Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #117

Julie Duffy is picking our words today. Julie is a writer and the host of the Story A Day in May Extreme Writing Challenge (Write a story a day, you guessed it, in May.) She is also the author of several ebooks and workshops for writers. Show her how creative you are.

Writing prompts cure writer’s block. Take the 10 random words below and, in the comments, crush writer’s block by creating a cohesive, creative short story tying them together! And remember: after (if) you finish, highlight your words and click the bold button to make them stand out and help you determine if you forgot any words. (If you’ve missed previous writing prompts, do those too.)

  1. Frozen
  2. Monstrous 
  3. Runt
  4. Basin
  5. Spoon
  6. Hundred
  7. Delicious
  8. Babble
  9. Clutch
  10. Roaring

NOTE: Don’t copy and paste from MS Word. Use a program like notepad that removes formatting or just type in the comment field itself. Also, finish your submission, THEN bold the words. Thanks. (And don’t forget to tweet this and share it with your friends.)

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Resources you should check out:
Thesis: Best Damn Theme on the Web
Collective Ink Well: Personalize Your Thesis Theme
Third Tribe Marketing: Marketing done the right way
Story Structure Demystified: Best damn writing book out there

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169 Comments on “Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #117”

  1. Shane Arthur says:

    “Bi-Bi-Bi-Billy…I’m fff-fff-fff-frozen!”

    “What you basin that babble on, Bobby?”

    “On account of I can’t fff-fff-fff-feel my feet. They’s monstrous black, and the right runt toe done already fff-fff-fff-fallt off.”

    “I done toldt you hundreds of times, Bobby, if you plays in the roarin’ snow long enough yous gonna clutch a cold.”

    “That’s why my toe done fff-fff-fff-fallt off. I just couldn’t catch that cold. It was all round me, but each time I done grabbed at it and opened my hand, nothing was there. What it look like exactly, Billy?”

    “Never mind that, Bobby. Grabs me a spoon; that runt looks delicious.”

  2. margaret says:

    Hi Shane, #9 and #10 are both the same word….should one be different?

  3. margaret says:

    You will never in a hundred years be accused of being a runt if you eat a monstrous basin of delicious frozen yoghurt every night. Clutch your spoon tightly because you might go into a sugar coma and begin to babble the words Ben and Jerry….Haagen Dazs…..Breyers….. You will have a
    roaring good time if you survive.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Ma: I’m all smiles…and hungry too. Such fun to read your submissions.

    • Cathy Miller says:

      @Margaret-I’m with Shane, I’m hungry now, but I’m wearing a smile. 🙂

    • Ember Bianco says:

      Margaret – Oh and how true it is – Amen! This was funny!

      • margaret says:

        Thank you all, Shane, Cathy and Ember…..you can tell how happy food makes me. 🙂 
        Sorry I have not had time to comment on the other submissions. This is Valentine’s week and
        it took me four hours to buy all the flowers, and another five to process the product not counting the time to clean the workshop or start prepping for incoming orders.  Hope it’s a prospersous holiday, or I will be making ice cream out of leftover flowers!!

        • Cathy Miller says:

          @Margaret-don’t apologize-it must be madness for you right now-I am trying to get here between my business writing and Nancy Nurse role for Mom who is on rehab for her knee replacement. God knew what he was doing when I never became a wife or mother-how do they do it? 😀 And I thought I could multi-task-HA!

    • Kelly says:

      Margaret–“monstrous basin of delicious frozen yoghurt” is such a great image. Love it!

    • Margaret, this is great! I go into a sugar daze every night after my coffee and cookies. Should I switch to a basin of yoghurt? Which dessert will let me make it through Harry’s Law? 🙂
       
      Cheers,
       
      Mitch
       
       
       

      • margaret says:

        Thank you Kelly, Julie and Mitch….my poison of late has been Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Ice cream….really rich and flavorful and very pure without all the additives.  Also Fresh and Easy’s (does everybody know Fresh & Easy?)  Roasted caramelized banana gelato…mmmmmmmmmm! No frickin’ wonder I can’t lose weight!

  4. The pain of the cold ran deep into my bones, like a hundred knives gouging into my wet, shivering body making the muscles of my neck sting, throb and tighten with each pulsating heartbeat.  I gazed across the frozen lake, blinded by the glare of the inexplicable white out; I could only make a blurred vision of the land basin.  If I wanted to live, this is where my salvation lay.

