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Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


I'm in for this stupid mega-brawl thing. I don't care if it's past the sign up deadline. Also you people aren't even worth the time it would take me to think of an insult, so whatever.

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Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


In for Week 200

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


Arivia posted:

That's fine, I just don't want to lose to a plagiarized Star Trek scene with some of the nouns replaced again.

Looks like I'm not the only one who was bitter about Sitting Here's win for 4 years lol

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


Collapse (1293 words, Thursday, Anime genre: Magical Girlfriend)

Delete the bad ones, too.

Dr. Kloctopussy fucked around with this message at 05:44 on Aug 9, 2016

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


Hammer Bro. posted:

Tipua (1000 words)

The big problem with this story is that I have no loving clue what anything means. Like, I can see the individual actions/occurrences, but their significance is a complete mystery. It makes it hard for me to find anything else to crit, honestly. :( I'm sad, because I feel like there is a cool world underlying all this, but I can't get a handle on it. It's okay for one thing to be of unclear significance until the end (though it's still not my favorite), but I can't really understand what any of it means even at the end.

quote:

The Waka drifted to a stop half a league from harbor. Its sails were tattered, its hold depleted, and its crew exsanguinated. No one knew why Tangaroa sent the boats back. was exsanguinated a word you had to use? B/C that means drained of blood, and I have no idea what that means (assuming it's a metaphor).

Sonorous bells gathered the townsfolk -- everyone over sixteen assembled under threat of drowning. The Chosen died the real death, but The Drowned came back vengeful. Avaricious. Silent. no clue what's going on still, and at this point, I'd usually only read one more paragraph to try to figure it out, then give up. What (who?) is Tangaroa, what are The Chosen? I can guess that people who drown are The Drowned, so that's why the threat of drowning was used, at least.

Rongo suppressed a shudder as he reached into the cauldron. The cold ivory of washed-up bones slid between his fingers until one found purchase. He closed his hand around it and reverently, gingerly removed it. WHAT DOES ANY OF THIS MEAN??? I understand the action, but not its relevance. Is this in front of the townsfolk? somewhere else all together? Who is Rongo?? How does this relate to the ship?

All eyes bore down on his fist. Rongo took a ragged breath and opened his hand: the black bone.

The crowd erupted, quivered, and departed. Rongo remained rooted to that very spot, as though he could escape his fate by melding into the earth. The fallen bones intermingled with the seawrack at his feet. His empty hand remained open. During the hours of his catatonia, kūmara vines visibly encroached upon the town square. Someone would have to fight them back before the next assembly, but that someone would not be Rongo. Noooooooo. Whhaaaaaat is happening?

He was freed from all duties but one. at least i can guess this probably means death? a rock in a storm

---

Raw fingertips scratched angry red welts in his whiskers. wait, who the gently caress is this?

"Another?" my question exactly

Toi had been an irascible chatterbox in life, though many years of death had mellowed him out considerably.

Rongo ran his tongue across the coarse plaque of his remaining teeth. "Stronger." I thought Rongo just had to die. :(

Toi shrugged, knocked the neck off of a particularly grimy bottle, and tilted it over Rongo's cup. wait, i thought Toi was dead, too. Are these people the Drowned chilling under the ocean and somehow still able to pour drinks? what is happening to me?

Rongo tossed it back in one quick motion and luxuriated as its toxic fires deadened nerve cells throughout his body. He didn't care if the numbness was permanent. The captain got free waipiro for a reason.

---

A week later The Waka had been refitted and it was time to go. He had enlisted one crewman and coerced two others. He who, because if this is Rongo, why are Enforces forcing him on board in the next paragraph??

Two Enforcers, naked and hairless, wrapped their massive hands around him. One on each bicep. The sudden change in blood pressure intensified the throbbing in his head; Rongo giggled at the sensation.

His crew openly traded glances of fear and disgust. Their captain wasn't a coward, he was just too drunk to board.

The Enforcers dropped Rongo off at the wheel, saluted, and returned to shore.

"Fffirst mate Rātā!" Rongo bellowed.

"Yes, captain?"

"Have we got the grog?"

"Aye."

"And the moonshine?"

