December 2015 75-word Writing Challenge -- VICTORY TO HAREBRAIN!

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TheDustyZebra

Aspiring notaphilist
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RULES:

Write a story inspired by the chosen theme and genre in no more than 75 words, not including the title

ONE entry per person

NO links, commentary or extraneous material in the posts, please -- the stories must stand on their own


WHEN WRITING YOUR STORY, PLEASE REMEMBER THIS IS A FAMILY-FRIENDLY FORUM

All stories Copyright 2015 by their respective authors,

who grant the Chronicles Network the non-exclusive right to publish them here
The complete rules can be found at RULES FOR THE WRITING CHALLENGES

Contest ends at 11:59 pm GMT, December 23, 2015

Voting Ends at 11:59 pm GMT, December 28, 2015

You do not have to submit a story in order to vote --

in fact, we encourage all Chrons members to take part in choosing a winner



The Magnificent Prize:



The Dignified Congratulations/Grovelling Admiration of Your Peers
and the challenge of choosing next month's theme and genre



Theme:

The Unexpected

Genre:

Steampunk



This thread to be used for entries only.

Please keep all comments to the DISCUSSION THREAD

We invite (and indeed hope for) lively discussion and speculation about the stories as they are posted, so long as it doesn't involve the author explaining the plot.


** Please do not use the "Like" button in this thread! **
 

Droflet

I don't teach chickens how to dance.
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Bowled Over


Santa spurred the reindeer on, steam rising from their upper vents.

Landing on the roof he said, “Take a break, deers, I’ll be right back.”

Down the chimney and up to the tree.

“Now, who’s been nice and who’s been, argggh.”

His dismembered leg lay on the floor, the cogs and levers wrecked and smoking. The boy held a strange device.

“What is that?”

“It’s my ray gun, Santa. And I’ve been very, very naughty.”
 

Luiglin

by day Stuart Orford by night Dark Lord's scribe
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Mercia, UK
That time of year again

The new bath was a convoluted mix of pipes, vents, widgets and spikes. The Minion checked the professor's notes and whacked an unremarkable pipe with a spanner.

"Ah... my annual Christmas bath," mumbled the Dark Lord contentedly.

Violent bubbles erupted across the gently steaming water.

"Should it be doing that?"

The Minion, peering at a dial, gently tapped it with the spanner.

Steam burst screaming from pipes, showering them with white-hot rivets.

"Oh sh..."

BOOM!
 

Ashleyne

Queen of Rainbows
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Apr 19, 2014
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534
The Boiling Man

Zooming through the sky, enveloped in a cloud of steam is The Boiling Man.

The water in his tummy vibrates a sentence from the building below: "Everyone get down on the ground."

The boiling man lands at the bank's entrance. He clunks through the door, his lips frozen in metallic apathy.

The bank robber's paralysed with fear as The Boiling Man takes the bag of cash, then turns and walks out the door.

Easy money.
 

reiver33

Only Forward
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Dumfries
The Blunting Of Damocles

Superheated steam swirled around the mammoth Rutherford-Curie generator. Electrostatic discharge from the Tesla coils made my teeth ache. The Heisenberg projector pulsed with a dull drone.

Fitch seized both activation leavers. “Unlimited energy, Herr Prinz, don’t you see? Dark Matter will make the radium engine look like a feeble candle. I am the voice of the future!”

I unsheathed my swordstick and stabbed him cleanly through the heart.

“Some things are better left unsaid.”
 

Cat's Cradle

Time, now, to read...
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A Christmas ‘Repair All’ Ordered At S & M Steam Engine Shop

The Harley was dead. I repaired the steam bike under arc lamps, surrounded by three hovering shades they cast.
You’ll finish work tonight,” he’d said. “This hog has some mechanical bug.”
“Sir, my family...Christmas…”
“Hog some bug!”


Fan installed...fezziwig pressurized... Late for Christmas dinner, and thinking more of gearing than gravy!
“Sir, I’ve decreased surplus revolutions, and installed the tiny rims. May I go?”
“You’ve realigned the gears, Cratchit?”
“Cogs recessed, every one.”
 
