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Event 2: Finish the Story

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Spearmint says...


Summary: Write a short story using one of the first-line prompts in the description below!

Judges: Spearmint and SpiritedWolfe

How to Enter: Post your story in a spoiler in this thread (the code for spoilers is [spoiler ](story)[/spoiler], without the space). Include your team name if you have one!

Description: Alrighty, here are the prompts~
Spoiler! :
1. The villain sat on a couch and said, "I'm tired of fighting. Can we just watch TV?"
2. It was all the potato's fault.
3. The day had had such a wonderful rainy start, but with the disappearance of the clouds, everything took a turn for the worse.
4. There was an abandoned box on the ground, one that held a shiny key and a note.
5. "I- I didn't mean to make the sun explode!"

Creativity and putting your own twist on these prompts is definitely encouraged! But please do make sure to keep everything 16 or below and include trigger warnings, with swearing at a minimum and no inappropriate themes (check out this link for rating guidelines). Word limit is 1000 words, though it's fine if you go a little over! Have fun writing!! ^-^

Ends: (auto-adjusted to your local time)

Feel free to ask questions or post comments in the Discussion Thread!
mint, she/her =D

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Mon Aug 02, 2021 4:28 am
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Liminality says...

Here’s my entry for prompt #2! Wordcount: 463

Spoiler! :
It was all the potato's fault. There was no one else who could have done it. The turnip was almost a hundred percent sure.

The sky was island blue. A few clouds drifted lazily here and there, but by and large it was a clear day. Despite that, the pool of water, which flooded the seedlings in the centre of the farm hung over every vegetable and fruit’s head like the rainiest of weather.

Mooing ensued. The old radish had hopped out of the dirt on his wrinkled red legs and brought over Clover the cow to drink up the water. But soon Clover was full and needed to go back to the shed.

The turnip activated the root network that linked it to all the other plants in the vicinity. “The potato must have overturned the water buckets!” they said. “They’re always so clumsy, it must be so!”

In the meantime, the potato was in the ground fuming. It had to be the turnip’s fault that the seedlings were being flooded. Poor seedlings – their roots would be waterlogged and who knows if they would grow properly and upright like they were meant to? The potato sure didn’t, and they were annoyed that the turnip had immediately blamed them. They channelled through the root network to say:
“Isn’t it suspicious that the turnip is trying to accuse me? Maybe they did it, for all you know!”

With that, the garden broke out into a war. The root network was filled with fruits and vegetables accusing each other of causing the little flood. On the north side of the farm, the cabbages argued that the lettuces must have stolen extra water from the well in the night and spilt it on the way pack to their patch. From the south side of the farm, the lettuces strongly denied this claim and said the cabbages must have tripped the horses during the water deliveries at dawn.

In all the commotion, the old radish decided to move into the cow shed with Clover and retire from his job of taking care of the seedlings.

Soon, tensions boiled over. The turnip leapt from their patch, white under the sun. “I’ve had enough!” they shouted and raced over to the potato fields. Next, the cabbages came racing southwards and the lettuces were racing northwards. The beans, the potatoes and the tomatoes all arrived – converging on the small, flooded seedling patch with vengeance and vitriol on their minds.

They trampled over the seedlings, and mud sloshed around their roots. The water spilt over to the next patch and the next. When night fell, the central area of the farm was destroyed.

Little did they know, the real problem was a burst pipe, meters below the top layer of soil.

Have you met my friend, The Story Review Template?

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Ignorance says...

I decided to go with prompt #4! Trigger warning for implied fire and death. Word count: 691

Spoiler! :
Maeve was a lone creature, wandering the local ruins in the year 4647. Ze had always been fascinated by them. They were said to be from a past group of people, ones unlike the Inzen. Some say that they were an entirely different species altogether.
Maeve smiled softly to zerself as ze came upon what was similar to a space station, but far less advanced than their technology. This was zer special spot, a place that always brought a sense of comfort to zer. Ze walked inside, the steps echoing the overgrown halls. Zappions and Dizers were in full bloom around the station, along with other unfamiliar plants that were said to be from the age of the olden creatures.
As ze walked around, Maeve got deeper and deeper into the station. Deeper than ze had ever trekked before. Ze paused when ze noticed something. A storage unit..? Maeve opened it, out of curiosity. There was an abandoned box on the ground, one that held a shiny key and a note. Eyes sparkling with newfound interest, ze picked up the note and began reading.
If there is anyone left to read this:
We’re gone. We’re all gone. The asteroid successfully hit our planet, and everything’s gone. As I’m writing this, I don’t know if the plan worked. The plan is to fly a group of humans to distant space, in hopes of salvaging what’s left of our race. Please, take the key. Go find the lock in the programming room. If we’re successful, then maybe someday I’ll explain more.
-Roberta Jackson, NASA astronaut

Maeve blinked. NASA? Humans? It was confusing, but ze somewhat understood what to do. Ze carefully picked up the key, examining it for a moment, before going to the programming room. Ze knew exactly where it was. Maeve had been there several times, and had always wondered what that lock was for. But now, ze knew, and maybe ze’d finally get some answers to the question ze always asked zerself: who was here before zer?
The Inzen creature cautiously slipped the key into the hole and twisted it. At once, the screen lit up, static filling it. Maeve flinched for a moment, about to remove the key, until ze heard a voice.
“Hello? Hello? Can you hear me?”
Ze froze. That person sounded so different… was that Roberta, the NASA astronaut? The one who had left the note? A creature unlike anything Maeve had ever seen popped up on the screen. They had messy, long red hair, skin the color of sand (save for the dark circles under their eyes), and brown eyes that looked exhausted and tear stained.
“Alright… god, where do I start… My name is Roberta Jackson. If you’re hearing this, I hope I’m not alone. I really hope not. Everyone else is dead, I’m the last one here… I don’t know what to do anymore. I think I’m the last human. If you’re seeing this, maybe some alien species has taken over, I dunno… it’s probably too far away for that, maybe this is being seen in the future..? Whatever. I can’t take this. Nothing matters, I can’t do anything… I’m trying so hard to find another planet, somewhere with food and water and.. and people. I need- I need people. I can’t keep doing this alone, I can’t- I just-“ Roberta sighed. “God, what’s gotten into me…” The red haired human clutched a finger, one with a ring on it. “Harmony… god, what would you think of me now…” Tears filled Roberta’s eyes. “Why did this have to happen- why- WHY?! YOU COULDN’T HAVE HIT ANYWHERE ELSE- n-no, I… I gotta stay sane, for you, my love… r-right. The camera. Please, send a signal, ANYTHING. I just- I just wanna go home… please…” Alarms suddenly rang on the ship. “Wh-What the- holy- okay, what’s going-“ Smoke began to fill the interior. “No- NO NO NO NO!! ST-STOP IT!! PLEASE, I JUST- I JUST WANT MY LIFE BACK, I-“ The screen reduced to static once more.
Maeve stood there, frozen. Ze had just watched the last moments of humanity, right in front of zer.
Do you how do?
I use any pronouns :)
Get in losers, we're going napping

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lliyah says...

