cDc 157: Jack and Jack (revised)
by Obscure Images
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...presents... Jack and Jack
(revised) by Obscure Images
>>> a cDc publication.......1991 <<<
-cDc- CULT OF THE DEAD COW -cDc-
Jack ran swiftly down the hallway, his progress unimpeded by the seemingly
endless number of brainless accountants filling up the hall. They parted like
the Red Sea, eventually closing back up in his wake. Jack was a professional
assassin. There is good money in the death business.
Jack was a modified human, nearly a totally artificial person. He was a
walking death machine. Wading through the crowds on the way to his target,
Jack put his body on autopilot so he could think about more important things.
"What am I really doing this for?" he asked himself. "For the money," he
replied. He had a nasty habit of having completely coherent conversations with
himself without actually knowing what he was going to say next. Moral qualms
have to take a backseat to the wallet, sometimes, and after being run out of
the Sim-Stim industry, there wasn't really an other good way to survive.
Jack slipped back into control again and continued along his path toward
the ExecZone. Jack looked at the accountants with sheer disgust. They've
given up all of their humanity so they could be wired for numbers. It's all
for their career, they said, but then what happens to all the big bucks they're
paid? Nothing - a lobotomized wirehead has no need for money, just a little
food and a closet to sleep in. So much for that career, there are so many
stupid people around. Just out of spite, Jack punched one in the head, causing
it to vaporize into a red mist.
The entrance to the ExecZone was where the troubles could start, so he
hyped up his sensors to detect any subtle changes which could indicate a trap.
A warning message flashed before his eyes - there was a trap up ahead. Well,
that could be easily avoided. As he ran up toward it, he shot out the sensors
waiting for him to come through. That should be it, thanks to the other exec
that hired him to kill his boss.
He smashed through the door into the room where his target was working
laboriously. Jack flew across the room and grabbed the man by the shirt. The
man started howling and begging for mercy. He tossed the executive out the
window and watched him fall onto the pavement below. Jack climbed onto the
windowsill and gave a mental command to fold out his polycarbon gliding wings.
He leaped and gracefully floated away, a falcon leisurely soaring to its home.
The next evening, Jack got out of bed, dressed up nicely, and decided to
take a walk on the Strip. The Strip is the quarter of the city totally
dedicated to bars, whorehouses, and crime. You could get anything that you
would ever want, and many things you could never want, on the Strip. The Strip
was Jack's home away from home. He usually hung around at Club Nuclear, where
all of his friends gathered. The look of the place was something from the punk
scene of the late 1970's. The people inside were dressed likewise. The music
was period music as well, the speakers pounding out devastation from groups
like Crass, the Sex Pistols, and the Buzzcocks. Jack sat down at the bar and
ordered a drink.
"Hey Jack, do you get off on killing people?" his own inner voice asked.
"Why don't you just fuck off? I'm sick of you talking to me like you were
my mother," said Jack.
"You seem to forget, Jackie boy, that I am you, and right now you are in
the midst of talking to yourself. You really should see a doctor about this."
"Just go away, I'm trying to get drunk."
"That seems to be all you do these days - kill people and get drunk.
Don't you want to make something out of your life?"
"No, I don't. Why don't you just leave me the fuck alone?"
"You are really a boring fellow. I'll go find something better to do.
See ya Jack."
Now that his other personality had left him alone for the time being, he
decided to start searching for a comfortable zero. Vodka and him were getting
to be very good friends. Jack was getting a nice buzz on, when a woman slid up
to him and started talking with him.
Charm was a subconscious action for Jack. The woman was a delightful
specimen, and shallow enough for a good night's exercise. Jack was entranced
by her exquisite beauty, which was only enhanced by her multihued mohawk. He
decided, through an alcoholic fog, that he wanted her for his own, at least
until he was sober. She offered to bed him at her apartment, so Jack naturally
accepted her blunt offer and followed her back to her place.
