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Apr 12, 2006
the end of days
1233 words


Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at 22:24 on Jan 8, 2021


Doctor Eckhart
Dec 23, 2019

Magill vs A1200-B
1069/1250 words

Magill reeled from his opponent’s punch and everything went into slow motion, the bright lights and the shouts from the crowd dimmed for an overstretched moment. His robot opponent was waiting for him with his gloves in a low guard, not a bead of sweat on it. Its eyes were unblinking and its grin with too many teeth was fixed on a face belonging to a thing that was unthinking, unfeeling. A1200-B, that’s what’s they called it. They weren’t allowed human names. Magill recalled the fight where A1200-B had beat A1200-A so badly its metal carcass had to be scraped up out of the ring to be thrown in a dumpster. Was he a fool to think he had a chance?

When he hit the ropes, everything came back to full speed again. He was back in the fight, bobbing and weaving to avoid punches as he regained his energy. He got in a couple of jabs while avoiding A1200-B’s flying fists. But the robot was like steel. No, more than just like steel, it was steel. Even his heaviest punches met with unyielding resistance. He feinted then hit A1200-B’s metal jaw with a surprise left hook. The robot stumbled backwards a little, and the crowd cried out. But then it recovered and rained down a series of blows. Magill felt blood trickle down into his eye.

The ding ding of the end of the round saw Magill staggering to his corner. He sat down heavily, and his team scurried to assemble around him. As blood was wiped from his face, he watched the same being done to A1200-B by its robot assistance. His blood. It was wiping his blood from the robot. Robots didn’t bleed red.

The same fixed expression remained on A1200-B’s face. Ever since it had set eyes on him, the robot had him in its laser focus.

Jeffers, Magill’s coach was crouching in front of him, saying something that had not been registering. “-not like you. You gotta admit it.”

Magill sighed and dropped his chin to his chest. “What if it’s just better?”

“Now listen to me,” Jeffers said, waving a finger in his face. “there’s no thoughts in that head of his, it’s just numbers and junk. It might have all’a the technical knowhow on the moves, but you can’t tell me that’s what makes a winner.”

Magill looked over his coach’s head to A1200-B. The robot was sitting perfectly calmly in its corner, ready to go again now it had been wiped down. “You’re right. It hasn’t wanted to be the very best since it was a child. But I have! It doesn’t dream every night of being the champ. But I still do, even after all these years!”

“You’re drat right! Now get out there and show us what you’re made of!”

Magill glanced over at the crowd and his eyes easily found his mother in her best hat. She shouted something inaudible and jumped up and down, raising her fist. He smiled and raised his fist back at her.

His coach tapped him on the shoulder, and he was up again for the ding of the next round.

Now Magill fought with new resolve. That vacant face no longer unnerved him as he bobbed and weaved to avoid its punches. In fact, he felt a bit sorry for the robot. He landed two good blows in succession to A1200-B’s face and this time he was able to ignore the lack of impact it made on the robot. His persistence paid off, and just as he was congratulating himself for properly pushing the robot back for the first time, a fist crashed into his left temple.

Magill forced himself to recover quickly and attempted to get some combinations in while he still had his drive to survive. But he was off his game, a searing pain rung out in his head. He tried to ignore it and kept his gloves up to block punches to his head. A1200-B got him right in the gut with a sucker punch of such force that he staggered.

Magill caught himself, swayed and grinned at his opponent and tried to look relaxed as he had seen his role model do so many times. Instead of trying to get in more useless blows to his opponent, he focused on moving around and dodging its attacks. Muhammed Ali had died long before Magill had even been born, but his mother had all of his fights on those ancient shiny plastic discs of hers.

He felt cocky for a moment. It seemed to be working. A1200-B was slowing down. So even a robot could tire eventually!

The next punch came out of nowhere. Magill’s neck snapped back. There was the sharp metallic taste of blood in his mouth. Then more punches followed. The shock had made him drop his guard. He dodged the next blow. Spat out blood. He raised his guard again, just a second too late.

Magill hit the mat. No matter how his mind fought his body, he knew very well that he was not getting up again. He closed his eyes. The ref was counting down. The cheers from the crowd rang in his ears. Cheers for his opponent.

The robot had won.

This wasn’t any lost fight. This meant the end for human boxing. It had been dead for years now, but with this loss Magill had just sealed the coffin.

“Let’s hear it for A1200-B! This has been a sensational fight, the like of which has never been seen before! Do you think we’re gonna see more fights like this?”

“Well I don’t know Billy, just listen to that crowd! Sounds to me that they want to see more human fighters taking on the robots.”

“You said it! Well Magill certainly put up a fight. This is one for the history books for sure!”

Magill’s chest heaved as he gasped for breath, daring to dream of seeing his picture next to Muhammed Ali’s in a book. He lifted his head and saw A1200-B standing in a victory pose with its arms in the air.

Magill strained his neck and met the robot’s bright eyes and bright smile, and he found himself smiling too. He’d see the robot back in the ring again soon. He gave a slight nod and wondered if it was its programming that caused A1200-B to return the gesture.

