Article: 288536 of talk.bizarre From: "Nikolai Kingsley" <email@example.com> Newsgroups: talk.bizarre,alt.slack Subject: The Assassin Date: Sun, 1 Dec 1996 00:50:59 +1100 Organization: anarchartists Lines: 430 Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> This story is for Transient and Rebecca Tolhurst; two sides of a coin. She wasn't bothering anyone; just relaxing, taking in what pale winter sunlight there was and watching the fountains, all of it free. She was in a mental state on the outer fringes of meditation, seventy-five percent of her mind still in Mundane Reality, so she didn't miss a couple of skate-punks over near the Statue Dedicated To Progress In Commerce pointing her out to a pair of Suits. She felt a frisson of alarm; she hadn't done anything overtly illegal in the recent past, but if they wanted to get technical they could probably do her on something like Loitering (she'd been here for over half an hour without buying anything from the souvenir stands) or Indecent Exposure (the lower hem of her T-shirt came down a mere two inches below her breasts, and there were several large, ragged, strategically placed holes in her jeans) or Unauthorised Pigeon Observing or something stupid like that. Not enough to have her Incarcerated for more than forty-eight hours, but it was the principle of the thing more than the inconvenience. Like most SubGenii she was routinely Incarcerated at least once a month under one pretext or another (probably so They could recharge the batteries in her tracking implants), but it had been less than a week since the last time; too soon. She briefly considered trying to force her brain into Dealing With Pinks mode and then dismissed it as too much bother. Soon their shadows were blocking the sun as they stood over her; she didn't open her eyes, didn't turn or acknowledge their presence. They waited for precisely as long as she expected they would, then one of them cleared his throat. She leaned back, palms flat against the concrete and slowly raised her eyes to theirs, as if the effort was almost too much. She cocked one eyebrow at them sardonically. "Aren't you a little short for a storm-trooper?" she quipped. Neither of them recognised the quote. She sighed. "You're blocking the sun." The Suit who'd cleared his throat assumed the Bad Cop role: "There's plenty of sun to go around." By way of answer she held one hand up to the sky and twisted her fingers as if tugging on a bell-pull; within seconds, the sky had clouded over and it had started to rain. A minor miracle; a Bob-given coincidence, surfing the Luck Plane, but they weren't to know that. As the rain began to soak into their clothing – making them feel more uncomfortable, while she just tilted her head back a little further and enjoyed the way drops of water beaded on her glasses – Good Cop consulted a palm-sized notepad computer (for the psychological effect, she noticed – his eyes didn't actually read it) and asked, "Are you Citizen 43659943276432E, Therese Gi–" "SAINT Therese to you, buddy." Bad Cop spoke: "You're one of them Sub-Guys, aren'cha?" She giggled, thrust her breasts out more prominently, nipples protruding through the rain-soaked "Frantic DogPaddle Tour '97" T-shirt: "Now, what makes you think I'm a guy?" It had precisely the effect she knew it'd have. She could sense their stunted and blocked Flunads trying to free themselves. Saint Therese was a past master at Pink-Taunting. Bad Cop leered and was about to make a nasty comment when Good Cop took off his shades; Therese could see that he was concerned about something. Like, maybe his mortgage payments had gone up, or he was way over the limit on the credit card that he used to pay for his sexbots. There was a definite quaver in his voice, something a Pink wouldn't have been competent to fake: "We need your help." Intrigued, she went with them, stomping heavily in the puddles as she went, splashing rainwater on their polyester suit pants. Letting them kidnap her was probably a bad idea; she couldn't imagine what the Conspiracy wanted with her apart from the usual dislike of anything they didn't control utterly and couldn't plot on a graph. On the way back to their tower-block, Good Cop took the trouble to explain while Bad Cop swore at the other Conspiracy dupes caught in the traffic jam: "Recently we came into the possession of a fragment of SubGenius literature. Most of it didn't make sense, and some of it was out-and-out fantasy –" She couldn't let this go past without a retort: "Fantasy is the ultimate reality, to which we all retreat at some stage." Good Cop looked slightly irritated at the interruption, but continued. "We now have physical evidence for the existence of the `Elder Gods' as you call them. They contacted us through our computer network