Hambone Tammy author-mrboo safe sam sanctuary

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Sanctuary

Part Two

By mrboo



“You’re doing fine, Tammy. Are you following the diet I gave you?”

“Yes,” she replied.

“Then there’s nothing to worry about. I am going to prescribe bedrest for the remainder of your term. It’s getting close.”

“Thank you, Doc.”

The doctor patted her on the shoulder and left the bedroom. In the main room, Sam stood anxiously.

“Is everything okay?”

“She’s fine, Sam. Strong and healthy. Just a little shocked, which is understandable. I do want her on bedrest until she delivers. I’ll let the council know. I’ll also have the mid-wife start daily visits.”

“Am mummah otay? Nee’ huggies?” Peachy asked.

The doctor smiled and bent to scratch her ears. “She’s okay but hugs couldn’t hurt,” he told the fluffy.

“Am gib bestest huggies!” she replied and trotted into the bedroom, with Hambone right behind her.

The doctor straightened. “Sam, are you okay?”

“I’m doing the best I can. After what happened, there’s a lot to think about. I try to keep Tammy calm, but, well, it’s not easy.”

Doc Miller nodded. “What I wouldn’t give for a truck load of Xanax. Everyone’s going to be stressed out now. I thought that it was bad before, but after that little dog and pony show…”

“It’s the not knowing,” Sam said, “I tell myself that it’s all going to turn out for the best, but I just wish that it was over.”

“You and me both, Sam, you and me both.”

----------


It had been a month since the fluffy’s warning of the impending visit, and the settlement was in chaos. It began when many decided that instead of working, they would stay home with their loved ones. This insurrection came to an end when they didn’t receive their rations and were told what they already knew, no work meant no food.

Then the little cabals started to form. One group began to treat the fluffies as if they were able to absolve them of whatever they had done to cause the pending doom and beseeched the creatures for forgiveness. Another group blamed the fluffies and rejected them, leaving dozens of broken-hearted bio-toys abandoned and wondering why they were no longer loved. A small but vocal group advocated for the extermination of all fluffies, but they were quickly banished from the settlement. There were also those who left of their own accord, preferring a return to the wilderness to staying for any kind of possible judgement.

However, most people put their heads down and went from day to day, not knowing what to expect, but hoping for the best. Waiting anxiously for any further news from the fluffies, watching the skies for signs, most of the populace did the best they could, but with each passing day, the tension grew.

The hall nights became quiet and were lightly attended, many preferring to stay home with family and friends. Sam and Tammy attended the hall night a few weeks after the fluffy’s announcement and found the mood tense and sullen. After the meal, instead of entertainment, the council spoke, doing their best to calm shattered nerves.

“People, we know these are trying times,” said Margaret, the council leader, “And we need everyone to stay calm and work with us as we try to figure this out.”

“How do you figure this out?” called a voice from the crowd, “Do you know more than we do?”

“Listen, we know as much as you do,” was the answer, “But we’re working on this problem as best as we can.”

“If you don’t know any more than anyone else, how exactly are you working on it?” cried another voice.

“Yeah! What are you doing? What are your plans? How are you going to protect us? What are you going to do about it?” several voices called out, “Why should we listen to you? Shouldn’t we be building some kind of defense?”

Sam sensed that the crowd was turning ugly. The council was starting to lose control over the people. He put his arm around Tammy and edged her towards the door. Then Thomas stood up and raised his arms. He didn’t say anything, but stood waiting for silence. When he finally spoke, he did so in a measured tone.

“What would you have us do? We don’t know what it is we face. We don’t know who is coming. It could be the ice cream man, or it could be the devil himself. We just don’t know,” he said, “How can we defend against that which we don’t know? Should we run to the hills and hide? Find a cave and live like animals again? I don’t know about you, but I’ve been here for almost three years. I have two babies that were born here. This is my home and we’ve made something here. I’m not about to run away and give it up. I’ll fight for it, if I have to.”

The crowd began to take their seats again and fell silent.

“We’ve faced worse, haven’t we?” Thomas continued, “We’ve lost everything we’ve known, our families, our homes, our way of life. Yet here we are, not just surviving, but thriving.”

He gestured towards Sam and Tammy. “We have new life being created. We have a future for our children, mine and yours. The human race will go on because of our work here. Don’t you see that?”

He moved to the front of the table and perched a hip on it. “Now we face another test, and how we react to it tells us who we are. And it tells whoever brought us to this valley, who we are. We are humans. Black, white and brown. Male and female. We hold our heads up high and we take whatever this universe throws at us. We face it head on, not cowering like sheep to the slaughter.”

Sam noticed that many in the crowd were nodding in agreement and some, Tammy included, were weeping.

“Friends, this is not an ending. This is only a chance for us to grow tighter as a group, as a people, as a civilization, rebuilding from the ashes.”

