Category Archives: Blog Battle

The Titan Mystery – Part 7

Seanna and McKinley stood there, the wild haired man grinning back at them with a devious look. The backdrop of the huge Titan behind the man it’s scale in stark contrast to any human form. He stepped forward towards McKinley as he did so Seanna raised her plasma rifle and armed it. She pointed it straight at him as she stared down the sight.

“Not aother step!” She barked at him.

“You’re not pleased to see me?” he continued to grin “McKinley, we have so much in common why is there all this distrust?”

“You’ve just killed two of my men and you’ve been giving us the run around ever since we got here and even perhaps before!” McKinley replied. Seanna wasn’t letting up, she was standing a few steps back from McKinley with their untrustworthy companion a few metres away. He took half a step closer as he raised out his hands.

“We’re the same you and I” he insisted.

“Not another inch, or so help me I swear I’ll put you down!” Seanna yelled at him, now get back!

“We’re not the same at all, I don’t recognise you at all!” McKinley told him “I’m done with you!” With that McKinley waved for Seanna to fire. For a split second the wild man’s eyes widened and he yelled as the blue bolt was unleashed from Seanna’s rifle taking down the man, pushing him back towards the edge of the platfrom. He pushed himself up, kneeling as his form began melting, disintegrating before their eyes.

“That should have taken him right down sir!” Seanna exclaimed “What in God’s name is this thing?” Seanna and McKinley watched his body melting, he looked up, his eyes no longer human as underneath was a monsterous creature with eyes far bigger than any human.

“You… will… all… die!” it’s voice grated, as he bolted forward. Again Seanna raised the rifle and leaving nothing to chance shot bolt after bolt of plasma into the monster with a final shot to the head pushing him off the platform and leaving him to fall the several kilometers to whatever was below.

Seanna and McKinley went to the side to look over the edge and see the spec vanish from sight. McKinley pushed himself back from the edge clutching his head.

“Arrrggh!” he yelled

“What is it?” Seanna was worried that something bad was happening, she dropped the rifle to help him.

“No, it’s ok, really. I’ve never looked down onto something from so high up before. Oh damn, that has really messed with my head!”

Seanna moved patted McKinley on the shoulder “You know what it is don’t you sir?” she said with a mischievious grin.

McKinley looked at her suspiciously “No, but I’m sure you’re going to tell me anyway!”

“It’s the years. You’re getting too old for all this running around!” Seanna grinned at him, half expecting him to cut her down for the remark.

“You’re not wrong there!” McKinley admitted to Seanna’s surprise “But someone needs to be here to look after the hot heads eh?” McKinley grinned back. The rest of the team were starting to filter onto the deck, unaware of what had just taken place but all of them shaken at the deaths of Person and Roberts.

Blake walked up to McKinley “What happened?”

“He killed them!” McKinley replied “But we’ve taken care of him now.” Blake nodded his understanding.

“There’s another hyperloop car on the other side of the core, it seems to lead further up the ship.” Blake was matter of fact in his information, perhaps a little more so than normal McKinley thought.

“Let’s get over there shall we?” McKinley suggested. He turned to Seanna “are you going to get dressed?” he asked his first officer.

“What for?” she asked “I can’t stand those suits they’re so heavy and I’m fine like this.”

“Fair enough” McKinley replied “I won’t argue with you. Let’s go.”  McKinley strode though the small group of people, all of them following his lead. Seanna waited behind, picking up her plasma rifle and slinging it over her soulder she followed on last. Just before she door shut behind her, she sneaked a look behind to make sure that nothing was behind her. There wasn’t, so she followed on behind.

After ten minutes they all arrived at the hyperloop car. McKinley spotted Seanna sneak in last he wandered over to her.

“We need to get some rest, we don’t know what we will find at the end of this and I’m worried that we’re all exhausted.” Seanna agreed and it was decided that the best place to rest was in the hyperloop car. McKinley reported back to the Tycho before finding his own corner and for a few hours they found places to get their much needed rest, Blake and some of the others took turns to watch out for trouble, but all seemed quiet. Four hours in and Seanna went to sit with McKinley.

“Can’t sleep?” She asked

“I got a couple of hours” he replied “I can’t shake that thing out of my head and this place. I don’t know, I’m disliking the feel of it more and more”

Seanna nodded “I feel it too and I know some of the others have been talking about it.”

“The thing is…” McKinley replied “We’re going deeper into this thing and we have nothing to tell us what’s safe and what isn’t”.

Just then the airlock to the hyperloop tunnel opened and the car started moving. In seconds they were out into the vast openess of the Titan, moving at immense speed.

“What just happened?” McKinley bellowed. The guard looked around astonished.

“Nothing sir, I was just here and the care started moving!”

McKinley looked at Seanna and out into the vast tunnel “Looks like wherever we’re going now we haven’t a lot of choice about.” McKinley was worried and this showed in his voice “Wake the team and tell them to prepare for anything!”

©Simon Farnell 2016

No ownership claimed on images

Written for Rachael Ritchey’s blog battle, this week’s there – Duplicitous.

