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  • #3872
    AvatarJib
    Participant

      A man with big hairy hands welcomed him in the new world’s consuelambassy office. “Welcome”, said the man with a deep voice. Sam couldn’t get his eyes off the man’s hands. He looked at the guy. Without those hands he would just be like a regular guy.
      “I’m a bit early”, said the man, “so we might as well begin now. Is that ok for you ?”
      “What ? Oh! yes, of course…” those hands are so huge, he thought.
      “Perfect. Just sit on this chair and I’ll guide you through the procedure.”
      “Ok.” Sam sat on the chair he had been shown and gave the man the papers he had brought for the procedure.
      “Great, I can see you’ve brought everything pertaining to your old self.” He barely looked at the documents and threw them in the shredder. A red light flickered before turning to a bluish green.
      “You won’t need those.”
      “Obviously”, said Sam. As he had already been puzzled that morning, he decided it was superstifluous to continue in this direction. He had come here to get a new identity after all. His old self had been torn apart. There was certainly no one to feel disrespected.

      #3826

      In reply to: The Hosts of Mars

      prUneprUne
      Participant

        It feels like it has all been a dream. And not a particularly good one, too.

        I look through the window, and the blue sky of Earth shines brightly though. Only a few more days before the quarantine is over, if I’m to believe the hazmat-suited staff, and I should be able to get out to wherever I want to. You can go back to your family the nurse had said with a smile. They surely must miss you.
        Obviously, the well-intentioned nurse had no notion of her family…

        The TV set they’ve put in the rooms is more helpful to piece together the fragments of memory of what happened. The news had kept mum about the aliens, or about our return for that matter. It seems they can’t explain how we came back so fast, without telling more. Maybe that’s the real purpose of the quarantine… brainwash us into forgetting, returning back to our lives quietly, and be happy that we could get back in one piece. Funny they should even bother at all, actually.

        I don’t know if there’s any coming back to how life was before. Surely the Inn and Aunt Idle would still be there, if only both more derelict than before. But would I want to get back? Do what? Only Mater’s sharp wits were ever a match, and she is gone too.

        This is the end of the Mars story.
        With some chance, I’ll start a business with Hans — raise Guinea pigs, rats and maybe a couple of those cute African pygmy hedgehogs. That would be a lot more fun.
        Squeals and cackles, and truckloads of cuteness.

        #3814
        EricEric
        Keymaster

          A raucous explosion of laughter cackled in the neighbourhood, waking up Bea from her afternoon siesta.
          SHUT UP!” she bawled covering her ears with a cushion, and looked desperately at something she could throw at the window. Alas, save for a manikin’s leg that looked like she owned a pegleg, and a piece of half-eaten banana, there was nothing she could find.

          She resigned herself to waking up, and pried open her little wrinkled eyes in the late afternoon purple light.

          Every time she woke up, she had to reacquaint herself with her reality. Not that she was such a junkie on computer duster, as that rat had rudely implied, it wasn’t only that.
          A few months before, she had an epiphany. Many years of meditation, guided, in groups, alone, with zen masters and copious reading had amounted to nothing but the occasional nice fluffy feeling. It was when she had decided to drop it all of sheer frustration, and burn all the stupid self-help books that something had chanced upon herself.
          She’d lost her ego. Poof, disappeared, like that.

          Before that, she was completely adverse to endings, and to any form of deleting.
          But now, she understood the words she’d read many years ago that had infuriated her profoundly at the time : “Everything must be scrutinised and the unnecessary ruthlessly destroyed. Believe me, there cannot be too much destruction. For, in reality, nothing is of value.”

          She was. And every waking up was a wake up to her eternal self.
          So obviously, the external appearances left a bit to be desired, now that desire was not. Continuity was never there in the first place.

          But to live, she had to find again what new reality she had just awoken to, as she did every morning, and after every siesta.
          Truth is, she kind of liked it, the non-continuity of it. Before, she would have gloated to whoever that name of an old friend of hers, that she was right about it, the unnecessary of that continuity babble. Now there was no need of it.

          A loud cackle outside stirred her back to reality.

          #3807

          In reply to: The Hosts of Mars

          EricEric
          Keymaster

            His mother had told him not to trust what he would see. Somehow she’d spoken as if she knew more than she wanted to tell.

            After the mayhem with the quakes, and the meteor impact, he thought that was it. There was something more to the reality of these events.

