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Written by fantastical in portal Fiction

Hitching Fate

The girls dropped me off at the truck stop; Sara even was bold enough to slip me a note with her number on it, wearing a grin too hungry for her age. I thanked them all for giving me the ride, even though I was quietly torn as I thought to myself that I hoped my own daughter would never pick up a strange man on the side of the road, even if she was with two of her best friends. The three girls that gave me a ride were way too trusting or way too naive.

A bell rang as soon as I opened the glass to the truck stop, yet I assumed the door opened often because no one bothered to look at me as I entered. I looked at my mobile, still no bars.

I walked up to the counter and waited for the boy behind it with the oily, slicked back hair acknowledge me. After a few moments, I cleared my throat more to catch his attention and asked, "Excuse me sir, do you happen to have a payphone around?"

The kid looked at me with a stupid stare. Either I was stupid for asking or he perhaps was not playing with a full deck. "Um, we have a phone that we pay a bill on every month. Is that what you mean?"

"Well, perhaps," I replied without being harsh, "my cell is not getting any signal, my car broke down a few miles back, and I need to make a few calls. Do you mind if I use it?"

"I could care less, but Frank would probably not allow it. He doesn't let me use it unless it is to call the cops or something. I am sure he will not let a stranger use it. Frank's bit of a cheapskate."

A big burly man, with an ugly scar across his face and and even uglier scowl, cupped the kid in the ear. "Watch yourself, boy!" He turned to look at me, "So you need to use my phone? What is in it for me? Like the moron said, nothing is for free."

I didn't recall the boy saying any such thing, but shrugged in my response, "I suppose what are you needing to have done?"

Frank looked me over as if measuring my worth. "You do not look like you are worth much of anything useful."

"You might be surprised."

"My cook called in sick, can you cook? I hate cooking and right about now, I would love a bit of a break."

"I have made a feast or two before. You let me use your phone and I'll cook for you until my ride shows up, deal?"

He eyed me suspiciously. "How long might that be."

"At least an hour."

"Deal!" Frank spit in his hand, and held it out to me. I mimicked the barbaric action and we shook on it. Frank placed his ancient touchtone phone on the counter for me and I called a number by memory.

The other end picked up after two rings, I started to talk, "Zulu-November-Golf-Delta-Alpha-Alpha-Romeo-Kilo-Juliet-Three-Echo-Zero." I hunk up the phone. "So, you going to show me your kitchen?"

"What the hell was that, bullshit? I thought you needed someone to pick you up."

"I do. They'll be here shortly. You are wasting time. You want me to cook for you a bit or not?"

~~~

"Dammit Frank, when the hell did you learn how to make burgers like this?"

"Didn't, it is the new guy."

"Well, better not scare the new guy off like every other guy you get to cook for ya."

"He is only here for a short time, payment for using my phone."

"Dammit man! Break his knees or something. This is the best grub you've served here in about three decades."

"Fuck you Bob! The food here is not that bad."

"Perhaps not, Frank. But, this IS that good!"

Frank called back to me, "Hey mister, can you make me a deluxe as well? Seems everyone thinks it is the best thing they've ev'r had."

"Sure thing, Bossman!" I always wanted a reason to say that, seemed as good a setting as any to do so.

Just as I finished Frank's burger, I heard the bell go off letting everyone know someone just walked in. This time though, everyone slowly did turn to see. I  smiled to myself and removed the grease-stained apron, knowing my ride was here.

Roxanne stood out like a flower on a cactus. She belonged anywhere in the world save here. Half of the men in the place were still in the process of scraping their jaws from the floor. Half of the women in the place turned a few shades of green. The rest of the people in this place were too stoned to noticed their hand in front of their face to realize that perhaps the most beautiful woman they will ever see just walked into this dump. I wasn't sure if it was irony or fate that Roxanne by the Police started playing on the vintage jukebox. None of the patrons here looked like the Police type.

"Here you go, Bossman. Enjoy and thanks for the use of your phone." I hand Frank a plate with the last burger I would ever make here. Made my way to Roxanne. Look at my watch, it took her 47 minutes to get here.

"What took you so long?"

She smiled sweetly, "The traffic to the middle of nowhere was a lot worse than one would have guessed."

"So Roxy, look around. Any fella look trustworthy here?" Roxanne had the uncanny ability to judge characters extremely well. She scanned the place quickly, pointing out a quiet boy, too busy scribbling in a notebook to notice us looking at him. I walked over to the boy, got his attention and slipped him Sara's number.

"What is this?" the boy said dumbly.

"It is a phone number to a particular girl. Perhaps fate means for you to fall in love with her. Perhaps fate means for you to just make her laugh. Call her tonight. That call will change your life. Don't call her, your life will never change."

With that, I walked back to Roxanne, took her hand and led her out of this dump in the middle of nowhere, that fate dumped me at.

We climbed into Roxanne's 911, she floored the gas and we slammed out of there teasing the speed of sound.

"So, do I have to take you to your rendezvous point, Alex?" she asked with a smile that could cut glass.

"No, I think the blind three will be satisfied with their touch influencing that truck stop instead. No need to go to the other destination, unless you are that bored."

At that, a set of blue and red lights started to flash behind us. I started to laugh. Roxy's smiled deepened.

"Let's see what happens with this slight diversion first, Alex. Maybe I'll even let the cops catch us. Just imagine the extra credit we can get spreading a bit of fate in jail?"

I look at Roxy and have to laugh. She was by far the most beautiful woman I knew, but she loved a side adventure almost to the point of insanity.

"Do either of us really need extra credit? We are the three, blind bitches favorites."

"Precisely. Because we are just too good at what we do. By the way, that boy just made the phone call."

"You sure?"

"As sure as I am that it is going to start to rain in about thirty seconds after we get pulled over."

Roxy pulled to the stop and rolled down the window. The cop, to his chagrin, looked like he was punched just looking at her.

"Um, do you have any idea how fast you were going, um, miss?"

Roxy smiled, and broke the man's poor heart just from the sight of it, "No officer, I was a bit preoccupied catching up with my friend, just how fast was I going?"

I started to laugh as the rain suddenly came down in sheets, soaking the cop, and soaking Roxy a bit as well. Her dress clung to her even more desperately than before. Damn, if she didn't look even sexier wet.

I didn't laugh only at that though, I laughed wondering if Sara and the shy, poetic boy she just met had any idea just how severely their lives were about to change. They never do.

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Written by fantastical in portal Fiction
Hitching Fate
The girls dropped me off at the truck stop; Sara even was bold enough to slip me a note with her number on it, wearing a grin too hungry for her age. I thanked them all for giving me the ride, even though I was quietly torn as I thought to myself that I hoped my own daughter would never pick up a strange man on the side of the road, even if she was with two of her best friends. The three girls that gave me a ride were way too trusting or way too naive.

A bell rang as soon as I opened the glass to the truck stop, yet I assumed the door opened often because no one bothered to look at me as I entered. I looked at my mobile, still no bars.

I walked up to the counter and waited for the boy behind it with the oily, slicked back hair acknowledge me. After a few moments, I cleared my throat more to catch his attention and asked, "Excuse me sir, do you happen to have a payphone around?"

The kid looked at me with a stupid stare. Either I was stupid for asking or he perhaps was not playing with a full deck. "Um, we have a phone that we pay a bill on every month. Is that what you mean?"

"Well, perhaps," I replied without being harsh, "my cell is not getting any signal, my car broke down a few miles back, and I need to make a few calls. Do you mind if I use it?"

"I could care less, but Frank would probably not allow it. He doesn't let me use it unless it is to call the cops or something. I am sure he will not let a stranger use it. Frank's bit of a cheapskate."

A big burly man, with an ugly scar across his face and and even uglier scowl, cupped the kid in the ear. "Watch yourself, boy!" He turned to look at me, "So you need to use my phone? What is in it for me? Like the moron said, nothing is for free."

I didn't recall the boy saying any such thing, but shrugged in my response, "I suppose what are you needing to have done?"

Frank looked me over as if measuring my worth. "You do not look like you are worth much of anything useful."

"You might be surprised."

"My cook called in sick, can you cook? I hate cooking and right about now, I would love a bit of a break."

"I have made a feast or two before. You let me use your phone and I'll cook for you until my ride shows up, deal?"

He eyed me suspiciously. "How long might that be."

"At least an hour."

"Deal!" Frank spit in his hand, and held it out to me. I mimicked the barbaric action and we shook on it. Frank placed his ancient touchtone phone on the counter for me and I called a number by memory.

The other end picked up after two rings, I started to talk, "Zulu-November-Golf-Delta-Alpha-Alpha-Romeo-Kilo-Juliet-Three-Echo-Zero." I hunk up the phone. "So, you going to show me your kitchen?"

"What the hell was that, bullshit? I thought you needed someone to pick you up."

"I do. They'll be here shortly. You are wasting time. You want me to cook for you a bit or not?"