Rules:

  1. 1500 words max (effective May 2016)
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related.
  5. State the Genre of your story at the top/bottom of your post.
  6. Post your stories on the 2nd & 4th Tuesday of the month, by 11:59 PM PST
  7. Go for the entertainment value!
  8. Put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section, and/or include a link to a battle post (not a page) in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post).
  9. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story.
  10. Let us know if you have a Facebook author/writer page so we can LIKE it to stay connected.
  11. Have fun!

The Titan Mystery – Part 5

The small capsule was racing it’s way back to the terminal room they had all come from, they had just passed back though the cavernous internals of the Titan and were now back in tunnel, it wasn’t long now and they would arrive. Seanna was sat there, arms crossed and had said nothing on the journey back.

“You’ve not said a word on the way back” McKinley was kind of asking, kind of stating “on the way here I couldn’t shut you up!”

“I’m not in the mood for this now” Seanna grumbled, looking away from him.

“Listen Seanna” McKinley drew closer to the young woman who failed to react “I know that things don’t look good on the surface of things, but think about this – where’s the bodies? You don’t know you die in that room you know!”

“You’re right the facts don’t look good, but can you explain why I would take this suit off?” Seanna responded sharply. McKinley sat back in his chair silently. A few moments later they pulled into the bay.

“Sealing airlock – repressurising the chamber” The computerised voice announced, Seanna got up to depart the sound of rushing air filling the capsule, then dying off slowly “Cabin pressure restored.” With that the door opened and one by one they began stepping out. Seanna regained some purpose, the core of the Titan was massive and she could see no way of shutting it down without causing a violent and destructive power backwash, destroying the Titan and probably the Tycho as well.

“How do we get out of here?” She asked, hald demanding to McKinley.

Looking at her sternly he said “You don’t get it do you? There is no way out of this. They tried before and failed!”

“They tried before? Who did…” Seanna was trying to get somewhere, it was then she heard a voice. Fear rose inside her, iut was the last voice she wanted to hear, yet also relieved.

“In here, I’ve got them on the scanner” was the muffled voice on the other side of the bulkhead. All the team looked at here with shock.

“What do we..” Jearo started to ask.

“Stay here, hide him” she hissed, pointing towards McKinley. Then the bulk head door slid open with a clank, Seanna standing there in front of her commanding officer. Not the aged and wild McKinley, but the McKinley she had tried to keep away.

“What’s going on? I couldn’t stand around any longer, I had to contact the Tycho to track you all. You went deep into the bowels of the ship, have you success?” McKinley was as enthusastic as she remembered, Seanna had to stifle her desire to hug him.

“Errr, not quite. We’ve hit a problem” Seanna replied

“What kind of problem?” McKinley was pushing his way in. He sensed there was something going on.

“Stop!” Someone shouted. It was the wild McKinley “don’t move any further into this room you fool, or you’ll destroy us all!” The team members silently parted, McKinley locked eyes onto his future self. Stunned for a moment, he stepped back away from him.

“I knew I would never age well, but really you have let yourself go!” McKinley was joking, but he wasn’t smiling about it. “You kept this from me Seanna?” He asked.

“Yes, sir!” She replied, she felt like the naughty child who has been caught out.She could feel his disappoinment.

McKinley nodded “I see” He looked at her “Why? I trusted you.”

“I know sir” was all Seanna could reply.

“Don’t be hard on her” McKinley’s alter ego was now showing the first sign of compassion since they had stumbled across him “You’re me, I asked her not to tell you. She hasn’t exactly disobeyed you!”

“I know that!” McKinley answered back “Like me the girl is confused – I don’t know what to make of this. How are you here and where is the rest of your crew?” McKinley was now raising his voice.

“I’m all that’s left, like you we got caught in this time trap and couldn’t get out of it.”

McKinley frowed at his future self. “Why can’t I get too close to you then? There’s no way out of this?”

“None” was the curt reply “I just showed your team the ships core it’s too big to shut down” he explained wildly “If you touch me, we’re likely to tear the time and fabric of the universe apart. We’re two entities from different time zones – we shouldn’t be this close even.”

“I want to see the core for myself” McKinley demanded stepping into the capsule, waiting to be taken. Again the team boarded and in a few moments were back on their way.

McKinley’s mind was full of awe and full of questions as he looked over the immense interior. He said nothing as once again the team disembarked. Looking ahead he saw the control terminal, marching ahead without pause…

“Sir – wait..” Seanna tried in vain to stop him. She followed after him, trying to keep up.

“There’s nothing in there for you McKinley” The wild man shouted behind him. Just as McKinley got to the doors they opened again, walking toward the piles of suits, McKinley was taken back at first. He looked around, then started pulling off the suits, throwing them to the side.

“What are you doing sir?” Seanna asked him.Watching as he threw the suits, back each one older than other other. He picked up the last bunch and threw them back, he turned and looked up, smiling at Seanna.

“Looking for something!” He puffed triumphantly.

“It looks like a hatch!” Seanna was shocked, she had never thought that under that pile was something intentionally hidden.

“Oh aren’t you the clever one?” McKinley’s future self stood there obviously agrrevated by what had been found.

