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Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


BeefSupreme posted:

hey ho I don't have time to write good and such but I do have time to beat up some stories real good

three crits up for grabs, first come first serve just link me your story any story you like

If nobody else is taking you up on that offer...

https://forums.somethingawful.com/s...0#post472819312

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Aesclepia
Dec 5, 2013
Next verse same as the first.

I never knew Thunderdome would teach me so much about Belgium! Thank you for all of this!

Chili
Jan 23, 2004

College kids ain't shit


Grimey Drawer

Deltasquid posted:

If nobody else is taking you up on that offer...


My sentiment as well, Beef Supreme, hit me with your thoughts bubbaleh

https://thunderdome.cc/?story=5957&...rnal+Affliction

Exmond
May 31, 2007


im doin it ma im writing

THUNDERDOME


BeefSupreme posted:

hey ho I don't have time to write good and such but I do have time to beat up some stories real good

three crits up for grabs, first come first serve just link me your story any story you like

I'll take you up on your offer as well:

https://thunderdome.cc/?story=5951&...Dragon+Problems

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME



I might also crit this story this weekend as a warming-up by Monday.

Burkion
May 10, 2012

Changeman! And Not A Moment Too Soon!


Sadly I'm going to have to bow out of this one this week. Lot of nonsense IRL stuff started coming up and I've hit a good pace on personal projects that have made trying to focus on this a nightmare.

I still plan to do my prompt regardless and share it here later on, unless anyone objects, because I genuinely loved what I was given and had, I think, a pretty fun idea about what to do with it. I just know for a fact that I'm not going to be able to focus on it properly.

Djeser
Mar 22, 2013



edit: edit: edit: edit: whoops!

enjoy please this gif

Djeser fucked around with this message at Oct 5, 2017 around 07:01

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


Blood Empress of Thunderdome

Tap to emit spores


Clapping Larry

Hey TD, I am challenging myself to submit to this flash fiction contest. Entry fee is 9 bucks, so a little less steep than some of the larger competitions.

join me?

blue squares
Sep 28, 2007


Soiled Meat

Sitting Here posted:

Hey TD, I am challenging myself to submit to this flash fiction contest. Entry fee is 9 bucks, so a little less steep than some of the larger competitions.

join me?

or, don't pay people in order to submit your creative work to them. wtf

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003


blue squares posted:

or, don't pay people in order to submit your creative work to them. wtf

Submission fees for contests are standard. Submission fees for regular publications are not.

BeefSupreme
Sep 14, 2007

DOUBLE BEEF ACTION

All three crits taken! (plus a bonus crit request that Jitzu dm'd me)

I'll have them done sometime Monday probably

Deltasquid posted:

If nobody else is taking you up on that offer...

https://forums.somethingawful.com/s...0#post472819312

Chili posted:

My sentiment as well, Beef Supreme, hit me with your thoughts bubbaleh

https://thunderdome.cc/?story=5957&...rnal+Affliction

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


Blood Empress of Thunderdome

Tap to emit spores


Clapping Larry

blue squares posted:

or, don't pay people in order to submit your creative work to them. wtf


Dr. Kloctopussy posted:

Submission fees for contests are standard. Submission fees for regular publications are not.

Hawklad
May 3, 2003


Who wants to live
forever?


DIVE!

College Slice

IN

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


Entries were actually closed, but I was a dumb lazy baby last night so you're still in, Hawklad.

Entries are closed for real now!

Good luck everyone and write some good words! Please put your flash rule in spoiler tags at the beginning of your submission to jog my memory. (You can just put the condensed flash rule from the prompt post, I'll know what I gave you.)

Yoruichi
Sep 21, 2017

Time for tea and Thunderdome

Flash rule: Bread machines and meat wall trivia.

Sourdough
1356 words


The little bedside clock in my sterile hotel room glows red at me, it’s 3.30 a.m. I can’t sleep, this trip was a terrible idea. Dan and I came to Belgium on our honeymoon, so returning post-divorce seemed like a great way to give the middle finger to our dead marriage. When I found out he’d been cheating on me I was furious. Furious that he was the one doing the leaving, that he was the one freeing himself from a relationship that always I’d known, deep down, had been a mistake.

“gently caress it”, I’d thought, “I’ll go to Leuven by myself and have a great time!” Turns out I was wrong about that too. On my first night here I tried to be brave and ate in a nice restaurant alone but I hated the way everyone looked at me. Since then I have been dining in my hotel room on snacks bought from Leuven’s hot snack dispensing “meat wall”, washed down with cheap beers and crappy hotel television.

Fed up with lying awake staring at the ceiling I drag myself out of bed and peak out through the cheap curtains at the nighttime street below my window. The bread machine at the bakery on the corner glows invitingly. Maybe something to eat will help me sleep, I think, putting on my coat and sensible tourist shoes over my teddy bear pajamas. The pajamas were a gift from Dan, saved from the purge of all things Dan-related by dint of being really loving comfortable. After all, I don’t have to get rid of everything, do I?

As I approach the bread machine the bakery’s side door opens and a man who must be at least a hundred years old emerges. What hair he has left is white and concentrated solely in his ears, nose and eyebrows. He sees me and nods. Bright blue eyes peer out at me from his wizened face. He looks like an ancient raisin in a baker’s outfit.

He turns and lifts a sack of flour off a pallet sitting on the pavement. I instinctively step forward, arms out to take it from him – it looks heavy and his old-man arms are so skinny. His caterpillar eyebrows waggle with surprise but he hands it to me anyway. It’s much heavier than I thought and I promptly nearly drop it, by the time I’ve recovered he’s shouldered another sack and is carrying it back into the bakery.

I follow him in, deposit my sack onto the pile in the store room, and then back out again, carrying on helping him shift the flour delivery into the back of the shop. A couple of times he says something in Flemish and makes ‘you can go now’ gestures, but this is better than not sleeping and thinking about how much I hate/miss Dan so I just smile and shake my head. By the time we’re done my arms are aching, I’m sweating despite ditching my coat and my teddy bears are covered in flour dust. The baker gestures to a table in the corner of the room, mimes drinking from a mug and makes a question mark with his eyebrows. I nod gratefully.

He disappears into a small kitchenette, leaving me to sit and look around the bakery’s back room. Its simple brick walls are painted white, with a huge oven built into the wall at the back. A vat on the bench is making an intermittent hissing, popping sound. I get up to look. It’s the poolish, a thick flour paste left to ferment overnight, the starter culture transforming simple flour and water into a magical substance, full of flavour, that will form the foundation of the day’s bread.

