Flash Fiction, Shorts

Hive Mind

Exile. The hive would no longer have him. They had tried, of course, in the beginning. As an orphan they had taken him in. Instead of turning his body into nutrients they had raised him and taught him their ways. But somehow in the back of his mind he knew that it would not last. That is the curse of being a red ant in a black ant’s world.

His first mission had been reconnaissance. A platoon had already invaded the structure, but had been gone for days. When they entered, giant monsters that could bring down the sky awaited them. He was the only one who had survived. Naturally, the hive blamed him for the outcome, and he was sentenced to live in exile for the remainder of his days.

Overcome with the loss of everything he had ever known and loved, he marched away from his old home in no particular direction and pondered his predicament. He felt heavy, as if he were carrying the weight of the world in his pincers. It all seemed so absurd. The last red ant, alone in the world. He shook off his existential reflections and tried to get his mind straight. He would get back to the hive. There had to be a way.

The massive structure loomed ahead of him as he left the forest and reached the hard ground. He knew what he had to do now. He would go back in and search for survivors, there had to be at least one. then the hive would accept him again. He kept walking until he penetrated the structure. No monsters in sight. He began searching, but was soon fantasizing over the celebration that would undoubtedly be had on his successful return.

The little red ant was so completely absorbed in his own thoughts that he didn’t even notice the human standing in front of him, one foot raised.

 

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