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  • Locked thread
Apr 12, 2006

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at 22:06 on Oct 31, 2017


Apr 21, 2010

Deceitful and black-hearted, perhaps we are. But we would never go against the Code. Well, perhaps for good reasons. But mostly never.

Wizgot posted:

In a world where the oceans have turned to acid.

I, For One

784 words

Look, we did some really great things, all right? World peace, that’s something. The new music. However that happened, we got some fantastic art out of that movement. Simpler living in general. Cleaner air, being able to see the stars properly at night. All that has to count for something, right?

Probably not. All of it just fades off into nothing, now that everybody knows it was all based on lies. Based on something less than even a lie.

= = =

The Nautilus VII was, more than anything else, gaudy. Painted with murals designed by gradeschoolers throughout the state in bright reds and blues and yellows, it was perhaps the ugliest vehicle I’d ever seen.

“And it’s all for the benefit of the crowd here,” said Julius Klein, my pilot. “Paint won’t last more than an hour once were in the water.”

“What?” I said. “They’ve put on more than a solid inch of lacquer.”

“Ayup,” said Julius. “That’s so the acid doesn’t strip the paint off until after we’re out of sight of the bay. Wouldn’t want people to start thinking we’re dead prematurely.” Julius had a dark sense, sometimes edging dangerously close to outlawed sarcasm. Of all the things our new aquatic masters demanded we eliminated, I think I miss sarcasm the least.

= = =

Underwater, in the fluorescent, antifreeze-green, poisonous and acidic sea, instant death outside the windows of our ceramic submarine. Not particularly more deadly than the pressures of the old ocean, not at this depth, but still, different, Alien. The first gift of the Tetrapods. Decades earlier, their vessels crashed into the oceans, changing them completely in a matter of weeks. Nearly a year passed before the first of them emerged onto the shore, making their demands. We glided through the part of the world that is theirs alone.

The sea is deadly but not dead. Strange new life flourishes. Pairs of spiked balls rotating on sinewy strings. Clouds of silvery rhombuses, always in motion, with the individual units seeming to vanish and appear from nowhere. Huge shapeless blobs, covered with hair-like tendrils. We floated near the ocean floor, out small vessel passing through the ribcages of great whales. “Gotta be good to go through these without hitting one,” said Julius.

“Isn’t this dangerous?” I said.

“Nah. The bones are practically piles of sand. They’ll disintegrate if we so much as brush them.”

“Why are we even going through them?”

Julius shrugged. “For the challenge.”

= = =

I was selected as the first diplomat to visit the Tetrapods in their home. It was a major achievement for humanity. I was bringing them new music. One of their demands was that we start making more of the music that they liked best, which was mostly dance-pop. We’ve brought it back, made a happier, more danceable world. Stop making war, stop polluting. Those were easy. Bringing dance-pop back was right up there with the war on irony, the harder parts of compliance with the new order. But we did it, we did it all.

“Almost there,” said Julius. “Sorry about this.” He punched me in the chin, and I went down. Julius activated the communication device.

A Tetrapod appeared on the screed, four spindly legs, each with a strong, accordion-like muscle in the middle, surrounding a small central body with a three-part eyeball. “Welcome, Earthlings,” it said in a burbling mechanical voice.

“Change of plans,” said Julius. “Humanity’s decided enough’s enough. This vessel is equipped with a nuclear weapon, and-”

“Wait,” said the Tetrapod. “Don’t use your death-machines. Please. I can explain!”

= = =

And explain he did.

So we turned around, and went home. I tried to kill Julius on the way home. I thought he was sleeping, so I took his gun out and, well, he wasn’t sleeping and he took it away and broke my hand and had me handcuffed to a chair for the rest of the trip. I had to try. When the truth comes out, it will destroy us.

The Tetrapods weren’t the aliens who changed the ocean, who built the great asteroid ships. The real aliens are the rhombus-things, three-dimensional projections of twelve-dimensional beings, interested only in connecting the waters of Earth to their great ocean, utterly indifferent to the surface, to anything we could do. The Tetrapods were passengers, parasites, pretending to be conquerors.