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.
The Voice

1046 words

“We’re in,” I say as a dozen panels across three fullscreen monitors spring to life.  Charlie’s grinning like a fool next to the wall panel. I’ve always wanted to say things like that.  Say them and mean them. Charlie stops mugging and stuffs his toolkit back under his shirt. Next stop: the fifteenth floor.

Any woman who's dated a certain number of men has been with a guy who says he's a spy. Mostly it's like a game. They're really saying that they're not going to be any kind of honest and that they're only interested in sex. And if they have the right kind of intense smoulder when they start telling those lies and you're just looking for a short term lay too, you play along. That's what I thought was going on with Charlie, for years on and off. He was in town a few months each summer, and we played the game.

I'm watching the security cameras. The guys in the basement are watching a loop from last week. They've got a pattern, teams of two patrolling the floors, going up to fourteen and back down again. They watch the elevator lights each time. "You think they've been burned before?" I ask over our earpieces. "Someone slip by them that way?"

"Maybe," says Charlie. "Or maybe they just get mad each time that they have to take the stairs."

Charlie knows about getting mad. Never at me, not once. But on my behalf he could get almost scary mad. The first time I told him about my handsy creep of a boss, he rolled over, looked me past my eyeballs and into my skull and said "Jess, do you want me to kill him?"

"No," I said. "Not today."

"Lucky him," Charlie said. I thought of it as part of the game, when I thought it was a game. But even then I never even thought about saying 'yes, do it.'

The fifteenth floor has its own security setup, starting with a big solid lock on the stairwell door. Solid enough to resist anything Charlie could hide under his clothes, are wired in to a different security station on that floor. "The lock is stronger than the door," says Charlie.

"Which means that the door is weaker than the lock," I say. I don't have an angle on where he's at now. But I can hear everything he hears. I hear the tools come out. A sound-suppressed drill starts to turn. The first hole is low, near foot level. He threads a fiber-optic cable through and I have eyes again. "Nobody watching right now," I say. "Make it count."

I used to work security by day. A lot more theory than practice. I didn't pick locks or guard doors. I did threat analysis. Hands-on for the cyber side, though. I never met a hacker I would trust with anything worth more than fifty bucks, so that part I taught myself. When Charlie started taking an interest in my work I started thinking that he wasn't entirely full of poo poo. I was thinking corporate espionage, someone in the competition. Except that it was a two-way street. He got me data I couldn't have learned any other way. Wiring diagrams. Zero-day exploits.

Charlie kicks the door open, leaving a small wedge with the lock in place. No alarms, but it's a loud way in and obvious as soon as anyone comes by. He's moving quickly. We've been over this part before. Where the office is, what the vulnerability in the safe is, what to grab.

I should have seen it coming. Sydney, my boss, had a lot more character flaws than just a miasma of sexual harassment. He was embezzeling, millions of dollars, and when I got close to figuring it out he set me up. Set me up good, with my own guys escorting me out, hands ziptied behind my back, to a waiting police car. They sat me in the back seat and the car drove off.

"We're not going to the station," said the driver. He turned around. It was Charlie. I smiled. "Your place isn't safe either."

"I've never seen your apartment," I say.

"A first time for everything," he said. "There's a coat in the other seat so you can cover your arms until we get inside. Then I'll cut those off."

"No," I said, wild with the sudden urge. "Leave them on."

After, he asked me again if he should kill Sidney, and I knew there wasn't a hint of joke to it. "No," I said. "But how about we rob him blind."

"Trouble," he says, softly into the mic.

"Hands up," says someone else. Maybe two voices at once.

*Remember," I say. He starts to move. We set ground rules when we planned this. No killing, no serious injuries. The sounds are violent enough, but no guns are fired. I hear one sliding across the ground.

Alarms start sounding, and I have to switch the security feeds back to live. He appears on the stairwell can, starting to bound downwards.

"Building security is coming up, three floors down," I say.

"And I have at least three coming close behind," he says. "Send the elevator to fourteen." I click keys and send the command.

He goes off camera, taking the door back into the building on fourteen. I catch him at the elevator, wedging the door open into the shaft, then slipping his body inside. "Tell me when it passes twelve," he says. I do. He jumps.

I don't have time to watch the screens, so I miss the scene at the lobby, a dozen guns pointed as the elevator opens, empty. I'm in the driver's seat, moving the van into position. Five gunshots sounded, then shattering glass, then the expected thump on the roof.

"You holding on tight?" I say.

"Tight enough," he says. I press the accelerator. A short drive to a garage and we've switched to a clean car.

Later, in a hotel suite in Morocco, he tells me that his previous handlers had "A far more permissive attitude toward enemy casualties."

"Do you miss that?" I ask.

He shakes his head. I pull the zip-tie tight around his hands and my shirt over my head.

Feb 18, 2014

Flight of the Fool
1,249 words

My first mistake was meeting Omias in our usual watering hole, rather than not giving him a warning or fond farewell at all. I sat on my usual perch and stretched my wings, knowing that he'd show up in a matter of minutes, always punctual. Sure enough, he swooped in by the time I got my glass of beetlebrau.

