“Uh, what’s this?”
Devin was dusting. The Dr. Pants Medical Funk Facility was almost comically large and, frankly, it had been abused. Ever since Dr. Pants mysteriously vanished, lo those many years ago, the boys had been using less and less of it.
The stage was used most often, when the band members needed to practice sweet kicks or variations on the Pants Dance. The medical bay still had bandages, but had largely been converted to a recording studio. The couches were still couches. The Bootsy Collins Future Memorial refrigerator (powered by the funk of the future ghost of Bootsy Collins) was filled with Diet Dr. Pepper.
But the neon blue phone under the frosted glass jar hadn’t been viewed by human eyes until Devin discovered the frosting was just dust and the phone…was pulsing with light.
David set down his guitar. “Where are you?”
“Over here-ere-ere-ere,” Devin’s voice echoed. A few minutes later, David pulled a cobweb from his hair and stood by his side.
“Oh my God, I totally forgot about this thing,” he said. “That’s Kreative Karl’s Phiction Phone! He was this weird scientist who was obsessed with how the stories in books and movies kept going after we finished watching them. So he created a phone to call them up and see what was going on.”
Devin licked his lips and blinked deliberately. He’d seen a lot of things since joining the band. Tiny orange Guido-loompas, bent on revenge. Zombie bandmates raised from the dead for one night of rocking. But this was a new one.
“You’re saying that after the cameras stop recording, the stories continue on,” he said.
“But those are actors in costumes. Using props. None of it is real.”
“This is going to sound really lame. Like made-for-TV movie lame. But that’s the power of imagination,” David said. “When we create a story, we create a universe in which that story is reality. If you really want to blow your mind-hole wide open, ask yourself this: Are we the original reality, or are we a story that was written by some sexy genius that took on a life of it’s own?”
Kenneth and Dustin rounded the corner, both covered in foam.
“What happened to you guys?”
“Soap bomb,” said Kenneth, wiping bubbles from his mouth. “I think Aaron left it as a prank for us. You know. From before.”
Dustin peered through the half-dusted glass jar. “Is, uh…is anybody going to answer the Phiction Phone?”
“Ooh, ooh, can I?” Devin shouted, jumping up and down. “I want to talk to a fictional character!”
David gave a nod.
“Hello?” Devin asked. “Uh-huh. Oh. OK, wow. Yeah. We’ll handle it. Thanks for the call. No way. Really? That’s sweet. You’re in my favorite reality, too. OK. Bye.”
“Who was it?” Dustin hiccuped. “Who…who…who…”
Devin smashed him over the head with the glass case and kicked Kenneth in the gut.
“Dude, what are you doing?” David yelled.
“That was Chewbacca, man. He said he’s watching our reality in a holo-vid and those guys are doppelgangers. He was calling to warn us.”
Wow, David thought. That Chewbacca is one class act.
(Written by Greg Elwell)