Saturday, December 7, 2013

Reddit Writings 3

Flash Fiction: You come to realize you exist within a computer simulation. Things were not always this way. (250 words)

        "Did you know octopi have their intelligence distributed through their arms?" Murph asks as he taps away at his keyboard.

         "Yeah, I saw a video of that once. They put an octopus in a new tank and half it's arms reached out to explore while the other half moved towards a little hidey hole." Martha yells over the sound of machinery. The grinding of the gears and the cooing slide of the pistons were a racket, but they had a sort of music behind them.

        "Do you think any of those arms ever wonder about being attached to the octopus? Ever just want to pop-off and explore the little tank on it's own? Maybe slither up and out and realize that universe is bigger than just four glass walls and some colored stones." Murph leans back and squints really hard at his screen.

        It flickers and for a moment he can see Earth hanging in dark surrounded by stars. His home, where his body still is, moving, laughing, living.

       His job now, Martha's, everyone within, was to make sure the MACHINE ran smoothly. Like a farmer, it cherry picked minds from Earth. Scanned them and replicated them within itself. Thousands, maybe millions of minds given form to take care of and treat the MACHINE.

       "No." Carol shook her head as she tightened a bolt. "The tentacle will die without the rest of the body and the octopus will just grow a new arm."

      Murph returned to work.

(More after the jump)

A group of the world's most infamous criminals gets launched into space as a compromise over death penalty. An Alien life form discovers them and evaluates the entire human species based on them.

       The blue-green streak arched through the sky. People left their houses and pointed, awed by the strange cosmic event. Many took pictures and videos, holding their phones to the sky.

        They couldn't have known.

        Defense bases in every country came to life. Government agents buzzing like bees. Computers screamed that this was an attack. The missile was coming for them.

        It was worse.

       The glowing shape broke into several pieces, and then stopped moving. Every signal was infected with their message. In several languages the broadcast began.

       "When we found your ship, we were delighted. New life, out here, in such a backwater part of the universe. Our people boarded the ship to greet your kind. They were butchered, raped and tortured."

       The lights shifted to a red orange.

        "How could our luck be so fortunate? Yours is the perfect warrior race. You kill without regret or reasoning and on instinct. You will help us win the war."

        The red lights descended and thousands of tendrils of light began to extend. The tentacles slowly moved out seeking the closest human life.

        "You will be trained, by these men and women. These exceptional human beings of the Redemption. These killers. It is no wonder you sent your best into the void. They would have conquered new worlds for you, but we are in dire need of your talents"

        Whomever the tentacles touched disappeared.

       "You will be our salvation, you brutish, horrible race."

Write a story that includes a vivid description of black leather gloves.

       The creak is what really gets to me. Or maybe it's better described as a groan? A moan? That sound that leather makes when pressure is put on it and it twists or turns.

       The naked light bulb above my head has stopped swaying, and my jaw has finally gone numb. When I spit a gob of blood and gum, my jaw re-ignites in fire.

       I haven't seen my nemesis, my torturer. His face is covered by an animal mask. A blood spotted plastic lion, mid-roar. What was once a nice button up blue shirt is now a stained mess. A large blot of blood in the breast pocket is a testament to where my molar is. Dark slacks, and dark leather gloves, he moves around the room like a shadow.

       They creak. They moan. They growl as they slide along my shaved head and neck and I swear I can feel every crease and wrinkle in those dark, dark gloves. He reaches over and picks up a saw, moving it in the light so that it reflects off it's polished surface. The gloves are a void against the brightness.

      He hasn't spoke. Hasn't made a noise since this has started. Just the scuffing of his shoes against the cement floor and the scream of his gloves as he flexes his fingers.

      He places the teeth of the saw at my wrist and begins to grind. I scream, but soon the pain is too much and everything goes mercifully dark.

      It's surprising when I wake up and I'm still in the warehouse. For a second the world is blurry and dreamlike, but my head is pounding and my arm hurts. I glance down and my right hand is gone, replaced by a stump, all wrapped up.

       Barely in the light of the blub, I see him. The Lion. Carefully he takes his fingers and pinches the tip of his pointer finger on the right hand and he begins to tug. The glove almost coos as it slides off...nothing.

      There is nothing there.

      Under his glove there just seems to be air. No hand, no wrist, no arm. Nothing. I want to scream but my throat is raw and any sound causes my head to light up. I choke instead.

       The Lion takes my severed hand and places it in the place where his hand should be. There is a pop.

       He wiggles it. He wiggles the wrist, the fingers. Tests it out. The leather glove lays discarded on the floor at my feet.

       Turning to look at me, the Lion, the hollow man, picks up the saw with his new hand, my hand, and I scream.

       He will consume me bit by bit, until he becomes me.

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