Guy looked like he'd had the poo poo kicked out of him, refilled, then kicked back out again. He'd lost half his noseleaf years ago, his blindfold plate had a spiderweb of cracks on one side, and at least one of his fangs had a nasty chip in it, to say nothing of the scars blanketing his ears. That and the dopey grin he gave me when he sat down made what I had to do all the more nerve-wracking for me, probably enough to tip him off early.

"Look," I said after we both had a drink, "Aglas ain't stupid. He's not gonna let that garnet cache go, and he's closing in on who took it. Only a matter of time until he gets his claws wet, alright?"

By now the rest of the clientele made a good show of acting deaf as they were blind. Omias lowered his ears, twitched his lip and fiddled with his empty glass. "Ey Sig, you know that ain't how it went down."

"Tch. What matters is someone stole gems that weren't his to steal," I said, leaning forward to bare my teeth in irritation. "Now this can go down one of two ways. Either you were smart enough to stash that cache in full, and you can present it to Aglas with only a new scar to show for it, or GYYYAAAAHHHFUCK!"

In the middle of my ultimatum, that sly rear end in a top hat had detonated a noise scrambler he'd hidden in his other hand. The sharp screeching noise the thing made was soon joined by the pained shrieks of me and everyone else in there as our map of the area blurred like a pond reflection barraged by pebbles. Not guessing he'd do something stupid and impulsive like he does every single time he's in a jam was my second mistake.

Once I got a clear head, Omias had flown the coop. I rushed to the exit and listened in panic before I heard him open his wings in a glide, transferring from a freefall drop to a safe landing on a walkway five stories below.

Mistakes number three to I lost count came when I went after him, cuz if you'd heard your boss as frothing mad as I did you weren't gonna let that poo poo stand. I dove headfirst and spread my wings to turn up and barrel through a few bystanders who picked the wrong place to rest in the middle of their flights. Up ahead, Omias scrambled and weaved through a bigger crowd, including a few goods baskets on ropes and pulleys crisscrossing between doors in the walls. Every moment I was exactly the wrong speed to let something or someone block my momentum was a mistake, though some folks were smart enough to get the hell out of my way once they knew who it was doing the chasing.

I doubted Omias had anything left up his sleeve to conjure wind at his back, so I knew he'd be relying on the catwalk network to really get a head-start on me. Two could play at that game. After I saw him make his first jump, I scrambled up onto the railing, latched my toe-claws around it and leaped off like a catapult load, sailing in an arc that would put me within stabbing distance of Omias upon landing. No sooner did I reach for my knife than his ears perked and he caught hold of a tramcar crossing over, going so far as to slide under it with barely a palm of empty space between it and the catwalk floor.

In a panic I unfolded my wings to keep from crashing right into it. Thinking he'd emerge from the other side and keep sprinting, I hit the ground and jumped over the tramcar, frantically listening to separate him from the merchants in the market ahead. What I should have heard was the click of his claws still gripping the underside of the tramcar, and by the time I did hear it he'd let go into another dive.

"How much longer you think you can go before hitting bottom?" I shouted, trying my best to streamline my descent.

Even facing away from me, I heard him chuckle and knew he had a poo poo-eating grin on. "If there's one thing you learn in Rubaiyoht, it's that there's always more bottom to hit!" Then he gripped a hook in his hand, latched it onto a rope, whirled around and kicked me right in the faceplate.

The force of his blow sent me tumbling rear end-over-teakettle into the far wall, and thank my lucky stars I barreled through a door held open by some dame letting her sweetheart in to have a romantic evening at home. I sent the two of them scattering like ninepins before we collided with a bookcase and got showered with foreign magazines. Shaking off that paper, I could hear the couple griping and yelling at me, threatening me with this or that. Thankfully they shut up once I got to my feet and revealed myself to them as someone they didn't want to gently caress with. I chucked them a hundred-ruble note as compensation before I left their hole and took flight, searching for Omias and grumbling to myself.

I might have lost him then and there, but I knew one last place I might be able to head him off. Before the two of us hooked up with Aglas's gang, we had our own petty operation using a storehouse in the poor side of town where groundbound refugees lived. Sure enough, I caught him knocking on crates inside, looking for something. Thinking I was lucky enough to catch him off-guard, I rushed him with a knife, only for him to spin around and catch me in a wrist-lock.

"Oh look, we have a matching set!" he said with that same stupid smile, an inch away from my face. Turns out that kick did more damage to my faceplate than I'd thought.

"You're a real pain in the rear end, you know that?" I snarled, trying in vain to maintain my grip on the knife. My other hand shot out to grab it as it fell, only for Omias to twist me out of the way. "I've put too much work into this to watch you gently caress it up!"

Then he asked, "And how much work did Lyta put into it?" It was a name I hadn't heard in a long time, and I froze up when hearing it, making my final mistake. Omias slammed my head into the crate, knocking me out.

I came to at home, with nothing but a note goodbye from him to show for the chase. I read it and tossed it into the fire.

