Sunday, July 23, 2023

“Not quite ready for Armageddon” • by Karin Terebessy

4, 3, 2, 1
We're all set for Armageddon.

Built the bunker plenty tough,
just need to assemble all our stuff.

Sirens wailing, here we go—
One of you kids take the camping radio?

What do you mean, you needed a part?
Oh, yeah, school project on recycled art.

It sure was pretty baby, don’t you worry,
but mommy is in a bit of a hurry.

Okay emergency supplies—hey that's not right—
for sure we had more than just one flashlight.

Oh, burned them out not long ago,
when you kids put on that “fashion” show.

Found the lantern! Wait a minute…
there are no batteries within it.

Yeah, okay, now I remember,
need new batteries each December.

No matter, kids, we’ve canned goods at least ten feet high—
or I thought we did. Where’s the supply?

Oh yes, girl scouts/boy scouts canned food drive.
At least we’re keeping others alive.

No baby, we had enough food to spare,
Mommy’s proud that you thought to share.

Look, the bunker’s solid, so we’re good—
Nope—scratch that, needed it for tree house wood.

Okay kids, not much longer to go—
Hey! I found a bag of jumbo marshmallows!

We’ll spread a blanket and watch the sky.
After all, it is the Fourth of July

So grab a stick and get ready to smile.
Mommy loves you and we’re going out with style.


Karin Terebessy likes to write speculative flash fiction stories. Her work has appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Stupefying Stories, Flash Fiction Magazine, Sci-Phi Journal, and other ‘zines. She is currently attempting to write a novel based on her short story “Mood Skin” which appeared in Stupefying Stories in 2016.

Her previous appearances in our pages include “The Memory of Worms,” in the now out-of-print Stupefying Stories #16, as well as:

“The Finder of Lost Things”
Through the distorted wide lens of the peephole, the man on Miriam’s porch looked even more pitiful than he probably was. He slouched against the porch railing, breathing heavily through his mouth.

Miriam tore the door open. “Let’s have it. What are you selling?”

He pushed himself upright. “Not selling. Finding…”


“Mood Skin”
Drug companies marketed Neuro-Dermo Spectral Emotive Response as a breakthrough in effective parenting. Administered while still in utero, babies emerged able to express their feelings in a brilliant hue of colors. The effect was guaranteed to disappear by age 7. In a few rare cases, some children developed vitiligo.

In an even rarer side effect, some children never outgrew their mood skin at all… 


“The Real Reason Why Mrs. Sprague Came by Her House So Cheaply”
On the doorstep, a white-haired man in a three-piece suit ballooned up his chest. “I come from the past,” he proclaimed.
   “Who doesn’t?” Mrs. Sprague snipped.
   “But I’ve just traveled through time!” he said quickly.
   Mrs. Sprague shrugged. “Me too. I’m doing it right now. And now. And now. Good day—”



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Please don’t make me escalate to posting pictures of sad kittens and puppies… 


Made in DNA said...

Damn. A song and dance as we go.

Karin Terebessy said...

Is there any other way? :-)

Adriana said...

As scarry a concept,but fun to read.

Karin Terebessy said...

Yeah, making light of scary things is one of most beautiful things about humans.