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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 474

Boa’s Howdy

  1. In Charles C. Cole’s “Between Scans,” disregard the space aliens; they do not appear in the story anyway. Might the story be read as a parody of a couple discussing having a baby?

  2. In Ron Van Sweringen’s “Malcolm Goes Missing”:

    1. Why might the reader surmise that Bertha and Mosey need each other even before the two characters meet?
    2. What senses does the author bring into play in setting the scene of the story?
  3. In Blaise Marcoux’s “Strike the Set”:

    1. What is the function of the girls’ father, David?
    2. Does the plot overstep Bewildering Stories’ guideline about stories that end “but it was all a dream” or the equivalent?

    3. Illusory reality was a staple of the television series The Twilight Zone. How do stories set in an illusory reality differ from those set entirely in a dreamscape?

  4. In David Scholes’ “Trath”:

    1. How likely is it that the records of any heavily damaged spaceship could be retrieved, let alone deciphered, by Earthlings who had no previous contact with the alien culture?

    2. The alien soldiers meet “the wife of the greatest military commander on this World, the chairman of the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff.” Under the circumstances, how likely is it that the family of any high government official would be allowed to roam the countryside, especially when no bodyguard could protect them?

    3. Aside from Trath’s kindness to animals, what indicates that he and his comrades may not be the kind of people the Quellers say they are?

    4. The story is evidently a chapter excerpted from a longer work. What might the backstory be? How might the story of Trath and the Quellers play out in subsequent episodes?

Responses welcome!

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