Excerpt of the week: Monoceros, Ptolemy Cluster

For the past couple of years I have had the good fortune to be part of a terrific writer’s group based in Louisville, Colorado.  Here is an excerpt from a talented fellow writer, Steven W. Johnson, who has a pro  credit to his name already with this debut Sci Fi short story, “Monoceros, Ptolemy Cluster,” recently published in Flash Fiction Online.




Monoceros, Ptolemy Cluster

by Steven W. Johnson

I try to keep pressure on the bullet wound but blood still leaks out between my fingers. It’s a deep red against my green scales. I don’t know if I hit that damn bug, Renny. But he hit me. It’s been quiet for a minute or two, or ten. I think I’m in shock; staring first at my blood, then my badge, then my blood. The sun’s starting to get low in the sky, casting long shadows in the rocky canyon. My thoughts drift.

In my mind, I see the government frigate orbiting. Big letters on the side say Interstellar Alliance of Planets, but I can’t remember the identifier after it. Doesn’t matter. Rumor is, the IAP collapsed from the weight of its own bureaucratic ineptitude long before I woke up. The nearest outpost I can remember was at least fifteen jumps away. Those guys are now probably local police or warlords or farmers. If they’re not dead. No help is coming.


CR Hodges


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