(1300 words) “Mother Mary and Jozuf!” exclaimed the old man, looking up at the dark sky. I swear I saw somethin’ fly past just now. Somethin’ white and round, real low. He took another swig from his bottle and turned back to the brazier. He wore a woollen hat, a dirty black greatcoat and brown boots with the soles almost worn through. If you had been near him you would have smelt a curious smell. A mixture of mould, sweat and urine. For that reason, he sat alone at the brazier. ‘Greetings earthman!’ The tramp heard the voice in his head and turned around. He almost fainted at the sight of the three strange figures standing at the edge of the light from the brazier. ‘Do not be alarmed. We wish you no harm.’ He stood up and found himself stumbling. “Good gawd, is this shum kinda joke?” ‘We wish to visit your leader.’
(900 words) The day my life changed was the day the lives of everyone changed. Finally, there was irrefutable, cast-iron evidence of extra-terrestrial civilisation. Evidence that couldn’t be fobbed off by governments as weather balloons, Venus, hallucination or just being plain drunk. But for me it was different. There I’d been, watching the whole shebang from my weightless viewpoint, floating around the International Space Station or ISS. “Hey, Jabez, there it is. I’ve got it on the viewing screen!” astronaut Vladimir Chekhov exclaimed. “Wow. Let’s have a look.” There, on our wall-to-wall cinema was a tiny pinprick of light, still tens of thousands of miles away but, without doubt, on its way to good ‘ol Planet Earth.
(850 words) Digby smiles and I’m reminded of his uneven, yellow, smoker’s teeth. “The Magician’s on his way, and we’ve two drones patched into the security screens.” He indicates a row of monitors, currently scanning the football crowd. The Director’s decided we need them alive, find out what makes them tick, dissect them while they’re still breathing if we have to.” He gestures to my ‘rig’ - in an aluminium flight case propped in a corner. “This time you’ll have M99 cartridges. Etorphine.”
(875 words) ‘Out in space no-one can hear you scream.’ Well, Alice could hear screams all right. Her three year old twins, Adam and Toni, fighting. Adam wailed as Toni held an angry-looking, bright-blue shark just out of his reach. Being taller, she would lift it higher, just beyond his grasp, as he jumped up … Continue reading The Artifact
(500 words) “Well, people don’t have to think for themselves nowadays, do they?” “How d’you mean?” “Well, in the ‘old’ days they didn’t know the Earth was round or that it went round the Sun. Or that the circumference of a circle is pi times the diameter. People, ancient people, like the Pythagoreans, had to … Continue reading Oh, Moo-ah Moo-ah!