Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us $3,400 per month for bandwidth bills alone, and since we don't believe in shoving popup ads to our registered users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
  • Locked thread
worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


*spins wheel*

bigmoneybigmoneybigmoney

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Tyrannosaurus posted:

Yay! Supernatural Romance could be just the kick in the pants your writing career needs!
Tangled Web
1093 words

I’m idling in my car outside of a nondescript apartment complex, checking the time on my phone with one hand as I keep my knee steady with the other. Despite the fact that I definitely saw this night coming, I'm still anxious as hell.

She finally comes out, the one good thing in my life; all dye-red hair, knee-high boots, and Buddy Holly glasses. "Sorry I'm late," Steph says as she gets inside. She turns around and we kiss and for a brief moment, all is well. "Slow down," she giggles and breaks away.

"I'm just enjoying what we have while it's here," I tell her as I shift my car into drive and take off.

"Joseph," Steph smiles and shakes her head, "you keep trying to tell the future! It's such a bad habit."

I take a deep breath. "Yeah, about that..."

***
"You're serious, aren't you?"

We're sitting inside Guzman's, a local, Mexican restaurant. Thankfully, it's the middle of the week, so there’s not as many people inside. "We've been friends for three years, Steph; why would I start lying to you now?"

"Even if you weren't”, she said apprehensively, "why tell me now?"

I shift uncomfortably in my seat. "Because, a year before I started having these visions, one of my classmates was forced into an exorcism by his parents," I said and looked away, my eyes glazing over. "He was never the same after that and I knew from that point on that I can’t even tell my own parents about what was going on with me."

I can see the disbelief in her eyes. "Watch, our waitress is going to get our order wrong," I tell her. "We ordered the menudo? She's gonna give us the albóndigas soup."

Our waitress, a tall girl with princess bangs named Tabitha, shows up with a pair of steaming bowls on a platter. "Here y'all go!" she says and serves us our soup. I say nothing: what should be hominy and beef tripe is instead meatballs and vegetables. Steph stares into the bowl. "Um, Tabitha," I say, "we didn't order this."

She looks at her order book. "Ohmigod, I'm so sorry!" she says and takes the bowls back. "I'll be right back.”

I watch as Tabitha serves the albóndigas soup to the right couple: a visibly pregnant woman and her anxious boyfriend. After seeing them, I see something deeply unpleasant and screw my eyes shut.

"Babe, what's wrong?" Steph asks.

"Something I saw," I told her. "You still don't believe me."

Steph sighs and plays with her ponytail. "Honey, it's just, this is all too much to take in right now. I mean, I don’t know where to begin.

Tabitha serves us our menudo and a small platter of condiments. The rich aroma of hominy, beef tripe, and chili pepper stock filled the air and put me at ease. Steph takes her first bite and her eyes grow. “This is too good," she said, "not even my grandma makes it like this!"

"I told you Guzman's had the best menudo," I smiled and dig in shamefully, pausing only to add in onion and lemon. "It's almost like I'm psychic.”

Steph rolls her eyes as she dips a piece of tortilla in her broth. "Do it again, then."

"You'll believe me then?"

"Maybe,” Steph says mischievously.

I shrug. "Okay. Wanna know why our waitress got our order wrong?"

"Sure."

"One, she’s an aspiring model."

"That doesn't surprise me, she's gorgeous."

"Two, she sent an application to ‘The Price Is Right’ the other day," I said and took another spoonful of my wholesome menudo. "That's why she's so nervous."

Steph laughs. "You're serious, aren't you?"

"Winner gets a margarita."

“Deal,” she says flags our waitress down. "Excuse me, Tabitha?"

"That's right!" she answers with a vivacious smile. "Did y'all need anything?"

"Me and my boyfriend are curious," Steph says with a Cheshire cat grin, "You look so beautiful, are you a model?"

"I am!" Tabitha gushes. "In fact, I just sent my headshots to CBS!"

"Really," Steph says as her smile fades. "What show?"

"'The Price Is Right', of course!"

I order a margarita and wait until our waitress is out of earshot. “Tabitha's gonna get a rejection letter soon and fall into a deep depression,” I tell Steph in a low voice, “Where that's gonna take her, I don't know."