    My right ear was, in its monstrous form and grotesque blackness, frostbitten and I was no longer able to hear myself cry out for my mother.  I know she tried to save us all, but there was only so much she could do.  It was all left to me.

    I rolled onto my side and could only kick myself ahead a few inches at a time, on the verge of exhausting all my strength and courage.  In the clutch of death, I dreamt of the roaring fire the others and I lay next to just hours before.

    A thirst came over me, a thirst for life and water.  I began to spoon out a hole in the ice, in the hopes to lap up a few ounces of fresh, delicious, water, to no avail.  I bit at a tiny pile of snow, and melted it on my tongue.  It was all I needed.

    I suddenly heard from the shore, the babble of my mothers yelp’s of fear.  With a newfound vigor, and sudden warmth, I got to all fours and began moving towards her voice.  My vision began to clear and I felt her racing towards me.  I fell unconscious as she grabbed me by the nape of my neck and carried me to safety.

    The next day, I awoke to find myself next to the fire I dreamt of.  My mother, and littermates all snuggled together.  I may be the runt, but I could see the love in my mothers’ eyes as she licked my wounded ear.

  5. Cathy Miller says:

    In the frozen, monstrous tundra of the great northwest lives an ogre, nicknamed Runt. His misshapen body never grew to the proportions of the other ogres. For that, Runt suffered.

    Runt often hid in the basin of a deep ravine where the lush green flora and sparkling blue water soothed the agonizing pain of one so different. Crouched beside the riverbank, Runt began to spoon the water into a heavy jug for his mother’s wash. Even if it took a hundred trips, Runt was grateful to do something for one he held so dear.

    Taking a sip of the cool, delicious water, Runt smiled at the sweet babble, its welcoming sound offered to all who came to this special place. Runt turned to rise and was startled at the sight of a beautiful, young girl, smiling the sweetest of smiles.

    “Hello, my name is Marisa. Do you not simply love this place?”

    Runt was shocked at her approach. Her flowing blonde hair caressed a smooth, porcelain skin that glowed in the innocence of all that was pure.

    “Are you not afraid?”

    “Afraid? Of what?”

    “Of me, of course,” Runt raised to his highest stature, as small as it still may be, “I am an ogre.”

    “Do you plan on eating me?” she giggled.

    Runt blinked in surprise. It was a widespread belief that ogres did just that – eat humans.

    “You mock me for my size,” he whispered, hanging his large head with a lifetime of shame.

    “Oh no, that was not my intent.” Marisa raced to his side, wrapping Runt in warm splendor that made his heart clutch.

    Kissing him softly on the small spot on his cheek that held his only hairless part, Marisa raised blue eyes brimming with unshed tears.

    “We are all God’s creatures and we are all beautiful. I am sorry if I hurt you so.”

    Runt could barely hear over the roaring in his heart as he whispered, “And none more beautiful than thee.”

  6. Kelly says:

    NO RUSH

    Walkin’ down Basin Street, late Thursday. 4’clock or so I suppose.

    There’s a family stopped on the neutral ground, rain not bothering them at all, posing for each other with the eternally frozen guise of Simón Bolívar. I guess he puts up with a monstrous lot of picture-taking. Funny I never noticed before.

    Woman steps out from her side-entry and sneaks up to me as I’m ambling. There’s a hundred reasons to rush, but I just can’t seem to. Late August heat and the steam from the rain off the sidewalk… making me dopey. Making me watch myself. Making me watch the whole world, but I don’t seem to see anything. Definitely don’t see that woman sneaking around. Woman makes me jump a yard in the air, at least.

    “Tina, what you playing at? I don’t need that kind of scaring on this kind of day!”

    “Day like any other,” Tina says slowly, looking around as if to check on its awful normalcy. I’d like to argue… but I can’t find the words. Woman isn’t listening anyway. “Well, Runt, you going someplace in particular?” (Six-foot-three and still the runt, to Tina.)
     
    In New Orleans, no one’s ever going someplace in particular, and my oldest sister knows that well. But I did have a way I was leaning. “Thinking ‘bout some spoonbread up to Mamie Redhands. Too warm for it, but I want it anyway. Suppose you’re too busy to join me?”

