FEATURED STORY
RECENT STORIES
STORIES BY TOPIC
NEWS
SUPPORT DSF
Make the universe a better place! Join Daily Science Fiction for only $15 / year, support us via Patreon, or donate any amount.
TRANSPORTER
Take me to a...
SEARCH
Enter any portion of the author name or story title:
For more options, try our:
SUBSCRIBE
Sign up for free daily sci-fi!
your email will be kept private
TIDBITS
Get a copy of Not Just Rockets and Robots: Daily Science Fiction Year One. 260 adventures into new worlds, fantastical and science fictional. Rocket Dragons Ignite: the anthology for year two, is also available!
KINDLE
Kindle Edition
DSF stories are available in monthly digests for Kindle!
SUBMIT
Publish your stories or art on Daily Science Fiction:
If you've already submitted a story, you may check its:
DAILY SCI-FI
Not just rockets & robots...
"Science Fiction" means—to us—everything found in the science fiction section of a bookstore, or at a science fiction convention, or amongst the winners of the Hugo awards given by the World Science Fiction Society. This includes the genres of science fiction (or sci-fi), fantasy, slipstream, alternative history, and even stories with lighter speculative elements. We hope you enjoy the broad range that SF has to offer.






A House Divided

When the Smart Flu spread among the local animal population, we worried about our pets. Sure enough, Pumpkin the cat and Gizmo the Chihuahua soon showed all the symptoms: coughing, runny noses, reading the news. The vet said keep an eye out for behavioral problems, but they seemed affectionate as ever to us. True, there had always been tension between them. Squabbles over food, the best spot on the bed, nothing unusual. Then a week later, just before dinner, war broke out.
Like a long-haired orange missile, Pumpkin shrieked into the living room and kicked off the recliner to strike Gizmo in the back, bowling him off the sofa. He yelped and ran off. The kids screamed, "Stop that, Pumpkin!" Pumpkin had done this before, but this time, Gizmo retaliated.
What Gizmo lacked in size, he made up for with technology. He'd spent quiet afternoons upgrading the Roomba in secret. Now, out he rode on his rejiggered chariot, barking a war song as he fired round after round from a modified nail gun.
Pumpkin immediately leapt atop the bookcase. Moments later an orange paw began tossing finger-sized cylinders down. As each one landed, it exploded in a gunpowder stink. A fire started in the rug.
We, the unarmed humans, ran for the bedroom.
Behind the door we trembled as they unleashed their arsenals on each other. So many hidden war machines! The building shook. Dust fell from the ceiling while the neighbors pounded the walls. Finally it ended.
Nervous, we poked our heads out. There they lay. Two still lumps in the wreckage, casualties of their mutual aggression.
I looked back to the perch in the bedroom. Our grey parrot Niccolo turned a gimlet eye at us. "At last!" he squawked.
The End
This story was first published on Monday, June 20th, 2022
Become a Member!

We hope you're enjoying A House Divided by Jon Michael Hansen.

Please support Daily Science Fiction by becoming a member.

Daily Science Fiction does not have a paywall, but we do have expenses—more than 95% of which are direct payments to authors for their stories. With your $15 membership, less than 6 cents per story, we can continue to provide genre fiction every weekday by email and on the website to thousands of readers for many years to come. You may also choose to support us via patreon.

Rate This Story
Please click to rate this story from 1 (ho-hum) to 7 (excellent!):

Please don't read too much into these ratings. For many reasons, a superior story may not get a superior score.

4.6 Rocket Dragons Average
Share This Story
Join Mailing list
Please join our mailing list and receive free daily sci-fi (your email address will be kept 100% private):