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steeltoedsneakers
Jul 26, 2016







Mercedes posted:

Porn was left up on your cellphone

Someday Never Comes
927 words
https://thunderdome.cc/?story=7788&title=Someday+Never+Comes

steeltoedsneakers fucked around with this message at 19:13 on Dec 31, 2019

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Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

This is the way that it all falls.
This is how I feel,
This is what I need:




Mercedes posted:

"Why is this bad so light?"

Memorial
997/1000 words


In India, we burn our dead. When my grandfather died, we ignited him in his hometown. The smoke was thick and so heavy, smelling of sandalwood, marigold, and earth. Ten generations ago, my grandmother would have walked into the pyre with him. His ashes were poured in the Ganges.

Our family's jewelry store burned three days ago, twenty years after my grandfather. My father burned with it.

I'd opened the door to my mother's room this morning and peeked in. The curtains were drawn. My mother was on the bed, sobbing in gasps, too tired to cry consistently. I called out to her softly and she jerked her head up quickly, that panic response. She didn't make any attempt to compose herself.

"Leena." she said. "Are you okay? How's Ravi?"

I didn't know how to answer her. Ravi's door had been closed since I'd woken up. More seriously, I was having trouble calling this a tragedy. I didn't have an easy answer for her. My mother motioned me to sit on her bed.

"Can I tell you something, between us?" she said.

"Of course, mom," I responded.

She pulled herself to a seated position. "I'm only crying because I feel like I have to. Is that wrong?"

I gave her a hug. It was a little maudlin, but that was her way. I understood. I hadn't shed any tears yet. I didn't know that any would come.

"I think you should feel free," I said. I quickly corrected myself. "You should be free to feel however you feel."

I left my mother and wandered to my brother's room, feeling listless. I knocked on the door.

"Ravi? Are you in there?"

The reply was muffled. "Yeah, Leena. Come in."

I walked in and sat down on the bed next to him. He had been playing solitaire, as he did when deep in thought. From what I could tell, he was winning. His room was fairly spartan. Everything he valued, I knew, was hidden underneath his bed, to keep it safe from our father. I remembered him keeping up a half-torn Sonic Youth poster, in rebellion. The consequences had been severe. I watched him flick the cards, then spoke.

"What are you going to do now?" I bit my lip with both anticipation and cautious optimism.

Ravi stopped playing. "I don't really know." He almost smiled. "Everything I've ever wanted to do, I guess?" He'd become more brief over the past few years. He told me once that he thought it kept him out of trouble.

I didn't have any words for him. There was a gnawing in my stomach. Encouragement didn't seem appropriate, although I wanted to fling my arms around his shoulders. Between cleaning up my father's messes and keeping our family afloat, the store had been a millstone around his neck. I thought I'd remembered him wanting to go to nursing school, once upon a time.

I got up, kissed him lightly on the cheek, then left.

I wound around the corridor to my father's room. My parents hadn't slept together in years. Before she'd gotten around to her uncertain grief, my mother must have had closed all the shades upstairs. The house seemed gloomy, the air thick. I opened the door to my father's room. His bed was still made and the exposed window bathed it in light. I sat down near the headboard and opened the cabinet. It was full of bottles of whiskey, most empty and one half-full. Black label, his favorite. His last breakfast must have been the other half of the bottle. I looked over the rest of his room, otherwise bare as a fresh rental. I'd read once that in late-stage alcoholism, nothing outside of the drinking particularly mattered.

I thought about the last two days. The officer had told us that my father had suffocated. Carbon monoxide poisoning and a lot of alcohol. After I thanked him and closed the door, I had gone to my room and smiled in secret. My mother, Ravi, and I had stayed separate that day, grieving and not grieving in our own ways.

I left and walked down to the living room, my feet feeling their way along the darkened steps. My father had insisted that the house be spotless. A few weeks ago he'd come in swaying and red-eyed, and looked over the mess from supper on the dining table. He'd screamed that if his family wanted a mess, he'd make a mess. I relived his words and a chill crept over me. I could hear the thuds, the clattering, and my mother's wounded whimpering. I flinched and without realizing it, had looked over my shoulder. I had expected him to be watching, towering at the top of the steps and leering down at me. I shook it off. Never again.