            But then, nothing could have prepared them for what happened next. “Bloody aliens?”

            Suspiciously, everyone seemed completely hypnotized and blissfully eager to follow them wherever they led. He had tried to wake Yz up, she was usually the no-nonsense one, but she’d looked at him with vacant eyes barely recognizing him with a faint “Johnny?”.

            He started to get really suspicious when one of the robots started looking at his behaviour, not packing like the others. It even tried to force him to drink water —dehydration was common in these airtight environments, it said. It was then it dawned on him, that there must have put something in the water. But for what? A Mars take-over?

            How he was somehow immune? Well, for a while he’d collected the water dripping from the stones, and had analysed it, found it very pure. A few days ago, before the whole string of disasters, he’d tried to drink it, see how it tasted, and it seemed safe. Must have been why. By now, most of the stones he’d collected had dried up, and his water supply was limited.

            While pretending to slowly pack his things, he was looking at everyone queueing in short lines, all very ecstatic to go to the implausible blue boot-ship surrounded by watchful Finnleys. The exodus had a very eerie feeling about it.

            He could see most of the persons he knew, even the new ones, Prune cuddling a box with her hamster family, Hans, even that daft Lizette and the mines guy. The religious nuts were so stoned they were all following an obviously overdressed robot with a headpiece they probably took for their religious leader.

            But wait… His mother? He hadn’t see her. Where had she gone?

            #3778

            In reply to: The Hosts of Mars

            EricEric
            Keymaster

              It was a quiet day in the mines.
              Godfrey’s teams were operating at less than 10% of the usual. Most of the Indian guys who worked there had taken unpaid leaves for the observance of the Ganesh festival.

              It was all a bit silly, come to think about it, for so many reasons.
              One obviously, was that the dates were aligned on Earth’s calendar, for supposedly practical reasons, but which had nothing to do with the environment they were living in now. What good was a lunar calendar when Mars had two main moons, the lovely named Fear (Phobos) and Dread (Deimos), and of course completely different day times and years.
              Anyhow, that wasn’t the least of the incoherences. You’d normally have to find a natural body of water to immerse the elephant clay statues. Good luck with that on Mars. But there was no stopping the rituals to find ways to survive. He’d heard an artificial pool would be temporarily erected at the Matrimandir to allow for the ritual to be performed.
              A waste of good water, if you asked him.

              The only good thing about it was that there was more calm than usual, mostly robots diligently carving the walls, and harvesting the yellow stones.

              The day before, there had been an unusual ruckus after a heated speech by the Head Nutter of the Religious Nuts, the old wrinkled as a prune Mother Shirley. She spoke of dread and doom, and having to repent and all. Gosh, did she put on a show.
              He smirked. All that was missing was a human sacrifice, and they would be irrevocably back to the good old ways of the religious fanatics…

              Even his Hindu friends seemed to have been affected and shown a renewed fervour at their own rituals. After all, their Lord Ganesh was supposed to remove obstacles. Or well, truth is, He was also supposed to create obstacles for the demons. But you’d never know whether you were on his good side or not.

              Maybe the unusualness of that day gave him some heightened attention, but Godfrey started to notice some other strange patterns.
              The Finnleys on duty were acting glitchy this morning. Looking through the console, he’d noticed there were some logs for the past days’ activity missing, and an unusual activity around some of the old tunnels which were used for temporary storage of the sulphur’s crates.

              An irrational doubt started to creep on him, enhanced by the feeling of unusually low activity inside the dusty bowels of the red planet.
              There was really no reason to worry, he tried to reassure himself, but as he’d liked to repeat, better be safe than sorry.

              He pushed the intercall button and called for an emergency evacuation drill.

              #3744

              In reply to: The Hosts of Mars

              EricEric
              Keymaster

                Prune was listening to Maya and Yz, not daring to talk, much less to disagree.
                Yz was back to the planet from her maintenance drill on the mothership, and had found their remote outpost overloaded with new clueless settlers.
                Now, even Maya, who was always the understanding one was fuming at the vexing situation and couldn’t help but complain about the new Mars settlers’ manners (or lack thereof). The matter was of importance, but somehow Johnny couldn’t help but find it hilarious.