"Aye."

"And the waipiro? Three barrels of waipiro?"

"Aye."

"Then let us be off!"

"Aye-aye," Rātā responded. The crew shuffled to their stations. Okay, wanting a bunch of booze is something I can understand.

---

For three days they sailed in darkness, for none had the heart to set the day-lights. During this time the captain hardly drank a drop. The crew was encouraged. During this time the captain ate none of his kūmara. The crew was disheartened. OKay, I am happy b/c I understand the first 3 sentences of this paragraph. No idea what the significance of the last two are.

The South Island materialized in the distance, and adrenaline galvanized the crew. The band of ogres that roamed this island had been raiding the mainland with increasing savagery. Already Rongo's town had more dead than living. But at least the ogres hadn't invaded since the town started mobilizing against them. I understand this, but I don't know what it has to do with the original return of the boat. Still not clear if that crew returned literally exsanguinated.

They docked quietly, and Rongo put his finger to his lips. He hadn't shared his plans and the crew was too afraid to ask, but follow-the-captain seemed as reasonable a strategy as any. Rongo pointed at the gangway, and the crew lowered it as somberly as a casket. Rongo pointed at a barrel of spirits then upward, and two crewman lifted the barrel. He tiptoed down the gangway and motioned over his shoulder, and they followed.

Rongo led them two cables inland, then pointed to a glistening patch of loam. His crewmen planted their barrel. Without a word of explanation, Rongo returned to the ship.

They repeated this process until every keg was packed in a tight circle on the marshy soil. Exhaustion blunted the crew's apprehension, though Rātā my computer is rendering this guys name hilariously wrong, but that's not a problem remained chary. Rongo returned to the ship for his uneaten kūmara, then trekked back to their circle of casks.

Rongo upended his burden while the crew watched silently. They returned to the ship, and Rongo raised the gangway. He crept back to the helm, pointed at stations, and gave the signal to depart.

Rātā's eyes bulged as he gasped. Here was an act of clear cowardice in premeditated sobriety. "An offering? You cannot placate--"

Rongo backhanded Rātā so hard that the first mate nearly crumpled. Recovering, Rātā turned to Rongo and drew another breath.

Rongo shoved his hand on Rātā's mouth and thrust his gaze down to the primal part of Rātā's brain which demanded animal obedience. Rātā deflated.

Gesturing northward, they sailed away from the island in silence. Once they had passed a comfortable distance, Rātā asked, "Why are we fleeing? We cannot return home except through victory."

"And victory we shall have," Rongo said. "Once that island is out of sight, drop anchor. There we shall wait for two cycles." You've got a lot of random terms for measurements in here, that takes away from the story b/c I have no idea what they mean. I originally thought cycles meant weeks or months, but down below you say days. So just say days here. I already had to give up trying to figure how long a "cable" was.

"But we'll starve!"

"Obey me in this, or captain your own fate." Rongo crossed his arms and looked away; the conversation was over. Did they have to abandon all the alcohol? Problem: who is asking this question? The narrator, apparently?

---

Two days with no food and limited water left the crew feeble and desperate. They would have mutinied if there were even a glimmer of hope, but the ogres would kill them on sight, and at this point so would their townsmen. Sprawled across the deck, Rongo croaked, "Cut anchor and sail southward."

The crew struggled to obey, and the instant they were in motion everyone collapsed back into prostration. An hour passed in agony, then the ship ran aground with a terrible roar. They could hide no longer; this was the end.

Rātā slumped his torso over the railing so he could face his demise head-on. Demise was not what he saw.

The island was inundated with kūmara. Gargantuan ogres, normally so fierce and facile I do not think you know what this word means, stumbled about and tripped over the vines.

"What?" Rātā asked.

