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The Beast
by Ray Cullis

Aarg, my name for the Neanderthal stinker on my left, raised his weapon as if it could harm the fearsome beast thundering toward us.

I had expected to get a rest between lifetimes of at least a few years and then be reincarnated some years ahead in time. But, no, that was not to be. You can imagine my surprise and horror when the smart-ass Lords of Karma informed me that I would preincarnate—be born again in an earlier time. Not only that, but I would be born again, not in the roaring twenties, or in the devastating American Civil War, or even in ancient Rome or Greece. Oh no, they were sending me way back to the Neolithic era, back to the stone age, back to the time when getting stoned was not a harmless trip but a threat to your very existence.

Now I am feeling flies of butter within my gullet as I make a motion to Aarg to run straight at the beast, and at the last second, to veer off to the left and run around it, while I perform the same maneuver to the right. Aarg understands and grunts, “Uga, Uga.” 

We have done this before but with two more men. Unfortunately, we lost them when the beast we were hunting wasn’t fooled by our supposedly deceptive maneuver, and simply grabbed the two stinkers and chewed them up, spitting out their stone axes and spearheads in the process, while Aarg and I climbed up on the back of the beast to beat the crap out of it with our stone axe-mallets.

Just beating the crap out of the beast wasn’t our goal of course. We intended to kill the animal and drag as much meat as we could hack off of it to our cave before some monstrous flying scavenger swooped down on us.

I turned my attention back to the beast which was only two spears throwing distance away, and lumbering toward me and Aarg, growling, slobbering, and snorting boogers as it came—a fierce sight, and one that caused me to soil my saber tooth garment and question whether dinosaur dinners are really worth all the effort and humiliation.

I didn’t get a chance to dine on dinosaur though, because—before you could say stinky Neanderthal—the beast was upon us and pounding us to smithereens under its enormous webbed feet.

Dang, I though as I released my last breath, just when I was beginning to enjoy the adventure in stinky land, the grim reaper has snatched me away to face the Lords of Karma again. They would, no doubt, amuse themselves again by shipping me off to some infamous time where I would again reincarnate as I don’t know who…or what.