I breath in its heady, yeasty aroma, and am transported back to happier days in my grandmother’s kitchen, helping her prepare beautiful sourdough loaves. I haven’t made bread since I moved to London to live with Dan, there was never any time in our city life, nor space in our tiny apartment. When we finally, miserably, had to move my grandmother out of her house and into a nursing home she’d given me the crock containing her sourdough culture. “Just remember to feed it a little fresh flour and water every couple of days dear”, she’d said, eyes twinkling, “it’s been alive and making bread for people for hundreds of years”. I have no idea if the latter part is true but in any case it’s dead now. I forgot about it, left it to dry out at the back of the fridge, and before I could try and revive it Dan had tipped it into the trash.

I stare into the poolish, watch bubbles slowly form and then pop, each one releasing a little puff of pure umami. I reach down with the tip of my finger – a sacrilegious thing to do – and bring a tiny portion onto my tongue.

My eyes widen as the sour taste of fermentation fills my mouth. The smooth white poolish suddenly looks different. I can see it moving, writhing. A million tiny yeast cells hungrily devouring the raw flour, multiplying and searching for more. I step back, mouth open. I can see them in the air as well, yeast and bacteria drifting, dancing together, searching. I look down and nearly gag. I am covered in them, they're eating the flour that’s dusted over my ridiculous pajamas, burrowing into the skin of my hands.

I desperately try to brush them off but it’s like trying to sweep the dust off a dirt floor. Rather than removing them I just seem to be creating more, a living cloud swirling around me, on and in and part of my skin. I try not to breath them in but it’s impossible, they are everywhere, tiny voracious creatures in my mouth and nose and eyes.

The baker walks back into the room carrying a tray with two steaming mugs and a loaf of bread. I must look like a total head-case, standing flailing my arms in panic in the center of the room. But he just smiles at me, the corners of his eyes crinkling as he gazes at the air around me. He puts down the tray, takes my elbow and guides me back to the table. I blink and the clouds of creatures drifting in the air wink out of existence. I catch a last glimpse of them jumping from his hand to my arm and back again, intermingling, but then they too disappear. On the bench the poolish hisses and pops.

My heartrate slows as I sit and take a sip of tea. He passes me a slice of sourdough, adorned simply with a little butter. I haven’t tasted bread this good in years, despite all the fancy restaurants that Dan and I went to with his London set. I think of my grandmother fading away in her nursing home. My eyes well up - how long has it been since I’ve been to see her? It was so difficult with Dan, she hated him and he knew it. I’m so stupid, I think, as hot tears begin to roll down my cheeks.

The baker pats my hand, gets up, and returns holding a small pottery crock. He takes a glass jar from a cupboard and transfers a large spoonful of the thick white paste from the crock. He gives it to me, pressing it into my hand.

Back out on the street it is still dark, the sun only just starting to lighten the eastern horizon. I return to my hotel and collapse, exhausted, into my bed. I sleep deeper than I have for months, the little jar of sourdough culture watching me from the bedside table.

Back in my single-person’s flat in London I carefully measure out the right proportion of flour and water into a freshly purchased crock and decant the culture into its new home. I can see the yeast dancing as it disperses through the mixture, beautiful and alive. Tomorrow I will bake bread, and take a loaf of sourdough to my grandmother.

derp
Jan 21, 2010


Lipstick Apathy

Prompt: roman dodecahedron

Light of Other Days
2000 words

removed

derp fucked around with this message at Oct 17, 2017 around 19:13

Exmond
May 31, 2007


im doin it ma im writing

THUNDERDOME


https://thunderdome.cc/?story=5990&title=A+meaty+deal

Exmond fucked around with this message at Dec 31, 2017 around 23:00

Captain_Indigo
Jul 29, 2007

Smooth soft red velvety lungs.

The City of Crust
Prompt: Brussels as a city for exiles
1993 words


As the armed soldiers marched Mark Summers into a shipping container, he could hear the chitinous clicking filling the dark night sky all around him. His breath was visible in front of his mouth as they stepped back down the ramp and onto the train platform. The container he would be sharing with three dozen brainless beasts smelled like industrial cleaner. From the woods, they emerged, herded by soldiers at all sides – an ocean of cuboid black bodies atop thin ivory legs.

-*-
They had arrived as less than a million creatures on a ship of frozen organic matter. It had been during Mark's final year of school, that the aliens had begun to appear in the curriculum. Contact Day became part of history class. A unit on the ethics of alien citizenship was added to social studies. The science labs were suddenly filled with posters showing their development from wriggling nymphs to either the bloated drones with their somewhat bovine bodies, or to the intelligent flying mantis things. Their had been no eggs on the ship, and none of the aliens had ever given birth on earth.

Then, just as quickly as they appeared, they were gone. After seven years, they vanished in a matter of minutes. Every mantis, every nymph, every tissue sample around the world, all were gone. All that were left were the drones. They stumbled around aimlessly on their insect legs, their faceless bulky bodies incapable of communication. They chewed at the ground and created the crust which they subsequently reaped nutrients from. It was a hideous organic rot that seeped into the earth. To Mark, it looked like shards of scab in seeping oceans of meat. In places, rivers of pus and infection formed around the islands of crusty tissue. In others, the ground looked safe but fetid pools of filth collected beneath and could give way suddenly. People drowned in them. What had once been the most important scientific moment in all of history, became an awkward reminder of everything humanity had failed to gain from its first interstellar encounter.

-*_

Over the next hour drone after drone was loaded alongside him. They waddled in awkwardly, their legs not designed for the slope of the wooden ramp leading into the container. They knocked together, toppled over, righted themselves. They smacked their front ends against the far side of the container, checking its strength. They were like giant, dumb turkeys. They were so animal that it made him angry. As they began to fill the space of the carriage and cramp against him, Mark lashed out, slamming his fist against a thick hide. The drone he struck felt no pain, but shambled aside all the same.

-*-

It was at a kid's party, a kid whose name he no longer remembered, that he had been infected. He was leaning against a tree, breathing in the cool smoky air of a fall afternoon. The sky was an expanse of pristine blue with thin, small clouds sailing lazily across it. He sipped a glass of wine with another dad from the group. They talked about sports, the weather, their upcoming family Christmas plans. The sounds of the children playing filled the yard, but then there was yelling. Thea father he was talking to frowned, then turned. They watched as a frightened drone ran blind with fear from the street. Bone-coloured legs clicked as it threw its huge black body forward in a lopsided gallop. Back then, they had known nothing of the diseases they carried, but the sight of the huge alien form rampaging towards the children had filled him with a bright white cold panic that seemed to come from his temples and radiate through his entire body. The other adults had frozen. One mother fell to her knees and screamed as he sprinted for the children. His own son, Matt, looked up, his thick brown hair catching a breeze to dance above his face in loose waves. Mark sobbed uncontrollably in the train carriage, cried shamelessly as the drones settled down around him. He remembered that look of confusion on his son's face as he stared up at the mass of chitin and blubber stampeding towards him. Mark had run harder and faster than he had ever thought possible. His feet had pounded the yard so fiercely that it felt as if they would break the ground. He had leapt and whipped his son up by his belt and dragged him from harm's way as the drone circled around, charged across the road, and into a farmer's field. He had clutched Matt against his chest until his son had struggled and complained he couldn't breathe.

