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Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007


Missed the entry by like a day. New to the thread, is there a set time when the next one comes around?


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

QuoProQuid posted:

INTERPROMPT: Write 300 words inspired by:

Do I need to be in the real competition for this

lol, real competition

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

QuoProQuid posted:

No. Anyone can participate in an interprompt.

Left, Right, Hard, Cider.

Right had nodded to left hat, awaiting the arrival of the whiteshirt.

The pressed cider arrived after their people had settled. It was imported from the east in exchange for furs, clothes, metal, and soon all the implements to make the cider harder and sharper had come too. It had burned their town. Their colony had been built, Right Hat thought with pleasure, on the basis of fear.

A small white nightshirt burst in from a kingdom of metaphysical pleasure, arms akimbo.

'Just unfortunate,' Right Hat thought. 'The object of our pity today is a tiny man dressed as a jockey on a mare race in the cold.'

The barrel of cider crashed into the ground and the whiteshirt knelt and lapped at it. His first exposure to the alcoholic pleasure withheld by his people heralded an immediate loss. As he lapped, the arms from the barrel grew. The whiteshirt drank deep, the hat-holders gazed, and the scene sickened. The barrel arms began to crush the small man in white, the representation of admission to invitation, while he continued to drink.

Right and Left hat smiled. They drew closer as they saw this whiteshirt torn in half spiritually and physically. The hard cider barrel trial had been merciless to the whiteshirt's struggle. The hats held each other close as the barrel ripped the dwarf apart. It pulled marrow from bone, drank from skull, and made a buffet of viscera. "A compact impression of a life with a barrel of cider", Left Hat exclaimed. Right Hat rolled his eyes, as if he'd been expecting the weakly prophetic verse.

Next time, the hats thought. They would wait for the next man of 'resounding purity'.

Carl Killer Miller fucked around with this message at Feb 29, 2016 around 19:27

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Titus82 posted:

Flerp your word is: Culaccino (Italian) which means the stain left on a table from a cold glass of water.

Noah, do you want a word or a flash rule? If it is a word then your word is: Mangata (Swedish) The glimmering, road-like reflection that the moon creates on the water.

Hey Titus. I'm in.

Nevermind the flash word, going to do Radioukacz

Carl Killer Miller fucked around with this message at Mar 2, 2016 around 15:03

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Missive Radioukacz Defined traditionally as a telegraphist for the resistance movement on the Soviet side of the Iron Curtain:

Jason Elliott and Aaron Ellery had been together since second grade, thanks to the attendance list. One seat over was Claire Ellery, Aaron's fraternal twin.

Their teacher attempted to walk the class through a counting exercise, oblivious or uncaring of the two boys' obvious laughter. They shot wads of saliva-greased paper at each other, then moved onto pencil erasers. Claire watched and smiled.

Their school's territory included a literal set of tracks. It delineated an aerially obvious 'right' and 'wrong' side. Jason's home, to the west, sported a shaky carport and rusting siding. The Ellery twins' estate was hand-hewn marble with a circle drive. Their homes, with some effort, were within running distance of one another. Their town was segregated, and the school was federally-mandated common ground.

One day early into fifth grade, as Jason and Aaron shoved and cussed at one another playfully, Claire'd taught them the word 'poo poo.' From that day, the three were together.

The Ellery twins convinced their father that they'd invested afterschool time in character-building extracurriculars: Aaron's french horn and Claire's cheerleading. He wrote the check, smiling with parental accomplishment and handed it to the school bursar, whistling.


A few weeks later, Mr. Ellery pulled into the school's parking lot a half-hour before practices had ended in place of his regular driver. His car slowed as he saw Claire without pom-poms, Aaron without a horn, and some filthy boy between them.

He leaned out of the window and yelled, blue-veined and red-faced, at his own children to get in, all while eying Jason. No consideration or fairness, only disgust for the boy, his kin, and his roots.

Mr. Ellery drove out of the lot and rolled up the windows. After a quarter-mile, he barked "No more with that boy and them. None."

His words started sharp and ended in a pinched hiss. The twins were silent for the rest of the ride. Their knees were drawn to their chests while thinking about the welting, raging, screaming night to come.

But children cope.


Jason and Claire, in response to Mr. Ellery, began passing easily coded scraps. Just after he'd dropped a note to Claire about their English teacher's lip sore, he had passed a note to Aaron:

A is C

Z is B

Ecr Kc?

Aaron broke it down and grinned.

Get Me?

Their notes were passed between desks, during lunch and recess, before, and after school. The three talked, joked, and laughed through those codes. They dared jumps off the swings, laughed at a teacher's armpit stains, and insulted children who had slighted them.

Before Jason hid from the Ellery's driver, Claire had handed him a code. Jason reached the hedgerow just as the sedan reached the circle drive. He opened the missive and read:

'Charlie is a fatty,'


In spring, they'd had (fraternal) twin assemblies. The boys watched their gym coach yell about just how much their things had changed and would change, sometimes from minute to minute without their control, sometimes at night, and usually in the morning.
Claire and the rest of the girls had watched a filmstrip with an accompanying tape that had overused the word 'labia'. The three had shared the strangeness of the day and swapped new words back and forth. Jason's daily 'bye' to Claire was shaky and sweet.

A week later, they'd ducked gym into the neighborhood next to their school. Claire, while wandering shoulder-to-shoulder with the boys, had knocked a 'no parking' sign clean off of a pole with a chunk of concrete. She squeezed Jason's hand in pure joy. At that moment, Jason Elliott's heart did something shifting, seizing, and soft, warm and weird and wonderful. He had liked the feeling, Claire, and their hands very much.

After school they'd lingered a few minutes longer than they should have. The three chattered as Mr. Ellery's sedan pulled into the school drive. He stepped from the car and glared at the children.Jason spotted him first and scribbled a quick missive. He stuffed it into Claire's waiting hand with a bold smile as Mr. Ellery reached the top of the steps.

Mr. Ellery grasped the twins' collars and hauled them to the car. He opened the back door, threw Aaron in, then took care to hurl Claire with terrible force onto him as a preview of the night to come. He climbed in and drove. Claire, an aching heap in a reckless car, unwadded the paper:

Fcq Y Jyzgy

She decoded it mentally over bumps in the road:

Hes A Labia

Claire hugged herself and shook in warm silent laughter through the pain. She'd felt like Jason had after she'd brought down the 'no parking' sign.

She flicked the note to Aaron, who began to convulse similarly though with less heart and more grunts of suppressed belly-laughs.

Their father was staring at the road until he pulled into the circle drive, leaving the car for the valet. Mr. Ellery hauled his children into the manor and exacted his night.

Mr. Elliott began to pick up his children daily, scanning the parking lot for Jason or the people he'd called Jason's 'kin'. Once satisfied of the school's landing's purity, he'd let the twins into the car.

The three observed this pattern for a week, then timed their chatter. At the end of each meeting, just before Mr. Ellery pulled in and Jason hid, he'd pass a note in their shorthand to Claire. She'd laugh and smile at him with sparkling eyes.

Then, one day, Mr. Ellery sped into the lot while the children were occupied with laughter.

They'd noticed him halfway up the front steps. He grabbed Claire and Aaron by the forearms as a note fluttered from Claire's hand. He stooped, then picked it up. His brow tensed as he eyed the missive. He pocketed it, then wordlessly dragged the twins into the idling car. Jason stared as the sedan pulled away. Their code had been lost and the punishment for a decoded missive were, as they'd learned earlier in class, brutal. Jason ran.

He reached the family house quickly and ran to his parents' room. They weren't home now, nor would they be for hours. He dug into his father's cabinets, found what he was looking for, then turned and ran for the Ellery's home. He reached it in ten minutes, his lungs burning and sides aching.

Jason approached the yard. Claire was absent, while Aaron pushed at an anthill with a black eye. Jason silently motioned him over while scribbling.

"Aaron!" Mr. Ellery bellowed, emerging from their estate's front door. His yell started like a dinner triangle and ended in a snarl as he eyed Jason. He stalked toward the boys as Jason passed a crumpled missive into Aaron's hand then dashed around the hedgerow and watched. peeking on the unfolding scene.

Mr. Ellery had Aaron roughly by the wrist. He read:


He flicked apart their cipher.


Mr. Ellery's scowl intensified as he stalked toward the house.

Jason stared at the scrap of paper, and scribbled though their cipher was broken. He tied the package, blanked note, hopes, and violence included, to a shard of paving stone and, just as Mr. Ellery hauled Aaron into the home, hurled it through Claire's second-floor window.