~~~

"Dammit Frank, when the hell did you learn how to make burgers like this?"

"Didn't, it is the new guy."

"Well, better not scare the new guy off like every other guy you get to cook for ya."

"He is only here for a short time, payment for using my phone."

"Dammit man! Break his knees or something. This is the best grub you've served here in about three decades."

"Fuck you Bob! The food here is not that bad."

"Perhaps not, Frank. But, this IS that good!"

Frank called back to me, "Hey mister, can you make me a deluxe as well? Seems everyone thinks it is the best thing they've ev'r had."

"Sure thing, Bossman!" I always wanted a reason to say that, seemed as good a setting as any to do so.

Just as I finished Frank's burger, I heard the bell go off letting everyone know someone just walked in. This time though, everyone slowly did turn to see. I  smiled to myself and removed the grease-stained apron, knowing my ride was here.

Roxanne stood out like a flower on a cactus. She belonged anywhere in the world save here. Half of the men in the place were still in the process of scraping their jaws from the floor. Half of the women in the place turned a few shades of green. The rest of the people in this place were too stoned to noticed their hand in front of their face to realize that perhaps the most beautiful woman they will ever see just walked into this dump. I wasn't sure if it was irony or fate that Roxanne by the Police started playing on the vintage jukebox. None of the patrons here looked like the Police type.

"Here you go, Bossman. Enjoy and thanks for the use of your phone." I hand Frank a plate with the last burger I would ever make here. Made my way to Roxanne. Look at my watch, it took her 47 minutes to get here.

"What took you so long?"

She smiled sweetly, "The traffic to the middle of nowhere was a lot worse than one would have guessed."

"So Roxy, look around. Any fella look trustworthy here?" Roxanne had the uncanny ability to judge characters extremely well. She scanned the place quickly, pointing out a quiet boy, too busy scribbling in a notebook to notice us looking at him. I walked over to the boy, got his attention and slipped him Sara's number.

"What is this?" the boy said dumbly.

"It is a phone number to a particular girl. Perhaps fate means for you to fall in love with her. Perhaps fate means for you to just make her laugh. Call her tonight. That call will change your life. Don't call her, your life will never change."

With that, I walked back to Roxanne, took her hand and led her out of this dump in the middle of nowhere, that fate dumped me at.

We climbed into Roxanne's 911, she floored the gas and we slammed out of there teasing the speed of sound.

"So, do I have to take you to your rendezvous point, Alex?" she asked with a smile that could cut glass.

"No, I think the blind three will be satisfied with their touch influencing that truck stop instead. No need to go to the other destination, unless you are that bored."

At that, a set of blue and red lights started to flash behind us. I started to laugh. Roxy's smiled deepened.

"Let's see what happens with this slight diversion first, Alex. Maybe I'll even let the cops catch us. Just imagine the extra credit we can get spreading a bit of fate in jail?"

I look at Roxy and have to laugh. She was by far the most beautiful woman I knew, but she loved a side adventure almost to the point of insanity.

"Do either of us really need extra credit? We are the three, blind bitches favorites."

"Precisely. Because we are just too good at what we do. By the way, that boy just made the phone call."

"You sure?"

"As sure as I am that it is going to start to rain in about thirty seconds after we get pulled over."

Roxy pulled to the stop and rolled down the window. The cop, to his chagrin, looked like he was punched just looking at her.

"Um, do you have any idea how fast you were going, um, miss?"

Roxy smiled, and broke the man's poor heart just from the sight of it, "No officer, I was a bit preoccupied catching up with my friend, just how fast was I going?"

I started to laugh as the rain suddenly came down in sheets, soaking the cop, and soaking Roxy a bit as well. Her dress clung to her even more desperately than before. Damn, if she didn't look even sexier wet.

I didn't laugh only at that though, I laughed wondering if Sara and the shy, poetic boy she just met had any idea just how severely their lives were about to change. They never do.

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To celebrate this wonderful eclipse, write a fantasy piece in which the moon is the central element of the story/poem.
Written by Harry_Situation

Eye Sore

99 years since the last solar eclipse passed over the earth, and now it has returned to pass over the town of Brimstone. The Gravely family and friends awaited outside in the backyard for one of the universe's most anticipated moments. 

"Oh this is gonna be exciting," Carmen giddily said. "Remember to be wearing your UV glasses when the eclipse arrives, kids."

"We will," Rosemary, Regan, and Dominic replied as they sat at the picnic bench together.

Mike maned the grill, flipping some juicy steaks over the sizzling fires. "Who wants some solar eclipse steaks?" he called out.

Everyone cheered and waved a paper plate for one of Mike's stakes. With Mike's telekinetic powers they flew across the yards like meaty saucers, touching down perfectly onto everyone's plates. 

Over by the shady tree the royal adviser Legion assembled an old telescope. Lilith waltzed to where the ancient demon stood. "Ello, Legion," she greeted, "Whatcha setting up here?"

"If one is to view an astronomical event such as this," the old arachnid explained, "then it is proper to do so with this telescope."

"Blimey, you must be ecstatic about this."

"Not really. This will be my 499th time I've witnessed this event, which will pass over the sun for the duration of about 2.36 seconds; yet I can understand why some would be invested in this once in a lifetime event."

"Places everyone!" their king, Lu, hollered to everyone. "The eclipse is coming!"

Everyone huddled around the picnic benches and watched the sky. The sunny day was dimming down around them. The wind blew wildly then settled to a calm breeze. With the assistance of a pair of ultraviolet sunglasses, Carmen, Rosemary, Regan, and Dominic saw the red sun be slowly consumed by the darker moon. Smiles spread across their faces.

Carmen glanced at her husband and his supernatural company. "Honey, don't you want some-" she paused. Her cheery smile dropped when she saw her husband, his brother, his secretary, his assistant Scrugs, and his adviser looking directly into the solar eclipse, with no eye protection on. She saw their pupils boil over red as if they were sunburned by the flares. Yet their smiles still remained fresh.

2.36 seconds later—just as the old demon predicted—and the moon completed its phase over the sun. The eyes of the demons and archangel were blackened like coal. They were blinded. Carmen continued watching as their eyes quickly healed back to their original, healthy forms. Their visions returned after their brief blindness like nothing happened during those 2.36 seconds.

Lu turned to his wife. "Sorry. You say something, dear?"

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To celebrate this wonderful eclipse, write a fantasy piece in which the moon is the central element of the story/poem.
Written by Harry_Situation
Eye Sore
99 years since the last solar eclipse passed over the earth, and now it has returned to pass over the town of Brimstone. The Gravely family and friends awaited outside in the backyard for one of the universe's most anticipated moments. 

"Oh this is gonna be exciting," Carmen giddily said. "Remember to be wearing your UV glasses when the eclipse arrives, kids."

"We will," Rosemary, Regan, and Dominic replied as they sat at the picnic bench together.

Mike maned the grill, flipping some juicy steaks over the sizzling fires. "Who wants some solar eclipse steaks?" he called out.

Everyone cheered and waved a paper plate for one of Mike's stakes. With Mike's telekinetic powers they flew across the yards like meaty saucers, touching down perfectly onto everyone's plates. 

