At this point, things were not going well. It seemed I had a lot to learn. At least Ravulon did in fact have a library. I told the librarian (that’s the name of the person who works at the library) my problems. She, like most prayers from Religio Praya, wanted to suck my dick to get some of its intoxicating nectar. After we made whoopee behind the counter she suggested I read One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest by some Pathetika Rho alien named Ken Kesey. She told me it was quite a rare tome from a planet that had not become aware of life on other planets and thus afforded special insight into the human soul. I was skeptical. What could I learn from such ignorant barbarians?
The book gave me some good ideas, however, like shock treatment. I decided I wanted to try it. It might help kill my mutant burning emotions at the source. But I could not find a doctor on Ravulon willing to perform the procedure. So in desperation I decided to take a bath with the toaster. It made me feel better, but only temporarily. And I also ended up frying the toaster, which doubly bummed me out, because by then I was eating dry toast and canned peas three times a day. I had to let the librarian give me another blowjob in exchange for another toaster. Apparently she was from a planet where such sexual acts were forbidden. She told me she had acquired a taste for Ravulon semen, which was reputed to have great calming benefits. She told me it was approximately equivalent to a single Blue Valeeyumz and tasted like creamy chai tea. Plus, she admitted, I was as cute as the Dickens. I didn’t know who that was until later, when she gave me a book called Great Expectations as a present.
By this time I had decided for certain that I wished to visit Capitola Iota or at least some other planet before I died. So I took the librarian as my new lover, even though she was almost thirty. I liked her better though than the girls I was used to fucking anyway. She was smarter than all of them put together, even if her pussy juice was a little more acrid than I was accustomed to.
Willamena was her name. She was the only librarian on Ravulon. I asked her how an alien ended up running the Ravulon library system. She told me she had originally moved to Ravulon as a missionary. Rather quickly she discovered our culture was superior to her own and decided to settle down. She petitioned some other alien races visiting as well and they all pitched the necessary funds and built the library as a gift to the people of Ravulon. Willamena stayed to run it and has been doing so for over ten years.
Willamena told me she was originally from the Religio Praya system and that explained everything. I hated those fucking missionaries. Luckily most of them had given up by now and moved on to more gullible world who were ready to accept the teachings of a mean, vengeful God taught by ugly, old, perverted bastards with white beards and nasty dispositions.
Willamena agreed with me that I should take my father’s advice and see the universe, even if it meant getting a job and adapting to a new culture. She said nothing was hopeless if I had faith in myself. Those inspiring words I’ve carried with me the rest of my life.
Damn it. If those fair-weather friends Jazz, Tofer, and Pseudo wouldn’t take me to the Capitolan worlds, well then I would have to find some other way to do it. But I hadn't the means to procure a spaceship. Ravulon provides for all its citizens’ basic needs, but it lacks a spaceship-enhanced welfare plan. So if no aliens would help me, how would I get a spaceship?
Feeling that I had lost hope again, I went to the library every day and read and hung out with Willamena until my eyes hurt. And then instead of dancing at night she would suck me dry and I would pop Blue Valeeyumz both to get us in the same frame of mind and to dull the glossy allure of space travel. We would kiss and talk and discuss books over tea until we passed out. That was when my only meaningful consciousness arose.
Me. Dreaming of dying.
Me. Dreaming of drowning my ignorance with space travel.
Me. Dreaming of dousing my interstellar inertia with some intergalactic delight.
My Rave clan friends thought I was losing the plot. I never went to parties anymore, and rumors spread that I rarely strayed too far from the library or Willamena’s pretty pussy. The more I thought about it, the more I felt Jazz was right. The library had all kinds of information about other civilizations, and even a smattering of local literature. The fact that I was not the first literary Raver was a comfort to me. I met others, many of them older than me, who seemed to live there like me. It was a misfit colony.
It seemed the more I read the more I wanted to read. I devoured every book I could find about Ravulon history and about the different kinds of alien cultures out there in the endless universe. There were so many books, I thought it would take me years just to read the interesting ones. I thought the library was the best place on the whole planet — better than the best clubs.
It wasn’t until much later that I found out the Ravulon library kind of sucked. Compared to other planets, it was mostly a neglected underworld hangout for space sick weenies and lunatic locals addicted to Red Meeneez. Sometimes it was a fight just to get a comfy seat. Willamena did her best to keep me happy with her frequent milkings of my cock, but as the months passed I grew ever wearier of life on Ravulon and started to feel my soul was dying a slow death.