                Johnny! Stop laughing, it’s not at all funny!”
                “I’m sorry, it’s the nerves!” he replied “I didn’t want to poke fun at your horror story, Mum.”
                “You damn right, it IS a bit of a horror story. Well, I don’t know what kind of a story it is. These new settlers that moved here are disorganized conflict and chaos all the time. And now nobody has a permit for sand scooter but me. So everything I do takes me 6 times as long with everyone else… and its hot!”

                She paused a little, smiling at Prune, then turned to Yz, who seemed equally annoyed by the recent mess.

                Prune ventured a word “But you really love the idea of cooperative community sharing, don’t you.”
                Maya nodded, then continued “but it sucks! IT SUCKS!… and it’s all a bit weird too. It’s a daily juggle with what I’m willing to say yes to, and where I draw the line and say no.”

                She sighed. “But some of it is fun, obviously. But much of it isn’t. I think everyone is struggling with finding themselves disconcertingly in a totally new place.
                The new place for me is never being alone to do anything, where before I almost always was, and really wanted people to do things with. But they are LATE and I can do things on my own easier.
                I prefer being a hermit while preaching about community. And doing things my own way while pushing for cooperation!”

                It didn’t help that Maya had agreed to help organize the event for Mother Shirley (though the party had changed the event location to the nearby fancier townlet of Romars without notice, instead of their rugged but peaceful village).

                The event had attracted the usual throng of nuts and illuminated sycophants, which would have dissolved just as well, if not for an unusual occurrence: Mother Shirley had claimed to have a divine vision by merging consciousness with the AI of the ship. She had seen floods and rains. Image that! As if water on Mars, was not ludicrous enough, now floods!
                All of a sudden, all hell broke loose and the religious nuts managed to create a panic, and had loads of people rush for the higher ground… Well, you guessed, to their previously quiet outpost.

                Of course, she had said nothing of the water-rocks she and John had found. Better not to encourage the nutters.

                Strange new place, indeed…

                #3698
                EricEric
                Keymaster

                  When Matilda, the local bag lady, saw the scene, she almost fell on her knees and prayed.
                  But then as the child seemed more than a passing gin induced vision, she told to herself “get a grip, Mati, there’s a child who obviously needs your help by the smell of it, no offense deer.”

                  #3692
                  EricEric
                  Keymaster

                    “Who ratted me out, obviously”.
                    Godfrey said finishing a mouthful of peanuts from the smallish bag the air attendant had just given to them.
                    “So, what’s the next destination now? not home surely?” “By the way, this nice Australian family will rue the day they met you. You managed to make their only paying guest flee as soon as you arrived with that bawling baby of yours.”

                    #3674
                    TracyTracy
                    Participant

                      Corrie:

                      I was offering the plate of mince pies to Mr Cornwall, who had been coaxed out of his room for the first time in ages and was sitting next to the gum tree sapling that Aunt Idle had strung with fairy lights in lieu of a Christmas pine, when they arrived. We were all surprised to hear the taxi hooting outside, that is, except Bert. I heard him mumbling something about “She bloody meant it, the old trout,” but I didn’t remember that until later, with all the commotion at the unexpected guests.

                      “Here, take the lot,” I said, shoving the mince pies on the old guys lap, as I rushed to the door to see who it was. A tall autocratic looking woman swathed in beige linen garments was climbing out of the front seat of the taxi, with one hand holding the pith helmet on her head and the other hand gesticulating wildly to the others in the back seat. She was ordering the taxi driver to get the luggage out of the boot, and ushering the other occupants out of the car, before flamboyantly spinning around to face the house. With arms outstretched and a big smile she called, “Darlings! We have arrived!”

                      “Who the fuck it that?” I asked Clove. “Fucked if I know” she replied, adding in a disappointed tone, “Four more old farts, just what we bloody need.”

                      “And a baby!” I noted.

                      Clove snorted sarcastically, “Terrific.”

                      Suddenly a cloud of dust filled the hall and I started to cough. Crispin Cornwall had leaped to his feet, the plate of mince pies crashing to the floor.

                      Elizabeth! Do my eyes deceive me, or is it really you?”

                      Godfrey, you old coot! What on earth are you doing here, and dressed like that! You really are a hoot!”

                      “Why is she calling him Godfrey?” asked Prune. “That’s not his name.”

                      “He obviously lied when he said his name was Crispin Cornwall, Prune. We don’t know a thing about him,” I replied. “Someone had better go and fetch Aunt Idle.”

