"What Madness Is This?" Vol. II: The Pinnacle Future

"What Madness Is This?" Vol. II:
THE PINNACLE FUTURE




I want to thank the countless readers and commenters that have fueled my imagination in the original 2013-14 WMIT and the Redux that was written from September, 2018, to present day. Without these posters, none of this would have been possible or close to as much fun. I especially wish to thank DocBrown, Zoidberg12, Murica1776, SargentHawk, AtomicPunk0, Traveller76, HeX, Imperolo, and many more for their ideas, input, illustrations, and advice. A large part of the fun of this entire little lunatic saga is the meme and comment culture around it, from running jokes like Joe Steele's "Pocket Bacon" to interesting little spur of the moment serious ideas that I scribble down furiously in my notebook for later use. I have been writing about the WMIT universe, off and on, for the last seven years, which is rather extraordinary. During my dark ages, where I left AH.com to pursue my job and whatnot, I wrote very little because I didn't think I'd ever be a good author.

Then one day, when I was lurking on the board like the swamp creature I am, I saw a comment reference me, with the poster proclaiming, "He was a great author, very imaginative, but I just wish he'd stick with a story and really exploit it to be the best it can be rather than trying to write a bunch of stories at once and burn himself out." That made me bound and determined to rewrite WMIT, and focus solely upon it. I consider WMIT to be the "Pinnacle" of my imagination, at least for now. Anything else I try to write will be inherently derivative and "Inferior" to this literary universe. Some may not like it, considering it too funny, too dark, too unrealistic, too close to home, too long, too short, not detailed enough, too detailed, etc, but there's been a whole lot of people giving me positive feedback through the years and I find it incredibly inspirational and fulfilling. I write this for free, knowing it's likely too "out there" and complicated for most publishers, although I do have a Patreon in my signature if you want to say "thanks for the rip-roaring tale" with a buck, haha! I was asked what I wanted to do as a child by my parents, and instead of saying "doctor" or "pastor" like they wanted, I said, "I want to entertain people." When I make other people happy, I'm happy. I don't know any of you people in real life, but it means the world to me when I post something I worked hard on and get positive feedback and constructive criticism.

It's safe to say WMIT Redux: The Union Forever brought my timeline back with a roar, snagging two hard-fought Turtledove Awards, one for best Colonial and Revolutions Timeline, and another for best quote. I want to once again thank anyone who voted for me. Redux has become one of the longest active threads in this section of the forum, nearing 10,000 posts, 500 pages, and almost one million views (Praise be to the Prophet Burr!). If the timeline chapters were properly printed and typeset, Redux: The Union Forever would be 1400 pages long and half a foot thick. But the thing is, we've just been building to the main event. My main purpose of writing Redux was to more fully explore the politics and struggles of the Republican Union and the New United States of America in exacting detail, and talk about the dozens of interesting characters living life in totalitarian cultist America. The Pinnacle Future is the main event, toward which I have striven these many months. The Union Forever is almost like an encyclopedia of my fictional universe, read to acquire knowledge of exactly what has happened to this unfortunate speck of space-time since the Prophet Burr received his "divine visions" of the Angel of Manifest Destiny at Valley Forge. The Pinnacle Future will be the true storyline I have slowly been formulating since I began The Union Forever. I wanted to tell this story so badly I spent the last two years working on just the setting and worldbuilding. We are finally about to begin... The Pinnacle Future.

 
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IT'S HAPPENING!!! ALL HAIL!!!

Also no shout out to the original creator of Steele's pocket bacon? I'm insulted. For shame!
(I'm kidding)
 
WE ARE NOT CONSTRAINED ANYMORE ON THAT GODAWFUL FOUR PAGES!!! OUR COMMENTS ARE NOW MADE MANIFEST!!!

HIS WORDS WILL BE HEARKENED FOR ETERNITY!!! ALL HAIL THE INFEE WRITER!!! ALL HAIL THE INFEE PRESIDENT!!!

ALL HAIL!!!
 