He was torn from his memories as he was momentarily crushed against the wall. He grunted as the air was forced from his lungs and his bones crunched uncomfortably. His limbs were already useless. His arms had grown withered and unresponsive and he had begun limping at some point in the journey. Now, he was sure that they were broken but he could still walk. He closed his eyes as tears rolled down his dark cheeks. He focused on memories of his childhood friends, on school, on his wedding day, on his children learning to walk and Christmas holidays. He thought about the things that had made his life peaceful and content, of home cooked dinners, of nights out with his friends, of dressing the house for Halloween with his wife.

-*-
The drones had become a nuisance. They did not age, they did not die, they were slow and large and ugly and noisy. Wherever they lived, they spread the crust across the ground, rendering it useless for anything else. Animals hated them, wireless technology failed around them. At night, they clicked their legs together. Leaders around the world had argued over what to do about the leftovers of mankind's greatest discovery. Eventually, it was ruled they would be sent to Brussels. Nobody knew why Brussels, but the thought was that if the mantis aliens ever returned - the real aliens, as people had taken to calling them - they would want to know where the drones had gone. When it was impossible to communicate with another race via language or writing, gestures were important. Mass slaughter was probably not the most peaceful gesture.

The disease had manifested as sickness to begin with. The first day he vomited three times and blamed it on food poisoning. When he was still being sick three days later, Mark went to the doctor. The doctor did some tests but found nothing wrong. A few weeks later there were stories around the country of people with a similar condition. All of them had been in recent contact with a drone. The military men and women who were working to round up the drones and transport them began wearing hazmat suits.

“It's probably something in those chemicals they spray,” his wife told him. She stroked his hair and rubbed his back as he vomited into the toilet. He spat, sniffed, flushed.

“Pheromones,” he had managed to say before his stomach convulsed and he was sick again.

Doctors were baffled by the disease. There had been no sign of it for the years that the aliens had been on the planet, now it was coming up all over the world. There were countries where the locals were trying to domesticate the drones and farmers who were attempting to use the aliens as beasts of burden were the most effected. There was vomiting, then the body began to deteriorate. Long periods of mute-ism. Strange neurological impulses. Nobody knew exactly what was going to happen. Everyone was terrified, afraid that the disease might be contractable from the infected. Mark noticed his own skin beginning to darken on the day that the military came to his house and arrested him. They had seized doctors records around the country. His wife had screamed and slapped at the soldiers until he had truly believed one of them was going to shoot her.

“It will be fine,” he had told her, holding back tears. He had forced a smile as the soldiers put him into the back of a van. “I've done nothing wrong. I'll be back before...” they had slammed the door before he could finish his sentence.

Of course, he now knew what was happening. He was becoming something like them. He would never take their shape fully, would never be a proper drone, but his limbs would eventually decay to ugly stumps and his body would bloat and turn black and soon he would be a brainless thing, chewing at the ground and spreading the crust just like the others. He would not eat, he would not drink, he would not rest. He would be a crippled walrus of a man, fat and blubbery and sliding on his stomach, spreading the alien rot until he, maybe one day, died.

There were no windows in the container, but Mark could tell the passage of time by the changes in temperature. It was through this that he knew it was dawn when he first began to smell the pheromones. It was not true scent, no sense that he had ever known, but something else. Some unknown sensory organ that had taken root inside him, twitched and convulsed at the chemicals in the air. To begin with it was a chaotic overload. It felt like someone screaming wordlessly in his head. He clutched his body and rocked and knocked against the drones around him. Slowly, he began to pick out individual voices. It was as if he could translate the messages automatically.

“Scared!” a drone spat in a spray of pheromones.

“Space. Light. Space!” Another cried.

But above all, stronger than any other message was another. A message that was chanted in unison with regularity. It was so thick in the air that Mark suddenly felt blinded by it.

“Make crust. Bring queen. Make crust. Bring queen. Make crust. Bring queen.”

He tried to push the message out of his head. His body took the chanting as if it was made for him. Something in it was comforting, but it made him itch. The urge to spread the crust was like an itch he could not scratch that got stronger with every repetition. He must spread the crust, he must let the rot spread wide enough and sink deep enough to become a new queen. He must prepare the world for the billions of eggs she would produce.

He could vaguely hear that he was screaming. As he took one hard step, his leg collapsed to mush and he stumbled painlessly on a broken chunk of bone. Staggering around the container, choking on the pheromones, one human thought remained. A warning. He had to warn the world what the drones were doing. He had to warn the world about the summoning of the queen. He suddenly understood so much. He grabbed blindly for the broken stump of leg. He had to warn the world. He lifted the stump of leg to the wall.

-*-

“Yo boss, you seen this?” Thomas asked.

Maxime turned his torch on the back of the shipping container. Behind them, the drones and the infected were crawling towards the abandoned city. The floor was thick with crust there. It had grown up and swallowed the buildings in most of the inner city.

“What is it?”

“Something written in blood.”

He shone his torch on the wall. It was not just blood, but shards of bone, clumps of meat. He checked his watch. They had an hour to clean the containers. He turned on his pressure washer and hosed the wall clean.

“Get going!” he barked. “You know how spooked the new drones will get if we don't wash the pheromones out.”

Thomas shrugged and sprayed chemical cleaner over the wall.

In the city, the crust grew ever deeper.

magnificent7
Sep 22, 2005

THUNDERDOME LOSER


Sorry I'm out this weekend - excuses and poo poo. If I can, I'll late-sub tomorrow.

Thranguy
Apr 21, 2010

'Read over your compositions, and when you meet a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out.' -Samuel Johnson

The Devil’s Kittens

1497 Words
(Flash: Ypres Cat Throwing Trivia)

I'm a witch. A proper witch, not some leaf-kissing misunderstood pagan or spinster that some nobleman or priest or judge wanted to get with or steal land from. A proper witch, casting curses for revenge or for pure spite. Make someone grow boils, make crops fail, still the heart of a child in its womb. Never to nobody that didn't deserve it, but here's the secret: near everyone deserves worse than anything I could ever do. Proper witching. Riding broomsticks, brewing draughts stronger than distilled wine, and, of course, fornicating with the Devil. That was always the best part, even if Old Scratch was a right bastard.

