Flash Fiction Challenge: Super Bee

2014 May Day 2 Spanish Broom Flash Fiction Prompt
Photo copyright K. S. Brooks. Do not use without attribution.

Most unmanned aerial vehicles fly slowly. Most are remote controlled by an operator. Most are used for surveillance.

The Super Bee is like no other UAV. It flies far too fast for an operator to control. Artificial intelligence controls it. The Super Bee is a weapon that detonates as it identifies its target.

Unfortunately, in its final test, the Super Bee identified Colonel Packard as its target. The results were unfortunate. DefenseCorp, Inc. had sunk hundreds of millions into the development of the weapon. There would be no defense contract.

But that didn’t mean no one was interested in the technology…

Welcome to the Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge. In 250 words or less, write a story incorporating the elements in the picture and the written prompt above. Do not include the prompt in your entry. The 250 word limit will be strictly enforced.

Please keep language and subject matter to a PG-13 level.

Use the comment section below to submit your entry. Entries will be accepted until Tuesday at 5:00 PM Pacific Time. No political or religious entries, please. Need help getting started? Read this article on how to write flash fiction.

On Tuesday night, judges will select the strongest entries, and on Wednesday afternoon, we will open voting to the public with an online poll so they may choose the winner. Voting will be open until 5:00 PM Thursday.

On Saturday morning, the winner will be recognized as we post the winning entry along with the picture as a feature. Then, at year end, the winners will be featured in an anthology like this one. Best of luck to you all in your writing!

Entries only in the comment section. Other comments will be deleted. See HERE for additional information and terms. Please note the rule changes for 2015.

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5 thoughts on “Flash Fiction Challenge: Super Bee”

  1. ***FINALIST***

    Amir brought the compact Super Bee weapon system into the garage.

    Omar said, “I can’t believe we actually pulled it off. They wasted millions on it, and we tricked them out of it for pennies at the bankruptcy auction. Amir, what if the Government discovers that you sabotaged it and killed the Colonel just to get hold of it, then realize the mistake they made in selling it to us, and take it back?

    Amir sneered, “Ha! I laugh at them! I am a Capitalist! I paid good hard cash for it and they even gave me a receipt. Besides, they never asked how I was going to deploy it. There, it is reactivated.”

    Omar was shocked at how easy it was reactivated, “Are you sure you reactivated it correctly?”

    Amir reassured him, “I wrote the instruction manual and no programming is required. You don’t even have to enter the coordinates. Just email a Selfie and it delivers the payload within minutes with no human intervention; that is how I killed Colonel Packard. Besides, our benefactors expect us to eliminate all opposition, and I know this delivery system will wipe them out one by one.”

    In the distance, a timer went off, and Amir turned to Omar “Done just in time, get the first payload.”

    Omar ran into the other room and quickly returned with three large pizza boxes and placed them into their new Super Bee Fast Pizza delivery system, and it zoomed out on the first delivery.

  2. Ceremonial rifle shots rang out over the meadow filled with rows of white headstones. Meanwhile, a dark SUV parked across the street from the otherwise peaceful cemetery.
    As lead designer Daniels had been investigated and cleared of fault in Packard’s death. He kept his ties to the radicals concealed along with his plan to sell the Super Bee technology. Daniels hadn’t planned on the Colonel’s life being part of the deal but they had a choke hold on him. Deliver Super Bee technology after killing Packard or be delivered to the radical’s leader and be made an example and assassinated.
    Daniels watched the SUV as the mourners dispersed leaving the cemetery vacant. The door of the SUV opened and out stepped Carol Daniels. What was she doing here? She looked petrified. Behind her a man held a gun to her back.
    “Get in Daniels or she’s dead!” The gunman ordered.
    In an instant the gun he held in his own belt was aimed at the gunman’s head. “Let her go, she’s not part of the arrangement!” Daniels was both calm and terrified. He wouldn’t allow harm to come to Carol.
    A blast came from above leaving the gunman dead. Carol and Daniels ducked low as the Super Bee flew overhead, pelleting the SUV, slaughtering its inhabitants.
    To Daniels relief the Super Bee had been placed in friendly hands. The millions he was to have gained wasn’t near the value of the woman he now held safely in his arms.

