Inspired Stains

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Prompt: A desperate man comes up with a unique way to make some extra cash.

It was simply a fact that Old George never had enough money. He had long lost his home and only wandered the streets now. He never had enough food or enough clothes. He barely ever washed himself or shaved. He was poor right down to the bones, but he never ever thought to beg for money.

Old George was a man of what you could call pride. He came from a rich family, one of many many lawyers and doctors and other fancy occupations. Old George was a doctor once himself, but those were the old days. Now, Old George was just another homeless man on the streets. Well, not exactly just another. Old George preferred to make his money the correct way, but what the “correct way” actually was, he himself wasn’t even sure. All he knew was that it had worked for the rest of his family and that he was probably doing it wrong.

He did not consider himself a failure.

Old George was simply different in his ways of life from his other family members. It seemed to be a different that not all of them could quite accept, but just simply different. Old George thought nothing of it. He spent all his money quickly, unlike the rest of his family. He didn’t save anything. He didn’t manage his money. Old George never regretted his actions.

Now alone on the streets, without anyone to help him (not that he would have accepted anyone’s help anyway) Old George was wishing he had a better idea in mind. Maybe the homeless idea was simply not working. Maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to sell his home to avoid property tax. But Old George quickly wiped that thought away. Old George never regretted his choices.

With nothing to do, Old George took out the only document that ever was of any importance to him – his high school diploma. It was as if that document had some magical abilities. Every time he looked at it, a brilliant idea would pop in mind and he would smile as he head off to complete it. Today his diploma did not fail him. Folding up his old diploma, he tucked it away in a pocket, an idea in mind and headed off.

Might it be important to state that there was a coffee stain on his diploma?

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A Happy Couple Game

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Prompt: Oh, I’ll propose a toast to the happy couple, all right.

“Oh you cynic.” Mary laughed out loud. “What’s wrong with us getting married?”

Sue glared at them.

“Mary, you know how much I dislike John.”

“What’s wrong with John?  He’s such a lovely man.”

“I don’t know. I don’t think you’ll be happy with him.” Sue leaned forward and poured some more wine for herself. “Would you like some more?”

“Of course.” Mary took the bottle from Sue and poured a glass for herself as well. She set down the bottle with a mischievous smile. “How about let’s play a game of toasting.”

“Mary…” Sue eyed her warily. “That never turns out well.”

“Don’t worry. You remember to rules right?”

“Don’t need to be reminded.” Sue mumbled. Oh, she remembered them alright. Simply drink and toast until you’ve said what the other person had in mind. Basically another way of saying drink until you’re dead drunk.

“I toast to your hair, girlie.”

“My hair?” Sue wrinkled up her nose.

“It needs a redo.”

“No.”

Mary downed her glass.

“To your lips.”

“Hey! What’s wrong with my lips?”

“Same as my hair.”

Mary rolled her eyes.

“Nope. My turn. To finding a boyfriend.”

“No. To getting a ring.”

“Close, but no. To getting a car.”

“No, to…”

<~*+*~>

“To…” Mary’s words were slurred as she dropped her wine glass onto the ground. “I’m beat. You guess mine.”

Sue shook her head, somehow still managing to keep a clear head.

“I know yours.”

“Why don’t you say then?”

“Oh alright, I make a toast to the happy couple. Happy now?”

“Yeah.” And then Mary fell asleep on the table.

The Wrong Person to Trust

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Prompt: A man gets a phone call in the middle of the night asking for sensitive information.

“Good morning Mr. Kenneth, how are you?”

Siire Kenneth groaned as he rolled over.

“Feel like fucking shit. It’s 2 in the morning, this better be good.”

“Sir, I need to ask you a couple questions.”

“Damn it, what did I do this time?”

“Nothing sir, we would just like to know a couple things.”

“Make it quick then.”

“What’s your favorite food?”

“Pizza.”

“Sorry sir, that’s not the right answer.”

“I should know what the fuck I like to eat.”