Over by the shady tree the royal adviser Legion assembled an old telescope. Lilith waltzed to where the ancient demon stood. "Ello, Legion," she greeted, "Whatcha setting up here?"

"If one is to view an astronomical event such as this," the old arachnid explained, "then it is proper to do so with this telescope."

"Blimey, you must be ecstatic about this."

"Not really. This will be my 499th time I've witnessed this event, which will pass over the sun for the duration of about 2.36 seconds; yet I can understand why some would be invested in this once in a lifetime event."

"Places everyone!" their king, Lu, hollered to everyone. "The eclipse is coming!"

Everyone huddled around the picnic benches and watched the sky. The sunny day was dimming down around them. The wind blew wildly then settled to a calm breeze. With the assistance of a pair of ultraviolet sunglasses, Carmen, Rosemary, Regan, and Dominic saw the red sun be slowly consumed by the darker moon. Smiles spread across their faces.

Carmen glanced at her husband and his supernatural company. "Honey, don't you want some-" she paused. Her cheery smile dropped when she saw her husband, his brother, his secretary, his assistant Scrugs, and his adviser looking directly into the solar eclipse, with no eye protection on. She saw their pupils boil over red as if they were sunburned by the flares. Yet their smiles still remained fresh.

2.36 seconds later—just as the old demon predicted—and the moon completed its phase over the sun. The eyes of the demons and archangel were blackened like coal. They were blinded. Carmen continued watching as their eyes quickly healed back to their original, healthy forms. Their visions returned after their brief blindness like nothing happened during those 2.36 seconds.

Lu turned to his wife. "Sorry. You say something, dear?"
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Eavesdropper. Write a short story or poem about a conversation you've overheard.
Written by TheCaptainsWife

Wedding Breakfast

         From the snippets of conversation I've overheard I can work out the 'what' they have done but I can't work out 'why?'

        So, why are the Chief Bridesmaid and the Best Man from this years Society Wedding hiding out at the end of the day in this little dockside bar? they stick out like a anchovies in a fruit salad? Him in a dove grey morning suit and red braces, her in a nice charcoal coloured backless dress, properly made up, fancy shoes and all.

        The wedding isn't over, I can hear the music drifting across the water from the reception at the upmarket resort on the other side of the bay, and it can't be a case of sudden lust for they have been together for a few years now, I know them by sight, but not well.

       This little bar, tucked between, car workshops, boat yards and the fishing co-op is not easy to find. Its frequented mainly by locals and a few renegade expats that can't stand the tourists, its not the kind of place people dress up, putting on a clean t-shirt counts as making an effort around here. It doesn't have a lot to offer apart from the fact that it must be about the maximum distance anyone could walk from the resort in those strange contraptions on her feet.

       Mind you the cook is good here,  local fare, but if you want salt-fish bakes you won't find better.

      The barmaid sets a table by the window and they leave the bar and pass by me, I can't help myself.

  "What are you two doing here?"

    "Nouvelle  Cuisine"  he said by way of explanation 

     "we're starving" she added "we've been on the go since breakfast"

 

  

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Eavesdropper. Write a short story or poem about a conversation you've overheard.
Written by TheCaptainsWife
Wedding Breakfast
         From the snippets of conversation I've overheard I can work out the 'what' they have done but I can't work out 'why?'
        So, why are the Chief Bridesmaid and the Best Man from this years Society Wedding hiding out at the end of the day in this little dockside bar? they stick out like a anchovies in a fruit salad? Him in a dove grey morning suit and red braces, her in a nice charcoal coloured backless dress, properly made up, fancy shoes and all.
        The wedding isn't over, I can hear the music drifting across the water from the reception at the upmarket resort on the other side of the bay, and it can't be a case of sudden lust for they have been together for a few years now, I know them by sight, but not well.
       This little bar, tucked between, car workshops, boat yards and the fishing co-op is not easy to find. Its frequented mainly by locals and a few renegade expats that can't stand the tourists, its not the kind of place people dress up, putting on a clean t-shirt counts as making an effort around here. It doesn't have a lot to offer apart from the fact that it must be about the maximum distance anyone could walk from the resort in those strange contraptions on her feet.
       Mind you the cook is good here,  local fare, but if you want salt-fish bakes you won't find better.
      The barmaid sets a table by the window and they leave the bar and pass by me, I can't help myself.
  "What are you two doing here?"
    "Nouvelle  Cuisine"  he said by way of explanation 
     "we're starving" she added "we've been on the go since breakfast"



 

  
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Write a ghost story worth telling around a campfire.
Written by Bunny

The Night The Circus Came To Town (Edit #3)

Max pushed up some loose blinds on his venetian curtain to look out his bedroom window on the second floor.  He was wondering about the white 'Friendly Floral' van, with rust along the chassis, that had been parked directly across the street from his house for three days now.  Living in the suburbs, all the cars and lawns looked similar.  Everything was expensive and cut to perfection.  Max had been staying over with his aunt Ivy for many years now, and he had gotten use to the layout of her street.  He didn't think a rusty old thing like that would come from anyone that lived in this blue blooded of a neighborhood.  It reminded him of something he would see on his old block in Michigan.  The van was huge, but there was no windows, except for the drivers side.  

The mystery of the van really intrigued Max.  He was the sort that had to investigate anything out of the ordinary.  He made a promise to himself to get a better view of the van at night, when he was sure there were no lights on in the other houses.  Letting the blinds fall, he bounded downstairs to brush his teeth, and get ready for the day.  He had planned to bleach his hair blonde today.  He was also supposed to go jogging with his friend Lisa, and take her down to Catskills Lake, because she had never gone before.

That night, at around 2:30 AM, Max slipped out the front door, crossing the street to get a better look at the white van.  Even from a closer distant it had a dreary aura to it.  On it's body, half bathed in shadow, was a picturesque bundle of various lilies, and roses, and orchids, and hyacinth, and tulips spilled out in a lush way along the side of van.  The picture, and the phrase 'Friendly Floral' was in elegant cursive, and seemed to be a sticker of some kind that had been plastered to the van long ago.  There was streaks of dirt, here and there, along the sticker edges that made the van look ancient.  Searching in front, and behind him at the dark houses, Max cautiously ducked behind the van, and yanked at the trunk handle as fast as he could.  Oddly, the trunk was unlocked.  As Max lifted it up slowly, he saw a mess of polka-dot clothes in the darkest left corner of the van.  He also saw a pair of floppy red shoes in the other farthest corner.  There was a bad smell coming somewhere, and Max could hear flies buzzing, although he couldn't see any of them flying in the half light.  At the center of the van there was a pile of smut magazines.  On top of the magazines sat an ash-tray that was full to the brim with cigarette butts.  One of the cigarettes was still smoldering, which meant it had just recently been smoked.  Immediately Max felt a chill up his back.  On impulse he stared back at the safety of his bedroom window and instantly froze with fright.  Staring back at him, with a menacing greasepaint smile, was a clown face.  There was blue makeup around the eyes, and exaggerated expressions drawn on the face.  Thinking immediately of his aunt, he bolted towards his house to warn her.  Unfortunately, right then a group of college guys sped past him on the road.  Max was forced to stand still for a moment.  They yelled some obscenity, and tossed a bottle out their window, that he could hear breaking somewhere in the distance.  Glancing back up at his window, Max noticed with horror that the clown had disappeared from the top window!  By the time Max had made it to the front door, and slipped his key in, he heard a blood-curdling scream that changed into a liquid gurgling sound...

The End

©

2017

Bunny Villaire 

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Write a ghost story worth telling around a campfire.
Written by Bunny
The Night The Circus Came To Town (Edit #3)
Max pushed up some loose blinds on his venetian curtain to look out his bedroom window on the second floor.  He was wondering about the white 'Friendly Floral' van, with rust along the chassis, that had been parked directly across the street from his house for three days now.  Living in the suburbs, all the cars and lawns looked similar.  Everything was expensive and cut to perfection.  Max had been staying over with his aunt Ivy for many years now, and he had gotten use to the layout of her street.  He didn't think a rusty old thing like that would come from anyone that lived in this blue blooded of a neighborhood.  It reminded him of something he would see on his old block in Michigan.  The van was huge, but there was no windows, except for the drivers side.  

