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Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


This thread looks like fun, so I'm going to join in. Hooray!

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Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


The Executive's Suite 497 words
Tessa fumbled at the hidden comms unit, hands slick with Harlan’s blood. Though trembling all over, she knew she had to make it sound as if nothing was wrong so she paused for a moment, took a deep breath, and forced a smile on to her face. It only looked a little unhinged around the edges, but luckily there was no one there to see except Harlan, and he was dead.

Wide-eyed, spattered with blood, and smiling, Tessa activated the comms unit and spoke a single sentence, “Lolly, Mr. Harlan would like to speak with you about my services.” Code for get in here right now. She thumbed the comms off and covered her face with her hands.

Tessa heard Lolly walk in and close the door behind her, but didn’t look up until she spoke.

“Tessa, what happened?”

Lolly claimed that there was nothing that could shock her, and indeed, her face remained impassive as Tessa lowered her hands and met Lolly’s eyes.

“He raped – he was raping me.”

“He’s an Executive, sweetheart, and you’re a whore. That’s your job if he wants it to be.” Lolly shook her head and sighed as she surveyed the scene, “This is bad, Tessa. They’d never let you off.”

Tessa pressed her hands to her chest, where her heart fluttered like a moth in a jar. “How can you make jokes right now? I’m going to get stripped, oh God, they’re going to Erase me. Lolly, what do I do?”

“Calm down. And be quiet.” Lolly walked over to Harlan’s body and studied it for a moment, frowning. She picked up the knife that Tessa had dropped by his body, “We can get away before they realise he’s missing.”

“We?”

“We. I’ll take my chances in the Exclusion Zone before I let them Erase one of us. I know this guy, he works in IdentiCorp - he can switch our registrations so we can get out of the city.”

Tessa stared at Lolly, hands still on her chest. Her heart started to slow as hope began to replace panic. “Are you sure?”

“I’m sure.” Leaving Harlan’s body by the bed, Lolly took Tessa’s hands in her own, “Wait here, and don’t make a sound, okay?”

Tessa nodded, watching as Lolly opened the bedroom door and called out to Harlan’s bodyguard, “Quinn, can you come in here for a moment? Executive Harlan wants to show you something.”

Quinn entered, smirking, probably thinking the boss was finally going to let him play with the whores. As the door swung shut behind him, Lolly walked towards Quinn and stuck the knife in his neck, drawing it across his throat. She stepped neatly aside as he crumpled to the floor, blood gouting from the wound.

“Lolly, what are you doing?!”

“Don’t worry, Tessa, there’s no cameras in the Executive’s suite. loving sons of bitches.” She took Tessa’s hand again, pulling her towards the door, “Come on. We have to get out of here.”

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


drat, this prompt is cool, but I can't do it for reasons that I am sure you would find completely unacceptable and inadequate. I might be able to dramatically read an entry if I get time before the deadline though. Is that allowed even though I'm not actually entering?

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Fanky Malloons (dramatic reading only)

I didn't actually say I would do one for sure, it was merely a possibility that turned out not to be possible because all my free time this week was eaten up by mangy sharks.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


I am in, and I choose the song Metal. I might even listen to it or read the lyrics or something before I start OR I MIGHT NOT.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Some people take Thunderdome seriously.

You better believe it. I might forgo writing a story entirely and go berserker up in here snapping all your spines as I go instead. In the name of being metal, obviously.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Since I probably won't have time other than RIGHT NOW because I'm still on vacation, yet refuse to be labelled a failure, here it is, at exactly 1,000 words because I'm assuming the title doesn't count this round, and if it does, well gently caress you.

The Sound of Metal

Mallory's mouth was dry. He peeled his tongue from the roof of his mouth and tried work up some saliva so that he could swallow. He opened his eyes to find himself in total darkness.

"What time is it?" he muttered. His head felt fuzzy. And heavy. He wanted to look at his watch, but he couldn't seem to convince his body to make the correct series of motions to bring his wrist in line with his eyes. He couldn’t stretch his legs either, something was in the way – and where were his blankets? He sat up and felt thick pile beneath his palms. Sliding his hands out, he noticed that the floor seemed to curve up, with the – carpet? blanket? what? – continuing up the walls. Though he was having trouble forming coherent thoughts, Mallory realized he was definitely not in the bed where he had fallen asleep.

***
Marta listened to the tour guide’s patter as she checked over the bull again, making sure it was ready.

"Dr. John Mallory, an engineering professor from MIT, has been helping our collection grow for the past year or so, restoring some of our old devices and building some brand new replica, featuring moving parts and everything!

