Friday, May 8, 2009

Friday Funkday

"Here's the situation. It's 3 a.m., we're out of milk, and all I want in this godforsaken world is a bowl of cereal. What is the solution?"

I grinned as I reached for the car keys.

12 comments:

  1. “It's 3 a.m., we're out of milk, and all I want in this godforsaken world is a bowl of cereal. What is the solution?"

    I grinned as I reached for the car keys.

    "Do you remember when I was 5 months pregnant, laid up in bed on doctor’s orders and a fever and all I wanted was a chocolate milkshake from the McDonald’s at the corner? To feel the silky, frosty, velvet chocolate ice slide down my throat? And you, what did you do?”

    “I had to go to work. I told you to get it yourself.”

    I tossed the keys at his propped up left leg.

    “I’m going to bed. You can drive with a broken ankle.”

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  2. There are two ways to respond to the constant darkness of subarctic winter. The first is to sleep all day. The second is to never sleep at all. I tended to adopt the second option.

    In the timelessness of the night, I wasn’t sure what the hour was when I heard my cabin’s arctic door open and shut quickly. I was glad to not hear much wind, at least. We didn’t get wind very much in the Fairbanks area, and it made our -40’s more tolerable than a lot of other -40’s around Alaska. But the past couple of days there had been some gusting, and it was nice to hear that it had died down.
    I zoned back out on my generator-powered Xbox as I heard my visitor stomping off boots in the arctic entry, which was a little false entrance like a wooden airlock that allowed someone to come in without opening the cabin itself directly to the cold. I glanced at the log wall to my right and saw my shotgun was ready. I wasn’t concerned. Bears didn’t stomp snow off their boots, and neither did thieves.

    Moments later, my girlfriend Molly entered and plopped herself down beside me on our fourth-hand couch.

    “How was your mom?” I asked.

    “Here's the situation,” she responded without answering. “It's 3 a.m., we're out of milk, and all I want in this godforsaken world is a bowl of cereal. What is the solution?”

    I grinned as I reached for the car keys. I loved it when she talked all sciency and problem-solving. Fifteen miles out on Chena Hot Springs Road, there was no place anywhere nearby to pick up late-night milk. We could be in town within half an hour or so, though. “Let’s go!” I urged her.

    “Go?”

    “Yeah, let’s go get some milk!”

    “I’m tired. I was sort of hoping you’d just say, let’s smoke some grass.”

    I laughed. “Nah, it’s adventure time. Fred’s will be open.”

    Molly groaned, and rolled off the coach. She slunk back to the arctic entry and started to pull back on her outerwear. I followed her and did the same.

    As soon as we exited the cabin, my senses alerted me to something out of the ordinary. I paused, mid-step, and placed a hand on Molly’s shoulder to suggest she do the same. At first I just listened. I didn’t hear anything. No bears, no moose, nothing.

    I slowly shifted my eyes to the left without moving my head. Then to the right. Still nothing.

    “Brian, what are –“

    “Shh,” I cut Molly off. “Somethings wrong.”

    Molly knew better than to question that. I had good instincts. If I thought there was trouble, there probably was.

    I turned my head a little to the left. Nothing. To the right. More nothing.

    Then suddenly there was a sharp crack.

    Almost before I heard the whizzing bullet, I heard Molly’s head burst into a thousand bloody pieces from high-powered rifle fire.

    I reacted by instinct. I dropped to my knees, yanked the arctic door open, and rolled into my entry. Not allowing myself the time to think about what had just happened, I opened the main door into the cabin, and crawled in. I headed straight for my shotgun.

    There were no further shots. I didn’t hear anything. I didn’t see anything. Night blindness was going to ruin me, though, so I killed the power, and brought down the internal lights. I stared into a black corner to help my eyes adjust more quickly and then looked outside.

    The shot had sounded like it came from our outhouse, but I didn’t see any signs of activity there. Suddenly there was another shot, and I heard a bullet thud into the logs of which the cabin was exclusively comprised. I peered through the window, and still could see nothing.

    But then I heard it. The crunching of boots on the packed snow outside. And they were moving quickly.

    I followed them with my ears around the building.

    They stopped at the back of the cabin. Soon I heard something tapping against the wall. Moments later, I heard boots again. This time on my roof.

    I raised my shotgun, chambered a shell, and pointed the weapon at where I thought the boots were. They moved again. I followed them with the muzzle of my gun.

    Then the boots ran again.

    I kept my shotgun trained on the sound, as best I could. It was only a few seconds before the boots ran back to the where they had just been. Then they dropped out onto the wooden porch. It sounded like a man, and a man much larger than me.

    The arctic door opened. This time I was worried. There was a lot of noise in the entry, but no stomping of boots.