LETS FUCKING GO!! ALL HAIL PATRIOT-SAINT NAPPY! ALL HAIL STEELE! ALL HAIL OSWALD! PRAISE BE TO THE PROPHETS BURR AND GRAHAM! ALL HAIL!
 
Just a teaser of what is to come. Picture Chuck wandering through the POTUS Mansion, high as a kite, with this song echoing in his ears.


VIGNETTE:
A DAY IN THE LIFE OF CHUCK

Ugh. My head is about to explode. My name is Charles "Chuck" Oswald, President of these here New United States, and I'm having one hell of a day at the Presidential Mansion. It all started going downhill when Susie from hospitality--a nice way of saying maid--paid me a visit in my wardrobe. She used teeth. She's got big chompers the size of tombstones and I politely asked her to watch it, but the dumb broad couldn't stop gnawing on my pecker like a bugaboo. While unfortunate, I suppose you would say that I was lucky, insofar as that I was incredibly high, and I mean incredibly high, on pain killers. You see, back during Operation Manifest Climax, I spent time in the Navy with my best friend, Lazarus Hubbard, and we experienced our fair share of back injuries. Some days I want to scream. Other days I want to blow up the world because the pain is so damn bad. Dr. Feelgood--or should I say my personal Presidential physician Whitlough Stevenson--prescribes me a lot of meds and pills for my aches and ills... but they arent't working today, by golly. Fun. Wait, did I do my afternoon injection? Damn it, these crazy schedules, I tell ya.

Every morning I roll out of bed at about 6 am. My trophy wife (brace yourselves because this is a mouthful) Wyetta Arkham Custer-Steele Oswald (deep breaths), sleeps on till about 8 and I barely see her throughout the average day. And yes, that is her real name, and yes, she is every bit the overbearing, pretentious slut that she sounds like she would be. When I came home from Manifest Climax as a hero draped in ribbons and reeking of only the finest toilet water, I supposedly bagged the "most desirable" bride in the Union, but I'd still rather sleep with my maid, my secretary, General Vance's wife, and your mother. Not only does Wyetta put me down and tell me I'll never be like her father, my Presidential predecessor Joseph Custer-Steele, but she also says that I'm raising our son wrong. The nerve of this bimbo to tell me Chuck II isn't spending enough time with me while she's out philandering with every Tom, Dick, and Sally in town. She's lucky I need her for public image's sake or I'd have her shipped off to Alaska. Anyway, I digress, I'm getting off track. Chuck II is a fine lad, a regular Chuck off the old block.

After I get up at 6, I go take a pisser in the bathroom, take three painkillers, an anti-depressant, a stomach pill, and brush my teeth. Captain Curtis Lawford, of the 13th ORRA Mechanized, uses the comm set that goes from his desk to my oversized porcelain tub to give me my briefings during my morning salt soak. Ah, if only this tub could speak. I had three chicks in it at once one time, and none of them had, ahem, five last names... if you know what I mean.

After spending some quality time in the salt soak, I stand up and take an ice cold shower to really get those red corpuscles pumping. Corpuscles are the beans for your chowder, I always say. I get out of the shower and pop a Garathalude capsule for my nerves before I begin my folicular ritual. I shave quickly and then begin the elaborate process of blow-drying and combing my hair. Not one citizen out of place and not one hair on my head is either, not on my watch. A Pinnacle Man must keep up appearances, after all. I also apply several facial scrubs and creams to fight the effects of age, war, politics, a broken marriage, a broken back, and a dependency on dangerous pharmaceuticals to get me through the day. God bless America.

Following the perfection of my facial aesthetic, I leave the bathroom, grab a cup of fresh coffee off the silver tray waiting for me by the door in the arms of a butler, and head into the wardrobe room (wherein I got funky-spunky with the maid as said earlier--yes the one with the teeth that could eat corn through a picket fence and where my day started to go downhill). I have a veritable smorgasbord of outfits waiting, pressed and starched and tailored of only the finest fabrics in the entire NUSA. If I am feeling particularly martial that day, I have my "ORRA High Command" uniforms ready, with optional pinch-crown hat or polished chrome steel pot helmet, but that stuff is usually for parades and special ceremonies. Normally I pick out a dignified but understated dark gray Highlander Brothers delux slim-fit two-piece business suit with a pastel shirt and a strikingly-patterned tie. My favorite is the one with the little eagles clutching globes all over it. Classy as hell. I check myself out in the full length mirror as I make the underdeputy subchief of some committee or other pick the lint off my clothes while they beg and grovel for some sweet, delicious pork barrel.

