Friday, August 02, 2019

Gyrbynerjk #2

Brian walked into the main room of the satellite with a towel around his waist, a towel wrapped around his head and wearing a robe. “Hey, Barry, I have a question.”

“What’s up?” Barry answered.

“Where is the shower?”


“Something to clean myself with. Water, soap. I’ve been up here a week and I’m getting pretty stanky,” Brian sniffed his armpit.

“I don’t think there is one,” Barry said. “Dr. Anderson is evil so he probably didn’t put one in.”

“Mm. I’m gonna start getting itchy if I don’t get a shower,” Brian said. A light started blinking on the console. Brian pressed a button. “Hey, Dr. Anderson. Did you really not build a shower in here?”

“A shower? You have a sink that recycles your urine to give you water and that’s all you’ll get,” Dr. Anderson yelled. “Now, I’m sending you a classic board game where you judge people based on how they look. It’s the mystery face game: Guess Who.”

“Guess Who? I love Guess Who,” Brian smiled at Barry. “Wait. My drinking water is made from urine?”

“Guess Who is a simple game where you try to guess which character the other player has,” Brian began explaining. He shuffled the character cards and tipped over the character portraits on the board. “You use physical characteristics to narrow down who you think the other person has. Barry, would you like to play?”

“Sure. Why not?”

Brian picked a couple of cards and then stuck them in the card holder. “Now, you can ask just about anything. Eye color, hair color, face shape. Barry, does your person wear glasses?”

“What if they were contacts?” Barry asked.

“We don’t know that. They either wear glasses or they don’t.”

“Okay. They don’t,” Barry answered.

Brian knocked down all the characters who wear glasses on his board. “Now you ask me a question.”

“All right. Does your person have crippling depression?”

“Like wearing contacts, we don’t know that either,” Brian replied.

“Have you really looked at Herman?”

Brian got closer and squinted at Herman, a balding redhead with a huge nose. “Huh. Well, still, it has to be a physical characteristic.”

“Oh. Does your person…I don’t know, wear a hat?”

“No. Is your person Frans?”

“No. Wait, can we do that? Just ask if the person is that person?”

“Not really? I just don’t like looking at Frans.”


Brian closed his eyes, seemingly in pain. “Hey, Brian,” said a voice from dead in Brian’s brain. It was a slightly goofy voice with a German lilt to it. “Howzitgoing?”

“It’s fine, Frans,” Brian hesitantly answered.

“Wanna touch tips?”

“NO!” Brian screamed, startling Barry.

“What the hell?”

“Sorry, Barry. Frans is just…something I have to deal with.”

“Is your person Frans?”

“No. I’d rather die,” Brian snapped back. “Okay, does your person have a big nose?”

“What constitutes a big nose? I mean, clearly Peter and Max have big noses but what about Anne and Bernard?”

“They have big noses. It either is or isn’t.”

“This isn’t as fun as I thought,” Barry said. “Does your person have blue eyes?”

“Uh, no.”

Barry looked through his characters. “Wait a minute. Only six people have blue eyes. Everyone else has brown. That makes asking about eyes completely worthless.”

“Does your person have facial hair?”

“Facial hair? That gets rid of nearly everyone on my board,” Barry exclaimed.

“Narrowed it down to five,” Brian gloated.

“Uh, I don’t know. This is so stupid. Is your person a soulless ginger?”

“It’s 2019, are ginger jokes still funny?”

“I don’t think they were ever funny. Humans just like mocking people they feel are beneath them,” Barry said. “Now does your person have red hair or not?”


Barry knocked down two more characters. “That was a stupid question.”

“Does your person have long hair?”

“Argh. Yes,” Barry grumbled.

Brian knocked down George and Eric leaving only three women—Anita, Maria, and Susan. “Your person is clearly a female.”

“Mm,” Barry grumbled again. “Does your person have a beard?”

“Not going facial hair?” Brian asked.

“I have a plan.”

“My person does have a beard,” Brian nodded approvingly.

Barry knocked down several characters leaving only three—Philip, David, Richard. “Checkmate.”

“Does your person have a hat?”


“Damn,” and Brian knocked down Maria.

“Let’s see. I gotta make this count,” Barry sighed. “Does your person…have red cheeks?”


“Your person is Philip,” Barry smugly said.

“You got me. Is your person Susan?”

“Yes,” Brian took the character and threw it down.

They sat in silence for nearly a minute. “So that killed, what? Ten minutes?”

“Yeah, you have to play about three to five games before any time starts being killed,” Brian said. “It’s a good game for younger people but once you enter puberty, it’s
kind of boring.”

“You could, however, give each character a backstory and have the players figure out the character from that. Like Bill. Bill once tried to get microfibers like Donald Trump to hide his baldness but it was too expensive and who wants hair like Donald Trump?”

“I guess you could do that but I feel that if you have to start giving the players character information sheets then you might as well just play Dungeon and Dragons.”

“True, true. So tell me more about Frans.”


That night, Brian was lying in bed, just moments away from falling asleep. “Hey, Brian…” a goofy voice echoed in his head. Brian rolled over and attempted to force the voice back to the back of his head. “Brian…”

Brian’s eyes snapped open. The voice wasn’t coming from his head. “Hello?” he called into the darkness.

“Hey, Brian. Do you wanna touch tips?”

“I don’t even know what that means. Who asks someone that?”

“An ignorant young man curious about his sexuality,” the voice said. “You told everyone. You made me a laughing stock. Because of that, we’re going to touch tips. Touch tips forever!” The Frans card appeared around the corner holding a knife.

“What the hell?” Brian screamed and scrambled out of the bed. “I’m sorry. I’m not like that anymore. I was a stupid teenager and I understand the damage I did. Please, Frans. I’m sorry.”

The card lunged at Brian, who dodged relatively easily. “You’re trapped on a spaceship, Brian. There’s no running away from me.”

“You’re just a playing card. This isn’t really happening,” Brian ran out of the room and into the main part of the ship. Barry was powered down near the console. “Barry, wake up. We have a problem.”

He slowly powered on. “Hey, Brian, what’s going…What the hell is that?”

“The Frans card came to life and now it’s trying to kill me,” Brian explained.

“Oh, I’m not trying to kill you. I’m gonna chop your tip off. Touch tips forever!” the Frans card declared again. Another lunge and both Brian and Barry dodged. “You can’t escape me,” the Frans card began laughing maniacally.

Brian and Barry ran to another room and shut the door. There were only three rooms on the ship. They could still hear the laugh coming from the Frans card. “I can’t believe that I’ve been on this thing for a week and I’m already going to be killed,” Brian said to Barry in a hushed tone.

“He clearly just wants your tip. Just give him your tip,” Barry said.

“It doesn’t just come off, Barry.”

“Well, then, just let him cut it off. How much could it hurt?”

“I don’t really want to find out.”

The door flew open. “Guess who?!” Frans exclaimed and slashed at Brian.

Brian grabbed Frans and began wrestling with it and ultimately knocking the knife away. Brian began pinching the card between fingers and moving his hands apart. The card ripped in half and Frans went silent. Brian breathed heavily. “Does your person have a giant rip across his face?” Brian asked.

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