Rongo broke into a gap-toothed grin. "Gentlemen, tonight we feast! Kūmara 'til you vomit, and waipiro if you find some. But not too much." Okay, I guess they have achieved some sort of victory, but uh... how the hell did it happen? didn't they sacrifice the Mara to the Ogres, or something? Why is there suddenly tons of it? None of this ever became clear enough to me >:-[

Man agonizes over potatoes. Drunk captain of a warship. Touch and thirst.

quote:

fac·ile
ˈfasəl
adjective
1. (especially of a theory or argument) appearing neat and comprehensive only by ignoring the true complexities of an issue; superficial. (of a person) having a superficial or simplistic knowledge or approach. "a man of facile and shallow intellect"
synonyms: simplistic, superficial, oversimplified;
2. (of success, especially in sports) easily achieved; effortless. "a facile victory"
synonyms: effortless, easy, undemanding, unexacting, painless, trouble-free "he achieved a facile victory"

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


MEGA BRAWL

go away post

Dr. Kloctopussy fucked around with this message at 05:44 on Aug 9, 2016

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


Thranguy posted:

Torn by Dr. Klocktopussy

~crit~


Thank you Thranguy and Kaishai!

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


I am an investigator.

....INvestigator you might say.

Edit: especially if you were J.A.B.C. who made this joke in the very first investigator sign up........

Edit 2: :toxx:

Dr. Kloctopussy fucked around with this message at 22:27 on Oct 20, 2016

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


Some experts assert that there are a number of unspeakable living horrors who are integral to the continuing operations at Voidmart. Your character has reason to believe that these creatures are not being fairly compensated for their labor.

Special Promotions
1991 words

I think my disguise is finally working. I’m past the cashiers, and Voidmart security is nowhere in sight. I sidle up to the meat counter, cool as a cantaloupe. The clerk, vigorously hacking away at a rack of ribs, meets my eyes, and keeps chopping, not saying a word.

“Do you have any Unspeakable Living Horrors?” I ask, with only a small tremor in my voice.

I follow him to the end of the counter labeled “Exotic Meats and Treats,” and we peer down into the case. A bowl of eyes stare back at me from between thick piles of flesh. I think I’ve had too much coffee, because it looks like one of them just winked at me.

“Gotta ask the manager,” he finally says, and hits a call button.

A crack splits the wall behind him, and spreads into a doorway. A middle-aged man lurches through, limbs jerking unnaturally. His eyes are completely black. My stomach knots tighter with every inch he covers. David, his name tag says. I suspect David has seen some kind of Horror. Possibly of the Unspeakable Living kind.

“No returns,” he says before I even open my mouth. “Only exchanges for an item of lesser value.” He pushes a styrofoam tray of meat into my hands, and turns away. It’s purple, spongy, and smells of fish, even through the cling wrap. The sell-by-date is yesterday.

“Wait,” I call out, but but the doorway is already shrinking behind him. I can’t let him go—he’s the best lead I have. The clerk is trying to wrestle a giant crab leg back into the freezer. I only have a split second to make a decision.

I don’t think of myself as a “maverick.” No, Abby Upson is more of a Rules-Exist-For-A-Reason kind of girl. But I’ve been butting my head up against a wall of Voidmart lawyers for weeks, and I’m sick of it. If there are Unspeakable Living Horrors working here, I will find them. And if they aren’t being fairly compensated, you can bet your butter I’ll be recommending a formal agency action. I work for the EEOC, for graciousness sake. We’re a federal agency! You can’t just put us on hold for 340 hours straight and ban us from the premises. Also, my report is due tomorrow and my boss says this is my “last chance not to screw everything up.”

So, I make a run for it.

*

Behind the door huge conveyor belts stretch into the distance. Employees on the closest one are removing old sell-by stickers and putting on new ones. I put the tray David gave me onto the belt.

“Get back to work!” a man yells, stomping towards me.

“I don’t work here,” I say. Oops. “I mean, not in this department.”

“Which one?” He says. His hands are creeping slowly closer to the truncheon hanging from his belt. I’m scraping my skull to think of an answer when I see a cart stacked with about a hundred cardboard Elvises.

“Cardboard Cut-Outs.”

He grabs me by the arm and drags me through the maze into a dingy back-office hallway that would fit right in at the EEOC. He stops in front of a door that says:

Margaret Schultz
Lower Sub-Supervisor
Cardboard Cut-Outs and High Explosives[/i]

He opens the door without knocking and shoves me forward.

“One of yours,” he says, and stomps off.

Margaret blinks up at me from behind the desk. She is putting a sock on a mannequin foot.

