Immortality

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Cover image: Pixabay.com.

Immortality

I don’t think a single one of us considered the implications. Eternal life for everyone. Death to death. It sounded so unbelievably... perfect.

All it took was one single injection to ensure immortality. The queues were chaos and brought about quite a few fatalities. Ironic, when you think about it. Poor them, perishing at the final moment. It’s only now that I, like many others, have come to realize that they were the lucky ones.

Think about it, just for a moment. There was no death, but there was still birth. It didn’t take more than a couple of years for places to become cramped, over-crowded. We spread out but there’s a limit of land so soon we were forced to go upwards as well.

Personal space? That was one of the first things to go. Violence was rampant. Severe injuries, fatal injuries, were a life sentence... an eternal sentence. And then there was sickness, ageing. The injection kept us all alive, but our bodies wore out just the same and so did our minds.

It didn’t take long for those that had the power or the means to retreat into fortresses. Immortality led to more and more inequality, and unless you were one of the select few daily life became hellish, with no prospect of it ever ending.

How could we have been so naive?

Me, I guess I am one of the lucky ones. I am employed as part of the army that patrols one of these fortresses. The master, some ultra-rich mega tycoon back in the day, has not made an appearance for many years. Was he even still alive? Stupid question: of course he was.

Today there’s a rabble gathering. Can’t say I blame them. Food prices have gone through the roof with way too much demand. Even here we are lucky to receive a meal more than once every three days. My belly cramps and my head gets light. There’s no fuel, but then we are all clustered so close together we don’t really need it for heat. And what is the point in traveling when everywhere you go is exactly the same. What must it be like for them?

I move into position at the front gate, forcing my arm to lift up the sword. It hadn’t seemed so heavy before, but at one hundred and ninety eight years of age my joints had worn out and my strength had definitely waned.

I recognize the rabble’s leader from the scar that runs from his eye, down his face and neck. He should have bled out from that wound, but instead it left him looking hollow... empty. I guess he would be for there’s no blood to be had. Just a quick stitch up and off you go, back out into hell.

He stares at me, pulls back his teeth in what he intends to be a vicious snarl. It loses a lot of its effect when there are no teeth exposed. I move my weight from one leg to the other, hold my sword ready. We’ve been here before, because that scar of his... I was the one who gave it to him.

Be ready!”

That’s my superior officer. He’s somewhere at the back, as much out of harm’s way as he can get while still issuing orders.

There’s a collective groan as we all form a wall. You can hardly be surprised, given the fact that over half of us are one hundred and fifty plus. We’ll hold each other up as much as ourselves and that’s our strength. So far the rabble has just ran at us, and we have been able to repel them. Today, though, something is different.

Link your arms,” shouts out the rabble’s leader and that’s what they do. There is no speed behind the attack, but rather it comes at a steady marching pace. There’s someone beating out a rhythm on an old rusty oil can.

I sneak a peek towards the man on my left. “What are they doing?”

Hell if I know,” he answers.

There seems to be no end to their numbers. They are going to crush us where we stand!

Hold firm!”

It’s alright for him, he’ll have a chance to make an escape while the rest of us get trampled and worse. So much worse.

Some of them are as old as me, other’s are much younger. I just wish I wasn’t face to face with... him. I lift my arm, slash with my sword. He’s too quick; he grabs it, wrests it from my grip and now I’m pulled forward, losing my balance. I see the flash of the steel above me as it descends down onto the back of my neck.

Will decapitation kill me? Hell if I know.

 

 


Submitted: March 24, 2021

© Copyright 2021 hullabaloo22. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:

Comments

AdamCarlton

Macabre... and funny. Some great writing here, really liked it.

Wed, March 24th, 2021 7:34pm

Author
Reply

Glad you enjoyed it, Adam.

Wed, March 24th, 2021 12:38pm

Mike S.

Seems like we're living though the beginning of this now; excellent, Hull

Wed, March 24th, 2021 7:34pm

Author
Reply

There's nothing I'd like less than to have to live forever, to be honest. Thanks, Mike.

Wed, March 24th, 2021 12:38pm

Ezra Enzo

Great take on the topic of immortality. It has comedic questions that brighten up the dystopian mood that you set, the realistic tone of someone still trying to live in a hell above ground. Incredible work. - E.E

Wed, March 24th, 2021 9:07pm

Author
Reply

Thanks so much. I'm glad the dark comedy worked. I'd hate the idea of living forever, but I did enjoy writing this story.

Sun, March 28th, 2021 6:57am

JE Falcon aka JEF

Too funny Hul, in a scary sort of way. But the idea for living forever is scary enough. LOL

Thu, March 25th, 2021 3:45pm

Author
Reply

Thanks, JE. The idea to me is terrifying. I'm glad I managed to insert a little bit of dark humor in the telling, and thanks so much for giving this a read.

Sun, March 28th, 2021 6:53am

Vance Currie

Nothing would terrify me more than the prospect of eternal life.

Thu, March 25th, 2021 9:29pm

Author
Reply

Honestly, Vance, I couldn't agree more. Thanks so much for giving this a read.

Sun, March 28th, 2021 6:47am

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