“Whapples are the best way to start your day. Heroes go to work on Whapples…”
The announcer’s voice boomed across the hall as Malcolm and Doris took their places at the microphone. Doris’s hands were shaking a little, as always. Malcolm looked over to the audio technician to check they were not live yet, and whispered to distract his co-star.
“Martians this week, again. Seems to be a running theme,” he said. “I expected them to have run out of plots by now, they’ve invaded everywhere.”
“S’alright for you,” drawled Doris. “You don’t have to let out blood-curdling screams every episode. Quite dries out the throat.”
On the other side of the room, the announcer was holding an interview with a supposed nutrition expert extolling the benefits of a bowl of Whapples every morning.
“Do you eat that?” said Doris. “I’m not convinced by some of the things they say.”
Malcolm shrugged. “It pays the bills. What’s the problem?”
“…why a zillion folks eat Whapples for breakfast. Do you? Enjoy with…”
“What if it’s bad for the kids?” whispered Doris. “They all eat it. What if it’s doing something to them?”
Malcolm raised his eyebrows. “What, it’s a commie cereal?” he mocked.
“Forget Martians,” said Doris. “If I really wanted to take over people, that’s how I’d do it. I’d put something subtle in the food. Make people slowly apathetic. Take a long time doing it.”
“Sixty years,” she said. “Nobody would notice until too late.”
The technician began the countdown.