Grumpycroc's reject pile.

Discussion in 'Original Works' started by grumpycroc, Mar 2, 2015.

  1. grumpycroc

    grumpycroc Member

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    Stories of mine that get rejected enough will be posted here. Feedback would be appreciated.

    The Perfect marriage.

    The holographs that surrounded me created the illusion that I was conquer of several solar systems. They depicted an array of slowly rotating planets, some so teeming with intelligent life that their surfaces were covered in city lights. They all orbited me as I plotted my strategy. At a thought, I had seized several shares of one world and dumped shares of another. The holographs calculated my profits. Tiniest fractions of currencies slowly, yet exponentially, accumulating in my checking account. I had years to go before large returns, but my head swam with ideas for the mansions I would have.

    When I started seeing double and things got blurry I rubbed my sore eyes. The blood vessels in them were constricting from staring at images too long. A headache was coming.

    A vehicle landing nearby sent vibrations through the house, which shook me from my thoughts. My wife was home. The room was dark. The day had gone by without me knowing, so I waved my hand to disappear the holographs, and turn on the lights. I jumped over the holograph machine and dashed to the porch. The old fashioned hinged door creaked open. My wife, Okana stumbled in, the bangs of her navy-blue hair casting a shadow over her light blue forehead, and her ruby red eyes. Her buttoned up wait-staff uniform, black with gold trim, was rumpled and twisted. She sighed, and I scanned her.

    “I see you had another hard day at the restaurant.”

    “Very,” She said. She spoke with a low voice, only a few decibels above a whisper. “There were some very demanding customers. It made it harder that Lisa was ill so we were short staffed.”

    “Well at least you got a lot of tips,” I noted with a smile. Okana simply sighed again.

    My wife was not human like me. Her body had blue skin, and long hair that extended long past the small of her back. Her ears were pointed, and she had a light purple diamond-shaped tattoo on her forehead. She was taller than me, so to be polite I had to look up to her eyes, or else my gaze would be pointed rudely at her breast. All in all, her body was perfect. It was different enough to be exotic, but anthropomorphic enough not to frighten patrons. Indeed her appearance elicited higher tips from the male patrons.

    She stood on one foot, and bent her other leg backwards to yank off her shoe from behind. She caressed her foot and mine ached just by looking at her.

    “You did good Okana. Go relax. Dinner will be ready in just a sec.” I had Okana's dinner in the fridge. It was a creature with an exoskeleton, and tentacles, called a ballywarp. It squirmed slowly, while heavily sedated, on a platter, surrounded by black weed lettuce. My dinner would be breaded chicken, the oil for which was already being heated by my stove.

    As I injected the green, glowing, cooking serum into the ballywarp, Okana pulled out a check from a pocket in her uniform. “I have already calculated your share of my wages.” My wife slid the check across our oak table. I pushed my glasses up my nose with one finger to get a better look at the check.

    “It's a good haul. Could be really helpful to my start up. But...” I smiled and turned the check back upside down. “...I don't need it.”

    Okana’s eyes widened when I slipped the check back to her, her gaze demanding an explanation.

    “My share trading business is really picking up, so there's no need to inject anymore capital. You can send the money back to Xilecore. Your folks would appreciate it.”

    My smile grew anticipating her reaction, but then it started to fade as she sat silently looking past me. I tilted my head in confusion, attempting to read her alien gaze for her emotions, but nothing came.

    I passed Okana her dinner, then sat down for mine. She poked her black leaf halfheartedly with her fork. With the chicken juice, vegetable oil, and spiced bread crumb swirling in my mouth, I tried to think of why she might be depressed. Failing that I considered how to cheer her up.

    “We'll be able to get divorced soon. You studied hard for the earth citizenship test, so you passed I am sure. Plus, with the money I am finally making you will end up getting more than you gave me as per our prenup. Things are finally coming together.”

    My heart rose with anticipation of her response, but I was left dangling in suspense as she finally stuck a tentacle of the ballywarp in her mouth. There was low popping sound when she chewed, for fluids exploded out of the creature’s limbs. When she was done chewing her alien meal she finally spoke.

    “I am impressed you are able to import ballywarps alive all the way from Xilocore. It has just the right amount of cooking serum, where it is succulent, but not too sweet.”

    My heart sank and so did my head. “Thank you. I am glad you like it.” I put the rest of my dinner in the fridge that night.

    While Okana took a shower I unrolled the couch into a bed, then had one last check of my shares. Overall I was ahead, but my shares in Xilocore fell three percentage points. I pondered if I should wait it out. My attention was diverted, when my wife was finally done in the bathroom. She sat on the bed fully clothed, with her legs crossed and her head held high.

    I asked, “Turning in?”

    “No. Not yet.”

    “I'll leave the lights on then.”

    “No please turn out the lights.”

    “Umm ok.” I raised an eyebrow, but waved the lights off. I could see her eyes glowing red in the dark. She seemed to be just staring at the far wall. The image stuck in my mind. I pondered in bed what might be bothering Okana, but fell asleep before anything much came of it.