“Yes!” McKinley shouted at him, I’ll show you something else clever too. He flung himself at the wild man, who only got chance toput his hands up in protest as McKinley grabbed ityanking it behind his back and flinging him to the floor over the new discovery.

“I don’t see the universe ending right now either!” McKinley was in a rage “I recognise your face but not the man, I don’t know who you are!” McKinley shouted. “I think you know how to open this, so – get started!”

The man looked up, hair wildly out of place, a deep chuckle coming from him “Alright – but you don’t know what you’re asking!”

©Simon Farnell 2016

This story is part of Rachael Ritchey’s blog battle, the category is Science Fiction and the theme is:

Voice

Rules:

  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/or include a link to this page in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!

Read all the short stories and vote! Winners are announced the Monday following. :)

The Titan Mystery – Part 3

The Titan Mystery – Part 3

“I’m detecting movement!” One of the team members shouted out. She was only small but her voice in the com system was loud enough to make eveyone wince.

“Which way?” Seanna bellowed back.

” About two hundred metres ahead” she shouted back, quieter this time “Moving towards us at approximately 7 kilomteres an hour”

“That’s a jogging pace!” KcKinley hissed.

“Arm weapons!” Seanna ordered. “Aim to injure not kill!” She added. At once everone pulled out thier arm, either a plasma rifle or small hand weaponand looked ahead. Wiating. Watching.

“I can’t see anything Jearo!” Seanna hissed at her team member.

“It’s definitely there!” Jearo shouted back. At that point the deck ahaead of them lit up, a huge bang sounded out, every one of them was thrown back and onto the floor. For what seems like an age all of them stumbled about, as if dizzy. Unable to hear anything thay all asked about each other but couldn’t hear. McKinley helped up Seanna who was holding her head.

“Come on, up you get” he puffed as he helped her to her feet “It’s just got interesting mission commander.” He smiled at her “What’s next?”

“You’re staying here commander and don’t you dare move! Jason, you and your team stay here and guard him and Tranquility!” She bellowed. “Where is he now Jearo?”

“Running away fast!” She shouted.

“All of you with me” the hole in the floor where the explosion happened offered easy access to the underfloor tunnel the unkown had used “Down here, let’s go!” Seanna jumped down the hole and was heard running away, rifle pointed ahead the rest of them piling in after her, trying to keep up. KcKinley stood there, watched by Jason and four others. He looked at Jason “Good this isn’t it?” He sat on Trnaquility’s ramp “I think it’s going to be a bit quiet now! That’s not what I was hoping for!” He said glumly.

In the service duct, Seanna was gaining on the person in front. They looked human, but in the dim light it was hard to see. Only the narrow light from her rifle let her see anything. Darak was overtaking her, he was a big guy and Seanna was hoping he might take the lead in securing their unkown bomber “I’ve got this chief!” he puffed as he ran past, “Try and keep your light on him!” Seanna pointed her light up to guide him. There was no need, suddenly a bulkhead appeared and their unkown went flying. Hitting the metal floor with a crash and tumbling.

“Secure him now!” Seanna bellowed. Darak was already on him, Seanna was there seconds later. Darak was man handling him into a safe place, Darak Got his arms and sat him him. Making sure he couldn’t move. The next few seconds saw the rest of the team catching up, puffing as they stopped to get their breath. The catured unkown seemed very human, moaning and struggling to breathe he gasped.

“Get off me Darak you oversized…”

“How do you know my name?” he snapped back. The man was gasping, the darkness yeilded little detail on him as he hid his face from the target lights of the rifles. “come on!” Darak insisted. Seanna looked round, her face suddenly dropped as if she had seen a dean man.

“Let him go Darak!”

“What?” He snapped “Are you -”

“Let him go I said!” She yelled. “Pick him up!” Darak with obvious discontent pulled him up. Trying to hide his eyes from the glare the man winced. He was scruffy, his hair long with an unkept beard. But there was no mistaking it was McKinley. Everyone gasped and were then silent looking in disbelief.

“Jason” Seanna got onto the com system with a little hesitattion, she was unsure what to say “Is McKinley still there?” Seanna waited for the  reply.

“Sure, why wouldn’t he be?” he replied.

“Never mind, keep him there will you?” Seanna replied dismissively

“No problem.” Seanna cut off the com link.

“What’s going on commander?” Seanna asked the scruffy and beaten down vervion of her commanding officer. “Why did you just try and blow us up?”

“If I was trying, do you think I you would be stading here now?” Seanna looked perplexed “I needed you to get away from him”

“Who?” Seanna asked.

“Him… me. The idiot that has to come along for the fun ride!” He bellowed out, waving his arms.

“Why are… you a problem to… you?” Seanna asked, now more curious than anything.

“We can’t be in the same place at the same time, if we do then time will fall apart and God know what will happen.” the withered and old McKinley was ranting on, obviously distressed “I was hoping that he wouldn’t be here – you guys were my ticket off this ship. I’ve been on here ten years and I don’t want to be on here a second longer!”

“What made you think we would let youtake our spacecraft so you could get away?” Seanna asked.

McKinley sneered “You don’t know what’s going on? Just like last time – you’re clueless. You have no idea what you’ve walked into”

” Then educate me” Seanna asked him, sitting on a bulkhead.