I sat down at the kitchen table and looked at the unadorned box the crematorium had delivered. It had been sitting there for a day or so, the ashes of his bones pulled from the wreckage of the jewelry store. The box was plain, its surface cool. I lifted it gingerly, just a few inches off of the table.

It was light, so light that it felt insubstantial. I hefted it to my ear like a Christmas present and gave it a gentle shake. There was a whisper of a shift inside. All that chaos, all that violence, all that weight, all inside this little box. I opened it and put my finger inside, stirring the fine ashes. Like a miniature zen garden, I thought. I walked to the sink, cradling the box.

I thought of my grandfather's ashes blackening the muddy water of the Ganges before he was swept away.

I ran the water and poured the ashes into the sink. Some of the ash floated up before it was sucked down. I rinsed out the box, scouring every trace of him from our home. Mom and Ravi would understand.

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


BLO OD E M PR E SS

of

THUDNER-DOME






Prompt: that crow has teeth

Mother of Murders
1000 words

Deep in the long dark of the winter solstice, beneath the light of a full moon, Signe journeyed to the heart of the forest, where the crows roosted among leafless treefingers. Frosty moss crunched under her boots as she approached the great grandmother tree. The crows looked down their beaks at the girl, silent as the grave, their feathers shivering like leaves in the insomniac night breeze.

Signe called up to the crows, ďI come here on the longest night, when all things are equal, to make an exchange with the mother of murders.Ē She added, uncertainly: ďThat is to say, as an equal.Ē

The weight of a thousand glittering eyes weighed heavy on the girl; she shifted from foot to foot to keep the cold from seeping up into her boots while the crows deliberated.

Finally, a voice arose from the throats of the birdsóa cooing, clicking, rasping voice that contorted corvid throats unnaturally around human inflections.

ďWhat do you bring us?Ē croaked the mother of murders from the mouths of her children.

Signe unslung a sack from over her shoulder and spilled its contents onto the frost-kissed moss: eyeballs, a delicious bounty of them. Irises colored brown, gold, green, grey, and blue stood in stark contrast to the cold-whitened forest floor.

ďThe eyes of ninety-nine killers, rapists, and child-beaters,Ē she said, grinning up at the murder. ďMy father among them. I offer you the sweetest bits of the deserving dead.Ē

ĒAnd what do you ask in return?Ē The voice of the mother of murders was thick with the hunger of her children; the bounty was sweet indeed.

ďI was born into pain,Ē the girl said. ďPain nursed me at its teat and fed me its worm-riddled bread.Ē She laughed, cold and bitter as the solstice wind. ďPain learned me in the ways of womanhood.Ē

ĒWe cannot take away your pain,Ē the mother of murders said, but there was tenderness in her gestalt voice.

ďI know,Ē Signe said, and took a deep breath. ďI want to fly. Like you.Ē

The mother of murders was silent for a long moment. Her children rustled on their branches, admiring the pile of eyeballs with cocked heads and eager expressions.

ĒThere is a way for you to fly with us,Ē said the mother of murders at last, ĒBut first you must prove yourself fit to roost among my children. Convince them with your story.Ē

Signe had seen enough death to be wise to the ways of crows; she knew the rough mirth of their caws concealed a deep love of rhythm and melody. In the mornings after she killed, when the eyeless body of her latest conquest lie naked and exposed to the dawn light, the crows would gather to celebrate the bounty of flesh, singing their syncopated songs, communing in complex, dueling rhythms.

A fiddle was strapped across Signeís back; presently she unholstered it, and withdrew a bow from a long deerskin sheathe at her hip. Positioning her chin in the chinrest, she took a few experimental draws of the bow across the strings, pausing occasionally to adjust the tuning pegs.

Then she began to play in earnest.

Notes fell from the fiddle in streams of tears, then rose like steam to the ears of the crows. Arpeggios built bridges from one mood to the next: innocence to disrepair, trust to hate, love to death, righteousness to dismay. To this brisk, watery melody she added her voice, yipping and growling and cawing in all the voices of sky, bush, and earth, challenging her own melody with animal dissonance.