"Why don't you use your ability to help people then?" She asks me. "You know, 'With great power comes great responsibility' and all that?"

"You'll see," I say. Once we finish our meal and pay, we walk outside Guzman's into the warm, summer night. I grip her shoulder as we approach my car. "Remember that pregnant lady sitting across from us?"

"No-"

"Silver Toyota, Arizona plates," I say and point. "Call and ambulance and make sure she's okay, I'm gonna run inside and grab towels and water."

Steph Stares at me as if I'm speaking in tongues. "Now!" I shout as she snaps as we break away. I hear a mother-to-be crying in agony and a panicked new father calling for an ambulance.

***

Hours later with free gift certificates to Guzman's, we're on our way back to her apartment. "That was so brave what you did there!" Steph says with stars in her eyes as I drive us back to her apartment.

"Kid's hosed beyond all hope," I tell her, and rub my temple with my free hand. "The dad's an abuser and the wife's his sycophant."

I see the stars fade from her eyes. "You wanted to know why I don't help people, that's why. Peter Parker has it better than I do-I know for a fact that most people are beyond hope. So I save myself from the grief by not helping," I tell her as I feel my surgery scar in my right shoulder ache. "I learned the hard way that fate is one of the very few binaries out there."

"Where does that leave us, then?"

We stopped in the driveway of her apartment. I shifted myself towards her. "Steph, I love you."

“I love you too, hon."

"Then do you want to know?" I asked her. "Do you honestly want to know?"

She drops her head. After what seems like an eternity, she finally answers. "No, I never want to know.”

We kiss and time stands perfectly still. For a moment, I let go that I know for a fact that this is our last night together. At that moment it's just me and her, and nothing else matters.

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


In, now who's my unlucky loser?

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


34th and Cicero

1174 words

August 8th is one of the muggiest days in recent memory in Queens. The temperature is 89 but the humidity is almost 90%, which makes the corner of 34th & Cicero feel like a human greenhouse: the moment anyone perspires, it immediately evaporates to create a thick, unbearable perspiration fog. Kelly Money-Walker’s hair, which she spent all morning coaxing with caustic chemicals and unsafe heat, is now completely unraveling. Her phone rings. She immediately swipes to the left; it’s her over-sensitive boyfriend who didn’t want her to leave the apartment in the first place. She wasn’t having it: not when she feels like a zit being squeezed. The more she stares at the crossing signal on the northeast corner of 34th and Cicero, the more she swears that time is standing still.

On the opposite corner stands Richard Cross, who’s holding his book bag like a nervous kid on the first day of school. His broad forehead glistens with sweat while his armpits are soaked right down to his elbows. He’s overworked at his understaffed job and his bag is full of sensitive project information that he and only he is entrusted to carry to the next presentation. All he needs to do is cross Cicero and step into the air conditioned office at 226 34th and everything will fine.

Standing in front of him are Lucy “LuLu” Fleur and Samantha “Sammy” Stratton. Friends since Kindergarten, these teenage girls are chatting with the high-pitched intensity of chickens, completely absorbed in their phones as they share Instagram photos and tweets like a pair of elderly women trading the juiciest gossip. The banter is as brittle as the screens of their phones, however: for the past few weeks, Sammy’s been spreading vicious rumors about Lulu online. As far as Sammy’s concerned, planting the seed that Lulu’s loving her boyfriend’s ex behind his back is even terms for her letting slip that she had lice and the months of physical and social quarantine she endured. Lulu knows, though. And the more they wait on the corner opposite of Kelly Money-Walker, the more the tension builds.

Kenneth Rivera is a part-time bike courier, ten minutes late as his muscles ache. The humidity adds on to his overheated body like a damp blanket, drawing sweat from every last pore on his skin from his scalp to his soles. Every breath hurts and the longer his body stays crouched over his bike, ready to snap forward, the more tempted he his to pedal ahead of the guy holding his book bag for dear life.

