Tag Archives: FF

From Hell’s Heart, I Stab at Thee.

“Once there was a time when I believed you all white devils,” explained the old sagomas. “Your people came and took all of the young men, and dragged them in chains to slave in your mines. Then came the years of sickness, entire generations of my people wiped out by the evil poxes you brought.”

The ancient man paced around the tiny marker at the base of the massive, dead Marula tree in the village center.

“Where once a village thrived is now just a destitute ruin, hopeless. Without our youth and their grandchildren, what future could there be?”

The sagomas peeled away the cloth turban covering his eyes with great care.

“Now I see that you aren’t devils at all, you are only the most evil of men. Men, who can be cursed, and made to pay for the injustice their sick culture has brought on this land.”

When the turban fell away, his single malevolent eye blazed forth, spearing each of the urbanized white corporate henchmen with baleful malice.

“You don’t believe in the Evil Eye. Your kind never has. So go back to your families, and take no care to guard against what comes for you now.”

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200 words, inspired by this week’s Flash! Friday prompt (3-41).

 

Let Me Look That Up, Sir

The scrawl on the index card on the end of the mobile filing case reads—“Pittsburgh, 15201 to 15232, 1979 to 1983.”

Each of these cases holds the records of tens of thousands of men. All cross-referenced, sorted by date and location. The filing cases recede into infinity, perspective vanishing point at the limits of vision.

Most file clerks have a nervous breakdown the first time they see this filing system. Is this Satan’s own record keeping, are the earliest entries scratched Sumerian logographs on hardened clay tablets?

No, but that’s close. These belong to the V. A. Hospital.

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100 words. Inspired by this week’s Friday Fictioneers prompt:

PHOTO PROMPT – © Claire Fuller

 

Left it right here, I swear

Every time I go back to the apartment, I feel like someone’s watching me.

My husband tells me it’s just paranoia, but when the sunset lengthens the shadows, my skin always begins to crawl. I can feel them, over that way, watching and waiting for something.

All in my head, my husband insists. The only thing “out there” is the Pacific Ocean, uninterrupted for at least five thousand miles. Who do you think is watching, exactly?

***

The whales had been watching humans develop in downtown San Francisco just before the tsunami arrived.

…It was there just a moment ago…

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100 words. Inspired by this week’s Friday Fictioneers prompt:

PHOTO PROMPT – © C.E.Ayr

Genesis

“Come on then, Jones, it’s your turn to give us a tale, mate.”

Jones had planned his tale during the previous traveler’s story and sat up on his robomule, ready to begin.

“Quite so. My lords and ladies, during my travels I have been many places and seen much. The tale I offer today is tragic, and true. It’s about a lady I met in the Lesser Magellanic who had more than forty thousand children.”

“Protraxilone is a frontier colony, and it would be idyllic if it were located elsewhere. Because it’s in the Cloud and its primary is part of an x-ray binary system, the local background radiation is enormous. Genetic damage is inevitable, and the birth defect rate is nothing short of tragic. For years, the Protraxan mothers had relied on IVF using imported ova, because of the risk.

That is, until Rothchild Zaggerty and his family arrived. Doctor Zaggerty set up a carefully shielded genetics laboratory and took on new patients immediately. He offered a new process, artificial oogenesis, the creation of new and healthy ova using the mother’s natural genes present in any tissue sample. Since the DNA came from healthy cells of the mature mother, he claimed, the new ova were free of damage from ionizing radition and could be stored in shielded containment until needed.

Protraxian mothers were thrilled, naturally. For the next fifteen years, ‘Zaggerty Eggs’ were involved in the majority of all childbirth. Not coincidentally, Doctor Zaggerty’s clinic made him a fortune, until genetic testing eventually revealed the disturbing truth. An entire generation, just about forty thousand children, all had the same mother.

Zaggerty’s process wasn’t anything like what he claimed. He’d actually harvested tens of thousands of immature ovum in the dictyate stage from his own pre-pubescent daughter. These oocytes were thereafter artificially maturated and produced as ‘miraculous Zaggerty Eggs’ whenever necessary. He took an enormous shortcut, completely unethical in every way. Thousands of Protraxan ‘natural’ mothers are unrelated to their children.

Doctor Zaggerty’s eventual fate was, well, ugly.

His youngest daughter Eva turned out to be uninvolved in the conspiracy. Eva is now the all-mother, oddly venerated by Protraxan society, yet has never given birth herself. Not her fault her dad was the most hated man of an entire world.

She enjoys fruity cocktails, you know.”

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385 words. Inspired by this week’s Flash! Friday prompt. It’s a Canterbury Tale, of sorts.

(I actually went to sleep last night without an idea, and sat up in bed well after midnight with a dream–so I missed the deadline, but had a story.)

These write-it-before-midnight challenges just don’t seem to work the same way my subconscious does. That’s okay, it’s almost double the desired length anyway.

Nor am I an expert human geneticist. To do this tale right, I’d need to interview one, get the details right, and reproduce this tale at short-story or novella length.