“So it won’t get cold,” she says. Then, as if coming out of a dream, her eyes actually focus on me. “Who—?“

“I’m new,” I blurt out. “Abby … Smith. Transferred from Meats.”

“Paperwork,” she says, holding out her hand. You’d think, working for the government, I would have thought of that. Nope.

“David said he would send it over.”

Margaret sighs and types violently into her computer. It lets out a moan that sent shivers down my spine.  “Nothing here. Typical Meat Department incompetency."
She hands me a giant stack of paper. “These are the departmental waivers. Sign here.” she points to the top sheet. I start to look at them, but she tells me to just sign. It’s not like I actually work here, so I do.

“I don’t suppose you’re familiar with the employee handbook?”

“Not really…”

“God, ever since David went to see the CEO--” she stops, and clamps a hand over her mouth.

“What?”

“Nothing. I guess since you just transferred I can make an exception—only this once, you understand?” She passes me a tablet. “Employees are responsible for knowing and complying with all Voidmart Policies. You have one day to familiarize yourself with the book. If you need to refer to it again, you can rent it for $20/hour.”

She turns back to her computer. Outside her office, I look at the handbook. There doesn’t appear to be a search function, so I flip through the index until I reach the U’s. I have to flip several hundred pages. There it is: Unspeakable Living Horrors. No page number, just See: Beetles. I flip back to Beetles. See: Unspeakable Living Horrors. Very helpful.


“Tired of beetles swarming your ceiling?" Says a sweet, grandfatherly voice over the intercom. "Try Voidmart’s patent-pending Buggy On Down Spray, available in the Pest Management Department!”

I look at the ceiling. Beetles are streaming across it, leading down the hallway and around a corner. I follow them until they disappear between the cracks of a locked door.

*

A small, wrinkled man glides up to the door, leaving a trail of wet slime on the floor behind him.

“Managers only,” he says.

“Oh, I’m Abigail Smith, the new Lower Sub-Supervisor of Cardboard Cutouts,” I say.

“Then where’s your keycard?”

“Margaret said they were having trouble with the computers.”

“Typical Cardboard Cut-Outs forgetfulness,” he replies “Not a brain in the department. Present company excluded, I hope. Anyway, you’ll want that key card so you can get your management discount in the cafeteria. As a Lower Sub-Supervisor of course, you only get .2 percent, but once you make it to Junior Upper Sub-Lead-Manager like me, you’ll get .8! Of course, that means going through…”

I space out while he lists about a thousand different management positions. A tentacle creeps out from under his trench coat. Is today Halloween?

“I even heard that Vice Presidents get a full 3 percent!” he concludes with a wistful sigh.

Just then, Margaret turns the corner. Uh-oh, this could be bad. But she doesn’t even look at me. She’s pale as paper and clutching a pink-bordered envelope to her chest.

“A summons from the CEO,” the small man whispers, eyes locked on the pink-rimmed note. He is trembling.

“Wow, It’s really great how the CEO takes such a personal interest in the employees here!” I say. He shakes harder. He must be upset that he hasn’t gotten to meet the CEO himself.

“Don’t worry,” I assure him, “I’m sure it will be your turn soon.”

He gulps, the wrinkles on his neck flexing, whirls around, and punches the keycode into the door.

*

He’s gone when I step through behind him. I’m in a long hallway, which leads to more hallways. Every twenty feet is an intersection. I turn right. It looks exactly the same. Long, straight, and with dozens of hallways splitting off. No doors. I turn back. At least I know this hallway has the door at the end of it. Wait, did I turn left or right? I look both ways, but the tunnel appears to go on forever. Very strange, but I’m sure I can find my way back when I need to, after all, it’s a straight line.

So where are the beetles?

Suddenly the hallway ends at a huge wooden door bound with iron spikes, like something out of a fantasy movie. It’s even guarded by two men in full armor carrying spears! Or maybe pikes. Who can even tell the difference between all that stuff.

“Upper Management Only,” says the man on the right.

Dang, what was that last guy’s title? Upper Sub-Junior something? I can’t remember. Besides, that 3% discount at the cafeteria sounds good.

