Saturday, January 16, 2016

Cracked Flash: Year 1, Week 24

Judge This Week: Mars

Word count: 300 max

How: Submit your stories as a comment to this post, along with your name, word count, and title (and Twitter handle or blog if you've got 'em!). Only one entry per person.

Deadline: Midnight tonight, PDT!

Results announced: Next Wednesday (late afternoon).

Remember: The prompt can be mutilated, but not beyond recognition.


"I TOLD you it was only a theory!"


  1. Dinner

    300 words


    “I told you it was only a theory.”

    The trouble was the remains of her theory were now splattered all over the dining room floor. Dinner hadn’t gone well.

    “So, back to the starting board.”

    I sighed. Our larder was now empty and with a sinking feeling I knew what she was going to ask me; so much for a quiet night in. I blamed Heston Blumenthal. But we needed to feed, so I went.

    This time though, the cave in which I had last hunted was bare.

    “You’ll probably have to go deeper,” she’d said.

    Thankfully I’d been blessed with excellent night vision so the maze of tunnels did not frighten me and the cold had never affected me either; if I shivered at all, it was from excitement, from the thought of what I might encounter. Hunting did that to me. I could smell them now, fear was a scent that could not be masked. They were there, waiting in the dark, defenceless having discovered that the old legends had lied, that there was nowhere left to run.

    As I passed, they shrank back from the ledges. But these were not what I sought, my wife would not want mutton, she wanted lamb, something young and tender.

    I grabbed my trophy, enjoyed its squirming as the heart pulsed stronger, the blood flowed faster. There would be no need for marinading.

    “That was quick,” she said, when I returned. “And I’ve decided no more nouvelle cuisine. Thought we’d try a ‘clean food’ diet.”

    She laughed at my puzzled expression. “It just means we do it the old-fashioned way,” she said as I laid the terrified girl on the table.

    At last a return to sanity, I thought as I bit through flesh and drank to my undead heart’s content.

  2. Words: 298

    The Experiment

    “I TOLD you it was only a theory,” Sebastian said. From here he could see Melville Koppies, the Sentech tower, and the grounds of the University of Johannesburg’s APK Campus in the light of dawn. Beside him floated his best friend, Gerhardt. “I never thought that it would actually work,” he added. Gerhardt’s scowl said it all.
    “I wish now that it was just some crackpot theory,” Gerhardt said. “It only sounded like a good idea last night. Super powers, I mean, not drinking whatever awful concoction that was that you gave us. I doubt they’ll let us back in the lab now.” He sighed, propelling himself backwards by accident.
    “That last shot of mampoer must have made me measure something wrong.”
    Gerhardt flailed about with his arms, but only managed to startle a pigeon.
    “Still, I thought it was just going to be a laugh,” Sebastian said. “You know, a story to tell one day. The day we almost got super powers when we drank something in the lab. My uncle started it, you know. At Christmas lunch. Although he also had quite a bit to drink beforehand.”
    “Is that the inappropriate uncle?”
    “For all his faults and… many prejudices… he is a magnificent scientist.”
    “With some crackpot ideas.”
    “Yes, fine.”
    “He probably also had some of the mampoer.”

    They both flailed about as they, at last, floated closer to the ground, leaving them at roof level.
    “You know, being weightless is a damn stupid super power to have. Flying is cool, bobbing around flailing your arms is just… well, you can be glad that no one is here to see us and put us on YouTube.”
    Gerhardt glanced down and saw his roommate standing at the window and laughing, his phone recording them.
    “Great,” he sighed.

  3. 1967 Redux

    “I TOLD you it was only a theory!”

    “But your ideas were usually so scary.”

    “I like to think they were full of sound, of fury,
    with just a dash of ye olde Tim Leary.”

    “And a tassel of awkward…
    William Faulkner,”
    I reminded.

    And so we blathered and bantered
    Like two old race horses, we cantered
    Waiting for our internal cannon
    To blast away at future thinking, anon.

    Our feet tired from too much asphalt,
    The pounding of bone on skin to a fault,
    Our wearying lives mushed to malt,
    Afraid to just call a halt,
    To the whole damn thing.

    We continued to bitch and to borrow,
    Life was rich, but ever so narrow,
    Always shifting, as full as a wheelbarrow,
    Lifting, flung forward, like a rickety arrow.

    Ah, I recall that summer of hurt,
    Of love and pain, of dust and dirt,
    Gripped by her flashing hoedown skirt
    As we twirled and lingered…and lurched

    “You said it then…remember?”

    “I TOLD you it was only a theory!
    It was late at night, my brain was bleary.”

