Void by Budi Satria Kwan

Save The World! (9)

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Emmanuel already knew the answer. It filled his whole being.

The Guardian Angel.

Are you Serious? What a Joke. Give in. Submit.

No, Emmanuel thought.

You don’t matter.

No.

None of it matters.

“No!” Emmanuel shouted.

The whole class stared at him. Eyes full of judgement.

“To the Principal’s office, Emmanuel,” Mr. Morrison mumbled.

Emmanuel grabbed his throat. Had he just? Did he?

“Now, please,” Mr. Morrison blabbed.

Emmanuel bolted out the door. He wasn’t going to the principal’s office. He… he wanted to go home.

He ran past the cafeteria where people were congregating around a boy eating an entire turkey in one bite and then visibly growing a foot taller.

He ran past the nurse’s office where bandages made cuts instantly disappear and vials of red liquid made every malady vanish like magic.

He ran past the lockers where one boy was selling unusual items to passerby. Why wasn’t anyone in class?

“Hey. Buddy.”

Emmanuel paused. He was out of breath anyway. The boy merchant had been the one who stopped him. He was standing hands in pockets, one foot against a locker, sucking on a lollipop.

Emmanuel tilted his head.

What?

“You look like you’re in the market to buy stuff. I got stuff. Wanna buy it?” the boy asked.

Emmanuel watched him warily for a moment. Then he shrugged and nodded.

“Cool.”

Eddy’s Locker Market

Junk Food- 10 Bucks

Health Potion- 20 Bucks

Fizzy Soda- 10 Bucks

Magnifying Glass- 17 Bucks

Bigger Wallet- 100 Bucks

Sweet Kicks- 150 Bucks

Emmanuel took out his phone.

Can I sell something?

“Ugh. Yeah, you can sell something. But I don’t buy everything. This ain’t a flea market.”

Emmanuel took the giant beetle leg out of his bag.

“Whoa, buddy. That’s gnarly. Where’d you get it?”

Emmanuel shrugged, then held it out to him.

“Yeah, I’ll buy it. Keep bringing me gnarly stuff like that and we’ll have a beautiful business relationship, you and I.”

<Emmanuel sold the Giant Beetle Leg (1)>

<Emmanuel got 5 Bucks>

“Pleasure doing business with you,” Eddy said, before climbing in his locker and shutting the door.

Emmanuel thought that was kind of weird, but figured it was best to stop questioning these things. Now that things had calmed down, he wondered what it was he was doing out here. Where had he been headed?

He had a thought in his head that the important stuff had passed and now it was time to-


Later that evening…

-Commencement Suburbs-

The Wilson Residence

Reginald Wilson welcomed the gentleman from the Semanto Corporation into his parlor. They had many matters to discuss regarding Commencement’s future and Reginald was eager to get this over with.

“I hope you’re not too attached to these designs,” the Semanto man said, getting comfortable with a glass of brandy in hand. “The boys in corporate are already pushing for a new visual direction with the luxury condos and they want the mall to incorporate them as we move forward.”

“The mall? The mall is… is a historic site. It’s practically a landmark,” Reginald meekly objected.

“A landmark in need of updating. It’s so mid-century, Reggie. You gotta get the mall people on board with this. It’ll be an eyesore in the middle of the new downtown, otherwise.”

“I… I can float the idea by them,” Reginald said as the air slowly left him.

“Good. Now let’s talk permits. We’ll need the wildlife preservation areas around the edges of the new developments here and here to be rezoned as commercial residential.”

“Commercial… residential?”

“It’s a new zoning category we want you to introduce to city council. It’ll allow us to… well to do whatever the fuck we want, really. But those protected wetlands are so in the way. I hope you can get the council to see reason.”

“There’s going to be a lot of resistance to it,” Reginald said.

“Who cares? You’re the mayor. Make it happen.”

“Of course. I’ll do my… best,” Reginald said as he looked over the war crime of a map the Semanto man had presented.

It was a map of the Commencement yet to be superimposed onto the one as it existed now, along with numerous red lines scribbled all over it. Cut down these trees, level these homes, drain these swamps, tear down these shops. All in the name of building the new home of Semanto’s regional headquarters and distro centers. The price was untold millions in profit coming city council’s and Reginald’s way. The cost… well, there it was before him. A new, glitzy, shiny, neon soaked city built on the corpse of two centuries of tradition. Reginald felt the dagger in his stomach twist a few degrees more.

“Why don’t we toast, hmm? To the future,” the man from Semanto said. Reginald raised his glass.

“To… to the-“

“I hate her!” Madison screamed. Reginald did a double take behind him. His daughter had just burst through the front doors holding a private school uniform splashed with red, three of her sycophant friends trailed behind her.

“Um, do excuse my daughter. It seems as if she’s had a rough day,” Reginald said.

“I get it. Teenage girls are a giant headache, am I right?” the Semanto man said, making a gun sign with his fingers pointing to his head.

Reginald smiled, dying a little inside as he did.

“That little bitch. I hate her so much,” Madison growled, wringing her ruined school uniform. Her three friends had scattered around her spacious bedroom, putting the finishing touches on their combined Summer Project.

“Forget her. Like, we got such a bomb summer project going on, Maddy,” Kennedy said, looking through her stylish black butterfly mask.

“Yeah. Like, who cares what a little poor girl thinks, anyway?” Regan asked.

“Poor people just don’t appreciate their betters. That’s why they stay poor,” Taylor said, twirling her wavy blonde hair as she lay on Madison’s bed.

“That’s the whole point of the project,” Madison said, throwing her uniform in the trash. “The ones who are better deserve to be on top. They understand what it means to have power. The ones who don’t, deserve to be on the bottom. That’s the way the world works.”

“That’s the way it should work,” Taylor said, trying on her beguiling black peacock mask.

“But people keep messing it up. They think life isn’t fair and so they go around trying to change things. They can’t accept the way things are. Well, life isn’t fair! It isn’t supposed to be! And they spit on us like it’s our damn fault.”

“It’s their own damn fault,” Regan said, trying on her stunning black dragon mask.

“So that’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to show them all their place,” Madison said, putting on her black bunny mask. “All of them.”

Day 4

Scorching Hot with a high of 920 F.

Town Energy: Melting

Chance of wild fire: 65%


Emmanuel rubbed his eyes. He was so tired.

“Quit yawning, sleepy head, before you make me start yawning too,” Miranda said.

Emmanuel harrumphed and kept rubbing his eyes.

“So, today is gonna be a big one. We have to… what did we decide yesterday?”

* Sycamore Knights. Part 3. Come oooooon. Let’s do it! (Not enough Stamina)

^ People need our help. Let’s talk to them and figure out what they need.

# More mottos! More catchphrases! Marketing! Advertising! (Not enough Brains.)

+ The more people get behind this project the better. We’ll win for sure if we get lot’s of volunteers.

(What should Emmanuel choose? Leave a comment and let us know.)

2 thoughts on “Save The World! (9)

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