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The room cleared out when someone threw open the doors and shouted, “Dinosaur Ghosts are destroying the Heritage Foundation!”
As the crowd poured out of the auditorium, individual statements could be overheard such as, “Wow, this I gotta see,” and “Who had Heritage Foundation in the pool? My money was on CPAC.”
Soon the room was empty except for Helen, who was methodically gathering up her things, and young Stumpy Wilkinson, who now approached her.
“There’s something else you should know. Something I forgot to tell the panel of liberals.”
“Make it quick,” Helen snapped. “I’ve got work to do.”
“It’s not just dinosaur ghosts we have to worry about.”
“What are you talking about?” Helen said, unable to conceal her annoyance.
“There’s another monster,” Stumpy continued, “one completely separate from the dinosaur ghosts. It’s from a different era. If my calculations are correct, it will arrive in our time within the next few days.”
“You best start making sense, Ass Boy,” Helen said. She wasn’t sure why she called Stumpy Ass Boy. It just came out. All things considered, he had a normal-sized-and-shaped posterior, and his face was not at all ass-like.
“Have you ever heard of the missing link?” Stumpy asked.
“You mean an undiscovered species between human beings and apes?”
“Oh yeah, that is what that is. Okay, this is slightly different. This is a species between human beings, monkeys, and monsters. I called it the Monkey Man Monster or MMM for short.”
“A Monkey Man Monster?” Helen said, shaking her head. “Is that like Bigfoot?”
“No. The Monkey Man Monster, or MMM for short, has surprisingly small feet. They’re quite dainty.”
“This is ridiculous.”
“I’m afraid they are very real and they are very dangerous. Not the feet, though. Just the rest of the monster.”
“And is the Monkey Man Monster also eating republicans?”
“You mean the MMM? Inconclusive.”
“Then what what exactly does the MMM do?” Helen asked.
"You mean the Monkey Man Monster? Let me put it this way. Just as the dinosaur ghosts have come back from extinction in order to take revenge on conservatives for their over reliance on fossil fuels, the MMM, or Monkey Man Monster--really it’s whichever you prefer--exists primarily to whack the shit out of people who don’t believe in evolution. Probably with a big club.”
“Republicans are really having a rough month.”
“Yes, I suppose so.”
“I don’t have time for this,” Helen said. She had packed up all the gadgets she needed to do battle with the dinosaur ghosts, but then remembered that she had forgotten to change outfits, so she had to unpack everything again because the outfit she wanted to wear was underneath all the doodads. She then went into the nearest women’s restroom and changed clothes.
When she returned she was wearing a virgin white dress, cut low in front to reveal her cleavage, and cut short on bottom to reveal her thighs.
“Whoa,” Stumpy said, drooling a little.
“Now I’m ready.” Helen said.
“What are you going to do?” Stumpy asked her boobs.
“Well, if I’m going to sacrifice myself, I figured I better dress the part.”
Stumpy continued to stare at her boobs.
People filtered into the auditorium again, chatting about the spectacle they had witnessed. A paleontology grad student ran up to Stumpy excitedly. “Dude, you missed it. Dinosaur Ghosts totally ate the building across the street.”
“You mean it’s over?” Helen said. “Where are they now?”
“The dinosaur ghosts? I don’t know. They took off,” the grad student said to her boobs.
“Damn,” Helen said, leaning over slightly, just for the hell of it. “I guess my plan will have to wait.”
Less than twenty four hours after the collapse of the Heritage Foundation, Kevin “Grammy” Graham, 72-year-old founder and CEO of The Crafty Craftsman, now with 372 locations nationwide, stood in the center of his latest triumph, the soon-to-be opened Worldwide Bible Theme Park and Creationist Museum in downtown Kansas City, Kansas. Years in the making, with no expense spared, the series of interconnecting structures, rides, and exhibits was guaranteed to be the new favorite vacation destination--a Mecca of sorts--for some of the most devout and willfully ignorant upper-middle class fundamentalist Christians in the country.
By far, the most noticeable feature of the park was the one hundred foot-tall replica of Jesus’s head (the white version), known informally as Mega Jesus. The sign out front featured a painting of a regular-sized Jesus with a word bubble pointed at his mouth, which read, “See the world through the eyes of Mega Jesus!”
