Genesis 19: Burn ‘Em All! (Season 1, Episode 7)

What happens when God decides to nuke Sodom and Gomorrah? Angry mobs, incest and, of course, giant eagles.

This is the latest episode in a serialised narrative. If jumping into things mid-way doesn’t bother you, ignore this and keep reading. If you like to start from the beginning, check out the archive here.


WARNING

If you are a creationist, evangelist, fundamentalist, or biblical literalist, this will probably offend you.

If you have any sense of propriety, this will probably offend you.

If you have the capacity to be offended, this will probably do the trick.

If you're okay with that, then read on.

If you want to read on just so you can tell me how terrible I am and that I should never write another word ever again, feel free.

Who knows? It might actually work.


God’s playing Xbox with Raph and Gabe.

The two have patched things up since Raph accused Gabe of sleeping with his wife. Partly, because he found out she’d been sleeping with someone else. Partly, because Gabe had helped Raph get revenge on her and the guy she was banging.

So there they are, playing Call of Duty, when God goes outside for a cigarette and notices something down on earth.

“Oh, Jesus Christ...” he says, and goes back inside.

He tells the guys he’s got a job for them. They bitch, moan and complain, but pretty soon, they’re down on earth, wandering through the gates of Sodom.

It’s here that they meet Lot, who’s been drinking since noon and it’s starting to show. By starting to show, I mean he’s full-blown throwing up in the gutter, slipping over in his own vomit and lying there.

People either laugh or avert their eyes, embarrassed for him. Lot just picks himself up and hurls obscenities at whatever man, woman or child is currently passing by, then slips over again.

By the time Raph and Gabe get there, he’s picking himself up for another round, targeting a guy walking past with his daughter.

“Don’t you fucking look sideways at me, Amos. I’ll kick your ass.”

Amos is like, “Fuck you, man. Get off the street.”

He hustles his daughter along.

She’s like, “What’s wrong with him, daddy?”

“Don’t worry about him, sweetheart. He’s a fucking bum.”

The girl, about six years old, comes up to Lot and kicks him square in the nuts. “Take that, you fucking bum.”

Lot crumples to the ground with a whimper.

Amos laughs. “That’s my girl.”

He gives her a hug and they keep moving, passing Raph and Gabe on their way in.

Amos eyes the strangers up and down, then turns to look back as they approach Lot, writhing in his own vomit. Amos frowns, suspicious.

We’ll get to that.

Raph’s like, “You alright, man?”, and goes to help him up.

Lot smacks his hand away. “Get the fuck off me! I’ll kick your ass, too.”

“Look, I don’t want any...”

But Lot gets right up in his grill, like, “You wanna go?”

And Raph does not wanna go.

The only thing he wants to do is get away from this vomit-drenched maniac. He turns his head so he doesn’t have to smell the guy. “Jesus Christ...”

Gabe’s like, “Look, man, we just wanna talk to you. We’re on urgent business from the big guy.”

Hearing this, Lot calms a little. “He sent you?”

“Yeah, man. What, you think we wanna be here?”

Back at Lot’s place, they wait while the guy’s daughters clean him up. He sits naked in an old-timey bath while the young ladies scrub every inch of him. There’s something vaguely sexual about it.

Actually, no, scratch that. It’s not vague at all.

They’re very clearly turned on by the act of bathing their dad, going so far as to moan and rub themselves up against him.

Off to the side, Raph and Gabe are super uncomfortable.

They also can’t look away.

Finally, Raph goes, “So, uh...where’s your wife?”

“She left,” Lot says. “Turns out she’s a lesbian.”

“Forget her,” says one of the daughters.

“Yeah, we don’t need her,” says the other.

Both still rubbing up against him and getting their clothes all wet.

Raph and Gabe try to look anywhere but at the bizarre, incestuous show taking place before them.

Raph’s like, “So, uh... she’s a lesbian, huh?”

“Yeah. My uncle tried to rape me and now my wife’s sleeping with his wife. Things are going pretty great for me right now.”

