A little word streaming

Here's a little something I wrote from a writing exercise. Since it's kinda odd, I thought I'd share.

Set the pot to boil.
The beef is prepared.
The soup will be ready soon.
I sharpened my pencil.
I would write an extensive description about the dish.
The paper will overflow with by brilliance.
It is amazing how my talent never hits bottom.
Now the recipe for the soup does call for donkey.
But I'm sure the substitution will still taste like a pleasant dream.

When I'm finished with this piece, I will sleep.
My bed will welcome me.
Although the sheet may need airing out.
Ah but the drug I take will make any inconvenience meaningless.
The pill will wash away all cares.
Especially when chased with a shot of whisky.

The bread will complement the soup.
The butter must be softened.
And the peanuts must be shelled.
The alcohol is already taking effect.
Hello little monkey.
Is that key for me?
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So where's our trophy?

Yes, we won the award for Best-Kept-Secret Blog.  Of course since we won, I doubt we're in conpetition for next year. It's very cool to be part of this strange enterprise called Needcoffee.
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Unlucky for the Rabbit

Widge has another Fiction Frenzy at Needcoffee, so here's my entry. As always, comments welcome.

Unlucky for the Rabbit
by Scott Campbell

"And this is one of our monitor suites, General." The room resembled any studio control room with a wall of video monitors, various consoles and computers manned by personnel in lab coats. All the screens have one man on them, an ordinary looking man in a suit with stains on the pants and jacket of his suit. He stands in a subway station, clearly exhausted, but all the benches are occupied.

"As you can see, we are currently observing subject 'Fred'." The man occupying the general tapped a few keys and on one of the larger screen displays a close-up of the man. Several small cuts could be seen on his cheerless face. On the corner of the screen in green letters: "March 3, 17:46 EST Subject: Fred Test: Bad Luck Level 2"

"Well, he looks like he's had a shitty day," said the General.

"Exactly. We have been able to induce 14 bad luck days for Fred alone."

"Now Dr. Smith, according to your reports, you can create the opposite."

"Oh yes, we had combat teams carry the focusing agents in simulated combat scenarios and there was improvement in accuracy, completion time, everything." Dr. Smith practically glowed with pride. "And of course, the benefits of inducing bad luck onto an enemy political or military leader are obvious."

"So the project is going well?" the General asks innocently.

Dr. Smith's pride dimmed a little, "Yes, General Browne."

"I got an email that mentioned some problems. Are there any problems? It really is easier to tell the truth."

Dr. Smith considered. "There isn't a problem. It's more of a disagreement."

General Browne sat down and motioned Smith to continue.

"As you know, the luck is generated by projecting a sub atomic energy field over the target area. This alone doesn't affect anything on the macro level. That's why the focusing agent is required to concentrate the energy and cause the various sub atomic particles to synchronize their spin." Dr. Smith had appeared at several congressional and White House briefing, so was skilled at giving the very simple version. "But we discovered that a sentient mind was needed to shape that condition into influence events to be favorable or unfavorable for the subject. It seems to work on the subconscious level. Fred and the rest of our current subjects have no knowledge of the cause of their good luck or bad luck."

"So, where's the disagreement?"

Dr Smith sighed. "We've been reluctant to experiment with higher energy levels since there's a correlation between them and the unlikeness of the events experienced. There are concerns about something happening that might expose the project or kill innocent people. Now our tests on our subjects show that some of the subatomic particles are spinning in a synchronized fashion even after the energy field in turned off. These inconclusive results led a few of our scientists to think that there might be a buildup and cause a high probability spike. But it's doubtful…"

The General said "Tell me about subject Louis."

Dr. Smith sighed again. "During one of the tests, subject Louis happened to be involved in three bank robberies in a day. But we never established that was from a spike. There could be other factors that contributed to that admittedly unusual event. Now if something completely inexplicable happen…"
The General interrupted "Like being attacked by giant mutant alligators."

"Exactly" the doctor started to laugh but then he noticed that general wasn't looking at him but at the monitor. The doctor turned around and saw that Fred was backed into a corner of the subway station while alligators walking on two legs slowly advanced on him. The doctor sighed and said "I need to make a call."
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Sci-Fi Quiz

From the lovely dindrane

You scored as Moya (Farscape). You are surrounded by muppets. But that is okay because they are your friends and have shown many times that they can be trusted. Now if only you could stop being bothered about wormholes.


Moya (Farscape)


Babylon 5 (Babylon 5)


Serenity (Firefly)


Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica)


Deep Space Nine (Star Trek)


Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)


FBI's X-Files Division (The X-Files)


Nebuchadnezzar (The Matrix)


Andromeda Ascendant (Andromeda)


SG-1 (Stargate)


Enterprise D (Star Trek)


Bebop (Cowboy Bebop)


Your Ultimate Sci-Fi Profile II: which sci-fi crew would you best fit in? (pics)
created with QuizFarm.com


Inspired in part by Needcoffee's Fiction Frenzy. As always, comments are appreciated.

