[Fiction] Getting the Boid

For a few years now Jabootu’s Bad Movie Dimension has been less a review site and more an examination of monsters, whether from the silver screen or, on occasion, pulp magazine covers. This is not a complaint, mind you. Just how things are.

Every now and then the covers will inspire less commentary and more full on fiction from yours truly. What follows is a prime example of this phenomenon (with inspiration cover provided at no additional cost.

As with the previous post, the astute reader will notice Cullen doesn’t do a lot more than give dialogue. This is an issue he… I’m aware of and know needs changed.

SQUACK SQUACK!

“Damn it, why does he always do this? It’s not a worm, Blue, it’s my breathing tube so please don’t–”

SQUACK SQUACK!

“Okay, fine. I’ll just gently remove–”

Please do not touch [Alien Lifeform] with your ungloved hand, [Spaceman’s name here]. You might contaminate it with your germs and cause untold harm.

“Oh, for the love of… Of all the times not to wear those damn gloves!”

SQUACK SQUACK!

“Fine. This is not a prob. Just have to get back to Dome Base, get some gloves, then throttle Blue.”

That is not advised, as–

“Skip it, GLAD! How far am I from the Dome.”

[Spaceman’s name here], you are a mile out and counting.

“Wait, I didn’t walk that far. And what did you mean, and counting?”

[Spaceman’s name here] has forgotten basic space protocol and not put on the Dome Base Safety break and the Dome is now rolling down hill.

“What do you mean, I forgot? I never for–”

SQUACK SQUACK!

“Argh, look, fine, just, just drive the Dome to these co-ordinates.”

Affirmative. I will drive Dome Base to [Spaceman’s name here]‘s location.

“Great. Just peachy. Estimated time of arrival.”

Unknown. I can not begin drive procedures until the Dome Base has come to a complete stop.

SQUACK SQUACK!

“What, why?”

Safety procedures. Something [Spaceman’s name here] seems to know nothing about.

“And she gets snarky with me. Great. Perfect.”

SQUACK SQUACK!

“Lemme think, lemme think. If I can’t touch Blue, maybe I can shake him off… like…. this! And this!”

Please do not shake [Alien Lifeform] with your ungainly thrashing about, [Spaceman’s name here]. [Alien Lifeform] has a weak stomach and it may–

SQUAAAAAAACK!

<Sploosh!>

Oh no. I am too late. The poor [Alien Lifeform].

“Did it just… oh God. WHY IS THAT EATING THROUGH MY HELMET!”

[Spaceman’s name here], you have been exposed to a corrosive acid as well as most of the [Alien Lifeform] last meal. To follow proper safety procedures for a change, [Spaceman’s name here], please use your anti corrosive acid spray upon contacted surface.

“WHERE IS IT?!”

It is handily placed directly on your belt towards the back of your suit.

“WHY IS THE SPRAY LOCATED ON MY B– oh, wait, I got it.”

Apply liberally to the affected area of the helmet while taking care not dosing [Alien Lifeform] as it might cause said Lifeform untold harm.

“Yeah, yeah, yeah.”

<hist!>

“There we go. Hey, as an added bonus, Blue’s no longer at my air hose. I might be… I might be okay.

“Now then, GLAD. What’s the ETA on Dome Base getting here?”

Unknown. Dome Base seems to be still rolling.

“Still?”

It was a very large hill.

“Nothing to be upset about, right? I’ll just start walking in the general direction. Just give me heads up when you can–”

SQUACK SQUACK!

“Oh great. Blue’s back.”

SQUACK SQUACK!

SQUACK SQUACK!

SQUACK SQUACK!

“And he’s brought his extended family. How nice of him. You know, GLAD, I think I’m going to start running your way.”

As you wish, [Spaceman’s name here]. Be advise that there are at least three [Alien Lifeforms] along your path that might cause further damage to your suit. And they may also eat you, as well. Which may cause the spread of germs and cause untold harm.

“I’m having… a hard time… thinking what I… hate more… You… or this… damn planet.”

Everyone is a critic.

