Fan Fiction

The Mountain Man
By Dwayne Anderson

Note from the author: This is the sequel to "Blast From the Past" and is a dedication to Harry R. Truman, the man who wouldn't leave his lodge at Spirit Lake before Mt. St. Helens' eruption on May 18, 1980.

July 4th, 3004. One and a half months had passed since Fry and Leela were admitted to the hospital after suffering injuries and burns during their previous time trip. Now, they were out of the hospital, carrying on with life as normal.

This afternoon, our favorite crew were sitting in the living room watching the news.

"It's Independence Day here in America," said Morbo. "All citizens are in for a spectacular show tonight when fireworks light up the sky."

"I'm looking forward to that," said Leela.

"Me too," said Fry.

Everyone else was looking forward to it as well.

"This is a day to remember the great American heroes," Morbo continued. "George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, and Rosa Parks. Now, Mt. St. Helens National Park in Washington State is pleased to make the announcement to all tourists that in keeping with the spirit of our nation's birthday, they've brought to life the head of another american hero. Mr. Harry R. Truman himself!"

Fry gasped.

"Fry, what's wrong?" asked Leela.

"I knew Harry Truman!" said Fry. "When I was a kid, he was an idol of mine. I saw him on tv in the weeks leading up to the 1980 blast."

"So what happened to Mr. Truman?" asked Amy.

"He died in the big blast," said Fry. "His lodge was buried under volcanic debris. After his death, books and songs were written about him. Art Carney even played his role in the St. Helens movie. A trail and ridge were even named after him."

"Lucky guy," Bender muttered.

"Well," said Leela, "I'm looking forward to the fireworks tonight. Let's go get ready for the show!"

Everyone stood and left, except Fry.

"After all these years," he said, "he lives again."

In his room at the Robot Apartments, Fry lies on his bed and silently debates what's happened.

His mind drifts to a flashback...

April 1980. A five year old Fry is watching television. On the screen, an old man is being interviewed.

"If I left this place, I wouldn't live a day, not a day! It would kill me worrying. My wife Eddie and I both vowed years ago we'd never leave Spirit Lake. I talk to the mountain, the mountain talks to me, I am a part of that mountain. When you live in the same place for half a century, you either know your country, or you're stupid!"

Fry sits up from his bed. A light bulb has turned on above his head.

"Hey! What are you doing lying here in the dark?" said Bender. "It's only 5:34 in the afternoon!"

"Sorry Bender," said Fry. "I was just thinking about Mr. Truman. When I was a kid, I idolized him. And I'll never forget the day I heard on the radio that he was dead, killed in the big blast."

"Let the past go meatbag!" said Bender as he walks out. "Anybody who chose to stay in the path of a volcano is a fool!"

Fry frowned. "A fool huh?!"

Then Fry's frown faded. A thought came to his head, "I often wonder why he chose to stay. If only I could find out."

He laid down again. Then he quickly sat up again.

"Wait a second!" he said. "Maybe I can!"

Fry sits down in the cockpit of the Planet Express ship and buckles his seatbelt. Then he starts up the ship.

The hangar doors above in the ceiling open. The ship ascends up and out into the sky, then zooms off towards Washington state.

"Guys! Guys!" said Bender. "Fry's gone! And he took the ship!"

"What?" said Farnsworth. "What is he thinking?!"

"Well, he was thinking of that old coot who perished in the 1980 blast of St. Helens," said Bender.

"Uh oh," said Leela. She realizes what Fry is up to.

In Washington State, Fry arrives at Mt. St. Helens National Park. After the ship descends onto the ground, he unbuckles his seat belt. Then he stands and walks towards the time machine installed on a nearby wall. Unlike last time, this time trip wouldn't be accidental.

He pushes a button. The date and time rapidly decrease. When Fry removes his finger from the button, the date and time reads:

May 17th, 1980
8:32 P.M.

Fry knew that it was exactly twelve hours till the blast came.

Inside the nearby lodge, Harry Truman fed his sixteen cats, then ladles beef stew into a bowl for himself. Shortly after he sits down and begins eating, there is a knock on the door.

Harry stands and walks to the front door, then opens it. Outside stood Fry.

"Mr. Truman?" he asked.

"I am," said Harry.

"Mr. Truman, I am a big fan of yours," said Fry. "I see on tv a lot. I idolize you."

"Shouldn't you be somewhere else?" asked Harry. "People everywhere say that the mountain could go anytime soon."

"I just came to visit," said Fry.

"When did you last see Fry?" asked Leela.

"He was in his room at the Robot Apartments," said Bender. "Ever since he saw the story about Harry Truman, he couldn't stop thinking about it."

"Fry said that Mr. Truman was his idol," said Farnsworth. "None of us ever saw him on TV. So now I'm sure where he went."

