This is a short story I wrote for an April Fools’ flash fiction contest at WeBook.
The theme, of course, is fools…
(If you are a WeBook member, go to the April Contest area to rate this and other stories.)
Secrets of the Samurai Squid
My office door flew open, the sound of my secretary, Kathy, arguing with a visitor, pouring into the room and vanquishing my peace.
“You can’t go in there!” Kathy exclaimed.
A disheveled man barged in, brushing Kathy aside with his bulk. He wore a tan trench coat and promptly sat himself down in one of the chairs facing my desk. His smell wafted over to me, causing me to gag a little. I cleared my throat and waved Kathy off, as the man was clearly not here to harm me.
“What can I do for you, Mr.?”
“That’s not important right now. What is important is what I have to tell you,” the mystery man declared, “I’m a diver, or at least, I used to be. They fired me when I told them.”
“About what?” I inquired.
“I’ve discovered where corals really come from,” he revealed.
“Umm, haven’t scientists known about that for a while?” I asked.
“Samurai squid,” the man stated.
“I’ve seen them. Medium-size squid with little samurai swords and white head-bands, complete with Japanese writing over a big red dot. They roam the shallow oceans carving the coral out of solid rock with eight swords buzzing like mad. The animals move in after. I know it sounds crazy…but look at this,” he said, reaching into his coat.
A wave of panic washed over me for a brief moment, as I wholly expected him to produce a gun and shoot me in the name of some alien overlord, or just because I was the editor of a prestigious nature magazine. To my relief, the man deposited a rolled up cloth on the corner of my desk. I gingerly reached for it and began to unroll the package, hoping that there wasn’t a finger inside.
I must have stared at the tiny, five-inch long sword for quite a while. The stranger broke the spell with, “Pretty amazing, isn’t it?”
“Well, I must say, it is intriguing. But what does it prove? You could have picked this up anywhere. Although, the craftsmanship is impressive. They’re obviously not giant squid then,” I deduced aloud.
“It’s probably just one species. Or, who knows, maybe they all have swords? This isn’t the first time science has been wrong about something,” he countered.
“Then why haven’t we seen scars on other animals that prey on them, or why are there no scars on the squids themselves, from when they fight each other?”
“Because they fight to the death. There are no survivors. And seriously, what kind of animal is going to take on a samurai with eight arms? Think about it…” the man offered.
“There’s just one problem with your theory,” I revealed triumphantly, “not all squid are Japanese…”
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