Futurism logo

Closing Time

By David Perlmutter

By David PerlmutterPublished 2 years ago Updated 2 years ago 5 min read
David Perlmutter is a fiction writer based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Melba! You made it. Thank God!

I wasn’t thinking that those creeps out there would have let you past the roadblock they put out there in Anaheim. At least we know now there are other people in the universe who want absolutely nothing to do with the United States of America right now! Hell, they're more cartoon characters than any of us! And yet they think none of us have a right to live because we are cartoon characters. What idiots!

So, obviously, you must know that the lease ran out on the old TV show. Anybody who looks like we do and works in this business eventually has to deal with their primary- or only- source of income being kicked out from under them like a chair under a guy committing suicide eventually, and put into reruns like a damned museum piece. They didn't bother to inform us real nice like or nothing. Just this one package from headquarters done up in brown paper, which, when we got it open, was just some pithy little severance paychecks and a note saying, effectively, that they were done with us and we could go fuck ourselves! And we promptly sent THEM a message that said the same thing, but they're never gonna read it.

We knew the axe was going to fall one of these days, so we made sure to save up some money and find some way to get back here safe before Jack the Board Room Ripper started going on a tear.

Totally goat-ally, as they had me say. Rubbish.

Wait? What? You can’t hear me? Yeah, I know it’s a little loud. But it’s the last one, forever, so….

I got it. Come with me to my room. The guys know better than to come bother us there. Besides, most of us are so drunk- including me- that it won’t matter. If the Army manages to breach the border between Anthropomorph and the United States, they’ll kill any of us that move. And since we all move anyway…

Why do they hate cartoon characters? I’m no psychiatrist, but it probably had something to do with one of us scaring them or something when he was a kid, and them not being able to forgive and forget. That’s what happens when you have a mob of toadies in their back pocket all the time think of the people of the United States in the same form and fashion.

And then the FBI and CIA and Homeland and the NSA and the rest of those moles briefed them about us, and that we really exist, and we really come from out here, and that it’s a fairly porous border between the imaginary and the real, and all the bets we had were off.

No! Human beings, not actual moles.

Here, they would have been, but you know how those humans love their stupid metaphors! So many damned metaphors in their language that they can’t think literally and logically anymore, the way we do. The only time they understand us is when we make them laugh, not when we try- and fail- to make them think.

Well, some of them do. The ones who are in what they call the “humanities”, certainly. But those dudes and dames rarely make themselves heard except from up in their ivory towers on the college campuses, and nobody listens to them. Just like us.

Anyway, somehow, they found some way to get in and spied on us. And they found some loopholes in the fantasy/reality boundary we’ve always used to keep us safe. Breaking the safeguards our ancestors thought would always last forever with their goddamned technology. If they have their way, we’re dead meat.

Again, another bad metaphor. I apologize. But you know what I mean, don’t you?

I thought so. You’re a good kid, Melba. If I’d kept myself together at your age, then maybe this little goat wouldn’t have had all her problems and hang-ups as an adult. But that ain’t important now. Not too much is anymore, it seems.

So we knew they were coming, and we decided to bake a cake. As in, this bash.

We even went to the trouble of dressing up, as you can see. I totally forgot I had this thing I’m wearing right now in the closet, and had to go get it altered. At least it wasn’t as bad as Cricket. I swear, as much as I like that guy, he spends too much damn time in that lab of his. I mean, he didn’t have a decent suit in his closet, if you can believe it, so I had to take him out into town and get him one. Pig and Banana, no problem. They slob around quite a bit, like I do, too. But, when we clean ourselves up, there’s something pretty about us.

Pity we can’t people to see inside of us. Then they’d know us better…

Not like X-Rays, silly. What the humans would call our “souls”. Inner beauty and all that. The part of you nobody really “sees” unless you let them, but only if they’re worthy enough to be your friend.

Not your enemy. They don’t know our secrets-yet- and they ain’t gonna get them if we have our way.

You know how people out there get the wrong idea about us all the time. That stuff about us needing to be restrained in straightjackets and locked away in asylums and all that. Well, all that really started with their people, not ours. They used to take all their defective-minded people and lock them away for good if they thought they were “embarrassing” them. Mind you, some of them, like that Marquis de Sade fellow, deserved it, but not all of them did. That’s the tragedy.

And, like they say out there, comedy is just tragedy plus time. So, we might even be able to laugh off all of this.

Shit. The lights went out. I’ll bet Pig must have been fiddling with the cords again. I love that guy so much it hurts, but sometimes he just don't think right.

Holy shit, what was that? Lightning?

Ah, DAMN IT! They broke through the barrier! Smashed it like it was toilet paper!

And we only got seconds before they get here and put their bayonets in us for good.

Well? What are you just standing there with your mouth wide open for? COME ON!


About the Creator

David Perlmutter

David Perlmutter is a freelance writer based in Winnipeg, Canada.

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

Sign in to comment

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2023 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.