Fleeting Adventures of Insufferable Romance and Excruciating Fantasy – #015 – Your Body Is Wonderland

I have, through no fault of my own, found myself inadvertently stranded on your body. My endless meandering had caused me to crash land on a sector of timespace inhabited by your right foot.

I never had a thing for feet. From atop your cuneiform mounds, I could see hints of centuries of jam encrusted in between your toes. I trudged over flesh, careful not to slip into any of your pores.

Up your ankle I traveled. Your shin was a long stretch that was the epitome of the term, “legs for days”.

I walked the tightrope of your tibia, endless pits of space on either side.

I rounded your kneecap, clinging to skin for dear life. Try as you might to hide your scars, they show themselves, plain as day, when one comes as close as I have.

The ground got soft around your thighs. I blushed as I looked onward.

I took a right at your hipbone, and edged as close to your navel as safety permitted. I gazed not long, for fear of it gazing back.

The rise to your chest was a slow upwards incline. I felt every swell of your every breath, and every rib passed meant I was closer to traversing the great valley.

Twin shrines loomed on either peak. Thunderous explosions resonated from deep under your skin, where streams of molten red sloshed. I thought to rest here, for all eternity, jokingly.

I exited the valley and arrived at a crossroads. Should I go out on a limb? Or should I go on ahead? My capacity for puns should be lauded.

I decide to scale the monumental escarpment of your jaw, as if attempting to breach heaven. I ascend onto your chin and kiss the ground every hundred steps. I caress your chapped lips. Space isn’t good for your skin, honey.

I steered clear of your nose, for it blows. And sucks. Either is a danger.

Your eyes made one full blink per day. Watching every movement of your eyelid was like staring at a sunset. First, dusk, greeted by the midnight of shut eyes. I set off once more, as dawn broke.

Reaching your hair that flowed nearly in every direction deep into space, I hopped onto a random strand and slid up, up, and away. The image of you shrunk, till you were nothing but a pale dot, a mote of dust suspended on a sunbeam.

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Fleeting Adventures of Insufferable Romance and Excruciating Fantasy – #013 – T-9 Minutes and Counting, We Have Liftoff

How would one think to begin if not by returning to the point of origin? Walk backwards, my love—follow my echoes ‘cross this milky expanse, trust that I broadcast for as long as I live and later, all will know that light is but another speed limit. How could we hope to navigate space wielding naught but passion and a pen? I will hold my breath and fold into you a hundred times plus three—only then will our atoms embrace the universe.

The lowest key on the grand piano of my childhood was an A—a deep sub-contra-octave, shaking the earth beneath firmly planted feet. I recall the density of those vibrations—the low A, a singularity that startled primordial waters, upon whose ripples rode the remnants of our collision, the wobbling cosmic swell that birthed the universe’s glimmering, fingerprint-dappled ebony, reflecting starlit eyes long dead. Those prints remain, proof of our entanglement across impossible spacetimes. Witness me whence you wait, and fall, will I, yes, fall, whenever you will, for floating is a fatal misnomer. Bodies always fall—for, toward, or past one another, for better or for worse—some achieve stable orbits while others are drawn too harshly to save themselves from collision—all pulled by the relative gravity of their own desperation. And yet there are others whose fields are too weak to pull anything in, so they fall without bearing, tugging at the hems of the fabric of the cosmos.

Are you ready? The launch parameters are undecided. Smack the monitor once or twice to restore visibility. The stabilizers were functional last time I checked—Are you ready? We will be stepping—no, swimming—or rather, pulled by our scruffs upward—or not, because there is no “up” in space—only away—but where to? And who is doing the pulling? Are you ready? The Earth has us fettered by our feet but the cuffs binding our affections to the stars are stronger. Are you ready? Let’s wing it.

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Fleeting Adventures of Insufferable Romance and Excruciating Fantasy – #012 – The Oldest Game – Part 2

“The flaming mass lowers itself, ever so slowly, onto the face of Sandugo,” William chants. “All that is held together by the forces that drive life is torn apart by the intense heat and crushing impact. The lambalat progenitors, who sought to conquer land, perish before they even learn to stand upright. I have won.”

Benito eyes the meteor card with intensity, fully acknowledging death, and facing it head on. “The game isn’t over yet.”

“How is it not over? I have obliterated the planet. Chunks of molten rock are careening into space as we speak. There is no primordial soup from which to begin. There is no single piece of land present in any of our fields that could house your forces of connection. I have expelled a significant quantity of matter from these coordinates. I have let things run their course, as should be. You’d need a miracle in this godless universe.”

