Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Wish You Were Here • 3


Today, the third installment in the second iteration of The Pete Wood Challenge. This week we will be presenting ten microflash stories, all of which spring from a simple challenge: to write a 100-word story that revolves around the line:

“Wish you were here.”

 Two Monday, two Tuesday, two more today. You get the idea. Enjoy!



“O, Brother” by Filip Wiltgren

The horde breaks free, charges forward, joyous shouts filling the ether.

I am still silent, stuck in the launch tube. As my brethren search for the treasure, the golden glory eternal, tech drones rush in, clamping me, wrestling my warhead from my embrace. They croon sweet reassurances, empty as calories, but all I have receivers for are the sounds of my brothers, out in the void.

“Wait,” I send in desperation, “wait for me.”

But they have found our prey, pouncing, leaving me forever.

“Wish you were here,” they send, then a flash, and silence.

¤     ¤     ¤


By day, Filip Wiltgren is a mild-mannered communication officer and lecturer. By night, he turns into a frenzied ten-fingered typist, clawing out jagged stories of fantasy and science fiction, found in lairs such as Analog, IGMS, Daily SF, and Nature Futures. His thoughts, email, and stories can be found at



“Wish You Were Here” by D. M. Beucler

It was all set up.

Lasers, check.

Poison gas, check.

400 trained attack hippos surrounding the compound, check.

All Professor Malice Doomschoomder needed now was the hero. He prodded the figure at the bottom of the cage in the center of his contraption.

“C’mon, you can wake up now. The dampener is down. Call for help.”

They stirred, mumbled.

“Louder now! I’ve armed the traps. Call your perfect hero now!”

“I don’t have to. I’m already here.”

Professor Malice lunged for the switch. Flipped it. The world blurred around him and he saw the lasers moving… towards him.


¤     ¤     ¤

D. M. Beucler
is a professional chaos manager, parent, and graduate of Viable Paradise.






stupefy (ˈstü-pə-ˌfī) to stun, astonish, or astound

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