    “Maybe that’s so, I know I was weary,
    But I liked, I loved your adventurous theory.”

    “We could do it up in all its glory.
    We could rewrite our uninspired story,
    because here, here in these concrete towers,
    our lives will be a haunting of lost hours,
    and none of them, none of them ours.”

    “We were then all so citied and frantic,
    and the dream not much more than an idle antic,
    and were it not for a chance psychedelic…
    Ah, I never weary
    of thanking the great Dr. Leary…”

    I sit here now, rocking away,
    Each moment, a full day,
    The sun, the earth, the moon,
    not theories at all,
    but OUR world
    in glorious,

    300 cracked flashbacks

  4. Bob McInnis @bob_mcinnis 283
    “I told you it was only a theory from the same root as theatre, a way to view an idea.” The President announced in her State of the Union address. “Low interest rates and economic stimulation was supposed to help all of us.” Giselle turned off the TV in disgust. She didn’t know if the signal would be there when she turned it back on. 4 months of arrears on the cable bill so disconnection was imminent. Did it really matter? All that was on was more bad news or somebody else’s reality being played out in full spectacle. She had more than enough drama in her own life.
    “How could it have all gone so wrong?” was the recurring discussion between her and Dave. They had gone to college, got steady work, bought a small starter house, along came Julie and then Jon, moved up the ladder and took on some debt. “Doing everything right.. Now no jobs, no house, no prospects and more debt.” The kids were in elementary school but may soon not have anywhere to live.
    The high and mighty had fallen but not as deep as Joe and Jill Lunchbucket and it was their theory that caused the mess. Didn’t seem like elected representation was repping them. “Maybe it is time to dump the tea in the harbor.” Giselle had spouted at a community meeting and now there were neighbors asking her to lead them. She was venting and now it was a good idea? She was beginning to see it as a good idea – “ revolution rolled pleasantly off her tongue.” She promised to give them an answer today and she now knew what she would say.

  5. 1-3-6-4-8-9
    298 words
    Catherine Custard

    “I TOLD you it was just a theory,” Kat said sheepishly under Jane’s scathing glare. She chugged the glass of champaign she’d ordered in anticipation of winning the 1.3 billion power ball.

    Jane signaled the bartender, “Double vodka, please!”

    “Your friend looks like she could use a drink, as well,” he said.

    “Absolutely not,” Jane hissed. “She has to drive me home and help me write my lecture for tomorrow’s class!”

    Kat tilted her head, batting her eyes at the bartender.

    “Jane, you can’t really be mad,” she said, fiddling with her empty glass. “This is madness; the universe has made a terrible mistake.”

    The bartender returned, placed a double vodka in front of Jane, and slid a shot of Crown Kat’s way.

    “Are you kidding me!” Jane snapped.

    He shrugged, “What’s she done so horrible she doesn’t deserve a drink?”

    “What’s she done?” Jane shrieked. “Drug me all the way to Georgia for a bloody lottery ticket swearing she had the winning number. Had an entire lecture to write!”

    “I did have the number!”

    “You did, did you? We lost, you nutter!”

    Amused, the bartender lingered waiting for an explanation.

    “She had a dream,” Jane said, lifting the vodka to her lips.

    “Not just a dream!” Kat said. “There was the appointment —1:36 on 489 St Lukes. And what about the book—opened it to page 136, flipped to the back to find it had 489 pages.”

    “Coincidence,” Jane said, “Like I told you when you called me… hysterical!”

    “Then why’d you come?” he asked.

    “I had to!” she said, draining the vodka. “Her sodding car broke down on the way.”

    “YES!” Kat said. “And how many miles were on the odometer when it stopped? 136489!”

    The bartender shook his head and fetched them fresh drinks.

  6. @firdausp
    'Some body'

    "I TOLD you it was only a theory," he uttered in a whining voice.

    I blinked twice before everything became black.
    Was I dead. I felt dead. But how did I know what dead felt like anyway, this was my first time dying. I'd heard of people who'd had near death experience. They'd all gone through a dark tunnel towards a light. I didn't see any tunnel but I could see the overhead lights of the lab.

    I could see the overhead lights of the lab!

    "I think it worked," I said in a voice not my own.

    There was a scramble of feet and then Jai's face appeared over me.

    "IT WORKED!" He shouted and I tried to cover my ears but my hands felt too heavy to move.

    I tried to get up but it was difficult.

    "Wait," Jai said, "I need to grease your joints, they're a bit rusty."

    "What! You neglected to maintain my future body," I was furious.

    "You were so ill, I didn't have time. And with all the data transfer from your brain to the robot, I was sleeping on my feet," he said indignantly.