When I left the wardrobe today I felt a murderous pain down my spine once again. Over the years, I have grown accustomed to this pain. I barely remember what it was like to be healthy, though you wouldn't know it if you looked at me. With my full head of hair, athletic body type, and my tanned complexion, I look like the peak of Pinnacle Fluidation. I popped another pain killer and choked it down with my coffee--wait... two sugars! Henson in the kitchen finally proved he can do something other than overcook my flapjacks. At any rate, I shuffled to the situation room, a round room with ivory-colored wallpaper, a magnificent desk, and a massive Presidential Seal area rug covering most of the hardwood floor. On the wall opposite my desk is a massive unit of televisors showing different news broadcasts, some international fare, and of course interesting surveillance footage of political enemies. This is where I spend most of my day. An office meets home theater, if you will. I have usually in excess of fifteen generals, politicians, and assorted goons waiting to ask me for something or other or to sign off on the execution orders for a batch of Infees. These small-time mooks don't bother me.

But then Sky Marshal Frank Johnson comes in, with his six feet five inches of Texas swagger and his overbearing penchant for flashing his 8 inches of penis at random passers-by. He named it Goliath. Man fucking named his pecker Goliath. What sort of weird kinks is Texas into? Johnson is a real piece of work, I tell you. He never shuts up and he always is slyly trying to prove to me that he possesses the greater intelligence ( a losing battle). Sometimes I question the loyalty behind his beady little eyes. Oh, I should explain: I am fully aware most of my underlings would like to see me dead. I don't mind, I'd want me dead too if I was them. I also am fully aware none of them are man enough to try to pull the trigger. Except maybe Johnson. I could sack him and send him to Alaska or the South American frontlines... but I will admit he is a clever son of a bitch to have around. Today he needled me about authorizing several air strikes into the Quarantine Zone while he sipped at a bottle of lukewarm Sweet Victory and whittled a duck out of a small piece of wood with his ceremonial dress dagger. Then he rambled out some folksy story about his childhood in Trinity City, about which I care not. I'm pretty sure he told me something about Old Man Winthrop's donkey having to be put down when it became weak as some sort of vague threat to my own well-being but I was honestly too stoned and bored to care. I just wanted him to shut the hell up.

The large man from the large state with the large penis (yes, Texas has a large penis) eventually left, briefcase containing signed airstrike orders in his hand, and made room for Manifest Destiny Party Thane Richard Lionheart Nixon to enter the situation room. I can't quite figure him out, no matter how long I know him. When I ascended to power, the Party practically insisted he be declared Thane. I am not jealous of a washed up actor-turned-soldier-turned-party-leech being my errand boy at party functions, and I don't think he's a threat, but he has this... this rat-like demeanor, and he's obsessed with recordings and tapes and surveillance even more than myself, and that says quite a lot. Sometimes I wonder if he's smarter than he lets on. Oh yeah, Johnson and Nixon? They led the expedition which rescued me and my Navy crewmates from our Amazonian nightmare during Manifest Climax, so we've known each other for, wow... going on twenty years. While windbag Johnson is an open-book and a loud-mouth chatterbox, Nixon is more of a quiet type, but I definitely trust him more than Frank. Contemplative. He enjoys playing the piano, especially the classics. Overall, I don't hate him, which is far more than I can say for ninety-nine percent of my administration. Nixon gave me briefings on urgent MDP affairs across the country being reported in by local Bannermen, the secretary of the party, the under-secretary of the party, the under-under-secretary of the under-secretary's internal affairs unit. Boring schlock every day, but Nixon is a control freak and he wants to review even small local affairs. He once told me, "Chuck, the Manifest Destiny Party is like a fine instrument, hand-crafted by the finest Pinnacle-blooded craftsmen, and its keys, both black and white, are all the different divisions and precincts of the Party. We must play the black keys and the white keys together to achieve a harmonious concerto, a cacophony of calibrated cadences." I call him professor all the time. He hates that. I like upsetting him. Dick's a riot when he's pissed, at least if you're over him and not under him. I injected myself once during my conversation with him and found him incredibly entertaining. Or did I inject myself? I can't recall. Maybe it's time for another dose anyway....

