You may be wondering what is Writersverse? It is the name of the writing group I am a part of which speed writes. Like the Spider-verse, each of us are given the same topics, (i.e. Spider-man) but then are given just a short amount of time to come up with our own original stories centered on the topics.
This story was a part of a competition for my writing group! I won 3rd place with this story!
Time limit: 1 hour
Genre: Space Western
Prompt which must be in the story: Frog
Extra prompt which had to be a main part of the story: Giraffe
The fourth sun of Numerrk burned low upon the horizon. Its pink hue casting a reddish tinge across the empty and sparse planet. All seemed still and calm; yet it was anything but a peaceful stillness. Rather, this was a deathly stillness brought upon by the smoking guns of the New Numerrk gang.
Houses, shops, inns, saloons, women, children; all silent, all full of holes. Caught and captured in the endless cycle of war.
Klint Shaw surveyed the apocalyptic nightmare with a grim expression, his grey duster flapping in the stale breeze. As the wind picked up his duster was drawn back, revealing a pair of Krayton Six-shooters holstered on his thighs. Klint absent mindedly rubbed the grip of his right six-shooter as he wandered the newly appointed ghost town.
The tales of the New Numerrk gang’s war against the native people of Numerrk had reached even the farthest planets in the known galaxy.
“If this war continues, my potential profit from Numerrk’s iso-mining might be at risk.” The big boss had stated to Klint, “Go and make sure that not only the mines, but my workers are not at risk. Use any means necessary to make sure I don’t lose a profit.”
Klint would have to work fast to make sure the big boss’ orders were not in vain.
As he wandered the destroyed town, Klint paused suddenly. For a moment, he thought he heard a quiet cough. Left hand on his left six-shooter, he circled back to where he had heard the noise.
This time a small cry sounded from underneath the rubble of one of the houses.
Groaning with the effort, Klint heaved a large portion of the house off of the other rubble. There, trapped underneath a large wooden beam, was a small Giraffa Camelopardalis, or as they had come to be known on Numerrk, G-raffs. In his hoofed hands, the G-raff was clutching a dirty stuffed frog, a strange creature from a distant planet.
Klint grimaced, he had no time to be babysitting a young G-raff and he almost walked away, leaving the youngling to its fate. Yet, the small G-raff began to cry and wail so loudly, Klint was afraid the G-raff would summon the living dead.
Klint drew his left six-shooter and aimed it at the end of the beam. “Close your eyes kid,” Klint grumbled, then fired.
A white bolt flew out of the barrel of the gun and cut clean through the beam.
Wide-eyed, the G-raff stopped crying and looked at Klint in fear as he moved the beam off of the child.
“Get going,” Klint pointed towards the rolling plains.
The G-raff shuddered and looked in the direction Klint pointed. Tears welled in his eyes again.
“Go on, many G-raff’s live in that direction. I am sure you will find some of them if you walk that way.”
Klint stood, dusted himself off and turned to leave, all but already forgetting the small G-raff.
He moved to examine the fallen roof of the saloon when Klint heard a noise behind him. Whirling, both guns drawn, Klint nearly fired upon the G-raff child who had decided to follow him.
“Go kid! Get out of here! A war zone is no place for a G-raff child. You should be with your kind.” Klint yelled at the child while pointing vigorously.
Dropping the stuffed frog, the G-raff began wailing again.
Beneath the wails, he had heard something. It had sounded like a metallic click.
Looking around, Klint spotted a slight shimmer in the distance.
Time seemed to slow as Klint lunged forward, crashing into the sobbing G-raff and tossing him behind cover.
A loud banging echoed around the town.
The impact of the iso-bullets knocked Klint backwards, tearing into his grey duster and ripping his right six-shooter holster.
Coughing, Klint’s vision fuzzed.
*Over heat imminent*
The words played out across his eyes, flashing red and yellow to catch his attention.
Through the ringing in his ears, Klint could hear the sound of the G-raff crying again, and the raucous laughter of the New Numerrk gang.
“We got him! We killed the metal man!” The voices giggled and cackled.
With herculean strength, Klint pushed himself off of the ground and drew his Krayton Six-shooters and fired.
What happened next is only known by the rumors which are whispered by elder G-raff’s to their grandchildren. Common folk would say that after taking out hundreds of New Numerrk gang members, Klint went on to retire a rich man.
Yet, the G-raff’s rumors speak of a different story. Their story tells of Klint’s bloody reunion against the New Numerrk gang, years after his arrival upon the planet Numerrk. They say that during that battle, as Klint Shaw drew his last inorganic breath, he handed his Krayton Six-shooters over to one of their kind who was ready to take up the fight.
We may never know the whole truth, for it has been forever lost in among the dusty plains of the planet of Numerrk.