living in conflict with the Prime Directive

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Short Story: Train

Trains move by my little station. Going to places further away. That’s all fine for my occupation. Others die around me. Me, one thing I aim to do. When I do I aim to please. Someone threw me at this station and now trains never stop for me. Once, I flew above it all. Trains stop start and mimicked me. Charging into out of darkness. Running away, never running free. From something we can’t see.

Every village had runner. Some acted like me. Never knew or cared or bothered. My only mirror, wine in front of me.

When I left my little village. No clue where I wanted to go. Never mattered, eventually.

I grew richer on nothing. I don’t think I ever owned a dime. Something about my company. Good looks, fine conversation, and better times. People came to me from everywhere. I went everywhere.

Eventually I grew tired. Good times, adventure – weighed me down. Did I fall? Tired. I had never gotten off. Left me rest on the next stop. I awoke alone at last. I cried. It’s in the past. I picked myself up.

Got myself all good again. Felt ready for the world ahead. I didn’t know it at the time. The world changed. Left me behind. Trains ignored our little station. Blew past on their way to nations. What kind of person am I?

Trains will not for stop me.

Short Story: Untitled

You are staring at a friend without even thinking about it. It hits you and then you’re looking them in the eyes. They are staring at you, too. You can’t look away because this is how you find soul mates, right? Something happens and contact is broken. You’re dazed because something like that always happens abruptly at first. You go through the days until you see them again wondering why you have such a weird friend. A closer friend says you are weird and you think “We are both weird, then.” You start compiling a list in your head of all the ways the two of you are similar and it is a short list with only silly, inconsequential things on it. You don’t know them well. How well do they know you?

The next time you see them you can’t believe it. It seems like they were gone forever – but never left your sight. You can’t figure why you think about them and you’re staring at each other again and you feel so much closer this time. maybe because of the list and you start because you suddenly can’t remember NOT staring at this person and then you realize they’re gone.

The next day you see them again and you can’t believe it. You tell yourself you weren’t actively searching them out – but you were. It wouldn’t have mattered either way because they just suddenly appeared in front of you. They look surprised too and – for the first time – you both look elsewhere. The clothes, the hands, the arms, the chest, the face, the lips, the hair. You want to mark them. Somehow. So you’ll always know where they are. Tie them to you. Then they look away, you realize you were staring at each other again. They look nervous – you feel nervous. They clear their throat and say “hello” like they’ve never seen you before. It feels like the First Word. Your legs feel about to give and you’ve never felt so much. There are so many things you want to do but nothing to say. So you freeze and look lost. Something breaks the moment and you start. The moment hasn’t broken for them and they look at you – confused. Maybe expecting a “hello” back, but you’ve forgotten and you get angry. Angry at that face you can’t stop staring at and this thing they need from you. Who are you to give it?! You angrily shout “What?!” at them pushing them away as you start walking down the hall. You get to the end and feel like breaking. Whether you force yourself to turn or not doesn’t matter. Whether they’ve turned to follow you or not doesn’t matter.

You had a chance at happiness with this person and you broke it. You can’t avoid the collision of your souls, though. The love is still coming, but when it does –  you don’t want to be there to see it. So you will keep pushing them away – breaking them. Until the pieces of your souls are so shattered there is nothing left to hurt you.

Image

Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon

Taken from top of South Kaibad trail at 5:30 am

Short Story: Dust

Hearing many times how sweet and rustic the area looked she knew it wasn’t for her. It was too human. The statues discolored by greasy groping hands, organic what-nots ground into the smell of the place. Sighing she finally learned what it meant to not belong somewhere. It saddened her to learn she did not belong here. A place where humanity had time and time again trod history into the stones renewing themselves barely in time for the future.

“This place has a lot of history.”

“Oh.” She couldn’t find dirt. Buried under the dust of … progress.

“Much quieter here than in those cities. We know how to live here!”

“I’m sure.”