A moving picture formed in a thousand glittering crow eyes: A toddling girlchild, sickly but grinning. The same girl, older, huddled outside a noisome hovel, cowering from the wall-eyed wrath of her father. Winters spent crouched wakefully by the fire, trapped indoors with the monster.

Time passed on waves of melody.

Signe alternated strokes of her bow with slaps of her palm on the body of the fiddle, disrupting the flow of the melody with abrupt percussion. Her animal yips and hoots became the squeal of the dying rabbit, the shriek of the territorial hawk.

Unspeakable things unfolded in the eyes of the crows. A child became a woman, then a killer, and the killer avenged the violations visited upon the child. She kept her fatherís eyes in a pouch at her hip. And then there was nothing to be except a killer; Signe avenged ninety-eight women and children, taking as her trophy the eyes of their violators.

Signeís voice fell silent; her bow trembled on the strings, producing the smallest shiver of sound in the still solstice night. Even the wind had given up its restless pacing, and now watched the girl with rapt attention, motionless as an alert crow.

One final vision played out across the eyes of the crows: A woman falsely accused of child-murder, awaiting trial in her cell. Her eyes wide as Signe loomed over her in the dark, garrote in hand. In the wake of the womanís death, a fatherís tearful confession: the child had drowned in the river under his supposed watch as he dallied with an amorous woodnymph in the long grass.

Signe, burying the falsely-accused motherís eyes deep underground, where no hungry beak might find them.

She lowered bow and fiddle, looking up at the crows with dry, empty eyes.

ďTake me into the sky,Ē she whispered, then added: "Please".

After a long moment, the mother of murders said, ĒWe forgive you. We accept you.Ē

And then her children fell on Signe, beaks digging into flesh, taking her apart piece by piece, dissolving her regret in pain beyond reckoning.

When the crows ascended back to their branches, beaks wet and hot with fresh blood, Signe rose with them, and came to rest in the grandmother treeís branches, at peace at last in the arms of the mother of murders.

Mercedes
Mar 7, 2006

"So you Jesus?"

"And you black?"

"Nigga prove it!"

And so Black Jesus turned water into a bucket of chicken. And He saw that it was good.






Storytime is over

Mercedes
Mar 7, 2006

"So you Jesus?"

"And you black?"

"Nigga prove it!"

And so Black Jesus turned water into a bucket of chicken. And He saw that it was good.






JUDGEMENT TIME

This was quite the small week, which in and of itself is a blessing and a curse. There were some really good stories that shot themselves in the foot by ignoring prompts, and a couple of failures that have wounded me deeply *cough*sebmojo**cough*flesnolk*.

I’ll first start off with our DM. Tibalt. Like my fellow judge said, Tucker Max/PUA flim flam. Also, the plot goes through the story, not at the end as a surprise.

My HM! Steeltoedsneakers! That story resonated with me as something that would probably happen to my stupid rear end.

Aaaaand our loser iiiiiiiiis Shotaro. This was quite a mess. And you named someone Sssst. Freaking why?

This leaves our winner! Barnaby motherfucking Profane! You get me. You GET me. You used, not two, not three, but four cameos. You went all in and you judge pandered like a motherfucking pro. The throne is all yours man.

Mercedes fucked around with this message at 01:10 on Nov 5, 2019

Mercedes
Mar 7, 2006

"So you Jesus?"

"And you black?"

"Nigga prove it!"

And so Black Jesus turned water into a bucket of chicken. And He saw that it was good.






Notes as I read. If you want a more detailed crit, please let me know and I'll provide one for you.

Mother of Murders
Opening was very scenic with great words. Iím interested to read on. The crows all talking was creepy. Well done. Also the eyeballs were very ew. The story took awhile to get started, but your tone setting was enough to keep my attention. Though well written, and would be scored high any other week, two massive problems come to the forefront. I donít see any crows with teeth and at the end, everything went right for Signe; well besides getting torn into by a pack of hungry birds, but she got what she wished for. I felt you kinda ignored my prompts and that makes me sad and dissapointed. Like a disproving mother.