“We have down pepperoni pizza.”

“Whatever, fuck you.”

There were beeping noise in the background, awfully like someone typing away on a loud keyboard.

“Favorite color?”

“Hot pink.”

“And Kenneth is spelled with 2 ‘n’s, correct?”

“Yes.”

There was more beeping.

“The fuck are you doing with this information? Is there something wrong with my security system?”

“Sir, just one more question, if a chicken crosses the road at 5mph and arrives at the cookie shop in 12 minutes, how many cookies are in the cookie shop?”

“That’s easy, 15.”

“Good. Thank you sir.”

At that moment the door of his bedroom opened up with a click and his wife stepped into the room.

“Oh hold on for a sec, my wife just got back-” He turned to his wife, “Maria! What took you so long.”

To his surprise the voice in the phone spoke along with his wife.

“The key you gave me ran out of batteries.”

“You could have just called me and told me to unlock the door.”

“Yeah and every time you claimed that I was a fake trying to get in to kill you.”

“I-” Siire was left wordless for a moment. It was true. Being constantly under the threat of death, he had a super security system set at his door. Only if you answered all the questions right or if you had a key could you get in. “Well, I’m sorry Maria for not trusting you.”

She only shrugged, putting down the phone.

“Nothing wrong with being cautious. Except,” She suddenly pulled out a gun, “I really am a fake.”

Plot Twist

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Prompt: Suffering a mid-life crisis, a man on the eve of his fiftieth birthday quits his job and goes on a  quest to “get the band back together.”

[…]i’m suffering. i can’t liver life anymore. my gramar has goten so horible i cant spel anymore. i think this was the state i found myself on the day before my 50th b-day. i was so tired, so drain, and so unable to live life as it is. i think i am having a midlife crisis. so, this afternoon, i stared deep into my birthday cake (which was shaped like a chocolate frosted donut and had boston Cream in the middle) and i realized that i was getting too old. i was going to probably die tomorrow. yesterday, at the hospital, i found out that i had heart issues. like my grandpa who died of a heart attack. we found him on the ground and it made me really scared and i cried. it was realy realy bad.

i decided to pick up my fone and call my boss, who it this very young, very cool girl. she picked up and told me she was busy. i said that I was retireing. she was surprised. but i hung up so she couldnt say no. i was going to travel to world and visit places like disnesy Land. […]

At this moment, the 9 year old boy clicked post and added this new segment to his on-going story titled “My Mid-Life Crisis” on his blog “The Life of a 50 Year Old”.

The Wrong Four Leaf Clover

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Prompt: While scrolling through Facebook, a women sees a picture of herself in a post about fashion victims.

Being a women of strong and eccentric tastes, Betsy was never the most popular one is came to fashion in her circle of work buddies. Nothing that she wore was ugly, but not everyone fully appreciated modern art on the human body.

After throwing on a pair of sweatpants once she got home, she sat down on her couch to surf the web. Today had not been quite the best day.

There was always tension in the air whenever it came to what she wore. Betsy wasn’t even sure why she still worked for this old fashioned conservative company. No colored suits, no neon shoes. Literally nothing original.

Being the idiot she sometimes was, she forgot about that whole “everything must be black and white” and wore a purple undershirt. The first thing that greeted her the moment she arrived was about 20 sets of malicious eyes trying to bore holes into her purple, no, not even purple, light lilac that almost seemed white shirt.

Next thing she knew, her boss was in front of her with big accusing eyes and Betsy knew that a nice scolding was to follow along with some large amount subtracted from her paycheck. What ridiculous and unreasonable people.

After being forced to chlorine bleach her shirt in the laundry room (Why in the world was there a laundry room in the first place?), she of course burned a hole in the collar of the shirt. Most certainly someone would notice and that would be the end of her, so she took the shirt off and just went with her jacket all buttoned up. Someone noticed her.

It is said that bad luck comes in threes and Betsy was sure that this would be the last of horrible happenings today. Up until know, it wasn’t wrong yet. But as she scrolled through her Facebook news feed, an unsightly title came showed up.