Finally one day my Rave clan friends came looking for me at the library. I had moved out of the camp by then and had taken up private accommodation at the library in exchange for shelving books and helping Willamena to keep the space sick alien junkee poets in order. They were surprised when they found me shelving books in the library. I greeted them and they began their pitch to try and convince me to come out for the biggest Ravulon party of the year, BT3 (Breakfast Treat 3000). I had forgotten all about it. To be truthful, it felt good to be missed.
BT3 is a planetary holiday in recognition of our trademark breakfast food item, the vitamin-fortified crème donut. Apparently my friends were hoping a few good nights of partying would snap me out of my literary and melancholic despondency. I was highly skeptical.
After much hugging and kissing and rimming, I finally relented. Besides, I hadn't been out in a while. BT3 is our biggest national festival, with countless opportunities to hear great music and recreate. Things suddenly became clearer. I actually became excited. Instead of my usual lunch of peas and toast I ordered out for a sillysiben mushroom pizza, and a sampler pack of space pills from last year’s winners at SpinFest. I hadn't been out in a while and decided to call some fashion girls and talk about the new styles.
The girls told me this year’s BT 3000 would be top notch. It would last three weeks, have a total of twenty-five house rooms, seventy-nine trance rooms, fifteen drum and space rooms, and the legal maximum ninety-five chill rooms. Attendance was expected to reach over ninety-nine percent of Ravulon plus a million groovers from over a hundred different planets all over the galaxy.
The party was bombing. I met my old Rave clan and danced for a few hours before attending a local orgy. I humped into a cute girl with red hair that I had met once down by the ocean. We danced and made love for hours. But as soon as I came I felt dull and restless. She wanted more of my loving, but I couldn't stop crying. I dressed and left. The music was giving me a headache, and even all the StarTrail Mix I had liberally snorted could not dissociate my mind from reality's unshakable grip.
I NEEDED TO GET OFF THIS FUCKING PLANET!!
On my way back to the bridge where I intended to make good on my earlier intentions of throwing myself off, I got stopped by a new bunch of aliens. I could tell immediately that they were from a Capitolan system from the generous gold trim of their spaceship. They seemed especially wealthy and attractive to me and I took this to be a good sign that I should hang with them and try to bum a ticket or hitch a ride to one of their worlds.
I introduced myself.
"Hello, my name is SonicBoy Wellbutrin."
"Hello, SonicBoy. My name is Volvo Eucalyptus. I'm on my Youth Break vacation from Capitola Alpha. On my planet we only get three weeks off between birth and age eighty-five. I plan to spend my time on Ravulon, even though it is illegal for my people to come here. These are my friends Advert and Bonus. We just got here and we need some showing around. I have just three weeks here to realize my lifelong dream. Then I must go back home and work for sixty-five straight years before my next vacation. This place is beyond my wildest expectations. I have never imagined there were so many party people in the universe!"
I couldn't believe it. I was talking to real live Capitola Alphans. And they wanted me to show them around. I knew instinctively that this could be my ticket off this dust ball.
"Look here, my fine Capitola Alphan peeps, I can show you as good a time on this planet as anyone. And I'll do it for no money."
"No money? You'll show us around for free?"
Now I had impressed them. I was slowly learning how to communicate with these Capitolans.
"Well, not exactly free. I will be your tour guide if you pay my daily expenses and then take me back to Capitola Alpha with you when you leave. It is my only wish in life to see another culture. Take me back with you and let me see your planet!"
"A Raver on Capitola Alpha? They would hunt you down and squash you like a space roach."
I feigned ignorance.
“Why? How could it be illegal to be from Ravulon on Capitola Alpha?"
Advert turned to me and finished.
"Because it is. It is illegal to pursue any lifestyle that does not have economic efficiency as its primary goal. People who are proven to be ‘potentially economically insufficient’ by the end of their eighteenth year are ground up into meaty chunks and sold as dog food. A Raver would be seen as a threat to our Great Culture of Greed."
I didn't know what to say.
"But I am only sixteen. I would still have two years to be perceived as useful!"
Volvo shook his head. "Your kind could never be perceived as useful on Capitalist Alpha."
