Friday Fictioneers – Sci-Fi – The Arrival

5 01 2013

Better late than never, here’s my submission to this week’s Friday Fictioneers. Will try and get back on track with the submitting and visiting next week. Happy New Year!

Copyright Lora Mitchell

The Arrival

The children jumped about and laughed, cavorting in the cold night air. The adults cheered and waved as four pink bubbles – the creation of some exotic physics – slowly expanded in the darkening sky like giant nocturnal flowers slowly unfurling their petals in the moonlight.

The crowd fell silent as the gateways opened to reveal the expected ships. Long, grey and featureless they emerged slowly from iridescent tunnels and drifted silently out over the waiting city.

They promised us progress. They promised us a future. They promised us they were friends.

And then the screaming started.




21 responses

5 01 2013

This is a beautiful transition from hope to anticipation to pure despair. I love it!

5 01 2013

Ooh – really sinister. A very strong visual story. I wonder if it might work even better without the final line? The penultimate one, ‘They promised us they were friends’ is a great line, with so much threat in it all by itself.

5 01 2013

I’ve been guilty of this before; adding in a final explanatory line where the implication is better served. Definitely something I need to be aware of. Thanks.

5 01 2013

Dear Pete,
Powerful ending for your story. Although I’m thinking I might agree with Claire. Plus you can save 5 words. In the end it’s your call. Good story.

5 01 2013

I agree. The statement ‘They promised us they were friends’ combined with the build up of suspense should be enough to imply they are not what they say without the last line. Guilty as charged. In my defense I’m running late and wrote this in ten minutes whilst listening to Southamption vs Chelsea in the FA Cup!

5 01 2013

I really liked your word choice, it was rich and flowing.

5 01 2013

Very kind, thank you.

5 01 2013

Oh, man, this is the type of story I love. Great job.

5 01 2013

Thanks. I promise there’s more sci-fi to come.

5 01 2013

great use of your 100 words. you tell the story well. dropping the last line would leave the reader with a sense of expectation. I believe the tension building through the story leads us to think it’s an ominous invasion.

5 01 2013

I agree. It’s a fault I’m trying to cure. Commonly refered to in these parts as “statin’ the bleedin’ obvious”. See also comment above.

5 01 2013
Tom Poet

I like it. Ten minutes? I love it. So you cut a few lines out….


5 01 2013

I wondered where you’d gone and fortunately, here you and your story are. I agree with the last line comments. The story’s beautiful images contrasted sharply with the reality of what was about to come.

How’d the game turn out?


5 01 2013

Dear Pete,

I think your last line added to the story, though some have said you could have omitted it. Rather well done for being written during a soccer match. I envy you the ability.



8 01 2013

I am inclined to agree with Doug.

Very well done.

6 01 2013

Okay, this was really good. Perfect tone and pacing, excellent word choices. You gave the sense of danger rolling in slowly and carefully on the unsuspecting crowd. I loved it.

I agree about the last line being unnecessary. I also think it was out of sync with the rest of your writing. The rest of the story was so artfully crafted that “And then the screaming started” seemed kind of bland to me.

That said, I really, really liked your style here!

6 01 2013

A wonderfully menacing and graphic story. I could just see those ships. Very HG Wells. I’m reasonably ambivalent about the last line but on balance I think I might have left it out. Very nice work.

6 01 2013
Sarah Ann

Hi Pete,
I think the story needs the last line. I would have been left wanting with,”They promised us they were friends,” but then I’m a bit slow.
The “giant nocturnal flowers slowly unfurling their petals in the moonlight” is beautiful. (Just to be picky you’ve got too slowlys in the sentence.)
A great change in emotion from start to finish. Well done.

6 01 2013

Well spotted on the ‘slowlys’, missed that one. Normally a bit more careful than that. Thx.

6 01 2013

Nicely done, Dude… watching SciFi Horror unfold… and such a sweet start too.

7 01 2013

not much i can offer about this except it was very well done. i’m glad i’m not the only one who saw aliens out there.

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