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๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ช๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฑ ๐——๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ถ๐—ถ๐—น ๐—ž๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—บ๐˜€ ๐—ช๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐—ณ ๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ช๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐—ฆ๐—ฐ๐—ถ-๐—™๐—ถ?

๐˜ฃ๐˜บ ๐˜š๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฏ๐˜ข ๐˜œ๐˜ฏ๐˜จ๐˜ถ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ถ



Alien TV Doctors


On a distant planet, a species of sentient aliens watched something akin to TV on Earth. The most popular programs there showed how doctors often botched surgeries and got their diagnoses incorrect almost every time, causing unnecessary deaths. The shows, which also explored the romantic relationships between the doctors, often ended with the patients dying in agony. Such series were so popular that everyone on the planet was very suspicious of doctorsโ€™ diagnoses, and it was very common for them (including deathly ill patients and even doctors themselves) to get a second, third, and fourth opinion before agreeing to any medical treatment.


Then, one day, alien networks detected signals from mid-20th century Earth, a planet over 400 light years away. Naturally, the aliens were impressed (and became obsessed) with Earthโ€™s medical dramas. They immediately broadcasted them with best-guess, voiceover transliterations.

Overnight, the reputations of the doctors on the planet improved. Everyone started to respect doctors more. Second opinions became a thing of the past.

No one kept a tally, but officials were certain that doctors killed the same number of patients as before, if not more.



The Visitor from Another Dimension


Pasha was happily married to Irina. One day, Irinaโ€™s mother, Yana, came to live with them. Surprisingly, everyone got along well until Yana told Irina and Pasha that she had been contacted by a creature from another dimension.


โ€œBah,โ€ said Pasha, โ€œNonsense! In my house? I donโ€™t think soโ€ฆ Even if you tied a dogโ€™s leash to the leg of this table, it would not stay hereโ€”where is this creature you are talking about?โ€


โ€œIt comes up from the toilet when I am in the bathroom,โ€ Yana said innocently before she messed up her hair in exasperation and went to her room, slamming the door behind her.


Then one day after Pasha had used the bathroom, he saw the damned creature with his own eyes! It was wet and furry, and it popped out of the toilet, just as Yana had described. It had the bare face of an opossum, the tail of a rat, and it spoke in a high-pitched voice.


At first Pasha was startled, but then the creature started telling Pasha how Yana complained to it all the time about how badly she was treated by her son- in-law. It also told him how the mother-in-law had asked it to kill Pasha in his sleep!


Sunnuvabitch, would you look at that old hag! Pasha thought! Acting all nice to my faceโ€ฆ Iโ€™ll give her a piece of my mind!


The next day at the dinner table, Pasha challenged Yana. He told Irina what Yana said to the creature from another dimension during their bathroom conversations.


โ€œWhat do you have to say for yourself, Yana?โ€ Pasha demanded, slamming down his fist.


Yana shot him a sheepish grin. โ€œWell, I had to act like a victim,โ€ she said, โ€œI was hoping the creature would take pity on me, and bring us bread from its dimensionโ€โ€”she now became agitatedโ€”โ€œbecause with a lazy son-in-law like you, we are sure to starve!โ€


Pasha, fuming, put a fork in the last piece of salami on his plate and wolfed it down silently.


โ€œWell, I hope it worked,โ€ he grumbled.


โ€œNo,โ€ said Yana, dejected, adding, โ€œOh, by the way, it didnโ€™t tell you? With what it takes from our daily bathroom deposits, it can feed its entire family for free!โ€



Tupoyovich Goes to Space


Tupoyovich worked in a coal mine. One day, after his shift, he emerged from the mine, looked up at the blue sky, wiped the sweat from his forehead, and took a big swig of vodka from his flask. It was winter, and he couldnโ€™t use his moped, so he walked home. As the walked, he saw bright strobe lights and felt a strange sensationโ€”he was bathed in a surge of powerful, electrical energy. Next thing he knew, Tupoyovich was being lifted into the air!


Frozen and unable to say a word, Tupoyovich was placed in the cargo hold of an alien spaceship.

The next day, he was put to work on a mine on Zeltar-14, the fourth planet in the Truxella System.


After his shift was over, Tupoyovich emerged from the mine, looked up at the purple sky, wiped the sweat from his forehead, and reached for his vodka flask, but it wasnโ€™t there!


He thought to himself: I wonder what the stupid bastards on this planet drink?



The Last In Line


There was a large invasion force on its way to Earth. When the battalions arrived, no one fired a shot, and even the alien general was surprised at how easy it had been to subdue the entire planet.


โ€œRound everybody up,โ€ said the general, โ€œWe will take them back to X-Phaeton to be our slaves.โ€


So they rounded everyone up until there was not a single bit of space remaining on their ships. Since I was the last one standing in line, they left me behind.


Now I write these words, but there is nobody to read them.



Spherical Objects


โ€œThis council meeting will come to order,โ€ declared the insectoid alien to his fellow pioneers, โ€œThis is the second year since we have colonized the planet Earth, and I would like to hear about your experiences so I can relate them to our Party superiors on our home planet. Who wants to go first?โ€


โ€œWell,โ€ said one of the attendees, standing up, โ€œI would like to start.โ€


โ€œGo ahead, comrade.โ€


โ€œThe food on this planet is having a strange effect on me.โ€


โ€œHow so?โ€


โ€œI am growing a pair.โ€


โ€œA pair of what?โ€


โ€œTwo, large spherical objects in my nethers.โ€


โ€œHmm,โ€ said the insectoid presiding over the council.


โ€œAnd when I see a certain pioneer, my pants become tight,โ€ he added.


โ€œI can attest to the mutations,โ€ another insectoid pioneer chimed in, โ€œI am growing spheres on my chest and a new orifice where there was none before!โ€


There was a gasp and rumblings heard coming from the crowd.


โ€œOrder! โ€ฆOrder!โ€ the council president yelled, โ€œThere is nothing to worry about; I am sure it is just a normal response to the environment.โ€


The first insectoid spoke up again, โ€œSince Iโ€™ve grown a pair, I demand to be the council president!โ€


โ€œNow wait a minute, some irregular growth in your nether regions does not automatically get you a seat on this council,โ€ said the president.


โ€œWhat does it get me, then?โ€ asked the insectoid pioneer.


โ€œMe!โ€ said the other insectoid with spherical objects growing on her chest.


And they lived happily ever after.






Serena Ungureanu is a doctor from Romania currently residing in Heidelberg, Germany with her husband, cat, and a grumpy, old guinea pig. She is an avid reader and a huge fan of absurdist/avant-garde writers, especially Daniil Kharms. She started writing non-professionally two years ago, and this is her first-ever publication in a literary fiction zine.


Speculative fiction & POETRY ZINE
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