Author: Andrew Bird

Kerrrrr-SHAZ felt his taut antennae shudder as he struggled to slow the Flying Saucer’s plummet towards jagged Nevada mountains. His face, reflected in the mirrored control panel before him, drained from bright to pale green in fear. Desrius in the co-pilot’s seat beside him tilted his grey elongated head, looking bored as he regarded Kerrrr-SHAZ with oblong obsidian eyes. Kerrrrr-SHAZ heard in his brain: [May I propose a solution?].

The electro magnetic pulse from the Earthlings’ atom bomb test had fried the anti grav engine and pumping more power into it was merely postponing the inevitable. If they could not fix the engine quickly, they would create their own Martian crater right here on Earth.

“How about we lighten the load?” shouted Kerrrrr-SHAZ over the roar of the struggling engine as his beady red eyes flicked to the ejection handle on the back of Desrius’ seat. Kerrrrr-SHAZ imagined pulling the handle and the look of surprise on Desrius’ face as the ejection seat rocketed him out of the Saucer. But with Desrius gone, he might be paired with Glerius (nooooooooo conversation) or Blorius (Mr “Sayings of the Emperor” himself). With a mountain range looming larger in the viewscreen, Kerrrrr-SHAZ realised desperate measures were called for. “What do you suggest Desrius?” he spat out between gritted sharp teeth.

The corners of Desrius’ tiny mouth curved upwards slightly in pleasure. [Well, Ker-Shaz, the gravitational engine has been somewhat overwhelmed because someone insisted on observing the detonation rather closer than advisable]. Bright green returned to Kerrrrr-SHAZ’s face as anger mounted. [Perhaps…], Desrius pondered as a particularly bleak mountain filled the viewscreen, […you might consider culminating the current energy transfer then reinitiating it.] “So, turn the engine off and on?” Kerrrrr-SHAZ said, stabbing a big red button. The roar of the engine was replaced by the rush of air outside as the Saucer entered freefall. A second stab and the engine coughed back into life, causing the Saucer to lurch upwards, narrowly missing being skewered by the mountain’s peak.

Kerrrrr-SHAZ felt his antennae droop in relief. “Well, the Saucer got zapped but you recorded the test, so the Emperor should have mercy on us, right Desrius?” […]. “You were recording, right Desrius?” The mirrored control panel before Desrius reflected the grey draining from his face.