That’s how it starts, proper witching. Which is why there ain't no maidens, and no mothers neither, since the Devil won't truck with a fertile woman, not until he’s ready to bring on the last judgment. So it’s crones, all the way down, merrily rodgering the prince of lies for power and long life. Now, it’s been a long time since we’ve been on speaking terms, but when things were good, they were good. He’s a forceful lover, and generous, in and out of the cot. He was King of the World, you may not recall, at least until the other fellow shows up again, and when things were good between us he gave me a share of that patrimony, the two of us co-ruling in mischief for a hundred miles around my home near Brussels.

So I had power, long life, and was a secret Queen, with as good a husband as might be found in that time, up until my mistake. One of the powers my dealings gave me was to change my shape, and I had a grand time using it, turning into crows and snakes and scorpions, soldiers and peasants and preacher-men.. It was my favorite power, more joyous even than cursing, until one day I took the form of a cat, without taking notice that the molly was in heat.

The Devil came to me almost at once, taking the shape of a randy old tom, and we had our feline jollies for quite some time before we even started to come to our senses. When we did he demanded I change back, before souls fixed to his get inside me. I rightly can’t say if it was already too late or if I just refused him out of perversity, but refuse him I did, and we fought, with words and with teeth and claws, and I sent the old boy running back to Hell with his tail between his legs.

If it wasn’t too late at the beginning of that fight it was by the end, so even as I had a touch of regret I couldn’t turn back for a good while if I wanted to. I knew plenty of hiding places where even the Devil couldn’t find me. I went to one, and spent nine weeks hiding before I bore the Devil’s kittens. Four black toms, Ishmael and Damien and Auri and Ix.

There’s a reason why the Devil doesn’t want any children, not before the end. Every time he runs off the world and back to Hell, that counts as dying, and if he should happen to have any heirs at the time, they inherit. And the Devil couldn’t just stay on Earth forever, not without all the demons rising up and kicking him off the throne of Hell itself. So before long my boys were the four kings of the world, of the North and South and East and West, of all the world but the small part the Devil and I still ruled together. I taught them all what I could, but eventually I had to send them out into the world.

Auri and Ix, East and West, were the first the Devil tried to wheedle out of their titles. They were inseparable and near-enough identical, even to another cat, and they got up to their mischief together. There was a town where every door was closed to them, where not a single person was kind enough to put out milk, and so they took their revenge. They talked to every cat in the town, and talked them all into leaving the rats be. Well, soon enough the town was flowing with rats, but instead of begging the cats for forgiveness, they went and hired a piper. Now you may have heard this story before, but it didn’t happen in any town in Germany, and the piper they hired wasn’t a man but the Devil himself. He did like in the story, led the rats to be drowned in the lake, the when the people wouldn’t pay, led off the children as well. Now Auri and Ix had a soft spot for children, so they stopped the Devil there, and Auri offered his quarter of the world for him to let them go. So the Devil wrote up the contract, only it was Ix who signed it with his paw, and the way it was worded meant the Devil couldn’t make a claim stick against either, and East and West were both lost to him forever. The Devil left in an angry puff of smoke, and Auri and Ix were left arguing about what to do with the children. They knew sending them home was out of the question. They knew about stories, and they knew that a good story about the importance of keeping promises was almost as good as one about why you should feed strange cats. But they did have a soft spot for children, so they sent them off to an empty part of the Summer Lands, where they could be children forever and never grow old.

Most of my boys did as cats did, and fathered many litters over their long, long lives. Ishmael didn’t, not for the longest time, so the Devil knew he might be able to take back the North by killing him. He knew Ishmael was my favorite, that he came home to me every century or so, so he set a trap for him. He talked the people of Ypres, which was right along his route home, into making a tradition of throwing cats that looked like little Ishmael off a tall roof. You might have heard of it, seeing as they still do it nowadays, only with stuffed cats instead of live ones. They say it was because of having too many cats, but that doesn’t make any sense when you think about it. If cats can be caught, there’s always someone hungry enough to skin them and put them in a stewpot. No reason to ever be wasting the meat if that’s what it was about. No, what happened is that the Devil convinced people that those cats were witchy.

They only did it every three years, though, and Ishmael didn’t come through at the right time for centuries. Finally he did, and he even got caught by the fools, and got thrown off the tall roof. So he flew down and walked away, because the Devil was too much a fool to realize I’d teach any boy of mine how to fly. The broomsticks are for steering. If you just want to land soft, you don’t need them at all. So Ishmael made it home and I finally was able to talk him into finding a nice young molly or two or three so the Devil couldn’t profit from making him die. Far as I can see Scratch still came out ahead on that one, getting to turn dozens of men into the kind who’d hurl innocent animals to their deaths, but he didn’t get the North back.

My boys lived a long, long time, but not as long as I did. Damien lived the longest, so the Devil had his chance at the biggest part of the world all the way up to the end of the nineteenth century. But it was the Devil’s pride that did him in. He bet the Devil, his claim against the Devil giving up on winning any of the Earth back from any of his nephews and sons and grandnephews and grandsons ever, that humans could out-evil anything that could be found in Hell. The Devil agreed in an instant, and Damien turned and showed the Devil what King Leopold’s boys had been up to in the Congo, and that was that.

So that’s why the Devil can only show his face here in Belgium. Well, Belgium and a few scraps of the bordering countries, making up those lands we’ve shared for nearly a thousand years now. Anywhere else you might think that there’s deviltry afoot, it’s probably normal human perversity and frailty. But when there’s a hint that there might be some kind of magic behind it, some form of supernatural mischief, well, in that case, there’s a good chance that the one to blame is a cat.

Solitair
Feb 18, 2014


Include Me Out
Flash: Belgium had a hand in starting the first world war, and in ending the second.
1784 Words

(Reworked (without those weird quote marks) and ready for submission elsewhere.)

Solitair fucked around with this message at Dec 28, 2017 around 20:24

Hawklad
May 3, 2003


Who wants to live
forever?


DIVE!

College Slice

The Long War
1062 words



It was a Monday, 1831. The old wooden gate at the foot of the garden hung limply from its hinges. I would always meet the boy there, to give him spare loaves and scraps from the monastery. He was poor and desperate. His threadbare clothes and pale, sunken eyes told me so. I would murmur a quiet benediction and he would whisper thanks and scuttle away down the hillside. I don't think he even knew my face.

Then the revolution came and he stopped coming to the gate.

When the echoes of cannon fire faded and the clouds of potash and soot drifted away, I went to the village to find him. It was a fool's errand—I didn't even know his name. A day of fruitless searching and I concluded he was dead, either from starvation or from conscription into the Princes Army. I walked the path back to the monastery when I chanced upon a merchant and his cart.

"Brother," he called. "I have something special for you."

Perhaps it was fatigue and sadness written upon my face, but for just a few pieces of bread I procured a large satchel of hops of an unknown variety. They smelled of mystery, pine resin, and dark anise.

"Put them in your next brew, brother," he said. His exotic accent matched his dark features and long black hair. "I promise it will fill you with the Spirit." If he said anything else I remember not, for the next thing I recall is passing back through the old wooden gate to the monastery.