Prompt 5 ~ 1032 words, Team Chickens

Spoiler! :

"I- I didn't mean to make the sun explode!" – a frightened Alice the ant whispered to her director, Reginald. This was her first day out of the ant hill, on foraging patrol. But her training in ant school, really couldn’t have prepared her for the magnitude of the world – and now, of course, the sun was exploding in front of her. Not a great first day.

“This is no sun, Alice” Reginald scoffed at the new recruit only a bit impatiently, “Those yellows are dandelion feathers, young one, the two-legs make wishes from their petals.” Twitching his front feet toward the sky he continued, letting his voice echo among the rank-lines. “The sun is there, and it weighs over a million grains of grass, and yet every day it wakes it up to do its job. A good reminder for us too!”

Alice marveled at the real-sun and the thought of humans somewhere around them. She had learned of their constructions and intelligence in school, but wasn’t sure she believed they existed. “What is a wish, Reginald? You said the two-legs wish on these sun-flowers?”

“A wish is a whole fruit basket free for the taking!” Anders another new recruit chimed in.

Reginald shook antennae and motioned for the group to continue marching. Alice fell in line beside him and Reginald answered, “A wish is a hope for something better, a dream you whisper to the sun and hope that she returns – ants don’t wish, we have jobs to do, and we take what we get – we’re foragers. But the humans wish, they’re an odd and irrational creature.”

Alice thought about all that she knew about humans, their strength, their machines, their sheer size (though she expected the other foragers exaggerated some of these legends). Humans were rumored to have food so abundantly that they loaded it into disposal bins, and were so powerful they could summon the wind or sun with a switch of their limb. “What could a two-leg wish for? Couldn’t they do anything they would like?”

“You’ll see Alice.” Reginald called back, leading the group up the side of a brick wall. Before the row of ants stretched a park where a family of humans had stopped to play. The mother-human said to her offspring, “Time to head home, now – we have a lot to do before your friends come tomorrow, we’ll come back another time.”

The child let out a howl, that rattled the earth that the ants were traveling on, edging closer to a granola bar wrapper that had pieces of oatmeal they could carry back to the colony – too much work for any one ant, but with their team it would be easily done. “I wish I could stay here forever, I’m not going home, we haven’t had enough time, it’s not fair, no!” the child shrieked, stomping back towards the swing set. Alice watched as she helped carry half a raisin back towards the return-line. “I wish you weren’t my mother!” the child yelled louder. The mother-human tilted her head, saddened and reached for the child’s hand to lead them away towards their vehicle.

Several of the ants were exchanging congratulations on the great find of the day, but Alice felt upset, the idea of a wish had been exciting, but the child seem to have misused its magic, hurting their whole colony. “No wonder humans are dumb enough to misplace their food on the ground, they’re ungrateful!” Anders said to Alice.

Reginald handed them each a grain of sugar to munch, “They’re not all like that, you’ll see.” He pointed towards another group of humans. These humans were playing some sort of game of throwing a ball into a hoop – Alice didn’t understand why they were playing, but she loved their expressions as they made passes or successfully made hoops. A smaller, younger-human was struggling to keep up, he was half the size of the rest of the group. “Hey don’t forget to pass to John” one of them shouted at the group, and the orange ball was passed over to the younger-human. “Let’s see if his offensive game is as bad as his brother!” another one of them jeered back.

The younger one threw the ball and it hurtled towards the basket but missed by a few feet. The older brother caught the ball and dunked it into the basket letting out a “whoop!” “How’s that for offense?” he playfully shouted back. The group laughed and made their way towards a bench to drink some water. The younger brother, spoke to his older brother, “Thanks again for bringing me! I know I’m not very good, but it’s fun to spend time with you. I just wish I was taller!”

The older brother slapped his brother’s back, “Wait a second! I have an idea, here get on my shoulders for this next round!” Alice, stopped foraging to watch eagerly as the humans balanced atop each other’s shoulders and the small one was now easily able to make the baskets! His wish had worked! And their whole colony seemed better for it.

As the ants filed in line to leave with their goods, she wondered at what she had seen from the humans – one wish wasted, and one wish fulfilled. She wavered as the raisin on her back became heavy, and was grateful Reginald appeared beside her picking up some of the weight. “What’d you learn today, Alice?”

Alice thought, then spoke, “The sun won’t explode easily, it’s far too big. And wishes and hope … they are strange, but they’re not all bad. If you’re ungrateful and angry already, wishes can hurt. But if you’re grateful and looking for the best already, a wish can multiply the goodness of what you already have! Maybe the trick to all this hoping is gratitude? ”

Alice thought a moment longer, “I wish I’d learn something new every day, and I wish that the sun won’t explode.”

Reginald laughed, and patted Alice’s head. “Maybe ants can wish after-all, and if ants can wish, that’s not a bad one Alice. Just don’t forget the sun will be up again tomorrow wishes or not, so be ready again for work.”
you should know i am a time traveler &
there is no season as achingly temporary as now
but i have promised to return

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rida says...

Prompt 5, 1,090 words, Team Chickens.

