The Graveyard of the Flying Machines Part II

by jprickett
originally published at 02:54PM on Thursday, March 29, 2007

The oxen strained forward a few more feet, the sweat in their fur glistening in the morning sun, the ropes attaching them to the airship slackening as they stopped. Johnson, Reynolds, and Payne yelled nonsense words at the beasts and slapped leather whips against their haunches. Payne stopped long enough to spit a long stream of tobacco between his round-toed boots. One of the oxen lifted it’s head and tried to bellow, but they were bred to be mute as well as large and all that came out was a breathy sigh, like a breeze blowing across a hot fire.

Morgan stared at the back of the airship. The wind picked up again, lifting the deflated balloon, and he saw the great gash in the ship’s tail. A massive hole opened on the side facing him with vicious-looking spikes of black iron splayed out around the rim. Puckers of metal, like tarry scar tissue, bulged up from the edges of the hole and ran away from it in all directions. The entire prop housing was gone, blown off and likely still lying in a field somewhere.


  • from uselessness:

    Surreal. I love the juxtaposition of draft animals and airships against genetic engineering and… the President? You’ve created a fantastical world here, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

  • from jprickett:

    Originally I was gonna type Emperor, but that felt cliched, so I went with President.

  • from Podge Dirkins:

    Very juicy and vivid. I like it.