Uninhabited

I am a bit behind this week, so this one is pulling double duty as a response to the invisible ink challenge of “Write a story about visiting a planet.”, and the Weekly Friday Picture prompt from The Writer’s Mess on the image below. Join Maggie as she steps onto a new world, and sees something amazing and unexpected.


Maggie stepped out of the ship, and froze. This was not the desolate rock she had been briefed on.

Fog drifted over a lush forest, as the sun rose in the distance, and that was the least magnificent part of it. She didn’t know if what she was seeing was towers, or statues, but they were huge, red and white, shaped like dolphins leaping out of the fog, only ripple in the air like they were fluid.

Before she could say anything, radio in, they began to move. At first it was a slow thing, so slow she wasn’t sure it was happening, and then it got faster, a spinning, and then a lifting, and she wondered if they were ships, taking off.

It was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen, as great fins broke free of the fog, propelling them though the air, leaving a great blue rippling wake that reminded her of the northern lights.

When they finally faded from sight, she closed her eyes, her eyelids like sandpaper, and when she opened them, it was all gone.

Not just the ships, but the sun, the fog, the forest, everything, like it was never there, but every part of her knew that it had been there, it had been real.

Even after the ships medic told her it was probably just a hallucination from oxygen deprivation, a missed pinhole in her suit. She knew though, it had been real, and she would never forget it.

Rebirth

This was a 250 word piece for The Writer’s Mess Friday Picture Prompt Challenge, based on the picture below. This one is another sci fi, this time about sending out a ship to start life on a new planet. My goal was to make this a little lighter that the upcoming Six Sentence story, but my nature prevailed, and it’s a little dark as well.


Callista added the last samples to the capsule, and pressed it into place. The drawer lock clicked, and the pleasant chirp of the verification system indicated that it had been accepted.

This was it, the ark was complete. All biological samples were safely aboard, and tomorrow the ship would launch for a new world.

She stared for a minute at the ark’s glowing power source. It would provide the energy needed for terraforming, for creating their new home, and she prayed that it would work.

The ark would launch tomorrow, but in one year she would follow it, one of many who were chosen to populate the new colony, or so people thought. It wasn’t just a colony, it was the last, best hope for their race to survive.

The planet was running out of resources, the utopia of no disease and long life quickly turned into a shortage of supplies, and people just assumed that at some point the government would fix it.

The truth was that they were going to do nothing, because in less than a decade the amount of energy being harvested from the core would stop the planet spinning, leaving the world a lifeless husk.

It would be three years before the effects became wide spread, before people realized that the colonists had gone to repopulate the species, and the rest of them had been left to die.

So Callista prayed, that this ark would work as it should, because everything depended on it.

A Ginormous Pig

This was for the Weekly Invisible Ink Challenge, and the prompt “Your first time seeing a large animal as a child”. I took an experience I have been told happened when I was a child from an early zoo visit, and put my own spin on it. I found this one really hard, child POV is not my wheelhouse.


“Mommy! Mommy! Look at the pig, it’s swimming! It’s ginormous!” She said, it was the biggest pig she had ever seen, ever.
“Yes baby, it’s a very big pig.” Mommy smiled, and stuck the the scratchy hat on her head.
“Can I pet it?” She asked, pulling the hat off her head. Oops. She almost hit a lady with a baby.
“No, we don’t pet animals at the zoo.” Mommy answered.
“We feeded the deer, can we feed the pig?” She asked, she could pet it while she was feeding it.
The lady with the baby gave mommy a mean look, I don’t like her.
“No-“ Mommy said
“I WANNA FEED THE BIG PIG!” It wasn’t fair, this was so much better than the deer.
“That isn’t a pig, it is a hippopotamus.” The mean lady said.
“A very big pig?” She asked her Mommy.
“Yes sweetie, a hippo is a very big pig. Do you want to go see the elephants?” Mommy asked.
“YES!” She said, taking one last look at the swimming pig, it was the biggest one she had ever seen, EVER.

The Toss of a Coin

Bonus entry because I forgot to post this on Monday! This story is based on the city image below, which I interpreted as a city flying through space. I tried to get as much of a feeling for the city as I could into 250 words, and you can read about Sienna, who has to make a choice about what she wants from her life and what she is willing to give up to get it.


Sienna had heard stories about a time when the great cities used to reside on a planet they called Earth. It was said that there was once was so much land, that one was allowed to walk on the dirt.


Sienna worked on the engines, below the lake hologram, and she had never been allowed to so much as see the limited supply of dirt they had aboard the City of New York, let alone touch it.


She had only left her level a handful of time, and she wondered what the city looked like from the high towers, with the stars passing them by. Did they have more tickets up there, or better luck maybe?


She looked down at the red token in her hand indicating her ticket had not won the lottery. There would be no child for her this year, and with one year left of eligibility, there would likely never be one if she stayed.


There was another choice though, in six months the New York would make it’s next planet stop, and they could leave then, join a group of settlers and try to make a go of it.


She flipped the token in the air. Name up, and she would sign up for resettlement. Number up, and she would tell her husband that she wouldn’t go.


The token hit the ground, and she picked it up without looking. She made her decision, and now she would have to live with it.