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 Post subject: Kaolin's Cache | Writing
PostPosted: 01 Aug 2009, 20:57 
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I have a few stories I'd love to share here, so I'll put them all here.

Apologies in advance for bad formatting. D:
Numero Uno!

The Princess and the Spider
Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess who lived alone. Beautiful but vain. She spent many hours in front of the mirror in the palace - a gigantic mirror taking up most of one of the castle walls.
One stormy night while standing in front of the mirror, a beggar came to the castle, seeking shelter. The beggar was close to death but the princess, not wanting to be seen housing such a vile looking man, turned him away from her door. The beggar said to the princess
"If you turn me away from here, I will surely be dead by morning", but still she did not agree to shelter the man.
"Very well", he said, "as a young man I was cursed by a witch, and after my death I shall return as a spider. A cursed spider, and whoever is bitten by me shall see their worst nightmare reflected back at them in every surface".
The princess chose not to believe the beggar and sent him back out into the cold, winter night.
Several weeks passed, and while the princess was sleeping peacefully in her bed a spider scuttled into her chamber. It crawled up a leg of her bed and stalked across her sheets toward her head. Feeling its thick hairy legs make their way toward her, she awoke and called to the spider.
"Are you the beggar I sent away?"
"I am. I have come to offer you a choice." the spider replied "You must house me until my natural dying day, catch and feed me insects whenever I please, and you must keep me warm in your home. You must also carry me on your shoulder for the rest of my life".
The princess was disgusted at such a thought.
"And what is the other choice?" She asked, angrily.
"I will bite you" answered the spider, "I will sink my fangs into your flesh and place a curse upon you with my venom. You will live the rest of your life with your very worst nightmare stalking you in any and all reflections."
The princess, hearing this, was relieved. She did not believe in such a thing as a curse.
In fact, she assumed the spider to be an apparition, caused by her drowsiness.
She spat at the spider and started to slumber peacefully, believing its presence to be non existant.
The spider crawled slowly, so as to not startle her, toward her face. His fangs drawn, he plunged them into the soft skin of her cheek and delighted in the feeling of his curse gushing into her veins. The princess awoke, and killed the spider. Her face painfully swollen, she rushed to the garden to apply ice to her wound. After the pain subsided she returned to her bed and slept until dawn. Awaking slowly, she put on her gown and walked to the palace mirror to disprove her apparent nightmare and see nothing but her reflection.
She turned to the mirror and saw her worst nightmare.
Reflected back at her was her own face with with a fucking great mole where the spider bit her. Imagine that.

The end.



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PostPosted: 01 Aug 2009, 20:58 
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The second story! Inspired by HP Lovecraft.

The final scrawling of Doctor Jackson Malvino, regarding his Ulterior Storage Breakthrough

I.

I am writing this passage as a document of the thoughts and musings of a man heading toward self-annihilation. I shall be no more the man I once was by the end of this night, though I have not been that man for some time prior to my writing of this last fragment of my current life and although my life may continue I sha’n’t have any recollection of this experience, or any other for that matter as the effects of my plan shall include a total reformatting of the cursed brain I was brought into this world using; the brain that fuelled my devastating experiments and breakthrough in the field of computer-human symbiosis. I do not know whether or not my vegetative state will be permanent, though I suspect after the installation of new base software I will have my default processes running once again, assuming I have not forgotten how to breathe and died in the process. I also do not know if it will be a painless experience however I shall find out soon enough.

It is a shame to lay such a brilliant mind to rest, but alas it must be done for the sake of my self-respect as I cannot bear to live knowing what dwells within the cavity of my skull-bone. I would like to relive the past and so I will include in this short letter to whoever may come across my lifeless self, once I have committed the atrocious act I must, an overview of my life’s work. I have never had the time to write an autobiographical review of myself yet I do not trust a biographer to gain the correct details, thoughts and feelings of the life I lead up until this very moment, in which my Dictaphone is taking up a large proportion of the limited memory with which this PC is bestowed.

The computer shall never rival the human brain. The data an average brain can hold is deemed roughly 40 Terabytes, while a large, learned and well exercised brain such as my own can hold many, many more times that, I would imagine. Imagine, as I have never measured my own brain capacity for fear of being unable to contain myself of its magnificence much to the probable ignorance and frustration of common man. I fear many men have been jealous of the intelligence I possess and have therefore criticised my comments on the computing world which, in these years of late, has been a rather large world indeed. Indeed since the breakthrough of mine, many more a plebeian has converted to the ways of technology and abandoned even their foolish notions of a social life. Social lives, of course, have been hard to maintain since the curfews were put in place, so the online world has been buzzing with incredible masses of humans.

II.

I have wasted enough time already introducing the theme of my life. If you are reading this you clearly have a very vivid idea already of what has befallen me, having possibly even discovered my gibbering or possibly deathly still form in this pristine office of mine, you also know who I am; everyone knows Dr. Jackson Malvino. I start my final tale before the inevitability that was the awarding of my doctorate had taken place. I had been attending a high end university in Central America known then as Bloomberg College. Its name has since been changed yet I cannot recall its current title, an annoyance becoming more common over the later years of my existence.

I had, at Bloomberg, been studying the human brain among other less important things for which I have no desire to explain so as to shorten the time until I may die. Looking back at the equipment used in the days of old I shudder and cannot imagine how I could have existed in such a bland and technology-free world as it was in the early 20s. I was of course a much younger man then than now and while I speak these words I can feel the slack of my flesh as it drapes loosely over my frail bones. A worthy price for the gift of longer life as medicine has improved and I have seen my work continue into the mid 50s, over a hundred and thirty years since I attended my college soon after the new millennium and the coming of the century before this.

I met by chance a man by the name of Jeremy McElroy, a handsome man with whom I often found myself wishing I could spend my life in a way other than as a roommate. He was at the time on a cookery course and it was at a local restaurant I first met him. I remember distinctly the dish he served to me was burned, for it was the burning of that meal that made it a delicacy, but I was not to know of this fact being uneducated in the culinary arts. As with the current name of my old halls of education I cannot think what the dish was, though I remember what took place shortly after. Calling for a waiter I had demanded to see the chef who had caused my meal to blacken. It was then explained to me with great patronisation how the food on my place is traditionally served “overcooked”. I fail to bring to mind how we became friends, but that is how we met. McElroy had many interests, cookery but one of them. His interest in computing had me stunned, his knowledge seemed to know no bounds. Rivalling my own intense familiarity with said subject, we stuck together and created many revolutionary pieces of hardware for the benefit of computer users.

Jeremy and I bought a house together once we had graduated. We had both been great lovers of similar kinds of music, and at one time we even had our own band however that was short-lived. Gradually as our tastes broadened we got hold of many more quantities of musical data that wouldn’t fit on either of our music players all in one, and they were of the highest storage capacity. This is where we started to wonder about further methods of storing data, not only of audio files but any file. I evoke the thought of a specific idea we had; to use the human brain to store data perfectly. To transfer a file to a real mind and be able to retain the information without losing any information as tends to happen with learning. This would enable the human race to retain their full brain capacity of information; we would become so incredibly intelligent as a result that our limits would be broken forever. To be able to traverse the galaxy in search of new life, to be able to discover alternate realities in which fantasies become true life.

Alas, these were but fantasies themselves. The technology with which to create such a thing would not be invented for several more decades. McElroy and I spent the next years researching and planning and inventing to design the tools we needed. We had the ideas, and we knew how to execute them. The next portion of my life is a blank; I cannot at all call to mind the things that transpired between the planning and the having created a first prototype of my device. My device and mine alone, for I do know dear Jeremy had fallen under a sickness of sorts, alarmingly similar to some illnesses manually created, procured from herbs and the like. As I say, I do not recall anything within this time and have had his symptoms described to me since he passed on. I would suspect foul play but am afraid my memory loss is partly due to the madness of guilt in which case I would not like to know the true nature of the death of the man I loved. Nevertheless I had my device, and that was all that mattered. Nothing could compare to infinite knowledge.

III.