She lived in a very large open flat. There was only one room, but that
room was as big as Jack's apartment. On one wall was a giant videoscreen
displaying some Japanese porno vid that showed the sex act in as much detail as
is possible without actually participating in it. The furniture was all made
up of white Flow-Plas which could be shaped into whatever you wanted. The
place was a rich girl's paradise. She was obviously an artist of some sort,
judging by her tastes in clothing and interior design.
She walked into the area of the room with the vaguely bed-shaped thing and
dropped the few bits of clothing that she had on. Jack did basically the same
thing, except that while she gracefully slid out of her clothes, he fell out of
They had sex.
The lights dimmed down as they both drifted off into a peaceful slumber.
Unexpectedly, the other Jack broke into his dream.
"Wake up, loverboy."
"What do you want? I was having a good dream."
"Yeah, I was watching - she's really good, you know that?"
"Yeah, I know, I was the one doing all the work."
"So Jack, what are we going to be doing next?"
"Shut up and go away."
"That isn't very nice, Jack. Just for that I'll show you what fun you can
have with me..."
Jack lost consciousness and awoke standing on the top of a metallic
sphere. A pattern swirled around the surface, looking like a satellite shot of
cloud formations. Jack and the globe were suspended in the middle of an
endless void. He sat down on the sphere. After a few minutes the blackness
surrounding him started to be speckled with little points of light. "Where am
I?" thought Jack. Off in space, a blue neon glow started to shine on him. A
cloud of gases beneath the sphere began to swirl, eventually congealing into a
planet. Strangely shaped objects started bulging their way out of the new
globe. "This place is really strange, like something out of a Dali painting,"
thought Jack, jumping off the sphere onto the ground. The land was lit by the
blue neon sun, giving the place an eerie coldness.
Jack heard his own voice, booming from nowhere, asking him how he liked
the creation. "I am god here, Jack. What I say goes. Want to make a smart
ass comment now?"
"Yeah, great - now let me out so I can get back to sleep."
"Not so fast, Jack. I'm leaving now, but I will be watching."
Jack screamed obscenities into the void, but the booming voice was gone.
Jack wandered aimlessly around this newly created land inside his head.
An odd limping rabbit-like creature shuffled across his field of vision. There
are living things here, thought Jack. As he got farther away from the sphere
he had started on, the scenery got stranger and stranger, as did the animal
life. From the looks of the life, it was obvious that laws of physics didn't
apply here. The sky started swirling around, and the star-like spots started
to disappear. They were replaced by images of his face that began laughing at
him. The roaring laughter hurt his ears, scaring him quite a bit. He began to
run to find some peace from himself, but there was no luck. The landscape was
full of bizarre monstrosities, but there was no where to hide.
Jack ran through a forest full of trees, every leaf bearing Jack's face.
He screamed in fear and frustration then ran in a new direction when the forest
ended and a flat blue tundra began. All at once the ground a few feet in front
of him began to bubble, and he saw himself grow out of the ground.
The new Jack stood there with a smile on his face. Jack could no longer
take this abuse, so he started running and dived at his image. He knocked
himself to the ground and punched as hard as he could in the chest, which
yielded like Jello. The duplicate face just laughed as Jack ripped the body to
shreds. As Jack continued to mutilate his image his surroundings began to fold
in on themselves. For a second everything was a blur...
...and when Jack looked down again he was staring into the empty eyes of
the girl he had just mutilated.
Jack jumped up in revulsion at what he had unwittingly done. The whole
corner of the room was coated in the girl's blood. On the bed lied what
remained of her body. Out of the rapidly putrefying pile of flesh, only her
head and one leg were recognizable. Jack ran out of the apartment as fast as
he could, not even bothering to wash off the blood that coated his clothing and
body. He ran as fast as he could for the several miles it took to get back to
When he arrived he took a shower and destroyed his clothing. He popped a
relaxation vid into the viddeck and sat in front of the vidwall. He sat for
several hours completely engrossed in the shimmering colored blobs that floated
about on the wall. When he lost interest in the vid, he stood up and walked
into his kitchen to pick up something to eat. As he ate his meal, Jack thought
about what happened to him. His conscious mind reeled at what he had done.
