Author : Jason Frank

I say goodnight to the two suns once they’re down. There’s a chill without ’em. I go to throw something warmer on. I end up putting on one of her old nightgowns; just throw it over what I’ve got on. I freshen up my drink and check on the charging situation. We don’t have a full charge, but we’re on our way.

Back outside I say goodnight to my HUV, her HUV, the HUV port… the mazeracks start crawling out of the little sheds I built them on the side of the HUV port and I say goodnight to each one of them. It’s morning to them, time to hunt. They give me little looks, they don’t get it. Whatever, they’ll be fine.

I make my way over to the little cemetery and say goodnight to everyone. I say goodnight to her last and longest. I tell her I know she’d understand and I cry, cry like a small child, wheezing and everything. Pretty quick my drink is empty. My cup may be defective. I promised myself to say goodnight to the whole bottle before… before I stop saying goodnight.

I say goodnight to everything that I recognize as an individual thing on my way back to the house. Goodnight, goodnight, goodnight…

I put more drink in my drink. The charge is at 97%. I give it a little more time. I put on my favorite song. It isn’t our song, which is better. I can’t listen to it anymore. Damn, I like this song. It’s over; I check the charge and we’re all full. I go back and play our song and say goodnight to all the furniture I bump into walking over to my fully charged blastick.

The damage we did in our day… I haven’t fired it in years, but I kept it. Never know when something is going to come in handy. Our song is really pretty. I start dancing with my blastick, respectfully. We’re dancing slowly and tears are running down my face. I’m pretty sure my blastick is sad too, sad as an object can be. It can’t believe I’m asking it to do what it’s going to do. The song’s winding down and I’m rubbing the stick under my chin looking for a comfortable spot.

Then all hell wrecks into my yard. I run out and recognize Rig’s HUV like half crashed in my yard. I sling the stick over my shoulder and go see if he needs help.

That old boy falls out of the HUV a bloody mess, too bloody for that wreck. He looks up at me and laughs. He compliments my “ensemble” and dies. That’s a very Rig way to die. I say goodnight to him. Then I see six of the most desperate eyed kids that ever had eyes in his HUV. We stare back and forth. I don’t say goodnight to them. The oldest is a dirty haired girl, holds her head like she thinks she’s tough. She says Rig said I’d keep them safe if they got to me.

Two years I was planning tonight and they want me to change my mind in two minutes. Two more minutes and I tell everyone to get out of Rig’s HUV and load into mine over there. We have to get going. Maybe all them goodnights were right. Maybe I don’t make it back here. Maybe I can’t see letting nobody hurt some kids, lost as me and Rig and she was once.


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