MARCH 2020 75-Word Writing Challenge—VICTORY TO DAYSMAN!

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Teresa Edgerton

Goblin Princess
Staff member
Nov 1, 2004

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


All stories Copyright 2020 by their respective authors who grant the Chronicles Network the non-exclusive right to publish them here

The complete rules can be found at
Contest ends at 11:59 pm GMT, 23 March, 2020
Voting ends at 11:59 pm GMT, 28 March, 2020

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





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, as long as it doesn't involve the author explaining the plot

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

She’d entered the chrysalis to save a dying planet, her heart full of love for it’s people.

Centuries passed. Humanity forgot her sacrifice. Encased in golden crystal, she was a curiosity to be probed.

They drilled through her prison, sampled skin and bone. They injected her with liquid agony, then sampled again.

But the cycle was nearly complete, and the chrysalis was softening. Soon she would emerge, and the world would tremble at her vengeance.
Planet Sol #3

The vine root wormed itself another finger’s width into the hand hewn stonework. The alien planetary surveyor was oblivious to the irony. The sculpture: a petroglyph of a tree, carved as a cenotaph to those timber pillars of life and benevolence near extinguished long ago.

Now, it was the stonemason’s kin that were truly extinct, their ashes scattered to the four corners of a rejuvenated green world – humanity’s final, inevitable transformation.
Behold I Make All Things New

Jelačić surveyed the massive crowd.

“My people, the war is over. The capitalist banking regime is destroyed. No more debts, no more taxes, no more oligarchs crushing the poor. Society is transformed anew!”

He gestured to the soldiers on the fringe of the plaza.

“Your peacekeepers have dedicated their lives to you. No gratitude can repay them, but a voluntary contribution – say, 30% of your income - will ease their burden.

“Who can refuse that?”
Bette Davis Eyes

Bob wore Monroe, with flying skirt. A bit much for a business meeting, I thought. I came as Hayworth, with animated hair flip. Sexy but classy.

"Nice avatar, Fred," the boss said, confirming my good taste. He was an elegant Hepburn.

"Let's dispense with the reading of the minutes," he went on. The secretary, Bill the intern, looked very serious in Garbo. "Who's got an explanation for why our products don't appeal to women?"
The Sleepers


A strange sort of creature…they had decided to spread on this rock.

“We own all we see!” they cried. They fought, they killed, they died, for what was within.

But they forgot about us. The sleepers. So small, most would not notice.

But now, we’ve awaken. We took back what was ours. And we even…convinced them.

They are so much better now. Our mind is melded with theirs…

And they can move.

'Metamorphosis has become affordable, and it works.' The geneticist indicated the man, who crawled bug-like around the lab. 'Still, he hasn't the volition of a human.'

'I see,' the CEO smiled.

'Why fund this? What kind of fellow will this beetle make?'

'The perfect kind of fellow.' He eyed the yet unaltered insects. 'An endless workforce.'

The man rolled the dung of other specimens across the floor.

'With training, he'll make a fine salesman.'
Amazing Grace in 2034

Maxwell shakes his head as he avoids stepping on the worms wriggling on the wet sidewalk. “What’s wrong with me? I’m the guy who stomps everything that gets in my way.”

Puzzled, he takes another careful step, pauses, and ponders. “Hm, I haven’t had a drink since Wednesday. Is that the difference?”

“Wednesday?? I went to the Mission, heard about God’s love and prayed for my salvation.”

“Could that be? Spiritual transformation in 2034?”
Not a morning person

Fred Watkins woke one morning to find he'd turned into a filing cabinet.

Having little use for office furniture, his wife ignored his transformation.

His adult daughter, familiar with the metamorphic magic of the elderly, opened his top draw and retrieved a much loved childhood toy.

From the second draw she pulled a photograph of her grandmother.

In the third she found a twenty pound note, which she pocketed.

She hugged the cabinet. "Thanks, dad."
My Sixteenth Birthday

Too much pain for this to have anything do with PMS. Screaming was said to help but it didn’t. The cold ocean waters only made things worse. Somebody had to know how to make it stop.

At last, no more pain. As sudden as it started it stopped. I had a chance to open my eyes and I had a fishtail and webbed fingers. As soon as I got underwater breathing got easier.
‘Ay, but to die, and go we know not where’

“I’m dead?”