She knelt and checked the welding on the hatch one last time. She knew it would hold - she had welded it shut herself.

"… Dr. Mallory is unable to join us, but his assistant, Marta, will demonstrate Dr. Mallory's latest feat of engineering for us at the end of the tour, a fearsome instrument of torture that was a favourite of the Ancient Greeks...

Marta snorted derisively as the tour guide moved out of earshot. Assistant. It figured. Never mind that it was her who had figured out how to make the pipes in the head work, her who had perfected the formula for the bronze alloy so that it wouldn't melt during use. Marta had done all of the work, suffering Mallory’s constant chauvinism and numerous advances with good grace and polite rebuttals; slaving day and night to do everything the way he wanted it without ever complaining, and for what?

Mallory had made it clear in the end that he would never see her as an equal; she would never be good enough, because she wasn't a man. The final demonstration of his ego, and his disdain for the mere fact of her gender, had taken Marta's breath away. Give Mallory first author on her research project or he'd make sure it was never published? And now the museum staff were calling her his assistant?

Grinding her teeth, Marta stood up, hissing "gently caress you, Mallory," and rapping sharply on the bull's hindquarter as she did so. It made a soft, metallic 'bong', the thick felt lining on the inside muting the noise considerably. Good.
She busied herself lighting the fire for when the tour group arrived, and started to feel better about the whole thing.

***
Mallory heard a muffled thud above his head. Kneeling, he reached up and felt more of the pile running in a smooth arc above his head. He was in a small, rounded space, lined with something soft. A thread of panic arrowed the fog clouding his thoughts. He dropped to all fours and crawled forward until he felt the wall start to rise in front of him. Mallory followed the pile with his hands, feeling metal where it ended and the walls narrowed, and then a series of tubes that disappeared beyond his reach and, he knew, into the head. They were pipes, and he was inside the brazen bull.

”No,” he whispered, “Oh Jesus, Marta, no.”

***
Marta turned up the flame as the tour group filed in. The tour guide was still prattling.

“Prepare yourselves for perhaps the most gruesome exhibit we’ve had to offer at the Torture Museum in some time, maybe even ever! You and Dr. Mallory went out of your way to ensure it sounds as real as possible, right Marta?”

“You bet.” Marta smiled beatifically, “You could almost believe there was a real person in there.”

***
“Oh my God. Oh, mother of God, no.”

Mallory heaved himself at the bull’s side, where he knew the hatch was. Where it should have been. But he met only the implacable resistance of felt atop firmly welded metal.

How could this be? He had checked it less than 24 hours ago – how could that stupid bitch Marta have pulled out all the wires, the machinery, and set this up? And she must have drugged him on top of that, and somehow gotten him shut up in here. That conniving little – Mallory suddenly realized that he was sweating. The floor was getting warm. Hot, even. He was suddenly furious.

“You bitch!” he screamed, pounding on the bull’s sides, “You can’t do this to me you bitch!”

***
“The bull is designed so that the victim’s screams would be converted into a sort-of musical version of an angry bull’s vocalizations, via a series of pipes in the head…”

The group ooohed appreciatively as the bull started bellow as the fire made its underside glow.

“…of course, our bull is mechanically operated and the fire is just for show, right Marta?”

***
Mallory’s rage morphed into hysteria as the walls of the bull became too hot to touch and he exhausted all of the epithets he knew. His universe became nothing but a blinding, white-hot pain as his skin started to blister and, in between incoherent shrieks of pain and fear he heard himself screaming, “I am an American citizen, you cannot do this to me!”

It didn’t help.

***
Marta could barely hear the tour group applauding over the bull’s strangely melodious bellowing. She basked in their admiration as the noise began to quiet and then, finally, stopped. If there was one thing she and Mallory had ever agreed on, it was this: the brazen bull wasn’t just beautiful – it was magnificent.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


TequilaJesus posted:

The only reason this thread's so quiet is we're all too busy ing to place our fingers on the keyboard.

Actually, I've been busy practicing my spine-snapping technique, but each to their own.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Martello posted:

But seriously, how loving awful is Mallory or how psychopathic and evil is Marta?

You've clearly never met anyone who has spent an extended amount of time amongst the ivory towers of academia.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


I'm going to have to step my game up, I want to throw down some bastardly prompts SO BAD YOU GUYS DON'T EVEN KNOW.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


I'm in like a...djinn?

