“So Mr. Wayne…could you tell us—in your own words—why we should hire you as an employee here at All World Compliance?”
I straighten my tie and clear my throat. “I need money.”
Raised eyebrows. “Can you elaborate on that?”
“I need money for pizza. And mountain dew.”
The interviewer, Mr. Macklemore, looks at me for a long moment. Then he coughs into a fist. “I see. Pizza and soda.”
“Yep.” I nod. “I’m not high maintenance—cheese or pepperoni is fine by me.”
“I’m a pineapple man myself,” Macklemore replies, smiling lightly.
I try not to gag. “I’m sorry—that’s not funny.”
His face turns cold. “I wasn’t joking.”
“Oh.” I hiss through my teeth. “Right. Um…nothing against pineapple.” I try to cover up my faux pas with an awkward laugh.
He continues to glare at me.
Finally, he taps my file on his desk. “We could use you, Mr. Wayne. But here at All World Compliance, there are certain commitments we require from our employees. There are certain…sacrifices they must make.” He gives me a meaningful look.
I cock my head. “Sacrifices? Like what?”
He looks down at his desk for a long moment…then a single chuckle ripples through his torso.
He starts giggling: “Oh ho. Hee hee. Hoo. Ha ha ha.”
Then he’s slapping his knee, roaring at the ceiling.
I rise from my seat, eyes ticking back and forth. What the balls is going on??? What the—
Macklemore claps his hands together, points at me with a ruddy, shaking finger, and screams, “BETA MALES! GET HIM!”
Hordes of pasty, skinny-framed dudes come rushing at me, deluging me with ill-thought-out irony and passive-aggressivity. I punch the living fuck out of them, but there’s like thirty or forty of these dickfaces, so they quickly pile on and pin me down. One of them strokes my cheeks with milk-soft fingers, then raises a pair of no prescription, horn-rimmed glasses toward my face.
“Don’t worry,” he murmurs. “You’ll be one of us soon.”
Veins bulge from my neck as I shout, “EAT SMEGMA! YOU FUCKS ARE ABOUT TO REAP THE WHIRLWIND! I’M WARNING YOU: DON’T—”
And then my face is eclipsed by their foul artifact. Screams rip from my throat as its eldritch powers infect my animus, transforming me into a micro-phallused, gumby-bodied shadow of what a man should be. My hair grows out and my jawline disappears. My nuts shrivel up until my once-gorgeous scrote lies flat against my taint like a wrinkled pancake. Hair vanishes from my knuckles, and were it not for my vestigial sex organs, I could easily double as an androgynous anime figure.
Even my speech has been beta-fied—every one of my statements ends in an upward-lilting question: “Um, excuse me? What just happened? I’m one of you now?”
I reach into my pocket and open my eReader to Echo, activating its reality distortion powers. Magic flash. A rust-spotted squat rack appears in the middle of the room.
I break free of their feathery grasps and stumble toward the rack, trembling as I duck under the loaded bar, and start repping it out. One…two…three…as I continue exercising, a quantum swirl of energy builds around me, filling my eyes and mouth with shining pools of light. I turn my head toward the heavens like Milla Jovovich in the Fifth element.
“I AM ALL THAT IS MAN! RUAAAAAHHHH!!!!”
The beta nerds cover their eyes with their forearms. They’re shrieking and wailing, begging for their Beta god Michael Cera to come and save their indecisive asses. But they’re completely fucked, for Michael Cera has turned a blind eye to their prayers. Forsake Cera, you cowering infidels!
For there is only I: Man Child Supreme.
The entire office building comes crumbling down around me and I pause for a moment, surrounded by a dusty haze of broken rubble and crushed bodies.
Then I bound through the air and arc through the sky.
Screw office jobs! There’s pizza to eat and soccer moms to pleasure!
Has some faceless corporation attempted to leech every ounce of fun from your Crom-blessed soul? Never fear! Get Echo Vol. 1 on Kindle here: Vol. 1 on Kindle. Vol. 2 on Kindle here: Vol.2 on Kindle Vol. 3 on Kindle here: Vol. 3 on Kindle #kindle #kindleunlimited #sciencefiction #scifi #books #novel #book