Title: Remember Me Not
Author: Ben Underwood Sr.
Summary: Not too far in the future a cyborg’s day goes from a bad day to worse day really quick.
Word count: 998
Just another day in post-apocalyptic America. The last biotech guy I knew in the area died of the plague last year, so I need to see Dr. Marron. I can’t have my body reject my ocular implants and blind me, or the neural connections fail and lose control over my arms and legs.
The sound of thunder heralds the storm looming on the horizon. The prospect of an electrical storm frying the bionics attached to my central nervous system disturbs me. That’s why I decided to run, and with my leg implants I was at 30mph. That’s why I didn’t notice the Markedmen till their bullet hit me in the side.
I fell from the road down the embankment. My world spun out of control and my head hit the ground more times than I could count. At the top of the hill I saw three Markedmen heading down toward me. I pulled one of my magnums and shot the one the left.
Behind a tree I hear bullets rip into the trees and hit the ground. Markedmen screamed over the gunshots, “KILL HIM!”
Ahead there’s another drop off, Rock Creek. I decided to take my chances. I plunged into the cold water. I bobbed near the surface managing to keep my head above water. I twisted helplessly in the current no semblance of control. At some point I hit my head and blacked out.
I didn’t regain consciousness until the end of Rock Creek where it empties into the Potomac. I saw the decayed remains of a tree hanging over into the water. I lunged for it and hooked my arm around it.
I clawed my way through the muck and lay there. I checked my holsters, only one of my magnums was there.
As I walked along the shore the first image entered my mind, a suppressed memory. That was a benefit of the neural implants, you could turn off memories.
“Hi daddy,” her voice soft. I was seeing and hearing.
“Let daddy rest,” I felt her, Annie’s hand on my face. I smelled Deirdre’s perfume.
The door broke down and three men stood there.
My hand had begun to burn. The stink of my flesh burning overwhelmed me. I felt the snap of my arm and legs. Blows crushed my face. My vision blurred. He twisted Annie’s head till her little neck snapped. Annie wouldn’t stop crying and it bothered them while they were molested my wife. They continued to take turns violating Deirdre until she died.
I find myself lying face down in the mud my body twitching in painful spasms. The crying sobs forceful and uncontrollable wouldn’t stop and they didn’t until I passed out.
I woke up with the sunrise. The only memories I was able to pull up of Annie and Deirdre are the ones of the joy. The memories of our time as a small happy family. I know that our time ended, I don’t know why. I’m okay with that.
I checked my bearings and started east for the Center.
I was crossing through the ruins of D.C. when in what used to be a shopping center I saw three guys chasing two girls into a building.
One screamed, “Little piggies, you can’t get away!”
I charged the man closest. BAM. He recovered fast and knocked me to ground and then turned to jump me. He didn’t see my knife, I plunged it into his stomach. When he pulled back I slashed his throat, his hands grasped at the bleeding gash in neck. The one closest to me fell after I popped his kneecap with my knife. Then I slash his throat too.
The last one runs. As he runs away he yells, “You’ll regret that cyborg!”
I tried to get up and felt a stab of pain. I looked down at a shaft of rusty steel rebar that poked up through my side.
A soft voice, “Thank you, mister.”
Another older voice, “Don’t talk to him, he could be bad.”
“But he helped us,” the little one replied.
“You two need to get out of here.”
The little one, “He got hurt helping us.”
She looked at the metal, “Stay here.” She told the little one, then came to me and offered me her hand. “Don’t try anything.”
“One. Two. Three.” She helped me up.
“Thank you,” I said.
The older one spoke, “Sissy, get that man’s shirt.”
“Okay.” Sissy went and got the shirt and they bandaged my midsection.
“Thank you, ladies. Get going now.”
“Maggie,” Sissy tugged at her and pointed out through the opening of the building. We all turn and we all see it, 30 men.
“RUN!” I scream.
“Where?” Maggie asked.
“There has to be a back way out of here.”
We found our way to a stock room door. At the end of the hall a steel exit door. We pushed through into the alley, once outside I found a wooden pallet and propped it under the door.
“Which way?” I asked.
“Go, I’ll lead them away.”
“B-b-but…,” Sissy stuttered. Maggie cut her off and pulled sissy along.
I headed the other way and pulled my gun and knife.
I turned, and I could see them duck into a building.
“Good luck ladies.”
The door crashed against the old wooden pallet and it imploded under the force. The door swung open and the men flooded outward. One fell on the splintered wood, his abdomen gouged open and spilled his intestines.
I took aim, I hit five head shots. I flip my revolver to use the handle like a hammer and grip my knife in my other hand. Six of them are dead on the ground the rest stare at me, malice burned in their eyes.
I just want the girls to have a chance.
They rush me, it’s time to die.