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Trucking Hell - A Garth Marengi short story
Greetings traveller. When I wrote the stort story Trucking Hell it proved so radical and at odds with logic that the powers that be stopped its release and the whole project bit the axe. There was also some legal business with an American horror hack who shall remain nameless who seemed to think it had some similiarity to a bad short story he'd knocked out a few years back. I had a word with Dean and he said people on the internet are always scouting around for free stuff and would probably be tres grateful for a handout. So sit back and enjoy this gift to you my loyal fans, because I'm barred from selling it.
Cars? Cars. Cars, cars, cars. So many cars. They had always been our friend but now Captain Jack Stevens of Romford special forces weren't so sure. There was one stuck in the side of Dixons and the word on the street was it had swerved there of its own accord.
"What happened here?" Jack asked in his growly voice like coarse sand.
"This womans car swerved into Dixons." the young constable said. She was a woman, and a good looking one at that. Jack had often wondered what it would be like to penetrate her dirty jungle but he couldn't remember her name, there was a lot of skirt on the force these days.
"Cars don't just jump into Dixons dear," Jack reminded her "Not in Romford anyway. Was there a driver?"
"You're right," she accepted.
As Jack made his way down Romfords impressive skyline he looked up and for a moment was caught in a halo of light as the sun began to set over its jagged cruel peaks. Could a car, if sufficiently motivated come alive and if said car was minded to could it commit suicide? Logic said no, Jack said yes.
Then a car ran over some kiddies at a bus stop. There was nothing Jack could do, there were cars everywhere. Ironically only the people who had double parked in front of ASDA were safe from their cars coming alive and doing things. Jack reflected that there was no justice anymore. Not now the cars had taken over.
Six weeks later the world was barely recognisable.
"It's like I don't recognise the place." he told the girl sitting next to him in the petrol station.
"You're right." she added.
"Here we are stuck in this damn garage and we've eaten all the Ginsters. In a day or two there will be cannabalism, violence and we might have to start eating those hard cheeseburgers that you can microwave in the garage but if you can use a microwave in a garage near petrol why is it that you can't use your mobile phone? Last week some spotty kid came running up to me and said it was a fire hazard to use a mobile phone near a petrol station. Who'se laughing now kid?"
"But what are we going to do?" she wept.
"We have to stop feeding them." he said, referring to the petrol that the cars had since forced the remaining human population to provide them, from petrol stations.
"But if we do that they'll attack us again, we only just survived that Austin Maxi bursting through the snack shelf."
"True, for a girl you have a lot of spunk." Jack told her. She smiled and within moments they were in the back room on the bins having it in all three positions. It was like holding his muscular torso she could pretend everything was normal but it weren't, not by a long chalk.
"One of us has to go out there and confront them." Jack told her.
"You're right, but not you Jack." she said "You're the sort of person who should survive this. When we start to rebuild your seed will be valuable."
"They'll have to pump it out of my dead gonads if I'm dead Sarah." he told her, because her name was Sarah.
"Oh Jack, I'm scared." she confided in him.
"Me too. Me too." Jack told her and then they held each other, by the bins where the management threw out perfectly good food but which patrons, even patrons on first name terms with all the staff including the saturday people, are for some reason not allowed to browse."
"But if you were to just have a look, you know to see if there was anything going out of date that day, surely that would be ok." she said.
"You'd think so. You'd really think so." he said.
Jack opened the door, the cars were waiting honking their respective horns and circling the petrol station. Had aliens brought them to life? Or maybe they had been sick of being badly driven by women. Jack didn't know and the cars weren't saying much. They were hungry, down to their last inch of petrol, that's gas if you are American.
"Why? You have always been on our side. If you want your petrol, again gas if you are American, you will tell me."
A large transit van nudged closer, it's grill a snarling face of rage. It flapped its doors like ears.
"Let the girl go then." Jack implored and the honking stopped. They let her go, there was some humanity left in them at least.
As Jack took the fuel pump in his thick sausagelike fingers he knew it was for the last time. They awaited their fix eagerly and came like babies looking to suck milk from tired and chapped nipples. Jack let the petrol flow over the forecourt. The cars began to slam their doors in rage and edged closer but Jack let the hose fall from his hands and pulled out his zippo, which seems like an expensive lighter until you realise that they have a lifetime guarantee - try finding that 10 for £1 in Romford market. He dropped it, after lighting it, and the petrol station exploded in a pillar of heat and a wave of fire. Jack died too and probably voided his warranty on the zippo but where he was going he wouldn't need a light he reflected as he exploded.
At least Romford was safe, who knew where it would happen next? His bravery would be the spark that kindled the tinder dry resentment people felt towards the errant cars. And as the smoke rose it seemed for a moment his face and glasses appeared watching over Romford as he always had.
20/Sep/2008, 3:57 am
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