They explained everything, at length. Made a video confession. We watched it a dozen times on the trip home. Funny thing, though. It ends with a blank screen, that just keeps going for hours. We never left it running. Once we got to the surface, though, someone did. And after four hours of blankness, there were more words.

“Never gonna give you up...”

Sep 14, 2007

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome

Megabrawl entry

The Free Market
542 words

“Places like this are wasted on people like them.” You spit the words into a warm morning breeze tumbling down one side of the valley and up the ridge you just descended. It carries your words right back to you, and you half-smile as you hear them. “Not that I’d do any better by it.”

Between the two ridges and a stone’s throw from the creek that bisects the valley floor sits a single homestead. Nothing moves but the weathervane atop the ridgeline of the roof. Small plots of crops, fertile but apparently untended, sit next to a horse corral, empty. A pair of grave markers poke out of freshly turned earth at the side of the house. The horse you sit on prances in place as you look on. “Remember the place, huh? Alright, come on.” You spur the horse onward.

Still as the home is, it’s not empty. A young man, perhaps still a boy, sits by the window, head hung between his hands. He does not move as you approach, does not appear to notice you. You dismount and tie up to the fence of the corral.

“Come on out, boy!”

His head jolts up, and a pair of glassy eyes stare out the window at you. They register neither recognition nor welcome—they register nothing at all. He rises with the painful slowness of old age, the sort of slowness brought on by tragedy and loss. No, not a boy anymore. He slumps outside and stands in front of the door.

“I was wondering when you’d call for me.” You nod to the grave markers. “Guess that’d do it. Your father picked a nasty fight, that’s for sure. Who’s the other one? Your sister?”

The boy looks for a moment as if he’s going to puke, but doesn’t, then looks as if he’d desperately like to puke, but can’t. Then he looks up at you, his eyes full of murder. “You started all of this, you sonuva bitch,” he growls.

“Hardly. Y’all had some fine horses. The Irving’s wanted them.” You reach over and pat the horse, a smooth chestnut beauty, on the neck, and it swishes its tail in response. “They paid me well to get them. It was nothing against you.” The boy grimaces, looks at the dirt, but says nothing.

You look around, surveying the valley. Over the eastern ridge the sun hangs, the sky clear, bright, and blue. Copses of trees dot the landscape, and the grass, green and long, dances in the soft breeze to the tune of the trickling stream. You can see the appeal of the frontier from here, for certain types. Of course, the frontier appeals to you, for different reasons.

“People like you, people like the Irving’s, will always need people like me. And people like me will always take your money.”

“I want you to burn their farm to the ground.”

You turn and look at the boy. He stands tall, shoulders up, eyes alive with flame. Revenge has a way of filling folk with life, of a sort. It’s a cold, bitter, angry life, but it is hard to lose that kind of life. You smile.

“That’s what I’m here for. Let’s talk payment.”

Aug 7, 2013



Hmm. It's good to be the king...

But is it good to be the king of a thunderdump like this?

I think I'll be taking a nice abdication, maybe somewhere sunny. In the meantime, submissions are closed while the Shadow Council elects a new thunderchump to wear the crown.

Fuschia tude
Dec 26, 2004


Breeds Contempt
1388 words

Xin Jiang ran his finger over the rim of the gold coin in his hands. The scanner chin embedded in his fingertip verified the chain. “The crypto checks out. Pleasure doing business with you.”

His customer waved its head-fronds at him. It gathered up the goods it had purchased and wobbled out the doorway with its two bags.

Xin traded in exotic goods and offworld delicacies. To stay out of the watchful eyes of Systech, he would piggyback on ships coming into the system, contraband slipped in among their other shipments. Captains were usually glad to look the other way once they got the bribe in their accounts. Some he knew well enough to have a regular agreement with, and offered a cut of profits. And it helped to be in with the local magistrate, in case anything went wrong that one or two millionths couldn’t clear up.

Out of the corner of his eye, he saw a dragon skittering across the floor. He stomped on it and the scales made a satisfying crunch under his boot. He checked the underside—no smoldering. Good. He had lost a shoe to one of those little firebreathing pests once already this month.

The afternoon was slow, as expected for this time of the cycle. A couple of tourists buying lunar confectionaries, a regular showing up asking for Nautilus fruit (none in season, yet). No one else.

