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Feb 25, 2014


Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo
Doctor Rope
Freshly blooded after a brutal defeat, I return once more to spill blood upon these sands.

My thirst for glory drives me. Who here wants to get cut?

Veteran or rookie, I'll bury you under the spew that is my bad words. Who feels bold?

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

Anomalous Amalgam posted:

Freshly blooded after a brutal defeat, I return once more to spill blood upon these sands.

My thirst for glory drives me. Who here wants to get cut?

Veteran or rookie, I'll bury you under the spew that is my bad words. Who feels bold?

it's been a while. batter up.


Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
Ok butthorns.

Your brawl is due on December 12th sometime during that day whenever your time zone says so idgaf.

I want a story that ends where it begins. Interpret that as you like and take up to 2000 words to tell your tale.

Upon request I will provide a list of 4 songs for each of you. Choose 1 of those 4.

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

Chili posted:

Ok butthorns.

Your brawl is due on December 12th sometime during that day whenever your time zone says so idgaf.

I want a story that ends where it begins. Interpret that as you like and take up to 2000 words to tell your tale.

Upon request I will provide a list of 4 songs for each of you. Choose 1 of those 4.

yeah, gimme some songs, can we bump teh date to the 19th we are having tdnerd meetup in my town before that

Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo
Doctor Rope

Chili posted:

Ok butthorns.

Your brawl is due on December 12th sometime during that day whenever your time zone says so idgaf.

I want a story that ends where it begins. Interpret that as you like and take up to 2000 words to tell your tale.

Upon request I will provide a list of 4 songs for each of you. Choose 1 of those 4.

:toxx: ill also take the songs

Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
Yeah take until the 19th.

I'll song you both when I get home.

Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
Since you both wanted songs, I'm combining the 4 apiece into one list of 8. Dibs the one you want and it's yours.

The the gently caress is this chili? pick:
The my daughter's current jam pick:
The old school pick:
The loving jaaaam pick:
The collaborative pick:
The I know someone in this band pick:
The why the gently caress not? pick:
The underrated pick:

Sep 30, 2006

stayin c o o l

Ironic Twist posted:

Thunderdome Week CLI: Rewriting The Books

And now, one of my favorite bands of all-time is going to take the stage.

Wikipedia posted:

The Books were an American duo, formed in New York City in 1999, consisting of guitarist and vocalist Nick Zammuto and cellist Paul de Jong. Their releases typically incorporated samples of obscure sounds and speech...
The Books are commonly cited by critics to be of a genre of their own.[27] Zammuto has described it as collage music.[18] Paul de Jong described it as "the new folk music...[w]e make our own instruments, use our own libraries of sound bites while trying to create something universally human."...
The Books' music usually consists of acoustic instrumentation of folk melodies usually played on guitar, cello, banjo and more, combined with a diverse range of samples obtained from cassettes found in thrift stores,[18] which are digitally processed and edited.[5] They also rarely use a drum kit in recordings and performances, instead favouring inanimate objects like children's toys and filing cabinets, which are sampled and looped.[29] Some observers contend that their music is aleatoric,[32] but Zammuto has disagreed, saying the music is very tightly controlled.[18]

You've heard this one before: pick a song by The Books, turn it into a story. I'm not going to be that much of a stickler over the prompt, but I would like to see some connection, otherwise what's the point?

You can either pick a song yourself or ask me to assign you one, but I will be giving all assignments out at once on Wednesday night EST, so if you want to start your story earlier, it's in your best interest to find your own song. This link might be helpful. Or this one, for those not in the US.

Also, the usual restrictions: no fanfiction, nonfiction or erotica.

Word Count: 1300 words
Signup Deadline: Friday, June 26, Midnight EST
Submission Deadline: Sunday, June 28, Midnight EST

Play Me Away
Nine hundred fifty words.

The moment the scarred man walked into my saloon, I knew I was going to send him straight to hell. I walk past the ‘Wanted’ poster bearing his face every day from the time the paper was crisp and new to the point it was ragged and decayed. Rumour is every man who went after him wound up dead. I intend to avoid that fate. His name is Ernie Bunson, but everyone calls him Blink; as in, ‘blink and you’re dead’. He’s the fastest draw in Rupert’s Land and the meanest to boot.

It’s definitely him on the poster. Older now, but that massive fish hook scar running halfway up the right side of his face was unmistakable.

I continue playing my piano without missing a note. I get a nickel for an hour of music and I’m expected to keep playing even if someone’s teeth gets smashed in. It’s an old player piano though, so it has a song it can play itself if I need a break to piss or get some whiskey. I watch Blink from the corner of my eye make his way to the card table and take a seat, his back facing the door.

The truth is, I’m no do-gooder. All sorts of scum find themselves in this place every day looking for booze and women. The bounty hunters don’t even come around here anymore, on account they get shot up and fed to ole Roy Herminson’s hogs. We haven’t even elected a new sheriff since George Parker got lasso’d and dragged behind that horse through the brush for trying to put an end to quick-draws on main street. I may not be inclined to do the right thing, but I am done playing show tunes for scoundrels and prostitutes. Blink has a two thousand pound bounty on his head back in Upper Canada. Maybe justice is just another word for opportunity.

I set my piano to play the loop of perforated paper inside the piano. It’s “God Save the Queen”. It came with the piano and I’m too cheap to get another, but it usually garners a hearty laugh from the boys. This time is no exemption. I get up from my bench and make my way to the bar.

The man behind the bar was an old frenchie named Pierre, but people just called him Pete.

“Ugh. I ‘ate when you play dis atrocious songe. I wish I could suicide myself!” He said to me in a thick French accent as I approach him, “dis will not count toward your ‘our, piano man.”

“That’s alright with me Pete. Tell ya what, I’ll sell you the piano for a bottle of whiskey and a round for everybody!” I exclaim, drawing all the attention in the place.

“But piano man, why would I buy the cow when I get the milk anyway?” He says as he gestures to me.

“Well, I’m about to retire, and if you don’t buy it, I’ll take it with me. At least if you buy you can find another pianist. Hell, you can even buy its a new song if you like. Otherwise you’ll have to see how much people like to drink to the sound of other people loving.”

“Well piano man,” he says to me as he passes me a full bottle of hooch, “that is a cheap price for a player piano. You ‘ave a deal.”

I slam my fist on the bar, shake his hand, and shout “This round’s on me!” Then I grab my bottle and make for the door as the rush of people crowd the bar.

My horse is still tied up out front, so I free her and make sure the saddle is on tight. I take a long drink of the spirits from the bottle and then place it in the sack on her back. Then I loop a long piece of rope through the stirrups under her and tie it off. I walk back into the saloon with the other end of the rope, tied into a noose.

The bar is packed with all the patrons. Looking for their free drink, all except the card players who still have money on the table. I’m standing right behind Blink as the other players notice me. They know something’s up, but I can see Blink is winning, so they keep their mouth shut hoping they’ll get their money back yet. In a funny way, you can trust a scumbag. At least to look after themselves.

I throw the noose over Blink’s head and pull it tight before he even knows what’s happening. His gun is in his hand instantly but before he can turned around I pull the rope as hard as I can, twice.

My horse takes off into a sprint, yanking Blink Bunson through three tables and the saloon doors, snapping his neck and killing him instantly. The outlaws at the bar turn to see me trying to collect a bounty, but before their guns are drawn I manage to jump on Blink’s back and ride him out of the bar.

Some of the patrons follow us onto the street, but they’re too drunk to score a hit. As soon as we are out of town I pull myself to a standing position. On Blink’s back, holding the rope like I was riding a plow. From here I can coax the old girl to slow down, stop, and let me ride her.

I wonder if I should toss him on the old girl’s back. It’s not the Christian thing to do, dragging him like that.

I pop the cork on my whiskey. Then again, I ain’t no Christian.

Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo
Doctor Rope

Chili posted:

The the gently caress is this chili? pick:

Absolutely this.

Sep 30, 2006

stayin c o o l
See archive.

SlipUp fucked around with this message at 20:07 on Dec 30, 2019

Feb 25, 2014
hope all the domers here had a great thanksgiving. few entrants but that's okay it's a holiday weekend

sign-ups are closed! good luck all. please do not fail :D

Mar 14, 2012

Internet Dating Fifteen Years After Having Been Raped

1,240 Words

I’d prefer to see you somewhere... It would be... Don’t book a hotel... Just me and you outside the library. A café? A bar? No... I know you’re travelling.... Not a hotel... Me and you won’t... I don’t want to meet you if... Goodbye!

All my friends say I should be dating. That I’m wonderful. That I deserve, what?

I want to feel important, feel loved. I want to feel fulfilled.

—You’re beautiful

It’s not libidinal; it reminds me every time I log in. It soothes me a little. More than a little: this deep blue, this light yellow. It’s bold text with lighter, delicate words beneath. The site is a whole world to me; safe I guess. Its blue and yellow is calm. It’s my world. It’s me and my face. Like it’s normal to list your loves. ‘Loves’ is such a strong word. Such a strong sentiment. What do I love? Can I love?