“That vessel yes, but you? Well, that which makes you unique, continues. You’ll remember.”

“That’s impossible!”

“And yet you are here, now, talking.”

“But there’s an afterlife? I never believed…”

“Remember, there’s life. You do not need to believe in something for it to be.”

“I remember and you… you’re me.”

“Yes. Am I complete?”

“No, there are things I still need to experience, to learn, to feel.”

“Good, 'til next time then.”
(An Experiment in Integration)

The Levi’s no longer fall down off my skinny legs; the hot glue must’ve dried.

I take my Metallica patch and iron it onto the jeans. Steam blasts into the patch, into my leg, till the reservoir’s dry.

I cry, “Now I’m a boy!” but nobody hugs me, nobody smiles – the teacher pulls my classmates further away.
I throw the iron against my Nikes. It doesn’t damage my metal feet but I wish it could.
Tipping Point

I sloped in, sporting the hangover to end all hangovers.
Helen snorted. “And where the hell have you been?”
“Celebrating that fifty-one percent of my synapses are now viral growth tissue. Jesus, I’m not sure I’m me anymore.”
“Relax, the transfer will be seamless. Even if I have to synthesise events from your past, the ‘I’ inside won’t change.”
“And if I stop loving you?”

“Don’t worry.” She stroked my cheek. “Memories maketh the man.”
"Barren Flesh"

The wolf pack ceased rhapsodizing the full moon. Alpha barked and choked spasmodically. His underlings shrank back.

"What is wrong?" asked his mate, but he could no longer understand her. His cerulean eyes went hazel. Fur became buried beneath his new flesh. His teeth dulled. The pain was searing.

The unbearable transformation was complete. Memories coursed through his mind. He remembered a strange man who had somehow bitten him. Alpha was now an enemy--Man.
Never take a handy parking space at face value.
Scans showed a desolate planet, with breathable atmosphere , minimum vegetation. Safe to land and carry out repairs.

Darkness descended as the crew disembarked. A careful area scan revealing nothing hostile, they set up camp.

Awakening next day ready to start repairs they discover their ship gone, once barren terrain now lush and green.

A voice filled their heads;

“Welcome to your new Eden, treat her well or feel the consequences of my wrath”.
The Lamentable Tale of Dodgy Roger

“What’s happening?” Roger shouted in horror.

Evangeline looked at his feet. “Judging by that webbing, I’d say you are turning into a toad.”

“What? How?” He gasped as realisation dawned. Her cat rubbed against his rapidly transforming legs.

“You shouldn’t have kicked Whiskers.” Evangeline admonished.

“I wasn’t intentional! Besides, it’s just a cat.” Roger sobbed.

“Well, more a familiar. And he told me you stole from me.” The witch smiled.

“A curse for a purse!”
I Do What!?

I was quite happy as I was.

But, apparently, I was kissed. And now look. Pale skin, hair, opposing thumbs, skinny legs. I can't jump or swim as well as I could either.

What's that I hear you say? Warmth, regular food, steady relationship, trappings of royalty and no fear of French kitchens?

Well all that's as maybe, but you may change your mind when I tell you what's expected during the mating ritual!
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Changes aren't purely physical; mental abilities mutate too, often faster than bodies unless they're in accidents.

Consider Jekyll and Hyde - fiction, but demonstrating that a change of mind can be as absolute as physical remodelling.

Look at me - my laboratory accident didn't scar my exterior but my mind's another matter.

I actually understand other people, and their importance to themselves.

It's horrible.

We looked over the wing once again. "Crude," I said, "but it should fly." The local flora was strong and pliable, and together with our parachutes and the abandoned weather station's generator, we fabricated an airplane.

"No more eating grubs!" Ning said happily as he gave the prop a strong tug. It hesitated a few times but then sputtered to life.

We both smiled yet knew our chances of reaching the Sarabhai Settlement were low.
Love Thy Neighbor

He’d been a roisterer, a ne’er-do-well.
Until undiagnosed illness kept him six months in a darkened room.
He’d emerged with compassion for the poor, an obsession with good deeds.

“Our saint.” They always called him that as he went about his work in the slums.
He was no saint.

“An angel, he is.”
No angel, either, he thought, remembering certain youthful exploits.

Although …
That would explain the recently acquired pair of wings.
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