                      #3599
                      TracyTracy
                      Participant

                        Corrie:

                        I woke up this morning with an idea in my head, and I don’t know if I was dreaming about it or if it just popped in, in the brief moments between sleep and waking. I made a connection with the topic I was doing an anthropology report on, and something I’d forgotten. No, not forgotten, it wouldn’t be true to say I’d forgotten it as it was always there at the back of my mind niggling at me that there was more to it somehow, but I hadn’t made the connection so obviously with the current project.

                        My research was about disconnection, and the separation agenda of the American channeling dream. At first I felt driven to explore particular areas and then piece by piece the puzzle that had nagged at me for years ~ I say years, it felt like years, but maybe it wasn’t so long ~ started to fall into place.

                        At first when I woke up the idea of censorship was in my head and the idea to start a petition and public awareness campaign about certain channeled texts that were withheld from public viewing, despite repeated requests for them to be public along with all the other texts. But then it occurred to me that censorship and omission wasn’t always deliberate. I mean, not a conscious choice to keep information secret, but something else. Almost like a case of some information not being seen clearly through the filters, yet for some reason dismissed as not fitting, and pushed away, almost unconsciously, and suppressed.

                        The text was about disconnect mainly, and there was some stuff about Nazi’s although the part about animals was the part that had stuck in my head, probably because I felt more connected to animals than Nazi’s. There were more animals growing up here than Nazi’s after all, Nazi’s was only something I’d heard about. But then it occurred to me that I’d been hearing more and more about Neo Nazi’s, in Europe mainly, forming groups and having protests. So that got me wondering about that too.

                        Anyway, the disconnect part: it was the reaction on the American channeling forums to the Ferguson riots that started me on this project, and Aunt Idle was full of encouragement when I started to explain to her what I was noticing. She said she had noticed similar things in her remote viewing circle online. Everyone seems to think Aunt Idle is losing her marbles, but don’t you believe it. She seems vacant and scattered but that’s only because her mind is occupied elsewhere.

                        The gist of this suppressed text was extreme separation, but it was the part about using words to seem enlightened to hide extreme disconnect that seemed to fit my project.

                        I did have to chuckle though, I wondered if I was being a racist by calling Americans disconnected as if it was a racial characteristic. More of a cultural thing, I suppose, can one be called a culturalist as if it’s a bad thing? I don’t see how you can study anthropology without a certain degree of separating into cultural groups though, even if it is shift anthropology. I’ll think about that a bit more later.

                        #3543
                        FloveFlove
                        Participant

                          Bert remembered running away when he was a kid. He had run away often. But he never got very far. They always caught him and took him back. The foster homes might look a bit different on the outside, but to him they were all the same. So he just kept running. These memories flitted through his mind as he watched Mater carefully shutting the front door so as not to make a noise. He watched as she she set down her backpack on the porch chair to check the contents and, obviously satisfied, she closed the bag and swung it on her back.

                          #3530

                          In reply to: Scrying the Word Cloud

                          EricEric
                          Keymaster

                            under phone keys box ocean huge story sometimes contact funny word power wait irina rain continued obviously discussion watch earth secret

                            #3461
                            AvatarJib
                            Participant

                              Lisa sneezed. She had forgotten she was allergic to fluff.

                              “Are you sure that the temple will be there ?” asked Sanso who’d been thinking about those strange properties of the island.
                              “I’m not sure”, cackled Lazuli Galore, “but that’s worth a try, don’t you think ?” He was wagging his tail, obviously happy to swim in the sea.

                              Fanella had long stopped thinking about goals and directions, she didn’t mind where they were going. She was enjoying the fun of the ride, and even the rain seemed welcome. She was looking at the plum dolphins who had been following them since their departure. One of the young ones was particularly playful, he was swimming around the giant duck, and jumping out of the water each time he passed near the young maid.

                              #3453
                              EricEric
                              Keymaster

                                The mirage was no longer a fleeting evasive picture.
                                They could see the pyramid’s top quite clearly, drawing them to its spot. By the robot’s estimation, they should already have reached it two days ago.
                                But it stood there, unmovable, and somehow still out of reach, an always moving horizon line.

                                “May I suggest a drumming session?” Jeremy asked around the campfire.
                                Arona raised her head silently but intrigued. The rude cat jumped on a flat stone and questioned him “What do you know about drumming, young boy?”
                                “Well, obviously that place is protected from intrusion, and we have to find the key to its entrance. I found drumming can help align our intents and give us inner clarity. Maybe one of us will find clues.”

