What The Future . . .

I may be only one in a million affected like this, but perhaps like the canary in the coalmine, I’ll be the first to let you know that the deteriorating Earth atmosphere needs an immediate fix, because it’s back again, the numbness in my head that comes only when the air carries noxious waste.

I escape to the mountains of Wasp-12-B, because the rarified orange air there doesn’t hold particles that affect my brain. Well, most of the year that is true, but it hasn’t rained diamonds that clean gunk from the rarified air since May.

Soon all Earthlings will be as I am, with a brain disabled by worsening air, making one stupid and dense. It’s not just an excuse for wanting to travel to the stars. Once the diamonds begin to fall on this planet, the air will become pristine, and my thinking will return once again and my pain will disappear. It was worth the 871 light years it took to arrive on this carbon- filled gaseous planet to be able to think again.

To see mountains made of diamonds is a beautiful sight. Once the diamond rains begin, I’ll transmit videos back to Earth so everyone can see how it clears the grey looking atmosphere and it becomes bright orange once again.

I needed a new wrap drive installed to make this trip, and to pay for that expense I stuffed every nook and cranny on my space ship with diamonds that fell from the sky on Neptune and Uranus. I paid to have my brain transferred to a cybernetic case with arms and legs and got a 100,000-year guarantee. How nice to know if I should spurt a leak or break a bolt, all cost is covered. Once my warranty runs out, I’ll upgrade to the latest module, but for now, this one will do as I travel through space looking for the perfect world.

My module is practically immortal, so while I’m on my journey, I’m going to plant my seed on every habitable planet I can find. If there isn’t life on any, I’ll create it and plant my seed so they’ll grow to be just like me.

I have plenty of sperm and eggs in my replicator. So much that I have to plant some almost every day. As soon as my head clears a bit, I’ll blast off to the next planet on my list. By the time I return to Earth, the universe will be filled with replicas of me. I’ll have so many followers that I’ll become the ruler of Earth and probably the universe.

No one could stop me because there’ll be billions just like me who will follow my lead. I took the long way home so I could populate every planet I saw. I finally arrived on Earth and saw that everything had changed. Humans were nowhere to be seen. Machines ruled everything. I wanted to claim my leadership position. I told the nearest machine, “Take me to your leader.”

A map appeared in my brain and I followed the directions. Eight thousand levels below ground in a lead-lined room. I saw twelve machines gathered around an orb of light. The machines were sleek metal-skinned humanoids. They were setting a table for twelve. I wonder why twelve and not thirteen; after all, I must be the guest of honor after travelling all those years in space.

“Welcome to the feast,” a voice in my head said.

“Thank you,” I thought, and then mentally posed a question. “What happened to the human race?”

I felt a great sorrow, and knew the machines missed them.

“We bred and fed them for thousands of years, but they couldn’t keep up with the demand and they became extinct.”

I didn’t understand what the demand was that they couldn’t keep up with, but the machine didn’t tell me. I watched the Humanoid machines sampling bits of oil and grease they spread on crackers and ate with razor sharp teeth.

“Why do you need to eat? I asked. I knew my cybernetic case was self-nourishing, and I wondered if they lost the design.

“We don’t need to eat. We, the rulers emulate our creators and eat because we can,” the voice in my head said.

I watched as the machines opened storage compartments in their chests and each of the twelve took out an electric wrench, a screwdriver, and a pair of pliers. They set these beside their knives and forks.

“What is it they’re going to eat that they need to use tools on?” I asked mentally.

“Something we haven’t had since the last human died, and now that you returned we can sample it once again.”

“I don’t understand. Did you eat humans? Is that why there are none left?”

“Ugh,” the interior voice said, “Never would we eat a human.”

“Okay, I’m a machine like you, so you know I’ll understand if you did. They were destroying this world anyway. I have started a new race like myself and we populate the universe, so you might as well know, you’ll serve me from now on.”

That’s exactly what we plan on doing, because you have something we love and haven’t had in so long it will indeed be a pleasure to serve you.”

“That’s what I wanted to hear. What is it that I have that you love?” I asked, merely out of curiosity.

“Brains, we haven’t eaten a brain in years. Thank you for seeding the universe.”

A force field picked me up and placed me in the center of the table. The humanoids picked up their tools and began to loosen the nuts and bolts of my braincase . . .”

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