Spoiler! :
How not to eat a pretzel

“I- I didn’t mean to make the sun explode! Please, principal Ferreir, you have to believe me!” The words rushed out of the girl’s mouth as she threw open the door and stormed in.
Sora Ferreir sighed, rubbing her temples as she stood up. Two girls, about 5 feet each, looked at her expectantly.
Both wore maroon overcoats, grey woollen boots and black jeans. They both had startling blue eyes and golden-brown hair that glistened beneath their black caps, and presently their forehead was creased in worry.
They were twins
“It was all Maria’s fault!” The girl who’d vanished the sun said. She shot an irritated glance at her twin, and her twin frowned, folding her arms.
“Was not!” She shot back. “If Moira hadn’t been practising out in the public instead of in the safe chamber, then none of this would’ve happened!”
The girl called Moira pouted.
“I was in a sky chanting class! We were practising cloud explosions! It was an outdoor class!” Moira said exasperatedly.
Maria rolled her eyes.
“Then you should’ve been more conscious of your surroundings. It was clear that I was coming to barricade you!” Maria said, her voice raising only slightly.
Both the sisters seemed to have completely forgotten about the principal’s presence.
Sora Ferreir straightened up, glaring at them and trying to muster up all the authority into her voice.
“Girls, girls. Enough!” Sora boomed, glaring impassively at both of them.
Both the girls immediately quieted, looking at Sora expectantly.
Sora gazed longingly into an opened cardboard box that sat at the edge of her desk, half opened to reveal a pretzel. Only an hour ago, she’d been sitting in her office, opening the cardboard box to discover a hot, delicious-looking pretzel awaiting her. She’d smiled contentedly and was about to have her first bite when Mr. Ezmel, the sky-chanting teacher and wizard, had rushed in. He had been wearing midnight-blue robes then, and a pointed wizard’s hat, and his grey beard was let loose on the floor, so when he arrived, there was a lot of stumbling and tripping but he’d finally made it to in front of her desk.
“Whatever’s the matter?” Sora had asked, finally closing her open mouth and setting aside her pretzel.
“The- the-” Mr. Ezmel had suddenly started coughing and then, after a glorious few thumps on his back by Sora, he’d sat down and told her that one of his students, the prodigious Moira Furror, had accidentally tore down the sun, when her sister had barricaded into her.
Sora had been, of course, surprised. It was unusual for Moira to cause trouble. Usually, it was her sister that did enough mischief for the world.So she’d ordered that both the girls be brought in, while she gave Mr. Ezmel a holiday for the rest of the day, suspecting that the surprise would’ve taken a toll on the old wizard’s health.
While waiting for the girls to arrive, Sora decided to calm her grumbling belly by finishing the pretzel, and she was about to take her first glorious, mighty bite when she was interrupted by their arrival, and now here she was- hungry, tired, and in the middle of a fight.
Sora closed her eyes for a moment, sitting down as she rubbed her temples. This was all a headache.
Sora opened one eye to find both girls looking at her worriedly, as if afraid she might’ve dropped dead and considering wether to ask for a medic or leave.
She ignored them and went towards the window, pulling open the blind and staring out.
It looked like nighttime. She glanced at the watch: 12:51 P.M.
“Moira. Maria.” She said sternly, trying to sound dangerous.
She wasn’t really angry- in fact, she was amused. After all, it wasn’t everyday that you saw the sun explode, or saw an old wizard trip over his absurdly long beard- no, wait, Sora did see Mr. Ezmil trip over his beard daily. (He has a ridiculously long beard, and to groom it would take all day.)
All the same, Sora supposed that this was a little amusing, even if slightly a nuisance
Sora cleared her throat consciously, glancing at the cold pretzel.
She dreadfully wanted to eat it.
“Moira, Maria. Detention for six months” Sora said with an air of finality.
Both the sisters groaned.
“You are so irresponsible, Maria! It’s because of you that I’m getting punishment!” Moira said suddenly, (in fact, she said it so suddenly that Sora jumped a good many inches from the floor). Moira clenched her fist and turned to look at Maria.
Maria pouted, suddenly going dangerously red in the face. She then said a string of words that made everyone jump and wince, and made Sora look at her half-sternly and half-disbelievingly.
Moira screamed with rage, and then waved her finger at her sister, it’s tips glowing faintly.
Before Sora could even draw in another breath, the spell had been done.
Moira smirked, looking proud of herself.
Maria screamed- or, at least she tried to. But all she really could do was open her mouth and scrunch up her face in an ugly grimace.
“That’s one week of peace for me” Moira said, grinning from ear to ear.
“Moira!” Sora said, finally finding her voice.
“That is now eight months of detention” She declared, before telling both girls that they were excused and sitting down to finally finish her pretzel.
She was just about to take her first bite- the cold pretzel at the tip of her tongue, when the door was mercilessly thrown open by a pair of thin, skeletal arms.
Sora closed her eyes momentarily, trying to gulp down her anger as she extracted the pretzel from her mouth, putting it back in the cardboard box.
“Yes?” Sora said, her voice feeble and weak.
“Where. Is. The. Sun?!” A squeaky, tiny voice growled.
Sora glanced at the speaker- a thin woman with slightly wrinkled skin, wearing a shockingly, dazzlingly, bafflingly, overly bright yellow suit.
“Ms. Malligan. A pleasure, as always.” Sora said warily.
“Oh ho ho, you will pay for this, Sora Ferriers. And I mean literally” Ms. Malligan said, then stormed off, before adding- “The government expects you in our monthly meeting. Now.”
Sora sighed a long, weary, sad sigh. She knew there was no escaping the headmistress of the biggest magical academy in the world.
She got up slowly from the table.
All she ever wanted to do was eat that pretzel.

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KateHardy says...

Prompt 4, 1036 words, Team Chickens :D

Spoiler! :
There was an abandoned box on the ground, one that held a shiny key and a note. It stood right in the center of the room, illuminated by the light of the single candle placed next to it. Said candle also happened to be the only light source illuminating the entire room.

The room itself was quite small, so the candle did a decent job of lighting it. James could make out cracked concrete walls, and one rotted looking wooden door. The room didn't appear to have any windows or any furnishings. In fact, the cardboard box was the only thing inside it, well besides himself and the rest of his team.

"So...uhh, what next?" asked Stean, one of his teammates, once they'd all had a good long staring contest with the box.

"To be fair, I didn't plan anything besides getting to the location of this box, so...uhh...I say we pick up the key and the note and then improvise," said Harry.

"You do realize there's a hundred percent chance that everything is going to go very wrong the moment that you pick up those items?" said Vankous.

"Yeah, this is definitely booby trapped, but ehh, what's the worst that could happen?" said Harry, reaching down.

"Please don't put that on my tombstone," said James.

"Trust me, in this line of work, you don't get a tombstone," said Vankous.

"How is that reassuring in any way?" said James, shaking his head.

"I thought that was pretty clear, you won't have an embarrassing message on your tombstone," said Vankous, looking confused.

"Both of you, stop bickering and stare at that door," said Stean, "that way, perhaps a tombstone doesn't need to get involved at all."

As he said that, Harry picked up the objects and studied them. They weren't particularly impressive on first glance. The key was shiny, sure, but it was just a thin strip of metal that looked so soft a human could probably bend it. The note was hardly any more impressive, being barely legible with how faded it was.

"Hey, maybe we're safe..." started James. There was a loud explosion from somewhere behind the door.

"How many times do I have tell you to never use the "s" word until we get back to the ship?" said Stean.

"Sorry," said James, as the door in front of them was blasted off its hinges and launched straight at Harry.

The door smacked into their team captain with a sickening crunch as the aged wood shattered in two upon impact. Harry pocketed the two items and stretched out his arms, brushing off the splinters of wood on his suit.

