Sunday, January 28, 2018

Kid Eternity #2

The entire gym class stood in two lines underneath the ropes. “I can’t believe the state requires students to know how to climb a rope,” Izzy said. She was in one line while Cory and Chase were in the other.

“I suspect it’s for some kind of Hunger Games scenario,” Chase said.

“Ha! Sucks to be the next generation,” Cory laughed. Cory stuck his hand in the pocket of his gym shorts and found a note. “What the…?” he pulled it out and read it.

2907 waits.
Hope you like politics.
-Yoshi C

“Well, at least he didn’t use ‘afoot’ this time,” Chase said.

“How did he get this in my pocket?” Cory asked.

“How did who get what in your pocket?” Issy asked.

“Nothing,” Cory said. “How am I supposed to get out of class? Coach Rockne will never excuse me.”

“I have a plan. Follow my lead,” Chase whispered. “Damn, Cory. What did you eat this morning? Did you shart yourself? How long ago did you die?”


“I said follow my lead.”

Cory rolled his eyes. “Oh, my stomach. Coach, I can’t hold it. I gotta go,” Cory didn’t wait for an answer and ran to the locker room doors.

Everyone stared at Cory, some chuckled. Coach Rockne shouted. “Next semester we’ll get into nutrition which might help you not embarrass yourself like that,” he pointed to the locker room with his pencil.

“Looks like we’re going to face off against each other,” Izzy said.

“It’s not a competition, Izzy,” Chase said. “But I’m going to kick your butt.”

“Oh, but it’s not a competition?” Izzy scoffed.

“It’s not. No offense but you’re a girl.”

“You have two seconds to recalibrate.”

“Girls have no upper body strength and are notoriously bad climbers. It’s why they climbed out of the trees first those thousands of years ago,” Chase explained.

“So women are more evolved which is why we’re so weak and puny? This is insulting and makes no sense.”

“Fine. If you think you’re so great at shimmying up a rope let’s make a bet. If I reach the top first, you buy me dinner at the Taco Hole.”

“Okay. If I win then you have to buy me a giant stuffed animal--something rainbow or pastel-colored.”

“That’s what I want to hear,” Coach Rockne exclaimed. “That’s what gym class should be. Two gladiators competing for dominance. Two students enter, one student leaves. Let’s do this.”

“I always thought I would die in gym class,” Chase said.

Cory arrived in 2907 in some sort of stadium or arena with thousands of people in seats, standing, and just milling about. He found Yoshi and went up to him. “Where are we?”

“The People’s Republic National Convention in Portland, Oregon. It’s like the Democratic or Republican conventions of your time,” Yoshi said.

“900 years in the future and we still do this?”

“It’s like a reality show now. The four candidates with the highest ratings are chosen. They are then put in a thirteen-episode series where an audience votes for their favorite two. Those two then get placed on the ballot and voted on.”

“Holy crap that sounds awful. When did all that start?”


“Makes sense,” Cory sighed. “So what are we doing here?”

“There’s an issue with our candidate over there,” Yoshi pointed at an older lady talking to the crowd. “She is by far the best candidate for the job but as it turns out she gets America closer to an autocracy than anyone else and just a few years after she is term-limited, America goes back to being ruled by a king.”

“Well, we can’t let that happen,” Cory said. “I’m sure we could just talk to her. She’s probably very reasonable and would understand completely. What’s her name?”

“Barbara Ann Blocher.”

“This will be easy.”

After Blocher’s speech, she left the stage and went down a hallway. Cory and Yoshi were waiting. “Make sure to get the new poll numbers as soon as they are out,” she said. “Also, ask the governor of Colorado why their delegates didn’t seem thrilled to be here. It looked back on the television.”

“Yes, ma’am,” replied an assistant.

“Excuse me, Ms. Blocher,” Cory went up to her.

Blocher sneered. “What?”

“Can I talk to you in private? Or just, step over here for a second?”

Blocher looked over at her bodyguard. He stepped forward but she waved her hand. They took a couple steps from the small crowd. “What do you want?”

