Mike Hayne

NYT 7

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The Manitou
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Manitou 2017

A dusty road led out of town in an isolated pasture. The terrain was flat. Q smelled fragrance from wheat fields a distance away. No traffic or people existed on this road. However, one wooden house with a shaded porch attracted Q's attention. There was an old man, and Q wondered about such an advanced age for a citizen. The man sat on the porch.

"There is an extra chair," he said. "My name is Travis."

"Thanks, I could rest for a moment."

"Where are you going?"

"Masters of Opulence. I'm a guitar player. Q is my name."

"Q," commented Travis. "That is unusual."

"I'm unusual," answered Q. "How old are you? It is odd for someone to own a house outside of the city, Travis."

"I'm fifty three. However, a person does not just walk up to the Masters of Opulence talent bureau. You need to be accepted from your home computer to ride the bus. To succeed, you should go back to the city, go home, and apply."

"I was on the bus," responded Q. "I'm already accepted. I need to get there as fast as possible."

"The bus passed by an hour ago," said Travis. "This road leads to the Masters of Opulence."

"Fifty three years old. I've never heard of such a thing."

"I have worked years on my poetry. The smell of the fields enhances me. I'm the best," Travis held a note pad and a pencil.

"Poetry? Why not enter it into the computer, and you could apply to Masters of Opulence."

"No. I do not crave that. Maybe after I'm dead someone will appreciate my poems," Travis did not like this conversation. His wife died years ago, but his child had ridden the MOO bus and never appeared on television or became famous. Travis thought he somehow misunderstood how the system worked. He did not want anything to do with this Q. "What is that shirt you are wearing?"

"Why did you do it?"

Brilliant sunlight spotted everything as the spaceship's shades were open. The vast potato and corn grow was attended by Morris, Susan, and their two children, Jake and Suzy.

"I don't know," Jake had the idea to urinate on his sister's portion of grow. "It was fun. I don't know why I did it."

"It was rude," said Susan. "And it will harm her crop."

"What," asked Morris, "is occurring?"

"Jake urinated on the grow as if it was for amusement," said Susan. "Just odd behavior."

"He's been doing it for months," said eleven year old Violet. "That's why my crops are stunted."

"You think you are smart," said eight year old Jake. "You don't know everything about growing."

"I know poison when I see it."

By the age of thirteen, a child could work. Suzy, age 13, loved the bright sunlight from the spaceship's opened shades. Her job was to use a hoe to chop up recently harvested fields. Then, after this, Suzy would play video games and eat pizza with her parents at home.

Randy, age 15, also hoed ground.

"Hot out here."

"Yeah," she said.

"I'm going to try to get into the tube."

"When?"

"Soon," said Randy. "How do you like working?"

"I love it," Suzy would miss her friend if he made it to the tube.


Copyright Mike Hayne 2017