Author : Mike McLaren

Shmuel Berkov grew up in Logoisk, and lived a regular life like any other boy in the village, until his eighteenth birthday, when he made the decision to run for Prime Minster of Belarus. He wanted to grow up and save the world. His dream to be the leader of his country came true.


Four friends sat at the compass points of a round table. They leered at one another over the monitors of their laptops. One of them held down the SHIFT-COMMAND keys and fingered a series of letters and numbers. He pressed ENTER.

Montol bolted to his feet. “Gimme a break, Epron. Every time you take a new turn it seems like you’re trying to end the game.”

“Well, duh. Now you’re catching on. I’m surprised you didn’t pick up on that three turns back.”

“Why?” asked Fras. “This is a fun game.”

“Come on guys; we’ve restructured the geology a billion times, rotated species over three hundred fifty billion times… .”

“But that’s the game, Epron.”

“We haven’t come up with a new thought in forever, not since Toubis invented gunpowder.”

“Hey, wait a minute,” contended Fras. “I came up with the steam engine idea right after that.”

“Just an extension of energy under pressure.”

“Uh uh. It allowed for the creation of electricity.”

“Just another extension of lightning, which was just an extension of fire. Don’t you see; we’ve gotten as boring as the game.”

“But I just came up with all those electronic gadgets.”

“Piffle. Fras gave that species thumbs for better uses than that.”

“So what do you want to do?” asked Toubis.

Epron leaned over his laptop. “Remember the first move of your last turn; you reorganized the politics of Europe and came up missing a bunch of nukes. Well, guess who has them.” He held down SHIFT-COMMAND, keyed-in G-A-M-E-O-V-E-R, and pressed ENTER.

All four boys leaned over their laptops and watched a crimson glow spread across their monitors.

“Well you did it, Epron.” Montol spun on his heels. “I’ll see you guys tomorrow. Got no choice, now.”

“Ah, don’t worry, man. We’ll think of something new. You know we always do.”


Prime Minister Berkov took up his pen, and at the moment he was to sign an historic document that would provide for perfect economic equality throughout the country, he was struck by another thought, as if a button had been pushed in his brain to reroute his synapses. He set down his pen, and picked up the telephone connected directly to the military base in Minsk. Within thirty seconds, the skies above Belarus clouded over completely with the contrails of nuclear missiles.

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