He crouched at the curb, looking to Claire's room. She approached the shattered window in slow rhythm with the drumbeat of Mr. Ellery's steel-toed stomps. The children locked eyes, his browns on her blues, as the sound of martiality and Aaron's bellows drifted through the dusk. Claire loosened the package from the stone and mentally transcribed the message:

Byb Qygb Grb Iccn Sq Qydc

She clutched the note and the knife from the package. Mr. Ellery's steps grew louder and closer, coming down the hallway now. Claire knelt, holding the blade in the dark of her room.

Her door crashed open and Mr. Ellery charged in, his back to the girl steeling herself in the room's far corner. Claire clutched the note in one hand, the knife in her other, and leapt.

Edit for formatting from copy/pasting from notepad.

Edit2: Didn't put the word up top.

Carl Killer Miller fucked around with this message at Mar 7, 2016 around 06:25

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Thranguy posted:

Week 187 Crits of various size

Karl Killer Miller: Missive:


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Dust Dust Dust All Night

1364 words:

Joel Sterling waited around the block from the party at an opulent ranch home on the corner of Chief and Laredo.

He and Tabby Sterling had been married three and a half years. She'd been loving the guy who lived in the small mansion with the chrome carport for at least the past three months. Maybe longer, who knows?

But three months ago was when things started getting blatant. He opened the glove compartment, removed a bag of powder and took a small but forceful snort straight from it. Joel had his blend, Tabby hated it, and he was doing it right.He barely had to try to get Tabby's plans for tonight. She'd noted her man's address on her public calendar, as though either she or Joel needed a reminder of where this prick lived. "Tom Haywood".He'd heard Tom's message on the family machine that morning before work, just as he was out the door. The evening plans dripped through Joel's skull as he ate. At seven PM, quitting time, Joel hit up his regular dealer on the college campus and grabbed his weekly bag. He'd pulled another wad of cash from his pocket and bought five extras.

A hatchback pulled in. Tom had a Mercedes that featured in a their graphic texts. Reading the messages between their swapped pictures, he'd known Tom parked on the driveway to show the car off a little. That turned Tabby on.

He sat and watched cars pull into the drive, each depositing well-dressed couples and the occasional single. Joel could see Tom and Tabby open the door for each new guest. Joel squinted. Yes. It had to be her. The party was blooming and Tabby, his wife, was the hostess.

Joel had snapped then, but a real hard snap that leaves sharp edges behind.He cracked his bag again and almost took another snort, but stopped. No, couldn't get too tuned. Still, he pocketed his whole stash, leaving his personal bag in his breast pocket and loading the other five into his blazer just as planned.

At eleven Joel moved. Every door and patio was wide open for guest circulation but he chose the front entry.

"Heeeeeeyyyy! Late arrival?!"

Joel stopped short at the doorway and stared stupidly. "Hi." He paused. "I'm Joel." The inquisitive man's face burst into 'new-friend' delight. No questions about Joel's flushed, damp skin or his blown pupils. The man was shitfaced. A glance around the room showed Joel that was the party's general mood. Mmhmm. "Joel? I don't think we've met! I'm Larry, this is Sarah. How do you know Tom?" Larry gestured deeper in, at Tom on a leatherchair with Tabby perched on the matched ottoman. Joel, tempered by the snort, pushed on: "Through a mutual friend. He vouched for Tom!"

Larry, gin-reeking, threw an arm around Joel's shoulders and walked him into the kitchen for gimlets. Larry talked drunkenly aboutwomen ruining lives while ignoring Sarah. Firmly in tow, Joel stared around the room.

His heart seized as he locked eyes with Tabby. She looked casually at him and given him a crisp smile, then gone back to conversation with Tom. Joel turned as he was tugged into the kitchen. Larry was holding two very full tumblers and still rambling about women. Joel's mind swapped to the crack track while Larry's misogyny unfolded. "Can't live with em, can't live without em!" Joel yelled, the situation decoded. Larry roared in agreement.

Joel's rich, booming laugh at his own joke echoed through the house.Joel and Larry, now bonded, moved into the family room through a crowd. As they passed by Sarah, Joel gave her a solid pinch on the rear end and a wink. She giggled and winked back as Larry shuddered. Joel owned the balding man with the shaky smile.

Larry was a crate of TNT sweating volatile thoughts of infidelity and waiting for the right kick. To Joel, this was the first seed he'd laid.

He patted the zip-top in his breast pocket. His dealer mixed it for him weekly. MDPV for a slow burn, Mephedrone for the long run, and a dash of K for the up and hole and the wake, all finished with a healthy dollop of brown chop angel dust.

Joel turned to two friends of Larry's, Arji and Maria. Arji's eyes flashed to each drink in the circle's hands over a diet coke. Joel waited until Arji dropped a boring anecdote, then roared in prepped laughter.

"I've gotta make Arji a cocktail for that poo poo! A diet coke?!" Joel began to muddle a handful of mint leaves from the nearby bar. He finished the cool, sweet mojito, and held it to Arji.Arji drained the glass, the circle cheered. Joel backed away as he catalogued the room. Lots of murky mulled wine and drunk partiers. He gave a quick, cranked-out look around: not the small corner wetbar or the buffet table. Nothing. The center bar, though: A retro-Americana crystal bowl, less than a quarter full of mull.

Joel worked the room and waited for the mull to be refilled:

-Three of Tom's subordinates became upset about their 'promised' promotions being straight bullshit.

-Two wives and a husband were now suspicious with their partners' long hours, which involved less filing and more loving.

-Tom's supervisor learned of his involvement in socialist pro-union work.

-An elder board member was near-apoplectic about Tom's fictional new race-based hiring plan.

When the maid grabbed the punch bowl, Joel had swiftly swept it away, explaining that he'd make Tom's favorite mull as a surprise to get things festive again. He winked and patted his breast pocket as if he had a secret ingredient or two, which he absolutely loving did. Joel ladled the warm stock mulled wine into the punch bowl and emptied all five packages of sweet chemical fury into the bowl. He left a huge jug of warm drug mull with the kitchen staff.Joel dropped more terminator seeds as he walked back to the punch table. He'd paid attention:

-A man who'd bragged about his concealed carry permits heard about a local anti-gun politican mouthing off about regulations at the kitchen bar.

-A Honduran waiter was called over just as Tom's cousin spoke his mind about the leechlike nature of immigrants.

-Maria was shown Arji slamming sixth cocktail and pouring a seventh.

-Larry saw Sarah, the CFO's arm around her waist and snaking down her rear end.

-Tom bragged about how he could cheat the 'help' from fair wages as his maid served him a tumbler of mull.

Joel placed the punchbowl at the center bar just as Tabby finally spotted him. Upon seeing her, he played the drunken suburban party trump card:

"I want to dedicate this to our hosts, Tom and Tabby! What a beautiful couple!"

Joel grinned, completely disabling any defense Tabby may have had. He began to pass the hot-shot mull around as guests drunkenly clapped and hooted. Soon, there were two rapidly emptying glasses per person, three for Arji and even one warming Tabby's hand.

Tom drained his second glass and filled a third. Tabby was deluged with drunken well-wishers as two men had begun shoving and kicking each other about store credit. Joel crept to the upstairs bathroom. He locked the door, turned off the lights, laid facedown, and listened. After a minute, he opened his breast pocket bag and took a hard, long sniff and flushed the rest. His nose dripped blood.A half-hour later, shouting and thuds had begun. He'd heard Larry pounding on the door, yelling that there was a tiger inside his neck as his words dissolved to a hard rippling gurgle.

It sounded like a window burst every half hour or so.

Joel had heard gunshots two hours in. They were followed by a brief silence, then an animated yelling and pounding on the bathroom door, followed by a wet, choked scream. There was a steady, slow scratch at the door until it stopped too.The bellows below intensified and crested for a few hours, a voice dropping from the chorus every few minutes, maybe Tabby's in one of those. Joel laid, wide-eyed.

No one's sleeping tonight.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

1173 words:

'Word at the Gate'

Captain Jacobzi arrived at work a half hour before the city entry gates opened and was through security and to his examination suite fifteen minutes early.

Jacobzi settled at his desk for an afternoon of penstrokes and stamps. The lines would start in a few minutes. To his left was the intake door, where singles and the occasional family would enter, heralded by a klaxon. To his right were two doors, one rimmed in blue and the other in red, but otherwise identical.Jacobzi assembled his armaments. His pen was nestled in his right hand, its sharp silver nib gleaming. Jacobzi's left hand was resting near a small silver button though he still gave it wide berth. At his right was a vacuum tube carrying Jacobzi's impressions of each candidate to his lord, and at his left was a tube for the commands in response.

