By Nick Cato
“They’re at it again,” the Pope said as he poured fresh cement in the bullet hole.
The audience continued chant-renditions of forgotten television jingles, clouds becoming triangular in the east.
“But Father, can we truly afford to lose the people?” A circle appeared under Cardinal O’Henry and sucked him down. “Father? Can we—”
The planes approached on limited fuel.
O’Henry, released on a frozen tundra, founds his own sect.
“I just want you to know how much this means to me,” an audience member said, his exposed arms covered in clear gelatin.
“Don’t speak my child,” the Pope said.
Police rushed the altar. A pistol floated before the crowd, daring anyone to look at it. One policeman gambled and was rewarded with two holes above his right eye.
O’Henry: “We have to get some heat or we’ll die―and it’ll be hard to attract any new members.”
The planes; tiny excremental meteors falling from their wings.
“Forgive me Father; it’s been six years since my last panic attack.”
The Pope closed his eyes and poured hardening cement into the confessor’s ears. A circle formed beneath the newly-deaf man.
“See the planes: hear the planes, those of aural cohesiveness,” the Pope said.
Antennae sprouted from the polieman’s wounds and fired two shots at the cement-crazed pontiff.
“Brothers and sisters, truly we are cursed. No one remembers a word I’ve said. You . . . yes, you who just joined us. What do you have to say for yourself?” O’Henry asked.
The newly-deaf man shrugged his shoulders, said “what?” then succumbed to another mental blow.
The planes crashed into the square, one by one by one, nearly-unfueled, yet exploding.
Covered in cement, the Pope escaped and headed for the tundra.
O’Henry sensed the pontiff’s coming, still screaming as ice worms pulled his brain across the solid-white plain.
The planes try to become one with the crowd.
The crowd, a circle forming underneath them.
The Pontiff, now frost-bitten and sluggish.
O’Henry, cast down now promoted.
Nick Cato's fiction has appeared in Dark Recesses Press, on several dark fiction websites, as well as the anthologies Deathgrip: Exit Laughing from Hallbound Books, Southern Fried Weirdness 2007, and the forthcoming Strange Stories of Sand & Sea by Fine Tooth Press. His work has appeared in Blue Lady magazine. With his wife, Maria, he runs Novello Publishers, a small press dedicated to humorous horror fiction. He also runs an entertaining webcast, Lair of the Yak. His debut novel, Suburban Exorcist, will be here eventually.
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