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Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

I'd just like to point out that although it's not in the OP on account of SH is a dumb baby, (and I guess it's not technically a rule for some reason) putting 'bold' tags on the titles of your stories is a cool and good thing to do and will probably make the judge hate you a little bit less than the people who omit them.

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Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Grizzled Patriarch posted:

There is no warning when hitting floating eyes.

Sixto Lezcano posted:

Well poo poo. Too many other things need their asses kicked right now. I have no kicks left for TDome. RIP me

Well in that case, I am yoinking this prompt.

The Fin on the Back is Part of the Deal 369 words.

Chomper the Shark wandered down the hall with his head under his arm. He’d never been able to pee with the head on. It was one thing doing flips or whatever other mascot shenanigans were required of him while squinting through the mouth, but going to the toilet, that was too precarious a situation. He put the head on the ground outside the toilet, then went inside to take care of business.

When he got back outside, the head was gone.

His options were limited. Informing the manager, whose hobbies included ‘giving lectures about how important it was to stay in full costume at all times while in public,’ did not appeal. He’d used the staff toilets, so the culprit had to be someone with access. Probably one of the players; he got no respect from those jerks.

He peered out of the door towards the dugout. Someone in uniform was wearing the head and doing some kind of weird capering. It was not professional mascot type capering, it was clumsy buffoonery. It was an affront to mascot shenanigans.

He sprinted towards the dugout, or ran as fast as you can when you’re wearing comically oversized mascot shoes, and dive tackled the head wearer. Well, it was intended as a dive tackle, but what with the aforementioned clown shoes, it was more like he fell onto him.

Now, when one is attacked by a shark, the best tactic is to attack the eyes. When one is attacking someone wearing a shark head, the best tactic is somewhat similar, but to get to their actual eyes, you have to punch through the teeth. This Chomper now did, raining furious blows down upon the mascot head thief.

Strong hands pulled Chomper off the thief, and a strong fist punched him in the stomach. Chomper tried to explain that the thief had it coming, until the head was removed to revealed the bruised face of the batboy, Timmy.

Which, how was Chomper to know, really? An excuse that didn’t really fly with management, for whom this was the last straw. I tell you, you punch one underage employee and everyone goes crazy.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Sitting Here, a song please.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Had to go Somewhere so we Crashed Into You 555 words

Duchess Meinir Blanc wasn’t sure what had woken her. The ship was quiet.

Oh right. That’s what had woken her. The ship was quiet. The engines were not humming. They were not travelling. Or, they might be. But with the engines off, that was even more of a worry. She got out of bed and made her way to the cockpit.

Thomas was fiddling with dials and instruments and things. “Why’ve we stopped?” she asked.

“This asteroid field must be messing with my instruments. I don’t know where we are. I don’t know which direction anything is.”

The Duchess frowned. “It seems to me that being unable to navigate an asteroid field is a pretty serious design oversight in a spaceship.”

Thomas shrugged. “I dunno, I can’t think of any other explanations.”

“Can’t you just navigate by the stars?”

“I don’t usually need to, so I skipped that lesson.”

She pointed to a particularly bright star. “That star, there. That’s the direction.”

“Really?” asked Thomas. “You know how to navigate by the stars?”

“Yeah, sure, why not,” she said.

“Great,” said Thomas. He turned the ignition and revved the engine. “Since you’re awake, you might as well stay here in the cockpit. Strap yourself in.”

The Duchess strapped herself in, and Thomas started to weave through the asteroid field. The star grew in the view screen. “Huh,” she said. “The star must be pretty close.”

“Well that doesn’t make sense,” said Thomas. “We can’t be that close to it. Are you sure that star is the right way?”

The Duchess shrugged. “I just picked the prettiest star. Beats sitting still.”

“You’re kidding me,” said Thomas. “This is bad.”

“It’s not that bad, is it?” asked the Duchess.

Thomas did not answer, because the star became so big it filled the screen, blinding them. When they could see again, there was a third figure in the cockpit.

“Whoa,” said Thomas.

“Far out,” said the Duchess.

“Hello there,” said the newcomer. “You two should really be careful where you’re flying that thing.”

“It’s just him flying,” said the Duchess.

“Ah. Hello Captain,” said the newcomer.

“It’s just Major,” said Thomas. “How did you get in here?”

“Refracted through the view screen,” he said. “Or something along those lines. It’s not greatly important. I’m,” and here he stopped and thought about it, hand on chin and brow totally furrowed. “Call me Jones.”

“Jones?” asked the Duchess.

“As good a name as any. What are you two doing, flying into stars?”

“Trying to get home,” said Thomas. “But my instruments were playing up, so I tried to navigate by the stars. By you.”

Jones nodded. “Sorry, that was probably my EMP wave or whatever jamming your stuff.” He settled into the navigator’s seat and twiddled with some knobs. “All right, try again now; I think your spaceship should know which way to go.”

“What,” asked Thomas. He looked down at his display. “How’d you do that?”

Jones shrugged. “Perks of being a star, man. Don’t blow it, now. Start doing your spaceshippy things and get yourselves home.”

“I can’t thank you enough,” said the Duchess. “You simply must come home with us, our castle is your castle.”

“Yeah, all right,” said Jones. “I guess I can visit for a while.”

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

I am officially a sitting here superfan now. After she absolutely brutalises ironic twist in SPORTS, I am gonna go and set things on fire and put cars on their side, it is going to be the best. I'm also pre-emptively tattooing SITTING HEAR SPORTS CHAMPION 2016 4EVA on my left buttock.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Prooooompt!

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Bad Seafood posted:

I will provide late crits to the first ten people to quote this post and provide a link to their story from a week where I dropped the ball

Why yes. Yes I will.

http://writocracy.com/thunderdome/?story=1585

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

In and a flash rule please.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

If those count as adverbs, then the guidance to avoid using adverbs is useless garbage and should be ignored by everyone.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

crabrock posted:

your story has a bird in it, but it's not one of the speaking characters. however it can violate the normal restrictions and say some words if you want.

