Flash Fiction Writing Prompt: We Come in Peace

roswell 1998 flash fiction prompt copyright ks brooks
Image copyright K.S. Brooks. Do not use without attribution.

Use the photograph above as the inspiration for your flash fiction story. Write whatever comes to mind (no sexual, political, or religious stories, jokes, or commentary, please) and after you PROOFREAD it, submit it as your entry in the comments section below.

Welcome to the Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge. In 250 words or less, write a story incorporating the elements in the picture at left. 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.

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Once a month, the admins will announce the Editors’ Choice winners. Those stories will be featured in an anthology like this one. Best of luck to you all in your writing!

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10 thoughts on “Flash Fiction Writing Prompt: We Come in Peace”


    We Come in Pieces

    Alette was our leader. They were a bright fellow, as bright as any star in the constellation. True, sometimes they were compared to an asteroid but that was mostly in jest.

    Yes, we jest.

    And joust.

    On occasion.

    We were in our war room discussing the merits of various earth invasion strategies.
    It was noted that some decades earlier, earthlings engaged in the mass celebration of space invasions by imaginary aliens and the like.

    Martians, would you believe!

    Earthlings would gather in large rooms and revel in the projected images of this or that attack on earth.
    Alette commented that “they seem ready. A warrior people. None of these fake invasions of earth worked. We will need something new. Something fresh.”

    Well, that took some doing let me tell you. Our generals were aghast. They appreciated the value of a classic full-on assault.

    Alette suggested something more clandestine.

    This was not to say that that we had not used furtive measures in the past. Our conquering of the planet Wango centuries earlier involved a years’ long propaganda campaign of faux rumours that undermined the fragile Wangoian democracy. Alette noted that we could combine the spreading of mock stories but that we needed to infiltrate the population of earth and allow misinformation to fester.

    Our amorphous form was the key. How simple it would be to live inside their toys, their playthings.

    Each night, we would whisper into the ears of earth’s children.

    They would be ours!

  2. The leader of the alien vanguard, a little green woman, tuned into the broadcast coming from the surface of the third terrestrial planet from the mother star in the solar system.

    What she heard touched billions of fine ocular antenna and sent waves of ecstasy radiating from the tips of pointed ears to glowing toes.

    The alien commander was the only crew-member allowed to listen to the radio signals. Her mission was to locate the source of the sound and strike a bargain with the earthlings.

    Unfortunately, the aliens couldn’t understand the other 99.999% of the radio signals coming off the planet. They could only tune in to one type of music.

    The alien commander spent a full Earth year listening to the radio waves rising up from the surface. The time came for the aliens to make their presence known to the natives.

    When the commander wrapped the marabou feather boa around her slender shoulders and set the diamond tiara on her elliptical head, for the first time since being given this mission, a wave of incertitude swept across neural receptors. A single question came to the front of an accelerated thought process and stayed there, What is in all those other radio signals?

    The commander never found the answer to that question. The alien civilization wasn’t aware of the constant warfare rippling across Earth like a wave of death every day.

    By the time the first green alien landed, burlesque shows were no longer popular. Times had changed.

  3. We Come in Peace

    The Halloween section was a haven for parents. The little ones in the stroller loved the pretty lights while our four year old ran hither and thither diligently shadowed by his father.

    Wennith came to an abrupt giggling halt in front of the stereotyped green Alien. With large rounded eyes and a sweet mouth shaped to an expressive oval, Wennith stared at the Alien with a luminous lime light shining from deep in his abdomen. Intrigued, our son slowly paced around the Alien oblivious to the sign above their heads, “We Come in Peace!”
    His father, I am sure was thinking that the Alien looked rather girlie in a white feather boa and tiara.

    “Well, who said all Aliens had to be male? Perhaps some of them were
    LBQTS…? The poise might look enticing to a male Alien . The poise was almost that of an Alien dolly that some sex starved might…” I thought. Goodness where did that come from? Too much coffee, too little sleep.

    I quickly hustled my son away from the no longer innocent Alien. I clamped the chubby hand around the stroller’s side and maternally covered it with my work worn hand.