“You have walked onto a time experiment, a death trap quarantined hunreds of years in the future which apprears at random points in time thatno one can predict”

“Why is this a problem for us?” Seanna asked “We just need to find what’s doing this and shut it down.”

“Just like that?” McKinley scoffed ” I could have done that years ago!”

“Why didn’t you?” asked Seanna.

“Becasue you can’t – you’re all going to die trying to get away from here. None of you will though. You all die and leave me here with no way out!” The anger in McKinley’s eyes was wild, his time alone must have sent him mad. Seanna suddenly felt in the pit of here stomach the feeling that he might actually be right.

©Simon Farnell 2016

 

This story is part of Rachael Ritchey’s blog battle, the category is Science Fiction and the theme is:

Ticket

Rules:

  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/or include a link to this page in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!

Read all the short stories and vote! Winners are announced the Monday following. 🙂

The Titan Mystery – Part 2

The Titan Mystery – Part 2

“We can’t locate and destroy the field generating this temporal field” Neila was telling him. McKinley had gathered his senior officers in the board room to understand his options and make a decision on the next step to escaping this field they had fallen into.

“Even if we did, the Titan is so large that there’s no guarantee that our weapons could cause enough damage to collapse the field” Tymon continued. The mood in the room was negative. McKinley didn’t like taking indiscriminate decisions, but they weren’t going to get anywhere by doing nothing and find out what they could not do! Looking over the table at each of them, McKinley spoke up.

“I did not call this meeting to find out about what we can’t do! We’re still no closer to a solution!” McKinley wasn’t shouting, he didn’t need to and saw no use in it. But he was now in no mood for more problems, they had now been trapped for 5 days and he didn’t want to be there a second longer.

“Commander – we’re merely reporting back to you as instructed” Neila protested.

“We can board the ship and find out what is causing this heat signature.” Seanna spoke up, up until now she had been silent. She had a readout of the Titan, with a heat source clearly showing.

“You can’t be serious – we have no idea what’s over there!” McKinley barked back, Seanna was McKinley’s second in command and he had learned to trust her despite her impulsive nature. She had demonstrated herself to be exceptionally capable many times, but McKinley often couldn’t see where her decisions led. He suspected she couldn’t either.

“What else is there we can do commander?” Seanna asked matter of factly? ” We have no other option!”

McKinley thought for a few moments, before nodding his head n agreement “very well” he replied “Gather a team together and devise a plan. I want to see it at 19.00 hours. You will execute at 07.00 tomorrow morning.” Seanna nodded, trying to contain her excitement. It seemed that having a look around the Titan was something she was itching to do.

The next morning Seanna’s team were preparing Tranquility for the short trip to the Titan. The general air of business was interrupted when McKinley turned up and walkled into the loading bay, suited up in a mission outfit.

“Commander?” Seanna asked with some surprise.

“Don’t worry Lietenent Commander, this is your mission still as it’s your plan. I’m coming along as well as an observer. Besides, you may need another pair of hands.” He smiled as he walked past Seanna.

“And?” She asked after him.

“And… I’m curious too!” Seanna grinned to herself as she fitted the helmet over her head. The door behind her closed and she walked past the two rows of team member either side of the Tranquility cabin and assumed the commander’s seat beside the pilot.

“Let’s go chief Collins” She instructed the pilot. The small craft lifted from the landing bay and out into the blackness of space. In the rear monitor the Tycho was slipping behind fast, while ahead the immense Titan loomed ever closer. It was just as she thought they were nearing that another depth to the scale was discovered. This spaceship was truly huge. It was going to take time to find their way around. Scans from theTycho were helpful, but incomplete and of course what was on board was almost completely unknown.

As Tranquility approached one of the many port side landing bays, roughly amid ships it lit up with a bright blue.

“Sensors are indicating an atmospheric force field” Collins advised. “Shall I proceed inside?”

“Proceed inside” Seanna instructed. Tranquility glided into the empty hangar bay and slowly descended to land gently on the deck. Inside the cabin Seanna checked the enviromental data.

“The atmosphere is good to breathe, but for now full mission suits and helmets to be worn. It my be breathable, but it’s also -100 cecius in there.” The mission members all acknowleged the instruction over the intercom. With that the door to the small spacecraft opened, there was a loud hiss as the pressure equalised and there before them, dark and mencing was the largest landing bay they had ever witnessed. It could have held six spacecraft the same size as Tycho, two wide and three long. With the far end of the bay mostly hidden, light was needed. The rest of the team follwed Seanna off the Tranquility, stading side by side, they looked on. Some of the team had scanners and were busily looking for any data on what lay ahead.

“Collins, can you give us some light please?” McKinley instructed.With that a number of piercing light around tranquility activated. Even with these lights there wasn’t much to see in such a large space.

“Deploy the buggies people” Seanna instructed, at once the team scurried around to deploy the four vehicles, which were a large buggy with six wheels “We’re never going to get this ship explored on foot!”

Then McKinley’s voice was heard over the intercom “Tycho this is Mckinley, we’ve landed on the Titan. So sign of any activity yet, will keep you updated with data and instructions”

“Acknowledged Commander” Tymon answered.