“With Sarah, you mean?”

Lot nods. Raph and Gabe look at each other.

“Does Abe know about that?”

“No,” says Lot. “He’s too busy with his boyfriends to care.”

“Not anymore,” Gabe says. “Didn’t you hear? He killed them all.”

Lot frowns. “All of them?”

“Yeah.”

“Why?”

“Trying to impress the big guy, I guess. Just kind of snapped when God told him he was out and you were in.”

Lot takes a moment to process this. “Hold on...God wants me to be the next Abe?”

Raph suddenly snaps out of it. “Oh...yeah, that’s actually the whole reason we’re here. Sorry, I was a little...distracted...”

The daughters are now full-on making out with each other as they continue to bathe their dad. Lot’s acting nonchalant, like this shit happens all the time.

Raph and Gabe just watch, slack-jawed in disbelief.

Before anyone can say anything else, the sound of approaching footsteps and voices can be heard. A crowd gathers outside.

Finally, there’s a knock on the door.

Raph and Gabe exchange a worried glance, and one of them says, “You expecting company?”

Lot frowns. “I look like the kind of guy who has people over?”

Regardless, he gets up and crosses the room to the door. Still fully naked and dripping wet, he goes to open it.

“I don’t think that’s a good idea...” Gabe says, but Lot ignores him, opens the door.

He walks out to face a large, angry mob. Torches and pitchforks. The whole nine yards. It helps to picture them all with thick, hillbilly accents. You’ll get why in a second.

Their leader is the guy we met earlier, Amos – only now, he doesn’t have his daughter with him. What he does have is a huge, rusty meat-hook.

“What’s goin’ on in there?” he says.

Lot’s still pretty drunk so he teeters a little. Stifles a burp. “Nothing.”

“Don’t look like nothin’.”

He tries to peer around Lot, but Lot closes the door behind him.

“What are you trying to hide, boy?”

“Nothing,” he says. “Is it too much to ask for a little goddamn privacy?”

At no point does anyone address Lot’s nakedness. Nor do they even seem to notice it.

Amos goes on. “We heard there were a few out-of-towners in there...”

At this point, the people behind Amos start salivating, licking their lips.

“...We thought you might be so kind as to bring them out. Have us a little party.”

Lot stares at him.

In Sodom, a “party” is slang for gang rape.

Other acceptable phrases include: “Have us a little fun”, “Get down tonight”, and, of course, “Pin the tail on the donkey”.

By this point, it should be well and truly understood that there is a lot of rape in the Bible.

Lot thinks about it for a moment – about what they’ll do to the angels, what they’ll do to him if he refuses. He also considers what the angels have told him. The whole him-being-the-new-father-of-a-great-nation thing.

“Sorry, fellas,” he says. “You’re gonna have to have your party elsewhere.”

And with that, he goes back inside and shuts the door. He slides the bolt across just as the mob slams into the outside of his house like a wave.

A wave of drunk, angry, soon-to-be-rapists, banging on the door and reaching in through the windows like zombies.

They even groan like zombies. Weird.

Everyone backs up into the centre of the room.

“What do they want, daddy?” says one of his daughters.

And that’s when Lot gets an idea.

I would say a light bulb went off over his head, but this is the old days. Probably more accurate to say that a figurative candle was lit.

Accuracy is really our number one concern, after all. No anachronisms or random divergences from the source material here. No, sir.

Lot turns to Raph. “Were you serious before? About me being the new Abe?”

“Serious as cancer.”

“Alright, then.” Full of purpose, Lot turns back to the door. “Hey, Amos...how’d you feel about taking my two lovely, young daughters instead?”

Dad!” shouts one of his daughters.

“How could you?” says the other.

The mob goes quiet outside and they can be heard whispering, discussing it.

Finally, Amos says, “How about one daughter...and one of them new guys?”

“No deal.”

“Come on, Lot. You gotta meet me halfway here.”

“It’s either both my daughters or no deal. You know they’re both virgins, right?”

