300-word story: A soldier finds himself on a mysterious battlefield.
Private Baker awoke with a start. He was lying flat on his back, staring at a blindingly bright sky. Where was he? How did he get here? He instinctively tried to sit up but his muscles failed him. He was completely paralysed, unable to move an inch in any direction.
"Come on, man," he thought to himself. "Pull it together. Remember your training." But his training hadn't prepared him for this kind of situation. He didn't even know what kind of situation he was in, simply that he couldn't so much as flinch and there were no sounds around him.
But wait, there was a sound. A distant, rhythmic grinding that was hard to make out. Baker focused on it, attempting to determine its source. Artillery vehicle? Tank? Whatever the case, it sounded malevolent and the soldier decided that he wasn't keen on finding out.
Taking a deep breath, Baker commanded his limbs to shift out of their recumbent position. Straining with his mind, he felt that he should have broken a sweat or even burst a capillary, yet nothing happened. He was rooted to the spot, plain and simple.
Baker began to panic. He tried to call out but discovered that his vocal cords were as unaccommodating as his body. Then, without warning, he was lifted into the air by his feet and carried across a silent battlefield.
God, it was a gruesome sight. Scattered beneath him was his platoon, or what was left of it. Only tiny fragments remained, surrounded by blobs of yellow ooze. It was enough to make a man give up hope, which is exactly what he did.
After his head was dipped into the same disgusting goo, the final thing Private Baker saw was an enormous, gaping mouth, hungrily awaiting its last eggy soldier.
Copyright © 2020 Rich Sutherland
Image: Specna Arms