In our last episode, we were fleeing from our giant roach-alien-monster infested building when we were confronted with a cordon of military officers and a choice:
A: Follow the military to the safe zone
B: Go lone wolf and head off in your car
I liked Gero's response a lot, but he didn't use "Tankerbell" anywhere in the copy, so unfortunately he wasn't eligible. I really enjoyed StrangerousRex's account as well, particularly that Karen from Accounting has a Mini car with "Tankerbell" written across it, I loved that bit. I wasn't super jazzed about the A & B options, though.
Renxin is a great writer and always nails these things. I like that Angeline from Accounting shows up again, only in military garb. When did that happen? Is she a spy of some sort? Anyway, I really like his choices at the end, too.
HerrD's having us frantically explain that Jimmy was too small to be a filling snack made me laugh. That sounds like the kind of guy we're shaping up to be! His choices also are intriguing, introducing the concept of talking giant roaches.
Finally, borntobealoser was the choice last week, and once again he's turned in a great bit of prose. I like that the invasion escalates and that we have the option of jumping into the giant tank, Tankerbell.
Ultimately, I've decided to go with Renxin, because I am a fan of a) bringing Angeline back in a more tough-girl role, and b) having to choose between explaining the human beef jerky (what the hell was up with that?!) and lying. That's cool. So here are the results of our actions and your choice for this week:
Cooperation? Hah! When has that ever worked? You slip away as nonchalantly as you can, and pop out through the fire escape. As you exit into the parking lot you get an odd feeling in your belly. Something you ate isn’t agreeing with you. You cast your mind back to the “Jack’s Links”, and for the first time in years wonder about the wisdom of eating someone. Preoccupied with this, you don’t notice the black, shiny, and most importantly, enormous insect hiding behind your car… Oh dear. Your adventure appears to be over.
Follow the military
Figuring that it’s better to go with safety in numbers of heavily armed guys than to wander around on your own in a city infested with big bugs carrying an axe you’re only vaguely sure of your skill with, you start towards the soldiers.
“Freeze!” someone yells.
Almost instantly there are guns leveled at you. Oh God! Do they know you left Jimmy to die? You weren’t all that concerned when you thought you’d gotten away with it, but oh you know you’re going to get it now! Some part of your brain not frozen by fear dredges up a memory, which lands in front of your mind and falls out through your mouth:
“Angeline?” you gasp, “Is that you?”
Even through all the hastily donned body armor and the bowel twisting sight of an uzi pointed at you, you recognize your hot co-worker. She groans and lowers her weapon, and the others do likewise.
“You know this guy, Tankerbell?” someone asks.
“Ah, hell,” she says, spitting, “As if the roaches weren’t bad enough, now I’ve got to deal with this bug.”
Pretending you didn’t hear that, you sidle into the camp. Angeline “Tankerbell” (you file that one away for future use) confiscates your axe, muttering something about liabilities, and directs you towards a tent where the other survivors are being examined. A small balding man with a white coat and worryingly manic expression waves some strange device around each person before permitting them to pass. When it comes your turn, he stares at the thing for a second before asking, “Did you, uh, eat anything like, say, a banana with a strange growth on it, or some kind of meat product this morning?”
He didn’t ask anyone ahead of you that, which makes you instantly suspicious. Do you:
A: Tell the truth about eating the scary banana and human jerky, or,
B: Lie, lie, and lie to save your skin
Your task, therefore, is to write up the result of each of those choices, with one leading to death and the other leading to two more choices for us to make.
Good luck and have fun!
Congrats, Rexin! I only realized after I had written mine that I didn’t bother to include a “tankerbell” reference, and couldn’t find a way to work the word, in any sense, into what I already wrote.
🙁 I gotta say, though, this is probably the most fun weekly event we’ve ever done on this site. Can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with this week!
Thanks for saying that, Gero! The participation is pretty much the same five or so people every week, but they’re always very good and so much fun to read. I feel like it’s worth continuing even though it’s not a huge hit numbers-wise, because the quality of the writing by everyone is super high.
Off topic, that Tankerbell pic should be the new HM mascot! Love that pic! If you messed up on the naming of your file, you’ve been Tankerbell!
Congrats to Renxin. . . oh, well, I guess we don’t have giant spiders to help us–they would’ve been a great asset.
He KNOWS. Oh–that means he knows what to DO! Uh. Wait. Admitting to possible cannibalism would be bad–sight problem? A dare? A joke? Joke. No–pretend the joke’s on me.
“What?” you say, “That stupid joke-jerky? The guys from marketing actually faked a tattoo on jerky. I didn’t let it get to me.” That sounded real.
The guy was punching buttons on something and looks annoyed rather than sympathetic. He points a black box at you. It has antennae and wires and lights and–“and a banana?” Um–that thing looks scary. “Yes.”
The section of the ceiling of the tent whips down around you, and you are bashed on the head. You feel a sudden pinch and realize someone has just stuck you with a needle. As you begin to fall unconscious, you hear him say: “That first reading was uncertain, but he couldn’t lie. Don’t worry–the neurotoxin will kill his nerves first. He won’t feel the incinerator at–” The adventure ends.
