Marionette

Posted: December 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

“It’s like existentialism in reverse, man!”

“You’re drunk.”

“Maybe a little…”

“And I hate talking about this shit.”

“C’mon, man. Think! It’s like, since seeing is believing, when someone sees something, it makes it real!”

“Will you shut up and grab an end?”

“So when these kids see the puppet show, it gives the puppets life!”

“You’re an idiot.”

“And you have no magic in your soul.”

“Shut the fuck up.”

Silence, punctuated by thumping and scraping of crates and cases. The marionette stirred. The drunk road hand was possibly an idiot. The surly one possibly had no magic in his soul. The marionette didn’t care at all. It clutched at the toy scimitar, and brushed one hand against the blade. It had taken a long time in the absence of a proper whetstone, but the small wooden pirate didn’t have much else to do in the back of the truck. The truck started with a growl, sending erratic vibrations through all of its cargo. The marionette dropped its tiny sword. It flexed its hands. The hands were not built articulate; the puppet had quite literally willed them flexible. If it could grunt with effort, it would have – the fingers popped free of each other. The construct picked up the sword much more easily this time. It would have grinned, but it hadn’t had a reason before, so wasn’t yet capable. The thing shuffled its way free of the other puppets. Why they weren’t moving was of no concern at the moment.

It held up the left wrist, twisting so that the joining of wood and wiring were on top. The thing slid the sword along its arm. Blade met cable. The thing pushed, and the wire separated without a sound. It switched hands and sliced its other arm free. Next came legs, and head. The construct could no longer be considered a marionette. It looked down at the tangle of loose wire that traced back to the controls. If it could have snarled in contempt, it would have. It would never let another control it. The tiny wooden pirate climbed up to the latch on the case. It stuck its sword into the mechanism and set about opening the latch.

. . .

The truck was late to its destination. The surly road hand blamed the drunk one for not latching the back of the truck. The drunk one lacked the wherewithal to defend himself. They had been pulled over by state patrol because the bay door was open. The only apparent damage was the loss of one marionette and the word “Freedom” scratched into the lid of one of the cases.

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