Listen to Ava

Avatar Author: Jim Stitzel I dabble a little in a lot of things -- writing, webcomics, gaming, photography, web design, music, and more. I'm a full-time code-wrangler and a part-time farmer with 40 acres, a lot of animals, and far, far too much to do. Read Bio

Beth stood on the knoll and gazed at the broken city some seven miles distant. The voice on the city’s public broadcast system was audible, even from here, but distance diluted it such that it merely caused Beth a mild headache. Had she been within the city proper, that voice would have been enough to make her skull pop like an over-ripe tomato.

Thad stepped silently up beside her. “Any change?”

Beth shook her head. “She’s been broadcasting non-stop for five days. The girl’s not human.”

“I think that’s fairly well established at this point.” Thad’s expression was grim, his mouth pressed into a firm line.

The two stood in silence for a while. Finally, Beth spoke.

“They marched a 6-year-old girl down in front of the world press and held her up as savior. ‘Listen to Ava,’ they said, and then the first word she spoke literally blew the top off the heads of everyone watching.” Beth clenched her fists and fired her next statement with explosive force. “I hate that little bitch.”

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Comments (10 so far!)

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  1. Avatar Jim Stitzel

    I saw a bumper sticker while driving the other day that said, simply, “Listen to AVA.” I still have no idea what it was supposed to be promoting, but in my mind’s eye, I saw a little girl with a powerful voice. That was the inspiration for this story.

  2. Avatar The Third Robot

    Really original concept and well played.

    Only critique would be that the last paragraph is a little difficult to follow.

  3. Avatar Jim Stitzel

    Thanks for the feedback. I revised that paragraph. Hopefully it flows more easily now.

  4. Avatar Jim Stitzel

    Yeah, I’m thinking about expanding it into a longer short story. I’m fascinated by this little girl, and I want to figure out who she is and where she comes from.

  5. Avatar Jim Stitzel

    Naturally! :-)

  6. Avatar Abstract

    I think it was referring to the band Angels & Airwaves, which uses the acronym as “AVA” for some reason.

  7. Avatar Robert Quick

    Did this become anything else? Inquiring minds would like to know!

  8. Avatar Jim Stitzel

    @Rorschach — Thanks!

    @Robert — Unfortunately not. I still haven’t ruled that possibility out, though. I just haven’t had the time and energy lately to do any serious writing.

  9. Avatar cthulhuburger

    This story is brimming with style. Well done!

  10. Avatar Jim Stitzel


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