Four armored guards ran in and pointed automatic weapons at them. If they were surprised that the door hitting Harry had done basically nothing, they didn't show it.

"Nothing like a door to the face to get a fight started," said Harry, "Alpha Pack! Let's get the heck out of here. You guys know the drill, leave everyone alive and try not to die. Dang, that did not rhyme like I was expecting it to."

With that, all hell broke loose.

Harry jumped in front of the trio and spread his wings as the guards opened fire, the blasts of white hot plasma simply being absorbed by his body in small flashes of dark cyan light. Ten seconds later, the weapons all clicked in unison, the universal sign of running out of ammunition. Harry smiled and slammed his wings forward, sending a massive gust of wind that sent all four guards flying into the wall. They fell to the ground as Harry calmly walked out. Stean charged out in a flash of green lightning, disappearing through the door. Vankous strode out right after Harry, a purple shield flickering to life around the wizard as he walked through the door.

James was last through the door and immediately someone was throwing a punch at his face. He ducked, spinning away. The assailant threw a kick at him but James caught the man's foot with his left hand, hitting the knee of the man with his other hand in a precise chop. The man went down in a groan of pain.

He looked around, getting his bearings. The were in a large open field of some sort. It looked to be close to midnight, there was no light anywhere in sight and James could barely make anything out besides the occasional flash of color coming from the combatants on the field.

"James, on your left, " yelled Harry from somewhere, and James ducked as he turned. A potato that was somehow on fire whizzed past him. Not stopping to question the origin of said potato, James ran forward. He ran past Vankous, who was taking on four guards at once.

He caught a snippet of whatever Vankous was saying, "....guys know the benefits of eating potatoes? It actually contains most of the nutrients required for a balanc...." That explained the potatoes at least.

In front of him, Harry was zapping people with electricity left and right, effectively tasing everyone that got remotely close to him. Before he could figure out whatever lecture Harry was giving the guards, another stray guard charged at him, this one equipped with a knife. The man slashed at him and James ducked, catching the man's hand in his right. In one swift move, he turned the man's hand the other way and sent the knife flying out of the man's hand. One swift punch to the chest and the man folded in two like a piece of cardboard.

James looked around for anyone else to fight. In the brief flashes of light from Harry's lightning all he could see were unconscious figures. Stean was currently a blur of green, and judging by the occasional cries of pain, he was running around knocking people out. Vankous and his potato based firework display lit up another corner in purple light, illuminating lots of potatoes and a few fallen guards.

He allowed himself a small smile. It looked like no tombstones were going to be needed after all. Deciding the most number of still conscious guards were near Vankous, he charged towards the hail of potatoes.
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SilverNight says...

Prompt 1, 1048 words:

Spoiler! :
The villain sat on a couch and said, "I'm tired of fighting. Can we just watch TV?"

The hero glanced at the clock. “I don’t see why not.”

The villain yawned, leaning back into the velvet cushions as she pressed a button on the remote. Instantly, the screen flashed to life, showing two familiar faces. The hero watched Abby swing her sword in a vicious arc, driving her opponent Max back a step. The crowd’s cheering was deafening, even with the volume low.

“Change the channel, Jenn,” they grumbled.

Jenn rolled her eyes at the hero, but she changed it. The other TV options were equally poor, though, as the next channel was a livestream of another duel, and the three after that were all commentaries on various fighter celebrities.

“You wanna listen to this, Hazel?” Jenn asked. “It’s talking about various sword techniques. Could get our view numbers up.”

“I thought you were bored of fighting?” Hazel folded their arms over their chest.

“Yeah.” Jenn sighed, switching channels several more times before settling for a talkshow. “This will do, I guess.”

Hazel walked towards the couch and nudged Jenn a few inches to the right before sitting down (Jenn always hogged couch space). Currently, the channel had an interview with the owner of ArenaLive, the entertainment company that they worked for. Hazel wanted to groan. Of course everything on TV had to be about them.

“This is lame,” they muttered.

“Hush.” Jenn kicked them lightly with the side of her foot. “It’s about the scandal.”

Of course it was. Hazel sat back, watching the screen with a blank, distant stare. Last week, one of the most famous contestants had backed out of their contract, condemning the company for their unsafe working conditions and the effects on participants’ mental health. The story had gone big. It had made the headlines for several days in a row and didn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon.

Hazel thought it wasn’t all that huge a deal. All of the heroes and villains wanted more benefits and money. But since they weren’t allowed to share their dissatisfaction with the audience, this was a very unusual event. No wonder everywhere was talking about it.

“Hey, you listening?” Jenn waved her hand in front of their face. “Looks like good old ArenaLive is suing for breach of contract.”

Hazel, who had not in fact been listening, only let out a distracted “mmh” sound.”

Jenn gave them an exasperated look. “Come on, this stuff is useful to pay attention to.”

“What, gossip on live TV?”

“It’s not gossip.” She sighed.

“I know you were joking about getting our views up earlier,” Hazel said. “But this is getting boring.”

It was true that the two of them didn’t need to draw an even larger audience. They were already the most famous pair of hero and villain, blowing the viewers away with their performances in duels. The tickets for their fight tonight had sold out in under a minute.

“It’s relevant,” Jenn insisted, turning on the closed captions so she could tell what was happening even as they talked. “Tony was one of the most popular villains out there besides— I just want to watch.”

Hazel bit their lip. They knew Jenn was going to say besides herself. It was common knowledge that their villain opponent was unhappy with her contract. Someone as successful as her should be getting far more out of her arrangement. Everyone in the industry wanted more out of it, but the villains most of all. After all, they did exactly as much as their hero counterparts, but they got less fame— and so ArenaLive didn’t value them as much.

Because the hero always won in duels.

“Does this matter that much to you?” Hazel asked.

“We’ve become modern-day gladiators for the entertainment of the masses. I’d at least like to see what happens to those who leave.”

“Sued for every last cent they earned, apparently,” Hazel muttered, their gaze fixed on the screen.

Jenn turned the volume down. “Let’s go over what we’re doing tonight, then.”

Hazel pulled out the notes they’d taken. The duels were all performance, all acting. The audience was made to think there was actual rivalry between each hero and villain, but it was completely scripted. They only seemed to be competing against each other, in a dramatic battle between good and evil. In reality, they succeeded or failed together, depending on how well they put on the roles. Hazel and Jenn were very good at keeping up appearances— they had to be, if they were considered the best.

“Think they’ll like this?”

“They’re getting what they want.”

It was at Jenn’s expense, though.

Hazel sighed, running their fingers over the cover. “You know why you always have to lose,” they said softly.

Jenn nodded silently.