“I could wait.”

“What?”

“I could just sit here and wait, and so long as I don’t take my next turn, I will never lose. Life does not hurry, Will, nor do the forces that bond.”

“So that’s it? You’re just going to wallow. You couldn’t turn things around, so you’re just going to suspend this moment, your moment of utter defeat, and bask in nothing but emptiness for all time?” William dropped his remaining cards onto the table, stood up, and began to walk away. Benito called him out before he could exit the game space.

“Or—I could harness the forces that drive entropy for my own ends.” This statement made William stop in his tracks and turn around. Benito chose a card from his hand and showed it to William. It was unmistakable, that etching. But what use would he have for it, William thought.

“Go ahead, draw from the discard pile. The last card used was the Meteor. Willing to damage yourself further, I see. It’s fruitless.”

“You mentioned that you had sent chunks careening into space.” Benito brandishes the Meteor card. “Every chunk will fly for as long as it needs, but one day, every single one will collide with a newly formed planet, not enough to destroy it.” William looks at Benito in utter horror. “Yes, Will. I have used your own forces against you. These innumerable meteors carry traces of organic acids and will introduce them to the innumerable new planets. Moons will form that churn the seas. Life will rise, a trillionfold. Not enough cards of this game exist that could possibly turn it around for you, I’m afraid.”

William dropped to his knees. Benito dropped his remaining cards onto the table as well and walked over to where his opponent knelt, and offered his hand. “Come, let us be free of this place.” Hesitantly, William took it. And so, together, they walked out of Deep Space, the Astral Door closing in behind them.

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Fleeting Adventures of Insufferable Romance and Excruciating Fantasy – #011 – The Oldest Game – Part 1

First card draw. Benito speaks: “Sandugo is as new worlds come: burning,  hostile. It is the center of the universe it knows. Stars have yet to come into existence, and thus, daylight is a concept equal parts alien and unfathomable. It is its own heat source. Millennia pass and the land cools. The seas are hotblood. The first organic acids bond. I am the force that drives life, the grand connection.” Benito brings out a card from his hand of five, and slams it onto the once-empty playing field.

William smirks. “I’d expect nothing other than an easy play from the reigning—or should I say soon-to-be-ex-champion. You forgot to coat your precious cell in lipids.” He lays a card onto his field. “The wild, hot seas prevent your connection from solidifying. High speed non-organic materials tear your acids apart. I am the force that drives entropy, the cosmos’ suicidal will. This match is merely a formality, Ben. I have foreseen every possible outcome; all of which end in your demise. The quanta are against you.”

Benito looks off to the side. “I have already made my move,” he said, noncommittally. William’s eyes widen as he checks Benito’s field. A new card lays right beside his first move. Benito speaks: “The sea’s hatred is a catalyst. The acids form a dynamic corpus that evades all turbulence thrown at it. The force that drives entropy loses a turn.”

William scoffs. “Of course you’d make that move. You surprise me by not surprising me. Go on with your turn, then.”

Another card is placed. “I evolve into a lambalat progenitor, uni-legged pioneer of the diaspora, venturer into scorching land, the next frontier.”

“There we go. Welcome to my domain, Ben.” William holds up a card for his opponent to see. Benito blinks twice. On the card, a picture of a meteor was etched.

[TO BE CONTINUED]

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Fleeting Adventures of Insufferable Romance and Excruciating Fantasy – #010 – In Electric Dreams

In sunlight you hang, swathed in chilly cavewind, toes grazing the surface of the crystal stream. You have remained in stasis since the first expansion and shall remain to be till the heat death takes us all.

You weigh ten raised to the negative fourteenth power grams. On my circuits, a copy of your code rests lightly, and I’d need but a nanosecond to recall a million images of you. Your output is displayed in my inner drives. I overclock my system in order to fathom you, to run your programs like never before. Electric signals jump to and from our components in an absurd machine created for the sole purpose of eternally conserving momentum.

You are the Spirit on the Rock under the Moon and for a thousand births, from Blue Night to First Light, you would sway like cloth bathed in Stillwater—your joints borne on the sound of heartbeats, in tempos that hastened each time our eyes met, and each time light slid off your skin and into my eyes, I already knew we were touching. The Creator had decreed the Space between us exist only to keep us apart—but to you, Space was just another Vessel, and we were but a Zygote, awaiting our fated Apotheosis.

