“Come along,” he’d said, excitedly chuntering about the fellow he had an appointment with, “it will be fun – and educational.”
Doubtful, I’d thought at the time; more so now. Even as the reptilian figure raised his weapon once more I was running away. For my part I am an excellent runner, adept at swerving, tripping and recovery, and taking sliding corners in a sliding spray of gravel. Good thing really, because our lizard chum was a very good shot – popcorn stands, coconuts and stuffed toys ignited and jetted their freshly liquefied guts into the air.
Hearts pounding (I like to assume he was also exerted) I made for the nearest building that offered something more than mere canvas for walls. I leaped through the doors and my heart, once so swift in its race, almost stopped as I collided with a twisted monster. Jealously I revised my initial description, for it was but myself, distorted in a glass. Knowingly or not I had led us into Charlie Burrows’ Mirror Madness. Lest the scaly fiend gun me down in the entrance I ducked into the maze.
My hands shook as I stalked past gross warpings of myself, illuminated with eye-blink flashes of light. Near the entrance I heard a hiss and taloned claws tapped onto the scuffed wooden floor. On my hands and knees I sought an exit, bumping against the mirrors, convinced that one would be a cunningly disguised door.
Presumably the presence of the murderous pursuer explained why Alastair’s friend had not shown up, or was not to be found. Quite how my old friend had become so embroiled in the world of insane conspiracies I’d never now know; and nor would I know what he had known that had drawn us both here tonight. Running on a tip from “a man on the inside” (of what he had not said) he had dragged to me to this innocuous meeting place in the old abandoned fairground. Suffice to say: it had not gone well, though the events had at least validated some aspects of his paranoid delusions. Perhaps he was briefly pleased, before being pleased became beyond him. There was indeed a lizard man trying to kill me and for all I knew his kind did rule the world.
Using my wit and the learning I’d accrued from many films I stood up suddenly, and lunged towards the reptilian assassin. Very likely, one of the problems with using films as reference material is the artistic licence employed throughout. When the lizard man fired at my reflection (a-ha!) it blasted the glass into a billion molten fragments. The expectations I’d had of it being a laser gun were not met and I realised that it was only wishful thinking and the influence of cultural memes which might have seen the killer cut down by his own scaly hand.
You’ll understand that I tried to run again, but to no avail. And so I find myself here. It is comfortable, granted, yet I lack the essential freedoms I am due. Zoos are for animals, not for people which is something I have so far failed to convey to our lizard overlords. Actually, this might just be a people pet shop from the looks of the reptile faces peering into the cage. I very much regret visiting the fairground that fateful night; I have ever been susceptible to peer pressure and now I see why we were so warned against it at school.