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by Michael A. Kechula

The Emperor of Mars sent 7-billion dozen chocolate chip cookies to Earth as a good-will gesture. The President of Earth’s Amalgamated Nations was so grateful, he declared a global holiday to honor the Emperor. Everyone on Earth received a dozen cookies, and gobbled them up.

That night, the President yelled over TV, “This is an emergency. We have been bamboozled. We just discovered the cookies from Mars contain teensy nano-nuclear bombs within every chocolate morsel. Martians might detonate the bombs any second. Induce vomiting immediately! Get to a hospital as quickly as you can!”

Vomit flooded the streets. Every hospital on Earth was overwhelmed.

Watching the pandemonium through a giant telescope, the Emperor of Mars pressed a detonation button on a doomsday machine. Instantly, billions of Earthlings who hadn’t vomited or had their stomachs pumped, exploded.

“I told you they’d eat free chocolate chip cookies,” General Ggg reminded Mars' Emperor, as billions of tiny nuclear mushroom clouds rose in Earth’s atmosphere.

“You were right about that,” said the Emperor. “But you were wrong about no Earthlings surviving. Many regurgitated our bombs before I pressed the detonation button. Millions may have survived.”

“No problem.  I’ll notify our spies on Earth to take a headcount to let us know exactly how many survived. All we’ll have to do is send an extra-large pepperoni pizzas to every Earthling remaining. We’ll embed more of our miniature bombs in every slice of pepperoni.”

“Do you think we can fool them twice?”

“Absolutely. Our spies tell us Earthlings have notoriously short memories. Most days, they can barely remember what they had for breakfast. Plus, they can’t resist glomming onto anything that’s free. To top it off, nobody on Earth can resist pepperoni pizza.”

A week later, a million Martian troopships landed on Earth. Nobody was alive to resist their invasion.