[WP] Your Spouse goes into the bathroom only to come running out 15 seconds later. Clutching you close they tell you they fell into another dimension and what felt like seconds to you was a 1,000 years to them. They now want you to follow them back because they have built a life for you there.
Malcolm squeezed my hand. We were standing in front the bathtub, feeling a bit foolish. Well, I was at least. I knew this was all a joke, but for some reason my heart was was hammering like a drum. “Close your eyes babe,” he said.
“Why?” I asked. “I don't want to miss anything. This whole dimension jumping is not exactly something one does every day, after all.” I could see a spider crawling it's way across the bottom of the tub, a dark speck in a sea of cream, zig-zagging it's way towards the drain.
“Do you trust me?”
I looked at my husband. “Would I be standing in a bathroom like this if I didn't?”
“You're humoring me. I get it. But I'm not lying.” One lock of my hair fell out of my tight bun of hair and hung loosely in front of my face. Malcolm reached out and brushed it out of the way so that he could stare me in the face. “Hey, I love you. Now close your eyes.”
I took a deep breath. “Okay.”
He clasped my hand again, and I squeezed it until the knuckles turned white. I felt him slip a small piece of paper into my palm. I looked up at him quizzically, but he was already facing forward at the wall. “On the count of three, then we'll do it.”
He ignored me. “One. Two. Three!”
I shut my eyes and felt a sharp jerk on my hand, and then my navel, and then suddenly the floor was gone and I was flying. I could feel wind and particles whipping by my face. I wanted to scream, but was afraid if I opened my mouth then something might fly in it.
There was a second sharp pull at my arm wrenching my sharply in a new angle, and I was thrust away from my husband. I lost all reservations and opened my mouth to scream his name, but nothing came out, the sound of my voice consumed by the void of another dimension. Then I was alone.
My body connected with something hard, and I lost consciousness.
I could hear them calling to each other.
It had been ages since Malcolm and I had taken a proper vacation to the ocean. It was good to finally be back, except why was I at the ocean again?
“You alright, miss?”
I opened my eyes, and only saw blurry shapes. The world was fuzzy as if I needed a pair of glasses, but I could make out three distinct colors: the dark navy water of the ocean, the bright cerulean of the sky and the beige expanse of sand stretching for miles in two directions before me. The sun was hot on my skin and sand was sticking in bunches to my elbows. I waited patiently for my mind to unscramble and my bearings to return to me.
It came in pieces: Followed Malcolm into bathroom. Different dimension. New life. Flying. Got separated. Hit a thing. Here now.
“Hello? Miss? You a mute or somethin'?”
I looked up. A girl no older then twelve or thirteen was looking down at me. She had tanned skin and short sandy hair fashioned in a short pixie cut. She was offering a hand to me, and it was at that moment that I realized that I was sprawled out on my back.
“I'm okay...I think. Thanks.” I accepted her hand and let her pull me to my feet. My entire body ached, as if I had done a work out at the gym for the first time in months. The girl was strong for her size, and did all the work to get me standing again.
I began to dust sand out of my plaid pajama bottoms. I noticed the girl was staring at me with a funny look. “What?” I asked, still groggy.
“That's a funny thing you wearin'. You're from the Outside, yeah?”
If the Outside is a different dimension, then yeah, I thought.
“Something like that.” I looked around. Out past a horizon of dunes, I could see a row of thatched, red roofs, a patchwork plain of mismatched and uneven tiles. It appeared to be some type of shanty fishing town. There were fishing lines dotting the shoreline, propped up in the sand, all facing the sea.
“You must have come for the funeral then. Lot's of Outsiders will be sailing in the next few days. Guess you must have shipwrecked huh?”
My head was still pounding and I only understood half of what the girl was saying. “Funeral? No. I'm looking for a man. Name is Malcolm Reynolds. Apparently he's lived...uh...here for about 1000 years. You heard of him?”
The girl shook her head and kicked at the sand. “Don't know anyone by that name. It's a big world miss.” She took a step closer and peered a bit closer in to my hears. “We should get you to a doctor. We only got herbalists in the fishing village, so if you want a real one you have to head into the city.”
I shook my head. “I can do that later, after I find my husband.”
She shrugged. “Suit yourself. You said he lived here a thousand years, yeah? Well anyone that lives that long would have to have a record in the city library.” She began to walk over to the fishing lines by the sea to check them. “I'm heading up that way for the funeral, you can join me if you like.”
It wasn't like I had any better ideas. I looked in both directions as far as I could, craning my neck as I did so. No sign of Malcolm anywhere. “Okay,” I said. I held out my hand again. “I'm Jill, by the way.”
She clasped in with bony fingers. “Pleasure to meet you, Ms. Jill the Outsider. I'm Ko'sa.” She pointed back towards the village. “Let's head back to my cottage. We can stop and get provisions before we head into the capital. If we leave now we can get in before the lines at the city gates get too long.”
I nodded. “Must be quite a funeral."
“You could say that.” Ko'sa grinned. “It's a funeral for the queen, after all.”
The queen? Guess even alternate dimensions are ruled by royalty, I thought.
“She was a good queen then?”
Ko'sa bowed her head. “Yeah. She'll be missed, at least by most of us. Some of us... wonder about her death. Whether it was really natural or not. The Queen and the King were an arranged marriage you see, didn't exactly fancy each other. Some say he had it in for her, loved another.”