More whispers.

“Nope,” Amos says. “That still ain’t gonna cut it. We need at least one of them boys.”

That’s when Raph stands up.

“Alright,” he says. “I’m getting tired of this shit.”

With that, he casts a spell on the mob outside, turning them all blind. Straight away, they begin feeling around wildly, shouting in fear.

“What the fuck’s going on?”

“Who did this to us?”

“WHYYYYY?!”

Amos is feeling around blindly like the rest of them. Pretty soon, he lays hands on one of the other guys and takes hold of him.

“Lot!” he says. “I’ve got you now, you fucking snake.”

And before ‘Lot’ has a chance to respond, Amos takes his meat-hook and rips the guy’s throat out. He then falls down on the guy’s body and starts having sex with it.

“Yeah, you like that, Lot? You old son of a bitch.”

It isn’t long before the dead guy’s brother jumps on Amos and jams his dagger into Amos’ eye. He then turns Amos over and starts having sex with him.

In a manner of seconds, the formerly-united mob devolves into a bloodbath. A bunch of blind guys killing and raping each other in the street just outside Lot’s house. Screams of pain and pleasure as Lot hugs his sobbing daughters and the angels watch through the window in disgust.

“Jesus...” Gabe says. “These guys will seriously take whatever they can get, huh?”

Raph nods. “No wonder God wants to nuke this place.”

When the last man goes limp (limp as in dead, not as in flaccid), Raph opens the door and they step out into the street. Blood and bodily fluids everywhere. Flies buzzing. Lot shields his daughters’ eyes as they make their way through the carnage and head for the palace.

There, they find Lot’s wife in bed with the queen, sharing a post-coital cigarette. Lot tells his wife they’ve gotta go. Like now.

Edith’s like, “I’m not going anywhere with you. We’re done.”

“Look, you don’t have to come with me if you don’t want. But you gotta get out of the city.”

“Why?”

“Because God’s about to nuke this whole fucking place with everyone inside it.”

The queen and her lover exchange a worried glance.

“Jesus...” Sarah says.

Raph steps forward. “It’s true. We’re here to get Lot and his family out alive. He’s gonna be the new Abe.”

Edith furrows her brow. “Really? Him?

“Really really,” Gabe says. “But we gotta go now. God’s gonna drop the bomb, like, any second.”

“The what?” Edith says.

“Never mind.”

So the queen and her lover get dressed, and they all make their way out of the palace.

“Where’s Abe?” Raph says to Sarah on the way.

“I don’t know,” Sarah says. “I haven’t seen him lately. He was spending all his time in the harem, but after he killed everybody, he just kind of disappeared.”

*

Up in heaven, God’s sitting in a deck chair by the puddle, waiting for the ideal moment to unleash hell.

He tears open a pack of Pop Rocks and pours some into his mouth, holds his mouth open while they crackle.

He then pours the rest into the water and watches as they sink down towards the bubble...

*

Sarah, Lot and the others are almost to the city gates when the firestorm begins.

Huge, flaming rocks rain down from the sky, smashing into buildings, setting the city ablaze. People scatter in every direction, some of them on fire, some of them taking the opportunity to loot shops and homes instead of getting the fuck out alive like they should.

Some of the looters are even on fire as they’re looting.

Call them what you want, but those guys do not give up easy.

One guy’s trying to make a getaway with a golden idol, holding it over his head, saying, “Protect me, Baal.” The very next moment, he’s crushed by a falling rock.

That’s what you get for worshipping idols, you fuck.

Not in God’s house.

Other people are trapped in burning buildings and leap out the windows to avoid a painful death. Unfortunately, this is the Bronze Age, so most of the buildings aren’t tall enough to commit suicide from. They lay there, wailing, or drag their broken bodies across the street until they’re mercifully trampled to death.

A grandmother comes up to Lot and his crew with a half-melted face, moaning, “Please...kill me...” and Raph happily obliges, cutting her down without a second thought.

“Come on!” he says to his team, and heads for the city gates.