Memorial
Okay, opener is interesting. Lots of burnings. ďIím only crying because I feel like I have to.Ē Holy poo poo I understand how that feels. *Resonating*. I like how youíre slowly drip feeding information about the father, but youíre slowly losing me here. Not a whole lot happening. The story is definitely a slow burn, and the ending is satisfying. I also really like how you incorporated your rule. It also seems that everything went right for the family. Ĺ rule beats completed I guess. Story isnít bad, just not my cup of tea.

Someday Never Comes
YES! Finally this is the kind of opening I want. Give me the wacky poo poo, you got my attention. But second person story telling? Canít have everything you want I guess. Okay, I take it back, youíre making that second person story telling work and Iím digging it. This story was awesome. I had a grin the entire time I was reading it. Knocked both rules out of the park. This is the kind of stuff I can see myself writing. Pandering rating 10/10, would ask to pander again.

Dangerous Streets
Not the most interesting of openers to be honest. The only thing that caught my attention is that the MC is a cat. But just barely. Youíre gonna have an upward battle here. You almost completely lost me until the catís thoughts. I can totally see cats internally monologuing like this.

-meowed-

Ooof.. changing MC in flash fiction? I barely tolerate it in novels. You donít have enough time to get me to care about this new main character. Also, how did he reach the roof? And weíre back to MC number 1. Second MC is dead. You at least nailed one part of your prompt. You would have nailed your personal prompt if you had the entire story from the perspective of the second cat. As it is, nothing went wrong for cat 1 since she didnít even like the second cat. She was tossed out, but went back home after seeing dead cat. SoooÖ

South-ish of Heaven
OMFG you went all in and I LOVE IT. Iím only in paragraph one gently caress yea. Please donít gently caress it up for me! Oh no! Xavier went to the dark side! That bastard.

Dude. DUDE. Some other story needs to be ridiculously on loving point to beat this entry and Iím barely to the middle. Also Nadia <3. Nadia no!!!

*slow clap* This is perfection. Exactly what I wanted to come out of this week. Had I not had the job to read the other entries, I would have crowned this the winner and everyone else got DMs.

No One Ever Believed the True Story
Thatís how you loving start a story. Letís keep it going. I like the energy this story has so far, but I donít know who warhol, jones or head look like and I donít know what CBT stands for. So Iím at the part where the dudeís in the bathroom and Iím finding myself spacing out. I can appreciate the slapstick (hah) but youíre gonna have to start the plot sometime. Iím also finding myself having to reread sections over and over again to understand that is going and that killed the pacing for me. Ah, so it was a story he was telling a judge.

This kinda started out strong, but could have stayed strong had you started with him in a courtroom with the judge and then he went all Micheal Pena from Ant Man. The plot should not be a surprise. You also tiptoed the line of of sexual grossness.

Sweet Chili Heat
LMAO the opening is great. I was gonna scroll up to see what prompt I gave you, but there it is. Excellent! Dude, your comedy is on point! Iím loving this so far. Iíll be honest with you. This was great. I forgot to write notes as I was reading cause I was enraptured. I wanna read more comedy stuff from you, you got the talent for it man! So far, you hit your prompts the hardest out of all the entries so far. There are a few tense shifts, but I always have issues with those and I didn't catch them on the first pass.

Umlaut
Woof, bruh, youíre borderline run on sentencing there in the first paragraph. And youíre going second person narrative too. Whatís the umlaut? Whatís sonicnerve?? Who am I? Youíre introducing a lot of questions this early on man. Omfg, the exposition is making really want to skip this.

I donít understand the point to this story or why anything happened. Just a string of events happened, some random names and then the story ended. Nothing about too long toenails that I could find. (I found it, but had to have it explained to me, still felt eh about the whole thing.)

Watch Party
Not the strongest opening. Someone says a name, and then you introduce two other names back to back to back. If Mark was in the same room as Christy, maybe introduce her a little later. Too many characters too fast. Wait, wtf is Ssst? How many people are in the room? Jesus. What the hell just happened? Why did Diane want money from Mark? What did the sports teams have anything to do with this story?

