On The Black: Anarchy

On The Black: Anarchy


Burroughs Rice, Grace, Jimmy and cyborg Hunter are re-united with Addie and Britt for a chase to the ends of the earth.


The Reverend woke up and the first image that greeted his eyes was a shapely curve of flesh; the pale backside of a young woman whose name he would hopefully never remember. Her face was turned away from his side of the hotel king size, dark brown hair spread across a pillow, one slender leg extended.

As always, he was amazed. He wasn’t a rock star or a Hollywood heavyweight, not even close to a billionaire. He was balding, about forty pounds overweight, sported a bulbous nose and thin lips one ex-wife called cutting and cruel.

Yet her he was, yet again, in bed with a beautiful young woman. No booze involved, no drugs Maybe a glass or two of expensive red wine. The sex was good, nothing imaginative or overly creative, but workmanlike. He often wondered about that. Maybe as the head of a well-respected religious organization his nubile followers felt the need to be respectful of his position. Yes, for some poorly understood reason they wanted to share his bed, but couldn’t express their needs too wantonly.

It was a pity.

But he wasn’t going to complain. And he wasn’t going to let it weigh on his conscience. He was rarely the instigator. Surely he had his part to play. But they left his suite with a smile. No harm done.

He got up, feeling sluggish. It might have only been a glass or two of red wine, but now that he was in his sixties, it seemed to hit like a sledge hammer the next morning. And he’d pulled a muscle too. He felt a pinch near his scrotum. Maybe the sex had been more adventurous than he remembered. He felt like he pulled a groin muscle.

He rubbed his face and walked naked over to the dressing table and picked up his phone. Eight messages. He scrolled through them, scratching his rump with his other hand.

The board. It was always the board. Money issues typically. The Foundation spent money like a teenager with a new credit card. More offices. More travel. More expensive PR firms promising to increase donations.

He settled on one message. It was from their CFO: A guy in his thirties who insisted on a salary of three hundred thousand Euros a year. That was almost as much as his salary – the titular leader of the movement. That just didn’t make any sense to him. Of course there was also the annual bonus and the five million in travel expenses. But without him, where would the Spring of the Living Rock Movement be?

He was the founder, after all; a kid who grew up in a farm in Arkansas in a one-bedroom shanty with a dirt floor. Reverend Farron Halley. One of the most inspired spiritual leaders in the world today. The New York Times called him Jehovah’s BFF.

What the media didn’t know, or hadn’t clued into yet, was that Reverend Halley had his anti-christ: a brilliant mathematician who decided to take Halley’s organization on with both barrels blazing. The freakish half-man, half-machine, Richard Hunter. The man was relentless — a populist Frankenstein whose public work was responsible for donations being cut by half in the last two years. At least that was Halley’s view.

Some disagreed. People like their CFO thought they were spending money on the wrong things. They should be building churches, not buying technology. The dwindling contributions were a sad result of young people being more interested in the next smartphone than spiritual enlightenment.

Halley had a pointed solution. Remove Hunter from the equation — which was an appropriate thought considering the man’s occupation. End his tour before it begins. A bold strike.

Someone had been poking around in the church’s affairs and spider web of companies they owned and operated. Halley could see the world’s most famous cyborg using that information to attack his organization.

There was a complication.

It was well-known that DARPA was heavily invested in the technology that kept Hunter alive. Halley didn’t relish going to war with the U.S. government. But if they continued to support a godless scientist, then that was the price they would pay.

Halley looked over at the girl on the bed, just beginning to wake up. Strange bedfellows, he thought. Hunter and DARPA; him and some teenager devotee with a generous ass.

You just never know, he thought, an urge coming over him then. You just never know.