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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