Sign-on Bonus
Hahaha you chose Kana the senior barista! Sheís not a recurring character, but Iíve definitely used the name multiple times. The story is dragging a bit. You gotta get the plot in there sooner. I still donít know whatís going on. Okay, now that the plot is rolling, I feel you could have easily cut most of the first part of the story. As sebmojo would call it, wiffle piffle. I really wish you cut the beginning, cause it really killed the potential to be scored higher. I like how you twisted your prompt meaning ďtrusting a fartĒ as in a literal Fart demon. Clever! Things didnít go wrong though. It slid right into place with the MC. Ĺ prompts, good use of a cameo.

I am Weary, Let Me Rest
Not the most exciting of openers, but written well and Bob is already endearing. Oh Bob, I can relate to how I feel about my alarm clock. I also love how all these fantasy setting characters have regular names. This is quite a fabulous read; well crafted honestly. My only complaint is that the catastrophic wrongs donít happen TO Bob. For him, everything goes swimmingly (besides getting woke up)

Flesnolk
Apr 11, 2012

h


:psyduck:

Black Griffon
Mar 12, 2005


Judging Music: Somewhere Along the Highway by Cult of Luna

-

Chairchucker - I am Weary, Let Me Rest

Starts formulaic and predictable. Fantasy people with regular rear end names is kind of a tired concept at this point.

Prose is stiff, story goes nowhere, is dull and ends on a fart.

Weltlich - Sign-on Bonus

Guess demons drive around in humvees, thatís cool I guess. Clever use of prompt. O poo poo is this a stealth voidmart story? Itís pretty grim and funny, good worldbuilding. Fun characters. Clever, though a little too clever and smirky at points ("Also, she was sipping an iced americano. In Hell.")

Shotaro - Watch Party

Oh no I donít know poo poo about sports. Here we go.

Confused about names; Ssst? Forestt? I guess sports are very serious business. The worldbuilding is lacking, because I donít get why someone would be trucking around with a machete in a thigh sheath. Everyone is very angry. Raw and brutal and kinda fun, but ultimately directionless and clumsy. I feel confused and a little irritated.

Thranguy - Umlaut

POV is a little messy. Some fun descriptions of aging metalheads, but poo poo is hard to follow and tonally weird. The injury is a funny idea and then after the power chord moment it just kind of falls apart.

SlipUp - Sweet Chili Heat

Gotta get your tenses right buddy, itís like nails on chalkboard. Fun and chaotic, but too messy, far too messy. Could be something fun if it was cleaner.

Tibalt - No One Ever Believed the True Story,

This is some pervy poo poo, and not in a good way. Tucker Max nonsense. PUA fishing tale bullshit. Nope. Prose is chaotic, and not in a good way. Exhausting and boring.

Barnaby Profane - South-ish of Heaven

I guess I'm the dissent. Well...

This seems like some random poo poo, eh. I get that stuff like this is fun to write, but itís boring and passť. Dull, terrible ending.

So anyway this is why it's ideal to have three judges. Good on ya, but you get no accolades from me. It's a way to do this right, and this ain't it.

Asap-salafi - Dangerous Streets

You know how I feel about cats, something better not happen to any of them.

oh you motherfucker

I recuse myself

(interesting character setup, story is a little basic, but I'm being serious when I say that this hits too hard for me to judge effectively)

Steeltoedsneakers - Someday Never Comes

Present tense is a good choice for the premise. Nice build up, but you get a little bit too thesaurus at points. Itís a ridiculous and funny story, but itís also grounded in something very real and kind of touching/melancholic.

Carl Killer Miller - Memorial

Oh poo poo you did something clever with bad so light. This is some heavy poo poo, but also uplifting. Emotionally weighty. Nice flow, good writing. Really liked this.