I still work for Aglas, too attached to a comfy life and afraid of reprisal to do anything so brave. Fool that I took Omias to be, he was still lucky enough to escape, and I enough to look like I hadn't let him go. He said he'd be back for me, with an army. I'm still waiting.

Sep 30, 2006

stayin c o o l
Death Before Dishonour

“Use this blade should you need to take your own life.”

Those were the last words my mother said to me. That was thirty years ago.

It was supposed to be a short war. We smashed wave after wave of colonial scum. But there was always more. They’ve taken these islands. Still, I resist. My honor demands it.

Rice stalks poked holes in the reflection of the moon on the paddy. They would be difficult to burn. Kozuka and I managed to steal a can of gasoline and a gallon of oil from the shed. It does not take much to blot out the moon in the pools. It became dark, sickly thing.

I pulled out a bundle of dried leaves and revealed a small red ember. Kozuka nursed it while I soaked the leaves in gasoline. We replaced the ember and floated the leaves on the closest paddy like a funeral pyre. Then I blew on it. Softly, gently. The ember grew incandescent, began to smoke, and suddenly erupted flame. It spread quickly and leaped from one paddy to the next.

The whole field was alight. We stared at the flames for a moment. They were so bright that you couldn’t see the stars. I swear you could hear them breathing.

We heard shouting and retreated. A gunshot broke the air. Kozuka grabbed his leg, then fell to the ground. I dropped down beside him. He had been hit in the thigh. I unbuckled my belt and pulled it around his leg so tight he yelped. He bit his own tongue to keep himself from giving away any more of our position.

I drew my service pistol and fired three wild shots back toward the farm. Then I pulled Kozuka up and helped him back towards the jungle.

We sat in the darkness. Kozuka could walk very far before needing rest. I tried my best to bandage it. There was too much blood.

“The bullet struck an artery,” I said quietly without raising my eyes, “I’m sorry.”

We have fought alone together in this jungle since Shimada was killed twenty years ago. Now I would be alone.

“I need you to swear to me,” he said between deep gasps, “You’ll tell my mother I died honorably. Give her this. Her address is on it.”

He reached inside his jacket and produced a small scrap of rice paper with characters covering every little space. I did my best to wipe the blood from my hands and took the note, then tucked it away, deep inside my gear, where it would be safe.

“I swear, on my honor,” I told him.

He nodded and looked up at the horizon. The sun was beginning to break.

“The rising sun,” he whispered.

The stillness was broken by rustling bushes and snapping leaves.

The blood. They had followed the blood. I went to pull Kozuka up, but he pushed me away. Weakly, he untied his boot and pulled the lace out. He looped it through the grenades in his pouch and twisted it around his hand.
He stared into me.

“You swore.”

I nodded and ran for cover between two fallen trees.

There was shouting. They said “No fight, give up, no fight!” in a broken, muddled accent.

Kozuka simply yelled, “For honor.”

There was a great bang. My ears rang as if I was trapped in a bell. Wordless screams erupted from the injured.

In a daze, I stood up and tried shaking my head. I could see some of them lying still. Others writhed in pain. One of the men looked uninjured. He was holding his comrade in his arms and saying something I didn’t understand. He saw me. His gun was beside him.

He reached for it and I shot him.

Then I shot the other survivors.

It was for mercy and honor. That is what I told myself.

I ran through the jungle for days. I zig-zagged, doubled back, hid. Their helicopters circled overhead like vultures.

After a couple of weeks the skies were clear and I moved on.

It would be some time before I struck again. I had too. These people supported the imperialists. The colonizers. The oppressors. They would rather fight for their position under the table than bite the hand that feeds. Their rice feeds them. Their people fought for them. They’ve betrayed their brothers and sisters. There are no innocents in war.

Months passed. The solitude was overwhelming. The calls of monkeys reminded me of screaming. I retreated further into the jungle.

I had been sleeping against a tree when a hand woke me. I pushed the figure down and drew my pistol.

It was a kid. He had long hair, circular sunglasses, and a shirt of cloudy colors. He removed his glasses and then raised his hands in surrender.

He was Japanese, not Philipino.

“Who are you? What are you doing here?” My voice cracked.

“My name is Norioa Suzuki, and I’m looking for Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda, wild pandas, and the Abominable Snowman,” he said, and then smiled, weakly.

I held my aim. It’s a trick. It had to be. Except… this kid was no military asset. He was an idiot.

I lowered my weapon.

“I am Hiroo Onoda. Why do you seek me?”

He shrugged. “To listen.”

We sat for a long time, listening to the birds and the monkeys. He shared his cigarettes. I hadn’t smoked in a lifetime. Finally, I spoke. Calmly. Bare details. But there were somethings that had to be said and then everything came pouring out. I told him my entire life story, about living in the jungle, and what happened to Shimada and Kozuka.

He listened silently but intently. When I finished he stood up. I nearly drew my weapon, but he simply bowed and placed his hand on my shoulder.

“You have served with honor. Your family is very proud, but they miss you. You can go home now. Be with them.”