Martin Trapp fans himself with his newsboy cap as his body odor wafts behind him. No one knows how he copes in the unbearable heat without paying for the power for weeks but he does. He tells them that utilities are a racket with a capital R. He describes them as the type you see in a mob film: big, stocky types with short tempers, lousy attitudes, and limited vocabularies. He stubbornly refuses to pay for his power and instead he leaches power from the tenement gird. The heat is getting to him, even more so than usual, he’s convinced that the girl next to him, the redhead named Kelly who lives next door, is ratting him out. That bitch. He keeps one eye on her phone and one eye on the signal light and counting heartbeats.

Officer Lawrence Morian wishes he had eyes on the back of his head. He remembers the times his dad told him how the heat drives people crazy, how in his time on the beat he was always a little more cautious during the monsoon season when it wasn’t just the heat but the humidity that made everything that much more miserable for everybody. Morian feels the pressure build under him, like a kettle with its spout sealed, he knows that it won’t take much for it to burst. One hand on his radio and the other on his baton, he makes his way towards the crosswalk as it finally blinks “WALK”

Several things happen at once. Lulu lunges for Sammy’s phone as the two wrestle on the ground, devolving into hair-pulling and face-scratching, blocking Richard’s path. An agitated Kenneth takes off and crashes into Richard, causing him to drop his precious bag and scatter his presentation documents over the girls. Enraged, Richard retaliates by tackling Kenneth off his bike and onto his pavement in a flurry of punches and profanity. On the opposite end, Martin attempts to wrench Kelly’s phone away from her. Kelly screams at the top of her lungs as a few bystanders behind her attempt to pry Martin off of him. But like antibodies to a localized infection, the pedestrians on both sides swarm towards their incidents, inciting their frustrations into outright aggression as violence erupts. An overwhelmed officer Morian now has to make a decision: which side does he call backup for? Does he charge into the breach with baton and pepper spray in hand? Morian inhales and decides to split the difference. He immediately calls backup for both sides and charges towards the side with the cyclist. Sirens wail as angry motorists get out of their cars and charge towards the rapidly-growing brawl. Police signals blare that a riot is happening off of 34th and Cicero. Riot police from the local precinct arm themselves with helmets, riot shields, and clubs as they mobilize and prepare for yet another battle.

The skies above, once indifferent towards the misery and aggression of the people below, start to churn. Riot police assemble on the opposite end of the melee as an officer blares over a loudspeaker for the pedestrians to disperse. With middle fingers in the air, Kenneth flings a firebomb towards the police as they scatter from the flame. Shields forward and clubs at the side, the police march forward in a phalanx as both sides clash. Skulls are bashed, helmets are crushed, and blood is spilled. The pedestrians of 34th and Cicero, once completely apathetic, are now grabbing whatever implement is possible to use as a weapon against the police-bricks, bottles, and debris are makeshift weapons of resistance as the two sides clash again.

The rain starts softly as a fine mist and steadily cascades into a rolling deluge. The people below don’t notice at all, their aggression still roaring in their hearts as they’re too busy engaging in the chaos of screams, blood, and violence around them. The rain turns into a torrent but not even that is enough to quench the firestorm below. In fact, the rain makes conditions worse as the pedestrians are now slipping on the pavement and asphalt while the riot police wearing boots callously bludgeon them into submission. Horseback officers charge into the crowd with wild abandon to smash skulls like Civil War officers claiming heads with sabers. Looters raid storefronts and raid the insides. Tear gas grenades are launched and thrown back. Cars are overturned as the whole block of 34th and Cicero burns into the night sky.

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


In with this Edo-era katana

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Schneider Heim posted:

I'll do two crits for last week. Any takers?
Me too, please

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


That's adorable

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Thank you Schnider Helm for the crit

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


By the Sword

(1041 words)

He was the son of a retainer; raised not of the faith of his native land but of the faith of a faraway people. Called the “Messenger of Heaven”, Amakusa Shiro at that moment felt the weight of heavens on his shoulders.

It was mid-April and that morning at Hara Castle, the fog was impenetrable. Shiro’s army was comprised entirely of ronin-masterless samurai, soldiers of no nation, veterans who found themselves completely alienated from society and vice-versa. They had sought redemption not in their nation or in their native faith, but in the same faith of Shiro: Christianity. The promise of salvation, of grace and absolution, despite the men they slaughtered and the horrors they committed, appealed to these men. And yet, at this moment, the Tokogowa Shogonate’s army, led by Lord Kuroda, had already breached the outer walls. Shiro’s army might have been in the thousands, but Kuroda’s was in the tens of thousands.

