Home > Fiction > FF – Still Useful

FF – Still Useful

Here is my story for Friday Fictioneers at last. Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle and this week’s photo was contributed by Sean Fallon.

You’d hardly believe it, but I spent all of yesterday trying to think how I could add a salt shaker and iPhone charger so I could work in the line “I’m charging you with a-salt and battery.” Sadly, it was not to be :-(. So here’s yet another post-apocalyptic nightmare for you instead.

To read this week’s other stories, click on the blue froggy.

Copyright Sean Fallon

Copyright Sean Fallon

 

Seamus stared sadly at his cache of batteries. Time was you could slip one of these babies into a torch, a remote, a toy, and it would come to life! Not anymore. Not since the flares.

Who knew the Sun held such anger in its soul? Every circuit board on Earth, every machine, fried in an instant.

The door flew open, dragging Seamus from his reverie.

“Seamus! Got another one who won’t cooperate! Need some more of that acid.”

Seamus picked a battery out of his pot, carefully sawed the top off and handed it over. Still useful, he muttered.

 

  1. March 3, 2016 at 7:22 pm

    What are they up to?

    Like

  2. March 3, 2016 at 7:40 pm

    Ooh! That was DARK!
    Brilliant, as always, my friend.
    (And DO solar flares fry batteries? I’m a little fuzzy about the science of all this. 🙂 )

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:11 am

      Glad you liked it 🙂
      Enough EM radiation will fry electronics, but the actual batteries will be fine! Just nothing left to put them in.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. March 3, 2016 at 7:53 pm

    Very useful story, too. Great job!

    Like

  4. March 3, 2016 at 7:57 pm

    Love this stry and how you gave a second life to them batteries!

    Like

  5. March 3, 2016 at 8:35 pm

    A clever repurposing of a previously useful item? I must admit, I’d never have thought of that.

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:12 am

      Most “well-adjusted” people wouldn’t have thought of it either!

      Like

  6. March 3, 2016 at 8:57 pm

    Who knew, indeed.
    Recycling at its best!

    Like

  7. March 3, 2016 at 9:53 pm

    Oh my if they were 9 volts (the square ones) They could stick it on their tongues. This is the one I wrote when the used this picture before. http://wp.me/p28tjX-vU

    Like

  8. March 3, 2016 at 10:22 pm

    Very dark – shame you couldn’t sneak your joke in!

    Like

  9. March 3, 2016 at 11:42 pm

    A grim future ahead, it seems. Well told. I like the matter-of-fact tone to deliver such a horrifying scenario.

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:15 am

      Thanks! I guess they’re getting by the best they can, and the previously unthinkable (to most) has become common-place.

      Like

  10. March 4, 2016 at 12:08 am

    Ouch! The inquisitor has some new toys to plsy with.

    Like

  11. March 4, 2016 at 12:44 am

    Got another one who won’t cooperate ~ Oh, boy, I bet I’m glad I’m not “another one.”
    So many good ideas in this piece. The angry sun, batteries for torture (maybe not such a good idea, but…) Well done

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:15 am

      I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes either right now.
      I’m glad you enjoyed it!

      Like

  12. March 4, 2016 at 4:07 am

    interesting. just wondering what it would be used for. 😦

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:16 am

      There are so many body parts you wouldn’t want acid smeared on…

      Liked by 1 person

  13. March 4, 2016 at 4:43 am

    This was really dark, Ali. I’d say don’t give people ideas, but it seems they already have them. I dislike reading most pages of the paper these days. Well done. — Suzanne

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:18 am

      There’s very little madness I could think up that hasn’t already been thought of by someone somewhere, I fear.

