[EPR 4] Nick 4

Abort, abort. Get her out of there. Close. You turned to Callie, “So, I’ll pick you up in a little bit.” 

Callie was uneasy, but she caught the drift and went along. “Cool, sounds great.”

“No time, lad,” said the homeless man. “Destiny is upon us. You must take on the mantle.”

You are stunned as you watch this man talk about destiny as he is deliberately drop kicking yours. This had to be the edible, but deep inside, you knew this was as real as it gets. Callie looked back and forth between you and him trying to figure out if this was some sort of joke. “What mantle?” she said. “Do you guys know each other?”

“The maiden!” the man said, dropping to one creaking knee and bowing his head. “Hail, it is truly an honor to be in the presence of the divine. Your part to play in this unfolding is integral to the well being of this world.”

Callie was taken aback. “Excuse me?” she said. “Maiden?”

The homeless man popped up quicker than expected and turned back to you. “Time is of the essence. Take this.” He produced and unbefore noticed cooler and plunked it onto the counter. At this time a small line began to form behind him, with rapidly cooling coffees and people itching for cigarettes increased the weight of the situation.

The cooler was your typical red and white, but there seemed to be a jankily assembled battery pack on the side that buzzed. Ceremoniously, he opened it, releasing condense vapor that poured out onto the counter as well as a stale, mildewy smell. From inside, he produced a silver canteen. He bowed his head and presented it to you.

You touched it, but immediately withdrew. You should have figured it’d be freezing cold. It was hard to hold because of how cold the frosty metal was, however it didn’t seem to affect the homeless man’s calloused hands. He continued to wait expectantly for you to take it. You cast Callie a glance who took on the visage of a skeptical bird, but she stood unmoving. Curiosity overtook you. You grabbed a rag from under the register for insulation and took the metal canister. You felt its weight in your hands as you turned it over and eventually found a label.  It was mostly nonsense, barcodes and serial numbers. The most striking thing that caught your attention immediately was the big red biohazard sticker. Promising.  

Eventually, you find a name. It stopped you. You almost dropped the canister, but you were able to hold on and stare at the name. In its casual courier text in the lab journal style boxes, sat the name “Yellow King”.  

You used to be active sports watcher, that was until you started working every weekend. Now you just turn to the local sports talk station to watch your teams from afar. For the past couple weeks, a certain ruckus has been bubbling up around one particular ‘dark horse’.  A horse no one had ever heard of had come from Nowheresville, USA and made a heroic run to seize the Triple Crown.  Some young money went out and bred a horse from some of the greatest families in horse racing:  Secretariat, Seabiscuit, Seattle Slew, you name it.  Some controversial gene therapy was applied to the horse in utero, eventually killing the mare it was born from.  The horse is described as an absolute monster.  A freak of nature.  And it is named “Yellow King”. It’s caused quite a stir in the horse world, and though the ethics are considered dubious, many are considering this the future of racing. In a strange set of events however, the horse suddenly died with no indication if the process would ever be repeated.

The first thing out of your stupid face was, “How do you fit a horse in a cannister?”

“Ain’t the horse, sir” said the homeless man, raising from his knee and replacing the canteen in the cooler.  “Tis a million little horses that will make a billion more.”

Callie understood before you did.  “Ew,” she said.

The idea trickled into the front of your slowed mind.  “Is this horse jizz?” you said a little too loud.  The line forming grumbled and a couple people left the line. Those remaining shook their heads and looked disapprovingly.  

“Aye, sir,” said the homeless man.  “The only one they took before the sire was euthanized, calling him a monstrosity.  I’ve seen it all in a dream, sir.  From this the world of horses, ney, the entire world will be changed. The families that will become rich from these horses will rule the world with an iron fist.  They will bring the end of days upon us. In the dream, they told me to find you and to pass the responsibility on to you. That you would know what to do.”

“So,” you said. “Stolen horse jizz?”

“Aye, sir,” said the man with a convincing deadpan. “Very elaborate, not enough time to go into the details.”

You and Callie were incredulous. “Why me?” you almost shouted.  More frustrated line goers started leaving the store. Some of them were still holding their goods they were patiently waiting to pay for. “I’m the last person to know about what to do with million dollar-”

“Possibly billion,” corrected the homeless man.

“Billion dollar horse semen!”  I looked at the homeless man who seemed to have an increasingly bug-eyed look on his face.  

“You’ve already partaken,” said the man. “The brownies that now run through your bloodstream had a drop of the seed within them. The seed is within you, binding you to this tale.”

The room paused for a moment as you go slackjawed as that dizziness of anger and confusion that makes your vision tilt washes over you. “The fuck are you talking about, man.”

“The brownies that you ate, sir,” he said. “I gave them to your friend, Jimmie who sold them to you.”

You were quiet for a moment. “He charged me for brownies that a homeless man gave him?”

“Yes,sir,” he said. 

“And they had magic horse cum in them?”

“Yes, sir,” he said.

“Ew,” said Callie.

Murder impulse began bubbling up through you. “How did you even get this?”

With deep sullen seriousness, the homeless man came in closer and whispered, “Angels.”

Honestly, you were almost relieved. For a second, you thought this guy was serious. But now that you found out that he was just a crazed vagabond, you released from whatever ‘responsibility’ I was letting this guy put on me. I figured I was getting a little light weight with my drugs or Jimmie made these a little too strong.

“Okay, buddy,” you said with a little swagger back.  “Why don’t you take this cooler back to the angels and tell them-,” but you struggled to finish the sentence as you realized that this homeless man’s eyes were beginning to bulge even more than before.  His eyes flushed red from popping blood vessels.  He didn’t even seem to be breathing.  

“Are you okay?” you asked.

That was before he toppled over face first on the floor. You were frozen, not even checking his pulse, because why wouldn’t he be dead?  

Callie screamed and someone yelled for a doctor. Someone else did the right thing and called for an ambulance. No one bent down to help him. You just stood there holding a cooler full of mutant horse semen and your dick in your hand.

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