Friday Fiction: ToiBox Edition No. 003 #fridayreads (goal, desert, record, hail)


Prompt #1059126187

Topic/Theme: goal | Location/Setting: desert

Character(s): NA | Object(s): record/cd/tape

Action: NA | Random Additive: hail

Musical Indulgence

It’s been months since I’ve heard from headquarters. It’s a good thing I ranked number one in solitary survival back at the academy, but even I’m beginning to think I might not make it to the next exchange. It’s not even about the provisions anymore; I just want to talk to someone who’ll talk back. I must find the mental fortitude to withstand this isolation and meet the next exchange.

My diffusion pump remains my primary source of water, though I was blessed with a flood a few weeks back. I’ve rationed the excess to the best of my abilities, but irrigation is greedy. Almost all my flood water goes to that. Not one to dream of snow, I never though the desert would get the best of me, but it seems I’ve been wrong about a lot of things. I’m just so tired of being alone and working so hard just to survive, when I can’t see an end in sight.

Each morning I rise to hang shading film across my eighth acre of crops. Of course to do so, I must wake before the sun rises so I can cover my body in protective shrouds. If I don’t hang the translucent SPF shade over the crops, the sun will burn them, no matter how much water I put on then. Then each night before the moon rises I change into my thermal gear in just enough time to pull the shading film away and replace it with heating springs. It takes me almost two hours each night to spread out the tiny tubes that release heat above my crops, keeping them from freezing each night.  The worst part is when a hail storm blows through. All I can do is hope the damage isn’t too bad.

I typically have about a one to two hour window for hunting. Since I chose leafy greens as my preferred crop, there’s no room or time to grow sources of protein. In actuality, I don’t mid the hunting anymore. This dry patch of terrain seems to be overrun with reptiles of varying size and color, all to which taste just like chicken to me- all except those these reddish-orange ones with the tiny horns on their tails. I’ve learned to keep those off my menu.

Between daily and nightly preparations for basic survival, I barely have time to catalog my inventory and prepare it for the exchange, assuming it’s still coming. But when I do find those sweet moments in darkest hours of the night, I cherish them. I almost don’t want to let go of my inventory; it’s become my treasure, my most precious procession, and sadly my reason for living. I struggle to survive everyday just so I can secure a few hours a night to explore the ruins below and indulge in the magical manifestation known as music.

When I came down here, people back home called me a fool. They said I’d never find an archive, but after only a week, I struck gold. I was the first, but soon others came down in search of other long-lost treasures: paintings, sculptures, toys, printed books, period clothing, grandfather tech, and so much more. I of course set out to find music.

When I first broke through the catacombs and repelled down into the old vault, I was disappointed. I’d thought I’d stumbled upon a vault of grandfather tech, but then I saw the vinyl records hang on the walls sealed behind glass casing. I ran to them salivating and came across a tower of cassette tapes and cds. Then I turned and looked back at what I had presumed were servers used to store code. I realized that those machines didn’t story code; they stored music.

For a week I forgot my training and lost my objective. My goal may have been to explore, locate, retrieve, and restore any remnants of music or musical influences from Earth One, but I was having too much fun to comply. After about a day of playing with witches and flipping through circuits and partially decayed manuals, I got the servers and speakers working. I drowned myself in Muddy Waters, Mozart, Led Zeppelin, Whitney Huston, Benny Goodman, Tchaikovsky, U2, Yanni, Bob Dylan, The Fugees, Pavarotti, Bob Marley, and so many more.

I had no idea who these people were, what they looked like, or how they made their music, but I indulged in every bit of it. Soon I remembered my protocol and realized that I had goals to meet. With my emergency rations about to expire, it was time to set up a survival plan. Every two to three months a ship would land to take stock of the music I was able to catalog, categorize, and convert to into nanodigtal form in exchange for more supplies. They’d stick around a week or two, make me an offer to go back home and give up this base; each time I declined. But’s it’s been almost six months since my last exchange and I think I’m about ready to retire.

I’m ready to go home and see how the music I’ve discovered here has affected the world I grew up in. I wonder how much the discoveries and treasures of this past have blended into the mold of my present- its future. It’s time for me to stop living out my days in the ruins of a long dead world inhabited by innocuous mutated reptiles. It’s time to give someone else a change to discover the wonders and magic of music from Earth One. Though they are no longer viable, if I do ever get out of here, I’ll be taking some of the vinyl records with me. They will be a reminder of the time I spend here, on Earth One.

970 words

May 29th, 2015 – Prompt #214287205

Topic/Theme: spy | Location/Setting: cabin

Character(s): sentient plant | Object(s): NA | Action: NA | Random Additive: map

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

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Toi Thomas

I like reading, writing, cooking, dancing, movies, and music. I'm a big kid and choose to see the world in my own special way. Yes, I'm educated, but I haven't let that stop me from being who I want to be. I'm a wife, teacher, author, blogger, and more.

2 thoughts on “Friday Fiction: ToiBox Edition No. 003 #fridayreads (goal, desert, record, hail)”

  1. Yeah, there were so many more I could have mentioned, but I was already concerned that the length was affecting the flow of the text. Thanks for reading it.

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