    “S’pose I am,” she says, “but I can’t have you eating Mamie’s delicious spoonbread alone. You need someone to babble at you.”

    She did… babble, I mean. Accompanying her twenty-eight-year-old “little” brother to have a mid-day treat can’t have been the most exciting part of her day, but you’d never know it from the way Tina went on. Her teenagers’d be home from school in half an hour, wondering why Mama wasn’t there to nag them about their books, but she was almost as lazy about this day as I was. Even if I did have a better reason.

    Tiny little thing of a waitress comes out clutching our plates just minutes after we sit down. Her timing’s all wrong… nobody likes their food to come out of the kitchen fast. And her attitude’s far too perky. Feel like telling her to blow some of that sunshine someone else’s way, but I know Tina wouldn’t like me to be taking out my mood on the girl.

    Storm’s coming down proper now. Seems about like a monsoon—roaring winds and buckets of wet.

    “I feel better now,” I tell Tina, pointing toward the café’s rain-battered bay window.

    “Yeah, it’s pretty, isn’t it, Runt? The city knows what you need,” Tina agrees. We both know the city dressed herself in gray and put this show on just for me. She’s good like that.
     
    When the baby died, she stayed sunny. I thought it was rude, but Meghan said New Orleans didn’t want us to mourn. Said the city wanted us to remember the two years we had our baby, not the last days when she was so sick. Definitely not that last day.

    But I remembered.
     
    Meghan was tired, and the hot sunshine had kept her from worry. Kept her strong. ‘Til she told me not to go to work that one day, because the baby had the flu, and she needed to go to the hospital and I should come, because they both needed me. ‘Til then, she’d been dealing with it on her own and I barely knew.

    Wasn’t I there? Why did I barely know?

    Then the baby…

    And Meghan was happy that it stayed sunny.

    Meghan still seemed so tired and I… I didn’t want to go back to work anyway. I thought we were tired the same. We stayed together and cried in the sunshine for days. “Too hot to move around much,” she said.

    I brought her tea and oatmeal. She patted my head.

    Then she told me she needed to go to the hospital, and I should come, because she couldn’t do this on her own.

    As if I’d let her.
     
    Funny, in New Orleans, no one’s ever going someplace in particular, but there I was rushing for the second time in a week to that antiseptic hell. Trying, for the second time in a week, to keep my face from showing my thoughts. Putting on my brave face, just like the city. But when Meghan died that night, and I walked home alone—she cried with me, my city did, because we could stop putting on the brave faces then. The trumpets whispered. The saxophones sobbed. And the rain came down and drowned out the singers, because nobody needs singing when angels are so near.

    I suppose Tina, babbling at me Thursday, she was just trying to make sure I don’t wander out into traffic. But that’s not me.

    The city needs me. She can’t do this alone. So I get a little spoonbread. I wander a little bit. I watch other families doing family things. And I cry with my city, ‘til we’re all cried out, and maybe one day, long after the last tear’s been cried, maybe things get just a little bit better.

    No rush.

  7. Ember Bianco says:

    Roaring past me I grabbed on to my little one with a delicious little smile on her face that went from ear to ear and demanded to know what was going on.  The room was frozen in a state of disaster, candy wrappers everywhere.  It was the eve of Halloween and every year I would dress the kids up in monstrous little outfits that no matter how terrorizing I tried to make them look, they still came out adorable. I looked towards my older one who was babbling on at a speed of hundred miles an hour about how the little runt got into all the candy bags and how even though she was in charge, it wasn’t her fault that all the candy was gone, and on and on she went.  “Everyone stop! I said in a very controlled tone; slow down- and -tell -me -what –happened, and don’t call your sister a runt.” “And what on earth is that Spoon for?” Clutched in Jenn’s right hand was a spoon with a glob of whipped cream attached to it. Now I was totally confused. Jenn went onto explain, “No Mommy, I wasn’t calling Beans a runt (Beans is the nickname that I gave to my little one when she was born) it’s “Chewie, he’s under the bed and I can’t get him out!” Apparently, the girls had left the bedroom door open and Chewie (Our fluffy blond haired Wheaton terrier,) managed to sniff out the chocolates and, the only way to coax him out was by teasing him with a spoon of whipped cream, which aside from chocolates is his favorite food. Once we finally got him out it was obvious he needed to be thrown in the basin for a much deserved bath. I don’t know which was more hilarious that night, poor Jen thinking that she was going to get in trouble because on her watch all the candy disappeared, or seeing the dog’s blond hair peppered in chocolate candy bars, or Beans running around giggling and screeching in her tattered and torn Halloween outfit. “What can I say? This is just another ordinary day in the life of raising children.”