How could any visitor, young or old, fail to climb the spiral staircase along the inside of Mega Jesus’s neck, leading to the immaculate tongue where they might kiss the inside of his cheek, gaze at his majestic tonsils, or have a seat on one of sixty four perfect pearly whites. A short elevator ride through the nasal passageway would lead them to the ocular center, the brilliant cerulean eyes of Mega Jesus, where for only twenty five cents, they could look through telescopic sights and literally see what Jesus sees--pretty much the whole park. After that, why not take a quick dip in one of several tear ducts (bathing suits required), or, for a few dollars extra, go for a full baptism? Ministers would be standing by.
And this was just the beginning. Someday, Grahammy hoped to erect a body to support the giant head. Expected to rise some one thousand feet in the air, if all went well, people from every corner of the state would able to look into the distance and witness the holiest skyscraper the world had every known.
Of course there were many other attractions to which visitors could avail themselves. Children could play games like ‘Beat the Devil’ and ‘Seat of Judgment’ or enjoy any one of the many wonderful rides such as the ‘Siege of Jerusalem’, the ‘Carousel of Locusts’ (“Look Mommy, I’m on the plague!”), ‘the Cain-o-nator’, or sit back and enjoy a ride on the ‘Exodus Train’, which just seemed to go round and round.
Teenage couples were encouraged to take a spin on the ‘Chastity Belt’, a giant spinning cylinder in which the couples were separated, strapped down, and then spun around until they were too sick to act on their basest impulses.
But perhaps Grahammy’s favorite attraction was the Old Testament Creationist Museum, featuring wax figures of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, Moses parting the Red Sea, Aaron sacrificing a lamb, Abraham sacrificing Isaac, and Daniel in the lion’s den. It also featured state-of-the-art three-dimensional digital representations of each of the six days of creation. Grahammy imagined one of his new employees barking, “Step right up and see the universe created before your eyes!”
Grahammy was certain, however, that the museum’s appeal would stem mainly from the Noah’s Arc Exhibit. Children would love to play on the still-massive scale model arc, ride the backs of stone elephants and crocodiles, and behold just how many animal statues Graham’s designers had managed to cram onto the thing.
Graham and his partners had debated endlessly on what to do about the dinosaurs. People had no problem believing that Noah could fit two of each of the nearly eight million species of animals on Earth on a structure that measured 300 cubits by 50 by 30, but Noah himself must have asked himself how the hell he was going to fit all those dinosaurs on his already crowded boat. After much prayer and soul-searching the Lord had evidently given him the go-ahead to nix the prehistoric beasts. That’s why, in Graham’s replica, he had submerged all the dinosaur models up to their necks in the surrounding whirl pool and positioned them to stare up at Noah, silently begging him to let them on board. Everyone knew what happened after that.
Graham stood on the Arc, and wrapped his arm around the statue of Noah. This was truly as close to Heaven as a person could get in this wicked world, and in a few hours the rest of the world was going to know it too.
He only wished the right wing of the Supreme Court hadn’t recently been eaten by dinosaur ghosts before they could rule on his case. In Billinglsy VS the Crafty Craftsman, Graham had hoped the court would decide once and for all that a company could claim a religious exemption from contributing a share of health insurance premiums to homosexual employees. His argument: by helping to keep gay people alive, he was in fact contributing to their lifestyle, a notion he found unconscionable. Now, he was almost certain to lose the case.
He tried to push the negative thought out of his mind. Today was going to be a grand day. Soon the gates of the park would open and Graham would be surrounded by a comforting throng of like-minded individuals.
Staring in the direction of the park gate, he failed to notice the water churning below him in an unusually aggressive manner, nor did he observe the emergence of two great beasts who had been denied a place on his arc. A shadow fell over him then, a pair of shadows, that cast him into their darkness. Slowly he turned, and his expression became a mixture of horror and confusion. He’d prayed this wouldn’t happen. Not today. But here they were. Dinosaur Ghosts, and...Were they holding hands?
go to chapter 11
go to chapter 11