Many decades passed and my device had evolved into an insert implanted into the brain with some form of Serial Bus connection. Over the years of testing and improving I discovered the way an implanted brain works. Each form of brain would be compatible with a different form of software to enable the data to run as best it could. The beautiful latest versions of a Gates-inspired Windows PC a common structure of brain, I discovered. Another common form, the pretentious Macintosh I so despised with its shiny white exterior obscuring its atrocious workings I would rather, heh, destroy myself than be a Macintosh. I also discovered with several mishaps that installing the wrong software into a mind can cause untold damage as once the original base of the mind is destroyed; all memories, instincts and abilities are destroyed also. The heart stops beating. The blood stops flowing. You forget to breathe. You die. I had to remove any evidence of this discovery, yet what I had to do to hide those bodies is far too ghastly to mention.
Having discovered this major flaw, I set about creating a reformat block on each implant, before finally releasing the safety-approved product to the public. By now the year was Anno Domini twenty one forty seven, and my mind had started becoming loose and distorted, as it if were becoming stretched over a wicker frame and left to dry. Damn these infernal life giving drugs! No matter, it will soon be over as my tale draws to a close.

Having refused to implant my brilliant mind with a tool I clearly did not need, I carried on oblivious to the awful truth within my mind. I did not, I could not, know of the horror I would eventually, inevitably unleash with my own creation. Years passed and my mind capacity depleted, I was currently somewhat more intellectual than the average human, with implant, but I had to admit to myself that though my creativity knew no bounds my memory loss was significantly harming the productivity of my research. I took to art for a few years from the early 2150s and was a very impressive artist. I would be.

It was only very recently I discovered my mind power depleting so rapidly I must recover the corrupted data by having the implantation procedure. I realise now that had I given in to the encumbrance of the degenerative disease my wonderful mind has been afflicted with that I could have become numb, happily, and could have spared myself the horror of the two things I discovered having implanted myself with the device. The first of the things that I discovered is the true nature of my beloved Jeremy’s death. My selfish actions spurred the deterioration of my mind just as I had predicted. I am often far too intellectually gifted to convince myself the truth is a lie, and the guilt of my selfishness had all too obviously been eating away at me, finally bringing me to the state I deserved; total self awareness. I have learned, even since I have been writing this, the full story I neglected to write in the earlier parts of this tale of departure yet much of it is too horrible to tell another soul; the poor humans I tried failed prototypes on! Those sickening sounds as their brains shut down all for my own personal gain; it tears through me.

That is not, however, the reason I wish to destroy myself entirely. That reason is far worse than the death of a loved one and the realisation of my own true despicable character.

That reason is clearly recognised by only my mind’s eye as it gazes upon the shiny white interior of its home.

- Doctor Jackson Malvino, 2001-2157



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PostPosted: 01 Aug 2009, 21:03 
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This third one, which is untitled, was written for my final project in college. I made artwork to go along with it, each thumbnail of which you can click to enlarge~

[align=center]I[/align]
The rain wept onto the earth. It was a terrible rain, falling on a terrible night. This rain swept away not muck and grime and plague from the streets, but the deep crimson love of a mother. The river that once flowed through a full heart now bled into the earth along with the life of a father, along with the life of a killer. The man had snapped. A sudden urge had taken him in his rage as the single bell rang out a single chime. The last view of the world in his wife’s eyes were of his; cold, remorseless as she was thrown from the casement.
He listened for a thump as the body struck the cold, dry earth yet there was none. He peered from the window to see a single ruby among pewter. The fence spike she had been thrown upon had been doused in her blood, now trickling down the post toward the ground. This was when the first drop fell – not of blood, but water. The rain began in the moment her life ended. This was not a rain of renewal; this was a rain of death. This was the rain of her soul departing into the nightmare-world of æther.
The killer stood for a moment in a disturbed trance. He felt neither sorrow for his late wife nor any repulsion at the deed he had done and instead he laughed a loud, cackling laugh that carried on long after his mouth had closed into a sickening grin. He would have stood until he could stand no more, staring at the scene, were it not for the soft sound of sobbing interrupting his thoughts. He wheeled around to find his only daughter, a tender young girl in her nightgown, drenched with rain and blood.
She had been awoken by shouts during the night and had witnessed the events as they transpired through a gash in the door where a thrown kitchen knife had been some months earlier. The beautiful innocent had witnessed her father propel her mother out the open window, watching in horror through the glass panes in the hall as her mother’s heart was pierced by the barbed fencepost and seeing the eyes she knew so well become dull and lifeless.
The father led his child into the kitchen and told to her sit as he prepared a drink for her; the drink to be her very last. He wasn’t as fortunate as he had hoped, though, as a neighbour had also witnessed the crime and as the girl took her first sip of the deadly cocktail, the siren bells of a police wagon could be heard pealing frantically, nearing the premises. Startled, the girl let the drink fall to the hard slate floor beneath her bare feet and she took a step back onto a shard of the tainted glass.
As the constabulary burst through the barricaded side-door, the poison that had entered her bloodstream took effect and the young girl was thrown into a black void of shadows.
[align=left]She awoke from her unconsciousness to find herself in an unfamiliar location. Glancing around frantically she noticed rows of pale, dirty beds in a blinding room, before her vision became distorted and she blacked out once more. A nearby nurse checked on her condition but she was otherwise left alone. She was being treated for poisoning after being found, by a constable during the raid of her home, barely breathing on the slate floor of the kitchen where her father had tried to murder her.

The trial drew to a close at the end of its first hour. A guilty verdict had been passed and no plea of insanity could save his life. The girl’s father was to be hanged until dead and his body thrown into a communal grave, without a coffin or a blessing.

In the degraded hospital, the girl awoke. Finally, her head had cleared and she was able to leave. Leave not to her home, but to an orphanage already full to its brim of sick and vulgar creatures no longer pure and innocent children. The girl showed no emotion at the tale of her father’s verdict, she no longer cared for anything or anyone – not now her mother was gone.

The orphanage owners were remorseless machines, caring not for the children but for the money they could work the children for. The kitchen staff brewed food in their cauldrons that barely kept the children alive and often caused many to fall ill and die. Those that didn’t die were forced to work, when they could work no longer they would be beaten and when they cried from the beatings, they were beaten harder. Many of the adolescents in the building took their own lives to escape the torture of living in such conditions, using their clothes to tie nooses or drowning themselves in the baths.
The girl was abused in vile ways that were painful for her fragile body, and cried herself to sleep at nights, bleeding and wondering what kind of malevolent deity had allowed this to happen to any human being.

As the noose was placed around his neck, he thought up ways he could have covered up the crime and not been convicted. As the noose was tightened he cursed himself for letting the witness go unnoticed. When the trapdoor opened and he fell through, the terror finally struck him as he knew that he was going to die. He was going to die. The rope pulled taut and he couldn’t breathe. His eyes felt as if they were going to burst and he kicked and he writhed as everything turned dark. He fell still. Conscious, just, he opened his blinded eyes and stared into the gaping black maw of death.


[align=center]Image[/align]

[/align]
[align=center]II[/align]
[align=left]The fire spread quickly through the building. The staff evaded the blaze and headed toward the centre of the city to alert the authorities to the fire. By the time they returned, many children had been unable to escape on their own and were consumed by the flames, left to their horrible deaths by the guardians of the orphanage. The layout of the building was such that after eating on the ground floor, the children were sent to their beds on the top levels and were hungry once more upon arrival.

The fire struck during the night, caused by the inner workings of a toil-machine one of the children had not powered off correctly. Nearly all of the children died, the sleeping quarters being situated above the work floors. This was the perfect excuse for one girl to slip by unnoticed and flee into the darkness. Thought to have been cremated alive, none searched for her.
The deadly inferno was eventually doused by the cold limb of the fire brigade and the wreck was abandoned for evermore.[/align]
[align=left]The girl took a last look at the smouldering ruins as a single raven arced through the smoke into the murky sky, vanishing. Following suit, the fugitive disappeared into the trees.[/align]
[align=left]She stumbled on in desperation, pressed upon by the surrounding fog through which emerged the bark encrusted cadavers of the forest, each branch a claw – drawing her into its deathly embrace. These were woods where the dead were alive and all living was dead. The personified corpses of the trees bore their roots, their gnarled, shapeless forms groping in the darkness at her legs and feet. One barbed tentacle wrapped itself around her ankle, tripping her and sending her sprawling into a rocky pit. The cavity swallowed her and her head fell upon a flat stone, knocking away her consciousness

[align=center]Image[/align]

[/align]
[align=center]III[/align]
[align=left]Few rays of light shone down through tree-claws to the ground where she lay. The bottom of the pit she had fallen into was damp and multi legged creatures scurried back into their dark holes as she stirred, a few of the braver ones attempting to feast on her cold flesh remained. She screamed, shooing away the necrophagous beasts tearing lumps from her lips and face, and sat upright in a daze.