At seven, the first klaxon sounded. 'Matt Cullen' entered through the door on the left in a grime-matte coat and pants. He stood in a small square, as the instructions overhead stated, in front of Jacobzi. Five feet, ten inches, and a just fine BMI. Mr. Cullen's profile read that he had not only did he carry no communicable diseases, his pre-enclosure record had been exemplary with an established medical doctorate.

"Quick physical exam, that's all!" Feeling rotely through a series of lymph nodes and reflexes, Jacobzi worked his way to Cullen's hands.

He carefully pulled off Cullen's rough right glove and exposed a stump fused by intense heat and trauma, a real desert crush. His pinky finger wriggled, useless from the violent amputation. Jacobzi calmly finished the exam, then returned to the desk for the paperwork. He didn't sit into the chair as much as he collapsed. He knew what awaited the doctor. Not citizenship, no. The blue door.At the top of page two, after basic demographics, Jacobzi checked off 'amputee/mutilated' at the top of the form, tore that page from the packet, and sent it to Lord Harald. Jacobzi knew which results to expect for a physical deformation.

At page 121 of standard entry document A, the two men got to discussing the doctor's experience. Cullen had been a sterling graduate trained at a real school in a field that made his deformity a non-issue. One-handed Cullen was a an expert microbiologist and an expert on disease and pathogenicity. Jacobzi glowed with admiration at the physician mutilee.The two men continued to fill out the massive form over the course of Cullen's hour. The minutes ticked by as Jacobzi began to sweat. He had expected a message directing Cullen to the blue door with a pathway curving away from the city, ending in a desert cul-de-sac and bone garden. Nothing came.

The response from Jacobzi's lord had been stamped in green. A complete city residence pass? They were saved for the most valuable of potential citizens, those that were defined as 'Professionally and culturally acceptable" by the three hundred and forty page admission packet, followed by an unseen, unheard arbitration and concluded with a green stamp.

As the captain reached for the entrance missive, a second note hit his hand. This one was on government stationary and bore three red stamps. Jacobzi flicked through his professional reference, a massive tome on a shelf to his right before cracking the wax. It was defined on page 996 in book 2a of the special circumstance catalogue as a direct command from a lord, to be obeyed until the post was vacated by politics or force.While Cullen watched, assuming this all part of the process, Captain Jacobzi opened the triple seal:

I am rendered obsolete by command of our dear Grand Master. Until I am dragged from this position, open our city by your judgment. Until my authority is stripped, I command your expert use of both the shield and of book 1, 300c.

In your service,
Lord of Eastern Gate

Jacobzi immediately passed Dr. Cullen and directed him to the red door. The city. The other door, lined in blue, led to a whirling desert and disappearance. Without Lord Heralt's intervention the physician would be gore swirling a dervish but in the city, he'd flourish.

The captain's next applicant, 'Joan Harville', was a wisp of a woman. Would have failed at page 3c, physical fitness, but the captain paged directly to 300c.

"Has your lord authorized this exchange?"

As he marked 'yes' per his orders and let her pass to the city, a red-sealed missive arrived in the tube to his left. It was the final judgment of an automated system. A mistake must have been made, the note emphasized. A person unworthy of space in the city had been admitted. Would the captain please file a correction to eject Mr. Cullen?

Jacobzi placed the note back in the tube to his left, then pressed his shield. The denial disappeared down the chute and the doctor remained a citizen. Over the next hour, Jacobzi followed his orders flawlessly. He admitted a man aged thirty years over the admissible limit, a vibrant young guy blind in one eye, and a woman outside of childbearing age.

Twenty minutes after each candidate was admitted in, a red letter of automatic rejection arrived and Jacobzi pressed his shield. The captain wielded his bureaucratic armament, his bladed pen delivering passages into the city, his shielded button obeying his lord's command to let all inside. As the sun crested, a letter with a new seal arrived at the captain's left, triple sealed:

I welcome you all to my lordship of the gate. Refer to page 299 of book 1 for processing until this gate and the city are reorganized.

Until this reorganization, refrain from your use of the shield.

Lord of Eastern Gate

As the letter arrived, the klaxon screeched and a young lady was invited to her interview with Captain Jacobzi. He followed her through the form. She answered each question with thoughtful charm. She had helped to build public water supplies, though she had grown up in a small, almost-dry town. The occasional toss of her hair made Jacobzi's heart float. She would have been perfect. The city needed her, but it was his duty to follow his new lord's command. Page 299 of book 1. It did not contain a test or survey, only a single quote:

"Until further notice, all entrants are barred from citizenship."

Jacobzi uncapped his pen, signed page 299, and sent the girl with the beautiful wink through the door framed in blue, into a murderous sandpaper wind. Her silhouette disappeared before the door slammed shut. He did the same with a number of other worthy applicants throughout the day until the sun set.

As Jacobzi's last city applicant exited through the blue-lined door, he relaxed. He'd held true to his lords and this fact warmed him as the winds howled through his gate. Jacobzi capped his bladed pen, drew his coat around him, and walked through the red-rimmed door, back home.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

flerp posted:

FreudianSlippers Killer-of-Lawyers and Carl Killer Miller here is a line by line for each of your guy's last entries.


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Thanks for all the crits!


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Hey, any of you serious thunderdome winners want to help out with this poo poo? I've got this collection of opening or theme-setting statements from some past thunderdome champs and they loving suck. My own writing is garbage too, but who enjoys this?:

Author 1 posted:

By junior year, we have everything figured out. Graduate top of the class, then off to the University of Tennessee. Summer Latin classes at the Marco Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. We imagine a hundred other kids like us, with cowlicks and library cards and woefully uncool sneakers.

This story got rave reviews. The protagonists are planning on going to U of T as adult human beings, at the age of 18, with unmanageable alfalfa cowlicks and sneakers that are so bad that they literally cause 'woe'. #1 story.

Author 2 posted:

Whenever I pray, my chest starts burning and Joey leans in close and wraps his around my shoulder.

Opening sentence for an honorable mention that almost took the week. The story opens with a guy having god-acid reflux and his friend Joey deciding to fix it with a big ol hug. Joey hugs his way all over that story!

Author 3 posted:




“You look good today,” says your mom.


Your eyes keep focusing on your adaptive communication device, called the Whisper. You wish it would sense your eye movements as you look at each letter in turn, but your eyes don’t move, like the rest of your body. You try to focus on each letter. h.e.l.p.


Your nurse, Damian, rubs you on the shoulder. “We picked out a new outfit for our special news,” he says.

You didn’t pick out anything. He bought you the dress. It has polka dots and a stupid bow on the front, and it doesn’t cover enough skin. Your bare leg rests against the cold metal of your wheelchair. You wish you could shiver.


That last one (per the head judge) won by a very, very wide margin even though it went on in a similar way for another thousand words. It is a story in words that is more boring than the same number of characters in morse code.

I've gotten some great crits for my terrible writing, but why does this poo poo win consistently? I've read the judge descriptions for each individual win, but they are vague.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

newtestleper posted:

Never has a newbie acting like a sore-losing little poo poo elicited such constructive responses from bitter vets.

You're scum, CMK, the enterprising kind of scum who goes to great effort just to argue in bad faith.

I know my own writing is terrible. Don't see a lot of sore loser in my post.

Sounds like your reading is just as lovely as your writing

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

sebmojo posted:

I'll judge this, 500 words, 29 march 2359 PST, prompt: beginnings are such delicate times. Toxx up.

I've got no problem writing this prompt and losing, but if I toxx do I get banned if I lose?

newtestleper posted:

Never has a newbie acting like a sore-losing little poo poo elicited such constructive responses from bitter vets.

You're scum, CMK, the enterprising kind of scum who goes to great effort just to argue in bad faith.

I like the TD but I don't really have ten bucks to spend if I arbitrarily lose to some semi-literate chump who's mouthing off for no reason. Can't even get my goddamn name right and it's three letters. If it's just a toxx to do the tale and submit something, then gently caress yeah count me in. I'd be happy to wail on someone who's decrying both newbies and bitter vets without being either one himself.

I hope this constructive reply helps with your perspective, newtestleper:

Every one of your stories is a bad faith argument for the value of fiction as literature. I hope your reply here doesn't call me out on the phrase 'wail on,' fuckface.

Thranguy set me straight


Carl Killer Miller fucked around with this message at Mar 25, 2016 around 04:23

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Royal Blood

*** (394 words)

The infant heir Francisco was a darling from the moment his mother, the Queen Isabella, introduced him to the court. He was the cherubic darling of the ladies and roundly affirmed as a boy of royal stock by the Dukes.

He was trained in language, art, philosophy, and combat by his father, King Ricardo II. As his only son and thus the only recipient of the divine right passed from God to King to heir, Ricardo encouraged the boy in every endeavor.

