defenestrate: verb; to throw (a person or thing) out of a window.
On the last few occasions the roof of his red Ford Fiesta had broken his fall, but this time he fell onto the windscreen. He heard it crack as his body dashed again it. But it didn't break; instead it bounced him sideways onto the bonnet, from where he rolled and crashed onto the pavement.
He was aware of the right protocol in these situations, having done this a few times now. Don't try to get up immediately; you need to make sure nothing is broken first. He felt himself all over. There was soreness in a few places, but no sharp pain indicative of a fracture. Slowly he turned over onto his stomach and pushed himself up on all fours. He was breathing heavily. With a groan, he put his left leg in front of him and pushed himself up on his two feet. Cautiously he took a step. He was swaying a little from side to side.
This was the fifteenth time he had been hurled out of his bedroom window.
He went back into his apartment building and up two flights of stairs. He stood nervously outside his front door, hesitating for a few moments. Then he turned the doorknob as slowly as he could. He stepped through, tiptoeing to avoid making the slightest sound.
The twenty-second defenestration was less painful than he expected. Somehow, in the brief moment he was in the air, he managed to orient himself such that he landed on his feet, again on the roof of his car. He congratulated himself on this achievement. And then off he went again into his flat.
He tiptoed in again, being careful to walk around the shards from the broken vase in the hallway. His TV lay smashed against the wall, right next to the sofa which has been broken in two and flipped upside-down. Curtains had been ripped to shreds, although they were still hanging on the rods. As he got closer to his bedroom, he noticed the tap from the bathroom, along with a generous length of pipe it was attached to, had been ripped out and now lay before him.
He bent down noiselessly to pick it up. But as he did some water fell out of the tap, making the slightest pattering noise against the wooden floor. He sighed. He knew what would happen next.
A whirring noise came from the other room, like a powerful machine coming to life. Then wheels could be heard. And then he saw it. CleanerBot2000 stood before him. Its two cameras, placed where a human might have eyes – probably in a failed attempt to make it seem less threatening – stared at him.
'Pest detected.' it said, staring at him menacingly. In theory, the bot was programmed to listen to human instructions, but he'd tried reasoning with it too many times to bother again. The bot crawled over to him, then picked him up in its mechanical arms. It took him over to the bedroom window and effortlessly flung him through it for the twenty-third time.
In the brief moment he was in the air, he found himself grumbling about how miserable life as a device tester could me. After going all this he would make less than the average barista, despite four years at a good university.
And who programs a bot so badly that it can't tell the difference between a human and a rat? And even if it did think that he, the owner of the apartment, was a pest, why was throwing a pest out the window the right thing to do? Surely the thing to do with a pest was to kill it.
As he thought this it occurred to him that he should be very glad that CleanerBot wasn't programmed to kill pests but to merely defenestrate them. Sometimes it was the little things one had to be grateful for.
He didn't land on his feet this time, but rather on his back, which had already taken a heavy beating. But the good news was he had held on to the pipe with the tap still attached to it – the perfect weapon.
Four more times he went up to this apartment, tried to smash the robot's head, and failed. And out the window he went, four more times.
Finally, twenty-seven defenestrations later, he managed to sneak up behind it and hit it hard, right at the back of its head. Then, surprisingly, everything else went to plan. The bots head flew clean off, ripping out a few wires in its circuitry in the process. It stopped moving immediately.
He celebrated for a few moments, and then looked around the living room. Everything that could have been smashed, cracked, ripped, or otherwise destroyed had been. He flipped half the broken sofa the right way up and sat down on it.
Oh well. At least he was insured.