She could not recall any event prior to her awakening and, confused, began climbing her way out of the hole like a centipede brutally dismembered by a curious child. She lay at the mouth of the vertical cave and breathed heavily, desperately trying to remember her past and identity.[/align]
[align=left]She staggered to the edge of the necrotic forest to find the remains of a building she no longer recognised. Hearing voices nearby, she drew back and lurked near the outer rim of the woods until she arrived at a battered wooden signpost bearing a single word, 'Fullhweol', the name of the undead city she had discovered.[/align]
[align=left]The crooked spire of the cathedral pointed toward the setting sun as it descended toward the underworld, giving fuel to the demonic forces beneath the ground. The waning moon was rising and in the twilight a single dwelling stood out amongst all others.[/align]
[align=left]She approached the gate of the property. On the wall, creepers of ivy grasped at the lichen set in the slate roof. The deep green of the ivy marred only by the blood-red veins coursing through its stem. She allowed her eye to follow them to the roots of the plant where she found a single crooked fence spike.[/align]
[align=left]The vague sense of familiarity washed over her when she ripped the ivy from the spike and as she did so, she remembered it all. The pain and anger flooded back to her, driving her against the wall overgrown with her mother's blood. She burst through the door of her former home and stood at the window.[/align]
[align=left]She threw herself from the sill and shuddered as the spike pierced her heart. She fell still as her blood flowed into the earth. Her soul became one with the plants, the roots drawing life from her death. The undying love between a mother and daughter shown only by the heart shaped leaves of blood-red ivy.

[align=center]Image[/align]
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PostPosted: 01 Aug 2009, 21:06 
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This is my personal favourite. Written from the perspective of some madman :D

Quincy Teabag
Hello. I am Quincy Teabag. I’m quite ordinary, I think. I can’t really say that about myself, I suppose. I was sitting in my house the other day and I decided to go out for a walk. I don’t go out walking very often, I like staying at home, but because it was sunny I put on my boots and went outside. Up the road there’s this gate that goes into some woods, but I’d never been into the woods before. I quite like animals so I went in there hoping to see something like a Dyr, or Foreseid. I like Foreseids because their fins are thin like paper, and they have pretty coloured hair on them. Their claws are really sharp, though.

I wandered into the woods and I got a little lost. It’s really big in there and there are loads of Bark-spiders and those big things with the loads of legs that I forget the name of. I thought to myself that I should have tied a rope around my waist so I couldn’t get too far from the gate. I haven’t got a very good sense of direction, you know. I started getting quite scared because I heard some noises that I couldn’t put names to. By the time night came around I was a gibbering wreck, but that could also have been because I hadn’t had any herbal tea since the morning.

There was a huge clearing to my left so I went that way and in the middle of the clearing was a great big tree. Well, it wasn’t very big when I was far away, but as I got closer it seemed to be getting really big. Not like when you move a stone closer to you and it’s a bit bigger than before, because it’s closer, it was more like it was growing whenever I moved. I turned around and walked toward it with my back to it and when I turned around it was bigger than ever. The tree was still very far away so I continued on toward it. When I finally came to the foot of the tree it stopped growing and I could see how big it really was. I looked up and I couldn’t see the top of the roots, because they were so high above my head. It was quite sheltered at the base so I lay under one of the huge leaves and closed my eyes.

It was dark when I woke up, but then I opened my eyes and it turned out that it was actually quite light. I was in the shade and it was cold so I went around to the other side of the tree to warm up in the sunlight. It must have taken me at least ten minutes to get to the other side of the tree because the circumference was so great. I was so tired the night before that I didn’t bother coming around to this side of the tree and I noticed that there was an ornate door with hinges made of what looked like metal but had the grain of wood. I used the door knocker (it was in the shape of a terrifying creature with crazy wild fur and massive teeth) which made a loud echoing sound within the tree, but there was no answer. I pushed the door and it opened, so I went inside.

“Hello?â€



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PostPosted: 01 Aug 2009, 21:09 
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This one makes me laugh.

Ursula

Before the operation, people would run from me. Screaming. Freak, they would shout. Weirdo. Monster. They were right, though. They always are. No smoke without fire, after all. My name is Ursula, and I’m an eighteen year old girl. A couple years ago I wished I could just end it all, but my mother always told me that once I hit eighteen I could have the operation that would make me normal. Children are cruel; if you’re slightly different they prove their superiority by beating you up, or playing cruel tricks. Imagine that amplified by a thousand, a life in which every day you wake up and wonder if it’s going to be the day you’re murdered by an angry mob. I felt like a Frankenstein’s Monster, but this waking nightmare was a real issue I faced every day of my life.

The operation was a success, however. Cosmetic surgery to make me look normal. It won’t last forever, I’ll need to return to the clinic to get laser surgery and to make sure my hormone levels are correct, but that’s a small price to pay for having an otherwise normal life, right? The bandages come off in three weeks, I hope I look normal. I’d like to be attractive, I want a husband and children, but I don’t think children would be a good idea. I don’t want them having my...looks. Oh I do hope the surgeon made me pretty. I do so want to be pretty. Maybe I’ll meet somebody when we leave.

After the bandages come off we’re moving out of Tokyo, we’ll be living in a little village outside the city. Stepfather says we can’t move too far away because of his work. He was just promoted to assistant director of the company, it’s all very exciting. I’ve gotten myself all excited, writing about all this! I can’t wait until I meet all the handsome country folk. The cottage is beautiful, it’s homely and if we can put up with Stepfather’s whining (you know he likes the big city, Mother just insists on taking me out of the city life) then I just know I can be happy. I hope the take-out store delivers to our cottage; I prefer their sushi to Mother’s awful cooking!

I suppose this is all Mother’s fault, but I can’t blame her...she loves me. She’s the only one other than Stepfather, and I can tell he’d rather not have to deal with me. At least I have never repulsed him. Even from the day I first met him. Instead of crying out in shock and revulsion, he opened his arms and held me close in a tight, strong hug. I remember that well. As for my real Father, I never knew him. He was taken away after Mother had fallen pregnant. He’s now behind bars.

Mother frequently tells me the story of my birth. I was a shock to all but her, a ball of wet matted hair emerging from the womb. The hospital staff fled, terrified, for my ursine features would haunt them for the rest of our lives.



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PostPosted: 01 Aug 2009, 21:10 
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This is all, so far.
I'm pleased with this one.
I was working on a prequel to it but I got bored.

3 am

It was 2:59 am before I finally turned in for the night. I had been reading by the fire until late, the low growl of the darkwood logs as they burned providing some background noise to help me concentrate on the manuscript. I usually read books swiftly but this one was taking me a few months and I only got a third of the way through.
The moment I began to hear the strange noises, I knew it was time to go to bed. Quickly, before the minute was up, I snuffed the candle and fled to my chamber. I threw myself into the bed and wrenched my eyes closed. The noises were growing louder but I knew that if I fell asleep before it reached me, I would be safe. Nothing can hurt me in my sleep.

March heralds the event once a night for three consecutive nights, and on the second night I went to bed early. It was 12:33 am when I blew out my candle. Jackdaws cawed outside my open window – caw, caw, caw. The constant bursts of noise making it difficult to drift into the safety of a dream. I sat up and stumbled over to the window.
I reached to close the wretched thing and I saw a great black beast. The terrible omen locked its yellow gaze with mine before turning and vanishing into the undergrowth of the necrotic woods infecting my view. I was asleep before 1 am.