    Freshly greased, I moved tentatively on my new feet. It felt mechanical and jerky. It was going to take a while getting used to this tin body.

    Reaching my dead body I looked down on the old thin man, pale and shriveled. It felt surreal looking at one's own dead self.

    "How soon will the human body be ready?" I asked in my robot voice.

    "It grows at human pace. It's about ten years old."

    "Hmm...another eight years then," I contemplated.

    "There's a slight problem though," he looked a little afraid.

    I waited holding my breath, metamorphically of course.

    "The body turned out to be female."

    1. That should be 'metaphorically' :)

    2. Hi Firdaus, it's me Pris (or Miranda) Good job!

      I hope this message gets posted. Trying it out for the first time.

  7. The Drive
    by Liana Challender
    292 words

    “I TOLD you it was only a theory! A theory. What do I know?” Justin shrugged and walked away. His patience was wearing thin with his mom now that his younger brother, Aiden, and his girlfriend, Jayne, were missing.

    “Come back here, Justin!” His mom ran after him grabbing him by the arm. Her tears were streaming down her face, her voice begging him for answers. “You need to tell me. What do you know? That’s your brother out there.”

    He continued walking out of the room. Aiden had been gone for two days. He told no one where they went. They were both only fifteen. Justin turned to his mom. She had her back against the kitchen wall and slid into the floor. She leaned forward with her face in her hands and sobbed.

    Justin went back to his bedroom and slammed the door behind him. He knew this was killing his mom. He didn’t even know what to tell her. Since his dad left, his mom was fragile. His brother took it hard and just hid away in his room. It was like he gave up or that’s what Justin told his mom.

    Justin had no idea what happened. The only clue he had was a text message he received that morning.

    Be sure to feed Buck. I’ll be back soon.

    Buck was their Labrador Retriever. Justin read the text again. Crap. I forgot to feed him. He went back towards the kitchen. His mom was gone. Justin found the food in the bottom cabinet and poured it into Buck’s bowl. A baggie with a zip drive fell in the dog bowl. Justin looked around the room. He picked up the baggie and hurried towards his bedroom for his laptop.

  8. Too Much of a Good Thing
    M.T. Decker
    247 words

    “I TOLD you it was only a theory,” Ethan said rolling his eyes.

    It wouldn’t have been all that bad if there weren’t three of him standing over me, and they were all gloating. “Will you just shut up,” I grumbled as I tried to get my bearings.

    Ethan Number One shook his head as Ethan Number Two offered me a hand up. Ethan Number Three was sulking in the corner.

    As I stood, I felt the world tilt under my feet and I would have fallen if Ethan hadn’t caught me. I was very surprised when I realized Ethan Numbers One and Two had actually caught me and Ethan number three came over with a cool compress.

    That made me take notice.

    I squinted as I tried to figure out what was going on and realized the cotton between my thoughts was getting thicker.

    “Do I want to know?” I asked as the Ethans settled me on the couch.

    “You were the one playing around with wormhole technology…”

    “Okay… that explains two of you… maybe… but three?”

    “You tried to put me back,” one of them answered.

    “And I showed up,” Number Three said, holding his hand up to make sure I knew which of them was which.

    I nodded and felt a sudden flash of vertigo. As I fought to keep my stomach under control, I saw Ethan Number Four shake his head as he told me… “I TOLD you it was just a theory…”

  9. Twitter: Kimmi_Pem_Pem

    297 words

    “I told you it was only a theory,” I told myself when I came into the house.

    Dark night. I was coming home from school, head pounding, feet hurt, so much studying to do. But I could not sit down. Not for a second. I made sure my doors and windows were locked. Curtains closed. Turned the lights on. So far, silence. All I heard was my heart want to come out of my chest.

    When I was coming home, a man was following me from the subway. He was wearing a white sweatshirt, jeans, and black boats. He was walking in my direction. I tried to go on the other side of the street, he was still right behind me. I didn’t know what to do? Should I call the police? Should I call my boyfriend, Mike?

    My dog Nelly came downstairs to greet me. “Hi, little guy. I’m sorry you were home alone today.” I went to the kitchen, opened the fridge, grabbed a can of beer, and took a sip. The house was still quiet. I was afraid to turn on the television. I need to know what’s going on the local news if there are any suspicious activities going on in the neighborhood. But I could not sit down one bit. I was still worrying about that man that followed me home.

    I took a look out of the window, I saw the guy. The exact man by his description. He was walking slower, closer to my house. I place my beer on the table and went to my phone to call 911. I stopped for a second. He pulled off his hood, and went to my neighbor’s house. It was the owner’s son. That was a relief. Time for bed. “Come Nelly.”