0
1 0 1

Clutching Happy Endings

Fifteen hours on a stimulant solution. Fifteen hours, hand in hand. Tethered down tight, both of them. She in leather straps and IV needles. He had the needles, too, but his own grip held him, knuckles white.  Slick in sweat. Not daring to look outside. Not the windows. Not the door.

There was no world for either of them past the plastic, automatic door. There was nothing for the clear sheet to show him, anyway - no missions, no more dreams, no hard realities. Just this.   Just them. Just chemicals and surface tension. Two pairs of eyes boring into one another.  

One refusing to let go. One full of something very close hate. Both full of hurt. Both so very tired.

If either fell asleep, it would be the end for both of them.  She would let go, and he was not okay with that. There are worse things than a dreamless oblivion. She knew that.   He knew it, too, but to him, all of those things were a lack of her. They knew one more thing, one hard, cold thing.  

There was only so much stimulant  in the one room left in all the world.  

He held on tighter. She watched his eyes, awake, waiting for the nightmare to end.

Prompt: countingstarsincabinsix submitted to writeworld 

He was afraid that if she closed her eyes they would never open again.

Writer’s Block

In one sentence is the spark of a story. Ignite.

Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a memory about this sentence. Write something about this sentence.

Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Seeking writing prompts, feedback, followers, and love.

0
0 0 0

A Glimpse Under the Shadows

(Prompt: Monolith Canyonby *TitusLunter, via writeworld)

The steam parts like my own, personal cloudburst. I spread my arms like jet wings as I break past the gloom. The glow that beams down on my face might as well be sunlight. To me, it's better.

I range and run and leap and lever myself over fallen communications hubs. I mount dragons of concrete and abandoned armor, thirty feet high. I have a hangar of forgotten treasure ships. I have a whole wide world of dark corners and secrets to explore. I'm not afraid. How could I be?

I'm home. I'm here. So I just breathe deep whatever chemicals I get and hope they're beneficial.

I mean, they haven't killed me yet. That means I'm special.

I'm a survivor. Soon, I won't be the only one. I'm gonna be...

A hero.

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Seeking writing prompts, feedback, follows, love, and a hero.

0
0 0 0

Her Galateo

Coin-Operated Boy by The Dresden Dolls on Grooveshark 

She did the worst thing to him she could think of. She bound his skin to tenterhooks and twisted.

His flaws were the first thing to go. His smile was just a little too sloppy, too wide, too dangerous. His casual words came from a lolling, lazy tongue, so that she replaced with shiny aluminium. It's more proper that way. She filleted the thick meat of selfish living down to bare bones and replaced even those with wrought iron and oiled joints. She gave all of his parts purpose.

Then came his history, which just really wouldn't do. She unlearned all of his lessons. She rewrote the way they'd met. She opened up the crystal candy case of his organic brain and she ran copper lines and quicksilver down the ridges until something fit. The past is best manipulated, not remembered, after all. Backstories ought to hurt, if only just a little.

Last? She took away his dreams. She told him all that he could be. He could be nothing less.

He could be nothing more. Well, no. I suppose that, if he broke, then he could just be nothing.

She did the worst thing to him she could think of. She remade him in her own image.

What else could she do?

Well, no. I suppose that she just... be...

Nothing?

Prompt: writeworld:

 

Writer’s Block

Music is love in search of a word. Find the words.
 

Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a critique about this song. Write something about this song .

Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

The worst monsters are the ones we make. The most terrifying? The ones that we recognize.

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Seeking writing prompts, feedback, questions, and more! Click it.

0
0 0 0

Bringing the Band Together.

o0Oo0Oo by Oberhofer on Grooveshark

Nimble fingers plucking out a random rhythm on a beat-up bass. That was everything to her.

She used to care about big, shiny parties. Sometime, she still shivered from the long-expired leftovers. She could feel the hungry people, clutching at her like finger sandwiches, soaking her skin in champagne. She remembered feeling beautiful at first. Like a tablecloth, you know, before.

White-on-black kicks, scuffed into something gray, textured, and tough tapped out a rhythm.