As he was closing up shop for the day, Xin got a call from one of his suppliers.

“Rae?” he asked when the connection was established, before an insectoid face extruded from the display.

“No,” it said. Xin never could tell the sex of a dipteran. “Rae’s not available.”

“Who are you?”

“Her second in command. The operating officer of this vessel. Listen—the shipment won’t be coming in.”

“What?” Xin jumped forward and grabbed the handheld, switching it to a more intensive encryption method. The image quality degraded quickly as the system processed the new encryption, and it fell back to a two-dimensional display. The bugface was no prettier in 2D. “But I need that next week—I already paid you!”

Its proboscis wobbled in the air as the dipteran shook its head. “It doesn’t matter. Systech has new scanners installed, and they’re testing more ships in the ports. Every port. Can’t risk it.”

Xin ran some quick numbers through his head—paying imports and fees to get the offworld goods he had purchased down to the surface would ruin him. He’d be out of business in a month, tops. And Rae’s absence still bothered him.

“And Rae? Is she all right? All my previous communications have been with her. Why isn’t she the one calling me now?”

“Yes, yes. All good. Is simply… very busy, right now.”

“Is she still Captain?”

“Good day, Xin.” The connection ended.

Xin cursed and ran through inventory again on his device. Stocks for most of the popular sellers, offworld edibles, would last a week, but he was running low on exotics. That was why he had been relying on this shipment. If he didn’t find a new source of imports soon, he’d lose his customers, the connoisseurs and aesthetes obsessed with the real, looking for things too delicate to order by terrestrial carrier or too intricate to form-print. Several were agents for magnates and other wealthy benefactors—collectors.

He sighed. He would have to talk to Rae eventually to settle that debt she owed. For now, he had to make a call.

A dragon buzzed around his ear. He idly swatted it away and switched on the handheld.

“Call the magistrate’s office,” he said.

Xin rolled into bed unusually late for him. He slept in the burrow above the shop, nestled in the attic among the crossbeams.

When he awoke, he found himself unable to move. His arms hurt and his mouth seemed stuck. He opened his eyes with great difficulty—had he been drugged?—and found himself staring at a large bronze human form towering over him.

“So, Mr. Jiang,” the living statue said. “You awaken.” Its mouth did not move; its voice boomed from somewhere deep within its chest. It lifted one elbowless arm into the air. In place of a hand, it had a solid bronze sphere nearly as big as its head. “I am here to deliver a message.”

Xin squirrmed, trying to free his wrists tied behind his back or spit out the covering from over his mouth, to no avail.

“Do not struggle, or I will shatter your legs.” The statue stood motionless, with the ball still suspended in the air. In between its pronouncements and movements, it was completely silent. “Simply listen. The ties on you will dissolve within the next thirty minutes,” it said, and waited implacably.

Xin blinked. He nodded, slowly. And out of sight, behind his back, he began to rub his thumb and forefinger together.

“Good. Message follows:”

The statue was silent for a moment, then the voice issuing from its center shifted in its quality, becoming rough and less monotone. “‘Forget about the shipment,’” it said, in this other voice. The recording was poor, but Xin thought he almost recognized the speaker. “‘Write it off. If you persist, you will be destroyed. There will not be another warning.’ Message ends.”

The statue’s arm clucked back down to its side. Then it turned and lumbered out of the room. Xin listened as its footsteps moved through the shop below.

He wouldn’t have thirty minutes to wait. Through physical stress combined with a binary contact code he had memorized, the reader chip had activated its panic mode. The end of his fingertip grew uncomfortably hot. He gritted through the pain and pointed the discharge at the tie on his wrist. Within seconds, it had been eaten through, and he turned it to the tie around his ankles.

Xin pulled the tiny chip out of his burned fingertip—first aid could wait—and practically leapt downstairs.

The bronze statue turned before reaching the door, just in time to meet Xin’s sledgehammer with its exquisitely sculpted head. Xin didn’t know where its processor or motor control unit was located and took a risk, but knocking its head down well into its torso turned out to be good enough. The thing sputtered and issued some caustic black smoke, but did not move again.

