“I already live in a foreign country,” says Thuli softly, thinking of the neat lawns and flower beds, the sequestering razor wire and security gates of the house where she grew up and where her parents live. “And I already belong to a different future.”
Robo-Killa’s gun barrel batters against her window, reclaiming her attention. “I shoot you,” he howls.
Thuli’s car cuts across the nose of the oncoming 14-wheeler, but too late, and is swept up by its bull-bars and rolled splintering and shredding until the bucking monster tramples her beneath.
Across the road a wiry group of youths sculpted by scanty food and occasional manual labour lounge against the frontage. All wear eye-sets – chitinous, intimidations reeking of testosterone.
“Oh…My…Gosh! I’ve discovered a first: cybernetic post-traumatic stress disorder.”
Glimpsed in the headlights, a child darts for the edge of the road. Thuli brakes, and the car slews – she hears a soft thump – and begins to spin. Helpless, she resigns herself: a limbo of thought in which she avoids imagining the bone-rending impact to come.
A small, dented globe of puke-green fire wobbles to life in the centre of the room. “Sorry, I’m a bit…” Bulumko doesn’t finish what he’s going to say: the ‘something’ he stumbled over is a corpse.