The foolishness of thinking ‘Love books! Read books!’ and ‘Amy Poehler means so much!’ can say who you are. ‘Fight for your library!’ Do these words—these crafted answers I worked on—reveal I’m afraid or do they just say, “Nuh-uh. No way. Go Away!” with no hint of regret?

—dtf, hbu

I can’t remember most of what I wrote on my profile. It was so much effort; seemingly not caring, being effusive, being strong. How do you know what you look like to men? To anyone? How do you know if this is who you are? What do they see? What do they think?

Eventually I got into it. Making up parts of myself, I enjoyed it. I answered questions as though it meant something. As though the algorithm cares. Does it know all about me? Can it tell? I bet it can. Men can’t tell. They don’t care. They don’t notice. They just want.

—We haven’t talked in a while. I miss our chats.


—Still busy with work?

I smile.

I type.

The librarian looks at me.

I type. —in the middle of it right now, forgot I was logged on, talk later?


He sends a smiley.

It goes nowhere, most of the time. It’s strained conversation. Why would I believe it could be any different? I’m afraid of my friends’ boyfriends, never mind their boyfriends’ single guy friends. Not always. I can eat a meal with my friends and their guys. I can have one, maybe two drinks. They have three, then four, often five, more. I’m afraid. They can handle their drinks. I can’t. I can’t handle them. They’re so tall, standing around us. They always stand. Towering over us. Even the small guys; pressing his legs against me. I have space. I’m not trapped. I’m loved by the people around me. I’m cared for. I’m safe. His hands press down on the table as though we’re a military map. A conquest. He’s so close. As though he could reach out and kill.

Not kill.

It’s a stray thought.

Click through.

I don’t pay attention. I just click through. I scroll down the page. Another page.

I look around the grand room in the library. It’s somewhere to be with people. With good people. These are real people; humble, careful, searching. Everyone’s trying to be quiet: that’s good. But there’s noise. A gentle rustle. It feels like living.

A librarian is sorting books. She smiles at me. I’m at an open table. It’s better this way; easier; better. Once, in the back room, hidden by the shelves, a guy took the seat right on top of me. There was a whole big table. He could have sat at the other end, opposite me, and perved at me that way. I wouldn’t have noticed. I could smell him.

Click through.

He’s built. Like meat.

Inhale. This place is neutral. Maybe there’s a smell of rain? Maybe I just smell the sound of wet jackets being shaken off? Droplets brushing off pants, jumpers, skirts. Umbrellas being tapped on the floor. Tap tap. Tap.

Click through.

Wimpy, unshaven. Not even clean for his picture.

Click through.

Just a name, no profile. Male bots? A stalker?

I smell something like the sun thinking of Ro’s message. The cursor hovers near his profile. I click. I bring it up. “We haven’t talked in a while.” I call him Ro, Ronan. Could I call him Ro? Would he be OK with that? Would he mind? What would he call me?

He probably has tens of women on the go but I’m not busy with work. I want to make time for him and me. Him and me! I read his message a second, third, fourth time. “We haven’t talked in a while.” He said he misses me.

How do I tell him? How do I say it? “Let’s meet up!” I want to meet him, I do. To see him, finally. He’s strong; calm and patient. Months we’ve talked for. I want to meet him. I can.

I click away.

I should tell him, just say it. Instead I click again.


Click through: another profile.

This guy’s handsome. He looks like he cares. Festivals; not just big concerts. Farmers’ markets, parades, plays when he can find someone to go with. “I rarely go out but I like big crowds. It’s not worth it unless you feel a little lost in the moment.” I draw deeply on him. He could hold me.

I want to be held.

He’s stunning. Really, proper stunning.

Ro is plain, but more? He means more to me. He smiles at me; through his profile. I imagine him smiling as he types. He’s patient and kind. We’ve talked for months.

Click out.

Click back.

This guy is, just?

I open the message box. Type. Delete. Don’t type. Make a joke about carrots. Farmer’s markets, you see. Delete.

I’m lost. He’s too handsome, you can’t send him a message. He’s probably vain. You’re still thinking of Ronan.

—Hey baby!


“Hey baby!” It’s wrong and I understand why. It’s not what I deserve but I get it. I know the meaning, the sentiment. I feel young. Sixteen again. It’s to make you feel young. I feel like that teenage girl again. ‘Hey baby!’ Innocent in how wrong it can be. How simple-plain wrong. Block; if you want a child! I feel small.

I feel small in a different way when I talk to Ro. Small and vulnerable, like I need him. Let’s meet up. I want him, I think. I think I like him. I want him.


I’ve decided.

I type. — I’m actually working in the library now. I didn’t realise I had this page open but you’re right, I missed talking to you.


Ronan’s typing. Baby flutters. Baby flutterbyes.



Ronan’s typing. Maybe he’s deleting something? Typing.

—Sorry, on the phone. At work. Give me a minute

I need to say it. I need to say it. I have to say it. —How about we meet up? I want to meet you.


He’s typing.

My fingers are typing. —We’ve talked for so long, I feel like we actually know each other. I think it’s about time. I want to meet you. Let’s meet.









— You’re in Dublin, right? I know a great hotel.

The librarian behind her desk looks at me. I smile at her. She smiles back.

sephiRoth IRA
Jun 13, 2007

"Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality."

-Carl Sagan
Tribal Council
936 words

The comments susurrated around the fire, nearly drowning out the surf from the night ocean crashing on the rocks below. The old man, BluesFan1995, stood before them, the wizening of his years evident in his missing teeth and the crags on his face. The golden Admin medallion swung heavy around his emaciated neck.


BluesFan1995’s words brought sudden silence as listeners in other side-discussions snapped their attention to the central circle around the fire. The crowd moved as one organism with a hundred arms, swaying in the ruddy light.

“The users demand a ban, my great Fan!” A high voice, etched with enunciation and punctuation missing from the speech of most, called from the dark faces in the back.


“It is I, Lady_Gumption! I request permission to speak!” The small frame of a middle-aged, bespectacled woman rose quickly and walked to the front of the crowd. Whispers caught like tinder as the users spotted the silver Moderator medallion on her chest. The Moderators had been silent on the issue of Puckmaster’s betrayal until now; their word would carry much weight in the eyes of the great Fan. The Ban was coming.


“Puckmaster spoke on the eve of May the Twenty-Seventh at 6:51 PM, and do did besmirch the great name of the Blues! The villain claimed to believe that the Bruins would win Game One!” At the mention of the Nameless Foe, the crowd booed and hissed. Fights broke out among those who thought themselves the most ardent.

Lady_Gumption, flushed with the heat of passion and buoyed by the cries of her supporters, whooped out an “LGB!”. The users picked up, each chanting along “Let’s go Blues! Let’s go Blues!”

The Moderator smiled at the power she held. She whipped a hand out, sweeping along the ducking crowd, until she pointed directly into the face of Puckmaster himself. The boy fliched.

“He claimed they would win! And they did! The Nameless won! Puckmaster brought the curse upon us! He should be Banned!”

The crowd seized this last indictment as an opportunity and grasped the arms of the youth. They dragged him through the coarse sand and threw him at the feet of BluesFan1995. The boy struggled but remained pinned under the blackened feet of the users around him.


“no i didnt say that i said i was worried the blues wouldnt win because bennington was looking kind of slow!”

The users gasped in unison at this blasphemy. Tears ran lines through the dirt on puckmaster’s face. He twisted his neck to see if BluesFan1995 had reacted. The leader remained impassive.


“plz BluesFan dont ban me! i wont post like that anymore!”


Puckmaster screamed incoherently as he was bodily carried to the altar that watched over the restless sea. The full moon shone down bright, illuminating the dried blood that spattered across the entire rock outcropping. With grim efficiency, the users holding his arm forced the boy’s head down onto the flat stone. Before his prostrate body, puckmaster could see out from the corner of his eye the grizzled elder bring a stone club forward.


The youth screamed again, keening over the wind, but it would not stop the swing of the club. The stone cracked against his skull, showering him in blood and sending him into the depths of unconsciousness. The users pushed his insensate body over the side of the cliff and it crashed to the rocks below.

The boy woke to sunlight peeking in through a thatch roof. He tried to move but saw that his limbs were bound tight in bandages. The sickly-sweet smell of medicine was heavy in the stagnant air. Out of his one good eye he could see a male face with laugh lines around the eyes, blonde hair, and a deep tan.

“He’s awake!”

“where am i”

“You’re in the Newbie Zone, young one. Rest easy. It will be a few days yet before you’re well enough to join the others. I am GoalieStud.”

Confusion washed in waves under the bandages of puckmaster's face.

“is this”

Goaliestud’s laugh boomed aloud in the tiny hut. “You must still be touched from your injuries! We found you broken and bleeding in the surf. This is, my friend, and you are welcome here. What is your name?”

“its puckmaster.”

For the first time, the Goalie frowned. “As I said, you must be touched. You can’t have that name, as there is an old man who we call puckmaster already. That name is taken. Are you sure this is your name?”

The boy knew that he couldn’t risk eroding the good will of this muscular man before him. He paused, thinking of his brief time on the island of The Hockey Gods had looked unfavorably on his posts there. Was this his second chance?