"But listen here, Capitolans! I am not like that! I can be productive. I can be perceived as economically sufficient. I swear it. Woe is me! I will kill myself if I am unable to accompany you to Capitola Alpha."
The Capitolans were shocked at my sincerity and attempted to calm me with shiny emeralds and small monetary gifts. But it was all to no avail.
"Listen here, SonicBoy. You would do well to accept life on your own planet. You are a product of your environment and best-suited to the culture which currently surrounds you."
I was resolved to go with plan B.
"Okay. The least you could do is drop me off at Capitola Iota. I have some friends there."
Bonus turned to his cohorts and laughed.
"Wow, he must really be desperate to travel if he wants to go there!"
"Why?” I asked. “What's wrong with Capitola Iota?"
“Iota’s a fucking ignoble middle class commercial artist hell,” replied Bonus.
Then Advert chimed in.
"Iotans are a pathetic lot of space wankerz. They think they are fucking special but they are just poor. Their GNP was only 5.6 trillion neodrachmas last year. It's only a matter of millennia before we nuke them to build an interstellar bypass."
"I don't care. I have friends there. I won't live that long anyway. Please! I am desperate!"
Volvo sighed and put his arm around me.
"Look here SonicBoy, the Capitolan systems are starting a new Universal Order. Your mere presence on ANY system could start a revolution. I'm afraid we can't take the risk. We have to maintain our immigration standards, you know, however unfair they may seem to the unenlightened..."
I was at my breaking point. "I will eat this whole bar of PoppyPus right now if you don't help me!"
Advert spoke up.
"Stop Volvo! Oi! Wise Up! Okay, look here, SonicBoy. If you really wish to see a bit of our Capitolan culture, we will do it. In truth, Iota has experimental Rave colonies where the monetary superstructure is still being entrenched.”
Bonus rose to my aid as well.
“Trust me, Volvo, there are enough loony freaks around on Iota that SonicBoy will fit in if he plays it smart. I’m not saying it isn’t risky, but it’s his dream. Everybody has dreams. In fact we just realized our dream by coming here… so is it not our Capitolan civic duty now to help poor young SonicBoy?"
Volvo sighed. “You know, you’re right. I guess we can drop him off on the way home. What harm could that do? Sound like a deal?”
I felt higher than the sun. “It's a deal!"
Volvo smiled. “But there is one condition. You must take me immediately to the Ravulon Mega Hit Testing Labs.”
“That’s easy!” I replied. I was going to show them the time of their lives.
Volvo nodded. "Okay then. Speak no more of the Capitola worlds until our three weeks of experimentation and partying is up. I came here to escape from all that… and to properly sort out the party universe once and for all."
At this point my life finally changed for the better. I felt it. I just knew it. It was like my whole life had led up to this moment. I knew I was done with my library life and ready to begin my space adventurer life. Suddenly I felt like dancing like a good little Raver again!
The Ravulon Mega Hit Labs were easily accessible by all the major roads on Ravulon. We hired a local transport and began the journey. I was so intent on not losing my newfound friends I literally led them around by the hand, squeezing tenderly. These aliens are good, I thought. They are getting me off this fucking planet, anyway.
Volvo spoke. "What pills are in top fashion these days, SonicBoy?"
"Oh, all sorts. We got Nasty Nebulaz, Red Rimmerz, Black Bumholz, you name it. I myself have always preferred the White Rabbit Eckeez with a liberal dosing of StarTrail Mix myself, because the buzz is so dancey and yet so chillin’. We can get anything you want at the 24-Hour Drug Store, but I suggest starting off with last years SpinFest winner, some variation on the Mutant Troggle Stellar Mindfuck pill. I guess the judges were feeling retro and shit. It's a Class C neurotoxin, but you might as well try it since you're on vacation."
Volvo looked confused but devious, like he was about to explode with anticipation.
"SpinFest? I have never heard of this holiday."
So I let them in on it.
"You see guys, here on Ravulon there is an annual planetary space pill competition called SpinFest. It coincides with the ending of BT3. The main point is that various competing chemical engineers from Ravulon release their latest concoctions to the citizens. We take them and then dance around and then vote for the one we like the best.”
“DAS IST VERR GUUD!” Volvo screamed.