Thomas smiled warmly. “Now, I want you to go home and be easy in your minds. Worrying about what is to come, whenever it is, whatever it is, won’t help. Love your friends, enjoy what you have and hope for the best. Good night and I love you all.”

The crowd broke into applause and surrounded Thomas, shaking his hand and clapping him on the back. Tammy turned to Sam.

“Let’s go home, babe,” she said with a tired smile.

“Sure thing,” Outside of the hall, they met Mitch and Susan.

“Powerful stuff,” said Mitch.

“Yeah, Thomas is a good man. Have you two made it official yet?”

Susan smiled and hugged Mitch. “We will tomorrow. We figure, why wait?”

“Well, congratulations! That’s wonderful,” said Tammy.

“Thanks. We want to start a family right away, especially now.”

People flowed out around them and they parted with a wave. It was another nice night, with a clear starry sky overhead. When they arrived home, they fed the fluffies and made ready for bed, Sam giving his wife her nightly foot massage.

“Do you think it’s right for them to want a baby now?” Tammy asked.

Sam shrugged. “Why not? What if it is only the ice cream man coming?”

“If only it was.”

----------


The next morning, after breakfast, there came a knock at the door. Opening it, Sam saw Mitch and Susan. They both had grim looks on their faces.

“Morning guys, is something wrong? You look like you haven’t slept all night.”

“We haven’t,” Mitch replied, “I’m sorry to bother you, but can we talk?”

“Sure, sure. C’mon in. Would you like some tea?”

“We don’t want to interrupt your day off.”

“It’s not a problem.”

Sam made tea and the four of them sat at the kitchen table. “What’s going on?”

“I’ll let Suzy tell you,” Mitch said.

Susan sipped her tea and cleared her throat. “Growing up, my father was a high school science teacher. His hobby was astronomy. He built his own telescopes and we often went to star-gazing parties when I was a girl.”

“What’s that?” Tammy asked.

“A star-gazing party is when people bring out their telescopes and spend the night looking at the stars, or planets, or whatever else they can see.”

“Oh, okay.”

“I spent a lot of my childhood looking at the constellations. I had star maps on my bedroom walls and lots of books on astronomy. I even had one of those planetarium things that projects the stars onto your ceiling. I could name pretty much all of the constellations and pick out the planets,” she said.

“Okay,” Sam had a sudden uneasy feeling in his stomach.

“Walking home last night, I noticed something,” she continued, “Something that has been bothering me since I got here.”

Susan looked at Sam and Tammy, and took a deep breath. “The stars I saw last night are not our stars.”

Sam inhaled deeply and let it out slowly. Tammy gripped his hand, tightly.

“Wha-what do you mean, not our stars?” she asked.

“None of the constellations are there. We sat out all night and I didn’t recognize any of the stars. The most visible, Ursa Major, with the big dipper? Not there. Orion’s belt? Not there. None of them were there.”

“What about the moon? Is it still our moon?” Tammy asked, almost pleading.

Susan nodded. “Yeah. But whatever’s past the moon, no. I couldn’t even see any of the planets.”

“You never noticed it before you came here?” Sam asked.

“Honestly, before I came here, I had more important things to do than look at the stars. Usually, when it was dark, I was in whatever shelter I had, just trying to survive.”

Sam nodded at this. “What does this mean? How could we lose our stars?”

“Aren’t the stars below the equator different from ours?” Tammy wanted to know, “Did the earth somehow flip over?”

Susan shook her head. “I know the southern constellations as well.”

“So what’s your best guess, then?”

“There’s two options,” Susan said, “One is that, with time, the star’s current positions will change, eventually becoming unrecognizable.”

“How long would that take?” Sam asked.

“Millions of years, I think.”

“And option two?”

Susan took a deep breath, “Option two is, the earth is no longer in the Milky Way and has changed its position in the universe.”

“Fuck me,” Sam said, a sense of foreboding rising inside of him.

“So, what do we do now?” Mitch asked.

“Well, we need to let the council know. Not like its going to help them much, but they do need to know,” Sam said.

“Will you go with us?”

Sam looked at Tammy. “You go ahead,” she said, “I’ll be okay for a while. Peachy knows what to do.”

Peachy had been told that if Tammy needed help and Sam wasn’t home, she was to go to the neighbors until she found someone to help.

Sam turned to the other couple. “Okay, let’s go.”

----------


The council house was on the far side of the village, past the hall. Once they arrived and entered the building, they found Will, one of the council members on duty. They greeted him and took seats at a table.

“What can I do for you folks?” Will asked.

“Susan here has something that the council needs to know about,” Sam said.

Susan told her story as the councilman took notes. When she finished, he leaned back and sighed. “Well, that’s a hell of a thing. We’re going to have to find some corroboration.”