Burden by Scott Campbell

The room was without adornment or distraction. This was a room where you were forced to concentrate on the matters at hand. The matter today was secured to a chair in the middle of the room. The man in that chair didn't look evil or mad. His expression was normal, for lack of a better word. The three people that sat in front of him studied this man who had destroyed billions. The woman in the center spoke to him.

"I am the Mysteriarch for this matter. I will decide how you and the events you caused will be solved for the good of all. These are my advisors." Her hands indicated the avian to her left and the ursine to her right. "Seven days ago, you gained possession of five solar disruptors, weapons of mass destruction that can cause stars to destabilize, even go nova. You then used these weapons on five stars, all of which contained inhabited worlds. You have caused the death of billions of sentient life forms. You have been examined and no biological abnormity has been found. Till this event, you have not associated with irrational influences. Therefore, we require your explanation for your actions. Truth is required."

The avian barked, "This is unnecessary. We only need to identify his conspirators and hunt them down. Surely a mind probe is all that is needed."

The ursine replied, "As I said when you argued this before, if this action was the result of some social disorder, we must address it before it can cause others to engage in irrational acts."

"Irrational acts! Five worlds and all their peoples are now cinders!"

The Mysteriarch raised her hand, "I require an explanation. That is all." She looked at the man in the chair.

The man looked at his judges and focused on the Mysteriarch, "And if the explanation is… uncomfortable?"

"That is why we are here. By breeding and training, I determine what will be done and what will be known for the best of all, without basis or favor." Her stare conveyed condescension. "I doubt your story will shock me."

A ghost of a smile appeared on the man's lips. "I wish I had such ability. What I know has driven me to…" He stopped, wincing at the thought. "I didn't want this. I discovered what I know by chance."

The ursine asked, "This was on your academic study on this pre-Contact world, Sol III?"

The man nodded. "I'm… I was a xenologist. The preliminary survey of this world has some anomalies, the possibility that they were visited and influenced by peoples alien to the natives. I was to find more evidence to confirm and determine their identity for possible legal action."

The avian piped in, "What is this group that acquired the devices?"

The man looked at him and laughed. The sound was bitter and contemptuous. "Oh no. It's far worse."

The Mysteriarch shot the avian a look and turned back to the prisoner. "Continue."

"I went to Earth; the natives call their world Earth, and started compiling information from their academic institutions. They have a natural curiosity of their origins and their past which helped me. As I was researching, I kept having this strange sense of familiarity. Certain religious ceremonies, ancient writings, and legends seem to indicate non-native contamination, but as my researches continued, I was experiencing a sense of … dread."

The prisoner breathed, gathering his strength. "You see, when I was a child, my mother cared for her father who was sick and not long for life. She had no one to care for me but I was a good child and she felt comfortable leaving me to play in the old family home. One day, I was in my grandfather's library and I found some books, so different from the rest. They talked of realms that were vast and inexplicable and alien gods that were mad and reveled in chaos. Of priests who worshipped these gods and made their followers cavort and dance to discordant rhythms. Of the great pain and suffering caused to gain notice from these beings. Of perverted sciences and magics and the abominations created by them."

The three were becoming more and more concerned by the prisoner's childhood experience. The avian screeched, "Do you speak of the ways practiced before the Rational Crusade?"


The avian flew out of his chair and screamed, "Obscenity! We should kill you now before your taint infects us!"

The ursine slunk lower in his chair, "Why did your grandfather have such books?"

"I did ask him before he died," the prisoner said. "He told me that without that dark knowledge, how could we know when such darkness would come again? How could we recognize it, fight it?"

"An interesting argument," pondered the ursine.

The avian looked at his colleague with disgust, "Interesting argument?! The Grand Armies of Rationality purged our stars of those mad cultists. Closed all portals to their domains. Destroyed all their damned tomes and writings. All to ensure that their cancer was cut out and burned. Keeping such books can only inflame and titillate weak minded fools to commit crime and atrocity."

"No!" The prisoner spoke with such force that the avian nearly lost his balance.

The Mysteriarch commanded calmly, "Please return to your seat." The avian complied.

"Don't you see?" The prisoner spoke with more passion, more force. "Earth was influenced by outside forces. By those dark forces we were told were destroyed. We didn't destroy them, they just went somewhere else. They went to Earth. They built their cities of peculiar angles and raised altars to the infinite void and to those vast beings that dwell there." The prisoner faltered. "But something happened. The cities fell and their gods were banished to dreams and the outer reaches of reality. I had hoped that this was the end of the threat."

