"Adaptation" by Chris Allinotte. Appearing in Creepy Things: An Anthology of the Creepy-Crawly, Spooky & Silly. Edited by Chris Bartholomew, published in Static Movement. Pages 217-219.
4 Vampire Bunnies out of 5.
SYNOPSIS: After a successful invasion and colonisation of Mars, two scientiests explore the land, only to make a shocking dicovery.
Taken from a book of insect-themed horror, Allinotte's story fits exactly that theme but does it with style. This is a short but sweet piece, the kind I like. I must admit, I'm a bit of a lazy reader when it comes to anthologies: I read all the flash first then work my way up the the longest stories. So this tale is precisely what I would have gone for first. The build up to Allinotte's story gives the reader all the back story they need - humans obliterated the Martians after destroying their own planet. Not an uncommon plot, but this tale gives the reader a fresher outcome than the movie-equivalents they may have come across.
WARNIING...HERE BE SPOILERS...WARNING...STOP READING NOW IF YOU DON'T WANT TO KNOW THE ENDING...WARNING.
Sorry, that was kind of overkill. I want to talk about the insect aspect the most but it's kind of a spoiler alert. Last chance to look away...Good, those of you who kept reading are in for a treat. Allinotte's bugs are not the black shelled beetles or the winged green-fly but living precious gems. The descriptions of them are wonderful and worth reading the story for in itself. I absolutely loved this part of the tale. I won't reveal what kind of antics they get up to but it's beautifully written and certainly made me glad I'd flicked to those pages where the story was hiding.
With this being such a short story there isn't much more I can say about it except that it is certainly one of the strongest pieces in this beastly collection.
THOUGHTS FROM THE RABBIT HOLE: A perfect example of flash fiction with a beatifully descriptive twist. It'll make you afraid of your jewellery and healing crystals for good!
Visit the writer at: http://chrisallinotte.blogspot.com/.