  8. Anne Wayman says:

    Imagine a frozen, monstrous runt gurgling up into the basin. Yech! Only a spoon will do to try and trap them. OMG there are at least seven-hundred of them! Delicious? I doubt it. They babble and double clutch the roaring vehicle as they make their escape back down the drain. Thank G*d they’re gone!

  9. This one inspired a little bit of a comical poem today.
     
    Baby Cravings

    Babble of a hundred monstrous babies
    a single purpose from plumpest to runt
    roaring in hunger, they each clutch a spoon
    weapon to devour the delicious frozen treat
    no basin can hold enough to keep them satiated
    fear when babies crave more ice cream

  10. Tanja Cilia says:

    “As like alike as two peas in a pod is a misnomer; a hundred delicious frozen peas in a spoon are a hundred different entities.  Even worse is as alike as two halves of a split pea.  This is a false premise.  A clutch of split peas, chucked into a basin, will yield a monstrous amount of microscopic flaws, infinitesimal differences that are not seen by the naked eye but would leap out at you, practically roaring, from under the lens of an electron microscope…” The teacher droned on and on. His babble was only interrupted when a loft of runt pigeons crash-landed into the aforementioned basin and gobbled up half the peas used in the demonstration before he could chase them away.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Tanja: This is your best one yet. I truly enjoyed this. I once got a general contracting contract in DC cleaning up pigeon poop around the moats of the Justice Department. Years of pigeon poop build-up. Took a week. Hellish work, great contract value though. We put those disposable masks on our faces and at the end of the day, we’d take them off and blow our noses. Nothing but black. yum, yum.

      • Tanja Cilia says:

        Thank you!  One of the things that indicates says “I am from Valletta” is that I tend to walk in  the middle of the street, even when  I am not in the City!

    • Julie says:

      Oh how I would have loved something like this to happen in some of my classes! 😀

    • Nice one, Tanja! I really enjoyed biology in school. Lucky my teacher never droned on like this!
      I like the ending, too.
       
      Cheers,
       
      Mitch
       

    • Kelly says:

      Tanja—I guess I really am a geek—I was wondering what the prof was going to say next. Sort of philosophy and biology all mashed together, his babble. You do scientific nonsense well!

    • Cathy Miller says:

      @Tanja-what a visual! I just might have dreams about peas and pigeons-LOL!! 😀

      • Tanja Cilia says:

        There are still places in Malta where you throw a handful of cut-up bread to the ground, and the pigeons swoop down,  out of nowhere. In any case, pigeons and sparrows are the only birds we have – no rooks, starlings, crows, etc… unless they get lost while migrating.

  11. Shane Arthur says:

    Fuckin’ frozen tv dinners!
    Monstrously disgusting meatloaf with ice crystals.
    A runt-sized basin of green beans. Thanks. I’ll surely be too full to eat for weeks after that.
    Can’t wait to spoon up this frozen gelatin-gravy either.
    Nuke at eight hundred thousand degrees for fifty minutes. Incinerating the food apparently adds back missing flavor.
    Mmm! This is as delicious as the commercials babble…NOT!
    I preemptively clutch my gut as the rations come roaring back up and back into the packaging.
    Funny! It looks exactly as it did before I cooked it!

    • OMG, Shane! This is priceless. Now, I have to wonder just how that food gets into the packaging in the first place.
       
      Gimme Lean Cuisine. My kids love Swanson, though.
       
      Cheers,
       
      Mitch
       

      • Shane Arthur says:

        @Mitch: All frozen box meals should have a disclaimer next to the pictures saying, “Results not typical.”

        • HA-HA! Isn’t that only for weight loss?