Edit: Of course someone would post that very (almost) same word while I wasn't looking. OF COURSE.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


3) Windigo?

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Martello posted:

Since Shine is obviously too much of a schoolgirl to bring his fine chiseled rear end into the Thunderdome, I'll say it for him - you fuckers should work out.

I can't because my gym is closed until further notice due to flooding Shine posting in the Thunderdome would certainly soothe my broken heart though. Hup hup hup.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Just so we get this out of the way, exactly how many people are writing "deal with the devil"?

I hadn't even considered the notion. Actually, this is the first prompt where I haven't immediately felt the spark of an idea, OH NO

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


sebmojo posted:

This prompt is a motherfucker and I don't even know why.


I know, ugh, what the gently caress.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Oh thank god, I thought I was the only one having trouble. It seems so simple at first glance but it's really hard to write something that doesn't sound like a kid's campfire story.

I know, I keep going back to look and the prompt and wondering "Is it right? Am I going to bring shame upon myself, and dishonour to my ancestors if I write this?"

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Black Griffon posted:

I am currently doing Olympic gods in the style of Cormac McCarthy and despite its horror I do not now how or when this path grabbed me and dragged me to these unfathomable depths of such wrongness that neither me nor my friends could see an end in anything but defeat.

Dammit, mine also involves gods and sports, albeit lesser known ones (the Gods, not the sport). Post yours soon so I can make sure mine isn't somehow exactly the same

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


removed

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Black Griffon posted:

I still have an hour left, right?

Don't think so, unless my computer clock is way off.

Erik Shawn-Bohner posted:

Submission Deadline: 10:00PM US ET on Fri, Sep. 14.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Black Griffon posted:

What the hell, my clock says it's 9:00. Fuuuuuck.

Edit: This was provided earlier in the thread: http://www.thetimenow.com/est/eastern_standard_time

Ha, which is extra confusing, because it should have been this one. Not that it matters since the Thunderdome Gods are feeling oddly benevolent right now. REVEL IN IT WHILE IT LASTS.

Edit: ALSO, if our stories are too similar, now I can blame Black Griffon because I posted mine first and before the deadline, aw yeah. (They are probably not too similar at all)

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


I'm finding all this goodwill from the judges very strange and suspicious. Just sayin'

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Stuporstar posted:

It breaks my heart to see you all thinking we're planning something extra evil behind closed doors. We only have your best interests at heart. Black Griffon, Fanky Malloons, please step into the next room for brain-worm conversion to collect your extra special bonus prize.

If it's all the same to you, I will stay right over here and wear this ravishing tinfoil hat - which is both sylish and functional - while I make sure that weapons I keep about my person are all in working order.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Stuporstar posted:

Still waiting for him to get is rear end in gear, and Nyarai has gone awol.

If I were to suggest that I killed them, would it make me eligible to usurp their positions as judge and arbiter of Thunderdome cred?

Just askin'

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Stuporstar posted:

I'm declaring three winners this week to take over judging while I'm away hunting down derelict judges and making them pay.

WEEK VII THUNDERDOME JUDGEMENT

The first winner is SurreptitiousMuffin. You are judge prime and hold the sceptre. It's your job to keep these two rabid bulldogs in line, your fellow judges:

Bad Seafood & Fanky Malloons

YES. Prepare to tremble under the loving caress of my iron fist, peons.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


toanoradian posted:

I say, as an ex-judge (thus having more intelligence), you should consult the two.

I agree. If you just ran around posting challenges willy nilly and expecting your fellow former rabble-members to fall in line, there'd be anarchy.

Edit: REDACTED

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


toanoradian posted:

'beyond thunderdome'


THERE IS NO BEYOND THUNDERDOME

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Jonked posted:

Oh, I know it's not that bad. I got my head around it easily enough in that Intro to Poetry class half a decade ago. It's just actually trying to write using rules and shits, man. I'm a rule breaker, I don't follow what The Authority tells me to do.

On that note, I may allow some creative cheating to slide. But you better cheat spectacularly, or I'll kill disqualify you.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Dr. Kloctopussy posted:

In for AMAZING poetry time.

FTFY

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Since SurreptitiousMuffin and Bad Seafood both claim to be in 'different' 'timezones,' I will henceforth be keeping order in here whilst they are sleeping or whatever it is they do in their moon countries.

The judges have eyes on you AT ALL TIMES, BITCHES.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Y Kant Ozma Post posted:

I thought this was a supportive environment.

