May 2018 75-Word Writing Challenge — VICTORY TO CAT'S CRADLE!

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HoopyFrood

The secret ingredient is crime
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#1
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 2018 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, May 23, 2018

Voting Ends at 11:59 pm GMT, May 28, 2018


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:

Veil

Genre:

Weird Fiction



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! **
 

Ashleyne

Queen of Rainbows
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#2
BEYOND BEAUTY



She slices through her septum. “No one knows the real me.

“The real me's never spoken before.” She chews her lips and tongue into mince.

She tugs her hair, scalp peeling. Do you hear me? Her voice echoes in his head.

Sorry for being cheeky. She crashes a hammer against her cheek bones.

Do you see me now? She plucks out her eyes. Do you still love me?

“Yes,” he says, mouthful of eyes, “always.”
 

Cathbad

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#3
Hoax or Not


No one had been able to replicate Doctor Karlstein’s experiment, viewing the Astral Plane.

Most had stopped believing. They called his video evidence a hoax.

Karlstein disappeared during his second experiment. I’d built this portal from Karlstein’s incomplete notes.

“Adjust Acclimator to 121.74.”

The words were barely audible. I looked up. I saw a haze within the portal!

Excited, I adjusted the Acclimator.

Doctor Karlstein came into view!

“Welcome.,” he said, smiling, “to the Astral!”
 

Cat's Cradle

Time, now, to read...
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#4
The Cosmic Matryoshka

The workaday world dissolved around me revealing this reality: a forest of branching growths rising from grey, putrescent humus.

Terrified, I fought through the entangling branches, seeking familiarity.

Momentarily the limbs aligned so their curtaining characteristic abated; above me rose a behemoth, on whose tumored shoulder I resided. Towering over it, a mountainous abomination whose own polyps ensnared my host. And rearing beyond that—

I cowered amongst the growths. On my scalp, something burrowed in.
 

AstroZon

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#5
Vesin Ambassador

The Vesin Ambassador emerged from the shuttle clad in flowing turquoise robes, her face shrouded by a white veil. Four body guards stood between her and me as I watched for her signal. She pirouetted and walked swiftly toward the shuttle. With my four targets already selected, I engaged the shockwave. I jumped inside as she commanded the pilot to fly. "Where to?" he asked. "Chronos," she ordered. She flung her veil and kissed me.
 

Calliopenjo

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#6
Sometimes...

The angel came down from the heavens to escort the new soul. Without an escort, the new soul would be escorted by the dark shadows from below. No one wanted that.

The angel stayed and watched the new one. Pitty, the next life held a promising future. Footfalls became louder. The angel had to leave or risk being seen.

Dark shadows came up through the floor and whisked the new one away, without a chance.
 

Victoria Silverwolf

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#7
The Discovery

After countless lonely hours spent leafing through forbidden books that smelled of dust and fungus, I pierced the veil between life and death. The answer to the ultimate mystery, which so many had sought in vain, was mine alone. No longer must I ponder the nature of that other existence, whose secrets were forbidden to those of us who dwelt in this plane. I, alone among ghosts, would remember what it was to be alive.
 

Onyx

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#8
Metamorphic

Dust colored hands force the chisel through the last connection to the slab, freeing the figure after long labor. In succession, the sculptor completed each point of anatomy to fine detail before carving the next rib or calf or final heel from the stone.

Pale eyes inspected the fine cracks and imperfections that were a measure of the tools and substrate, but also the authenticity of life. Standing, the sculptor walks for the first time.
 

Luiglin

by day Stuart Orford by night Dark Lord's scribe
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#9
The Dance

I sat transfixed, my entire universe bent upon the vision before me.

Its movements were languid, sensual, wearing layers of gossamer crimson silk that floated in rhythm and yet not.

A layer shed, then another and another; silk wafting away elsewhere, taking with them my tattered thoughts.

To leave the veil.

Too close, cloying scent, hot breath, eyes of abyssal fire, dark whispers. The veil peeled away as did my soul, and I cared not.
 

Stable

Watching you from upside down
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#10
Release

If only I’d never found the mossy shrine behind the waterfall. It wasn’t wet rocks that made me slip, but that malign will. It is too horrible to believe that I fell by mere chance, smearing blood across the altar.

This modern world is not equipped to stop them. What saint makes miracles today? Twisting flesh writhes at the edges of my vision. They won’t let me sleep.

Why won’t they let me sleep?
 

