The Prism Press Special: Arbitrary No. – C:\UNE 28

Arbitrary Number by Edwin Escolero

Arbitrary No. – C:\UNE 28

A man with a grey beard steps out of a rusty pickup truck with a faded paint job after plowing through snow. Standing under the cloudy sky the bearded farmer watches as the wind scatters snow across the field. Frost engulf crops that were cultivated by the hands of man and time. Walking through land that once thrived with life the man grabs a root from the frozen soil. As he holds the crop he ponders the purpose of power and the reason why the weather device was created.

Under the dark dawn a young man gets up from bed and marches to a field to sow seeds. As the sun rises the man marches home to take a backpack along with books and heads to school. Passing through dusty fields the scholar notes the withering plant life as he walks to school. A classmate joins him and both talk about the drought that’s afflicting the region. They discuss possible measures that can be enacted and a shared desire to improve life for all. The two pledge to work towards a resolution for the problem that plagues the land and to nurture nature.

UNE 28A man with a lab coat enters a facility with folders and papers labeled “Project Nurture Nature.” He shows a badge that identifies himself as Nadir to a guard as he enter a conference room to pitch his project to the scientific community. There is a debate among peer about the probability of success for the project. Eventually they agree under the condition that Nadir provides access to his research to sponsors and third parties who express interest.

Nadir rubs his eyes as he’s awakened by the smell of eggs and beans. Rooster-1 invites him to join him and offers a plate. Nadir fumbles down from the sofa and knocks down papers from a table. Grabbing a mug he drinks black coffee that had cooled off and goes to pick up the documents from the ground. Remembering the weather device’s original goal of creating opportunity for a better life, he vows dismantle the destructive force of the present and fulfill the pledge he made in his youth.


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