This week's Angry Hourglass Submission!
An Afternoon In the Arena at the Duval County Fair
The beast towered over him. Silent. Guymon hadn’t thought about spiders having vocal chords before this moment. It made sense. If they didn’t have any means of making noise before The Process, they wouldn’t have any afterwards.
“Don’t hurt him Papa,” Carla shouted from the crowd. His daughter sounded just like she did in the basement when determining that the creepy crawlies in the window sill was a just a daddy long legs. She had no heart for other spiders, but daddy long legs always earned her sympathy. “Their mouths are so tiny they can’t even bite people. Just other bugs,” she would educate him.
“OK, Carla. I promise I’ll never kill any daddy long legs.”
Twenty feet above him though the spiders’ mandibles looked like they could exposed Guymon’s skull with the efficiency of a can opener.
The rain-rusted loud speakers buzzed from the four corners of the dirt arena. “And here comes hometown hero Guymon Mallerno. Let’s see he’s a match for Big Daddy!” The crowd cheered. If it was for the once-defensive end of the Reagan High Growlers or the double decker sized spider threatening to eviscerate him, it didn’t matter. The noise of the drunken mob agitated the arachnid.
The promise of The Process had bankrupted the nation. A chemical reaction that could instantly expand organic materials held unlimited promise. Produce and livestock could be exponentially enlarged to feed everyone and reduce the farmland needed. All government resources were steered immediately to the full scale roll-out of The Process by executive order.
The problem was that ten months after enlargement, the cells broke down. Killing anything that had become gigantic. And anyone that had consumed Process-treated items. The only thing that The Process didn’t destroy were arachnids, leaving the nation stuck with thousands of the giant monstrosities. Not wanting to miss any opportunity to placate what was left of the masses, the beasts were put into service entertaining them.
Guymon didn’t care about this history though. It didn’t matter in this moment. He seized the spiders leg and started to lift before the creature could react. He wouldn’t be able to keep his daughter’s promise today.