“You don’t believe me?”

“It’s not that I don’t believe you, but we have to have something to back up your claims.”

“Just check the library for an astronomy book, or even an astrology chart and go outside tonight, you’ll see. I’m not crazy.”

“Now, young lady, I never said that you were crazy.” Will said, “We just need to be sure.”

As they argued, the room suddenly darkened, as if the sun had gone behind a cloud. Sam thought that odd, as the sky had been clear on their walk over to the council house.

A strong gust of wind blew in through the open window, extinguishing the lamp on the table, pitching the room into near total darkness. Before anyone could react, there came an enormous booming sound, followed by several more.

BA-BOOOM!!!!! BA-BOOOOM!!!! BA-BOOOOM!!!!

Susan screamed as they covered their ears and fell to the floor. Sam and Mitch struggled to their feet and found the door. Outside, they could see flashes of light in the black sky like huge flashbulbs going off. The booming tapered off and the flashing stopped. Suddenly the sun returned and things went back to normal.

Mitch went back inside and grabbed Susan in a hug. Thinking about his wife, Sam took off, running for home. He passed throngs of people standing out in the lane, watching the skies in shocked silence.

At home, he found Tammy huddled on the floor with the fluffies, crying uncontrollably. She latched on to him tightly, her body wracked with sobs.

“Peachy, go to the neighbor’s. We need Doc Miller right away!”

“Am mummah otay?” the mare was close to breaking down herself.

“Yes, but we need the doctor right now!”

Sam gently lifted Tammy and carried her to the bed. He lay next to her, cradling her as they waited. Hambone scrabbled onto the bed and snuggled against her.

“Oh, Sam! I was so scared! What happened?”

“I don’t know, but it’s over now. Everything is okay.”

“Promise me that it’s going to be alright. Promise me that we aren’t bringing our baby into another world of death! Promise me!”

“I promise that I won’t let anything hurt you or our baby, ever.”

Outside, the late morning sun shone down on the peaceful valley. It was another perfect day.


To be continued




Uploader MrBoo,
Tags Hambone Tammy author-mrboo sam sanctuary
Rating safe
Source Unknown
Locked No

Comments


- Reply
MrBoo: Here's the next chapter. Let me know what you think.
- Reply
CwinicawDepwession: Good shit again my dood, I'm eager to find out what dafuq is goin' on
- Reply
Anonymous1: It’s getting chilling. I think the narrative is above using the stupid “biotoy” term but other than that literally zero complaints.
- Reply
Nuuu: I like it and am looking forward to the next part. I like that you use the term "biotoy".

- Reply
MrBoo: @Anonymous: I'm glad you like the story, but I would be interested in knowing why you think the word "bio-toy" is stupid.
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Anonymous2: @MrBoo: It isn’t stupid in the context of characters in-story using it to either purposefully or accidentally deny the sentience of fluffies, but these stories usually humanize fluffies to the point that the narrative itself referring to them as such becomes a contradiction. And the argument I usually see is “well their core behaviors are programmed into their dna” ignoring the fact that these are called “instincts” and all animals, including humans have that. So in summation it just comes off as a stibborn logical fallacy that shows no signs of going away anytime soon. But as I said, that is a very minor point and overall I love your writing.
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Anonymous3(2): stubborn*, excuse me

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MrBoo: @Anonymous: Well stated argument. I use bio-toy as a contraction of biologically engineered toy, meaning only that these creatures are products not of nature. It has nothing to do with their sentience, programmed or otherwise.

However, if you use the most common canon, they have a rapid maturation (especially in speech) that, realistically (!), would require some form of pre-programming. Needing months to acquire even a basic vocabulary would make them less desirable as a child's toy, their very reason for being. They are, after all, a product. Therefore, calling them bio-toys is correct.
- Reply
Anonymous4: @MrBoo: “meaning only that these creatures are products not of nature.”

Sure, and I can understand that, but in most canons they lack synthetic devices in their bodies, so it could also be argued that their origin lies in selective breeding, albiet on a cellular level. Coneptually, their general origin is not so different from the creation of domestic dog breeds, save for modern technology shortening the length of time the process takes and how precise and diverse the combinations of animal DNA used to create them could be, in addition to how sophisticated their instilled instincts are.
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Anonymous5(4): Conceptually*, damn this keyboard.
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Nuuu: @MrBoo: That's the exact reasoning why I deem the word fitting.

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MrBoo: @Anonymous: Canids are canids. If a wolf and a beagle interbreed, you still have a canid. This is nature. You cannot interbreed a bird with a horse or a pig with a hamster naturally. Combining their DNA would require a very unnatural human assist, no amount of selective breeding could achieve this goal.This would make them "not of nature" or biologically engineered. Thus, a bio-toy.