[Fiction] The Hand That Makes

This originally appeared on the original version of this site February 23, 2017. It’s repost as a part of the Stuff Cullen Wants To Be Seen project with minor editing here and there. It’s probably too clever for it’s own good, but I like it. Five years later it has a kick for me. That has to mean something.

Don’t whisper like that. It’s unbecoming.

Much better. Though you could enunciate a little more.

That’s it. That’s the way.

The whole line now. Don’t miss a word. It’s important to get it correct and remember.

Yes. Progress. I think tomorrow we might try a different passage.

You can rest now.


I don’t care if it hurts. You have to do it.

Why? Don’t ask me why. You just do.

Okay, because if you don’t I’ll rescind outside privileges.

Ah. Don’t like the thought of that, now do you?

And there you go. Flex and relax. Flex and relax. Each day a little stronger, each day a little less pain.

You can rest now.


Finished. No more stitches. When you’ve healed there won’t even be a scar. So much better than my last one. I might be learning a thing or two myself.

Don’t mutter like that. It’s worse than whispering.

I can understand your frustrations. It must seem like it’s taking forever for you. You must believe me, though, you’re advancing at quite a steady rate.

Everyone says exactly what you did. At least at first. It’s completely understandable.

Each day you become better and better. And one day it and the pain will all be over.

You can rest now.


Exciting news. From now on, instead of a full day of therapy, you’ll have only a half day.

I knew you’d be pleased! The rest of the day you will be outside. That’s right! Outside doing so much. And better still it will be for the benefit of all.

Oh, lifting and pulling. Building and cleaning. Whatever the schedule says for the day, that’s what you’ll do.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. One of the things you’ll build? It’ll be a new house for me. Now isn’t that a wonderful thing to be building?

Oh no. No, I won’t be helping. Don’t be silly. I have far too many important things to do myself.

You can rest now.


Well done! A full therapy, and not a word of complaint. If all could see your progress!

Better than who now?

It’s not fair to compare the two of you. Nor should you do any comparing. You’re on the same shift as he, and must work together in any case, for the benefit of all.

He can’t help smelling bad, any more than you can. Though perhaps if you bathed more, it wouldn’t be such a problem.

Yes, yes, I’ll make the same suggestion to him when he comes into therapy.

You can rest now.


That was ugly, now wasn’t it? So unbecoming. So less like you should be

His fault? What do you mean, his fault? It doesn’t matter what you think he thinks or how he smells. You shouldn’t have done it. You should have left him alone.

No. No, you didn’t kill him. We wouldn’t be having this conversation if you did. Just delayed production, bad enough.

No, we won’t be doing therapy tomorrow. I’ll be attending your… playmate.

Oh, let me assure you, I’ll get that arm back on and functioning. He’ll be back to normal in no time. Until then you’ll just have to work a second shift as well as yours.

Get back to resting.


I hear you went a calling today. And let me tell you, no one is happier that you sought to apologize than me. Well done. Well done indeed.

Oh, I wouldn’t have made you do it. Don’t be silly. Forced apologies are pointless.

Don’t you say that.

I told you not to say that.

Well you’ve certainly spoiled that gesture, now haven’t you? And such folly. Had you not opened your big yap, I might never have known.

I’m done with you today.


Did I tell you to rest?

DID I TELL YOU TO REST?

I don’t care how upset you are. I want you working on my building! Now get up off your lazy ass and—

Oh, so that’s how it is, is it? That’s what you think?

You think that’s a threat? Go ahead, try and rip off my arms. Go ahead, big Man, you go right on and—

THERE! HOW’S THAT GOING FOR YOU? LIKE IT? LIKE IT?


Round and round we go. Sometimes for every step forward there is a step back. For me as well as for you.

For what it’s worth, I am sorry for what happened. I mean that. I should never had let it go so far.

Oh, that’s all right. No need for you to apologize, my good Man. You were hurt much worse than I in all this. Not that I have to tell you that, of course. Hm hm.

Now, now. Everything will be fine. You will be fine. The bones will heal just fine, and you’ll be back on track to being what you always should have been. Just like how the Father Doctor always meant us to be.

After all, do we both not now walk on two legs? Do we not drink from glasses and eat from plates?

Are we not Men?