Finish the Story contest, week n. 40 - Hunt Down The Bananafish!

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Original artwork and final by @f3nix - first half of the story by @theironfelix


Hunt Down the Bananafish


Boots clamor with the machinery humming. Iron walkways, under stomping feet, ache despite losing the senses a while ago. Grunts echo and bounce off the marble-walls and iron-ceiling. The grunting marchers ache for purpose, as they can stand no more of their shoulders’ acidity caused by hauling a crate so long.

"Hush, we near the Colonel-"

"Bob, we’ve been on the USSS Milky Way for how long? It’s pronounced ker-nel - not co-lo-nol."

"Keep your peace, Jerry. Anyways."

Raised arms, Bob’s hands knocked three knocks, every knock so polite yet firm. His legs, being precautious, retreated; doors squeaking due to leaving their closed state, the Colonel with a pipe and cocked hat steps out. Steadying the shades, the pipe soon found itself hugging the floor.

"Master-Sergeant Bob, how’d you... oh He would be very proud, yet let’s not yammer on about that."

"Indeed, and we tracked the coordinates-"

"Coordinates! I’ll patch you in sonny. Please yank that box in now. Tell me, how’d you got this potassium-skin?"

"I’ll take this one Bob, go input the coordinates. Colonel, the details matter not, but our white gloves are still white. Anyways, coordinates should be in now. Say, when does that bounty expire?"

"I still cannot believe it, we’ll be rich! We’ll have the Bananafish finally in our hands and the bounty just renewed and quadrupled its payout!"

Frothing came racing out and spreading about the Colonel’s mouth, Master-Sergeant Bob’s and Jerry’s eyes picked up on the bubble-infection. Bob’s hands signaled to Jerry if now was the time to act, but that time to act was inappropriate as Jerry’s hands signed. Bob’s ears, hearing the awkwardness, compelled the voice-box to utter.

"Would you like to do the honours of telling the other ships?"

"Ah, sorry. Anyways, the coordinates are already sent - now just an announcement... Ahem... Attention crew, this is the Colonel speaking. Right now coordinates have been uploaded and you may have a question. My answer: we found the Bananafish and we’re going to hunt! I repeat, we’re hunting down the Bananafish... I muted my mic, but do you hear that Master-Sergeant?"

"Ecstasy."

"And a hero, for that’s what you and your platoon are. When we’re back, I’ll make sure you get your due honours."

Bob’s and Jerry’s eyes deadlock together on the other, lips arching high and their minds ridding of any misdeeds. Turning their heads to the ship’s front view, the image of starry seas became interrupted as the view warps to a tunnel of passing light spires that raced with the ship. However, the moment was fleeting and the armada of spacecraft found themselves floating above the Bananafish’s home.

"Master-Sergeant’s Platoon, come ‘ere. You’ll be my personal convoy ‘til the mission is over. So sit in your own Orbital Drop Pods and await blastoff."

Sat they were, their armour covered with more weapons than plating and a soldiery hoorah echoing. The clock ticked, yet they were ejected soon and all saw the Nature below.

The hunt has begun.


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The universe was like a boundless blank sheet. A sheet that his pen had courted, engraved - even pierced - over and over.

Bananafish. That’s how it called himself eons ago since a writer spoke of an innocent children’s game on the beach shore of a planet once called Earth. The Bananafish waited, parked in an exquisite balance between the twin black holes Aieth and Morrigan.

A barren leviathan, in balance on the raven hair of an angel, the Bananafish was caressed by the electromagnetic fields generated by the clash of the two celestial powers unmeasurable forces. Beings like it maintain a special relationship with the cosmos. They are its privileged interlocutors. And, in fact, only a few millennia had passed since it had perceived through the strings the reunification of Yoh with his own conscience. This could be serendipitous, at least from the point of view of the narration according to the verb of Bananafish. Or, more correctly, according to its whispering.

Now, while Morrigan seemed to prevail over the twin thus tickling his fin with sudden plasma puffs, Bananafish waited and pondered. Soon the message that it had voluntarily let out, inclusive of its coordinates, would bear fruit. A fleet of spaceships would answer in forces. It had been so long, even for it, since the last time when it had been able to whisper a good story.