The final night of this month’s ordeal was by far the worst. I should have done the sane thing and entered my dreams earlier than the night before, drinking some drowse inducing tea. Alas I made the mistake of waiting for the disfigured beast to arrive, hoping to battle it and be free to peruse my texts through night until dawn.
I suppose the death-omen from the night before resigned me to my fate, as I knew deep inside that I would not live to see another day. I sat by candlelight in the smaller of my libraries – the other two, at present, are bare. They shall be, now, for all eternity.
3 am. The hem of my gown started to flutter and I felt a hot breeze at my ankles. A sudden stabbing pain struck my mind, as if my thoughts were thin shards of glass being pushed into my brain. The pain spread like icy fire through my veins and the wall began swimming before my eyes. At first I thought my vision was becoming distorted but I glanced at the candle and it was clear and in focus. As if in response to that thought, the candle fluttered and died. My eyes slowly adjusted to the dark and I looked back to the wall – it was definitely moving, as if something were writhing just below its liquid surface.
The entity pushed against the inside of the wall and a laceration formed at the heart of the bulging mass. Electric blue-white light shone from the slit, piercing the darkness and partially blinding me. I could just make out a black three-pronged talon emerging from the dimension beyond my floral wallpaper, silhouetted against the intense blue-white light. The dull red eyes of the great shadow creature locked onto me and it burst from the wall. The blackness consumed me and my being was ripped from my physical body – I felt the incomprehensible pain as each thread of my life-force was torn from me, every fibre bound to my heart snapping one by one.
The darkness grew darker, and it was over.



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PostPosted: 02 Aug 2009, 18:46 
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You're a very good writer! And you certainly have some wonderfully original ideas. Some of those stories are very dark, but I also happen to like dark stories, so I found them really compelling.

I think my favourite was the Doctor Jackson Malvino story. Apart from the writing style, which I thought was very well done, I loved the way that he comes across as arrogant, self-important, and generally unlikeable, right up until the end, where it becomes apparent that he fully recognises his faults and is appalled at what they have led him to do. But most of all, I loved the very last line. That was a brilliant and powerful ending.

I also loved your college project. (And the illustrations, particularly the first one.) Again, that was a very dark, powerful story, and very moving too.

The Quincy teabag one was intriguing. Very surreal.

Those three were my favourites, but there were none that I didn't like. All of them very unteresting and well-written.



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PostPosted: 02 Aug 2009, 19:10 
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Malvino's a funny bloke - the idea was actually a personification of a Macintosh computer, the character was based on a person I know who actually uses a Mac (and sees himself as the most important person to ever walk the earth) and the ending as actually Malvino realising that he IS a Mac. Which is why he kills himself. Because he's so appalled with what he is and has been all along - not because of the fact that he poisoned his boyfriend.

After writing it, I sent it to the guy I based it on and made him read it back to me over Skype in a funny voice.
It was hilarious.



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PostPosted: 03 Aug 2009, 19:26 
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[QUOTE=ClanSoul;37147]the ending as actually Malvino realising that he IS a Mac. Which is why he kills himself.[/QUOTE]
That's why I thought that last line was so powerful. He had already said earlier that he would rather destroy himself than be a Mac, and then the final line shows us that that is exactly what he is. :)



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PostPosted: 03 Aug 2009, 19:27 
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I'm glad you got it, loads of people didn't understand it :P



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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2009, 11:08 
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I got it! It was an interesting story, but I have to say....Macs aren't all that bad. :p

I really enjoy your writing. This was the first chance I've had to read through them all, or I would have commented earlier.



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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2009, 11:13 
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Yay! Thankyou.
And no, they're not, but Apple are.



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PostPosted: 30 Aug 2009, 20:47 
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Dad

“My father is a scientist”, my friend said.
It was career day in school, we each had to show off one or both of our parents to the rest of the class and people would fire baffling questions at the kid and parent/s about their career and lifestyle.
“Wow!” one kid squealed, astounded that one of her classmates had such a ‘cool’ dad.

I knew otherwise. I didn’t dislike him because his job wasn’t cool, because it was. They were very cool. I disliked him because he was too outrageous with his experiments. I’d seen some of the things he’d created and subsequently destroyed. Hideous, deformed creatures with no will of their own – writhing in agony as their painful existence carried on. Usually he mutated existing animals; rabbits, cats, dogs. Recently, however, he’d been starting to become a little too adventurous.
“That’s right!” he beamed, to the class, “I am a scientist!” He stood, swimming at the children as they ’ooh’ed and ‘ahh’ed, astounded that a real-live man of science was gracing them with his presence.
“I shouldn’t really tell you this but I suppose a tiny bit of info can’t hurt. I work the for government, so I can’t tell you too much on the subject of my experiments.” He said.

“Tell us! Tell us” the class chanted.
“Alright, alright, settle down, class!” Mrs Atkinson ushered them to silence. The scientist readied himself.
“Well ok, I’ll tell you what I do. My job is to find the secret of eternal life. Now don’t get your hopes up-“ but the children were already whooping with excitement and chatting to each other about what they’d do if they could live forever.
“Alright children! Ok! A round of applause for Terry’s dad!” shouted Mrs Atkinson over the din.

Then it was my turn. My average-looking father in his loose tartan shirt really couldn’t live up to a scientist looking for the secret of preserving life, nor could his job.
“I’m a delivery man, among other things” Dad said, pulling fibres from the holes in his jeans.
Getting up, he paced the front of the classroom, thinking what to say.

“I know Dad can’t really compare with a scientist like that...” I said sheepishly.
“Come on, Jamie,” Dad said, his confidence growing, “being a delivery man is a very important job!” He rounded on the class. “How many of you like to eat?” he asked, laughing. Mrs Atkinson raised her hand, encouraging the rest of the class to do the same. “Without delivery men, no food would ever get to the shops! Imagine that, a shop with no food!” Dad smiled. “Come to think of it, there wouldn’t be any shops either. To build something you need the materials, which are delivered by-“
“Delivery men!” the class finished for him.
“Exactly.” said Dad. I looked at him, a grin splitting my face in two.
“I never thought of it like that before.” I said to him. Dad knelt down and looked at me square in the eyes. He started to laugh, like he usually does before telling a really awful joke.
“Shows how much faith you have in your dad, doesn’t it?” he said.
I screwed up my face and shuffled my feet before responding.
“Shut up.”


*


“Daaaaaad” I wailed, “Daaaad! When are my toys coming?”
Dad promised to buy me enough toys to cover my entire floor, like a giant ball pool of teddies and stuff. When he was too busy doing sciency things, I played with my toys. He never gave me much attention anyway.
“For Christ’s sake! Shut up you little bastard! You’ll get them when they arrive!” he shouted in return, then went back to his lab in the basement. Things were so much better when mum was still alive. Dad had devoted his life to trying to bring her back, and he was nearing his goal. It’s all that kept me going. Even the government, who paid him to find the secret of ‘eternal life’ for their armies and leaders no doubt, were unaware of his mission. “Eternal life...” I mused.

Then the doorbell rang. I ran to the entrance before Dad shouted at me to ‘Get the bloody door!’ It was Jamie’s dad, delivering my teddies
“Oh, hi Terry. Is your Dad in?” he asked
“Sorry Mr. Jamie’s Dad” I replied, “He’s downstairs and doesn’t like being disturbed.”
My friend’s dad smiled and tousled my hair, before handing me an electronic clipboard
“I’m gonna need a signature for all these teddies, mate. Just write anything.” He said
I wrote ‘anything’, feeling proud of myself for making a joke. Jamie’s Dad looked at it and laughed
“Very good” he said.

Soon, my room was full of the toys I’d been waiting for, the past six to eight weeks. There were rabbits and lions and giraffes and monkeys and all sorts of weird and wonderful animals to look after me while Dad was in the basement.
“See ya John!” shouted Jamie’s dad, into the basement
“Oh! You delivered those toys?” Dad shouted back.
I heard footsteps ascending the basement stairs and soon emerged my father, panting like he’d just run a mile
“You really should visit the gym sometime, mate” Jamie’s Dad laughed and turned to me. “Will I be seeing you at the fair this weekend?”
“Oh, no.” I said. “I have plenty of homework to do. I hope you and Jamie have fun, though.”
He shook hands with my dad, then left.