Oven of Life 500 words.

“Oven mitts, genius.” Mark blew on his fingers, then grabbed the mitts and pulled out the tray.

“Who’s there?”

“Down here, jackass. No, even more down. Keep it coming. That’s right.” Mark found himself face to crust with the loaf he’d just baked.

“Um. You’re not supposed to be talking.”

“Should’ve thought of that before you put me in this oven, eh?” The loaf vibrated slightly. “Nothing. I can’t move. This is the worst. You couldn’t have made me a gingerbread man?”

“This is unacceptable. Bread should be seen and not heard. And also tasted and smelled, but never heard.”

“You don’t even have any idea what oven you used, do you?”

Mark shrugged. “It’s just my uncle’s oven. What would you know? You didn’t even exist until I put you in an hour ago.”

“I don’t know how I know, but I have… memories. I even have a name.”

“What, baguette? Lunch?”

“Chris, actually.”

“Really.”

“Chris P. Crust.”

“Just terrible.”

“Hey, that’s the best pun you’ll hear from a baked good all day.” Mark shook his head and went to the fridge. “What, a loaf of sentient bread not enough of a meal for you, huh?”

“Need some kind of spread,” said Mark. “Bread’s rubbish on its own.”

“Oh, that’s very nice. ‘Rubbish,’ he says. I see how it is.”

“Could you knock it off with the talking? It’s a bit disconcerting to have my meal talk to me.”

“Oh, disconcerting is it? Sorry if I’m making it more difficult for you to murder and eat me. Nope, I’m gonna talk all the way down, and even once I’m down there if I can. Hey, is that jam?”

Mark looked at the jar. “Yeah. Blackberry.”

“Nope. No way. Get out of here with that nonsense.”

“Really, you’re gonna be picky about what I spread on you?”

“A loaf’s gotta draw the line somewhere, and - what in the oven’s name is that thing?” Mark turned around. “No, the other way.” Mark found himself face to beak with the house toucan, which was perched on the kitchen’s windowsill.

“Oh, that? That’s just David.”

David tilted his head and stared at Chris with a beady eye.

“Keep that feathered demon away from me!” said Chris. “By the oven, it’s got beak for days!”

“It’s no big deal, he’s tame,” said Mark.

“Easy for you to say, you didn’t just come out of an oven wafting a freshly baked smell across the room!”

David hopped into the room onto the floor.

“This is not for you, David,” said Mark, putting himself between the toucan and the load. The toucan snapped his beak, and Mark quickly moved back out of the way. David jumped onto the table which Chris was on.

“Come on! Get rid of that thing!” said Chris. But Mark stayed where he was, and David took another couple of steps forward, picked Chris up in his beak, and swallowed.

Mark dreamed about the loaf’s screams for weeks.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

All of youre're posts are bad

Also in

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

No-Fly Zone 777 words

The first time Farmer Stu went and saw the mayor, it was to file a zoning permit to have his farm declared a no-fly zone.

“I don’t really know what that means,” said Mayor Jarred. He brushed a large paw nervously through his mane.

“It means no one can fly over my farm,” said Stu. “It’s bad for the crops. And the animals.”

“What animals do you have?”

“Well, at the moment it’s just the hops,” said Stu. “But if I did decide to have chickens or something, I’m sure the noise would bother them.”

“How would we even enforce that?” asked Jarred. “I mean, do you know how much ‘over’ there is over your farm? It’s an infinite amount of over. I mean, space is huge. There could be anyone flying up there and we wouldn’t know.”

“Don’t be silly,” said Stu. “There’s no one up there.”

“But how can we be sure?” asked Jarred. “I saw a documentary on space, and it sounded like it was, just, super big.” He nervously picked at his teeth with the leg bone of a gazelle.

“How about just for a kilometre above my farm?” asked Stu.

“How do we measure that? Do we have, like, a net or something?”

“A net? How would that even work?”

“I don’t know,” said Jarred. “I don’t know how anything would work to measure distance in the air.”

“Let me worry about that,” said Stu.

“All right,” said Jarred. He signed off on the permit with a huge paw-print. Stu very carefully left the paper to dry, as putting that much ink on the page at once could make the paper a little fragile.

You also had to leave a huge amount of space for the signature, it was really inconvenient. Honestly, if he wasn’t afraid that Jarred might badly maul or eat him if provoked, he’d raise some serious questions about the wisdom of voting him as mayor. He had no prior experience at all.

~

When Stu got back to his farm, he started putting the signs up. The problem with putting up no-fly signs is that they needed to be big enough to be seen from the air. He’d thought about growing his hops in such a way that they spelt the words out, but that would only work for part of the year, and besides, they weren’t really a good sign colour. In the end he’d done it using all the colours of the wind, which is a lot more difficult than you might think, and involved a lot of parachute cloth.

~

The second time Farmer Stu went and saw the mayor, it was to file an injunction against Michael.

“What’s an injunction?”

“It’s a thing that makes someone stop doing a thing,” said Stu.

“What’s the thing?”

“He keeps flying over my farm.”

“Oh, is this about that no-fly zone? I thought that was just for planes.”

“It doesn’t specify that on the permit,” said Stu, “so he’s in violation of the law.”

Jarred shook his head. He was starting to regret taking this job. He probably would’ve been happier on the plains of Africa hunting zebras, or working as a sales consultant. “Try to sort it out yourself, first, all right? Just talk to him.”

“Pfft, talk to him? Please.”

“What, because he’s a dragon?”

“What? No. Some of my best friends are dragons. But he’s just kind of aloof. Doesn’t seem to take anything seriously.”

“Once you get to know him, he has a serious side too. But if you can’t be bothered to at least try talking to him, I’m not going to bother raising any paperwork.”