The other Jack had been talking to him for quite a while, but he'd always
assumed that it was his subconscious mind, a conscience of sorts. Jack
shivered as he began to realize that it was something altogether different.
About this time, his other personality popped into his head.
"Hey Pal, how does it feel to have no control, helpless and afraid? You
are almost mine. It won't be long until I have full control over you. You
will have to live in that world I created for you while I carry on a new life
of my own."
"Why are you doing this to me? I've never done anything to you."
"You have done something to me, Jack. You've made me live in a hell of
your creation for over 10 years."
"What do you mean? I didn't know you even existed until a few years ago.
How could I have done that?"
"Your unconscious fears and hates trapped me in your image of hell. Only
recently have I been able to periodically escape for a while. I have finally
broken free of your hell, and it is time for me to banish you to my version."
"Leave me alone! Just get out of my head, do you hear me? GET OUT OF MY
"You will lose, Jack. You will lose," he chuckled, and disappeared.
Jack was huddled in a corner of his kitchen, whimpering and mewling, when
they came for him. The police officers picked him up and carried him out of
the apartment, to a police car on the street below. Just before they shoved
him into the car, he stopped whimpering, sprung up and knocked the officers'
heads off with his metallic limbs. The new Jack had finally taken full
Inside his head, Jack was back in the blue-lit land that was to become his
new home. He found that if he willed hard enough he could cause a vidscreen to
appear. It showed what his other self was watching at the moment. His
entertainment was short-lived, because at that time a giant surge of
electricity pulsed through his body, wracking his spiritual body with pure
The pain eventually passed to start all over again in a few moments. Jack
was dying over and over by the minute. He never got used to it. It was a
whole new pain every time. In the moments when he wasn't being tortured, Jack
tried to regain control of his body.
Jack focused his will, and a translucent shape began to form in the sky
above him. He grunted in pain as he reached out with his mind and brought the
giant form to the ground.
The structure was a crystalline octahedron with red light coursing through
it in miniscule veins. As he watched it closely he could see brief glimpses of
thoughts - a little boy is struck repeatedly with a whip. Jack winced at the
sight of the tortures being shown in the crystal. He calmed himself, formed a
club in his hand, and began to hammer away.
After what seemed like years to Jack, he finally broke through the side of
...and regained control of his body. He found himself in a dingy room
full of twisted corpses and instruments of torture. "Oh my god, what have I
become," said Jack to himself. He staggered out of the room and climbed down
the stairs to the ground floor. There was a tugging at the back of his
consciousness, a wave of nausea overcame him. The victory was only transient.
Jack realized that the only final victory would be Pyrrhic. He knew what he
had to do. He found his way over to Johnny Anarcho's place, and bought a few
things that he needed. Then finally he went back to his old apartment, and
began to assemble his equipment.
He opened a small panel in his wrist and plugged a fiberoptic cable into
it. The cable ran to three separate smart detonators located on his head and
chest. The detonators were hooked up to three pounds of high explosives, also
attached to his head and chest. There was a constant tugging at his brain as
Jack left his apartment and walked mechanically over to Central Square. There
was a giant crowd swarming through the Square, as it was lunch time for most
people. Moments before his brain triggered the detonation, Jack shook his head
a couple of times and noticed where he was. He immediately dismantled the
explosives on his body and put them in a pack he was carrying. Concentration
creased his facial features as he made his way back to his apartment and as he
removed an antique Smith and Wesson .45 pistol from a box that his father had
given to him, his muscles stiffened. He strained to load a single shell into
the chamber. The pressure increased, and a faint laughing could be heard
inside his head. Jack used his body against the wall to force his arm to bend
upward into his mouth. His finger rested on the trigger, paralyzed. Nearing
complete exhaustion, Jack used what was left of his strength to pull the
trigger back slowly. There was a blast, and in the milliseconds that it took
to rip through his brain and out the back of his head, the laughing died and
Jack felt the first real peace he'd ever experienced.
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.ooM |Copr. 1991 cDc communications by Obscure Images. 02/17/91-#157|
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