What a hero.

But already, the smoke’s getting pretty thick. Soon, it gets so bad, they can’t tell which way is up.

“Shit!” says Raph.

“You mean you don’t know the way out?” says Sarah.

“Just shut the fuck up and let me think.”

Raph’s panicking now, swinging around wildly, looking for the exit.

Nothing but smoke.

Everyone’s coughing and spluttering, and it looks like this might be it.

Then, suddenly, a large shadow comes over them.

Raph looks up...

The rest of them look up...

“The eagles!” Gabe shouts, with a cheer.

Sure enough, three giant eagles are flying down towards them, beating the smoke back with their wings. They pick up a few people each in their talons, then take off again, flying up and out of the smoke.

Lot looks out over the burning city, hearing the screams of an entire civilisation, and lets out a contented sigh.

“Finally,” he says. “It’s my time to shine.”

Over on a different eagle, Raph says to Gabe, “This kind of seems like cheating, doesn’t it?”

Gabe just shrugs. “Who cares, man? It’s a happy ending.”

Suddenly, the eagle shakes violently like it’s going through a bit of turbulence. The wings stop beating.

Raph looks up and sees an arrow right through its fucking head.

“Jesus Christ!”

Two more arrows follow in quick succession, taking out the other eagles. Down they go, crashing just outside the city walls.

Impossibly, everyone emerges unharmed.

“How the fuck did we survive that?” says Raph. “We were like a hundred feet in the air.”

“Stop asking questions,” says Gabe. “Can’t you just suspend your disbelief and enjoy the ride?”

“I can’t enjoy the ride if I know it’s fucking rigged, can I? There’s no stakes.”

“What do you call that?” says Gabe, pointing to a mysterious archer standing on a nearby hill. They can only see his silhouette through the smog. Cloak flapping behind him, bow in hand – he looks like fucking Legolas or something.

Then he’s gone, disappearing behind the hill.

Raph shakes his head. “Let’s just get the fuck out of here, shall we?”

He turns to the others. “Keep moving, and don’t look back. I’m serious about that.”

“Why can’t we look back?” says Edith.

“Because I fucking said so, that’s why.”

The others glance at each other and shrug, then follow Raph and Gabe away from the city.

They’re almost out of the smoke, when Edith, who’s right at the back, hears footsteps coming up behind her. Running.

Whoever it is calls out, “Edith!”, and she turns, only realising her mistake as Legolas’ cape billows past her and disappears back into the smoke.

Before she can say, “Fucking Legolas!”, her entire body turns into a pillar of salt.

Why a pillar of salt?

I have no idea.

None of the others look back, though. They all keep moving.

Only once they’re out of the smoke and over the hill do they regroup and realise Edith’s not with them.

“Where is she?” Sarah says, panicking. “She was right there, right behind me.”

“She looked back,” says Raph. “I told her.”

Sarah starts to cry. “Oh God...”

Even though his wife has literally just died, Lot seems more uncomfortable with Sarah’s crying than anything. He turns to Raph and Gabe, suddenly cheerful, and rubs his hands together. “So...where to now? Canaan, right? Let’s get this father-of-a-great-nation thing going.”

Raph and Gabe exchange a look.

“Yeah...” says Raph. “You’re gonna have to take that up with the big guy. It was just our job to get you out of the city.”

“But...”

Before Lot can say anything else, two more giant eagles land nearby – these ones wearing metal helmets.

Raph lets out a sigh. “Fucking eagles, man.”

He and Gabe mount up like a couple of badass knights and fly off.

*

Up above, they meet up with God, who’s flipping burgers on a grill and they’re like, “Dude, you almost fucking killed us.”

God’s like, “You guys were fine. I sent the eagles.”

“Yeah, except some asshole shot them out of the sky.”

“Oh, shit.” He laughs. “Sorry, I wasn’t really paying attention.”

“Well, don’t worry,” Raph says, laying the sarcasm on so thick it hurts. “We’re fine.”

“Clearly. And the cities?”

