Apr 18 2018

Q #AtoZChallenge Quinn #Fiction #SFF #WEPFF


AtoZChallenge Theme 2018 J Lenni Dorner #SpeculativeFiction
26 parts of a Speculative Fiction story by J Lenni Dorner



#AtoZchallenge Letter Blog of author @JLenniDorner #wepff April 2018



Jenesis and I finish the winner’s feast in silence before falling asleep together on the mat.

“Attie, wake up.” She rubs my shoulder.

“Why? Is there breakfast?”

“I don’t know what that is. You need to prepare.”

I laugh. “Just hand me a leftover bite of food.”

“There is no more food. They took the scraps while we slept. If you wish to have more, you must win it.”

My life cannot be endless battles. I roll over, away from her.

“Attie! Did you not hear the sound? You have another fight.”

“Hopefully it’s another lobster alien.”

Jenesis pulls off my clothing. I protest at first. But I know she’s doing what must be done, and putting on the fighting costume is what I must do. This is how we will survive until I can figure out a way off Phaeton.

“Stupid world. I miss my children. My family must be beside themselves. How long have I been here? How much time has passed since my abduction?”

She motions to the padded walls. “Only those who have been to surface worlds speak of time in such ways. Sleep, fight, recover, eat if you are lucky, and repeat. That is how you should measure time.”

I run my fingers through my hair, finding sweat and grime. “Any chance I can win a shower?”

“I don’t know what that is.” She moves my arm, helping me stretch.

“Of course not.” I run my tongue over my teeth. I’ve never gone so long without brushing. My mother was a stickler for oral hygiene. “My mother is probably heartbroken. She had thirteen children, and now she’s down to ten.”

“Ten?”

“One died in infancy. I’ve been abducted by an alien, not that anyone would suspect that. Vanished. Just disappeared.”

“And the other?” She rubs my calf. The healing worms have done their job.

I shake my head. “Don’t know, don’t care.”

“You do not care what happened to your sibling?”

“Nope.” I swing my arms across my chest. “Hey, what you said before we went to sleep, about trophies rarely raising a child, and fighters never meeting their offspring?”

“Yes?” She stands as her fingers run along my outfit, sealing me in.

“Then how did your mother raise you?”

“She was a champion. Champions do what they want, eat when they want, go where they want.”

“Huh.” I scratch my chin. A red beard is growing on my normally shaved face. “So your father was a trophy?”

Jenesis huffs at me. “He was also a champion. When she died, he left.”

“Left? Champions can leave?”

She raises an eyebrow. “Who on this world do you think could stop them? Do you not understand what a champion is? The seven best fighters. Leaving is the road less traveled, for there is nowhere that would treat a champion better.”

“That qualifies as important information. I’m ready. Bring on the fight.”

This battle is nowhere as easy as the previous one. A creature closer to an abominable snowman is my opponent. His fists are hard and heavy, like two boulders. But his trophy, if he has one, doesn’t take the care in costume design that mine did. Jenesis keeps my “dangle bits,” as she calls them, wrapped against me. Not this guy. I drop to the ground and kick upward. The roar makes my ears ring. They keep ringing as I’m taken from the arena.

Brydanz waits for me in my quarters, again. “Another win for Attie the Earthling.”

I flip him off. “How’d you get your job? Abducting people against their will, forcing them to fight or starve, that’s gotta be an interesting application. Did you study for that?”

His evil grin unfurls. A mouth shouldn’t be able to do that. If he’d done it when we first met, I might have pegged him for an alien. Or a creature from a nightmare. Probably the nightmare thing, since we did meet after my nap in the graveyard.

“I’ve brought you another trophy. Younger than most, but he is fathered by a champion.”

“Lovely. I’ve already got one with two champion parents.”

“Indeed,” his grin gets wider, sicker, the way it did the night he took me. “This one is special though. See if you can guess why.”

A red-haired boy steps out from behind Brydanz.

“Danny?” My legs give out, landing me on my knees. The world shatters, time stops, my lungs fail. “My son? How?”

The boy digs the tip of his right big toe into the mushy floor. “Is that my new trophy name? Father called me Quinn.”

I wipe my eyes. The voice, the movements, it’s not my son. I look up at Brydanz.

“Will you keep this trophy, your nephew, or shall I dispose of him?”