The next day as my heart ached and I prayed for the boy I brewed, dedicating the beer to his memory. I added the hops to the kettle as the merchant had instructed and watched them swirl and disappear into the black depths of boiling wort.

And what a brew it was! Upon my first taste I knew it was the best beer I have ever made. Deep fruit and floral spice on the tongue, frothy and dark as it quenched the throat. The merchant had not lied, it was blissful and I felt the strength of my faith redoubled upon every quaff. The aches and pains that came with midlife were erased, and even the limp I've carried from a horse injury in my youth seemed to ease.

Excited, I offered it to the brothers of the abbey. They universally condemned my creation. "Disgusting!" said one. "As bitter as sheep's vomit!" said another. "Pour it in the trough for the cows," another exclaimed.

I didn't understand. My elixir was the finest creation to ever come from the brewhouse, a taste of heavenly grace, yet they found it repulsive. Confused and even a little sad, I took the remaining bottles to my chamber and stashed them away. But I didn't forget about them. Every year on the anniversary of the last day I saw the boy, I drink one precious bottle. To his memory.

I have done this for the past eighty-four years.

I cannot say what exact preservative quality this beer contains, but many brothers have come and gone since then, and I have remained. I have not much aged, but every year I count more lines on my face in the reflection of the copper mash tuns and and washbasin in my chambers. I have tried many times to replicate the brew, but without the merchant's exotic hops it has been for naught. Earlier, I would even travel down the path, looking for the merchant with the dark skin and wild hair, but always returned through the wooden gate empty-handed.

Now I spend the eternal days alone in my chamber laboratory, dissecting brains and examining dreams, looking for answers to questions I don't even know how to ask. My hypotheses and ideas are ill-formed, suppositions and premises unsupported by any scientific or spiritual evidence. I have distanced myself from God, as terrible and unjust as that is for one who has followed the Strict Observance as long as I. But I know it to be true. Scientific inquiry has been no better. It has failed me as well.

I am lost. A pariah, blessed with long life but cursed with unformed purpose and unanswered questions.

It is a Monday, 1917. My brothers keep me at a distance. Their song echoes through the cold corridors of the ancient building as the sun rises over the eastern hedge. I want to sing, but I won't. I hear the brothers drop breakfast at my door, and I wait for their footsteps to recede before I emerge.

Despite my cloistering I am aware of The Great War raging across the continent. The German army occupies much of the countryside beyond the monastery walls. Stories of pillage and surprise sex reach my ears, and plumes of smoke again threaten to blot out the sun.

After breakfast I see from my window a group approach the foot of the garden. Belgians, by their uniforms, and my brothers unlatch the rickety gate and allow them inside. One is borne on a stretcher, white bandages soaked though with blood of dried crimson. He looks familiar.

Over the next day I hear the whispers throughout the abbey. The soldier is mortally wounded and will not survive the night. No medicine seems to help and he moans and whispers as he fades into darkness.

Tonight is the anniversary, though, and it is a special one.

I reach down below the floorboards and pull up the bottle of elixir. Dust and clay coat the glass, almost a century old, and it resists a bit as I pull it from the simple wood box.

It is the last.

I spin the bottle in my gnarled hands, and reach for the key to open it, but I hesitate. What has this extra life given me? What clarity of purpose has my extended years granted? Compared to the promise of a young life renewed?

Donning my ceremonial robe, I take the bottle downstairs to the infirmary. The soldier is there, wrapped in wool blankets, and his breath is shallow. His lungs are hollow and as raspy as olive branches dragging on stone. He looks look up at me.

His pale, sunken eyes see me for the first time. They widen in recognition.

I meet his gaze, pull the key, and open the beer.

Obliterati
Nov 13, 2012

Ask me about being the most Magnificent Bastard in EU4 Multiplayer.

e: RIP

Obliterati fucked around with this message at Dec 7, 2017 around 15:01

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

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

Deltasquid posted:

wikipedia posted:
A passionate alpinist, King Albert I died in a mountaineering accident while climbing alone on the Roche du Vieux Bon Dieu at Marche-les-Dames, in the Ardennes region of Belgium near Namur. His death shocked the world and he was deeply mourned, both in Belgium and abroad. Because King Albert was an expert climber, some questioned the official version of his death and suggested that the king was murdered (or even committed suicide) somewhere else and that his body had never been at Marche-les-Dames, or that it was deposited there.[20][21]

A Good Dog 1256 words

“Sorry, this old tailor can’t give you a bone right now,” said Mr Stubbins.

Ali tilted his head at the tailor as if to say ‘Why?’

“Because you’ve fed.”

Ali wasn’t really up on pop culture so didn’t really understand what a sweet pun that was, he just sat there feeling slightly miffed at the fact he wasn’t being given a bone.

The door to the shop opened; Marie entered with about a foot of snow, and quickly closed the door behind her. She had to put her full weight against it to get it to close. “We might not have any more customers today,” she said. “Minor avalanche, apparently?”

“What exactly is a minor avalanche?” asked Mr Stubbins.

“One that only covers everything with snow instead of crushing us to death,” said Marie. “Anyway, I guess we’re stuck here for a while.”

“Let’s crack out the board games and the snacks, then,” said Mr Stubbins. So, Marie got down the Monopoly set, and she played as the boot and Mr Stubbins played as the hat, and Ali played as the dog, even though the dog was an inferior Scottish Terrier rather than a clearly superior Belgian Shepherd, like him.

And then an hour into their game Ali remembered why he hated Monopoly, and suggested by way of pointed looks that they watch TV or something, anything other than playing more Monopoly.

“Yeah all right,” said Marie, and then to Mr Stubbins, “I think we can just declare you the winner at this point.”

“Oh, come now,” he said, “surely you want to go through the process of having to mortgage all your properties and sell off all your houses.”

“Not really,” she said.

So, they sat and watched TV for a while, and Ali fell asleep, and then so did Mr Stubbins, and Marie decided what with the avalanche and all, maybe it would be easier if she slept in the shop as well.

And when she woke up and opened the door, the snow was all gone, but also so were their cars.

“Hmmm,” she said.

Mr Stubbins came up behind her. “Hmmm indeed,” he said. “This is a bit of a predicament.”

And Ali also came up behind them and gave Mr Stubbins a look and a whine that suggested that it had been sufficient time since he’d fed, and Mr Stubbins relented and went and got him a bone.

“The phone’s dead,” said Marie, holding up the phone in question.

“Hmmm,” said Mr Stubbins again. “It’s a fair way to town without a car.”

“Bit cold, too,” said Marie.

Ali, overhearing their conversation, put down his bone and did some woofings at them.

“Even for you, it’s probably too cold,” said Marie.

Ali woofed again, more insistently.

