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Deal With It“There,” Philip said, and stuck the tip of the pick axe in the dirt.
“Are you done? Took long enough.”
“Oh, pipe down, Mack, I did what I needed to do.”
“All you had to do was kill him, dude, I think this is a little excessive.”
The younger man turned his head as Philip kicked body parts into three separate holes, then picked up the hoe and helped fill them without looking.
“Well, I can’t sleep at night if I know somebody I killed could come back.”
Mack stopped the hoe and looked up at Philip in shock. “You mean, you do this because you’re afraid of…of zombies?”
“It’s not likely, but the fact is, it could happen. Not gonna take my chances. When you’ve killed as many people as I have, kid, you have to find some way to deal with the ghosts in your head.”
“All right, whatever, but I really hate your coping skills.”
Happy AccidentsSometimes I wake up in the morning, blink against the blue light coming in the window, and forget for just a second that the rest of the world is dead.
When I was a kid, I read stories about how some of the best inventions and discoveries resulted from accidents. “Happy accidents,” my mom called them. I grew up hoping that one day I would be a scientist, and “accident” into something incredible. I achieved my goal—I’m not unhappy and it was something incredible.
Three months ago, I walked into my lab like I do every day, coffee in one hand, cell phone in the other, ready to work. An hour later, the entire lab went up in a puff of green smoke. I managed to make it to my safety bunker before the explosion went off, but by the time it was safe to emerge, the damage had been done.
I stayed in the bunker a month, waiting for my detector to tell me that it was safe to exit. When it still hadn’t gone off after a month and my food supplies were running
StrangersLauren laid on her bed, scrolling through stories on some paranormal website her sister raved about. Standard fare, really—ghosts, demons, nearly-there-but-not-quite photos, clearly faked photos, curses, unexplained deaths—nothing to make Lauren so much as lift an eyebrow.
She clicked on one story labeled “The Stranger” and skimmed through it. “Yada, yada, cursed because she was unbearably nasty, morality tale, etcetera, etcetera,” she said as she glanced through it, then closed her laptop with a sharp click.
Sighing, Lauren slid off the bed and grabbed her coat, heading down stairs and out the door. Seriously, rotting her brain believing that crap, she thought, and pulled her coat closer to fend off the chilly drizzle.
Five blocks to their favorite ice cream place; she met her sister there every week, and she hated it. She would have to pass at least three homeless people only to listen to her sister talk for an hour. At least she could get t
ChupaSheila crawled out of bed, eyes barely open, and slammed her hand against the alarm clock. After a trip to the bathroom and a half-hearted glance in the mirror, she shuffled her way to the kitchen.
Then, just as she had every morning for the past fifteen years, she poured herself a cup of coffee and thought, for the millionth time, what would I do without coffee on a timer? Then leaned against the sink, letting the aroma work its way into her system, and watched out the kitchen window.
This habit resulted from the hummingbird feeders her mom had put up before she died, and out of respect for her mom and, she had to admit, some personal interest, she kept them filled during the warmer months. Most mornings, a few hummingbirds would zip around the feeders, and she would start her day with them, marveling at their speed.
As she watched, two hummingbirds came up to the feeders, a blue and a green, and a territorial fight broke out, one chasing the other in huge arcs around the feede
Becoming a ManThe day my mother brought home a brand new book for my brother, I knew something had happened. He was too young to know, though. “Aces!” he yelled, grinning, when she put it in his hands.
I didn’t look at him; I looked at her. The joy of the gift didn’t mask the sorrow in her eyes. The deep wrinkles branched out from the corner of her eyes like leafless winter branches, and the exhaustion etched in the lines on her forehead read loud and clear.
Somehow I knew, without a word. I waited until she walked into the kitchen and followed her. “He died, didn’t he?”
She let out a shaky breath and started putting the other things she’d brought home away. “I can’t hide anything from you, can I?”
“Late last night.” She set down a magazine, and I glanced at the back cover. Ham in a can. I wondered what it tasted like for a second before I remembered what we were discussing.
“So what now?”
Permanent Relocation“Well, here we are, floating in a tin can in the middle of space.” The stocky blonde with short hair shoved her bag under the sparse bed in the room.
“Funny, I thought it would feel different,” said the brunette behind her.
“Welcome home, ladies,” said the tall, severe woman who showed them to their room. “Dinner’s in an hour, and we don’t wait.”
When the door was closed, the blonde laid down on the bed. “What’s your name again?”
“Stephanie, but I like Stevie better.”
“All right. Nice to meet you, Stevie.” Pearl pulled out her things, putting them in the small dresser beside her bed. There wasn’t much—some clothes, toiletries, a few books, and some pictures. Stevie noticed that she shoved these under the clothes. The curvy brunette sat on the bed when she finished and looked at the blonde across. “So why are you here?”
“Had to get
BoomI ran for my shotgun as soon as I heard the blast. No way I was going to get caught off guard, no sir. Another one followed the first, insistent, and with the sound of crackling that could only mean shrapnel.
