Deegan came up with this weeks starter sentence. I used to anguish over how to use some of the sentences, but found a story can start pretty much off of anything. This story was definitely influenced by another much better writer than I. To just call him better is probably an insult. Halfway through writing this one, I suddenly remembered Anthony Burgess' "The Wanting Seed" . That has to be where I came up with the idea.
In matters of life and death, one could not forever rely on the judgment of his fellow man. Those who did, deserved what came their way. For this reason and several others, Murphy had no respect for the western culture he existed in and dealt with every day. Westerners were soft, fat, and useless. They looked to their various governments or churches for sustenance, protection, and direction. Murphy hated them for their neediness.
Murphy dropped the drained, lifeless carcass to the ground. He stood over it and gazed into its dead eyes. Feeling nothing but contempt for this member of the herd he had just culled, he wiped his mouth and then rubbed his blood soaked hand on his victim's Brooks Brother lapel. He ran his eyes from the torn neck down the crumpled and now bloody lines of the finely tailored coat.
"Nice shoes", Murphy said and he walked away.
Phillip Hendricks sat in his 8x8 cubicle and pored over the stats from the recent controlled hunt. His hope was that after eight months of this new program, tangible data could be gleaned, filtered, collated, and presented to his G-14 boss for positive evaluation. Since he had been an early proponent of this controversial population control program, his career might not be on the line, but failure here could affect his movement upward.
Hendricks pushed back from his cluttered desk. Sighing loudly he looked again at the screen of his PC. One thing he had learned to rely on in this life was data. Data did not lie. It could be made into lies, but raw unfiltered data was truth without any baggage. And the data he was looking at did not make him happy. The targeted populations were still growing faster than the agency's efforts to control them. The Balston Stockyard area was the exception. Oddly, there appeared to be net zero growth in that one area.
Why was only one area supporting the initial goals of the program? Or was it why are all the others failing to do so? This conundrum ate at him as he stood, grabbed his coat and left the building for the day. Once on the subway headed home, he switched gears and was now worrying about his sump pump problem at home. After fifteen years with the Population Oversight Agency, Phillip Hendricks had mastered his profession. He learned early the only way to stay sane was to leave his job on the 12th floor when he went home at night.
"Senator Hewlet, is there any truth to the rumor of a federally sanctioned and supported controlled hunt in progress? And to follow up, would you or do you support such an effort to trim the over population problem?"
Murphy watched the press conference and smiled.
"Let's see you dance around that question Senator", Murphy shouted at the TV.
Senator Hewlet looked perturbed. He smiled though. A greasy smile.
"Well,in the ten years since the sub species Vrykolakas was identified, documented, and collected into internment camps, there has been pressure growing to re-introduce them back into Society. Some pilot programs have been discussed, but at this time, to my knowledge there is no federally backed effort to use the Vrykolakas to augment our attempts to rein in the population growth. Any uptick or surge in blood lettings is most likely the result of the few Vrykolakas never caught pushing back against our containment efforts........Next question.... Yes you there on the left........"
Murphy was impressed. That bastard managed to answer but not answer. To the screen he raised his hand in mock salute. "You sir have my respect. Even if you are a politician."
Murphy found the remote and clicked off the TV. His work day was not over yet. He still had to log in his kill count for the week. Failure to log in a kill count or meet the weekly quota meant back to the camp in a heartbeat. Mankind did not trust the Kindred. Murphy rubbed the spot on his neck where the tracking probe had been implanted. "Damn them and their technology."
Phillip Hendricks had a fitful night. His dreams were of numbers that did not add up, hordes of people spilling over cliffs, and subway cars bulging obscenely from the mass of Humanity crammed inside. He awoke on Thursday morning determined to figure it out. He would take a field trip on his way home that night. As he donned his jacket and hat, he turned to his live in love and said, "Don't wait up Frank. I'm heading over to the Stockyards for the night. I need to check on a pilot program we have going there."
Frank looked up from his handheld stock ticker. "Uh okay Phil. Be careful out there. Balston is a tough neighborhood. Don't wear anything expensive..........Oh yeah, that's right, you work for the Feds. You don't own anything expensive." Phil grimaced, flipped Frank the finger and headed for the subway.
Murphy was awakened earlier than he was used to. This always put him off. Whoever was pounding on his door at.......Jeez, 6:00 PM better have a damn good reason.
"Who is it and what do you want?"
Phillip Hendricks had no problem hearing this question through the closed door. The nervous jitters he walked up the four flights of stairs with spiked. He was now close to piss his pants scared. But he pressed forward and with a cracking voice, "Is this Mr. Murphy's apartment? My name is Phillip Hendricks. I run the program Mr. Murphy is part of."
The door opened a few inches. Hendricks stood there some moments. Gathering what courage he still had, he pushed it open and entered the apartment. The dim light inside could not hide the neatness and order of the place. Impressed, Phillip Hendricks began to relax some. Leaning against the back of the couch, Murphy lit a cigarette and took a pull. He did not say anything.
"Just Murphy is fine", interrupted Murphy. "I lost the use of "Mister" many years ago.........Uh, You are not my handler. Where's Samson? I was told any visit would include him. Am I in trouble? My kill count has been meeting quota, so what's up Mr Fed?"
"No, on the contrary Mr. ....uh Murphy. You have been exceeding my expectations. I am here to ask you how you do it? The other test sites are showing no progress. Yet here in Balston, you have met all projections perfectly."
Murphy took another drag off his cigarette. He studied the man standing uneasily at the entrance to his living room. The man's fear was obvious. Still staring at Hendricks, Murphy held out his hand and snuffed the cigarette out in the palm. Phil almost jumped out of his skin. Suddenly he felt his bladder weaken.
"Uh, That's Hendricks"
"Okay, Mr Hendricks. Relax guy. I can smell your fear way over here. Your program is the only thing keeping me out of internment. I plan to stay out of internment. So tell me what I can do and I will try to do it. But as to how I do it, well that's my business. You set up the rules, I follow them to the letter. I provide you dead people. And I do it here in Balston just like you wanted. Other than that I have nothing more to say except..........I like your shoes."
Again I would like to thank Cormac for his continued efforts to provide us hacks and hackettes a venue to display our various writing efforts.
Back to the grind............................