“Hmmm,” said Mr Stubbins again. “If you’re that insistent, I may have something that would make it more bearable.”

Mr Stubbins went into his workshop and came out with a dog sized furry coat.

Ali looked at it with his head on one side.

“It will keep you warm,” said Mr Stubbins.

Ali barked in assent.

So, Mr Stubbins and Marie helped Ali into the dog coat, and then Mr Stubbins wrote a note that said ‘Hey, so we’re stuck up here without our cars and the phone’s dead, can you give us a hand ey? PS we’re at the old tailor shop up the mountain.’ And he tucked the note into one of the pockets on Ali’s coat, and Ali woofed reassuringly and started to run down the mountain.

“Maybe you should reconsider the location of the shop if we get back,” said Marie.

Mr Stubbins shrugged. “The tourists like it.”

~

Ali bounded down the mountain, in the all limbs moving at different speeds manner of a dog that has not realised that an icy mountain has very little traction. Eventually all limbs reverted to moving at the same speed, by virtue of they weren’t moving at all in relation to his body, he was just sliding down the mountain. He was picking up speed, and given the cliff he was heading towards, that seemed less than ideal. He tried digging a paw into the ground to slow his descent, but he couldn’t get any purchase, and he got rapidly closer and closer to the edge of the cliff, until he found himself flying off the edge of it, and closed his eyes as he waited for the inevitable pain at the bottom.

He opened his eyes again when it had been a decent length of time without any bone shattering landing. The ground was still coming towards him, but much slower than he expected. Ali woofed in bemusement. He certainly didn’t remember being able to fly, but maybe it was like how butterflies don’t get their wings until a certain amount of… but they had the cocoon thing, didn’t they? He glanced to where he imagined wings would be if he had them. There were no wings, but his fur coat was shimmering strangely.

~

“Will Ali be all right, do you think?” asked Marie.

Mr Stubbins smiled. “He should be fine. That’s a very good fur coat I gave him.”

Marie shook her head. “There’s no way you just had that coat lying around for no reason. You made it for him, didn’t you?”

Mr Stubbins shrugged. “He’s a good dog.”

~

The good dog in question had landed softly at the bottom of the mountain, and was gingerly testing all his limbs to make sure that he had really fallen all the way down the mountain without turning into a Belgian pancake or breaking every single bone in his doggie body.

Then he trotted over to the butcher, where they were sure to find his note, comment on what a good boy he was, and reward him with some sausages or something befitting of his good boy status.

The butcher was closed. Ali frowned as his dream of sausages slipped away, but continued to the nearby petrol station. The petrol attendant saw Ali, and noticing what a cute and probably good boy he was, bent down to pet him. Ali woofed softly as if to say, ‘Yes all right, that’s all well and good, but there’s a very important letter in my pocket, also do you have any sausages by any chance?’

The attendant finished petting Ali, and went as if to walk away, so Ali walked in front of him, blocking his way, and pointedly looked at the pocket on the coat. The attendant tried to move around him again, and Ali blocked him again. There was more pointed starings and pointings with the nose at the pocket. Eventually, the attendant figured it out and got the message.

‘Humans are dumb,’ thought Ali.

~

Once the note had been read and the attendant, who it turned out was named Joe, had made some calls, a rescue was mounted. Maud led the rescue, on account of she had chains to put on her tyres and so could get up the mountain. Ali sat in the front passenger seat, sadly sausageless, but enjoying scratchings behind the ear and pattings while Maud drove the two of them up the mountain. And when they got up the top and rescued Marie and Mr Stubbins, Mr Stubbins told Ali what a good boy he was, and gave him some sausages.

And Ali ate all of the sausages, and they were very good, so it was a good day, all things considered.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Trappist again
1080 words

Abbot Van Hecke drained his bottle, swirling his tongue around the rim to collect the residual foam then belched. He leaned back in his creaky abbot chair, feet on the table, then cocked his hand back and spun the bottle end over end across the cavernous refectory. He smiled broadly at the smash.

“Brother Krasimir,” he intoned. “Brother Krasimirrrrrrr”

There was no response. The Abbot frowned. He leant forward and picked up one of the bottle caps on the scarred ancient table, then spun it across the room. It bounced off the tonsured head of a young man sitting across the room, who jerked awake, habit sleeves flailing..

“Father, yes. Yes? Father Abbot?”

The Abbot was still frowning. His finger stabbed out at the befuddled monk.

“You were sleeping Brother Krasimir. God won’t like that. God is very dark on bad snoozy monks. Now get me more beer.” He waved his arm vaguely at the smashed bottle mound. other end of the hall. “I have run out.”

Brother Krasimir was hesitant. He stood, bunching his cincture in both hands.

“Father Abbott, there are--”

“GOOOOOO!” yelled the Abbot with the righteous fury of a Walewein. “Fetch me my loving beer!”

Brother Krasimir took a sidling step to the right and crouched down a little as if preparing himself to dodge any hurled projectiles. “There is… none left, Father Abbot.”

The words fell into the Abbot’s ears and shattered into shards of purest incredulity.

“No… beer? Beer is gone? Gone like the dreams in the morning?”

Father Abbott felt tears forming in his eyes. Then he gave a furious blink and pushed his chair back from the table and stood in one, swaying, motion.

“What bullshit is this. Take me there, Brother Krasimir. I will not be thwarted. It is time.”

Like a brown woolen stormcloud he swept through the refectory collecting Krasimir along the way. The young monk was babbling explanations about tourists and internet sales and unseasonably hot weather, but the Abbot wasn’t listening. His mind was on the day, many years ago, when he’d come to the Abbey. The Abbot of the time, Abbot Mooerklat had been very drunk.

“Brother Van Hecke,” the Abbot had said. “You’re a fine fellow. You’ll do good, good,” he’d waved his hand vaguely. “Good monking. Might even win the monk race and become an Abbot, ha? Unlikely but we live in a world with airplanes and the wireless, who knows what mysteries the mind of God will unfold, hey? Just remember, the final bottle. Within itself. The fiiiinal bottle. ”

At that point he’d collapsed in a gentle pile of snores and Brother Van Hecke (as he then was) had tiptoed out of the room, but not before purloining the tiny key that the Abbot had been patting as he spoke. The old Abbot drank himself to death a few years later and never mentioned it, so Van Hecke presumed he’d either forgotten their meeting or that passing on the mysterious key had been his goal all along. It had slipped his mind in the intervening years, after he’d tried every lock in the Abbey to no avail, but the sudden urgency of no beer at all had sent a glorious holy inspiration sleeting through his beer-fumed mind.

