Time And Relative Dimensions In Space

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This story is inspired by the prompt, “What Pegman Saw.”  Each week, Karen Rawson provides a location-based prompt from Google Maps™. The goal is to keep your story to 150 words or less. Prompts are posted on Pegman’s Blog Fridays at midnight CST.

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Time and Relative Dimensions in Space

by Jan Brown

There it was: the TARDIS! Michael had told her it was hidden next to the caretaker’s cottage, but she hadn’t believed him.

Well, who would? Michael was just a young research Fellow, jealous of the Doctor and his seemingly endless knowledge–not to mention his popularity with the student body. With computer registration, the Doctor’s classes were always full within minutes.

She lugged a heavy backpack jammed with tools that might be necessary to open the time machine’s door.  She tried the electronic screwdriver she stole from the Doctor’s desk, but the door didn’t budge. Duh…it was secured by a padlock. She cut the lock with her bolt-cutters and pulled the door open with nothing but her hand.

Well, damn. It was just that prick Michael’s practical joke! To be certain, she flipped the main power switch inside the “TARDIS” and watched the street lights turn off throughout the park.

 

 150 words

If you’re not familiar with Doctor Who, you may not have seen a TARDIS, which is actually a time machine disguised as a phone booth. You can check out the current episodes here.

Summer Re-run

It’s vacation time at Friday Fictioneers! Actually, it’s not much of a vacation for our leader, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, who is under a deadline for her third novel. So she is re-running a favorite photo prompt from 2012, and I am re-running the story that it inspired.

I love cheesy science fiction movies from the 1940s and 1950s. The preposterous plots and archetypical characters provide not only entertainment but insight into the sometimes hilarious cultural stereotypes of the era. Some of my favorites are:

It! The Terror from Beyond Space (you can see the zipper on the back of the Martian’s costume)

The Thing (an evil alien, a nebbish reporter and an inept military)

The Beginning of the End (giant locusts eat Chicago)

The Blob (bad boy turns out to be the hero)

This is a piece of fan fiction based on The Blob. I believe it was Steve McQueen’s first feature film role. His character had to fight off an alien creature, a growing pink gelatinous blob. He discovered it was vulnerable to cold, and he convinced the townfolk to get a bunch of CO2 fire extinguishers and freeze it to death before it “ate” the diner and all the people in it.

The 1988 remake had a similar gooey blob, but it turned out to be a mutation of a biological weapon invented by–wait for it–the U.S. Department of Defense. The film was set in a ski resort town, so Kevin Dillon and his hot girlfriend killed it (well, most of it) with a snow-making machine.

The photo reminds me of curtains hanging in a diner, like the imperiled diner in the original movie, so I invented a sequel. I hope you enjoy it! I’ve included the old movie trailer for extra chuckles.

ice-on-the-window

Photo copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Ice Ain’t Nice

(with apologies to Steve McQueen and Kevin Dillon)

by Jan Brown

It was a viscous combination of sleet and snow, and it was coming at us horizontally. Each icy fragment hit our unprotected faces with the force of a miniature missile. We ran as fast as the slippery street would allow, finally reaching safety inside the diner.

We couldn’t resist staring out the window as it was pelted with the same sideways slush. Then we realized that safety was just an illusion. With a deafening crack, the glass fractured and the slush quickly coated every available surface. The Blob was back, and this time it wasn’t afraid of the cold.

For more Friday Fictioneers’ stories, click the link:

 

How to Deal with a Dalek

Welcome to Friday Fictioneers! We are a lively and friendly international writing community. Between Wednesday and Friday of every week, we each post a 100-word story to share. To learn more about us, or to post your own story, please visit our lovely leader’s website, author Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Addicted to Purple.

This week’s photo prompt is from fellow writer Kent Bonham. Thank you, Kent! One of the drawings on the right page of the book reminded me of an upside-down Dalek, the alien-machine creature that has been intriguing viewers of BBC’s Dr.Who television series for decades. If you are not a Whovian, all you need to know is that the Daleks chased Dr.Who through time and space while screaming “Exterminate! Exterminate!”

Perhaps the illustration in the photo is an early blueprint for the monstrosity. Or perhaps it’s just a sweet children’s book….

dalek kent bonham

How to Deal with a Dalek

by Jan Brown

“Self-destruct in two minutes,” the mechanical voice shrieked.

“Clara!” pleaded the Doctor, clearly panicked. “If the Dalek explodes, it’ll take us along for the ride. Boom!”

“Hand me the sonic screwdriver, and we’ll be rid of it in a few seconds. Thank God this is the last one.” The cyborg’s back panel creaked open.  “It’s an old one. But stubborn.”

“What exactly are you doing?” asked the Doctor.

“I’m switching firmware for its core functions. The new code will cut power to the Dalek’s brain before it can self-destruct.”

