SF Drabble #149 “Ceremonial”

“It’s just so goddamn hot.” They stood, sweltering under twin suns.

“Try to ignore it.”

“In dress uniform? This thing is wool!”

“It’s not wool. You only think it’s wool. It’s artificial. It’s a polymer or something.”

“Anyhow, it feels like wool.”

There was a commotion across the square. “Here they come. Remember, the Prime Minister is the one with the gray hair and the bushy tail.”

“Are we bowing?”

“No, not this time. Apparently it’s a grievous insult.”

“Of course it is. It’s always something.”

“Yep. Okay, straighten up now. And remember to smile.”

“God, I hate first contact.”

SF Drabble #148 “Childlike”

The thing growing inside of Ross doesn’t seem to be hurting her; it probably evolved to keep the host alive, a symbiotic relationship. She’s remarkably calm. I probably wouldn’t be handling it as well.

Now she says it’s talking to her. Maybe it’s communicating telepathically, I’m not sure. We can’t hear anything, and the sensors aren’t picking anything up, subvocal or otherwise. She won’t go into detail about what it’s saying, only that it promises to ‘take care of her.’ Whatever that means.

We asked Ross if it had made any promises about the rest of us. She wouldn’t answer.

Fantasy Drabble #101 “Instant Dragon”

He tried not to seem too excited when the postman came to the door. He flashed a thin, polite smile, and signed for the package with affected disregard. “Thanks.”

Inside, with the door close, he tore the brown paper off and dug into the cardboard with his fingernails. He pulled newspaper out and tossed it over his shoulder like salt for luck…

…and there it was. A large dish covered with plastic, and in it a beautiful multicolored egg. There were no instructions, but he knew what to do: one small drop of water would begin its long-dormant life cycle.

Fantasy Drabble #102 “Ritual”

It’s amazing how much ritual accumulates over the centuries: the robes, the candles, the drawings on the floor and ceiling, the interminable prayers and invocations. The virgin and the knife were the only things that were really necessary. She didn’t even need to be pretty. In truth, she needn’t even be a girl. Even the bowl was extra; after all, he could lap the blood off the stone floor just as easily.

Perhaps he would institute some reforms now that he had descended to this plane of existence. Couldn’t hurt. One really can’t let these things get out of hand.

Zombie Drabble #156 “Two Ships”

I was going to shoot the zombie when an arrow flew over my shoulder and pierced its left eye. I turned around, and there she stood.


“Sure. I figure, why waste your ammo? Arrows grow on trees,” she laughed.


“So, let’s get a couple things straight: I’m not interested in repopulating the species, and I’m not letting you into my hideout. But you can stay in town if you want.”

“I appreciate that.” It was a shame, too: she was young and pretty. “Just passing through. Seen many people?”

“Not live ones. Not for a couple weeks anyway.”

Zombie Drabble #155 “Secrets”

When the rest were fighting, or running, I hid. I was paralyzed with fear. George, Wendy, the mailman, the kids from next door: I heard them all die, ripped apart by those things. I heard Mr. Singh empty his shotgun before they got into his place and finished him off.

I hid, and I listened, and I’m not sorry. I’m not. If I’d have come out, if I’d have tried to help, if I’d even made a sound, I’d be dead too. Anyway, there’s no one left to judge me.

Sooner or later, rescue will come, and they’ll never know.

SF Drabble #147 “Organs 2 Go”

Now, Mr. Franks, let’s go ahead and get your vitals, shall we? Now please hold very still for the scan, it’ll only take a second. There we are. Everything looks fine, so I’ll send the Doctor on in in just a moment. Now, this is your second time with us so I don’t need to give you the whole spiel about the procedure. No? Fine, fine. But Mr. Franks, I really do think it’s time to quit smoking, yes? We can only grow you new lungs so many times before the insurance company will start asking some very hard questions…

SF Drabble #146 “Where Were You On The Night Of”

I know what you’re thinking, Steve; no, I’m not telepathic. Psi powers aren’t real. Everybody knows that. But like the man said, any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. The computer analyzes the data those sensors are collecting for more than two hundred thirty metrics. It knows your heart rate, and what your glands are doing. It sees patterns in your brainwaves. And it tells me all about it. Not in so much data, of course. It just comes up on the screen, “Subject is lying.”

So, Steve: how about we try this again, from the beginning, okay? Great.