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The Bowl of Petunias (IV)

Thirty seconds after the age of magic came to an abrupt end, the City of the Golden King hit the ground. No, that was inaccurate. What it hit was the New Bureau of Access, the tiny little office that operated the flying chair used to send people up to the City of the Golden King one at a time.

The thing about this mode of entry into the City of the Golden King was, it made it pretty hard to invade it from the ground. The other thing was, it made it pretty hard to¬†leave. Which meant that, for the most part, people increasingly didn’t. A visiting family member here, a member of law enforcement there. Ten people made a busy week. And so, the job of Director of the New Bureau of Access had, over time, become pretty lonely. So when Fred Patricide, on the occasion of her fifteenth anniversary on the job, took her first ever off-site break, she felt pretty much just… fine about it. There were no flights scheduled until well into the afternoon, the office could do without her for 45 minutes.

And so it did, for every single one of those minutes until the 41st, at which point the glass bottom of the City of the Golden King tore through every single plank, every single little window, every single shred, of the New Bureau of Access. And when the glass bottom was done, the brick foundation came in to smash what was left to a pulp that the… smears would never even reach.

People would go on to call Fred, inaccurately, the “sole survivor.”

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