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Contest News

"The Best Defense is a Good Defense" Contest Results






Winning Entry:

Stephanie Barr

“Whenever one is tempted to destroy something alien—a planet, a coral reef, the geeky gamer guy who speaks exclusively in puns—anything unique, the question that undoubtedly presents itself is, what might I destroy that can never be recovered? What boon might be lost to the cosmos that can never be recreated? What will I throw away that could benefit the entire universe? In other words, what's in it for me? All right, truthfully, geeky gamer guy wouldn’t' be missed since there are thousands just like him, but there is something you stand to lose by destroying the Earth, something you can't find anywhere else, something so compelling, so quintessentially Terran that it has become a symbol of our very nature. Something so good it's like sex (so you know the geeky gamer guy has nothing to do with it), but with more ice cream. You can destroy us and we can't stop you, but you will thereby destroy the secret of this ambrosia and leave yourself bereft of what you never even knew you missed. It is perfect. It is decadent. It is even better with non-dairy whipped topping. Don't kill us.

“We have pie.”

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Runners-up:

Runner Up #1: Christopher Pearson

The architecture of the device was broadcast in every form of communication known to humankind. Binary, trinary, a sequential coding of square numbers. There wasn't enough time to send an interstellar S.O.S. of course. There were mere hours before their armada reached us. Only enough time to show them what we made. “The Box.” It was a device the size of old Manhattan, a perfect cube, shielded by a field of material energy that could only be broken by the destruction of the planet's core. It was held together by that energy as well. Its purpose? The box was intended to send another message, one that could not be scrambled or disrupted by our enemy’s equipment. It would broadcast through wormholes and spread out through the cosmos. The message:

WE ARE EARTH. THEY HAVE DESTROYED US, AND WE HAVE DISCOVERED A SOURCE OF INFINITE ENERGY. AVENGE US.

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Runner Up #2: Thomas Atwood

Once, they tell us that satellites were used for communication, to let people make phone calls and share cat videos. That was before the uprising. These days they have one purpose. Every time an alien vessel appears in the sky, the satellites, retasked for this very purpose, fire their radiation on Earth. Each blast lengthens the space between atoms and molecules, to the point where the alien’s bombardment phases through the Earth. Laser beams pass through harmlessly. Alien boarding parties that try and land phase through the ground beneath them, tumbling harmlessly into the Earth's core. We have learned the best way to defeat our enemy: to deny him battle.

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Runner Up #3: Cathleen Townsend

“Wait just a moment! Hear me out.

“I know it seems like the easiest way to solve the problem is to simply get rid of us. Then you can move on and consolidate—get your next solar system before the Vorlecks beat you to it. And that makes sense.

“But consider this—you can’t be everywhere. If you’re going to be out there grabbing systems, who’s looking after all the planets you’ve already taken? No matter how advanced you are, there are only so many of you.

“You don’t want our planet for resources, and we can’t travel farther than Mars, so we’re no threat to you. But what we can do is to keep an eye on this system—and we can do that better than you. We live here. We’re highly motivated. This isn’t just one of our many planets; it’s the only one we have.

“We don’t mind being part of your coalition. After all, you won’t affect our day-to-day affairs. We won’t even contact you unless we sight a Vorleckian ship. And we’ll want to tell you. You’ll leave us alone. The Vorleckians might not be so kind.

“So it’ll cost you nothing and gain you eyes on a possible route into your system. One thing we have studied thoroughly is war. You need as many eyes as you can spare on your perimeter—or you might find the Vorlecks have cut you off from your main fleet.

“Now isn’t that worth holding off on our destruction?”

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Runner Up #4: Christopher R. DiNote

To all who see and hear these presents, greetings. An Apologist, I come to defend the human race and its home, Earth, threatened at this moment with the promise of complete and total annihilation. In front of each of you, there’s a small dish. In that dish is the one single thing, above and beyond all else that justifies our continued existence. In that dish, you have three scoops of Spumoni ice cream, actually they’re gelato, but we won’t dwell on that. You have incomparable power, you have wealth, banished diseases, and you have technology and military strength beyond compare. No human can question your accomplishments, and we certainly can’t stop you. But you don’t have ice cream. What’s more, should you destroy us, you will never, even with all your science, wisdom and sorcery, ever have ice cream again. Sure, you can try to recreate it, you might replicate it on the subatomic, even the quantum level, but it’s not the same, and it will never be the same. You don’t need anything from us, but you all want ice cream. I think it shows a spark of the Divine and points to the path of enlightenment, something all civilizations should aspire to, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. End us, and you end ice cream, for all time. End us, and you end the one single thing in this universe that has actually has ended wars, healed divisions, and built cultures. Well, that and maybe the Beatles.

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Runner Up #5: Anthony Ornellas

They were psychics, telepaths to be exact. They told us that they were invading our world when they got to the “edge” of our solar system, enough time for “mourning and last rites.” Humanity has had a few psychics due to . . . genetic mutation. We’ve developed psychic inhibitors and artificial telepathic broadcasting devices. With little time to come up with a plan, and a need to defeat these aliens before they got to Earth, it was decided that the most revolting thing on Earth would be broadcasted to them. The question was what?

You’d be amazed at how fast the entire backlog of the internet can be downloaded these days.


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