She used to dream about music. Now she needed songs to sleep. She used to roll down rivers, Brandon Boyd singing a lullaby while whatever new dad roamed the halls in the wrong direction. Her way. She let Lostprophets drown out all the girls who hated her hips, all the boys who loved her body, while she sunk deep into circuit boards and sound consoles. She was Tragedy Bound.

Lips popping out percussion, until clean, white teeth part and pull at the cheap, red second skin.

She lights went brought across the cityscape and she looked up. The gunshots didn't get any quieter. Police sirens and ambulances still roared like an angry crowd. The light was supposed to be about hope, but what's hope without music? What's imagination without a little desperation?

Then some creeper walked by, a zonked half-naked girl in his arms. Her mental record skipped.

STALKER by the pillows on Grooveshark

 

He was dressed like Chippendale's. It was just the sort of thing she'd see at the wrong parties back West. The music stopped, or at least it shouldn't have. She didn't notice the riffs ramping up. She only heard the ringing in her ears, her half-imagined battle aura like some anime. She imagined being strong.

Then she slammed her Rickenbacker hard across the back of his skull. He didn't see it coming.

The girl dropped, but he went flying a good 30 feet into a Cadillac. She hadn't seen that coming.

Then the gang across the street spilled out like ants. Then the blonde girl woke up and spontaneously combusted. Then a black girl cosplaying TRON goes to PROM descended from the sky. Then a random... girl? Boy? Street kid dropped a reuben and screamed like all hell. At her.

Holy rusted metal, Batman... She was glowing. Her bass vibrated like sex. The track changed...

Gold Guns Girls by Metric on Grooveshark

Nessa blinked. Nessa freaked out for exactly two and a half seconds.

Then Vanessa Elliot kicked a lot whole Metric ton of ass.

Prompt:

Writer’s Block

Music is love in search of a word. Find the words.

Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a critique about this song. Write something about this song .

Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

And with the team brick, I'll shelve that experiment. That said, if anyone requests more stories of any/all of these characters, I'm happy to continue. (Adamant | Michael/Noel | Cali | Legacy )

You never call... You never write... These old bones start to worry.

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Seeking writing prompts and more.

0
0 0 0

Legacy Might Be a Dick

I like to think of myself as a nice guy. I even wondered why the lava supermodel seemed to be crying. Or leaking.

Probably leaking. Lava girls don't cry. Do they?

Anyway, I hit her with a trash can. She falls. The can melts.

The poor guy underneath her hips had third-degree burns, scratches and body pressure cauterized against his neck and other tenderer locations,  but he'd live. If he got medical help. Like me. I'm not a doctor. I skipped my residency to aid foreign kids in...uh... I forget. Guam?

Anyway.

Black lips hissed like a wasted sirloin, then she lunged at me. Probably a scream or roar or something. So I slash the lid across the back of her (literal?) obsidian hair as hard as I can. 

She falls. The lid starts to bend like butter. I drop it fast. 

I hit my panic button for an ambulance - private care is always faster, then I get him elevated and covered in my tux. I knew that jacket would get ruined. Who hosts a party in Detroit? I work soup kitchens, sure, but let's be serious.

Okay. Maybe not everyone in Detroit's a demon. Maybe.

The demon snaps up, throwing a clumsy punch. The air from it scorches an inch off of my left eyebrow and warps my glasses right out of prescription. Goddamnit.

"Those were 200 dollar glasses, asshole!" I throw an overstated roundhouse kick that sends her flying. The Italian leather goes with her, seared into her face. I swear. 

Then the fire in her dies. Under the ashes, there's a knockout blonde in the natural. Unconscious, but crying.

"Oh, goddammit..." I mutter. 

Like the superhero I aim to be, I give 8-Mile a good look at my fantastic obliques as I carry my demon off in my own shirt. I keep on the cummerbund, though. I am sexy.

And, yes, Doctor Franks, I know it. It was going to be a dumb party anyway. Exes...

 

writeworld:

I don't just want to be famous, I want people to really love me.

