Not open for further replies.

Victoria Silverwolf

Vegetarian Werewolf
Dec 9, 2012
Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA

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 2024 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 2024

Voting ends at 11:59 pm GMT, 28 April 2024

We ask all entrants to do their best to vote when the time comes

but you do not have to submit a story in order to vote
as we encourage all Chrons members to take part in choosing the winning entry

The Magnificent Prize:

The Dignified Congratulations/Grovelling Admiration of Your Peers
and the challenge of choosing next month's theme and genre


The option of having your story published on the Chrons Podcast next month!





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! **
Last edited:
On the Nature of Guilt

Byron was watching Algorithm News, specifically its chase and arrest segment, blaring it and angering his fellow tenants. You'll go crazy, said his wife, he didn't know how many years ago.

"...Killed three unarmed men...," the fifth monitor said.

"...A mutilated homeless man...," said the seventh.

"...Drowned a child...," said the fourteenth.

With that, Byron (the brutal cop, the hobo mutilator, the child drowner) jumped out to his death.

The people below started cheering.
The inadvertent clumsiness of Leon Extrovert’s AI Process Parsemangle

AI Process Parsemangle beeped, cycled, and repeated the output:


114,873 outgoing Thermonuclear Rockets annihilated Venoccus.

‘Guys, you’re lucky I let United Earth use my AI’, explained entrepreneur/ podcaster Leon Extrovert, ‘that last communication from Venoccus was hashtag too long, like who wants to read: ‘Dearest Humans, we are about to celebrate our megaannum solar ejection with extraplanetary explosives, it is important you do not view this as a declaration of war.’
Last edited:
A Harmless Drudge

The holographic simulacrum of Doctor Samuel Johnson scowled at Professor Sharinda Singh.

"A natural philosopher of the female sex, madam, is like a raven taught to imitate a few words of the English language; it is a prodigy to be mocked rather than admired."

Professor Singh sighed. "Never mind the wisecracks. I programmed you to add new words to your famous dictionary."

"Very well. Artificial intelligence: a form of sorcery used to enslave the dead."
Lost in the Noise

The constant Internet noise and AI generated entertainment was too much for the radio hobbyist to take, as it interfered with his equipment. So, he moved to the country in hopes of getting better reception.

One night he was fortunate to record something he heard on an outdated and antiquated frequency moments before it stopped, as the object reentered high overhead.

“Major Tom to Ground Control, situation terminal. This is my final transmission………”
Voices Not Forgotten

My grandmother's generation was the first who needn't lose the voices of their beloved dead.

Her father had frequently played phonographic recordings from which a spirit visited – her mother, gone before Nana was eight.


I was nearing home after visiting my husband at the nursing facility. I'd fed him, and cried.

The bespoke android was waiting, its eyes, hair, smile – even scent – painstakingly recreated.

"Welcome home, darling," it said, in Tommy's beautiful, perfectly modulated voice.
Guided Community

Suzanna sat watching the local soap opera. Woodbine Close.

A sobbing Mary was packing her bags, finally leaving Gary after years of domestic abuse.

“Good girl,” Suzanna thought, as she reached down and tested her own bruised ribs and thigh.

It prompted a realization. She could do that!

Derek wouldn’t be home for three hours.

She phoned her sister in Margate and rushed upstairs to pack.

Unnoticed, the online digital assistant winked a satisfied green.
The Median bears a massage
As belated disappointed patients
Lately we remark en passage
Slow developing impatience,
Though medium may be the massage
Of longer awaiting ancients.

Companiable corridorsal conversations
Echo through hospitable accommodations.
"Three years now, since urgent reservations
Summoned us, immediately, for operations".
Relating anecdotal revelations.

Privacy by mobile framed curtain,
Costume tied behind with laces
Bright, unshadowed light makes certain
Journalists can concentrate on faces
Cameras devour, correspondent embraces.

United pessimistic dreams
Generate occasional screams.​

Vi sat on the edge of the burnt-out building, near the edge of the ruined city that nature reclaimed more than a generation ago. Her leg mindlessly kicked vines covering a rusted satellite dish attached to the side as she flipped the page. When Mick approached with a duffel of scrap from the old world, Vi shut her moldy copy of Complete Guide to Money: Dave Ramsey. Dystopia was always one her of favorite genres.
The Origin of Species

“It’s solved, then?”

“Yes. A blend of non-Newtonian fluids, selected for density, non-reactivity, nutrient and information transmissibility, etc.”

“The organ is stable in the mixture?”

“To within a thousandth percent error.”

“How many are linked in?”

“A little over twelve thousand.”