I continued, “Whichever pill wins the competition, the chemist gets to be a demigod for a year or two, you know, basically eat nothing but space caviar and fuck models all day. Losers take it rather badly, and in extreme cases have been known to commit suicide or even hack off their own limbs in a fit of blind rage. Ravers take this thing very seriously. It is maybe the only thing we take seriously. The top pills are normally accepted into production and marketed in far-off galaxies everywhere.”
Volvo looked down his nose at me and spoke as if up on some high mountaintop. “Silly Raver boy, yes of course I have heard of SpinFest. It is the competition I am going to win this year. I am going to be the first Capitolan to enter and win it. It is true that no Capitolan has ever won SpinFest before, no?”
“Capitolan? Win SpinFest? Impossible! I don’t think one has even entered before,” I responded shocked.
“Well I am going to be the first,” Volvo spouted with complete confidence.
I was incredulous.
“Aliens are free to participate in SpinFest, but I’m positive they cannot vote. In fact the majority of the aliens I’ve encountered in the past years who have participated in the SpinFest pill tests were so wrecked at the time that they didn't even know it was going on. Aliens come here to party and dance. They show little or no interest in our social ways. If you want to enter SpinFest then fine, but I must warn you this is serious stuff not to be taken lightly.”
Volvo looked at me, frowned, cleared his throat, and then spoke.
"Serious stuff huh? See here SonicBoy… we Capitolans never joke about competitions. I want to enter immediately. The rules state I need a Raver to sponsor me. That’s you, SonicBoy. I feel I can use my superior Capitola Alphan intellect to create the ULTIMATE SPACE HIT. One of these space pills will get the user higher than any before. It will be a single capsule that can withstand all negative vibes, self-destructive tendencies, buzz killing people, and other untimely space-time phenomena. And it is completely without side effects, except, of course, that you have to remember to eat or else you might die of starvation."
“Remember to eat?” I questioned.
“Yeah my calculations show it should last for two weeks,” Volvo intimated.
I laughed. "Two weeks? Who's gonna wanna be high on a pill for two weeks? You'd lose for that minus alone. But I will still pop one if you make them. My parents almost died taking space pills, you know. I got pill testing in my bones. No mere pill is gonna fry my young brain. I could give a fuck about a pill, me. I'm leaving Ravulon regardless of how many space pills I take and that's the end of that.”
Volvo was insistent.
"Okay maybe I will re-engineer it to last a week. But no less than that. Otherwise you wouldn’t get the whole effect.”
“Re-engineer it? You mean you already have created it?”
“Yes, SonicBoy, I have already invented it. But it exists only in my mind. I simply require the proper equipment to create it. It is my destiny to prove to the Ravulon people that I am sexy and capable of making good space pills! I have spent almost half of my 20 years of existence secretly studying psychedelic chemistry. I am the best young chemist in the whole galaxy. I know can do it. Take me to your labs at once. My space pills skills are unparalleled."
I felt I had to calm Volvo down.
"Okay Volvo,” I said reaching in my pocket for a Blue Valeeyum. “Here, take a chill pill. I think we should just relax and try not to think about it right away. Why don't we go to the drug store and score some White Rabbit Eckeez and catch a deejay set somewhere? I got to admit there are a few new interplanetary dance moves I got going on in my head and I need someone to show them to.”
Volvo threw the pill on the ground. He could not be swayed. In fact, he retorted loudly, "NEIN BLUE VALEEYUMZ! NEIN DANZIG! NICHT UNTEELL ICH MAKER ME DEM SPACE PILLZ!"
Advert broke the uncomfortable silence.
"Volvo is regressing. You better take him to the Mega Hit Laboratories. Unless of course, you want him to find some other Raver to do it for him!"
Figuring I had to shape up or I would never ship out, I took them immediately to the labs. I had never been there before, and had to do a lot of quick talking just to get us in the door. The other scientists looked at us in disbelief. Who ever heard of a Capitolan space pill scientist? What next? A heterosexual male missionary from Religio Praya?