      Like

  14. Lyn
    March 4, 2016 at 6:08 am

    There’s always an extra use for everything. Well done 😀

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:18 am

      Many things have been re-purposed in this new world. I’m glad you liked it!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. March 4, 2016 at 6:13 am

    Oh i do enjoy a nice post apocalyptic nightmare. HaHaHa! Keep the salt and battery up your writing sleeve for another time! 😀

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 8:19 am

      Apocalypses bring so many possibilities 🙂
      I’m sure I’ll get that joke in somewhere one day…

      Liked by 1 person

  16. March 4, 2016 at 8:46 am

    Who knew the Sun held such anger in its soul? ~ powerful personification! 😀

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 1:05 pm

      The Sun giveth and the Sun taketh away…
      I’m glad you enjoyed it 🙂

      Like

  17. March 4, 2016 at 10:58 am

    It must be great to actually have some scientific knowledge to back up your science fiction. I have to turn to Professor Google when I need to know stuff like whether the sun would actually destroy battery power. There really should be a Wikipedia of hypotheticals for fiction writers. People like you could write pages for people like me to reference: eg, What would happen if the suns rays burnt out all batteries?

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 1:08 pm

      A massive solar flare/CME could take out all the electronics though batteries would be fine I imagine – they’re “chemistry”! But if all the batteries got fried and the electronics were fine it would have much the same effect 🙂
      (I realise having reread my story that I wasn’t clear on which bits got fried.)

      Liked by 1 person

      • March 4, 2016 at 10:11 pm

        For the purpose of your story, I don’t think it mattered!

        Like

      • March 5, 2016 at 6:19 am

        🙂

        Like

  18. March 4, 2016 at 11:01 am

    Daaaark. Yes, I really like this – appreciate the deadened resignation in the main character. And yes, nightmarish as all heck. Shudder.

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 1:09 pm

      I get the impression he’s not all that happy with the situation, but he’s making do. Survival is the name of the game in this future wasteland of a a world!

      Liked by 1 person

  19. March 4, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    Sometimes it is sooo hard to get a story to cooperate with its given ending! Your a-salt story will still happen…. just needs another criminal opportunity.

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 1:09 pm

      Yeah, try as I might I couldn’t get my awesome award-winning joke into a story!

      Like

  20. March 4, 2016 at 1:45 pm

    I don’t know if the Energizer Bunny mascot is well known outside of the US, but that’s what I thought of. Those batteries keep going and going and going and going….

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 3:22 pm

      Funnily enough I was going to mention the Energiser Bunny (with an “s”!) in a comment on someone else’s story, but wasn’t sure if he was well-known outside of the UK…

      Like

      • March 4, 2016 at 3:24 pm

        Ha! I actually live near the bunny’s home. Energizer is a local company headquartered just across the river from me…

        Like

      • March 4, 2016 at 3:28 pm

        It must be hard to sleep at night with all the clashing cymbals and whatnot.

        Like

  21. March 4, 2016 at 1:47 pm

    I find it intriguing that the Sun is being uncooperative and angry and the people in the story are torturing the people who are not cooperating. Wonderful story, Ali!

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 3:22 pm

      Very true, I hadn’t noticed that. Maybe it’s “displacement”!

      Like

      • March 4, 2016 at 3:28 pm

        I noticed it because I thought that was the reason the sun was being the way it was because of the people being the way they are being. Just a thought… LOL

        Like

      • March 4, 2016 at 3:32 pm

        🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  22. March 4, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    I am charging you with making me think. Now I wonder how can I use. I am charging you with a-salt and …

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 3:23 pm

      Feel free – someone might as well get the use of it!

      Like

  23. March 4, 2016 at 4:42 pm

    Now this is creative. Very well done.

    Like

    • March 4, 2016 at 4:50 pm

      Thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

      • March 8, 2016 at 2:40 pm

        How is your book coming?
        I’m almost finished with what I hope is my last editing. I’m improving the ending and resolving some issues.
        This week, the plot for the third book came to me. The story is very different form my original plan.

        Like

      • March 8, 2016 at 3:05 pm

        Heh heh. No comment 😉
        Sounds like you’re getting on well with yours, though!

        Like

      • March 13, 2016 at 10:39 pm

        You’re funny.
        I’ll ask again in a couple of months. ;0)
        Yes, I hope to publish book two this May.
        We shall see.

        Like

      • March 14, 2016 at 8:23 am

        Cool 🙂

        Like

  24. March 4, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    What would Inga think? 😉

    Like

    • March 5, 2016 at 6:10 am

      Heh heh 🙂 A psychologist’s dream. She’ll probably get a whole book written out of this bunch!