As she closed the panel, they watched the last Dalek die.

 

 

To read more Fictioneers’ stories, click the link:

The Funeral

Welcome to Friday Fictioneers, where every story is a surprise.  We are a community of writers from around the world who post 100-word stories every week, based on a photo prompt from Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog.  This week’s photo was provided by fellow writer, J. Hardy Carroll.

Photo Copyright: J. Hardy Carroll

Photo Copyright: J. Hardy Carroll

The Funeral

by Jan Brown

Annie stood looking over a sea of dark suits and black dresses. Someone at the podium was expressing high praise for the talents of their late colleague, a young IT analyst named Eric Barber. Too young to die.

She turned and saw a familiar figure. It was Henry, their corrupt former boss, and the cause of Eric’s death.

Annie stepped back, sneaking what looked like an e-cigarette from her purse. She blew hard through the hollow cylinder, and a tiny dart shot out.

Slowly, Annie walked out the front door. Two seconds later, Henry crumpled onto the floor.

Rest in peace, Henry. Or not.

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To read other Friday Fictioneers’ stories, click the link:

Double Agent

Welcome to Friday Fictioneers, when writers from around the world post 100-word stories based on a photo prompt provided on Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog. This week’s photo is by Kent Bonham. Thank you, Kent!

If you are a fan of the Showtime series “Homeland,” you may have noticed that the demure, young Iranian-American CIA analyst Fara Sherazi has had a couple of uncharacteristically angry outbursts in recent weeks. First, she ranted at the U.S. bankers who laundered terrorist funds. Then, she became outraged that the Iranian spymaster Javadi–who syphoned a large chunk of the bank fees for personal use–would not be exposed for his graft. Instead of bringing him to justice, the CIA blackmailed and convinced him to work as a double agent.

How deeply rooted is her anger? She’s a newbie without any experience as a field agent, but she seems to have conflicting loyalties. Could she potentially “go rogue,” follow him to Iran and expose him?  If so, how would she get out of the country without alerting her bosses at the CIA? Surely their databases are flagged whenever one of their operatives passes through Customs.

This is a piece of fan fiction that imagines that scenario. Hopefully, it stands on its own, with or without the background info.

Enjoy!

alley - photo copyright Kent Bonham

Double Agent

by Jan Brown

I am forever grateful for my cousin Jamelah. When I explained my mission, she readily lent me her passport. Fortunately, she’s a U.S. citizen and her passport contains no other biometric data beyond the digital photograph. Though we look almost exactly alike, our fingerprints would be distinguishable.

I am chasing the worst type of traitor—one who feeds off the misery of others. He’s a snake who betrayed his own people for money. I know where to find him this morning. This quiet alley leads to the back door of his bank. He will not live to see another dollar.

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Click the link below to read other Friday Fictioneers’ stories:

A Vision of Earth

Welcome to Friday Fictioneers, when writers from around the world post 100-word stories based on a photo prompt provided on Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog. This week’s photo is an awesome view of Maui taken by Doug MacIlroy. Thank you, Doug!

The photo reminds us how beautiful our world is, and how easy it is to take that beauty for granted.  I just began watching back episodes of Battlestar Gallactica, and I’m struck by the sense of longing that the characters have, both for beauty and for home. They have lost their own planets–the twelve colonies they originally settled. They were vanquished by Cylons, a cybernetic race with advanced intelligence, strength and weaponry. (I know, it’s a science fiction cliché–the robot uprising. But a few of the Cylons are pretty interesting, not to mention sexy!)

The displaced humans are searching for a mythical thirteenth colony. It’s supposed to exist on a beautiful planet in the far reaches of the galaxy. The colony, the planet, is Earth.

Along the way, some of the males are distracted by an ethereal being who appears as a shapely and alluring female.  Unfortunately, humans long for beauty even when the truth is twisted and ugly.

This is a piece of fan fiction, a story that takes place on one of the conquered planets. Fans of Battlestar Galactica will probably recognize the characters, but I have left them unnamed. My hope is that the piece stands alone, with or without a backstory.

As always, I encourage you to read other Friday Fictioneers’ work by clicking the link that appears below my story.

Maui from Mauna Kea, Photo by Doug MacIlroy

A Vision of Earth

by Jan Brown

He stood near the cliff with his lover, in awe of her beauty as well as the planet’s.

“Is this what you imagine Earth looks like?” she asked.

“I hope to live long enough to find out.”

“Not if the humans find out you betrayed them. I can protect you.”

“How?”

She walked to the edge of the cliff, a mirage beckoning him to follow. As she vanished into the clouds, he reached out for her, but felt a tug from behind. His pilot said gruffly, “Time to go.”

Had God protected him? Had his lover tricked him? Or both?

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