Apocalypse will be less one Horseman

by Justin Jürpantz

As the year 2000 fast approaches, involved parties are eagerly gearing up for the apocalypse. Satan is stoking the fires of hell. The Angels of Heaven are polishing up their horns to sound the notes of Armageddon. Bill Gates is preparing to launch Windows 2000. And leading it all will be the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.
Well, maybe three.
In what is being harked and heralded as a brash, untimely move, Horseman Pestilence has decided against participating in the upcoming End of Man.
At a press conference early this morning, Pestilence’s publicist Harry Mockery read a prepared statement.
“I did not reach this decision lightly,” Mockery read on behalf of his client. “Both time and funds ran short for my particular vocation. Perhaps with a larger budget, I would have felt more at ease with my position. I wish the other Horsemen all the best.”
The so-called “larger budget” was part of a six-part wage increase Pestilence had hoped to garner. This enlarged budget would have gone toward more potent chemicals for ending sinners’ lives in writhing agony.
“They’re not truly damned,” Pestilence commented earlier this century, “unless they’re writhing.”
Coffee and crullers were also served at the press conference, as many reporters missed breakfast.
“I missed breakfast,” stated a gluttonous Craig Gustafson of The Minnesota Daily.
The press conference concluded with an appearance by Pestilence himself. One lucky reporter from The Woodbury Recluse had the opportunity to ask Pestilence specifically what prompted his retirement.
“(Personal differences),” said a mute Horseman.
These presumed personal differences might stem from a fallout with fellow equestrian, Death. Over the past millennia, Pestilence and Death have had a pending labor lawsuit. Recently, the court ruled in favor of Death.
The case is still in appeal.
Because of the rather elusive answers by both his publicist and Pestilence, many are considering ulterior motives behind Pestilence’s decision. Speculation into possible reasons for not participating in the Rapture is running rampant.
Father Sanlorde Sackcloth of St. Helen’s of the Blessed Shroud Church in Calumet City, Ill., believes that perhaps Pestilence is just being a stubborn old goat that should be given a swift kick in the pants.
“I believe that perhaps Pestilence is just being a stubborn old goat that should be given a swift kick in the pants,” commented Father Sackcloth.
Kelly O’Carlos, general manager of the Horsemen, is still enthusiastic about the Hellfire to soon engulf the globe.
“These boys are willing and ready to punish and reap,” said O’Carlos. “The remaining Horsemen are confident in their duties and will carry on (with the eradication of civilization) as planned. The apocalypse is still a go.”
And as for Pestilence?
“I’m sure Mr. Pestilence will be happy in whatever new field of work he chooses,” shrugged O’Carlos.
“We’ve been building this up for too long,” said Horseman Famine. “The buzz is out there. It would be impolite to back out of the annihilation of life now, what with all the hype.”
“I am War,” said Horseman War.
With the Day of Judgement just around the corner, time is running out for any last-ditch effort for a recoup of the Horsemen. Whether or not Pestilence will rejoin or go freelance remains to be seen. But as long as Death remains with the Horsemen, we may be treated to a bitter breakup fiasco second only to the rock music group, Pink Floyd.
Death and Pink Floyd were unavailable for comment.

Justin JÅrpantz can be reached exactly where his name says, as if you didn’t know.