“Work Dress Codes: The Victims of Modern Fashion”

Betsy frowned and clicked on the article taking her to her company’s blog (which for the record had maybe 5 followers). This wasn’t much of a surprise and she was sure that her name was going to be in there somewhere. But never did she know how many times they cursed and insulted her way of dress.

And then there was her, in only her bra, bleaching her lilac shirt in the laundry room. Beneath the picture was a caption.

“As fellow co-workers, we have always been worried for our friend Betsy. The common courtesy of wearing only stiff uncomfortable black and white clothing just has not seemed to click in her mind (as you can tell in this picture). We worry for our friend and hope that you will too. A burst of color is inappropriate for  work settings as formal and important as ours and it is in our deepest wishes to maintain this boring monotonous color scheme to improve concentration and headaches.”

Betsy was furious. After proceeding to post a long angry comment, she decided that maybe, it was time to move on to the another place to work.

Maybe bad luck came in fours.

A Bad Omen

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Prompt: Two childhood friends meet up after twenty years. After several drinks, one admits to having murdered several people.

I knew today was going to be a bad day. I knew it the moment Mr. Magic Eight Ball told me that all signs pointed to death 6 times in a row even after I gave it one hell of a shake. Not to mention, isn’t 6 the devil’s number? I wish I could have just stayed home, but how in the world were you to convince your boss that a plastic ball filled with inky liquid just predicted your death? So I dragged myself out of bed, brushed up and went off the work highly alert in case any idiot decided to swerve their car into mine and send me to my impending death.

Thankfully, I survived.

I survived work as well.

Yes, there were more mountains of papers than usual, but I didn’t die. No paper cut that wouldn’t stop bleeding, no accidental death burns from the coffee machine. I left work in triumph because I must have escaped my death, which also gave me the bright idea of getting a drink for defying the death gods.

And so here I was drinking, for the third time in my 20 some years of being alive.

“Excuse me mister, would you mind if I joined you?” I looked up with tap on the shoulder, surprised to be staring at the face of a lovely young lady. If I were not so drunk, I would have said no.

“Of course.” I stared into that perfect almond face, those puckered red lips and sparkling hazel eyes. Her hair draped across her shoulders in dark brown waves.

I felt like I knew her from somewhere.

“We know each other.” She said, breaking the silence.

“Really?”

“Remember that next-door neighbor you used to sell lemonade with?”

“Shelly?”

She broke into a smile.

“Yup.”

I froze for a moment, not knowing what to say. As a socially awkward nerd, Shelly was the closest I had to a childhood friend. She was the only person who could tolerate my ramblings of the universe. She took me seriously.

“What brings you here?” I asked. The last thing I heard of her was moving to Texas and then we lost contact. Her mother died when she was still young and her father… I never really did see her father ever.

“I was going to ask you that. I didn’t think you would grow up to be a drinker.” She laughed. “Care to share one with me?”

“Why not?”

***

As the heavy head of a drunken man banged against the table, the woman sitting across from him finally sets her glass down, having not drunken a single drop. She slides over and slings his arm over her shoulder, half carrying him to an empty room.

She whispers only one thing in his ears as she unbuttons his shirt.

“You asked me what I do as a living.” She pauses for a moment. “I’m only continuing my father’s legacy.”

Coke or Pepsi

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Prompt: Look, somebody has got to make a decision.

Garry hated parties.

There was nothing wrong about them – he loved having company, but whenever Ella hosted a party, she always pushed the shopping to him. And the list was so long.

“Yeah?” Garry punched the accept button on his phone as it ringed loudly in the store.

“Coke.” The feminine voice on the other side of the line squeaked. Garry groaned.

“Again?” This had been the fourth time she called, unable to figure out whether to get Coke or Pepsi.

“Yes, I’m positive.”

“Wait wait wait wait… are you sure?”