D.A. Xiaolin Spires

SFF writer & reader
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#11
The Invisible Hand

Something compelled Ling to draw. She thought as long as she pursued her interests with enthusiasm, then all wheels would turn. The great economic machine would rattle along with all cogs in place, animated by the insistent force that drew them all to their respective interests.

She remembered from Microeconomics they called this the Invisible Hand, but sometimes she would see more—an Arm, a Neck.

And for the first time, she saw a Veil.
 

Harpo

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#12
Foggy Daze

Scene one: Within.

Accursed sunrise, orb absence notwithstanding, dang this baffling groundhog, clouds belong higher.
I can't see owt out. I'm going nowhere.
Where's my blooming net? What happened last night? Heck, my neck.
When will it lift?

"Fog forecast for four days" says the effing radio.

Scene two: Without.

Moonrise, slowly glowing nowhere, they said four days a fortnight since, no fishing or shooting, sick of flipping pancakes.
Cursing gets us nowhere.

Curtain.
 

dannymcg

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#13
Manna

All through our history we've created myths and superstitious tales to hide our ignorance.

Now at last, in this, our progressive Victorian era, we'll lift the veil between dimensions and see what's really out there.

“Activating device 3,2,1”

Click.

Terrified screams ring out around the world as the Unspeakable Ones swarm to catch the abundant new food.

After aeons of blindly searching they can finally see us.
 
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Hugh

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#14
Inagaddadavida

The veil of the Temple was rent, and all manner of foul things crawled out.

Hard as they fought, the Brethren could neither repel them, nor seal the tear. The hideous tide was overwhelming. Great Hirgan was the last to fall, his spiked tail lashing spasmodically even in death.

Their best efforts had been in vain. That which they had guarded against for millennia had finally come to pass.

The human race had entered incarnation.
 

Peter V

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#15
In the Eye of the Beholder.

“Marriage to a Fae is a rare opportunity.” Father opined. “And rewarding beyond imagination they say.”

“But to never lift her veil. To never see her eyes!” I’d complained.

“Do not be tempted.” He’d reminded me solemnly that it was a binding condition of the contract.

If only I’d listened.

After consummation I pulled the veil aside to look upon her eyes.

Now I’m lost; incorporeal and trapped in the universe within them.

For eternity.
 

Parson

This world is not my home
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#16
A Parson’s Love Life
Cupid loved summer nights. All lighted flighted fairies did. When they twinkled they looked like fireflies. Cupid needed that veiling. He was hunting the self-proclaimed Queen of Memphis with Pastor Malcomb’s single arrow. She was his only chance for true love.

The Memphis Queen suddenly seemed to materialize. Instinctively Cupid fired Malcomb’s tiny arrow. It went wide and hit Puddles, the Queen’s puppy.

Disaster! True love was lost. Malcomb was doomed to eternal “puppy love.”
 

s.d. Ervin

The internet is PEOPLE!
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#17
VIRTUAL BOB
This face on my viddy? Bob’s face. These expressions? Bob’s. Ask me. Bob’ll answer. Bob’s memories? Mine.
I’m here so Bob can be here....still. To ease the ache. To answer what you never asked. To help...like Bob would.
Bob uploaded. That’s me.
But.....there’s a veil.
Soooo.....I can do Bob. But I’m not Bob.
 

chrispenycate

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#18
Salome

If concealment were my aim
I could choose a thicker weave
Flashing limbs beneath proclaim
Healthy body, mind deceive
Guaranteeing endless fame
Generations still recall
On the water-splasher's fall.

He in insolence refused
Mother's offering to flatter
I held Herod long bemused
Offering any gift matter
I, determinedly amused
Asked the prophets head, on platter

Reckless beauty, femme fatal.
Reputation, when I'm dead
Amplified, apocryphal,
Ends a baptist's head ahead.
 
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#19
The Valley of the Veiled

Four days since I'd lost my climbing team in the Andes during the storm. I'd wandered lost and delirious from lack of sustenance.
The last disturbing vision I'd had as I collapsed was of figures walking toward me all wearing dark veils.
Some time later I opened my eyes. I was comfortable having been cared for. The veiled figures were stood close by.
"Hello my friend" one of them said.
I needn't have been apprehensive.
 

nixie

pixie druid
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#20
Wedded Bliss

The organ began the wedding march, I stood and turned to watch my bride walk up the aisle. My fear lessened, her sisters were beautiful she would be too.

Our parents arranged the match,we had never met or exchanged pictures, choice removed for the greater good.

The priest finished the vows.

"You may kiss the bride"

Lifting her veil, anticipation turning to horror, as I saw eyes stitched shut.
 
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