Read Being A Greengrocer during the last 90 days of the Apocalypse - Chapter 3 online

Chapter 3: A Short Ride Home

The two drifted through the countryside, like iridescent fish swimming downstream. The autonomous car rode impossibly smooth. Its engine was so quiet that Yeung-Sung almost thought Simon had trained it to be polite. Somehow, even mud, cobblestone roads and potholed tarmac all passed under them without so much as a rumble. It was so unbelievable that it felt magical, yet so obviously technological that the reality of his situation drove a stake in his mind. Yeung-Sung quickly developed a monster of a headache. If, in this age, which some had called a second dark-age, this man and his 'company' just send out a piece of tech like this without comment, then they were dangerous.

In his seat, he did his best to twist his legs into awkward, unbalanced positions. Yeung-Sung didn't want to make the mistake of becoming comfortable while in captivity. Yet the seat leather rubbed against him, gently pulling him deeper into its folds.

Inside of the five-seater, Simon sat in front on the right, with a dashboard monitor setup in front him which was offline for the moment. Ostensibly though, Yeung-Sung noticed the absence of a steering wheel. He was sitting to the far left, in the back. Continuing to deny the wonder and comfort of his carriage. From his view, he tried to extract something from the swathes of black that flew past outside the window at over 100 miles an hour.

Simon coughed. For attention.

"Uh, Yeung-Sung, want a smoke?" He offered a fresh, sealed pack.

"I don't smoke".

"Neither do I, really. I bring it with me to calm folks. Though telling you that probably makes you more nervous, huh?"

Yeung-Sung turned away from the window, peering back over his shoulder only to see Simon, with a stupid grin that pulled apart the idiot's cheeks. Putting the pack back to where everything seemed to come from -his coat- he made a mixture of subtle jingling noises. What else did he have in there? Probably something even more useless.

"There's other people on the research team better acquainted for this, honestly. Sorry about the death threat."

Simon shrugged, "I wanted to, uh, shut you up. For your own good, I might add. I wouldn't actually hurt you."

He started searching his pockets again. "Are you hungry?" he asked. "Ahh, I should've offered some food back at the start." He was muttering now. "Now, let's see,"

Yeung Sung wasn't interested. "Didn't you say you were going to show me something cool?" He sat up straighter and decided to vent out his headache, "Or tell me anything about what's going to happen to me? If I'm going to be a guinea pig, turned into some kind of genetic freak, just tell me already!"

He fixed Simon with a pleading stare. He almost managed a tear, though it didn't get through. He was getting the impression that Simon wasn't much of a people person.

Instead, Simon became engrossed in his phone. He was turned away so that Yeung could've only seen the movement of his hands. He watched Simon slide his thumb upwards on the screen a few times, then afterwards, promptly locking the phone with a snap. Still mumbling to himself, completely inaudible now, he turned it over through a cradle of fingers, and unlocked it to begin the same process over again. It didn't tell Yeung-Sung much except that he must've been checking for something.

But then, unexpectedly, Simon brought himself back to eye level with Yeung-Sung. He looked at him in a way that reminded Yeung-Sung of taking monthly stock counts. What to do with you, he thought it implied. He didn't get the sense that Simon meant it in a sinister manner. Or maybe he had broken through to him. He reckoned that Simon could've instead been on the fence about finally telling him something. Something useful. He unconsciously peered away (his gaze was becoming uncomfortable; definitely not a people person), peering down to his coattails, he realized just how full Simon's pockets were. Something useful at last, Yeung hoped.

He needed to push him over the edge. After all, he seemed decent enough, albeit a social idiot. He obviously wanted to tell him. Perhaps he simply asking the wrong questions. About the wrong things. A simple question, then. Yeung Sung fell back, allowing the seat cushions to claim him and asked,

"Where are we going?"

Simon perked up. "The colony, of course."

That doesn't explain a damn thing! I have more questions now.

"The colony?" Yeung-Sung didn't bother trying to close his mouth. One reaction ran into another, clogging up his jaw. He knew that until he had figured out what to say back to him, he would continue to look like an idiot. The agape fool searched for a phrase with the tip of his tongue. It was actually nice and cool in the autocar. "Please. Explain."


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