Where Ladybugs Roar

Confessions and Passions of a Compulsive Writer

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Flash Fiction (Bloody Mantis Aliens)

Okay, so I've dragged my flash fiction over from Flashy Fiction. If you're not there--you're square--that's the only reasonable explanation. Each day they post a prompt and everyone so inclined writes like a fiend for ten or twenty minutes and posts it. It's a fun bunch, and they have a November contest which only requires you to post. So, just do it! I order you!

"Awww, Trevor! How'd you manage to get blood all over that?"

I won't say that vampire hunting is a highly skilled job. It used to be, but that was back when people assumed that vampires were smart and hot. That was when they were still stuff of legends. Now that every fourth person is a vampire--no one wants to track down their neighbor and stake them. Besides, the first thing to go is their minds, and it's like dealing with large, deadly cockroaches really. They were slower than cockroaches, though.

This new recruit they'd stuck me with was as dumb as they came. I'd been bailing him out of one mess to the next.

"Trevor," I yelled again. "Oi! You're supposed to be aiming for the middle of its chest, you git!" All he'd managed to do thus far was to make sure the stupid vamp could never have children. How was his aim THAT bad?

"He keeps moving," Trevor yelled back.

This was what came of dropping the benefits and making it contract work. No decent person wanted to stake effin' bloody vampires at five a.m. when the only company was the sanitation workers.

"Training another?" Tim asked as he dumped the trash from a nearby dumpster into his truck.

"Always," I said. "I'm always training another. We're starting off slow-like here in the burb park, but I think it might be a week before we even make it into the city."

Tim laughed and asked, "Hey. Can I have a try?"

I tossed him a stake. Like a javelin, it flew from Tim's hand and right into the vamp's chest as he was trying to fall on top of Trevor. (Why was Trevor laying there?) The stake had just the right amount of power to dust the vamp, but fall effortlessly next to Trevor.

"That was bloody amazing," I said, impressed.

"Thanks," Tim said.

"Would you ever...?" I started to ask.

"No! Are you kidding? I make twice as much doing this," Tim said. He waved and his truck took off.

Trevor wandered back to me. "He kept moving."

"Yes," I agreed.

If you wanted to call that moving.... The old man had been moving slower as a vampire than he probably had in life--and he looked to be over a hundred.

"You just don't have the killer instinct, Trevor. Come on. Let's go back to the building. Dawn is about to break." I tossed him the spare stake bag to put in our trunk.

"What's with all the pouches of blood in the back?" Trevor asked as I opened the driver's side door.

"Bait. If we can't find any, we drop a bag of blood, and they come for miles."

Trevor nodded and slammed the trunk shut.

It was a quiet drive back. I drove Trevor through some of the more vampire-rich areas on our way back--as a sort of inspirational ride. They scurried around in shadows--just waiting their turn to be staked.

We'd parked the car and gotten out when I heard them.

"What the...?" I asked as I stared into the darkness.

"What's that sound?" Trevor asked.

I saw it... a large pool of blood trailing from our trunk out into the street.

"Aww, Trevor! How'd you manage to get blood all over that?"

There was at least a dozen of them snarling in the dark. I opened the trunk to get out the stakes. That's when I realized that Trevor had upended the bag of stakes on top of the now empty bags of blood. We'd been dragging blood all over the city, and now we most likely had dozens of the giant blood-sucking cockroaches heading for us.

"Well, Trevor, today you're actually going to earn your minimum wage. Try to stay alive until the dawn breaks in..." I looked at my watch. Yeah. I'd been training a new guy tomorrow. There was no way Trevor would last twenty minutes. Maybe I'd let the new guy stake Trevor.

I look at him. "Look. We have to end this. We're over."

"Why?" he asks, pouting.

I check my watch. "Um, in about four minutes you're going to want to eat my brains."

Okay. That was fun--mostly. Now to the dirty, ugly business of killing.

I look at him. "Look. We have to end this. We're over."

"Why?" he asks, pouting.

I check my watch. "Um, in about four minutes you're going to want to eat my brains." It's weird to be wearing a watch, but we were trying to fit "in."

"Are you sure we don't need to do it again? I liked that," he says.

I roll my eyes.

"Anyway, I'm pretty sure you're wrong," the creature who'd chosen the name "Bob" replies. "I watched that documentary on mantis too. It was the female that rips the head off the male after copulation."

"Are we sure that mantis and man are similar?" I ask--again.

"Bob" shrugs. "The great overlord told us that we needed to watch educational television if we were to properly infiltrate this alien life form. Man... mantis... they're just different breeds of the same thing. We've copulated and I've given you my seed... you're supposed to rip my head off."

"Do I have to eat it?"

"C'mon, Batty, we went to all the trouble to time from copulation to cannibalism--we even suffered through those stupid hair soap and infant butt padding ads to get the timing right. Don't you want to fit in?"

"It's BETTY not BATTY."

"Whatever. I told you to go with Jane," "Bob" says.

I ripped his head off--he'd made it fun. There was no way I was going to eat it, though. It's not like he'd know.


"You're late."
"I swear, I have a good excuse!"
"You'd better. You've got three seconds to explain."


Courtney was waiting inside the theater with her dagger-sharp eyes poised on the door for my entrance--my very, very late entrance.

"You're late."

"I swear, I have a good excuse!"

"You'd better. You've got three seconds to explain."

Three seconds? Last time she'd given me ten seconds. This didn't bode well for our relationship.

"Aliens," I said. "I was abducted by aliens."

Growling, she hissed, "Owen, you little twerp! What is it with you and aliens? It was cute the first time, but this is the third time, and it's just a little ridiculous to hear from a grown man."

"I swear--it's the truth, Court. They picked me up outside my house, did a little probing, dropped me off here. I'll need a ride to my car. It's on the side of the road about a mile from my house."

She scowled at me. It wasn't attractive, but it seemed a poor time to mention it. "Are you ON something?"

"Like what?" They'd asked me to bring out my girlfriend, but I'd declined--maybe I should mention that--win some points back.

"Forget it!"

Storming out, the beam caught her mid-stride. As they towed her up into the mother-ship I yelled, "Be strong, Court. It's really not so bad--just stings a bit the first time. I'll just drive your car back to mine--if that's okay. Guys, if you could drop her off at my house when you're done, that'd be great."

Looking down at the movie ticket in my hand, I changed my mind. There was no point in wasting nine bucks, and I'd been anxious to see this.

"Take your time!" I yelled up, pointing back at the theater.

The first time took the longest anyway.


  1. Thanks, Catherine. Darth Vader voice: "Join us" at Flashy fiction. "Join us--or die." Or not. Actually--not. It would be too much work to hunt people down, and I'm lazy.

  2. These are great, Wendy!!

    I really liked the character's voice in the first one and the third one just cracked me up. :)

    This Flashy Fiction thing looks like fun.