As Ko'sa prattled on about the royal family, I realized there was something pressed against my left palm, now slick with sweat. I opened my hand to reveal a note. The same note that Malcolm had thrust into my hand back in the bathroom.
It was tiny and rolled up neatly, like a scroll. With fingers that were slightly trembling, I unrolled the tiny piece of parchment and read the words in my husband's hand writing.
If you ever need to find me, just ask for the King ;)
[WP] A Dystopian society where women have taken over and stored enough sperm to last them a million years. Scientists even figured out how to genetically engineer to make sure you always give birth to females. After giving birth privately in your home you notice something different on your child.
In his early years his mother dragged him through the alleys and the dark corners of the undercity, down below where lived the meek and poor women and the workers, hiding, always hiding from the women up above, who'd kill him if they knew.
He grew up a contradiction, an opposite of himself – to the world he was a girl, his mother dressed him in skirts and makeup and bows, and in the dead of the night when she'd take his clothes and tuck him in bed she'd tell him stories of these larger creatures, this race that walked the Earth some many years ago, and she'd say, "You are one of them, you are men."
What was men? He didn't know what that meant, he had no frame of reference save the chimeric images of these shadow-people that walked the past Earth alongside women, these dreamwalkers that his mother conjured at night with her stories. Creatures with hair on their faces, muscular, big, as big as mountains, sometimes he thought.
What was men? What did men do? Save from the obvious differences he could spot when he looked at himself in a mirror, what else? Why was it dangerous? Why was it bad? How was he different?
He grew up on those questions, never finding an answer. In his teenage years, his mother underfed him, on purpose. She gave him hormones so he'd stop growing. So his voice wouldn't change, but he didn't see, he didn't understand – how could his voice change? Why would his voice change?
"It'll grow deeper."
"That's just how it is with men."
Men. He was men. One of them. One of the shadowy figures, the mean, dark ones that walked the Earth, that had to be exterminated.
But why? What did men do? Why was men evil?
His voice changed, and he grew, despite the hormones and the humble meals. Past sixteen he could no longer leave the house save under a veil, save in the dead of the night, and only so when it was chiefly necessary.
And new feelings were brewing in him now. Feelings for the women he saw, feelings about the world around him, feelings of tenderness and of other things but above all, with every night that passed hidden in that small apartment in the undercity, what grew in him more was a hatred. A hatred for the women who ruled that world, who cast away the 'men', who deemed them bad and evil, who condemned him without ever meeting him, ever knowing who he was or what he thought, judged and trialed and convicted him over a prejudice of the past, over shadowy figures that walked the Earth before he was born.
If men were evil, he wasn't men. He was something else. But he was men, his mother said so. So men couldn't all be evil. So women were evil, because women judged him, determined he was bad without ever meeting him. Cast him to a life of growing up without identity, without knowing what or who or why he was not meant to exist.
A mistake, a rough tumor in a delicate world.
It was years, long years after his mother was gone before he figured it out. And then years, long years of planning, of studying maps, building sketches, until he finally managed to put into action his plan. He knew by then that the women were already engineered to have only other women, that his mother had been an aberration, something not likely to happen again.
He knew that they got pregnant from a machine, and that all the DNA on Earth was stored in a single room. And he found the way in and through the tunnels he crawled and in the dead of the night he stepped into the room where it was kept, where all of it lay behind glass, all the specimen, and he knew the codes, he spent years and labored to learn them, and he unlocked every door and he destroyed everything.
There was going to be no more genetic material save what was inside of him.
And when he was found in that room, when the women found out what he had done, they spit and cursed in anger but ultimately they bowed to him right then and there, their throats dry and quivering from swallowing their disgust at him, but they bowed all the same, because he was the last hope for humanity now, he was all there was left if people were not to die and never be born again. He was the future.
But he didn't want hope, and he didn't want future. He was men. He was born of hatred and darkness, he was the shadowy figure in his mother's stories, the great villain, the last on a line of wrongdoers, of darkness-lurkers, born and raised and existing solely for the purpose of evil.
At least he was convinced of it. So he ran the knife cross his throat and let the blood wash down his neck, and the women watched in horror as humanity died right then and there, in front of them, the blood of all future human life that would not be pooling in an expanding circle towards their bended knees.
The blood of men.
[WP] You are god and have been on a bender since you drove Adam & Eve out of the garden. You wake up in a cheap motel room and start to read the Bible trying to make sense of all the shit you apparently did.
"You have reached the office of Lucifer the fallen one, who am I speaking to?"
"Yeah, this is God, put me through to him." I didn't know who else to call really. One minute I'm kicking Adam and Eve out of Eden the next I'm waking up with a headache in the middle of the desert.
"Umm... right away sir." The demon secretary tells me.
"Lucy? You there?"
"What do you need? I'm busy. And you should be too right? Y'know, answering prayers or whatever it is you do up there. And how'd you get this number?"
"Look I work in mysterious ways alright? Remember when I kicked Adam and Eve out?" I ask him.
"Yeah... that was like 6000 years ago, why'd you ask?"
"Well, I've been going through this book called 'The Bible' and I don't remember any of this- wait 6000 years?!?"
"Yeah, 6000 years." Satan honestly sounded concerned. "Dude do you not remember that?"