and provided irrefutable proof of their powers and capabilities." Therese smirked at him, nodding slowly. "You finally caught on, didja? WHO'S LAUGHING NOW?" Neither of them recognised this quote, either; she thought that maybe she would have to start putting annotated footnotes in her speech. "This is no laughing matter," replied Good Cop sternly. "These... these BEINGS intend to wipe out human civilisation as we know it! We've tried bargaining with them... but, it's just... they..." Therese sighed. "You don't have anything they want, right?" Bad Cop laughed nastily. "Until now." That thrill of fear ran through her again. Good Cop consulted his notebook said, "There was a passage in that SubGenius book we found that said, and I quote: The Elder Gods still hunger for Yeti ecstasy, their favourite gateway to the world. They much prefer to manifest by "riding" an aware being at the moment of OoZquirt rather than being summoned by a bunch of dopey Satanists doing blood sacrifices." Therese nodded. "Revelation X, chapter six. Yeah, so?" Good Cop blushed. "We haven't been able to replicate this `OoZquirt' in our research facilities. We've run out of other ideas. We've tried everything we know to please these Things, and it's not working. That's why we need your help. You have a reputation as a..." here, he consulted his notepad again, "A... an `Adept Mistress of the Rising Flünads'." She grinned, hooked her thumbs through her braces. "Tha's me." Good Cop nodded enthusiastically. "That's what I mean! You understand these things... `Exogasm', `Sexhurt', `orgozmonic radiation', `Big Red Straps'... this is an area in which we're completely at sea. Not a lot of official research." "Yeah, I heard what you guys did to Wilhelm Reich and Frank Dashwood. And Orton Nenslo." The limo pulled into a heavily armoured entrance to an underground car-park, tyres squeaking on the metal rails and echoing oddly off the concrete walls. It was dark under here, the kind of darkness that the Conspiracy preferred; the shadow of a tower-block punctuated by the ghastly, intermittent corpse-glow of neon tubes. Even the air smelled dead; it was more like a mausoleum than an office block. Therese longed to set off a stink-bomb, or even just to burn some incense. Maybe set fire to a stack of inner tubes. Or fart. Anything to relieve the sense of sterility. On the way up in the elevator, Good Cop filled her in on what little progress they'd made. "It wasn't easy to get funding for this project, but the desperation of the upper echelons... well, you know." Therese snorted. "Yeah. Unusually far-sighted of them. What, did these Things say they were going to start at the top and chew their way down to ground level?" Good Cop's suddenly stiff posture told her that she'd hit close to the mark. The elevator doors opened on a brightly-lit glass-walled laboratory, white walls, benches cluttered with racks of test-tubes and beakers over Bunsen burners, cathode-ray oscilloscopes making "boop" noises and, in general, the kind of messy set-up needed to give the impression that serious research was going on here. On the far side of the laboratory, however, things took on a nightmarish perspective; the racks of test-tubes gave way to rows of dildos, the beakers to bottles of water-soluble lubricant, the CROs to banks of video tape machines, one of which was playing some blurry, garishly-coloured cheap porn. Good Cop introduced her to Franklin, their Male Subject. He was aged in his late twenties and despite a slightly receding hairline, reasonably attractive; built like a circus strong-man, even down to the ridiculous leopard-spot pattern jock-strap. One of the anonymous female lab assistants was smearing oil over his rippling pectoral muscles in a business-like manner. She couldn't help giggling at the sight of him, at the overblown macho bullshit male-polarity of it all. Her giggles died down quickly when she met Judith, their Female Subject. This was, for Therese, the real horror of the Conspiracy; how it could take a normal female, Heir to the Uberfemme's Pansexual Slack, one of Connie's Own Abominatrixes, and turn her into – this – She was attractive, in a sharp, smoothly plastic mechanical way; the same way you might consider a department store dummy attractive if it was dressed up as a leather Domina. She was wearing a black PVC teddy, fish-net stockings and high heels; all her femininity was planed down to fit the abstract perfectionist formula that Western Society demanded; rules which said a woman wasn't attractive unless her eyes were thus far apart, the incline of her nose so many degrees, her breasts exactly such-and-such a shape. Therese was torn between the desire to scoot around the back to check for a power-cord dangling out of her ass and the need to tear