    Then the door into the cabin proper opened, and a man came in, dragging my girlfriend’s headless body with him. He brought her inside and shut the doors, before turning his attention to me. He hadn’t shaved or bathed in quite a while, but it was winter and in a dry cabin, that’s what life was like. I hadn’t shaved or bathed in quite a while either.

    He aimed his rifle at me.

    I wanted to at least know what was going on. “Why did you kill her? Why do you want to kill me?”

    The only answer was the sound of my own head bursting into a thousand bloody pieces from high-power rifle fire.

    *

    There are two ways to respond to the constant darkness of subarctic winter. The first is to sleep all day. The second is to have horrific nightmares that wake you up. I tended to adopt the second option.

    In the timelessness of the night, I wasn’t sure what the hour was when I heard my cabin’s arctic door open and shut quickly. Moments later, my girlfriend Molly entered and plopped herself down beside me on the mattress we had laid out in our small loft.

    “How was your mom?” I asked.

    “Here's the situation,” she responded without answering. “It's 3 a.m., we're out of milk, and all I want in this godforsaken world is a bowl of cereal. What is the solution?”

    I grinned as I reached for a plastic bag under my pillow. “Let’s smoke some grass.”

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  3. Whoa. Not cool, Nevets.

    Okay, that was pretty cool.

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  4. /fights the urge to treat that comment as a flash prompt for another macabre story.

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  5. Even if it involves another kill-off-a-character episode???

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  6. I *do* like killing, RJ... LOL

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  7. He got me. Did he "personal advertise" on anyone else's blog?

    Maybe I will make my first prompt: As Kraxpelax lay sprawled at the bottom of the abandoned mineshaft, Babe Wallpaper Art still fluttering through the dusty air, he only had one regret.

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  8. Kraxpelax is like one of those streakers from the 70's...he got my blog too! What the...

    Anyway, B. I loved your post!
    Nevets, DUDE (haha) what's with all the gore?? I like it.

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  9. Yeah...he got my blog too. Whatever.

    CN - lol!

    BN - lol squared!

    And btw - guys, your stories were amazing today. CNN and BN - you both came up with some plot lines that were really out there but so imaginative,

    I concede, I cannot write anything nearly as good as the two of you did with today's prompt!

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  10. "Here's the situation. It's 3 a.m., we're out of milk, and all I want in this godforsaken world is a bowl of cereal. What is the solution?"

    I grinned as I reached for the car keys.

    Arthur just shook his head.

    “You coming?” I asked.

    He mumbled something incoherent and pulled the blankets over his head.

    Twenty minutes later, I was sitting at the old oak table I knew and loved so well. I was happily demolishing my second bowl of Count Chocula and Cheerios (yeah, I know it sounds weird – but yum!) when my mother padded into the kitchen’s archway.

    “Margie?” she asked sleepily.

    Who else could possibly it be?“Yeah, Mom, it’s me – and thanks! You’re a lifesaver. No, really. I mean it.”

    My mother, in her scruffy bedroom slippers, shuffled over to the table and sat down across from me.

    “And Arthur?”

    “In bed. Asleep. Probably. You know Arthur.”

    My mother tried to hide a yawn.

    “Anyway, I was wide awake. And hungry. And I needed my favorite comfort food after staying up to watch the scary flicks on Terror Theatre 3000. And then I discovered we were out of milk.”

    “Next time, ask Arthur to record the show – and also, do try to remember to go food shopping, particularly when the stores are open.” This was obviously my mother’s 3 a.m. attempt at being facetious.

    “Ha. Funny. Just so you know though, I did. Go food shopping, that is. But Arthur used up all the milk in some recipe for dinner. It was really good, by the way. Maybe I should ask him to make it for you for Mother’s Day. You’d like it too. You and Daddy are coming over, right? But anyway, I guess I should have gotten a half gallon instead of a quart. Of milk, that is. Still and all, I’m grateful you and Daddy live here, so close by. It’s almost like I never moved out.”

    “I know.”

    I fake-pouted. “Awww, come on, Mom. Admit it, you like having me close by and around all the time.” Then, seeing my mother’s face, I smiled my sweetest smile at her.

    Mom stood up, walked around to where I was sitting and kissed me on the forehead. “Bed’s made up if you’re staying. Lock up when you’re finished eating your cereal, please.”

    “Will do, Mom, although it might be a while. Those movies were really scary. But thanks again!”

    “’Night, Margie.” My mother padded back out of the kitchen, mumbling something about there being no such thing as empty nests.

    After I heard the upstairs floorboards creak with her footsteps, I grinned again – and reached for more milk, Count Chocula and Cheerios.

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  11. RJ, very good! Just because it's not twisted doesn't mean it's not fun to read! :)

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