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Canadian Surf Club
Feb 15, 2008

Word.


quote:

I don't like the word "for" in a sentence like "He poured under the light of the small desk lamp they sat by for it was past the sleeping hour and all the lights in the Berlin home were dark". It's dumb and archaic and you shouldn't. Too many run-on sentences.

Yeah that sentence changed forms a lot and I agree that that's a pretty archaic connector.

Congrats to sebmojo, well deserved

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Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.


Wow. Actually kinda surprised I didn't bite the bullet on that one, though I wouldn't think by much.

And Sebmojo, the emperor returns. Congratulations man.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Huh. Looks like the mindfogging toxin I got Bulgarian emigres to fire into each one of the judges with an umbrella did the trick. Roubles well spent.

Noah, I did think about that - it's suggested that Hippo survived a car bomb, so maybe the narrator did too? But yeah, sort of cheap. I misread the deadline so thought I only had about five minutes left when I got to that bit.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Alright, useless bastard judges are keeping quiet, so I'ma flex my judge's prerogative - starting next round.

THUNDERDOME WEEK X: THE DARK LORD'S CORNFLAKES

Judges: sebmojo, Black Griffon, Y Kant Ozma Post

Prompt: Modern day high fantasy, with at least one transgressive romance.

DREARINESS AND CREEPINESS WILL BE PUNISHED WITH EQUAL AND ULTIMATE FURY

Length: 1500 max. Shorter better.

Signup Deadline: Friday, Oct. 12, 1:00 AM PDT

Submission Deadline: Saturday, Oct. 13, 1:00 AM PDT

Entered:

Black Griffon = NO ENTRY MAY HIS UKULELE NEVER RING TRUE
Dr Kloctopussy = NO ENTRY CURRENTLY WRITHING ON HORRID STABBING TENDRILS
Toanoradian
V for Vegas
Baggy Brad
Sebmojo
Jonked = NO ENTRY MAY THE GODS CURSE HIS FEET TO STINK
The Saddest Rhino
Bad Seafood
Surreptitious Muffin
Justcola
Peel
Sitting Here
Wrageowrapper
CaligulaKangaroo
Derp

Black Griffon
Mar 12, 2005

Now, in the quantum moment before the closure, when all become one. One moment left. One point of space and time. I know who you are.

You are destiny.


What the hell, User CP apparently hosed itself (or I hosed up but that wouldn't be possible because I'm a judge and gently caress you).

So anyway; sign the gently caress up you useless shitheads!

gently caress, even I'll sign up because I'm so loving awesome.

Edit: Also; what the gently caress is wrong with your deadlines seb?

Noah
May 31, 2011

Come at me baby bitch


I'm out for this week, I have a flight to catch tomorrow and a wedding all weekend, so no writing for me. See you guys next dome.

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003


This prompt is confusing as hell. It has to be "modern day" but also "set in an imaginary world?" and what is a transgressive romance?

I'm in regardless. Woo!

Edit: oh, I guess it can be in a parallel world or a world-within-a-world, but that seems to seriously undermine the idea of "high fantasy" to me. Whatever, it's cool.

toanoradian
May 30, 2011

The happiest waffligator


Oh man, I miss Week X! It happened so fast I don't even have the time to sign in! As weeks go Thunderdome get more intense, goddamn.

Dr. Kloctopussy posted:

This prompt is confusing as hell. It has to be "modern day" but also "set in an imaginary world?"

I read this as 'high fantasy is usually set in the time era roughly equal to the far past, for this week set your high fantasy in a modern time setting'.

clearly this invites jihadist wizards

I'm in, but also would like to know what you mean by 'transgressive romance'. Homosexual romances? Romances between trans people?

Also apparently my control panel only registers 2 new posts even though there's...4 well-spaced posts. Even the forums itself work against Thunderdome?

Black Griffon
Mar 12, 2005

Now, in the quantum moment before the closure, when all become one. One moment left. One point of space and time. I know who you are.

You are destiny.


Needless to say, signup deadline is not Thursday 4th, just sign the hell up and we'll figure it out.

V for Vegas
Aug 31, 2004

THUNDERDOME LOSER

It will always be October 4 in my heart. Signing in.

Black Griffon
Mar 12, 2005

Now, in the quantum moment before the closure, when all become one. One moment left. One point of space and time. I know who you are.

You are destiny.


Transgressive romances are romances that break social norms and acceptability.

And we have tons of ideas of what modern day high-fantasy could be, but we're not telling, because when we have tons of ideas, you idiots should be able to come up with one.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Black Griffon posted:

Needless to say, signup deadline is not Thursday 4th, just sign the hell up and we'll figure it out.

Fixed. I am a stupid judge.

And in, dammit.

Baggy_Brad
Jun 8, 2003

THUNDERDOME LOSER

I'm in.

Jonked
Feb 15, 2005

by exmarx


I missed last weekend due to probation, but as a reward I get a nice interesting prompt to jump in with!

Count me in.

The Saddest Rhino
Apr 29, 2009

I could hear the roots of loneliness creeping through me when the world was hushed at four o'clock in the morning


I honestly have no idea how modern day high fantasy isn't urban fantasy, but why the hell not. I'm in.

