A whole world on a single page!
The short story morsels of One Page Worlds are flash fiction adventures of all flavors. Every Wednesday will feature a complete story in one page, or the first page of what could be a novel or novelette.
Sharing the fun and geekery is the best part of writing! Please tweet or comment with your guesses on what genre, character, and job is central to each tale. Enjoy touring new universes each week with One Page Worlds!
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The goddess’s words whisper from the same distance as death is, which for me is pretty damn close.
“I demand more than sacrifice.”
With the cooler containing the sacrifice under one arm, I leap from the shuttle and hit the docking bay floor at the same moment the aliens’ shuttle does. Metal screeches behind me as the thing skids across the bay toward our shuttle. My pilot screams into our shuttle’s vo-com, but the intruding shuttle turned kamikaze weapon is making enough of a racket to drown it out. Sheathed cleavers and knives slap against my legs from their loops in my belt while I run. Away. I slip in through the doors to crew quarters before the two shuttles smash together. The impact judders the entire godship, and godships are supposed to be more solid than a nuclear bunker.
Ears ringing, I switch the cooler to my left hand and yank an apron from my flight suit pocket. It goes over my head easy, but tying it mid-run can’t happen. Instead, I slip a paring knife from another pocket and grip it by the blade. Ship’s crewmen and crewwomen poke their heads out of doors and aim laser pistols down the hallway behind me as I pass them.
One hollers at me, “Why didn’t Jakrom alert the captain that the vara were attacking?”
Jakrom? Vara? I yell over my shoulder at the lady. “Is that what he was doing?”
“Alix,” she spits, and I can feel the pistol she’s turning at my back now. “How do you not know your pilot’s name?” The woman’s voice is coming in on the vo-com at my hip now, more audible now that I’m almost to the goddess’s quarters.
The same technology that lets people bitch from a distance like it’s live conversation is what the pilot—Jakrom?—used. Shouldn’t the captain be coming down here to fight them by—
Captain er, the captain barges through the door to his quarters with laser pistols in all four hands. “Get into the kitchen Alix,” she yells. “You didn’t throw your meat cleaver at the vara did you?”
I pocket the paring knife I though I’d need to use and whip out my trusty meat cleaver. “I didn’t need to slash any aliens.”
The door separating the crew quarters and our corridor explodes.
Heat washes in on me from behind. Bootfalls pound closer and closer.
Lasers go off, the captain and her crew firing on the vara who apparently made it in behind me.
I yank the lever on the goddess’s chamber and spin through the door, shutting it behind me and whirling again to face her where I know she’ll be. At the four-burner range stove with the marble countertops and the krodium backsplash. The curls that tumble down to her shoulders are as red as her impatient face. She points to a vo-com watch at her wrist. “I hope there wasn’t trouble procuring tonight’s sacrifice?”
Crossing the kitchen, I place the cooler on the counter and open it. Three of the finest cuts of prime rib lay wrapped in chill paper inside. “No Ms. Lyroso, but them aliens sure do value their steak. You’d think they couldn’t get it on their planet. Are you ready for more of your own personal culinary courses?”
A delighted grin spreads on her face and she raises a hand like a salute. “I do demand more than sacrifice. Let me remove our varan third wheels first. I never tire of excitement.”
Light bursts from Lyroso’s hand and she closes it into a fist.
Then she opens the kitchen door.