    I dreamed of being on another planet where the land scape was nothing, but spiked rock. Strange green aliens with spikes presented me with gifts in their pinchers, calling me the “Rich one.” I thanked my extraterrestrial subjects, but my eyes got shifty as I wondered how I was going to tell them that I wasn't actually the rich one. I sank below the floor into a dark cave. It was suffocating, hot and getting hotter. I felt my sides get constricted, and a heaviness on my back. Grogginess came over me. It was absolute dark. I was restrained by some kind of weight, and some strange thing slid up and down my back. At the same time something warm wrapped around my waist. Warm and a little moist. Then it dawned on me. I had just awaken and something was on top of me.

    I gasped and tried to force myself up, but then the weight leaned down even harder.

    There was a whisper from a voice that I recognized. “shh, shh, shh” Okana said. “It's ok.”

    I could feel my veins pounding against my skull, and my heart rate quickening.

    I was quivering when I spoke. “What are you doing, Okana?”

    She embraced me, sliding her hands around my chest. Her hot breath caressed my skin until she was breathing in my ear, but I couldn't breathe at all. That is when she whispered to me again.

    “I am being your wife.” Then the kiss. Wet, hot, and frightening.

    “No!” I leaped up. My wife screeched when she landed on the floor with a thump.

    “Ouch!”

    ` A wave of my hand and the light went on. I was up against the wall at the head of my bead, gasping, with a sheet over my privates. Okana was on her back, naked and rubbing her head.

    “Ouch. That hurt.”

    It took me a moment to catch my breath. “I'm sorry, I didn't mean to. I got scared.”

    Still caressing her head she stood up. “But why? Did I do something bad?”

    “Well...yes! What were you thinking sneaking up and getting on top of me like that? In the two and a half years I've been married to you I don't think I ever see you do something so...”In my panic I racked my brain for a word.

    “...Crazy! What has gotten into you?”

    Okana tapped her two pointy fingers together nervously. “Well I've been talking, with my coworkers…” I raised an eyebrow, anticipating Okana's explanation. She climbed back into bed, crawling to me on her hands and knees. “…Some of them have ordered wives on the glacta-net too, and they do things with their wives. They kiss, they enjoy time together, and sometimes they...” Okana's eyes looked away while she thought on her words. “...do intimate things together.”

    I breathe a sigh of relief and let go of my sheet. “Well it's true some marriages are love marriages, but ours is different. It's just so you can get citizenship and I get capital. So don't worry. You don't have to do any of those things that your coworkers mentioned. I tapped her on the shoulder lightly, but her ruby-red eyes kept staring into mine, and that is when she confirmed my worst fears.

    “But I am happy doing all those things.” She crept closer to me, caressing my legs. My back straitened against the wall again. She kept whispering bringing her lips closer to mine even as I gritted my teeth. “You must want me too. Why else would you have gone through all the trouble to prepare my favorite food? Why else would you make my bed? It's all ok though, because I feel the same way.”

    My pounding pulse was pressing on my skull, my lungs were paralyzed. When her hot breath was on my lips, I had to shake my head and push her back at the shoulders.

    “No, no. You can't love me. There's absolutely no way!”

    Okana pulled back too. “What? Wait! Does that mean you don't love me?”

    “Okana you're not human. This isn't even your real body. Your real body...” I placed my hand between her breast, “...is in here.” I didn't feel a heart beat in her artificial body, but with a tap of my finger I could barely feel something wiggle. The taping triggered a reflex in the real Okana, the one embedded, and bonded to the artificial humanoid body.

    “So you see? We can't be in love.” I gave one last gentle push to put distance between us.

    Okana's face became pale, her eyes wide and moist, like I told her that her mother died. I continued speaking anyways.

    “We are so close to succeeding, Okana. My business is finally taking off, your days away from achieving Earth citizenship. To ruin it all now because of false feelings would be...”

    Before I could finish, her hand cracked against my cheek like a whip. She put so much of her body into the slap, that her hair rose in the air and her tears flew off her face.

    “Don't you dare tell me what I feel!” She clenched her fist.

    “After all the years we've been together. The months we had to spend searching for better jobs, the work we had to do to get out of the decrepit apartments, your father's death, and you think after all that I wouldn't feel anything just because I'm technically not human?!”

    I rested my hand on my cheek. It radiated pain, and must of have been red, because it felt so hot, but when I looked up at her I could only think of the pain in my chest. I tried to speak, but couldn't. For a moment she gritted her teeth, but soon she unclenched her fist, and let her head fall.

    She turned her back on me. “You're right. We're not in love. We're just partners. I will start divorce proceedings tomorrow, whatever the results of the citizen test.” At that moment she stood up and left me nursing my sore cheek. I had never been so confused. I thought I was doing her a favor by not loving her, by respecting her as a worker, but there on the bed I wasn't sure of anything.

    That night neither of us slept, but the next day we started with the divorce. Our partnership, our marriage was over in a couple of days. She got her money, her citizenship, my business was still growing, and for some reason none of that made me happy. One thing is for sure though. I am never marrying anyone again.
     