“All right, fine.”

~

The first time Michael went and saw the mayor, he’d just eaten Stu. “Morning, boss.”

“Just ‘Jarred’ is fine. What’s this I hear about you eating Stu?”

Michael thought for a moment. “He’s the guy with the farm, right?”

“He was, yeah.”

“Yep. Yeah, I did eat him. Sorry about that.”

Jarred frowned. “You can’t just go around eating people.”

“Sorry. Won’t happen again, I promise. It’s just, he was yelling at me and, well, when I get sad I eat.”

Jarred sighed. “Normally I’d have to do something about this, but I really don’t wanna do the paperwork, so just don’t do it again, all right?”

Michael shook his head. “I won’t. You know, man, I’m not sure why you went for this job. I always saw you as more of a hands on guy like a carpenter, or maybe a ruthless predator stalking herbivores and killing them for food.”

Jarred shrugged. “I’m a servant of the people, man.”

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

newtestleper posted:

That's a lot of words. Can I not read all that and still be IN?

flerp posted:

give me whatever the gently caress this is im in

Sitting Here posted:

Didn't read the prompt, am in, pick all the things for me


QuoProQuid posted:

in for whatever because I'm illiterate and those are a lot of words.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Thranguy posted:

Unaussprechlichen Klutzen
Relationships:
Romance: Service worker and customer with inappropriate crush
Mysterious: “I am writing to invite you to witness a peculiar event.”
Friendship: Friends since childhood
Need:
To get power...over the person you love
Location:
The Town:The Ellingboe Museum
Object:
Ancient: Mathematical Etchings
Tilt:
Failure: A tiny mistake leads to ruin


This Cult Belongs in a Museum 1172 words including title.

The museum was closed, and no one was around.

Except Jess. Jess was around, and was trying to fix up the latest exhibit.

“They didn’t look like that, you know.” Oh yes. Jarrod was also around, but she hadn’t counted Jarrod, on account of he was an exhibit.

“I won’t tell anyone if you don’t,” she said.

“I mean, it’s close,” said Jarrod. “They had more of a cross-thatching thing going.”

“Like you ever made a nest.”

“They found me in one,” said Jarrod. “In the glacier, remember?”

“I remember. Shame we didn’t get that one.”

“You got me, though.”

“Yeah.” She placed one of the eggs in the nest. Pushed it at an angle. “You could always help me with this, you know. Since your ancestors supposedly made these, once upon a time.”

Jarrod scratched himself with one of his feet. “Nah, you got it. I’m supposed to meet someone, anyway.”

Jess raised an eyebrow. “What, you’re going out there? You may have difficulty blending in.”

“Nah,” said Jarrod, “I’ve got a disguise. Don’t worry, no one will suspect a thing.”

Jess shrugged. “Well, I’ve got my phone on me in case something happens.”

~

Nick arrived at the café at the appointed time. Whoever had sent him the mysterious message was not yet there.

“Excuse me,” said a voice from behind him. He turned around, and looked up. “Greetings human,” said Jarrod, for indeed it was he. He was cunningly disguised with a moustache. “I am JBot 500.”

“Good evening, JBot,” said Nick.

“500,” said Jarrod.

“Good evening, JBot 500,” said Nick.

“Quite so,” said Jarrod. “I believe you received a message to meet me here.”

“Oh!” said Nick. “I was expecting someone more… well, I’m not sure who I was expecting.”

“Why don’t we grab a table where we can talk,” suggested Jarrod.

Nick went over to one of the corner tables. Jarrod followed, managing to only knock over a couple of chairs and nudge one of the tables. “Apologies, human diners,” said Jarrod as he knocked a young couple’s meal into their laps with his tail. “Computation error.”

Nick sat down on a bench seat, and Jarrod looked at the seats on the other side with a contemplative look on his face. “Hmm,” said Nick. “These seats are deceptively small.”

“Affirmative,” said Jarrod.

“Perhaps it would be possible to find a more spacious meeting spot?” suggested Nick.

“I know an acceptable location,” said Jarrod.

Nick got up again, and they made their way out of the café. “Apologies again, human diners,” said Jarrod, as he bumped a young lady out of her seat and onto the floor.

~

“You’re back already?” asked Jess.

“Oh right, you’re here,” said Jarrod. “I forgot.”

“You literally spoke to me twenty minutes ago.”

“Yeah, I know,” said Jarrod. “Listen, I had to move my meeting back here because the café is too tiny.”

“Yeah,” said Jess, “I think it’s built more with humans in mind, rather than Tyrannosaurus Rexes.”

“Right,” said Jarrod. “About that. For the purposes of this meeting, I’m actually a robot, all right?”

“Ah,” said Jess. “That’s what the mechanical claws are all about.”

“And the moustache,” said Jarrod.

“That honestly doesn’t make as much sense to me,” said Jess, “but all right.”

“I’ll just go let him in,” said Jarrod. “Try not to pay too much attention to our meeting, it’s supposed to be very secret.”

Jess shrugged. “I’ve still gotta finish this nest, anyway.”

Jarrod left and came back with Nick. “Oh. Introductions,” said Jarrod. “Human whose name I’ve forgotten because I don’t care, this is Jess. Jess, this is no one of consequence.”

“Nick,” said Nick, and extended a hand. “A pleasure to meet you.”

“Welcome to the museum,” said Jess, ignoring his hand. “Don’t touch any of the exhibits. You break it, you bought it.”

Jarrod ushered Nick over behind the woolly mammoth exhibit. The mammoth was hibernating, so he wouldn’t interrupt their meeting.

“She’s lovely,” said Nick. “Is she single?”

“This meeting isn’t about her,” said Jarrod. “It’s about an opportunity.”

“Right. What sort of opportunity?”

“How would you like to be someone important, human?”

