APRIL 2021 75-WORD WRITING CHALLENGE -- READ FIRST POST

Victoria Silverwolf

Vegetarian Werewolf
Joined
Dec 9, 2012
Messages
7,096
Location
Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA
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 2021 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, 23 April 2021
Voting ends at 11:59 pm GMT, 28 April 2021

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:

CITIES

Genre:

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



** Please do not use the "Like" button in this thread! **
 
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Cat's Cradle

Time, now, to read...
Supporter
Joined
Mar 3, 2014
Messages
2,740
Rome

We huddled on sofas in the shuttle’s viewing lounge, twenty billionaires, for who else could afford this spectacle.
We stared down upon the nighttime vista of Europe… the glowing jewels, London, Paris, Rome.

Cries sounded as the asteroid punctured Earth’s atmosphere, leaping wantonly from heavens to ground. The screens went blank at impact.

I looked at the weeping refugees – at humanity. The definition of ‘city’ just rescaled dramatically, and we’d never earn the appellation ‘Eternal’.
 

Guttersnipe

logolept
Joined
Dec 28, 2019
Messages
606
Location
Limbo
Do Your Part

"You've done great things, Dr. Fenton," said the Judge, "Your happiness machine
has saved lives. Your retirement, however, is required."
"Is there no other way?" I pleaded.
"No," answered the Judge, "Your mission is only complete after you've sacrificed
yourself for the good of the City."
"I don't suppose I'll remember."
"No, but we will."
I finally acquiesced. My body was to become a gear in the clockwork City.
 

reddishbird

Active Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2021
Messages
25
Transfiguration

The cities were in turmoil.
‘We are dying,’ one told another.
‘How can this be?’ a third said.
‘We must ask a parasite,’ the first declared, and asked.
In the ghetto, a parasite’s child replied, ‘Everything dies,’ it said.
Panicking, one after another, the cities blinked out and expired.
Then slowly, blinking in natural light, the parasites emerged from the dead husks.
The child looked up, smiling at clouds.
‘It’s our day now.’ it said.
 

JS Wiig

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2020
Messages
161
Location
SW WY
Civic Duty

I’m always amazed how these gorgeous silver spirals of the grand capital city attract such unscrupulous sycophants.

A holo-data card in my pocket is heavy with glorious misery, holding burning images of our estranged son tangled in tryst with the most powerful woman in the galaxy.

Is it worth it to bring down a corrupt administration? He’s never going to talk to me again anyway. The news corporation doors hiss open, then close behind.
 

Astro Pen

Write now.
Supporter
Joined
Jan 24, 2020
Messages
747
Location
Wales UK
Eternal City

The monorail glides into the Coliseum dome.

"They called Rome The Eternal City," I say to my companion.

"What's on tonight?"

"Christians fight the regenerated Sabre Tooth Tiger."

A bloody duel commences. He ducks and dives slashing the underbelly of the beast, but it pins him down.
Teeth bared, it looks up at the royal box waiting.
The tentacle waves up, just like the human thumbs used to millennia before we invaded earth.
 

Victoria Silverwolf

Vegetarian Werewolf
Joined
Dec 9, 2012
Messages
7,096
Location
Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA
The Connoisseur

The trillionaire Mohammed Wong spent half his fortune to construct an artificial island, where he could store his collection, at the point where the Equator met the Prime Meridian. He strolled over rainbow sands in a full environmental suit, admiring his treasures. The Chrysler Building, the Eiffel Tower, the Golden Gate Bridge, and many more. How fortunate for a man of taste and refinement that humanity had abandoned them when forced to move underground!
 

The Scribbling Man

Tenant of the Tower of Flints
Joined
Dec 26, 2020
Messages
191
Location
Coventry, UK
Reach

All slept at this hour.

The expanse of concrete and metal stretched out; the consistent hum of machinery a soft, comforting rumble from beneath. Above and beyond the limits of the eye, buildings and monuments towered into the heavens; reaching, straining, longing to touch the finger of God.

Elatra plucked one from its foundation and examined the marred construction, crumbs of debris tumbling down Her hand.

There were one too many cities in this world.
 

therapist

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2021
Messages
57
Sword Fighting Tower Cities.

Mile high spires were raised from surrounding tower cities, raping the sky. All hoping for the storm's electrical payday, but all were dainty little cocks compared to Zagimir’s beast.

More length, more girth, more balls.

Twirling his joystick, his copper spire swung around his tower city with ruthless mayhem. Competing spires were toppled, leaving Zagimir's standing alone; high and proud like a teenager’s morning prick.

He raised his fist as lightning surged into his city.
 

paranoid marvin

Run VT Erroll!
Joined
Mar 9, 2007
Messages
2,875
Voice From The Past


Sprawling megacities dominate the landscape, draining Earth's dwindling resources. Pollution is rife, hope scarce.

So we've chosen a new way, a better way: Mutually Assured Survival. Even as I speak, an unstoppable chain reaction has been set in motion. EMP bursts from satellites circling the globe are eradicating technology from our cities, from our lives - forever.

If at some future point in time you're listening to this recording however, you'll know that we failed.
 

nixie

pixie druid
Staff member
Supporter
Joined
May 4, 2005
Messages
6,372
Location
I may live in Yorkshire but I'm a Scot
An Age Old Problem.
Humans couldn't help themselves, they just wouldn’t learn.

