Three (Very) Short Stories

When Jemima and the Queen talk fashion, things go intergalactic


The aliens crash-landed in the middle of London Fashion Week – right through the roof of the old tobacco factory into Jemima Ong’s debut show. Everyone applauded as the ‘creatures’ took to the catwalk. They were even wearing the same distressed crinolines and burnt sienna/mauve palette cut to their multiple tentacles and horns.

‘They’re attacking the models!’ cried the football player and his wife in the front row. Except the models seemed quite happy about it. Ecstatic, even. The girls and the aliens tangled in and out of file down the catwalk like a self-weaving river of long lost tribes reuniting, burning with love.

In the midst of the mayhem, Jemima noticed one particularly magnificent alien staring at her, no doubt the Queen.

‘You – made – all – this?’ she asked Jemima in awkward English as she approached. ‘You are Queen?’
‘Yes,’ answered Jemima.
‘I made all of my followers too,’ said the Alien Queen. ‘Jemima, we want you all. We want it all. But first I want you.’

This collection is officially sold out, Jemima thought as the gorgeous lusty Queen of the Aliens gripped her in tentacular embrace. I’m going to make inter-fucking-galactic money, bitches.



2650 A.D. Razuta woke naked in her 78th floor apartment and pondered the smoggy view. She was always naked. She hadn’t worn a stitch of clothing since she was born. Everyone was naked now because of the heat and the only one still in culture shock was her three hundred-year-old grandmother who still insisted on wearing a bikini and would tell Razuta stories of online dating and casual sex in the 2300s. Back when people still did it the animal way. Razuta didn’t understand dating. ‘Human perpetuation’ was a career choice now and you had to pass many exams.

She stretched her phone to computer size and Telethought-ed her grandmother like every morning.

‘Why is everyone naked?’ was the first thing her grandmother always asked.
‘Gran I love you but you’re such a zreck. People don’t do attraction anymore,’ Razuta would answer. ‘It’s too warm for old-fashioned sex anyway.’
‘I miss clothes more than sex,’ said her grandmother. ‘In 2389 I had a 20th Century Pucci swimsuit and I used to wear my faux diamond necklace and matching earrings in the pool. Even in the water.’
‘A pool?’ Razuta asked. ‘Like that chlorinated water people used to swim in? That’s totally goynz.’



‘It’s not a real D&G,’ she said, hands on hips to emphasise the exquisite macrame shoulder work and hand-stitched beading at the décolletage. ‘It’s a holographic re-creation of one.’
Isn’t that still as expensive?’ he asked her.

He was in Ralph Lauren, one hundred percent real.

‘No,’ she said. ‘I have a deal with D&G. And they have a deal with the hologram people.’
‘So you’re naked,’ he said.
‘Technically,’ she said.
‘What happens if I touch you?’ he said, with a grin. But he didn’t touch her.
‘You’ll get an electric shock. I’m wearing force field tonight as I don’t know anyone at this party and this neighbourhood seems a little… edgy. And the band is playing on the roof garden so I wanted to be warm.’

Now he could make out the subtle lilac glow all around her.

‘So you can adjust the temperature?’ he asked.
‘Yeah, I have a little dial on the back of my neck hidden just under my hairline. They put it in for nada as they’re one of the sponsors for the magazine I’m starting. I’ve got force field for life.’

Anna Maconochie’s new book Only the Visible Can Vanish has just been published by Check it out HERE.

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