The Peace Plaza – The Speakeasy

Written for the Speakeasy.

The Peace Plaza

Lambert laid a soft cloth on the rough concrete of the building’s roof. Gingerly, he placed five ultra-high tech rifle rounds on the cloth. If he was careful, everything would work perfectly. It would be so easy to start interstellar war all over again.

Shadows danced and cavorted in the night of Macadus II, animated by the lights of passing air traffic. Across the shining marble mosaic of Peace Plaza, both Humans and the alien Tooarliks danced to rejoice the ending of the war. The dinosaur-like Tooarliks were graceful and athletic. And though Tooarliks liked to tease Humans about their lack of coordination, Earth’s previous and greatest enemies had learned they loved Earth’s 1970s Funk music. A common ground had been discovered and it brought the two species together to dance to life, instead of death. Thousands danced in the night, once dying as enemies, now staying alive and dancing together.

The rifle was hand-made with precision by Lambert himself. It sat upon a tripod with small motors that directed the weapon. The tiniest nudge caused by a human pulse could throw the aim off at this incredible range to target of 4 kilometers. It had be be aimed and held securely by the powered tripod. Lambert started up the targeting app, and the tripod answered the signal.

In the two years of peace following thirty years of war, Humans and Tooarliks found they had much more in common than not. Humans had believed Tooarliks were slobbering warlike monsters. By contrast, Tooarliks believed Humans were slobbering warlike monsters. Later, they admired Human pastoral scenes of nature. Humans loved the beautiful vocal harmonies of Tooarlik vocal groups. The more time the two species spent together, the more they realized they liked and respected one another.

Not everyone on both sides agreed with this assessment. Powerful individuals held grudges, manic enough to be deemed outright insanity. That’s why Senator Barrymore hired Lambert. Barrymore was dedicated to wiping out the Tooarlik species down to the last helpless infant, and peace was a disruption to his plan for genocide.

Lambert loaded the gun. Chemical-based rounds, like the ones used from the 1800s to the 2100s, weren’t powerful enough to be hand-held and fire a round accurately for 4 kilometers. The bullets he loaded carried tiny scramjet engines. Even these engines would not operate until the air passing through them moved at about Mach 4, four times the speed of sound. Most chemical-based rounds moved at around Mach 1 or 2. Complex and tiny jet engines propelled the special bullets to Mach 5, easily fast enough to start the scramjet engines and boost the velocity to Mach 22. At this hypersonic speed, one .50 cal round could pulverize the armor of a battlefield tank.

Lambert withdrew his hand, cruelly scarred by fire. He paused to look at it and remember. He remembered the fire that engulfed his wife’s body as her skin blackened. She was still alive when he put the flames out with his bare hands, but the massacre of Earth’s colony, Ithacus V, had obliterated everyone. All medical personnel were dead. Amy died in his arms. The next day, the news reported that Tooarliks had massacred every soul on the colony. In fact, one lone survivor escaped, unnoticed.

On his pad, Lambert moved the sight to the target. No one without the exotic equipment Lambert possessed could hold the weapon on target at this range. On the Peace Plaza stage, Kooali Preedun, the Tooarlik Ambassador, raised his arms before a cheering crowd of Humans and Tooarliks. His death would doom the burgeoning peace between the two great warlike species, and interstellar war would begin anew. Lambert pressed the trigger button, and a bullet flew.

Lambert made a phone call. Senator Barrymore answered. “Tell me something good.”

“Oh, it’s good. Shot is on the way.”

“Excellent.”

“By the way Senator. Not everyone on Ithacus V died. There was one survivor who saw that Humans perpetrated the massacre to foster racial hatred against Tooarliks. That one man later learned that YOU ordered the massacre.”

Lambert watched in the sights as the Senator’s jaw fell open. “Where are you?”

“Nowhere near the Peace Plaza, Senator, but don’t worry…”

Lambert watched in the pad as Barrymore’s torso exploded, atomized by the hypersonic round.

“…it’s a perfect shot.”

At the Peace Plaza, revelers continued dancing in peace and harmony to the music of Chaka Khan.


__________________________________
Author’s notes:
Scramjet engines aren’t just Science Fiction. Here’s an explanation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scramjet

The writers of Speakeasy join each week to write up to 750 words of flash fiction based on a a sentence and media prompt. This week the sentence, “β€œIt would be so easy” must be included anywhere, and a reference to the Stayin’ Alive video should be included. I included Chaka Khan from the 70s because…I like Chaka Khan. πŸ˜‰ Look for this week’s Speakeasy prompt here: http://www.yeahwrite.me/speakeasy/152-open/

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About EagleAye

I like looking at the serious subjects in the news and seeking the lighter side of the issue. I love satire and spoofs. I see the ridiculous side of things all the time, and my goal is to share that light-hearted view.
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25 Responses to The Peace Plaza – The Speakeasy

  1. habibadanyal says:

    Too good for words.