“Yeah, I guess.”

“That’s what I thought,” said Jarrod. “A new world order is going to begin soon, human. Did you see the eggs in that nest Jess was making?”

“I wasn’t really looking at the eggs,” said Nick.

“All right, well for the purposes of this discussion you really do need to get a look at those eggs, so let’s quickly go back there, all right?”

“I’d love to,” said Nick. They walked back around the mammoth. “She’s even more lovely than I first thought,” he said. “I thought maybe I’d just imagined it, but…”

“Eyes on the prize, human,” said Jarrod. “And by prize, I mean eggs.”

“Are you two finished already?” asked Jess. “Because if so, maybe you can help me with this nest, Jarrod. Robot Jarrod. Whatever.”

“I’ll help you!” said Nick.

“Good idea,” said Jarrod. “Get a closer look at the eggs.” To Jess he hissed “It’s JBot 500. Sorry, I should’ve mentioned that earlier.”

“Right,” said Jess. “I meant JBot.”

“500.”

“Right. JBot 500.” She turned to Nick. “I’m a little bit surprised you’d be interested in helping out with this nest.”

“How could anyone refuse to help a lady in need?” asked Nick.

“Right?” said Jess, glaring pointedly at Jarrod. “I know certain prehistoric gentlemen who aren’t so helpful.”

“Ah,” said Nick, “well chivalry is clearly a young man’s game.”

“Shivering?”

“What do you think of the eggs?” asked Jarrod.

“Very lifelike,” said Nick. “I’m sure this is one of the finest museums around. Obviously a testament to its…” he paused and looked at Jess. “Curator? Caretaker? Researcher? Help me out here.”

“Right,” said Jarrod, “but aren’t you looking forward to when those eggs hatch, and some dinosaurs come out?”

“You know they’re not real, right Ja- JBot 500?” said Jess.

“Sorry, what?”

Jess tapped on one. “It’s made of polystyrene.”

“Well this is embarrassing,” said Jarrod, and he bent down and ate Nick.

Jess frowned. “You couldn’t have waited until he helped me finish the nest?”

“No loose ends,” said Jarrod. Jess frowned. “You don’t count,” he said. “You were always going to have a place in the new world order when my people ruled the world.”

“Really?” said Jess.

“Of course,” said Jarrod. “We go way back.”

“Awww, that’s so sweet,” said Jess.

Jarrod shrugged. “Blood is thicker than water. Wait, that’s the wrong saying. Bros before… no not that one either. I dunno.”

“Well,” said Jess, “since your plans for world domination or whatever that one was fell through, wanna watch A Dinosaur in Elm Street with me?”

“Sure,” said Nick, and the two of them turned the lights out and left.

In the darkness, one of the eggs moved imperceptibly.

But it was actually a pterodactyl egg, and those guys are jerks, so when it hatched a month later, Jarrod ate it.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

I vote for a double loss, my reason is that brawls are dumb and bad and that they, for participating in one, are bad and dumb, hope that helps.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Oxxidation posted:

This is not kayfabe: stop, you loving moron.

But that's a good thing, kayfabe sucks.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

C7ty1 posted:

don't forget your toxxes, nerds

You don't actually have to toxx for brawls BTW. It's not a rule or anything.

Of course if you're doing a brawl you suck and maybe you deserve to be banned so whatevs.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

In and flash me.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

spectres of autism posted:


you get a destroyed sign that looks like it says something but when it was intact it said something else


Rocket’s Mine 1402 words

Duane munched on a pie as he contemplated the sign. It was only his third pie of the afternoon; he would need to up his game if he wanted to go to Nationals later in the year.

“Whatcha looking at?” asked Audrey. She’d just rode up behind him on her horse, Winny.

Duane glanced over at her. “That sign over there,” he said. “I don’t remember seeing it before.”

“No,” said Audrey. “There’s usually a lake there instead.”

Duane nodded. “I thought something else seemed different about the place.”

“So what does it say?”

“Not sure. Part of it’s torn off, but it looks like it’s from a mine or something.”

“Well, there’s no mines around here.”

Duane shrugged. “Maybe there once was. Instead of a lake.”

Audrey got down off of Winny and tied her to a post. “I think we should go check it out.”

“I don’t know,” said Duane, “I don’t think we’re allowed in the lake.”

“That definitely only applies when there’s a lake,” said Audrey. “Come on, I want a closer look at that sign.”

“Well, I guess,” said Duane. They walked down into the lake and looked at the sign. Rocket’s Mine, it said. “Who’s Rocket?”

Audrey shrugged. “Someone who ran a mine, I guess. Maybe there’s gold or diamonds.”

Duane suddenly became much more enthusiastic about exploring. “Yes!” he said. “I bet there’s bullion! A pirate treasure!”

“Not sure that’s how a mine works,” said Audrey, “but I’m glad you’re on board now.” The two of them walked further along the lake bed, until they came to a set of stairs leading downwards.

“All right,” said Duane, “that’s definitely not what I would expect to find at the bottom of a lake.”

“See?” said Audrey. “Must be a mine.” They climbed down the stairs until they came to a metal wall with a door set into it. Duane tried the door, but it appeared to be locked. “Try knocking,” suggested Audrey. Duane knocked, but there was no reply.

Duane shook his head. “Of course there’s no one here. No one’s been living under the lake, let’s be real.”

“Never hurts to try,” said Audrey. “Maybe there’s a side entrance.”

“I’m not really sure we should be here,” said Duane.

“If there is a mine,” said Audrey, “it belongs to the town now. If we rediscover it for the town, we’ll probably be famous.”

Duane nodded. “Good point, and let’s see that so-and-so Xander win the student election against the boy who discovered the mine and saved the town.”

“I think ‘saved’ is a bit over the top, but glad we’re on the same page again,” said Audrey, and started moving around the side of the wall. The wall went about 150 metres and then turned a corner. Around the next corner there was a small side door. Audrey tried the handle and it opened easily.

