The Visitor’s Invitation

strange moon

Image credit: Google Images

It happened just that fast. One moment, the three brothers, having just reloaded their Celestron NexStar telescope back in the camper, were about to put out their campfire and call it a night, and the next they were facing the phenomenon.

“This couldn’t be because we’ve been observing the object.” Forty-five year old Jake was the oldest and the first to get the amateur astronomy bug when he was in high school. “I mean, it’s not that close.”

“Not yet, but…” Terry forgot what he was about to say at that moment as he continued to stare at the glowing sphere. At thirty-nine, he was the “baby” of the family, but also the only one whose marriage lasted.

“But nothing. It’s got to be from the object.” Stan worked as a chemical engineer, so was the brother who came closest to being a professional scientist.

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The Wrong Moon

moon

© Gah Learner

“Honey, come here. The full moon is so beautiful tonight.” Robin and Noah Clarke were celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary in a small resort town and had just returned to their hotel room after dinner.

“Full moon?” Noah picked up his smartphone and started pushing virtual buttons.

“Can’t you leave that thing alone and come watch the moon with me, please?” Minor annoyance etched her voice. “We’re on our second honeymoon…”

“That can’t be the Moon. Moonrise isn’t for another hour and the window faces west.”

Robin turned and looked out again. “Oh my God. You’re right. It’s getting bigger.”

I wrote this for the Rochelle Wisoff-Fields writing challenge. The idea is to use the image above as the inspiration for crafting a piece of flash fiction no more than 100 words long. My word count is 100.

The light in the photo is apparently the Moon, but then again, what if it isn’t?

To read other stories based on the prompt, visit InLinkz.com.

Lunar Manqué

the moon

The Moon – Found at chamaeleon-observatory-onjala.de

He called himself Manqué Manx because no matter how much resolve he managed to muster in any state of emergency, he would ultimately falter.

This time though, facing the unknown adversary entrenched in the Plinius crater between Mare Serenitatis and Mare Tranquilitatis, he couldn’t afford to wring his hands in desperation and let government red tape take six months to come up with a list of possible contingency decisions.

The aliens had taken out both America’s Lunar Base One and the Chinese’s Yuèliàng Outpost from orbit and had landed by the time the supply ship was on approach. They couldn’t change course in time and were knocked down as well.

Manx was the only survivor, but he would let that weigh upon his conscience later, if there was a later. Although the hull breach and subsequent atmospheric blow out took everyone else, Manx made it because he was already in his pressure suit, doing a final check on the support vehicle’s systems. He launched right before the Tycho class cargo ship impacted, and was now flying a hundred meters above the surface, approaching Plinius from the southwest.

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10AM

sun moon tattoo

Found at tattoosboygirl.com

John had timed it all perfectly. Renee was at the front reception desk talking with Brian when the flowers were delivered. He watched through the large windows that showcased the lobby as the vase with a dozen long-stemmed red roses (a classic) were placed on her desk. He couldn’t tell what they were saying, but he could guess.

“If you could just sign here, Ms. Stewart.”

“Sure.” She was grinning, convinced that they were from Brian. She didn’t even bother to look back up at him to see the bewildered look on his face.

“Here you go.” She handed the pad and pen back to the delivery guy.

“Thanks. Have a nice day.” He had a good job for the most part, always making people happy.

“Thank you, Bri…” She’d started to stand to give him a kiss and then stopped when she saw his expression. “What’s the matter?”

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The Moon At My Shoulder

moon

© Justin Peters

“I must be dreaming. I mean, you can’t be God.”

“Yes, you are dreaming and I am a manifestation of the Almighty that won’t totally blow your mind.”

Lucas Todd still felt like his mind was being blown. He’d just been accepted into UCLA’s Astronomy and Astrophysics graduate program. Ever since his Dad told him about watching Neil Armstrong setting foot on the Moon on television, he wanted to go there, too.

NASA’s manned space program had gotten pretty disappointing since then. His Dad always thought he’d see a permanent Lunar Base or maybe even a colony being established during his lifetime, but poor Dad died of cancer last year. Lucas didn’t want Dad’s dreams to die with him.

If either NASA or a private space agency was going to establish that Moon Base, then Lucas was determined to be a part of it

“I mean, I don’t even believe in God, well not really.”

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