Sitting Here - Mother of Murders

Oh hey a scandinavian name nice. Dark, creepy good poo poo. Aw nuts, donít use ďpresentlyĒ imo. But gently caress, I got shivers at the end. Good poo poo.

but where's that full set of teeth tho

-

Cooldown music: Jůhann Jůhannsson - They Being Dead Yet Speaketh

Flesnolk
Apr 11, 2012

h

ropmtp

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk








:toxx: to post a redemption by friday 2359pst

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


THUNDERDOME CCCLXXIX -- ANTS

Having swarmed my way onto the throne through shameless pandering, I now bestow upon you the opportunity to pander to me in turn by writing stories about ants, or at least stories that feature ants prominently. In general, I’m going to look most favourably on stories that at least seem like they’ve done some basic research. It bothers me, perhaps more than it should, that A Bug’s Life features a male ant protagonist and almost no true bugs. This is your chance to do better. Which is not to say that you can’t put male ants in your stories, but you should know what you’re doing.

If you like, you can request an ant with your signup, and I’ll give you an ant species for inspiration.

Word Count: 750
Rules: No gdocs, no fanfic, no erotica
Signups Close: Friday, November 8th, 2359 PST
Entries Close: Sunday, November 10th, 2359 PST

Queens:
Barnaby Profane
Yoruichi
Flesnolk

Workers:
Antivehicular - Odontomachus bauri
Thranguy - Anoplolepis gracilipes
Carl Killer Miller - Paraponera clavata
flerp - Dorylus helvolus
Tibalt - Atta cephalotes
lofi - Linepithema humile
sebmojo - Sphecomyrma freyi
asap-salafi - Eciton burchellii
Black Griffon - Cephalotes atratus
Sitting Here - Solenopsis invicta
Something Else - Mymecocystus mexicanus
Jon Joe - Gigantiops destructor
Some Strange Flea
Anomalous Amalgam - Mystrium camillae
crimea
SlipUp - Polyergus rufescens
GenJoe - Oecophylla smaragdina

Barnaby Profane fucked around with this message at 20:58 on Nov 11, 2019

Antivehicular
Dec 30, 2011

I wanna sing one for the cars
That are right now headed silent down the highway
And it's dark and there is nobody driving
And something has got to give



In, gimme an ant

Thranguy
Apr 21, 2010

Yes, the good words are gone.

Why are the good words gone?!




In, ant me up.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

This is the way that it all falls.
This is how I feel,
This is what I need:




In, hit me with an ant.

flerp
Feb 25, 2014

I DON'T ALWAYS
HERDY DUR MUR FLERP FLERPITY
FLOOPIN
BUT WHEN I DO
I YER DER FLERPITY
THURN DER DERMIN
BORK! BORK! BORK!




ant! ant! ant!

Tibalt
May 14, 2017

What, drawn, and talk of peace! I hate the word, As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee


I'm in, please give me an ant.

lofi
Apr 2, 2018






I ain't written in a while, let's give this a shot! Ant me up!

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







Yeah ant me :toxx:

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


Antivehicular posted:

In, gimme an ant

You get Odontomachus bauri!



Thranguy posted:

In, ant me up.

It's Anoplolepis gracilipes!


Carl Killer Miller posted:

In, hit me with an ant.

Watch out for Paraponera clavata!


flerp posted:

ant! ant! ant!

Dorylus helvolus!


Tibalt posted:

I'm in, please give me an ant.

Hope you brought your appetite for Atta cephalotes!


lofi posted:

I ain't written in a while, let's give this a shot! Ant me up!

Have a crack at Linepithema humile!


sebmojo posted:

Yeah ant me :toxx:

The O.G. special: Sphecomyrma freyi!

asap-salafi
May 5, 2012


In. Ant me please.

Black Griffon
Mar 12, 2005


feeling antsy gimme a shot of ant partner

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


asap-salafi posted:

In. Ant me please.

Oh snap, it's Eciton burchellii


Black Griffon posted:

feeling antsy gimme a shot of ant partner

The gliding Cephalotes atratus!

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


BLO OD E M PR E SS

of

THUDNER-DOME






well, the queen can hardly let the colony get busy without her. IN, and give me an ant, if you would

Something Else
Dec 27, 2004


I'm in please ant me up

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


Sitting Here posted:

well, the queen can hardly let the colony get busy without her. IN, and give me an ant, if you would

Careful with Solenopsis invicta -- these polygynous relationships sound fun at first, but often end with gruesome dismemberment.