  3. ***FINALIST***

    Below the dry summer heat, umbrellas opened and closed in strange patterns, every one signaling its own silent melody of pulsation. The candidates had started doing this by season three, after the winner of season two died under his umbrella. Umbrellas became one of the ideas of candidates to attract the drone. Everyone wanted to be the martyr who died so his or her family got the two million euros.
    Displays like this were the unforeseen result of the show. The audience loved it. Hypnotic, mesmerizing, fixating. Made ready for commercial breaks.
    This season seemed to promise creative new methods to attract death. The drone had been hiding for quite some time, calculating in its unknowable machine logic who would be its target this season. It could be anybody on the island.
    The screens around Arden Rivers showed more activity everywhere. People seeking shelter after having second thoughts on their involvement, but also those trying to draw attention any way they could. And some of the former gladly helping the latter.
    “Show me the drone”
    One of the screens changed to show an aerial of the artificial town. The drone was close to downtown, flying toward the center. Soon it would choose, ending a very profitable season. Too bad.
    Rivers went back to directing, choosing views to broadcast. Somebody said the drone had chosen its victim. Alarmed. Turning to ask, he found out who, as the drone crashed through a window in the broadcast tower. The audience would love this.

  4. Shabazz manipulated the super computer, while Elias and Zaid watched the four monitors.

    Elias asked, “Is Super Bee ready?”

    Shabazz nodded.

    Super Bee was a technologically advanced UAV or Unmanned Aerial Vehicle capable of flying near the speed of sound and controlled with Artificial Intelligence. With a preprogrammed target set, Super Bee was ready for a deadly, one way mission of destruction.

    Zaid paced nervously, “Do you think they suspect you switched the AI?”

    Elias turned to Zaid, “No. I took one they thought destroyed and reprogrammed it to kill Colonel Packard. Everything worked perfectly and DefenseCorp is no more. We control the Super Bee.”

    “I suppose so.”

    “When Congress learned Packard had been targeted, those responsible swept it under the rug and shut down DefenseCorp immediately.” Elias grinned, “America won’t tolerate their most decorated hero dying.”

    Both men chuckled.

    “If they only knew,” said Zaid. “When do we launch?”

    Elias nodded, “We wait only for the order. It will take off near the Montana Militia camp. The trail will be easily followed and the radical American militia will be blamed.”

    Zaid snickered, “Then the Department of Homeland Security will move in and look like heroes.”

    Suddenly, the door to the room burst open. Colonel Packard stormed in the room followed with two armed men. He stopped abruptly, and confronted Elias and Zaid, “Allah Akbar!”

    “Allah Akbar!” they responded.

    Packard extended his hand, “Is our target ready?”

    “Yes,” said Elias.

    The Colonel grinned, “Then let’s take out the President!”

  5. ***FINALIST***

    Jay shook his head, “I can’t believe your plan worked.”

    “You know how command is.” Nick shrugged, “They never scrap their screw ups. I walked right out with it.”

    “Screw up? It took me years to program this thing. It worked just as it should have.”

    “Sorry, that’s not what I meant.”

    “Yeah, yeah.”

    Nick let out a long and low whistle, “What are we waiting for?”

    Jay punched in the operating sequence on the keypad and stepped back as the Super Bee began to buzz and hover a couple of feet off the ground. A video screen flashed to life.

    “Hello gentlemen.”

    The color drained from Jay’s face, “Colonel, you’re supposed to be…”

    “Dead?” Colonel Packard hissed, “I am very much alive. Did you really think we didn’t know? We decided this would be the perfect opportunity to test the Bee’s remote activation procedure. The lab made a few modifications though. Command felt one picture of a target left too many uncontrollable risks, so we added voice recognition software. You’ve given us what we needed for that, as for the picture…”

    Jay and Nick’s phone beeped in unison. Jay pulled his phone from his pocket to see a picture of the two men taken not ten minutes prior. He looked back at the Colonel’s smiling face.

    Packard tapped the face of his watch, “I’d guess you have about three minutes left, give or take.”

    The screen winked out.  

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