“You Damn Morons Have No Idea How Fucking Lucky You Are!”

Part 02 of my third global warming science fiction novel “Last Week”. Link to Part 01: “Back To Paradise Era”.

Tuesday, February 7, 2023, 3:12 A.M.

“I need some money,” Angel said. “I want to buy me a hamburger with French fries. And a milk shake to go with it. And coffee.”

“What?” The woman Angel was talking to did not understand.

“I said ‘I need some money’,” Angel repeated. “Are you deaf?”

“Get lost,” the woman said and continued reading her book, ignoring Angel.

Angel had found a McDonald’s restaurant after walking for a couple of minutes. The time travel over that long distance had left her hungry. Also, she really needed to get her hands on her first hamburger. That was one of the main reasons she had come back in time.

“I’m a Princess who just came back in a time machine from the 24th Century, you know,” Angel said. “Obviously you must give me some money. I’ll pay it back to you later.”

“You must be crazy,” the woman said, shrugging. She looked back at her book again.

Angel realized she was getting nowhere. Clearly these people in the 21st Century had no idea of how to treat a Princess like her properly. But this woman could be excused. She probably did not even understand that she was in the presence of Royalty.

Excellent. Now she would find out if her gear worked. There was no way this woman would pretend to be under hypnosis.

Angel activated the Glaring Glasses.

A brief flash of green pulsating light hit the woman right in the eyes. Surprised, she looked at the source of the green light. Instantly, before she or anybody else had a chance to notice, the hypnosis set in.

“I need some money,” Angel said, one more time.

“Your Majesty!” the woman exclaimed excitedly. “What a great honor! Please let me help you out here. I will be telling this story to my grandchildren at the camp fire. Me, getting to give some money to a Princess! Here, please kindly take these thirty dollars. I am sorry I don’t have much more on me now. I really am. But I need some cash for the subway ride home.”

The woman handed Angel three ten-dollar bills. Then she got up from her seat and knelt down on the floor of the restaurant, touching her head to the dirty tiles, to show proper respect.

“That’s much better,” Angel remarked, looking approvingly at the woman. She noted that the history books had been right. There really had been plenty of people still using dollar bills in 2023. “I need your address so I can get some money back to you later.”

“Yes, Your Majesty.”

The woman briefly raised her head from the floor. She took a card out of her purse and handed it to Angel, still kneeling. There was a Bitcoin address printed on the card, but no name. Bitcoin would take over completely as a currency in the next couple of decades, but it was already fairly common in 2023.

Some of the other guests in the restaurant started to notice the scene. Some of them smirked. None wanted to get involved. It was probably some hidden camera television stunt, they thought. Best to pay no attention. There were a lot of crazy people out there.

“Thank you. You may take your seat again now,” Angel said. “Once you sit back down, you will continue reading your book. You will instantly forget all about our little interaction.”

Angel walked over to the counter with her new-found wealth of thirty bucks. The kid at the counter greeted her cheerfully and waited for an order.

“I’ll have a Big Mac with French fries, and a vanilla milk shake,” Angel said. She paid the bill and walked back with her haul to a table next to the woman who had given her the money.

The woman was reading her book again. She had completely forgotten about the whole incident with Angel. Later, she would discover that she had thirty less dollars in her purse and wonder how the hell that had happened. Angel would of course pay her back to the Bitcoin address the woman had handed her, and add a little something. She was grateful, after all, for the first thirty dollars she had got in this World which was completely new to her.

Angel looked at the food on the table before her.

So that was a hamburger. Real beef. Like she had read about in the history books. It sure looked good, and smelled great. She was salivating at the prospect of eating it. But she took a couple of moments to savor the situation.

There were no hamburgers where she came from. The collapse in the late 22nd Century had eliminated all meat from the human diet, among other things.

Eating meat is a very inefficient way of feeding people. It takes much more energy than farming for grains. There was not much energy available in the 24th Century in the first place. And wasting any energy was against one of the 10 Commandments of her World.

In her World, food was extremely scarce. Even for Royalty such as herself, eating meat was completely impossible. People less fortunate were known to eat cockroaches, if they could afford them, which only fairly rich people could, and only on special occasions. The going rate for one roach had reached over four hundred millisatoshis just before Angel made her trip.

As for meat, there were no cows left in the first place. Cows and pigs and chickens had followed countless other species that went extinct in the catastrophic global meltdown that was the price for the brief great life humanity had enjoyed in the Paradise Era.

A lot of people in Angel’s World would have given their left arm for the chance to eat one hamburger, just once, in their lifetime.

Angel had given most of her remaining lifetime in the deal. She got one last week in the Paradise Era, in exchange for death after that week. This better be good, she thought, as she had many times before.

She took the hamburger in both hands and held it close to her face, slowly taking in the great smell for another couple of moments. She smiled and closed her eyes, so as to concentrate fully on her sense of smell. Then she took her first bite of meat.

She did not start chewing for about half a minute. With her eyes still closed, her face showed an expression of pure bliss. Then she chewed that first mouthful of meat and swallowed it. She stood up from her seat, and said, to no one in particular:

“You damn morons have no idea how fucking lucky you are!”

She hoped that her long hours of studying ancient English language with her teacher Zyana Zack had paid off and that she had got the nuances right. It was very hard for a Princess from the 24th Century to master the correct use of “fucking”. On the other hand, she didn’t care all that much. It didn’t matter at this point in her mission.

No one paid much attention to her anyway, though a couple of people had heard her remark.

Then she took her first sip of vanilla milkshake. With no cows left in the 24th Century, obviously there were no milkshakes in her World either.

The Wikipedia edits from the Paradise Era had survived to the 24th Century. She had looked at pictures of milkshakes all right. But there was no way to understand how they actually taste from looking at the articles.

She smiled again. This was already worth the price, she thought. It was called the “Paradise Era” for a reason.

She took her time to finish the hamburger and the milkshake. Then she walked over to the counter again and bought herself a cup of hot coffee. Coffea plants had become extinct late in the 23rd Century. Her father had sometimes told her how he had just managed to get some when he was a boy.

Link to Part 03: Princess Angel Meets Satoshi

Published by kflenz

Professor at Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo. Author of Lenz Blog (since 2003, lenzblog.com).

One thought on ““You Damn Morons Have No Idea How Fucking Lucky You Are!”

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