Something Else posted:

I'm in please ant me up

It's Myrmecocystus mexicanus!

Chili
Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit


Fun Shoe



:slick: Year 3, Baby :slick:



Iíll say this now and Iíll say it again at the end of the post: DO NOT INDICATE INTEREST OR ATTEMPT TO SIGN UP IN THREAD. Message me directly either through PM or on IRC. Not looking to bog down the thread while all of this great anting is going on.

This year, I want to include as many people in on the festivities as possible. Accordingly, there are two ways you can participate in the merriment. If you want to join this year, you MUST participate in Event 1. Event 2 is optional.



Event 1 The Gift of Trash Words

Last year, we had a big collaborative story that included all of the participants. It got messy and was hard to manage. Changing it up again this year!

There will be a prompt. It does not need to be strictly adhered to. Everyone will be secretly paired up with one other domer, if there's an odd amount, I'll sit out.
One person starts the story, one person finishes it.

So instead of one big crazy story, there will be more stories representing small little thunderdyads.

You'll get the prompt when it's your turn to punch the holiday keys. Prompts for the first in the partnership will go out in about a week, and from them, I'd like to have the first half of those stories back in two weeks. That way, your partner has enough time to steer away from the iceberg you set them up with.

You may sign up for just Event 1, if you'd like.



Event 2 The Gift of Trash Presents (so far, everyone has utterly ruled at giving gits. If you sign up for this, be prepared to be blown away and I guess do some blowing yourself)

No spending minimum or maximum, but keep your expectations low so you may be surprised! Gifts can range from something as small as a really nice greeting card to whatever the hell you can think up. Just make it some combination of personal, thoughtful, funny, what the gently caress ever. Also, in order to sign up for this event, you need to have completed at least 5 Thunderdome entries. Don't let low funds deter you here! Seriously, a bitching card, and a trinket would be welcome by all of us.

Last year, I had separate circles for folks in and out of the US to try and keep shipping costs low, but Iím not doing that this year. Suffice to say, if shipping charges are crazy nuts for your Santee you can always consider digital gifts (gifts on steam, forums upgrades, whatever else).

Iíll facilitate all communication between Santas and Santees. If you don't feel as though you know your santee very well, feel free to ask me questions that I'll then relay to them. DO NOT TALK TO YOUR SANTEE. THAT RUINS THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS AND YOUíLL MAKE THUNDEBABYJESUS CRY.

You may sign up for just Even 2, if you'd like.


To indicate your interest DO NOT POST. Preferably, send me a PM, but if you donít have PMs find me on irc or Discord. If you have PM's and you're only signing up for Event 1, then I need nothing else from you. If you don't have PM's I need an e-mail to send the story to. Also, if you're signing up for Event 2, I'll need a mailing address for you so your Santa doesn't get lost on their way to where you live.

To sign up, indicate if you are down for event 1, event 2, or if you a mirthful bastard who wants in on both. No pressure, but that last option is totes the most festive and you should do it.

I will confirm with you when you sign up. If you don't hear from me, it means I missed it. Try me again. Additionally, in the likely event that something here isn't clear, let me know outside of the thread and I'll be sure to amend what needs amending.

Iíll post a reminder about this when the deadline is a few days away. For now, GET MERRY!

lofi
Apr 2, 2018







Turns out insomnia does have a use - I spent hours last night thinking about ants:

Fourmis de Cuisine
746 words

The Steak Shack has always had an ant problem. When I started here it was basic black ants, but a couple of years back I upgraded to Argentine. It was back-breaking work, digging out the old nest, but I was lured on by heady words like mega-colony and trillions.

I nearly drove myself mad with worry after that, thought I'd lost my touch, until I figured it out; of course a different species speaks a different language, I just had to figure it out again, same as I'd done before. Like I said, the Steak Shack has always had an ant problem. So I'm sat in this horrible greasy kitchen one afternoon, feeling sorry for myself about the waste of a good culinary education and watching a trail of tiny bodies explore the grease behind the oven, when the thought hit me: ants use chemicals to communicate, right? Taste, and smell. And taste and smell are what I do. So could I talk to the ants?