                                It took them some time to discuss about technicalities, assemble a drum with a piece of Arona’s cape, and silence out their chatters, but after an unmeasurable and undetermined amount of time, they were all drawn into a pridanic journey to the rainbow world.

                                When they came out of the trance, Jeremy looked at them, amazed and excited by what he had seen.

                                First, they had travelled, guided by a herd of unicorns, to the heights of Karmalott, only to find it deserted, with faceless spirits leaving it.
                                When they shared their accounts, it seemed they all had seen in some form, the old City descending, with the wilting beanstalk bearing its weight with increasing difficulty. A flight of storks guided many to a safe place, and they’d seen most people would be fine.

                                It was then that they saw the P’hope mounted on a creature flying awkwardly like a bat, descending towards the pyramid. Greenie recognized him and with him painful feelings of betrayal came back. George as well remembered old secrets, and why he was the King, and how his departure had precipitated Karmalott’s fate.
                                As for Irina, riding on a spirit zebra, she’d found that people from her past were after her and her dear Mr R, and had followed her on the island. Using the teleporting boxes of the temple could send her to a safe place. Maybe on one of Mars’ posts.
                                Arona realized, there was little hope she could claim her bounty, as there was no longer a City to bring Greenie back to. But then, a spirit tortoise showed her the Cup she was promised was lying deep in the underground clear lakes under the temple.

                                Jeremy was quick to point it out. “That’s it! The entrance is from below, we have to follow the underground currents.”

                                #3422
                                EricEric
                                Keymaster

                                  When Berberus arrived at Gazalbion, still wet from his swim down beanstalk through the City’s sewer waterslides, the Great Processor in person came to great him.

                                  “Dear, dear, what have we here. That’s not so often the P’hope sends someone down here with us poor heathen… To what do we owe the pleasure?”

                                  By the look of his office, the Processor was doing well. Small favours had earned him enough belief of his worth, and his office was full of amenities otherwise hard to come by and much more to sustain, down there.

                                  “Would you share with me some hydromel, made from waterbee honey, you’re not mistaken. That should help you get more… comfortable.” He said his last word intently, giving a look at the hook-leg.

                                  Berberus liked to have people guess at why he kept it so visible, while obviously he could have conjured enough belief to alter it himself. It gave him an edge over them. And the hook gave nasty scars too.

                                  “Not drinking on duty.”
                                  “Very well, suit yourself.” the Processor said drinking his voraciously.

                                  “Any strange people coming lately? Out of the ordinary beliefs to contain?”
                                  The other brushed off the question “No, not really… Now, about this promotion our dear friend the P’hope mentioned back in 2020, what do you think… Any chance to get out of this hellhole? Promised Land my butt. What do we get next? Flying whales?”
                                  “You’re not. Answering. My. Question.” Berberus was already losing his patience and started to mentally conjure the many painful ways he could believe this talk would end.
                                  “I have already answered it, and if you have nothing else to share with me, you might as well me back to your sad master.”

                                  The Processor made a movement to get up from his chair, but a swift and precise swipe of the hook-leg anchored him back in it.

                                  The other was looking at him with empty eyes, and the Processor’s mistake was to think he was an idiot that could be sent away easily.
                                  He poured himself another drink, casually answering with a “We’re done. Get out.”

                                  When Berberus got out, it was of his own volition, leaving a trail of blood up to the door.
                                  He had managed to extract one word from the slob before his soul left his body: Sanso

                                  #3391
                                  EricEric
                                  Keymaster

                                    The P’hope was closing his eyes on the wind business shadow market, as he was of course getting a share of the profits. There were not per se any physical currency in Karmalott, but people did their exchanges based on good faith, which was actually better than gold.

                                    The good people had taken the habit to say that transactions were paid in bises, which was supposed to be a vague approximation for “Belief Support”, and a reminder of the city’s blazon, which was party per pale argent and vert, a waterbee eradicated counterchanged —which is easier seen that said, obviously.

                                    The more bises people got, the likelier they were to manifest what they wanted.
                                    So long as people were not too rich in bises, the P’hope’s power wasn’t threatened, and he kept a close eye on the biselords who always wore ample bear furs as a sign of power, and their invented coats of arms on their bellies, to harness the wishful power of their bises-ness.