“I’m the new Vice President of Pest Management” I say.

“I assume you have the usual protections?” Asks the man on the right.

Nope, but I don’t want to blow my cover in front of two dudes with halberds or whatever they are, so I say sure and they open the door.

*

I’m in a damp, dark cave. Voidmart must be using it to provide natural cooling. Very cool to see green building principles used at somewhere as huge as Voidmart! I follow some clicking noises--beetles click, right?--to a small subcavern. I peek in, and see a giant spider, at least fifty feet tall.

“Excuse me,” I ask, “Is this where I can find the beetles?”

The spider hisses at me, it’s eight eyes rolling. “No one bothers to learn the differences between arachnids and beetles anymore.” It rears up on it’s back legs, revealing a sphincter dribbling white paste. “Perhaps we should teach you.” Hundreds more eyes light up behind it, and chitinous rustling fills the air.

“Oh no,” I say, “I wouldn’t want to take up your valuable time. If you could just point me towards the beetles, I’d be much obliged.”

The spider drops its front legs, wobbles a bit, then finally stutters “Next left, then fifth door on the right, number 84,440B.”

I thank it for it’s kind assistance and move on. The caverns are softly lit by bioluminescent plants and the sound of dripping water echoes soothingly from the walls. It’s quite nice, actually. Thanks to the spider’s directions, I find number 84,440B easily. Inside are the beetles.

“Excuse me,” I say, raising my voice to be heard over the steady hum. The beetles draw together and form themselves into a roughly humanoid face. I think they could be described as an Unspeakable Living Horror, but only if one were very rude. It would probably not be very polite to mention Pest Control, either.

“I’m Abigail Smith, the new Director of Diversity,” I begin. When the swarm of beetles nods in what I assume is acceptance, I continue, “I’m doing a survey to ensure that all of our employees are content with their current situations and level of compensation.” I sound pretty professional, I think.

The swarm’s vague impression of eyes sweep down to the floor beneath it, where a bare human skeleton lays. It hums in a way that sounds mostly positive.

The skeleton stands up and walks to a large pile of rubber suits at the edge of the cavern. It puts one on, and looks more-or-less like a normal person, albeit a bit jerky on its feet. It pulls on a Voidmart uniform and throws itself onto a cart already piled high with similar employees.

Of course, the dead don’t require any compensation. A very efficient arrangement, you must admit.

“Well then, thank you very much for your cooperation!” I say, and wave goodbye to the beetles.

All-in-all, I think this has been a very successful investigation. I type out an email to my supervisor at the EEOC: No evidence of anything unusual or illegal at Voidmart.

*
In a lickety-split I’m back into an actually nice part of the corporate offices. A door swings open as I walk by, and I turn to read the nameplate:

Abigail Smith
Director of Diversity

My own office! I sit down at the desk and check my email. There’s a note from the CEO!

Congratulations on your promotion! Let’s meet soon :) :) ::)

I know I’m going to just love working at Voidmart!

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


In

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


Junk
239 words

I’m in front of the kitchen sink, pumping, and watching tiny people and their dogs scramble across Bernal Heights through the window, when the pigeons come back. One turns a slow, orange eye on me, and my fist jerks closed, squeezing the pump handle so hard my breast is sucked against the clear plastic cup, and a spurt of milk hits the side of the bottle with a splash.

I’m sorry, I tell it. It looks away.

*

Jonathan had been yelling at me to “get that loving junk off the porch,” for days. He was sick of “seeing Craig’s loving junk every time I walk in the front door” and if it was here when he got home, he wouldn’t be walking through that door ever again. I put on some old sweats and gloves and got to work. Something like half a rusted out motorcycle was there, in pieces.

I was off-balance in my strange body. I felt the tire bumping against my newly rounded belly as I tried to ease it down the stairs. I hit a step funny, and I had to let go. At the bottom, I saw the nest, the egg, already broken. Cradled in the shattered white shell was an unmoving, wet lump of feathers.

When Jonathan got home I was still crying.

“They’re pests anyway,” he said.

*

I unscrew the bottle and pour the useless milk down the drain. I’m sorry.

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Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's time....to DIE!"


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