The Peddlers Of Smut, Fragment 3

space-smut_3On the tiny screen, coarse with static, a tall, skinny man was attempting to inject a Tau Cetian gatorfrog with a murky brown substance. He spent ten minutes looking for some semblance of veins, then gave up and jammed the needle into the beast’s armpit, emptying the monstrous syringe in one swift motion.

“And now, my lovelies,” the man grinned into the camera, “we will see that famed Tau Cetian regeneration at work. The results, by our humble calculations, should be dramatic…”

For a few moments, the gatorfrog seemed unfazed by the intrusion, then a shiver ran over its bulbous body, its six eyes rolled back and a forked tongue slivered out between the fangs, lolling lazily. You didn’t have to be a xeno-biologist to tell that the creature was severely stoned.

“A gatorfrog fucked off Krokodil, my lovelies!” the skinny man cackled.

I joined him, filling my cabin with the sound of a grown man reverted back to childhood – if fast approaching dangerous inebriation levels, and  raised a toast to the crazy bastards from Universe Is Yours and their ‘21st century drugs’ segments. Real class, those guys, not to mention balls. In an age where every wavelength, every channel and broadcast sprouted filth, theirs felt honest, unfiltered and relatable.

Shifting the receiver on my knees, I popped another beer, my ninth, and fell into one of those lethargic periods of musings I was so prone to those days. The little box spat white noise, the image vanishing, but quickly recovered, catching the pirate signal.

Universe Is Yours was outlawed in nearly every corner of the galaxy, its crew wanted for crimes ranging from the trite murder and rape to the slightly more eloquent alien-species-abuse. According to Federate law, being caught viewing their programming was punishable with anything from instant dismissal to public hanging, depending on the number of minutes watched. I, personally, considered this somewhat of an achievement, risking my career and neck nightly to tune into their broadcasts. For this purpose, and after significant brining, Steve from engineering – a perverted soul in his own right, had constructed for me the portable device he prosaically termed the Space Ear. Primitive in essence and astoundingly elegant in execution, it allowed me to bypass the on-Ship receivers, which logged every signal. It simply sucked in every wavelength within a two-parsec radius and decoded only the ones I needed. In theory, I could tap into whatever military channel I wanted to or catch the mating songs of solar whales – fifteen minutes of which, some claimed, allowed one to achieve Nirvana; but instead, I chose to spend my evenings glued to the antics of a band of pirates. It was a privilege hard bought – five cases of Aldebaran whiskey went to the genius engineer – and highly cherished. Especially on nights like these, when the grind of corporate drudgery refused to fade despite the liquor.

The gatorfrog was, by now, surfing the fullest extent of a Krokodil high, trying desperately to wrap its tongue around its balls. I thought about doing the same, but quickly realized I wasn’t quite drunk enough yet to test the limits of my physiology.

“Yes, yes, my sexies, it begins,” the UIY man whispered, circling around the tripping creature in anticipation.

“I like him,” I told myself, polishing off the beer. I wasn’t lying. Darryn and his cabal of junkie privateers tapped directly into the ideologies that fuelled my years directly before signing up on the Ship, before Solaris K, before the tide of my ambitious youth turned, before it all went to shit. The universe is fucked, the pirates proclaimed, so let us make fuck to its fullest extent. They embraced excess with abandon and, in that mess of drugs and amputee cyborgs mating with sentient viruses, they, somehow, found the Truth.

On the screen, the Tau Cetian beast ceased its attempts at self-pleasure, freezing instead in grimaces of pain. Its limbs curled and crumpled, rotting in front of my eyes, withering to deformed stumps of flesh with naked bone protruding from where muscle just flexed.

“A drug-loop, my lovelies, is what we’ve made here! It will regrow those paws in a few minutes…only to lose them again! And again and again! For hours! Enjoy! Fuck you, Tau Ceti! Now that’s content!” Darryn, clearly having sampled some Krokodil himself between takes, whooped, signing off with the trademark Universe Is Yours line.

Content! Original content! Oh how many times have I gotten hard over that phrase? I lusted after it, craved it with virgin desire, and, as I drifted off to visions of unexplored planets and unpolluted cultures, I didn’t know how soon the solar winds will bring me into contact with the UIY freaks and the madness they embodied.

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