Echo: A Dystopian Science Fiction Novel

“Walk with me, Mark.  You have something to write with?  This is what I ask of my Executive Assistant Mark Johnson as I wipe ketchup and tater-tot crumbles off my Voltron, Defender of the Universe tee shirt.  He gets out his composition notebook and readies a #2, Eberhard pencil.

“Go ahead, Mr. Second Grade President.”

“Get some of the early puberty onset guys together and execute a direct action strike against the Lunch Bully Gang this afternoon, when they’re doing their lunch money shakedown.  As always, maintain plausible deniability.  Also:  assemble some chess club guys and employ them as cafeteria observers.  Have some enforcers on standby; I’d recommend Mike Halsley and Walter Flanagan.  They just got their jiu-jitsu blue belts, and they’re eager as hell to fuck some fools up.  Make sure that if any idiot decides to steal food, they pay with their dignity.”

He scribbles something in his notebook and looks up.  “Done.”

I nod.  “I’ve overheard Stevie Beckwith the other day; some Little Leaguers are copying off the smartest nerd in Mr. Boros’s physics class.  Get a team of 4th graders together, and for the next two weeks, make sure they grab those Little Leaguers’ knapsacks and scatter their books.  I want those bat-fuckers pissing their pants if someone so much as MENTIONS the idea of copying off someone else.”

He scribbles in his notebook again.  “Check.  Anything else, boss?”

I rub my eyes.  “Christ, being second grade president is hard.  How’s my re-election campaign going?”

He switches to a trapper-keeper he’s been holding under his composition notebook and flips through it.  I’m not comforted by his somber expression.  “Sally Jenkins has been hard at work trying to slander you.  And just by looking at the poll numbers, I’d say she’s succeeding.  She’s ahead of us by five points.”

I stop in my tracks and give him an incredulous look.  “FIVE POINTS?  Jesus Mark, how the hell did she pull THAT off?”

“A viral video.  She’s convinced 43% of the school that you intend to take chocolate milk off the lunch menu.”

I drive my tiny fist into the nearest locker and curse vehemently.  “What the FUCK, man??  I LOVE chocolate milk!  Can’t those idiots see that—”

“Not according to the polls, sir.  And the election is only a week away, so unless you’re able to—”

“Well well well.”

I hear a sinister chuckle.  I turn to look in its direction, and I see Sally Jenkins’s evil shadow stretch long across the linoleum hallway.  She’s surrounded by a cadre of five 9th graders.  Up until now, I’ve only seen 9th graders from a distance.

And lemme tell you:  they are fucking GIANT.

“Sally.”  I point an angry finger at her.  “You know that video is bullshit.  I love chocolate milk as much as the next second grader.”

She inspects her nails like a cut-rate Bond villain.  “Doesn’t matter, Kent.  What matters is what the rest of second grade thinks.  And they think you’re a liar liar pants on fire, no good stupid face who hates chocolate milk.”

I ball my hands into fists and scream, “THAT’S NOT TRUE AND YOU KNOW IT!  YOU’RE THE STUPID FACE, SALLY JENKINS!  EAT MY ASS!”

She responds with a malicious chuckle.  “I’ve cornered you with five 9th graders.  Who’s the stupid face now, jackhole?”

Me and Mark start backing away.  “Don’t fuck with me,” I warn.  “I’ve got a white belt with a black stripe in jiu-jitsu.  You lay one hand on me and—”

Then they charge.

I grab Mark’s collar and pull him along with me as I beat a hasty retreat, screaming, “RUN FOR YOUR LIFE, MARK!  THESE APES ARE TOO GODDAMN STRONG!”

We sprint past some teachers who yell, “Hey!  Which class are you supposed to be in?  Get back here!”

(Shitballs!  This will NOT look good in the debates!)

We turn a few corners, trying to lose them, but the squeak of their sneakers grows louder; it’s only gonna be a matter of seconds before me and Mark will be begging for mercy under a storm of noogies and charlie-horses.  I wouldn’t be surprised if they gave us swirlies; I’ve heard rumors that Sally is a staunch advocate of enhanced interrogation.  We’re about to have a bad fucking day unless…

Only one option left.  I open my eReader to Echo, activating its reality distortion powers.  Magic flash.

Suddenly I’m a hulking college student.  Full head of hair, rippling muscles, an easy smile, and a mischievous gaze that radiates dangerous intelligence.  Sally, her goons, and Mark look up at me in fear-filled wonder.

“So this is what I become,” I murmur, looking at my weight room-callused hands.  I’m hit by a blur of precognition, and realize that I have a glorious future as a professional Man Whore.

Evenly, I say:  “Sally.”  I nod at the ninth graders.  “Goons.”  I let my eyes sweep all of them.  “If you don’t back off and publicly announce that your video is bullshit, I am gonna gift your PTA soccer moms with the best dick they could ever imagine.  My junk curves up and it’s diamond hard, so believe you me:  their g-spots are gonna be pushed to their sternums, where only I’ll be able to reach them.  Your moms are gonna go from being faithful friends and allies to staring dreamily off into the distance, wondering when they’ll be able to molest yours truly.”  I wave a hand down the length of my Man Child body.  “Is that what you want?”

Sally and her minions run off crying, and I revert back to my 7 year old form.

“Jeez Kent,” Mark says, “Wasn’t that a little harsh?”

I clap a hand on my friend’s shoulder.  “Not at all, buddy.  Today I’ve realized what I’m destined to be.  Enough of this politics bullshit.”

I gaze out the window.  It’s a clear sunny day, and the glories of recess beckon to my soul.

“I’m destined to be a professional Man Whore.”


Have you been fallen victim to the evil machinations of a two-timing second-grader?  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


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