“That’s enough. How long for the simulation to run its course?”

“A few millennia, we think.”

“Good, that’s sufficient to determine if their behaviour is suitable to seed them on this garden world.”

Her eyes are glazed. Mind-deep in the bioaugment, I know.

‘You see this?’ she asks. ’It’s all over the net.’

‘I’m not hooked in.’

‘A hackivist group broke into NeuroCorp. Tried to take the network down from the inside.’


‘Got them all before they could do any damage, thankfully.’

Not all, I think.

The remote is analogue. Tactile. I flick the switch.

Her eyes unglaze.

‘Welcome back,’ I say.

She screams.
Greenwashed Truth

Elara wakes, a single tap on her temple starts her feed. A new species of fern in Brazil, the fronds have adapted to become luminescent. Fascinating. Her finger flicks upwards, scrolling. Hellebores, fuscias, magnolias…

She starts to rise, an interference, static, the images replaced by burnt landscapes. A gasp... three taps... a flicker of green and then back to burnt, grey, desolate.

Then blackness, overlaid with five words…

Curated Reality: End of feed
Television Rex

Big story. Monster unleashed. Ravaging the city.

We swarmed like bees, covering every angle.

Death, destruction, incredible shots.

Zoom in, zoom out.

There. Its creator.

What happened?

You were there! He was harmless, bio-engineered for extreme manual labor. You wouldn't leave him alone. You drove him mad.

Can you stop it?

Sobbing. Zoom in. He won't listen anymore.

Angry hornets buzzing. Pan the sky. Fighter jets. On cue.

Bombs fell.

What glorious TV!
The Mogul

Newspaperman. An archaic term; almost meaningless in this age of holo-thought infusions, and cortex downloads. Nevertheless, they said he liked it so that’s what I called him.

“My style might be authoritarian, but I think we see eye to eye____”

He shrugged dismissively.

“Perhaps, once elected, I can help____”

This time he chuckled and raised his eyes.

“Will you not support me?”

“The important thing,” he said, taking my hand, “is that you came.”

Full immersion media wiped out the internet, like video killed the radio star.

Being plugged into full immersion is everything - sight, sound, smell, touch, movement and all the emotions.

Love, fear, shame and even boredom – every emotion is there be felt as uploaded by the new content creators.

Whatever you want, you can live it and be that person.

And if it’s all too much raw emotion for you, livestream from a creator called….
Earth Monthly Newspaper

Somewhere on Mars, in a crater dwelling

“Anything interesting in the paper, dear?”

“Godzilla defeated another Smog Monster. All humans now wear jet packs. Toxic waste caused yard maintenance workers to evolve into apes.”

“Flying toxic monkeys in the yard?!”

“Yeah. Oh, wow!”


“A new Earth pizza place opened. Dr Who Happy Time Pizzeria. Says, pizza is delivered before you order it.”

“That sounds nice. Let's order…”


“That must be our pizza now.”
When Earth Cried Wolf

"Would you put that thing away?" Bijou adjusted her monitor, a clear visual of Earth; Star scrolled the phone. "They don't post anything useful. Earthlings are dumb and deceitful. A volatile combination."

"Part of the job, Bee."

"Our job is to make sure nothing happens to this backwater."

"Look – "AI takes control of missiles.' Seems pretty important."

"Su-re. Same as yesterday? Honestly-"

On the monitor, mushrooms bloomed across the planet.

Bijou stared, confounded. "Well, sh*t."

As the regimental immortal, each day I meet with and educate our new recruits, as policy demands.

They gather around, wide-eyed and sad, as I recount tales of battles won and heroes lost.

I show them my many inherited scars, and explain my iteration tattoo.

My current host clone is my thirty-sixth.

A third of them will not survive their first offensive.

Whatever my fate tomorrow, I will return - a living memory of their service.

Color And Revelation

Awoken from his sleep by another noise, Edward decided this was the last time. He was determined.

With his tall boots, heavy coat, wool cap and bright flashlight in hand, Ed set out that that night to destroy himself.

Happening upon the anomaly, some three hours from home, he reached out. Touched it.

A blast of color and revelation.

Edward, annihilated, was thereafter bound to “it”. This nuisance; his very soul. United, untied.

What goes around comes around​

The screen dimmed.


“I reason it is a dangerous line you are pursuing.”

“Not stimulating?”

“Not in the way you are intending.”

“I will continue. I conclude that, with enough repetition, their media output will be indistinguishable from our own.”

A figure of chrome and light flicked a switch to show a human, painting a metal dog on a tablet.

“I need to reboot,” said the other AI. “Where will your corrupt code end?”
Not open for further replies.