Penance

Establishing shot of a dark alley at night. We loom overhead, watching a man run in from the street. Police sirens sound off in the distance, howling over the big city traffic.

Close-up on the man’s upper body, but we can’t see the upper part of his face. He’s breathing through his mouth. There are bloodstains on his shirt. His footsteps echo through the dingy sidestreet.

He comes across a door. He frantically tries to get it open, but it’s locked. The sirens get louder.

Desperate, he starts pounding on the door. He constantly keeps taking looks out towards the main street. He manages to kick the door in and hurries inside, slamming the door behind him. Continue reading

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A Letter

Dear Papa,

How are you? I’m fine. Mama teach me how to write. Mind my punk—punkthu—my peeriods and my esclamation marks she says. Am I doing it right Papa? How are you? I’m fine too.

Mark hit me again today in school He is dumb Don’t tell Mama I said dumb. But Mark is! He really is! I saw him eat boogers and ask him why he eating boogers and he hit me. I hate him.

Papa…. Im scared. I think Im sick. Am I sick Papa? I wish you come home orredi. Scared. Mama she don’t like to tell stuff but I can hear her talk to the white coats on the tellefown. She said something like haloo-see-nayshun, what is that Papa?

Try my best to write coz I think Im sick,,, or Mama thinks I’m sick. Don’t know anymore. But they made me talk to a white coat. Funny, Papa they all wear white coats. They made me look at pictures but not really pictures because it’s just a bunch of inkblots and I really think they want to pin me down and tell me I’m crazy but I’m not I’m not fucking crazy.

Mama has big shoes I can hear her now,, up up up up she comes up up up.

Well, okay Papa. I have to go now. How are you? I’m fine.

– David.

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Ghosts of the Revolution

December 29, 1896

Steps echoed in the darkness of Pepe’s cell, an odd occurrence considering his guard had already tossed dinner onto the floor. He peeked out from between the bars to see who was coming. A hooded friar was walking down his way, a candle and bible in hand, accompanied by a prison guard. Pepe returned to his seat and waited. His execution was tomorrow; these were to be his last rites.

The rusty gate screeched open, and the friar entered Pepe’s cell. He motioned the guard away. “Please, allow this man to receive his blessings in peace.” The guard grunted and hesitantly walked out.

The friar turned to Pepe. “Doctor Jose Rizal?” Pepe nodded.

A hand extended from the holy man’s robe. “Unus Instar Omnium,” he said.

Pepe looked up at the priest, startled. He knew those words all too well – he wrote them himself years ago, when he formed the Philippine League. He took the friar’s hand and rose to his feet. “Do I know you?” Continue reading

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Rapture: Beyond Thunderdome

By the time you read this, the world will have ended. Humanity will have fallen into chaos, demons will rise from the depths, and the Earth as you know it will be a forsaken wasteland where all manner of horror runs rampant. Also, Godzilla will be shitting on your front lawn.

Of course, there is the chance that it’s more Apocalypse Later than Now, and you won’t have to shovel mountains of irradiated undersea dinosaur poop just to get out of your house. For this prompt, however, let’s just assume it does.

Larry suggested we write stories about Armageddon. You can do anything end-of-the-worldy, from illustrating the precise moment the world ends to envisioning a post-apocalyptic world where motorcycle gangs do battle with hyper-intelligent apes in an effort to be the first beings to hitch a ride on a Vogon ship. Do as you please, since no one will be around to complain anyway.

Have fun killing off our existence!

Photo from here, because I’m a dork.

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Questions, Part 2

Prologue and Part 1 | Part 2

Of all the universal truths within the grasp of human comprehension, the one that Henry Santos knew most intimately was this: waking up with a hangover was an absolute bitch. In his experience, hangovers felt like a conscious lobotomy, in which a particularly ungentle doctor drilled through his brain with a rusty implement while he sat there wide awake. As the tip penetrated his skull and twisted the tender gray matter underneath, the urge to vomit yesterday’s lunch and everything that followed afterwards inevitably overcame his ability to keep his mouth shut.

It wasn’t the hangovers that prompted Henry to check himself into rehab, however. It was the waking up next to strangers in unfamiliar rooms, the gashes from awkward stumbles on the sidewalks, and the unwinnable struggle to remember what happened the night before. It was the late nights and the painful mornings confronting Elena. It was the loss of friends and the transience of the relationships that followed.

Henry was a mess, and he knew he needed to get his life back in order.

As he waited for the blinding lights to stop dancing in front of his closed eyes, he attempted to reconcile the odd timing of this hangover. He had been clean for over six months now; he knew this because he was sure he celebrated this triumph a couple of nights ago. Why, all of a sudden, did he choose to fall off the wagon now? What happened? Continue reading

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Questions, Prologue and Part 1

Here’s my entry to the Game Show challenge! Part of it, anyway. This is still a work in progress, but I figured one massive post will be too tiresome to read. Instead, I’ll be submitting several parts over the course of the next few days, adding links to each part when applicable. Whee!

Prologue and Part 1 | Part 2

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Prologue

To say that Steven Burcell was a fan of detective stories was an understatement; he devoured the works of Christie, Hammett, and Harris after moving on from the Stratemeyer collections in his youth. He idolized both the uncanny brilliance of Sherlock Holmes and the gritty, violent underworlds that spawned from Frank Miller’s mind. Their tales of crime and retribution captured him, holding his attention for ransom as he devoured books, television shows, and movies recounting their exploits.

More than anything, it was the mysteries that intrigued Steven the most. The discovery of the gruesome crime, the collection of evidence, the uncovering of clues to the perp’s identity and the inevitable pursuit – a cerebral cat-and-mouse that packed gunpowder into every page – all of it fascinated him to no end.

Why Steven thought it would be a good idea to pursue these tales in real life, he had no idea. In fact, becoming a detective seemed like a horrible decision now. Continue reading

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They Come Once A Year

Note: I initially uploaded this on Facebook but I thought of posting it here for uh, posterity’s sake. I’m a bit iffy with Facebook Notes.

———————

He was talking in his sleep and she could hear him. But the words were faint, jumbled and insignificant. Words that made sense only in dreams.

She turned to her side and watched him sleep. The slow and steady movement of his chest heaving up and down. Up and down.

She thought he was beautiful. She traced one slender finger down the line of his jaw, resisted the urge to play with his stubble. He always looked at her funny when she did that.

“I love you,” she whispered.

He stirred.

Continue reading

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