The most fundamental part of the fights was that the hero needed to win. They could let the villain have an impressive display of power, make it seem like all was lost for the hero, but they always had to be defeated. That was what the audience wanted, after all. No one liked stories where the bad guy won. And if that was what kept ArenaLive as the most popular TV program, then that was had to be done.

“I’m so tired of it, though,” Jenn whispered. “It’s always the same, every time.”

Hazel glanced up at the clock. They had some time left.

“You know, we could rework this ending,” they said, looking back at the screen. “We could give them a show no one saw coming.”

Jenn followed their gaze, putting it together. “You want to protest.”

“Why not?” Hazel shrugged. “If we did it, it could change something.”

The worry on Jenn’s face started to turn into a small smile. “Maybe we wouldn’t have to keep fighting for as long as a corrupt company wants us to.”

It could work out for them. And it would definitely get what had already started more attention. Even if it meant bad consequences, Jenn would still get her turn in the spotlight.

Hazel held up their hand, looking their teammate in the eye. “Ready to win, for a change?”

Jenn took it, wrapping her fingers around their hand as Hazel did the same. “Ready.”
"silv is obsessed with heists" ~Omni

"silv why didn't you tell me you were obsessed with heists I thought we were friends" ~Ace

"y’all we outnumber silver let’s overthrow her >:]" ~winter

silver (she/they)

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RandomTalks says...

Prompt 3, words - 1071

Spoiler! :
​The day had had such a wonderful rainy start, but with the disappearance of the clouds, everything took a turn for the worse.

April stood by the window watching the last of the raindrops slide past the glass pane.

When she had woken up in the morning to the incessant beating of the rain against the roof of their house, April had danced in glee. She had run to the window and watched the sky light up with bright flashes. She hadn't remembered to be afraid of the thunder or the lightening in that moment, she had simply ran down the stairs and into her parents bedroom.

"You can't leave now, Dad! It's raining, you will get all wet! You have to stay!"

Her mother had smiled sadly while her father had pulled her into the bed between them and whispered in her ear. "How about I make you a deal? We get out of bed, we watch your favorite cartoons and play that board game you have been going on about for days now. And if it still hasn't stopped raining then, I will think about staying. Alright?"

April had considered it for a moment, and her parents had stared at her patiently as she had considered the odds of her father lying and slipping past the door without telling her while she was completely dissolved in SpongeBob as she usually was. Finally she had made a decision, and jumped out of the bed nearly crushing her mother in the process.

"What are you doing?" she had asked.

"Dad said he wanted to watch cartoons with me," she said pointing at the clock on the front wall, "SpongeBob starts in just half an hour, we can't miss the beginning! I have to set everything up!"

Her mother had rolled her eyes, but she had still helped her in making the popcorn and then let her take all the credit when father came down. They had watched SpongeBob SquarePants, and she had spent the hour explaining the cartoon to them, clapping when they laughed at the right parts and sticking her nose in the air when they got a name wrong. Even then, every once in a while, her eyes would fleet to the window in the living room, watching the rain, listening to the soothing rhythm of the raindrops in order to make sure it was still there. But then her father had pulled her into the sofa between them and she hadn't looked again.

They had played board games and her father had allowed her to cheat. When she won the game for the third time, her mother had refused to play, and she had had to tickle her to tears before she agreed to play again. She had still won that round.

They had made breakfast together, they had watched more cartoons and sailed paper boats across the street in their rain coats. And when the rain had slowed down, and April had sat at the window staring up at the sky with tears in her eyes, her father had held her hand. But she had refused to speak to him. She had accused him for leaving, said some hurtful things without knowing what they meant and she had run up into her room so she could cry in peace.

And now, as she stood at her window, tear tracks still visible on her cheeks, she wondered what was the point of such a wonderful morning, if God couldn't even give her a single day. Up until that moment the skies cleared, they had been living in their own little world inside the house, separated from the rest of the world and it's duties and responsibilities by this paper thin glass wall. But now the glass had shattered and reality had bled in, and April was too young, too inexperienced to deal with the little shards of glass that life had offered.

A knock sounded at her door, and she stubbornly refused to answer it.

It opened anyways.

"April, sweetheart. Don't be mad," her mother said hugging her from behind. "You know he has to go. You are a smart girl. Don't be like this."

April rubbed furiously at the traitorous tears that were slipping past her eyes without her permission. "Why does he have to go? Why can't he just stay with us and let other Dads protect their daughters? Why does he have to protect us all?" she sobbed.

Her mother turned her around and bent down on the ground so that they were eye to eye. "Look at me, love. He loves us, you know that right? He loves us enough to risk his life for us, for all of us."

"But I didn't ask him to!"

Her mother smiled softly. "You didn't have to." She folded her arms around her and took a deep breath. "You know, this is hard for him too. We should try to help him, we should try to make it easier for him, so that he can go with a smile. Don't you want that?"

April nodded.

"Good girl," her mother smiled, smoothening the curls scattered around her forehead. "Then, let's go."

April counted the stairs as they descended, she counted the minutes until he left and she counted the months until he came back. There were too many numbers. She couldn't remember all of them.

Her father stood in his green Army uniform. April wished she could get her scissors and cut it into little pieces. She smiled at him.

"You can go Dad, we will be alright."

He smiled. "There's my little girl! You will be good, won't you? You will be a good girl for me?" he asked, enveloping her in his huge arms.

"I will be the best girl for you."

Her mother came up to stand behind her, arms around her shoulders. Her father looked at them without saying anything for a while and April wondered if he was soaking in the sight of them as they were memorizing the curve of his smile, the light of his eyes and the kindness of his voice. His fingers ghosted across the doorknob, as he smiled at them, "Later, girls."

He kissed her mother and he kissed her forehead. And when he was gone and his car had left, she sailed the rest of the paper boats with her mother, and watched as they floated away to their intended destinations.
Last edited by RandomTalks on Mon Aug 02, 2021 11:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
“Life’s under no obligation to give us what we expect. We take what we get and are thankful it’s no worse than it is.”

― Margaret Mitchell

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Riverlight says...

Name: Vilnius (@TheScribe)
Team: Chickens
Prompt: Potato
TWs: Implied Peeling of Sentient Potato, Discussion of Said Peeling - 16+

Spoiler! :
It was all the potato's fault. As star sat in court and awaited a verdict, she still couldn't believe what she had done. She couldn't remember, but Unipotato claimed that it was all true...

Supposedly Last Week

"Let me get this straight," star began with a sigh as the three of them all stood in Evil Potato's kitchen. star was a little too tall, but she managed just fine despite hitting her head every so often.. "First Evil Potato kidnapped you... Then I found a lot, a lot, a lot of people to help look for you... And now... you want to marry Evil Potato?!"