"No I remember that just fine." I flip through the pages of the book on my lap. "It's just the other stuff, y'know the stuff in between. I was drunk okay."
"I honestly couldn't tell. Like I'm being honest I couldn't." He starts chuckling.
"Dude this isn't funny." I tell him. "Hold up, I flooded the earth?!?"
"Yeah, you thought humans were evil and shit so you killed like all of them. The animals too for some reason." He tells me.
"So I kill nearly all life on earth. And you think I was sober? That I was okay?!? That didn't seem weird to you at all?!?" I ask him.
"I mean you always were kind of a dick really." He says. "I thought you were just moody or something."
"And I destroyed a town just cause some people were having buttsex?!? Why would I do that?!"
"Oh yeah I remember that. That was crazy man." He laughs. "Oh this other time the whole world was speaking like one language and you were like 'nope! Can't have that!' and scattered them all over the place, like we could've had world peace and shit but you wouldn't let that happen!"
"This is terrible." I tell him. "I need to remind people what my true message is, I should send a messiah to preach my word!"
"Oh you already did that." Lucifer tells me. "His name was Jesus. It happened like 2000 years ago."
"I did?" I ask him. "Did it go well?"
Lucifer breathes through his teeth, "define well."
"Did everyone accept his message? Was he loved by all?"
"A lot of people accepted his message don't worry, but a lot of people didn't. They killed him."
"Oh." I say "well those that did accept his message follow him still right? Don't be greedy, love thy neighbor, accept all? They follow that right?"
Lucifer is silent. Then he breaks out laughing.
"Dude it's not funny!!" I tell him. "I gotta fix this."
"Good luck with that man." He tells me. "And if you ever need anything, don't call me ever again." The he hangs up.
"Shit." I think. "okay I'll make a new messiah, make him a Jew because everyone loves Jews. And name him Jesus. Okay second times the charm."
[WP]You are an omnipotent god. Out of boredom you decided to live an ordinary human life vowing not to use your power. 15 years has pass and you have a 9 to 5 working for a major tech company. Your boss has been tormenting you for years and you have reach your limit
After living for eternity, you would have thought that I could hack a nine to five job for a mere ten years. Add on the fact I'm pretty much the most powerful thing in existence, you would definitely think I could hack a nine to five job for a a decade. You would be completely right. Or well, you would have been completely right three years ago. Now? Not so much. The reason, you ask? My boss.
Thousands of years of watching humans struggle through life and answering to their superiors had granted me a lot of empathy for them, especially when they asked impossible things. I mean, I thought it had. Turns out what I was feeling was only sympathy. But now I understand. Now I feel the real effort it takes to appear bright, friendly and on the ball whilst a slimy, untrustworthy arrogant, bratty human adult saunters around as if he owns the place and he came up with all the ideas.
I own this entire universe, mate, get off your high horse.
I'm all powerful! I'm all freaking powerful! he does realise all these ideas are mine right? It was my idea to ditch the stylus on touch screen phones because fingers worked just as well! Heck, it was my idea for touch screens anyway! But I'm stuck answering the phone for complete imbeciles that can't even sign into their accounts.
'Hey, listen up folks.' His nasal voice sent waves of anger down my spine, annoyance rushing through my body as his words hit my ears. Something in my hand cracked. I looked down, hoping it wasn't my computer mouse.
Sighing, I spun slightly on my chair and pushed the wireless mouse in the bin, before whisking open my desk drawer. It was completely full of identical white replacement wireless computer mice. I picked one up without looking and began to sync it to my computer.
'That means you too, Johnson.'
I looked up, trying to keep my expression neutral.
'If you keep it up with that attitude you'll be in for another disciplinary; we've been having a lot of complains about you from our customers. You're walking on a razor thin tightrope, Johnson. Don't think you're off the hook just because you've been here for a few years.'
Obviously my expression still conveyed my absolute loathing. A few years? It's been at least ten. Smug bastard.
'As you know, the next model is still in the planning stages, and as I'm one of the few members on the team I'll be quite busy for the next few months. I don't want any interruptions or anything; nothing is more important than this right now. Nothing you have to say or ask of me is more important than this. My ideas for previous models have been invaluable; I will not be breaking my track record. That is all.'
He puffed his chest up, looking over his employees as if he was a fantastic boss that had just given a fantastic speech as opposed to giving a shitty excuse for cutting his work load in half.
He left. I continued syncing my new mouse up, wondering what I would say to HR for breaking yet another one. They were already aware of my anger management issues. The anger was directed at the waste of space that I had the pleasure to call my boss. He hadn't come up with any of the ideas; he had casually asked me for advice in the staff room and stole my ideas.
I'm not an idiot. I'm omnipotent, I'm all powerful, of course my ideas are the best. No one ever seemed to question what I said, I seemed to have an aura around me that compelled complete trust.
That's when it hit me. What could be the worst thing for the next model to have? What would he trust me with, take to a meeting, push through and ruin his reputation with?
I opened my work emails and started to type out a message for him, gripping my new mouse this time with anticipation rather than anger.
'I think, for the next IPhone, perhaps if we had no aux input....'
Edit: fixed a bunch of typos, and thank you to everyone for the amazing feedback
[WP] Genies exist. However, they are all evil wish genies who try and interpret wishes disastrously. You're a lawyer at a Wise Wishing Firm, who helps their clients word their wishes as safely as possible.