                                    #3363
                                    EricEric
                                    Keymaster

                                      The Time Seam Bar, as they renamed it, for all the efforts put in it had a slow start, but after a few weeks started to do extremely well.

                                      Admittedly there was a bit of a public relationship boost offered (not quite completely out of generosity obviously) by the cable network. They’d been alerted of the re-purposing of the Time Sewer facility by the Queens after a routine control of their presence on cleaning duty. The report wasn’t glowing, but somehow a business-oriented member of the Board managed to get the Cable Network to lend some money and advertisement to bring the little venture to the next level.

                                      Props got a major overhaul and interior designers helped rearrange the space. They even got the Queens an impersonator of St Germain, an old has-been forgotten star who was still on the Network’s payroll and whom they didn’t know what to do with. He was actually doing a brilliant St Germain.

                                      Amar was in the room at the back, doing some accounting while Reginald was at the bar and Cedric was managing the fat dancers and, of course, St Germain’s shows. So far, the arrangement worked well, and they were quite proud of their success. Cedric’s mother couldn’t stop her praises and rants on the website’s page, so they had to moderate it a bit, but that was basically the most trouble they were in.

                                      “Another day gone well…” Reginald was removing his wig and make-up, with Amar still counting the last cash made for the day.
                                      “Reg’, I’ve started to remember things from our visit at the techromancer’s hut, I still don’t know what to do of it.”
                                      “I’ve been remembering stuff too… Some scary shit.”

                                      #3361
                                      AvatarJib
                                      Participant

                                        Beside being a casino, the 888 pavilion had a particularity. It was one of those reverse buildings with a ground floor and all the other stories underground. Since the Great Reform of Feng Shui in 2088 by Feng Shui master Jeorge Huhu, who discovered that dead people weren’t actually living six feet under, it wasn’t considered bad Feng Shui any more to dig your home.

                                        Obviously, for practical reasons, such building could not go too deep in a volcanic island. A column of light in the center assured the lighting of the eight floors by an expensive network of optical crystals. The opacity of the end crystals could be adjusted using polarized filters to create a dark atmosphere similar to the old-time prohibition casinos, or simulate daylight as in the volcanic pool on the bottom floor, which was affectionately referred to as Hell by the 888 pavilion’s employees.

                                        #3315
                                        EricEric
                                        Keymaster

                                          Some character development, obviously not quite canon material…

                                          The Arousing Scarf
                                          – a short story

                                          by Ewkmon

                                          Sadie Merrie had always hated derelict Birmingham with its zesty, zealous zoos. It was a place where she felt snappy.

                                          She was a mysterious, freakish, algae smoothie drinker with ginger arms and supple hair. Her friends saw her as a successful, sad saint. Once, she had even helped a clear batty old crone recover from a flying accident. That’s the sort of woman he was.

                                          Sadie walked over to the window and reflected on her dusty surroundings. The storm teased like rampaging rabbits.

                                          Then she saw something in the distance, or rather someone. It was the figure of Sadie’s sister Moanie. Sadie’s sister was an awkward succubus with funny arms and impressive hair.

                                          Sadie gulped. She was not prepared for Sadie’s sister.

                                          As Sadie stepped outside and Sadie’s sister came closer, she could see the mysterious glint in her eye.

                                          “I am here because I want revenge,” Sadie’s sister bellowed, in a glamourous tone. She slammed her fist against Sadie’s chest, with the force of 3750 grumpy cats. “I frigging love you, Sadie Merrie.”

                                          Sadie looked back, even more mad and still fingering the arousing scarf. “Sadie’s sister, I love you,” she replied.

                                          They looked at each other with cheery feelings, like two talented, thankful twin piggies drinking at a very generous funeral, which had jazz music playing in the background and two slim uncles flying to the beat.

                                          Suddenly, Sadie’s sister lunged forward and tried to punch Sadie in the face. Quickly, Sadie grabbed the arousing scarf and brought it down on Sadie’s sister’s skull.

                                          Sadie’s sister’s funny arms trembled and her impressive hair wobbled. She looked vindicative, her body raw like a breakable, blue-eyed broom.

                                          Then she let out an agonising groan and collapsed onto the ground. Moments later Sadie’s sister Moanie was dead.

                                          Sadie Merrie went back inside and made herself a nice drink of algae smoothie.