"Yes," Unipotato declared, blushing as she smiled at Evil Potato.

"Have you gone crazy?!" star stood straight up by accident, hitting her head again. Bending back down, she rubbed the sore spot that she had hit at least a dozen times.

"He's not evil, just misunderstood!" the carbohydrate protested dryly. "He's really not that bad!"

"He... kidnapped you... and led dozens of people on a wild potato hunt! The case was cold for months, and I'm only here because Vilnius finally admitted what he knew and told us everything!"

"He did?" Evil Potato growled. "I never should have trusted him... but I regret nothing." The dark-skinned tuber scratched at his horns, wicked teeth making up his foul smile. "Unipotato and I are happy together, and that's that."

"No, that's not that!" star fumed, heart breaking into a million pieces. "Unipotato belonds with me! We've always been together, and I-- I won't let you do this!"

"Or what?" he asked. "You wouldn't hurt a fly!"

"I'll-- I'll-- I'll--" Angrily, star turned around and opened several drawers, searching through them until she found what she was looking for. Lifting the silver-colored weapon, she clutched it in her hand and turned towards Evil Potato, holding it up for them both to see.

"Not the peeler," Evil Potato breathed, voice heardly more than a whisper. "Please, put it away." star ignored his pleas and slowly inched towards him. Unipotato rushed out of the room, but star ignored her, just keeping her own hand on the peeler...

"All rise," Ches barked as Judge Channing Potatum entered the room once more. The twelve jurors all sat nervously with one another, looking either at the judge or star's lawyer.

"Uh... Your Honor," Vilnius began, "may I approach the bench?"

Potatum nodded and Vilnius scurried forward, speaking to the judge in hushed whispers. A few minutes later, Vilnius returned to where he was standing beside star as the judge began to speak. "Vilnius has asked that witness Momo return to the stand to be questioned again. Momo, please come forward."

Momo hopped up from her seat and made her way forward, smiling sadly at star as she sat in the witness stand for the second time. Vilnius took a deep breath and said, "Miss Momo, would you mind telling the court what you think about my client?"

"Well, star's always been a really great person. She's always happy and cheery and making everyone's days so much brighter."

"Would it be true to say that she acted in a fit of rage and did something only out of a moment of heartbrokenness and not evilness-- theoretically, of cou--"

"OBJECTION!" roared Edgar Allen Poetato. "This line of questioning is purely theoretical and adds nothing to the defense!"

"Sustained," Potatum ruled. "Anything else, counsel?"

"No, Your Honor," Vilnius sighed, returning to his seat. "Your witness."

Poetato smirked, peering at star. "Ladies and gentlemen of the jury," he began, "the defense has no case. star skinned him alive. Unipotato is suffering from the trauma. It's best to put this to a close." Turning to Potatum, the prosecutor added, "I have no questions for the witness and instead call Detective Chi to the stand."

Momo silently rushed back to her seat; Chi marched forward, puffing on a pipe with bubbles bubbling out of the end, wearing a large tenchcoat and an even larger detective's hat. "I'm here. What do you want?"

"Detective, you were part of a team that tracked Evil Potato for months. When you finally determined his location, you called the accused and then the police. Why?"

"Because star deserved to know."

"Did you allow star to go inside?"

"Yes," Chi replied, sarcasm tinging his voice. "Of course I let star go in alone to single-handedly rescuse her friend from a potato with mashed brains."

"...your sarcasm is duly noted," Poetato said, rolling his eyes. "Do you believe the accused when she says that she has no memory of the event?"

"Yes," Chi answered firmly.

"Would you mind explaining to the court w--"

"Given that you aren't the best potato in the sack, I'll lay it out quite clearly for you," Chi replied. "star hit her head around thirty times as she wandered through Evil Potato's home. It's absolutely remarkable that she didn't knock herself unconcious within five minutes. star's innocent; Unipotato committed the perfect crime. You'll find that potatoes have no finger prints; it's likely that Unitpotato killed Potato. star feinted as a result of the trauma of the event and finding a skinned potato on the ground."

"I'd like to strike this from the record," Poetato began.

"Objection!" Vilnius squeaked, standing straight up and breaking the ceiling as his head raced towards the sky. "Huh... it's dark up here..." Carefully pulling his head down and ignoring all the dust in his hair, Vilnius stood with his back bent. "The witness makes a very good point. I'd like for Doctor Kitty of the Spunky Space Institute to run some tests."

"Chi asked me to do that already!" SPunky declared as she walked in, draggin Unipotatp by the ear. "I have proof! Admit it, Unipotato! You did it!"

"Fine," Unipotato grunted, crossing her arms. "I did it! I killed Evil Potato!"

"But why?" star whined. "Why blame me?!"

"It's obvious, isn't it?" Chi answered yet again. "Obviously Unipotato would've made millions off of the publicity."

Judge Potatum slammed his gavel down turned to the jury. "What is your verdict?"

"Not guilty!" they chorused.

"Then the case is dismissed!"
The politics of the world may be corrupt, but that does not mean that we must be corrupted ourselves.

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Valkyria says...

Prompt 1 ~ 279 words

Team Dragons!
Spoiler! :
The villain sat on a couch and said, “I’m tired of fighting. Can we just watch TV?”

Diana lowered the broken broom. “I’m sorry?”

Grant lazily waved a hand in her direction. “Sit back… relax. I snagged some popcorn from one of my minions.” He popped the snack into his mouth, looking at her with one eye closed. “Diana, dear, a bug will fly into your mouth if you don’t close it.”

Mouth snapping shut, Diana dropped the broom onto the dust, rubbled floor. She gestured wildly around the ruined room.

“Are you kidding me?” she said, raising her hand. “What about that fight we just had? I smashed your window coming in. You threatened to kill me. The list goes on.”

In her peripheral vision, a cracked fan crashed to the floor, leaving a cloud of dust in its wake.

“You can add property damage onto that list,” said Grant dryly. Against her better judgement, Diana sheepishly glanced at the ground. “Besides, Mythbusters is on.” He held the remote up and shook it enticingly.

“...I do like that show,” she said begrudgingly, scratching the back of her leg with her sneaker. She rubbed her arm, then she sharply looked at him. “But, I missed the last episode of The Owl House, so we’re watching that next!”


He offered her the bowl. After a moment of hesitation, Diana sat down next to him and took a handful of popcorn. Grant switched the channel to the Discovery Network.

“Sorry about the mess.” Diana kicked away the broken edge of the broom.

“That’s okay, you can make it up to me by giving me the key to the city- OW!”
Don't just exist; live


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FireEyes says...