the woman's clothes off, grab one of those industrial-strength clitoral stimulators and fuck some sense into her. In the end she settled for shaking her head sadly. Judith examined Therese with disdain. The SubGenius female was in her early twenties and comely in a sort of wind-swept way but her hair was all over the place, her eyebrows were unplucked, she didn't have any make-up on and her breasts appeared droopy because they weren't constrained by a brassiere (although they were rather nicely framed by her rainbow-striped braces). She was wearing purple-tinted wire-framed glasses instead of contact lenses; her belly-button – exposed between the hem of her chopped-down T-shirt and the ragged, worn denim jeans – had a ring in it, and she stood with her thumbs hooked in her pockets and her pelvis angled forward in a most unladylike and provocative way. Therese examined the assembled equipment with a practiced eye. Phallic lumps of plastic, the same ugly pink colour as Barbie dolls; vibrators, vibrators and more vibrators. The Conspiracy had denied originality in sexual expression for so long – had reduced it to a "healthy release", just like Orwell had predicted – that they had no idea what it was really for. It was sad, like cargo cult natives trying to summon back those nice shiny planes with runways and control towers made out of bamboo and palm leaves. This was going to be like explaining advanced data encryption algorithms to four-year-olds. They'd seen the disdainful looks she'd been giving their equipment; Good Cop was moved to defend what progress they'd made: "Under ideal conditions, our subjects can reach orgasm in under thirty seconds, from a cold start." Therese turned to stare at him. "And? You say that like it's some kind of achievement." Good Cop took off his mirror-shades and openly displayed confusion. "It's not how quick you can get there – it's how many detours you can make on the way, how much scenery you can take in on the trip." She racked her brains for a metaphor they could understand. "How many greasy truck-stop burger dives you get to steal napkins from. In fact, in terms of getting there, it's better if you don't get there at all." They all stared at her as if she were insane. "Haven't you people even heard of Karezza? Tantra? Maybe I should just get a whiteboard marker and write `SEX != ORGASM' on it. Make you write it out a hundred times." Not knowing quite where to start, she suggested they give a demonstration. Bad Cop leered until he realised that he was going to be kicked out of the lab. Therese was glad to see him go; he looked like the kind of asshole who beat up his sexual partners whenever he could afford them. She sat cross-legged on a bench and watched Judith and Franklin undress and lie down on a kind of reinforced hospital gurney. It was appalling. She was certain that Judith faked her orgasm, and Franklin's may as well have been; she was glad the whole sorry performance was over so quickly. They turned to her afterwards, seeking approval; being careful not to laugh at them, wanting to hold up a score-card with "0.0" on it, she said carefully, "Why don't you try for duration rather than expediency? See how long both of you can go." Good Cop waved his hand dismissively. "We don't have time for that." Therese shrugged and sat back on the table. "Fine. I don't have anything better to do than sit around waiting for some disembodied Xist energy demon to crawl up your asshole and eat its way up your spine into your brain. I've seen that happen before. I wish I had a video-camera here; I'd tape it and send it to that Funniest Home Videos show." She thrust her thumbs through her braces and started humming "Elvis Has Just Left The Building". She didn't need to continue; Good Cop had turned pale. He must be closer to the top than she'd first thought, close enough to make him a target. Therese took Judith aside and cautioned her, "Look – this process is the result of the interaction of two people. Two, you know? You can't fake this any more than you can fake being bullet-proof. I know he's not exactly Mr. Right, but try to lie back and think of a St Bernard or something. Anything. Otherwise none of us will get out of here alive." They started again, this time with the intention of coming as close as possible to orgasm without actually reaching it. Franklin had some trouble with this until Therese suggested wrapping a length of chain around his testicles and attaching it to a power outlet; the implied threat in this seemed to help. After that, it rapidly became boring, almost like one of those pumps you saw attached to oil-wells. Up, down, up, down. Yawn-o-rama. Good Cop was too concerned with the details of their performance to do more than occasionally glance up from his monitoring instruments. She