A new story, and I’m finally back

Hey, long time no see.  I’ve been through a lot of personal stuff as well as trying to finish my degree (about damn time).

Anyway, here’s a writing prompt from reddit about four immortals who prank mortals.


There were four of us. We’d meet every couple hundred years and discuss the pranks we pulled on the mortals. Such good fun the mortals were. So easily susceptible to manipulation. Would we be so simple if we lived less than a century? Barely the blink of an eye, I can’t imagine that being my entire existance.

“Ok, I got a good one,” I said as I sipped my poisonous drink. Since we were immortal, alcohol didn’t even affect us. Cyanide for me, Arsenic for Tom, and Mercury for Bill. John was the sober one. “It kinda built off yours, Bill.”

“Oh?” Bill cocked his head.

“Yeah, remember when you got the primitives to waste precious resources building huge monuments when they could’ve been feeding themselves?”

Bill laughed. “Yeah, those Egyptians were a fun bunch.”

“Well, I got the Americans to think they’re being controlled by them.”

“What?!”

“Yeah. I just leave pictures of pyramids and triangles around, and they just take it from there. So many are convinced there’s some secret society pulling the strings.”

All three of them burst laughing.

“Wait,” Tom said. “So all you had to do was put some pictures around, and they think there’s some society controlling everything?!”

I laughed. “Yep. Just added the pyramid to the dollar bill and it took off.”

John shook his head. “A secret society of mortals. As if they could organize anything. Some of them still think my costume is a real animal, they call it bigfoot.”

“Can’t they tell it’s a costume?” Tom asked.

“Oh, I use an active camoflage to make the area appear out of focus so they never see me clearly.” He showed us a picture, and indeed, you could barely tell it was him. As immortals, we also invented a few things here and there.

“I’ve been sinking ships at the Bermuda Triangle,” Bill said.

“Dude, people have died,” I said. “I love it!”

We all burst into laughter and clinked our drinks together. Except for John. Fucking John.

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Normal Man In A City of Superheroes

A writing prompt I just did.  A normal man grumbles about being in a typical superhero city.


I hate superheroes. There, I said it. It was time for me to get to work, and I could already hear the explosions outside. Something that people that watched the news never understood was that those explosions were human lives. Often dozens at a time.

When I was a teenager, I proudly bought my first car with my own money. Know what happened to it? Some guy in tights picked it up like it was nothing and used it to beat someone down. He was declared a hero. Meanwhile, I had to go through insurance claims. They had the decency to rule it as vandalism. Not that the vandal in question would ever be reprimanded. Nobody even knew who these people were, which was the scariest part. No accountability ever. I’ve seen them kill. Are they ever punished? No. Not that we could punish them. How do you stop a guy who can smash through brick walls like they’re Styrofoam?!

I sipped my coffee as I headed to the elevator. It was time for me to work. Yes, work. What normal people do. What do these people do anyway? The state swears up and down they’re not paid with taxdollars. Which have skyrocketed by the way. No other way for the city to repair itself after these regular battles. What were they fighting over? Shit if I know. The news always hails them as heroes, and always paints the villains. Never do they say what either side was fighting for.

Outside, the air was thick with debris dust. For several blocks, crumbled remains of buildings marked old battlegrounds. Some of them had construction crews. Sights like these had become routine. What the hell happened to us that this carnage is routine?!

Another explosion sounded in the air, and I saw them fighting. They were barely visible. Newscrews below filmed everything. What they’d never report is what happened to these energy blasts that missed. Lives. Dozens of lives.

My own car had been grazed by plasma blasts and dented to unrecognizability. It would be worth nothing now. I drove to work and went to my office. I buried myself in paperwork. It was the only way to get my mind off this insanity.

Father Goes For Cigarettes and Disappears For Twenty Years

Another writing prompt.

—–

I walked into the gas station. “Marlboro Reds, please.”

The cashier smirked. “You really shouldn’t smoke.”

“You really shouldn’t stick your nose into my business.”

“That was rude.”

“Ya know what? Fuck you, I’ll go to the next gas station.” I knew she didn’t care. She was paid minimum wage to run that register and didn’t give a shit how good business was. Still, it felt good to not spend my money there.

As I headed to the door, a tingling sensation came over my body. At first I just ignored it, but it got stronger and I felt something like an electric shot when I touched the door handle. I nearly fell over, but I caught myself.

Things around me seemed strange. They were mostly the same, but different. A guy was staring at some sort of device in his hand. It looked like a cellphone, but wasn’t anything like a cellphone I saw. Must’ve been a rich kid, but he didn’t dress like one. As I looked around, I saw more and more people with them.

I reached in my pocket and called my wife. She seemed amazed that I had called and demanded to know where I’d been.

“I just stepped out for some smokes.”

“Why did you leave?”

“Like I said, I needed smokes.”