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  2. grumpycroc

    grumpycroc Member

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    Jim, Sally, and Plank.

    Jim saw Sally standing alone on a glowing sphere that was as warm as she was. She let her picnic basket dangle on one hand so she could wave to him. Jim sighed for even if he could see her, she was far away from him. He would have to jump on a many clouds to get to her, and he wondered how long the odds were, that he should be separated from his love so cruelly. Jim pushed that question to the back of his mind, stiffened his back, and pulled on his goggles.

    He saw a cloud moving past him. Though he had only a vague idea of what direction it was going and how fast, he could bet that it would be there when he landed on it. Sure enough when Jim made the leap the cloud materialized into a point just large enough to support one foot. The only problem was, he had no idea how fast the cloud was moving or in what direction, and he would not know until he leaped off it. Like a ballerina, he stood up on one tipy toe. The point became somewhat what cloud-like again, and Jim sensed that the cloud wanted to move towards Sally much more than it wanted to move away from her. When he found another cloud he gambled and leaped off in the opposite direction of Sally.

    Sally gasped and held her hand to her mouth, for she saw Jim jump off a cloud into nothing. Then there was a whistle from behind her. It was Jim. He had gambled that the particle would have zipped past Sally when he leaped off it, and he won. Sally put her hand on her chest in relief, especially since Jim was closer to her. Still, he had more bets to make. He stood on one foot to get a good balance of where he was and where he was going. There were three clouds to jump on between him and Sally, lined up conveniently like a set of stairs leading up to his lady love. Jim knew better than to trust convenience.

    Jim eyed the cloud in the middle, as well as the many clouds underneath it. He planted his foot down on his cloud, causing its velocity and direction to blur. He lifted his foot up and down, again and again, each time ending up with a different velocity. Sally was biting her nails, for his finagling brought Jim away from her. Finally Jim got the speed and direction he wanted for his cloud, and he used the additional momentum of it to launch himself. Sally gasped when the middle cloud disappeared right when Jim needed to land on it. Looking down, Sally, held her breath as she expected her love to disappear for real. Instead, he had hedged his bet properly and was safe on another point.

    Jim shook the tension out of his fingers, and his eyes darted as he considered all possible steps. He found a perfect cloudy point in the nothingness; it had the right combination of knowns for him to be able to rely on it, and it led him back up to Sally. The only problem was he would have to grab on to another point for the final step, and he had no idea where it would be when he got that far. Jim considered another cloud point that was more reliable, but took him a step away from Sally. When Jim made his decision, he took a deep breath, tensed his leg muscles, and then sprinted to get the long leap he needed. His foot fell on the cloud point, and he aimed for that other reliable cloud point. He was about to leap away from Sally, when out of the corner of his eye he caught her warm smile, her desire to embrace him, her happiness in her bright eye. When he saw all that he had to take that gamble, he had to jump on that small point, unreliable, point.

    With a twist of his body he kicked himself off, and reached to the stars for that one point with the skin of his fingers he got it. He won the gamble, or so he thought. He swung himself up like an acrobat, before the point zipped away, and just as his love ran to him with her arms open, and her long hair flowing, and just as he smiled in anticipation of her embrace, something moved him. Jim looked around in confusion as he stood on yet another cloud, only he was on the opposite side of Sally's sun. As Sally looked at him with disappointment and tearing eyes, Jim started jumping from cloud to cloud in frustration. Whenever he tried to land on Sally's sphere he would teleport to the other side. Gritting his teeth Jim made one last leap to the sphere. Big mistake.

    Jim was teleported to another cloud that suddenly zipped away from the sphere. With the water flowing from her eyes, Sally leaped after him in desperation. Jim reached, but his heart fell into the nothingness like Sally did. Jim was on his knees. For all he knew he might as well have been on the dark side of the moon, and wherever he was he was a million miles away from Sally, and that fact stole the life from him. Looking down at his cloud, he wondered, what were the odds that he would be taken from Sally this way?

    Jim clenched his fist at the universe that he had come to hate; then he felt warmth. Two arms wrapped around his torso and felt a soft chest pressed against his back. He turned around and when he did he saw Sally's warm smile. He wondered what the odds were that his love and he would happen to be united, but then he pushed that question to the back of his mind, as his love spread out the sheet for their picnic.
     
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  3. Black Tattoo

    Black Tattoo The Corruptor

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    I don't see why these should be in a reject pile. They have some pretty good basis for building a plot. In my humble opinion, of course :D
     
  4. grumpycroc

    grumpycroc Member

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    I was hoping someone could tell me why these stories should go in the reject pile. There may be something really wrong with them....or....They just never bothered to look at them.

    Anyways if you do find something wrong I promise I won't "dislike" your post. :)
     
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  5. Black Tattoo

    Black Tattoo The Corruptor

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    Thanks, grumpycroc :) But as it is, I don't see anything wrong. Of course, that's just me and I'm more on the 'writing' end than the 'publishing' end. Maybe someone at the other end could give better advice or at least a better perspective.
     
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