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Friday Flash – Turbo Nuclear Amazing Aries Awesomeness! – Part 1 – Friday Flash Fiction

Turbo Nuclear Amazing Aries Awesomeness!- Part 1

The heat of the Mojave Desert is intense and the preternatural silence almost overwhelming, interrupted only by the screeching of buzzards circling overhead and the continual buzzing in the telegraph wires.

Jack looks around in awe as the midday sun scorches his flesh. Momentarily, he thinks about returning to his small town, stiffens his resolve and dismisses the thought.

There’s a rare, breathtaking beauty here, a feeling of peace, stillness and timelessness. The Desert sprawls out as far as the eye can see, the cloudless blue sky stretching across it almost like a benediction.

A fragment of Walt Whitman’s poetry flickers across his mind:

“Afoot and light-hearted I take to the open road,

Healthy, free, the world before me,

The long brown path before me leading wherever I choose.”

He feels a sense of expectation in the hot hazy air, of new beginnings accompanied by keen anticipation.

Something makes him startle round as a shape begins to form in the far distance. A dust storm, a sand-devil or merely a mirage conjured by the intense heat? From afar, there comes a muted rumble which grows steadily and inexorably into a roar. He wonders if he is going to be in the epicentre of an earthquake. The shape is now more distinct, the roar louder, more intense, growing into an ear-splitting fugue.

As if from nowhere, a huge red V8 Mustang convertible swerves into view. Loud rap music punches the air, making the Desert seem to pulsate in a Shiva-like dance of Creation counterpointed by this energetic new rhythm.

He stares in amazement and wonders about fleeing for his life as the car blasts towards him. Rutger Hauer in ‘The Hitcher’ he thinks, but rabbit-like he’s entranced, seduced and transfixed.

The Mustang screeches to a halt sending dust and sand everywhere.

The driver’s door swings open and out struts a lean young man in his early twenties, decked from head to toe in the very latest designer labels – red Paul Smith silk shirt, black slim fit Armani jeans and handmade Texan snakeskin boots. He’s got short blond hair, pierced eyebrows, tanned skin, and penetrating blue eyes that seem to bore into Jack’s soul.

Driving rap music pumps out of the state-of-the-art car stereo providing the dramatic soundtrack as he marches towards him with an almost ferocious sense of self-confident swagger. His energy and charisma threaten to overwhelm Jack as the stranger grasps his arm, imperiously demanding “Who are you waiting for, Thelma and Louise? Come on, let’s get where its at!”

Within seconds the car seems to have breached the sound barrier as he is sucked into the back of the black leather seats. He can just about make out what is being said over the roar of the V8 engine and the hypnotic, martial beat of the music. The car is festooned with the latest boys toys, including radar speed detectors and it’s clear that the driver travels light as the boot must be full of bass speakers.

“Who are you?” enquires the shell-shocked Jack.

“Aries,” comes the curt response, accompanied by a slightly raised right eyebrow. “I’m the very first of your teachers, trainers, consultants, motivators, gurus – whatever you want to call us. I’m here to teach you the skills and attitudes of the warrior. That means becoming assertive, dynamic, go-getting and able to embrace and surf life’s challenges.”

“My name’s Jack,” the other replies. A knowing smile crosses Aries face.

“If you want to bring out the best in others, become a winner and a positive thinker with an optimistic and impulsive take on life. Mofo, you gotta listen to what I say! And if you really want out of that Capraesque small town you’ve always hated then hear me good!”

The Zodiac’s baby, Aries’s reactions are those of a child determined to explore everything life has to offer before the world tells him how he’s expected to behave. Hell-bent on getting his needs met, like a baby he demands to be the centre of attention, and, like any babe, Aries is ruthlessly selfish. He’s ever ready to learn, to take risks and to have it all. A newborn brat, he’s yet to learn the limitations inevitably imposed by others, one of his strengths certainly, but one that society is often less happy to tolerate.

Aries hasn’t a clue about what he supposedly can’t do because nobody bothers or dares tell him. He knows exactly what he wants and how to get it – right now. he’s in a constant state of reinvention and becoming, rarely constant, always seeking new thrills and sensations. Never one to tolerate boredom, lifes pioneer is the first to agree with composer Stockhausen’s assertion that you should spend one day a year involved with the past, and the rest seeking the new and contemporary.

Aries never concerns himself with the dead past or the unborn future. He adopts the Eastern mystics philosophy that the only reality that matters is the one you create here and now.

Aries’s eyes dart at Jack and transfix him with a penetrating stare. A waspish smile plays across his oh-so-seductive lips as he enquires “So, you’ve evoked me because you want to know how to create the life of your dreams?”

Before he can interrupt Aries launches into a slick, rapid-fire delivery in which he introduces the basics of goal setting or as he calls it (uber-marketeer that he is), The Awesome Magic of Well Formed Outcomes.

Most of his passionate narrative bypasses Jack’s rational mind and hits him on an emotional level. Every word Aries utters makes perfect sense – of course you have to know exactly what you’re aiming for. How else can you visualise it? How else will you know when you’ve achieved your heart’s desires?

Only a fool would aim for an airy fairy dream like ‘getting on better with my partner’. How are you going to know when you get on better with your partner? Will you drink less, stop having affairs? How will you ‘feel’? Will you be elated or indifferent? If indifference is what you’ll feel how can you make your goal such that you’ll feel elated, powerful or whatever else turns you on when you hit it?

“Got that? Of course you have,” smirks Aries, “you’ve got to feel passionate about your goals.”

“Right, but then I get tense and I start worrying about failure.”

“Failure’s all part of the learning process, right? If you fail the first time just try doing it differently the next. If you’re not failing you’re not learning, according to my mate Leo. What you gonna do – sit and stagnate because you’re too scared to stick your head above the parapet?”

“What happens if I keep trying and never succeed?”

“Well,” replies Aries, “you’ll never know, will you? In reality, it doesn’t matter, so long as you’re enjoying the journey. You can’t become so attached to your goals that you don’t enjoy the process of achieving them! You’d miss most of your life that way. You’ve got to live in the present like I do. Tomorrow might never happen and we’re a long time in the grave!”

The Mustang is now hurtling through some of California’s finest wine growing country. Aries, who loves heavy red wine with a passion, looks longingly at the lush grapes as they glisten in the sunlight.

To be continued ….

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