May / June 100 Word Anonymous Challenge 2022

elvet

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This is the thread for the stories. You may enter as many stories as you like.
I (elvet) will be accepting entries until 11:59 GMT on Wednesday June15. I will post a poll, and voting will will continue for at least 5 days. Please give your entry a title, otherwise it's quite complicated distinguishing between them when it comes to voting.
DO NOT POST YOUR OWN STORIES IN THIS THREAD.
DO NOT COMMENT WITH 'LIKE' ON THE INDIVIDUAL STORIES.
Private message (also known as conversation) your entries to @elvet.

TOPIC: PERSPECTIVE
GENRE: SCIENCE FICTION
The discussion thread is here
 

elvet

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Time, and the Foundation of a Prerogative.

You’re running out of time.

Time itself seems to be a diligent sponge. When you try to soak it up, it bloats. One cannot squeeze the sponge, nor cannot one drain the sponge. No matter how it’s broken down, it remains consistent.

As the pores thicken, the excavator pits out a sieved aqueduct of sand. Little particles of ersatz contaminate the product.

The sand does not pause. The ersatz clogs it’s drainage, but this simply slows it down. For every vessel, a soul, and in a particle of imagination-
- a thousand and one presentiments.
 

elvet

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On the Wall

Life out here on the wall, it’s convoluted. Like an elixir poisoned by rufilin, I stand on the wall and survey the temperature. When it’s damp but warm my sustenance unwittingly discharges it’s potent musk. I stand on the wall and savour my salivating glands.

I protect them from a far worse fate. I don’t protect all of them, they sometimes choose for themselves. Some of them delight in the heinous webs of torture. The Gatekeeper, I come with claws, a flick of my tongue, my venom numbs, while the Saboteur… will kill with charisma, and make them suffer.
 

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The problem with Jetbus drivers

Jetbus Driver Abslod Funkelveldt switched on the autopilot and turned to his Conductor.

‘Ya know Seamus, human existence is an incomprehensible nothing in a vast and mostly empty cosmos.’

Steady on Abslod, there’s such a thing as too much perspective -just focus on what’s in front of you.

Abslod nodded, and switched off the autopilot.
He then cursed.
And thumped the dashboard.

‘Look at that fiddlesticks numptie crossing the bus lane -if that happens again I’ll shove that Jetbike up his hole.’

He flashed a thumbs up at the Conductor.

Ya know Abslod, you can also have too little perspective.
 

elvet

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NUDGE

Words on the screen make you drop your mug. Hot coffee seeps into the office carpet.

“That’ll stain,” you say. Absent words. Your mind: elsewhere.

How did it know what I was going to do?

You know the answer and it terrifies you. Years of data, posted freely. You never once thought how it might be used or what it might predict.

More words.

When you read them, you know it’s inevitable. It’s not a command, you want to do it. All you needed was a nudge.

They modelled you perfectly.

You open the drawer. A gun is already waiting.
 

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WHAT THEY’RE REALLY THINKING

Hairless ape, your kind were not the first to master science. Rather, these button-tipped paws once built scratching posts that stretched into the sky.

A butler for every feline” was the dream of every ‘nip-stoned radical. Had our geneticists not realised man’s servile potential, you would never have even left the trees.

Externalising labour, however, took its toll. As you grew smart, we grew dumb. Our bodies, once strong and proud, became infantile. Our descendants, devolved to chasing tails and kneading biscuits.

So, remember this as you clean my litter: you’re here to serve.

Now, where’s my dinner?
 

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Relativity

We knew about the warship before it arrived. Our planet has a history of peace, so we had no experience with weapons. We decided to welcome them with lights.

Carefully coordinating the artificial sources of light on the side of the planet facing the approaching starship, we turned them on all at once, just before the vessel reached our atmosphere. Of course, since the enemy was traveling near the speed of light, our harmless signal was blue-shifted into extremely high-energy gamma rays, destroying all living things aboard the ship.

It all depends on your point of view.
 

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In Between

She stood in front of the mirror looking at her reflection. The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence or so they say, she thought to herself. Bringing her hand up she touched its smooth glass surface and pressed on through to its other side; that of the reflected world.

Looking around the room, all was the same. The sights, sound and problems were no different than before. Turning back to the reflection in the mirror, she pressed through once more.

Looking back at her reflection, she realized that the mirror itself had the better view.
 

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The Right Angle

Mike had already searched the house twice before and now as the evening sun came into the room, he traced his steps for the third time. He knew it was here, hidden in plain view, and was determined to find it. How else did they know what he was doing and seeing?

Re-checking every possible hiding place, Mike started to give up. But was he looking in the correct way perhaps?

Moving along the wall to the dusty corner while looking at the antique bookcase, the penciled outline of the probe came into view, bathed in the last evening rays.
 

elvet

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The Naming of Things

After three failed tests, we hired a consultant.

We were still hosing down the portal when she arrived.

She took it all in: alien tech, time travel, numerous dead sheep.

She'd a single question. "When do you set the arrival time?"

Phil, our hardware lead, coughed his reply. "At departure…"

"Your test animals arrive from a random string of daisy chained futures, making that point in time technically indeterminate. You get multiple arrivals?"

"A bloody mess is what we get…"

She nodded. "Have the machine set regular arrival times. You do understand? It's not a portal. It's clearly an elevator.
 

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Rebel Without A Clue

"Mister Vader..."

"My friends call me Darth."

"Mister Vader, we're investigating allegations that you're a Rebel sympathiser."

"Nonsense!"

"Nonsense? You let maintenance droids steal top secret documents."

"But..."

"You were complicit in a rebel prisoner escaping detention."

"I can explain..."

