Honours even. Well done both. For posterity's sake this was a flash fiction special contest - a challenge risen to admirably by the winners and all the entrants. Thanks for your support. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Evelyanin - The Meeting “Alright everyone, settle down! We need to get things sorted out. Before we start, let’s get the names cleared up. You, by the paperclips, what’s your name?” “I’m Steve, remember?” “Sorry Steve. What about the guy beside you?” “I’m not a guy. My name’s Megan.” “Oh yes, Bruce’s secretary. What about the rest?” Everyone starts identifying themselves, the chatter growing louder until Marlin climbs up the pencil sharpener and signals for the group to be quiet. “Well, looks like everyone’s here. Name tags would be really nice right now. Kevin, I heard your name somewhere. Come up and give us an explanation. Oh, and please talk to us in English, not technilese.” “Thank you sir. Sadly, I don’t even have a scientific explanation, but the team and I do have a theory.” Everyone stares intently at Kevin. “Go on.” “ When the world was covered in radioactive fallout from the nuclear war, every human being was killed. However, we believe that we, or as some might call, our souls, needed to continue as some form on this earth, so we transferred to one of the only things that survived the radiation.” “Cockroaches!” Someone screams. “Uh, yes. I’m not quite sure how it all worked, but it is undeniable that we are now cockroaches.” Panic starts filling the room. “Everyone, settle down! If this is reversible at all, we need to calm down and work together. Has anyone seen the president?” The room is quiet. “Okay, bad question. Sir, if you are anywhere near here, please say so.” Everyone looks around, but no one moves. “Looks like he isn’t here, perhaps we’ll find him later. Kevin, tell us a little more about cockroaches.” “Yes Mr. Secretary. Cockroaches are from the order Blattaria, they are-“ “Some useful thing please.” “Uh, of course. They have average life span of about one year.” “One year! God help us!” “No need to freak out yet Charles, let him continue.” Kevin twitches his antennae nervously. “The lifespan doesn’t have to be too long. After all, a female cockroach can have up to 400 offspring in her life time.” A voice interrupts from the back. “Excuse me Mr. Secretary, Gloria fainted.” “She’ll be fine, she’s a cockroach for crying out loud. Let Kevin finish what he has to say.” “Uh, yes, uhm, cockroaches eat thing like-“ “Will someone explain what is going on here?!” “Ah, Mr. President! Good to see you alive and well. Come on up, we have a lot to discuss.” ------------------------------------------------------------------ Speedy - World Fair - Coming Soon The cool breeze blew yesterday's garbage around casually, but nobody was left to notice, nor care. The sun reflected off a magnificent lake's azure surface, but the dead had little time for beauty anymore. The smell of decaying flesh drifted, but unlike reckless man who murdered itself, the species who survived relished such treasure, rushing in competition to stake a claim. A centipede crawled down the surface of a lonely building, no longer scared of rolled up newspapers or little kids with curious agendas. Those stupid upright creatures had left so many cracks open to venture through since they had been silenced, but the curiosity of a hollow eye socket was to much for one to refuse. Weeds grew through a split tarmac road in some random city. They grew fast, and soon they would grow strong. As time continued, the city would be populated by more flora and fauna then ever before. Life during the dark years of the upright monsters was finally over. Their day had come, and together they would rise as one. One fading poster slowly losing its grasp with a brick wall, showed an image of a young girl playing on a swing in a park. It was entitled, 'The World Fair', and it was coming soon. With its illustrations of many bright colors and smiles, you could almost hear the girl's cheerful laughter as she swung to great heights. What was left of a corpse, lay at the center of a town square–exposed tendons and ligaments held bone and dry meat together. The sun burst through dark purple clouds, a ray of light shone upon the corpse revealing a small sprout of life emerging from death. Time would pass, it would grow from the spent life and continue to thrive, but it would never birth flowers or leaves. A few feet up, around its great girth would hang the same lifeless corpse of its creator. A bony finger pointing down toward the Earth. A gesture to where the hottest, most populated and antagonizing party, was now taking place. The skull of the nameless victim rests tightly between two branches with jaws hanging ajar. Once, only hate, anger, and recklessness would come from such a vice. Now a nest harboring a baby dove beheld the world from within, peacefully. The World Fair had come–the colors brighter than the poster or its artist could have imagined. While the rats and roaches enjoy their menu, and colorful birds, with joyous butterflies entertain an awakening world, it appeared those silly upright morons have missed their own show.