"First, remember that your wishes must be a single simple sentence. Additional clauses or run-on sentences give most genies a lot of wiggle room."
I sized up my client. Mid 30's. Married man. Two kids. House, mortgage, probably a dog. He seemed like a dog person to me.
He had a lot to lose.
It was my job to make sure that, if he decided to go through with his three wishes, that he didn't wind up losing his house or kids or marriage. Or worse. I remember one time, a client of mine who walked out without taking my advise. The mental image of him being turned inside-out, blood everywhere, was just too much for me. I flinched.
My client apparently noticed.
"What is it?"
"Oh, nothing. I was just remembering a former client of mine. Are you sure you wish to go through with these wishes? You can always walk away."
My client, let's call him "Bob", looked me straight in the eyes.
"I feel like this is an important opportunity, and I just don't want to pass it up," Bob said.
"Okay, I have a team of linguists professors who can help you with the phrasing of the Wish. As well as a crack team of word historians who can help trace the history of each word used in the Wish so we can make sure there are no historic interpretations that can be used against you."
Bob shifted at the table. "Why do we have to do that?"
"Because the Genies don't have your best interest at heart." I leaned forward. "For example, suppose you wish for a nice family. Did you know that the word 'nice' once meant 'silly' or 'foolish'? One guy, not a client of ours, wished for his family to be 'nice' and now spends all his time caring for his wife of 10 years and 3-year old son whose IQ are no higher than a cocker spaniel."
Bob's eyes widened.
"Or think of how other words have changed over time. Naughty used to mean the same thing as nothing, so wishing for your wife to be naughty in the bedroom, and boom! no more sex life. Hardly the thing to wish for, I'd say."
"Okay," Bob said, "so what else should I watch out for?"
"Related to word history are homophones; words that sound like other words. One guy I know of who ran a local collection of shops made the mistake of wishing to run a world-class bazaar. Now he's bankrupt and is just too weird to look at."
"So," I asked Bob, "what sort of goals do you have with your wish?"
"Well," Bob replied, "I guess I'd like to have a long life, more money, and more time to spend with my kids."
"I have to stop you right there, because you really need to be careful when wishing for a long life."
"Ever think of the consequences of outliving your wife? Or your kids? Or worse, outliving your grand kids? We all wish we could live a long life, but for the few folks I know who found themselves living for centuries, they all have become nearly suicidal out of boredom.
"Genies seem to take a perverse pleasure out of finding the ones who are least suited for immortality."
Shaking his head, Bob asked, "Unsuited for immortality?"
"Sure," I replied. "There are some of us who are genuinely curious about the world, who spend our time learning, reading, growing our minds; those are the best capable of coping with a life span of over two or three hundred years. Even confined to a wheel chair we would find pleasure in learning more about life.
"But some of us lack that basic curiosity. And for them, immortality becomes a burden rather quickly, as they age, become more frail, and watch their friends die off around them. Imagine being confined to a nursing home for a hundred years, with no friends, nothing to do, and not able to kill yourself.
"Those are the worst wishes. I've met a few. It's really sad."
"So what do you recommend," Bob asked.
"I would make one of the wishes about money, so you can pay for my services. My standard contract is 30% of the net value of any monetary wish, and we require a monetary wish as part of the three wish package. If you don't want a monetary wish, then we would need a standard deposit of $50,000, which we would bill against in order to do the research."
"Wow, that's a lot."
"Yes, it is, but if you can suddenly have a million dollars in your bank account overnight without any strings attached, our standard fees are quite reasonable.
"The good news is that unless someone else picks up the lamp and rubs it, the wishes are yours, and you can wait as long as necessary in order to make them. So I would recommend you buy a safe, and put the lamp in there for safe keeping. Don't wrap it in a rag or towel; that could accidentally rub the lamp and whomever was holding it would get the wishes. And give us a week to research your case so we can phrase the three sentences correctly."
"Well, what if I just wished for a million dollars without any strings attached?"
"See, that's why you need us," I replied to Bob. "Because the phrase 'strings attached' would be interpreted literally, and you may find yourself with a million dollars in your house, and cops at your doorstep wondering how you robbed the local bank.
"No, give us a week, and let us sort out the wishes that meet your goals for you."
(Edit) OMG, Thank you everyone for the kind remarks!
(Edit 2) Part 2
[WP] You're an ordinary person trying to kill some mosquitoes that happened to enter your house at night. After managing to kill a couple a strange bright light flashes down and out of your body, making you feel stronger and faster. You've just leveled up.
A bright light flashed, blinding Tom. The first thing he saw was Mittens the cat arching her back, hissing at Tom, and sprinting out of the room. That light must have startled the poor girl almost as much as it had startled him.
"Wait! Mittens, come back!" He called.
"Are you sure you want to do that?" He heard an internal voice ask.
"That was a weird thought. Of course I want Mittens to come back." Tom thought back.
"One point spent in Animal Companionship. You may now summon one pet." The internal voice responded.
No sooner had the thought finished than Mittens strutted back into the room to stand by Tom's side. She looked up at him expectantly. Tom noticed a spider crawling along a cabinet door. He pointed to it.
"Mittens, attack!" He commanded.