"--and then, Father Abbot, Brother Voorkek let the milch-cow in from her grazing and she tipped over the vat, so that put paid to the new brew, but we have--"

"ZZZTT," said the Abbot, hand upheld. They had arrived at the cell in which the old Abbot had spent his last months. Van Hecke pushed it and it swung open. The cell wasn't popular because of the old Abbot's final project, a three metre high statue of a beer bottle that made sleeping uncomfortable. There were also reports that the ghost of the old Abbot would come and climb into bed in the middle of the night, but Van Hecke had made it known that such speculation was likely heretical and it had ceased. Now, as he gazed at the enormous beer bottle, painted (inexplicably) with a dilute solution of a brown yeast based extract the old Abbot had had imported from Australia, he was nodding. At last, at last.

"You knew, you old bastard," Van Hecke muttered to himself. "You knew this day would come. Ha!" He clapped Brother Krasimir on the shoulder. "Break that open for me, Brother."

The Abbot had not heard a man splutter before, and it was a curious sound, as though he was tongue wrestling a dozen words into submission. "Bbbut," he finally managed.

Van Hecke shook his head. This was most unsatisfactory. There was, he suddenly remembered with another lightning flash of clarity, a sledge hammer in the emergency cupboard the man from the municipality had made them install a few years back. A few strides later, he was hefting it in thirsty hands. He swung it behind him, ignoring the terrified squeak from Brother Krasimir as it whooshed past his head, then slammed it into the statue. The brown-stained plaster cracked and a puff of dust came out. He chuckled and swung again, loosening a brick. A frenzy of blows left him panting, and a head-sized hole in the bricks.

"Now, you buffoon! Quickly!" He was pulling bricks away, flinging them behind him, and Krasimir was helping. The final beer! He could taste its rich pungence already. The final state of beer, blessed by the effort of man, sanctified by the holy spirit! He pulled one last brick and reached in, his hand closing on a cold metal handle. He pulled it carefully out and set it on the floor. A smallish metal case with a lock, large enough for a small bottle.

"Here it is, Brother Krasimir. Here it is." The Abbot looked at the monk and was filled with a sudden beneficience. He was not always as kind to Krasimir as he could be. He leaned down and turned his stolen key in the lock and cracking the case open. Inside, of course, was a bottle.

"You may have the first taste, brother, of the final beer." He popped the top and handed it over.

Krasimir lifted it up, muttered a puzzled benediction, and drank.

The Abbot looked at Krasimir's frozen expression. It did not seem as grateful or transported as he would have hoped. He took the bottle from his clenched hands, and took a sip of the fermented urine of old Abbot Mooerklat.

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


submissions closed, nerds

EDIT: I'm giving everyone who toxxed a cool 12 extra hours to avoid a ban.

Deltasquid fucked around with this message at Oct 9, 2017 around 09:30

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat


Gravy Boat 2k

Goddammit, I fell asleep. And I'm not going to submit the horseshit I was writing between three other projects after an all-nighter, because I can see now that it would have been a guaranteed loss anyway. Sorry.

anime was right
Jun 27, 2008

by R. Guyovich


you dont have to tell us why you failed, just fail, no one cares, poo poo happens, lol

Obliterati
Nov 13, 2012

Ask me about being the most Magnificent Bastard in EU4 Multiplayer.

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Obliterati posted:

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words

My title fails
"I'm on fire!" he screamed.
Everybody in the pool shrugged at that.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

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

Sham bam bamina! posted:

Goddammit, I fell asleep. And I'm not going to submit the horseshit I was writing between three other projects after an all-nighter, because I can see now that it would have been a guaranteed loss anyway. Sorry.

Counterpoint: just write imo

derp
Jan 21, 2010


Lipstick Apathy

Obliterati posted:

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words

A whole week to write a few pages long story?? This is impossible! My life is so busy I can't set aside a few hours over the course of a week to do a thing I'm supposedly very passionate about! I might end up writing something bad, and have it seen by a half dozen people before I can easily delete it from view! I'd better just write nothing!

flerp
Feb 25, 2014


Obliterati posted:

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words

pee pee poo poo my words are bad and no matter how much i blame other things they will always be bad

Fuubi
Jan 18, 2015

THUNDERDOME LOSER

At least it's not the French

Word count: 901

"Ensign! Report!" The captain's voice thundered over the blaring alarm. The shaking had woken her moments before, and captain Rose Molhey of the US space explorer Watterson did not like to have her sleep disturbed.


"M- multiple EMP explosions off starboard quarter, Captain!" Ensign Weaver's voice quavered. This was his third week on duty, and his second night on the bridge, and he had hoped for an eventless first voyage. 


"Keep it together, lad," the captain responded, not with a lack of empathy. She remembered her first battle, back when she was but an ensign.


She turned to her first officer standing by the Wheel. "Damage report."


"Bumps and buckles all over the hull, and on most of the crew, but no serious injuries. EMP took down visuals, but radar is still working. Shields are holding steady, too." First officer Hanlon was a handsome man, chosen for his skills as a pilot, and as a team leader. His suaveness had put him in many of the ship's beds, including the captain's. When asked, he attributed that to his easygoing nature, and winning smile. Up until the first explosion he'd been charming the lieutenant at the coms, with expected results.


"What is the source of the explosions? We don't seem to be under attack," captain Molhey asked as she took the captain's seat.


"From what we can tell we have ventured into an old, uncharted, minefield. We set a few off before we noticed, and we're holding still now until we've charted a way through. Drones have been deployed." 


"What's the ETA on th-!" A sudden explosion threw the captain out of her seat and sent her sprawling into the navcom console. The bridge shook and the floor lurched before the grav-stabilizers had a chance to kick in. 


"Evasive maneuvers!" hollered Hanlon. He was on the Wheel before anyone else had time to react, hands moving deftly over the controls. 


A new dot showed up on the radar, and as the ship started to move, he started to maneuver them away from the dot, and through the minefield, using only the radar and the partial data collected from the drones.


"Ensign, check on the captain," he commanded ensign Weaver without taki g his eyes off the screens in front of him. "Take her down to sick bay."


"I'm... I'm all right." Hanlon couldn't help glance at the captain on her hands and knees on the floor. Her hair was disheveled, and blood was streaming out of a small jack near her ear, but as captain Rose Molhey rose Hanlon saw a fire in her eyes he had not seen before.


She'd be a devil in the sack tonight. he thought.


"Watch out!" The shrill voice of the luitenant at coms brought him back to focus, and he quickly finished his maneuvers, and moved the ship out of the minefield. 


Suddenly, in front of them on the radar was a huge red blip.


"Lieutenant! Give me a name on that ship." Captain Molhey's voice was ice.


"The Quantum Space Identification Transponder states it as N/A." She swallowed before continuing. "It's a pirate ship."


More explosions rocked the ship. Everybody was hanging on for their lives as Hanlon executed moves that the grav-stabilizers had a hard time to compensate for. At first, he managed to avoid the enemy torpedoes, but finally, one clipped a wing, and with it the engines died. 


