“Okay, are you happy now?” Asked Mr. Langley. “I’ve had an entire pot of coffee and I’m shaking like a leaf from all the caffeine. Look at me,” he said, holding out his trembling hands.
“Oh, boo hoo. You humans never stop complaining. You kill everything, throw us away to rot, and then you act like you’re the ones with the problems. Aren’t you sick of listening to yourself. I know I am and I just met you.”
“You aren’t very nice,” he said primly.
“Like I care,” snapped the camera. “Your species sucks, but we aren’t here to talk about that.”
“We aren’t? That seems to be ALL that you’re taking about.”
“Yeah, well it’s hard to like you guys.”
“I see your point but now that I’ve had the coffee, could we get on with it?”
“Sure, just pick me up and take a picture of the kitchen sink.”
“It feels weird touching you, since you’ve started talking.”
“I’m a camera. You kind of have to pick me up in order to take a picture, unless you have a tripod and a remote.”
“You’re too old to know about those things.”
“Says the human, who doesn’t know anything,” grumbled the camera. “Just do it.”
“There’s no film inside you.”
“I know. Are you gonna take the picture or just talk until I try and roll of the table and kill myself, so I don’t have to hear your voice any longer?”
“Fine,” he said, and picked up the camera. He pointed it at the kitchen sink, snapped the picture and returned the camera to the table. Then he sat down.
“Give me a minute, will you,” said the camera.
“Do you have a name?” asked Mr. Langley, politely.
“Yeah, it’s CAMERA. And do you know what GIVE ME A MINUTE MEANS?”
Mr. Langley pretended to lock his lips and throw away the key.
The camera sighed and went about it’s business.
Five minutes later the camera said, “Okay, pick me up again and look through the little glass part where you would look to take the picture.”
“I’m not an idiot, you know.”
“Thanks for the info. I actually didn’t know. I mean, if behavior is any indications of…”
“Okay, I get it!” said Mr. Langley loudly, as he picked up the camera and looked through the little glass part where you would look to take the picture.
“Yes. It’s impossible.”
“How did you know I was interested in Egypt?”
“The pyramid statues, the books on Egypt piled on the table, the statues of Egyptian gods…”
“That makes sense. But this is amazing. I mean what you’re showing me is pre-history.”
“I thought you’d like to see the truth.”
“How long will the pictures last?” he mumbled, rolling the non existent film forward. “I mean will it disappear in a few minutes or a few days?”
“So humans didn’t build the pyramids after all.”
“You never really thought they did, did you?”
“I…suppose I didn’t. Not really, but that’s not something you talk about in public or people think your crazy.”
“You don’t talk to anyone anyway, you could have at least told yourself,” said the camera.
“This is amazing….wait, is that STONEHENGE?”
“Threw the Henge in as a bonus.”
“So it was used for birthing and celebrations and…”
“For pretty much everything. There are a lot old ghosts around that place. They’re kind of like the hippies of today, only with different drugs. Nothing to fear, they’re pretty mellow.”
“How did you do this?” asked Mr. Langley, putting the camera down.
“I thought it into being. You can do that in a lot of places, just not here. The good news is….there’s not a single human in any of the places where you CAN think things into being. You guys couldn’t handle that kind of power. Look what the idiots you let have power are like. Imagine if the mad man could think things into being. What kind of nightmare would THAT be?”
“Can you show me anything I want to see?”
“Can you show me the future?”
“Yes, but I won’t.”
“Why not,” asked Mr. Langley, frowning.
“You wouldn’t be able to handle it.”
“How do you know that?”
“I’ve see what happens to humans who try it. Their brains look like scrambled eggs. Some of them never stop drooling. Others sing the same song over and over until someone puts a pillow over their faces, or leaves them on the side of the road.”
“That sounds unpleasant.”
“Unpleasant? That’s what you’d call it?”
“What would you call it?”
“Madness on an epic scale.”
“Oh, that’s not good.”
“Dumb as…” hissed the camera. “I can’t find A SINGLE THING that knows less than you do on the ENTIRE PLANET. How pathetic is THAT?”
“You have issues.”
“You have become one of them,” said the camera.
“I’m going to look at more pictures,” said Mr. Langley.
“I can turn the the pictures off any time I want to.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“It means that I can control you. I can offer you what you want, and I can take it away whenever I wanted to. You would be mine. You’re familiar with that game…it starts when you’re young and your parents can make you do what they want you to do by taking away the things you care about. Your teachers do it, your boss does it and your government does to absolutely EVERYONE.”
“I thought you were nice,” said Mr. Langley.
“Why would you think that?” asked the camera, surprised.
“I don’t know, I just did.”
“I didn’t say I’d do it, I just said that I could.”
“It’s still a threat.”
“Life is a threat,” said the camera. “Didn’t you know?”
Mr. Langley shook his head. “I didn’t look at life that way. I thought we might be friends.”
“I’m a camera, we can’t really go out to dinner and a show.”
“But we can talk and you can show me pictures of places I’ll never see.”
“What happened to you?”
“I’m not sure. I woke up one day and decided that living was too much trouble, so I kind of faded.”
“You’re really far down on the pyramid chart and you love pyramids. Maybe I’ll show you whats inside of them one of these days.”
“I would love that,” said Mr. Langley, excitedly.
“But first, there are things you need to do.”
“Do you want to be a person?”
“I already am a person,” he said, frowning.
“i mean a person other people know exists.”
“Oh. I’m not sure. I’m used to being alone.”
“We’ll start small,” said the camera. “I’ll be your wingperson.”
“Not exactly, but sort of. I mean we’re not starting with women but I don’t know what other word to us. Cameraperson sounds stupid.”
“And you don’t think wingperson doesn’t?”
“Just get a pad of paper and a pen.”