      Like

  25. March 4, 2016 at 6:22 pm

    Oh, my! How horrible! I love the line – Who knew the Sun held such anger in its soul? That’s great! Well done.

    Like

    • March 5, 2016 at 6:12 am

      Thanks! It is a pretty horrible thought. And these people were probably office workers and the like before the apocalypse turned them into psychos…

      Like

  26. March 4, 2016 at 7:12 pm

    Sorry you couldn’t do the salt and charger. but this was great fun. Who would have thought of such a use for batteries?

    Like

    • March 5, 2016 at 6:16 am

      Yes, not fitting that joke in was a real blow 🙂
      I’m glad you liked what I ended up with! Only seriously twisted people would think to re-purpose batteries in such a way, I think.

      Like

  27. March 4, 2016 at 7:18 pm

    Love it! The idea of the sun having fried everything is fab and can only imagine what uses the acid will have! Well written and thought provoking 🙂

    Like

    • March 5, 2016 at 6:19 am

      Thanks! I sometimes worry this could actually happen (the frying that is). We’ve lost power grids to solar events but it would take a really massive event to wipe out the entire planet 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  28. March 4, 2016 at 10:52 pm

    This is sick! 😉

    Like

  29. March 5, 2016 at 10:50 pm

    Dear Ali,

    At least you worked your pun into the intro. Nothing’s wasted…like the batteries. Well done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Like

    • March 6, 2016 at 7:44 am

      Dear Rochelle,
      I thought it would be a shame to miss out on my pun altogether! I’m glad you liked it – and the story!
      Ali

      Like

  30. March 5, 2016 at 11:15 pm

    There they are, their world turned upside down, and they can think of nothing else than torture each other. This is so sadly close to the truth, it hurts. I too love the line with the angry sould of the sun. Took me a while to get the a-salt and battery, but now it makes me chuckle.

    Like

    • March 6, 2016 at 7:46 am

      I fear in an apocalyptic world, the nastiest and most ruthless are the ones most likely to be running the show. I’m glad you got the pun – at first glance it wouldn’t make any sense whatsoever to those whose first language is not English 🙂

      Like

  31. March 6, 2016 at 11:19 am

    I see you’re heading back to ‘macabre’ again. I missed your dark touch. 🙂

    Like

    • March 6, 2016 at 6:12 pm

      I had to go “dark” after I failed to get my joke into a story 🙂

      Like

  32. March 7, 2016 at 11:27 pm

    Another nice twist, and good world-building. I enjoyed it and fear that apocalypse! : )

    Like

    • March 8, 2016 at 7:58 am

      I fear it to. It’s a dog eat dog world in the near future 😦

      Like

  33. March 8, 2016 at 8:47 pm

    I feel that human’s ability to innovate does not exclude darkness… wonderful take.

    Like

    • March 9, 2016 at 8:12 am

      Thanks – his morals are as fluid as the dangerous times he lives in.

      Like

  34. March 9, 2016 at 1:12 am

    Delightfully dark as usual. I don’t think nasty, ruthless people need an apocalypse to justify torture – didnt Trump argue for ‘waterboarding, and more than waterboarding’ very recently (and to great applause)?
    Nicely done.
    KT

    Like

    • March 9, 2016 at 8:13 am

      Very true, but now it has become, if not acceptable, then “every day”.
      I’ve only read bits and bobs of the election excitement going on in America, but it does sound like something he’d say! Yeeks.

      Liked by 1 person

  35. March 9, 2016 at 4:23 am

    Nice twist at the end. Very well done!

    Like

    • March 9, 2016 at 8:15 am

      Thanks! He’s found his dark niche…

      Like

  36. March 9, 2016 at 11:27 am

    Excellent story, though I do hope it doesn’t prove to be prophetic. You’ll have to write something including the salt-and battery on another occasion. 🙂

    Like

    • March 9, 2016 at 12:49 pm

      I hope so too!
      I’ll have to get that “joke” in somewhere. It would be as shame to waste it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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