Team Chaos
549 words
Spoiler! :
There was an abandoned box on the ground, one that held a shiny key and a note. I picked up the note and it read, “You are the only one left who can read. Everyone in the world has lost the ability to read books. There are some in this new world of ours that have never been transported to a new world by reading. This key you have been given, leads to a vault filled with all the books in the world that have been forgotten. Good luck finding it.”

I shook my head at the world’s state nowadays. No books? No imagination? It became apparent that I really was the only person left who could read. I must get these books and make my house look like the Beast’s Library and maybe, just maybe get others to read too.

I picked up the key and it shone brilliantly. As I tried to rotate the key in my hand, I found I couldn’t. There was something of a magnetic force keeping it from going out of its anchored position. Could this key be like a magic compass? I took a step and it glowed slightly. I took another step and it glowed a little more.

A few lefts, rights, alleys, and streets I came upon the shore. What? I thought it would lead me to a vault full of different worlds. But I looked down to see where the key pointed. At a first glance it was gesturing to the vastness of the sea ahead. But on further inspection, it was slightly angled towards a cliff along the water. There’s no harm in checking if the cliff could lead to the vault. But how was I to get 5 miles out into the water by myself?

The key glowed once again. What could it be glowing for? My mind started to wander and think as to how to get over this predicament. What if I could fly just like Peter Pan and Wendy? All I’d need is faith, trust, and Pixie Dust. I had faith and trust, but all I needed was Pixie Dust. But of course this was the real world and I couldn’t have Pixie Dust. I looked down and saw I wasn’t standing anymore. The key now gave off such a light that of a lighthouse. I had to just keep floating and air swimming.

Breast stroking for what seemed like hours, I finally reached the cliff. I landed and started exploring. There was a hole in the cliff and I found out quickly that it extended very deep. But the key still glowed so I had a light source. I must be so close to my book hoard.

Step after step the key became brighter and brighter. I reached a dead end. It was all a lie. I rested my ark on a rock coming out of the wall and got slung into a room. There was a distinctive smell coming from behind me. Slowly, I turned around and saw towers of books for me to read. And a Curig in the corner for making tea. Excited, I dove into the books and picked up one to read immediately. I felt like a dragon protecting their hoard, and nothing could keep me from it.
I won't go down by myself, but I'll go down with my friends
I'm taking back the life you stole
Came a time when every star fall brought you to tears again

-My Chemical Romance

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JoyDark says...

Word Count: 666
Prompt: #2

Spoiler! :
It was all the potato’s fault. Katharine had sensed from the second she picked it up that including the sweet potato in the dinner would be a mistake. It had been sitting in Katharine’s refrigerator for about a week now, and there were dark spots on its surface. When she picked it up for the first time since putting it there, her fingers had nearly broken through the thin, brown paper-skin and squished the flesh inside. Katharine even imagined it having a faint odor: sickly-sweet and strangely earthy.

Right as she had picked it up, Katharine knew somewhere deep in her gut that she shouldn’t cook with it.

But her parents had been coming to visit her for the first time in months, and her mom loved sweet potatoes. Back before Katharine had gone out-of-state for college and bought her own apartment, her mother had used sweet potatoes in the family’s meals at least twice a month, roasting them and sautéing them and even baking them into pies. They were her “comfort food,” as she proclaimed. Secretly, Katharine had become sick of them, but her mom’s love of the sweet potato was admittedly impressive.

So it seemed only natural to cook the sweet potato in her fridge for her parents when they came. It was already a special visit for Katharine anyway—this was the first time her parents would get to see her newly bought apartment with all its furnishings, lived-in and composed; a symbol of his grown-up Katharine really was. Why not make it even more special by cooking sweet potatoes for dinner the evening they visited?

She bought them about a week in advance, along with everything else she needed. Katharine was a decent cook, but she rarely made anything besides rice, plain salads and the occasional egg sandwich. This was an opportunity to prove to herself that she could truly cook, alongside proving it to her parents.

When her parents came, with open arms and happy faces, suitably impressed with Katharine’s new living space and independence, the dinner began well enough. The broccoli was slightly undercooked, but Katharine’s parents didn’t seem to mind. Her mom complemented the roasted chicken extensively, raving about how it was “even better than” hers. And then… there were the sweet potatoes.

Katharine didn’t give any to herself, claiming she had just had them the night before and didn’t need them two nights in a row. The potato Katharine served to her dad was suitably ripe, as Katharine had affirmed before cooking. The potato Katharine served to her mom, however, was the sweet potato Katharine had felt unsure about before, before brushing aside the notion that a feeling in her gut could truly mean anything. She cooked the sweet potatoes together in the oven, and they both came out looking similar, steaming and sweet-smelling. At that time, there didn’t seem to be anything wrong with that certain potato at all, so Katharine brushed aside any last doubts and served it to her mother.

It was unfortunate, then, that that stupid sweet potato gave her mom food poisoning and caused her to vomit in Katharine’s toilet later that night. It was even more unfortunate that her mom began to feel so unwell, Katharine had to let her parents to stay the night over, over the course of which her mother threw up twice more. As her mother stayed awake, shaking and sweaty from vomiting, Katharine brought her water and let her father sleep on the couch.

“I’m so, so sorry about this, Mom,” Katharine whispered as she sat with her in the apartment’s bathroom. “This is all my fault. I had a bad feeling about that sweet potato, but I ignored it and now you feel awful—”

“Shush,” her mom said, huddling on the floor near the toilet. “This is not your fault. You made a very nice dinner, and me and your father had a wonderful time.” She chuckled weakly. “This is all that potato’s fault, and nothing more.”

i actually made a post
pretty radical if you ask me

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LizzyTyler says...

Team Chickens!
Word count:328
Prompt: #1
Spoiler! :
God, I just want to watch TV. Jay thought, flopping onto his couch. “All this evil stuff is really wearing me out.” He complained with a sigh. “You never win!” He cried, throwing his hands up in the air. “What’s the point anymore?” He grumbled, crossing his arms. “At least the stuff is nice.” He said, glancing around at his living room. The only problem, he mused, twiddling his thumbs, is that none of is yours. Nothing has any sentimental memories.

Sighing, Jay reached for the channel changer. “Let’s just watch TV. No evil stuff today.” He decided with a nod.
Flipping through the channels, Jay frowned. Stopping on the news, he watched for a moment.

