NOVEMBER 2023 -- 75 Word Writing Challenge -- VICTORY TO CAT'S CRADLE!

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Christine Wheelwright

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Jan 3, 2022
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Oh Canada!
The Department of Corrections

As a filings inspector, case 75,453 was the strangest I ever saw.

The penalty for error was always death, but my role was to examine the nature of inaccuracies and determine their cause. There was, for example, a notorious tick box on page 893 of form 63 which was missed on more than one occasion.

But 75,453 was different. Scrawled in big red letters across the front page was the message “F*** You!”
 

Ian Fortytwo

A Poet, Writer and eclectic Reader.
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Dec 30, 2018
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1,341
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Somewhere on this mortal coil.
Bureaucracy gets in the way.

"You need a red slip of paper, to progress any further," said the receptionist.
"How do I get that?" said the woman.
"By getting a green slip," replied the receptionist.
"And how do I get that?" said the woman.
"With a yellow slip, which was posted to you," said the receptionist.
"I haven't received that, which is why I am here," said the woman.
"Not my fault," said the receptionist.

The woman wept.
 

M. Robert Gibson

is encumbered by a cumbersome cucumber
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1,953
Letter from the United Nations Department of Excise for Ambulatory Deceased

Dear Sir,

We understand you have recently become Ambulatory Deceased and are currently actively predatory.

We remind you that you need a licence, depending upon your chosen mode of locomotion.
- Running: Licence Z0MB1e/RF
- Shambling: Licence Z0MB1e/SW

Our records indicate you do not have, or have not applied for, the relevant licence.

If you do not apply within 30 days, we will inform the Immolation Department.

Yours,

On behalf of the Office of the UNDEAD
 

Luiglin

Getting worse one day at a time
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Mercia, UK

New World, Old Order​

Even the shadows had shadows.

“A show of hands,” called the Secretary.

There followed an embarrassed pause. Dark figures in a dark room made counting raised arms difficult.

“Maybe, ayes?” offered the Chair.

Unanimous.

“To our bunkers, gentlemen. We reconvene in thirty years.”

The Chair clicked enable on a big red button icon. He chuckled. Draining the swamp, more like evaporating it.

Elsewhere, a well-built figure plumped his burger down on the big red button.
 

mosaix

Shropshire, U.K.
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Shropshire, U.K.
Is That You Rita?

We’d avoided the obvious name for the ship but, when it came to the planet, those of a religious persuasion carried the day and we called it ‘Ararat’. Get it?

Observations from orbit had indicated existing flora and fauna and, shortly after touch down, we were approached by a sample of the dominant species.

It waved a ‘hand’ and, as it spoke, we turned on the universal translator.

“You can’t park that there, sunshine.”
 

MetalHorse233

Babushka Whisperer
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Nov 21, 2023
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Croatia
The Last Serum

In the lab, Lev watched his colleague, her hand clutching the serum. Beyond the window, Gred’s snowy desolation loomed.

Lev felt a knot in his stomach. "It's too risky, Anastasia," he cautioned.

"Risk is our only path, old friend."

Months later, Lev clapped alongside the Board as Anastasia presented. He forced a smile, feeling the weight of his watch against his wrist. Each glance he stole at it deepened the unease in his gut.
 

Cat's Cradle

Time, now, to read...
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God, They Were Thorough

They hung the fluid-proof speaker with its Evergood batteries around the corpse's neck, then closed the plywood coffin's lid and lowered it into the ground.
At graveside they set a marker:

Jonjun Ambrickson
Died in queue 10-3-2067 waiting to petition for an increased weekly food allotment
Supplicant number 178,579​

As the law mandated no petitions could be closed till heard and formally adjudicated, every 15 minutes the speaker activated:
Supplicant 178,579, please continue waiting
 

Bren G

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Three Four Things You Can Count On At The End of The World

Death and taxes. The only things in this desolate life you could count on. Jain decided there was a third. Bureaucracy. Through Free Zones, Contaminated, and Embattled ones, he made his way slowly, a legion of forms, bribes and approvals slowing his progress. Would she still be here?

Jain slid the magistrate a banana clip. He nodded. A little girl was ushered out.

Jain, tearfully gazed at is daughter, and grasped a fourth thing. Love.
 

Elckerlyc

"Philosophy will clip an angel's wings."
Joined
Aug 27, 2019
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2,041
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The Netherlands
Paper Apocalypse

2026
Preclusion of digital files as legal documents, due to their susceptibility to undetectable alterations by Advanced AI technology.

2029
Government switches to a fully paper oriented administration.

2034
Citizens are obliged to file their documents in twofold in separate filing cabinets, which must be legally certified.

204x
Ongoing licensing and other administrative obligations. 30% of the national labour force employed as civil servant.

2053
Cabinets exclusively allowed on enforced floors.

2059
The
Collapse.
 

Ursa major

Bearly Believable
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England

A Change of Administration


At “belief-shattering,” I was hooked. “Our electronic administrators were not the first,” sounded a bit loopy, but….
Down we went, through tunnels old and new, some precariously held open by little more than sticks and wishes, until we came to an old wooden door.
“Behold!”
The door opened onto a room full of wooden furniture, with labels such as “Writing Desk”.
This is how the world was run!”
So just another bureau-crazy cult.
 

Daysman

this way comes
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Oct 14, 2018
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728
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east of gornal wood, south of weddell wynd
Secondment

My compatriots and I work the shallows of an endless tide, recovering shoes, disposable cups, and plastic packaging from the swell.

Yesterday, I awoke in one of the Establishment’s mobile clinics.

Its red eyed cyclopic physician berated me. “You must eat more.”

I laughed. “Maybe if you provided better rations?”

The machine shrugged. “When you drown, I revive you. This is my function. The Establishment has decreed it is humanity's function to fix everything else.”
 
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