“I know you may not understand all these words but that creature is part flesh, part machine. It has orders to follow and it can’t deny them. It must murder every man, woman and child, those are its orders,” Sam explained.
“Maybe we should let it,” I said defeated. I looked at Sam and the Captain. I suddenly felt different. I felt released. I suddenly didn’t care, I had been deeply shocked by the revelations that had just been thrust upon me. I was dead. My husband was the Sky Kraken, and… I suddenly I didn’t care. It was as if all my emotions had simply been swept away. I wasn’t sure if they were locked up in a closet or the creature that I was, had removed them. I looked down at where my hands had been and inspected the whip tentacles.
I want to be with you, I thought to the Sky Kraken. When Paul had rejoined it, it had started moving again. Now the Sky Kraken was slowly and efficiently, grabbing the citizens of Draco Island, and one by one, eating them. It was popping them into its mouth like one would pop nuts into their mouth. I could now hear a dull roar behind my eyes.
Not yet, whispered Paul’s voice to me. You still have work to do. I suddenly flickered and was me again, in my human projection looking as I had before. I turned to look at Sam and the Captain who were now trying help people escape the Sky Kraken. There was no place for them to go, we were on an island, and the Deceit of Trinity had been torn to pieces by the dragon.
Honesty, I heard Mitch’s voice. It came through loud and clear above all the others.
“Mitch?” I asked out loud.
You’re very special, he whispered. You’re to be the mother of the world.
“What?” I asked not understanding.
Within your womb awaits the world to be ready to be born again. I placed my hand down to my flat stomach, remembering that I’d had sex, no I had made love to Mitch and he’d put his seed in me.
I picked up my fork from the ground and shook the voices from my head. I grabbed the nearest human to me. A skinny man, practically still a boy, and I shoved my fork as far as I could into his throat. Blood spurted over my hand, wet, hot, and sticky. I jerked my fork away and reached out for the next victim, but they weren’t victims, they were just waiting for the world to be reborn and they couldn’t be reincarnated if they were still living now could they?
The first time he’d ever seen Louella Huckabee he actually thought it was Rebecca. The Rebecca who had died some six hundred years ago killing a cyborg squid by shoving it into a funnel cake fryer. If Rebecca weighed a hundred and fifty pounds less, she would’ve been Louella’s identical twin, and all along, Sean doubted that Louella wasn’t Rebecca. They had the same attitude, they were both brutally honest, both vulgar, and both hard working. Sean hadn’t let Louella stay on board the Deceit of Trinity because she had turned his second mate in a one eyed/one balled buffoon, but because of her resemblance to Rebecca. He had learned that some minds break under the solitude and he was almost certain that this was what happened to Rebecca. She didn’t know she was Rebecca, she thought she was Louella Huckabee, school teacher, married to Paul Huckabee.
Sean wasn’t sure why he had tried to protect the humans. Before he’d woken up as a cyborg squid himself, he hadn’t known that the mind or soul, somehow got preserved when the collectors took the DNA sample. He had thought that Rebecca, dying before being eaten alive had been the lucky one, but in truth, her mind had been saved just like his. Sean could only assume he was trying to protect the humans, was because he knew what the solitude was like, he had been through it and somehow came out moderately unscathed. Sure he had gone down his own homicidal moments, long enough to have actually attained the nickname: Deadly.
He tried to stop Louella, but when he touched her, she became the bastard Mitch. It was like he was protecting her from him. Mitch was a different piece of work all together. Mitch had his own story. He’d also worked at the theme park, not at funnel cake with Sean and Rebecca, Mitch was in restrooms and grounds. Mitch and Rebecca had been somewhat sweet on each other. Mitch would make an effort to come to Funnel Cake and say hi, and Rebecca would beam at him like he’d just given her diamonds.
He supposed that Mitch had gone through the same torture they all had. Everyone came out the other side of different. Sean had watched humanity for centuries before killing some and stealing a pirate ship. Rebecca made herself into a completely different persona, Paul, Rebecca’s husband, had become the Sky Kraken. Mitch only cared about one thing, finding Rebecca. Mitch killed humans, killed other collectors, whatever stood between him and his quest to find Rebecca. It was sad though, he’d been trapped on the surface, while Rebecca had been trapped above the clouds.
In the end, it had been futile. The Sky Kraken, now above the clouds, killed and ate, killed and ate. Island after island was desolated, and finally the human race was no more. Seven billion minds locked inside themselves inside the Sky Kraken. There were a few collectors who had not joined the Sky Kraken, Mitch, Sean, Sam, Louella, and the villagers who had made their home inside the theme park on the surface.
Sean watched as the Sky Kraken finally collapsed into a pile of collectors. It had served its purpose. People began to emerge from the collectors and soon it was like a pile of humans struggling to stand up. A man that Sean had never met, but because of the collective consciousness of the cyborg squids, he knew this man was David Huckabee, Paul’s brother.