whispered to him, "Where's the toilet?"; after a suspicious glance, he told her. He didn't need to stress that the building was heavily guarded; she knew, and he knew that she knew. The corridors of the building were all deserted; dark, dimly lit by fluoro tubes set along the lushly carpeted floor. She knelt and ran her hand through the pile; it felt like animal fur. Knowing Them, it probably was. As she searched for the toilets she felt the remote, disinterested stare of the security cameras mounted at the intersections. Almost unconsciously, she added an exaggerated, sensual hip-sway to her walk. Pat Benatar's song "Stop Using Sex As A Weapon" came to her mind; Patty, you were never up against the Con, she thought. Like the laboratory, the toilet was lined with white tile and brightly, almost blindingly lit. Inhumanly clean. She imagined that most Pinks wouldn't dare crap in the toilets for fear of making a mess. Security cameras set in each corner constantly scanned every square inch of the room; it was common knowledge that the Con believed people were more likely to commit ThoughtCrime in the toilets. She went over to the paper towel dispenser and yanked on the end of the roll, pulling great lengths of paper out to fall at her feet. Methodically, she went from one toilet to the next, wadding paper into the bowl and flushing it until all but the last were blocked. She performed this sabotage almost automatically; a matter of habit. She crumpled up the cardboard roll from the towel dispenser and wedged it into the door of the last stall to keep it open, then sat down on the lid of the bowl, rested her chin on her fist and thought. The test subjects were Pinks through and through. With a few years of intense Tantric training or some good weed (or something – anything – to loosen them up), they might be capable of raising enough Kundalini to roll a ping-pong ball off a table. For the moment she doubted that they'd be able to overcome their Pink self-consciousness. This meant that inevitably, Good Cop would ask her to step in. "It's not that I don't find Mr. Leopard-Pattern Underpants attractive... it's the principle of the thing," she muttered to herself. As she spoke, one of the security cameras turned to watch her. She grinned and spoke aloud in mock-seriousness, "Oh goody, alone at last. Now I can indulge my most secret fantasies and desires." There must have been someone listening at the security station; another camera swung to watch her. The light was too bright; it was starting to hurt her eyes. She took a few spare yards of paper towel, soaked them under a tap and then wrapped it around her eyes. Much better. She went back into the toilet stall, slowly stripped off her jeans, sat back on the toilet and idly caressed her nipples for a few minutes until she felt the temperature of her Günads rising. She opened her mouth in a half-smile, half-gasp, spread her legs and stroked the insides of her thighs. "This is for Saint Moxie," she whispered… After her fifth and sixth orgasms – which had run together and made her so dizzy that she almost fell off the seat and the paper towelling had fallen from one eye – she glanced up and saw that three more cameras had appeared through panels in the ceiling and were pointed at her. She grinned evilly and kept at it, masturbating furiously and building up an image in her mind: the Ark of the Covenant from Spielberg's film "Raiders of the Lost Ark". When opened, however, this one was filled with metal-studded motorcycle boots and bright purple Nerf sex-toys and jars full of mouldy peanut butter and rainbow slinkys and trashy DC comics and Freddy Blassie picture-discs and vibrating studded rubber balls that played "Fur Elise" and bowls of lime jello with trowels and Robert Williams T-shirts and Things with BIG RED STRAPS attached at strategic points. As her focus contracted down to a point just below her navel, the lid exploded off the Ark; beams of bright purple light shot from her crotch, weaving around her frantic fingers, arcing off the metal fittings in the cubicle and smashing the lenses of the security cameras. For a few moments, she was one with the White Light, the Ocean of Being, the Endless Void of Slack; when she came back to conventional reality she found that she'd blown the door off the cubicle and there were odd scorch marks on the walls. She knew then that she'd have to do this; but it was going to end her way. As she left the toilets, she grinned at the dead, smoking cameras, dangling forlornly on the ends of their cables. She was wearing damp Doc Martens with bright green laces, but as she walked, she could hear spurs ringing. "Okay," she said to Good Cop as she entered the laboratory again, "I'm going to save your asses. No offence, you two, but you just don't