I lit up a Firebreather. I know the doctor's are saying that these might not be good for you after all, but I need a little pinch of coke to get me through the day. Did you know they took cocaine out of Sweet Victory a few years back? They said it could "stunt or harm children's development." What a bunch of fucking pussies. If this generation can't handle some Anglo-Saxon marching powder in their kiddies' lunchboxes, how the hell are they gonna fight a war men like the last generation and myself did. G**-damn kids. After Nixon left, I received a call from my pal, my fabulously wealthy friend, Mortimer Krummhorn, CEO of Krummhorn Studios, the biggest animation and movie business in Kissimmee and the world. He told me things were proceeding well on-set of that new live-action Zap Zephyr movie with that Lee Oswald kid. I like his name! Finally a Texan I can respect. Seems like a nice kid, from what I've heard. They found him working in a book depository in Texas. Now I'm gonna be totally honest here, I don't remember much of the conversation me and Morty had. I don't remember if I took my mid-day injection either. I have about thirty fresh needle-marks on my arm, but I don't remember which one is which. Did I shoot up while talking to Nixon? I don't remember....

I got up to go eat breakfast, leaving the situation room, and when I reached the hallway the entire world seemed to be spinning in a churning, gyrating carousel of color. I stumbled and groped my way to the dining room, where a fresh plate of flapjacks and maple syrup awaited me (the last hanger-on of my Canadian heritage, and no, do not ask me about my Canadian heritage unless you want to be thrown from a helicopter; it's happened before). I gobbled them down, even though every scrape of the fork on my plate sounded like a daemoniac screeching and the two blueberries on top of the flapjacks looked like bulbous, alien eyes staring directly into my soul with devious intent. After wiping my mouth clean of syrup and crumbs, I headed for the couch to recover my senses but tripped on a rug and fell to the floor. My back and head felt that a lot. I did not like this. I slowly picked myself up, double-checked my back brace through my stoned, blurred vision, and headed for the couch once more.

The moment I crawled onto the over-stuffed Custer-era antique was the same moment Bobby Stewart, one of my newest "Rat Pack" bodyguards, barged in carrying a blue and white thermal plastic icechest in one hand. "Mr. President!" he blurted, his sudden appearance making my head pulse even more.

"What is it, Bobby? Fucking Prophet, man, can't you learn to fucking knock?"

The young man with thick brown hair and eyes that opened too uncomfortably wide at all times for my liking casually gave a stiff arm salute. Judging by the smile on his face, he clearly thought he had done a good-good. Now it was up to me to see if he actually had. I could already smell his cheap drugstore toilet water and it made everything worse.

"I think you'll be most satisfied by what is in this icebox, sir!" he said in his New York accent, approaching the couch as I tried to sit myself up.

As he deposited the container by my feet I groaned and asked sarcastically if it was some headache medicine for the ruckus he had just punished my skull with. I picked up the box and could hear the slosh of melting ice inside, as well as what felt like about ten pounds of additional weight. I slid the lid open carefully and was stunned by what was inside.

Bobby Stewart did a little swing of his fist in a "bully for me, right?" type of way as he bent closer to look into the chest with me. My hands shook. My breath was uneven. I looked Bobby dead in the eyes and asked, "Bobby... why ... in the name of the Prophet Burr... do you have Governor Shiloh Anderson's severed head... on ice... in... my home?"

