Flash Fiction: A Taste of Peace

Written for Microcosms, my prompts for the week were “ordinary person”, “airplane” and “sci-fi/fantasy”.

A Taste of Peace

It was as close to the aliens that I had ever been and I sighed inwardly as I saw that my window seat with the extra legroom was next to a couple of Greens.

I stowed my hand luggage in the top compartment, keeping my book clutched against my chest.

Lingua franca, just use the lingua franca. Everyone decided on it when the first lot of aliens landed, didn’t they? I swallowed past the lump in my throat. And I was just an ordinary admin worker. No one special. Not a trouble-maker.

“Hello, may I please pass?” My accent was thick, that much I knew; in class, I’d been mocked about it many times.

The couple looked as flustered as me, only nodded, and I squeezed past, sitting down with the book on my lap. It was an old, yellowed paperback, the spine fixed first with sticky tape and now with duct tape.

I hid the cover from my neighbours. It was one of the old pulp sci-fi stories. We all liked the idea of a lone alien from a destroyed planet keeping us safe. Hundreds fleeing from their planet to this one… not so much. Apparently, the Greens had thought the planet was uninhabited. We’d thought so too when we first arrived and tried to assimilate.

“We do not speak well,” the green alien said.

“Me also.” I relaxed.

The woman – I think it was a female – held out a bar of chocolate.


I stared back at her. Greys and greens usually don’t see eye to eye. Apparently, it was Greys who had attacked the Greens in the first place after years of secret government abductions and experiments. But who could say no to chocolate?

By Carin Marais

Bibliophile, writer of speculative fiction, non-fiction, and maybe-fiction, language practitioner, doer of stuff.

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