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HareBrain

Smeerp of Wonder
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Harbinger in the Smoking Room



Barrington looked up from his newspaper. ‘Caldicott! Where’ve you been?’

‘Devil of a tale, old chap.’

‘Involving a feisty adventuress in button-up boots and a military-style jacket?’

‘No.’

‘Airship invaders over London?’

‘Nu-uh.’

‘Armies of steam-powered soldiers controlled by a deranged scientist?’

Caldicott leaned closer. ‘The invention of an efficient internal combustion engine powered by petroleum derivatives.’

‘By the Grand Boilermaker! You blaspheme, sir!’ Barrington extracted his clockwork revolver. ‘Hang on while I wind this.’
 

ratsy

www.scifiexplorations.com
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Santa Satan Claus

The air balloon-powered sleigh jingles along, flying above the cozy, white covered village. It lands on a great house; hovers about the immaculate peaked roof. Hooves trample the snow crusted cedar shingles as the robed figure enters the brick chimney from above.

He emerges from the glowing coals, feeling at home more than ever. His bag is empty but not for long.

“Santa?” a tiny voice asks.

“Close.” He reaches for a cookie, smiling.
 

Victoria Silverwolf

Vegetarian Werewolf
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Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA
Sea Change

The shipwreck left Whitcomb alone on a barren isle, surviving on turtle eggs and rainwater. The Global Cyclopedia, via his informer, revealed that a mapping drone was scheduled to pass overhead within a fortnight. A few days later the informer was lost during a violent storm. He had no way to communicate with the drone. His despair changed to shock, then joy, when the informer emerged from the water like a golden crab, and spoke.
 

LittleStar

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Jun 30, 2011
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740
Gifts For the Wise

“What is it? Why’d he deliver it here?”

“Look, Old world writing. Fetch Mardebrand.”

Butler puffed jets of steam, rolling away in search.

“Have you ever seen anything so-- ”

“Incredible,” Westing finished. “Ahh, the paper shimmers like Argent and Aur. A scent?”

“Myrrh.” Mardebrand arrived, grinning like an acolyte.

“Can you translate?”

Mardebrand traced the thousand year old words with her finger. ‘For Abigail. Merry Christmas. Love Santa’. She gasped. “It’s for me.”
 

Robert Mackay

Not all those who wander... Oh, actually, I am.
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Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum

I was six years old when I saw the last dance of the marionettes. Every Christmas Eve they would emerge from the town hall and dance, whistling “The Little Drummer Boy”, pluming dirty steam, underpinned by rhythmic clanking.

That year, the percussion was gunfire, and the melody was screams of pain and disbelief.

They call that last dance the "Mistletoe Massacre". Some blamed a foreign enemy, but I remember rictus joy on iron faces.
 

Perpetual Man

Tim James
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Never The Last Christmas

The elves revolted just before Christmas.

Clad in copper and steel, clockwork enhanced body armour, firing steam-powered projectile guns, citing anti-slavery laws, their bullets chewed through the candy-coated houses of the North Pole.

Seasonal dreams ending in hissing vapour and crossfire.

Reindeer parts flew in different directions, staining the snow scarlet.

Santa escaped, riding a wounded Rudolph, bemoaning the unforeseen uprising.

One red eye gleamed from beneath torn skin.

“I’ll be back.”
 

Gonk the Insane

A.J. Grimmelhaus
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Cambridge, England
The Golem's Christmas Miracle

The golem’s footsteps echoed down the cobbled street, gas-lamps quivering in its wake. I ran faster. I knew where it was going.


The golem was waiting, clockwork ticking the seconds away as blood pooled at its feet. ‘It was him or me.’

I fired the pistol. Broke its heart the way it broke mine.

I was too late. Santa was dead.

I sighed, picked up a wrench.

Never ask Santa for your own Santa.
 

