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Pie in the Sky

by Michael D. Brooks

For months, Winston followed the news and discussions in the scientific community about the discovery of a new phenomenon in the cosmos. It was described as some kind of cosmic vortex. Scientists located what had been more recently dubbed a ribbon in the sky by the mainstream media, and it was moving fast toward Earth. They said it was on a collision course.

Descriptions and discussions of it and people’s reactions to it reminded Winston of all those science fiction movies where humanity argued about what to do in the face of impending doom. Usually, in the movies, humanity found a way to survive, rescue the so-called cream of the crop, dodge the bullet, or resolve the situation through its own collective resolve, technology, and a helping hand from the Almighty.

Winston wondered, as the days passed, which of those options or conclusions would play itself out, since humanity obviously had no realistic way of altering the course of the Earth or of the anomaly hurtling toward them.

In the weeks following its discovery, as the cosmic vortex made its way toward Earth, it became visible in the day and night skies. Winston had taken to stretching out on the grassy lawn next to his home during his free time, observing what appeared to be an undulating black strip lined with jagged white shapes that looked to him more like a large mouth that was constantly chewing rather than the spatial anomaly that scientists called it. But there were others who inevitably said the thing in space was the hand of God; others said it was Satan; others, that it was aliens.

Politicians made assurances, the military said it could handle anything that came its way, and religious leaders sought to comfort their followers.

Scientists calculated that today was the day the phenomenon would reach the planet and either pass by harmlessly or swallow the world into a wondrous vortex of endless possibilities, since astronomers and astrophysicists were unable to see through it or beyond it, or detect any kind of readings from it.

As Winston watched, spellbound, the fast-approaching space ribbon began to change its configuration and took on the look of what resembled a smile rather than a chewing mouth. At that instant the sky blackened as the vortex entered the sphere of Earth’s influence, and Winston swore he heard the distinctive sound of a slurp just bef—

Copyright © 2013 by Michael D. Brooks

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