Her pupils dilated as she spotted the enemy. She hopped over to the prey, swatting at it a few times before swallowing it whole. Tom felt a faint surge of energy pulse through him, a tiny aftershock of the one before. He needed that feeling, that high again. Did it only come from killing insects? That couldn't be it. Spiders were arachnids, not insects. And what was that voice in his head? It was almost like living inside his very own role playing game.
The appearance of a small copper coin pulled him from his thoughts. It hid just beneath the door of the cabinet, where Mittens had vanquished the spider. Tom stooped to pick it up. He didn't recognize the figure etched on its surface. He held it to the light to get a better look only to notice a second coin sitting on top of the counter where he had killed the last mosquito. The same mysterious figure adorned this coin, too.
"That does it." He thought. "I'm probably going to wake up any minute now, but until I do, I might as well have some fun with this."
"Mittens, let's go. It's time to find some bigger prey!"
[WP] Your Grandma, a shape-shifter, is diagnosed with Alzheimers. She begins to forget her true form...or was it a disguise all along?
Grandpa and I walked into the entrance of St Mary’s hospital. In the ever-bustling reception area, Healers strode purposefully in all directions. We made straight for the elevator, heading to the Geriatric Unit on level 4. As the elevator door opened, I saw a young boy sitting in a wheelchair who was being pushed by- who I assumed to be- his mother. His right leg was completely covered in a white plaster cast. Grandpa made sure the door of the elevator didn’t shut as they passed through and the woman cast him a grateful smile. As they moved away, I caught the beginning of an argument between the two.
“So you’re really going to take my X-box away for two whole weeks?”
“I told you Timothy, if you didn’t try to stop this levitation nonsense before you’re old enough, that there would be punishment.”
“It wasn’t my fault!” the boy whined, “Jake double dared me. Double dared me Mom. Plus, he levitates around the house whenever he wants.”
“You jumped off the roof Timmy! If we didn’t get you to a good healer in time, who knows what would have happened. Now stop arguing before I make it three weeks…”
I couldn’t help but laugh a little. As the elevator ascended, I looked up at my Grandpa. He had always been a tall man, but these days there was a slight stoop in his posture. The twinkle in his usually-bright blue eyes had dimmed. An invisible weight tugged on the corners of his smile. But, ever stoic, he looked down at me and spoke in a forcefully cheerful tone.
“What do you think she’ll be today, Maddie?”
These days, Grandma had taken a liking to shifting into her favourite historical figures. Yesterday it had been Queen Elizabeth the second. For the entire visit, she spoke in a high English accent and inquired regularly as to the whereabouts of her beloved Corgi dogs. The Healers had informed us that she had already requested 9 cups of tea that day.
I flashed Grandpa a grin. “I don’t know, but really hoping she’s gotten sick of the Queen. I’m not sure either of us could handle being asked any more questions about what the Daily Telegraph had to say about her outfit she wore on the day of her Diamond Jubilee.”
Grandpa chuckled. As we entered the ward, we were greeted cheerily by all the staff we passed. We were regulars now, and most greeted us by name. I saw my Grandma’s primary Healer step out of a nearby room. Even if one was born with the Healing gift, there were certain limitations to the extent that one could "heal" the body; and some things that even the most skilled of healers could not fix. Degenerative conditions of the brain were amoung these ailments. All Healers were, hence, required to attend medical school as any other Doctor would. Healer Saunders, who was in charge of Grandma’s care, also had a degree in both Neurology and Geriatrics.
“Healer Saunders!” I called.
The man spinned in my direction and, recognising me and my Grandpa, walked towards us.
“How is she doing today?”
The man smiled with genuine warmth. “Judith is doing just fine today, although,” he paused and furrowed his brow, “I must admit, I have no idea who she is. Her current form I mean. But she is perfectly fine for visitors.”
Grandpa and I strode into Grandma’s private room where Grandma was standing, gazing out of the room's window. When she turned to look at her visitors, her face was that of a young woman. She looked to be about in her young 20’s. She had wide, chocolate coloured eyes and tresses of beautiful, long dark hair. I felt my Grandpa freeze in his stride. When I looked up, his face was contorted into an expression I had never seen before. It was… Pain. Longing. Disbelief.
Grandma’s face light up when she saw him. “Oh, Harold, thank goodness you’ve arrived. I thought we were going to be late!”
Suddenly, I understood. Tears were streaming silently down my Grandpa’s face. She had not recognised him in over a year. Somehow, he forced calm words out of his mouth.
“L-late for what, my dear?”
“The dance, silly!” Grandma giggled. But then her expression turned serious. “The only problem is… I can’t seem to find my dress. And I can’t go in this old thing.” she said, motioning down to her hospital gown.
“Oh, don’t worry my love… I think I know where you left it.”
“You’re wonderful Harold,” said Grandma. I had never seen anyone look at another person like she was looking at Grandpa right at that moment. She walked up to him and kissed his cheek.
“I’ll be right back, darling” said Grandpa, and he exited the room. I followed swiftly in his wake. He sat down on a nearby chair, and covered his face with his hands. I could tell by the movement of his shoulders that he was sobbing.
“That’s… Grandma when she was younger?”
Grandpa looked up, and took a shaky breath. “Yes… that’s Judie when she was 23. I was 25. We were going to the faculty dance that night. I forgot… I forgot how beautiful she was.” He was silent for a moment. “The pictures don’t do her justice. Not even slightly.” He sighed. “Come Maddie, we should probably go.”
