HDG72 - An Anthology

Excerpt From ‘Death’s End’ by Kurt Vonnegut, 1980

by apes

Tags: #cw:noncon #a_surprising_lack_of_kink #alternate_history #Human_Domestication_Guide #microfiction #D/s #dom:female #drugs #hypnosis #pov:bottom #sub:male

“It was then that Kenneth Matthew Singleton came upon a small, queer building, whose purpose would have entirely eluded him were it not for the presence of a motley few words printed in small, queer type above the doorframe.

'The Library of Things That Have Been Forgotten'

The self-declared library itself was barely larger than a studio apartment, and contained only a few books on only a few bookshelves. The books scarcely had titles, either on their covers on on their spines. A suffocating quiet held the room, and by all indications it had never not held it. Kenneth retrieved a book entitled 'The History Of, Volume I', blew the dust off the cover, and thumbed through it's pages.

It was a wholly uninteresting history of an unnamed civilization over it's many years of existence. It's rulers were scarcely influential, it's obsessions scarcely deep, it's pains scarcely meaningful. They had no serious wants nor woes. It took him just over three hours to complete the first eleven volumes. He cautiously cracked open the twelfth, and final, volume.

"On the 17th of the month of Montagnard, 3179 if accounting years by the Stevens calendar and 1000 if accounting years by the Galbraith calendar, all citizens committed suicide."

These were the only words printed in the book.

Kenneth approached the desk counter in the corner of the 'library', complemented by a stout man with a pencil-thin mustache, and placed The History Of, Volume XII, open to the first page, on the worn balsa-wood.

"Excuse me, I think this book is incomplete."

"We pride ourselves on having a complete collection, sir."

"All the other pages are blank."

"Yes."

"But what of the nation?"

The clerk spun around the book, put on his reading glasses, and read the aforementioned aloud.

"But how? Nooses? Firearms? Starvation? Mass poison?”

“No, sir. They all died naturally.”

“But they killed themselves.”

“Yes, of course.”

“Some sort of suicide by old age?”

“No, sir. Natural deaths.”

“And – and why? They had no reason to. The reign of King Varticlaus was going decently, as the eleventh volume ended. The duel between the Twin Parliamentarians was at an end. The Great Dam was weeks away from completion.”

The clerk only stared.

“Is that why it’s here?”

"We pride ourselves on having a complete collection.”

“Do any of the other books here talk about them?”

“Of course. But you mustn’t read it in here."

The clerk closed up The History Of, Volume XII and offered a slim paperback from under his desk, its title reading The History Of, Volume XIII. Kenneth exited the ‘library’ and leaned against a lamppost as he turned over the cover.

“The 17th of Montagnard is reported as having been the happiest day ever lived.”

He only grunted and deposited it in a trash can nearby, containing a few dozen copies of the same book.” p. 178 - 180

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