By Ben Segal
I saw the cow with the glass plate grazing the lawn of the university’s hospital. The glass plate is on the cow’s side, so you can see into the cow.
Inside the cow is dark and bloody. If you shine a light at the glass plate, you can see better. You can see the organs that are in the immediate vicinity of the plate.
There is also a hinge on the plate, so you can open up the cow and reach inside and find out what the inside of a cow feels like. Or at least, you can find out what the inside of the cow feels like in the area right behind the glass plate. You could if you could open up the plate, but you need to know the right combination for that. The researchers keep the inside of the cow locked up.
I told Steven about the experimental cow. I told him I knew where the experimental cow lived and at which times it could be found grazing.
“We should steal that cow.” he said.
We stole the experimental cow.
After we stole the cow, we hid it in my basement. My backyard is on a slope, so you can get to the basement through a backdoor that is on ground-level. That’s why we chose my basement instead of Steven’s. For his basement, we would have had to take the cow down a flight of stairs.
It took us a few days to figure out the combination, but eventually we unlocked the cow.
The glass plate was about a foot in diameter. It was round. Steven told me I should open up the cow. Neither of us wanted to be the one to open her.
“You open her,” I said.
“You open her,” said Steven.
The cow was very patient. I mowed the lawn and brought her the grass clippings and she stood next to the broken treadmill and ate happily. Soon she finished the clippings, so Steven mowed his yard and we brought her those. She started mooing. I was worried the neighbors might come.
“Ok,” I said. “Open her now.”
Steven opened the experimental cow. Her guts slipped out of the portal and started bleeding on my carpet.
We tried to close the cow, but she just kept spilling out of herself. The more we tried to fix the situation, the more cow got onto the carpet and the less cow stayed in the cow. The glass plate was all the way open and pushed up against her side. The cow was mooing with full-force now and Steven and I were totally covered in blood.
I tipped the cow over onto her side and grabbed a bucket from the garage, then I scooped all the inner-cow off of my carpet and poured it back into her body. Steven slammed the window shut on her side.
The cow kept mooing horribly. I felt sick. Steven excused himself to the bathroom. The cow was bellowing and kicking and we knew she’d die if we didn’t call the researchers who built her. We also knew we’d go to jail for theft of an experimental animal.
After I called the researchers, they rushed to my house. They were furious researchers. The experimental cow was worth several million dollars. Also, she was useless for anything besides experiments. She didn’t even produce proper milk.
I asked them to please forgive me. I told them, “I am very sorry.”
Steven ran and hid in my shower before the researchers came.
The researchers told me they didn’t care that I was sorry. They were going to press charges, because I stole their cow and nearly killed her. (Thankfully, they managed to save the cow. Some of the researchers, besides being academics, were also highly accomplished practicing veterinarians.)
Because I didn’t want to go to jail, I told them that they could experiment on me if they wanted. The researchers huddled together and conferred. One of them stepped forward. He was tall and had an unfortunately shaped nose. He extended his hand and I shook it.
Anyways, I only let the researchers open the glass plate. Sometimes girls.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ben Segal‘s fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in various publications including Word Riot, Zygote in My Coffee and Monkey Bicycle. His first book, 132 Stories, is a large fold-out of 132 interconnected narratives in the form of a crossword puzzle. It is due to be published later this year by No Record Press. He also co-founded and helps run Leisure Class Records.