Writing Prompt: After building a giant cheeseburger statue and advertising “the best cheeseburger in the universe”, aliens from around the Milky Way have descended on your restaurant to see what the hype is about.
Darius Inkleburt had never, not even in his wildest nightmares, imagined the consequences of advertising ‘the best cheeseburger in all the universe’.
It’s just a publicity stunt. He’d claimed. A mighty fine way to drum up business. He’d argued. And anyway, there isn’t a single soul on all of Earth that can prove whether or not I’m lying. He’d summarised.
He was wrong.
There was, at that particular time of day, in the particular month of that particular year (nine forty-two in the morning, Tuesday nineteenth of March, twenty nineteen) approximately eight hundred and seventy three extraterrestrial lifeforms inhabiting Earth, all of whom (apart from Dale) could have disproved Inkleburt’s outlandish claims, if for no other reason than this cheeseburger wasn’t technically a cheeseburger at all (on account of the fact there wasn’t any Blumwowder Sauce).
Dale, if you must know, was a vegetarian.
Quite unsurprisingly not one of the eight hundred and seventy three other worldly lifeforms already inhabiting Earth bothered to visit Inkleburt’s Space Way Cafe as he’d affectionately named it (and not so affectionately decorated it, the wallpaper was… in poor taste to say the least).
The reason this was quite unsurprising is that each of these otherworldly life forms had, at one time or another, come across a chain of restaurants most notable for the enormous golden arches on the restaurant’s roof. This particular chain of restaurants had recently started offering home delivery, and though their burgers were far from ‘the best in the universe’ they were cheap, and at the very least contained trace amounts of Blumwowder Sauce.
It was around nine fifty that the first inter-galactic visitor arrived at the Space Way Cafe. Though Inkleburt would never have known it. This particular visitor (a Klaxagoon, quite literally a giant sphere of luminescent goo brimming with eyes – think of a slug, only a thousand times the size and filled with marbles) took one look at the wallpaper, hurried back to their space craft, got in, took off, and never again returned to Earth.
Of course, it wasn’t Inkleburt’s fault that the pattern on the wallpaper both simultaneously spelled the Klaxagoon equivalent of you useless fat blob and, when viewed through more than six hundred eyes positioned at very specific angles (angles the Kalxagoon eyes had mastered to a tee) depicted the most horrific massacre in recorded history.
The second visitor arrived at nine fifty-five.
There was a bell above the door of the Space Way Cafe, shaped like the planet Saturn. It gave out a bright and happy chime as the door opened, not that anyone was bothering to listen to the poor little bell.
Inside the cafe was dark, the ceiling painted a garish sort of black. Tiny spotlights in the ceiling produced what was meant to be a star-filled sky, but ended up looking more alike the lid of a microwaveable dinner (pierce film before cooking).
The seats were fashioned in a way that made the occupant appear to be riding a bright red rocket, and the tables were round. There were salt and pepper shakers that looked like astronauts with holes in their heads (a nasty ailment, even for a spaceman), the ketchup and mustard bottles were made to look like space-guns, 3D displays of the milky way hung from the ceiling, port hole windows with pictures of outer space were glued to the wall behind them, and the toilet signs had been changed to display an alien with four tentacles and an alien with six (I’m sure you can work out which is which).
None of this impressed the Nungawhip, Flargs.
Flargs was tall enough to look at eye-to-eye, and short enough to reach under a table without spraining one of her many back bones. She walked on legs of an alien metal, presumably prosthetic, and wore a yellow hat over one eye. With a flick of her tongue (which was also her tail) she took a seat at the bar, politely coughing from both her mouths until finally Inkleburt noticed he had a customer.
“Yes, yes. One minute.” Darius called from the kitchen.
Flargs coughed again.
“I’ll be right there.” Darius called, this time through severely gritted teeth.
Flargs coughed three times, once from her left mouth, twice from her right.
There was a sound like a rat being flattened by a saucepan (which is exactly what had made the sound), and then Darius emerged, white apron and all (the all being rats blood and not tomato ketchup).
You might expect Darius to have blown a fuse or hit the proverbial roof when he saw the multiple-backed, many mouthed, eye-hat wearing monstrosity that sat at his counter. But what actually happened was this…
Darius marched over to Flargs, leaned as far over the counter as was humanly possible (with only one back bone to support him), and pointed menacingly at the sign that hung behind him.
The sign read; No shoes, no shirts, and absolutely NO cosplay.
Copyright © K R Perry 2019