SurreptitiousMuffin
Mar 21, 2010

I got it wrong. Look, I'm well aware I got it wrong and uh, I got it wrong.


In like Flynn.

justcola
May 22, 2004

La-Li-Lu-Le-Lo

I liked last weeks and so will give this one a go as well. No idea what I'm going to write yet though duh.

edit: I thought a bit.

Modern Romance (1194)

Jaak looked out at the Los Angeles cityscape from his penthouse apartment, watching the sun slowly set on the horizon. He could just make out the Great Steed pulling the inferno behind it, galloping just a few miles on the edge of oblivion as it had done since the dawn of the New Age. Jaak's phone rang.
"Hello lover. How was work?"
"Standard. You?"
"Made some advances on transmogrifying gluons into photons. Wanna hear about it?"
"Not really. Can't really wrap my head around quantum alchemy."
"Neither can most wizards. Wanna go out?" came the voice.
"Sure. Come over whenever." said Jaak. He put the phone down and went back to scrying. The HD television bulged in and out, showing flashes of black in the space between the noise. Occult shapes. The Horned Gods. War. Jaak frowned, noting it down on his laptop.

The couple entered the night club after paying a few groats at the door. Pounding techno drowned out conversation as the goblin DJ loaded another wax cylinder onto the decks.
"Wanna drink?" Jaak shouted to his partner.
"Can you get me a love potion?" shouted Roosalon. Jaak laughed and ran a hand down his lovers back before nudging his way toward the bar. As he waited for the goblin to get his drinks he looked across at the alchemist he'd been dating the last few weeks. Roosalon was beautiful, the dim light exaggerating his perfect features in that air of mystery that'd made Jaak attracted to him in the first place. Most of the things that walked past couldn't help but look upon his face and feel something stirring inside them. Jaak brought the drinks over and kissed him tenderly.
"Let's dance."

The night was long and hot. A hundred or so beings danced frantically in the club, eyes rolling, sweat catching the harsh light, the sticky smell of spilled potions tainted the air almost as much as the dry ice that constantly poured over the dance floor. Jaak and Roosalon spilled out of the club late, laughing and holding each other. As they made their way through the city a few people eyed them curiously. Eventually Jaak snapped.
"What are you looking at?"
"Nothing." said a werewolf.
"You have a problem with gays or something?"
"No, no, nothing like that. It's just..."
"Yeah?" said Roosalon, walking forward.
"Aren't you the Chosen One?" said the werewolf. Roosalon's face fell.
"So what." said Roosalon coldly.
"Nothing."
"Oh, so you think the Chosen One should only marry the princess huh?" said Jaak. He was surprised to hear his voice crack slightly.
"Look, I'm just going home. I don't want any trouble."
"Get out of here." said Roosalon. The werewolf scurried away leaving the couple alone on the street. They walked in silence for a while, the only sound were the distant clattering of hooves from the nearby interstate.
"Let's go home."

The two men laid together on the couch, Jaak resting his head on his boyfriend's chest that slowly rose and fell as the minutes passed.
"You aren't bothered by what the wolf said are you?"
"No, no. Man, elf, dwarf, orc, monster, god, it doesn't matter any more does it?"
"Of course not."
"But..." said Jaak, pushing himself up. "Well, y'know. There's never been a gay Chosen One has there?"
"No, but I don't see why there can't be." said Roosalon lighting a cigarette.
"But it's in your genes. The great evil will rise, you will defeat it and rescue the princess. It's been like that for the last thousand or so years."
"Those times are over. The last of the dark lords was vanquished, all the princesses are now queens and the world doesn't need any more heroes." said Roosalon.
"What about your magic sword?"
"What about it?"
"I've seen the runes on it glow. Evil is going to rise again, isn't it?" said Jaak.
"No. I'm an alchemist, not a hero." said Roosalon. He got up and went to the window. Jaak followed him and rested his hands on his partner's hips.
"I've seen things in the TV. It's mostly noise but..." Roosalon turned and kissed Jaak hungrily. It took him by surprise, the passion of it. The sadness of it.
"Don't worry Jaak. Nothing is going to happen." said Roosalon. Jaak wanted to believe him.

