I was in the Tabernackle once.
It was the night before the EDM race.
I was with Taz and Bungalow.
Only the stone Gorbandula saw us creep into that holy place.
‘No good will come of this,’ it’d growled when I handed Taz and Bungalow glowshrooms.
‘Ah, shut your rock hole’, I’d replied. That kind of comment could get you killed. But the priests were at the festival.
Every other Martian listened to them while we ate their glowshrooms. We expected something magical to happen. But were disappointed.
Race morning came quickly.
I pitied the crowds watching -their lives not racing Emergency Dispatch Machines must feel empty.
I took stock:
- We were the three best EDM pilots in the galaxy
- In a home race
- I was confident of beating Bungalow (he never took risks)
And EDM racing is about risk:
Sector 1 of 3
You need to go slow, or the gravitational pulses will destroy your machine.
Nobody told the Jupitarians.
All three were torn apart. Debris hit my port rudder. I grabbed it, but in doing so knocked the wind deflector loose.
It slapped against my head.
- Bungalow peeled off the course
- That left Taz, and some extraterrestrial no-hopers
- You need to commit
- Pick a racing line
- Stick with it
A Neptunian machine exploded against an outcrop. One by one the others piloted their machines out of danger. And of the race.
We were approaching the finish line.
The loose deflector hit my head again.
3000 metres left.
- I woke in a field of glowshrooms
- With a foot on my head
- The body that it belonged to belonged to a priest
‘Get outta the Tabernackle ya filthy scut‘, he yelled.
And I don’t plan on ever returning.