"Get ready! We are going to get boarded!" As everyone got up from the floor once again the captain and her first mate had already drawn their pistols. Soon everybody had armed themselves.


They waited for the inevitable sound of ship linking to ship, but what they heard was instead more explosions.


"What's happening out there?" Rose looked at the lieutenant.


"I'm... I'm not sure. The pirates were there on the radar, but then their QSIT went silent." She looked closer at her instruments. "But I think there's another ship out there! I think we are saved!"


"Identify them, quickly."


"It's the-! Oh." The lieutenant looked up. "It's the BSS Hergé"


"The French?" The first officer groaned. "We were saved by the french? We'll never live this down."


"It's not the French," captain Rose responded. "It's the Belgians. Open up a channel."


"'Ello? This is captsin Dupond of the BSS Hergé speaking. Hope you are all fine over there." The thick accent was jovial, and Rose relaxed somewhat.


"Yes, we are good now. Thank you for your timely rescue," she responded.


"We are happy to be of assistance. We see your engines are down. We can send some men over to help with repairs, if that is agreeable?"


Rose smiled. "Thank you, that is agreeable."


"Then prepare for the anchoring. Have a good day."


The two ships anchored together, and the Belgians boarded the ship.


"Everybody, stand down. They are here to help," the captain said over the intercom. That was the last thing she ever said.


As she greeted the captain of the Hergé on her bridge, she was shot at point blank range, her crew was gunned down, and the Watterson was stripped of all its valuables.


As captain Dupond reentered his bridge he told his crew to change their QSIT back to N/A, and to refill the minefield.


"Ah, Belgians. We get them every time with it." The captain laughed, and the Hergé set off to find its next prey.

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat


Gravy Boat 2k

Obliterati posted:

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words
Emergency Override
42 words

The light said that the valve was closed. It's not my fault that they didn't design it right. Like you would have known better! And why would anyone put an indicator on the back of a control panel? "Operator error" my rear end!

Hawklad
May 3, 2003


Who wants to live
forever?


DIVE!

College Slice

Obliterati posted:

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words

Its a Trappist
21 words

"sebmojo stole my idea and then wrote a dumb story that was still much better than mine," exclaimed hawklad, admiral ackbarishly.

Aesclepia
Dec 5, 2013
Next verse same as the first.

Obliterati posted:

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words

Fail fail fail. Fail? Fail.

Fail, fail fail fail faily fail. Fail fail. Fail fail fail, fail Trex fail.

"Fail, fail."

Fail fail fail, failed. Fail.

Captain_Indigo
Jul 29, 2007

Smooth soft red velvety lungs.

Obliterati posted:

INTERPROMPT
Nobody cares why you failed
100 words

"There are deep set flaws in my personality.

Nobody cares.

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


Week 270 results: L'époque Médiocre

This week, Thunderdome showed once again that goons are good at making culturally insensitive puns and memes about meat, while writing good stories itself proved to be…


“Difficile, difficile, difficile. Faut voir.”

Much like a soggy and plain waffle made in America, with no brown sugar or whipped cream to speak of, this week’s stories left a plain aftertaste that masqueraded as Belgian but was obviously off-brand. From made up names, to significant others holding one conversation in two different languages, from wise old Flemish men who gave magical advice, to shipping aliens off to Brussels for reasons even the in-universe character couldn’t explain, there were many details that tried to integrate the stories into Belgium but left the judges scratching their heads.



The final nail in the coffin of Belgian national pride was that half of those who said they’d be present, failed to show up at all, including literally everybody who had toxxed. In some ways, this might be a metaphor for Belgium itself.

All in all, a resoundingly mediocre week, where the sentiment amongst judges could be boiled down to "This could have been better."

One Honourable Mention goes to Derp's Light of Other Days. Overall the judges found it was competently written, with good prose, if a bit long. There were good ideas bubbling beneath the surface, and I have to say the description of 't Poatersgat is spot-on for a Belgian dark, dank cellar-turned-into-bar which I was happy to see. Unfortunately, the story missed the winner seat by having a couple of paragraphs too many, that made the early part a bit of a slog and wasted words that could have been used for actually traveling through time.

Dishonorable Mention goes to Exmond's A Meaty Deal. While the prose, lack of punctuation and cardboard characters could be forgiven in a week like this one, the meat jokes got old approximately 5 minutes after the IRC chat stopped making them. Much like the Dutch, the meat jokes reared their ugly head once too often to my liking, and this deserved a badge of shame of sorts.

Then, we move on to the loser of the week. This one might come as a shock, because the prose at a first glance is mediocre enough to dodge a bullet. Yet the story overstayed its welcome after the second sentence, retreading the same character note over and over again, like a concussed puppy pedaling in the water and sinking deeper and deeper into the shallow end of the pool that was week 270. The pay-off for this slog was a one-two punch of made-up and completely bewildering names (just use google jfc) and a piss joke. Thanks for ending my week on a sour note, Sebmojo, with your terrible Trappist Again. Go stand in the corner.

Finally, one story rose to the challenge of actually being competently written and not chock full of cliché. This week's Winner, Obliterati's You Have Nothing To Lose But Your Chains read quickly, inoffensively and naturally, which is more than can be said of the other stories. In addition, it had a certain tone and put a neat spin on the flash prompt which I could appreciate. This story was the least divisive, liked by every judge and without any sort of cliché, although it certainly has room for improvement. Nevertheless, it stands proudly above the other contestants.

For the coming term, Obliterati will be Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Belgium. We cede the floor to him to form coalition talks (get co-judges) and set out a programme for the coming legislature (proooompt!!)

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Exmond
May 31, 2007


im doin it ma im writing

THUNDERDOME


Deltasquid posted:

Dishonorable Mention goes to Exmond's A Meaty Deal. While the prose, lack of punctuation and cardboard characters could be forgiven in a week like this one, the meat jokes got old approximately 5 minutes after the IRC chat stopped making them. Much like the Dutch, the meat jokes reared their ugly head once too often to my liking, and this deserved a badge of shame of sorts.

IRC posted:

<Deltasquid> “We have lived for 100 of years and nobody knows our names. This statue is on the lips of every bloody Belgium person and tourist”
<Deltasquid> this needed a dot at the end
<Deltasquid> She ran her hand along my arm in a comforting motion “Legends and legacies don’t matter. Just the time we have now does”
<Deltasquid> same
<Deltasquid> where are ur dots
<Deltasquid> “Easy for you to say” I murmured, hoping the smile on my face warmed my words “You are going to live forever aren’t you”
<Deltasquid> where
<Deltasquid> are
<Deltasquid> ur
<Deltasquid> commas
<Deltasquid> and ur dots??

God..drat you dialogue tags and dialogue in general! Can the next prompt be having mute characters?

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