Jaak went to work the following day feeling a little sorry for himself. How many potions had he drank the night before? Head thumping, he went to his desk and began to write the previous afternoon's scrying, though it took a lot longer than it should. He almost missed the commotion around him.
"What's up?" said Jaak. A young mermaid wheeled past him in her bath chair.
"Haven't you seen the news?"
"What?"
"Scries from New York. The twin towers have been hit." she said. Jaak felt his stomach fall away. As if in a dream he got up and walked towards the editor's office, where all the journalists had gathered around a large television. They watched in silence as a druid recanted his vision whilst a CGI animation played over and over. A dragon crashing into the side of the WTC. Then another. Jaak watched the smoke and fire spill out from the towers then at the faces around him. The report cut back to the news room.
"In one of the worst prophecies of recent times, we can confirm that the World Trade Centre may be attacked tomorrow. We'll keep you updated as much as we can." said the shocked anchorman. The King of America was now on.
"Tomorrow, we will be a country awakened to danger and called to defend freedom. Our grief will turn to anger and anger to resolution. Whether we bring our enemies to justice or bring justice to our enemies, justice will be done."
"poo poo." said Jaak. His phone rang.
"Jaak, have you seen the news?" said Roosalon.
"Yeah, I'm watching it right now."
"Jaak, they've sent the King's Guard here. They want me on a zeppelin this afternoon."
"Are you going to go?" said Jaak. His voice was flat. There was too much to take in.
"I...I don't know. I didn't think this would happen!"
"Go."
"But our conversation last night-"
"That was before. We haven't faced a great evil for seventy years, your country is expecting you."
"But I love you." said the Chosen One. Jaak closed his eyes. When he opened them again he watched the World Trade Centre's collapse again. And again.
"I love you to. I'll still be here. Go." said Jaak. He put the phone down and went to his desk, wiping a tear from his eye. If only things were different. If only he lived in a world where things weren't so clear cut, that good and evil were subjective rather than obvious. Of course, the story would need to be played out. Good would triumph and the people would rejoice. And the hero would marry the princess and they would live happily ever after. Jaak looked at the runeprocessor in front of him, the cursor blinking steadily like a beating heart. He began to type.
'Once upon a time...'

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.


In.

This week (or whole October actually) is supposed to be pretty busy for me, but I came down with a nice little idea and some unexpected downtime, so I really don't have any excuse.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Dr. Kloctopussy posted:

This prompt is confusing as hell. It has to be "modern day" but also "set in an imaginary world?" and what is a transgressive romance?

I'm in regardless. Woo!

Edit: oh, I guess it can be in a parallel world or a world-within-a-world, but that seems to seriously undermine the idea of "high fantasy" to me. Whatever, it's cool.

It's a challenge. You tell us what it means and make it so loving compelling we want to poo poo ourselves with joy, Shorn-Boner style. That's how you do it, Dr. K.

Peel
Dec 3, 2007



God help me I am in.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Extended sign-up deadline because I can just smell indedecision out there. Come on in the water is fine and certainly not filled with ravenous dick-eating candiru fish.

Completion deadline remains unchanged. Do not flout it.

SurreptitiousMuffin
Mar 21, 2010

I got it wrong. Look, I'm well aware I got it wrong and uh, I got it wrong.


sebmojo posted:

Extended sign-up deadline because I can just smell indedecision out there. Come on in the water is fine and certainly not filled with ravenous dick-eating candiru fish.

Completion deadline remains unchanged. Do not flout it.
Don't be so dramatic. Candiru don't eat your dick, they just swim up inside your urethra and lodge themselves in there with the barbs that run along their tiny bodies. It's a big difference.

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


Blood Empress of Thunderdome

Tap to emit spores


Clapping Larry

Ok I bailed last week, but I'll be in this week to see if I can redeem myself.

Wrageowrapper
Apr 30, 2009

DRINK! ARSE! FECKIN CHRISTMAS!

I is in. I apologise now for those who have to read it.

CaligulaKangaroo
Jul 25, 2012


Candiru fish or not, I'm in.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

justcola posted:

Modern Romance (1194)
Jaak looked out at the Los Angeles cityscape from his penthouse apartment, watching the sun slowly set on the horizon. He could just make out the Great Steed pulling the inferno behind it, galloping just a few miles on the edge of oblivion as it had done since the dawn of the New Age. Jaak's phone rang.
THIS SHOULD BE A LINE BREAK
"Hello lover. How was work?"
THIS SHOULD BE A LINE BREAK
"Standard. You?"
THIS SHOULD BE A LINE BREAK
"Made some advances on transmogrifying gluons into photons. Wanna hear about it?"
THIS SHOULD BE A LINE BREAK
"Not really. Can't really wrap my head around quantum alchemy."
THIS SHOULD BE A LINE BREAK
"Neither can most wizards. Wanna go out?" came the voice.
THIS SHOULD BE A LINE BREAK
"Sure. Come over whenever." said Jaak. He put the phone down and went back to scrying. The HD television bulged in and out, showing flashes of black in the space between the noise. Occult shapes. The Horned Gods. War. Jaak frowned, noting it down on his laptop.
THERE SHOULD BE LOTS MORE LINE BREAKS IN THE REST OF THE STORY

Points for being quick off the mark*. Expect punishment for missing out line breaks.

Everyone else take note, don't just c/p from Word it will gently caress up your formatting.



*No actual points awarded for being quick off the mark

Capntastic
Jan 13, 2005

A dog begins eating a dusty old coil of rope but there's a nail in it.

Fallen Rib

Sitting this one out, but already smirkin' at the ways people are interpreting the prompt. Good luck, folks!

SurreptitiousMuffin
Mar 21, 2010

I got it wrong. Look, I'm well aware I got it wrong and uh, I got it wrong.


EDIT: This was terrible. I got timezone confused and rushed to finish. My real entry is a few posts down the line. I'm keeping this here only because a true warrior owns their shame.