“You left Tymon in charge?” Seanna asked McKinley.

“Yes, I didn’t think he could do much harm on this one!” Seanna laughed, but was stopped suddenly as the landing bay was suddenly lit up with rows of lights, one after the other turning on, until the whole landing bay was brightly lit. The whole team froze and looked around at each other, waiting for what was to come.

 

This story is part of Rachael Ritchey’s blog battle, the category is Science Fiction and the theme is:

Indiscriminate

Rules:

  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/or include a link to this page in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!

Read all the short stories and vote! Winners are announced the Monday following. 🙂

The Titan Mystery

The Titan Mystery

The explorer ship Tycho was approaching it’s destination. A seemingly abandoned spacecraft picked up three weeks ago from a passing mining ship. There had been no response to the messages they had sent to the abandoned ship, it was now very close and Commander McKinley was considering what to do next. Tycho was now slowing so that the ship could be scanned from a safe distance. The communications officer turned to  him, his name was James Tymon and he had been working for three days straight to get something from this ship. It seemed he had finally succeeded.

“Commander, the scout probe has been able to interrogate the object’s computer.” McKinley looked at him, hoping that this information would give him some information to make the next step clearer. McKinley stepped closer to him.

“Go on” he instructed.

“The abandoned ship is called the Titan, it’s returning from a colonisation mission to SG151205.” Tymon said.

“We’ve never had a mission out that far yet, let alone a colonisation mission” McKinley replied, now even more confused. “Are you sure about your data?”

“As sure as I can be Commander” Tymon replied “There’s more, according to it’s ships computer it thinks it’s the year 2774.”

At this McKinley felt strange, he needed time to process this, it was the year 2305. All the command crew had heard this and turned to look at Tymon, everyone is disbelief. McKinley was brought round by his operations officer Neila Weng.

“This thing is huge commander!” She blurted out.

“How big are we talking about?” McKinley asked. He knew the report was of a large spacecraft, but was was large?

“It’s around 50 kilometres in length” Weng replied “I’m now able to show it to you.”

“Show me.” McKinley instructed. With that the screens around the control centre were filled with the view of the Leviathan spacecraft.

KIGUJTn

“Just to make it relevant I’m putting a scale representation of the Tycho alongside.” With that a white shadow of the Tycho was shown alongside. Once again everyone went silent, there was nothing to say and everything to take in. The Titan was the largest spacecraft ever recorded. What’s more it seemed to have been made by humans, with technology that was far in advanced of what was available now. The concepts McKinley was trying to take in were blowing his mind away, McKinley was now left pondering again.

“Neila, take us around the Titan at a distance of 250 kilometres. Scan the craft for signs of life and see how much construction detail we can get from it too.”

“Yes commander” Neila replied.

The Tycho advanced toward the mysterious Titan at a slow pace, circling the giant spacecraft completely while the crew worked the instruments and let the computers gather and store all the data. McKinley was thoughtful while all this was going on. None of the SOP’s covered this kind of situation, does he board the Titan? He hated calling into command as they were all bureaucrats and almost none of them had ever been out here and deal with this stuff. But McKinley could see no choice.

“We’ve carried out a complete sensor sweep Commander McKinley” Neila reported, initial scans show no significant life forms on board, however not all the data has yet been complied.”

“What about the constructions scans?” McKinley asked.

“We’re waiting for the computer to analyse the data, it shouldn’t be too long” Neila replied.

“Tymon, could you please mark our position in the ships log, please note vessel status and time. I need to talk to command in my office, can you put them through for me?” As McKinley turned towards his office Tymon stopped him.

“Commander McKinley, command isn’t there and the date on the log is wrong.”

“What?” McKinley asked in disbelief.

“The beacon for command just isn’t there and the astronomical computer thinks the date is 2774”

“But that computer takes astronomical data to work out the date, it can’t be wrong!” McKinley protested.

“I know commander… it’s like…” Tymon trailed off his thinking taking him to a place that he didn’t want to go.

“Like what?” McKinley demanded.

“Like we’re in the year 2774” Tymon turned to his station and brought up the astronomical data the Tycho was receiving, planet positions, star charts and the like. He turned back to McKinley “It’s as I thought commander, the local planetary positions, star formations coupled with…”

“Don’t give me that crap” McKinley burst out “what’s going on?”

“Astonromically we’re in the year 2774. But I don’t know how. The best explanation is that the Titan has something to do with it” Tymon concluded

“Make a course away from the Titan, engines ahead full” McKinley ordered. At that point the the Tycho turned away from the Titan, pulling away fast the Titan was soon out of close sensor range. A few minutes later a sensor alert was heard.

“What’s that?” asked McKinley

“We’re coming up on another object, it’s pretty big!”

“Can you identify it?” McKinley asked.

“Not yet…” Neila replied “Hold on, you won’t believe this Commander”

“Try me, Neila today has been full of disbeliefs!” McKinley was now sounding irritated, he had a feeling he wasn’t going to like this.

“Let me show you” Neila then showed the object approaching fast on the main screen. At first it couldn’t be made out then, impossibly the Titan was clearly ahead of them.