The young hitman looked confused. He straightened his navy blue lapels nervously as he tried to come up with an answer. "Mr.... Mr. President... boss... you sent me to Dakota to check on that pipeline to see if Governor Anderson had gotten his ass in gear. You told me to bring you his head."

I felt my inner rage boiling. "Bobby, my son, I never told you to behead the sitting governor of Dakota. So you better come up with a better explanation right the hell now."

With a look on his face halfway between fear and confusion, he searched his suit pocket before producing a small yellow envelope and producing a folded up document, which he proceeded to quote. "'To Bobby Stewart, esquire at large. If Governor Anderson produces any excuse as to why the pipeline has not been completed, bring me his fucking head on a silver platter.' I couldn't find a silver platter I thought would keep it from rottin' and stinkin' the place up so I thought you wouldn't mind the icebox."

My mind was reeling, and not from the drugs. "Bobby..." I said between labored breaths, struggling to hold back one of my famous temper attacks, "I didn't mean literally bring me his fucking head. It was some G**-damn hyperbole, Bobby you fuckwit. He's wildly popular in Dakota and is a decent fucking guy, he's just been falling behind on the pipeline project and I wanted him to get his ass in gear, not get his face in a crate. What the fuck is wrong with you, Bobby?"

He looked crestfallen and took a step back as I set the icechest on the floor and slid the lid closed once more. "I'm... I'm sorry, sir... I just misunderstood."

I stood up, battling against my stoned brain to coordinate myself. I extended two arms out like I wanted a hug and gestured with my hands for him to embrace me. "It's okay, Bobby, we all make mistakes."

He reluctantly accepted my invitation and awkwardly started to embrace me, making sure not to touch my suit (men have been thrown out of helicopters for that). "Gee, thanks, boss, I'm glad I didn't upset you or anything."

When those words left his big, fat mouth I finally exploded, shoving him away. "OF COURSE I'M FUCKING UPSET, YOU INCOMPETENT ASS HAT. YOU BROUGHT ME THE SEVERED HEAD OF A MAJOR POLITICAL FIGURE! WHY THE FUCK WOULD I WANNA GIVE YOU A FUCKING HUG WHEN YOU HAVE GOVERNOR ANDERSON'S HEAD ON MY FUCKING FLOOR IN A PICNIC BASKET? GET THAT SHIT OUT OF HERE BEFORE I HAVE YOU SHIPPED TO FUCKING ALASKA, YOU DUMB GOON! AND HAVE SOME SELF-RESPECT AND SCRUB THAT SHITTY MUSK OFF YOURSELF WHILE YOU'RE AT IT, BECAUSE YOU SMELL LIKE A DIME-STORE PROSTITUTE!"

Bobby Stewart grabbed the cooler and scampered like a gazelle out of the room, practically leaping over furniture as I threw books and small statues from the coffee table at him. Nixon poked his face into the room from the hallway, one eyebrow raised. Then he lowered it and stared at me. I could tell he was debating on asking what had happened but had decided against it. "Ah... you okay, Chuck?" he asked in that throaty, jowly little voice of his.

I took a deep breath and replied succinctly, "Another day in the life, Dick." I withdrew a cigar from my coat pocket and picked up a lighter I had knocked to the floor in my rage. With a flick of the flint wheel, I felt the nicotine hit and I regained my composure. "Now pardon me, Dick, I have to take a pisser."
 
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Hi there. I really liked the original WMIT and the WMIT 2.0 The Union Forever. I'm gladly going to this thread and seeing what comes next.
 

Coolio

Gone Fishin'
Ok from what I can understand there's no more coke in sweet victory the Ru is still fighting in South America and Alaska is now apart of the Ru but I thought the Ru would rename it and Oswald is going to nuke the rest of South America Edit I tried to make a map based off the boarders http://www.scribblemaps.com/maps/view/GvA6pXnzLf one day I will make a good one
 
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I wonder how much of that is true, how much is Oswalds drug altered mental state, and how much is just Napo teasing us with red herrings?

Also, Good Lord! He’s really coked up and it’s barely even breakfast.
 
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