Shiro emerged from within the castle after spending the night in deep prayer and contemplation. He was only sixteen, but the months since the rebellion started, he had aged, physically and spiritually. His eyes, once bright and full of youthful energy, were sunken into his skull. His father’s swords, a handsomely forged set of katanas, hung loosely at his side. Barely able to see through the fog, Shiro made his way to his men. Normally, they would be sharpening their swords or fletching arrows, but weeks into the siege without food or ammunition had left them broken, listless, and faithless.

“Brothers,” Shiro said softly as his men looked up, “I’d like to lead us into prayer.”

Shiro’s men took to one knee and made the sign of the cross. “Father, we ask not for your blessings, we ask not for your righteous aid in this battle, we simply ask for your grace and absolution for the evils we are about to commit. In your name we pray…”

“Amen,” his men said in unison and rose.

“Yamada, step forward,” Shiro said, his voice cold.

Yamada was twice Shiro’s age, but he flinched as if he was half his size. “Step forward, coward," Shiro ordered again, his tone abundantly clear that he would not repeat himself again.

Yamada stepped in front of Shrio. “Yamada, we have evidence that you have directly colluded with the enemy and revealed sensitive information to those pagans, those who dare call us barbarians while Tokogowa’s Daimyo burns the faithful alive. Do you dispute any of this?” Shiro asked.

“No,” Yamada answered wearily.

Shiro closed his eyes. “Yamada Emosaku, for the high crime of treason, I sentence you to death, to be carried out immediately,” he said and motioned towards his senior officer Masuda, who grabbed Yamada by the shoulders and forced him down to expose his neck. “Do you have any last words?” Shiro asked as he drew his sword.

Yamada turned his head and smiled. “I’ve made peace with my creator, barbarian, can you say the same?”

Enraged, Shiro struck, so fast and powerful that Yamada’s head flew into the air. But he wasn’t done: the moment that Yamada’s headless body hit the ground, Shiro immediately struck it again, and again, and again.

"Don't-you-dare-question-my-faith-you-heretic-pagan-scum!" Shiro screamed at the top of his lungs in between chopping Yamada's corpse. So violent was his butchering of Yamada’s corpse that even Shiro’s senior officers, twice his age and seasoned veterans, would not watch.

Hyperventilating and bathed in Yamada’s blood, Shiro’s rage still wasn’t satiated. Picking up Yamada’s head with one arm and his body with the other, Shiro climbed the battlement walls where Kuroda’s men waited on the other side.

“Behold!” He shouted and threw Yamada’s mutilated corpse over the wall. Lord Kuroda stared, horrified as Shiro, covered in blood, held Yamada’s head aloft in his arms. “Such is the fate of those who dare oppose our Lord!”

“Kill them!” Lord Kuroda bellowed. “Exterminate the barbarians!”

“To arms, brothers, to arms!” Shiro cried and raced back down, unceremoniously tossing Yamada’s head overboard. His brothers, the remaining survivors of the lost cause of religious freedom, assembled behind the inner wall of Hara Castle. The last barrier between themselves and inevitability was now being breached.

“Hold nothing back!” Shiro shouted over the loud bang of Kuroda’s battering ram. “Give no quarter!” He demanded as the doors started to give way. “And fear not for your salvation! For it is I who will answer to St. Peter when we arrive at the gates of Heaven!”

The doors finally gave way. With both swords in hands, Shiro screamed at the top of his lungs and charged with his brothers behind him.

***
“Amukasa Shiro,” Lord Kuroda declared, “For the high crimes of treason, heresy, and collusion with the barbarian hordes and their cult of Christianity, I hereby sentence you to death, to be carried out immediately.”

The walls of Hara Castle were stained red with the blood of the Shogunate’s army and his own brothers, who he witnessed die in battle and the survivors immediately beheaded one by one. “Do you have any last words?” Kuroda asked.