                                          THE END

                                          #3293
                                          EricEric
                                          Keymaster

                                            The whales’ dance on the dark bluish background lit by the tiniest reflection on floating seahorses and other sea creatures, made the scenery look like an eerie night skyline, full of moving stars.
                                            The added feeling of weightlessness was empowering, and soon, the three queens passed side glances, barely interested by the words of wisdom of the hologram, and catching each other’s mind, almost asked their question at the same time.

                                            Terry was the quickest this time, “Please, please, can you do a rendition of the Name Game with your disco ball lights, we’re all dying to do a dance! Please?”

                                            Interestingly, the Hologram didn’t show any hesitation as it started to sing, and the three queens were all glowing as they adjusted their wigs, fins and other appendages.

                                            The Name Game
                                            Terry!
                                            Terry, Terry bo Berry Bonana fanna fo Ferry
                                            Fee fy mo Merry, Terry!
                                            Sadie! Sadie, Sadie bo Badie Bonana fanna fo Fadie
                                            Fee fy mo Madie, Sadie!
                                            Come on everybody!
                                            I say now let’s play a game
                                            I betcha I can make a rhyme
                                            Out of anybody’s name …

                                            The lights were on, and the dresses glittered, Terry in the spur of the moment added kelp extensions to her wig to match the sardine tones of her suit, while Sadie’s only concession to fashion was a little glowing golden jellyfish that seemed to match her bob cut, and made for a funny pulsating hat.

                                            Adamus was on, and unstoppable

                                            The first letter of the name,
                                            I treat it like it wasn’t there
                                            But a B or an F, or an M will appear
                                            And then I say Bo add a B
                                            Then I say the name and Bonana fanna and a fo
                                            And then I say the name again
                                            With an F very plain and a fee fy and a mo
                                            And then I say the name again
                                            With an M this time
                                            And there isn’t any name that I can’t rhyme.

                                            A chorus of dolphins tried to join, having Consuela burst hysterically into peals of unstoppable laughter.

                                            Consuela!
                                            Consuela, Consuela bo Bonsuela Bonana fanna fo Fonsuela
                                            Fee fy mo Monsuela, Consuela!
                                            But if the first two letters are ever the same,
                                            I drop them both and say the name
                                            Like Bob, Bob drop the Bs Bo ob
                                            For Fred, Fred drop the Fs Fo red
                                            For Mary, Mary drop the Ms Mo ary
                                            That’s the only rule that is contrary.

                                            Maurana was shaking her head in seducing moves, pretending not to die of envy of the others, and expecting her turn.
                                            And the music went on…

                                            Okay? Now say Bo: Bo
                                            Now Belen without a B: Elen
                                            Then Bonana fanna fo: bonana fanna fo
                                            Then you say the name again with an F very plain: Felen
                                            Then a fee fy and a mo: fee fy mo !
                                            Then you say the name again with an M this time: Melen
                                            And there isn’t any name that you can’t rhyme
                                            Maurana! Maurana, Maurana bo Baurana Bonana fanna fo Faurana
                                            Fee fy mo Aurana, Maurana!

                                            And they continued with all sorts of names for quite a while, even some of the whales’ and dolphins’ who were obviously enjoying the interlude.

                                            :fleuron:

                                            “Did you get all that on video?” Maurana asked Sadie.
                                            “Of course I did, the ezapper got it all. Linda Paul and the network won’t believe their eyes, it’s some heavy material! Even better than gold bars!” Sadie could barely believe what had just happened.

                                            The whales seemed to have been so thrilled that after a moment of silence, a smaller one broke off the cycle, went to the huge crystal and took a heart shaped shard of it to offer them.

                                            “I guess that’s their way of burning a DVD, what do you think?” Consuela was blissfully hopeless with technology, but could also have some moments of brilliance.

                                            “We should go now” Sadie said looking up from the ezapper “it looks like some unidentified giant blue crab is coming at us, and we better let the whales handle it.”

                                            “Are we going through that awful sewer again?” Maurana was starting to get green at the idea.

                                            “I don’t think so, I had Sanso pick us up at the underwater cave thanks to Consuela surprise reconnaissance mission. He just arrived and he just texted me his location. It’s not far from here. He seems to have managed to herd a few octopi to carry us across. Always surprisingly resourceful this one, I might start to like him…”
                                            Snapping from her emotions, she continued
                                            “Time to say your adieus to 2222 ladies. Tonight, everyone’s a winner. We’re going to be famous.”

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