have what it takes. See if you can get Bad Cop back in here." Good Cop showed a combination of relief and curiosity. "Why not Franklin?" "He's got the wrong idea about this. Your training program has pushed him further away from what you've been trying to achieve. Repellent as he is, Bad Cop is an unmarked slate, and if we're going to reach OoZquirt at all, It's gonna be with him." She got Bad Cop to take all his clothes off and shower thoroughly before they coated him in baby oil and cuffed him to the test-table. "Relax, honey, this is all part of the trip," she cooed, adjusting the ankle-restraints so that he had less than a hand's-span of freedom. She insisted that they put three condoms on him; "Bob" alone knew what kind of icky retroviruses he had floating around inside him. The simple act of putting them on got him hard; she got up on the table, knelt over him and slowly guided him inside her. She didn't move, just sat there, giving him an occasional squeeze. She could sense the Flunads rising within him; she kept him right on the edge of actual stimulation, occasionally giving her clitoris a gentle rub to keep her energies at a similar level to his, although diametrically opposed; sort of like a tug-of-war but in reverse. After a few minutes of this, Bad Cop's Flunad levels were oscillating out of control; she sat perfectly still until the amplitude of the cycles evened off. She knew she had to be careful, here; it was a delicate balancing act. Eventually, he'd reached the level where he was actually emitting brief bursts of Orgozmonic radiation; feeling these feeble sparks glance off her nineteen-sided Günad field, she knew it wouldn't be long before one of the Xists came a-sniffing to see what was going on. It wasn't real sex, but she knew it would have just enough of the characteristics of real sex to attract something. She was counting on it. Sure enough, just as Bad Cop was beginning to get into it, she vaguely sensed Their presence; the sheer weirdness of what she was doing had attracted a small group of Them, and They were shuffling about for the best position to take advantage of it, which – for any Thing which had had dealings with the Conspiracy – meant that They would try to enter through the Male terminal. It was only then that she realised that her being here had been pre-determined; not by the Conspiracy (which only thought it controlled everything), but by her group, the people she worked for undercover. They couldn't work out in the open without being recorded by the Conspiracy's monitoring equipment, so every mission their operatives undertook was guided by the hand of chance; seemingly at random. As William S Burroughs had once put it, their instructions were conveyed through a series of real situations. She gently nudged Bad Cop along, drawing his Flunads higher until she sensed that one particular Xist had bullied the others out of the way and was positioned within the body of the male polarity tethered beneath her. With slow movements of her hands, trailing faint purple auras, she coaxed it into position and felt it slide into Bad Cop with a snap, like a proctologist putting on a rubber glove. "Whoo, you're a big one, aren't you," she cooed to it, feeling its aetherical shape bending Bad Cop's body slightly out of true. At that point, Saint Therese let go, squeezing on Bad Cop's hard-on and rocking back and forth; Bad Cop moaned and thrust his hips forward. His balls gave off a crimson glow as the Xist writhed within him and pushed him towards Exogasm. Just as Bad Cop was about to come, she drew back slightly and projected a spherical Günad shield, mentally crossing her legs; his energy hit the shield and rebounded back into his body. The Xist howled with frustration, a subsonic roar which caused glassware in the lab to fracture. Saint Therese rode it out, obstinately refusing to complete the circuit which would give the Xist what it so desperately craved; It pushed harder against her shield to no effect. There was a brief pause, a few seconds of quiet while the psychic combatants eyed each other off; then the Xist made one last desperate thrust forward through Bad Cop's genitals. The energy simply rebounded off her shield and Bad Cop's body exploded, his legs twisting out from underneath her, his torso flipping back over the end of the test-table, intestines and gore flying out in all directions. Therese knelt there, eyes closed, shield intact, waiting until the energy ricochets had died away and the subsonic rumbling had faded. Then she got off the table, stepped past Good Cop and Franklin and Judith – who were all simply standing there, eyes blank, in catatonia – washed herself down, got dressed and left the building, mentally notching up another hit for the SubGenius Sexual Assassin's Group.