The Delicate Balance of Terror 27

“The eyeless creature with the quacking voice would never be vaporized. The little beetle like men who scuttled so nimbly through the labyrinthine corridors of Ministries-they, too, would never be vaporized. And the girl with the dark hair, the girl from the Fiction Department-she would never be vaporized either. It seemed to him that he knew instinctively who would survive and who would perish, though just what it was that made for survival, it was not easy to say.” George Orwell

She tiptoed through the desert as if she was walking through the sky. A see of stars surrounded her, swirling around her, lighting her path. She could no longer hear the humming, only the glorious whirling of stars. Stardust kicked up from the path of her feet as she saw the bunnies dancing in the distance. Created by her own bloody beaten hands, she breathed life into them with every footstep. In a sweep of wind the sky is blackened and the moon is full. There is a child looking down a well with tears falling from his eyes. She feels him, can feel his heart beating along with hers. He is holding onto a stuffed bear. She screams no, but as he falls into the well she sees the calmness on his face as if he was going back home. She is looking down the well and in the light of the moon she can see the tears glistening in the darkness. She can only send him stars, it is the only thing she knows how to do. She watches them enter his heart unbeknownst to him. A warmness he can’t remember feeling enters his body. She hears a humming and without thinking, ducks under a tree. They are here now. We were just a game. This is now the real game. She shakes off these dark thoughts. We were just practice. If it’s all a game we need to make our own rules. This thought comes to her from the shadows with the tip of a hat. The sparks are shooting out of their mouths as she puts a hand in front of her face realizing they can’t touch her here. She sees windup chattering teeth walking between her legs. They say nothing. They speak in chains. They trap us with each word. It says nothing. They are no longer living. Trapped reptiles in a cage of plastic. Their darkness surrounds us. The humming echoes within her mind but she will not let it cage her. The teeth and the wind up toys begin surrounding the bunnies. Pointing fingers, endlessly chattering what they are. The bunnies can’t hear it and continue on to that dark ever shifting building beyond the mountain. The old man with the beard waves them on as stars fall from his eyes, bathing the bunnies in light. The words he’s writing are disappearing into the air, floating away with the stardust. The Colonel is flying over head in his helicopter. His book of fire is slowly disappearing and his face is about to explode. He lands his helicopter in front of the bunnies and begins catching them in a butterfly net, but he can’t hold the stars. Don’t forget it’s all a game, the old man with the beard screams. The Colonel sees the stars swirling around me as he is clacking his claws. She tips her hat to him and with a smile, as she remembers how to communicate. In a swirl of stars she tells him, this is war, but now we’re making the rules.