Day 7: Space Visitors

Author Jenna Eatough's Flash Fiction Story from Fyrecon's Fyretober Writing Prompt 2023-10-07

During October I am bringing you extra flash fiction or poetry in celebration of the season and inspired by Fyrecon’s Fyretober!.

Enjoy my seventh entry into Fyrecon’s Fyretober!

Fyrecon's Fyretober Daily Prompt List

1. New neighbors
2. It’s Alive
3. No Exit
4. Walk in the cemetery
5. Door in the wall
6. Mirror
7. Space visitors
8. The Monster Is
9. Anti-magic costumes
10. Skeleton’s battle cry
11. Djinn party
12. Space dwarves
13. Zombie fireball
14. Possessed guild house
15. Lorekeeper’s mask
16. Dragon sight
17. Alien scryers
18. Trick-or-Treating Shapeshifters
19. Disguised spellbook
20. Screaming trapdoor
21. Ghost weaponsmith
22. Jack-O’-Lantern avatars
23. Pheonix light sail
24. Sparkle castle
25. Graveyard pocket universe
26. Sentient wand
27. Haunted Skyhook
28. Pirate space elevator
29. Disguised terraforming
30. The Witches’ Laws
31. Precognizant cats

Bonus Fanged griffin

Bill swept the push broom ahead with a small puff rising into the air with each sweep. An overly energetic push sent dust high enough to enter his nostrils and cause him to sneeze. A movement which sent pain vibrating through his shoulders. Gritting his teeth, he turned his head to the side as he tried to swallow in the exclamation. A habit formed from years containing himself around families.

Not that it mattered anymore.

Bill paused his pointless cleaning to examine the empty sidewalks of his amusement park. The small park he and his brother Wally had spent decades of their lives on. Years preparing, running, and enjoying. They’d seen it through thin crowds to the golden years when they’d had to turn people away for capacity, and back to the park’s attendance shrinking again.

Then Wally passed.

Bill hadn’t meant to let the park fall into disrepair. This had been their dream together, but living in their shared dream had become a nightmare. At least in the immediate aftermath of his death. He’d turned the park’s daily operations over to their manager. A man he’d thought he could trust with Wally’s legacy.

Bill had been wrong.

He’d been blind. Obsessing over a file he’d found on Wally’s computer, something about a new untapped market. He hadn’t noticed the manager slowly drizzling funds out of the park’s accounts until too late. Not until Bill’s phone rang off the hook from collectors.

Bill had tried looking for the manager, but he’d taken the money and run to who knew where leaving Bill to pick up what pieces he could. The books were a shamble, supplies were low, maintenance had been left undone. Bill did the only thing he knew. He rolled up his sleeves and got to work.

Now he hoped he hadn’t come back too late.

Beyond the empty sidewalks, the park bore a skeleton crew. Only a scattering of employees monitored the attractions or stood at empty booths. Most lazed about on their phones more than not. If something didn’t change, he’d have to close the park at the end of the season. He didn’t see anything changing and had begun the paperwork.

Nothing had gone right since Wally passed.

Bill leaned over his push broom, giving it another shove. The hair on his back rose sending a prickling across his skin. Looking up, he glanced about trying to spot what could have caused it. What could have broken now.

The employees had stopped and held their phones loosely looking about as well. Bill hadn’t been the only one to feel it, but everything seemed normal.

A quick buzz vibrated through the area, and Bill blinked as if a blight light had flashed through the area. When he opened his eyes twenty people clustered about him on the park’s sidewalks. Only, not people. At least Bill had yet to hear about tattoos of other enhancements which changed the skin pigment to those shades of blue and green.

One glanced about, his head twisting unnaturally far. His body spun to match his head’s direction when he spotted Bill, and the man strode over to him. “Are you the proprietor?” The voice warbled in Bill’s ear, oscillating between being audible and being overwhelming.

Reaching up, he rubbed a knuckle into his ear and nodded. “I-I am.”

The man straightened and settled back lower in a tottering movement. “We’ve come to be amused.”

“Come?” Bill glanced at the people moving closer to him. “Come from where?”

The same representative of the group spoke again, but this time Bill couldn’t understand what he said. The sounds were nothing like any language he’d heard, and he’d heard plenty running the park. The man pointed up, and Bill followed his direction. His mouth fell open when he saw a silvery object hanging over the park. If it hadn’t been directly above him, he wouldn’t have spotted the thing, for it rippling as if trying to blend with the sky. “We’ve come.”

“You’ve come to be amused?” Bill asked. The man, alien Bill supposed, nodded vigorously. “As in to ride the rides?” Bill asked sweeping his hand across the area. The alien nodded again, and Bill couldn’t voice another question though it burned in his head. Why here?

“Wally’s communications were quite convincing.” The alien clicked. “Oh yes. Recompense!” Bill wasn’t sure what the alien did, but when he held out his hand towards Bill a diamond sat on it. “Will this do for my party?”

Bill stared at the diamond glimmering and huge. He was no expert, but he figured that thing could cover operations for the season. Probably another. Licking his lips, he reached out and hesitated before touching the alien’s hand. His eyes flicked up from the diamond to the alien.

“No worries. We’ll provide compensation each day we attend. Wally’s communication covered this requirement well.” The Alien swept his hand lightly toward Bill as if encouraging him.

“Tomorrow?” Bill asked not trusting his voice if he tried more words. Another diamond tomorrow? And Wally had explained this to them? He supposed that explained the untapped market his brother had mentioned, but how?

“Yes, and each group arriving soon will as well,” the alien said. “Each will pay and identical recompense if this is agreeable.”

Bill glanced back up at the saucer, licked his lips again. A mystery he could worry about another day. He’d been the most popular park on Earth once. Bill supposed he could try being the most popular off Earth. “Sounds like a deal.”

Be sure to check out all the #fyretober creations.

#fyretober2023 #fyretoberflashfiction2023 #fyretoberprompts2023 #fyretober2023day7

“Fyretober is for everyone who loves to create, and this month we’re looking to see your flash fiction, poetry, and illustrations every day. We’ll be providing daily prompts for the month and want to see what new concepts and wonders you can make with them.”

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