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Micro-Man   By: (1916-2008)

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MICRO MAN

BY WEAVER WRIGHT

[Transcriber Note: This etext was produced from Fantasy Book Vol. 1 number 1 (1947). Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.]

[Sidenote: The little man dared to venture into the realm of the Gods but the Gods were cruel! ]

The early morning streetcar, swaying and rattling along its tracks, did as much to divert my attention from the book I was reading as the contents of the book itself. I did not like Plato. Comfortable though the seat was, I was as uncomfortable as any collegiate could be whose mind would rather dwell upon tomorrow's football game than the immediate task in hand the morning session with Professor Russell and the book on my lap.

My gaze wandered from the book and drifted out the distorted window, then fell to the car sill as I thought over Plato's conclusions. Something moving on the ledge attracted my attention: it was a scurrying black ant. If I had thought about it, I might have wondered how it came there. But the next moment a more curious object on the sill caught my eye. I bent over.

I couldn't make out what it was at first. A bug, perhaps. Maybe it was too small for a bug. Just a little dancing dust, no doubt.

Then I discerned and gasped. On the sill, there it was a man! A man on the streetcar's window sill a little man! He was so tiny I would never have seen him if it hadn't been for his white attire, which made him visible against the brown grain of the shellacked wood. I watched, amazed as his microscopic figure moved over perhaps half an inch.

He wore a blouse and shorts, it seemed, and sandals. Something might have been hanging at his side, but it was too small for me to make out plainly. His head, I thought was silver coloured, and I think the headgear had some sort of knobs on it. All this, of course, I didn't catch at the time, because my heart was hammering away excitedly and making my fingers shake as I fumbled for a matchbox in my pocket, I pushed it open and let the matches scatter out. Then, as gently as my excitement would allow, I pushed the tiny man from the ledge into the box; for I had suddenly realized the greatness of this amazing discovery.

The car was barely half filled and no attention had been directed my way. I slid quickly out of the empty seat and hurriedly alighted at the next stop.

In a daze, I stood where I had alighted waiting for the next No. 10 that would return me home, the matchbox held tightly in my hand. They'd put that box in a museum one day!

[Illustration]

I collect stamps I've heard about getting rare ones with inverted centers, or some minor deviation that made them immensely valuable. I'd imagined getting one by mistake sometime that would make me rich. But this! They'd billed "King Kong" as "The Eighth Wonder of the World," but that was only imaginary a film ... a terrifying thought crossed my mind. I pushed open the box hastily: maybe I had been dreaming. But there it was the unbelievable; the Little Man!

A car was before me, just leaving. Its polished surface had not reflected through the haze, and the new design made so little noise that I hadn't seen it. I jumped for it, my mind in such a turmoil that the conductor had to ask three times for my fare. Ordinarily, I would have been embarrassed, but a young man with his mind on millions doesn't worry about little things like that. At least, not this young man.

How I acted on the streetcar, or traversed the five blocks from the end of the line, I couldn't say. If I may imagine myself, though, I must have strode along the street like a determined machine. I reached the house and let myself into the basement room. Inside, I pulled the shades together and closed the door, the matchbox still in my hand. No one was at home this time of day, which pleased me particularly, for I wanted to figure out how I was going to present this wonder to the world... Continue reading book >>




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