Sunday, January 29, 2017

Short Story: Fantasy Sound

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By: Emma B.

(A Fly’s Account of the Opening Night of Fantasia)

  It was a cold winter evening in the middle of New York City. I was simply flying around town trying not to get rained or snowed on. I was also desperately trying not to get crushed by a passing human walking by, or someone just acting stupid. However, in all the chaos, there was one place where I could hide and be 100% sure of my own personal safety, the local thing called a theater.
I didn’t understand how it worked; if I go anywhere else on the planet, the humans will try and slap us out of existence like wild dogs and yet when they enter this one building, the mind control of this giant flat surface projecting a few images suddenly puts them in a trance. It makes no sense to me and yet it’s a place with too much free food (the humans never take all of it), air just right to keep out of the cold for a bit and finally secluded areas where I wouldn’t get swatted at. It was bit loud sure, but honestly it’s much quieter compared to the hustle and bustle of outside.
So on that day of all days I swooped into the theater. The first thing I noticed is that it was packed, more than usual. All of the humans plowed through the snack bar as I quickly grabbed a small crumb that would last me a few hours. As I flew around the place I noticed all the humans crowded into one part of the theater, my part. The reason it was usually my part is because this particular side compartment of the box was usually the least crowded but today, well you could barely make out of the door there were so many people. I had heard rumors that this giant boat sank about 28 years prior to all of this and that the crowds of screaming humans were god-awful over there. Well at the time I almost convinced myself I had somehow leaped back in time to that moment the crowds were so bad. However, I realized that was bogus once I saw the humans were actually in a line.
I landed on some woman’s hat and once she sat down, I took off to my corner of the theater. It was far above any humans so I couldn’t be spotted. If I knew anything those flashy images would appear anytime soon and I’d tune out the black and white human images and just sit there bored making commentary on crowds of laughing or crying humans. However, something odd happened right as the room darkened. Instead of the black and white flashes, was a deeply pale blue with bold black shadows cast against, like storm clouds in the middle of June.  After a second or two I saw several million humans walk up carrying strange looking objects. Now even though I saw millions of humans, I think I’m pretty sure they see things was differently than I do, so based off a previous experience similar to this, there were about 104 humans all walking up holding things.
“Surely this is just advanced mind control right?” I whispered under my breath.
However, due to the color change, I was curious and kept staring. Shortly after a few moments all of the people started setting up their strange things. Most of them were positioned inside their mouths or close of their chest. I wondered if maybe this was some human mating ritual and the people on screens encouraged breeding in humans. Next, a final human (from the perspective of human vision) entered and took center stage. I thought quietly again about my theory. Possibly this human was the lead in mating and the reason for the color change was because that color adds to the perfect environment for growing human eggs. I thought how I might want to try a human egg sometime, they sound good. Or perhaps this for something else like just simple bonding or just brainwashing to do all of the above. Regardless of what it was, none of it seemed remotely pleasant at all. The center stage human started blabbering on and on and I quickly whispered,
“Yep it’s either science, eating or breeding.”
However, as the man finished running his mouth, one final man walked a stair case. I groaned but then the humans started clapping wildly. They saw this one human and suddenly applause ran out like wild fire, never ending. Finally the wild clapping stopped and a deadly silence fell over the area. I thought that was my cue to leave however just as I did a loud sound fell over the area. It stole my attention as I whipped around and saw something fade into the stair-case human. Suddenly, shadowed versions of all 104 humans holding their objects appeared against differently colored background. Some of them were rubbing sticks on a piece of wood, some were pulling and releasing strings, some were pounding down on a cloth service that tightly stretched over a bowl.
I was confused, there was one thing that made me even more curious, the sounds seemed emphasized. I had heard sounds from these boxes before but nothing like this. It was almost as if the humans didn’t care about watching other humans but rather listening to the sound. So I tuned in closer to try and see what all the fuss was about. The sound was absolutely gorgeous, and unlike anything I had ever heard. I wasn’t even aware that humans could make such sounds. I also saw the images weren’t shadows of humans anymore but rather abstract shapes over golden, pink, blue and gray backgrounds. Streaks of gold created images across the landscape and all of it kidnapped my senses even more. Especially as hills were be made out, stars and pillars of light. I couldn’t put in words how detailed everything was. I also noticed that the humans didn’t silently whisper as they usually did but rather sat in silence as they let the sound kidnap them.
Suddenly, the pillars of light came flying through the darkness as stars fell from the heavens and clouds of red, purple and black smoke covered the area. Then a giant bolder moved slowly out of the way allowing for more light, contrasting with the darkness. Suddenly the sound and images ran wild until finally the staircase human showed up again, controlling clear water as the music seemed to follow his every motion. Finally everything was focused on the staircase human until finally everything exploded back to black. The humans rambled more and then finally the images reappeared, this time it was small circles of light (containing small humans with wings) flying near a pond as they made magic out of the things I considered ordinary like water, leaves and webs. The next images I saw dancing mushrooms, flowers and fish. Things of nature going into their own waltz all while the small humans guided nature and gave it order. Very quickly the scenery changed to a large 2,000-year-old sandstone temple with a cloaked man carrying pales of water. After that it was a series of savage beasts ravaging the countryside. They were out for blood and yet also had an air of innocence about them. Finally the ending falling to dust.
There was a small break as I sat there in awe of what I just seen. I pandered about everything as the humans seemed to be in just as deep thought. It was around then when I realized this had to be more than a mating ritual, but what could it be? Finally the humans came back and more images appeared on the screen. The new images consisted of many things including half human creatures, humans with control of entire mountains and some creatures that acted human but weren’t human at all. It all end, with a single human shooting an arrow of stars across the moon. There was another series of animal images however what grabbed my attention the most were the last two series of images. The first of last two series of images was of something almost human controlling a series of monsters from the top of a mountain. It was too foreboding to be anything human, almost like something out of a scary story. However with one ringing sound, the creature returned to the depths of a mountain until finally the images were blue with yellow lanterns and black-cloaked humans filled the images. I heard some humans sniffle in the audience, however I simply sat there curious of what I was seeing. It was so calm compared to the disgusting sense of dread I had just experienced and even though it made no sense it was still something so important I had to look at it. It was somehow more important than everything else despite being equally beautiful. Even for creatures such as myself (a simple house fly) beauty meant everything, however this was different. It was something that existed and something that can only be experienced by this almost surreal combination of sound and images.
Suddenly, a lone human started to sing; they were alone with only a few other sounds accompanying the voice. It was something beyond my comprehension and something that gave me a strange sense of hope as I listened on and on, finally the sounds faded and the images did to and the humans left. Everything was quiet and I was left to pander with my thoughts. I knew this something important to the humans, otherwise why would they shut up so quickly once it started. I flew out of the theater and the twilight had turned into midnight and I saw the humans crowd back into the streets as they always did. However that day, that long moment in time never stopped being important to me and the only things that could describe it was a fantasy sound.

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