I had my fears like the rest of my people, and they grew more intense in the next couple of minutes. It wasn’t long before Volvo started prancing about like a total twat and screaming more Alphan baby talk gibberish. The others told me it was called Middle Capitolan Deutsch, the neo-gothic stage between Latin and what we now call English, which is of course the language our galaxy speaks today. I suddenly became very embarrassed for all of us at the display he was making. Now I had two reasons to leave the planet. Volvo was speaking aloud as if to everyone and no one and using a derogatory tone. His accent seeming to strengthen considerably…
"VASS KEN YU TELL ME ABOT SPACE PILLZ YU FUCKEN CHIKEN SHEETS DAT AH DON AHREEDY KNOW?!?"
"YU UNT YER STINKEN SPACE EKKEEZ. YU VILL ROO ZE DAY AH STEPT ON YER LEEDL HAPPY DANZIG PLAH-NET!!!"
I ushered Volvo inside the labs and closed the door behind him, leaving myself and his planetary compatriots all looking at each other and then down on the ground to avoid embarrassment for him. I could not stand it any longer. I had to figure out what was going on.
"Advert, what the FUCK is up with Volvo?"
From behind closed doors I heard Volvo scream, "LEAVE US!" although he was all by himself. We decided to take his advice. Another long silence occurred until Advert spoke up.
"Volvo is obsessed with the ideas of time and energy and how they intermingle. Volvo believes that you can convey any message you want with the right kind of stimulus. Fundamentally, Volvo is trying to create space pills that recreate the experience of the birth and death of the Universe in all its simultaneous real and parallel realities. This pill, he will simply call the ‘USH’, or Ultimate Space Hit. Our society back home on Capitola Alpha is so advanced in its studies of quantum project management that we already know this will come to pass.”
“But mainly”, Bonus added, “Volvo is being such an incorrigible twat because he thinks he is in some competition with you for the attention of the universe."
“Me?” I asked. “Why me?”
This all seemed like psychobabble to me at the time. At least one lone question clamored for an answer in my ultimate space hit deprived brain.
"But if Volvo already knows that this is going to happen, then why is he being so dramatic about it and shouting in a dead language?"
Advert stared into my eyes and said, "There is always drama in creation SonicBoy, isn't there? An army knows it is capable of victory before a war yet it still fights it, no?"
"Yes,” I replied, “But sometimes a great artist knows he is going to paint a great picture, paints that great picture, and then dies unloved and poor."
Advert looked at me and continued, "Oh I see, SonicBoy, you Ravers don't understand financial reason. To us Capitolans, this melodrama is an essential part of life, like cash reserves, or real estate."
"Okay fine, whatever. It's just that I've never met aliens who wanted to do anything like that before. What's his motivation? Does he actually think he can win? What is he, stupid?”
"He will win," Bonus spoke up. "We are just waiting for it to happen now. May I suggest somewhere more pleasant like a space pub?"
I agreed. I needed a drink. We went to the nearest floating space pub and snorted numerous lines of StarTrail Mix and drank PoppyPus soda for seven straight days. The floating pubs are cool for tourists because you can see the whole planet without ever leaving the barstool. Bonus and Advert were having such a good time with the Space Slutz of Minor Moralis that they forgot all about Volvo and his obsessions.
A week later, we returned to the labs to see how Volvo was getting on with his science experiment. When we entered the compound I saw Volvo standing outside his laboratory smoking cigarettes and joking with the other scientists. It was obvious that they all respected his space pills skills immensely. There was a strange glow in his eyes like he had been on a great spiritual voyage.
"Ah, SonicBoy, you are back!" cried Volvo.
"Yes, yes. I am back. How did it go?"
A Ravulon scientist grooved on by us, slowly disrobing and screaming: “It’s brilliant. It’s fucking space ace one hundred percent super nova brilliant!”
Soon I learned the truth. The contest was over before it started. Volvo had made his first batch in just three days, had given it to the other scientists to sample, and after a quick series of chain reactions, the contest was canceled and a large dance party ensued.
Officially, the judges were not allowed to vote until the drug wore off, but preliminary polls suggested Volvo had the prize in the bag. Factory production lines were already being set up, and within forty-eight hours, almost everyone on Ravulon over the age of five would be tripping on the Ultimate Space Hit.
Volvo handed me a little baggie of shiny metallic space pills. “This, SonicBoy, is a special batch I made just for you... as a thank you for taking me to the labs and putting up with my unruly behavior.”
I was touched. “Thank you, Volvo.”
Then Volvo pulled out a key from his white lab coat pocket and took and unlocked a special drawer in his desk. He removed and opened a glowing box. It was glowing from the pills. He spilled an assortment of USH on to the table.
