26 parts of a Speculative Fiction story by J Lenni Dorner
My scream leaves me gasping, then gagging. My lungs are on fire. The rest of my body shivers and shakes, fighting against the cold. A viscous, green, translucent fluid surrounds me. I’m going to drown in slime. Just one breath of air, just one, and I could maybe swim out of this.
But it’s so hard to move. Am I paralyzed? Maybe I’m chained? No, I’d feel chains, I think. This is different. I know I have limbs, ones I’ve used many times. They just aren’t responding. The shivers and shakes have stopped, I think. I can’t feel.
Either the fluid has no taste, or I’ve forgotten how my tongue works. Is there a smell? Slime should have a smell, shouldn’t it? Parsley water has a scent. Not a strong one, but a scent. It’s not as green as this. What could make this color?
Does it matter? I’m drowning in green slime, and knowing the shade of green isn’t going to change it. The only sound left is my heartbeat, which is slowing. Or fading. Maybe I’m going deaf. Can deaf people hear their heartbeat?
It’s gone. I feel nothing, hear nothing, taste nothing, smell nothing. Darkness will come soon, and I’ll be dead. My daughters will be orphans. But maybe I’ll see my wife and son again.
“Your newest Earthling!”
The words ring in my ears as I fall. A crowd cheers in the distance. Thousands of unfamiliar scents fill my nose. There are lights beyond the slime. I swim toward them. My limbs! I can move again. I can feel. I’m soaked in slime, and have never been more grateful to know it.
Someone grabs me.
“Earthlings have no worth here.” Something heavy collides with my head. I put up my arms in defense. The crowd chants words I can’t make out.
Have you ever taken a moment to appreciate your senses?
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