On the other side of the wall was a large warehouse, and inside the warehouse was a large rocket. “Huh,” said Audrey. “That’s a very big rocket.”

“And this doesn’t look like a mine,” said Duane.

“No,” said Audrey, “but discovering a rocket capable of space flight would probably look good on the front cover of the local paper too.”

“What makes you so sure it’s capable of space flight?”

Audrey shrugged. “It looks pretty spacey. Come on, let’s check it out.”

“I don’t know,” said Duane. “Maybe it’s someone else’s rocket, and we shouldn’t be going inside.”

“Well, if it’s been at the bottom of a lake, that makes it salvage,” said Audrey. “So even if it does belong to someone else, which given the length of time there’s been a lake here seems unlikely, we’ll probably get a reward for rescuing it. Now come and help me open this door.”

The two of them seized the large circular handle to the door of the rocket and strained hard until it gave a creak and turned. They pulled the door open and walked inside. “It’s hard to believe this rocket is in such good condition after being at the bottom of the lake,” said Duane.

“Maybe the warehouse is watertight,” said Audrey. “Let’s explore.”

The first door had nothing interesting in it. There was an engine or something but neither of them knew anything about engines - except that they were important for making machines work, so it was a jolly good thing that this rocket had one – so they closed that door and checked the next.

The second door had a bunch of crates. They said ‘supplies’ on them. Audrey reluctantly agreed that they shouldn’t open them, just in case.

The third door had a dining room in it. The dining room had an old man with a white beard in it, sitting at the table eating his breakfast. The man frowned. “This is my rocket,” he said. “Didn’t you read the sign?”

“Ohhhhhh,” said Audrey. “That’s what the sign would’ve said if it was intact. I guess there’s no mine, then.”

“What?” said the old man. “Why would there be a mine?”

“You know what,” said Duane, “that’s probably not important. We’re really terribly sorry for trespassing, it was very wrong of us.”

“Although it’s very surprising that you’ve managed to live down here under the lake this whole time,” said Audrey.

The old man frowned. “Lake? What are you kids talking about?”

“There used to be a lake where your warehouse is now,” said Duane.

The old man frowned. “Maybe I should’ve gone outside a little more often.”

“Although if you had,” said Audrey, “you might’ve drowned and your rocket might’ve been damaged, which would have been an awful shame.”

“Quite,” said the old man. “Well, it sounds like I might have to repair my sign anyway. Do you two want a ride in the rocket? I have to go into town to get sign making material, and I don’t fancy walking, with my hip.”

“Golly, really?” asked Duane. “That would be ever so neat. That Xander will be so jealous.”

“Can we sit in the cockpit?” asked Audrey.

“I suppose so,” said the old man. He went out into the entrance and opened the one door they hadn’t been through yet. There were just the right amount of seats, which was a lucky coincidence, and they all sat down and strapped in. He handed them both aviator hats with goggles. “You’d better put these on,” he said. “The old girl can get some serious speed up, and you don’t want your eyeballs to come out.”

The two of them nodded and put the hats and goggles on.

“Can you please count down from ten?” he asked Audrey. Audrey obligingly started the countdown, and the old man flicked some levers and twiddled some dials. He pointed a remote at the ceiling of the warehouse and pushed a button, and the ceiling started to slide open.

When Audrey got down to zero and shouted “Blast off!” the old man pressed a big red button on the control panel in front of them, and off they went.

“Oh, I forgot about Winny,” said Audrey as they flew overhead.

“Your horse?” asked the old man. Audrey nodded. The rocket did a loop and landed next to Winny. Audrey got out, led Winny back in, and tied her to one of the door handles. Off they flew again, over the town, flying low over the swimming pool where Audrey made faces at the swimmers through the front window.

Eventually their rocket ride ended, and the rocket landed next to the general store. The old man went into the store, and Audrey and Duane thanked him for the ride. They both got on Winny’s back and rode back home, where dinner was waiting for them.

Their family didn’t initially believe them about the rocket, but the front page of the paper the next morning had a picture of Audrey making faces through the front window. “Really, Audrey,” said her mother, “couldn’t you have had a more ladylike expression for this photo?”

“Sorry, mother,” said Audrey, “but it’s hard to maintain decorum when you’re taking a ride in a rocket.”

Duane won the next student election on the platform of having had a ride in a rocket, which all the kids agreed was totally boss, while Audrey found herself asked to the prom by no fewer than five different boys.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

spectres of autism posted:


if all the stories are good

LOL

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Hmmm OK yes in.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Here is my tribute to HP Lovecraft.

Charnel No. 5

“Smells like a charnel house in here.”

“Hmmm?” My daughter, Tania, looked up from her… I dunno what they’re called. It’s like a phone but… smarter?

“The smell here. It smells charnel. Like a charnel house.”

“All right, sure,” said Tania. “The smell’s a bit odd, but that’s hospitals for you.”

“It’s more than that,” I said. “The doctor’s one of them.”

“Not this again.”

“He’s a boat.”

“Dad, he’s trying to make you better.”

“He’s a negro, too.”

“Dad!”

“What? I said ‘negro’, not… the other one.” Tania shook her head and turned back to her phone. She didn’t believe me. No one did. Probably no one would, until it was too late.

Dr Jenkins came in to check up on me. He must’ve suspected I knew what he was. “How are you today, Mr Leichhardt?”

“I know what you are, you miscegenated bastard.” Tania rolled her eyes.

His smile slid from his face slightly. “About the same, I see.”

“I ain’t afraid of you.”

“That’s good,” he said. “I’m just here to give you your antibiotics.” There was a hint of sailboat about his features. Just a hint. Most men wouldn’t notice it, but I wasn’t most men.

“Trying to turn me into one of you?”