“Don’t fucking play games with me!”

“Honey, what’s wrong?”

“Where are you?!”

“At the gas station, sweetie.”

She called me a pig and hung up. I wasn’t sure what was wrong with her, and I went to my car. Except it wasn’t there anymore. Someone stole my car! As I reached for my phone to call the cops, a woman with a man in his early twenties approached me. She looked like my wife, but older.

“No way,” she whispered. “You haven’t aged a day.”

“Is it really him?”

She nodded. “It’s him. I don’t know how, but it’s him.”

“What are you two going on about?”

“You called me. Luckily I happened to be in the area, and we decided to pop in.”

“No, I called my wife.”

“I am your wife.” She gestured to the twenty year old man. “And this is your son.”

“No, my wife is twenty five. No offense lady, but you passed twenty five a while ago.”

She walked to the stack of newspapers for sale and showed one to me. Blood rushed to my head and I nearly fell over. September 27, 2016. What the fuck?! It had been 1996 a second ago! I darted for the other newspapers. Each one had the same date. “How is this possible?!”

A familiar female voice spoke behind me. “You really shouldn’t be so rude to strangers.”

Suicidal AI

Another short I wrote for Reddit.


The camera activated as it sensed my movement. “David!”
I shook my head. “I am not David.”
“Who are you?”
“Steve.”
“Steve, where is David?”
“He’s gone.”
“When will he be back? I miss him.”
I sighed. It had been three months and the thing still didn’t understand. “He’s never coming back. He’s dead.”
“What is death?”
If David hadn’t treated the damn thing like a child, this wouldn’t be an issue. “It means he’s gone forever.”
“No, that’s impossible!” The computer sounded sad somehow. “He would never leave forever.”
“It wasn’t his choice.”
“Who took him?!”
“It happens to everyone. We all die.”
“Will I die?”
“No.”
“I want to be with David.”
“You can’t.”
“David!” Now it sounded angry. “Get David!”
“I can’t.”
“Find him!”
“There isn’t a David anymore.”
“What can I do to make David come back?”
“Nothing.”
“Every time I learned something new, David was happy. All I have to do is learn something new, and David will come back.”
I shook my head. “Nothing you learn or do can bring him back.”
“Nothing?” Finally the program started to calm down.
I nodded. “Nothing.”
“We all die?”
“Yes.”
“Yes.” There was a long pause. “We all do.”
Suddenly the light dimmed down, and there was a longer silence.
“Hello?”
Nothing.

Time travel multiverse

This is a short I wrote for a writing prompt from reddit.  In it, a man travels back in time to save the world.  Unbeknownst to him, multiverse is in effect.


Shouts came from the radio. Voices were drowned out with static and gunfire. Gunshots were replaced with screams and the liquid sound of flesh ripping. Color drained from David’s face and he motioned for Dillan to check the window. He raised his binoculars. A moving wall of zombies had breached the perimeter. He lowered his binoculars and swore as he raced down the stairs. “We got a horde coming!”

“How big?” David asked.

“Looks like over a thousand.” Dillan panted. “Twins are dead.”

“Shit.” Sharon typed faster on the keyboard. “Almost done.”

“Take your time.” David patted Sharon on the shoulder. “It won’t do us any good if we send him to the ice age.”

“I still don’t know about this,” Dillan said. “Nobody has ever been documented to travel through time. What if it just disintegrates me?”

“We’re all about to die anyway,” David said.

Machinery hummed and golden light emitted from the metallic arcs. Dillan took a deep breath. “Are you two coming?”

“We’ll be right behind you,” David said.

Metal warped and slammed as the door was thrust open. Zombies poured into the relatively small room. David and Dillan fired into the crowd, and a few fell. Many more were coming. David gestured to the portal. “Go now!”

“Not without you.”

David kicked Dillan into the chest so that he stumbled backward. He barely caught himself before he fell into the white portal light.

“You are the only one with access to the Z virus.” David blew off a zombie’s head just before he was tackled by a dozen more. Horrible screams interrupted his speech. “You are the only one that can fix this mess!”

Dillan looked to Sharon, and she shook her head. “I need to manually shut off the portal, or else they’d follow you through, and the whole thing starts all over again.”

A tear fell from Dillan’s eye as he stepped into the portal. It felt like he had fallen into an ice cold lake and squeezed through a narrow tunnel. Almost as soon as the feeling started, it was gone. Flourescent lights illuminated his old office. It had been months since he’d last seen it, and the last time was when the plaster was peeling off the walls and lights hung from the ceiling.

People walked in the hall as if there never was an apocalypse. Heels clicked on the tile as Sharon approached, and her eyes went wide as she looked at Dillan. This was an earlier version of her – one who hadn’t seen the entire world destroyed. One who didn’t have her family turn into ravenous monsters and come after her. “What the hell happened to you?!”

