“We don’t do these things because they are easy…”

The President’s words rang around the contours of the bowl like an interminable echo. The first carp on the moon was certainly not going to be that. Armstrong wondered how the engineers had managed to fashion a rocket with their fins and how they could light the blue touch paper, it being terribly damp in an environment of 99.7% H2O (discounting a few trace minerals and unmentionables).

He hoped there was water on the moon, hopefully not to much salt – that osmosis could be a killer! – in the Sea of Tranquility. Such a nice name; comforting. He imagined splashdown in the enveloping blanket of a benign, liquid atmosphere.

“Minus ten to launch…”

Armstrong braced himself. “Nine!” Soon now. “Eight!” To distract himself from the imminent g-forces, he thought of the tremendous journey, the Moon, the Sea. Of climbing free of his life-support suit and swimming free, where no fish had swam before…


…once around the castle and skimming the coloured gravel.

(173 words)

Written for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers, Challenge #188.

The story this week is inspired by a book I read some time ago by E.O. Wilson. I bought the book after seeing his talk on why intelligent space travelling aliens – assume they are out there – would likely be physically quite similar to us. It’s a fascinating hypothesis to get into but if you want the short answer, it’s something to do with opposable thumbs, creating and controlling fire, and oxygen.

So you see it’s not because a fish has a short memory – research suggests just 5 months, I’ve heard recently – because the fish would simply write it all down, like Guy Pearce in “Momento”. Or maybe they’d just pass things on to another fish with more month’s memory left. Don’t ask me, I’m not a fish expert!

This week’s photo prompt provided by Jodi McKinney. Thank you, Jodi.

The rules for FFFAW are all explained HERE and please click on the blue FROG button below to read other stories submitted.


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