Back in 1980...

"Good stew," said Fry. "What kind of meat is this?"

"Moose," said Harry.

"Mr. Truman, don't you ever get lonely up here being all by yourself?" asked Fry.

"Well I did for a bit after Eddie died?"


"My third wife. She was the only woman I married who loved the outdoors. I was devastated when she died. I was older, so I expected to go first. Together, we ran this inn, but I closed the lodge after Eddie died. I couldn't play my player piano for a while. I even spent many nights crying myself to sleep."

"Yeah," said Fry. "Mr. Truman, what I want to know is, why do you choose to stay here despite the danger? It means certain death to stay."

"I have to stay," said Harry. "I've lived up here for many years. Eddie and I both loved Spirit Lake. So much, we vowed that we would never leave. We'd stay till the ends of the world for our home."

Fry and Harry finish their stew. Harry is the first to stand.

Fry bends over and pets one of the cats, which proceeds to purr. Deep down, Fry feels sorry for these creatures, knowing that they'll die tomorrow.

Harry sits down at the piano and begins to play a song.

"Eddie and I love this song," he said. "Other than Eddie, you're the only person I've ever played the piano for."

Fry listens to the song. When it ends, he gives Harry and standing ovation.

"I liked it," said Fry.

"Fry, come with me," said Harry as he stood. "There is something I need to show you."

Outside the lodge, Harry leads Fry to his garden.

"This is where I buried Eddie," said Harry.

"The garden is beautiful," said Fry.

"Eddie loved this place," said Harry. "That's why I buried her here."

"What does this have to do with you staying here?" asked Fry.

"As I said before," said Harry, "we both loved this place. It was our home. If I went to live somewhere else, it would worry me to death about this place."

"But Harry, the mountain could blow anytime!"

"Nobody knows more about this mountain than I," said Harry. "And it don't dare blow up on him. This mountain would never hurt me. Even it it did, I don't care. This is my home. I've lived a good life. I've served in a World War, defied Prohibition, and have many memories of this place. If the mountain goes, so do I. Can you understand?"

For a moment Fry hesitated.

"Yes Harry," said Fry as he nodded. "I think I can."

"You should get going now," said Harry. "No one without good reason is to stay in this area."

"Yes sir," said Fry. He saluted. Harry saluted back.

"Godspeed, Fry," said Harry.

"You too," said Fry. "But before I go, may I have something to remember you by? Your autograph?"

"Certainly," said Harry.

Fry returned to the ship, carrying a paper with Harry's autograph. As he walked up the stairs leading up into the ship, Fry turned and gazed upon the lodge where Harry lived. Tomorrow morning, it would be gone.

Fry turned away and continued up into the ship.

The next morning, long after Fry had left, at 8:32 A.M. St. Helens blew its top. Harry Truman's lodge was buried under volcanic debris. The mountain Harry chose never to leave had given him a fitting burial.

Back in 3004, the rest of the gang are waiting for Fry to return, when suddenly, they hear the sounds of the hangar doors opening. Through them descends the ship. From it, comes Fry.

"Fry! Where have you been?!" asked Farnsworth.

"To see Mr. Truman," said Fry.

"I knew it!" said Farnsworth.

Fry shows his co-workers Harry's autograph. They ooh and ahh over it.

"We should get ready," said Farnsworth. "The fireworks start soon. People all over America will see them! Now, where should we go?"

"May I make a suggestion?" asked Fry.

Later, the crew are gathered outside a lodge in Mt. St. Helens national park, waiting for the fireworks.

The door to the lodge opens. Out come two silver cyborgs. In the jar on their necks, is a head. Fry recognizes one of them.

"Guys look!" said Fry. "It's Mr. Truman himself!"

The others look. Harry looks quite surprised to see Fry.

"Fry, it's you!" he said. "You haven't changed one bit in 1024 years!"

"Long story," said Fry. "Who's the other head?"

"This is Eddie," said Harry. "I had those who brought my head to life, bring hers to life as well."

Eddie waves to everyone.

Suddenly, fireworks being to light up the sky. All over America, people see the sky brighten with numerous colors as fireworks explode.

"This is one Independence Day I'll never forget," said Fry.

The others agreed.

He told us he would never leave the mountain,
No matter what it did he wouldn't go.
Some folks think he's crazy, but how can you blame him?
Because he wouldn't be forced to leave his home.

He said, "I've lived up here the best years of my life,
And I can't throw those memories away.
The lord's been good to me, so has the mountain,
I settled here, so this is where I stay."

Here's to you Harry Truman,
They can't talk you into moving.
You're not gonna leave your mountain home at all.

Here's to you Harry Truman,
You showed the pride of a great human.
If the mountain goes so do I,
This is where I lived and it's where I choose to die.


The End