Extinction (Friday Fictioneers)

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Image by The Reclining Gentleman at http://thereclininggentleman.wordpress.com

‘2040,’ he reads aloud, ‘last living bird, the common sparrow, dies from avian influenza.’

He moves along to the next panel and taps the touchscreen.

‘2078: the last female crocodile in captivity, and last reptile known, dies of old age.’

He shakes his head in disbelief.

‘2123: rising water temperatures lead to the death of all oceanic fish and mammals.’

He takes a deep breath before moving to the next screen.

‘2236: last mammal on earth, male human living in southern China, dies age 98.’

He taps his antennae together thoughtfully.

And with a flutter of wings he is gone.

************

I felt a little sci-fi this week since my short story ‘Meet the Martians’ was recently published in the StringyBark Future Times Short Story anthology (hard copy and ebook). It’s an exciting moment to see my name in print, especially in a genre I’ve never attempted before. But bring it on! There’s something rather exhilarating about predicting the future, especially a future that’s been taken over by insects…

Friday Fictioneers is a challenge set by Rochelle Fields where writers around the world create 100 word stories inspired by the one image. For more information see: http://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/24-october-2014/

49 Comments

Filed under Friday Fictioneers

49 responses to “Extinction (Friday Fictioneers)

  1. Dear Jessie,

    I hope we’re not really facing a future of intelligent insects. Well done sci-fi. And a hearty congratulations on your short story. There’s nothing to compare to seeing one’s name in print for the first time. Revel in it.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

  2. Dear Jessie,

    A rather brilliant take on the prompt and one that has a high probability of coming true. ‘We strut and fret our hour upon the stage and then are heard from no more’….except in the fossils. Great work and a lesson that will be ignored in the long run by the vast majority…soon to be gone.

    Aloha,

    Doug

  3. Another great story from your pen. Congrats on your short story being published.

  4. Ooh Jessie, this is great. I didn’t see those last lines coming, although I did have a brief thought about who built the information boards if the last human is dead – but then if they can read them, then the insects can surely build them.
    And congratulations on the short story publication!
    Claire

  5. Jessie, I liked it a lot. I can expect that once the insects rule the world there will be a band called the Beetles playing. πŸ™‚

  6. Quite a twist there – a wry twist. Well done.

  7. Loved this piece. Great job!

  8. Very Cassandra. If only it weren’t true. Fine piece of writing.

  9. Whoa! This is very, very nice. I looked at the plaques along the rail and thought, “I love those when we’re travelling. They tell so much.” But not as much as your story.

  10. I guess the insects inherited the earth after all. Hopefully this isn’t too accurate a prediction of the future. πŸ™‚ Congratulations on the published story.
    -David

  11. Cute story, congrats on the publication!

  12. So that’s what the future holds, Jessie. You do have a knack for SF as this great story shows.
    Congratulations on the publication!

  13. At least the insects are starting out by lamenting and memorialising what has been lost. Their future looks a little brighter for this reason. A thought-provoking and sobering story.
    Marg

  14. Great story Jessie. I wonder how far from the truth it will be!! Congratulations on your publication – well done!

  15. I really liked the ending and the implications are stunning ~ Congratulations!

  16. Lovely twist. and what is scary is it may just end up being true

  17. Dear Jessie,
    Congratulations on publication! From what I’m reading here, SciFi and speculative fiction in general could be what you were born to write. I enjoyed your flash this week–tightly written and neatly sewn up at the end into a complete story. That complete story thing is the true challenge with but a 100 words to use.

    All my best,
    Marie Gail

  18. AnElephant finds this entertaining.
    And he, of course, lives forever.

  19. Jessie, Congratulations on having your short story published! Good and creative story. That was a great twist at the end. Being a human and lover of nature, I hope that doesn’t happen. Well written. πŸ™‚ — Susan

  20. I have one word for all aspects of your post – flash fiction story and publication announcement: Fabulous!

  21. Oooh _ like my sci-fi, and this is nicely done. Last human dying in captivity is a turnaround on the usual ‘last man alive’, which is clever.
    Cheers
    KT

  22. Dear Jessie, Wow, how surprising! Great story and very entertaining. You have a wonderful imagination! Nan πŸ™‚

  23. Nice “easy-to-read” Sci-Fi. I liked this story. … GREAT CREATIVITY

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