The sledgehammer fell to the floor with a thud. Xin caught his breath, tried to shake off his brain fog, and scanned the shop.

His handheld lay in pieces on the floor near the upstairs passageway. It was ripped apart from its center, like a great weight had been dropped on it. The shop door had been busted open at the lock and it swung gently in the early morning breeze. Nothing else had been touched.

Xin stomped at a dragon skittering on the floor and shut the door with an angry grunt, barring it with the hammer’s handle grip.

Then, gripping the scanner chip tightly in his off-hand once more—it was no longer good for anything but burning—he walked up to the statue and set to work. “Let’s see what we have here…” He began cutting through the bronze material. He hoped he would find an answer.

He did not.

Xin surveyed his situation. He had no idea who had sent the statue threat—probably someone involved with Rae’s ship. His goods for sale were likely to run out soon. There was no incoming shipment to replace it. His handheld was broken. His best business partner seemed to have been separated from her ship in a mutiny… or maybe was trapped inside it, somewhere. He didn’t even know where her ship was or where it would be headed, now.

Maybe it was time for a change. He had grown too complacent here. Officials were closing in on his supply lines. He could sell what remained of his stock, but would it be worth the hassle? He had more than enough crypto to get him offworld. From there, he would think of something. He always did.

Xin packed a few of his highest value items into a bag and marched out of his shop for the last time. First stop: buy a new handheld. Next stop: points unknown. Somewhere that wasn’t overrun by flying reptiles.

In a world with dragons just... just loving everywhere, man. They're all over the place. And not cool dragons either. These dragons are everywhere and they are 100% not cool. Ubiquitous uncool dragons, I guess is what I'm trying to say here. Dragons.

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003

"It's DIE!"
The Adding Assistant

this was a funny story that nobody adequately appreciated because YU JUST DON'T UNDERSTAND MY GENIUS OK

Dr. Kloctopussy fucked around with this message at 21:29 on Jan 1, 2018

take the moon
Feb 12, 2011

by sebmojo

take the moon fucked around with this message at 14:12 on Aug 28, 2017

Nov 3, 2010

Scoffing at modernity.
:siren: Thunderdome Recaps! :siren:

Hello, Thunderdome. Why don't you take a seat over there. We need to have a talk about sexual content in TD entries, a topic that consumes half the time Sitting Here, Ironic Twist, and I devote to Week 258: DOUBLE TROUBLE with BAD CAT 1 and BAD CAT 2. How can you avoid an appearance of personal interest in whatever weird, effed-up prose porking you oblige the judges to endure? I don't know, but your friendly recappers can offer some tips on what not to do. Our coverage of Week 259: One, Two, Three is downright bland in comparison, involving four dramatic readings and nothing fetishy at all unless you really like time shenanigans.

For the first time in his life he realised he didn't care about his country anymore and all he'd learned throughout the years was an intense hatred for the people he initially thought he cared for.

Jitzu_the_Monk joins us when we turn to Week 260: Empty Spaces! He provides the judge perspective on German proverbs, naked suicides, mall nostalgia, and bad air, those critical topics of our time. For bending some truly sadistic flash rules to his will in "Between the stirrup and the ground," sebmojo then receives time in the dramatic spotlight.

I'll never know and a part of me never wants to.

Episodes past can be found here!

Kaishai fucked around with this message at 01:31 on Aug 29, 2017

Aug 7, 2013



:siren: Judgement Time :siren:

There were few winners this week.

I asked for a miserable society from the winning side, for a story about the lucky few living comfortable lives atop their ivory towers pissing down on all the icky common folk below them.

Most of you completely ignored that and gave me a view from the bottom, looking directly up into the stream.


In the end, we've decided to reward those stories that stood out by meeting another day in hell with a smile. I'll gladly trade Tyrannosaurus back this stupid crown for the mental image of hideously happy little Joyous pulling on his toes for an eternity. The story was, well, quite rough at the end, but built a world that was safe and comfortable and gnawingly claustrophobic all at once. He is your Winner and all must bow before him!