Kneeled over, his neck exposed, Shiro gazed his surroundings for the last time. To his left, he saw the enraged and disgusted minions of Tokogawa. To his right, the mutilated bodies of his brothers. And ahead, the blood-red skies of the setting sun. Behind him was Kuroda as his executioner, and beyond that sunset was something else. Something so incomprehensible, Shiro could only laugh. It started as a soft giggle, but Shiro was soon cackling, loud and high like a madman. His captors so disturbed that it shook them to their very core. Nothing else remained within Shiro, for his spirit was thoroughly obliterated. What remained was the simple spark of defiance, which soon grew into a roaring fire of insanity. “I-shall-return-in-a-hundred-years-and-have-my-revenge,” he stammered, his voice hoarse, barely more audible than a whisper. But everybody heard.

Shiro heard the familiar scrape of steel being unsheathed as Kuroda stepped next to him. “Kuroda,” Shiro whispered and tilted his head towards him.

Kuroda paused. “I’ve made peace with my creator, blasphemer, can you say the same?” Shiro asked him.

Enraged, Kuroda immediately beheaded Shiro in one strike. “Somebody bring me a pike,” he ordered.

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


I'm in, what's the house special?

Thanks to both Broenheim and Djinn for the crits.

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Duck Blood Soup

(1032 words)

“Mom, what’s Tiet canh made of?” I asked, halfway through a bowl of what could only be described as deep crimson gelatin with bits of duck meat in it.

Mom sucked air through her teeth. She always did that when she knew she was in trouble. “Minh, darling, why do you ask?”

I put my spoon down and looked at her. “Why can’t I ask?”

She shook her head. “Son, don’t be ridiculous, we aren’t feeding you poison!”

“Then why won’t you tell me what’s in this?” I asked and wiped a bit of the jellied stuff from my mouth. Tiet canh used to be my favorite dish in the whole wide world. When I was that age, Mom would serve three bowls almost every morning: one for Dad before he left early in the morning to work at the duck farm in Puente Hills, one for myself before she dropped me off at my charter school, and one for herself when she came back before she left for her job at the pharmacy. I could only describe it as the most savory food imaginable, especially when she’d serve it hot with fish oil on cold winter mornings.

She shook her head and smiled. “Son, you are much too young to worry about what you eat, that’s your job!” She said and ruffled my wavy hair. “You worry about your studies and let us worry about these kind of things.

I knew she was trying to misdirect me and I wasn’t having any of it. I pushed my bowl away and crossed my arms. “I’m not eating it until I know exactly what’s in it.”

***
Saturday, Dad finally relented and took me to the farm. The first thing that struck me on the drive over in his pickup was the stench of duck poo poo. It was so pungent and omnipresent that it hung over like an invisible fog. I gagged the moment we got close. “You get used to it,” Dad said gruffly we eventually pulled into the gravel driveway of the farm.

The farm itself was was huge, bigger than any park I ever visited. Dad gave me a brief tour of the place, stopping only to introduce me to his coworkers and exchange brief pleasantries in Vietnamese. Outside of the owners, the farm itself was almost entirely run by people just like me and my Dad. I’d tune out by default any time someone was speaking Vietnamese since my parents never bothered teaching me the language.

The ducks themselves were housed inside a pen made of bamboo and a roof out of thatch. Some were swimming in the pond while others simply milled about in the open field as a farmhand corralled them with a bamboo staff. I immediately started fawning and made a beeline towards them as their mother flew in my face and attacked me, jabbing her bill in my face as I covered my eyes with my hands. “Mothers are very protective of their young,” Dad laughed as he finally pulled me away. “Come over here.”

We stepped underneath a giant canopy where underneath would be the source of my nightmares. It was a rack, on top was a board holding several funnels and on the bottom was a wide trough. A couple other farmhands were around covered in feathers and blood and I felt a sickening feeling in the pit of my stomach.

Dad grabbed a random duck and violently shoved it down the funnel head-first. “Tiet canh is made from duck blood,” Dad said as he pulled the duck’s head through the funnel, “And here’s how we harvest it.” Dad pulled a razor-sharp knife from his overalls and slit the duck’s throat.