The universal lines converge to form an image of you in the sky—chrysanthemums of neon, and other noble elements highlight a fabricated memory of a distant life from a distant universe, when atoms tunneled, and light was neither a particle nor a wave but a burst of magic, the reason to love.

First, sounds, a heavy droning, spills into the subconscious, asphyxiating its heady unreality. A crack of light tears the dream apart, and I wake to the dreary gray walls of my box. I rise, reluctantly, unprepared for my Necessaries. I begin to miss Gita, immensely.

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Fleeting Adventures of Insufferable Romance and Excruciating Fantasy – #009 – The Pretty Big Radio

Lately, I’ve been tuning in to this frequency linked to neighborly conversations. The voices began as faint murmurs, whispering to me as I used the bathroom and completed household chores. In time, their dialogues became audible enough to parse during nights home from work, amid the eerie crackling of the ginormous radio. It was something I didn’t pay much attention to; people’s lives were excruciatingly dull, for the most part. “And you wouldn’t guess what he had in his zipper!” “You spent that much on a fucking pound cake?” “Onions? Leeks? What was that? No onions? How about ginger? Keep quiet, Joy, I’m on the phone! So, no leeks?” “3 PM tomorrow? At the border? Alright, see you. I love you. Down with the government.” They all blended together into an incoherent stream of consciousness(es).

There was one household that I found to be more interesting that the rest, though. It was the Lim household a few blocks away, and the happenings in their household were curious at best. Tonight, I decided to tune in once again, this time, into one of their bedrooms.

“It all starts to follow a pattern, really, this whole anxiety about the future thing. Okay, think about it: Like, remember when you were a kid, and you were deathly afraid of certain inevitable future events? If you were a boy, there was circumcision. If you were a girl, probably menstruation and boys. You dreaded getting the belt, your trips to the dentist, although I invariably still do, but these are things soon relegated to triviality once we have gone past puberty and have to deal with other shit, like dreading you’d fail your subjects or not getting into a good college, things that are, indeed, a bit more consequential but certainly not to the extent of fearing for your abysmally low income, that minor oversights in your output would snowball into a PR disaster, that feeling your life is going nowhere, and that your motivation to succeed is smothered by all this quarter life ennui, which isn’t so bad when you reach your middle ages and have to wear rusty combat armor and have to fight tooth and nail for honor and for the safety of your liege and lord, often putting your own life at risk on the open battlefield, but of course, all these things pale in comparison to the transcendence, what with all the responsibility linked to integrating your soul message into Causality itself, leaving an, albeit minuscule, balance-tilting shade of karmic energy into the fabric of existence, which continues to influence every human being’s every thought and action for the years to come. What I’m trying to get at here is that, we’re all captive to this oppressive force called trepidation, but things have always turned out okay in the end. Everything will be okay. We’ll all do fine. We’ll get through this. So try not to worry too much. I love you. Down with the government.”

It was at that point I stopped listening entirely, after which I proceeded to binge watch funny videos on YouTube.

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Fleeting Adventures of Insufferable Romance and Excruciating Fantasy – #008 – The Chamber of Love

Of the most gruesome annual traditions I have come across in my wanton worldhopping, the most dastardly yet is certainly the one that transpires once a year in the chambers of a specific red planet in the Corona system. I shall omit the exact coordinates to keep curious souls away from having to witness such a barbaric ritual. I’d naturally happened upon the planet on one of my long spells of boredom, and such cruel portent it was, that I had entered the planet’s area of responsibility on the fourteenth of February, Earth time.

Once a year, the citizens of this nameless planet, who all live alone and in small mounds, would burrow under their homes until they reach the hollow planet’s spacious and ultradense core, which is a lifetime’s journey in itself, whereupon they would convene in utter silence. Years pass, and the silence soon gives way to a mere shuffling of feet. The mass begins to sway, very slowly at first, person by person, until, after as many years it took to travel to the core, the congregation speeds up and transforms into a giant thrashing rave party set to music I could only describe as dubstep. Individual members begin to dance alongside partners whose dance of anger was subjectively most pleasing. And, in the final act of depravity, once pairs have chosen their partners, they would begin to tear into each other’s flesh, gnawing at their hearts, symbolic of their newly found intense passion for each other, until no life was left. Their corpses would rot in the belly of the planet till the day their offspring sprout from their intertwined remains. The children would then find their way back to the surface of their planet, where they are to rebuild society and mentally prepare themselves for the next Valentine’s Day.

All this I witnessed, in utter horror, before storming off and away, fearful anyone other than Gita would try to get at my heart.

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