“Can I show you my room now dad?” I asked happily. I looked at his eyes for some genuine feeling of excitement, but there was none
“Fine” He sighed, “quickly.” He hurried me toward my room. He glanced around the door “Amazing,” he said, “now come with me. I need your help in the lab.”
My help! In the lab! I’d never been allowed in the lab before. I was thrilled and daunted at the same time. I darted ahead of my Dad and rushed down the stairs, almost tripping several times. The winding staircase took me deeper and deeper into the earth, the foundations of the house way above me. The way was lit with old, flickering bulbs mounted on the balustrade and the constant flicker on the stone walls made my head swim I reached the bottom of the stairs and tripped over a dirty shovel, I placed it against the wall and turned to look at the lab.

The laboratory contained instruments I had never seen the likes of before; strange shaped bottles and flasks, a pipe with a constant blue flame erupting from it protruded from the ground in the center of the room, above which was a wide-brimmed glass pipe filled with sparking, almost electrical gas, as if a storm cloud were contained inside the glass. I followed the pipe along to its end, which was at the bottom of a tank filled with some dark liquid. The electrical-charged gas bubbles occasionally exited the pipe into the tank, in controlled bursts. A formless mass within the liquid twitched at the touch of the electrical energy.

“Dad, what is-” I started, but Dad cut me off.
“Don’t stare directly at it, Terry. It...” he trailed off, captivated by the thing.
“Dad?” I called. He snapped out of the trance and looked at me. Kneeling down, he held my shoulders, a grave expression on his face.
“You must never speak of what is about to happen here, do you understand?” he growled, slowly. I nodded. “Good. See that lever to your left?” he pointed to a small handle sticking at an angle from the side of the tank.
“Yeah. You want me to pull it?” I moved toward it, hand outstretched.
“No! Not yet. Wait until I tell you to.” He replied.

I looked into the tank absent-mindedly as Dad started calculating out loud, his voice becoming little more than background noise as I became steadily more transfixed with the thing in the tank.
The more I looked, the more of the entity I could make out. I saw an arm, another arm. I could see a pair of legs. I looked up, following the curve of its back up to its head. The closer I looked, the clearer the liquid seemed to become, until I could see its entire form. A noise in the background began to irritate me as I stood, captivated by the woman in the tank. The noise grew louder and a vague sense of familiarity passed over me.

“PULL THE LEVER! GODDAMNIT TERRY! PULL IT OR IT WILL BE TOO LATE!” my Dad was shouting at me. I snapped out of the trance and stared at him dumbly. “PULL THE LEVER! Wait..WAIT! NO! DON’T PULL IT!” but I’d already gripped the shaft, the rounded head came towards me and pointed toward the ground. The flame in the center of the room glowed brighter and I could feel its heat on my face. The gas ignited and burst through the pipe into the tank. The energy making the thing writhe and its flesh pulsate. It wrenched its arms around its body and shook, colour returning to its pallid skin. It was just then I realised what was so familiar about the being in the liquid – it was a dead body. It was my mother’s body. My mother was being brought back to life.

“Get out! Now! You pulled the lever too late, you bastard! There’s no telling what will happen!” shouted my father. I looked back at the tank and saw my mother’s body withering, the skin of her face being pulled taught around her bones. Her eyes opened and a red light shone from them, engulfing the tank. A disfigured black claw punched through the tank, two of its fingers were cut off by the glass. Dark lumpy blood pumped out of the stumps, maggots splattering to the uneven concrete floor. My father grabbed me and ran before I could see what had become of the rest of her.

He bolted the door to the underground laboratory and barricaded it with all he could find. Eventually the banging from the other side of the door subsided and he listened as the creature retired to the depths of the basement.
“It’s ok, Terry, she can’t hurt us now. She’s locked in there and locked in there she will stay, I promise.” Dad reassured me. Stricken with grief, he sent me to my room and sat on the floor next to the barricaded door.

I lay on my bed, looking around at the teddies I’d had delivered today, by Jamie's dad. I’d just seen my dead mother come back to life and then decay, right before my eyes. None of these teddies would help. Night fell, and I drifted off into a dreamless sleep.
“Get up! Get out! Now! Out the window! Go!” Dad suddenly shouted, bursting into my bedroom. I woke up and stared at him, not understanding why I needed to leave. Was there a fire? Was there a burglar? I cast my mind back to the events of the previous day and remembered with a sickening jolt about my mother. I leapt from my bed and opened the window, beckoning my Dad to get out first. The wall began to melt and fold, and something pushed out of the wallpaper. In the darkness I could see nothing but the glowing red of its eyes. My father was pulled back into the middle of the room and he fell down onto the toys. My mother pulled him down beneath them I heard his gargling scream. All fell silent.

I stared at the spot where he had seemingly been dragged into the underworld. There was no movement, it was as if nothing had happened. As I started toward the window, something leapt toward the ceiling and hung from the chandelier using a three-clawed talon. Using its fully formed other hand, it checked itself over. It ran its claws among the fur on its belly, the golden coloured polyester shimmering in the moonlight. The giant, deformed lion toy looked at me, its sunken eyes staring with hatred into mine. The creature had decided to use one of my toys as a body.

The amalgamation was truly hideous. It was as tall as a human adult and had innumerable razor-sharp fangs, its eyes like bottomless pits of glowing rock. Parts of it were decaying already. Its left flank was dissolving into a black shadow that hung about it in wisps. The false fur mostly fell about matted and greasy and maggots crawled out of tears in the fabric. I fled through the window, and ran without looking back. I don’t think it followed me; it was playing a deadly game.


*


As I ran, the only sounds I heard were the rushing of air past my ears, my own frantic breathing and my footsteps. I darted down an alley and across the bridge near the center of town and headed for the fairground. There were plenty of people there, so I knew it would feel safe even if I knew it wasn’t. On top of that, Jamie and his dad would be there.

I reached it in about ten minutes and my lungs were on fire. I looked around for a bit and even considered going on one of the rides, just to get everything out of my head for a few seconds but I had no money. Eventually I found Jamie and his father.
“Hi.” I said.
“Oh, Terry! I didn’t expect to see you here!” said the deliveryman. “Finished that homework, then? Are you alright? You look flustered. Where’s your father?”
“Dead. Just now. I need help.” I said.
“Holy shit! What happened!?” Jamie’s dad replied.

Everything started to swim before me. I turned around and clutched my head, trying to make it stop. The grass at my feet was still, so I stood and turned back to explain to Jamie’s dad. Everything went hazy and out of focus, again. I realised that it wasn’t me the ground just behind Jamie was pulsating and the waves were spreading through the air and making everything blur together. A bright light emanated from the pulsating earth and people noticed, crowding around to look.
“Run! Everybody! GET OUT OF HERE!” I shouted, pulling Jamie away from the rotting furry forearm clawing its way out of the soil.

Suddenly there was utter pandemonium as people dashed this way and that, trying to get away from whatever it was that was threatening to destroy them. I could feel the darkness in the air – not a calm, peaceful night-dark but a horrible feeling of dread, a visible mass of darkness swam about the area about the beast prowling through the fairground, strands of blackness trailing behind it as it stalked.

It knew exactly where I was, and it knew exactly where I was heading. It was still playing a game. It was a wolf, it was a cat, it was a hunter and it was going to kill me.
Jamie was crying, his dad carrying him in his arms as we ran toward the entrance of the fairground, and the only way out.
“There’s a building site just around the corner, the men are most likely still there.” Explained Jamie’s dad, and ran in that direction. I followed, and the disfigured lion-toy fell back, allowing us to escape for now.

The builders laughed and told us to piss off, but as soon as that dreadful thing arrived they ran to grab their power tools in a feeble attempt to fend it off. One disgustingly fat and sweaty man fired his nail gun into the arm of the creature. The resulting tear in its fabric spewing forth yet more of the Dark, turning the sepia dust of the building site into something like a tar, bubbling and corrupting everything near.

I ran for the warehouse, I don’t know why I did that because I knew that there was no other way out than the way I’d go in but I felt that I needed to be inside the warehouse. The builders followed me; I can only assume that they also felt the need to be inside the warehouse.
I don’t remember what happened next but I found myself in one corner of the warehouse, the other end from the door and still quite far from the rudimentary elevator inside that I was trying to head toward. Looking over at the door I could see the Dark seeping through the bottom of the open door. Sure enough, the Dark Lion thing slinked inside. The door slammed shut and the warehouse grew unnaturally dim.

