Aphelion Issue 275, Volume 26
August 2022
Long Fiction and Serials
Short Stories
Flash Fiction
Submission Guidelines
Contact Us
Flash Writing Challenge
Dan's Promo Page

Good Day in the Interstellar Tow Lane

by Mike Wilson

An old man, piloting a junker-craft in space,
thrusting along slowly with one engine,
towing another down-on-their-lucker...
figures he can make it to SS79 just fine.

Then his radio crackles to life:
“Help a poor guy, will you?
I see you going by - don’t ignore me.
You can pull me, too, and I’ll
make it worth your while!”

So, thinking he only has one life to live,
the old guy rendezvous with the broke-downer,
attaches his remaining grapple to a fancy flitter.
Slowed to a crawl, he guns it full throttle...
pulls the tethered two to safety, an hour later.

Once docked to Station 79 they meet in person --
The first one thanks him, slaps a few credits
in his palm and moves on.

The second is the eccentric trillionaire who
owns SS79. The old spacer finds himself
richly rewarded - finally attaining
financial independence in his twilight years.

Humming to himself a familiar refrain, he collects his reward.
“It’s not who you know, it’s who you tow...”

© 2012 Mike Wilson

Mike Wilson has been writing poetry and short fiction for ten years now. Recent publishing credits include Tales of the Talisman, Lyrical Iowa 2012, and his recent novel, "Future Property" available on Amazon.

Find more by Mike Wilson in the Author Index.

Comment on this story in the Aphelion Forum

Return to Aphelion's Index page.