The mystery of the van really intrigued Max.  He was the sort that had to investigate anything out of the ordinary.  He made a promise to himself to get a better view of the van at night, when he was sure there were no lights on in the other houses.  Letting the blinds fall, he bounded downstairs to brush his teeth, and get ready for the day.  He had planned to bleach his hair blonde today.  He was also supposed to go jogging with his friend Lisa, and take her down to Catskills Lake, because she had never gone before.

That night, at around 2:30 AM, Max slipped out the front door, crossing the street to get a better look at the white van.  Even from a closer distant it had a dreary aura to it.  On it's body, half bathed in shadow, was a picturesque bundle of various lilies, and roses, and orchids, and hyacinth, and tulips spilled out in a lush way along the side of van.  The picture, and the phrase 'Friendly Floral' was in elegant cursive, and seemed to be a sticker of some kind that had been plastered to the van long ago.  There was streaks of dirt, here and there, along the sticker edges that made the van look ancient.  Searching in front, and behind him at the dark houses, Max cautiously ducked behind the van, and yanked at the trunk handle as fast as he could.  Oddly, the trunk was unlocked.  As Max lifted it up slowly, he saw a mess of polka-dot clothes in the darkest left corner of the van.  He also saw a pair of floppy red shoes in the other farthest corner.  There was a bad smell coming somewhere, and Max could hear flies buzzing, although he couldn't see any of them flying in the half light.  At the center of the van there was a pile of smut magazines.  On top of the magazines sat an ash-tray that was full to the brim with cigarette butts.  One of the cigarettes was still smoldering, which meant it had just recently been smoked.  Immediately Max felt a chill up his back.  On impulse he stared back at the safety of his bedroom window and instantly froze with fright.  Staring back at him, with a menacing greasepaint smile, was a clown face.  There was blue makeup around the eyes, and exaggerated expressions drawn on the face.  Thinking immediately of his aunt, he bolted towards his house to warn her.  Unfortunately, right then a group of college guys sped past him on the road.  Max was forced to stand still for a moment.  They yelled some obscenity, and tossed a bottle out their window, that he could hear breaking somewhere in the distance.  Glancing back up at his window, Max noticed with horror that the clown had disappeared from the top window!  By the time Max had made it to the front door, and slipped his key in, he heard a blood-curdling scream that changed into a liquid gurgling sound...

The End


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To celebrate this wonderful eclipse, write a fantasy piece in which the moon is the central element of the story/poem.
Written by Mike1073

Eclipse

Unknown in your Beauty never matched in your aw, I gaze at you without certainty that I will ever see again. Visions of golden rings sweep me off my feet and set me free calling out your name brings me closer to your silhouette in the dark... If there was ever a moment to remember it would be now, today, this moment or never. Why is this happening? why are you here? why are you leaving? and will you ever come back? Our love was a solar eclipse and I've bin blinded can you show me now that the sky is blue if you'd ever take me back? Am I the man for you? Sincerely the moon.

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To celebrate this wonderful eclipse, write a fantasy piece in which the moon is the central element of the story/poem.
Written by Mike1073
Eclipse
Unknown in your Beauty never matched in your aw, I gaze at you without certainty that I will ever see again. Visions of golden rings sweep me off my feet and set me free calling out your name brings me closer to your silhouette in the dark... If there was ever a moment to remember it would be now, today, this moment or never. Why is this happening? why are you here? why are you leaving? and will you ever come back? Our love was a solar eclipse and I've bin blinded can you show me now that the sky is blue if you'd ever take me back? Am I the man for you? Sincerely the moon.
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Written by Randombunny in portal Fiction

Weeds

There used to be a tree in the backyard. It fell two summers ago, struck by lightning. We chopped it up, used it for firewood in the winter.

That stump, I used it to have tea parties with the fairies that lived in the honeysuckle. Little acorns for cups, leaves for plates, while they wove flowers into a crown for me. Said I was a princess, and they loved me. I wished so bad I could fly like they did. Wished a bite of leaf would fill me up, so I wouldn't be hungry anymore. Wished I could live with them, and smell honeysuckle all day long.

They said I could, if I listened close, and did as I was told.

So I went down to the creek, all dressed and laid down.

Now I can fly, and I'm not hungry anymore, and there's honeysuckle curled around my headstone, and it smells so sweet.

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Written by Randombunny in portal Fiction
Weeds
There used to be a tree in the backyard. It fell two summers ago, struck by lightning. We chopped it up, used it for firewood in the winter.
That stump, I used it to have tea parties with the fairies that lived in the honeysuckle. Little acorns for cups, leaves for plates, while they wove flowers into a crown for me. Said I was a princess, and they loved me. I wished so bad I could fly like they did. Wished a bite of leaf would fill me up, so I wouldn't be hungry anymore. Wished I could live with them, and smell honeysuckle all day long.
They said I could, if I listened close, and did as I was told.
So I went down to the creek, all dressed and laid down.
Now I can fly, and I'm not hungry anymore, and there's honeysuckle curled around my headstone, and it smells so sweet.
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Chapter 3 of Running With Wolves
Written by ChanelleJoy in portal Fiction

FROZEN TEARS

Everywhere we looked there was snow. We had lost track of how long we had been walking but it had been some time. Progress was slow and getting slower by the day. We had made it to the Ottowa River got across the frozen waters with no drama. If we thought it had been cold before, on the other side of the river was a whole other story. It was as though we had stepped onto another planet. The snow was coming down in thick sheets by this time and it was difficult to see very far ahead but, what we could make out ceased our tracks. Where buildings should have been, there was only snow; an endless expanse of snow with the very tip of a roof spotted at random intervals. My heart fell and hopes of finding Rowen alive plummeted along with it. If it weren’t for that niggling feeling in the very deepest part of my soul, I would have given up. I hadn’t received a mental image for a while now and the last one I did get was not very helpful. Just another brilliant flash of white with a few added, grey blobs. Were they supposed to be people? Then a word had come to me. Wolves. They were wolves? What could this mean? Was she being attacked by a pack of wolves? No. I could sense no fear in her image anymore. That was promising. I tried to calculate how much time would have passed since this ice age – I could deny it no longer – had started. The days were beginning to blur together and our cell phones had long run out of battery. We had no idea what day it was. We were exhausted and cold and it was getting extremely difficult to keep moving.

On and on we went. Even when the building tops became invisible, on we pushed across uninterrupted fields of white. We had not come across one person in all this time, which I estimated to be approximately two weeks. Though we had been certain we were heading in the direction of Halifax, I was no longer sure. We had only our compass to guide us and for all I knew, we could have got turned around and were walking back the way we came. Our supplies were dwindling and we were surviving on strict rations. We had thought we would be able to restock along the way. We couldn’t have known everything would end up buried under mountains of snow and ice.

“Reuben?” Seth drew up beside me. “We should go back.”

I didn’t even realise I had stopped – mid-step, too, by the look of it. I turned to him and sighed. “Go back where?”

“Back. Anywhere there is civilisation. I can’t keep going and neither can you. If we do, we will die out here. We should go back and wait this thing out like Rowen is probably doing, safe and warm.”

I could still feel the connection, the rope pulling me towards my twin that told me she was alive. It had to mean she had found somewhere safe, didn’t it? Seth coughed violently. He had started several days ago and though he didn’t say anything, I knew he was struggling. We both were. I couldn’t allow myself to be responsible for Seth’s death and I couldn’t tell him to turn back alone. He would never survive. I stood there pondering my options. Maybe I could take Seth back to where there were people and head back out on my own. Yes, I thought, that’s what I will do.

“Okay,” I said aloud. “We’ll turn around.” I will come back for you, Rowen. Do you hear me? I won’t leave you.