“I would like to ask you to drop out of the race. It’s hard to explain but your election has serious negative repercussions for the country,” Cory explained quickly.

“So I win?”

“Yeah, but serious negative repercussions for the country and all that.”

“I’m not dropping out,” Blocher said.

“I can’t allow you to stay in the race,” Cory responded.

“You can’t stop me. No one can stop me,” Blocher yelled and hit Cory with a full-force punch sending him down the hallway and through the concrete wall and into the building next door.

Chase and Izzy stood at their ropes and looked up as Coach Rockne and the class looked at them. “All right. First one to the top get the taco dinner.”

“Or the giant stuffed animal,” Izzy said.

“Yeah, whatever,” Coach Rockne rolled his eyes and sighed. “On your marks, get set, go.”

Izzy and Chase jumped up and began climbing the rope. They started out climbing at the same speed but as they reached the middle, Chase began slowing down. “This was a stupid idea,” Chase said, sliding down the rope a bit and burning one of his hands.

“I agree. Why’d we do this?”

“I just wanted tacos. I could’ve just went and ate some after school today.”

Izzy stopped climbing and looked at Chase who also stopped. “Do you want to stop this stupid contest?”

“If you want to,” Chase panted.

“Nope,” Izzy said and continued climbing, harder and faster.

“What? You tricked me,” Chase continued climbing but was now a few paces behind Izzy.

“There are no rules,” Izzy said. “You just climb until you reach the top. Climb until you’re free.”

“What?” Chase stopped climbing again and looked at Izzy.

She reached the top and screamed, raising her fist in the air. “Suck it, Chase. Suck. It.”

“Good job, Miss Azuz. The whole class expects pictures of James giving you your gigantic stuffed animal. I’m sure it will be pathetic and humiliating. Everyone down in the locker room,” Coach Rockne said and the kids ran off to the locker room.

Izzy slid down the rope a bit before jumping off and landing on the floor. “Are you still trying to reach the top? Just come down,” she said.

“I can’t. I looked down by accident and have now apparently forgotten how to use my arms.”

“Why didn’t you tell me she had superpowers?” Cory asked as he flew back into the stadium and landed next to Yoshi.

“I figured you would figure it out when she didn’t seem threatened by you,” Yoshi said.

“Thanks,” Cory turned to Blocher. “Wait. That’s it. That’s how I’ll get her to drop out. It’s going to hurt but I think it’s the only way.” Cory went up to her and lightly slapper her.

“You insolent slug,” she bellowed and began pummelling Cory. He fell to the ground tried to block her punches. “I will teach you a lesson. Nobody gets in the way of Barbara Ann Blocher and lives.”

She continued hitting Cory. A crowd was gathering including media outlets with cameras and microphones. Blocher soon realized what was going on and stopped hitting Cory, who quickly got up and scrambled away with Yoshi.

“I know what this looks like,” she said and tried to laugh. “I was just…”

“Hitting a fourteen-year-old,” Cory yelled at her. “I just wanted an autograph.”

“No, no. That’s not what happened. I have witnesses,” she pointed at the two guys with her.

They shook their heads. “You were still hitting a teenager, ma’am,” one said.

Blocher continued to try to talk her way out of this. Cory looked at Yoshi. “I think we can go,” he said. They walked off behind a corner and entered a portal that took them back home.

Cory walked through the halls at school after return, heading to his next class after gym, which was already ten minutes in. When he walked in, everyone looked at him. “Mr. Buchanan, where have you been?”

“I was...personal issues,” Cory answered and quickly sat down.

“Where’d you get that black eye?” Izzy asked quietly.

“What?” he touched his eye softly. “Ow,” he gasped.

“What were doing in the bathroom that gave you a black eye?” she asked.

“You don’t want to know,” Chase interjected. “The mere fact you have to ask should tell you it’s a sordid and sad story.”

“Mm,” Izzy wrinkled her nose and went back to paying attention to the teacher.