Francisco was introduced to Maria at sixteen. She was his first cousin, Isabella's niece, and a daughter of a high duke in the King's court. The bloodline and the divine right made their union obvious. Their first child was stillborn, a limp and transcluent corpse heaved from Maria six months into their marriage. Their second child, a boy and the heir, was a spitting image of his father.

While his stature, a congenital four and a half feet, excluded him from the personal arts of war Francisco had grown into a truly gifted politician. He had the king's ear by fifteen and had all but supplanted the chief ministers by twenty.

A week after King Ricardo fell ill of a toxicity of his humours, the newly-crowned Fransisco II took the throne. One night soon after, candlelit in his imperial quarters, King Ricardo handed the family blade, the symbol of their station, to his son, then passed quietly in his sleep.

King Ricardo was buried with full royal honors as his son and the new king grieved in seclusion for a single day. Then, Francisco II began his kingship with a fervor, the family blade always at his side and dangling just inches from the ground. Francisco's wisdom was celebrated and the hearts of his people swelled as he brought them health, wealth, freedom, and prosperity.

When he was buried next to his father, the funeral's resplendence was only surpassed by the raw emotion of Francisco II's people. His queen and people wept and wailed over their passed liege. Francisco was a father to each family under his rule, as ever-present and nourishing as the sun. Francisco's son, a wise but more fragile ruler than the former king, was gifted the crown the next day.

Francisco's heirs would feed on he fuel of his star until it shrank to a heatless, heartless neutron.

*** (486 words)

Manuel was named after his legendary ancestor, the founder of the kingdom, a dominion which had grown considerably since Ricardo had passed the family saber to Francisco nearly 200 years ago. As had become family custom, he was joined at birth with Isabella as his future queen. By design, the infant girl was a direct descendent of Francisco II, a niece of two dukes, and, bizarrely, an aunt of a junior minister. As was becoming family custom, Manuel's mother, the queen, died in childbirth.

He was coronated hastily after the death of his father, as he carried the only blue blood of the line. The proud blood of Francisco and his forebears, with its investment in purity, concentrated to a genetic poison. Manuel's subjects had noticed generations of weakening kings, even with the rare and unpredictable spike of regal talent. Yet, no cause was identified to this effect. There was, after all, the divine right.

King Manuel III was born with a crook in his right wrist, a left leg a full three inches shorter than the right, and muscles always inching to atrophy. He could no longer hold the family blade due to these inborn deformations. After brief and exasperated ministerial discussion, the splendid blued steel blade was removed and the bare hilt presented to the King. Manuel held it weakly, a scepter without a touch of regency.

The new liege, as he grew, reacted to the physical curses of his birth with a streak of cruelty and holistic anger made exponentially more dangerous by his station. While Manuel III styled himself a politician and commander, the psychology of his inability to hold one sword forced a thousand into the hands of his people for the purpose of pillage, looting, and destruction.

Two years into Manuel III's rule, he fell ill. His ministers insisted that it was simple overindulgence, but the King was convinced he'd been poisoned. He turned his innate paranoia onto his people and punished them with impunity, satisfied to treat them as flies in a jar. The genetic component of empathy seemed to have been bred out of the royal blood and his people began to sleep with creeping unease, nauseous in worry.

When Queen Isabella was fifteen, they had tried for an heir. Their first child came out both small, weak, sick, and female, so they tried again. They produced an heir who would be King, a boy mirroring his father's poor constitution. Isabella died in apoplexy as the boy was delivered.

The King died just as suddenly. He'd woken, clutched his chest, then fallen back, never to awaken. His procession carried the token resplendence of his predecessors', but the cries, wails, and emotion were absent. Many of the cloistered King Manuel III's subjects were seeing him for the first time in years, their lord's skin waxy from seclusion and glinting sickly in the sun as he was carried to rest.

*** (498 words)

Anacleto III was coronated while still jaundiced from prematurity. His birth was a gamble taken by the court, as a live heir had become a blessing from the now-casual stillborn. His mother died in childbirth, as was tradition in their line. The family bloodline was an ouroboros, unable to deposit waste, only to consume and re-consume.

Anacleto, in all his deformation, was presented to the courtiers. He babbled unintelligibly and continuously at each desk, but without any mirth. He'd been born with a tongue twice as large as normal, leaving his ceaseless speech accompanied by steady twin rivulets of saliva from his permanently gaping mouth.

His growth arrested at a scoliosed four feet. Neither of his hands, inbred to unbreakable rigor, could grasp the scepter, once the heirloom sword. After a ministerial discussion eerily similar to one held before his ancestor Manuel II, the hilt of the treasured family blade was remounted to hang passively around Anacleto III's neck. The King hunched from its weight.

Anacleto had only one real responsibility: to produce an heir. The King was unable. After a rote attempt by the queen, his ministers first tried a professional courtesan, then a seasoned matron, only ending with a dribble of impotent, chalky semen. There would be no heir. The King did not receive the news well.

Anacleto, in a blind rage with his penis still hanging free, hobbled rapidly from his chambers to the court. The first courtier of many to look at the exposed and raving King received the brunt of Anacleto's genetically unbridled rage. The courtier in question had spent his entire life serving the Royal line, as had his father. He was an educated man with a love for his kingdom.

The heirloom necklace was driven into the courtier's face in a flurry of gore as the King used the treasured symbol of his Royal office on the courtier. Anacleto continued to strike, screeching and drooling, until he was pulled away.

This event seemed to absolve the subjects of any illusions of just rule. Their entire faith in leadership was based on the bloodline. Without an heir, public mistrust swung hard against the seemingly-always hidden monarch. Bolstered by the absence of an heir apparent, the king's chief advisors met under cover of darkness. By the late morning, Anacleto was led by hand to the finality awaiting him in Royal chambers.

The minister at the king's door had little recollection of Anacleto's forebears, other than the stories of their ultimate degeneration passed orally through the generations of the court. The minister said a small prayer to the memory of Francisco, led Anacleto in, then closed and locked the chamber door.

Anacleto III wound his short life down, pushing miniature cannons under his own spittle behind a locked door. He would never know that he was the last of a proud line, nor that his kingdom, in staggers and heaves, would cast off the poison blood of regency and look once more to prosperity.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Thanks as always. More motivation to wreck this guy in our brawl.

Edit: IN IN IN

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

BRAWL vs newtestleper, judged on by sebmojo:

'First Flight of the Kormorans' (482 words)

The regal kormoran nests on a plateau about five hundred feet from the warm Pacific surrounded by a dense, dangerous grassland . We have identified a classic nest with the father departed, the mother literally ruling the roost, and gaggle of fledgling birds, flapping their tiny wings, following their matron. We've followed it from the first branch laid down. Early on, they were almost indistinguishable from pigeons, a cluster of cheepingly adorable hungry gullets in a nest built from small sticks and, clearly, the lifeblood of their mother.

As the hatchlings grew and left their nest, our crew fell in love with two. Julian had a gorgeous tuft of feathers just above his beak and Ricky wandered dumbly around the peak with ignorant impunity. As Julian grew, his fellow hatchlings followed him across and around. He was a strutter. Ricky grew fat and sat near his nest, still full of eggshells. Their maturity was, however, mirrored below.

Just as it was the season for the kormoran hatchlings' first flight, it was time for the shade fox kits' first meals. Their fur had just begun to redden. The cubs crept clumsily through the grass below. They'd learn to hunt as their prey learned to fly.

When their mother hen deemed it appropriate, she marshalled the hatchlings into a stiff line at the side of their cliff home. Her walk morphed from a casual waddle into a near-perfect Patton. She marched the line, from end to end then paused briefly, planted one webbed foot on clumsy Ricky, then kicked her child off the cliff.

Our hearts stopped as he tumbled, turning end-over-end for a second that to us, a crew who had watched him hatch, felt like an eternity. Then, instinct kicked. Little Ricky's wings seemed to burst from his body. The first flap was uncoordinated and unsure, the second more sure, and the third in harmony. As the fox kits yipped, Ricky crossed the plain. We watched and waited as he hit the water, going under entirely and disappearing. Yet, we couldn't focus on the churning waters long as our bold friend Julian was booted from the cliff.

He tumbled like Ricky, though his wings unfurled a moment later than his brother's. As he began his first flight, a pit opened in my stomach: only one of his wings had opened. Two hundred feet from the water, he hit the plain and tumbled violently. We learned then that kormorans can run, but foxes run much faster. Julian had taken a dozen steps before the kits, having slavered for weeks, were upon him. We looked on, tears in our eyes, as our tiny friend was consumed.

