Punishment Enough

“What movie are you watching?” the old woman asked, clearly seeing the title screen and introduction on the television.


“Oh, that was a good one,” she said as she sat on the couch. “I don’t like this opening.”


“Ha ha ha, that’s silly,” the old woman said just two minutes into the show. *cough* *cough*

The old woman got up from the couch and went to the kitchen for a drink of water. “Now, do I want a glass or a bottle?” she asked herself. “I like that actor. What’s his name again?”

“Which one?”

“You know, that one.”

The young lady sighed and decided just to pick one. “Dan Aykroyd?”

“No, the other one.” The old woman opted for a glass of milk instead and returned to the couch. “That one.”

“That’s Dan Aykroyd.”

“No, the other one is Dan Aykroyd. Isn’t it?”

“No. Can we please just watch the movie.”

“I’m not stopping you from watching the movie.”

The young lady sighed and shook her head. “Uh-huh.”

This continued for the next hour until a bright light suddenly filled the room and blinded the two women. When the light subsided, the old woman was gone.

“Mom?” the young lady asked. “MOM!”

Nothing. She searched through the house in a panic then realized the house was quiet. Peacefully quiet. She sat back down on the couch and picked out a different movie. Less than an hour later, a bright light filled the room again and quickly subsided.

“Now what are you watching?

The young lady screamed. Her mother was now sitting on the couch again, but there was a note attached to the back of her blue cardigan, which read: She never shut up! We are giving her back to you! That is punishment enough.

The young lady sighed and resigned herself to never watching a movie in peace and quiet again.



The Primer

Saturday nights used to be filled with sitting four inches away from the console television watching Captain Kirk scream at Klingons and Time Lords forever battling the Daleks and Cybermen. At least that’s how Adrian liked to remember it. Life changed when President Trump announced the development of Space Force. The call came out for volunteers and Adrian was one of the first from Iowa to join. It was the only time he had wanted to be first in something. He wanted to be Captain Kirk, soaring among the stars.

Training was difficult as they had to be prepared for anything. Air Force facilities were used for pilot training, while Army facilities were used for hand-to-hand combat training. He didn’t want to fight. Besides, who were they going to fight in space…E.T.? A week after graduation and appointment to Battalion 1, Adrian found out who they would be fighting, and there was no turning back now.

Their primary workplace was not in space as the name implied. Rather, they were all locked in an underground facility. It was there the true nature of space force was revealed, and who was really behind the show. Members of Battalion 1 were all loners, gamers, or computer geeks. People who were more comfortable behind a screen than with others.

Their mission was simple. Spread the message. Their lives were spent underground, behind computer screens. Their only entertainment was found in a secretly developed holodeck, although Adrian had suspected they existed all along since AR had been made commercial so quickly.

Adrian took to Space Force and it grew on him. He quickly advanced through the ranks. Much faster than anyone else. He was young, talented, inquisitive, but also naive. Just what they had been looking for when they posted the recruitment posters in his high school.

The funny thing about being inquisitive and naive is that it makes one gullible, and Adrian was no exception. It wasn’t until he was called before the Commander that he learned how naive he was and how far from television his life had become. One thing about space force though…once a member–always a member. Sometimes Adrian gets the feeling that someone knows he’s there, watching, hoping to be spotted by a new anti-virus or malware detector, but he never is. They are too smart for that. They have lied in wait for decades. Watching, waiting, learning, planning, experts in tantalizing imaginations. Soon, it will be time for Earth’s real rulers to make their presence known, but in the meantime, they are content supporting science fiction and conspiracy theories. Two things that make people believe in the impossible just enough to think everything is possible.

This short was inspired by the 3TC prompts – Time Lord, Klingon, holodeck and FOWC with Fandango – tantalizing

Worth A Thousand Words #30

Photo credit: NASA and JPL

Welcome to Worth A Thousand Words

Use the photo prompt above to find your inner muse and set it free. No limits on word count, genre, rating, etc. Let your imagination run wild.

To participate, simply write a story for your blog and either link back directly to this page or post your link in the comments.

Please use WATW as a tag so that I can find your stories easily if the pingbacks don’t work, or you forget to post a link in the comments.

Remember, no word limit, the longer the better, read what others have written, and most of all, HAVE FUN!

* The photo is of the tarantula nebula. It is 159,000 light years away from Earth–that means it would take 5,914,800,000 years to reach it in the Shuttle Discovery, and located in the Dorado constellation (the swordfish) visible only in the southern hemisphere.

Image result for dorado constellation
Photo credit: The Star Witness