Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Flash Fiction: Gin and Sin

As always, this is an entry for one of Chuck Wendig's flash fiction challenges on his website Terrible Minds. This week's challenge was to write short 500 word story named after a cocktail drink. I have to admit, I've never actually had a Gin and Sin, but it was in my Encyclopedia of Cocktails book and I thought the name sounded cool.

Gin and Sin
    “In vino varitas, but hard liquor’ll do in a pinch,”I say out loud to a deserted bar. The name on the outside says The Gin and Sin after the drink. Apparently they make the best mixes in the system, but that’s not the reason I’m here. No, I’m here cause of the three meter long duraglass window, the best view on the whole station. It offers a nice little vista of Mars below and, coincidentally, the desperate orbital battle happening above her.  It’s the perfect place to watch twenty years of Mars independence curl up and die, kicked to death by the jack boots of Earther aggression.
    I pour myself a glass of bourbon three fingers deep as I watch a three Earth destroyers swarm a Mars cruiser, the M.S.S. John Carter by the looks of it, and start hammering her mercilessly. Their railguns and missile ports fire with the accuracy that only AIs smart enough to run entire alcove cities can deliver, spitting out shots that from this distance look like golen glowing fireflies.  She gives as good as she gets, and I see one of the destroyers bank and break away, her bow rent almost completely in twine. It’s not enough though eventually one of the destroyer’s missiles burrows through her armored hull and hit the fusion engines.  There’s a split second where everything stops and the whole world hangs in stillness. Then there’s explosion.
It flares out, a single blinding white flash, silent as the light. Then it goes dim, a desolate slab of metal suspended above the planet, the last and only testament to the dreams and lives of the people who were aboard it.
    Suddenly the station shudders and rocks, after shock vibrations rumbling through the hull. Shit, we’re too far away from the explosion to have been affected. What the hell caused that?
    I swing around as the sound of footsteps breaks me from watching the silent massacre outside to see Lt. Major Dutch at the bar entrance, huffing and out of breath. Even though we’re the same age Dutch always seemed like an old man, even before the war and the last few bitter months haven’t done anything good to his complexion.
    “Major, the Earther marine’s have breached the top parts of the station,”he wheezes out. “We’re evacking to the surface and joining up with partisan forces there. We need to haul as ASAFP.”
    I gulp down my drink and turn back to the bar.
    “Not me Dutch,” I tell him while searching for some more of the good stuff. “I’m tired of fighting a war that can’t be won. It’s time for me to just sit back, get drunk and wait for the end.”
    “So what, you’re just gonna let some jacked up Earther punk take you out like a bitch?”He shakes his head. “Tom that just ain’t gonna happen. Now you can come quickly with me and we can enjoy some quality Olympus Mons brewed rye. Or I can knock your ass out and carry you and you get nothing.”
    I pause only for a second.
    “What year is the O.M.?”I ask.
    “‘Twenty-nine,” he replies.
    I grab an unopened bottl of the gin and hurry to the evac with Dutch. Hell, I don’t even like O.M. stuff, but sometimes you gotta make do with what you got.

Gin and Sin
60 ml/2 fl oz gin
soda water
30 ml/1 fl oz lime juice


  1. I really liked this one. Grab the bottle and let's fight this battle. Fun!

  2. Compelling action, I could see it!