That title needed CAPSLOCK hardcore.
Okay, so over at Terribleminds.com, like every week, there’s a flash fiction challenge. And there’s a prize involved.
Here’s my entry. The aspects, chosen randomly were: Alien Invasion/Revenge/Sea Monster.
By far the weirdest thing I’ve ever written.
Moa’s Little Monster
Rain pounded on the windows as Mr. Brian Wells yelled at his assistant back on Earth.
“How was anyone supposed to know she was a photojournalist? She came in with the rest of the cheap labor.”
He stood in front of the glass wall behind his desk that served as his window, watching the endless, turbulent sea far below.
“Look, we’ll just remind the world that The Water Company has literally saved the world. Without us, they’d all be dead as Earth dries up like a prune. Tell them, the Fish love us. They happily work for us. It’s not like they can prove otherwise. Not like we can understand them. The protesters and hippies call us an invasion force, but the natives welcomed us with open arms. That’s the story we’ll run. Trust me, they’ll buy it. Get it done. Don’t screw this up.”
Wells turned off his earpiece and sighed. The angry thunderclouds rumbled and flashed lightning across the sky. He smirked at the view. While the rest of the colonists and workers lived down in the depths of the ocean planet, he got to live up here, on top, where he belonged.
The tinkling of glass behind him caught his attention. Turning around, he saw his tiny servant stand in the middle of his state-of-the-art condo. She held a tray in her tiny hands with his daily glass of malt whiskey balancing on its surface. He named her Moa. She was barely the human equivalent of twelve, and looked it too. Small and frail, her gray face lowered and her dark wet hair all over the place, sticking to her spotted cheeks. On either side of her face were these beautiful turquoise fins that laid flat over her ears, hiding her gills.
After the war with the Fish, she was one of the first to be put up for sale. She caught his eye immediately. Wells thought of her as an investment, like wine to be aged. All he could see were those large green eyes and that gaping, toothless and voiceless mouth to realize her potential.
His wife didn’t mind at all. She wanted to rescue her, bring her to the salvation of human civilization. Wells liked that about her. Concerned with the greater good, oblivious to what was really going on, what was right in front of her nose.
Mr. Wells sunk into his expensive leather couch, gesturing for Moa to come over. She took tiny steps and raised the tray with her eyes still on the floor.
Well smiled as he took the try and placed it on the coffee table. “Sit with me. Take a load off.”
He patted the spot beside him and she hesitantly sat down, staring her hands in her lap.
“You know. This job. It’s stressful. People think I have it made. But the amount of responsibility…the whole human race depending on me. It’s affected my health.”
He showed her his hands, moist with sweat. Running one through his hair, it came back with several strands. “Sweaty palms, my hair falling out. Stress. That’s what it is.”
Moa said nothing. Well of course, they couldn’t make a sound above water. So she sat there with her eyes fixated on the glass of whiskey. Wells licked his lips as he watched her.
“You’ve really grown.”
He picked up the glass. Moa’s wide eyes followed his hand.
“Thirsty? Want a taste?’
She shook her head a little too hard, hair flapping about.
“It’s okay. Just a taste.” He pressed the glass closer to her mouth.
Her throat moved as if swallowing hard and her eyes nearly crossed as she keep the glass in view.
“Just a taste.”
As he spoke, his hand slid up her skirt.
Moa gasped audibly and jumped from the sofa. She turned around, backing slowly away from him, eyes wide.
Mr. Wells laughed. “Not yet, eh? Maybe in a few more years.”
He tossed back the liquor swallowing with satisfaction. Moa just stared at him. Her eyes the widest he’s ever seen them. She stopped trembling. Now she stood stock still, as if waiting with breathless anticipation.
Wells frowned. “What is it? What are you–”
The last words were cut off as his tongue doubled in size in his mouth. Alarmed, he gripped his throat as he gagged.
“What…what did you do?” It was the last thing he managed to say before he could no longer speak, his tongue having stretched outside his mouth, a long slithering piece of flesh.
As he struggled to breathe, his skin just poured sweat.
The little bitch. She poisoned me.
It was his last human thought before pain shot throughout his body. He watched in horror as his fingers and arms bulged. His head felt like it was in a vice grip, stretching up towards the ceiling. His clothing ripped and he popped like a water balloon, spilling out onto his shiny marble floor – a great mass of tentacles.
Mr. Brian Wells, in that moment, was reborn. He blinked at the world with a brand new eye, centered in the middle of his bulbous head. Everything was alien and fascinating, but far too dry to his liking.
The voice was in his mind, but didn’t belong to him. Wells turned and saw the little mermaid who created him.
Moa looked at him with happiness and a terrifying glee. “It worked, it worked! Oh mother, oh father, it worked!”
Wells felt a surge of happiness at seeing his master so happy. She stroked his head and he purred.
“Come. Back to the depths. We have to avenge the others,” his mother told him.
Like a good son, he followed her and obeyed her when she ordered for him to break the window. Glass shattered and mixed with the rain as Moa kissed him for his good work. Wrapping a tentacle around her protectively, they jumped from the heavens to plunge into the depths below, where they belonged.