The woman nudged the silver fish with her boot. ‘What is it?’
The man squatted for a better look. ‘More to the point, where did it come from? It wasn’t there a moment ago.’
The woman pushed it again and it squirmed. ‘God, it’s alive. Should we get it back in the water?’
‘Don’t you bloody dare.’
The man looked at the woman who looked scared. The boy took an involuntary step back. The fish had just spoken.
‘Did you…’ began the man.
‘Yes, I spoke. Get over yourselves. And no I don’t want to go in the water. I don’t like water. I don’t have gills, ok?’
‘Er, well can we help?’ The man exchanged another confused look with the woman. ‘I mean, fish normally die when their out of water for too long.’
‘Yes, well, and not many of them talk, do they? Shall we call me the exception to the rule? Would that help?’
‘I suppose.’ The woman had squatted down and reached out a hand.
‘What is it with this touching fetish? Can’t you just leave me be?’
‘Well yes, but I mean….what are you doing here? How did you get here?’
‘Questions, questions. If you give me… five…’
‘Did someone drop you?’
‘You’ll be pretty valuable.’
‘Maybe you’re some sort of AI.’
‘…two…oh, they’re early.’ The fish turned its head and looked up. The man and the woman followed its gaze. The boy was bored and had begun digging yet another hole.
Above their heads the clouds that had been gathering coalesced into a silvery structure that looked much like the fish only many times the size.
‘What the bejeebers is that?’ Asked the woman.
‘I guess you’d call it a space fish,’ smirked the fish. ‘Here we go.’ As he spoke the bottom of the enormous fish opened and many thousands of similar fish poured out crushing the man and the woman though the boy sat in his hole and thought he really needed a pee.
One fish became many which became one massive fish. The hive mind absorbed the man and the woman and taking the best of both adopted their characteristics changing in moments into an enormous version of a human.
Looking round, the newly formed super clone took in the frightened faces of the other beach users. One, braver than most shouted, ‘what are you?’
The hive mind scoured the accumulated wisdom of the man and woman, which wasn’t a lot. ‘Think of us as an invasive species. Now which of you shall we absorb first?’
While the panicked humans began to run and the superhuman sucked them into itself in a perverted inversion of the traditional fish supper, the little boy watched.
As the battle lines were drawn between the Gomorrah beast of Blackpool sands and the human race the little boy grew to be its most ferocious opponent. Over the years they fought many battles though throughout they always had one thing in common. Neither enjoyed swimming.