This is the Thunderdome, not the Love Shack. All future complaints about this round must be presented in iambic pentameter.

Martello, you have to write your poem while doing goblet squats. I'll know if you don't.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Martello posted:

And as Her Fankness instructed I shall thumb it out while performing Intelligent Telephone Goblet Squats.

Pics or it didn't happen

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Jon Joe posted:

I thought to throw my hat into the ring.
I was too late, I am super sad now.
The hat is large, far too large for my head.
Purple monkeys sit on the top, laughing.
Ribbon tails from the brim, winding around.
A smelly flower centers on the front.
This is, so sadly, no entry, I'm late.

I will allow it, but your entry better be awesome, or I'll cut you







(from the competition)

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


kangaroojunk posted:

One more.

gently caress jet lag.

Missed the drat deadline. GMT my rear end.

I guess I'm out this week.

You can only enter if you go full Shakespeare and write a sonnet.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Twelve hours to go and less than half of you are done. Chop chop people.

For the dunderheads that can't wrap their tiny minds around 0:00 GMT, that's 19:00 EST. Get busy, motherfuckerrrrs.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

E: WAIT A GODDAM SECOND I GOT THE DATE WRONG YOU HAVE ONE MORE DAY SORRY GUYS.

e2: Nope, no we didn't. poo poo, I've confused myself with "midnight". Officially we're done but if anyone got confused by that and wants to submit before the coming GMT midnight, I'll allow it. My fault for bad wording.

Dude. -1,000 judge points.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Black Griffon posted:

This is the weakest loving week ever.

True dat. Benagain should have to complete some kind of Thunderdome forfeiter challenge in order to be able to compete in future rounds.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Black Griffon posted:

"I say", said one who sat at fireplace,
"This labor is not hard nor grim to time.
These poems fly from fingers, quick and true,
And leaves me time for supper, tea and brunch.
It might not be the order you desire,
But oh, alas, I've lost the point again.
No let us, 'fore it once again occurs,
Return to that which waited on my lips.
This poem took me not an hour to write,
But rather, like, four minutes or, say, five.
It's not an art to make the time for art,
But soul is nourished by this joyful craft,
And should you find you timetable is full,
Then jot it down on carriage tram or bus.
Indeed, I think that what I try to say,
Is that you failed the Thunderdome, you rear end."



Black Griffon knows where it's at

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Don't mistake my honeyed words earlier for anything other than a thin shell masking my apocalyptic disappointment at every single one of you.

This is how this week's round makes me feel:


You better prepare yourselves for some vicious haiku critiques.

Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


Prepare yourselves for some devastating haiku critiques:

budgieinspector
Very topical
I think Detroit would approve
Do wigs count as hats?

Black Griffon
An epic journey
Even though your hats were wrong
I still think: awesome

sebmojo
Lasers, robots, woah
An enjoyable cadence
Shocking twist, that bird!

Wrageowrapper
Historical stuff
But these hats were not silly
Needs more strumpets

Jonked
A unicorn hat!
Hip, but it still mostly works
Just sort of ends though

Sitting Here
Hobo poetry
Blood and gore and anticlimax
So many commas

Noah
A promising trout
With dystopian setting
Yet something's missing

Jon Joe
Oh, enjambement
Have you never heard the term?
Hat bomb all your stops

Dr. Klocktopussy
A gruesome warning
Good rhymes, although late (and rushed?)
I am also bored

Chairchucker
Although comedic
This papal anomaly
Still made me want death

toanoradian
You have no rhythm
Syntactically awkward
But, a bonus hat!

Bear Sleuth
Rats and D&D
A wall of text with no breaks
It's okay, I guess

Bassetking
Your hat choice was poor
But rhyming couplets saved it
You were late, gently caress you

Kangaroojunk
Another late one
And a gross panty sniffer
You are disgusting

Erik Shawn-Bohner
Cowboy poetry
Deep and meaningful for spew
But you can't win, so

Martello
This is some real talk
But a burqa barely counts
How many goblets?

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Fanky Malloons
Aug 21, 2010

Is your social worker inside that horse?


toanoradian posted:

Which of the three hats I mentioned is the bonus hat?

Also I agree that my poem is pretty much poo poo.

I know, I even gave you an extra bonus point for writing a blank-verse complaint and you still came out near the bottom.

The bonus hat was the ushanka. You're lucky though, because a ushanka was also the unbonus hat, it just depended on the context in which it was used.

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