Taking an HM and a middle class idyll as their reward are Flerp, who built a singular moment more than a world, but nailed that moment with aplomb in Like the Old, Dead Fairytales, and Fumblemouse with To Live Without, a very bittersweet story of cross-eyed lovers.

Sunday by unwantedplatypus and Breeds Contempt by Fuschia Tude both failed in following the prompt and in constructing stories with, y'know, endings. They'll be going home with a DM and a half-ration of soy gruel.

But its Wizgot and his Neon Demon who wrote the inevitable zombie story, and so it's Wizgot we'll leave locked in the lightless basement of Omelas as this week's Loser while I walk away to go find a stiff drink.

Fleta Mcgurn
Oct 5, 2003

Porpoise noise continues.

Kaishai posted:

:siren: Thunderdome Recaps! :siren:

Hello, Thunderdome. Why don't you take a seat over there. We need to have a talk about sexual content in TD entries, a topic that consumes half the time Sitting Here, Ironic Twist, and I devote to Week 258: DOUBLE TROUBLE with BAD CAT 1 and BAD CAT 2. How can you avoid an appearance of personal interest in whatever weird, effed-up prose porking you oblige the judges to endure? I don't know, but your friendly recappers can offer some tips on what not to do. Our coverage of Week 259: One, Two, Three is downright bland in comparison, involving four dramatic readings and nothing fetishy at all unless you really like time shenanigans.

For the first time in his life he realised he didn't care about his country anymore and all he'd learned throughout the years was an intense hatred for the people he initially thought he cared for.

Jitzu_the_Monk joins us when we turn to Week 260: Empty Spaces! He provides the judge perspective on German proverbs, naked suicides, mall nostalgia, and bad air, those critical topics of our time. For bending some truly sadistic flash rules to his will in "Between the stirrup and the ground," sebmojo then receives time in the dramatic spotlight.

I'll never know and a part of me never wants to.

Episodes past can be found here!

The song is Careless Whisper by Wham!

Apr 12, 2006
:siren: CCLXV :siren:

A couple years back, a kid out of Seoul wanted to become a rapper. He did. And if you watch something like his It G Ma it’s just hilariously bizarre because it is straight up Atlanta trap, y’all. I don’t like all of his music. But I like a lot of it.

What I really like, though, is his name. I think he’s got a cool-rear end rap name. Keith Ape. After his favorite artist, Keith Haring, and his chosen spirit animal. And that’s, uh, that’s basically what this week is going to be. That’s your prompt. Find an artist you like. Find a spirit animal. Make a name.

When you sign up you must also sign up with the name of your main character

If you forget to do, this then I’ll assign you a name that I think is particularly dope. Also, you can just ask me to do this. Also, you can toxx and then I’ll give you a choice between TWO names.

Like I said, that’s pretty much it, y’all. Just write me a story that fits a character named Wolf Van Gogh* or Romare Wildcat** or whatever wild and wonderful thing you choose. Have fun with it. Feel free to post some paintings from your artist if you’d like. They don’t have to influence your story. They can just be cool pictures.

Be creative. Write good words. Just write no more than 1250 words. That’s your limit. Deadline to sign up is Friday at midnight est. Deadline to submit is Sunday at midnight est.

*you may choose this
** you may also choose this

Apr 12, 2006
judges: me

writers: Jay W. Friks -- Ozzy Bee
Fleta Mcgurn -- Helmut Fox
Thranguy -- Warhol Howler (+100 words!)
Pippin -- Dryden Diamondback
Aesclepia -- Julie Dormouse
ThirdEmperor -- Munch Rat
QuoProQuid -- Vincent Van Cock
Unwantedplatypus -- Isaac Newt
Blue Squares -- Martin Bird
Jon Joe -- Kid Kid
Captain_Indigo -- John William Wildcat
Fuubi -- Psy Duck :toxx:
Benny Profane -- Hammerhead Hammersly (+100 words!)
Magnificent7 -- Prince Tardigrade
Sitting Here -- Tennyson Squid
Exmond -- Billy Kid
Maigius -- Boris Manul

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at 02:11 on Sep 2, 2017

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Got Out.
Grimey Drawer
In with Ozzy Bee

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

late as megabrawl entry

Spem in Alium
815 words

This damned voyage is peeling you like an onion. Each morning, as you clamber out from below decks and feel the flaying sea breeze on your face, another layer of your old self rips off and flies away. The cramped accountant’s office in London where you worked for your father, the smell of the ink on the books that no-one was meant to see, the crisp rapping sound of the constable’s knuckles on the door, the hard-eyed questions. The shame, the shame, the shame.