The Pale Rider

He wears white well after Labor Day. White shirt, white hat, white shoes, white cat following at middle distance with its nose high, imperious. His manner is polite, fussy. He has big hands and his fingernails are very short and very clean. He drives a ’72 Corvelle- white, of course but you knew that. It keeps his feet off the ground. His holster is engraved leather- a man wrapped in the coils of a dragon, thrusting a sword upwards through its throat and into its tiny, thuggish lizard brain. His armour is spotless- for such a big creature; a dragon has very little blood in it. Inside the holster is a .38 Colt Peacemaker. Silver embossed, otherwise plain.

He fell in love once. Her name does not matter. We will call her The Lover. Her House stunk of cat piss and violence. Many years and miles away, men played Capoeira in white suits and you could tell a true mestre that he played in the mud and never got a speck on him. After he hosed her thin body, he showered and he wept.

Norman Rockwell is dead.

The Lover made bad decisions until none of the decisions were hers to make. That is a lie. It has the smell of truth but it is too convenient. It is easy to sleep to. The Lover’s decisions were made for her by those with fatter wallets. That is also a lie but it lives closer to the truth. It’ll do.

When his time was up, the man in white begged The Lover to come with him and ride off into the night. She could not make that decision. A man with long fingers and a faded tattoo of a dragon on his right arm would follow her phone records and burn her and add her teeth to his pile of gold. It would not be his fault- it was his tiny, thuggish lizard brain driving his violence.

Richard the Lionheart is dead.

The Man took his gun and put one bullet into the dragon, up through the throat. There was a lot of blood. It ruined the white suit. The cat had not eaten in days and licked the man’s big hands. The Lover cried and ran. The Man briefly mourned his suit, then put his gun back in the leather holster with its blooded bloodless knight and drove off into the dying light of the sun.

Black Griffon
Mar 12, 2005

Now, in the quantum moment before the closure, when all become one. One moment left. One point of space and time. I know who you are.

You are destiny.


No one will ever get points for being quick off the mark because it's retarded. Look at the first story submitted every week. None of them have won, and although not all of them are terrible, they've all missed something.

The best ideas are worth dwelling on, if only for a few days. Sure, you can put down good words in half an hour, but they won't be the best. Take your loving time you idiots, you're not impressing anyone.

SurreptitiousMuffin
Mar 21, 2010

I got it wrong. Look, I'm well aware I got it wrong and uh, I got it wrong.


Black Griffon posted:

No one will ever get points for being quick off the mark because it's retarded. Look a the first story submitted every week. None of them have won, and although not all of them are terrible, they've all missed something.

The best ideas are worth dwelling on, if only for a few days. Sure, you can put down good words in half an hour, but they won't be the best. Take your loving time you idiots, you're not impressing anyone.
Oh God, Pacific Daylight Time means America and not Samoa, doesn't it? Goddam Americans bogarting everything. I thought the deadline was in like, an hour. I wrote it yesterday and edited it today. I would've scrapped it and entered something else but I didn't think I had time.

justcola
May 22, 2004

La-Li-Lu-Le-Lo

Black Griffon posted:

No one will ever get points for being quick off the mark because it's retarded. Look a the first story submitted every week. None of them have won, and although not all of them are terrible, they've all missed something.

The best ideas are worth dwelling on, if only for a few days. Sure, you can put down good words in half an hour, but they won't be the best. Take your loving time you idiots, you're not impressing anyone.

I was a bit busy and only realised after I signed up, rather posted something than nothing. Phew. Though someone has to be first, I don't see it having any baring on winning or losing.

It's the first time I've written something fantastical so I liked thinking along those lines.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Black Griffon posted:

No one will ever get points for being quick off the mark because it's retarded. Look a the first story submitted every week. None of them have won, and although not all of them are terrible, they've all missed something.

The best ideas are worth dwelling on, if only for a few days. Sure, you can put down good words in half an hour, but they won't be the best. Take your loving time you idiots, you're not impressing anyone.

My co-judge is right on the money. He is just standing on those dollar bills flaunting his stygian feathers and flashing his gore-caked beak.

Write it fast if you want, but then sit on that fucker. Because each time you go away and come back it will get a bit better. Do this, and we will not need to unfurl our horrid stabbing judge-tendrils.

Edit: Current PDT.

derp
Jan 21, 2010

a little less conversation and a little more filthy rodents


Lipstick Apathy

Hey I like to write things. How do I play?

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.


I fully expect to lose for not being transgressive enough. Still, it is a thing.

Stale Bagels (1,091 words)

The No. 47 was a dull and faded copper, the better parts of it having been scrapped long ago. It was an old military model, discharged and repurposed for use in the civilian sector. Moss gathered along the roof and the window panes, unconquerable. Danielle didn’t mind. He liked to think of it as a garden on wheels.

Not that anyone ever used the Dullahan Express for its looks.

“Hey. You. What’s the hold up?”

“Sorry, sorry.”

Danielle always counted out exact change. Arriving prepared was meaningless. He’d just count out the coins again. It was the kind of habit you tried to shake but never could. Like smoking in movie theaters for some people or swearing in good company.