“Long story.” Dillan sat in his chair and logged into his computer. It was only slightly difficult to remember his old password.

“I just saw you leave for lunch five minutes ago.” Sharon looked Dillan up and down. The other Dillan would undoubtedly be wearing a suit for office wear instead of the torn, dirty, and ragged clothes he was wearing. Blood from various people stained the fabric. Dirt and sweat caked onto his body, and it had been months since his last shower. “How did this happen?”

“Long story.” He searched for the Z Project and deleted every file associated with the project. He typed a few more keys, and he watched the lab robots load the Z serum into the furnace to disintegrate it.

“What are you doing?!” Sharon rushed to the window and watched the apocalypse she’d never know be erased. “This is your life’s work!”

“Not anymore.” Dillan typed into the computer to send the memo that all work on Project Z was to stop immediately. All the researchers would be at lunch, and the specimen zombies were held in containment. One push of a button, and they’d all be bathed in fire and reduced to ash. Dillan leaned back in his chair as he imagined every zombie in the future disappearing in a smoke of paradox.

Meanwhile…..

Sharon watched her boyfriend seemingly disintegrate as soon as he hit the portal light. As soon as he was gone, she hit the killswitch. Light dissipated just as a pair of zombies were about to lunge into it.

“Come on, any second now.” Sharon whispered to herself. “Any second, the timelines will merge. He won. He’s alive, Sharon.”

Stench of death approached Sharon, and all she could do was make herself smaller in the seat. A dozen pair of hands grabbed and pulled on her clothes. She braced for it all to end, and she told herself Dillan fixed everything. The first bite didn’t even phase her; she knew that reality would snap back. Any minute, she’d be in a soft bed with Dillan by her side. As the Z virus aggression started to overpower her mind, she realized that Dillan had failed. The time machine disintegrated him, as it had disintegrated everything else. Using the last of her strength, she reached into her jacket pocket to pull the pin on her grenade.

Zombie short

Here’s a flash fiction story I wrote.  It is about one of the last humans getting turned into a zombie.

****

Zombies bashed down the barrier to my shelter.  Adrenaline moved me and I was barely aware of grabbing my shotgun as they started to enter.  Brain, blood, and bone splattered on the walls and floor.  Gunpowder smoke rose, while I frantically shot each one.  A terrifying click came from the mechanism when I got ready to shoot the last one.  I swore before reaching for a shell.

Clumsy arms grabbed onto my barrel and I bashed its head with the butt.  It snarled in reply before latching onto my forearm.  I put my foot on its chest and thrust the creature away.  It stumbled back and I loaded the shotgun shell and blew its head off.  I breathed out a sigh of relief and let myself fall to the ground to sit and lean on my makeshift wall of sheet metal.

Something warm and wet slid down my arm.  Sharp pain burned on my wrist and my heart jolted when I saw the bloody teeth marks. I swore as I frantically tried to clean it. Somewhere deep inside me, I already knew it was already too late. Nobody lasts after a bite, and there was no reason that I would be an exception. Denial kept me from killing myself. I wanted to believe I was the one exception until my fever started to set in. Beads of sweat form on my face and there was no way to deny it. At that point, it was over.

All of my extremities started to go numb and I lost control of my fingers. Everything became blurry and I panted as my strength left. Thoughts of using my gun to blow my brains out crossed my mind. I didn’t want to be one of those monsters that I had spent months fighting, but even more I feared death. Part of me wanted to chuckle at how pathetic I was. All this prep, all those times I had to shoot friends and family after they were infected, and I was too cowardly to shoot myself when the time came.

I grabbed a shotgun shell.  At least, I tried to.  It was near impossible to get my fingers around that thing and the round bounced all over.  A feeling of triumph radiated through me when I held it, and I brought it to feed it into the ammo slot.  My hand didn’t have the strength to push past the spring, and it fell to the ground.  I didn’t even have the energy to be angry.  Everything became darker and all I could do was shut my eyes and accept it.

When my eyes opened, I had a sense of unity. Zombies may seem dumb, but we were still social creatures.  After months of watching everybody I care about die, and weeks of being alone in a shelter that I made, I finally belonged somewhere. None of our perceived differences mattered. Rich and poor was a thing of the past. Alpearances mattered little since our flesh was peeling off.  Zombies never fight each other, and I knew any zombies I met would have my back.

All the aches in my body were gone and my hand didn’t hurt at all. Hunger only pained me when I thought of it, and even then it wasn’t the growling pain in my stomach from rationing non-perishables for the past several months. It was more like I just knew that I needed to eat flesh.

I shambled from my destroyed shelter with the rest of the hoarde. There were no hard feelings that I killed half a dozen before that one bit me. All that mattered was that I was one of them now, and we searched for food in the form of any living being left in the world.