Another flash fiction by Mr Wendig, and with the release of his new book ‘Dinocalypse Now’ he’s feeling all dinosaury and why not? So the challenge this week is to write a piece of flash fiction, again for 1000 words that features dinosaurs. Seemed easy enough but it turns out that ideas were bubbling and mixing in a strange way today.
I wonder what you think.
Flash Fiction: T-Wrecks
Major Willington stood facing the doors, while the clamour of journalists nattered and clicked behind him. He’d had to play dignitary all morning, and now they were in the confining lift he could just face forward and grab some peace at least for a moment.
The lift pinged and the doors squeaked open to a plush VIP lounge, with rows of chairs facing a large TV screen that occupied the full length of the wall. Willington stepped out of the lift and stood to one side as the rest of the occupants spilled out.
‘Ladies and gentleman please take a seat, the show is about to begin’ said the Major gesturing into the room with his hand and smiling his least fake smile. The excited group fussed and shuffled their way down the rows and sat, chattering excitedly like teenagers in a cinema.
The lights dimmed and a spotlight shone on the Major who had taken his place behind a podium in the corner of the room. The screen switched on showing the logo of what looked like a dinosaur driving a tank, with the words “Melding the Past with the Future” written underneath. A hush fell upon the crowd as the Major cleared his throat, standing to attention behind his podium.
‘We live in dangerous times, ladies and gentleman.’ he began ‘The fear of terrorism is always with us. You are already aware that in recent years we have been under attack from various fundamentalist religion and anti-capitalist groups.’
The Major knew too well that the easiest way to get a crowd on your side was to scare them with the idea that terrorists were everywhere. The major knew that the terrorist alert status had been on green for months.
‘We need a new line of defence. Something we can use to help keep our shores safe and with that in mind Ladies and gentleman, I’d like you to watch this short video. I’ll be happy to take questions afterwards.’ The spotlight on the podium went out, leaving the crowd squinting at the bright screen.
The images on the screen were blurry at first and it took a while for them to become clear. There was a lizard a very large lizard, in a cage but the static made it difficult to make out any detail.
‘I must apologies for the quality of the image.’
‘My god is that a dinosaur?’ screamed one of the journalists in a rich Texan accent ‘and what’s that on it?’
‘It’s a gun!’ shouted another ‘You’ve strapped a gun to a dinosaur?’
The major smiled and laughed in a condescending manner. ‘Ladies and gentleman we have not strapped a gun to a dinosaur. This dinosaur has been augmented with the latest in pioneering American technology. ‘
The video continued to play, showing many dinosaurs each fitted with various bionic limbs and over-the-top weaponry. After the crowds first outburst, they were silent, dumbstruck by what they were seeing. When the video ended and the lights came on, the crowd turned to look at the Major their eyes wide with confusion.
‘I’m going to assume that there are questions’ said the Major standing in front of the journalists.
The journalists remained silent and open-mouthed trying to make sense of what they’d just seen.
A journalist raised his hand slowly. ‘Yes sir, you at the back’ said the Major pointing at him.
‘Um yes’ the journalist stammered ‘Are they…’
‘Real? Of course’ the Major interrupted. ‘We have had dinosaur cloning technology for years. We managed to clone some dinosaur DNA and mix it with amphibian, and well It was quite a feat of science, there should have been a film about it’ He smiled to himself, but then remembered why he was here and he straightened up instinctively. ‘Are there any other questions?’
A blue suited woman stood up, her hair tightly tied in a pony-tail, stood up. ‘So, if I understand you correctly, Major. We will be using cybernetic dinosaurs to protect ourselves from terrorism?’
‘Yes, that’s right.’ The major stood a little straighter as if his sense of pride was blocking any rational thoughts he may have had. The journalist snapped her mouth shut and sat down speechless.
‘Are there any more questions?’
The journalists looked around at each other, and the Major looked around the room smiling secretly at their confused glances.
‘Well ladies and gentleman. If there are no further questions, could you please make your way back to the reception area where you will be provided with refreshment. I will join you shortly; I have a brief matter to attend to.’
The journalists stood and filed into the lift. As the lift doors closed, and the journalists disappeared upstairs ‘The major took out his cell-phone from his pocket, flipping it open and pushing a few buttons.
‘Everything went as planned.’ The Major said. ‘What? No, I don’t think they suspected anything. I think they believed me. The news should be on the front page of every major newspaper by tomorrow.’
The Major listened intently to the phone.
‘Yes Sir, I believe that even if she does go to the papers, they’ll be so busy with this that no formal charges will be made against you… yes… thank you… thank you Mr President.’
Major Willington closed his mobile phone, straightened his tie and walked into the lift to join the journalists upstairs.