‘Those cities.’ Was this not a city. Cities meant people and there were people here. She tried to hold back her tears. She yearned for deserts and forests. Not quiet places. Minds were sharphere. She didn’t like it. She couldn’t see running for the joy of running. Walking for the joy of a journey. Sleeping for the sake of real tiredness.

She needed the gnaw of hunger in her stomach.

Short Story: How to Survive

Full name is “How To Survive Being The Eldest Sister On A Camping Trip” but that is too long for a post title,  I think.

You have just pulled into the campsite! First, you must open the door quickly. Second, sprint out and run to the side of the road. You have accomplished your first two tasks! Task one is to avoid being trampled by the dog, while task two is establish yourself as carsick!

It is now time to unpack. Remember, you are carsick! In the end, manage to take out: 1 part of the tent, 2 cooking supplies, 1 coat. If someone else beats you to it, complain. Do this all very slowly all while going back to the side of the road repeatedly.

The ‘men’ of the family will now set up the tent. Dad will have to go do something halfway through. When they ask you to hold the tent pole in his place, hold it. Then you may space out. Several minutes later, you may become aware of someone screaming at you. Ignore it for a few more minutes. Soon the screams will be muffled. When this happens, look around confusedly and ask why the screams stopped. You might even want to add “How Pretty” they were. Next, innocently ask your brother why he is playing hide and seek under the tent. You may want to suggest he find a better hiding spot. This should make him mad enough to thrash himself free! Although, if you do decide to help him, be certain to laugh manically the whole time.

By now, your Dad should be back. Notify him of the situation immediately. Be warned, your brother may try to convince your dad that you are guilty of a petty crime he calls “attempted murder”. This may cause your dad to get mad because he is old-fashioned. You must not tell him this as being in the wild has turned him into “werewolf man”. It would be wise to allow a younger sibling to test whether or not furriness, is directly correlated to strength.

After convincing your Dad you did not try to kill your brother, you can stroll off to ‘help’ elsewhere. Your Mom, for instance. Notice she is cooking dinner on the portable camp stove.

Ask her if she needs help! But, this is the important bit, stand really close so she will assume you’ll just get in her way! Suggest opening the many cans of cream corn and peas she has on the picnic table. Relieved, she will agree and begin to talk to you. As you do not want to hear about her life, talk about your experiences in the wild, so far. Tip: use the word “experience” a lot.

Talking about yourself is stressful. There are a lot of topics you have to stay away from, like the truth. Fortunately, can openers are great stress relievers and you have one! Simply call your sister over and start lecturing her. As soon as she’s close enough, wave it around and make little jabs at her. This also works with knives! Not only will it make you feel better, it will also to freak her out.

You and your mom are now almost finished with dinner. This means you need to get out of there fast. Maneuver so the fire and your mother are both to your left. Now, begin to lean over the stove –Make sure your hair is out of the way!!!!– and stare at the fire. Even if someone is already there, dryly state “Someone should be watching the fire.” Long ago, you have convinced your Mom how you two are the only competent members of the family. An exception possibly being the cat. She will agree, and you will have cemented yourself into the position of ‘fire watcher’.

Many options now unfold before you! You can either; listen to your ipod, stare into space, mess with the fire, insult your brother, mess with the dog… The list is only limited by your vindictive imagination! It would be wise, however, to take this time to question your tactics, are they any good? Could you make a few changes? You may ask yourself why do you have to be so evil all the time? This may cause you to spiral into a depression.

When you have extracted the necessary quota of chocolate from your family as they attempt to make you feel better. Cheer up! Throw all your energy into pretending to help! In fact, go the extra mile and give your sister some of the chocolate you scammed. Never-mind the fact it is approximately 1/10 of the chocolate she gave you earlier, she will reward you with a twix bar later and say you are the best sister ever!

Night is looming, the campsite is creepy, wolves are salivating in the woods, and your dog fell asleep. When you decide to turn in for the night, bring a rock with you. The purpose of the rock is to bash your siblings over the head with it until they stop giggling. This will require endurance on both your parts as they will turn it into a game of tag.

