Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sci-Fi Short - Flash Fiction #3

 This is the same story as the previous two but this time, the entire story takes place in 1 minute. (This was hard!) Oh and if anyone has a name of for this storyline, I'm totally open. Maybe someday I'll develop all these into something bigger!


The clock glowed 10:24 a.m, though out here, you wouldn't know it, as dark as it was. Captain Thomas Gladion gripped the thrusters in his white knuckled hand, trying to keep the starship low and quiet. His eyes twitched from staring so long at the angry orange numbers of the console. Their pilot had been critically injured in an altercation with the locals not an hour before, so it was Thom's job to get his crew home safely.

“There's no way we're gonna get out of here without being spotted,” said his co-pilot, Lieutenant Zachary Ty, as the ship slid through the grizzled ether.

A dull thud sounded in Thom's brain as the ship made a sickening lurch sideways. He could feel them angle downward as a result of the impact, an orange glow billowing from one of the engines. The sound was accompanied by the smell of smoke that drifted through the cabin like a living thing, crawling through the crevices to the passenger deck. Thom's eyes stung as the bitter essence clawed its way up his nasal passages. Sparks erupting from the console snapped him back to reality as he noticed Zach fumbling for the extinguisher.

The crew behind them shouted, cursed and coughed as they clamored to their seats. All of them fought like stampeding cattle against each other, fear, and the ships own lurching. He heard a female - which was probably Anya, the ship's medic – shout that the smoke could be from burning chemicals leaking from the engine and it was highly toxic. The captain started to cover his nose with a bandanna, but soon realized that there were more important things he should be doing with his hands. Toxic smoke was the least of his concerns in a ship that was making a beeline straight to the waiting ground below.

The light flickered once as the console threw more sparks, then died all together. The ship was plunged into darkness equal to that of the outside world. Thom groped for the emergency power button as the ship pitched steeply and began to roll. The power came back on dimly and the captain was wrestling with the stabilizers under an eerie blue glow. A low hum vibrated through the bones – his and the ships – and slowly the power dimmed until it was nothing but black once again.

The engine must really be failing, he thought, as he leaned all his weight on the stabilizer rod. The ship ceased its haphazard rolling and began to steady and slow but unfortunately, they were still falling too fast. Lt. Ty had managed to open the air vents and now the smoke was creeping out of the ship as if seeking bigger adventures in the big black. The whistling sound from the vents buzzed in Thom's ears as he unceremoniously smashed at buttons attempting to pull the ship's parachute. It was released with a great yank that plastered everyone to their seats, just a moment before the ship made landfall by crunching violently into the ground.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Sci-Fi Short - Flash Fiction #2

Ok so here's my #2 short.  This time I took the first body paragraph of my last story and wrote that into the whole story.


Captain Thomas Gladion yanked hard on the stabilizers in a futile attempt to right the plummeting craft. He wasn't even supposed to be flying the ship, but with their pilot being critically injured, it was his job as captain to get his unit to safety. The crew were cursing and stumbling to find their seats just as sparks erupted from the console, nearly blinding him. His co-pilot, Zachary Ty, shielded his dark brown eyes as his arms flailed out trying to grab the extinguisher. A hiss sounded by Thom's ear as soft white foam blanketed him and his instruments.

The fires had stopped, but now Thom had to scrape away the sticky repellent just to find the controls. He yanked again but the sinking feeling in his stomach told him that they were still falling, and fast. One engine was completely dead and the second was sputtering with its last breaths of life; this did not seem promising. And where they would land was uncertain as he was not able to see the world below through the cracked windshield. Then as if things couldn't get worse, he heard the low hum of the generators powering down forcefully as the ship was plunged into darkness.

Blinded now and still falling, Zach thrust the ship into a spin to try and slow the speed of their descent while Thom groped for the emergency parachute. After what seemed like an eternity, he flicked something and the ship jerked back suddenly, signaling that the parachute had been released. They slowed down dramatically, plastering everyone to their seats, but Thom didn't believe it was enough. His heart was racing when he realized that in this pitch blackness, he had no way to tell if the ship had righted fully. He pressed against the force of the slowing and grabbed the wing controls, jostling them wildly, trying to get them to catch the air.