“I’m sorry, Goaliestud. You’re right, I must still be a little broke from my injuries. You can call me PuckLover.”

GoalieStud nodded and grinned. “Welcome, PuckLover. Once you are well I will show you to the Forest of the General Forum and from there the other fans can guide you around the island. I wish you well! Let’s go Blues!”

PuckLover grinned back. He was home.

Simply Simon
Nov 6, 2010

📡scanning🛰️ for good game 🎮design🦔🦔🦔
Catching Up
1493/1500 words

Chat Messages with: [Steph-O]

<Steph-O 09:17 PM> Hey man, I’m sorry that I’ve been silent for so long. I had some stuff come up in real life and wasn’t feeling the game much anymore. That’s no excuse for ghosting you for weeks, but…anyway, I wanted to say that I always had a great time playing with you, but I’ll have to take a break. Maybe I’ll pick the game back up in a few months, and you’ll be the first to know! Sorry if that sounds gay, but we did kind of become friends, no? Think we can just keep shooting the poo poo without the game running? Do you have time
<Steph-O 09:18 PM> gently caress i still had that typed up
saved for over two years haha

<CrshngMartel 09:43 PM> omg
Seriously, it’s you?

<Steph-O 09:45 PM> yeah uh hi
same old me
see above i guess
still feel sorry about that especially the whole not sending part

<CrshngMartel 09:47 PM> It’s fine I guess
Was a bit peeved about it for a while but it was just a game acquaintance after all
<CrshngMartel 09:50 PM> So
How you’ve been and why write now?

<Steph-O 09:51 PM> i did sort out the real life poo poo
at least i thought
catches up to you maybe

<CrshngMartel 09:52 PM> You’re not making much sense…

<Steph-O 09:53 PM> guess so
still getting used to opening up more
maybe ur good practice

<CrshngMartel 09:54 PM> No offense, but wouldn’t someone you know and who knows you be better for that?

<Steph-O 09:55 PM> opposite really
ur perfect
<Steph-O 09:58 PM> how u been then?

<CrshngMartel 10:07 PM> Sorry, was getting ready for bed. I’ve been doing fine, thanks! Finished college despite the problems I had told you about, got a decent job now and – can you believe it – a girlfriend!

<Steph-O 10:10 PM> oh thats nice
not of the job i got a job
<Steph-O 10:13 PM> seriously though can you chill with the bed thing a bit

<CrshngMartel 10:14 PM> I’m no longer playing games all night, man. Gotta see my gf’s family tomorrow and really don’t want to be tired for that. Can we not talk after the holidays?

<Steph-O 10:15 PM> yeah about that

<CrshngMartel 10:20 PM> You got ten minutes.

<Steph-O 10:28 PM> sorry i was dozing off a little
hope its not too late
<Steph-O 10:30 PM> yeah so i wont keep you too long
im lying in a ditch somewhere in oregon and bleeding

<CrshngMartel 10:31 PM> That’s
[message deleted]
not very funny?

<Steph-O 10:32 PM> actually hurts a lot yeah
oh sorry misread yeah its not a joke

<CrshngMartel 10:33 PM> Seriously? You had an accident or sth?

<Steph-O 10:34 PM> wild boar
now kinda stuck in a wreck

<CrshngMartel 10:35 PM> why write me??? Dude call 911!

<Steph-O 10:36 PM> dont wanna

<CrshngMartel 10:37 PM> The hell
Where are you? I’ll do it!

<Steph-O 10:41 PM> oregon
dont bother
just wanted someone to talk

<CrshngMartel 10:42 PM> Dude you could die!

<Steph-O 10:43 PM> hm probably
make some people happy

<CrshngMartel 10:44 PM> You’re in shock or sth
okay listen!
You need to calm down, stop chatting and CONTACT SOMEONE who can HELP you!!

<Steph-O 10:45 PM> i dont need to do anything
not anymore thats whats so great about this

<CrshngMartel 10:47 PM> Seriously man, I don’t know what’s up with you and I don’t want to presume
But we had some great times together
You NEED to get help

<Steph-O 10:50 PM> naw
thats just the way its gotta be
never wanted to see my family anyway
after all that poo poo
so that boar?

<CrshngMartel 10:51 PM> You can just NOT see them anyway
But stay alive regardless
To spite them or sth?

<Steph-O 10:52 PM> i know a thing thatll spite them more
best thing is i just gotta do nothing

<CrshngMartel 10:53 PM> Dude you
that’s not how I wanted to spend my evening

<Steph-O 10:54 PM> so sorry
i can log off and let you sleep

<CrshngMartel 10:55 PM> Don’t u dare
So again, where the HELL ARE YOU???

<Steph-O 10:56 PM> oregon

<CrshngMartel 10:57 PM> jfc

<Steph-O 10:58 PM> didn’t you tell me not to give personal details
to strangers on the internet
i was so young when we met
you taught me to be cautious
<Steph-O 11:01 PM> real life did the rest
<Steph-O 11:07 PM> hey ru here? still bleeding ya know

<CrshngMartel 11:08 PM> mhm hold on
try stanning it

<Steph-O 11:09 PM> haha autocorrect
<Steph-O 11:10 PM> wait
werent u on pc before

<CrshngMartel 11:11 PM> why would it m

<Steph-O 11:11 PM> are you scrolling back on pc and chatting on phone

<CrshngMartel 11:12 PM> no im

<Steph-O 11:13 PM> ur looking for the old messages!

<CrshngMartel 11:14 PM> no

<Steph-O 11:15 PM> loving stop it
were old friends talking
dont loving DOXX me!!!

<CrshngMartel 11:16 PM> I’m trying to save your LIFE here!
<CrshngMartel 11:20 PM> hey
<CrshngMartel 11:22 PM> HEY
<CrshngMartel 11:23 PM> Talk to me!

<Steph-O 11:27 PM> sorry i was brushing my teeth
gently caress u man i was reaching out
just for a chat

<CrshngMartel 11:28 PM> Jesus okay
Then let’s chat.
Why do you think it’s best for you to just die?

<Steph-O 11:31 PM> nobody cares

<CrshngMartel 11:32 PM> I care.

<Steph-O 11:34 PM> enough to be tired for your drat gfs family
but thats funny no
the only one who cares
some guy i dont even know the name

<CrshngMartel 11:35 PM> It’s Marten

<Steph-O 11:36 PM> lol

<CrshngMartel 11:37 PM> Yeah,
So how’re you doing?

<Steph-O 11:40 PM> hungry
maybe i can grab some boar pieces from here
but my leg is closer

<CrshngMartel 11:42 PM> Yeah don’t do that
But if you do, tell me how it tastes

<Steph-O 11:43 PM> haha

<CrshngMartel 11:46 PM> haha

<Steph-O 11:47 PM> on your phone again?

<CrshngMartel 11:48 PM> not typing if you mean that

<Steph-O 11:49 PM> calling ?

<CrshngMartel 11:51 PM> I found the info I needed Stephen

<Steph-O 11:51 PM> Stephanie actually
what info

<CrshngMartel 11:52 PM> what i ned to safe u
sorry typing one handed

<Steph-O 11:53 PM> You
loving save
<Steph-O 11:56 PM> y do u care

<CrshngMartel 11:58 PM> You’re a friend.

<Steph-O 00:02 AM> how

<CrshngMartel 00:04 AM> Some relationships don’t ever end, man.
<CrshngMartel 00:06 AM> Every time I look at the stupid action figure I bought when I was a lifer for this poo poo I get this urge to reinstall
And that’s because of the good times I had. With people like you.

<Steph-O 00:07 AM> gently caress

<CrshngMartel 00:11 AM> Are you OKAY?

<Steph-O 00:12 AM> no
and almost out of juice
electric and red

<CrshngMartel 00:16 AM> Okay read very carefully please.
<CrshngMartel 00:17 AM> You told me your parent’s town, so now there’s a police alert for all highways leading from Oregon to that corner of Idaho.
Radio alert is out, they’re searching
<CrshngMartel 00:19 AM> But PLEASE work with me here.
They’ll find you.

<Steph-O 00:19 AM> no they wont

<CrshngMartel 00:20 AM> High chance they will.
And you’ll be still alive because I know you, you don’t give up even if you say you want to. Remember when we almost wiped to ol’ Thundershitter?

<Steph-O 00:21 AM> haha the lightning oval office

<CrshngMartel 00:21 AM> But you kept the raid going when everyone was throwing their keyboards. And you cursing along but still hitting the heals. So listen the gently caress up.
<CrshngMartel 00:22 AM> They will find you and you will survive. But by that time that leg will be beyond saving, and your family will visit a sad cripple, and if you’re super unlucky you’ll have brain damage from blood loss or whatever
<CrshngMartel 00:24 AM> Or you use that last bit of phone juice to call 911 and tell them the last road sign you passed.