It started as mostly a way to pass the time, cooking up bizarre combinations and seeing how my little companions reacted. Writing down anything interesting that happened. But gently caress me it I didn't eventually figure out some basic commands, 'come here', 'danger', and so on. I couldn't help but dream of myself as some master criminal, diamonds and banknotes making their way to me on long rivers of chitin. That's why I swapped out the nest, because who wants to rule a block when you could control a mega-colony that could reach across whole countries? But even after I'd started over, got up to speed with a new language, I pretty much ran into a brick wall: I didn't really have any fine control over the critters, and a stream of ants bringing me nice crisp notes straight from the bank isn't exactly subtle. I mean, it wouldn't take Sherlock Holmes to solve that case, would it? So I'm sat there, idly feeding my little friends crumbs from a bun, waiting for the post-work 'rush' to start, trying to figure out how to become a supervillain, when the bell over the door clonks.

I haul myself up, putting on my customer-face, and I just loving know this guy is going to poo poo all over my day the second I see him. A face like boiled pork belly, suit that looks like he's slept outside in it, and a watery little smile that doesn't reach his eyes. He roots around in his sweaty armpit and hands me his card, proves me right - health inspector. He's on his way home, he whines, but just wanted to stop in because there'd been a phone call, he's sure it's nothing, but just wanted to pop in, he just won't shut up. And of course there's nothing I can do to stop him taking 'a quick peek in the back'.

Like I said, my tiny friends don't really get subtlety, didn't know to stay hidden, were quite enjoying that bun I'd been feeding them. And inspector holier-than-thou is all over us, making all sorts of threats, demanding chemical warfare and closures, sanctions and remedies.

Well, after much bitching and moaning he eventually fucks off in a trail of paperwork, and I'm left back in my little kingdom trying to figure out what I'm going to do. And it dawns on me: this is how I become a supervillain. I shut up shop and get to mixing. Normally I'm an intuitive type of chef, but for this I measured everything out just so, all nice and precise. Asafoetida, star anise, mint, even something as simple as pureed potato, they all go in. It takes hours to get it perfect, but in the end I'm left with a sludge that tastes pretty bland to me, but to an ant should taste like pure hate. I take his card, so rich with his stink, and smear my concoction on it. Hand it to the little ones. 'Fear', 'threat', 'attack'. It's not poetry, but as they tear into the card, as the bulbous-headed soldiers appear and the dismembered card is dragged away, I think I've sent the message I meant to.

The next day I open as usual. I make a point of leaving the old TV set on the counter tuned to the news, the volume turned up. Bizzarre insect attack... killed... swarmed... asphyxiated. I guess the old saying was right: there are no problems, just opportunities.

Jon Joe
Oct 19, 2011

GUESS WHO'S LYING


Grimey Drawer

Fire the ant ray.

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


Jon Joe posted:

Fire the ant ray.

Gigantiops destructor has eyes only for you. Side note: this is objectively the best ant name, so don't gently caress it up.

lofi
Apr 2, 2018






Hey ant-expert, what's the bubble thing in the middle of that one's head? A third eye? Psychic ants?!

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


That's one of her three ocelli!

lofi
Apr 2, 2018






Oh, I see the others now you've mentioned them! That's just a greedy amount of eye for one ant to have.

Some Strange Flea
Apr 9, 2010

AAA


Pillbug

I think I've got something with these ants.

In.

Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo


Doctor Rope

I'll take some ants, please?

crimea
Nov 16, 2012


In.

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


Anomalous Amalgam posted:

I'll take some ants, please?

You've won the snappy Dracula ant Mystrium camillae!

SlipUp
Sep 30, 2006


gently caress it, I'm in. Ant-e up.

GenJoe
Sep 14, 2010


ant no time like the present. i'll take one, please.

Barnaby Profane
Feb 23, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2021


SlipUp posted:

gently caress it, I'm in. Ant-e up.

The slave-making ant Polyergus rufescens!



GenJoe posted:

ant no time like the present. i'll take one, please.

The weaver ant Oecophylla smaragdina!

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Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo


Doctor Rope

Eh, I have to eat a toxx. I failed to submit for my brawl on time.

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