I Am a Brain in a Jar

The Terrestrial

July 27, 2020 Klaus Brenner and Doctor Brandon Winter Season 1 Episode 17
I Am a Brain in a Jar
The Terrestrial
I Am a Brain in a Jar
The Terrestrial
Jul 27, 2020 Season 1 Episode 17
Klaus Brenner and Doctor Brandon Winter

A hunter from another world becomes trapped on ours. Also, who the fuck is Bo Eagle?

Contains Bo Eagle's Success Gulag by Dr. Brandon Winter and The Terrestrial by Klaus Brenner. The voice of The Brain is Sarah Nightmare.

Show Notes Transcript

A hunter from another world becomes trapped on ours. Also, who the fuck is Bo Eagle?

Contains Bo Eagle's Success Gulag by Dr. Brandon Winter and The Terrestrial by Klaus Brenner. The voice of The Brain is Sarah Nightmare.

Good evening, beloved listener. We have an amazing story for you today. But first, I want to talk to you about Bo Eagle.

Yes, that Bo Eagle. Financial advisor to six galactic Hegemons. Five-time intramural martial arts runner-up in the Kuiper Belt Division. Eight-time god-emperor of a technologically inferior planet and seven-time ruler-in-exile. And author of the self-published bestseller “Seduction, The Eagle.”

And what have you done with your life, you deadbeat?

Low-energy, no initiative, sitting in your undies for story time—when was the last time you lived life to the max?

Oh, did I offend you? Then tell me, do you sleep on a pile of money like Bo Eagle does?  Bo Eagle has six wive and twenty-seven children, how many do you have? Do you own a boat? I didn’t think so. Do you know who does own a boat? Bo motherfucking Eagle, that’s who.  

But there’s good news, you insignificant insect. Bo Eagle’s Success Gulag can turn your life around.

For just twenty-five easy payments of a thousand credits a month, you can transform yourself into the financial predator you were born to be. We’ll transport you to an undisclosed location and —  over the course of five years of course work, social indoctrination, and hard labor — fundamentally alter your perception of society. You will see that the world only consists of winners and losers. And you don’t want to be a loser, do you? 

So don’t be a moron, act now! If you have to step over a few people to get what you deserve, the first one might as well be you. 

Bo Eagle’s Success Gulag. You’re real. Everyone else is just faking it.

The Terrestrial.

The FedEx guy stood perfectly still in the living room. 

He was dead, of course. In an instant, the plastification ray had turned his tissue into polimer, transforming him into a collector’s item. It had been painless.

Richard didn’t necessarily care that it had been painless. But humans tended to make ridiculous faces when they were dying, so it was best to not let them suffer too much.

He used a dolly to roll the FedEx guy to the back entrance of the garage. He noticed the stoic, almost regal look on the man’s face. I’ll say he was a prince, he thought. 

Richard always lied about them. He’d tell his clients whatever statue they were buying had been a monarch, or a great warrior, or a world-renown artist. Nobody knew enough about Earth culture to question him, and who wanted a tax-preparer as a trophy in their parlor? 

Richard turned the light on in the garage, illuminating 23 figures. He placed the FedEx guy next to the Jahova’s Witness, still grasping her can of mace. She’d almost gotten away.

Usually, he only stored five or six statues at any given time. The problem was, no one was coming to get them.

Now, Richard wasn’t really named Richard. His name was impossible for humans to pronounce, but Fizzle would be the closest approximation. And he wasn’t really a he. Fizzle’s species reproduced asexually. Already, two genetic clones were gestating inside him. Over the course of several decades, the clones would slowly consume him from within, not bursting forth from his stomach until he had finally succumbed. But that’s neither here nor there. 

On Earth, neighbors knew him as Richard Murphy, data entry clerk, kite enthusiast, polite enough but kind of a weirdo. He had been preying on the city of Omaha for close to a year now. 

It was like shooting fish in a barrel. Barely had to hunt them, didn’t even need to leave the house. Salesmen and proselytisers would just stop by on their own. And if they didn’t, he’d just hop on Tinder, or Grindr, or Farmer’s Only. He’d amassed a small fortune exploiting the horniness and gullibility of humans.

And now he wanted to leave, so he could make use of this wealth. He wanted to spend some time at one the Pleasure Palaces of Hypatia, then buy a small house on Dagon. The money he’d made would go a long way there.

But he couldn’t. Because of the fucking pandemic.

Earth is a planet teeming with life, including viruses, bacteria and other microbes that have a nasty tendency of killing things that have no immunity to them. There are some extraterrestrial species, like Richard’s, who’s physiology makes them immune to Earth diseases. To others, this planet is a deathtrap. Any spacefaring entity returning from there is required by pangalactic law to stay in quarantine for three standard days, roughly a month and a half in Earth time. And if there’s an active pandemic, travel to and from the planet is strictly forbidden, under penalty of death.

So Richard was trapped. He missed his homeworld, he missed his friends. Rizzle. Dizzle. Hizzle. Steve. 

Sure, they could send each other holographic messages, relayed through wormholes, but those could take months to reach a star system thousands of lightyears away, and it wasn’t the same as being together.

Richard sat down and turned on the TV. He wasn’t fond of Earth television. It was too primitive. On other worlds, you could transmit smells, tastes, emotions, and countless other things. Here, it was just vision and sound. But Richard had shit else to do. 

All of it just seemed so insignificant, though. On the screen, Pierce Brosnan was disabling a satellite that threatened to end life on Earth, and all Richard could think of was: how could this possibly matter? If Earth got destroyed, so what? There’s barely intelligent life here, and humans are probably going to destroy themselves before they even get out of their own solar system. There are empires that span entire galaxies. Why do humans think they’re so important? If the Earth were to fall into the sun tomorrow, no one who mattered would even notice.

He switched channels, from Bond to syndicated Seinfeld to an infomercial, then turned the TV off entirely. He decided to go out into the yard, lie down in the grass, and stare into the sun. 

It wasn’t anything special, just a big, flaming ball of gas. He had seen thousands just like it. But humans couldn’t look at it without burning their retinas out, apparently, and doing things that humans couldn’t gave him some satisfaction.

Richard’s skinsuit itched. He wanted to take it off, show this world what he really was. It probably wouldn’t end well, but at least it wouldn’t be boring. 

His eyes moved to the decorative, white rocks on both sides of his driveway, and suddenly he had an idea.

He grabbed a satchel and a ladder from the garage, loaded the satchel with rocks, climbed up onto the roof, and began making words. Not in English, of course, but in Universal Standard. He knew that this probably wouldn’t accomplish anything, but it gave him a sense of purpose, took his mind off things.

 It was already night before he finished. Richard sat down next to his message and looked into the night sky.

Some nuance is lost, of course, but roughly translated, the message read:

“Save me, fellow traveller. It’s so lonely here.”