“I cannot, as long as the war is being fought. I cannot leave until my commander relieves me.”

“Hiroo, the war is over. The Americans won. Look,” he said as he bent down and pulled a newspaper out of his bag. He handed it to me.

It was current. It spoke of the anniversary of the end of the war. The friendship between America and Japan. The prince’s wedding. Modern life in Tokyo.

I grew red in the face and threw it to the ground. “Lies! If anything this is proof the war continues. If the Americans won, then there wouldn’t be any life in Japan. We swore we would resist to the end, that the women and children would fight with bamboo sticks to bring down as many of them as they could. One hundred thousand souls for honor. It was on every poster, in every parting breath,” I told him, gesturing wildly with my hands.

A wave of sadness overcame him. He sat back down and told me how it ended. How the atom bombs vaporized whole cities in an instant. How invisible rays poisoned people. How the Americans could obliterate all of Japan, and how impossible it was to fight back.

“That means Kozuka died for nothing. Those people died for nothing,” I said, pointing into the jungle. His gaze dropped to the ground.

We sat in silence again. I told him if what he was saying was true, I would surrender my commander. I gave him a time and a place. I fumbled with the small scrap of paper in my jacket. If it were true, then I only had one oath left to fulfill.

I met my commander there. He's a bookseller now. He's older, heavier, and has laugh lines.

I gave up my mother’s blade.

Sep 14, 2007

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome

I will officially close submissions when I wake up. Sebmojo, QuoProQuid, crimea, you have until... whenever that is.

Sep 14, 2007

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome

Oh right, submissions are CLOSED.

Sep 14, 2007

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome


I asked you to write action this week, and you succeeded in writing action. Except for one of you.
NAGA LIU KANG's Virtue & Vitriol confused 'no fighting' with 'no action', and contained exactly zero adrenaline.

Fortunately, the rest of you managed to meet the minimum requirements. Unfortunately, most of it was bad action, but such is the way of Thunderdome. The other bit of the prompt (and more important): make us care about your characters. Good characters can cover many mistakes. Our DMs spent far too much time telling us about half-baked fictional worlds, when that time would have been much better spent making your characters interesting and your stakes clear.
Simply Simon's To Win Her spent all it's time talking, and then, after the action, erased all the stakes. Not good.
Something Else's The Incident on Vascon 9 gave us two unlikable characters with unclear motivations, which makes for an uninteresting story.
J.A.B.C.'s River's Shadow featured three tenses in the first sentence, which is a bad start. Though the action was okay, the rest was not strong enough to make up for the grammatical concerns and some lackluster storytelling choices.

Ceighk's The Standing Stone narrowly avoided a DM by virtue of having been disqualified, for editing his story.

On to the good stuff. Our HMs were rewarded for having compelling stakes and compelling action--though they accomplished this in different ways.
Chili's Shoot was a fun wrestling romp with heart, and clear, relatable character motivations. Simple, short, and effective.
Uranium Phoenix's Those Untouched by War lacked strong worldbuilding, but receives high mark for creating exceptional tension and brief, brutal action through effective structure and prose, with just enough heart to carry it.

Some battles leave both sides so battered and bloodied that declaring a winner becomes a meaningless exercise. Not so here. This fight saw the winner mount a pile of enemies, weapon held aloft and nary a scratch on him. This story managed humor, sparse but effective action, and, most importantly, relatable and interesting characters with personality (and even a bit of an arc!), all in 1200 words. A unanimous, easy choice. YOUR NEW BLOOD GOD:
Tyrannosaurus -- the end of days

Mount your throne, King. I relinquish it gladly.

EDIT: Thanks to my co-judges, flerp and Chairchucker, who are both magnificent bastards.

BeefSupreme fucked around with this message at 18:20 on Apr 28, 2020

Apr 12, 2006

The animals are scattered in the wake of the Circus Train’s crash... Mother Elephant has been hung in a mock trial. Rabbit is nursing his broken heart on the road back home. Tiger and Peacock have accepted their fate… But Fox seems to be preoccupied by late 18th century French post-structuralist philosophy, despite her dire situation...


This week, you’ll be writing about an animal (possibly more than one) fleeing from the wreckage of a crashed circus train. It is on the run from capture and is in pursuit of ultimate Truth (in any number of its varied shapes and meanings). Can it dodge both hunters' traps and philosophical entanglements? Will it need to? Success and failure come in many forms - if they come at all.

To participate, you will need to:
  • Pick an animal. It can be one that is traditionally found in a circus though that is not a requirement. It’s more important that you pick something you find interesting and that you’ll enjoy writing about. I won’t decide this for you.
  • Ask for either a philosophy or a fallacy. Your assignment must then be included in, alluded to, or, at the very least, vaguely influence your story. If you :toxx:, I’ll give you a second choice and you can use one or both.
  • Write.