I shook my head. “We’re not going anywhere. You’re taking Grandma to a dance. Wait here… Just for a few minutes. Literally.” I smiled playfully.
When I ran, time slowed nearly to a halt. Speed was my gift, and there was no better time to use it than now. Just over 36 seconds later, I burst into my room. The friction had burnt the soles of my shoes and the carpet slightly.
“Worth it.” I muttered.
I grabbed my prom dress from the cupboard, and rubbed the soft pink silk between my fingers. I knew it would fit Grandma easily. I picked up some of my jewellery and some make-up from the drawer too. I rushed to Grandpa’s room, and picked out one of the suits he reserved for special events. Soon, I was back in the Ward, carrying my items and panting slightly. I held them out to Grandpa, whose eyes were still wide in wake of my sudden disappearance.
“You’re taking Grandma to the dance.” I stated firmly.
He looked up at me, and that twinkle in his bright blue eyes which I had missed so much was back. “But Maddie… where will I take her?”
I pondered for a moment. “Well, in the time it will take you both to get ready, I reckon I will have found something suitable… I’m pretty fast. Now go tell Grandma you found her dress." And with that, time ground to a near-halt as I ran back out of the hospital doors.
[WP] Instead of being funded by John Hammond, Jurassic Park is instead funded by his second cousin on his father's side: Richard Hammond. Along with Jeremy Clarkson and James May, how would Jurassic Park: Top Gear Edition be different?
Announcer Jeremy: Tonight, on The Grand Tour: James is attacked by a Compy. I take a casual off-road drive in a Land Rover. And Richard pees himself.
Jeremy: Helloooo Hellooooo, thank you thank you, and welcome to the Grand Tour. Coming to you from Isla Meurta.
James: I say doesn't that mean the Island of Death?
Jeremy: Yes it does James, but don't think too much about it we've been in worse places.
James: Like what, exactly? I saw an actual Dinosaur as we came in on the Engine Helicopter. Four feet and a giant gaping mouth.
Hammond: Looked rather like Margaret Thatcher
Jeremy: Thank you Richard. No that was a herbivore, and we like herbivores, they don't try to eat us.
Richard: Wait hold on how do you know it was a herbivore? You are no expert on dinosaurs sir. In fact you are an expert on nothing. Why are we here?
Jeremy: Hammond we are here because your lawyer called the Producers and informed them that you now own this park, and the Producers saw an opportunity.
Richard: Wait hold on, I own this now? They didn't tell me that.
Jeremy: No they were waiting to see if you got eaten first.
James: May I just point out that while the dinosaur we saw when we first landed was in fact a Diplodocus and thus a herbivore, there are signs on this map I've just been handed by the Producers which clearly say Tyrannosaurus Rex pens and Velociraptor Field. These are not...
Jeremy: Yes yes, that's all well and good James, but nobody cares about what you're saying because it's boring. We have been given a challenge. We are to, in a word, survive. We will make our way from this welcome center, through the Raptor fields, past the T-Rex pen, and lastly finish the tour at the exit gates here at the ferry dock. And we will be doing so in these: Richard you'll be driving a 2003 Jeep Grand Cherokee. James you shall be driving a 1988 Toyota Land Cruiser, and I shall be driving a 2001 Land Rover. Mine of course has more power, because I asked for the most powerful one.
James: They all look hideous.
Jeremy: Blame Hammond for that, he owns this place now this is his paint scheme.
Richard: Wait you can't blame me for this I've just found out I own the place. And don't touch that, that looks expensive to fix.
Announcer Jeremy: So we set off on our tour of the island. The Producers gave each of us a flare gun and a package of bear spray, along with a map. James wanted to lead the way but I quickly determined that he was going too slowly so I chose an opportune moment to surge ahead.
James: Clarkson you pillock, we have no idea what's ahead of us, slow down!
Richard: Yes slow down Jeremy, you might crash into my new park and if you do you're paying for the damages.
Jeremy: Hammond if I crash into anything it will just be petrol in a few years so look on the bright side, you've got a future in OPEC!
Announcer Jeremy: Everything was going smoothly under my direction when suddenly things took a turn for the worse.
James: ...of course this entire park appears to be fabricated from plants and animals that evolved millions of years apart, and could never have existed the same time. That plant over to our right for example is from the Triassic era, while that small dinosaur up ahead would appear to have been from the Tithonian age...
Announcer Richard: James was then attacked by a large number of small dinosaurs. The Toyota was up to the task.
James: Get away from me you little bast....
Jeremy: Everything ok back there James? I accidentally bumped a gate open a few minutes ago, I trust everything is progressing normally?
James: Clarkson you cock, you've let some dinosaurs out into the wild and they've attacked my truck. My tires have been eaten by some sort of acid.
Richard: What do you mean you bumped a gate open Jeremy? If you've damaged my park I'm going to have it taken from your pay.
Announcer Jeremy: We progressed through the park, James with a new tire and horribly scarred paint job that actually improved the look of his Toyota. As we approached the Raptor portion of the journey Richard began to show signs of sluggishness.
Jeremy: Something wrong with your Jeep Richard? You seem to be falling behind.