Now that the two demonic monstrosities have been suitably mutilated, feel free to settle into your sleeping bag. However, you might get yelled at when your parents see the carnage. It might be best to rip a hole in the tent and say a cougar did it. Always best to be on the safe side.

For those of you who may be wondering… I really am carsick!

Short Story: Peggy

“Who are you and what did you do to my driveway!”

Remains of several objects lay strewn everywhere. I had driven into town for a late night grocery run and I came back to find a 30-something year old woman with frizzy hair wearing a welding helmet. Still caught in my headlights she pushed up the helmet and squinted at me. Then at the car. Stunned, I heard her ask,

“Would you mind turning off the engine?”

Somewhat mindlessly, I complied and stepped out of the car. Not quite as mindlessly, I grabbed the  crowbar I kept in the front seat, for emergencies. By now, the stranger who I assumed was responsible, had hoisted the hood of the car and was now investigating the engine, I asked “What are…?”

“Ooo! Thank you so much, Dear! This will do just perfect!” confiscating the crowbar. She then pointed out some part I could barely see, and informed me she needed that piece if she was going to fix her time machine.

“This next bit is going to be very loud. Oh! Name’s Peggy! Hi!”

Nothing can quite describe the demonic din this small woman set upon the night. It had clangs, it had bangs, crashes, snaps, and chings.  Knowing there was nothing I could do and with the beginnings of a headache coming on, I went to bed.

“Good Morning!”

Startled I leapt off my perch on the sill and crashed to the floor. It was still very early and the coffee hadn’t quite kicked in.

“Peggy! What are you -?! How did -?! My house! You’re in it!”

“Calm down. I’m only making breakfast!”

Sure enough,  the delicious scent of vanilla and cinnamon wafted through the house. I closed my eyes and breathed in.

“What are we having?” I dreamily inquired.

Equally dreamy, but in a somewhat nasal tone. “Onion rings.”

I blinked. Standing before me in full chefs’ regalia was Peggy with clothes pin on nose, tears in eyes, and smelling strongly of onions.

Over breakfast, Peggy told me about how quickly she needed to get moving again. Earlier, she had regaled me with stories of far off worlds in a distant time and down the street in three more years. Then she opened up about Thrakazog, an alien.

“I met Thrakazog when I still worked as a fry cook in Plutopolis. Turns out he’s a slime-ball. He only liked me for my onion rings… Anyway, I’m on the run! “

Peggy stayed with me nearly two weeks working on her time machine. When she finished, we coated my home with cinnamon and vanilla and she made onion rings one last time for me.

We were sitting at the table when both Peggy and I jumped at the sound of someone knocking on the door. I relaxed in relief. However, Peggy had bolted out of her chair and sprinted across the kitchen counter to her time machine.

“What’s going on?! Peggy!?”

“It’s Thrakazog! St-st-Stop him!”

Rapidly, she strapped herself into the device. I slowly turned on my heel and, slowly, walked toward the door. Another round of knocking ensued.

“Coming!” Hopefully braver than I sounded.

I felt like I was in one of those horror movies… I knew I shouldn’t but… Trembling I cracked open the door. What else was I supposed to do?

“Hello, may I? ” Smiling, “My name is Thrakazog, Peggy’s Landlord. Is she here?”

Doesn’t Like Introductions

First off, a quick little thing I picked up in last years english class. It really helped me last year! Then I forgot about it which is extremely obvious to me now. I haven’t wrapped up a single story since.

Ah wait, this is about starting stories. Oh well. Still works~!

1. The first line—suddenly that great line comes out and the story pours out from it

2. An object that represents (symbolizes) something important

3. A memory of an interesting event (fictionalized to make it more magical)

4. A dream (reorganized to make sense)

5. A painting, photo, dance, or piece of music that speaks to you in a narrative way

6. A message or observation that you’d like to share with the world

7. A character you know or observed (names changed to protect the innocent)

8. A place you have seen or been that has a story of its own

9. A newspaper account of an event that has a deeper story inside

10. An issue in your life that you want to work through in a story

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