Everything can be extremely metaphorical. Extrapolate as necessary. Esoterically ramble as called. Nothing matters.


sign ups close friday midnight est
subs close sunday midnight est
1314 words


sebmojo (weird)

killer crane
Ironic Twist
a friendly penguin
Quartz Crusher
Something Else*
The Saddest Rhino
Doctor Eckhart*
Sitting Here


Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at 23:09 on May 3, 2020

Sep 30, 2006

stayin c o o l
In, :toxx:, one of each, animal tbd

Oct 24, 2018

by Pragmatica
In unicorn philosophy

Jul 17, 2015

by Nyc_Tattoo
In :toxx: one of each, a regular cat

Apr 21, 2010

Deceitful and black-hearted, perhaps we are. But we would never go against the Code. Well, perhaps for good reasons. But mostly never.
In with a Polar Bear and a Fallacy.

Sep 21, 2017

Horse Facts

True and Interesting Facts about Horse

In :toxx: one of each please kind sir

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


in, zebra philosophy

killer crane fucked around with this message at 22:43 on Apr 28, 2020

Oct 4, 2013

in, animal tbd, one of each please :toxx:

Apr 12, 2006

SlipUp posted:

In, :toxx:, one of each, animal tbd

Your philosophy is Gadamer's hermeneutics (or just broadly hermeneutics). Your fallacy is the wisdom of the crowd.

Saucy_Rodent posted:

In unicorn philosophy

Your philosophy is bioethics.


In :toxx: one of each, a regular cat

Your philosophy is deontology. Your fallacy is line drawing.

Thranguy posted:

In with a Polar Bear and a Fallacy.

Your fallacy is genetic.

Yoruichi posted:

In :toxx: one of each please kind sir

Your philosophy is bioconservatism. Your fallacy is false dilemma.

killer crane posted:

in, zebra philosophy

Your philosophy is kaizen.

Your philosophy is authoritarianism. Your fallacy is guilt by association.

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

:toxx: as usual to crit all the stories last week by the end of friday pst

Ironic Twist
Aug 3, 2008

I'm bokeh, you're bokeh
in with a philosophy

Apr 12, 2006

Ironic Twist posted:

in with a philosophy

Your philosophy is just war.

Nov 16, 2012



Apr 12, 2006

crimea posted:



Your philosophy is verificationism. Your fallacy is we have to do something.

Feb 25, 2014
platypus fallacy

a friendly penguin
Feb 1, 2007

trolling for fish

In, philosophy, sheep

Apr 12, 2006

flerp posted:

platypus fallacy

Your fallacy is ableism.

a friendly penguin posted:

In, philosophy, sheep

You philosophy is Kantianism.

Feb 25, 2014
403 crits

Simply Simon

action week, the week where you spend half the story with boring rear end dialogue. this is bad because the people do not shut up and none of the dialogue is interesting and its all just “this is what is happening and what im thinking” and there’s nothing here that makes me get attached. i dont care about these people. its a relationship that we see nothing of, feel nothing. were just told theyre gonna get married and that, by itself, is to make us care, but we dont see any love or passion or anything worth fighting for, so the action doesnt land. and the action isnt great either, the blocking is fairly awkward. and jesus just make ur characters shut the gently caress up if they dont have anything interesting to say. too much exposition, wowzers.


why are you capitalizing winter and south????

dont have two characters’ names start with the same two letters

we dont get yumie’s name until the THIRD paragraph. you know… the protagonist!!!

there’s no reason to care about these characters. they just walk around, kill some dudes, and thats it. the backdrop of whatever japanese bullshit doesnt matter and doesnt change the context around the characters in any meaningful way that makes it interesting. like, this feels like an opener to a samurai movie or whatever, and this would be *fine* by those standards, but it definitely wouldnt be the standout moment and rly would just be the filler to get you to the moments we care about. this just fails to understand what makes us care about stories, because there’s nothing here. there’s some historical nonsense going on, but nothing grips because we cant get attached and we dont see why this history would be interesting.


what the gently caress just happened?

this is like some really weird and bad anime which is probably not the impression you wanted to give. motivations are incredibly weird. i was kinda hoping for something good here, since u set up a girl and a romantic conflict that i was like hey maybe the stakes of this fight might be interesting or deal with characters or idk be kinda cool. but then just bullshit happens. he gives him a knife and summons a group of goons? to surround them? as they fight with knives? what? how? are these people still in high school? why is this guy obsessed with fighting with knives, presumably to the death, and how was he able to rile up an entire squad of people to join him in this fight. like, what? and then the guy just kinda dies for no real reason and the dude is like what the gently caress just happened and idk what the gently caress is going on. this had a decent start, but it descended into nonsense too quickly and forgot about making us care about the fight.

something else

this is really bad because it’s really really sloppy. there’s not rly a lot of fighting in this, but also, there’s nothing to care about. the protagonist is just a nothing of a character and the antagonist is a generic villain. and theres so much talking for no reason and its so cliche and still nothing happens. the fight isnt interesting because the villain gets the upper hand and it always stays the same and the protagonist’s win was that he just called someone else to shoot the ship because he sucked too much rear end, with the antagonist apparently having a way to escape this. who cares? like, this guy sucked and basically did nothing and if they could jsut blow up this dude’s ship why didnt they do this? probably becuase they wanted this lovely rear end in a top hat to die. there’s no tension when we dont know who the characters are, where their only defining trait is being assholes to each other. the stakes here are completely nonexistent, and there’s no good character for me to latch onto, and the scifi nonsense does nothing to save it.

