Human Resources, by Luke Robert

“Hey you, look at me. I’m death. I know it’s odd; you must be thinking you’re insane. The god of death, a common housefly? You humans have this idea that I’m some sort of drama queen floating around in the same cloak I’ve had since the dawn of time, wearing a skull mask and carrying some outdated farming tool. But the truth is I’ve always been right here with you, with all of you, the whole time. So let me…”

“Oh, that’s cute, think you’re the first one to try that? No fool, that one is dead. You swatted it like so many others. I’m up here now, above you. As you now surely understand, that individual fly you just killed wasn’t death but merely a god of death, as is this one—so don’t bother killing it. Even if you do I have millions of replacements, five within one hundred feet, and more being produced as we speak. So don’t bother…”

“Ok, really. Don’t do that again or I’m going to bump you up on my schedule and go talk to another human. You’re all the same to me anyway. I came here to give you mutually beneficial information, not to have you waste both of our time.”

…………

“What?”

…………

“You don’t understand? Well I guess it comes with your evolutionary state. What’s the best way to put it…? Ah! I’m not a single individual organism. The common idea is that death exists like your Santa Claus, a single being that goes from place to place doing his job. But that’s not how it is. Think of me as a fungus, yes, like the mushrooms in your backyard. The mushrooms that appear among your grass after it rains are like these flies. But those mushrooms are just extensions of the whole fungus that spreads beneath your lawn. That whole fungus is death and this fly—all flies—are just nodes, or as you like to call them gods of death.”

…………

“No, absolutely not. I can’t just go around killing randomly. I have a schedule, I have time tables and rules. I have population size and a million other things to worry about. You know all this conservation and prudent use of the environment stuff that you humans are trying to figure out? Yeah, well I figured that out ages ago. I got too greedy awhile back and almost killed off everything on the planet.”

…………

“Yeah, that’s where dinosaurs went. So in a way, I guess you should thank me for your existence. Now, what I really came here to talk with you about, the reason I revealed myself to you, is this: I want to give you information on how your race can avoid extinction.”

…………

“Yes, it’s strange, death giving advice on how to avoid death. Go ahead, laugh. But listen, right now you humans are doing exactly what I did to the dinosaurs. Using your resources like there’s an endless supply, wasting them like they materialized out of thin air in the blink of an eye. Now, I’ll tell you how you can lead the rest of humans into a sustainable future but first…”

…………

“What?”

…………

“Oh, I’m not concerned. Imagine how you’d look if you told the other humans that death itself was an invisible fungus that extended throughout the world and that every fly in the world was a god of death. They would lock you up forever.”

…………

“Please, haven’t you learned anything? Even if you devoted your entire life to swatting flies you wouldn’t be able to kill me or be anything more than an annoyance.”

…………

“Sit down and drop the magazine.”

…………

“If you don’t settle down I’m going to move on to the next person.”

…………

“Thank you.”

…………

…………

“Oh, no special reason why I chose you except that you were alone and seemed to be in a good mood.”

…………

“No, I don’t care about the human race, I just care about my resources. A human or a cow, both grow flies the same way. You see, if you humans keep this up you’ll kill off all life on the planet. If that happens there won’t be any carcasses for me to grow new nodes in and I’ll just go back to being a non-physical being. I won’t die, I’ll just have wait a couple of million years before I can take a form again. And I don’t want that. Now listen up because this is how you all can avoid going extinct…”

housefly-396057_640

~~

 

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Posted on May 6, 2015, in Contest, Issue 16: Shinigami Stories—Reaping the Harvest of Souls and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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