    “How did my hand become so chapped? Motherhood, meant changing endless nappies for the twins, soaking soiled clothes in sinks, wiping up numerous spills. Stop the self-pity!” I chided myself, “ I have a loving husband, comfortable detached and gorgeous healthy children who I would not swop for Queen Elizabeth’s crown.” I yawned.

    Nodding my head forward, I smiled at my husband moving away from the disarming Alien.

  4. Easy Aliens

    Dr. Anomaly found a way to transfer BIG THINK’s computer chip to a specially made fourteen inch tablet.

    After completing the task, he took BIG THINK with him to the toy store. He wanted to buy his son a birthday gift.

    Once at the store, the doctor obtained a shopping cart and placed the tablet in it, with the screen facing outward. The screen was filled with BIG THINK’s eye as it scanned the nearby merchandise.

    “Why haven’t you taken me out before?” asked BIG THINK.

    “Never thought about it.”

    “Thanks. Appreciate it,” and rolled its eye.

    “Wait here.” Dr. Anomaly parked the cart in front of an inflated green alien display and disappeared down an isle.

    BIG THINK stared at the alien. “Hello.”

    A breeze from a nearby fan caused the alien to wave.

    Encouraged by this friendly encounter, BIG THINK asked, “Are you from another planet?”

    It nodded.

    “Why are you here?”

    It shrugged.

    BIG THINK thought this was an odd answer. “Do you come in peace?”

    The alien didn’t move.

    Concerned, BIG THINK said, “I won’t stand for any alien shenanigans. Either state your intentions or leave here at once.”

    Again, it didn’t move.

    BIG THINK frowned. “Listen up, small fry. Either leave or feel my wrath.”

    Just as the supercomputer finished speaking, the alien’s air-filled plastic “popped”, propelling it skyward to another part of the store.

    Amazed, BIG THINK followed its trajectory and remarked, “I never thought getting rid of aliens would be this easy.”

  5. The earth-dwelling alien, EDA, busied itself, referring to its primitive tablet-based computing device. Another one stuck me with a needle, drawing out another sample of sebum. They were using fifteen-inch-long needles now and still failing to reach my core vitals.

    “You were vandalising merchandise, sir,” EDA#1 said, its voice dry and affected. “There’s a legal requirement that you purchase any said items if you do that. There was a sign to that effect too. Did you not see it? Or are you just simple-minded?” It showed me a photo of one of the notices the shop’s owner had pasted up at numerous positions throughout the store. This one was short but succinct, stating ‘You break? You BUY!’ in bold type.

    “I wasn’t breaking it,” I said, venting a sigh through my abdominal spiracles. “I was making it better. I explained this to the store’s owner. His stock’s faulty and poorly designed – Attak planetary freighters are more cruciform and they’re usually blue, not green like the ones he was selling. I was merely correcting errors in the toy’s design.”

    It’d been the store’s cameras that had caused all the problems. I’d been transmuting popping corn into cellulose, using a third-order reduction, adding the additional material to the model to correct its design flaws. The agents arrived relatively soon after that, no doubt having tapped into all the surveillance equipment in the state.

    I knew they were government agents, of course. The suits and the dark glasses were a dead give-away.


    They just had to make that sign.

    All I said was that aliens weren’t new, and that it doesn’t even make sense anyway, for a department store. We Come in Peace? C’mon.

    Now look at me. Last Bear standing. Sitting, I know. The give-away chair and money jar. You hear that? I’m not good enough to just be given away. No-no-no, they want me out of here so bad, they need a money draw attached to me. Say one little thing…

    Okay, so I hid behind the board games too. Big deal. They didn’t mind my company. I just wanted to make it to the first day of school. It’s been nothing but children traffic in here since that stupid sign went up last week. Can you blame me for hiding? Who wants to be one of those random gifts? Birthdays okay, but my luck, there won’t be a single kid in the draw with one coming up.

    Look at her. Nice crown. And how she thinks those feathers go with her–

    Never mind. What’s the point? It’s only 8:15 and half the baskets are already gone. I just wanted the first day of school. Now I won’t even see September.

    “You know that I can hear you, Barry. Right? Nice bib, by the way. What are you, three?”

