Collaborative Speculative Fiction Part 4

Collaborative speculative fiction part 4 is the last photo prompt for our shared story. Below is the last contribution from last week and my addition for this week. To read all parts of the story, click here. On July 11, I’ll post the entire story. If you haven’t played yet, please feel free to add your inspiration to the the story in the comments.

The creature glided toward the light, its long body leaving a slow wake. My jaw open, I watched it too. Then a gentle splash to my left caught my attention. I stared for a minute and then realized that a second creature like the first was making its way toward the light. I quickly looked between the two animals, and then glanced back at the distant light. Clearly I had been forgotten by the enormous and mysterious creature. Had I also been forgotten by the hurt people back in my house? Now that I wasn’t about to be torn apart by teeth the size of my arm, I had a chance to go back and apologize. I blew out my cheeks, dropped my head, and took two steps toward home. Another thought crossed my mind. Now that I wasn’t about to be torn apart by teeth the size of my arm, I also had the chance to find out what that animal was. And who the person with the light was. And what they were doing. I looked back to the light and counted four distinct swells with tails cutting through the water. I turned my face toward home and heard the door slam. That was enough to make up my mind.

I strode down the pier, the only sound the slapping of those tails and a gulping sound. Through the mist, I saw a white head illuminated by a lantern. The elderly person was pitching something from a garbage can seated on a dolly.

I had the strangest feeling I was interrupting something but cleared my throat.

The person whirled to me, an old man, his face seamed from age and weather. “What’re you doin’ out on a night like this?”

“I-I-I–who are your…pets?”

His eyes narrowed. “You’ve seen the animals?”

“Yes.” I stepped closer, and the stench from the garbage can pushed me back.

“And you didn’t run away?”

I decided to be honest. “I thought one was going to eat me, but then it swam out here to your light.”

“Ain’t my light.” He dug a short shovel into the garbage can and heaved the stinking meat into the sea. “They smell the rotten fish. They can smell it on still nights.”

A thousand questions swirled in my mind like the mist. As I was trying to choose one, the old man stiffened. “That shouldn’t be on the water at this time of year.”

I peered at the sea. The boat that took tourists on pirate cruises in the summer chugged toward the pier.

The old man rummaged through items in a box beside the garbage can. “It’s gettin’ so’s a man can’t have any peace with a few friends any more.”

Collaborative Speculative Fiction Part 3

Onto the next installment of our group story! Here’s the photo for our collaborative speculative fiction part 3. In collaborative fiction, writers take turns adding sentences or paragraphs to a story. To read the first installment, click here. The second installment is here. Below is the last paragraph from last week. My next contribution is below it. I’d love for your to play along! Write your inspiration in the comments.

What was it? And why was it coming toward me? The creature’s eyes had to be as big as my head. And its eyes were fixed on me. It was approaching me fast, now only ten feet away. A wild cry, a high-pitched roar that seemed to slice my ear drums, raged from the creature’s throat. I spun on my heels, adrenaline surging and heart pounding, but I slipped on the wet pier and face planted the cement. Was this it? Why, oh why did I leave the house, slam the door, yell that I never wanted to see any of them again? Was that really the end of it all?

I whipped around to a seated position, expecting to see the creature opening its mouth for its first taste of me.

Instead it lifted its head and made a sound like a giant sniff. Then it swam toward the end of the pier.

Leaping to my feet, I was about to turn and put as much distance between me and the sea as I could when I saw a light bobbing at the furthest point of the pier. That bobbing had to mean a person was holding a light. I’d thought I was alone on the pier. Had the light or whoever was holding it attracted the creature?

What’s the Story?

What’s the story you can imagine for this picture? Here’s mine:

Where’d that creature come from? I’d seen them at the surface but never down here before.

Our eyes locked, and I pressed closer. So strange. It looked nothing like me and yet I could see something recognizable in those tiny eyes.

My brother clicked behind me, and I clicked back.

“Don’t waste your time with that long-finned fish.” His clicks crackled like sand abrading my skin.

“I don’t think they are fish.” I flicked my tail to move closer and hit something smooth.

The creature reached out one of its fins. I tried to touch it with my nose, but it felt as smooth the area I’d hit above it.

“Let’s go!” My brother spun away.

To the creature, I clicked, “I’ll be back.” I turned, my head full of questions.

What’s the Story?

What’s the story behind these two characters? Is the young woman a warrior from a fantasy? A superhero with her sidekick? A super villain with her hench-wolf? I’d love to hear your ideas!

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