THE ACADEMY… a Sci Fi Hypershort by Ethan Lawrence #scifishort #story #pitch #idea #thegeekieawards


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THE ACADEMY by Ethan Lawrence

It was the year 2072 under the rule of the United Planetary States and a time of great civil unrest and the rising threat of a primitive and aggressive neighboring galaxy. The President had become anxious and began strong preparation for a possible resistance invasion. Outside one of the world’s most dazzling cities, near a small village, became the center of military training for the eligible youth of the blue marble planet. The Academy, as it came to be known, was where young prospective military officers were trained in the divisional system of armament and function, as well as the crafts of espionage and the ancient study of ornithology, or birds, due to the discovery of a primitive and dangerous new world populated by terrifying reptilian-like creatures.

Academy excellence was the first priority, but it was here that young men and women, from peasant or aristocratic background mingled and developed character, leadership and a strong devotion to planet, through values and principles. The campus of the Academy was a wholesome, patriotic, and invigorating atmosphere in which students were inspired toward maximum achievement. It was a self-contained community with academic facilities, housing, dining, medical support, recreational and athletic facilities and its own maintenance section. A number of key staff and faculty members along with all drill instructors and their families lived on campus.

In addition to its academic buildings, the campus included an obstacle course, mud course, confidence course, rock climbing wall, speed-march reaction course, and facilities for various other athletic activities. There was a chapel, cadet activities center, which contained a great hall, game rooms, dining facility, which sat the entire Corp of Cadets at each meal. The zero-grav gymnasium was fully equipped, and there was an outdoor plasma rifle and artillery range.

Cadets were billeted in five, two story barracks with two cadets to a room and two rooms sharing a bathroom. Each barracks contained an apartment where the drill instructor and their family lived. In a separate stone structure, its turreted high-walled battlements echoed some distant and medieval protocol; the Main Center amplified the student’s knowledge of alien world inhabitants so much that anything was attainable in the evolution from ignorance to enlightenment.

The highly advanced Academy was a structured, disciplined, and motivating environment, with military history and weaponry strongly encouraged for the betterment of the President’s modern tactical expansion of knowledge and skills beyond the traditions of the old infantry, cavalry and artillery.

But these new uniquely talented young officers would not simply train in handheld weapons, but also a ‘directed energy orbital defense system’. While its sun-powered lasers were capable of vaporizing any asteroid passing too close to the planet, the same system was also used as asteroid-moving technology, capable of raining death down on enemies, like the reptilian creatures– a catastrophic, planet- annihilating impact.

This cataclysmic event caused mega-tsunamis. Clouds of super-heated dust, ash and steam spread from the crater as the impactor burrowed underground in less than a second. Excavated material ejected out of the atmosphere by the blast, was heated to incandescence upon re-entry, broiling the planet’s surface and igniting wildfires. Colossal shock waves triggered global earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. The impact of the asteroid caused the worldwide extinction of the prehistoric reptilian-like creatures, more commonly known on this alien planet 65 million years later as dinosaurs.


Ethan Lawrence has served on the writing staffs of the TV series The Pretender, Murder in Small Town X, Fearing Mind, So Weird and SyFy’s acclaimed series Eureka. He has developed web series for Generate Management/Alloy Entertainment such as Full Metal Alchemist and has sold TV pilots to NBC, ABC and The Gold Company.   He wrote the screenplay Hellraiser 5 for Dimension Films, Nevermore for Propaganda Films, Downloader for Stuart Gordon/Red Hen Productions, Mortal Velocity for Warner Bros. Studios, Creepers for Papa Joe Films (based on the David Morrell New York Times bestseller Creepers) and wrote the feature film Asylum for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios/Hyde Park Entertainment.

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