In peace negotiations between alien species, translation is so, so important…

This is a really short story – you can read it all below…

(c) 2012 Simon Goodson.
Story Disclaimer


Negotiator watched the fragile looking humans approach.  Months of effort had gone into arranging this first meeting.  Communication was still difficult with many gaps in translation but that was unimportant today.  This ceremony was to confirm both sides peaceful intentions.  To reduce the tensions that had existed since first contact, the worries that negotiations with this strange race would be impossible.

The humans stopped and their Kalotu, or Ambassador to use their word, came forward.  At least that part of the ceremony had been translated successfully.  Negotiator bent over the sacrificial Kalotu and, as protocol dictated, crushed the Kalotu’s head in its jaws.  The blood tasted foul, but such was the price of diplomacy.  It was careful not to show any signs of its disgust.

The rest of the human party started yelling and pointing.  Several drew weapons and opened fire on the shocked negotiator, tearing him apart before he could react.  Other members of negotiator’s party returned fire.  Within hours a full blown interstellar war had started.

Translation can be such a tricky business.

The End

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2 thoughts on “Translation

  1. I read aloud ( which slows my thinking and I can get every nuance) and that one choked me.
    I really want to hear what each side said. Wow.

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