Richard: No, no nothing wrong with the Jeep. I just keep feeling like we are being watched.
James: Of course we're being watched there are cameras all over the place.
Richard: No, I think there's something out there.
Announcer Jeremy: Hammond was right. His natural instincts as a small animal that survived by sensing when hunters were tracking him were showing through.
James: Come on Richard. Everything is behind a fence. Unless Jeremy has broken another gate.
Jeremy: I merely grazed that one thank you very much.
Richard: Grazed it? Going 50 MPH?
Jeremy: Oh cheer up Hammond, look at all this magnificent land, all of it yours.
Richard: Not after you get through with it, you're destroying it piece by piece. And what was that noise?
Announcer James: That noise was in fact, a Raptor jumping onto the roof of Richards Jeep.
James: Wow, what an excellent example of a Velociraptor. Flash it with your high beams Richard.
Jeremy: Hammond control yourself. The Producers wouldn't send us out here in the wild if they thought we could come to harm. Use your bear spray, I'm sure it will work.
Richard: Ahhhh, the cap is broken, the cap is broken. Here we go, and ahhhhOhh god I've sprayed myself. I've sprayed myself. And peed myself if I'm honest.
James: It's worked, the bear spray is driving the Raptor away! By Jove Hammond!
Announcer Jeremy: Having survived the Raptors and the devious Compys, we now made our way into the dragons den of all lions dens. The Tyrannosaurus Rex pen. All of us were more than willing to proceed past this point in the tour but the Producers insisted.
Jeremy: ...And so you see the Land Rover is simply superior to anything else on the road. Look at what we've been through so far. My Land Rover has managed to suffer nothing but a few dents in the bumper. Hammond's Jeep is a mess of urine feces and bear spray, which I'm sure will take forever to clean and the roof is barely holding up. James Land Cruiser is of course the indestructible truck but even it could not escape this tour unscathed.
Richard: Jeremy you've gone off the road. Jeremy you're on the wrong path.
Jeremy: That's ok, my Land Rover can handle anything. I know what I'm doing, I'm going to race you both to the dock.
James: You win Jeremy, come back please. You're headed into the T-Rex pen itself. It's marked off limits.
Jeremy: No no, I will have none of your nonsense James May. They could not have a fully grown T-Rex on this island, it's too small. It would starve. My Land Rover can out race anything else on this island, including you're two pitiful excuses for 4x4s.
Announcer Richard: And with that we shut up and let him go. We could always find a new co-host. Chris Evans isn't doing anything.
Jeremy: I may have erred when I said they couldn't have a full grown T-Rex on this island. Because I am stuck right now in a ditch. A ditch that looks remarkably like a footprint. And I don't know if I can get out of it. Time to switch to sport mode. And now press the fiddly little button, and here we go....no no that didn't do it. I'll have to engage the Terrain Management system and switch it to Mud/Ruts. There we go and...hahah yes we are free! Britain is gloriously victorious once again!
Announcer Jeremy: I shouldn't have been so happy. I might have been out of the ditch but my efforts to gain freedom had been noticed.
Jeremy: Oh my god what is that? Must go faster. Land Rover don't fail me now!
James: Jeremy scientists estimate that T-Rexs can only reach a top speed of 40 kilometers per hour! You can do it Clarkson!
Announcer Richard: As we rounded the last bend to the docks we could see Jeremy in his Land Rover being chased by a T-Rex.
Richard: It's almost got you Jeremy, turn hard right!
James: Yes, lets see what turns better, a Land Rover or a T-Rex.
Clarkson: Now is really not the time James!
Announcer James: In fact it was. Clarkson's sharp turn was in fact the difference, and as we boarded the ferry, our cars full of mud and our own biowaste, we couldn't help but thank goodness that dinosaurs couldn't fly.
Announcer Jeremy: And on that Bombshell, gooodnight!
edit: Thank you all for the kind words. I saw the story right in front of me as soon as I saw the topic. Brilliant suggestion. And I changed gasoline to petrol. Because of COURSE it would be petrol.
edit 2: Wow, thanks for the gold. Wasn't expecting that!
[WP] The year is 2040, and you are the last smoker alive. The "Quit Smoking" ads get personal.
"Quit now Dan!" said the man on the talking billboard. A finger pointing at the lone figure walking down the empty street. Empty due to everyone crossing to the other side to avoid him and his smog. Dan paused by a waste bin, small cardboard box in hand. He looked from the box to the bin and back again. Those across the street stopped and stared, ready to witness history being made. There was absolute silence as Dan lifted his hand, as if to throw the packet towards the bin, all eyes now on him, even the billboard advert man stopped to watch. He launched it. It hit the rim. There was a sharp intake of breath as it bounced into the air above the bin. It hit the rim on the other side, people held each other in nervous anticipation. The packet landed onto the other trash in the bin and the crowd across the street erupted into thunderous applause and cheering. Celebrating as if a great sporting victory had been achieved. Little did they realise that Dan had taken a new packet from his pocket, removed the plastic, drew a long white stick out with his teeth and ignited the end. As a large grey cloud left his lips, the crowd died down. realising their premature celebration. There was a disappointed groan and a shuffling as daily activities resumed. "God dammit Dan. You were so close." shouted the billboard.