uranium phoenix

this is alright tension building but its still mostly w/e of a moment. theres not a whole lot of actual stakes here that the reader cares about. the characters arent very interesting, and we dont rly get a good insight into the war and what matters. theres a decent scifi premise and a decent tension build, but it ends up just being very middle of the road, never really pulling the reader in because there’s not much to attach ourselves. the characters are kinda there, but we’ve all seen this before. it’s just, all too by the numbers. this story rly does take its sweet time, but it doesnt rly use that time to build up relationships or make us rly want to root for any of these people not to die. it uses it decently well to build up tension, but, ehh tension by itself doesnt quite work for me.

ironic twist

this is that fight in scott pilgrim where they have the music duel but scott pilgrim is decently fun so im not rly complaining. this is alright as a kind of pure action scene because it has a clever enough premise to keep it interesting even if the characters arent that interesting, kinda like a decent jojo episode (anime reference). there’s some vagueness, and i rly dont know how i feel about the overarching plot being about some weird anime organization that wants to rule the world through sound or whatever (i dont think ruling is even a thing u said in this story but w/e). it kinda feels unncessary and i would like it to be a lower staked duel between two people, but then again, if this is trying to be a Larger Thing, then it makes some sense, but feels a bit too obvious. i kinda liked the dating angle that i thought was in there, but im unsure if that was intentional, but it would make it kinda fun, although then it might be TOO similiar to scott pilgrim so who knows


this is fun. it has a nice little mid-way through twist and ends in a satisfying way that i like. that’s not much here to critique, truthfully, as it’s a very straightforward story, and it lands as well as it probably can. perhaps the beginning is a bit too much in terms of his obsession with himself, so the turn doesnt quite work near the end and there mightve been a bit too much focus on trying to make the shift be surprising vs landing naturally, but it’s nice to have a story start with one thing, and end with a different thing that makes sense and builds up a nice little conclusion that you go and say aw thats kinda cute.


this just doesnt land. nothing rly happens. a hag shows up and does creepy things and leaves, and then, unrelatedly, bandits show up and a girl stares very hard at the bandit, and he goes nah nvm u guys are good to go. like, nothing happens and the two things together dont make sense at all. props, i supposed, are in order for trying to write something where there wasnt a fight at all, except in someone’s head, and i could see that working, but this is all too cliche. like, you had VIKING BANDITS (you know, people from like a thousand years ago), i poo poo you not, say “well well well, what do we have here.” like, what???????????????? the dialogue here was so boring, there was no ounce of character in any of it, nothing interesting about any of these people for me to attach myself to.

also, another point, your shift to olaf’s perspective was very awkward and weird. when it’s centered on one character’s PoV, and then it shifts to another, it can be very disorienting to be suddenly reading about how scared olaf is when we’ve been inside another character’s head the entire time.


this another decent piece, but it’s one that bleeds together with about any action piece you can think. there’s a lot of weird little contrivances that im not a fan of. the ship just blows. when he pulled the parachute i was literally like “wait he had a parachute???” altho that may be my failure as a reader vs ur failure if u did set that up (note to self, reread. i did by skimming and didnt see anything so yeah). idk, this piece is definitely pure action, but it’s not rly interesting in its own rights. weve seen all of this before, the explosion, the jumping through the air, the fighting and headbutting, the wisecracking. its just not enough.


and then we get to this story and its interesting from the start! the characters have personalities! creepy weird things happen that make me go whoa what the heckers! it made me laugh! it had characters you could care about! holy moley its everything i could ask for. well, except for IT’S IS ONLY SHORT IT IS. and also i dont rly get the christian character thing because it’s kinda weird how the character was like hey im a christian now but actually im still doing shrooms??? and so that doesnt rly make sense and feels like u wanted to make a funny joke thing as ur intro and then realized “wait no drug story would be more interesting” and so u kinda just wrote around it, which idk, not a fan. but overall, this story is fun, it has a nice buildup to action where its spent making these characters have personalities so when scary things happen im like oh no and then he does the funny kick and its like yeah haha i like that and then there’s a fun gag at the end of the story and wow, just, wow. it does the things that an action scene should do. incredible.

doctor eckheart

look, im not a nitpicker, or at least, i try not to be. but, immediately, my instinct for a story that goes “boxer fights metal robot” is immediately what the gently caress no how would that work theres no way. and the story tries to play it straight for some loving reason!!! like what???? no. he’s punching literally steel. like imagine an mma fight thats like “boxer fistpuncher vs a steel wall.” like, that would obv no work. and so when my first instinct is “your premise makes no sense what the gently caress” thats kind of a failure. regardless, this story isnt very interesting since we dont rly care, and the goofy parts of this might work if this was played way less straight and more outright wacky, such as the lines where he says “oh it’s not like punching steel, i am punching steel” and the corny “robots dont have dreams, but humans can! I CAN BEAT IT” are pretty fun but they end feeling less like me running along with the story laughing along with its dumbness and more me being like why is this story so serious, its so loving dumb.