Writer’s Block


In one sentence is the spark of a story. Ignite.

Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a memory about this sentence. Write something about this sentence.

Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

Because I like to see capable "normals" on a roster. His privilege is his superpower. He means well,  I swear.  He's just really, really working on his daddy issues. And god complex. And...

(C) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins.  Send me prompts.

0
0 0 0

The Tomorrow People - My Thoughts on the Future of Spec Fic

Radioactive by Imagine Dragons on Grooveshark

Superman has blood on his hands. There are no Western Isles and Frodo's eyes will never cool, not even down to a simmer. We saw the hero we needed and we cheered for the villain we really deserve. Even after we let him fall.

Ours is not a naive generation. That's why we're the perfect ones to save the world.


 

I grew up on science fiction and fantasy. I learned right and wrong from superheroes and Martin Luther King. I was sitting in my French class when the towers fell. The dust still hasn't settled. We have grown up, not through a Depression, but through a more insidious and unresisted poverty. I have magic in my grasp. I have all the information I could ever want, one little search box away. Still, I can't stand to look at it more than a few minutes a day. I'm unusual. Most just filter out hard truths.

Dates vary, but this is my millennial generation. This is the backstage to our stories.

We still have our heroes, from Harry Potter to Katniss Everdeen, to Sam and Dean to Sherlock. That said, they aren't the heroes of our parents and our grandparents. We have more in common with T.S. Eliot and Percy Shelley than we ever will with Siegel and Shuster. We don't believe in Superman, because most of us were never lucky enough to see him in our own lives. We were born jaded. Born in doubt. 

I believe that our speculative fiction - our science fiction, fantasy, mystery, any story built outside of everyday experience - is already changing. It belongs to us, handed down from our neglectful parents. Just like everything else we got, it's a goddamned mess. So now what? Our elders don't know how to use their iPhone. But we do.

Millennial fiction is disillusioned. We know we aren't in Kansas and never were. We adapt fast. We know that there's just a dirty old man behind that curtain and we're kind of pissed off about that. The protagonists of our generation are and will be snarky, flawed, and emotionally overburdened - just like us. We know that Obi-Wan is full of it. We know that Dumbledore's got skeletons and more inside his closet. The heroes of our stories aren't going to listen long to lies; we've heard them all.

Millennial fiction is diverse, and in more ways than one. We don't want straight, white (or maybe alien) heroes. We want queer aliens of color trying to hold down a part-time gig at Macy's. We want love stories that transcend categories, dropped into all the wrong settings. We want naughty sex and we want sweet love. We want our fears and feelings affirmed. We want, for the first time in many of our troubled lives, for our heroes to look like us. Most of all? We want to take our stories out of the hands of the fools who came before us. Gods, look at what they did to them...

Last and most important - the big take-away from all of this - is that millennial fiction is determined. We don't have the time or patience for more Bella Swans or Princess Peaches. We get it. Our stories will get it. Privilege will be made obvious. Ignorance will rear its ugly head as a central, if not the only true antagonist in our stories. We will humanize our villains, but we will beat them. We will act with open eyes and compassion, but we will do ugly things. We will make the hard choices.

Millennial fiction, no matter the genre, the magic, the future mechanics, will all be stories about hope, hurt, and the consequences. That's who we are. That's what we see. That's why we'll win. And believe me, we will. We will win. We will overcome.

Wonder Woman will be powerful, sexual, intelligent and will set her own terms on what strength really means. The Age of Men in the Middle Earth will be short, replaced by an Age of Open Hands after endless wars. The Joker will keep being cool.

Ours is not a naive generation. That's why we're the perfect ones to save the world. And we will.


 

Prompt: An erudite Anonymous asked me:

Write an essay on any topic you wish.

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Always seeking writing prompts, feedback, or interesting interaction.

0
0 0 0

Making the Most

Whats Going On by Marvin Gaye on Grooveshark

We painted the walls red. It's fine. The blood was ours; the room wasn't.

The night was good.