[WP] The year is 1910. Adolf Hitler, a struggling artist, has fought off dozens of assasination attemps by well meaning time travelers, but this one is different. This traveller doesn't want to kill Hitler, he wants to teach him to paint. He pulls off his hood to reveal the frizzy afro of Bob Ross.
Hitler was having a piece of banana cake when Bob Ross walked in.
"And I just feel like no one gets me, you know?" The future Fuhrer was saying to one of his servants, as he sprayed whipped cream over the cake, distracted. "I mean, I know most artists are destined to be posthumous, but… I don't know, I guess I want the fame and the fortune too, you know?"
"Ja, It is very hard, my master," the man said, in a German accent but in English for no reason at all, just like foreign characters in the movies.
"Hey, Hitler," Bob said, stepping in, confident. "May I?" he pulled a chair sat down without waiting for an answer.
"What is this!?"
"Listen, I'm Bob Ross and I'm from the future and I paint stuff."
"Yes. Here's the thing – I'm supposed to come here and teach you how to paint so you'll be a good painter and not invade Poland and then the rest of Europe and cause the death of millions of people."
"Holy shit, I do that!?" Hitler widened his eyes.
"Oh, yes. It's awful. People still use your name as a reference to evil. There's even an internet law based on how long it takes until someone compares a certain situation to Nazi Germany during an argument."
"What's the internet?"
"Never mind," Bob leaned forward. "This is what we're going to do – I'm going to teach you how to –"
"Excuse me," Hitler's servant said, in that same fake accent. "I'm afraid I must intervene here."
"Well, Mr. Ross, have you considered the twist?"
"Yes. The fact that you'll teach this man how to paint, he'll grow to be a famous painter, not invade anything, and when you return to your home time you'll find out that another man named, I don't know, Hans, has taken over Germany and did worse things than Adolf here could ever do."
Ross frowned. "I don't follow."
"You don't watch much Twilight Zone, do you?" The servant asked.
"How do you know about the Twilight Zone? This is 1910."
"Never mind about that." The servant leaned back. "My name is Hans, Ross. And I will take over Germany if you teach Adolf how to paint."
"Why!? Why would you do that?"
"Why else would I be in the scene? Why would Hitler not be alone when you walked in? I have to serve some purpose for the plot, right? And let's face it – go back in time and kill/talk/convince/teach Hitler is a trope we've seen before, and it always ends like this. In fact, most time traveling tropes tend to end with a silly variation of the butterfly effect we-made-things-even-worse twist. Let's not make this prompt another example."
Bob Ross scratched his head and thought about this. "Shit. Okay. I guess. But what do we do now?"
"Now we find a way to subvert time traveling tropes and present something fresh for the readers. And fast, because they're getting impatient."
"Why are they getting impatient? We're still at 500 words!"
"Yes, but we've gone post-modern self-referential, characters-acknowledging-their-own-stories. That annoys some people."
"It's not really my fault, look at the prompt. Where do you go with time traveling Bob Ross and Hitler that's not self-referential parody?"
"Now you're blaming the OP for your shortcomings as a storyteller. Classy."
"Not my shortcomings. I'm not the author."
They both turn and stare at me for a second. I shrug.
"Anyway," Hans said, resuming the conversation. "Do something different. Fast."
"Huuuuuuh…. Fuck, I don't know. Kiss Hitler!"
"Erotic Nazi Fanfic? No thanks."
"Okay, then… you have cancer, and Hitler nurses you to health, but in the end we find out Hitler has cancer too, and –"
"I'm not taking part in The Fault in our Stars Feat. Adolf Hitler. It ain't gonna happen."
"Well, you gotta do something, and fast, because time is running out."
"Hitler? Any suggestions?"
Adolf looked around. He got up and paced. "I don't know. Can you just return to your present time and call it a day?"
"And then everything happens as it's supposed to? That's boring."
"Yeah…" Hitler stopped. "I don't know then. I really don't know."
Hans shook his head. "Okay, I got this." He grabbed a little radio device from his pocket and spoke into it. "Send them in."
Ross frowned. "Send who in?"
Static emerged from the radio for a second, then a voice answered: "Copy that."
"Send who in?" Adolf repeated. "What's happening?"
"Well," Hans said, getting up. "If we're in a Hitler and Bob Ross time traveling prompt and we can't figure out a way to turn it into something fresh, we might as well embrace irony and self-mockery to the full extent of Writing Prompt's classic tropes."
"What do you mean?"
The door came open behind Ross. He turned back and watched as two teenagers walked in – a boy in round glasses and a scar on his forehead and a girl that looked a lot like Emma Watson.
"Hey Harry, hey Hermione. Sorry to drag you into yet another prompt. You got the time turner?"
"Yup," Harry said, in a bored tone.
"Harry Potter fanfic? Really?" Ross shook his head. "For fuck's sake."
"If we're gonna go down the rabbit's hole, let's do it proudly."
Hermione started setting the time turner. Harry looked around, curious. Ross sighed.
"Fuck that, I'm out," Hitler said, and then he jumped out the window, and then WW II didn't happen, but the Statute of Secrecy was violated on account of the whole thing and muggles learned about magic and when Ross returned to his present day no one gave a shit about static paintings anymore, so he died a poor man, which I guess is irony or whatever, I don't even care.
For more information on why the fourth wall is damaging your health and you should get rid of it, check out /sub/psycho_alpaca =)