It was a hot night. He sat at his desk trying to think, the floor shaking to the bass-line in the dance club below.
Who was the ROC? What did they want?
It had been a week since the phone calls started. Every day at five o-clock – whispering. Madness.
He had to get out of here. He tucked his keys into his coat pocket and closed the door behind him.
His car sounded like vibrator stuck in someone’s teeth. I’d better go see that Hispanic mechanic, he thought. He’s the sort of person I trust touching my engine.
But the Hispanic mechanic was trying his hand at research and development. He didn’t want to fix the car, he wanted funding so that he could fix the car later.
“Fuck that,” he swore. And he left.
It was getting dark.
It was only a few miles to Moon City. His white Stratistastic grumbled like a whiny bitch as he pushed his foot to the floor.
A few metres into the Moon City and people were already making bum jokes. Bum jokes, he thought, are the refuge of the sad and alone.
Suddenly, headlamps appeared in his rear-view mirror. He moved his hand to his holster.
As the car pulled up alongside his, a young blond-haired man poked his head out of the window.
“Beware the pit!” the yellow god shouted, and he spun the wheel hard.
“What a douche.”
The cars collided with the sound of a machine gun going off inside a bouncy castle.
He was out of control. He couldn’t turn out of the skid, and he was sure he was going to die.
But the red circles on the side of the road just bounced him back to the centre of the road. He didn’t even lose any speed, and there was no damage to his car.
I’ll crash some more, then, he thought, compelled.
Boing! Boing! Boing! He was having some seriously pointless fun.
Soon he came to a sign that said “Pit-Stop.” Well, that was just fine with him. He needed an engine jobby, anyhoo.
He drove his car down the narrow pit-lane, looking for signs of life, but none appeared.
“I’m out of luck,” he muttered, cursing his fortune.
A wave of blackness came. It wiped the world from his eyes.
“The Race of Champions,” cried voices all around him.
Ghostly fingers and slow hands moved over his face. “We are the Race of Champions.”
They were all around him. Swarming. A phantom pit-crew with phantom tools, pouring non-existent gasoline into a full tank, tightening screws that weren’t loose.
It was over as fast as it had begun. The specters raised their arms in salute as he pulled away.
A rush of cars sped in front of him. The Nordic god pulled alongside. “Yo, Gumby, what did I tell you about the pit? Now you’re almost a lap behind!”
His car still sounded like a toddler’s treadmill.
Curse the Race of Champions!