What I remember most wasn’t so much how red the duck’s blood was, or how gurgled it’s scream was, or even how pungent the metallic smell of blood was. What I remembered the most was how cold I felt. How I wrapped my arms tightly around my body because at that moment, I learned that my father, the man who raised, cared, and provided for me, was beyond a shadow of a doubt, a killer. A slaughterer. A mass murderer. And I was guilty of the same heinous acts by proxy in consuming the blood of these innocent animals. “Are you okay, Son?” Dad asked me.

I didn’t answer. I could only stare transfixed at him, like a deer staring at a wolf. Seeing how I was very much disturbed, he told me to go inside the break room and ask for some bread so that I could feed the ducks in the pond.

***

I spent what seemed like hours, tearing off pieces of bread into the serene pond and watching ducks and ducklings swim over to feed on them. The sight of them, these pure, innocent creatures, completely unaware of their eventual fates, stirred something in me. I got up from the pond. I knew I couldn’t save all of them but that wouldn’t stop me from trying.

The entire farm was surrounded by a chicken wire fence. Knowing I’d have to breach it first, I settled for simply snapping the post closest to the pen and bending the rest of the fence as close to the ground as possible. I then unlatched the back door of the pen and went inside. There were several ducks inside resting soundly. Taking a deep breath, I went inside and did everything humanly possible to scare the ducks out: I stomped, I shouted, I flailed my arms. I corralled the ducks out the back of the pen and towards the part of the fence I wrecked towards freedom. Somebody with large, strong arms soon scooped me up. I didn’t bother looking up, I knew drat well who it was.

Dad lost his job at the duck farm. It took months before he could find another farm to work at and by then, I was dropped out of my charter school and put into public schooling where I’ve remained ever since. Dad and I never saw eye to eye from that point forward and to this day, I refuse to eat anything including duck in it.

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Mercedes posted:

Michigan don't got no hurricanes.
Or a decent football team

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Kaishai posted:

If you're still lingering over your enrollment form, you have one hour left to join the class!
*signs up for inrollment*

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Covering the Spread
967 words

“...and coming out on the field, please welcome Michigan's own, Benjamin “Benji” Abdon!” The announcer cried over the loudspeaker. The crowd chanted “Ben-Ji! Ben-Ji! Ben-Ji!” as a six-foot tall college athlete, wearing a blue-and-yellow jersey with the name “ABDON" over the number 23, walked out onto the Michigan State field. It was a Saturday night in late November and even though Benji could see his own breath, he felt even colder. His fellow Wolverines were ready to claim victory against their longtime rivals, the red-and-grey Ohio State Buckeyes. Despite the fact that this was the most watched game in college football, Benji's mind at that moment wasn't on the game itself, but elsewhere.

***

“Go on, Benji, eat,” his older cousin Yadi encouraged him by offering him a platter of rice and yellow curry. “You’re a growing boy, after all!”

“Yadi, what do you want?” he asked.

Yadi put the platter town and smiled. “I can’t do something nice for my favorite cousin?”

“Don’t give me that,” Benji snapped and leaned in. “You’ve been nothing but trouble for me, Yadi.”

The two of them paused as their waiter served their pad thai. “How could you-”

“The time you tried to pass me as your own son to scam financial aid.”

“Yeah but-”

“Or the time you tried pinning shooting at sparrows with your dad’s pellet gun on me.”

“Benji-”

“Or how about when you tried scamming me out of Grandma’s bond?”

“Motherfucker, listen,” Yadi said and stabbed her fork into her plate of stir-fry, her immaculately drawn eyebrows narrowed. “Who snuck you into R-rated movies as a kid? Who was the one who loaned you her Mustang when you said you were ‘this close’ to scoring with your girlfriend? Who was the one who helped you when you couldn't get financial aid?”

Benji looked away and ran a hand through his spiked hair. “Yeah, I thought so,” she said. “I treat you to your favorite food and this is what I get.”

“Be honest with me then, what is it that you want?”

Yadi pushed her glasses up and sighed. “I bet against your team and-”

“Bye, Yadi,” Benji said and started to leave.

“-I did it because I knew José wants to go to college like his big brother, doesn’t he?”