They would have come for a rich bounty, armed to the teeth. Oh yes, they certainly would have found one. Perhaps, not exactly what they wished for. They could not even imagine what their impatience would have been to hear his voice.

Here they come out on the range. Small insects silhouetted against the iridescent light of thickened debris along the horizon of events.

Here they arrive, so minutes and merry. Many febrile minds, ready to listen to its voice once again. The Bananafish could not hold back any further, and at a distance of 0.2 parsecs, sure that they could feel it without losing a word, let its story flow out in a soothing, organic whisper. The story gushed copiously and headed for the small space fleet listening.

"Listen, little beloved creatures. Listen to my words and enjoy them. I will sing for you the most melodious of my chants".

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"Report, Lieutenant Major!"

"Colonel, we diverted as much energy as possible from the primary core to the last remaining shield. Levels 2 and 3 have been swept away. We are at 30%."



"What about the others?"

"Melchizedech interrupted every communication. The latest data available from the alpha-3 quadrant, before the dashboard’s critical damage, have reported us the complete obliteration of the Megiddo army." For a short while, the shielding would have still defended them from the roar coming from the Bananafish. What did they think they could do in that senseless act of hubris? It did not matter anymore.

Absorbed, indifferent to the distant screams of the Lieutenant Major, the Colonel remained staring at the main visor as long as he could. Laying, arched on his pupils, the projection of an astonishing yet appalling spectacle.

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Ah, what a lovely entry that dares befall upon me laps. I must humour this thought before it leaves my mind like a fly. So, Dr. @f3nix, it seems as thou hast arriv'd at a great hour, indeed a Red Letter Week! Hush now, for I seem the jitteryness of thy soul without a need for thee to speak yet. As the story hath done thy reply a great service! Indeed! It too knows how to come alive! I see the yearnings and the history pouring into this story while the story reflects all the contests done to one solid stream. From the mention of the first of the @bananafish's first operations to that of Yoh (really a prison built around Fortuna's Freedom) to that of now with its first awakening after a long slumber.

Reise reise! Indeed, without the need for a true-esque ending, the @bananafish had done them in. The Colonel no more, and the crew an unfortunate accident standing in the way of the true hunters. Now may the feast begin @bananafish! Now I can watch thee slaughter them without mercy, ha hargh! I shall enjoy front-row tickets like those people who saw the American Civil War on the battlefields themself early in the war. Now may the bloodsport begin!

Upvot'd and resteem'd!
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Apologies Master Felix for the late reply! You know all the stuff that's happening and typing is becoming a little harder given the due family time! Yes a merciless slaughter was indeed what they deserved for their hybris sin. I have to say that participating was fun.. I could start to get into it.

Don't mess with the bananafish.

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Never ever!

Great Finish. Captured my attention from the start and rolled along to the end. Glad you entered the contest.

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Thank you buddy! I wanted to have fun together with you.. it's a great feeling to be a participant have to say!

Happy that you dove into the waters to play along with the writers! Here's to the hope that you'll have more opportunities to do so in the future! 🍺

It had been so long, even for it, since the last time when it had been able to whisper a good story.

(Found it funny to read this within your first foray as a contestant. 😁)

Your story reveals to us the immense power and history of the cosmic storyteller. Elegant descriptions poetically paint the scene of the leviathan that is balanced between Aieth and Morrigan (names that hold a wealth of stories). The memory of the choice of the name Bananafish and the references from previous FTS editions are not only a wink to the contest but proof to how it is behind countless stories through the expanse of time and reality.

Compared to an entity such as this, the hunters are, as you put it, mere insects. As the Bananafish unleashed its story to the spaceships, we are shown the true strength of a well told tale. Against the Bananafish, they never stood a chance.

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Thanks for such an in-depth analysis, @brisby (and forgive me for my late reply)!
The Bananafish wanted to find another prophet as a channel for his stories but he just found a bunch of greedy asses 😜 Thanks for what you did in leading the contest.. It's been a real success and I hope you had some fun too, notwithstanding judging is not an easy task!

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