The Dark Balloon

A weblog by Hao Lian.
A terrible secret guarded by golems.
A note that thanks you for being born, all those years ago.

A case of it going down, part six

“Has anybody tried this door—uh, rhetorical question.” I gazed up at the ceiling anxiously. “I think,” somebody called out from the other end of the room. The doctors and the woman had been looking for a way out of the room for hours. Minutes, even. Seconds. It was hard to tell. They were doctors, and they all had experience with waiting rooms. Unfortunately, there was only one way out of this room: through a door. And there was only one door. I know, because I checked the other doors.

“Screw you, we’re trying this door!”

“Now, wait a minute. Let’s not make any rash decisions. Just step … just step away from that doorknob.”

“Sure … not! I’m trying this door!” I screamed, rebelling with all my might.

I tried it. It opened. It was like the scene from “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz,” where Dorothy steps out into Oz and discovers everything in color; like that, except that three tall and scary women stood blocking the doorway.

“Um. Hi … how are … how are … plumes … where are we?”


We stood dumbstruck. Could it be possible that we were in a satirical look on Baum‘s classic masterpiece commenting on the relativism of ethics and the empty categorization of good and evil? Did I just foreshadow? JUST THEN, all three of them—women, if you’re not into objectification—laughed.

“We get that a lot.”


“Nothing.” We weren’t.

“We are the Three Sisters Hello Kitty.”

“Well. Hello, Three Sisters.”

“No. Three Sisters Hello Kitty. ‘llo Kit’ is part of the name.”

“Ohh, pathetic. We didn’t ask you who you guys were, though.”

“In that case, I never told you that I’m Hypnotica, this is Erratica, and this is Mica.”

“Hi. We are malpractice doctors.”

“Your coming has been foretold, circumcision.”

I began to shake … hands with Mica. “No! Don‘t do that. She’s flaky.” I quickly withdrew my hand and never started a relationship with Mica. She was flaky, mmm? I decided to shake hands with Erratica.

“Hi. Where are we?” I asked. Tic, tic.

“So,” I said to Hypnotica. “What’s special about you? Let me guess. You hypnotize people.”

She looked confused. “No, I notice hips.” That was a good thing, because I have nice hips. “You have nice hips.” See?

A doctor stepped forward. “Again. Where are we?” Tic, tic.

“Wait,” I interrupted. “Why aren’t boxes falling on us anymore?”

“The room disappeared!” someone exclaimed. Indeed it had. Indeed it had.

“But how?”

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“Buhh,” I elucidated.

Mica spoke. “Sorry to break up the Ruby Way parade, but we have to get you guys out of here. The room may expand at any moment.”

“You heard her … stone … guys! Let’s go!”

Like mad rabbits with a situation on their faces, we sprang towards the exit, pushing away the women, and running into the open. We ran and ran and ran into another room, slamming the door behind us, the door sliding up after we closed it.

“I think we’re in an elevator.”

“No, that was definitely a panty whip escalator. Fffpshh.”

A groan came from the corner, reminding us all that the object was still there. Someone took a crowbar and stroked her nose gently. Her blood splattered all over the walls, and she fell asleep.

“You have a crowbar? I thought we promised each other that we wouldn’t hide food.”

“Look, man, I’m sorry, but—”

“No tampons. If you‘re going to be a traitor, we’re all going to have a nine-star dinner right now without you.” Without a fuss, all the doctors did not put their elbows to the table, except for the traitor, who starved to delicious, delicious death.

“Hey, Jark, why are you holding a prank Halloween hand?” You know, one of those amputated hands. Jark looked at it for the first time. Another groan arose, this time from among the doctors. “You shook her hand. You just had to shake her hand.”

It was nightfall, we think. Sleeping arrangements were being made. “How do you sleep?” I said conversationally to the woman.

“A pillow.”

Be More Specific.

“A pillow of chicks.”

“Chicks?” That was alarming.

“No no, baby chickens. Those chicks.”

“Oh, those chicks.” Reassured, I turned around and slept fitfully on a bed of manatees. Sea cows to hallucinogenic people who think they look like cows.

Sunlight broke through the windows, gently arcing over bedroom. Its warm rays soothingly awakened each person as it streamed past their faces, their faces then breaking into a comfortable, cozy yawn, signaling the start of another normal but happy day. Unfortunately, there were no windows in the room, and sunlight was given a very big “Talk to the hand, sister.” by the laws of physics. Instead, everybody slept way past noon and woke up when they felt like it.

Many people wake up asking, “What will I do today?” Others wake up asking, “Mmm, coffee.”. Later, Jark asked in a completely unrelated situation, “Wouldn’t it be possible to break down these walls? Looks like adobe.”

“How can you tell?”


“No guys, I don’t think we should. We might die.”

“That‘s a risk I’m willing to laugh at you for considering it.”

“He‘s right. We shouldn’t take risks. It’s too risky. Besides, we have nothing to break the wall down with.”

We gasped. Then we thought. Then we had children. Then we killed the children to not derail the already fragile plot arc any more than allowed. Then we all looked at each other before exclaiming in unison, “Hummmmmmoohh.”

[(2005 July 4) .]

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