Then, we noticed that Ricky had bobbed to the surface. He could swim and the foxes could not. The mother hen continued to kick hatchlings from the ledge as Ricky swam victoriously, having survived the flight of the kormorans.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Tyrannosaurus posted:

How Can Adverbs Be Real If Our Eyes Aren't Real?

Where we're going, we don't need adverbs

Edit: anyone with a high tolerance for poo poo mind critting my last 2 subs? The brawl entry and the 3-part flash fiction from last week, or either, or both, or just send me a word doc that says 'gently caress you' in 40 point Arial.

Carl Killer Miller fucked around with this message at Mar 30, 2016 around 18:12

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

I feel really bad for you.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

A Classy Ghost posted:

Oh no, my name's on that! I hope no one from TD tracks me down on Facebook

At least if they do, you know you'll have found someone more mentally hosed than you are

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

3.141592653 posted:

Oh don't you lol at me, mister.
I haven't lost yet and no way am I going to ruin it for myself simply because my retarded brain is over thinking this.

This is the weakest Kayfabe I've seen since the British Bulldog got dropped in Royal Rumble '95.

You called him 'mister,' man.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Yes, you understand.

3.141592653 posted:

gently caress yeah I called him mister.
I'm far too polite to insult others. Far too polite.

edit: never mind. retarded brain is retarded.

Oh my god can you suck worse

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Friends til' the End (476 words)

"Rodrigo. Rod-ri-go! You hear the chopper? Been seeing it all day. I skipped out on a shave at Saul's but it followed me here."

Rodrigo was unperturbed, though Elan had burst through the steel-core front door clearly burnt on something.

"Tinted windows too, Police Academy parked all up and down. Old crown vics all packed with uniform pigs, not tryin to play at costumes or nothin."

As Elan babbled, Rodrigo's voice began to resonate and echo inside the dealer's skull.

"Well, Elan, I think that line of crank may have sent your plans off the rails." Rodrigo wiggled his nose and continued. "Pun intended, Mister never-high-on-my-own-supply."

Elan spun toward his friend. "I don't need you acting all holy and givin me life lessons, Rodrigo. I know I'm got. There's meth in the crisper, man!"

"Mr. Kingpin!" Rodrigo let out a short chuff, circled the room,and laid down. "I guess 'don't trip hard when you think the cops are after you' counts as high-and-mighty advice."

Elan was bug-eyed, wild, and bathed in angel dust. Yet, his feelings were clearly hurt. Rodrigo whimpered.

"Hey, hey. I'm sorry, buddy. At least we're in this together, right?"

Elan nodded and Rodrigo continued.

"When things get down, who's always waiting here for you?"

There were a series of crashes and drywall flakes as Elan's safehouse was breached. Yet, the dealer was calm.

"You always make sense, Rodrigo. But listen here, ok? You get out and hide. Get under the bed, or in the tub. Get outta here."

Instead, Rodrigo wandered to Elan's side and sprawled across his lap and responded.

"Oh, please. Like the family dog ever survives a no-knock raid. I'll have a bullet in me before the first cop is through. If they don't get me by accident, they'll start wondering if you stashed inside the pup once they waste you."

"I'm going to give it up, Rodrigo. Surrender. The gear, the pills, the horse, I flushed them all down the toilet until it backed up, same with the sinks. Out the windows til they noticed. The rest's sitting right there, waiting for 'em."

Elan gestured to the enormous pile of narcotics on the area rug.

"They can't touch us if I do that, right? I'll just give us up, you and me."

In Elan's head, Rodrigo sighed at his own naivety.

The pair stared at the door, the crashes of the law getting closer. Rodrigo's drug-addled master sent last words of serenity through the trusty Golden:

"I wonder if they need a warrant to search the inside of a retriever."

Elan laughed, his breathing finally easy. He grinned above the drugs and the guns, cops, and bullets coming. Rodrigo's nose pressed wetly into Elan's arm.

"Hey? I love you, Roddy."

Elan curled in, Rodrigo panted then nestled, and their front door blew open.

Carl Killer Miller fucked around with this message at Apr 4, 2016 around 03:58

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

In, flash rule plz

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Ash Knowledge

"Pappa, could tell me a story?" Gerald, Jerry to his fellow kindergartners, turned from the window of their Greyhound toward Pap.

Jerry was Pappa's favorite. The boy showed a preternatural compassion and the captain wouldn't be around forever.

"How about a story about birds?"

Jerry wrinkled his nose, but Pap continued.

"Once, Jerry, there were two kingdoms of birds. They fought with their claws and beaks whenever they met and the stakes were very high." Pap said this while looking into the back of the seat ahead of him, but now he turned to Jerry.

Jerry nodded, then Pap wove an allegory of the kind that only doting grandfathers can.


Captain Gerald Murphy planted a foot on his B-17 baby's wheel, all chocked, and watched his men load the bird. Adolf was on the run and his boys had been commanded someplace real specific. An industrial town called Dresden, a hundred and twenty-plus unspoiled factories right inside the Nazi armpit.

Stein, his executive officer, called to him from across the airfield: "Cap! Am I hearing right? A hundred fifty factories packed with Nazis, softened up by the Brits, all their backup down to Berlin, and not a mom or baby in the bunch?"

Murphy had no idea at all, especially about the last point. "Yeah." Then, louder, "and the faster our boys load, the sooner we can go!" The captain punctuated the statement and ended the conversation by ashing his smoke on the tarmac. That was the standard line. His men loaded heavy munitions as the Captain thought about his perfect operation.


Pap had paused at this point in his allegory. Jerry spoke up, seeing an opening. "So, some of the birds were ready to attack a nest?" Pap almost spoke up in his own defense before righting himself. Just a story. "Well, Jerry, not a nest. More like a place where birds learn to fly." Jerry spoke up after a moment. "Pap, you can't learn to fly alone. Mom doesn't let me go past the end of the street alone."

The boy wanted desperately to wrap his head around this yarn of his grandfather's. Pap had taken most of his life after the ink was dry in 1945 to piece together his emotions and choices at Dresden.

"Let me tell you some more about the birds, Jerry. Maybe then, you'll understand."


Captain Murphy's beautiful B-17, Frieda, took a hard right onto the runway in mid-March, 1945. A babe modelled after Bombardier Stein's wife, a pinup in a red bikini dancing with grey wings let everyone know just who was taking off.

Murphy's hackles were up: the British had laid into the town the day before but only lost three aircraft. The reports had bled in that the downed bombers had been hit by bombs dropping from higher-flying allies. That wasn't the approach, ratio, or result from an industrial center.

Frieda coasted toward Dresden as Murphy tensed. His tags thumped against his chest with each lift and drop. He could only see a horizon of fire without a single eruption of bullets from below. Any air raid siren with power was beseeching the inhabitants of the ruin to hit the ground.

Through the cockpit window, it wasn't right. The buildings burning were homes, rowhouses and cottages, all ash and cinder. There were a few factories, sure, but the blurs scurrying on the ground weren't uniformed. They had bright dresses and crisp white schoolboy shirts. Stein looked to him and Captain Murphy responded in a tone that didn't brook questions.

"Stein, prepare the bays and the boys. We're bombing."


His speech was broken momentarily by Jerry. "The big birds saw little ones on the ground? They wanted to eat them?"

Pap had become lost in his allegory, his memory of lighting Dresden aflame and roasting chicks and hens burning in his cheeks. "Jerry, you're right. Something was wrong."

He brought Jerry in close. "Don't tell your mom", he began, "but I learned that someone telling you to do something isn't always a good reason to do it."

Jerry thought on this point with as much intensity as Pap, Captain Murphy, had convinced himself at the time of the purity of following orders.

"Let's see. I think our hero bird had just made a very dangerous decision."


The skies over the city went dark with a cloud of wings. Stein stared into Captain Murphy as he called an order over the aircraft PA: "Boys, open all bays and commence." His eyes could track the first bomb in a flurry from his own craft, though it sooned joined a wave of others.

The munitions turned the air over a residential block into pure heat. As he passed over an ancient clock tower, the blazing miasma touched down. He saw the schoolboys simply vanish.

Any industrial town, any war engine needed homes and lives and people. The blunt realization and its obviousness hit Captain Murphy all at once in the wake of Frieda's bombs. Their bomber wheeled slowly over the city, dispensing the rest of its payload under orders from her captain. Stein, the only other man with enough rank to pause and be shocked, was motionless.

They hadn't brushed a single factory, by Murphy's count. Their bombing path was scheduled over homes, families, schools, parks, and every in-between that makes up life in a city. This couldn't even be called collateral damage, as it was in past missions; he couldn't grasp a technical term for what he and the Frieda had just done.