The words of the classified advertisement were clear and clipped, “Elizabeth Olmstead, recently widowed, seeks husband to take over New Zealand High Country farm”. They landed beside you like a life preserver. You try and see Elizabeth as you cling to the railing of the ship and look out at the brawling sea, beyond the horizon, towards the imaginary contour of your new home. You have a photograph, creased and water stained from the time it danced out of your fingers and you only just caught it. She looks stern, and her tight black bodice is like armour.

So you try to see the imaginary curve of her naked body outlined in the swirling williwaws, the contours of her imaginary smile described by the wingtips of the albatrosses that follow your ship for scraps. The wind blows around and through you and you pretend that it howls her name.

And three months later you stumble down the gangplank, clamping your sturdy hobnailed boot heels to the swaying cobblestones of the wharf. The light is bright and the hills are green with unfamiliar plants, towering ferns.

You turn around to make sure the porter has your sea chest and when you turn back Elizabeth is standing in front of you. Tall, taller than you’d expected. You say your name, in a voice that’s less forthright than you’d prefer, then say it again. Better. You put out a hand and she takes it after a moment’s hesitation. Her fingers are calloused.

The farm is a long ways inland, she tells you, biting off the sentences like a seamstress nipping off thread. You offer a few conversational openings; she replies with monosyllables. So you spend the cart ride winding up into the foothills looking at: an old Maori woman smoking a pipe, a herd of fat sheep, Elizabeth’s spare profile, a good-natured drunken brawl between cow-cockies, Elizabeth’s frown of concentration as she coaxes the team over a muddy rise, the shafts of watery effulgence coming from the clouds, Elizabeth as she glances back at you.

The “bush” closes over your heads. You laughed when you heard her calling such a fecund tangle of jungle that, like it was a little topiary in Kensington Gardens, but she didn’t laugh back - just raised an eyebrow. The track is rutted and clogged with fallen ferns and supple jack - she tells you the name of each plant, pointing to them - and you jump off to help push the wheels. You are exhausted when you reach the clearing and she tells you where to set the tent.

The night falls, your first antipodean night, and you squat on the rich black soil looking up at new stars. Elizabeth smokes skinny cigarettes she rolls with tobacco from a leather pouch around her neck. The acrid smoke from the fire stings your eyes and you cry a little, and wipe them before Elizabeth can see.

You wake to a nudge. Elizabeth is crouching beside you, finger to her lips. It's dawn. You are very cold. She points across the clearing. A brown chicken-like beast with a sharp beak and the mad red eyes of a weasel is stabbing at the grain sack for the horse. Elizabeth looks back at you and draws a breath, then as one, you both yell at the top of your lungs. The bird jumps a yard into the air and comes down splay footed then sprints pell mell for the undergrowth. You have not seen Elizabeth laugh until now. She grabs your hand and then you are running towards the edge of the clearing, chasing the bird.

You hurdle the first fallen log, whooping, then your boot catches on a vine and you crash onto your face. You hear Elizabeth trampling through bush - she didn't wait. The soil is damp in front of your face. There is a liquid trill of birdsong overhead and you lie there, listening to it. You hear a rustle of leaves and turn your head. The brown bird from before is staring at you, eyes ablaze. It cocks its head left, then right, then stalks off .

You find Elizabeth ten minutes later. She is squatting with her back against a tree, looking out across the valley. A waterfall cuts out of a hillside cleft and sparkles in the dawn light.

"Quite the trek!" you say heartily. It sounds wrong.

"He liked this place," she says. "We'd always stop here on the way back to the farm."

She pats the ground and you sit, a little sheepish.

The sun begins to warm you.

After a while, she takes your hand.

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

since I failed like a snail, i'll crit all the stories from last week before subs are due this week.