We'd shopped at a shopping mall. We'd had drinks and told edgy jokes at our neighborhood disposable restauraunt. We'd walked for hours through well-lit boulevards and smoky lots. We'd kicked cans. We'd danced to music that we made up, silly little hums. Everything was all fine.

Then the muggers found us. They thought we looked rich. They thought we looked easy.

When we got back up, all slit and savaged, they screamed and left half a dozen wallets behind.

We'd kissed gently at each other's painless wounds. We'd laughed, even if we'd cried a little. It had been the perfect, peaceful evening, but then it wasn't, and then we had to cry a bit. We really had been asking for it, hadn't we? It was what we were. Not. Normal, that is.

So we broke into a pawn shop, all off-white walls and thin glass cases. We rocked and rolled against each other until we shone like iridescent porcupines. We made an evening out of it.

We weren't normal. We weren't nice. But we were together, and we had two pints of Dreyer's.

Strawberry. Of course it was strawberry. What else could it have been? The night was good. 

Prompt: writeworld:

Writer’s Block

Music is love in search of a word. Find the words.
 

Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a critique about this song. Write something about this song .

Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

Still on the road. Still seeking love and other input.

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Seeking writing prompts, feedback, questions, or what-have- you.

0
0 0 0

Weighty

I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) by Sleeping at Last on Grooveshark

 

There's nothing wrong with silly little love songs. There's something wrong with heaviness.

I sat there, propped against a door and buried in the road dust of a dozen years. I couldn't see my face reflected in the little mirror wind-chimes anymore. My legs were too long and couldn't hold me up. The cracked white porch. The cracked white swinging chair, half-cracked and half slapped to the ground. Worn and weathered, that was us. Worn, weathered, and too heavy to fully fall.

So we lean.

I know there's nothing on the other side of that door. The road dust of a dozen years doesn't just wash away. I'll never be a boy again and you're already long gone and lighter than air. The only way to get less heavy is to fall, but we old things are heavy. We're stubborn. We're tough.

So we lean.

I'd cry if I still had tears in my chest, the kind of fluttering panic that used to move my eyes whenever you looked too hard at me. I'd get up, if I had anywhere to go. I'd fall over, if I had the strength. It would be comfortable with any company. Well. I had the door. The house. Time.

So we lean.

In time? Time will crumble us and we'll both be as light and free as the dust I couldn't touch.

 

Prompt: writeworld:

 Writer’s Block

Music is love in search of a word. Find the words.
 

Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a critique about this song. Write something about this song .

Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

0
0 0 0

Impactful

She fell on him like a cold-blooded concussion. He saw her coming a mile away. He always would. She just had that kind of look in her eye, whenever he stumbled into their old town.

He always crawled out.

Scratches. Scrapes. Imprints of keyboards on his shoulder-blades. Glass shards peppered through his scalp. Lacerations from unworthy IKEA put-togethers up and down his flanks, his arms, and his refurnishing budget. Little blue-black welts like kisses on his neck matched with her lipstick.

He looked back and saw double. He tried to think and landed somewhere nauseated.

They say not to sleep, but that's just folklore. Still, better safe than sorry, so he called her again.

His head hit the floor with a sickening thud.

He felt better already.

Prompt: countingstarsincabinsix submitted to writeworld:

His head hit the floor with a sickening thud.

Writer’s Block

In one sentence is the spark of a story. Ignite.

Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a memory about this sentence. Write something about this sentence.

Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

The events above are not based on real experiences or circumstances. Any resemblance to real events is appreciated, however, and we would like to know where to encounter more of them.

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Always seeking writing prompts, questions, feedback, or requests for the same.

0
0 0 0

Nightfall

Writer’s Block
A picture says a thousand words. Write them.
Mission: Write a story, a description, a poem, a metaphor, a commentary, or a critique about this picture. Write something about this picture.
Be sure to tag writeworld in your block!

(Prompt: Scarlet road by Northstar76, via writeworld)

Let me tell you a story. It even starts in a tree, just like this one. Staring up, just like now. There was a wind. There was a strong, rose scent over roasted air...