Seth gave a nod and we set out. He coughed again causing me to cringe and pray earnestly that he would make it back. I can’t really say I was religious. It wasn’t like I went to church every Sunday. Sure, we went as a family at Easter and Christmas, but I think that was more because we thought it was the right thing to do rather than because we held belief in the idea of God. Over the years, I’d given it some thought now and then, however, I was yet to come up with a solid opinion. I guess I believed there was something out there, something greater than ourselves. I just wasn’t sure what. The Bible pulsed in my pocket. I had taken to reading it each night, finding myself devouring the words like food. Even Seth started to take an interest. It became our nightly ritual and we came to find ourselves relying on it more and more. Some of the passages didn’t make much sense so, we would skip over those ones. Others, though… others seemed to sing with power and strength, filling us full of wonderful sentiments and promises. Maybe it was God, maybe not, but it was something and we would take whatever we could get to help us through this journey.

That something must have had other plans. To my despair, when I woke the next morning, Seth did not. I reached out a trembling hand to feel for a pulse. His skin was frozen, blood no longer pumping through the veins and arteries. I wasn’t usually one to cry, at least, not of my own volition. When Rowen cried, on the other hand, I couldn’t help but cry as well. Even if we were miles apart, I would suddenly find tears streaming down my cheeks and I would know immediately that Rowen was crying and quite often, why. Right now, the tears spilled from my eyes, pouring forth my own emotions, exhaustion and fear. I could feel the tears freeze on my cheeks before they made it half way down my face. I don’t know how long I sat there for. I had sunk into the deepest depression I had ever experienced and for a while, I considered just staying where I was until I died. It was only fair. It was my fault Seth had died. Part of me knew Seth would tell me otherwise. “It was my choice to come with you,” he would say. Every now and then I would think I saw him move and would shake him, screaming his name. When he wouldn’t awaken, I’d scream again.

“Where are you now, God?” I’d cry in disdain, among other unintelligible babblings. I think I was losing it.

I wrenched the Bible from my pocket and threw it at the side of the tent. It landed with a thud, splayed open. I ignored it. Then, just when I thought I had made up my mind to stay put, a strong image flared to life in my head along with the word “brother.” It was so vivid and so strong it came like a slap in the face and I gasped in shock. It was not dissimilar to the ones from before; just blinding white snow and wolves. Why was Rowen showing me wolves? I hadn’t figured that out yet. And now, when I was thinking I would not see or hear another message from her again, I get this; right when I was about to give up. Was it a coincidence? Possible, yet, being Rowen, likely not. Either way, it was the awakening I needed. What had I been thinking? I didn’t have time to die. I had to find my sister. She was out there, right now, alive and needing me. Get up, Reuben. Get the hell up! I unzipped the door of the tent and dragged Seth’s body out. I felt like a robot set to automatic as I used a small shovel to dig an icy grave. It was the right thing to do.

“I’m so sorry, Seth,” I whispered, crouching before the makeshift grave. “I should have told you more but, I loved you. You weren’t just my friend, you were my brother. Thank you for everything. I will never forget you and, if I live through this, I’ll find your family and I’ll make sure they know how amazing you are… were,” I amended, a lump catching in my throat. Rising, I tried not to think about what would happen if the ice melted. If it ever melts, I thought bitterly.

With a last look at the fresh mound of snow, I re-entered the tent to begin packing. The Bible lay where it had fallen, still open. Gingerly, I picked it up and glanced at the page.

“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

It was a verse from the book of Revelation. From what I could remember from my few sermons, this was talking about the second coming of Jesus, when we would go to Heaven to be with our passed loved ones and everything would be perfect. I rolled my eyes. I wanted to still be angry at the injustice of it all; Seth, my family, this damned ice age and everything else. Stubbornly, I tried to hold onto the rage, to bury it and let it fester away inside. But I couldn’t. It was slipping away, escaping my desperate clutches and being replaced by peace.

“No!” I didn’t have the right to feel peace. At least your parents and Seth are somewhere far better than here. Even my thoughts betrayed me, though they were right. Still, it didn’t make it any easier.

Fighting an internal battle, I finished packing and readied myself to go on alone; except there was something blocking my path. I blinked several times thinking I must have been hallucinating. Before me, stood a wolf; a majestic beast with grey and white fur and sapphire blue eyes. It was the most beautiful wolf I had ever seen though, there was something strange about the way it was looking at me. I didn’t feel threatened. There was no malice or savageness in the wolf’s silent gaze. Instead, it looked at me tenderly, like it knew me; like it knew who I was and everything about me. I squeezed my eyes shut, shook my head and looked again. The wolf was still there, cocking its head as if to say, “What are you doing?” Slowly, the wolf approached me. Still, I did not feel I was in any danger. The term “angel” came to mind as it kept inching forward until it was close enough for me to reach out a hand and touch the soft fur. Even so, I didn’t move, staying frozen to the spot as I waited to see what the wolf was going to do. Suddenly, the wolf nipped at the sleeve of my jacket and gave a small tug.

“Hey!” I cried.

The wolf cocked its head once more, turned and started to walk away. I thought it was leaving until it paused to turn its head back in my direction. Frowning, I took a step. It gave me what could only be a nod before beginning to walk again. Was I meant to follow it? I must have been because, when the wolf looked back at me for a third time to see I hadn’t taken another step, it trotted back over to nip and tug at my sleeve again.

“Ok! I get it. I’ll follow you.”

Shaking my head in bewilderment, I took off after my strange new companion. Maybe I’m dreaming. These things didn’t happen in real life. They did to Rowen. Another vision sprang to life. In it I saw a small log cabin nestled among trees and snow. Strange. It didn’t feel like it came from Rowen. The wolf was studying me intently.

“Was that you?” I asked incredulously.

The wolf gave another nod and my jaw dropped. Rowen was the one who could talk to wolves, not me. The wolf’s eyes bored into mine as another image accosted my vision; an image of a woman I knew all too well. Long, blonde hair framed a face identical to mine, if only more feminine, and deep, forest green eyes peered out at me. It was Rowen. I inhaled so sharply that I choked, causing an immediate coughing fit. Gasping for air, I met the wolf’s gaze.

“You know my sister? You know Rowen?” I demanded.

In reply, the wolf simply turned around, beckoning me to keep following. I had no idea where I was although, it should be somewhere in Quebec if we had stayed true to our course. Should I trust this wolf? Rowen would, my conscious told me. That decided it. With this spectacular creature by my side, I began the next chapter of my journey. I’m still coming, Rowen.

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Chapter 3 of Running With Wolves
Written by ChanelleJoy in portal Fiction
FROZEN TEARS
Everywhere we looked there was snow. We had lost track of how long we had been walking but it had been some time. Progress was slow and getting slower by the day. We had made it to the Ottowa River got across the frozen waters with no drama. If we thought it had been cold before, on the other side of the river was a whole other story. It was as though we had stepped onto another planet. The snow was coming down in thick sheets by this time and it was difficult to see very far ahead but, what we could make out ceased our tracks. Where buildings should have been, there was only snow; an endless expanse of snow with the very tip of a roof spotted at random intervals. My heart fell and hopes of finding Rowen alive plummeted along with it. If it weren’t for that niggling feeling in the very deepest part of my soul, I would have given up. I hadn’t received a mental image for a while now and the last one I did get was not very helpful. Just another brilliant flash of white with a few added, grey blobs. Were they supposed to be people? Then a word had come to me. Wolves. They were wolves? What could this mean? Was she being attacked by a pack of wolves? No. I could sense no fear in her image anymore. That was promising. I tried to calculate how much time would have passed since this ice age – I could deny it no longer – had started. The days were beginning to blur together and our cell phones had long run out of battery. We had no idea what day it was. We were exhausted and cold and it was getting extremely difficult to keep moving.

On and on we went. Even when the building tops became invisible, on we pushed across uninterrupted fields of white. We had not come across one person in all this time, which I estimated to be approximately two weeks. Though we had been certain we were heading in the direction of Halifax, I was no longer sure. We had only our compass to guide us and for all I knew, we could have got turned around and were walking back the way we came. Our supplies were dwindling and we were surviving on strict rations. We had thought we would be able to restock along the way. We couldn’t have known everything would end up buried under mountains of snow and ice.

“Reuben?” Seth drew up beside me. “We should go back.”

I didn’t even realise I had stopped – mid-step, too, by the look of it. I turned to him and sighed. “Go back where?”