<Steph-O 00:26 AM> ugh

<CrshngMartel 00:30 AM> did you do it
<CrshngMartel 00:35 AM> DID YOU loving CALL
<CrshngMartel 00:36 AM> Stephanie please
<CrshngMartel 00:41 AM> I can see you typing just send move your fingers! Then call!
<CrshngMartel 00:45 AM> STEPHANIE

<Steph-O 00:57 AM> im gon
<Steph-O 00:58 AM> sry sleepy
<Steph-O 01:00 AM> did call tho

<CrshngMartel 01:01 AM> oh thank God

<Steph-O 01:03 AM> brain damage scary
gently caress the leg its knobby
thanks marten

<CrshngMartel 01:04 AM> Just stay with me. Don’t doze off again.

<Steph-O 01:05 AM> got sth to keep me busy
scrolling back dont write
<Steph-O 01:09 AM> hm
turns out i never told you where exactly my parents lived

<CrshngMartel 01:10 AM> But you did say you wanted out of Idaho.

<Steph-O 01:12 AM> you cheeky gently caress
i remember
when we beat the thundercunt
you cheated too

<Steph-O 01:13 AM> Exploit. Legit until they patched it.

<Steph-O 01:14 AM> haha man
we really gotta catch up.

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

This is the way that it all falls.
This is how I feel,
This is what I need:

As We Soar Into the Burning Eye
1438 Words

<Welcome to the NobleAir In-Flight Messenger App! Additional charges may apply for in-app purchases! Enjoy complimentary spelling and grammar correction! Remember, Be Respectful and Have Fun!>

<Andy> Yoooo 27B represent! Where's everyone from?

<Campbell> 18/F/CA LOL

<Eva> We're from Tennennesee! :) :)

<Howard> Is your mom okay with you talking to strangers, Eva?

<Eva> My mom's too busy to play

<Monica> Ugh I wish the drink cart would get here! ;)

<Howard> Here, here! After that conference I could use a nice whiskey.

<Andy> Oh man same same

<Eva> Mom said I could have a coke!

<Howard> What is it, 5 and a half hours to Chicago?

<Campbell> Yeah, I think so

<Andy> I can't believe we lucked into this flight, C. Redeyes sold out all down the west coast!

<Monica> Same here! Last minute ticket FTW!

<Andy> Is it just us on this chat thing? Full flight, too!

<Monica> What, we're not good enough for you? ;)

<Campbell> Man, twenty minutes into the flight and Andy's already complainin

<Campbell> You better get that **** out of your system before we get to Chicago bro

<Howard> Did you all feel that?

<Campbell> Yeah, smooth flight my ***! I almost popped out of my seat

<Campbell> Wtf there's another one

<Eva> Im scared

<Eva> My mommy said everything will be ok

<Monica> Listen to your mommy Eva

<Andy> Yeah kiddo it's just a little turbulence! That's a big word for air bumps

<Howard> Pretty quiet flight besides the 'air bumps', huh.

<Monica> Oooh yeah, drink cart drink cart!

<Monica> I'm gonna get turrrrnt

<Howard> Monica, there's a child present.

<Monica> It's nothing she hasn't heard before! It's just like your mommy's wine nights!

<Eva> Mommy doesn't have wine nights. She likes to meet with her friends and pray

<Eva> They're weird

<Campbell> The dude next to me just started praying.

<Campbell> Or chanting, or something. Some people don't do well on planes I guess

<Monica> Has the drink cart gotten to you guys yet? :D

<Campbell> I dunno, doesn't look like this guy drinks. I think he's a rabbi or something

<Andy> Flying in robes seems like sorta a solid idea actually

<Campbell> Free ballin?

<Howard> Watch your language!

<Andy> I'm just feeling a little bound up in these sweatpants, old man

<Howard> I'm not old, I'm just decent.

<Campbell> lol, eat it Andy

<Eva> All these bumps are scary

<Howard> Why is it so dark in here? I tried calling the stewardess, but no one has come.

<Howard> Are the cabin lights broken?

<Monica> Try calling for a drink, they'll show up then

<Monica> Worked for me! ;)

<Andy> Campbell it's weird, the guy next to me started chanting too. Not dressed in robes tho

<Campbell> Yeah this dude hasn't let up. I can't even make out what he's saying

<Eva> Mommy's praying too

<Campbell> All these bumps are getting to me man. I'm gonna go up to the stewardess and ask them if everything's ok

<Monica> Do it! I almost spilled!

<Andy> Did you guys see that? I think they let Campbell into the cabin?

<Admin: User Campbell has logged off! ERR: PASSENGER NOT FOUND>

<Andy> How'd he log off? I didn't see him come back

<NobleAir> "The traitorous children of Igarde wept as I held their limp Moon in my jaws."

<NobleAir> Akarrh 18:40

<Monica> Uh excuse me?

<Andy> Whaaaaaaat was that

<Howard> I'm sure someone is just playing a prank with the messenging system.

<Howard> Though I'm not familiar with the work they're quoting.

<Andy> Campbell's still not back. I'm getting freaked out, I'm going to go check his seat.

<Howard> Calm down.

<Monica> He better not log out on us

<Andy> Something's not right here. His seat was empty so I asked the dude in the robe where Campbell is.

<Andy> He stops praying or whatever and tells me that there's no one sitting there

<Andy> Then this creep offers me the seat!!!! No ******* way man

<Andy> I'm just gonna wait until he comes back

<Howard> That seems wise.

<Eva> I think the drink lady is from my mommy's church!

<Howard> That's very nice, Eva.

<NobleAir> "The ramparts have fallen. Our own dead turn against us in tooth and claw. Her moon fades and I fear all is lost."

<NobleAir> Tourbrandt 13:16

<Andy> Ok, it's been an hour. Campbell isn't back. I'm gonna go ask a flight attendant

<Monica> Are we just ignoring those messages now

<Monica> Is that seriously where we're at

<Howard> I'm sure it will be fine. It's just a joke.

<Monica> Jokes are supposed to be funny, Howard

<Howard> You sound like my ex-wife.

<Andy> The attendant pretended that she didn't know what was going on

<Andy> Then she said, and I quote, 'We firmly suggest that you stay in your seat, keep your window closed, and refrain from molesting other passengers.' wtf is that ****

<Howard> You sound paranoid. It's a night flight. People don't want to be bothered.

<Eva> I'm bored

<Eva> Mommy won't talk to me she's too busy praying

<Eva> None of these games work

<NobleAir> "Those who yearn for safety, cry for shields, weep for an end, look no further. Gaze upon me, and weep no more."

<NobleAir> Akarrh 29:1

<Howard> This stopped feeling like a joke.

<Monica> All I know is I'm not getting up. I'm staying right here

<Andy> I wish Campbell were back

<Eva> That was mommy's prayer!

<Eva> She says it in the morning and at night and at lunch

<Eva> and with snacks

<Howard> You know what all that means, Eva?

<Andy> so the kid knows the creepy poems. I think I've seen this movie

<Monica> There's no wifi. There was when we left

<Howard> I know, I tried.

<Andy> Getting scared, Howard?

<Howard> No. I'm just looking at all the options.

<Andy> JESUS. I almost hit the ceiling! That pilot needs to cool it.


<Andy> That stewardess just dragged some dude out of his seat

<Andy> **** she's taking him into the cabin

<Andy> Can you guys see into there

<Howard> She's closed the door. That seemed uncalled for.

<Monica> How can you be so calm? Is none of this getting to you?

<Monica> The chanting's so loud now I can't even think

<Monica> It feels like everyone on here is praying I'm seriously freaking out

<NobleAir> "My brothers! My brothers have fallen! Oh blessed Igarde, where is our rescue? Where our salvation?"

<NobleAir> Tourbrandt 22:23

<Andy> **** this. I'm going to the cabin

<Andy> I'm gonna get campbell out of there

<Monica> NO

<Monica> DO NOT

<Monica> Don't leave me here

<Andy> I don't know wtf is going on but I'm not gonna sit here

<Monica> Howard, say something!

<Howard> I'm not dying on his account

<Monica> Who said anything about dying???? You're such a ****!!!!!!!

<Monica> Andy DON'T GO UP There

<Admin: User Andy has logged off! ERR: PASSENGER NOT FOUND>

<Howard> Did you hear Andy yell? No one around him lifted a finger to help.

<Howard> They dragged him out

<Howard> The passengers helped

<Monica> You ****ing coward!!!

<Howard> I didn't see you trying to help

<Monica> I'm drunk!!!!

<Howard> Bet you've said that before

<Monica> **** you Howard

<Eva> Stop fighting!!!!!!!!

<Eva> Daddy and mommy fight then mommy made daddy go away

<NobleAir> "The last bell of Igarde shattered and her radiant tower fell. I am her last son and on this hallowed ground I shall wait for the wings of Akarrh."

<NobleAir> Tourbrandt 35:16

<Eva> Mommy is grabbing my leg so hard. It hurts and she won't stop

<Howard> The praying stopped.

<Monica> Thanks for the update Howard

<Monica> *****

<NobleAir> "At last, mighty Tourbrandt. Your head in my hands, your soul in my teeth. Where is your Igarde? Look no more, for your eyes see no longer."

<NobleAir> Akarrh 68:4

<Howard> Did you feel that? I think we're climbing.

<Howard> I need to see what's going on

<Monica> Howard was that you? Shut that window!!