Stein piloted back to base over a roasted husk of humanity.


"I don't understand, Pap. The good birds wanted to make sure the bad ones couldn't hurt."

Captain Murphy smiled as his grandson realized what had taken him twenty-odd years of piloting.

"And what we talked about doesn't sound like a very fine way to do that, does it?"

He couldn't gift the boy the knowledge in his old soldier's heart; he couldn't bring him into the fold. He could teach him lessons, though. Lessons he'd need after Cap Pap was long gone.

"I think we'd just had one of our heroes notice that the 'evil enemy' his flock had been pecking and clawing were just babies." Before Jerry could interject, Pap continued. "When that leader bird came back to the nest, he had a lot of thinking to do. He thought about living and how an uncontrolled blaze would eat it all."

Jerry kept silent. Pap's grandson was usually full of questions, until he peaked on understanding.

That was an awful lot of lessons in a short amount of time. Jerry thought while looking out the window for the rest of the ride.

Pap sat back, closed his eyes, and felt his dogtags thump on his chest with every bump in the asphalt.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

sparksbloom posted:

R.E.M. Week Crits, Part 1


Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Monday Night Meltdown (No flash rule, 1543 words):

The twelve foot bull-headed champ entered to a shower of fireworks. He hurtled through the iridescent blue barrier into the ring, all six hundred pounds, chestnut fur, and yellow spandex suit. The crowd went wild at this surprise #1 pick.

"Looks we're getting some entertainment early, Slim!" Kravitz looked into the ring with his good eye and listened in with his good ear. He was a brawler from the old human league, just as it'd incorporated with monster brawl. His first and last fight in that league showed itself in the flesh-slick now composing half his face.

Manotaur hit the ring and the PA cued into his theme song, hair metal screaming about a real demon while a guitar solo cheesed its way under the vocals.

"Manotaur's old school, pure class! He trained with the best of the human league right before integration and tonight's his last fight!!"

"All we've got now is seeing who's coming up as number two! And it's, it's, no, Kravitz, no! And we've got The Labyrinth in here!" Slim, unable to reach the announcer table over his gut, thumped his armrests emphatically.

A seven foot, headless man, his torso constantly-churning stone maze, leapt through the blue barrier ahead of a backing music of funereal chants. He charged toward Manotaur, rotating arms raised, as the announcers continued.

The Labyrinth charged Manotaur and hit the half-bull at the torso, his puzzle still turning. Manotaur reeled into the turnbuckle.

"Cool it on the rhetoric, Slim!" Kravitz was on his feet. "Manotaur's being set up for, for, for, the Puzzle Box!"

"Aaaand, here it comes! Is this an unceremonious end for Manotaur?!" Slim had the mic clutched close to his mouth, nestled between his breasts.

The Labyrinth's puzzle stopped turning, its pieces aligning to reveal a hole in his torso. He leaned back, then noisily vomited a red-grey fluid from the black space inside the puzzle. Manotaur leapt away a moment too late. The vomit had melted the turnbuckle entirely and had burnt Manotaur's left hand to the bone.

While The Labyrinth was reeling, Manotaur hauled him rear end from end, vomit-hole facing up, and carried him to the barrier as his left hand smoked and sloughed.

"What a turnaround! I haven't seen anything like this in years!! Kravitz?"

"I think the puzzle man is done, but we'll see what the wall has to say!"

"Just to remind you, viewers, the wall is judged by our team of eight refs. If a fighter can still fight, he'll bounce right off, but if he's an inch from death, he'll fly through to elimination!"

Manotaur hurled The Labyrinth into the blue barrier. It flashed red and the puzzle man crashed heavily to the ground. Manotaur picked up Labyrinth for another hurl as the stadium lights went dim.

"Looks like we've got a new one!! Who drew number three? Who?!"

A man with unnatural curves, muscles, and bulges strode into the ring accompanied by a tiny man in spectacles.

"It's The Savage!! Never has such a chemically-boosted monster of a man been let into a rumble!"

"I hear that his trainer, Mr. Dreeper in the glasses down there, invents all The Savage's chemicals! He's the first genetically born man in the rumble in years, Kravitz!"

"Slim, I think I rumbled him when he has still called him the Barbarian! The human league days! He made the league jump, but just what has it cost him?!"

The Savage rolled into the ring, ran right through, rolled out, and in a fluid motion landed a punch directly into the taint of The Labyrinth, held aloft by Manotaur. Labyrinth howled and Manotaur hurled him through the barrier. It went green at his passage, then back to blue. The crowd roared.

"Labyrinth is out, and The Savage is looking at a safe fight with a very tired Manotaur!"

"Keep your eyes on the clock, Kravitz. We've only got another ten seconds!"

Manotaur crawled back to the ring and hung on the corroded turnbuckle with a skeletal hand as The Savage stomped into his back. No nails in the shoes, the rules said, but nothing about kicking as hard as you can.

A klaxon sounded, no theme music.

A mess of human flesh, teeth, nails, hair, and limbs, crawled, rolled, and pushed its way into the ring past the blue.

"Our good doctor, actually a practicing dentist, states that it's the result of every experiment he ever botched, all mixed up! Hence the name, Amaaaaalgam!" Slim bellowed into the mic.

"Looks like he botched a whole bunch of 'em, Slim!"

The Savage, still circling Manotaur, didn't notice Amalgam. Six of its hands grabbed at the chemical man and hurled him toward the blue where he crashed, the barrier flashing red at the impact.

Manotaur, sensing an opening, kicked at Amalgam. His boot sank to the calf in the fleshy mess. As he drew it out, gore spilled into the ring and Amalgam roared. Manotaur stomped again.

"Heeeere's what you've been waiting for, what Doctor Monstrous calls 'S and S!'"

The dragon threw itself into the arena and belched show fire with its neck stretched to the dome. The aforementioned doctor, wearing a tastefully bloodied lab coat, walked next to him but stopped at barrierside.

"Scale and Slaughter, my friend! Slim, when's the last time you've seen this guy?"

Slim couldn't get a syllable in when Scale spotted Amalgam resting and oozing on the ropes after his Big Boot from Manotaur. Scale belched a gutful of fire and Amalgam lit like a ball of wax. It screamed as it burned, all thrashing limbs and spilling gore.

"Well, Amalgam's already done! That's just bad strategy on the flesh's part, eh Kravitz?" Slim thumped one hand on his belly in punctuation.

"Yessir! You're Amalgam, you see a fighter like that, and you know that he just can't get you in a corner! Reminds me of a fight I had back, oh, 30 years ago. Took a couple of oil rags and a grill starter!" Kravitz's good eye drifted lazily to the ceiling.

"No time for daydreaming now, Kravitz! As Amalgam burns, we're about to get another fighter, our last one of the night! I think we know who's coming!" Kravitz continued. "I thought he was dropped from this round for some off-ring violence! Slim?"

"Some off-ring violence?! Some?! He beat The Lord of Chains to death behind a martini bar!"

Two spurts of flame shot from the arena gateway as a massive metal golem, ten feet, strode in.

Pig crawled into the ring, not bothering ducking under the remaining ropes, instead stretching them to the limit then bursting through. He turned to The Savage, who was already poised to leap onto the metal man's back. The Savage battered away at Pig's head, not feeling the pain as his right fist was slowly mashed into a pulp. Scale was working Pig's left leg to similar effect.

The Savage paused for a moment to look at his ruined hand, a mistake. Pig plucked the chemical man from his shoulder and hurled him one-handed into the blue barrier. Instead of thumping against it as Labyrinth had, The Savage's body burst upon impact. The force of the throw sent a limb in each cardinal direction, dissolved the rest, and the barrier flashed green.

"The word is that a blacksmithstress Pig monstrosity by charming a hero, clothing him with layer after layer of iron, then forging him over an anvil!

"Well I'd call that 'beating your man into shape'!"

"Indeedy-o, Kravitz! If you look down, Pig's crafter is ringside!" Smith Dee waved her hands inside the blue, while the other managers had retreated to an observation box.

Manotaur, temporarily forgotten as Scale and Pig dueled. It was a hell of a risk, but Manotaur's experience taught him it was one worth talking. In the other corner, Scale belched another gutful of fire. Pig's armor was red-hot but the beast was unfazed. Pig's right arm shot to te ceiling and caught the dragon by his long, thin neck. Pig's fist closed and the Scale's vertebrae were powdered.

Manotaur, conversely, had only been watching the fight between the two behemoths, then it all clicked. A monster that felt no pain, clad in enough armor to hide every centimeter of skin, with his creator, seemingly oblivious, swayed rhythmically at ringside.

