Wednesday, February 20, 2019

A little flash fiction for you

A few months ago, before I started the stretch run in GLORIOUS SLIP, I needed to get my fingers back into fiction mode after X amount of time away from it. This flash fiction piece was the result; I had seen a cartoon on Facebook depicting this scene, and I figured it was a good exercise to get the writing muscles re-attuned.

Hope you enjoy.

Copyright 2019, Sean Sweeney


Death Meets An Alien

Passing the TV, Bob flicked the porn off as he returned to his bed, feeling plenty lighter in his groin. He had just left the bathroom, content with his clean-up abilities for the present, the tissues wadded and sent to his septic tank. Traces of his seminal fluid remained on his skin, matting the thin hairs between his groin and navel to his body. He didn’t care about that; the cleaning job was to make sure that his baby-making goo didn’t coat the inside of his underwear and turn it into a crusty mess; the rest, he figured, would come off in the shower tomorrow morning.

“Ah, lesbians are like plumbers,” he said as he slid under the covers again. “They never cease to help clear my pipe.”

Bob’s head hit the pillow a heartbeat later. As soon as he closed his eyes, the scenes from the porno replayed over and over again as he drifted off, a dreamy smile tracing along his lips. He saw their bodies collide together, their legs scissoring as they mashed their groins against the other. He didn’t remember anything else after the duo separated and approached him; two pairs of breasts, full and fake and coming to rest alongside each other, came crashing down across his conscious self before sleep claimed him.

The heavy clunk of metal against the wall jolted Bob from his heavy slumber hours later, the breath catching in his throat as he jerked from the mattress. He didn’t make a move for the slick goop lingering in the corner of his eye, focused he was on the open door and the darkness beyond it.

“Hello?! Who’s there?!”

No answer came. Bob ground his teeth together.

“I’m calling the police!” he shouted.

“The police won’t help you.”

Bob felt the blood draining from his face, replaced by cold clamminess. The voice came through high-pitched and Arctic, and with such force that it felt all the air in the room had departed. He couldn’t help but notice just how his body shivered from hearing it; he clenched his buttocks almost on instinct, as if preventing his bowels from voiding its contents into his jammies.

The creature slipped into the bedroom a moment later, and Bob didn’t hear his floorboards shifting under the being’s weight. He heard nothing over the sound of his blood thundering in his inner ears.

But the being’s voice sliced through the din with utter sharpness, with the force of a razor grating against Bob’s nerves.

“I have come for you, Robert Wellington,” it said half a moment before the door closed of its own volition. “Your time has reached its end.”

Bob tried to speak. He did his best to pry open his jaws and let sounds flow, but the fright at the being’s presence — a long black cowl shielding its face from anyone’s gaze, along with the scythe it held in one bony hand — reverted him to mere babble. His throat felt as if a python had slithered across and held him within its mighty grasps, for his breath felt choked. His chest ached from the fierce beating his heart gave the inside of his sternum. He continued his lengthy shiver, even as he did his best to shrink underneath the heft of his comforter.

“Why?” Bob squeaked. He thought he had shouted the word, but it came through his lips like a whisper.

“Do not ask why,” the specter of death hissed. “Accept.” It moved forward, easing itself toward Bob’s left foot. It lowered the scythe, almost bringing it parallel to the bed. “Accept. Your soul is mi—”

Crack. The door flung itself open again, the knob driving into the wall. This time, the angel of death spun to see who dared intrude; Bob glanced that way and saw rays of bright light streaming into his room — along with fog rolling and rising.

Bob blinked.

What the f—? he thought, his mind spinning.

The fog cloud grew in size and density until it filled the threshold to Bob’s bedroom. Bob blinked again, then glanced at the specter; it kept whatever served as its gaze fixed on the doorway.

Can I get away? he wondered. Its concentrations are now elsewhere; surely I can slide out of bed, open a window, crawl out, and shimmy down the drainpipe. And without making a single noise.

The thought disappeared as eerie tones resembling a long, throaty whistle purred from the hall. The resonance made Bob recall the times he watched War of the Worlds, right before —

He sought out the bedclothes and grasped them, hard, until the cartilage in his knuckles popped.

Then, Bob stared deep into the fog as it shifted, and through the vapor stepped an extra terrestrial, an alien, its ovoid head and beady black eyes seeking one thing — him, its own gaze landing right on him, almost immediately upon entry.

“Robert,” it said, its voice almost sounding computerized, “we have come to take you away from Earth. The information you have garnered for us resides in the probe we inserted into your rectum the last time—”

Bob wanted to scream.

“Which Robert are you looking for?” the specter of death interrupted, gliding toward the alien.

The alien, to its credit, blinked its eyes and turned to face the specter.

“Gilbride. He lives here, right?”

Bob blinked as the alien pulled what looked like a map from hammerspace; the being wore no pants. All extraneous sounds save Bob’s racing heart and that of the paper unfolding disappeared.

“See, our information led us here. Robert Gilbride lives here.”

“No, no,” the specter rebutted. “He doesn’t live here any longer. I took his soul ages ago.”

“Are you sure?”

“Quite positive. Once you’re mine, you’re mine. No ifs, ands, or buts about it.”

The alien threw up its hands, almost in defeat.

“Rats. You didn’t happen to retrieve a probe, did you?”

“That,” the specter replied, “is not in my purview.”

“Damn it. That information is critical to our intended invasion. But onto other matters: Since you are so in-the-know, do you happen to know where Evelyn Bulfinch lives?”

“Why yes, she’s in the next town. Double chimney, satellite dish. Colonial home. Scheduled for reclaiming in October 2025.”

Bob noticed the alien almost grinned when the angel of death gave the month and year.

“We’ll have her back well before that,” it said. “You have my guarantee.”

The alien then crossed its thin arms against its chest and raised its head toward the ceiling. It shimmered into nothingness, almost as if it defragmented itself. The fog cloud fizzled away, and the supernatural light retreated, leaving everything dark — almost too dark for Bob’s liking.

Then, the specter spun again, facing the bed, and Bob knew this was it. The end of the road.

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