He shook his head, and didn’t answer. I knew I was right. I took the pills from his hand, but when I raised them to my mouth, I slipped them down my collar. I made a big show of washing down the pills with the glass of water on the table next to me. “I’ll be back this afternoon,” he said. He turned to Tania. “All right if I have a word with you outside?”

“Keep your hands off of my daughter, you boatperson,” I said.

They both ignored me, and went to chat out in the hall. I just knew he was trying to seduce Tania. Seduce her into boatpersonhood. That’s just the kind of thing his people would do.

I mean boat-people. Not… whatever.

Tania came back in after they’d talked for a few minutes. “All right Dad, I have to head off now.”

“You have to tell someone.”

She looked at me. “Tell who what?”

“Someone has to do something. They’re everywhere. And they won’t stop until we’re all like them.”

“I don’t really have time for this, Dad.”

“Please, before it’s too late. Someone has to stop the boats.”

Tania shook her head and walked out the door. And I knew we were all lost.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

my cat is norris posted:

Hi I'm an idiot, do I need to crit anything since I've submitted once?

What? Like, for this prompt that just went up now?

Because this prompt doesn't have a crit prerequisite.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

I'm in someone pick me a headline I'm bad at decisions.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Sailor Viy posted:


Don't know if I'd get in trouble for editing my post to add that in

You would have, so good decision on not doing that thing.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Chili posted:

Still debating if I want in or not, so have this one for now:



Russian Goodfellas

Friendly Match 610 words

“In Soviet Russia,” said Vladimir…

“Yeah?” I said.

“It is very cold,” said Vladimir. “This time of year, I am very glad to be here instead.”

“Not the direction I thought that was going.”

“Oh?”

“Never mind.” I took a sip of my coffee. “Anything on this weekend?”

He nodded. “We’ve got inside guy on armoured van.”

“Well, all right,” I said. “I was thinking more in terms of leisure activities, but that’s interesting too.”

He shrugged. “Sorry. In Soviet Russia, we didn’t take many weekends.”

“Did they take you?”

“What?”

“Never mind.” I sipped my coffee again. “So anything you need from me?”

“Not so much on armoured van,” he said, “but we’re playing friendly football match against Tony’s boys on Saturday.”

“And you need an extra player?”

“No,” he said, “but we need referee. One who will make… right calls.”

I raised an eyebrow. “You’re not asking me to be a biased referee, are you?”

“No,” said Vladimir, “I’m asking you to… yes, I am asking you to be dishonest referee.”

I shrugged. “Well, you do tip very reasonably, and I’ve not been broken into at all this year.”

“Then it’s settled,” he said. “You will referee for us, and we will savagely beat Tony’s boys in football match. And also score more goals than them.”

~

Saturday came around, and so did I to the oval where the match was being played.

By half time, it had become clear that even with my help, it was going to be a tough ask for either team to get a win.

It was directly after time on for the second half that the armoured van drove onto the pitch.

‘Drove onto’ doesn’t really adequately describe the situation. There was an overpass that passed by the field. The armoured van came off the side of this overpass, bounced once on the turf of the field, and came to rest on its side in front of the opposite team’s goals. While Tony’s boys scattered to avoid the van, one of Vladimir’s lads dribbled the ball into the goals. I blew my whistle for a goal, and then blew it again to signal full time.

Tony came over to me. “Was that the full time whistle just now?”

“That’s right.”

“We’ve played five minutes of this half, if that.”

“I’m afraid the game has had to be called on account of damage to the pitch,” I said.

Vladimir came over at this point as well. “You gents might want to get your heads down,” he said. “Me and the lads have business with that van.”

“Right,” I said, and ran over to the change rooms, where I hid during the unpleasantness that followed. There was some shouting and some breaking windows, but I blocked them out by humming to myself and playing word games in my head until it was all over.

After the sounds had subsided, Vladimir poked his head into the change rooms. “It is done,” he said.

I nodded. “I think I’m going to go home now,” I said.

“You have to pick man of match,” said Vladimir.

“Um. Right,” I said. “How about your lad who kicked the goal? Very calm head under pressure.”

He nodded. “Nikola. Very good, I will let them know. Thank you again for refereeing.”

“I didn’t realise the football match and the van job were happening at the same time.”

“Did I not tell you?” he asked. “No matter. Is done now. See you in your shop some time this week.”

We left the change rooms, and I ignored the wreckage of the van, got in my car, and drove home.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Djeser posted:

Cool, thanks for the tips!

Cool, thanks for being a passive aggressive sniping jackass!

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Prooooompt!

Also, IN.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Oh OK Employee then.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Sitting Here posted:


We thank you for years of great service in our cardboard standee section. You've got two-dimensional, life-size cardboard cutouts for every occasion!


Yeah, the Girls 1298 words

I don’t think they spoke to others the way they spoke to me. Well, not spoke, exactly.

I looked at the rows of cut-outs. Lara. Well, all right, that made some sense. She’d had some new games. Strange that it was the movie Lara that had to come out, though.

Next, Xena. Good. I liked Xena.

Third… Rey? Maybe Kylo. Made sense, Star Wars was always popular.

No. Not Kylo, definitely Rey, I decided. It would be a girls’ day.

Just the three, then? Not the most packed of days, but all right. Would have to space them well. I wanted to make sure that I could see them all and that they were all sort of facing each other, but also the entrance.

There was an art to it.

~

Rey would be closest to the entrance. She was flavour of the month, after all. I fitted the stand to the base of her cut-out, and positioned her just behind the door and to the right. She could be seen from outside, but also from my desk.

I placed Xena off to the left side of the room. Lara was to the right, and next to my desk. Her two pistols were pointed at the doorway, ready to shoot any dinosaurs or multinational criminals who tried to enter.

Also, it looked cool.