"I'm not sure what Manotaur's going to do here, but it better be-"

Slim's speech was cut off as manotaur sprung from the opposite rope and hurtled headline toward pig- and right through his the metal monster's leg. With a last burst of strength, he threw himself through the broken rope and buried his horn to her skull.

Pig, winding up a swing, froze mid-motion at the light in the blacksmith's fled. Now off-balance from his windup, the iron man crshed heavily into the mat. He landed on the corse of Scale, who burst like an overripe melon.

"I can't believe it, Slim! Manotaur's last fight and he shows he's still got it!"

"Now that's smart playing. Aaaaaaand, the refs have called it! This week's rumble goes to six time intercontinental champion, Man-OH-Taur!"

A ref raised Manotaur's good hand aloft as the bell rang and his theme song pumped over the PA.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

In w/ flash rule please

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

The Dance, the Dress, their Dream, and the Sun (678 words)

Iliona's leg had never cramped, not in sixty years, but lately her knee creaked and popped like a bonfire with each press of the pedal and turn of the loom. She had been working since dawn. Today's craggy brown orb in the grey sky hit the cross in the home's only windowpane and Beata nudged slowly through the front door. She couldn't disturb Iliona. The competition was in two days and her mother needed concentration. They'd been talking less and less as it approached and had reached an easy silence. The loom sat silent for a moment, the woven garment hidden in a beaten tartan.

Beata was mousy, made even tinier by her bulky cloak. She passed wordlessly into her father's office, hanging her jacket as she went. Her father had been gone a long time, but he'd left them this home, a few bundles of long-gone money, and a mirror. A real one, reflecting glass. A relic. Beata had passed into the office without seeing what her mother was making. Iliona asked her daughter for this, early on, and Beata had obliged. It kept the loom regular.

Iliona, as she wove, saw Beata flip and tumble in her memories, spinning among the weeds with innate grace as she grew into a woman. These images transposed themselves from Iliona's vision onto her weave. One night, in from the haul, Iliona dragged a long, thin, wooden beam into the office. She'd nailed it horizontally to the wall. The next day, Beata began to practice from a book Iliona had pulled from the trash years ago.

In the office, Beata was transformed. She'd drawn her hair into a tight bun and now balanced flawlessly on one toe. her legs in parallel with the wall. She gazed into the mirror, constantly checking her own poise. Beata's muscles were hewn from steel with the delicacy of soapstone. As the sun set, she changed back into her cloak and moved, ordinary again, to a small burner and stirred the soup.

Iliona had set the table. Two bowls, two spoons, one ladle, mismatched and all worn. They were still silent, but even with the anxiety of the room, that was usual. Iliona's grandmother had a yellow sun, warm and easy, rise every day. When it was gone, the family had stopped praying before meals. It was hard to pray for pure sunrise when everyone expected a last sunset.

After dinner, Iliona slept at her loom while Beata cleaned. The girl laid a second greatshawl on the floor, curled, and slept.

The next day's weak grey sun hit the cross in the windowpane and Iliona smiled. She'd left the tartan hanging from a hook in the wall. She rose from the loom just as Beata entered and saw her mother's handiwork. Iliona's daughter's breath caught and the dam burst.

Eyes brimming, Beata stared at the competition dress and struggled to recover the words she'd lost in their months of near-pure labor. Its threads were the last of the real sun, woven to her form. A million sequins glinted and flared even though the light was beaten and weak. Its feathers were broad and exotic, tribal and strong. And the tiara, the peak, was crafted with such delicacy that only Iliona's face could tear Beata's gaze from it.

Yet, she couldn't articulate this flood of impressions. By this time, Iliona had risen from the loom and now stood close to her daughter. As Beata stammered, Iliona croaked in a voice limp from disuse:

"When I heard the floorboards creak, I pressed the loom. You never stopped dancing, Beata, and I never stopped weaving."

Beata could only string five words:

"It was all for us, Mother"

Though the dress was a beacon on the loom, Beata's vision was blacked into her mother's shoulder as they held each other close, temporarily wordless again. That night before dinner, for the first time in generations, they knew that with their hope, their love, and faith, the sun would rise. Mother and daughter held hands, looked to the sky, and prayed.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

Ironic Twist posted:

yes, post your story on a day that doesn't exist pls

This was a good Columbo

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007


Sry, it's for my garbage loss story Dust Dust Dust All Night

Carl Killer Miller fucked around with this message at Apr 26, 2016 around 21:42

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

sparksbloom posted:


I'd also like to do some crits for the first three people who take me up on it. Any week is fine.

SB, you mind taking me up on my last entry? Looks like I'm inching toward 'better', which means that my next story will be the worst one yet!

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

A Wall all Night 961 words

Flipped from my losing story Dust Dust Dust All Night, here:

Satch didn't glide, he tumbled. He'd was 'new', a term that, like 'glide', was completely relative. He'd died. He had to handle this, or he'd drop down, maybe even to choir. Rough baritone at best. He wanted to move, though. He wanted to be a guardian.

'Break down their walls,' his landing mission echoed.

Satch was a man, once, so he 'got' what the message was saying. An angel, a pure being, would have roasted the air to solve the problem, but Satch had finesse.

He pulled a landing at the end of a curved driveway, packed with cars. Inside, the party was split by a marbled hallway. On the left, the den, were people dancing to suburban booty bass. On the right, the partygoers were frozen watching an argument. No. A fight.

Jack lounged in a crumpled seersucker while sipping on neat scotch. "Well look, Sarah, maybe you should get off my rear end, huh?" His voice was amplified by the alcohol and didn't need context. "We're trying to throw a party here, and you just bitch, bitch, bitch."

"Bitch? Bitch!?" Sarah's voice hit desperation. "Look at yourself, Jack. Look at you crawling back into the hole! You promised!" She reached for his scotch. Jack pulled it away and gulped a single malt down.

Satch touched Jack and dove deep.

Jack. Clean for five years, after two with Sarah, and had the chip to prove it. She'd balanced his steps, denial, pre-breakfast vomit, more denial, and his shaking when they kissed in the morning. She'd forgiven each plastic vodka bottle under jeans, inside unused luggage, and in old shoes in coat closets.

"Oh, here's the fuckin' lawyer, getting on my case." Jack leaned in, gritting his teeth with a whiskey-stink. "Don't you have a deposition to give to Judge Harris in the den?" Jack was rambling, furious, drunk. "I hear the way to get ahead is to give a head, huh?". Satch winced at the clumsy insult while Sarah left the room.

'Take down the wall.', a voice echoed to Satch.

Satch didn't like where he'd have to start, but he followed Sarah onto the dancefloor as Jack refilled his scotch. Just as she crossed the threshold, Satch reached out and held her shoulder.

Satch saw a woman burdened. Fights after Jack had fallen off the wagon, her heart eclipsed by his problems. Satch saw their intimacy cool to a soft ember, and then Sarah in bed with the judge. Jac stopped asking about her needs, her attention. She'd given to Jack until there was nothing left, then had sought some fulfillment for herself before she snapped in half.

Satch cracked his metaphysical knuckles, reviewed what he'd been presented, and understood why this was his task, his wall.

In Satch's estimation, they'd pushed opposite sides of a matrimonial wall that wouldn't yield. Satch didn't want to think about failing on this one, a task of people, by people. He'd be judged by pure beings, a metaphysical lashing waiting to happen.

Satch followed Sarah onto the modified dancefloor, which she passed in favor of a recliner to the right. Just before they turned the corner, he looked back at Jack. He'd cracked a bottle of water and was sitting under the mantle, alone. When Satch turned, Sarah had moved to a leather chair. She perched on its ottoman, then laid a hand on Judge Harris' knee. In the old days, with the angels, the Judge would have clasped his chest and slumped, followed by every other guest at the party. Satch couldn't, thank God, do that. Instead, he twiddled.

Word ran through the party quickly that Tessa's, Sarah's work-friend, had a cousin who could open the rope at a two story glass dance palace downtown. Satch had the most power over those not directly involved. He twiddled a little more until Judge Harris buttoned his coat and was gone. It was the opposite of the old guardian angels, who had ethereal focus and made clean sweeps.

With the party down and empty, it was just Jack, Sarah, art deco, and Satch. Jack had shuffled into the dancefloor and joined Sarah on the ground. He suffused booze from his pores and Sarah wasn't making eye contact. This was the place, Satch thought. He drew his arms overhead, ready to shatter the wall between them.

His metaphysical hammer struck between them, then cranked back, throwing Satch across the room in ethereal failure.