Adrenaline burns as it courses through my veins. I’m on my feet in an instant. My hand wraps around Brydanz’s neck, lifting him off the ground and pinning him to the wall. His every rancid breath is mine to permit or deny. His thunderous alien heart misses three beats. My snarl replaces the sound.

“You. You abducted my brother. Was it before or after the cars collided? Did he kill my wife and son, or was that your doing?”

line break

WEPFF critique badge http://writeeditpublishnow.blogspot.com/2018/04/welcome-to-wep-writeeditpublish-april.html

873 words, FCA


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19 comments

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  1. Wow. The plot thickens. This is so good!
    Janet Miles has this post to share Blogging From A to Z – 2018 – P is forMy Profile

    • Yolanda Renee on April 18, 2018 at 6:28 PM
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    Fighting for your life and the life of those you love, how awful to be controlled in such a way. Food withheld, knowledge of your loved ones dished out in spurts. It would raise the anger, the adrenaline, the stakes. Horrific, but a very, very interesting read! Excellent.
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  2. Wow! My heart is pounding. I need to read this story from the beginning. And to the end. I hope there is a happy ending for this guy.

    • Deborah Drucker on April 18, 2018 at 11:48 PM
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    Interesting alien world but I would not want to be stuck in that situation. It would be good if he can eliminate Brydanz and then escape with his nephew.
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  3. Very intriguing. I like the world and situation you have built. Lots of really good tension. WELL DONE>
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  4. Fighting for your life, as your unusual family comes back on you. Talk about a road less traveled, fighting the theme like a glove. Well done.
    Christopher has this post to share WEP April 2018 Contest PieceMy Profile

  5. Wonderful world building. How horrifying to be trapped in a place without the common measures of time, without the comfort of news of loved ones. Brilliant take on the prompt!
    Nilanjana Bose has this post to share Q is for Qongqothwane …and …Qart-Hadasht …My Profile

  6. This story took me off guard
    I had to take a step back
    Taken but thought lose
    On a world to fight
    Daily for one’s life

    A Road force to go down
    No chose given around
    So fight and be healed
    For their glorious right

  7. Sounds like a hard life, like gladiators of the future. This story intrigues me, and I would definitely read more. I don’t think I’d like to be called a trophy though. . .but one does what one has to to eat and survive.
    Good luck with the A to Z!
    DG Hudson has this post to share WEP – The Road Less Traveled, An Outpost StoryMy Profile

  8. A very difficult life to live. I saw small episodes of The Gladiators. I came away thinking people haven’t changed. An engaging story.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia
    Pat Garcia has this post to share WEP – APRIL 2018 CHALLENGE, Janie B, by Pat Garcia,My Profile
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  9. Great episode, first a way out is revealed to get back home, then the twist at the end with his presumed dead family. Great stuff.
    https://iainkellywriting.com/2018/04/19/q-is-for-quimper-france/
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  10. Cool story and very intriguing premise!!

    Donna B McNicol, author & traveler
    Romance & Mystery…writing my life
    A-Z Flash Fiction Tales: http://dbmcnicol.blogspot.com
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  11. Hi j lenni! Fantastic story. Fantastic world building. Fantastic ending! Loved it from start to finish. Will have to read more.

    Thanks for linking for WEP during the A-Z. You’re doing a great job.

    Denise
    Denise Covey has this post to share #WEP #flashfiction, my story, LOVE SUCKS. Vamps in Paris.My Profile
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  12. Flipping what was thought to be known around might be more of a shock than the alien world, or maybe not. Fighting in an alien arena may be quite shocking for a bit. haha

  13. Woah! His nephew Quinn! Looking forward to Attie seeing his brother.
    Emily Bloomquist has this post to share Sunrise in Puerto Lopez, Ecuador #AtoZChallengeMy Profile
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  14. Great writing as always! I love your A to Z theme, and I’ll have to come back and read this in its entirety some time soon!
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    1. Cool cool! Thanks.
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    • Jo-ke Ojo on May 2, 2018 at 1:15 PM
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    Engaging. Scary. Intriguing. Life. Survival.
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  15. Great twist! I can see him fighting the Yeti type monster with ease, lift his abductor with strength he possibly shouldn’t have… Excellent.

    Ronel from Ronel the Mythmaker A-Zing with Everything Writerly: Q is for Query
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