“Those metallic USH I just gave you are the slightly tuned down version as recommended by SonicBoy. They don’t last the full two weeks. For us four however I made these… I don’t intend to release them to the general public until I die. But for us, it’s time to take them now.”
Glowing pills were popular when I was a kid. It was a novelty. They looked like candy. Curious but arrogant, I announced that I wanted to take two. Volvo looked at me as if I were mad and handed me another one. I popped them in my mouth along with two more.
"You’re a madman, Sonic Boy!"
"What the fuck is a couple of extra pills when you're sixteen?" I replied as I washed them down with my last sip of PoppyPus soda and burped loudly. “I’m in my fucking space pills prime, you know.”
They laughed and each took a single glowing two-week USH pill. Then we headed for the nearest party to celebrate. It wasn’t long before I was completely off my space tits.
I don't know how to describe taking the ultimate space hit except to say I kind of really liked it for the first week until things got a little sketchy, probably because I forgot to eat and sleep. Everyone on the whole planet of Ravulon was in my mind all at once giving me a tongue bath all over my body. I had never had a feeling like that before, so many tongues up and down licking me in all my many places.
In fact a really long list of cool things happened to me that I can't really put into words. Stuff about space and time and having sex with trees and plants. Seventeen days into the trip I realized it was just a drug and not real. After that I started flowing with it and really started enjoying myself. Days passed like weeks and weeks like months. I had no idea who I was. No frame of reference. It was not scary though. It was beyond the physical realm.
Suddenly I remembered Volvo and Advert and how much I had wanted to travel the Universe. Why did I want to leave this great planet of Ravulon, my very own home planet? It had the best of everything in the Universe. Every single alien tourist that I had ever met all told me the same thing: Ravulon was the shit.
No, I decided to tell Volvo that he can kindly give me some money instead of taking me back to Capitola Iota. All I needed to be happy was some more Ultimate Space Hits, a couple new lovers, some underground records, and a very large bowl of grapes that I could live in forever.
It was then I saw Volvo. He was looking distressed.
“SonicBoy, how are you feeling? I was worried that we were going to lose you for a while. We had to feed you through an IV for the last two weeks. We were all so high we could hardly remember to eat ourselves. It appears that the effects of the drug expand exponentially with increased dose. You took like sixteen hits, not four hits.”
“Well I feel good… maybe better than ever in fact. Those are some pretty swell space pills you got there. You have to give me the recipe sometime when I can find my brain so as to remember it...”
"Your brain is right where you left it, SonicBoy… in your pants."
"Ha ha. Very funny Volvo. Anyway I have decided to stay on Ravulon after all. Nice to meet you guys and all but I think I am going to check into a rehab clinic and vegetate for a few years. You got any more of those glowing USH pills for the walk over there?"
"SonicBoy… listen to me. We are on a spacecraft orbiting the planet Capitola Omega space customs. We are some thirty thousand odd light years from Ravulon. We could wait no longer to make the journey home. And we are in trouble. I missed my three-week curfew by two months. My father has thus found out about our little escapade. He is currently deciding our sentence. Preliminary reports show he plans to put us in jail for seven years. My own father! Can you believe it?"
I squinted my eyes as if reading the future off a cue card with tiny print.
"Yes, I can Volvo. In fact, thanks to your drug, I can tell that you will spend exactly nineteen months in jail… at which time you will turn gay with your prosecuting attorney and be set free on a loophole."
Volvo beamed with pride.
"You see you little shit, I told you I would win that contest. I am the best space pills scientist of all time."
"No one," I admitted, "would deny that for even one quadrillionth of a nanosecond.”
"Yes but you don’t deserve this shit. You are an alien. You are not one of us. I fear what they will do with you, SonicBoy. You see, they need a scapegoat!"
"Tell them to drop me off on Capitola Iota. I will find a ride back home someday if I try hard enough. I don't want to get you into any more tight spots than you're already getting into, heh heh.”
Suddenly a voice came over the intercom. It was Volvo’s father, CEO of Capitola Alpha.
“No, you’re not getting off that easy you little Raver scum. I’ve got different plans for you!”
I watched in horror as my own body begun to dematerialize in the spaceship. I thought it was all over. Everything went black.