Alex The G and T

Thar! That Blows.
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Extremely Northern California
Time Travails

“Bring Your Cigar and your Cognac into my Laboratory, Doctor W____. See? My most amazing device has been nearly compleated.”

A haze of smoke and oil shimmered over an astonishing array of brasswork and cogs.

A battered waif plummeted through the skylight; flopping onto the floor in a stew of blood, glass shards and filth.

“Hoy! Child! Who are you?”

“I was to grow up to become You, Sir... I beg you... Destroy Our Machine!”
 
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mosaix

Shropshire, U.K.
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Shropshire, U.K.
His Every Need...

Leather helmet, goggles, studded face mask. Just divine, he thought.

“Enjoying yourself?” she asked.

“Cocktail parties are fine but I could do with proper drink.”

A small panel in her tightly laced bodice sprang open to reveal a whiskey miniature.

“There's always a vodka if you would prefer...”

“Vodka?” He eyed her smooth lines. “But where? Show me!”

She leaned closer with a twinkling eye, touched his arm, and whispered “Not here, darling, not here...”
 

hopewrites

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End of the Thunderstone experiments


Tesla's impassioned scrawlings are interrupted by the fluting sound of his doorbell.
Rising. "Now who could that be, I'm not expec-"
Erupting through the doorway, "Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!
"Biggles! Tie him- to the Comfy Chair!
"Cardinal Fang, wriggle his toes..."
A yellow and black electric-mouse pikaed behind the three transdimensional Inquisitors.
"Confess!
"Confess!!
"Con-"
"Alright god dammit, I confess." His aspect changes, "I AM THOR! GOD OF THUNDER."
*ptsKAOW*
 

Dan Jones

Free Omar!
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Pistols At Dawn

“Ostensibly, their quadrophonic arrangement evokes Haydn’s fugues,” said Gertie, sitting down.

“Apparently,” whispered Jane, “the scherzo replacing their latest opus minuet gained notoriety for blasphemy!”

Tittering, they watched lackies wheel onstage a winding, wooden contraption ending in a huge, steaming orifice. Four gentlemen entered, one sporting green hair, holding an angular approximation of a guitar.

He struck it. The orifice doused the audience with shuddering thunderclaps, blowing the ladies’ wigs off.

I AAAMM AN ANARCHIST!!!!
 

Judderman

The Iceman cometh
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Apr 20, 2010
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969
Time forever short

Inspector Sinnet barged past the crowd of gaunt factory workers. Time was short. Always running out no matter your pace. Could it end? Where was the cursed creature? Sinnet’s head snapped up as an ear splitting squawk was heard. The mutated Turkey burst through the fog, a grotesque beast. So fast! It delivered a sharp peck to Sinnet's jugular before he could even utter “Oh I say”. Sinnet's questions were answered. His misadventure ends here.
 

Glen

Who are you people?
Joined
Apr 27, 2011
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781
Location
Sydney
the secret ingredient

‘Fine port, Jenkins’

‘Fine cigars, Smythe.’

‘Shall we?’

Smythe nods assent. Jenkins screws the crystal to the lever and pushes it forward.

Bright lights coruscate from the portal, brassy sound emanates. A glittering stage. Swirling lights. A bouffant-haired dandy screams, ‘You were born to be on that stage.’ A crowd roars.

Jenkins pulls the lever back abruptly. ‘My word!’

‘Is that the culmination of our age of steam power and progress?!’

‘…more port…?’

‘…please…’
 

johnnyjet

Western PA High Tech Country Boy
Joined
Nov 11, 2011
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Pennsylvania
The Little Engine That Really Could

A puff of steam made Leopold jump back.

A whistle blew. Another puff. The little train moved slowly around the Christmas tree.

Leopold clapped his hands.

It picked up steam as it circled, moving faster and faster.

Suddenly it lifted off the tracks, spiraling upward around the tree.

Leopold rushed to a window, threw open the sash.

The train veered out the window in a flash.

He watched it soar out of sight.

"On comet!"
 
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