<Monica> It's so bright

<Monica> It's too bright

<Monica> They'll see you

<Admin: User Howard has logged off! ERR: PASSENGER NOT FOUND>

<NobleAir> "Do you hear it? No cawing of crows, no din of the market, not the barest breeze upon the ear. It is my sound."

<NobleAir> Akarrh 70:9

<Monica> Eva? Are you there?

<Eva> Yah

<Monica> Stay with me sweetie

<Monica> Please just stay with me

<NobleAir> "At last. At last, we soar into the burning eye."

<NobleAir> Akarrh 82:10

<Admin: User Monica has logged off! ERR: PASSENGER NOT FOUND>

<Admin: User Eva has logged off! ERR: PASSENGER NOT FOUND>

Apr 30, 2006

The Very Best of the Pineapplettes
1310 words

I live in constant fear that someone will find out I’m not vegan. Hundreds (and soon to be thousands – fingers crossed!) know me on YouTube as The Pineapple Vegan. Really I’m more of an apple person, but the Apple Vegan was taken so I had to improvise. Anyway, I couldn’t do it, even when I started eating things that weren’t pineapples. I went to the supermarket three days in and bought a package of Kraft Singles and ate them plastic and all. I recorded it, too, but I deleted the video in case anyone wanted to use it as blackmail.

The point is that I’m not vegan – couldn’t do it or hack it – but even when I was just fifteen subscribers deep there were the people. I call them the Pineapplettes. Here are some nice things that the Pineapplettes said about my recent What I Ate Today video:

Love your videos! You make being vegan look so easy.


can you make beefaroni vegan

I sent each and every one of them a personalized thank you for engaging with my content. Most of them didn’t understand, but that’s okay. There’s a special kind of person who becomes a Pineapplette. You have to be sensitive enough to be curious about veganism, but you also have to have a consumerist taste – in other words, a thirst for content.

But my favorite Pineapplette is Jean. When I thanked Jean for her kind, insightful, really wonderful comment on my latest video (“love the argyle sweater! do you know how to cook any vegan recipes that don’t include pineapple? my sister is vegan and allergic”) with complimentary vegan recipe for rice and beans, she wrote back.

Thank you so much! My sister is going to love this so much. She just started doing this vegan thing and she’s telling me I should give it a try but I’m sooooo lost lol.

To which I responded:’

JEAN! You are my favorite Pineapplette. Taking care of your sister, doing extracurricular research just to find a recipe that she could eat – let me tell you, you sound like a truly wonderful person. If you ever need any other help, please, please, please let me know.

I’d just sent this message out when my roommate started knocking on my bedroom door. I cracked it open just enough to make eye contact with him.


“Oh, hey. Uh, I just wanted to check in – it’s about two AM, and… I’m sorry, it’s just that you’re typing very loudly.”

I didn’t say anything for a while – I know you have to really drag these silences out so everyone knows what’s “what” – and then I said “got it, thanks.” And to my (very welcome!) surprise, Jean had already gotten back to me.


What could it mean? When I was writing thank you notes to each of the nineteen (!) comments on my latest video, where I review various vegan whipped cream substitutes, I struggled, at times, to come up with an appropriate response, and quite honestly “k” did not cross my mind as an appropriate response.

I immediately began recording another video about Pineapplette Etiquette. In the video I discussed my own personal ethic, which had come to me very quickly after beginning my channel, which was to avoid suffering, etc., etc., but also to communicate with a one hundred percent full heart at all times. “Do not let me down,” I said. “It’s not the Pineapple way.”

My roommate was knocking at my door again, but I didn’t have time for him – it was time to post. I posted the video and waited for the responses to roll in. I refreshed the page. I refreshed the page. I know that YouTube can sometimes take a little while to reflect views accurately and so I tried to hold off and made it three minutes and forty-three seconds and still there were no views for “PINEAPPLETTE ETIQUETTE - KNOW THE RULES!!!” I had a good thumbnail and everything. It was three in the morning so I understood, of course I understood, that it would “artificially deflate” the numbers, but zero was extremely deflated in my opinion.

I spent the rest of the evening refreshing the page and recording in a tape recorder ideas for other videos. Then it was six AM and the Starbucks at the corner opened so I went and grabbed myself a coffee. When I returned I had received another message – from Jean!

Hey sorry about earlier was in a rush. Saw the most recent vid and hope you weren’t thinking about me. Um I hope this isn’t too forward but I hope everything is okay. It sounds like you might be going through something. Let me know if you need to talk

My phone started ringing and it was my mom and I put it on silent, because my mom can be extremely dramatic on the phone. As I thought about how to respond to Jean it hit me that she had seen the video. The Kraft Singles video. I know I shouldn’t have done it, shouldn’t have taken it, but I absolutely had to (I think I needed the protein and I wanted to remind myself that I had the protein) and now Jean and probably the rest of the world wide web had seen it. And horrors of horrors my new video was now getting new comments.


crazy vegan is an oxymoron


My mom had also texted me some bullshit (I could just see the preview: “hey just wanted to make sure you were still taking…”) but I was focused on the Internet. They’d found out my secret and it was all over for me, each and every Pineapplette torn asunder from what we had.

I knew that Jean deserved an answer so I responded:

“JEAN THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU FOR CHECKING BACK IN. (Sorry about the ALL CAPS!) Listen you might hear it from the news so I wanted to let you know first, since you’re so kind and thoughtful, that it’s true. I’m not vegan. I ate a whole package of Kraft singles and they have VIDEO EVIDENCE. Jean, you are better than the entire world.”

It was all over. The comments kept rolling in.

like if reddit brought you here

drinking game: count all the times he says “pineapple way.” pro tip call an ambulance

delete your account

Yes. I was going to have to delete my account, and since they knew my shame even that wouldn’t be enough, I would be paying for this for the rest of my life. I went to my account settings when I receive one more message from Jean:

“hey being vegan is hard! what matters is you’re trying. Quick question: have you had anything to eat today? it sounds like you’re really upset about this and I know a snack can make me feel better. sorry just more of a stranger being nosy.”

I couldn’t remember the last time I’d eaten. I’d been making videos, working on the Pineapplette community, for three days straight, and I hadn’t eaten anything. I ran a vegan cooking channel and I was neither vegan or cooking, which of course was why I was deleting my account, but didn’t I owe it to Jean, my most loyal Pineapplette, to give her advice a try?

I started recording another video, went to the kitchen, walked right past my clenched-fisted roommate, and poured a bowl of cereal with oat milk.

Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo
Doctor Rope
Becoming Close
877 Words

August is typing…

Only illuminated by the light of her monitor, Julia lounged lazily in the pale glow. Her left foot was planted firmly in the carpet with an elbow digging into that thigh. An extended hand rested on W, A, S, D and Space, out of instinct. The other arm was draped across the desk and those fingers collectively rested near enter and backspace.

A: I’ve been thinking about making a trip to the States.

J: Why? I thought you hated here. Fat Americans, Dumb Americans, Worst Americans… etc. You are literally always going on about it.

A: And?

J: *rolls eyes*

August is typing…

J: What? You typing out your long coming love confession and how you hoped we might meet up? *eyes flutter*

A: Don’t tempt me lol Maybe I’ll just leave Dan, start a new life. No kids, no mortgage…

J: lol, ok well if it’s not to profess your undying love for me and abandon your family. Why are you thinking about coming?

A: I’ve got an uncle that lives out in Seattle.

J: Oh? A new revelation. A long-lost uncle with a vast sum of riches to bequeath.

A: Well… yeah, kind of.

J: Oh poo poo… you’re not kidding?

A: lol

J: You’re loving with me aren’t you?

A: I kind of wish I was… but no, I’m serious. I’ve got a rich uncle who was on the forefront of the cloud, and made some wise investments back when a lot of tech firms were just getting started out, but that’s neither here or there.

J: I mean it kind of is, but go on…

A: Well, he’s my mom’s baby brother. My mom got married and my dad moved us for business reasons but kept us in Europe. My mom’s brother left home early on, never looked back. Only sent my mom and I care packages from time to time.

J: Sounds like an alright enough guy. What’s the hang up?

A: Dude was weird. In the weird uncle kind of way.

J: poo poo man, I’m sorry. That’s really hosed.

A: No sweat. It was a long time ago and it was nothing too serious thankfully.

Julia is typing…

A: lol, don’t worry about it. We don’t need to have a loving therapy session about my weird kinda pedophile uncle.

J: loving yikes.

A: Exactly.

August is typing…

Julia leans back in her chair and lets her head drape over the rest of her seat as some indistinct vapor wave instrumental lo-fi techno gives her night a sense of magical grandeur.

August is typing…

J: So do you think you’re going to come? I kinda want to meet you.

A: Yeah, I think so. I feel like I should. I haven’t talked to him in years, but my mom kept up. She says he’s not doing well.

J: Are you going to… you know… confront him?

August is typing…

J: Sorry, I keep trying to wrap my head around your situation.

A: It’s no problem, I shouldn’t have said anything. It’s just… It fucks with me you know. Like he’s just lived his life like it was no big deal. I mean maybe he feels some guilt. I don’t know… The whole situation just fucks with me. I don’t like talking about it too much.

