Friday Fictioneers — Intergalactic Souvenirs

PHOTO PROMPT © Claire Fuller

Aliens visited Earth once, during the Holocene Epoch of the Quaternary Period. Along with the official samples collected for scientific analysis, one of them smuggled some souvenirs back home as toys for its 5-year-old squirmling.

All quite harmless, it thought, until a beetle crawled out of a piece of deadwood and infected the squirmling with a deadly virus that wiped out every living creature on the planet.

In a couple of centuries from now, human astronauts will visit the star Wolf 1061 and discover exoplanet 1061c is dead. Then they will excavate and find a 2016 copper-plated coin from Earth.


Friday Fictioneers: 100 word stories
Photo prompt: image © Claire Fuller

Author: Sarah Potter Writes

Sarah is a British eccentric who writes offbeat fiction, haiku and tanka poetry. When stuck for words, she sketches or paints instead. She's into nature conservation, sustainability, gardening, dogs, natural health, and reading. Her sociability is something that happens in short bursts with long breathing spaces in between.

35 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers — Intergalactic Souvenirs”

    1. Thank you, Dale 🙂 Yes, it’s terrifying to think that something microscopic could wipe out all the life on a planet, but it’s quite possible. I never forget the Martians in War of the Worlds, being zapped by the common cold virus.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Dear Sarah,

    Dale took the thoughts right out of my head. It doesn’t take much to infect a squirmling and take out an entire civilization. Once more you’ve painted quite a fascinating picture with your keen imagination.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Rochelle
      Thank you.
      It’s scary, isn’t it, the fragility of life: that it can seem so robust one minute and utterly destroyed the next? I can imagine that any alien advanced enough to visit other planets, should think twice about doing so for this very reason (and probably has thought it already about our world!).
      All best wishes


  2. Well done, Sarah. I’ve been reading several of the FF for this week, and they are so inspiring. As I haven’t posted any fiction on the blog, I took the liberty of writing one last evening. I’ll get it posted, perhaps, this evening! (I’ve been a bachelorette this week, as husband out of town to a class; so I have gotten even less done than normal!) It’s funny/interesting, but you and I are on a very similar wavelength for this story. And poor squirmling!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are some good stories on FF this week. Will check yours out. It doesn’t surprise me that we’re on the same wavelength. Great (quirky) minds think alike! As for husbands being out of town, I know I often blame mine for distracting me from getting as much done as I’d like, but it’s probably good for me that he watches the clock and organises me a little, or I tend to drift!


  3. This is wonderful sci fi flash dearest Sarah, love it and I can’t help but think of War of the Worlds and how one tiny, apparantely ‘harmless’ virus can do so much harm, whether in fiction or real life. Brilliant 🙂 xxxx


    1. Thank you, Carla:-) I think that many tragedies happen without malice of forethought, misguided as the perpetrators are with their lopsided view of what’s right. The whole American Indian thing gets me extremely agitated. Grrrrrr


      1. Thanks, Carla. I will check out your Facebook page. We both know what’s getting all the airtime at the moment. Even in the UK, I think the US election is commanding more than its share of airtime. Yet again, I say grrrrrrr!!!!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s the beauty of flash fiction. It can provide the bare bones upon which you can build a novel later. My 5th novel (not yet published) grew out of a 400-word story to become 65K words in length.


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