Benji stopped and gripped his chair. “He looks up to his big brother and wants to be a college success, too,” Yadi pointed out and took a bite out of her curry. “But there’s no way he can afford college. And I can help with that.”

“How much could you help?”

Writing on a napkin with her makeup pencil, Yadi handed Benji a figure as his eyes grew big. “It’s not Michigan State money, though," Yadi reasoned.

“This is bullshit-how am I supposed to believe that you provide us with this much money?”

Yadi looked him in the eyes. “Because it’s me who’s asking to help”

Benji sat back down and served himself. “What do I need to do?

She smiled. “All you have to do is cover the spread.”

***

From under his sweat-filled helmet, Benji looked at the scoreboard: 21-25, Ohio up by four. Michigan was a scant fifteen yards away from the end zone and on their fourth and final down and only seconds on the clock. Remembering Yadi’s words, Benji knelt behind the center and called the play. “Red-22! Red-26! Hut-One!”

Center Jordan Mercer snapped the ball. Like bighorn sheep, blue and red slammed into each other. While Benji held onto the ball in his arms like a baby, his receivers flew home towards the end zone. Racing back, Benji lifted the ball high into the air before slamming it back down into his other hand, tucking it into his body, and sprinting into the fray.

“And Benji runs the ball!” The announcer shouted while Michigan crowd gasped in shock.

“gently caress are you doing?” Mercer shouted while holding back a buckeye linebacker but Benji ignored him. Bobbing and weaving, he crossed the ten-yard line and right in the path of an incoming lineman. Bracing for impact, Benji didn’t notice the semi of another Ohio linebacker rushing in his blindside. Tumbling on the ground, Benji tasted grass, dirt, and blood at the same time. His head on fire and his vision blurry, he didn't hear anything until he heard the piercing trill of the ref’s whistle. Benji could see the anguished looks in the Michigan stands and hear his coach’s incessant cursing. But his eyes and ears were focused on one person: Yadi, who was jumping up and down, cheering at the top of her lungs, smiling from ear to ear. At that moment, Benji knew. He knew exactly what her intentions were and knew exactly what he hand to do.

***

"Hey José?" Benji called his little brother as he got up the very next morning at 5AM.

"Benji?" A sleepy-voiced José answered on the other line. "What's up, big bro? I saw you lost last night."

"I know," he said as he went into the hall closet of his dorm room and pulled out a lockbox and unlocked it. Inside it was his pistol, a black-and-grey hunk of plastic which, in happier times, he let his brother use at the firing range. Benji sighed and removed himself from any doubt by checking that it was loaded before switching the safety on and putting it in his back pocket. Yadi's text was still fresh in his mind: "meet me @ starbucks 10am". But he wasn't taking any chances, he knew exactly where she lived. "José?"

"Yeah?"

"Just wanted to know that you're okay," he said.

"Yeah, why wouldn't I be?" José asked. "What's wrong, Benji?"

Benji sighed. "I'm going to make sure you get what's yours," he said as he left outside into the predawn.

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Sitting Here posted:

i consulted the tarot about entering this week

http://www.facade.com/tarot/persona...ngle&Reverse=on

i don't know what that means, so IN
This is what I got. If this is as any good as an indicator, I'm in.

P.S: Which arcana(s) will you be drawing from, Dr. K?

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


newtestleper posted:

You're a disgusting coward get the hell out of here

Ironic Twist posted:

But they were still better stories and closer to the prompt than newtestleper's, who takes the Loss this week for apparently deciding to interpret “daylight horror” as “period piece where a Victorian-era noblewoman sleeps naked in a forest, then kills a guy with a rock for the crime of not running her over with his horse and carriage.” We unanimously did not know where the hell you were coming from. Please don't return there.

Oh, sweet, sweet schadenfreude

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


Ironic Twist posted:

1) Sure
2) Dude who are you
https://youtu.be/1qiFjN3D8TU

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


in

quote:

The palsy plagues my pulses
When I prig your pigs or pullen
Your culvers take, or matchless make
Your Chanticleer or sullen.

(USER WAS BANNED FOR THIS POST)

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

worlds_best_author
Aug 23, 2015


in

  • Locked thread