Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2021/03/29 (Week 192)

“Um. Zed? Is there more than one galaxy?” I had this bad feeling there was.

“They’re like marbles. They’re everywhere.” I guess my facial expression caused him to continue, “Why do you ask?”

“Um. Turtles.”

“What kind of turtles?”

“Big? And covered with mosses?”

“The space turtles from Orion?”

“I don’t know. I’ve only seen the one.”

He pushed a button on his desk, and a hologram displayed between us. It was of a turtle. At least 10 feet long. Covered in green mosses and lichens.

“Yeah. That’s what it looked like.”

“They come from Orion. Some of our residents keep them as pets. You almost never see one. They tend to keep them on the bottom of lakes in swamps. Like the one in under the muck in Lake Drummond, in Virginia.”


Zed did the math himself, and I didn’t have to explain why I’d asked. “You mean you saw a space turtle? And a galaxy?”

I nodded, “And the turtle ate the galaxy.”

Zed pushed another button, and J and K answered, their holographic selves hung over his desk. “We have a problem, guys.” Zed pointed at me.

J was the talker, and started first, “Hey, Epsilon! How’s the training coming?”

K glared, like always, “Shut up and let him explain.”

Zed tapped his fingers on his desk, “Well?”

Not knowing what else to say, I explained, “I saw a space turtle.”

“Those are ugly, aren’t they? All covered in green slimy stuff. Like that Swamp Thing from the comic books came to life, but uglier.” That was J. Always talking.

K cut in. “What did the turtle do?”

“Um. He ate a galaxy.”

“Oh, dear.” That’s all K said.

Zed took over, “We’re gonna need you boys to find that turtle, and get him off planet before his dinner is digested.”

J looked at K. “Is this a not good thing?”

K nodded. “It’s good if you want to swim in turtle shit 100 feet deep around the entire planet.”

J nodded, “So this is definitely a not good thing.”

K nodded at Zed, “We’ll handle it, Zed.”

“I’m counting on you, boys.”

The holographic display of J and K vanished. “I do hope they find that turtle in time.”

“Turtle shit 100 feet deep around the entire planet?” I had to ask.

“Well, Epsilon. It did eat an entire galaxy.”

395 words

I pretty much had to write this, when I told Miranda, “OK. So, MIB hasn’t done this one yet, where some giant moss covered turtle eats a galaxy…” And then she answered me with, “Write it for me!” How could I say no? So, for week 192 of Miranda Kate‘s Mid-Week Challenge, we get a fan-fiction story about Men In Black. You can learn about Miranda’s challenge here. The stories people share for the weekly challenge are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.


#SwiftFicFriday Week 69 : Abhor

In my experience humans abhor a mystery. When presented with something they can’t explain, they make shit up, or they wave their hands and proclaim, “It’s the work of God!”

Among my favorite human comedies is the story of face masks, which illustrates resoundingly well how humans abhor what they can’t explain.

Face masks are not perfect. Imperfection is expected where fallible, excitable, emotional, exhaustible humans are concerned. As humans can’t agree on basic definitions, such as what intelligence is, I find it surprising how well masks work. They do an amazing job of stopping viruses and bacteria spread through the invisible drops of moisture in their breaths. The masks stop most of the drops, though not all of them. If the masks stopped all the drops, they would also stop the flow of air, killing those who wore them.

I found it striking how humans had physical confrontations over whether or not to wear a mask. Some humans don’t understand how viruses and bacteria spread through the moisture in their breaths. They concluded the spread was caused by the motion of air currents.

The humans who could not comprehend that water droplets in the air can be removed from the air, with no adverse effects on people, went out and made up explanations for how masks work.

They used infrared and wide spectrum cameras to observe the motion of air when people breathed with and without masks on, proving masks did not stop the motion of the air.

Lacking an understanding that masks effectively stop most water droplets without stopping air flow, these humans declared masks didn’t work, they refused to wear them. Which explains why so many of them died of a simple, airborne virus.

They made shit up. It was wrong. Some of them died.

298 Words

It’s Week 69 of #SwiftFicFriday, hosted by Katheryn Avila. Hard to write when you’re running on empty. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #SwiftFicFriday. They are always fun to read. And there are some great writers who show up regularly.