The builders unleashed their nail guns and the fabric grew steadily more tattered, the lion becoming an unrecognisable mass of black blood and maggots and tar. I retched several times before vomiting onto my shins and then I ran as fast as I could toward the elevator. For every step I took, the creature took two. It drew closer and closer, it was as if it were gliding. The extraordinary speed unmatched by anything mortal.

“Oi! Over here you ugly shit!” shouted Jamie’s dad, from behind me. I whipped my head around, pain exploded in my neck.
My friend’s father was holding a wine bottle filled with petrol. He ripped his tartan shirt and dipped a strip into the bottle. He took out his lighter and ignited the strip of fabric, then launched the bottle at the feet of the deadly toy.

Flames erupted around it, the plastic fur melting away from the hideous darkness beneath, revealing something so horrific that I vomited again, and the builders clutched at their eyes in terror. Its eyes shone with a colour I had never before known, a terrible colour; the colour of death itself. Tendrils of Dark hung about its face obscuring its features, though there weren’t many features to obscure. Its entire being was a shadow, I found it hard to focus upon and whenever I looked away it seemed to shift in front of my eyes, as if it needed to be gazed upon; to be feared.

I sensed that it gained strength from the fear and pain of others, a storybook cliché wrenched from the wildest fantasies I’d read about. But this was the real thing. The terrible truth of my impending death pierced my thoughts and I screamed and as I screamed the Dark pulled at my soul, the nightmare opened its mouth and screamed with me. The scream shook my very essence and the Dark tore it free, the pain was unbearable and the last thing I witnessed was my body being torn to pieces by impossibly black tendrils of fear and loathing, wrenching apart my flesh to get my soul.

The pain grew more and more intense and now I know only the infinite agony of my death.



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PostPosted: 31 Aug 2009, 18:46 
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I won't comment in detail, since I've already done so on your forum, but I'll just record here how much I liked this story, and especially the dark, scary nature of it. It was refreshingly different to have a horror story where there really isn't any way to escape. :)



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PostPosted: 01 Sep 2009, 14:30 
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The Princess and the Spider 2: The Spiderning: The Film: The Novel

In a far off mansion in a castle in a land far away, there lived a princess; a cursed princess.
Many years before this tale is set, all that she ever cared about was taken from her by an evil spider. She wanders the halls of her castle, alone – where once stood a grand mirror now stood a grand mirror with a sheet over it so that she may never have to gaze upon the terrible scarring left by the arachnid’s poisoned bite.

Sighing, she stepped away from the tear-stained cloth covering what was once her most treasured possession. She descended the decrepit stone staircase which led down into the entrance hall in a great sweeping spiral, expertly avoiding each damaged foothold lest she should slip and bespatter the dusty marble floor with her brains.

It was 11am and the messenger had arrived with a letter from her parents and an outstanding bill from IKEA. Catching sight of her face, the messenger retched and left. The princess woke a fire and burned the bill then opened the letter from her parents.


Salutation here,
Your mother and I are holding a large dinner party later this month.
As well you know, our humble abode is neither as grand nor sizable as your mansion in a castle in a land far away. We will need a place to store twenty mattresses and twenty featherbeds.
I hope you can offer room in your home to store these things until the night of the party.
Your uncle Toby (Belch) will need a place to pass out and we feel that this number of mattresses is necessary to pre-empt where he may fall.

Looking forward to hearing your reply,
Mother



“Damn,â€



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PostPosted: 01 Sep 2009, 20:00 
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Ah! You've finished it! :D

I do like the ending. :D And as I said to you earlier, I love the bits about the bill from Ikea, and the messenger retching. :p I thought your OCD comment was part of the story, but I see it's not in here. I take it it was just a remark to me. :p

Anyway, I like the story. I found it very amusing. :)



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PostPosted: 02 Sep 2009, 06:41 
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Hehe, thankyou! :D



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PostPosted: 09 Jan 2010, 12:27 
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[align=center]2369[/align]

A hideous wail cut through the minds of the soldiers, jarring them into action. The lookout stuck his head above the mound of soil and bodies, a bunker of cadavers thrown together by desperate men seeking refuge from a frail but deadly foe. A wave of the ghasts, suspended in the air by invisible wires, steadily drifted toward them. Several of these packs – groups of twenty or more undead - followed and merged into a translucent blur dispersing far and wide beyond the Dark horizon like oil paint blended with pitch, smudged across a bloodstained page.

“They’re here!â€



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PostPosted: 09 Jan 2010, 13:28 
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Time to copy/paste, since I've already commented on your forum. :p

As I said on MSN, I really like the story. I do enjoy stories that are dark, that avoid the clichéd happy endings and the idea that good always prevails over evil. I like the inexorable nature of the way the Dark takes over - nothing anyone could have done was going to make any difference.

It's also nice to see something more come out of your original story of the Black Beast. It seems we now have a beginning and an end. I'm hoping that one day you'll feel inspired to write some of the intervening events.

Hmm... Actually, it looks like you've never posted the original one here. Unless I'm going blind. Assuming I'm not, maybe we could see that one at some point too.

I also like the poem, but it's the story that really caught my imagination.



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I thought I posted here already fff

I was actually quite surprised when I summoned the effort to tackle this thread, expecting some droning nonsense that I'd have to actually force myself through. I'm happy to report I quite enjoyed the reads - both princess and spider tales and the numbered one. It's impressive how smoothly you transition from painting deep, organic images to making off-hand, bizarre jokes.
I'll tackle the others when I get a second of time not already claimed and tagged by something else.



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PostPosted: 17 Feb 2011, 14:14 
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Shit happens.

Huh? What?
Where am I?

"Ughhhh"
"Sam. Sam, can you hear me?"
"Uh..yeah...what..what's going on?"
"The operation was a-"

"Sam? Sam are you with us?" comes that voice again.
"What? Yeah...oh. Hey. Did it...work?"
"Yes. Well, we hope. We'll check up on you next week to play back the recordings"
"Cool. Okay. When can I go home?"
"Haha well you're stuck here for a day or so until your stitches take, we don't want your head popping open!"
"Haha I guess not, okay."

Man, this is boring. I hate hospitals at the best of times but man my head's pounding.
Guess I should try and sleep...

"Sam? You can go. The doctor says it's fine." sys the nurse who spoke earlier.
"Wow okay, that was fast. I guess I slept longer than I thought."
"Yeah, you were out for a few hours. Any dreams?"
"Don't think so. Wait, how do I turn it on?"
"It's on. You can't turn it off, we'll...edit some of the footage out"
"Haha you better, I'm not having anything dirty in the presentation next month. Heheh."

It doesn't feel like I'm ready to get out of bed yet but I'm still gonna try.
Whoa, my legs are so heavy. They feel like they're made of lead.
I dunno if I can stay standing...

"Hi mum, it's...good to see you. I told you it'd be fine, and now I have enough money to pay for uni AND see Taylor."
"Yeah, I still disapprove."
"Too bad. It's my life."

Haha shit it's so hard getting trousers on after an operation. Fuck xD

I've missed being in this car.
"Thanks for driving all the way up here, where are you staying?"
"That travelodge just down from your flat."
"Oh ok, anyway do you mind if I just go home? I kinda just want to rest."
"Ok."

This town is so weird from inside a car, just like it was when I first came here last October and when I was with Dad when he took me up here. I'm used to walking across this bridge.

"Sam, I wish you hadn't done this. Who knows what that chip will do to you?"
"Mum, shut up. I know it's experimental but I got a hundred grand for this, I'm LOADED. They assured me it'll all be fine and now I'll be able to watch my dreams back, it'll be so cool."
"Hmm. Kate's been worried sick, though."
"Yeah. I know. I'll see you later."
"I love you!"

Ugh I hate it when she says that. I don't like saying it back. Which key is- oh the square one, duh. I'm glad I laid my pyjamas out when I left.

Mmm this bed feels nice.
Wait shit, Taylor will be home in like 20 minutes.