Great, and I’m in my pajamas. I loaded the shotgun and walked with a purpose through the living room. The patriotic music from the July 4th concert still played from my radio—fitting, I realized, and I stood taller.
The last notes of America, The Beautiful rung out loud and true as I opened the door. As soon as I stepped outside, light and sound assaulted every sense. I refused to waver, and I shook my gun and yelled, “Come and get it, you pansies!”
The booming intensified, and I raised my gun. I might not be able to see my attackers, but if I shot in their general direction, I could provide covering fire for our boys. Good thing I brought extra rounds.
I leveled my gun at the tree line, knowing that whoever lead the charge of those exp
Helper“Forget the car, Gene, it’s gone.”
“Cars don’t just get gone, Marsha.”
“Yeah, well, people don’t just get gone either, do they?” the blonde looked out into the woods. “But twenty years in this business and I’ve gotten plenty of people just gone.”
“You’ve been doing this for that long?”
Marsha looked up at him in perplexed amusement. “You mean the gray roots and the wrinkles on my hands don’t give it away? I’m touched.” She turned and started walking back down the highway, muttering to herself. The short, stocky guy behind her hesitated, then followed.
“Why do you do it?” he asked as he fell into stride with her.
“Sometimes people need to go. Someone’s gotta help ‘em.” Gene nodded silently, and the two walked on for a while until Marsha turned down a small path into the woods at the edge of the highway.
“Well, I appreci
PeacekeepersI marked the calendar in the same way I did every day. This was my fourteenth year in SRS, the Serious Reaction System, an organization committed to reducing panic as much as possible in the face of catastrophic events.
Prior to the Psycratic Invasion twenty years ago, the SRS wasn’t necessary. Sure, people panicked, but send a few cops out with their riot gear and people would calm down.
Of course, when a 12-foot alien is staring you down, panic is a natural reaction. That’s where we step in. In addition to censoring the newscasters when they get out of hand, we also hit the front lines of any catastrophe, bringing peace, if not always order, in the midst of the chaos.
When I checked in, I knew something was happening. The low, excited hum of news zipped around from person-to-person, and it didn’t take long to get to me. “Did you hear? There’s an uprising in the 4th Quad. Looks bad, too. One of the monsters came out of TranqStat, tore up the whole ward, k
make me proud. kageyama tobio x reader
Kageyama Tobio x Older Sister!Reader ;;
"Tobio. Can you toss for me?"
The young boy of 9 looked up to her older sister who gave him a small smile. He didn't mind giving tosses to her sister; it was fun — and it helped her practice. As far as he knew, his sister was volleyball player in her middle school and was the ace. She said she needed to work on her spikes, but he didn't understand why she needed to keep practicing it — considering that her spikes were the best. Well, in his opinion, anyway.
He shrugged his shoulders loosely. "Sure."
She grinned and went to the backyard, Tobio following in behind. And as they arrived in backyard, she turned to him, the grin still plastered on her face. "You ready?"
Tobio nodded his head and [Name] passed the ball to him and as the ball was coming towards him, he extended his arms up above his head, positioned his hands in a diamond formation, spread his feet about shoulder width apart, and as the bal
birthday kiss. oikawa tooru x reader
"Good morning, [Name]-chan~!"
Oikawa gave the girl a wave, but the girl merely looked away, trying her best to ignore him at all costs. Knowing that she was avoiding his presence, Oikawa entered the classroom and grabbed a chair and scooted next to her. Really close to her. Too close for her own comfort. But did Oikawa care? No, of course not. He never cares about anything but himself.
Which is why [Name] hated him.
"Do you know what day it is~?" he asked, paying no attention at how the girl was extremely uncomfortable by the space between them. Oikawa, however, saw the tint of blush appearing on her cheeks, and that only made him want to get closer to her even more.
"Friday." [Name] simply replied, or at least, tried to.
"Nope!" he exclaimed, that sadistic smile of his still plastered on his dreadful face. The students stared at the two
lovebirdsstudents, blinking at the scene. Though, this wasn't the first time Oikawa barged into their c
runaway irony (FFM 22)Twenty minutes after finishing the documentary on New Zealand, Nicole had a plan worked out. She wrote it all down in gel pen, an itemised list of all the things she needed; then she got to work.
It wasn’t easy to convince the man in Bunnings to sell her nails, but she put on her best innocent face, and told him it was for her father’s garden shed. It wasn’t easy to convince the neighbour to let her have the old fence palings, either; nor the logs that had been earmarked for a bonfire, but a few hearty fibs and her best “I just want to help my daddy” smile went a long way to convincing them.
Two weeks later, she had bruised hands, a lot of knowledge about how not to use a hammer, and what she hoped would pass for a half-decent raft. She packed herself a bag with some clothes and spare underwear, then packed another bag, this one larger and wheeled, with as much canned food as she could carry. Before she left, she remembered to grab the can op
FFM 18: Friday NightAnother friday night. Burnt coffee, stale cigarette smoke, and a bunch of assholes that Vlad didn’t like any better than himself. If there was a silver lining here, it was that this would be his last meeting. That almost brought a smile to his tired, pallid face. Almost. Instead, he peeled off one last sticky tag, wrote his name, and sat in the circle with the rest of the guys.