It was not enough, however, as they hit the ground with a sickening crunch. Rocks and dirt sprayed over them as they literally bore into the soft earth. The cabin began filling with smoke and Thom feared that another fire had started in the engine which would ruin it for good. Finally they slowed to a faltering stop, rocking this way and that until they settled almost peacefully in silent, velvet night. It was at this time that Thom found the emergency power button, illuminating the world around them including the red, scaled faces of the native Etiri.

The crew sat in silence for a moment staring blankly into the Etiri's angry golden eyes and patting themselves to make sure all their pieces were still in place.  Finally, it was determined, as the air cleared of smoke, that the crew would have to go the way of the smoke – out. They were all a bit wary of appearing in the midst of an Etiri village – no, a city – but they pried the battered doors open anyway. Hundreds of Etiri rushed in, grabbing at the soldiers' hair, limbs and clothes and dragging them roughly into the Etirian Night.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Sci-Fi Short - Flash Fiction #1

Look! I wrote something!

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Captain Thomas Gladion clutched the controls of the starship in his white-knuckled fists, it was difficult to fly a ship this big at such a low altitude.

“There's no way we'll make it off this planet without being spotted, especially not with a damaged engine,” said his co-pilot Lieutenant Zachary Ty.

 The Captain ignored him and tried to focus only on flying, with their pilot critically injured, it was his job to get the soldiers home safely. A dull thud sounded in the back of his mind and the ship tilted suddenly while sparks erupted from the front console. They front of the ship jolted downward and at that moment, it occurred to Thom that they were going to crash.

“Everybody hang on!” he shouted into the com as he braced himself for impact.

Thom yanked hard on the stabilizers in a futile attempt to right them, but the effort was in vain as they continued losing altitude faster and faster. He could hear the crew stumbling and cursing as they tried to buckle themselves into their seats. A mechanical whir signaled that the power had failed an instant before the ship was drowned in inky darkness, the captain groping for the emergency power switch with one hand and the parachute release with the other. Still, the earth met them with shocking immediacy and the vessel violently crunched to the ground. Smoke filled the cabin as they skidded to a stop in god-knows-what forsaken country.

The whole crew had fallen into numb silence for a few long moments as everyone patted himself to make sure all the pieces were in the right places. Lt. Ty had had the foresight to open the air vents and now the smoke was drifting lazily out into the alien world.

 Medic Anya Reese's thin voice floated throught the blackness, “If we stay here too long I don't know what the radiation will do to us...maybe kill us...or worse.”

“If the natives don't get to us first,” said Ty sarcastically.

“We'll figure something out,” Thom said, finally igniting the emergency power and illuminating their surroundings – including the red scaled faces of the local Etiri, their angry golden eyes peering at the crew through the windshield.

Unfortunately, there was nowhere to go but out where hundreds of Etiri would meet them. With a resigned sigh Damon “Spike” Haversaque shoved the doors open, his burly frame straining against the cold steel. In rushed the Etiri, speaking rapidly in their language consisting of clicks and whistles, grabbing the soldiers by their limbs, their hair and their clothing, dragging them all across the blackened ground. Captain Gladion was tense, nervous, afraid – his crew had never encountered aliens in this way before, aliens who probably wanted to kill them and throw their bodies down a ravine. As he was roughly shoved along, he realized that they had landed right in the middle of a village – no, a city – and were being led down a wide avenue to a large building, looming shadowy in the lamplight and bearing the crest of the ruler of Eteriea.

And then they sat, the whole crew of the Broken Talon, in a dim, ten by ten foot concrete room, waiting.  For what, no one knew. The Etiri never spoke to them and the only glimpses they got were of the delicately-scaled guard faces through the food slot. No one could keep track of how long they were prisoners as the vaguely bland and visually frightening meals seemed to come at very long intervals (Spike tried to keep track using the length of his beard, but in the perpetual, misty near-darkness even that became hard to measure).

However, one day (or night) was different, the door slid silently open and just stayed like that until the Captain peered out side and one. Carefully, the crew crept out and emerged into the blinding Eterian sunlight to see their ship, repaired and humming, patiently awaiting their arrival and Lt. Ty commented: “So why were we trying to kill these people, again?”


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