Curiosity

A SciFi Short Story by Michael Anthony Dioguardi

Curiosity

by Michael Anthony Dioguardi

Other Publications

 

The following transcript has been intercepted and translated from its original language. Property of the United States Government. CLASSIFIED MATERIALS ENCLOSED.

CONVERSATION III — MSD: 51937.94038

TRANSMISSION START TIME: 06:45:17 UTC

“I swear it moved a bit.”

“What? From yesterday? No way — Just look at its tracks”—

“Yeah. Exactly. The treads are longer.”

“I can’t see”—

“Well get a better look. Quit your whining.”

“I ain’t whining. I know I sure don’t want to be seen by it — do you?

“No — of course not. By the looks of it, I bet it could do some damage.”

“You could say that again — I mean, look at its legs — got six of them!”

“They might be arms.”

“Oh forget it!”

“Hey! Wait, we ought to throw something at it” —

“Throw something at it? Are you mad? It’s got a damn beam that shoots from its eye!” —

“Oh it’s so small. There’s no need to worry.”—

“No need to worry! Talk to me after it’s through with you — then we’ll see who’s worrying.”

“Here we go again with the negativity.”

“Fine. Why don’t you go over there and shake its bloody hand! What! You actually threw a rock at it! Why! You’ll get us both killed!”

“Hush! Look at it. Its little head is turning.”

“It’s looking for us with its laser! I’m telling you it’s going to happen any moment now.”

“Would you just relax! Look! Its feet are rolling again!”

“We should go back. We should hide. It’s going to zap us!”

“I think it’s harmless — I’m going to have a look”—

“Have a look! No! Don’t!”

“It hasn’t zapped me yet! Look! It hasn’t even turned to see me yet — it’s so dirty. It’s definitely been here awhile.”

“I’m not coming out!”

“Well suit yourself then — its legs are cracked and mangled. Poor fella!”

“That’s just a disguise! It’ll get you! Any second now!

“It’s got some of that writing on it — you know, looks the same as the writing on the metal back in the cave we found a few years ago.”

“What’s it say!”

“Well, it starts with one of those circles with a bit missing from the side, and then a skinnier circle with the top missing, then there’s a” —

“You’re awful at this! Does it have the sharp squiggle, triangle, smooth squiggle, triangle that was on the last piece?”

“There’s one of those smooth squiggles!”

“Oh fine, I’ll just have a look.”

“Yeah this one’s harder to describe.”

“Alright, let’s see — you were right! This one’s challenging.”

“Does it come off?”

“No it’s bolted in here — I’ll scrape it in some sand stone and we’ll take it back.”

“There’s a nice one by your foot.”

“Ah thanks! Alright, here we go — C….U….R….I….O….S….I….T….Y — it’s got a little picture of itself too!”

“Look up here — It’s got the same word as the other piece of metal!

“You’re right! I’ll get that down too — N….A….S….A — compare it a bit.”

“Alright. Let’s head home.”

“Right on.”

TRANSMISSION END TIME: 06:55:38 UTC

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