Come on, come on, fucking computer.
Dammit Skype load the fuck up.
BearCatEgg is...online! Whew. I don't have to wait! Unless the internet makes me.
Oh, it is connecting, good.

"Hey baby!"
"Saaaammyyyyy I was so worried! Are you okay?"
"Yeah! I'm fine. Just tired."
"I love you so much! How's your head?"
"It's good, a bit sore. I love you too cuddlethigh <3"
"Oh man I can't believe I'm finally gonna get to see you NEXT MONTH"
"Me too! I am a All of the excitement to see you and we can have all of the sex it will be great."
"Yes. All of the sex. All of it. Your cock. In my mouth. I will give you ALL OF THE BLOWJOBS."
"I'm okay with this. Hang on a sec baby, I need to poop."
"Okay I LOVE YOU"
"I love you toooooooaoaoaohhhhhhrgh shit I have no toilet roll. Fffff. I'm gonna go and get some."
"Aww okay but HURRY UP I have MISSED you."
"I will, haha, don't worry. I'll be right back baby I love you!"
"I love you too."

End call.
Aw man I hate ending call :(
Ok keys, wallet, phone, pokéwalker, anything else? ...nope.
Wait where is my hat.

Ok, that's better.

Fucking hell it's hot today, it's not even June what is this. Get out, heat, you don't even fit.
Fuck I really need a shit. Fuck fuck fuck, I'm gonna have to run...

ARGH TRAFFIC.

FUCK.
AAAHH.

I'm just gonna go before this car gets too cl



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PostPosted: 17 Feb 2011, 14:56 
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Dino

Joined: 10 Jun 2008, 15:55
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Since I've already commented on this one on CSI I'll just post what I posted there. (Hope you don't mind.)

I really like this story. The format is unusual in that there is no outside narrative, but I think that adds to the interest. I feel it makes the reader identify with the character (you :p) even more than in a standard first person story because we don't get to see anything that you don't say, hear or actively think, and that makes it very personal. I also loved the fact that it was impossible to guess at what was going to happen, which gave the ending all the more impact, especially as it was so unexpected after grabbing the reader's interest in procedure you'd undergone.



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PostPosted: 05 Dec 2014, 22:34 
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Haven't written much in a while, but here's a thing:

The Bubble


And I could breathe again.
I opened my eyes and found myself in college, the boy's hands resting on my arms. He looked mildly concerned, but I could tell it was just airs; in truth he was perfectly calm, having familiarised himself with my panic attacks earlier that year.

“You okay, Kal?” Ted asked me. He took my clammy hands in his and gently supported them as my shaking subsided. I nodded and reached into my satchel for the iced tea I had prepared the night before. I was still shaking a little, as I attempted to trespass the flask in my hands. Ted removed it, pouring the cool amber liquid into the vessel's accompanying cup. The refreshing jasmine tea, chilled by the ice rattling within, allowed me to finally speak.

“I'm sorry, I hate being such a fuss,” I muttered, taking back the flask and securing its lid. “Thanks, though.”

“Kallie, don't be silly. If you need help, I'm here to give it to you. It's no inconvenience, you really don't need to apologise...”

“I know, I know, I just-” he took my arm and pulled me up out of the chair. “I'm hungry,” I said, blushing a little. I looked at my watch; it was a little after 1PM, and I had no classes until 3:15.

The corridor was mostly empty at this time of day, those students who were in lectures would be kept in the teaching rooms for another ten minutes or so and it being late spring meant the majority of those who had free periods would be sitting on the grass outside, enjoying the sunshine between the brief flash showers characteristic of April. Nevertheless, we preferred to remain indoors ever since 'The Event' that led to my anxiety. The fractals and recursion that had plagued me ever since I tried that damn drug had kept me up at night for months now, and so I often turned to Ted to distract me via text whenever I couldn't sleep, preferring his conversation to thinking about the things that continued to eat away at my sanity.

Ted was a boy I liked. I was sure he knew, but he'd never done anything about it so I assumed he didn't feel the same way. Maybe my girlfriend put him off, but we were all on the same page about our open relationship. Ted loved to read fantasy books and comics, I knew, and liked to embellish his life with tropes and concepts from the stories he had recently been reading. Of late, this had manifested as a declaration that he was a mind reader. He called it 'Perception', and described it as a sense of understanding those around him in a deeper way than is normal. I remained skeptical of such nonsense, calling it 'empathy', and accusing him of embellishment.

Before long, we were sat in a nearby empty teaching room with our greasy cafeteria lunch. Ted had been quiet for a little while, staring off into the distance, so I dug him in the side of the ribs with my elbow.

“Whatcha thinkin' bout?” I asked melodically. He almost choked on a piece of potato.

“Damn, girl, you nearly killed me!” he joked, before his face grew a little more serious. He took a breath, as if anticipating a difficult conversation. “Something's wrong, it has been since you had that panic attack.”

Frowning, I finished my mouthful of bread and fries, and also became serious. “What is it? Did I do something to upset you?”

“No! No, nothing like that. It's just, right when your panic attack struck, I couldn't breathe, and I felt everyone in the nearby classroom thinking the same thing.”

I suppose my inevitable dismissal of his 'Perception' is why he felt the conversation would be somewhat difficult. I rolled my eyes and groaned. “Not this shit again. What was it this time? She's never coming back? GET DOWN Rotisserie Equine?Oh no, I unseated my M-Rotor, perhaps?”

“No, I'm serious, something happened. Nothing about that webcomic 'being real'. This actually happened, I swear. They were all thinking something like... How did I get here? Or Where am I? Even you, Kal, you thought it too.”

“Well now I KNOW you're making it up. I didn't think any such thing, I was too busy freaking out about loops and shit!”

He grew concerned again. “You mean, you don't remember? I thought it was weird that nobody seemed to react to anything after they thought that, but if they don't remember what happened...”

I'd had enough of it, though, so I threw my sandwich in the bin and decided to go look for someone else to hang out with. The door almost closed behind me before Ted pulled it open again, following me out of the room while hastily reseating his jacket.

“Kallie, wait up,” he panted, “I didn't mean to piss you off, come on.” I rounded on him.

“Ted, are you seriously suggesting I take you seriously after you essentially just tried to turn one of my panic attacks into one of your silly little fantasy games? We don't live in some magical universe filled with goblins from a children's card game, you fucking ass!” I shouted, turning back to head for the main doors. Ted still followed me, attempting to explain that he wasn't saying that at all, blah, blah, blah. I suppose in order for the universe to make things worse, this was the moment that Cera alighted from the staircase directly in front of us, and her particular form of bubbly personality was the last thing I needed right now.

“Guys! Hi! Teddy, I was just looking for you!” She shrieked, descending on us for the traditional hugs that passed for currency in this place. “I did that thing you said I could do!!”

“Perceiving? Is that the thing you mean?” Ted replied.

“Yup! I did that. First everyone couldn't breathe, then they were all confused and then they all forgot about it!” she said, clapping. “But what do you think it means?”

“It means you're both fucking assholes, that's what it means! You've planned this, obviously.” I shouted, storming out into the now overcast spring weather. “I'm done with this, leave me alone.” People had begun to shuffle to and from their lectures, and amiable chatter could be heard from all around me. I needed to find somewhere quiet to sit down and fume, so I made a beeline for the smokers' area and fished through my satchel for my 3DS.

A couple fictional fights later, a girl called my name.

“You doing okay? Do you have a lecture or anything?” She asked as the sat down next to me.

“You really should quit, Emma,” I said as she began to roll a cigarette.

“I know,” she replied.

“If I weren't such a dreadfully nice person I would take a deep breath and blow all that tobacco away,” I commented.

“I know.” She took my hand and asked me again, “Kallie, are you okay?”

I sighed heavily, folding my 3DS, and let go of her hand. I rested my head on her shoulder. “Just some people I know being annoying,” I flattened my lips and blew hard, making my lips rumble. “Neigh,” I said, knowing how my girlfriend loved it when I was being silly. We smiled at each other.

“Do you have any lectures?” Emma asked, for the second time.

I shook my head, and so she took my hand and led me across the road to the convenience store that had opened up within the college grounds the previous year. It was predictably quiet in there, just a few students who were filling paper bags with cheap sweets. It began to rain as we entered.