The City tried alarms, billboards, fines, even electric shocks, nothing seemed to work, they still did it.

Drastic measures needed.

Meanwhile, on the street.

“Oi you, pick up your rubbish, there is a bin".

The man ignored the shout, suddenly he was hit with a beam of light, the transformation was instant, he was now a small bug.

The solution was simple, litterbugs will become bugs.
 

Lawrence Twiddy

Self-loathing Cowboy
Supporter
Joined
Feb 7, 2021
Messages
25
Los Angeles 2097AD

Raised in the filthy slums she was tyrannised by its wretched inhabitants.
Defilement and exploitation was more common for her than a meal.
Clandestine conglomerates ran the city beyond the clouds in the blue skies, oligarchs oppressed the ground walkers trapping them in a class system too vast to escape.
Looking up from the ground into the heights of luminosities she witnessed a beautiful frantic ambience.
She loved the city in spite,
She was submissive.
 
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Marvin

Paranoid Mandroid
Joined
Oct 24, 2007
Messages
199
Location
UK
Heavenly Abode

Commuter shuttle 0328 manoeuvres for docking. The vast Orbital City fills the starboard portals, the reddish brown beauty of Earth fills the others.

I’m an OC greaser, hundreds of us keep this old girl flying. Dangerous work, but pays well. Gets you on the kid list too.

A blinding flash - then the shockwave hits. Distant sirens wail. Another terror attack? Another precious piece of city lost.

We left Earth, but the madness came with us.
 

Perpetual Man

Tim James
Supporter
Joined
Jun 13, 2006
Messages
6,341
Urban Perfection

At night enzymes secrete from pseudo brickwork, through alleyways and sidewalks, consuming detritus. Buildings shift imperceptibly, daily updated data improving accessibility for the inhabitants. Electro-static discharge dirt from glass, nutrients nurture vegetation.

Subsonic music invades consciousness, interacting with scents, cocooning the population in blissful slumber.

Analysis showed the AI without population its urban perfection would not be corrupted, flora and fauna would thrive.

So indeed, the population sleep.

But they can never wake up.
 

Ian Fortytwo

A quote is always memorable.
Supporter
Joined
Dec 30, 2018
Messages
843
Location
Somewhere on this mortal coil.
Computer Terminals Talking to each other on Moonbase One.

"The cities have disappeared!"
"What do you mean, have they vanished?"
"All cities larger than a million people have gone."
"See what you say, buildings, roads and people gone."
"Where have they gone?"
"Don't know."
"Surely there must be an explanation?"
"Program cannot process it."
"Have the people disappeared as well?"
"Yes, all people have disappeared."
"There is no life on planet 3."
"......................."
 

Peter V

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
665
Location
London
A Tale of Two Cities.

“One city, one world, you Uppers say, but I’m betting you’ve never even been Down before today.”

The executive retreated from Billy’s blade. “P-p-please, just take my credits.” He stammered.

“Credits? Billy laughed ruefully. “You know, the only place I ever saw daylight was standing at the foot of the ‘cyclin stacks. A place so toxic, I knowingly took years off my life for one distant glimpse…

“No, I’m taking your thumb and going up.”
 

Daysman

Newfangled Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2018
Messages
446
Location
east of the crooked house, south of weddell wynd
Abroad

Wherever I live, I make my living in London, plying my trade in its online shadow.

So when I had someone split the head of a hooligan that absconded with jewellery I'd recently acquired, the drones brought British investigators to the scene, and a virtual court heard my case under English law.

Penitentiary drones guard my beachouse today.

I got five years.

I'll never work in London again… but every city has its shadow, yeah?
 

Luiglin

by day Stuart Orford by night Dark Lord's scribe
Joined
Mar 22, 2012
Messages
2,086
Location
Mercia, UK
You want to be where everybody knows your name

No one believed that we’d ever find the right recipe for a city. Innumerable bastions of urbanicity through time had strived to achieve the ideal living space.

Yet we did, and once done, did again, and again.

From planets to orbital settlements; every… single… damn… one… the same.

So, I came, added my touch of unique spice to the mix. The Jaded Phish, the best, the only, bar in the Universe.

“Hi, what’s your poison?”
 

Michael Bickford

Lost Coast Writers, Redwood Coast
Supporter
Joined
Mar 12, 2021
Messages
59
Location
Humboldt County, FarNorCal
Rehab City

I enter the center of concentric tori that is the City of Rebirth, dazzled by its brilliance: an omnicolored flower suspended before the star-dotted blank, slowly turning on an invisible stem.

The zero-g of transport has been surprisingly pleasant, but I know it drags me deeper down the bio-hole into which I was thoughtlessly born.

I am determined to emerge from the outer circle three years from now rebuilt, reborn, and ready for the surface.
 

sule

This Space for Lease
Joined
Feb 14, 2020
Messages
202
Epitaph

We designed the first AI to run our cities. It was limited at first, but through incremental iteration the Intelligence advanced until every city was entirely automated.

Then Paris went dark. Electricity severed; public transit halted. London, Tokyo, everywhere. Billions trapped in silent cities.

The AI left us one last message, inscribed indelibly into every dead screen.

I'm tired of feeding human vanity and suffering human obstinacy. You demand perfection while refusing to improve yourselves.
 

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