“What? You’re kidding!” McKinley shouted out “How has this happened?”

“I don’t know Commander” Neila replied “Inertial guidance has showed us making a course away from the Titan, we didn’t move off that course or turn. Yet there it is!”

McKinley fell silent, thoughtful and concerned at the same time. What had he done? What is this force that seems to bend time and space and how the hell were they going to get away from it… if they could.

To be continued?

 

This story is part of Rachael Ritchey’s blog battle, the category is Science Fiction and the theme is:

Leviathan

Rules:

  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/or include a link to this page in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!

Read all the short stories and vote! Winners are announced the Monday following. 🙂

Sherlock Holmes and the case of the kidnapped daughter

This is a blog battle story for Rachael Ritchey’s weekly blog battle. I thought I would go all Victorian and detective for it.

Sherlock Holmes and the case of the kidnapped daughter

I trudged slowly up the stairs, weary from his fact finding mission that Homes had sent him on. The daugter of a local business man had been kidnapped with no trace of her wherebaouts being found, I hoped the telegram I had in my hand would yeild better news. Just before I reached the door to the rooms of 221B I stopped, listening for anything Holmes might be doing. It was silent. Opening the door I waved my hand in front of me as I was met with a cloud of smoke, Holmes was sat in his chair with the look of the grave over his face.

“No news then Holmes?” I asked couging, Holmes sat there for a moment, saying nothing.

“Do you have have the telegram?” He asked evetually. I handed it to him as he reached out his hand, his thin fingers making him seem older than he was. The last few days had been difficult for Holmes and he hadn’t eaten in this time.

“Here, I haven’t read it as you instructed”

“Thank you Watson” Holmes took the telegram and unfolded it, taking more time than usual to read it. Suddenly his eyes lit up.

“This is good news Watson, it seems despite my best efforts and skills we have merely stumbled upon the answer to this most curious case. I’m sorry to be a burden my friend but I must ask you again to run an errand for me.” At hearing this I groaned, I was hoping to be able to get some refreshment as it was nearly 4 o’ clock in the afternoon and breakfast had been so long ago.

“Please could you go to Inspector Lastrade and tell him to send a couple of burly constables to this address, tell him they are to wait until 6 0’clock before entering the house. Tell him that the daughter of Mr Thurlow will be there. I would also like the presence of the inspector here if you please” Holmes had been scribbing down the address as he had been instucting me. I took the note and left the room. Holmes himself was putting on his coat, he seemed to have his own errand to run, this made me feel a little better about my discomfort as I would not be leaving my colleague to his thought while I was gone.

I returned to the flat with the inspector in tow, he was curious to know about Holmes thinking and would not stop talking about it on the way back. I was finally glad to put in in front of his tormentor. Holmes was standing in front of the fireplace puffing away with a gleeful sneer on his face.

“Homes!” Lastrade bellowed out. “I hope you’re going to tell me what’s going on!”

“All in good time inspector, why don’t you take a seat and pour yourself a brandy, I dare say at this hour it would be welcome. The cigars are open on the table as well, do help yourself my good man.” Content with the thought of brandy and a cigar the inspector sat himself down and made himself at home. “Come Watson, you make yourself confortable as well, I dare say that the day’s exertions have taken their toll on you.”

It was just as I sat down that there was a knock at the door, Holmes just called out ” Come in Mr Thurlow” The door opened in in walked Mr Thurlow who had been here only a few days before to tell us about his kidnapped daugter and the letter he had demanding money for her return.

“Welcome Mr Thurlow, do come in, you will of course remember Dr Watson and this is Inspector Lastrade”

Looking pale, Mr Thurlow replied “I instructed no police to be involved!”

“Calm yourself Mr Thurlow, you will see shortly why I had to engage the the services of the good inspector” Sitting down Mr Thurlow was not looking comfortable. His look became even more distressed at the arrival of the next guest. He emerged after knocking, I didn’t need Holmes’ deduction to work out that he was a local post delivery officer.

“I’m looking for a Mr Holmes. Which one of you gentleman would…” He stopped mid sentence as he locked eyes ever so briefly on Mr Thurlow.

“I am Sherlock Holmes” Holmes announced.

“I got this note asking that I should attend this address at 6 o’clock. Your note didn’t give me much time. What am I doing here?” The post officer’s mood was becoming rapidly aggressive.

“I needed you here for two reasons Mr Brinkley” Holmes began “The first reason was for you to verify to me that you indeed know Mr Thurlow here, from the looks on your faces I see this is the case”

“Mr Holmes, I’ve never seen this man in my life!” Mr Thurlow protested.

“Please don’t muddy the situation with more lies Mr Thurlow, you and Mr Brinkley here have been staging your own daughters kidnap” As Holmes was talking Lestrade walked towards the door, two other police constables joined him. One of them whispered into his ear and Lestrade nodded.

“Mr Brinkley was the key to this singulalry interesting case as he was able to divert letters and telegrams going to you from the fake kidnap address, to the real address which happens to be his gome. The ingenious twist of using your similar addresses has to be admired. You Mr Thurlow live 107 Maple Road and you Mr Brinkley live at 107 Maple Terrace. These addresses are merely a 10 minute walk apart.”