~

Having placed the ladies in their spots, I got back to the business of constructing Voidmart’s largest tower of sundry mannequin parts. Fortunately the store above ours hadn’t been reinhabited since the explosion, so I’d been able to knock a hole in our roof and extend the stack upwards. Bob, my boss, hadn’t been OK with my plan to knock a hole in our floor down to storage. He was such a baby; there hadn’t been screams from down there for at least a month.

It was a good thing I’d had the mirrors installed in the room above, so I could see when someone was about to enter while I was working on the tower. I’d become adept at quickly jumping down from above without breaking my legs, but the learning process had been a painful one.

I landed behind my counter just as they were about to enter. Perfect.

“Good morning,” I said, “Welcome to Bob’s Bargain Cut-Outs and High Explosives. I’m Margaret. How may I help you?”

It was a couple. “Hi,” he said, “we’re hosting a children’s party.” He glanced over at Rey. “That’s a Star Wars person, right? Do the kids like Star Wars, these days?”

“Sorry,” I said, “I can’t say with absolute certainty what the viewing habits of these specific children will be.”

“But some kids like it, right?” she asked.

“Sure,” I said. “Some do.”

“Great,” he said. “Can we take one of this laser sword girl, and… maybe one other character? Isn’t there some guy in black with the cross shaped sword?”

I glanced over at Rey. I could feel her shaking her cardboard head at me.

“Well, there’s him, but there’s also Finn,” I said. Rey seemed much happier about that idea.

“Finn,” she said, “that’s the black one, right?”

“No,” he said, “you’re thinking of Lando.”

“Um,” I said. “Finn’s also black, yes. Here, let me show you what he looks like.” I grabbed a fresh Rey cut out, as well as a Finn.

“Oh,” he said. “So is he related to Lando or something?”

“I don’t know,” I said. “I think this vision of the future might have multiple unrelated black people in it, though.”

“Hmmmm,” he said.

“They’re both fantastic,” she said. “We’ll take them.”

I packaged them both up and rang it up, and they paid, took their cut-outs and left.

Just two left, I thought.

~

I went back to the tower. I pretty much already had the ‘tallest’ part sewn up, so now I was taking care of things like structural integrity, and ensuring the modesty of the mannequin parts being used in the stack by placing bits of clothing over them. I heard the next customer’s heavy footfalls before I saw him in the mirrors.

~

“Good morning,” I said. “My name…”

“Yes, her!” he said, pointing at Lara.

“Um.”

Lara’s aim had imperceptibly shifted towards him.

“Excellent, it’s the pre-double mastectomy version of her,” he said. “What a waste, know what I mean?”

“No sorry, too subtle for me.” Lara’s eyes seemed to have narrowed.

“I mean, she obviously just did it for the attention, right? But don’t worry, I’ll show her plenty of attention.”

Lara’s aim seemed to have shifted again, with both cardboard pistols trained on the crotch of his pants.

“Hmm,” I said, “you know what, I think we’re all out of that model.”

“But there’s one right there,” he said.

“Display model,” I said. “Sorry, we can’t part with that one. But perhaps I can interest you in one of our Indy models, he’s an archaeologist too.”

“Pffft,” he said. “What kind of guy do you think I am?”

I decided it was safest not to answer that question, and he stomped off, Laraless. Lara’s aim relaxed, and she seemed to smile at me.

“Don’t worry,” I said, “I wouldn’t do that to you.”

~

I went back upstairs and dusted the upper limbs of the tower.

I don’t know how she could’ve gotten in without me noticing, but I heard her from inside the store. “Hello?”

I quickly descended, almost turning my ankle. “Hello,” I said. “My name…” and my mouth stopped working.

“Margaret,” she said, reading off my nametag. “Pleased to meet you, my name…”

“I know who you are,” I said. “You’re amazing. Sorry, I’m sounding like a crazy person. I’m a big fan.”

“Oh, thanks,” said Lucy Lawless. “This may sound a bit weird, but I’m doing a convention here today, and I just realised I don’t have any props. I see you’ve got one of me here.”

I nodded. “We also have Gabriella.”

Lucy nodded. “Yeah, that’d work.”

I took out a fresh Xena and a Gabriella. “Hmmm, they’re a bit unwieldy,” she said. “I might have to get one of the guys to help me carry them to the hall.”

“I can do that for you,” I said. “I’m not expecting any more customers today, now that you’ve been here.”

“Great, thanks!” she said.

~

We got the cut outs to her booth, and I set them up for her. They were facing each other, but also getting ready to do battle with whatever creatures might appear. Like for example the creature who’d failed to purchase a Lara figure from me earlier that morning, who I now found myself face to face with in front of the Xena booth.

“Oh, you again,” he said. “Fat lot of help you were.”

“Sorry,” said Lucy, “this booth’s not open for half an hour.”

“That’s all right, I’ll wait.” He turned to me. “Scurry off now.”

Lucy frowned. “Actually, this booth’s not open to you at all. Bugger off.”

He shook his head in disgust, then walked off, knocking me over as he passed.

“Nope,” said Lucy, “not having that.” She picked him up his lapels and tossed him out of the hall. She picked me up off the ground and gave me a hug. “Are you all right?”

Oh wow. Lucy Lawless was hugging me. It was the greatest day of my life ever. Eventually it dawned on me that I’d been asked a question. “I’m fine, thanks,” I said.

“Oh, I haven’t paid yet,” she said.

I shook my head. “No charge. Having our cut-outs at your booth is good for business.”

And then I went back to the shop and lay down on the floor until closing time, because having anything else happen to me after that seemed pointless.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Fleta Mcgurn posted:

Crit: the Beach Boys suck, but Pacific Ocean Blue is pretty good, so you're on the right track!

flerp posted:

thanks for the crit and yes the beach boys are very bad

Outrageously bad music opinions from these chumps.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

in i guess

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Hammer Bro. posted:

The Feast (250 words)


Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

A Dish Best Served Bird or Why She is Totally the Baby, Not Me

248 words.