“Back. Anywhere there is civilisation. I can’t keep going and neither can you. If we do, we will die out here. We should go back and wait this thing out like Rowen is probably doing, safe and warm.”

I could still feel the connection, the rope pulling me towards my twin that told me she was alive. It had to mean she had found somewhere safe, didn’t it? Seth coughed violently. He had started several days ago and though he didn’t say anything, I knew he was struggling. We both were. I couldn’t allow myself to be responsible for Seth’s death and I couldn’t tell him to turn back alone. He would never survive. I stood there pondering my options. Maybe I could take Seth back to where there were people and head back out on my own. Yes, I thought, that’s what I will do.

“Okay,” I said aloud. “We’ll turn around.” I will come back for you, Rowen. Do you hear me? I won’t leave you.

Seth gave a nod and we set out. He coughed again causing me to cringe and pray earnestly that he would make it back. I can’t really say I was religious. It wasn’t like I went to church every Sunday. Sure, we went as a family at Easter and Christmas, but I think that was more because we thought it was the right thing to do rather than because we held belief in the idea of God. Over the years, I’d given it some thought now and then, however, I was yet to come up with a solid opinion. I guess I believed there was something out there, something greater than ourselves. I just wasn’t sure what. The Bible pulsed in my pocket. I had taken to reading it each night, finding myself devouring the words like food. Even Seth started to take an interest. It became our nightly ritual and we came to find ourselves relying on it more and more. Some of the passages didn’t make much sense so, we would skip over those ones. Others, though… others seemed to sing with power and strength, filling us full of wonderful sentiments and promises. Maybe it was God, maybe not, but it was something and we would take whatever we could get to help us through this journey.

That something must have had other plans. To my despair, when I woke the next morning, Seth did not. I reached out a trembling hand to feel for a pulse. His skin was frozen, blood no longer pumping through the veins and arteries. I wasn’t usually one to cry, at least, not of my own volition. When Rowen cried, on the other hand, I couldn’t help but cry as well. Even if we were miles apart, I would suddenly find tears streaming down my cheeks and I would know immediately that Rowen was crying and quite often, why. Right now, the tears spilled from my eyes, pouring forth my own emotions, exhaustion and fear. I could feel the tears freeze on my cheeks before they made it half way down my face. I don’t know how long I sat there for. I had sunk into the deepest depression I had ever experienced and for a while, I considered just staying where I was until I died. It was only fair. It was my fault Seth had died. Part of me knew Seth would tell me otherwise. “It was my choice to come with you,” he would say. Every now and then I would think I saw him move and would shake him, screaming his name. When he wouldn’t awaken, I’d scream again.

“Where are you now, God?” I’d cry in disdain, among other unintelligible babblings. I think I was losing it.

I wrenched the Bible from my pocket and threw it at the side of the tent. It landed with a thud, splayed open. I ignored it. Then, just when I thought I had made up my mind to stay put, a strong image flared to life in my head along with the word “brother.” It was so vivid and so strong it came like a slap in the face and I gasped in shock. It was not dissimilar to the ones from before; just blinding white snow and wolves. Why was Rowen showing me wolves? I hadn’t figured that out yet. And now, when I was thinking I would not see or hear another message from her again, I get this; right when I was about to give up. Was it a coincidence? Possible, yet, being Rowen, likely not. Either way, it was the awakening I needed. What had I been thinking? I didn’t have time to die. I had to find my sister. She was out there, right now, alive and needing me. Get up, Reuben. Get the hell up! I unzipped the door of the tent and dragged Seth’s body out. I felt like a robot set to automatic as I used a small shovel to dig an icy grave. It was the right thing to do.

“I’m so sorry, Seth,” I whispered, crouching before the makeshift grave. “I should have told you more but, I loved you. You weren’t just my friend, you were my brother. Thank you for everything. I will never forget you and, if I live through this, I’ll find your family and I’ll make sure they know how amazing you are… were,” I amended, a lump catching in my throat. Rising, I tried not to think about what would happen if the ice melted. If it ever melts, I thought bitterly.

With a last look at the fresh mound of snow, I re-entered the tent to begin packing. The Bible lay where it had fallen, still open. Gingerly, I picked it up and glanced at the page.

“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

It was a verse from the book of Revelation. From what I could remember from my few sermons, this was talking about the second coming of Jesus, when we would go to Heaven to be with our passed loved ones and everything would be perfect. I rolled my eyes. I wanted to still be angry at the injustice of it all; Seth, my family, this damned ice age and everything else. Stubbornly, I tried to hold onto the rage, to bury it and let it fester away inside. But I couldn’t. It was slipping away, escaping my desperate clutches and being replaced by peace.

“No!” I didn’t have the right to feel peace. At least your parents and Seth are somewhere far better than here. Even my thoughts betrayed me, though they were right. Still, it didn’t make it any easier.

Fighting an internal battle, I finished packing and readied myself to go on alone; except there was something blocking my path. I blinked several times thinking I must have been hallucinating. Before me, stood a wolf; a majestic beast with grey and white fur and sapphire blue eyes. It was the most beautiful wolf I had ever seen though, there was something strange about the way it was looking at me. I didn’t feel threatened. There was no malice or savageness in the wolf’s silent gaze. Instead, it looked at me tenderly, like it knew me; like it knew who I was and everything about me. I squeezed my eyes shut, shook my head and looked again. The wolf was still there, cocking its head as if to say, “What are you doing?” Slowly, the wolf approached me. Still, I did not feel I was in any danger. The term “angel” came to mind as it kept inching forward until it was close enough for me to reach out a hand and touch the soft fur. Even so, I didn’t move, staying frozen to the spot as I waited to see what the wolf was going to do. Suddenly, the wolf nipped at the sleeve of my jacket and gave a small tug.

“Hey!” I cried.

The wolf cocked its head once more, turned and started to walk away. I thought it was leaving until it paused to turn its head back in my direction. Frowning, I took a step. It gave me what could only be a nod before beginning to walk again. Was I meant to follow it? I must have been because, when the wolf looked back at me for a third time to see I hadn’t taken another step, it trotted back over to nip and tug at my sleeve again.

“Ok! I get it. I’ll follow you.”

Shaking my head in bewilderment, I took off after my strange new companion. Maybe I’m dreaming. These things didn’t happen in real life. They did to Rowen. Another vision sprang to life. In it I saw a small log cabin nestled among trees and snow. Strange. It didn’t feel like it came from Rowen. The wolf was studying me intently.

“Was that you?” I asked incredulously.

The wolf gave another nod and my jaw dropped. Rowen was the one who could talk to wolves, not me. The wolf’s eyes bored into mine as another image accosted my vision; an image of a woman I knew all too well. Long, blonde hair framed a face identical to mine, if only more feminine, and deep, forest green eyes peered out at me. It was Rowen. I inhaled so sharply that I choked, causing an immediate coughing fit. Gasping for air, I met the wolf’s gaze.

“You know my sister? You know Rowen?” I demanded.

In reply, the wolf simply turned around, beckoning me to keep following. I had no idea where I was although, it should be somewhere in Quebec if we had stayed true to our course. Should I trust this wolf? Rowen would, my conscious told me. That decided it. With this spectacular creature by my side, I began the next chapter of my journey. I’m still coming, Rowen.

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Write an R-rated short story.
Written by Voyager33 in portal Fiction

Stone Cold

Cold... So cold... Why am I so cold?

Jarod opened his eyes. It was still dark. He was to afraid to look at the clock but he had to. He turned his head slowly. His body dead still where it lay under a thin sheet on his single bed. He stared at the soft red glow of his digital clock.

3:33am

"Dammit!" He jumped out of bed throwing his sheet carelessly on the floor and darted to the window. He pulled back the curtain of the only window in his one bedroom apartment on the fifth floor, which overlooked Westcreek Park, and looked down onto the same bench he had looked at the previous morning at this time, and every other morning - since that day. A figure dressed in black waved at him as he always did and placed an envelope in the dustbin beside the bench then walked away.