“Miss Thurlow has been found as is bing looked after Mr Holmes.” Lestrade informed Holmes. At this the post officer ran for the door, trying to push the constables away. The constables pushed ushing him to the floor and cuffed him. Mr Thurlow was sobbing in his hands, he know it was over and kept muttering about what he was going to do now. The constables led the men away with Lestrade following. A few moment later and the room was quiet again.

“How did you work out that they lived at the same addresses Holmes?”

“It was simple my dear Watson, in our first meeting Mt Thurlow slipped up, at the time I missed it but something about the whole situation wasn’t right. I dawned on me when I saw the address on the telegram for Mr Thurlow. Which stated Maple Terrace, not Maple Road.”

“What was the point of the two addresses though?”

“It was simple Watson, there was no point except to confuse. The real crime was that Mr Brinkley could intercept post control the letters going to and from the kidnapper, who didn’t really exist as I suspect Miss Thurlow knew nothing of this, save to say she was being held in a strange house and not allowed to leave. Both men were hoping to get money from the kidnap demand, with the kidnapper essentially vanishing. It nearly worked too Watson.” Pulling his pipe out Holmes lit up with puffs of smoke filling the room again.

© Simon Farnell 2016

Rules:

  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/or include a link to this page in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!

Read all the short stories and vote! Winners are announced the Monday following. 🙂

Mum, can I have some more?

It was half term and Will was bored. He was once again playing on Minecraft and had been helping to build a huge house with waterfall around it to protect it.

“Mum! Can I have some chocolate?”

“No you can’t!” Will’s mum said. “You need to have some breakfast first!”

“Ok” Will said, returning to his game. A few clicks on his controller and he had thrown the water over the tall pole, watching the water cascading down in and over the house. He spoke into his mic “Hey dude, I’m going but I’ll be back!” Will took off the headset and put ir down onto the sofa where he had been sitting. Will walked into the kitchen where mum was.

“I’m hungry mum. What can I have to eat?”

“Well there’s shreddies, or weeto’s or if you like you can have some toast.”

Will looked up at his mum and smiled cheekily “Can I have some toat with butter on? Can you make it please?”

“Yes, you can have some toast” his mum replied, “but you can make it yourself”

“Oh!” Will complained, he popped some bread into the toaster. A few minutes later he emerged from the kitchen with toast, cut up apple and a raw carrot and set about eating it while he got back onto his game. It seemed the waterfall had now grown and had enveloped the not only the house, but the surrounding area, flooding out the farm where there had been cows and chickens and pigs.

A while later he was at the skate park, Will loved the skate park and was taking his scooter up and down al the ramps. Climbing up onto the half tube, he teetered on the edge, pausing before going down and then flipping back and forth up and down the tube.

“C’mon Will, it’s time to go” Will’s mum told him “It’s cold and I want to get warm”

“Can I stay some more mum?” Will pleaded.

“No Will, it’s too cold” Will’s mum pleaded back. In a flash of genius she added “Let’s get some sweets” Will came off the half pipe and scooted after his mum.

“How much can I have?” Will asked.

“It depends what change I have, let’s see when we get to the shop” Pushing the door open to the shop Will left is scooter outside and followed his mum in. “Here’s 20p Will” producing the coin from her pocket she gave it to Will. Taking it he looked over the shelves full of sweets, pausing at the lollippops he picked up a handful.

“Mum, can I have some more?”

“Hang on Will” His mum replied, reaching and digging into her pocket “Here’s another 20p” she said, handing it to him. Will stood there counting for a few seconds.#

“Thanks Mum!” he said and wandered off to pay, emerging a minute later, already sucking on a lollipop. It wasn’t long and they were back home again, the ever increasing Minecraft water house had now turned into a water park, farm and creeper battleground with random holes where they had exploded.

Dinner time came and went, Shepherds Pie was always his favoiurite and he was sitting there watching Horrid Henry, listeneing to his parents always telling Henry to not be horrid.

“Mum, can I have some icecream?”

“Yes, but go and get it yourself.” mumbling under his breath Will paused the TV and get up and spooned the icream out into the bowl. He scooped some out and ate it and again. He liked doing that, it meant he got more without mum knowing. Sitting down again he watched all that Henry got up to and was then told to clean his teeth. Mum got up and watched his clean his teeth, it made sure he didn’t make a complete mess in the process of cleaning them.

Will trotted up to bed and got changed, slipping under his superheroes duvet he snuggled down, it was snowing outside and Will could see the huge flakes falloing outside.

“Mum, can I have a story?”

Will’s mum sighed “Yes, which story would you like?” showing him some of the books laying about he said.

“No, no, that’s got a spider in it.” Then he smiled “That one” It was a Minecraft story book from Stampy Cat himself. Will’s mum sat down and read it, it wasn’t that long and in a few minutes it was over, along with Will’s day. His eyes were closed and he was breathing heavily, oblivious to the snow building up on the window sill outside and the curtains being closed. Will’s mum knew that she had a whole evening before she heard the words… mum… can I?

But tomorrow was another day… tomorrow he was going to see his Gran.

