Oct 3, 2014

In Space, No One Can Hear You Grammar Like a Pro

Can’t a poor little spaceship catch a break? There I was, sucking ore from an asteroid, when a manic voice jammed seven hundred frequencies. “HELLO,” it blared. Oh, no. It’s them.
“WE ARE LAWYER,” they said, gliding into view from behind the asteroid. “WE AM HELP YOU REACH GREAT JUSTICE.”

"Astronaut"
by Ove Kvavik


When I turned off all my audio and data comms, they switched to semaphore. Large sails crawling with bioluminescent bacteria popped out of their hull. “HELLO,” they signaled, in blinding pinks and greens. “WE IS PROTECTORS OF INDEPENDENT SHIP EVERYWHERES,” said the glowing bacteria. “YOU IS HAD CASE FOR US? LETS WE HELP YOU RESULT! MUCH LAW!”

I displayed the universally accepted code for “Back off.”
“BUT WE SERIOUSLYS AFFORDABLE,” they said. “HAVES SKILL TO HELP YOU IS FIND RESOLUTION!”
“Look,” I said, opening an outgoing data port, “We’ve talked about this before. I have no need of your services. What will it take for you to go away?”
“NOT WANT THAT US YOU REPRESENT? WHY? IT LIKES TO WASTE MONEYS?”
“I don’t have a case,” I said. "I don't need you to represent me anywhere." I felt tempted to pull up and away from the asteroid, but I sure needed that tantalum.
“WE AM NOT GOOD ENOUGHS FOR YOU?”

"Three-headed exploration probe."
Many more where this one came from.

“Hey, look, a squirrel,” I said. Old trick.
“HAHA,” said the bacteria. “SPACE CANNOT BREATHE IN SQUIRRELS. EVERYONE KNOWS.”
OK. Now what?
“IT IS SILLY. YOU FRIENDS, YES? WE AM LIKE TO LAUGHINGS.”
Something told me I had taken a wrong turn.
“WE IS TEAM OF US NOW! FUN FRIEND WITH LAWYER SERVE OF THE LITTLE GUY!”
“I don’t want to work with you,” I said.
“OH? NO PROBLEMS. WE KILL YOU, NO HARD FEELINGS. IS PROFESSIONAL!”

Rocket ship sculpture by Rik & Shelley Allen

NOTES:
1. I made this prompt longer than usual, yes. You are still free to adapt the premise to a story of your own. I just had to expand on the concept of a space-crazed vessel run by bacteria. 50 words would not suffice.
2. The way I see it, the vessels are the characters. Self-aware entities. No human crew.
3. Any day is a good day to enjoy quirky robots and spaceships.

Minius Module, also by Rik Allen.

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