“Come on now, any time this century lady.”

The voice came curt and coarse and a good four feet separate from the seat where the headless driver tapped his fingers rhythmically against the steering wheel. In an overhead compartment perched the speaker, the driver’s head, hawk-nosed and beady-eyed.

“Sorry,” Danielle again excused himself, mentally calculating the amount one last time. He closed his fist around his fare and shook it, once for luck and twice for love, before placing it in the driver’s outstretched glove.

“Alright, let’s see here.” The head frowned in concentration, the body making out the size and shape of each coin by touch alone. “Hmm, seems in order. No gold, good, good. Alright now GET yourself on board. We’re late enough as it is. And the Dullahan is never late. YOU HEAR ME? NEVER!”

No one used the Dullahan Express for its manners, either.

Danielle stepped lightly onto the bus. The driver stacked the coins and fed them one by one into that gaping black abyss beneath his collar. Satisfied, he pulled back a lever, and the doors shut tight. Danielle kept a hand to his back to ensure the length of his skirt wouldn’t be caught.

“What are you standing around for, HUH? TAKE A SEAT.”

“Sir, yes sir!”

Danielle could always tell who used the No. 47 regularly; or rather, who didn’t. The tip-tap of his heels against the cold tin floor never failed to draw at least a few unfamiliar glances. The repeat customers simply kept to their newspapers. A trio of freshmen witches whispered to one another as he passed. It must have been the start of a new semester at the Imperial College. There was giggling among them, and from atop their collected suitcases their chaperone, an owl with the face of a man, looked on disapprovingly.

Already the No. 47 had begun to move.

Danielle never had trouble finding a spare spot. Sam always kept one open for him.

“Danielle!”

Sam extended a hand and gestured towards the seat beside her. Sam. She refused to be called Samantha. Danielle noticed she wore a new suit, an impossible black and freshly creased. The whole of the night seemed to exist in there, yet her manner was as kind and forward as ever. On her lap rested a small package, loosely wrapped.

Danielle straightened the wrinkles in his dress as he joined her. It was a secluded section of the bus near the back and almost empty, save for a sulking doppelganger beside himself. To Danielle it was their whole world.

Some people used the Dullahan Express for its timely arrival. Some for the cheaper fare. Danielle used it for this. Sam always took the No. 47 on Monday. So Danielle, too, took the No. 47.

“Good morning, Danielle.”

“And you, Sam. Looking chipper this morning.”

“The bakery downstairs made too many bagels for an order. I managed to snag a few for breakfast.”

Sam undid the package and produced a chocolate chip bagel with a light spread of peanut butter.

“Hungry?”

Danielle accepted. He took a bite and nearly choked on the staleness of it. He coughed, hand to his mouth, his gaze incredulous to Sam’s.

“Well I didn’t say they were fresh bagels.”

Sam laughed as the bus turned left onto a bridge that never existed and shot out across the surface of the bay. The water churned calm beneath them. On the horizon where the sky meet the sea stood moored several imperial aircraft carriers fueled and prepared for flight. Framed against the rising sun, even they were beautiful.

Danielle continued to eat the bagel despite himself.

“Is that a new suit?”

“Tailor-fit. Elvish even, if you can believe that.”

“Elvish? Aren’t those expensive?”

“Typically. Well above my pay grade, at least. But the bossman was pretty pleased with my work last week, so the whole shebang came as his treat.”

“What happened?”

A sly smile drew across Sam’s features, her hand playfully smoothing out her hair, short and frayed.

“Weeeelll, I don’t want to brag or anything, but a couple Castilian diplomats—you know, those tightwads up north—agreed to speak with the regent about surrendering their claim on the border territories, a firmer part of the language in that little arrangement courtesy of Yours Truly.”

Sam raised her eyebrows, knowingly. Danielle wouldn’t have believed it from anyone else.

“S-Sam! That’s incredible! The Castilians have refused parley for months!"

“Not no more, baby. Not no more.”

There was a lurch as the bus reconnected with the land. It would only be a minute longer now.

“You must be excited. Will you be getting any recognition?”

“Nah. The papers should likely just list the firm, possibly the bossman. Useful or not, I’m still just a cog in the well-oiled imperial machine.”

If that line of thought troubled her, Sam didn’t show it. Instead she glanced at her wristwatch and panicked.

“Woah! Nearly my stop. I always forget how fast this guy is.”

Danielle agreed it was fast. Too fast.

The No. 47 made a sound like it was about to collapse in on itself, and parked gingerly across from the Royal Arcade where the bronze angels sang from the rooftops. The passengers began to rise and collect themselves, all except Danielle whose stop was still a ways. Sam clicked her tongue.

“Welp. As always, it’s been fun.”

She stood and brushed the bagel crumbs from her legs. Danielle nodded and said nothing. This was always the hardest part of his day.

Sam joined the crowd. Danielle looked to his shoes and thought I love you.

“…Hey. Hey!”

Danielle looked up. Sam was already at the exit. She winked and snapped and shot him with both fingers.

“Love you too, babe.”