J: I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to make you upset.

A: It’s not you… It’s just a bunch of bullshit, you know.

J: Yeah, I hear you.

J: Sooo… you’re definitely going to send me all your flight details and travel arrangements, right?

A: lol, I hadn’t planned on it.

J: *gasp* You really don’t want to upset, Dan, huh?

A: He’s unbelievably insecure.

J: If it’s not one thing it’s another… At least you’ve got someone!

A: Everyone always says that, ‘at least’! I say gently caress ‘at least’.

Julia keyed in a nervous emoticon holding hesitant hands over an implied mouth.

J: That bad?

A: No, it’s not… I just… I don’t think people should just settle. So much of what we’re told to be comfortable with just seems like settling. At least you’ve got this! Yeah, so loving what.

J: I think you’re looking at it wrong, bud.

A: Maybe…

J: I mean it though, I do want to meet you.

A: OK, If I come…. IF I come I’ll let you know when and where.

Julia smiled. She hadn’t intended it, but her heart did swell up a bit more when she thought of August. She enjoyed his persistence and matter of fact nature even if he did occasionally come off as abrasive.

J: Alright, well I’m off. Later man.

A: Later.

Nearly a decade of daily conversation and she had barely pieced the man’s life together, but there was something to be said about the sincerity of his company.

It wasn’t a romantic love that she felt for August, but she did love him. He had become a meaningful part of her life and she had hoped to meet him. To touch him. To hear his sarcastic quips in person.

She sighed and put her computer to sleep. Ambient synth sounds still played quietly as some far-off island she’d never see in person filled the screen.

“Until tomorrow, August.”

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.
Or Have I Found My Place

758 words

I knew it was bad news before I read a single word. Halcyon205 only ever posted pictures on his feed. You've probably seen his work dozens of times over. I can't count how many times someone has slapped a few unnecessary words over one of their photos and gone twenty-four hour viral with it. You know that one with the two discarded air-filter masks by the side of a road? That was one of theirs. And you probably couldn't say just what pithy memelet got stuck to it when you saw it, God knows I couldn't. But you remember the pictures.

Halcyon205 only posted pictures. No captions, no updates or replies. No words unless they had a sign in the frame. Just pictures. Urban photography, mainly. Decaying and abandoned places. Small kindnesses, a bill changing hands, a busker's hat full to brimming. Fleeting art as well, graffiti half way to whitewashed or chalk art on a sidewalk as the first heavy drops of a rainstorm come down.

So a long paragraph of text, dull red letters on a black background, was alarming by itself. It wasn't them, couldn't be.

It was their mother. The news was about as bad as it could have been, Halcyon205, Harry Preston Carter, was dead after a two-week hospitalization. Multiple organ failure, sepsis. There was information about a service, and a list of their favorite charities.

Hal never used them, but they did have comments, open threads on private posts, with curated lists of trusted followers. I went there. We talked, mourned, wailed and gnashed virtual teeth. And we decided to go.

Not all of us could, of course. One thing we knew about Hal was that they hated planes. Well, 'knew' is too strong a word. But they never once posted a picture of an airplane, maybe even 'shopped them out of skies according to MythicTree77, our resident imaging guru. Lots of trains, a few cars and boats and busses, but never a plane. And they probably read those discussions, could have dropped a picture of a 737 to prove us all wrong. We decided it would be wrong to fly there. If one of us couldn't get there on land, they'd go on someone else's phone.

It felt strange, asking for a week's vacation to go to the funeral of a person I'd never met. But it felt right at the same time.

We met up, under a tent at the service, outdoors, even in the rain. Hal had insisted, according to his mother. There was a well-kept grounds, behind the crematorium. There were tents. We met in person for the first time, struggling to keep straight faces introducing ourselves under goofy names we picked for ourselves half a lifetime ago. I'm TragicGoat656. I used to be a theater geek.

We met, and talked, and told Halcyon215 stories. We held up our phones to give our FaceTime partners a view. There were about a dozen of us there, twice as many faces on phones. We talked to their family. Their sister nearly burst into tears when she saw us. "I always though Hal didn't have any friends."

We heard about their childhood. They had a horrible stutter, growing up, and suffered terribly for it. Children are monsters. Hal learned to stay silent. You'd think they would have loved email, loved text messaging, but no. Hal barely wrote to their own family, and organized their work as a commercial photographer to minimize use of words.

On the other hand, they had three complete novels on his computer. Their sister showed them to me. She had been named their artistic executor, mostly about the photography work, but since I work with agents she had me take a look. Completely unpublishable, but there were some beautiful fragments in them, moments when their camera's eye took over.

We held our own wake, in a bar near the train station and the cheap hotel a few of us were staying in. We got sloppy through the night, sang karaoke and flirted shamelessly in combinations both obvious and highly improbable to the rest of us. We stayed until the phones lost power, and some went to bed alone or caught red-eye busses. I took an old friend I never met before to bed, and wasn't the only one. MythicTree77 and JJKFoley wound up getting married out of that party.

And Halcyon215 was still dead, still with us but gone forever, and the unimaginable fact of life in a universe without them in it stretched out before us.

Something Else
Dec 27, 2004

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome

Never Log On
1430 words

I shake hands with the officiant, squinting in the spotlight. I accept my plaque. I am one of the top ones in the country, if not the world. I field questions for an hour before they call it a night, but I could go on for longer. Professional satisfaction is the only kind I know these days.

I set the table for dinner using the boutique ceramics that look like the stone age. I shout up the stairs at my son. “Plato! Dinner’s on the table!” I listen for any response amid the muffled bass beats, and hear nothing. Plato is recently fourteen, and I already know I've lost him.

I knock on the door, on the metal sign really. It reads 'Trespassers will be shot,' and I have no idea where he got it. I open the door. His eyes flick to mine, and back to his screens. He mutters something, but I can't hear it under the squealing guitars. "It's dinnertime," I tell him again. His eyes roll up into a furrowed brow. He thrashes out something on his keyboard and pushes back.

We eat dinner. I tell him about my ceremony. I have to concede that he does acknowledge me. I ask about school, about his friends. I wonder why that's a hard question. I wonder how to bring up the idea of a 'no phones at the table' rule. I can't settle on it before he runs back up the stairs. I convince myself I've earned a heavy pour, and I watch the news.

I hear things at night. The music changes - not much, it still sounds like chaos to me. But I hear swear words, and foreign languages. I hear gunshots, not real ones, I know, but from games, or videos. I hear him laughing. In my head, I tick off all the practical reasons not to worry about my son. And then I worry.

I lose hours at work reading articles that chill me to my bones. I find myself unable to banish images of the toddler I laughed with, unpacking a duffel bag of long guns, with a name and story for each one. With plans. I let them know I'll be running home at lunch.

I step into Plato's room, ease my way around his desk. I kick through the crumpled tissues and napkins on the floor and settle into his gaming chair. I feel wrong. I picture my son screaming in face. I picture him pulling something out of his bookbag. I tap the space bar.

No password. I guess he never thought I’d come poking through here. He must feel so safe at home. It warms my heart. I’m proud of the life I’ve made for my little prince. My eyes focus. I resolve the image on his desktop background - a grassy, flowered field, and two pale women lying in it, nude. It isn’t lascivious, exactly, but it’s certainly not art. Either way, it falls into the pit in my stomach, making it deeper and wider with its presence.

I don’t know where to click at first. I follow my fear, mostly into games with violent titles, and I close out of them as quick as I can. I find a browser I recognize, but it looks like he hardly uses it. Default bookmarks only, which unnerves me.

Finally, I find something with chatrooms. It’s messy. I’m overwhelmed by everything I see there. The words they use. The way they use them. I refuse to connect these things to my son. There’s no straight line that can be drawn from these obscenities and the product of my loins without breaking all known laws of physics. I hear the door slam downstairs.

Dinner that night is different. I can’t take my eyes off him. I analyze him now, his every movement, the way he eats. The way he doesn’t notice me. I can’t muster a single question. Nothing to seem normal, not anymore. At least he doesn't betray any suspicion that I was in his room. His mind is elsewhere. I shudder to think of where that might be. I wait for him to go upstairs.

I agonize over my screen name. I feel silly. I feel it must be crucial. I land on ‘Dirger_Prime’ - a reference I have to count on Plato not to understand, not to link to me. I log in.

At first I wait, and watch. The conversation flies by so fast, I wonder if any of the participants can even keep up with it for more than a minute. They talk about music and games, mostly. They seem to hate everything normal, and everyone who isn't here. Then again, they call each other the most terrible things. I find some of the words completely un-googleable, to my dismay. I am fascinated.

I zero in on a screen name - it's 'KkrruchH8'. Unpronounceable to my aged tongue but I recognize it from Plato's computer. That must be him. I follow him throughout the chat. He laughs. He posts a picture of a gun and asks if he should buy it. I laugh at that, knowing he doesn't have the money. He tells someone that I'm a stupid bitch. I read on for hours.

