My friend Nathalie messaged me, asking, as a published author (thank you, thank you, you’re too kind), if I could help her out with this absolutely insane scavenger hunt she is taking part in. The rules? Quite simple, really:

“Get a previously published Sci-Fi author [that’s me!] to write an original story (140 words max) about Misha, the Queen of England and an Elopus.” Misha is Misha Collins, wacky actor who started said scavenger hunt, and the Elopus is an elephant/octopus… And it need to be done in 24hrs.

G.I.S.H.W.H.E.S. (Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen) was created by actor Misha Collins and some other folks. Here’s more about it:

GISHWHES, obviously, is an acronym: The Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen. GISHWHES is difficult to pronounce and even more difficult to explain. It truly is the greatest scavenger hunt the world has ever seen. In 2012 it shattered two Guinness World Records: one for the largest scavenger hunt ever, with more than 14,000 participants from 69 countries and the second, for the most pledges to commit a Random Act of Kindness. We accomplished over 93,000 pledges in 94 countries! Last year we broke two more Guinness World Records: (1) the longest chain of safety pins – over 43,000 safety pins  creating a chain almost 2 kilometers long; and (2) we achieved the most hugs worldwide in 1 week – 108,121!  Read more…

It’s insane, right? I’m not weird for thinking that. No, not weird. So when Nathalie asked me to help out, I was a little reticent. Mainly because I normally have a hundred times the number of words to work with that she was asking for. And yet… there was this little voice that said, “Oh come on – you call yourself a writer. It’s just 140 words!”

Yes, voice, 140 words about an elopus, Misha Collins, and the Queen of Bloody England! But you’re right; if I can write nearly 500,000 words of zombie nonsense (plus one or two other things), I can certainly do this. So here, for my fans and readers (both of you), I present, in it’s entire 129-word length (take THAT, voice! HA!)…


The Grand Sacrifice of Misha Collins, or,
How I Learned to Hate Space-going Elopuses

The Elopus stared at the vidscreen as it slurped up its final Earth meal, tentacles dripping red.

“My dear Queen,” the vocoder said, translating its thoughts automatically. “I can’t stay any longer. What you ask is impossible.”

“Surely there must be some arrangement…” said the aged woman. Her country’s insignia – a piece of blue fabric divided by lines of red and white – waved in a window behind her.

“Our High Priest has ordered the invasion. It cannot be stopped. Even for delicacies such as this – what is it? A ‘Misha Collins?’ Quite tasty.”

It slurped the last of the blood and bone off the deck, retracting the tentacles into its trunk. It reached to switch off the screen as it glared at her. “Prepare yourselves, Majesty. The fleet comes.”

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