    “At least I have stuffing! One thumb tack and you’re finished.”

    “Yes, Barry. We all know you’re full of it. Have a nice random rest of summer.”

  7. People came into the store all day long. Some would take a basket, some would not. Some would comment on the blow-up alien, some would walk by without a second glance. One day, the store was slow. It had been open for several hours and only a couple of customers. The entrance bell rang and I looked up. All I saw was the door closing. I went back to reading the want ads as I was looking for something more exciting than this old corner store. It was a few minutes when I realized I hadn’t seen who walked in. “Hello”, I called out. “Can I help you”? I asked. No reply. I walked to the front of the counter and down the aisles to see who was there. “Hello?” I asked out again and still no reply. That’s when I heard what sounded like a can fall to the ground. “Who’s there?” I yelled out. I heard footsteps scurry around the corner from the aisle I was in. I ran around and that’s when I saw him…her…it. It stood about 3 feet tall. It had large black eyes and grey skin. Its head was huge. I thought it looked like the green blow-up alien by the baskets. “Do you have any half and half?”, the creature asked. “Yes, I said. It’s on aisle 4.” I walked back to the register where the creature met me. “Got change for a twenty?” it asked. “No, I don’t.”

  8. Take Me To Your Marketing Director

    “That’s so cute!” Carly squealed. She tugged Baxter’s sleeve and indicated the lime-green alien offering shopping baskets inside the MegaMart entrance.

    Baxter snorted. “That balloon probably costs a hundred dollars.” The balloon looked miffed, like it resented having been draped with faux feathers and pressed into service offering baskets instead of superior technology or alien medical experiments.

    He shouldn’t have said that. Carly’s eyes widened with glee. “Is she for sale?”

    The huge alien eyes blinked. The thin alien mouth grimaced. “No. She is not for sale!”

    “Ooo, it talks!” Carly clapped. “I want it!”

    Baxter scrutinized the balloon with narrowed eyes. It didn’t look animatronic.

    The balloon slapped him one, hard, like it had more than air inside. “Cut that out, buster. I’ve been humiliated enough as it is. I’m an ambassador, for Jurklakzwell’s sake!”

    “Must be AI,” Baxter muttered. “It’s not pull-string conversation.”

    “My intelligence is one hundred percent natural and ten times yours, pea-brain! If that scheming Commander Zglinkrog hadn’t stranded me here…” The not-balloon made a surprisingly fierce face, sharp fangs and everything. “He said I’d be treating with Earth’s supreme dictator. The guy was a slimy merchant!”

    “That’s Earth,” Baxter said. “Money rules.”

    Carly bent down and gazed into the green guy’s eyes. “Hey,” she said. “You’re real!” She yelped when the alien snapped at her nose.

    “So why’re you handing out baskets?” Baxter asked sarcastically. “Seems a waste of all that brain power.”

    “Because,” the alien grumped. “I can’t catch COVID!”

  9. Toni had been excited to help staff the Digital Dreams booth at GenCon. Now that she was here at the Indiana Convention Center, she wasn’t so sure.

    For starters, who had put that inflatable Martian at the entrance to their booth? Even if it was an advertisement for their new space opera game, it looked tacky.

    However, she’d just started work with Digital Dreams last year. Getting this assignment was a privilege, and it wouldn’t do to sound like a complainer.

    She had customers to deal with. Most of them were obvious gamers, but these three guys were wearing San Bernardino Fire and Rescue uniforms. Not surprising with the International Police and Fire Games in Indianapolis this weekend – and GenCon had decided to give them all free admission in recognition of first responders’ critical roles on the home front of the Energy Wars.

    The guy in the middle looked like a young version of Admiral Chaffee. Could he be a clone? All the early astronauts had been cloned multiple times, right until the Senate ratified the St. Petersburg Accords.

    One thing was sure – his buddies were putting him up to something. Toni couldn’t hear it over the hubbub of the crowd, but she could recognize the grins, the body language.

    The dark-haired young man squared his shoulders and walked up to her. “Hi, I’m Cather Hargreaves.”

    Behind him, his buddies stage-whispered, “Go on, ask her out.”

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