10:01 – Lance Olsen – Future

10:01 – Lance Olsen

—-Pages 175-176—-

00:09:42:22

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Somewhere below the soul of Remedios the Beauty, a secondary explosion, then silverwhite light flocking toward her through the ventilation system.

In the instant before it arrives with a fiery kiss, she remembers the day her great-grandfather, Josė Arcadio Segundo, having vanished for years into the jungle in search of a waterway connecting Mocondo to the sea, unexpectedly floated into view on the river in a rickety steamboat filled with prostitutes.

Since he did not succeed in finding the course he had been questing for, he decided to celebrate the failure instead.

That evening he threw a Festival of Disappointment on the Street of Turks. Remedios the Beauty was crowned queen, not because of her looks (she had shaved her head with a dull razor that morning), but because of her wondrous cinnamon-and-orange scent

As the master of ceremonies lowered the rusty clothes hanger standing in for a coronet onto her head, a rival queen in a magnificent white lace dress and abundant veil came into sight at the far end of the block.

An enormous entourage of nuns flooded around her. A wary hush swelled through the revelers. Even the prostitutes ceased laughing. One of the nuns shed her habit. In her place stood a soldier with a rifle. He raised the weapon above his head, shouted something Remedios the Beauty could not comprehend, and the holy entourage turned quickly into an unholy platoon. With that, the Banana Company Massacre commenced.

When a bullet took off Josė Arcadio Segundo’s kneecap twenty-two inches to Remedios the Beauty’s left, and her great-grandfather crumpled into a pile of useless old clothes beside her, Remedios the Beauty felt something tingle in the bottoms of her bare feet for the first time in her life, and realized her future would be nothing if not curious.

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