A Date With George Lucas

Night It was just around 8 that I saw the headlights. I ran out the front door and down the steps, taking them two at a time. Pulling open the door, I settled into the passenger seat.

“Oh George!” I said, “I’d know those headlights anywhere!”

“Mmmph.” George said.

He sat hunched in the driver’s seat. The car was filled with a strange and heavy smoke.

“It smells of burning plastic!” I exclaimed, sniffing the fog.

“It really is marvelous,” George sighed dreamily, backing carefully out of the driveway. He turned to me with a grin, “It truly makes one feel alive. Tell me this: Would you like to have a taste of this cigarette? It’s a special mix of certain...organic herbs and spices. It's a special concoction of my own design; spare no expense.”

“What’s in it exactly?” I asked, beginning to feel lightheaded.

“Oh, a little of this, a little of that,” he began to cackle, “Want a taste?”

“No thanks. Remember, I’m the chaperone, I’ve got to keep my mind alert for danger.” I said, wrinkling my nose and waving an arm in front of my face. My hand created brightly colored trails in the air. “It does smell lovely though.”

Night Drive “Like plastic daisies…” his voice trailed off. 

 I peered through the windshield. Tall buildings loomed ahead.

“Where exactly are we meeting this little lady of yours?” I asked.

“Oh god,” George gasped, his fingers tensing around the wheel, “It’s working…I feel it!”

 The car accelerated wildly. We plunged through traffic, missing taillights by what seemed like inches. Honks and squeals filled the air. The lights blurred and streaked; I felt a pressure behind my eyes. With each blink came an explosion of color.

“Maybe youssshould lemme drive.” I slurred.

“There isn’t time; we must arrive before sunrise.”

I looked at my watch. The hands seemed to point towards an occult truth. I didn't like where this was leading.

“What time are you?” I asked.

“Vroooop! Tee-hee-hee!” The watch replied.

“Answer me you wretched beast!” I cursed, shaking my wrist violently.

“Bing-bong. Eight Twenty P M.” The watch finally chimed.
Night City
I scowled at it for a while, daring it to speak again. Then I realized George had been talking all this time.

“… can’t understand! You don’t understand how they operate!" he rambled, "They have rules, they have regulations, they have code do you see? Ethics? A standard for living and a standard for dying! The world doesn’t provide for them, so they cut a swath of their own.” He slammed a meaty fist on the dashboard and a cloud of rust-colored dust billowed from the vents. “A swath through the wheat! Someone like you could never survive the way we have. Womp Rats scrambling from a dying Star Destroyer! We have seen it in their bones. In the dank and shuttered night.”

“Seen what?” I asked, my voice quavering.

“The end of course!” his breath came quickly, “The machines and the machinist; the harem and the holy war, all of it! Everything. Soon the smooth silken veil shall be lifted from our eyes. We are not in control, we are the control.”

I made no attempt to answer. The car was quiet. After a few minutes I rolled down my window. The smoke began to thin.

“Here, have a taste of this.”

George handed me the poisonous drug cocktail of a cigarette. I tossed it out the window.

“Oops,” I said, “The wind caught it.”

“Let bygones be bygones.” He declared solemnly, turning the car down a side road.

Suddenly the car lurched to a stop. We sat for a moment. George began revving the engine; growling under his breath.

“What are we doing?” I asked.

“This is a crossing for certain animals. Wild beasts…trained boars…chimpanzees. Can’t you read the sign?”

Dark Times I looked around.

“I don’t see any sign. This looks like a used car lot.”

George began to laugh.

“I’ve forgotten! You can’t read the glyphs, can you boy? Now we must move. Come.”

He got out of the car, and I attempted to do the same. My legs wobbled and buckled. I grunted and fell into the gutter.

“Oh wait!” He cried, snapping his fingers and walking around the car to as I picked myself up, “I almost forgot!”

He reached in through the window, felt around, and came out with a small red bottle of breath drops.

“Bad breath?” I giggled.

“You might say that. But then again, you might not!” He dropped the bottle into his pocket and took a step back. “Well, what do you think?” He asked, spreading his arms wide.

I stood for a moment, looking him up and down. I stroked my chin. He wore tattered purple sweatpants and a blue t-shirt. “Ewoks do it Ewok style” lettering across the front suggested helpfully. He was also sporting a red and green flannel lumberjack shirt, and around his left wrist he wore a blue and pink charm bracelet. All the colors seemed bright and alive.

“My little George,” I snuffled as tears filled my eyes, “My own little vagabond king!”

“A king fit for a king,” He nodded knowingly. “Come now, we musn't keep a lady in waiting waiting.”

He pointed down the street towards the checkered lights of a small Italian restaurant.

Outdoors “I hope you speak the language. Come and meet my lucky lady” he said, and stumbled down the sidewalk.

“Wow,” I said, gazing up at the stars.

A bit later I began walking towards the lights. The wind began to howl. I shuddered and pulled up the collar of my coat, cursing under my breath. Upon reaching the restaurant, I peered in through the window. Families and couples sat inside, laughing and smiling. The young boy at the front counter stared absentmindedly into space. At one of the tables a little girl sat scribbling intently on a menu with the stub of a crayon.

Suddenly , I didn't feel so hungry anymore. Placing my back against the wall, I slid to the ground and pulled my legs in close. I sat for a time, and stared at some grass which had begun to grow through cracks in the sidewalk.

I heard the sound of approaching footsteps. “Hey buddy, you alright?" A voice said.

“Beat it.” I said, ripping at a tuft of the grass and tossing it aside.

The footsteps shuffle away. I fish a tiny blue capsule from my pocket, place it between my teeth, and bite down hard.

There is a pop, and a sizzle, and the world softens. My eyelids droop. A soothing warmth radiates from the pit of my stomach to the tips of my fingers.

I sprawl out on the pavement. My head fills with the roar of white noise.

"Goodnight moon." I murmur.

"Goodnight moon."