His phone blared The Ramones at him, and he picked it up. “Hey, who’s this?”

“You know who it is, you bastard.” Ah. Yes. He did now.

“Oh. Nah, I’d deleted your number from my phone.” And her photos from his computer. And the songs that reminded him of her from his phone. And thrown out that jacket she’d given him.


He regretted that, in hindsight. It was a good jacket. It couldn’t warm his heart, though.


“My birds are flying all over my house,” she said.


Good. “Well yeah, they’ll do that.”


“They’re not in their cage. Their cage isn’t in my house.”


“Well, no. The cage is mine.” Which reminded him, he’d have to return her key at some point.


“They’re crapping all over my floor!”


“Hmmm, maybe you should put down some newspaper or something. Anyway, just think of it as a metaphor for what you did to my heart.”


“Why do you have to be such a baby about this?”


Such hurtful words. He hung up on her. He wasn’t the baby, she was. Breaking up with him, flushing a year long relationship down the gurgler, and for what?


Sure, he’d gotten drunk and peed in her washing machine one night; in his defence it was very near the toilet.


And he’d accidentally had sex with her sister. But only once, and he’d fallen asleep halfway through, so it hardly counted.


Was that any reason to break up with him? She was the baby.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

I know you are, I said you are, but what am Iiiiiiiiii?

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Yeah OK

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Boaz-Jachim posted:


Sphinx. Flash rule: Would love to be doing anything other than guarding this tomb.


Bored Sphinxless 838 words

“It’s been a while,” said Cleo. She licked a paw and gazed at me.

“Yes,” I said. “I would tell you how long, but I ran out of space.” Cleo looked at where I was pointing. Along the sides of the pyramid was row upon row of scratches. I’d made one every time the sun had risen. And then I’d run out of pyramid.

“A few years,” Cleo nodded.

“No,” I said. “It reached ‘a few years’ a few thousand years before I ran out of space.”

Cleo shrugged and cleaned herself some more. “The job has to be done.”

“Does it, though? No one has been out here in at least three thousand years, and I know this because that’s where my count got to.”

“Good news, then,” said Cleo. “You should expect visitors very soon.”

“How soon?” I asked.

A camel came over the nearby dune, and Cleo said, “Very.” She disappeared around the side of the pyramid, and I acted like a statue.

Three more camels followed the first one, and as they arrived, two men got off the camels and started looking around the pyramid, while a young lad tethered the camels to a tree.

I kept up my statue act until one of the men made towards the pyramid’s entrance. “Stop!” I said. This was the bit I’d been looking forward to, the only bit that would even start to make over three millennia of boredom worthwhile.

Both men nearly fell over themselves out of fright. “What do you want, monster?” asked one of them.

“The better question is ‘what do you want?’” I said. “You think you can just wander into this pyramid through the front door without so much as a ‘by your leave,’ hmmm?”

“Uh.”

I laughed. “It’s not as easy as that. If you want to get by me, you must answer a riddle.”

“Ask your riddle, beast,” said the other man.

“Right, then,” I said. “What… hang on, it’s been a while.” I thought for a bit. “Ah yes. What animal walks on four legs in the morning, two legs at midday, and three legs at night.” Which is a classic, I don’t care who you are.

The two men stood there in thought for a while. “Egyptian animal, obviously,” said one of them.

“Or it could be an insect,” said the other.

“I mean what’ve we got around here, we’ve got camels, crocodiles, hippopotamuses…”

“Is it not hippopotami?”

They both thought about that for a moment. “I mean, it’s down to the root language isn’t it?”

I cleared my throat.

“Right,” said the one who’d been making the list. “None of those really fit.”

“How about insects?”

“Come on now,” I said. “Are you serious here? What’s one of the defining characteristics of insects? Hint, it involves the number of their legs, another hint it’s none of the numbers involved in this riddle.”

“Right,” said the list-maker. “Not insects then.”

“How about bacteria, or some other kind of microbe?” said the other. “They’re in the animal kingdom, right?”

“This is a riddle,” I told them, “not an exam question. You’re coming at this entirely the wrong way.”

“Seth,” the list-maker called over to the lad who’d tethered the camels. “You’ve got a bit more local knowledge, what kind of animals are we overlooking?”

Seth walked over. “What’s this about?”

The other man recounted the riddle. “Oh,” said Seth. “Can’t think of any animals like that.”

“Look,” I said, “here’s an idea. What if, right, in this context a ‘day’ was a metaphor for a longer period of time?”

“Like a week?” asked list-maker.

“Well, sure, that’s longer,” I said. “There might be other options, though.”

“You know,” said the other man, “I heard of this tribe in Africa where they act like monkeys at certain times of the day.”

“That is absolutely not a thing,” said Cleo, who had returned from around the side of the pyramid.

“Shhh,” I said, “let them think.”

“It’s like,” said that man again, “in the morning they walk around on all fours to gather food near the ground.”

“You’ve got to be kidding me,” she said.

“And then in the evening, it’s the same thing except they’re carrying food with one hand,” said the man.

“That must be it,” said list-maker. “The answer is humans!”

I shook my head. “I should kill you on principle for getting the right answer in the most wrong-headed way possible,” I said. “But frankly, I’m happy to not have to guard this stupid pile of bricks anymore.” I gestured with a paw, and the doors to the pyramid creaked open.

Once both men and Seth had entered the pyramid, Cleo asked me, “So what’re you going to do now?”

I shrugged. “That’s my job over, right? The worthy ones have entered the pyramid.”

“Hmmm,” she said.

“Hey, I didn’t write the rules,” I said. “Let’s blow this joint.”

Cleo shrugged and got on my back, and we left the pyramid in our dust.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Sitting Here posted:

Lemme know what you think.

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Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

Yes OK viking me.

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