Thursday, February 27, 2020

Happy Birthday, a Sci-Fi Flash Fiction by Linda Mooney

Posted by: Linda Mooney
Happy Birthday
A Sci-Fi Flash Fiction
By Linda Mooney

            “Happy birthday, dear Gallas! Happy birthday to you!”
            Cheers went up as Wallace presented the large sheath cake aglow with a multitude of tiny striped candles outlining the edges. Gallas watched with patient curiosity as the chocolate dessert was carefully laid on the table, and the crowd of well-wishers gathered around.
            Leaning over the table, Stacie placed the tip of the fire starter on each wick, taking a few moments to get all thirty candles running along the outer edge of the cake. Technically, her Paldolvian mate wasn’t thirty years old. Neither were they certain today was actually the date of his birth. But if all the rest of the crew on the ship got to celebrate their birthdays, Stacie was determined to include her husband in the ritual. So they’d figured today was as good a date as any, and he’d estimated himself to be thirty Terran years old.
            “Every time I think I have learned all your strange customs, you surprise me with a new one,” he groused in a teasing tone.
            “You should be used to it by now,” his wife quipped. Straightening, she gave a wave of her hand to present it to him.
            Gallas looked down at the inscription on the cake. “What am I supposed to do with it?”
            “First, you blow out the candles,” Lt. Shoreson called out, followed by titters and chuckles from the rest of the group that had gathered in the mess hall.
            “To see if your wish comes true,” Pvt. Dewey replied.
            “My wish?” Gallas glanced at his wife. The mate he had fought and nearly died for in this war between planets. The woman he’d almost lost. “I have already been granted my wish,” he stated, making it clear to all what he meant.
            Stacie’s face reddened under his direct, loving gaze. “Just blow out the candles so everyone can get a piece of cake and get back to work,” she chided with a smile.
            Bobbing his head once, the Paldolvian took a deep breath and blew, seeing the flames extinguish under the gale.
            After which each candle re-lit.
            He jerked his head back in surprise as the others laughed good-naturedly at the joke they had pulled on him. Undaunted, Gallas tried again, and again the miniature fires popped back into existence.
            Sighing, he looked at Stacie, who was trying vainly to stifle the giggles behind her hand. Commander Stancion had collapsed on a seat, tears backed up in his eyes, his sides hurting from mirth. Others around them also howled at the joke.
            Undaunted, he licked his fingers and tried to pinch the flames out on a couple of candles. When that tactic didn’t work, he reached for a nearby cup of water, but Stacie managed to stop him before he poured the contents over the cake.
            “No, no! You’ll ruin the icing!”
            Gallas grunted. “I take it spitting on them is not acceptable, either.”
            She laughed. “That is definitely not allowed,” she told him.
            Reaching over, he tentatively swiped one clawed finger across said icing, bringing it up to his nose to sniff. He followed with placing a portion on the tip of his tongue, then shot at glance at his mate. “It is not unpleasant.”
            “It’s not meant to be,” she countered.
            He perused the candles again. “How do I kill them?” His query brought forth a fresh wave of chuckles from the group. Placing his hands on his hips, he studied the cake and the problem laying before him. “This is meant to be a test of my intelligence,” he stated.
            “It’s all meant as good-natured fun,” his wife assured him.
            He stared at the candles for a few more seconds, when a smile spread over his face, and she knew he’d found a solution. What she didn’t expect was for him to reach over to pluck a pair of the irritating things from the confection, turn them upside-down, and snuff them out in the icing.
            “There. I have defeated the undefeatable. Now we can eat our foe.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Rim of the World, Book 7
Sci-fi Romance
by Linda Mooney

Things have been quiet on Neverwylde, but everyone has been busy. With a new group of research scientists sent to spend the next six months on the planet, their goal is to learn and document as much as possible to classify the alien world as a 2A planet. But things never go as planned on this still wild and unknown galactic anomaly.

Dox has a one-track mind, but that’s normal for his kind. Being an isotope baby, he was specifically created to be highly intelligent, often found working on inventions, and rarely speaking beyond a couple words. But he’s also fiercely loyal and protective, as well as sweet and innocent, with zero experience when it comes to women. They never even crossed his mind, until now.

Xeno-archaeologist Dr. True Brown can’t wait to get her feet on Neverwylde soil. Having researched everything there is to know of the planet so far, she’s somewhat starstruck when meeting the original crew, but no amount of research could prepare her for the reality of the world, or the feelings the quirky, quiet, innocent tinkerer invokes. She didn’t plan on romance while on this mission, but then again, she didn’t anticipate her fellow scientists turning on them either.

Politics and greed are getting in the way of science and discovery, and may push everyone off the planet for good, wiping out all of their hard work. With months turning into days, the crew scrambles to protect a world filled with endless precious resources and intelligent life.

Once again the greatest enemies may not be the deadly creatures on the planet, but some of their own.

Warning! Contains a borrowed uniform, lessons on love, lost luggage, a purple cavern, a mosaic map, relevant theories, alien watchdogs, low-frequency sound, and a fight to protect others as well as those who are beloved.

Excerpt and Buy links

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