“Gone,” says Gabe. “Nothing but rubble.”

“Good.”

God takes a sip of his beer. He keeps his eyes on the grill so they can’t see his face.

Finally, Raph’s like, “Seriously, man, what was your beef with Sodom and Gomorrah?”

The big guy freezes.

He looks inside at Enoch passed out naked on the couch, beer bottles all over the place.

Raph follows his gaze and begins to see what the problem is.

God continues flipping burgers. “So, you guys hungry or what? You must be, after all that running around down there.”

Gabe’s like, “Yeah, I could go for a...”

“And Abe?” Raph says, pushing a little further. “I know he was an asshole, but Lot’s no saint, either. Did you really care that much that he was gay?”

“I’m not having a gay patriarch, alright. End of discussion.”

“But why does it even matter?”

“Because it’s not right!” God says, shouting now, hurling his beer against the wall so it shatters. “It’s not natural.”

Raph and Gabe exchange a look, but God keeps his eyes on the grill. Finally, Raph steps forward, putting a tender hand on his shoulder.

“If you feel it, then it’s natural,” Raph says. “You don’t have to be ashamed of it.”

God lets out a long, deep sigh.

“Come here, big guy,” Raph says, pulling God into a hug. “Come here.”

God collapses into him, sobbing like a baby. Raph holds him and pats his back, being like, “There, there... Let it all out.”

Gabe stands there, awkwardly. He lights a joint just for something to do.

After a few seconds, God snaps out of it. He pushes Raph violently away and says, “Get the fuck off me!”

Raph’s standing there with his arms still open like, “What the hell, bro?”

God steps back, pointing at him. “You fucking queer! Both of you. I’m surrounded by goddamn queers. Why don’t you just go have sex with each other, if it’s so goddamn natural? I should’ve burned you along with them. Burn ‘em all!”

He runs inside and slides the door shut behind him. They watch through the glass as he breaks down in tears, falling to his knees and pounding the floor with his fist.

“Jesus Christ...” says Raph.

He looks at Gabe, who takes another drag on his joint. Shrugs.

*

Down below, Lot’s standing outside the ruins of Sodom, not really sure what to do with himself.

He turns to Sarah, says, “Where do we go now?”

Sarah sniffs, wipes her eyes. “You don’t even care at all, do you?”

He looks at her like he genuinely doesn’t know what she’s talking about.

“Your wife just died, you asshole. And all you can think about is being the father of a great nation. Jesus...You really are the next Abe.”

And with that, she walks off, taking the road west.

Lot sighs, knowing she’s right. He looks eastward, up into the hills, and sees a cave where he and his daughters can spend the night.

They go up there and are surprised to find a bunch of clay jugs filled with wine. Maybe someone had a party here and just forgot. Maybe this was where some guy going through a mid-life crisis went to escape the wife and kids.

Whatever the case, Lot proceeds to drink his troubles away while Sodom and Gomorrah burn on the plain down below.

Off to the side, his daughters are like, “Alright, now’s our chance. He’s drunk, depressed, our mom’s out of the picture – it’s go time. Also, there’s probably no other men left on earth after God just nuked us back to the Stone Age, so really, it’s our responsibility to repopulate the earth. Y’know, like Noah and shit.”

So that’s what they do.

On the first night, one of them goes up to him and feeds him wine until he’s basically incontinent, then hitches up her dress and off they go.

In his weakest protest voice, Lot’s like, “No... What?... Oh, I’m so drunk, I have no idea what’s going on...”

Second night, same thing, but with the other daughter.

In an even weaker protest voice, he’s like, “Oh, no, not again... What’s happening?... Man, I’m so drunk, I can’t even process this... Oh, actually, that feels pretty good...”

Finally, God comes down and he’s like, “Seriously?”

It’s the morning after Lot’s fucked his second daughter and they’re both still sleeping. Both pregnant, too.

Lot’s got a hangover the size of Texas. He sits up, holding his head, like, “What the fuck do you want?”