“…destroyed a whole building. No one was hurt, thanks to the heroics of Captain Eagle.” As the news caster continued, Jay stood up in outrage. “That’s not what happened!” He cried. “That bird brain almost destroyed that building trying to stop me! He only saved everyone after he realized he was bringing it down around us! Jay complained, throwing his hands in the air in disgust. “To be fair,” he mused, sitting back down, “I was robbing the place, but that’s not right. To blame me for bringing down the building? I’ve never even tried to kill anyone.” Jay grumbled, grabbing for the channel changer once more. After flipping through, he finally settled on a kids show. But again, after a few minutes, he stood up again. “What is this?” He exclaimed, watching the little colored characters run around on the screen. “This isn’t an actuate portrayal of me and that Dodo!” He said, despairing. “First of all, I’m not an idiot! I don’t openly challenge that feather brain. That’s just stupid!” He cried.

Flopping back to his stolen couch, he turned off the TV. “I guess being a Villain isn’t all fun and games.” He grumbled, staring at the black screen. “And I guess Villains are never properly represented on TV.”
“your highness” is gender neutral

so if you are ever confused about my pronouns

that’l work

alternatively “your majesty”, “my liege”, and “supreme overlord”

*please note “your grace” is also acceptable

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ForeverYoung299 says...

Team Chickens
Prompt 1
Word Count: 564
Spoiler! :
The villain sat on the couch and said, " I'm tired of fighting. Can we just watch T.V.?"

Miraculously it went perfectly well with life except that he was not the villain. However, he wished to be one, not in reel life but in real life. Those people were really great. They were in fact the ones who made the heroes.

He was a little boy, 7 years of age. He adored the villains. They were in history and if he did something similar, he too would be in history. Fighting with friends was a daily task for him to prove his villainous power. But he was tired of those fighting, he easily won over his opponents. And the worst bit was that it gave him a heroic feeling.

He needed to do something big, something that could create history. He needed to be someone whose thoughts would give people a shiver down the spine. How exciting it was. He was there laying on the bed watching his favourite T.V. Program. The villain in the movie opened the T.V. and there was the boring hero. He was telling the news channel about the atrocious deeds of the villain and the need to catch him.

Cortez wondered how people preferred to be a hero. Weren't they very flat? Like they literally succeeded at everything. The thought made him shrug. He was a hero in the fight and he didn't quite like it.

All at once, the electricity was gone. There was a power cut.

"Hey! The fuse has blown off." His mother shouted to his father. It was not his business to restrain the fuse from blowing off nor did he know what it was. The utmost important thing was to get the electricity back. It was the last episode and it would not be repeated. He had to watch it at any cost.

He ran to the door to get outside. To his surprise and disgust, every single house had the lights except theirs. He remembered the scene where the very same had happened with the hero. No, he was not the hero, he couldn't be the one. He had to be a villain. He felt like he was the hero and the villain at the same time.

He ran back inside his house and did what the villain had done. He took out the knife and was going to stab the hero, that is himself in the stomach but he was stopped. A grumpy man stopped him. He was a villain, the man was a villain. He had all the characteristics of a villain except that he was a saviour.
"You are a villain, why did you save me?" He asked quite surprised.
"What do you mean?" The robber was even more surprised, "Why were you committing suicide? You wanted me to be accused of that!?"
He didn't understand but he recalled a scene from the show where the villain broke into a man's house to steal. "Are you a thief? If yes, you are a villain."
"Thief! Thief!" His mother shouted, "Thief!"
"Escape, come!" Cortez took the thief to the back door and helped him to escape. But… didn't he do a heroic deed to save a person? Is there anything named an actual hero and a villain? Isn't every man a hero and a villain at the same time?
She/ her

I love sarcasm to its fullest and I am a genius(You know what I mean :wink:)

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sylrie says...

NOTICE: The Star mentioned in this story is based off of the tarot card on the same title, "The Star." The character is in no way meant to emulate the beloved YWS user starlitmind. Thank you ^-^ (hope I'm not too late)

Spoiler! :
The villain sat on the couch and said, “I’m tired of fighting. Can we just watch TV?”

The hero stood in the doorway, wary of the villain’s request. Noticing the hero’s hesitation, the villain sighed and gestured for him to sit.

“Come on now, you know me better than anyone. I’m not fond of traps.”

“Nobody knows you Death,” the hero replied wryly.

“Have a little faith, Star,” Death said, flicking through the channels. “Isn’t that what you’re known for?”

“Among other things, yes.”

There was tense silence for a moment, broken only by the soft click of the remote and the snippets of ads, shows, and movies from the television. Star broke the stalemate, relenting and joining Death on the couch. It would have been an odd sight, if anybody had been there to see it; a healthy young man with a gleaming sword sitting next to an armored skeleton on a decrepit couch, in a room lit only by a television. Death stopped cycling through channels as a show caught their fancy. Something about cartomancy. Felt appropriate.

"We're not just gonna watch TV, right?" Star asked. "Surely there's some alternative intent here. There has to be."

"Is there? Why can't we just sit down and enjoy..." Death gestured at the TV, "Whatever this is?

"It is my purpose in life to defeat you. Before you destroy everything."

"Well sitting down to watch TV is certainly an interesting way of doing that," Death hummed.

When Star didn't respond, Death looked over at him. The hollow eye sockets seemed to examine him - they were surprisingly emotive for a skeleton.

"Why do you let others decide your purpose?"

Star was taken aback. "What?"

"I know the Emperor set you on this task. I know that you have faith in him above all others, and yet I don't understand why you let him determine your purpose in life."

"I decide my own purpose!" Star growled, shooting a glare at the skeletal figure. “Nobody does so for me!”

There was silence, then Death turned towards the TV, saying nothing more. After a moment, Star did the same. The show’s witch was doing magic for a conflicted young man, using little stone cards to guide him. The first was a man sitting on a throne, the second was a burning building, and the last was a pair of individuals holding hands.

“So...how long?” Death suddenly asked. “My guess...a few months now.”

Star frowned, “What do you mean?”

“Since you reversed yourself Star,” Death replied. “I know you, even if you pretend not to know me. You walked right up to my doorstep rather than trying to ambush me like usual. I know change, and you’ve changed a lot...you’re doubting whether or not your purpose is your own. I understand that you see a father in the Emperor, but you’ve got to find your own reason to live. You don’t have to settle on the purpose he laid upon you.”

Star was silent for a moment. Death could tell his guess was right, but they knew they couldn’t force Star to come to the conclusion they did.

“And what should my purpose be?” Star whispered, almost inaudibly.

Death’s skeletal smile seemed to widen somewhat. “I have no clue. That’s up for you to figure out.”
With that, Death picked up the remote and started flicking through the channels once more. As Star watched the skeletal figure, he could hear the final words of the witch before the channel was changed:

“These are trying times, but it seems you will find someone to guide you through - *click* - Wanna know your future? Try Tarot!
Lost, not aimless. I know where I need to go, I just...don't know how to get there yet.

If you have to ask, "Is this cliche?", it probably is.
— - no name -