Jarod hurried down the five flights of steps and out of the building doors. He stood next to the bench in his boxers. Stretching his arm out into the dustbin he removed the envelope.

"Be white. Please be white." Jarod pleaded to himself.

"Red... No!" He hurried up the stairs back into his apartment locking the door behind him. Tossing the red envelope onto his bed Jarod opened his wardrobe. Black jeans. Black shirt. Black hoody. Black running shoes. He stood still at the foot of his bed staring at the red envelope. Not wanting to open it but having to. He snatched it up and tore it open revealing a photograph.

"Black pin-striped suite. Black hat with a white rim. Silver skull cufflinks." Jarod's heart beat heavy in his chest.

"The Skull Pin gang!" He turned the photograph over.

Dunning, Dock17, Pinnacle, Duncan Deyer

A cold chill ran through Jarod's body as he read.

"Already?" Jarod shoved the photograph into the front pocket of his hoody. He flipped his bed up against the wall exposing the wooden floor. On his knees he pulled at the loose planks removing them one by one. Grabbing the backpack that lay beneath the floor Jarod swung it over his arm and and onto his back and dropped the bed back down covering the hole in the floor.

"Dunning harbor. I haven't been there in a while."

Jarod closed the door to his apartment. He stood a moment staring at the number 33 on his door.

"How did I get here?" His thought was accompanied by a familiar rising sensation that always started at his feet.

Cold.

He locked the door and hurried down stairs to the basement where he found his motorcycle parked and ready.

Jarod kicked his bike stand down and hid his motorcycle in the shadows between two old shipping containers. Dunning harbor was unusually quiet. Jarod knew that it was no coincidence. The man who provided him with the envelope chose tonight for a reason. Jarod walked slowly down the docks aware of the cold that had now risen up to his knees.

"At this rate the cold will have me before I can make it home... Dammit!" Jarod picked up his pace. As he passed dock 16 Jarod stopped. Positioning himself in the darkness where the dim lampposts' light failed to reach he squinted his eyes as he searched the names in the boats floating at dock 17.

"Pinnacle." The name was clear as day even in the dark of night. Jarod moved closer. Slowly. Finally he was beside the boat. The cold was now closing in on his waste. Jarod shivered as he snuck a peek through one of the small windows of the boat.

"Nothing..." He moved on to the next window. This time he heard voices before he dared look through the window. Deep heavy voices arguing about something. Jarod moved closer.

"What do you mean it's not here!?" The first man spoke in anger. His voice strong and full of authority.

"Sorry Mr. Deyer sir. I just received a call five minutes before you arrived. Manual said the shipment has been intercepted." The second voice was trembling with fear. Jarod almost felt sorry for the man.

"My crew is already with Manual sir. They will have answers for you soon."

"A third man! This is not good... what to do. What to do?" Jarod slid down to the floor. Sitting on the cold concrete of dock 17 just outside from the man he had to kill Jarod buried his head in his hands. "Maybe I should wait for the cold to take me? It's already chest high. At least then I won't have to deal with the memory of killing someone - even if he is a drug lord."

BANG!!

Jarod jumped to his feet as he swung the back pack of from his back and stood hard up against the boat. Gun in hand.

"What just happened? Dammit! Focus Jarod." Jarod slowly moved his head towards the window.

Ka-Klank!

Jarod froze. He had not noticed the door right behind him. It was now open and two men walked out the boat. Luckily the door swung in Jarod's direction blocking him from the two men's sight. Even more fortunate was the sound of footsteps walking away from him - door still open. Jarod dared not swallow in fear of making a noise when in actuality all he really wanted to do was throw-up.

"Where you born in a barn man!?" Jarod recognized the first voice he had heard. The voice of the man he had to kill. The drug lord, Duncan Deyer. "Go close the door!"

"Close the door? Did he just say close the door...!?" Jarod forced his body to move as he spun around to see the door swing shut.

"Well well. What have we..."

BANG!!

Jarod could no longer feel his fingers. The cold had come quicker than normal. It was now moving up his neck as he watched the man he had just shot collapse to the floor in front of him. He focused his eyes on Duncan Deyer who was now making his way down the docks. Running.

"Dammit! Dammit!!" Jarod's body was now moving on its own. The cold had taken away not only all physical feeling but his own will was also no longer his own. As the cold moved over his nose he looked on as he closed the gap between himself and the drug lord. Jarod watched his arm lift in mid flight. Taking aim.

"At least this time there will be no collateral damage..." That thought brought welcomed warmth to a body that was now completely stone cold.

BANG!!

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Write an R-rated short story.
Written by Voyager33 in portal Fiction
Stone Cold
Cold... So cold... Why am I so cold?

Jarod opened his eyes. It was still dark. He was to afraid to look at the clock but he had to. He turned his head slowly. His body dead still where it lay under a thin sheet on his single bed. He stared at the soft red glow of his digital clock.

3:33am

"Dammit!" He jumped out of bed throwing his sheet carelessly on the floor and darted to the window. He pulled back the curtain of the only window in his one bedroom apartment on the fifth floor, which overlooked Westcreek Park, and looked down onto the same bench he had looked at the previous morning at this time, and every other morning - since that day. A figure dressed in black waved at him as he always did and placed an envelope in the dustbin beside the bench then walked away.
Jarod hurried down the five flights of steps and out of the building doors. He stood next to the bench in his boxers. Stretching his arm out into the dustbin he removed the envelope.
"Be white. Please be white." Jarod pleaded to himself.
"Red... No!" He hurried up the stairs back into his apartment locking the door behind him. Tossing the red envelope onto his bed Jarod opened his wardrobe. Black jeans. Black shirt. Black hoody. Black running shoes. He stood still at the foot of his bed staring at the red envelope. Not wanting to open it but having to. He snatched it up and tore it open revealing a photograph.
"Black pin-striped suite. Black hat with a white rim. Silver skull cufflinks." Jarod's heart beat heavy in his chest.
"The Skull Pin gang!" He turned the photograph over.

Dunning, Dock17, Pinnacle, Duncan Deyer

A cold chill ran through Jarod's body as he read.
"Already?" Jarod shoved the photograph into the front pocket of his hoody. He flipped his bed up against the wall exposing the wooden floor. On his knees he pulled at the loose planks removing them one by one. Grabbing the backpack that lay beneath the floor Jarod swung it over his arm and and onto his back and dropped the bed back down covering the hole in the floor.
"Dunning harbor. I haven't been there in a while."
Jarod closed the door to his apartment. He stood a moment staring at the number 33 on his door.
"How did I get here?" His thought was accompanied by a familiar rising sensation that always started at his feet.
Cold.
He locked the door and hurried down stairs to the basement where he found his motorcycle parked and ready.

Jarod kicked his bike stand down and hid his motorcycle in the shadows between two old shipping containers. Dunning harbor was unusually quiet. Jarod knew that it was no coincidence. The man who provided him with the envelope chose tonight for a reason. Jarod walked slowly down the docks aware of the cold that had now risen up to his knees.
"At this rate the cold will have me before I can make it home... Dammit!" Jarod picked up his pace. As he passed dock 16 Jarod stopped. Positioning himself in the darkness where the dim lampposts' light failed to reach he squinted his eyes as he searched the names in the boats floating at dock 17.
"Pinnacle." The name was clear as day even in the dark of night. Jarod moved closer. Slowly. Finally he was beside the boat. The cold was now closing in on his waste. Jarod shivered as he snuck a peek through one of the small windows of the boat.
"Nothing..." He moved on to the next window. This time he heard voices before he dared look through the window. Deep heavy voices arguing about something. Jarod moved closer.
"What do you mean it's not here!?" The first man spoke in anger. His voice strong and full of authority.
"Sorry Mr. Deyer sir. I just received a call five minutes before you arrived. Manual said the shipment has been intercepted." The second voice was trembling with fear. Jarod almost felt sorry for the man.
"My crew is already with Manual sir. They will have answers for you soon."
"A third man! This is not good... what to do. What to do?" Jarod slid down to the floor. Sitting on the cold concrete of dock 17 just outside from the man he had to kill Jarod buried his head in his hands. "Maybe I should wait for the cold to take me? It's already chest high. At least then I won't have to deal with the memory of killing someone - even if he is a drug lord."