I try to think of what I would've said to my parents if I caught them listening in on a party line when I was fourteen. I might've bit their heads off. But back then the conversation was about the beach, and next week's test. I try to consider my bias. I want to be fair to my son. He posts a picture of a cartoon frog wearing sunglasses, and holding the end of a rope that leads into what must be an archival photo of a lynching. The chatroom loves it.

I get a message alert. From 'admin' - it reads: "Who are you?"

I close the app and slam my laptop shut with too much force. I watch the stairs, but he doesn't come down. I don't think he ever will, and I'm afraid of what will happen if I go up.

I try to return to my normal life. The next quarter promises ever greater challenges at work. I should be thrilled. But I know something new now, about the world, and it put a poison inside me. Scuttling along in the shadow of my normal thoughts as they make their way to the top of mind, there's a hatred, or the idea of one, that tries to make itself real. I don't hate the way Katie wears her hair, but that poison tells me it might feel good to try hating it. I hate the poison and I know that means it's winning.

I pour some wine for strength and log in. I flex my fingers and respond to 'admin'. If I have to lie to find out who put that poison in my son, I will lie. I tell them I'm a fellow traveler. I'm Travis. I'm white, of course, and Christian. I love to game. I go to the gun range every weekend. My father is a business owner. It turns out 'admin' just wants to know what school I go to. I give the name of the one across town.

The chat flows past me now, without perterbance. The words and images I found profoundly disturbing days ago, are now just streaks of light. I find 'KkrruchH8' and send a direct message. I tell him I like his memes. We get to talking. I desperately copy and paste from the main chatroom, trying to keep up. At last I find my opening. I ask him about other chat rooms. If he's into anything else, besides this kid stuff. Anything more serious.

KkrruchH8: wat do u mean?

Dirger_Prime: u know. the worlds getting worse. some1 has 2 take action.

KkrruchH8: uhhhh idk. goodluck tho. make sure u let whoevers cool at ur school know b4 u do whatvr. common courtesy thats how its done. g2g

And that's it. He logs off. Or maybe he blocks me. I close my laptop gently and sip my wine. I can't decide if that's a good answer or not. I can't decide if I feel any better at all. I go upstairs and knock on Plato's door. He's gaming. Hyper-focused. I wish him goodnight. His eyes flick towards mine, and back again. I shut the door. I decide that I don't feel much better at all, in fact.

I take my laptop to bed and start doing research. I'm going to buy a gun.

Feb 25, 2014
entries closed

Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo
Doctor Rope
Late interprompt - 100 words - A good and/or bad phone call

Sep 30, 2006

stayin c o o l

SlipUp posted:

Chili Jon Space Brawl

In a galaxy where good is good and evil is evil there are epic battles waged across worlds deciding the fates of trillions. You two are going to give me an epic space opera for the ages. You have 2500 words and until 11:59 MST December 6th, 2019.

Good luck, the fate of humanity rests in your hands.

Brawl has been extended to Friday the 13th.

Feb 25, 2014

ok so im gonna do this quick because busy week. this week was mostly, again, a lot of meh. i appreciate u all attempting tho.

winner goes to Mrenda. this is still a very flawed story imo but was marginally capable of mustering up some feeling in my co-judge and i have to concede, it was the most successful this week.

HM im giving to Simply Simon. my co-judge had it as the loser, but hey, im the head judge so nuts to him ig. it’s not written terribly well, but i thought it was fun and when i reread it, i found myself wanting to keep reading it rather than skim through it like most other stories this week.

DM goes to Something Else. I was actually really excited to read this story when i first started because i thought it was gonna be a fun story about a dad learning more about his teenager on the internet. instead it became incredibly dark and cemented its DM with an astoundingly confusing and terrible last line.

Loss goes to Carl Killer Miller. im sorry, but, way too many characters, boring chat log dialogue, none of the characters are interesting, tension is at a 0, and i didnt care for anyone. its premise was alright, but the execution was dull and i couldnt care more about the story.

Mar 14, 2012

Week 383: I’m Walkin’ He-ah!

There’s very little time to be aware of yourself these days. Every moment is occupied, whether by responsibilities, work commitments, social commitments, family commitments, or simply because of distractions. The world at large towers over us, comes right to our doorstep, even into our homes. Often the only time we have to ourself is between events, especially as we travel to and from these events. This week I want you to write about the time between events, the time we have to ourselves, the time we have to discover little known parts of who and how we are, specifically as we travel through a city.

I started reading Joyce’s masterpiece Ulysses in spring this year and I didn’t finish it until Autumn. Difficult and broad, yes, but it was very much worth reading. While you don’t have to write the definitive modernist short story for thunderdome this week, I do want you to reflect, as Joyce did, on how the city is our modern home, but more than anything it’s the people, and people who are as obsessed about the very minor things as well as the grand occurrences, who make it the modern emblem of humanity. People come first, but a city is made of people.

You can set your story in a city whenever, or wherever, you want (although be aware setting up something too out-there might detract from your purpose.) And your purpose is to make the reader discover some of our humanities reading your very important prose; whether it’s the stumble to a late night café to wind down your night, the serendipity of coming across a blessing on the street, the escape of being lost in love’s embrace as we travel through the city in no-time at all, stopping off for lunch, a coffee or a drink before you hustle for a few quid, or even just experiencing time to think or talk to your friends as you drive to another friend's funeral. As much as your character should be traversing a city, they should also be caught in their minds, their ambitions, their hopes and fears.

The city is not the star, instead it allows the people to shine, and so is illuminated by them. Write me a story about the time you take for yourself, the time to be your most-self, as you cross the largest temples to humanity we've ever had, the metropolis.

Sign ups close: 23:59 Friday 6th December Pacific Time
Entries close: 23:59 Sunday 9th December Pacific Time

No poetry (Looking at you here Joyce)
No erotica (Looking at you here Joyce)
Stories must be in English (Looking at you here Joyce)
No g-docs (I'm sure he would have managed that too)

Word Count: 1,600 words.


Sham bam bamina!
Anomalous Amalgam - toxxed
sephiRoth IRA
magic cactus

Mrenda fucked around with this message at 17:19 on Dec 8, 2019

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat

Dec 30, 2011

I wanna sing one for the cars
That are right now headed silent down the highway
And it's dark and there is nobody driving
And something has got to give


Anomalous Amalgam
Feb 13, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo
Doctor Rope
In :toxx:

Carl Killer Miller
Apr 28, 2007

This is the way that it all falls.
This is how I feel,
This is what I need:


sephiRoth IRA
Jun 13, 2007

"Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality."

-Carl Sagan

Would an airport be stretching the the parameters of the prompt too far?

magic cactus
Aug 3, 2019

We lied. We are not at war. There is no enemy. This is a rescue operation.

Mar 14, 2012

sephiRoth IRA posted:

Would an airport be stretching the the parameters of the prompt too far?

Say, like, a business traveller on his way to his local city airport he regularly commutes from? That's fine. Travelling within the city, a schlep to their typical Monday morning departure, is within the spirit.

Someone sitting in a departure lounge, waiting for a flight? That's too much of a stretch. If you wanted to push it to some far-future situation where aiports/spaceports/ports-in-general became cities unto themselves, that might be ok. The point is you're surrounded by a living city (not a waiting room) and you're finding space for yourself moving through the living city.

But all I can really do to stop you is give you a loss/DQ. Write your story and see if it fits.

sephiRoth IRA
Jun 13, 2007

"Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality."

-Carl Sagan
Fair enough, thank you. I fly all the time for work and moving through the airport resonated for me in terms of the prompt. We’ll see what I can do.

Mar 14, 2012

sephiRoth IRA posted:

Fair enough, thank you. I fly all the time for work and moving through the airport resonated for me in terms of the prompt. We’ll see what I can do.

Movement through a colossal living, uncaring world(city) is the point. The time it gives you to yourself which you don't have otherwise is the point; the space it gives you to engage yourself. If you can show an airport is similar enough to a city, with the trappings of a city, and the time you have is your own (and not spent in thrall to the coming flight) then I'd say go for it if it's a story you feel you can tell.

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat
There's definitely something city-like about an airport, with all the shops and all the people running and riding around.

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.

Sep 30, 2006

stayin c o o l
Sure, why not?


Sep 21, 2017

Horse Facts

True and Interesting Facts about Horse


Feb 25, 2014

This won, mainly, because it was effective at creating a good amount of emotional resonance, but i have a couple of issues with it.

It feels like it tells rather than shows in opportunities where the telling feels unnecessary and really pulls away from the effect of the moment. Such as this section


I’m afraid of my friends’ boyfriends, never mind their boyfriends’ single guy friends. Not always. I can eat a meal with my friends and their guys. I can have one, maybe two drinks. They have three, then four, often five, more. I’m afraid. They can handle their drinks. I can’t. I can’t handle them. They’re so tall, standing around us. They always stand. Towering over us. Even the small guys; pressing his legs against me. I have space. I’m not trapped. I’m loved by the people around me. I’m cared for. I’m safe. His hands press down on the table as though we’re a military map. A conquest. He’s so close. As though he could reach out and kill.

