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Darkness Falls

25 Apr

Some of you may have seen that Mauna Kea is in the news lately because of an ongoing attempt by protesters to stop the construction of the Thirty-Meter-Telescope. The issues in question can be found by searching the web carefully, but be careful to research thoroughly as there are many conflicting viewpoints out there. As an employee of one of the existing observatories on the summit, I have been counseled by admin to keep an open mind and be professional in the expression of my opinions. And so I have. This weeks story for Friday Fictioneers is based on my own photo prompt and speaks my mind quite clearly.

It is longer than normal by 58 words and for these I make no apology. I have been spot on for months and will be absent from the mix for some time to come so I hope you will tolerate my overage. If you do not want to read more than 100 words, you’d better stop 68 words ago.

Thanks to all who read on. See you down the road a bit. Aloha, D.

 

Darkness Falls

(Copyright Douglas MacIlroy)

A mob is coming to destroy what might have been their salvation. They listen to reply, not to understand. They want to watch the world burn.

Mauna Kea is sacred. But not for the reasons they claim. The Universe unfolds, light dances eternally and the majesty of Nature gives not a tinker’s damn about man’s gods. The mountain was here long before they arrived, guided, ironically, by their elder’s knowledge of the stars. It will endure long after they are dust.

Mauna Kea is sacred. Unlike the mob, I have learned this through direct experience over five years of glorious sunsets, cold, clear nights and solitary dawns. Cloaked in false pride and righteousness, ignorance is on the march against the inexorable tide of knowledge.

I lock the doors and wait. Someplace has to be the backwater of science and education in the world. It might as well be Hawaii. This will be their legacy.

If you listen carefully you can hear the stars laughing.

 

 

aaaaaaaafondly

To all my followers

Vampires From the Sky!

10 Jul

 

Vampires from the sky

 

Not really.

 

 

(I kept it short because stories with this subject matter tend to bite. Thanks to Kelly Sands for the other-worldly picture.)

Exodus

11 Jun

100 words for Friday Fictioneers, a tribe of writers wandering the desert, treading on broken tablets and trying the patience of Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, our navigator, cat herder and Moses of sorts (Pharaoh, too, if you think about it) based on a photo prompt below from the inimitable Ted Strutz.

 

Exodus promptCopyright Ted Strutz

 

I used to shake my head at believers. Ignorant fools with an unshakeable conviction in the existence of the supernatural. Eternal life, sacrament of blood, crucifixes, legions of disciples; mumbo-jumbo from people too stupid to think for themselves.

During a routine exam of a new patient, my last, I became convinced otherwise. It wasn’t the four elongated canines and a pair of exaggerated masseter muscles so much as the deep pools of his eyes that transformed me into the living embodiment of a fervent believer.

I intend to remain that way.

The next ferry leaves in a few minutes.

 

 

 

 

Skull Maze

Two Wolves and a Sheep vote on what to have for Dinner

14 May

A 100 word story for Friday Fictioneers, a restive flock of writers shepherded loosely by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, based on the photo prompt below provided by Sandra Crook.

This is a story that has been written many times. To prove my point there are at least four clues in this version that point to a previous incarnation. If you find them all I challenge you to then examine the events of the last fifteen years with the same attention to detail. Then return to your grazing.

 

Two wolves and a sheep vote....

.

Heinrich Luitpold, head of the DHS Border and Transportation Security Directorate sat in the back of his bullet-proof BMW and smiled as his driver fumed. The conference recently held in headquarters suite 1-C had yielded an action plan that would lead at last to a final solution.

In 2019 increased fees charged by TSA to travelers would finance new uniforms and prominent, respect worthy badges. By 2022 agents would be given arrest powers and weapons. In 2025 the mandatory registration and RFID chipping of all citizens would commence.

“Relax, Franz,” said Heinrich, “We are no longer concerned with the sheep.”

 

End game

 

The Department of Homeland Security Border and Transportation Security Directorate is the actual name of a department of our government.

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” – Edmund Burke

“Don’t rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world stood up and stopped the Bastard, the Bitch that bore him is in heat again.” – Bertold Brecht

 

 

HeadsTails

 

 

 

 

 

Admiralty Law

12 Sep

Here is a sea story of 100 words for Friday Fictioneers, a loose confederation of Raftbuilders, be they Captains or landlubbers, from around the world, who each week build a raft, inspired by the picture below, to carry us for a few minutes upon Oblivion’s shimmering tides.

(I once had an off duty policeman try to order me to do thus and such while I was Master of a passenger vessel in near coastal waters. I told him to take a seat and keep quiet or I would take him to the pier and arrange for him to have an opportunity to speak with his on-duty brethren about his conduct aboard my vessel. I also threatened to have him married to the guy sitting next to him unless he settled down. Admiralty Law. A powerful tool in the right hands.)

Admiralty Law

“Six hours and we haven’t caught a thing!”

“It’s a hard life,” replied Salvattore Testa, Master of the Loon Asea, out of Sandy Hook, New Jersey.

“I want my money back.”

“How’s it feel to want?”

“You can’t…”

“Every charter there’s someone who thinks he’s God’s gift to the ocean. Drinks, pukes, talks too much and wouldn’t have the slightest idea what to do if he found himself suddenly swimming out here.”

“…..um….”

“Couple of things. There’s a reason it’s called fishing instead of catching. Your money pays for safe passage and I’m still earning it. Don’t tempt me otherwise.”

 

 

Refund?

 

 

Garden Party

4 Sep

Here is a 100 word story for Friday Fictioneeers based on the photo prompt supplied by our bus driver, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. The picture has a box for everyone. I’m in the one with the little green note asking; Please, must you laugh incessantly? Or perhaps I live one down to the left, forever being told to not spit on the sidewalk. Depends on your POV. This prompt is a writer’s paradise. Enjoy.

Garden Party

“Mom, are there such things as Zombies?” I asked.

“Only in books and movies, dear.”

“If they’re not real then why do people write about them?”

“I don’t know, dear. I think it has something to do with confronting one’s fears.”

“Is there a Santa Claus?”

“No, my love.”

“Easter Bunny?”

“No.”

“God?”

“Of course not, sweetheart, but never say so in mixed company.”

“What about all the people that go to church?”

“It is enough that you know that they believe it with all their hearts.”

“Mommy, are there Vampires?

“Hush up and eat your soup before it clots.”

clot cleaning

Because Freedom is Dangerous

28 Aug

Here is my story for Friday Fictioneers, a gathering of writers from around the world who meet each week in Rochelle Wisoff-Field’s cyber garage  to share their 100 word inspirations based on photo prompts such as the one shown below from Dawn.

This week’s picture is of Union Station in Washington, D.C., a city created by Congress to keep the nation’s Capitol distinct from the states and to provide for its own protection. (Seems they were doing then what they do so well now. Go figure.) It  is also famous for harboring a disproportionate population of vermin whose actions are the subject of my story. (I’ll let you know my cell number as soon as I’ve settled in.)

Lubyanka

“Destination, sir?” the TSA agent asked.

The elderly man standing trackside looked his interrogator up and down, taking in the blue and gray uniform rife with none too subtle bells, buttons, whistles and decals.

“Do I know you?”

“I’m a Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response team member. We’re authorized to….”

“Visible Intermodal what?”

“VIPER Team, sir.”

“Has it crossed your mind how ridiculous that sounds?”

“The Department of Homeland Security chose the name.”

“Ever wonder who chose theirs?”

“Your destination?”

“My ticket says Denver, but it’s looking more and more like Lubyanka Square, Moscow. ”

“Please come with me, sir.”