"But in one book, one horrible book written by a madman addled by narcotics, it talked about how when the stars were right, they would come back. They would rise from the oceans and the earth and from the underside of reality and reclaim all that they lost. I dismissed it at first. A simple resurrection tactic to ensure the followers' obedience. But I checked and those stars would form the conjunction detailed. How could someone with telescopes with crude lenses track stars that take thousands of years in their movements? Then I knew. It was all true. All of it. And it was coming back. I had to stop it. If the stars were destroyed, the various gravitational and electromagnetic conditions couldn't be met. I was able to use some of the hexes the priests wrote down to acquire the solar disruptors and the ship to deliver them. No one helped me. I acted alone."

After a moment of silence, the ursine asked, "If this outbreak was to happen on Earth, why not destroy it? Why destroy five star systems instead of one?"

"Because we deserved it. We are so proud of our past, our Rational Crusade. But we merely moved that evil to taint a young planet without any defenses. We were arrogant in our victory and an innocent world should not be punished for it. We are the ones who should be punished for our hubris."

"And that was your decision to make?" The Mysteriarch asked quietly. "You took it upon yourself to save us without any thought to inform the authorities."

The prisoner opened his mouth but the Mysteriarch spoke on, "But you imagined we would not believe you, that we would still be unable to handle the truth. That we would ignore you, dismiss you. You never looked for other ways of stopping this conjunction. No other methods to prevent this return. You decided to condemn billions who never participated in the Crusade, who never even had knowledge of these matters to death. Just you."

She walked to him, still speaking quietly, "You commit acts worthy of a god. But you only have the wisdom of an ordinary man." She stared into his eyes. "The only hubris I see here is yours. For that hubris, you will be punished. You will die horribly for your crimes. And everyone outside this room will believe you acted to satisfy an insane appetite for destruction and revenge. The only monster they will know about is you. You will be cursed from now till the end of history. My only regret is that your punishment is so slight." And then she turned away.

Eat me!

Oh Great Cthulhu!

I have been an extremely diligent devotee this year.

In July, I defiled the grave of that traitor, Lovecraft (90 points). In May, I fed [info]hiebster to a Shoggoth (250 points). Last week, I exposed [info]princeofcairo to soul-rending horrors (250 points). In June, I stopped [info]ratmmjess from defiling Lovecraft's grave (-20 points). In January, I recruited [info]chadu as a new cultist (30 points). Yesterday, I sacrificed [info]djbnaut to Cthulhu (500 points).

In short, I have been very good (1100 points) and deserve to be eaten first.

Your humble and obedient servant,

Submit your own plea to Cthulhu!


She was trapped in the corner of her bedroom. She tried fighting to no effect. The phone wasn't working. The man kept patiently walking towards her. She had fallen into a fetal position on the floor begging "pleasedontkillmepleaseno"


The man's voice was calm and reasonable. The woman was taken out of her fear enough to respond "What?"

"Why shouldn't I kill you?"

The woman's voice trembled "Because it's wrong. Because the police will get you."

"The police, my dear, will not stop me. I am beyond their ability to stop. And the concept of right and wrong are so fluid, despite what certain moralists say. I find exploring the human body during the moment of death pleasurable as well as the effect my acts have on the sheep we laughingly call society."

He removed a long thin knife from his coat and stared at it. "The question you should ask, my dear, is why you should live?"

She stared at the knife, nearly hypnotized by how its edge catches the light from her digital clock. She tried to answer but she couldn't think.
"I understand" the man said gently. "It's hard to think with the animal instinct to survive pounding in your head and your veins. But if you think about it, your existence really is unnecessary. Your appearance will not inspire artists to create. Your intellect will not broaden anyone's understanding. Your talents are minimal. You are simply a minor clog in a big machine. All you truly contribute is piss, shit, and carbon dioxide."

Her tears flowed again. But not from fear. His words were cutting through her.

He drew closer to her. "But I offer you something precious. You will become more. You will be a symbol to so many: the capriciousness of modern existence, the need for greater strength in adversity, the danger of freedom unbound by caution. Your life will be studied for years to come to determine what made you special to me. Your body will be measured to see all the twists and turns my explorations of your flesh take. Your name will live on, carved into history with my bloody blade."

He held out his hand. She found herself taking it. He led her to her bed and laid her down. A few flicks of his wrists and she was naked before him. She gave no resistance when he tied her to the bedposts. She found her heart beating faster, but not from fear.

She asked in almost a whisper "Will it hurt?"

He smiled. "Oh my, yes."

Blank Slate

A follow-up to http://www.livejournal.com/users/scottums/2005/02/12/

Feel free to comment.

I don't trust elevators. How can you. You're relying on its indicators to tell you how many floors are being passed and what the destination is. All the travel is hidden from you. And the thing of it is, no one notices. People either space out or talk to the people next to them, but they trust the elevator to go from ten floors up or five floors down. All that time when the doors are closed in between is a blank.