“You had it wrong all along,” David stated. “I was the Sky Kraken, not Paul.” David’s hand suddenly shot out and moved into Sean’s chest as if Sean was nothing more than just the illusion it really was. Sean was dragged closer to David. “I control the hive. I can’t have errant drones. I’m deleting you from the database.” Sean’s image suddenly flickered and it was shown that David’s hand, now a tentacle had slammed so hard into Sean’s body it had burst through the skin and was inside the cyborg squid’s head. The cyborg squid gave that inhuman squeal and the red lights behind the eyes flickered before winking out. The cyborg squid suddenly dropped to the ground, lifeless.
“No! Sean!” Shouted Sam’s voice behind David. David turned and just like he had Sean, his tentacle flicked out and like Sean, Sam’s body flickered and disappeared showing David’s tentacle inside Sam’s cyborg squid head. Sam’s cyborg body looked less mechanical and more living tissue.
“You and your lover used my brother’s wife against him,” David said and Sam’s body, like Sean’s gave an inhuman screech, tried to jerk away from him. The red glow in his eyes winked out and a second dead cyborg squid fell to the ground.
Louella’s being mother of the world wasn’t exactly what she expected. There was still the problem of being above the clouds. Squid lings, she knew they were now no longer Sky Kraken spawn, sacrificed themselves to fly into the clouds and destroy the Rainmakers attached to each island. The islands crashed into the surface, many into the ocean and sank, but a few crashed into the ground leaving craters and kicking up clouds of dust. Draco Island was the last to collapse to the ground.
The world was now free of humans, and belonged wholly to the collectors, the cyborg squids. The young that Louella gave birth to were not humans, in fact she, with swollen belly and tentacles laced with her husband’s, gave live birth to thousands of squid lings. At the moment of their birth they began to float up towards the skies, tiny, like spiders. Unlike the pink cyborg squids, these were all black in color.
Work went into rebuilding the world, but outside the theme park were fields of pink eggs, with incubating humans in them. They were waiting to be hatched into a world that was ready to be repopulated. The cyborg squids that had remained independent, had to be dealt with. One by one, David attacked them and deleted them from the data base. Only two were left, Louella and Mitch.
Louella went to see Dr. Erich Schwertfeger. He was basically the last living human, but he wasn’t human, he was more or less a cyborg human, the technology that went into creating the collectors was based upon the same components that he’d created to extend his own life.
“Ah, ze broken one has returned,” Schwertfeger greeted.
“Broken one?” Louella asked.
“Ja, you were broken when I first encountered you,” he replied.
“You told me I was human,” she stated.
“Would you have believed me if I had told you that you were a telepathic cyborg squid?”
“I would’ve have thought you just as insane as I still think you are,” Louella replied honestly. Her nickname wasn’t ‘Honesty’ for nothing. Schwertfeger gave a little laugh.
“Would you like me to fix you?” Schwertfeger asked and Louella wondered about this. She had given up wearing her human projection. She had come to the crazy engineer as her cyborg squid self, and like Sam’s form, she was even a little more flesh and a lot less mechanical. There wasn’t even a red glow in her squid eyes.
“What is broken with me?” She asked.
“Your mind,” Schwertfeger began pointing to his own head, tapping a temple with one finger. “When I created you I just wanted you to collect DNA samples, store them in a database, what was once called a Cloud, if you will. I do not know what happened that when my squid lings began to take samples from humans that a piece of the mind or soul if you will also got saved and uploaded to the cloud, to the collective, to the database. These minds, they’ve been alone, only the ones who have become strong enough to escape the database, such as yourself, can hear them. They are mute, deaf, and in the darkness, and the mind craves, requires stimulation, or it breaks. Yours broke.”
Other than the fact that Louella had a hard time to accept this mechanical man in front of her was her creator, in essence she was having a conversation with God. She almost turned and left the creepy labyrinth house that this man dwelled in. She didn’t think she was broken, she was fine, and she had just birthed thousands of new squid lings, collectors who were 100% flesh.
“You see, you are not this person you call Louella Huckabee, according to the database…” Schwertfeger went to what looked large chest of drawers with nobs all over it and a screen, flicked a switch and there was a humming as something began to power on. Light came from the screen, Louella now knew this was computer, once she had accepted she was dead, and had stopped wearing her human projection she had suddenly been opened up to the world of her cyborg squid body. She knew things now, understood them. He had pulled up a search box. And typed in Louella Huckabee A list of names and faces appeared on the screen. “None of them look like you.”
“I’m a cyborg squid, I look like the other collectors,” Louella defended. She was uncomfortable where this was going. She remembered a little too clearly the photo of the woman standing next to Mitch that Mitch had kept as shrine to his lost friend.
“No, this is who you are,” Schwertfeger typed in REBECCA HUCKABEE, he scrolled down and there popped up on the screen was Mitch’s heavyset friend. Louella wanted to shake her head, but she when she did, her whole body moved back and forth.
“She’s an ancestor, I was born on the Wondering Holm. It’s a genetic resemblance that has shown up generations later, there are a hundred explanations why I look like her,” Louella defended.
“Except only one that is truth,” Schwertfeger stated.