The Mark of Carter by Bruce Meyer

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The Mark of Carter by Bruce Meyer
The Mark of Carter by Bruce Meyer

Carter Frangin wanted everyone to know. Dark energy was not dangerous or evil; it was exhilarating. It was empowering. His brain was charged and every muscle in his body surged with strength. He wanted to shout it to the world.

However, at that moment he was preoccupied. There were foot officers in front of him and police cruisers overhead. Behind him, Atraville’s tallest downtown building towered above him, blocking any escape. Below him, his feet straddled a round iron access cover for the city’s radiated power.

“Dark energy has been detected on your person,” the amplified police audio said. It originated from the captain that floated in a cruiser just above him, but it sounded out of the air all around him. “This is a level three violation. You have ten seconds to lie face-down on the ground.”

A level three violation meant he was a danger to the public. That made him mad. They had it backwards. Dark energy was an advantage, not a threat. “I’ve become the most powerful man in the world,” Carter said. “I’m offering this to everyone.”

“By not complying, you have now committed a level four violation,” the voice said. “You have ten seconds to lie on the ground or we may use stunning force.”

The police cruiser descended shining a spotlight so bright it burned Carter’s eyes. Although humanoid, he barely resembled anything human anymore. His red eyes glowed like headlights, and his body pulsated with energy as if worms writhed beneath his skin. They were only focused on his appearance. How could he overcome their preconception? How could he prove what dark energy could do?

Carter jumped with all his strength and slammed into the underside of the lead cruiser. The captain worked to establish control, but with Carter destabilizing the ship, it only careened downwards. “I won’t hide what’s real,” he said at the top of his lungs. “Dark energy will change the world!” Carter jumped off just before the cruiser hit the ground.

“Level five violation,” a different voice said all around Carter. “You have ten seconds to lie on the ground or we will apprehend with deadly force.”

Instead, Carter’s powerful legs took him through Atraville faster than the police cruisers could fly. Glass offices on stilts, hovercraft docking ports, and archaic structures still on foundations all blurred together. The cruisers behind him were like vehicle-sized bullets. Their negatively-charged pods thrust against the city’s radiated power field. Although they could not match

Carter’s super-human speed, that same field allowed them to track every movement with pinpoint precision. Soon Carter saw hundreds of them. The cruisers filled the sky ahead.

It was when he crossed over the round iron access to a radiated power tunnel that he had the idea.

Could they see him if he hid under the source of their field? It was worth a try. He opened the cover and jumped down to the concrete floor of the tunnel.

“Hey, here’s another one.” Carter landed in front of a mirror image of himself. The beast had the same glowing red eyes and swollen, pulsating skin. There were hundreds of them all huddled around the antennas for the radiated power.

“Where did you come from?” Carter said. “I mean, how did you get like this too?”

“Same as you. Don’t you know? There’s tons more like us, all throughout the tunnels.”

“How many?” Carter said. “I thought I was the only one.”

He shrugged. “There’s more of us every day. They show up just like you. Everybody thinks they’re the only one.”

“Where do they come from?”

“Dark energy isn’t just vacuum energy. It doesn’t just accelerate the expansion of the universe; it accelerates that energy within each of us. It’s spreading faster than they can apprehend us.”

Carter was excited by the possibilities. He realized how everyone would know the truth. “We don’t have to hide. If we form an army, we can rule the world!


AUTHOR BIO: I am an electrical engineer from North Idaho working in the electrical utility industry. My writing is a bizarre mixture of theology and theoretical physics, and follows the theme of dark energy. More of my work can be found on my website,