I think if you had kept out those feelings of fear, of allowing these images to rest and for us to implicitly feel that fear would work stronger. Right now, it feels too direct in what it’s saying, and as such, the images feel weaker and too obvious. And things like, “I’m lobed by the people around me,” well, it isn’t really in the story is it? Like you say it is, but we don’t ever see a friend, and don’t see what love is. It feels like the character is saying to that themselves (which might be intentional) but I think making it more of an image makes the impact of truthfulness (or not) hit harder. Other times, the telling kind of undermines what we’re supposed to feel, mostly in terms of how Ronan is described. He’s described vaguely, and the character just says, “I like him,” but it’s never explained further. He’s just kinda described as this ideal but it’s never anything specific. I’m not sure if this is intentional -- if it’s an attempt to show that the character doesnt really fully understand why she likes Ro, but I feel like it sort of undermines the theme of this story. Of overcoming trauma and to take risks again after the trauma, it feels like there should be someone more special, or if it isn’t somebody special, it should be more on the character’s end of their decision, or at least, I feel like that would make the story more effective.

I also think this can be edited down a bit. It sags in places, and its stream-of-consciousness-esque feeling is fine, but it think it can be pared down and more effective. It’s also rather scattered, which is intentional, but i think the scattered thoughts can kind of distract from what’s going on. For example, that section with the guy in the library made me think it was going on during the story and wasn’t a recollection.

sephiRoth IRA

This is just an eh story for me and it’s one of those that I always have the hardest time to critique. It wears its premise on its sleeves and carries it through to its effective, but predictable, conclusion. I do have some issues on the execution. It’s not very clear that the protagonist is Puckmaster, as the main focus is on BluesFan up until like 5 or 6 paragraphs. The conclusion also doesnt really make sense as a “internet but a real place” thing. Like, how do you get banned and then just get washed ashore to another forum? The one-to-one metaphor you were employing was kinda betrayed to make that work. But overall, the major issues is that it’s not very interesting. Like, after the initial “internet BUT WHAT IF REAL LIFE” you dont really do anything unique or surprise. Like, haha forums are dumb and ban people and sometimes some forums are good (well, we dont really know that forum is good since he just showed up) but it isnt really surprising or interesting besides it’s initial premise, and tbh, the premise is pretty eye-rolly anyways so idk it doesnt impress.

Simply Simon

I enjoyed this quite a fair bit. The dialogue is rather stilted, I will say, but I enjoyed the relationship between the two, and was probably the closest to what I wanted out of this. A real look at the odd relationships we have (relative) strangers on the internet. And this takes it in an entertainingly, but also real, direction. Steph being weirdly nonplussed at being gored by a boar, and their emotional issues, feels like it’s done with relative tact and in a way that feels maybe a bit exaggerated, but still feels relatable when it comes to dealing with people who are mental health issues. I like the bits of humor in here. The little haha of eating the boar pieces really helped pull the piece outside of its darker tone but still being believable. The last couple of lines were really fun. You were also able to effectively show character actions just through dialogue alone.

I think the main issues is that the dialogue is, overall, just a bit too stilted and unrealistic, and that it feels a bit too bloated. I would try and cut down some bits of it and see what stands, but I think this was fun but also emotionally effective.

Carl Killer Miller

So, while Simon’s had stilted dialogue, this piece had the same issue. But here, it doesnt have any of Simon’s strengths. There are too many characters and none of them are given really any interesting personalities. Like, they’re all 1 dimensional (especially the kid), and when they are killed off, we don’t really care. I think that’s the main issue. Without any real interesting characters in this situation, it ends up feeling flat. It isn’t TERRIBLE but it’s just mostly boring and I have no reason to care because I have no reason to be invested with the characters. There are just WAY too many and none of them are distint that I couldn’t even begin to describe any of them off the top of my head.


This feels… potentially problematic? But really, my main issue is that I think the tone stays too consistent throughout. Like, person with mental health issues does something stupid on the internet and it cascades from there is fine, but I don’t really know what this story is saying? The internet can be bad for your mental health? I mean, sure, but I feel like there isn’t really like a turn in this story? Where it like, kind of recontextualizes or tries to make sense of what’s going in this story. It’s kinda just like oh yeah it kinda sucks that people with mental health issues are on the internet and people dont rly understand that and it can lead to them being hurt. And sure, that’s a fine enough message, but one that I feel like might be a little too obvious? Or, at least in this story, is a bit too direct and feels almost too cartoon-y that, i dont want to presume that you dont respect the subject matter, but it does feel somewhat disrespectful. Again, i dont think you personally are making fun of it, but it does feel like the story is. I also think where this story really falter is the line “hey just wanted to make sure you were still taking…” because it is just wayyyyyyyyyy to direct and i audibly groan and was like if there’s one thing you can trust your reader in understanding this story, it’s that this character is absolutely an unmedicated person w/ a mental health issue.

Anomalous Amalgam

This has a lot of amateur writer issues, which is nice for me since I get an easy crit job here. Ok, first, unnecessary descriptions. Read this:


Only illuminated by the light of her monitor, Julia lounged lazily in the pale glow. Her left foot was planted firmly in the carpet with an elbow digging into that thigh. An extended hand rested on W, A, S, D and Space, out of instinct. The other arm was draped across the desk and those fingers collectively rested near enter and backspace.

Now, the question is, what does this description tell us. Well, it tells us Julia is relaxed when she’s talking to this person. You could also argue that she’s a gamer because her fingers are on WASD and Space (instead of, say, the home row). But there’s a couple of issues with this. 1) do you need to waste this many words to show this? Like, is it worth to have ALL of these descriptions to portray those pretty simple ideas. But there’s also 2) could you portray this in a way that maximizes the value of your words? For example, take Simon’s story, and see how he uses that the characters are gamers to help contextualize their relationships. He is able to use the details to both show some personality, like Thundershitter, but also showcase where their relationship came from. The quote is an excellent of televisionitis, as well, because you do not need that much description. Do we need to know it was specifcally her left foot in the carpet? Or an elbow digging into a thigh? Why is it important for us to know what specific keys her fingers were resting over? The answer is, we don’t. As flash fiction writers (and as a writer in general), you need to be aware of what needs to be said and what isnt. The story doesnt concern the exact place of her arms and elbows and whatever. Just say, Julia was resting on the floor, and leave it at that. That’s all we need to know.

The other issue is that you tell and dont show. Like here:


Julia smiled. She hadn’t intended it, but her heart did swell up a bit more when she thought of August. She enjoyed his persistence and matter of fact nature even if he did occasionally come off as abrasive.

You really don’t need this. Like, we already know this, or we should know this, because of all the dialogue we’ve had between the characters. If we didnt know this, you had failed as an author. Saying it outright doesnt help your case. So be confident, and let your words stand on their own.


This has good descriptions for a week that lacked a lot of strong physical description, but the issue here was that, as I went through it, I realized that there wasn’t a lot of strong emotional energy here. Like, I get what the story is trying to do. That an internet community rallies behind a single figure and brings unlikely people together. But like, we don’t really feel what that’s like. The character’s descriptions are nice, but I never really feel like the character was that intensely involved, or that he was really feeling anything super powerful. To me, I think the main thing was an unlikely group of people getting involved and bonding over something both unusual and sad. But we dont really see that. It’s mostly glossed over and summarized, and we see no real interactions between people, no real emotions shown, no complicated feelings based on this odd convergence of weird relationships and interests. Like, you just say two of them got married because of this. Why didnt you SHOW them getting together? That wouldve been infinitely more interesting.

Something Else

This story. Oof. When I started reading this, as an extremely online teenager emotionally distant from my parents, I was actually kinda excited. I was hoping this would be a story about a father learning to accept that his teenager may be interested in things he doesnt understand, but that they are ultimately making him happy so that’s okay. Instead, the kid is in some weird alt-right discord, which, i mean, okay, that’s fine. I’m not gonna judge even tho i was rly looking forward to a different kind of story. But then it’s kinda… confusing. Like the dad character is weird, but in a way that i cant really get a bead on. I mean, he names his son Plato for god’s sake. He’s strange and odd and the way he speaks is unsettlingly, which I think is intentional? But he also feels genuine, a father who doesnt really understand his son and what he’s interested because teenagers are weird and assholes. But then he’s also so easily corrupted by this hate? Or like, he was so gullible that he didnt know these kinda of people existed? He was THAT naive? Really? I don’t know, I can’t find the character believable. I do kinda like the ending, with the father’s assumptions ultimately challenged and proven wrong, which is nice because it wasnt the father actually just assuming but instead directly asking his son what he feels (although I do think it’s also kinda hosed that the father is just willing to let his son keep posting in some horrible alt-right discord, especially given that he’s found his son directly posting poo poo but hey fiction can have characters be bad parents). But the ending line is just… what????????? Baffling. Impossible to understand. But the main issue is that the protagonist just feels like such a bizarre, inconsistent figure, but not in a way that’s believable. Honestly, I feel like it could work, and could actually be really strong, but maybe this isn’t the right context and story to explore this kind of character.


Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
Just a quick reminder to all story starters in thunderstone christmas! Get your half in so your closers have time to finish things off! So far, only one has been submitted and passed along to a closer.

Don't post anything here. If you have any questions or concerns, message me directly!

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