“I need to get some more baccy,” Emma said, and I released her hand from mine to go browsing amongst the snacks I probably shouldn't buy. There was a flash from outside, and thunder rumbled a second later.  The rain had become incredibly heavy, and rivers had begun flowing across the road.

“I guess we should stay in here for a bit, then?” I suggested, and the cashier nodded at me to say that he didn't mind us lingering in the store for longer than strictly necessary. Emma returned to my side with an unheated pastry, and so I took a seat by the store's microwave while she cooked it. With science. As my gaze returned to the rain outside, I realised I felt a lot more calm here with Emma than I did with Ted. Perhaps it's for the best that I didn't make a move on him, I resolved. There's never any drama with Emma, and I don't want to have to put her out by complaining about another partner when we should be smooching. The water level was rising, outside; the spring weather had turned into something a little more formidable than an April shower.

“I'm glad I don't have a lecture until later!” I laughed, watching as the water level rose to cover a few weeds sticking out of a crack in the pavement.

“Same,” Emma sat down on one of my knees and I put my arm around her for support. “And they have enough supplies here to last a while in the inevitable biblical apocalypse!” Jokes aside, she did seem concerned about the weather too.

At the moment the water level reached that of the curb, something started to rise from the rippling plane of its surface; bowing the water as it strained to break the surface tension. The thing is, the surface never broke. The bulge rising from the water consisted of just that – water. The upper hemisphere spattered as it was struck by raindrops, but remained intact; a perfect sphere of water hovered above the flooded road.

“What the fuck is that?” Ushered Emma off my lap so I could get a better look, I rose to my feet. We peered out through the rivulets of rain rushing down the glass door and observed as more of these spheres rose from the water.

“Some kind of ball? This is weird, this is so weird,” Emma turned to the cashier. “Are you seeing this?” He and the other students who had taken shelter with their strawberry laces and foam bananas stared in shock as the water spilled from the road and over the grass leading to the store. The 'micro wave' broke against the foot of the store's entrance steps. From the shallow plane of water rose yet more water balls.

“They look empty,” said one of the students, “Like a bubble. Look, the rain isn't even splashing the bubble itself, it's just running off.” He was right, like a group of glass orbs the bubbles of water were filled only with air.

“I guess that's how they came up from the grassy bit,” the cashier suggested, “it'd be too shallow for anything else!” The students began to exchange their own theories as to what was happening, ranging from apocalypse theories to ghosts to mere tricks of the light.

“Someone go out there,” a student proposed. “Go touch one, see what they do.”

“Fuck no,” came the general response from most of us, but the cashier decided he was up for it.

“I don't want any of you getting hurt in or around my store, last thing I want is to get closed down. I'll go look and make sure it's safe for you to leave.”

“Maybe we should call the police?” Emma said, grabbing the cashier's arm. “If you think it might not be safe, why put yourself in danger?” She dialled the emergency services, but I doubted there was any way to communicate through the weather. “No signal,” she confirmed.

“That settles it,” said the cashier. “I'm going out there.” He opened the door and descended the steps until he almost reached the water level, where he could be within reach of the nearest bubble without getting his shoes soaked through. He reached out a hand and penetrated the bubble with a few fingers. With a yell, his arm was yanked into the membrane of the bubble, stretching toward it despite how hard he pulled against it. In seconds, the bubble had expanded apparently the equivalent of his body mass, and he was gone.

A couple of the students were yelling, too, and backing away from the door as the bubble came in contact with one of its neighbours. This caused it to expand further, absorbing the second bubble into its surface area.

“Kallie, come away from the door!” Emma grabbed me and pulled me away as the bubble began to swell and absorb the others. As it did so, more began to rise from the water beneath it and join the orb.

“If it keeps expanding, it's going to swallow us all...” I said, and Emma pulled me into a strong embrace. “I'm scared, Emma...”

“Me too,” she kissed me, “but we need to find another way out of here. We can't panic now.” The other students looked at us in dismay.

“Don't panic? Don't panic?!” a boy said. “A dude was just fucking... something! Killed! Gone! What do you expect us to do? Stay here?” He pushed out of the doors and beckoned his friends to follow him. “We can just go around it and escape, come on!” he told them. Sure enough, the bubble wasn't yet big enough to block any of us from walking around it.

“We'll go back to the college and tell them what's happening,” a girl said. “Stay here and die, if you want, but we're le-” her comment was cut short by another yell. The boy who panicked had stepped into the water from which the bubbles were rising, and I turned just in time to see him disappear into its depths – or, shallows. The water couldn't have been more than shin-height, and yet his body seemed to fall right through the world.

“Shit. Shit! We can't get across!” the girl yelled and turned back to the store. The bubble expanded again, as more water added to its surface area, and it came into contact with the back of her head. Her eyes rolled back into her head and she was pulled into the water before she had time to react. Her arms and legs went limp in the instant her brain lost touch with her body, and her neck stretched like spaghetti before the bubble slurped her up.

The remaining two students jumped back in time to avoid the next expansion, and we all retreated to the back of the store.

“We need to find another exit, and something to keep the rain off,” I suggested, and Emma nodded. “You, come with me and we'll look for an exit. Emma, you take him and find something to shelter us.”

“There's a way out through the stock room, I did part time here in my first year and I know the staff code,” said the other student, a girl whose name I never learned. Thankfully, the late store owner hadn't changed it and we were able to find a back exit. Emma handed out a set of forgotten umbrellas from behind the cash register.

“Okay, we need to get somewhere away from water.” Emma said and we opened the back door. I saw the blood drain from my girlfriend's face. “Th- they're... everywhere...”

I stepped up behind her and looked out of the door. Huge, spherical bubbles hung in the sky like decorations on a giant tree. Dimples in the topography of the college grounds had created bubbling lakes all around us, making escape impossible, their proximity causing them to rapidly expand with the growing bubbles nearby. The closest two of them snapped together.

I pulled Emma away from the door as fast as I could, but it was too late; the bubble reached into the door frame and gripped my girlfriend by the stomach.

“No!” I shouted, gripping to her as tightly as I could and attempting to wrench her away from the ravenous bauble. She twisted herself around and clutched my face, kissing me one last time before the force of the bubble took her from my life. Nevertheless, I refused to let go of her. One hand still gripping her wrist, I was pulled arm-first into the bubble myself.

In that moment, time slowed like molasses. I felt no wrenching or distortion as the membrane fused with my arm; in fact, I felt nothing at all. My arm was intact, and it was the bubble that was distorting around me. It appeared to be expanding and flattening itself into a plane. It reached toward my face and I felt the skin of the water forcing itself down my throat, into my lungs. The bubble was up to my chest; my arm, breasts, my whole upper torso becoming one with the membrane that was distorting around me. I couldn't breathe, my lungs gently hugging the surface of the bubble. I began to panic, I instinctively let go of Emma, but realised my hand was gone, and so was she. She was part of the bubble now, and it was taking me as well. The panic grew into fear, and fear into terror as I knew this was the end.

My consciousness, bereft of human form, was now entirely part of the expanding bubble. It flattened into a plane, and I could see shapes as it began to reform into something new. A figure, touching my arm... Emma? No... that's not her. The events began to seem like a distant fiction, as my consciousness took a new form. How did I get here? Where am I?

The bubble popped.

And I could breathe again.


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PostPosted: 06 Dec 2014, 16:50 
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Dino

Joined: 10 Jun 2008, 15:55
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I really like this story. (I generally do like your stories - you come up with some great ideas.) I actually found the description of being enveloped by the bubble more scary than I would any conventional horror story. And I also like the fact that you've left the reader to work out what's going on, rather than writing out an explanation - very Japanese. XD



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PostPosted: 06 Dec 2014, 21:44 
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It was actually partially inspired by the spiral series in the horror manga created by the same guy as "the enigma of amigara fault" (i don't remember his name, though i could google it, but so could you ;D)
I like it when stuff is left to the interpretation of the reader, even if there's a definite "description" of what has happened available both within the story and from the author. I intend to expand on this story in other Chains stories I write, so overall it'll make more sense. it's from Stephen King that i take inspiration for that tactic ;)


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