BANG!!

Jarod jumped to his feet as he swung the back pack of from his back and stood hard up against the boat. Gun in hand.
"What just happened? Dammit! Focus Jarod." Jarod slowly moved his head towards the window.
Ka-Klank!
Jarod froze. He had not noticed the door right behind him. It was now open and two men walked out the boat. Luckily the door swung in Jarod's direction blocking him from the two men's sight. Even more fortunate was the sound of footsteps walking away from him - door still open. Jarod dared not swallow in fear of making a noise when in actuality all he really wanted to do was throw-up.
"Where you born in a barn man!?" Jarod recognized the first voice he had heard. The voice of the man he had to kill. The drug lord, Duncan Deyer. "Go close the door!"
"Close the door? Did he just say close the door...!?" Jarod forced his body to move as he spun around to see the door swing shut.
"Well well. What have we..."

BANG!!

Jarod could no longer feel his fingers. The cold had come quicker than normal. It was now moving up his neck as he watched the man he had just shot collapse to the floor in front of him. He focused his eyes on Duncan Deyer who was now making his way down the docks. Running.
"Dammit! Dammit!!" Jarod's body was now moving on its own. The cold had taken away not only all physical feeling but his own will was also no longer his own. As the cold moved over his nose he looked on as he closed the gap between himself and the drug lord. Jarod watched his arm lift in mid flight. Taking aim.
"At least this time there will be no collateral damage..." That thought brought welcomed warmth to a body that was now completely stone cold.

BANG!!
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Written by zoenixon

The Great Power of the 1st Paragraph: How to Make It Engaging?

Every writer hopes to draw the audience to their content through the title they use. However, what determines whether the reader goes through the whole content or simply ignore it, is the first paragraph. Does it appeal to your audience to read more?

It begs the discussion on how to write an engaging first paragraph. Remember, if you write your article while bored, the same will pass to your audience. While it is possible to draft a whole article with an online rewriting tool, you will need to invest time and thought into your introduction.

If writing the introduction for a particular piece of article is giving you a headache, you can always start with the content that falls into the body of the article, and finish with an intriguing introduction that will hook the audience. It isn’t a matter of rocket science, but with practice and the willingness to learn, comes a long way.

What do readers Look for in an Introduction?

a)    Start with a story

You can use a story as an introduction to your article. The story should give detail on how it relates with the overall essay. In this kind of introduction, however, one is likely to get lost in the story and ends up rambling.

It should be a short story to form a connection with the audience. Your article introduction, shouldn’t be too long either, as the primary intent or rather message, of your story, will get lost in the story.

b)    Build empathy with the audience

We are more likely to read through an essay that we can relate to, than otherwise. As a writer, it is therefore important to empathize with the audience. You could use phrases such as; we can associate, etc. You want the audience to connect with the article and be able to see them in that particular situation that you would like to address.

When you point out something that they can relate to, you can get their attention, and the audience will want to read more of the content.

c)    Use a “you” opening

As you use an online paragraph rewriter rephrase your source materials, you could use the reference ’you,' in your opening. A paragraph that has you addresses the reader directly. They often start in the form of a question, but not always. Example, “Do you check your emails, daily?”

To make such an introduction enticing to the reader, try and picture the ideal audience. What could be bothering them or what could they be doing at the moment? Describe these details in your first paragraph and use the word “you.”

d)    Show expertise

It primarily applies to company blog posts. You can start the first paragraph of some of your blog posts with a description of your expertise in a particular field. It is a great content marketing strategy.

The reader will be more attentive and willing to read the article if they can feel that you are an expert in a particular field. You can refer to customers needing to know more about a certain product or provide answers for a common set of questions, that people ask your team.

e)    Use “I” or “me.”

Many may not be comfortable with using this kind of approach in the first paragraph. However, it is a way to help the audience connect with the story by recognizing and relating to your feelings. You are not writing a monologue.

Therefore, your writing should try to converse with the reader. Ask a question that the reader could even nod to or answer in their head.

Conclusion

How you draft your introduction will determine whether the reader gets hooked or not. It is, therefore, important to invest in your introduction. The above tips will help you make your introductions engaging to the audience who will want to read more of the article.

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Written by zoenixon
The Great Power of the 1st Paragraph: How to Make It Engaging?
Every writer hopes to draw the audience to their content through the title they use. However, what determines whether the reader goes through the whole content or simply ignore it, is the first paragraph. Does it appeal to your audience to read more?

It begs the discussion on how to write an engaging first paragraph. Remember, if you write your article while bored, the same will pass to your audience. While it is possible to draft a whole article with an online rewriting tool, you will need to invest time and thought into your introduction.

If writing the introduction for a particular piece of article is giving you a headache, you can always start with the content that falls into the body of the article, and finish with an intriguing introduction that will hook the audience. It isn’t a matter of rocket science, but with practice and the willingness to learn, comes a long way.

What do readers Look for in an Introduction?
a)    Start with a story
You can use a story as an introduction to your article. The story should give detail on how it relates with the overall essay. In this kind of introduction, however, one is likely to get lost in the story and ends up rambling.

It should be a short story to form a connection with the audience. Your article introduction, shouldn’t be too long either, as the primary intent or rather message, of your story, will get lost in the story.

b)    Build empathy with the audience
We are more likely to read through an essay that we can relate to, than otherwise. As a writer, it is therefore important to empathize with the audience. You could use phrases such as; we can associate, etc. You want the audience to connect with the article and be able to see them in that particular situation that you would like to address.

When you point out something that they can relate to, you can get their attention, and the audience will want to read more of the content.

c)    Use a “you” opening
As you use an online paragraph rewriter rephrase your source materials, you could use the reference ’you,' in your opening. A paragraph that has you addresses the reader directly. They often start in the form of a question, but not always. Example, “Do you check your emails, daily?”

To make such an introduction enticing to the reader, try and picture the ideal audience. What could be bothering them or what could they be doing at the moment? Describe these details in your first paragraph and use the word “you.”

d)    Show expertise
It primarily applies to company blog posts. You can start the first paragraph of some of your blog posts with a description of your expertise in a particular field. It is a great content marketing strategy.

The reader will be more attentive and willing to read the article if they can feel that you are an expert in a particular field. You can refer to customers needing to know more about a certain product or provide answers for a common set of questions, that people ask your team.

e)    Use “I” or “me.”
Many may not be comfortable with using this kind of approach in the first paragraph. However, it is a way to help the audience connect with the story by recognizing and relating to your feelings. You are not writing a monologue.

Therefore, your writing should try to converse with the reader. Ask a question that the reader could even nod to or answer in their head.

Conclusion
How you draft your introduction will determine whether the reader gets hooked or not. It is, therefore, important to invest in your introduction. The above tips will help you make your introductions engaging to the audience who will want to read more of the article.
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Capture a moment
Written by Sam_Claussen

Catch em all

Sweat dotted my forehead, and the love of my life, her blue eyes shimmering in the candlelight as the pianist played must've noticed. She blushed, studying the restaurant and avoiding my gaze. It was where we had our first date, and she knew what was coming.

I got down on my knee and brought out the diamond ring. She immediately said yes, tears streaming down her face as the patrons burst into applause. The feeling within me, it was ...indescribable. 

I then pulled out a  master Poke ball and chucked it at her face. Needless to say, I failed to capture the moment. 

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Juice
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Capture a moment
Written by Sam_Claussen
Catch em all
Sweat dotted my forehead, and the love of my life, her blue eyes shimmering in the candlelight as the pianist played must've noticed. She blushed, studying the restaurant and avoiding my gaze. It was where we had our first date, and she knew what was coming.

I got down on my knee and brought out the diamond ring. She immediately said yes, tears streaming down her face as the patrons burst into applause. The feeling within me, it was ...indescribable. 

I then pulled out a  master Poke ball and chucked it at her face. Needless to say, I failed to capture the moment. 
3
0
0
Juice
19 reads
Login to post comments.