...There was a white star in the sky.

"Hey! Heeeeey! AC-895, do you read me? AZ-895, do you copy? Ace? AAAAAAACE!"

AC-895 watched the former flatline of the audio link spike like a heart attack.

Instead of dying, he sighed. "Negative, Zee. Comm inoperative, critical failure. Call back tomorrow. Over-"

"MORON! Get down from wherever you're hiding and get back to work!"

The leaves around him bristled, catching even the flight vibration of her stomps on the thin soil. Metal thunked just underneath. He hated that; no matter what, he was never all that far from metal guts and way too many people. They had to add a second alpha 16 cycles back.

He hopped from the tree and floated down. The mag-seal eased him to the floor, before clicking hard at the last inch. He rolled his neck in irritation, hugging his helmet like a pillow.

"Whaddya want from me, Zee? I already finished, so lay off!" He yawned at the exact frequency of her irritation. 

Tromping boots pinged sonar through the mist and scattered crimson leaves. "You expect me to believe you already serviced the Stinger?!"

Black branches and black blossoms shivered at his interrupted nap. He groaned. "I already serviced that squad!"

A helmet broke through the brush, inches from his face. "The whole squad?! That's fast..."

Then a moment's impressed silence, before she grabbed the front of his fuzz-lined deck suit in both gloved fists. "So that's why those lazy assholes didn't report you! What'd I tell you about doing other people's work, Ace?!"

"Only yours?" Ace. From anyone else, he liked the name. From Zee? It sounded like tinnitus. He tried for a winning smile, forgetting his smile's actual service record.

"Why, you...!" Zee shook him, then groaned when he went limp. "This... is why you always fail the Expedition Test. You don't follow protocol! I mean, if you're going to be average at self-defense, average at analysis, average at navigation, and dismal at anything else, no wonder you're hopeless!"

He caught her wrists in a vice-hold, making her yelp. "Hey! My sim scores are great! And I'm great at-"

"Maintenance? Really?" She looked away, ignoring her failed attempts to break loose. The idea of Ace being stronger than her was just that intolerable in her mind. "Face it - your only talent is that you don't know when to quit. Speaking of which - how long have you been out here without a mask?"

Ace shrugged. "Hour or two?" Her eyes went wide. "Hey! It's practice, right? I'm fine!" He let go to wave away that killer gleam under her transparent visor. He much preferred the darker, military versions for a reason. When would she just graduate already?

"You're insane, you know that? Certifiable for duty dismissal! What could possibly-"

He put a finger to the re-breather of her mask. Against all reason, she blushed.

He just pointed up and grinned.

The mist had already begun to rise as a new current of wind carried it like a waterfall in reverse. The floating moisture parted to reveal an endless sky of stars, and at its heart, just above them?

The planet below. A great, gleaming coat of white parted as the sun fell out of their side's view. Great branches and woven webs of vine shook loose and parted, revealing seas and endless trunks below. The glistening white drank up the atmosphere and budded with petals of a bioluminescent green. Jungles and islands shone below like the arcology reactor. Like fire.

Like home. Ace was in love.

So was Zee, but Ace wasn't the sort of guy notice stars that close.

"I'm going up there, Zero-3. I promised. And you're gonna fly me there in a Stinger. Deal?"

DX-000 pouted. She hated her name. "They don't let cadets fly Stingers, Ace. I'm too young-"

He knocked on her helmet. "You can still test. I trust you. Deal?" he asked again.

She fumed a while, but underneath the spreading rings of fragrant flower petals, even she felt something. "...Deal. Now, c'mon. There's a defense scrimmage on Deck 5. You need it."

Already defeated, he followed her down the ladder to the cylinder city within. All that metal.

Miles of steam and wire. And not a single breath of rose air.

What a shame, huh? But this is just the beginning. For all of us.


I'd love to write this sci-fantastic story further. Steel and roses.

(c) 2013 Lawerence Hawkins. Seeking writing prompts, review requests, and does anyone actually read this? Yes? No? Intern Dana lives...