Friday, August 13, 2010

5000 years - #fridayflash

today, it's writing initiatives crossing over:
  • in Daily s-Press, there is a special writing feature on #fridayflash - a twitter-based stoy share+spread, based on the hashtag #fridayflash.
  • in 52/250 A Year of Flash, the theme for this week is: Space Camp. the story i wrote for it is "5000 Years". the Space Camp issue went live today - [it's seriously amazing. take a step into Space here in 52/250] - and parallel, i now post the story here, to join #fridayflash.
  • enjoy & if you have a story to share: join! both #fridayflash and 52/250 are open to newcomers. the next 52/250 theme is "Can't Wait", due on Sunday. #fridayflash happens every Friday.
  • and now... the story. which matches the theme: it reaches back to the first written signs, and then rolls toward the future.
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5000 Years

She had been warned. On first glance, this species seemed like another average task: anthropoid, medium-brained, clueless about any realm beyond the third dimension.

She observed them from the camp her ancestors had put up on Mars aeons ago, when the first earthlings had reached the level of rudimentary writing. That had been 5000 years ago.
By now, the earthlings were roaming the stage of basic technology. Fascinated by mechanics and speed, they had managed to burn 67 percent of their planet’s resources, and were still eager to go faster. Every now and then, they built giant telescopes, then ended up frustrated as neither aliens nor antimatter could be found, despite all their hopes and their piles of astrophysical equations.

Parallel to observing them, she read through the reports of those who had gone on ground missions before her. Many hadn’t returned. Some had turned to humans, some had died as martyrs, some still were there, trying to prevent the worst.

Weirdlings, she had named them secretly. Now, while preparing for her own ground mission, she had to confess that she was both appalled and fascinated by them, by their overly occupation with dialects, frontiers, and hair lengths; their hopeless love for the nature they slowly killed; their longing to travel the world and the universe, to find peace, and recreate paradise, somehow.

“Don’t fall for them,” her commander reminded her again before she was beamed down.

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related links: short stories , 52/250 and 24/7

12 comments:

Linda said...

Love this. Especially the penultimate paragraph -- our legacy tidily summed. Reminds me also of Battlestar Galactica, a series I watched with religious fervor. Peace...

Michael Solender said...

love the concept of weirdlings - great scifi feel and delivery. nice piece

John Wiswell said...

There was life on Mars, but it beamed down here for a closer look. Hope she meets the right representative. It's fun to look at ourselves through a potentially alien lens - thanks for sharing yours.

J. M. Strother said...

I'm glad someone's looking out for us, we aren't doing too good of a job of it on our own. Sort of a cross of the monolith scene in 2001 and Starman. I liked it.

Welcome to #fridayflash, Dorothee. Stories doing double, or even triple duty, are always welcome. And thanks for the spread on DAILY s-PRESS.
~jon

AidanF said...

Nice way of phrasing the way the alien species views us. I imagined that the aliens manipulated our attempts to spy them. I like your mention that humans are in the phase of speed and mechanics. Welcome to Friday flash.

Laurita said...

Weirdlings is certainly an apt nickname. You said everything in a tidy nutshell. Great piece.

~Tim said...

Weirdling? I resemble that remark.

Anonymous said...

Finally someone willing to tackle the issue of hair length in humans!

I applaud you.

Tony Noland said...

Nice take on the alien observer. The trepidation at the end was nice.

Anonymous said...

A very clever piece with such a good perspective.
Adam B @revhappiness

KjM said...

"...to find peace, and recreate paradise, somehow..."

Love this fragment. It's so us, I'm afraid.

Deliciously tight, this piece. The contrast between the perspectives of the MC and the "weirdlings" came through so clearly.

But, we are dangerously attractive also. There's a tragedy waiting to happen in a continuation of this story.

Nicely done.

Cathy Olliffe said...

Never fall for the humans - now, if I could only paste that on my forehead...
Nice story! Welcome to #fridayflash!