Fleta Mcgurn
Oct 5, 2003

Porpoise noise continues.
Helmut Fox (photographers count as artists, right?) checking in!

Apr 12, 2006

Fleta Mcgurn
Oct 5, 2003

Porpoise noise continues.

If my character is also a dragon, can I get more words?

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.

Charity (490 words)

Boy ain't never been too proud to beg, not before. Not before. Dirt and blood, coughing up fierce, scrambling up on them scrawny-rear end legs. Ain't never seen no nothing like that. Good kick's always been plenty enough.

Must've spent an hour polishing these boots. Seems a shame. What a shame.

"Fear of the Lord's the beginning of wisdom," you remind him. Smile. Let him know it ain't too late. Got a good side, same as any. Settle this Christian-like. Boy's got time.

"Ain't God," he says, "Ain't nobody. Just a has—

An hour a day every day, seven years. Starting to fade. Now they're stained. What a shame. What a shame.

"Mighty thin ice." You circle around. Taking his time, this time. Like a baby doe freshly just shat out it's momma. "Mighty thin ice. Standing at the precipice." Prec-i-pice. You say it sound for sound. Smile, to yourself. Should use that one more. "Don't think I ain't above knocking you in."

There we go, on his feet. Kid's got sand, you'll give him that.

"Can't sink no lower, Leslie. Getting with Marley. Getting out."

"Getting out? You?" You take to his shoulder, his guardian angel. "Ain't nowhere for us Jimmy, nor no Whore of Babylon. Been thinking too much, I can tell. I can tell."

"Can't tell poo poo." Pulls back, incensed. "Ain't never done nothing for me. Ain't never done nothing for no one ain't you."

"And what she done for you?"

"Taught me to be somebody." He swallows. "Taught me my numbers. Taught me count real good. Taught me some of that," he struggles in the moment, "Ar-ith-met-ic."

"Arithmetic?" Incredible. loving amazing. The laughter just comes. Couldn't hold back. "Arithmetic. Gone be some kind of math magician? Jimmy boy, listen here: only reason that harlot teach you anything so you count out the change when she done with your little John."

"Shut the gently caress up Leslie."

"Ain't besmirching her honor, boy. Is what it is. Girl's a whore. Ain't no whore never did no good to nobody, putting me in this position."

"Ain't taught me poo poo, Leslie."

Keep an old shovel behind the bar. Lots a history with that shovel. Lots a graves. Even made a few. Ain't nobody left make you fetch without a reason, Jimmy boy giving you drat good reason.

"Taught you respect. Seems you need a remedial lesson." You lean against the bar, hand groping in the darkness. Find the handle. Weight's just right. "Here's hoping you learn half as good as—

The crack of the gun rings harsh and final. A thick leaden knot wells up in your gut. Boy's talking again, only ain't no words. You slip to the floor.

Jimmy tucks the pistol down his pants. Ain't scared no more. Ain't scared. Ain't scared. Disappearing. Everything. It's all disappearing.

Jimmy's gone. It's all gone. You're gone. All gone. Alone.

Born with nothing, gone with nothing.

Jimmy...don't go. Jimmy...

Apr 12, 2006

Fleta Mcgurn posted:

If my character is also a dragon, can I get more words?

We're not doing that this week. Shitposting will halve your word count. Effective immediately for all posts following this one.

Apr 21, 2010

Deceitful and black-hearted, perhaps we are. But we would never go against the Code. Well, perhaps for good reasons. But mostly never.
In, and give me a dope name.

Apr 12, 2006

Thranguy posted:

In, and give me a dope name.

Should it technically have "monkey" at the end? Yes. But... doesn't sound as cool.

Warhol Howler

May 25, 2016
In with Dryden Diamondback.

Dec 5, 2013
Next verse same as the first.
In with Julie Dormouse.

Aug 7, 2013



In with Munch Rat

Jan 12, 2012

Tr*ckin' and F*ckin' all the way to tha

vincent van cock is my spirit animal

Sep 6, 2012
In as Isaac Newt

Apr 12, 2006
For the record, you do it either other way. Keith Ape or Ape Harding. Also, I got a long-rear end list of names if you're having trouble coming up with something.