God’s like, “I wanna know what you’re doing getting your daughters pregnant.”

“What’s it look like, man? I’m repopulating the earth. Like Noah.”

God shakes his head. “I didn’t destroy the whole fucking world again, it was just these two cities. Jesus... Walk a few miles in any direction, you’ll see. There’s people everywhere.”

Lot’s like, “Really?”

“Yes, really. I promised I wouldn’t kill everyone again and I meant it. Sodom and Gomorrah were just giving me the shits, that’s all. I’m allowed to destroy cities if I want. I didn’t make any promises about that.”

Lot gets to his feet, squinting against the morning sun and wobbling a little. “Sorry, man, look...I guess I misunderstood. I just thought you wanted us to repopulate the earth. I thought that’s why you let us live. Why you made my daughters...you know...the way they are.”

In a moment of anger, God grabs Lot by the collar and shoves him back against the wall of the cave.

“Don’t act like you didn’t know there were other people out there. You just pretended like you were the last three on earth so you could take advantage of your daughters. Isn’t that right?”

“Hey! They came on to me.”

“What are you, six years old? They’re your daughters. You’re supposed to know better.”

“Well... look, they’ve wanted to fuck me for a long time. Don’t ask me why, I don’t know. But as long as their mother was around, they didn’t act on it. Now that she’s gone...” He pauses a moment, as if out of respect. God rolls his eyes.

Lot continues, “I’m a man, alright. I’ve got needs. How long was I supposed to hold out?”

God can’t believe the words coming out of this guy’s mouth. “Forever. You were supposed to hold out forever. Because – and I’ll say it again – they’re your daughters.

He realises it’s useless trying to reason with Lot and lets him go. He heads for the entrance to the cave, but Lot calls out, “Wait! Does this mean I’m not gonna be the next Abe?”

God stops, turns around. “One of the reasons I destroyed Sodom in the first place was to get rid of Abe, but...now, it looks like he might have escaped.”

Lot’s eyes go wide. “He escaped?”

The big guy nods.

“How the fuck did he escape?”

“I don’t know. But he did. The plan was: destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, Abe dies in the process, you step in to take Abe’s place. Now...”

Lot starts to panic. “I’m still gonna be the new Abe, right?”

“Well...”

“Look, please, I’ll do anything. You want my daughters? Take them. You want me to sacrifice them? No problem. I swear I had a knife around here somewhere...”

He starts desperately searching for his knife, but God says, “Jesus, stop. Stop! Look, I don’t want your daughters and I don’t want you to sacrifice them. Frankly, I’m shocked at the disregard you’ve shown for their well-being throughout all of this. Nevertheless, you’re still the best candidate I’ve got.”

Lot smiles, like he’s just been given the highest praise. “Thank you.”

“It’s really not that good of a compliment. Not even a compliment at all, really. Just a...fact. A sad, miserable fact.”

God shakes his head at the state of human affairs.

But Lot’s only hearing what he wants to hear at this point. He says, “So what’s the plan, boss?”

God perks up a little. “Yes, the plan...I’ve been thinking about that a lot. Now...while Abe’s still alive, he’s still my guy. I made a covenant with him, and as long as he doesn’t outright disobey me, which he hasn’t yet, I can’t do anything about it.”

Lot lowers his head.

But...” God says, and Lot brightens. Hopeful. “If we can make him disobey me, then you’ll be able to step in and fill his place.”

Lot smiles, liking the sound of that.

“Now, currently, Sarah’s pregnant with Abe’s child. When the kid is born, I’m gonna make Abe do the unthinkable: kill his own son.”

“Jesus...” Lot says. “Seems a bit excessive.”

“Exactly. There’s no way he’ll be able to do that, because it’ll mean destroying his line of descent. If he has no line of descent, he won’t be the father of a great nation. But if he doesn’t kill the kid, he’s flat-out disobeying me.”

“That...” Lot says,”...is fucking brilliant. You really are an evil motherfucker.”

God shrugs. “I made you in my image, didn’t I?”


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