He’d never had a better morning, Danielle decided.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

derp posted:

Hey I like to write things. How do I play?

Entered.

Erik Shawn-Bohner
Mar 21, 2010

by XyloJW


Daddy's been drinking and spending his time whittling a paddle.

Daddy's getting off of work and coming home.

SurreptitiousMuffin
Mar 21, 2010

I got it wrong. Look, I'm well aware I got it wrong and uh, I got it wrong.


I did another thing. This is my real entry.


ORCS!

In Scranton, where we lay our scene, two Orcs
whose hearts are interweaved will break the rules-
for love. Abreast down Cedar Ave they stride
unhidden hands held tightly- hearts aflame.

The crowd is riled, they boo and scream but love
needs not approval nor has time for fear.
A man enChevied drives at them, his foot
hard press'd against the floor. His lance- a wire
coathanger.

The Orcs! They flip the car without regard
for that but their beating hearts. The knight
is slain. The crowd is stunned. They cry but not
in rage, for they have seen true love's measure.

Some summers later, suited in black in
an aisle adored with rose and weeds, marching
with joy held high, the Orcs complete their vow.
"Do you?" "I do." "Do you?" "I do." "Now you
may kiss the groom."

V for Vegas
Aug 31, 2004

THUNDERDOME LOSER

Sacrifice

It wanted to sacrifice one of the new iPads. You know, the whole deal – candles, pentagrams, incantations – with a shiny slab of glass and metal ‘designed in California’ sitting right there in the middle of it all. Not working of course. (The whole ‘eons of darkness’ thing was bit of an own goal in retrospect). But that didn’t stop the ceremony going ahead. The end result was a small, charred pile of glass and metal. Pretty much the exact same result as the attempts with the iPad 2, the iPad and the various iPhones we had tried.

At least the Apple gizmos were physical objects. I mean, geez, there was a hell of an argument when It wanted to sacrifice a sub-prime mortgage. How do you explain collateralised security to something which only has a loose concept of time? Let alone the idea of ‘commerce’. Didn’t matter. The name had been descryed so we had to sacrifice it. I think It was a bit disappointed when It saw just a small piece of paper on the altar. You can never tell what It’s feeling I know, but all those blood gutters had been hewed into the obsidian for a reason.

There was an easier run after that. The portrait of Mao from the Tienanmen Gate, the left hand of Christ the Redeemer, the Magna Carta. Don’t get me wrong, it was still pretty busy, but it wasn’t complicated like.

Global warming was tricky. How do you ritually disembowel four hundred and fifty parts per million of carbon in the atmosphere? An SUV? Too gauche. Carbon Trading Permits? That would just be the sub-prime disaster all over again. In the end we stuck a polar bear up there. It’s kind of symbolic I guess, and I thought some good old fashioned blood-letting might cheer It up a bit.

I still don’t know why terrorism came up. Good grief, It is literally the ‘Lord Of’. The whole place runs on terror; it’s our religion, our currency, our daily bread. And now it wanted to sacrifice it? I just didn’t know what to do.

‘I will be the sacrifice’ It said.

‘How can you sacrifice yourself? Kind of defeats the purpose doesn’t it?’

‘Do you remember why we came here? What we did all this for?’

‘Doesn't matter.'

'Do you still love me?'

Gordon Bennett. Is that what this was all about? 'You're not my wife anymore. You're the Dark Lord.'

She smiled that smile that creased the corners of her soft blue eyes. 'That ends now.'

Wrageowrapper
Apr 30, 2009

DRINK! ARSE! FECKIN CHRISTMAS!

The Drone of the Tower

Across parking lots of bitumen and yellow paint they traveled, along highways rustling with activity, into the yuppy places of this world, the strange suburbs, the unspoken apartment complexes and through a public transportation system designed by the arch town planner himself Gertstein the Conciliator. The young hero, Baz son of Gaz, and the mystic and volunteer city tour guide Magda of the Tea House came to a colossal tower of pure evil.

The setting sun over the giant sign dazzled the onlookers. DoomCORP reigned down upon them.
“We have arrived young master Baz, but our journey has only just begun”. Magda looked up at the lad from her Zimmer frame, smiled wryly and offered her traveling companion something from a paper bag.
“Banana chip?”, she asked him.
Baz shrugged his shoulders, wiped his brow and seethed.
“Not a fan, eh?” and she shuffled the bag away in a mess of old people baggage.

“Tell me, Magda of the Tea House, what must I do to save my homeland?”.
Magda took hold of her Zimmer once more, her wrinkled hands clenching at the handles as she spoke of deeds to be done.

“Atop this lofty tower here, the order for the destruction of your home lies in a safe. Yet it is guarded by a creature of pure corporate evil, The Vorpal Drone”.
“The Vorpal Drone?”.
“Aye, the Vorpal Drone. A vicious creature of distilled chaos. Yet even a creature of this horrific nature still has a weakness. Find it and victory is assured, for only when he has been vanquished will your homeland be safe from development”.
“Piss”.

With his road workers shovel by his side and his fluro red vest shimmering in the evening light Baz stormed the tower. Magda just sort of hobbled along behind as best she could.