    Like

  2. Stacie says:

    I love it that the likes of the Bee Gees brought the aliens and humans together! And? Chaka Khan is awesome.

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Often it is the most unexpected things that are the solution. And who could ever be angry or warlike when Chaka Khan is playing? Thanks much for stopping in, Stacie!

      Like

  3. List of X says:

    I suspect that shooting a human Senator could also lead to another interstellar war. πŸ™‚

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Not if it was done “by” a Human. The whole idea was to have a human assassin kill an alien ambassador. Have no doubt, if he shot the alien, evidence that Lambert did it would have miraculously appeared. An open and shut case for the detectives. In this case, have no doubt that evidence of the Senator ordering the massacre would miraculously appear.

      Like

  4. tinsenpup says:

    Brilliant ending! I love all the technical details in this: utterly convincing and obviously based in fact. You know your stuff. This was a great read!

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Thank you! I love hearing that. I do love the technical details and I like to savor them. I’m happy to hear you enjoyed that aspect. Thanks much for the kind comments, and for reading. πŸ™‚

      Like

  5. “Tell me something good,” another musical reference in this. And yes, who doesn’t love Chaka Khan? πŸ™‚ Now that song is stuck in my head.

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      I had no less than 7 mid-late seventies (danceable) songs queued up in my browser, trying to decide which one to work into a story. “Rock the Boat” was a favorite at first. But like usual, Chaka Khan won me over at last. I’ve had worse earworms before. πŸ˜‰ Thank for stopping in!

      Like

  6. Loved the care and detail you put into your story. Lovely thought that music from the seventies could make all the difference.

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Thank you, Kathy! Wouldn’t it be great if music could hold off interstellar war? In future stellar voyages, we should be share our art as well as our muscle. πŸ˜‰ Thanks for stopping in and commenting!

      Like

  7. Suzanne says:

    Fantastic! I love the way you set this up, giving us the back story without giving away the twist. Wonderful details and imagery. Great character development. And a riveting read to boot. Nicely done sir! πŸ™‚

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Thank you Suzanne, I really appreciate the kind words. I was hoping to keep readers on their heels until the very last moment. I’m so glad you enjoyed the story. Thanks for sharing your thoughts! πŸ™‚

      Like

  8. jannatwrites says:

    Sweet revenge! The whole time I read this, I couldn’t believe the irony of someone initiating war at a place named Peace Plaza. So glad it turned personal, instead πŸ™‚

    I had to chuckle at how each side thought the other were monsters… reminds me a lot of how people judge others on earth right now!

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Hehe. I’ve studied military history for a long time, and I’ve found that consistently, both sides see the other as sub-human monsters. Usually, once they get to know each other, they find they have more in common than not. Glad you enjoyed the irony. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. I really enjoy what you thought. πŸ™‚

      Like

  9. atrm61 says:

    Yay!You brought back the Tooarliks!Monster love at its best ;-)Loved the piece Eric and as I had been hoping that the villain of the piece did turn out to be that Barrymore-more cheering by me πŸ˜€ Excellent story telling again.

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Thank Atreyee! I really like the Tooarliks too. Expect to see them again I think. If there’s a Senator in my stories it’s highly likely he’s a bad man certain to see his doom. I may be falling into a habit here. πŸ˜‰ I’m so glad you enjoyed the story. Thanks for the encouraging words. πŸ™‚

      Like

      • atrm61 says:

        No,not a habit but my wicked mind sees too much at times I guess-yes,enjoyed this Eric and I look forward to seeing more of those Tooarliks again:-)

        Like

  10. Mollie says:

    Viva la Revolucion! *fist pump* I really enjoyed the twist at the end.
    Sidebar: How do you pronounce Tooarliks? My brain is giving me a few suggestions.

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Hehe! Thank you, Mollie! It was a twist that, I believe, the good Senator richly deserved. Anyone that wants to keep a war going is a lunatic.

      Pronunciation: Tooarlik: Too – are – lick

      I tried to imagine a species name like a bird’s call. Tooarlik’s are very musical (vocally) and are very much like Earth dinosaurs, and our dinosaurs evolved into our current birds. So to hear a Tooarlik speak would be like hearing a bird call.

      Like

  11. Oh my God! This is absolutely fascinating! Your story claimed my complete attention right from the beginning to the end. I must say you’re the master of technical details as well as the element of magic. Tooarliks sound really interesting! The ending was totally unexpected- I had thought Lambert was one of those individuals who would be willing to sacrifice something good like world peace for personal revenge…. but ultimately he was a smart guy. Great job!

    Like

    • EagleAye says:

      Thank you so much for the glowing comments, Tinkerbelle! It was my plan from the beginning to have the reader thinking one ending was coming and finish different way. One in which, Lambert was the smart guy. I personally love the Tooarliks and I plan to write more stories with them in it. Thanks much for reading and commenting. πŸ™‚

      Like

  12. Shey says:

    Great detailed description, captivating and love the twist at the end.

    Like

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