And I like to check out blanks.

I, and others like me, explore the blank spaces that are on the maps, the places people never notice or have forgotten about. Or have deliberately hidden in plain sight. That's what I'm going after today.

Wethersfield Memorial Medical Center is a sprawling mass where it treats everything from lung cancer to acne. To handle the relentless march of modernization and people who have more and more medical complaints, it is in a constant state of construction. We have a list of construction firms that build secrets from panic rooms to underground bunkers. Doing a routine search of the various subcontractors for hospital construction, I noticed Williamson Construction was one. I doubted the Chief of Surgery needed a panic room, so whatever it had built should be interesting.

I started with the plans for the hospital. Since I'm only 13, I couldn't fake being a doctor with the white lab coat and a stethoscope. But keeping to visiting hours and carrying a flower basket works just as well. The hospital corridors are a chaotic mess of nurses rushing about, patients in beds, wheelchairs, or walking with IV poles. There was always a prevalent chemical odor that removed the smells of sickness. The thing was the absence made you notice it even more. Using a pedometer to track how big the floors were, I walked unnoticed taking sniffs of my flowers to keep my sanity.

Now to the elevators. Hospitals have a lot of them. Not just because a hospital is big and you want elevators to be convenient, but emergency personnel have to get to operating rooms, labs, and patients rooms fast. So there are elevators in some odd places. And I'm going to see if one goes to an odd place.

The elevator gives access to the seven floors of the north wing. The elevator itself has doors on the front and back for greater access and the buttons reflect this. Each floor except the seventh has a pair of button, for example '3' and '3R'. The seventh floor only gets one. However from the measurements I took and looking at the building itself, there is a section that can be accessed by the elevator rear doors. Of course, it's not listed on the hospital directory, but it's there.

I must explain something about myself. I have certain abilities not usually found among so called normal people. One is that locks unlock for me. Doesn't matter what kind from simple key locks to the latest biometric security systems, they want to open up and show me what they're hiding. Some people have looked into it to see if I'm some sort of fairy changeling or X-Men mutant. But they never can find the cause. Doesn't bother me much. I care only about the result.

So when I was alone in the elevator cab and it reached the seventh floor, I walked confidently to the rear doors. By all rights, I should have banged my face on the doors, but they opened up and I walked through the doors into a corridor like all the others in the hospital. I need to stop building up my expectations. You very rarely encounter bubbling beakers and Tesla coils. I peeked into the first room lit only by the display of several machines. I saw what looked like a woman laying in a hospital bed hooked into several IV bags. A tube ran into her mouth and the rhythmic mechanical pump was in time with her breathing. There was no reaction that I could see when I entered. Was she in a coma? Then I noticed the bulge. She looked about six months pregnant.

I went to the room next door. Different woman, different stage of pregnancy, but same setup. What the hell? I finally saw a nurses' station and noticed no one sitting at the desk. I saw that there was a half full of coffee on the desk. I put my hand over it and still felt some warmth. OK, where's the nurse? I walked quietly down the hallway, listening for any sign. And I heard it. Grunting and moaning. I hope that isn't what I think it is.

It was. I saw a man in a lab coat with his pants around his ankles on top of another comatose patient. I got out my trusty taser, cranked it to full, and hid in the next room. And I was going to go easy on him. After a few minutes, I heard him squeal, then the rustling of clothing. I tensed and when he passed the doorway where I hid, I jammed the taser right in the back of the neck. Never knew what hit him. After that it a simple job to tie him up with spare IV tubing and cover his eyes with some cotton padding and paper tape.

With the pervert dealt with, I started trying to figure out what was going on. I saw that the desk was set up to monitor twelve 'patients'. But they were tracking both the women's health signs and their fetuses. All of them were pregnant. But that's all I got. Their charts were full of dense medical jargon and abbreviations. I excel at languages (another of my talents) but I'm not good at Tech-ese. I did gather that these women were pregnant by being implanted with pre-fertilized eggs. So all these poor women were just incubators? I also saw the phrase "persistent vegetative state". Were they already in that state before they were put into service? The paperwork didn't say.

Then I noticed a doctor's name amongst the lab work. Dr. Filitov. He was one of these fertility doctors who advocated successful men to donate sperm to increase the population of smart people since stupid people were breeding too fast. The usual eugenics crap. He had approached several members of the explorer's group for donations, but they brushed him off. Could this be where he's incubating his so-called super babies? Then giving to suitable parents to be raised as saviors of humanity or future overlords? I made copies of some of the files and took some pictures of this secret breeding pen. I would submit this to the Executive Committee and let them figure out what to do. They knew people who could sort all this out. But the credit for finding this bit of weirdness would be mine. But first, I would take a shower to get the antiseptic smell of the hospital off of me.
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