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Home Science Fiction Stories What is this White Stuff?

What is this White Stuff?

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Sheriff Barnes awoke to the voice of a radio announcer.  “Nobody seems to know where the white stuff came from.  It’s not snow, because the temperature is 81.  Also, and most important, is that fact that it’s not snow.  It feels like Styrofoam.  It’s unbelievable.”

The sheriff rushed to his window.  “What the hell,” he said, and dressed as he listened to the radio.  “What is also strange, is that Greenfield is the only town in the county that is covered by the stuff.

“The experts are scratching their heads; no one has an explanation.  City crews are out in force trying to clear the roads, but according to the reports we’re getting, none of the plows in town can move the snow.  James White, a plow operator, said, “When a plow picks some up, it softens and dribbles off the plow.  It’s like trying to hold on to oil.”

The Sheriff strapped on his gun, ran to his car, and drove to the station.  On the way, his deputy called on the radio. “Sheriff, five kids tried to play in what they thought was snow, and disappeared in the stuff.  It happened at the corner of Silver and Federal.”

“The Sheriff sped to the scene, and when he got there, he found several men trying to chop into the stuff, but they couldn’t make a dent.  Frank Jones picked some up with his shovel, but it just dribbled off.  “On the ground it’s solid.  Off the ground, it’s oozing slime,” Frank said.  “This is beyond weird.”

“We gotta get into this pile of whatever it is and find those kids, but how?” the Sheriff said.

“Dynamite,” Harry Batra said.

“If we use dynamite, we could kill the kids, but what else do we have that will put a dent in that thing?  Okay, let’s use dynamite,” the Sheriff said.”

“I have some,” Harry said and ran off.

“While we wait for him, let’s get a closer look at this stuff,” the Sheriff said, and poked a pile.  Frank poked a different pile with a shovel.

As the Sheriff jabbed at the mass with his night stick, he heard a scream, and saw Frank disappear into a pile.  A few minutes later, carrying the dynamite, Harry ran toward the Sheriff, and, as he neared him, he was sucked into a pile of the substance and disappeared.  “What the hell is happening?” the Sheriff yelled angrily as he looked all around at the white mystery that covered his town. “There has to be an explanation,” he said and poked the white mystery with his night stick.  As he poked the white stuff, the mass of white began to vibrate and, after a while, huge piles split off and moved in different directions.  One pile moved toward the Sheriff, rolled over him, and sucked him into it as it went forward.

After all the people in the town were eaten, the separate piles came together, and an enormous mass of white invaders floated into the air and streaked off toward the next town.

The End


While teaching speech and English at a community college, Mr. Greenblatt wrote short stories and plays, one of which won a reading at Smith College.  After retiring, he wrote short stories, novellas, and plays.  Several of his stories were published in on-line magazines, and others were published in print anthologies.


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