He studied them closer. Jack had lost his lopsided boozy grin and Sarah didn't look furious, just resigned. Satch's arms burned from the mistaken breaker. Jack and Sarah moved closer together, then Satch saw the wall.

Satch struck, with his hands this time, at cherubic masonry surrounding and enclosing the couple. Sarah sank into Jack's shoulder. He held her like a friend giving comfort.

Satch struck with the hammer this time, crushing marble only he could see. His physicality was mirrored in the couple on the sofa. Sarah had taken off her engagement ring and placed it on the ottoman between them.

Satch moved through the rest of the wall as a maelstrom while the couple moved apart. When the unseen barrier was rubble, Sarah turned back.


Still cracked-eyed, Jack looked to her. "Yeah?"

She collected the ring on her way upstairs, leaving it on the bare dining table. "It's over."

Jack didn't cry, or beg forgiveness. He took off his blazer, turned off his phone, and darkened the room, their ring still catching whatever rays still glowed in the home. He leaned back and exhaled deeply.

Satch was walking out of the house before Jack was asleep. Finesse, seeing walls, and breaking them without breaking their architects. Every person needs a guardian with their back to a wall.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

In, can I get a flash rule judges?

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007 (1480 words)

Sweetest Invectives

Joseph blew out fourteen candles and the family all had a slice of yellow layer cake and a glass of milk before bed. They had church the next morning. Four times a week. He laid for a half hour wide awake after being tucked, his stomach full of spaghetti, his favorite, and cake, every kid's favorite. His mind was elsewhere. Sunday he'd be able to move upstairs to a beatific reality.

From four, Joseph had been attending Bible study in the church basement, just like all his neighbors, his friends, their parents, and grandparents. Everyone in town belonged.

Joseph hadn't seen any of its insides. The children had a path cut through a whistling switchgrass field and down a set of root-cellar steps to the church basement. There, in a womb of candlelight and packed dirt walls, he'd learned about God. Miss Crowley taught that God had built Bishop Warren, the pulpit, the church, and the sky.

Over the years, mentions of Bishop Warren became more frequent. God faded. Joseph did not have physical conception of either one, only heard stories. In that sense, it was easy that the Bishop, under God, made the stars shine, the rain fall, and carried the sun across the sky. He slept and dreamt of Bishop Warren in a kingdom of endless light, a seraphic opening for the children's church below.

Today, Joseph walked past the children and switchgrass field to the church. It was the community's center, old-growth oak shot through in anemic white, windowless. Each inch of the building was backed by hewn granite as their choir was indeed very loud. This was God's house. The Bishop's house. Joseph's stomach turned at the very nature of the place as his family entered.

Joseph felt very cold in the dark chapel. He sat between his father and mother. They had promised to guide him on this first day. Each row of pews was lit by a single hanging candle. If there had been a draft, wax and ash would have showered them all, but the air was still.

A door opened high in the steeple. Joseph's eyes didn't need to adjust to its light. It was red-brown, sunlight with all the joy out, a rusted reflection. Then, Joseph had his first look at the holiest Bishop Warren.

He wore home-tanned leather, fresh with haired pores still gaping, but Joseph's eyes were on the radiance that the Bishop had carried from the room. A ruby pendant swung from his neck, emitting a mirror glow of the sickly light from the steeple.

The stairs wound directly to the pulpit. The Bishop paused and eyed his congregation. Joseph felt God's eyes, the Bishop's eyes, boring into him. The glow above intensified, as did the shine of the amulet. Bishop Warren pounded the pulpit and a roar rose from the congregation. Then, his sermon:

"We have come together once again," the Bishop began, "to strip the lies from our house of God and inherit the browning of his cross in baked blood." The Bishop's arms were arched now, pushing on the pulpit. It groaned with every shove, each invective syllable. "We have come to consume the evil fouling our most holy homeland." Two men were dragged forward. Joseph watched as each was nailed to a battered cross. He recognized the second man. Mister Crowley screamed in cadence with each swing of the hammer, punctuated by yielding wood.

Joseph held back for twenty-five minutes though his eyes were half-closed for the last twenty. He stood and turned to the church door. The congregation, consumed and consuming, did not notice. As he pushed the church doors open, he turned his head for a last look. Joseph's mother lashed Crowley mercilessly. Each leather flange left a bloody streak. Joseph's father bit into Crowley's leg. He licked the seeping blood as it ran. Joseph burst through the church doors.

He knelt on the straw near the door and vomited. Joseph looked at two eggs and acid with a churn of bacon and potato. He rolled to his back and breathed heavily until he heard another boom. The Bishop's door in the spire.

As they rode home, Joseph was silent. His mind was on that sick glow atop the pulpit staircase at the Bishop's door. Joseph had looked at the steeple when on his back. It, like the church, had no windows, no light, and no way to glow.

The next month came and went. His mother made spaghetti, but used sauce from a can. No church trellis tomato.

One morning instead of learning arithmetic in the garage, Joseph was in the family truck to the house of God. When they entered the Church, still lightless, Bishop Warren was already standing sentinel at his pulpit. He looked to the crowd steadily and held his pendant. The glow above intensified. Joseph heard the deflated, echoing howl of a gut-stab as the Bishop eyed him, him out of the congregation.

Misters Isaiah and Matthew were brought near the pulpit wounded. Then, the sermon: "We could bind these men to the wood, but what good would it do?!" The congregation roared its approval as Warren continued. "They are known now as monsters, messengers not worth a crucifixion!" He accentuated this last word and punctuated it with a pound on the pulpit. At this manual gavel, the congregation surged.

Joseph watched his parents beat the crowd and lay hands on the men. His mother looked back at him, gave a grotesquely casual wave and wink, then kicked Mister Isaiah. Even through the din, Joseph heard a jawbone crack, maybe even teeth hitting the roof of Isaiah's mouth. Joseph watched as the men were battered to masses of bruises, bites, scratches, and tears. When their blood had soaked the plank floor, Bishop Warren held his pendant in both hands. The congregation had been starving.

Joseph hunched with his head between his knees, just like his first service. This time, he sat through the entire service intact. His hands were folded and his parents left him on the soaked pew in the hopes that the boy had found religion. Joseph heard the doors slam and saw the chapel in pure candlelight. He walked to the pulpit and ascended the staircase. At the top, the door was ajar and glowless.

He pushed the door open, expecting horror and brutality, a wave of blood.

"Take a seat."

The Bishop, slouching, pointed to a chair sharing an ottoman with his. He kept his point as until Joseph's knees unlocked and he stumbled over. The Bishop's leathers were off and he wore only a pilled overcoat. No glow. He looked small and fatigued.

"You've seen this congregation as it is, Joseph." Warren's voice came slow and easy. It held neither fire nor sulfur. "This town loves its blood, Joseph. It's damned, every square inch, been damned. But sometimes, sometimes we catch a break." He took a deep breath, then removed the blood pendant.

Joseph stood from the chair. He opened his mouth, but there were no words.

"Do you understand, Bishop Joseph? The Bishop is the only good man in town. Each child sees the sermons. They all suckle on the hideous teat of this land and drink deep." Warren took another breath. He looked even smaller without the pendant, as if he was shrinking in Joseph's view. "You rejected it in your body and soul from the first."

He took a step toward the pendant in Warren's hand.

"You choose the most sinful of the people here and have them devour their own. Evil, hate, and hellish bloodthirst. This place is addicted to all of them. It has to be sated."

Joseph broke: "What if I don't?"

Warren was very matter-of-fact in his response. "This glow, Joseph. These are souls, the town, your parents, their friends, this carnivorous congregation, all stored here in a lightless place. If it leaves?"

The Bishop let the question hang for a moment, then answered it himself.

"The chorus is infectious."

The Bishop placed the jewel and chain on his bedside table, then crawled into his cot. Warren pulled the covers tight and faced the wall.

Joseph took the pendant. No hesitation. He wore it, expecting to feel something, some snap of wisdom. Nothing. He tried to shake awake the Bishop, to relieve the old guardian of his duty. When he pushed the covers aside, there was half-centimeter of dust and nothing else. Joseph, guided by his medallion, crawled atop that dust. He felt, for the first time since he was a child, true comfort.

Joseph awoke at the break of day. He put on the Bishop's leather and descended. His parents stared ahead hungrily, as did each other parishioner. Joseph took a deep breath, held the pendant, pounded the pulpit, and bellowed:

"The worst among us must be bound to the stain of the wood!"

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

sebmojo posted:

interprompt: god loving dammit i nearly made it, 100 words

I feel super bad for you. Does baby wanna brawl, make it all better?

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

sebmojo posted:

haha, yeah sure i'll squish you if you want. 500 words, who'll judge.




Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

In with Lucky Strike

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