Security guards were getting battered with fist and mobility walker heel, photocopiers ruthlessly smashed without remorse, stationary was taken from cupboards without the requisite forms filled and busty receptionists fled in terror. Much glory was had on the battlefield that day and many a town planner fell beneath their just boots.

The two heroes took to the stairs. They were after level forty seven. They got to level three and decided to take the lift instead.

“Ding”

Cautiously Baz son of Gaz and Magda of the Tea House left the lift. What lurked beyond?

“Hello?”, mumbled Baz. There was nothing.
One step forward. Two step forwards.
“If I knew you were coming I'd have baked a cake”, sung Baz beneath the hum of the building.
“What are you doing, boy”.
“Singing, it helps with the nerves”, and so he continued to sing.

They found a room signed as “Repository”. They went inside.
A safe.
They had made it.
“Huzzah”, shouted Baz, “now I can destroy this vile document and save my home slum from re-development”.
“I kills you”, shouted something large and foreboding. Baz gulped. It was about all he could do. Behind the two heroes stood the glowing purple Vorpal Drone clad in suit and tie. Its colossal frame, part elemental demon and part middle management salaryman, barely contained the hate within it. With a deft fling of the beasts twisted hand it threw a clipboard into Baz. The impact caused him to drop his shovel and fall to the ground. Magda rushed towards the beast with all the power her decrepit legs could muster but the mere demonic aura of the Drone froze the mystic in her feet.

“You must find the creatures weakness, hurry, before it is too late”, screamed Magda at the prone lad. But he was frozen himself. The fear had well and truly taken over his body.

“If I knew you were coming I'd have baked a cake”, he sung once more. Magda sunk into her frame. It really was too late now.
“Baked a cake”, sung the Drone. Baz and the old lady looked at one another. The lad hesitated just a little but then followed up with,
“Baked a cake”.
“If I knew you were coming I'd have baked a cake”, the Vorpal Drone sung.
“Howd ya do, howd ya do, howd ya do”, the two sung together.
“You did it Baz”, shouted a delighted Magda as Baz crawled himself back up to his feet. The battle had been won, the slums were saved. But the two singers kept on going.
“Had you dropped me a letter I'd a hired a band”, they sung as the two slowly moved into one another.
“Greatest band in the land”, a little closer still.
“Had you dropped me a letter I'd a hired a band”, the two were now standing right next to each other.
“What's all this then”, thought Magda.
“And spread the welcome mat for you”, where upon Baz jumped into the Drone and the two kissed.
“Aye, tis true love indeed”, sighed Magda whom then vanished in a puff of Vics vapour rub having completed the task set to her.

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Baggy_Brad
Jun 8, 2003

THUNDERDOME LOSER

A Game of Patents

The freight train stopped just before sunrise at Balmer, a hundred miles short of Branson City. After the squealing wheels were silent Ralph peeled open the back door of the shipping container and scouted the loading platform. At the far end two gigantic, yellow crateBots were packing metal drums onto an open carriage. He saw no guards.
"This is our stop," Ralph told Leumeah. She joined him at the container doors. A night breeze whipped along the train and Leumeah shivered, pulling her arms inside her shawl.
"Why here?" she asked.
"We're getting close to Branson. We'll have to go on foot now."
Ralph measured the trip to the platform, one step out onto the carriage's coupling and then a ninety-degree turn and a jump onto the concrete. He stretched a sandalled foot out onto a wide piece of the greasy coupling, stood straight and jumped sideways onto the platform.
Leumeah stood at the doorway, sizing up the jump. Under the shawl her hands moved, pulling at her bracelets.
"No rush," said Ralph, "but a guard could pass any second, and you have more to fear of capture than I do."
"Just picking the right moment," she said. She sucked in a deep breath, for whatever help it would give, and closed her eyes. Her lips moved silently. Ralph realised she was praying again.
"Leumeah--"
Leumeah's eyes opened wide and in a quick movement she leapt onto the coupling, pirouetted on her sneakered foot and flung herself towards Ralph who caught her by the waist. Even after she was balanced he held on. She pressed into him, breathing steady and eyes down.
"For someone born with tech you sure like talking to the gods," he said.
She blushed. "Weren't we in a rush?"
Ralph took her hand and they ran towards the warehouse, tracing the wall until they reached a driveway that led them to the streets of Balmer.
Sticking to the shadows, the officer followed.

Balmer was a small town, an old grain stop on the line to the city. A thin river meandered perpendicular to the main street and train line, and the town council had paid the license for a dam which kept the water lapping at the banks. Like most towns with a river, the water provided a natural divide between the techs and the unlicensed. The freight station was on the licensed side, the roads were paved and two commercial towers rose up alongside the main road. Ralph led Leumeah across the bridge and into the poor side of town. The still water beneath was turning turquoise with the dawn.
Across the bridge the road changed to cobbles. The buildings along the main road were the homes of the bourgeoisie, the bricks and piping proof that they could afford the masonry and plumbing licenses. In the streets beyond, the dwellings were clearly those of the lower class, mostly a collection of shanties and tee-pees. A few residents were awake, starting their days with the sunrise. Candles lit up some windows. No court would ever award the patent for fire.
Ralph studied chalk markings on the brick wall of fruiterer on the main street.
"This way," he said, turning down a street.
"Where are we going?"
"To find an entrepreneur, maybe there's something quicker than walking."

