The Literary Phoenix

Funny, the damage a silly little book can do. Especially in the hands of a silly little girl.

Alexandra could feel the bubbling of culture around her as she stood outside the Kennedy Space Center.  It wasn’t xenophilia – the excitement wasn’t from being surrounded by diversity, even though this even was going to be something that would change the world. It was from what she knew she was about to witness.  Her hands were shaking – shaking – as she held the microphone up to her lips and smiled the million dollar smile she had been perfecting just for a moment such as this. Her hair was pinned up in the proper style, and her makeup soft and tasteful She didn’t feel a bit like herself… but she didn’t care. She would give her soul for a moment like this.  Even Patrick seemed more relaxed today, and he held his fingers up for the countdown as Alexandra looked at her own reflection in the camera lens and braced herself for the most amazing thing she would ever see.

Patrick lowered his final finger and the camera began rolling.

The sensation of the moment stole her voice out of her throat.  She became her disguise, but there was nothing that could squelch the reporter in her heart.  Her smile broadened as she said:  “Carolina Wheaton with WSLS-TV, I’m here at the Kennedy Space Center and we are about to witness the launch of the Apollo XI…”

Her television personality surrounded her and excitement flooded her veins.  Nobody else knew it – not the reporters, not America, not NASA, not the crew… but mankind was about to walk on the moon.


Prompt: Write a short story in fifteen minutes or less.
Challenge Word: “xenophilia” – An attraction to foreign peoples, cultures, or customs.
Time to Complete: 11 minutes.
Character/Story: Alexandra Mission (as Carolina Wheaton) from Paradox (original).

(I’m also linking up to Red Writing Hood… because it just seemed to work! 🙂 )


14 thoughts on “Prompt: Takeoff.

  1. The picture caught my attention right off, because I’m a huge SciFi fan and space geek! It’s a great piece of flash fiction… it brought me into the story right away, revealing details bit by bit.

    It did take me a little bit to realize what this had to do with the Red Writing Hood prompt… then I realized how she had a whole “persona” that took over her, like a makeover, when she was on camera.

    1. Connecting it really was a long shot, but I thought that it was a sort of coincidental, far-fetched way of responding to the prompt. 🙂

      I never used to know or care much about space travel, but the research I have done for Paradox has definitely opened my eyes!

  2. Carrie says:

    How exciting it would be to be in that position. I love how she felt like she was wearing a disguise as she presented her face to the world.

    1. In context to the original, she is quite literally wearing a disguise. 🙂 But that is complicated. I’m glad this little flash presented enough to show that she was a different person. 🙂

  3. Wisper says:

    Nice. I like the transformation into a “character” and not caring.

    1. Thank you! Part of her is just so comfortable in that skin, it feels natural. 🙂

  4. Suzanne says:

    Very intriguing. I was a little confused by the name change, but I see this part of a larger story, and I can see where it makes more sense in context. This is definitely something I would want to read more about!

    1. I read over it a couple times, unsure of whether or not to leave it there, but in the end I felt guilty not sticking to my own canon, and kept her introduction. 🙂

  5. This was fantastic! My pulse positively jumped! Very, very well done!

    1. I’m glad you could feel the excitement! I was hoping that would come through!

  6. Cameron says:

    Not only a disguise—a makeover— for her, but a sort of impending makeover for mankind, no?

    1. I didn’t think of it that way, but that is excellent insight….

  7. Now I’m interested in the rest of the story. I love the “knowing” here.

    1. Haha, I should probably write the rest of the story then! 🙂 Thank you!

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