Rat King was up first. Blah blah, all the usual bullshit about ruling the sewers. Honestly, who cared? That guy wasn’t a true monster. As far as Vlad was concerned, they should’ve sent him packing ages ago, but this was a place of support, so he’d never said as much. Twitching and fidgety, he waited for his turn to stand at the podium.
“Hello,” he began. “My name is Vlad. Of the Family Macnair.”
“Hi, Vlad,” the assorted murderers and thieves replied.
“As most of you know, I
A ConversationI told him he smells of coffee and thrift shops. He said, “Is that a good thing?”
I said yes, very. Or better than smelling of cheese and ammonia.
“Who smells of cheese and ammonia?”
This lady I work with. And not good cheese, either. Roquefort, that’s been sitting on the dash of a car on a 100 degree day.
“Why do you suppose the ammonia?”
I assume that she cleans with it.
“Oh my God,” he said. “Who cleans with ammonia? Unless she’s getting rid of evidence?” He cocked an eyebrow.
And who smells of cheese if they clean with ammonia, is what I want to know. I tell him I can never eat stinky cheese again, but that being near him always makes me want a coffee, badly.
“What do thrift shops smell like?”
I ask him if he’s ever been into a thrift shop.
“I don’t think so. Old bookstores. I love those. Is that close?”
I thought about that. Yes, yes that wa
SplitI didn’t know what to do for her. Or to her. Or with her. She cried, a lot. She thought I didn’t know, didn’t notice, or maybe just didn’t care.
I saw her dancing in the rain one Saturday afternoon, nude. Not a stitch on her, and dancing by the creek, red welts rising on her skin from the biting mosquitoes. She never danced. I watched, and marveled that she could dance and still look sad.
When the rain let up, she stopped and stared at the creek flowing and bubbling over big flat mossy rocks. I called her name without using my voice, and she turned, but then looked away again. I wondered where she was in her head, that she could stand there and ignore the itchy bites and not worry that she was naked.
I envied her lack of self-consciousness. I pulled my heavy cardigan around my shoulders, even though it was hot and muggy out. I hid in its folds like a turtle hides inside its mobile home.
Sometimes I could feel her tugging at me, begging. I was stubbor
Giving the Bride AwayThird Person Plural
Father: Teenagers are too immature to know what’s best for them.
Third Person Neuter
Mother: This country just doesn’t have the same standard of morals.
Third Person Masculine
Father: He’s the perfect choice for her.
Third Person Feminine
Mother: She’s not too young. It’s normal to be nervous.
Father & Mother: You should be excited on your wedding day.
Bride: This isn’t what I want.
:: GULA :: Charles Grey x Reader
gula ; latin for gluttony.
"Ah, I'm so hungry! [Name], get me something, will you?"
"Must you eat all the time? You just ate an hour ago!" the girl said, raising her voice. It still surprised her at how this man could consume any food with a blink of an eye. He kept eating, eating, and eating, it made her sick to the stomach. Just watching him eat made her stomach churn in disgust. "If you want food, then go get some yourself."
"That's a lot of work," Charles complained. "that's why I'm asking you, silly!"
"I'm not," [Name] began, walking towards him and sticking her sword in front of his face. "your maid."
"Course, you aren't." he mumbled, removing the sword away from his face. "Must you always stick your sword in front of me? You know, one day you might end up slicing my face in half! And it will be all your fault, [Name]."
"Oh, please. I would have done that if you weren't the Queen's butler."
"Still cruel as ever, I s
The Bird Lady FFM20I’ve lived in NYC for over two years, and for so many people living there, it’s an awfully lonely place to be. Everyone is very focused on themselves, no one makes eye contact in the streets, and even the cabs ignore you. My job is the only thing that keeps me here. I make so much money, it would be stupid to move back home and work at my dad’s store for only a fraction of what I earn. That, and I have an old lady to take care of.
She’s one of those bird ladies in the park. She’s a sweet old thing, and it would kill me to leave her alone. It would probably kill her too.
We became friends because I was sitting alone in the park one afternoon, watching the clouds and daydreaming. She jumped out of nowhere and said, “Feed the birds?” I nearly fell off my park bench, I was so surprised.
“Sure, sure,” I said, pressing a quarter into her wrinkled hand. Gums showing, she smiled. She handed me a paper bag of breadcrumbs and sat next to me.
Bling“Carry me across the threshold,” she told me. “It’s tradition.”
“Well, dear, it’s a simple question of weight ratios. A five ounce bird cannot carry a one pound coconut, after all,” I quipped.
“Are you calling me fat?”
“It’s impossible for you to be any other size, love.”
“Just what are you saying?”
I realized at this point that perhaps I hadn’t thought this through enough. “Nevermind, dear. Up you go!”
My knees shook as I lifted her, shuffled forward, then sat her down.
“Now that wasn’t so bad!”
What could be done? I was in love with a robot.
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