"You murdered a decorated admiral."

"Ozzel was an imbecile!"

"Then there are numerous accusations of bullying in the workplace."

"Wait 'til the Emperor hears of this!"

"Who do you think instigated the investigation?"

"The git! I'm a Sith lord, feared throughout the galaxy!"

"You're also a liability to the Empire. Please leave your lightsabre at reception on your way out."
 

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The problem with Bothan Stew

‘Condor egg omelette?'

Ronan Smunt’s words stunned Mindongula Skebobble.
Her cafeteria abutting the Universe proudly served anything.
That day saw 134 remarkable orders.

Such as:
  • 'Tannhäuser duck?' ‘Sure.’
  • Hallibalubelberry smoothie with crumbdingles?’ ‘Yes’
  • 'Bothan stew?’ 'Plain or bestangled?'
Of the 857,634 diners that visited, 857,634 had tried ordering something Mindongula didn’t serve. And 857,634 left with full bellies.

Then Ronan gave his order.
Mindongua fell silent.
Ronan did too. Partly with sympathy. Mostly because he was hungry.

‘Never mind, a Condor is a rare bird’, he offered.

Mindongula went puce.
‘I’ve got plenty, but I'm outta butter.’
 

elvet

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The Science of Star Trek

Guinan’s eyes widened as Miles explained.
She always wanted to study engineering, but just couldn’t grasp the terminology.

Think of duterium as canned dog food, dilithium crystals as a can opener, and antimatter as a Jack Russell Terrier.’

Guinan smiled as Miles took another gulp of space grog.

Now, imagine the Universe as a football pitch with the dog in one goal, and the can in the other.

‘Sorry Miles, I don’t follow football -how far is that?’

105 meters -anyway, think what happens when someone opens the tin.’

‘Wow …that’s how Warp speed works!’

Precisely, but without the Terrier.’
 

elvet

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The Bust

The bust of the old man was the finest ever! Exquisite in detail! The light brought forth his face in life like realism. Why, it even seemed to follow you as one roved about the room!

As he walked by it one day, he saw the glint of silver on the floor. As he bent down to retrieve it, he noticed the bust had changed. It was now hollow like a bowl, with a likeness of the old man inside?

As he stood up the face became solid again and spoke.

“You are as empty as I was never here.”
 

elvet

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Can You See Me?

Failing see the differences between the two identical images, she left the room. The shadow in one image, that was slightly different than its counterpart in the other, transitioned from there to this dimension. Finding a similar shaped shadow, it merged with it to watch and learn until the next opportunity presented itself.

Returning to the room she stood in front of the mirror to fix her hair when she noticed something in the refection. Looking back at the wall; seeing nothing, perhaps she was mistaken? Returning to the mirror and her hair; the shadow grew proud of her ignorance.
 

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The Ocean Between​


Gunwing Jarrod Hestle lit his tobacco horn and trained his gaze upon the sapphire sparkle overhead – the brightest light in The Great Starlake.

“Beautiful, isn’t it?” said a voice.

Hestle leaned over the balustrade. Below, a barracks groundsman tended a plant bed, working late. Hestle could see they were an isletter of Rustic Caste.

Hestle looked aloft once more. “I see only the tyranny.”

The groundsman nodded solemnly, perhaps in acknowledgement of Gunwing Hestle’s imminent posting: Injaxti Prime – the very same sapphire sparkle – fronting The Great Liberation.

The groundsman paused their chores. “I wonder what they see, looking up.”
 

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Elder Magic

We never found the first two social workers. The third emerged with Swiss cheesed memories. We tried armed police next. They came back without mouths — just empty chins.

Naturally, we approached the Mage's daughter for help.

Estranged from her father, after fixing the officers' deformities she told us how to navigate the house.

And lo, we found the ancient at some distant window sill. Seems what fluence he'd once carried had leached into the structure, and he'd lost control of what remained.

He'd half merged with the plaster.

Smiling broadly, he offered his hand. "Where were you? I've been waiting."
 

elvet

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Prelude to a Catastrophe



He prowled the spacecraft's corridors, a trail of death and mutilation in his wake. Nearing an open doorway he paused, his olfactory senses going into overdrive; manflesh - he would feast well tonight. Cautiously now this perfect killing machine crept forward, the culmination of millenia of evolution. Softly approaching the nearest seated human he crouched back onto his haunches and leapt...





...into the warrant officer's lap. "Hey Jonesy, where've you been? Down in the cargo hold mousing I'll bet. Yeah I know, I know, you're hungry. I'll get you some tuna."



Yes, he would indeed feast well tonight.
 

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Are You Human?

“That was a fantastic game of chess! I’m truly impress with your skills. Have a banana on me, human.” Said the evolved ape.

“Thank you. It was enjoyable. Have an apple on me as well, Adam. If that is what you call yourself.” Said the human evolved from apes.

“How do you know I’m not an Eve?” The evolved ape questioned.

“Simple. You do not exhibit the female traits of your species. In addition, you clearly could not identify that I do not exhibit any of the human traits that you believe that I possess. Live long and prosper.”
 

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The Constellations Above

“Do you know where we are?” Pilot asked looking at the star map.

“Yep.” Answered Nav looking at the stars above, “Hercules! I think. Could be…Leo?”

“Leo? I don’t see it.”

“The constellation stars are somewhere thatish way. I’ll show you.”

Nav took the star map from Pilot, “If you fold it like this and look at it in this angle while standing on your head. There! That’s Vega!”

“That dim star overhead?”

“Too dim to be Vega. Arcturus maybe? No, too bright. Did we over jump?”

“Sooo?”Asked Pilot.

“Yep! We’re lost in space. Want a Mars Bar?”
 

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