In the sprawl of Balmer's backstreets Ralph found another chalk marking on the cobbles. They stopped and walked back the way they'd came, twenty paces. There was a wooden shack in the middle of a weedy yard, square and squat and around a metre high. Ralph and Leumeah followed the path to the front door and Ralph knelt down to knock. From inside there was the sound of glass clinking and muttered swearing. The front door opened and the head and shoulders of an older man appeared, gazing up at them. Leumeah could now see that the majority of the home had been dug into the ground, and the structure was just a roof.
"What is it?" the old man said. His skin was wrinkled, weathered and his facial hair was shaved into a white goatee. On his head he wore a faded, black baseball cap.
"We saw your symbols," Ralph said.
"What symbols?"
"I'm in the hub. I'm Ralph."
The man sized him up, one eye-ball spinning, processing, and the other judging Ralph's appearance.
"I'm Deb," said the man. "Who's the girl?"
"I'm Leumeah--"
"You can trust her," said Ralph.
"Righty," said Deb. "Get in then, before the Stalkers spot you."
Ralph stepped into the dugout home, and then helped Leumeah inside. In the sky a single jumbo jet on its way from Branson City was drawing a line of contrails in the golden-orange sky. Deb pulled the door closed.

The inside of Deb's hovel was a single, dank smelling room. The dirt floor was covered in woven thatch, in turn covered with strewn, hand-made clothing and empty jars stained by liquor. Leumeah looked at every corner of the room like she was at a museum.
"We're trying to get to Branson, unnoticed," Ralph told Deb. "We need some tech."
"What do you need? I've got laptops, some power cells--"
"Something a little more old school. We need some cycles."
Deb stroked his goatee. "Might know where some could be found," he said. "What's in it for me?"
"When was the last time you connected to the hub?"
"Few weeks ago. Round here they've been sniffing out Wi-Fi faster than we can setup the next hot-spot."
"So you haven't read then? There's a new tech and the hub's going to be the one to own the patent. This is a big one."
Deb wasn't listening to Ralph, he was watching Leumeah as she moved about the room. "Hey," he said. "I know her."
Leumeah took a step behind Ralph. Ralph said, "No, she just looks like her."
Deb chuckled. "Young'n, I may not have a license for spectacles anymore, but I recognise her true enough. That's Stevens' daughter."
Leumeah left Ralph's defence and gave a small wave. "Hi."
"Now I am intrigued," said Deb. "What is so important that the daughter of the world's most powerful CFO is running around with an entrepreneur?"
Ralph sighed. "You might as well show him."
Leumeah said, "What's the one thing that the commoners and the techs share? What's the one technology that's never been developed, never been patented? What makes us all human?"
Deb shrugged.
"Immortality," said Leumeah, eyes alight. She dropped her shawl and pulled back the sleeves of her sweater. Around each wrist was a bracelet. One was black, the other white. Two thin, pure stripes of silicon with a small, flickering hologram centred between each ulna and radius.
Deb whistled.
"Watch this," said Ralph. To Leumeah he said, "Are they on?"
"Yes."
Ralph lowered a shoulder and threw himself into the Leumeah's back. She rocked slightly, but her expression showed no concern for the impact. Ralph walked around to face her. She stood on one foot, and pirouetted in a circle while Ralph shoved her. He couldn't budge her.
"That's just the beginning," Leumeah said. "The bracelet doesn't just give you power and balance." She gave Ralph a tender pat as he caught his breath. "It prevents injuries --"
"Where did you get it?" Deb asked.
"This is the prototype. We need to take it to Branson and patent it."
"The company are after it," said Ralph. "We need to register it first. We need to make it open source."
Deb shook his head. "You kids are crazy."
"We open sourced spoons," said Ralph. "We can do this, before they get it back."
"You stole it?"
There was a pounding at the door. Deb peered through a crack on the inside.
"It's a patent officer," he hissed. "There's drones. You fools have been followed."
"Do you have any weapons?" asked Ralph, his eyes searching the room.
"I've got a jammer. It could knock out the drones, can you take out the officer?"
"Do it," said Ralph, picking up one of the empty jars. "Leumeah, are you ready to run?"
"You're going to hurt him? Do you have to? Maybe we can pay him off?"
"You would say that," said Ralph.
"What's that supposed to mean?"
The officer knocked again, five firm thuds. Deb pulled a digital remote from underneath his sleep mat.
"There's cycles," said Deb. "Go to the toilet block down the street. Find Divis, tell him Deb sent you. You ready?"
Ralph nodded. Leumeah closed her eyes and prayed.
"Good luck."
Deb stubbed his finger into the remote. There was a clunk as the two drones lost propulsion and toppled into the weeds outside.
Ralph yelled, "Now," and flung open the door.

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