i literally, immediately, looked at a different tab after reading that first line. im in. FUCKKKKKKKKKK you. that poo poo’s not even ironically funny anymore and the description was so boring nad ughhhhh i have to read this. ok

alright this was pretty boring. it’s very expository, but the exposition isnt very interesting. i guess it’s, on the face value, kinda fun to think about a spy not-so-secretly being cute about it and then actually joining in on the spy, but man, this story does NOT want to be fun, it seems. it takes its premise so seriously, which feels like the missed opportunity. its played way too straight, and the end i guess is meant to hit those kinda light chuckle action movie scenes, but there’s nothing there previously, especially when u consider the flirting with a secret agent angle seems like something u could 100% do something fun with but w/e. it’s a decent little movie action scene, i guess, but it lacks the fun that i think it needs because nobody wants to watch a bland rear end in a top hat walk up stairs while another bland rear end in a top hat chats in their ear.


i dont rly get the necessity of the bird angle, and i feel like it should be more, but it doesnt rly lend itself to be anything interesting. it ends up jsut being a thing thats there and kinda talked about, but doesnt add anything of true value to the story. its also not rly clear on whether or not if its like regular dudes with wings, or weird bird people, or actual birds, or something else. besides that, this story feels like it’s banking on “people with wings” to carry its generic plot of generic characters that dont rly have any interesting or fun or intriguing or meaningful personalities. its just like omg i gotta chase this guy oh no he got a way oh shucks and i dont rly care because i have no reason to care about what these people want.


this feels like something that needs a lot of editing to rly whip up into what is, at its core, something decently interesting. there’s a couple of rly interesting parts that needed to land, especially the “i murder all of those americans” line. im unsure if it was shortened because u were trying to hit the word count or trying to undercut the horribleness of the action, but i think emphasizing it wouldve been stronger, more interesting, and rly help cement the tone of the piece. i think there’s some decent ideas, but the execution is wanting. the ending… doesnt quite make sense? like why does the japanese kid know his name and is so willing to explain everything that happened? the ending also just happens too quick, and i feel like this piece needs to breathe outside of the word count to rly get going. im not sure what a final draft of this looks like, but it can be something interesting.

Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
Thanks flerp!

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

In, toad, :toxx: for one of each

let's do this

Quartz Crusher
Apr 1, 2020
In with jackrabbit and a philosophy

Jul 2, 2007

There's no need to rush to be an adult.

Thanks for the crit, Flerp. I need to remember that just because I know the backdrop, I still need to make that matter in my story. Info in my head isn't info in anyone else's, and it hurts my story not to grasp that.

Also, getting back on that horse. Count me in, as a Goat with philosophy and fallacy. And, yes, :toxx:

J.A.B.C. fucked around with this message at 05:45 on Apr 29, 2020

Apr 12, 2006

Antivehicular posted:

In, toad, :toxx: for one of each

let's do this

Your philosophy is eliminative materialism. Your fallacy is tu quoque.

Quartz Crusher posted:

In with jackrabbit and a philosophy

Your philosophy is populism.

J.A.B.C. posted:

Thanks for the crit, Flerp. I need to remember that just because I know the backdrop, I still need to make that matter in my story. Info in my head isn't info in anyone else's, and it hurts my story not to grasp that.

Also, getting back on that horse. Count me in, as a Goat with philosophy and fallacy.

:toxx: up then.

Jul 2, 2007

There's no need to rush to be an adult.

Edited my post to show the :toxx:

Apr 12, 2006

J.A.B.C. posted:

Edited my post to show the :toxx:

Your philosophy is transcendentalism. Your fallacy is no true scotsman.

Something Else
Dec 27, 2004

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome

Hogs :toxx:

Apr 12, 2006

Your philosophy is British idealism. Your fallacy is ignoratio elenchi.

The Saddest Rhino
Apr 29, 2009

Put it all together.
Solve the world.
One conversation at a time.

in, flash me a philosophy

Apr 12, 2006

The Saddest Rhino posted:

in, flash me a philosophy

Your philosophy is Italian futurism. Which one could argue is a bit more of an artistic movement rather than a true philosophy. If you would argue such, PM me and I'll assign you something different. But I think it's neat and could make for some interesting writing.

Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
In, mouse :toxx:

Apr 12, 2006

Chili posted:

In, mouse :toxx:

Your philosophy is utilitarianism. Your fallacy is traditional wisdom.


Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007
What's all this then?

:toot: Thunderdome has a zine now! :toot:

The above link is work and family-safe.

We selected 12 stories out of those contributed by writers in TD. This was the seat-of-our pants effort, so a huge thank you to those who have been patiently bearing with us! Shout out to Steeltoedsneakers, who actually made this happen, and our assistant editor, Obliterati!

Issue two will feature

  • A submission form!
  • A team of motivated editors!
  • Formal acceptances/rejections, just like a real magazine!
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Keep your eyes on the thread for more info.

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