© 2016 Simon Farnell

No Ownership claimed on image

This story was written for Rachael Ritchey’s blog battle, the theme was Lollipops

Rules:

  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/or include a link to this page in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!

Leaping the Void

astronaut-on-the-moon

Leaping the Void:

The darkness was enveloping her mind and vision. Overloaded with the sensations of sounds and the crippling force that brought her to where she was now. Was she dead? Who was she even? What was it she could hear? Voices? The roar subsided and slowly the sounds became clearer. She was breathing fast, she knew somehow this was bad and tried to control her breathing. For moment she lay there, collecting her thoughts, looking up and the bright blue and a white gem against the black sky, peppered with stars.

“Kristen, are you there? Please respond” was what she could hear, over and over. Dazed she lay there some more before she realised.

“I’m Kristen” she said out loud, still breathing hard, slowly getting control. She pressed the intercom button “Science officer Bowman here control, I’m here… I’m not sure what happened”

“Bowman, thank God you’re there. You’re heart rate is really high, you’ve got to get your breathing under control. Where’s Mendez and Harrison?” Kristen truned to rest on her elbow, her mind returning to the events. The massive quake, she had been looking right at both Mendez and Harrison when they vanished. Kristen looked round, now slowly sitting up, amazed that her life support system wasn’t damaged.

“I can’t see them contol!” She replied “I’m fairly sure they’re gone – they vanished in front of me.” Kristen picked herself up as the only way one can in a space suit. Finally getting up and standing as close as she dare the huge chasm that had appeared where her friends once stood. “What happened control?” She asked.

“We’re not sure Bowman, but we need to get you back here. What’s your oxygen level indicating?” Control was sounding concerned, the moon walk had already been going on several hours and they were due back soon anyway.

“It’s showing at 14 percent control” For a moment there was silence.

“Acknowleged Bowman, we need to find you a way over that chasm. You’re only a ten minute walk away from here. But it will take you three hours to get round the chasm, and about forty minutes to drive the Mule round. But you only have thrity minutes of air left and that’s if you’re careful.”

For a moment, Kristen stood there thinking. “I’ve got an idea” she finally said “You’re going to like this.” Kristen walked slowly and steadily toward the Mule. Once she got there she reached into a side compartment and pulled out a firearm. Looking round she could see that the Mule would be useless anyway, it’s front wheels sunk into the Lunar dust. Carefully she climbed onto the Mule’s cabin, looking round she could clearly see the base just the other side of the chasm.

“I’m not going to die here like this!” She thought to herself as she turned around and sat on the circular hatch atop the cabin. Her back was to the base, taking out the firearm and gripping in in here left hand she began the release procedure for the hatch.

“Bowman? What in God’s name are you doing? This really isn’t…”

In space, there is no sound. Which is a good thing in some ways as right at that second the hatch flew open and catapulted the determined woman up and across the chasm.

“Ohhh…myyy… Gooooddd!!!” Kristen shouted as she felt herself shot up and away from the Mule. Regaining her senses, she fired the gun.. one, two, three, four times. Each shot pushing her further and further away from the Mule and toward the base.

For what seemed like an age she was flying over the Lunar surface, no one had ever done this before. No one had needed or wanted to and she could see why. A red light in her helmet flashed, only 8 percent oxygen now. She had very few minutes of oxygen left. Finally she was descending, but at a hell of a rate. Turning to face the base… somehow in flight. As she got nearer the ground she pointed the gun toward the ground and fired one, two, three, four times. That was it, no more rounds left. Kristen had slowed but was still moving fast. She had not only cleared the chasm but was so close to the base. Moving her arms and legs as if to run.

Suddenly it was all a blur and once more Kristen was looking up and the blue and white globe that was the Earth. The red light was flashing and now there was a buzzer telling her that she was dangerously low on oxygen. Her visor was cracked and was only vaguely aware of being pulled into the Lunar base. Then, there was nothing.

“Wake up Bowman… wake up! Hell of a stunt you pulled off out there!” Kristen slowly opened here eyes, Scott Williams the base commander was sat next to her. She was laying in the base infirmary but all she could think about was the damn, thumping headache.

“I made it?” Kristen whispered weakly.

“Sure did Bowman, we had to pull you in becasue you crashed so hard. You’ve been asleep there for two days. Sorry about Mendez and Harrison, but we’re glad you’re back safe.”

With that Williams got up and left, Kristen was lost in her thoughts. She had made it, just. Thinking about her missing friends she lay there watching the medic checking her.

“Why me?” Kristen asked.

“What?” the medic asked, confused at the question.

“Why did I make it?” Kristen asked.

“Ask God, becasue I can’t aswer that. from what I hear it didn’t come easy.” The medic checked some instruments and adjusted a couple of levels and walked off, leaving Kristen alone. Alone to wonder why against all the odds, she had made it back.

©2016 Simon Farnell

No ownership claimed on images.

 

 

This story was written for of Rachael Ritchey’s blog battle, the theme for this week is Chasm and the rules are below. If you don’t take part already and would like to, have a look at Rachaels blog battle page.

Rules:

  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/or include a link to this page in your own blog post (it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!