“This is the song that you love the most and we hate the most.” - Nick Cave
It is a dark and stormy night. The General CEO enters the boardroom through the three security passages, the silver heels of his black leather boots echoing throughout as they strike the brushed metal floor. Despite the hour and the dim, recessed lighting he leaves his sunglasses on and straightens his cap as he strides to the large oval table that dominates the room. Above, a vast display screen awakens with his presence and fades into a detailed relief map of the country. Vast areas are shaded in a wash of greenish-gray, contrasted with small swaths of stippled sky blue. The General CEO contemplates this map for several moments and then begins to walk around the oval table, running his fingertips lightly over the tops of the swivel chairs arrayed all around it.
Sitting in these chairs are figures dressed in identical charcoal gray business suits, but instead of flesh they are stuffed with straw. Their heads are identical, hairless plastic molds that only feature holes where normally facial characteristics would be present. As with their stuffed scarecrow bodies, straw pokes out from all of the orifices of the heads. The General CEO occasionally caresses an air-cooled plastic cheek or pushes the straw deeper inside a face through an eye or mouth-hole. After the General CEO completes his circuit, he stands to the side, hands on his hips, and lifts his chin to call out to the dark upper reaches of the boardroom.
An emotionless though distinctly female voice issues from speakers mounted throughout the boardroom.
The General CEO lowers his gaze to his motionless board members. “Update please.”
THE DAY HAS FINALLY COME.
The General CEO looks up, and as he realizes the gravity of Control’s words, a sickening, mirthless grin spreads across his face.
“It’s really true?”
THE LAST MEASURE, ADMINISTERED ONE HOUR PRIOR, INDICATES THAT THE DESIRED EFFECT HAS BEEN ACHIEVED.
The General CEO licks his lips. His voice quavers with excitement. “Details?”
PER CAPITA, MORE THAN 98% OF MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN IN THIS COUNTRY NOW KNOW MORE FACTUAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE HEIRESS THAN THE WAR.
The General CEO’s breath catches in his throat.
PER CAPITA, MORE THEN 90% OF MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN IN THIS COUNTRY ARE MORE CONCERNED ABOUT THE OUTCOME OF THE HEIRESS’S DRUG AND ALCOHOL REHABILITATION THAN THE OUTCOME OF THE WAR.
The General CEO can barely believe that this is actually happening. “And the third? The third objective?”
100% OF THIS COUNTRY’S POPULATION CAN IDENTIFY THE HEIRESS BY NAME, FACE, AND CATCHPHRASE.
The General CEO slowly, raggedly inhales.
CONVERSELY, MORE THAN 50% OF THIS COUNTRY’S POPULATION DOES NOT KNOW THAT THIS COUNTRY IS AT WAR.
The General CEO exhales sharply, his shoulders shaking with delight. “Send. For them.”
ANTICIPATED THREE HOURS PRIOR WITH EARLY RESULTS. THEY WILL ARRIVE MOMENTARILY.
The General CEO responds, genuinely, “Thank you, Control.” He stands motionless for several moments, drinking it in. It has taken years, but his two archons have fully and completely accomplished their directives. They have finally created the circumstances necessary for the End and the subsequent, joyful birth of the Beginning and its orgy of order and fear.
THEY ARE HERE.
The General CEO undresses with a single gesture and lies naked and face-up upon a thick black leather couch that sits upon a shag rug off to the far side of the boardroom. A keypad to the right of the entranceway pulsates through a series of colors and accompanying sounds, and the three metal doors quickly slide open with an attendant rush of air. In silently walk a young blonde woman and an old white man, both completely nude. The young woman is the famous Heiress; the old man is the President of the United States. The General CEO gestures for the two to join him.
As the Heiress’ petite powdered feet pad along the floor towards the General CEO, maggots quietly rain down from her vagina to the polished metal. The President’s tiny penis is fully erect, and a foul yellow pus drools from the head. These twin towers of filth approach the General CEO and lie down on either side of the black leather couch, caressing him gently. In a small cloud of steam, the General CEO’s body melts into that of a gigantic worm, fat and brown, with hundreds of smaller worms spurting out from suppurating wounds where the tight worm-skin has split. Only his head remains untransformed.
Suddenly the General CEO’s face splits down the middle, the skin separates from the head and both halves fan backwards from it like wings. Revealed underneath, a great sphincter imbedded with multiple rows of tiny sharp teeth is sheathed in blood. The Heiress and the President move in close to lick the blood from the sphincter’s wrinkled lips. Those lips twitch violently, and then issue the General CEO’s final order in a gargled belch.
“Release the bats.”