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Neptune’s Army – Flash Fiction

March 1, 2016

The humpback whale begins to blow out from its two blow holes

Neptune’s Army

“Eyes shut against the darkness, counting back from ten. I hope to god it’s gone when I open them again,” Taska prayed out loud to whatever gods there were in the Universe. She kept her eyes closed for a good five minutes before opening them again.

“Nope, still there,” she sighed.

“You can’t just wish or pray me away,” the creature said as it sat upon the blue rock staring back at Taska.

Taska waved her fin at it. “You don’t belong here. Get back in your rocket and just leave us be!”

The creature laughed. “No can do. I have a five-year mission here and I plan on sticking it out.”

Diving back into the sea, Taska swam to the City to report back to her boss. She dove deep within its depths, past the coral reefs, under the large stone arches until she finally arrived at the Palace. She slid effortlessly through the large doorway and into her boss’ den.

“What say you, Taska?” the King asked.

Taska lounged upon an alabaster shell, thoroughly exhausted. “It’s still there. The gods won’t take it away.”

The King swam back and forth along the den, pacing. Finally, he scrapped his forehead with his dorsal fin and settled back into his shell. “Should we send up Cravis to scare it away?”

“Well, he is plenty big and with those razor-sharp teeth, he would frighten most other creatures of the sea, but honestly, my liege, I doubt this creature would pay much mind. It is content to sit on that rock spying on our every move.”

The King blinked. “We can’t have someone spying on us, Taska. Get back up there and convince this creature to leave!”

Taska sighed and watched bubbles rise up and disappear. “My liege, I spent two hours trying to convince it that nothing good could come of its mission here. Two hours!”

The King slammed his pelvic fin on the edge of the shell. “So spend another two hours! Just… just make it leave! Take as many soldiers with you as you need.”

Waving Taska off, the King turned from her and began snacking on some plankton. Frustrated, Taska swished her caudal fin and exited the Palace. She loved her boss, her King, her Father, but sometimes he royally pissed her off. She swam toward the barracks and ordered up a legion of Swords. Perhaps they could inflict some damage on the creature without her needing to call in Cravis. Sharks were such a pain to deal with and Cravis was the worst of the lot.

Taska swam back up to the surface, followed by her army of Swords. When they broke the surface, the creature was stretched out on the rock basking in the glow of the risen moons. The Swords made a circle around the rock, awaiting orders.

“Creature!” Taska yelled. “The King orders you to leave. If you do not comply, my army here will make you!”

The creature rose up upon the rock and looked around, then laughed at Taska again. “Have these swordfish grown legs? How will they reach me?”

It was true. The creature was too far inland for her army to do any damage. She had hoped that their mere presence would have put the fear of the gods into him.

“You leave me little choice,” she bellowed.

Taska dove back under the sea and began making a series of clicking noises. She felt them long before they arrived. Her largest weapons would force this creature off of that rock and if not back into its rocket, then into the sea. Soon a hundred of the planet’s largest creatures rose up to the surface. Sargent Attamus awaited orders as the other whales held back into the distance. Taska resurfaced.

“Well, what will it be, creature? Leave now or die?”

The creature stood with its two upper appendages hugging its hips. It no longer laughed. A look of panic crept upon its face. “You are not a very friendly lot,” the creature finally said. “I would have thought you inhabitants of Neptune to be more open to explorers.”

This time Taska laughed. “We were once, Earthling, until your lot nearly destroyed our sea with your pollutants. Now, I will ask you one more time, leave or die?”

Sargent Attamus laid in wait. His troops were getting edgy and restless.

The creature sat back down upon the rock. “No, I think I will just stay right here. There is this mission, remember?”

Taska grew furious. How dare this creature! His arrogance! If all Earthlings were like this one, it was no wonder the King refused to let them visit Neptune. She’d heard the stories of early explorers who’d come here, built cities upon the blue rock and then allowed their sewage, trash and chemicals to slip carelessly into the sea, but this was the first time she’d ever met one of these infuriating creatures.

“We have ways to make you leave,” Taska declared.

The creature crossed its upper appendages and stretched out its two lower ones. “You can certainly try,” it called out.

Taska dove back under water and cried out a series of clicks, hums, and gurgles. Within minutes, the sea surrounding the blue rock filled up with all of the creatures of the sea: more whales and swords, sharks and octopuses, large squid and the serpents of the sea, the giant eels. Taska resurfaced sitting upon a large shell.

“Final warning!”

The creature sat there, reluctant to move.

Taska gave Sergent Attamus the order. The giant humpback inhaled and then a few moments later, he exhaled, blowing huge jets of water out of his blowholes. The signal alerted the others.  All of the creatures began swimming about. The sea responded to their movement as huge waves began to move inland toward the creature.

“Okay, okay!” the creature shrieked as it grabbed its gear-bag and ran further inland toward its rocket. “No need to get hostile!”

Taska and the army cheered as the creature climbed back into its rocket and blasted off, back into space.

©2016 Lori Carlson. All rights reserved.

(1017 words)


 

This watery Science Fiction tale is brought to you by terriblemind’s Flash Fiction Challenge using the following prompt: “Eyes shut against the darkness, counting back from ten, I hope to god it’s gone when I open them again.” (Jonny B)

This story is dedicated to Heather @ Word Trix for her birthday! Happy birthday, Heather!

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6 Comments
  1. robynne black permalink

    Love it. Neptunian to the core, where do I sign up? 🙂

  2. Quite right too. Nasty dirty humans. Great story 🙂

  3. Loved this story and the angle you took it from. Very enjoyable read 🙂

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