“Well… I mean… I’m feeling for Coke right now…”

“And you felt for Pepsi two minutes before that and Coke five before.”

“Oh… Garry… You know how much I hate making decisions.” The voice became whiny.

“Are you trying to tell me to make the decision?”

“Can you do it for me?”

“No.” Garry promptly refused. “Last time I made a decision you almost tore apart our living room.”

“I… I… Well this is different, you know.”

“I’m not making to decision.”

“Well then get Coke.”

“Are you positive?”

“No.”

Garry sighed frustrated.

“Then why don’t we just get both and see which one we end up drinking?”

“No, Garry, that would be wasteful.”

“Wasteful? How would that be wasteful?”

“Because there are plenty of people out there who need the Pepsi more than we do.”

“Than give it to them.”

“But…”

“But what?”

“Actually, you know what? Get the Pepsi.”

“What? You just said Coke!”

“I meant Pepsi. You know what I mean.”

“No I don’t.”

“Garry…”

“Make a decision now.”

“Can’t you do it for me?”

“No! I already told you I can’t!”

“Ugh, Garry! You don’t know how much I want to slap you right now.”

“I do know. You want to slap me a lot.”

The line went quiet.

“Fine, get Coke.”

“Ella…”

“I said Coke!”

“Ok. Bye, I’m not taking anymore requests.”

Garry hung up and turned off his phone, grabbing Coke off the shelves and left the store. Hell knows what kind of shit he was going to go through at home.

A Death of Relief

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Prompt: Three people walk in a bar after an earthquake

A Death of Relief

“You haven’t-”

“What?”

“Nothing.”

“Nothing what?”

“I said nothing.”

They sit down at the table. Or what once was a table.

“Nothing?”

“Nothing!”

The second man slams down his fist.

“Why don’t you finish your sentences anymore?”

He is met by silence as the first man looks down. It continues until the door creaks open, letting in a haggled figure. Another man.

“Looks like I’m not alone.” The third man glances at the other two men gruffly, sitting down at their table uninvited. Dust racks up around them and the first man coughs slightly.

The third watches them intently before he reveals the bottle in his hand.

“You two didn’t expect to find a bartender here did you?”

“A bartender?” The two men both look up surprised.

“This is a bar.”

“Nonsense.” The first man replies.

“Blasphemy.” The second man agrees. “We are proper men.”

The third man laughs, shaking the table. He glances at them.

“You don’t look like proper men.” He pops the bottle open and places three wine glasses he seemed to have whizzed out of nowhere down on the table. “Lucky you, I brought extras.”

Pouring out three glasses, the man slides two towards the them.

“A toast to surviving.”

The two men look skeptical at first, wondering if they should touch the glasses or not. But the deep magenta liquid eventually caves their will and they each take a gulp.

“A toast to surviving.” They nod to the third man who is smiling now.

“That’s more like it.” He says, taking another swig. “So tell me, what is your story?”

“Our story?” Both men look surprised at the question, not understanding what it means.

“The earthquake.”

“Oh.” They both remain silent. The third man waits patiently until the second man speaks up.

“I lost my home, all my money. Most of my family were safe, but we’re as poor as hell and starving.” He stops short, unable to proceed. The first man rests a hand on his shoulder, but keeps silent.

“And you?” The third man looks directly at the first man.

“I- I- d-don’t know what happened.” He mutters. The third man shakes his head, leaning back against his chair.

“I’ll tell you what happened to me then.” Both men nod eagerly. “I had a wife. She was a lovely creature. Her hair, her eyes, her voice. Everything was just so great and beautiful. I adored her. She was my everything. When we got married, I spent all I could to give her what she wanted. After our marriage, I tried my best to fulfill her. She wouldn’t allow for children. She thought they were annoying and getting pregnant would ruin her physique. Oh, how I adore children…” The man sighs. “Well, how unfortunate that it is for my wife to be lost in the earthquake, but I only feel relief. Do you understand?”

Both men nod reflexively.

“Now can you tell me your story?”

The first man nods and begins.