Feb 25, 2014

The battle ends and the next duel begins soon. However, there are those who cannot get back up. First, let’s get rid of the weak. The results of each match up are:

In Bad Seafood vs Fleta Mcgurn, Bad Seafood wins!
In Sitting Here vs Uranium Phoenix, Sitting Here wins!
In crabrock vs Solitair, crabrock wins!
In sebmojo vs Jitzu_the_Monk, Jitzu_the_Monk wins!
In Tyrannosaurus vs BeefSupreme, Tyrannosaurus wins!
In SurreptitiousMuffin vs Chili, SurreptitiousMuffin wins!
In Toadsmash vs Thranguy, Thranguy technically wins but really Toadsmash didn’t submit anything because he loving sucks so it's a default win. Lame.
In Aesclepia vs Djeser, Djeser wins!

The winners proceed further into the megabrawl. The others wallow in defeat, as is befitting of their nature.

Now that the wretched are gone, we go into prompt number two.

Genre Mixing

If there’s something I notice about a lot of lit mags, they love to talk about the blending of genres. So why not indulge them a little bit? The combatants will have to mix together two genres I give you. Each brawl has their own two combinations.

For crabrock vs. Jitzu_the_Monk, you two will mix these genres: Magical realism and historical fiction.
For Bad Seafood vs. Sitting Here, you two will mix these genres: Slipstream and western
For Tyrannosaurus vs. Thranguy, you two will mix these genres: Surrealism and fantasy
For SurreptitiousMuffin vs. Djeser, you two will mix these genres: Cosmic horror and slice-of-life

If you don't know the genre, research them. I'm giving you a lot of time for you to think about this, use it or don't, I don't care. Good luck.

Word count: 2500


I will get my crits out for the first prompt by the end of this week.

blue squares
Sep 28, 2007

Martin Bird

I was rethinking my name

blue squares fucked around with this message at 00:46 on Aug 30, 2017

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk


Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

Tyrannosaurus posted:

judge: me

writers: Jay W. Friks -- Ozzy Bee
Fleta Mcgurn -- Helmut Fox
Thranguy -- Warhol Howler
Pippin -- Dryden Diamondback
Aesclepia -- Julie Dormouse
ThirdEmperor -- Munch Rat
QuoProQuid -- Vincent Van Cock
unwantedplatypus -- Isaac Newt
bluesquares -- Martin Bird

I'll judge 2

Oct 19, 2011

Lovely night, no?
Grimey Drawer
In with Kid Kid

Apr 12, 2006

sebmojo posted:

I'll judge 2

if you want

Jul 29, 2007

"That’s cheating! You know the rules: once you sacrifice something here, you don’t get it back!"

In with John William Wildcat.

The John link might be NWS if your work don't like you looking at pre raphaelite titty.

Jan 18, 2015

In with

Psy Duck

And because of failure: :toxx:

Apr 12, 2006

Apr 12, 2006
I've spent too much time thinking of names I like. So.

:siren: +100 Word Bounty :siren:
  • Wolf Van Gogh
  • Warhol Howler
  • Zinaida Gar
  • Croc Matisse
  • Vos Ox
  • Katsushika Mustang
  • Picasso Serpentine
  • Falcon Friday
  • Klarwein Turtledove
  • Hammerhead Hammersly
  • Corbeau Jarry
  • Dolly Hornet
  • Artemisia Gharial
  • Osprey Applebroog

If you've already signed up, you can switch once with a toxx. If you've already toxxed, you can switch once. First come first serve.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at 15:51 on Aug 31, 2017

Profane Accessory
Feb 23, 2012

In. I'll take Hammerhead Hammersley.


Sep 22, 2005

I'm in with Prince* Tardigrade for two reasons:

- no matter how lovely I write, at least I'm writing something. Or trying to write something. Or hating myself for failing to write something.

- SittingHere's podcast about everybody's writing. I didn't know that was a thing, I just went and listened to your very very long in-depth dissection of my story. Holy poo poo. A thousand thanks for poking holes in our work. PS, the air is bad. You heard me.

* edit - does Prince count as a name? Prince, the artist, but if you meant to go with a name name, then I can change it to Nelson Tardigrade but that's just not as awesome.

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