Denial springs eternal. “No. No. Nothing like that. I mean no meat. No bananas either.”
His eyebrows go up. It looks like he doesn’t buy it. He points a black box at you. It has antennae and wires and lights and–“What’s the last thing you ate?”
“Cheerios.” It was the first thing you could think of.
He smiles at you. A warm, sympathetic smile. “You seem to have an infection. My equipment is one hundred percent certain. I have to recommend an antibiotic. We can’t have anyone sick or we’ll ALL get sick at the temporary housing.” He picks up a cottonball, dips it in a solution labeled ‘isopropyl alcohol,’ and reaches out to swab your arm. Do you:
A: Take the shot he’s offering? You don’t want an ‘infection.’
B: Resist. Run if necessary. Just say ‘no.’
Uh, don’t discount the silent readers. I haven’t had sparks of creativity to contribute, but I’ve read the story every week and it is going great. Very funny stuff guys.
Same here. All of these posts have been awesome, I just haven’t had the time to contribute. With all my midterms happening today, I ought to have free time tonight.
Okay, school caught up with me and I haven’t been able to waste as much time on here as I would have liked. It’s been a hard week, and then today I wandered back here and saw this.
I am thrilled! I honestly didn’t think it would be my stuff this time around, and this has totally made my week!
(Oh, and one small correction: I’m a gal, not a guy. Just sayin’.) 🙂
Gah, sexism fail! My apologies, Renxin.
A: Tell the truth about eating the scary banana and human jerky:
You might as well tell them, he’s probably only asking because the scanner says something freaky is going on in your stomach, and you don’t want to die of infection, you’ll miss out on all the action, including a chance to hit on Miss Tankerbell. Besides, they probably wouldn’t believe you anyway. “Why, yes I have. One suspicious banana, and a whole bag of human jerky. That isn’t a problem, is it?” The man looks at you in horror. “You bet it’s a problem!” He turns to the other white coats and yells “We’re going to have to pump his stomach, NOW!”. In a matter of seconds everybody else in the tent has launched themself on top of you, pinning your puny body to the ground. After successfully restraining you with minimal effort, they set you down on a table, and the small balding man pulls out a terrifying piece of apparatus from a drawer. You try to scream out and suggest that this might not be all that necessary, but it just provides the bald guy with an opportunity to shove the pump into your mouth. With a flick of the switch, the contents of your stomach is sucked back up the way it entered. From the corner of your eye you can see it all: the banana with the lump, check. Several pieces of dried human, check. A small army of baby roaches, che- wait, what?! The critters sprint off in every direction, attempting to make a bid for freedom, but Angeline and her squad are easily able to pick off every last one with their machine guns. After being released from your restraints, you shriek “What the hell just happened? I don’t remember eating any bugs recently!”. “Relax, Pencil Pusher, you’re not the only one that this has happened to, we’ve wasted half of our supply of ammunition on those things. You’re fine, for now.” says Angeline, matter-of-factly. “Now report to the civilian lodgings, or follow me to Captain Hook. You were the last one to leave that building, we could use any information you may have.” Awesome! You managed to get away with eating human unpunished, and now Miss “Tankerbell” Angeline has just invited you to stick around. Your charm is rubbing off, after all.
A: Head off with Tankerbell to find Captain Hook,
B: Report to the civilian lodgings
Lie, lie, and lie to save your skin:
There’s no way you’re going to tell them about the Jack’s Links, they’ll arrest you and throw you back to the roaches, or worse, they’ll think you’re wierd. “No sir, no banana, and no meat. I’m actually a vegetarian with a deep phobia of bananas.” The small balding man looks back at his scanner, then gives you a concerned look, before deciding that it’s not worth the trouble to follow up on whatever his scanner detected. “Very well, move along.” Phew, that was close! Now to speak to Angeline, maybe an insect apocalypse might be enough to convince her to go out with you. “Hey, Tankerbell! How’s about we ditch this place and go for a dri- Oof!” A sharp jab to the stomach with the butt of her gun is enough to knock the wind out of you and stop your attempt to hit on her in it’s tracks. “Shut it, Pencil Pusher, I haven’t got time to deal wit- What’s wrong with your stomach?” Sheesh, wasn’t she paying attention? You told them you hadn’t eaten the Jacks Links, how long is this going to go on for? “Nothing’s wrong with my stomach, the bald guy agreed, remember?” Judging by the fear in her face, you don’t think she does. “That doesn’t explain why it’s rippling…” You look down. Your stomach is indeed rippling. Quite vigorously, in fact. Perhaps you should’ve told them about the Jack’s Links, after all. There’s no time to ponder this, though, as hundreds of tiny insects rip through your stomach, and an entire squad of soldiers starts to pump lead into you. It looks like your adventure, and your life, ends here.
S’all right. You can’t tell gender from reading ‘renxin’ really, and in any case you had a 50% chance of being correct.