Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 3
“I spent a long time collecting up those tapes,” the old man says. “I’ve got the whole lot. Every single one.”
There certainly are a great many. They take up the only set of shelves in the house, leaving no room for books.
“Promise me you’ll look after them.”
A foolish promise, but one I keep regardless. Even after the bombs drop and all the trees crumble into ash.
The Reader is a large device, made heavy by its great dignity. A dead format for a dead world.
“What knowledge will the Tapes of the Wanderer impart?” you ask.
“That is a holy mystery,” whispers the deacon. “All we know for sure is that it is of great importance. Listen, scribe, and commit their words to stone.”
Not until you chisel the last letter does the generator die.
“I’ll be there for you,” intones the priest, “like I’ve been there before.”
“I’ll be there for you,” comes the echo from the pews, “When the rain starts to fall.”
“I’ll be there for you,” priest and congregation chant, “‘cause you’re there for me too.”
The chorus concludes with the customary four claps of the hands.
“And now, prescribed by the Book of Ross, there shall be a break.”