          I know what you mean, though. I read about the tricks advertisers use to make their products more appealing to the camera:

          grapes are dipped in olive oil
          plastic cubes stand in for real ice – which would melt under the hot lights
          Speaking of melt, for ice cream, they use some kind of lard mixture – like in store-bought frosting (yuck!)
          Elmer’s glue makes a nice milk substitute, especially as it drips off the flakes

          If all else fails, there’s always Photoshop!

          Cheers,

          Mitch

    • Kelly says:

      Shane,
       

      Nuke at eight hundred thousand degrees for fifty minutes.

      LOL, that’s exactly what I do—is that a problem?

  12. Ember Bianco says:

    Shane – Don’t want to cross you on a bad dinner night <smiling>  and the Swanson’s Meatloaf is my favorite, but unfortunately you are so right!

  13. Venus, darkside, delivered a delicious peace in the monstrous basin carved from the Yablochkina Crater. Within minutes of sunset, the roaring waterfalls became frozen confections decorating the rim of the outer crater. After eight solid earth months of constant sunlight and deafening noise, the silence was pure bliss.

    However, like bears emerging from hibernation, Devin and the rest of Colonization Crew Delta-3 shook off the rust of a “day’s” rest – nearly a year! – and prepared for the dangerous trek to the next crater. Hopefully, this new one would be more hospitable. The whole point of this excursion was to prove that man could live on this choking ball of rock. Devin was sure this was a waste of time. As Delta team leader, however, he had to keep his opinions to himself. Let these goofy scientists do their stupid assays – he chuckled at his wit. Devin and the “Rangers” would keep them from getting lost, breaking a leg or, god forbid, running out of oxygen.

    Devin keyed the intercom mike and shattered the new silence. “Attention, Delta-3, all hands!” He waited a beat before continuing, imagining one hundred eyes automatically looking toward the grainy hologram projector. “Nav team reports full sun down conditions will be optimal in 7 ticks. After that, rapid temperature drop will commence, reaching nadir at optimal plus 2 ticks. Don’t forget your mittens!”

    ***

    Jada smirked. Continuing to spoon yeasty pudding into her nearly toothless mouth, she mused for the millionth time at the arrogance of her species. Just about all the data had been wrong. Something had happened to the Venusian lithosphere. Something so out of proportion to the normally sedate evolution of geologic change that the only possible conclusion was an impact event. Some massive material had displaced 90 per cent of the atmosphere, triggering a cascading series of global climate changes. Of course, no one on Earth had recorded any such occurrence or, if they had, they were too stupid to figure out the ramifications.

    When Devin mentioned mittens, it was not far from the truth. The colonists were wholly unprepared for the unexpected extremes in temperature. All of their crops had failed, save for the hardy soybean plant, which still yielded only a clutch of about 2,000 flowers per row. The uni-blow structures, spun from the canisters of fiberglass stored in the hold, had warped, threatening to collapse and expose them all to deadly radiation. And the clothes, Jada thought wryly. Could we have been less dressed for the weather? Not even one pair of Nomex coveralls – standard issue on all missions, except theirs, god alone knows why. Scooping the last of the soy slop, Jada grunted and unfolded her stiff, gangly limbs from the bench. Time to go.

    ***
    “Devin, we need to talk.” Jada slipped into his semi-private bubble and tried to close the sliding door.

    “Don’t bother.” Devin waved laconically at the warped infrastructure.

    Nodding her understanding, Jada left the door half-open and resorted to a stage-whisper. “We are not going to survive nightfall, man.”

    Devin looked at her, waiting.

    “The day’s soybean yield was only 25 per cent of minimum requirements. The rebreathers are almost full of cee oh two, instead of the hoped for replenishment of oxygen. Nobody has a clue as to how to get the damn things to grow at night. We will consume the yield in less than 60 Earth days, another 25 per cent disaster. Food stores were depleted five ticks ago.”

    Devin grinned. “I knew you runts would not be able to make it on Ranger rations! Listen, my orders do not call for evacuation. There is barely enough fuel for a tailgate party, let alone trying to escape this hellhole. So I suggest you take that scientific babble back to your bubble, start packing and be ready to ship out. Dismissed!”

    Jada pulled a wicked ion blaster from her back pocket. “I knew you were going to say that. You jerk. We runts have already subdued your contingent of Ranger boy scouts. Do you think we would have volunteered for a one-way trip? While you and your overpaid space jockeys were mud wrestling each other, the Geological team synthesized rocket fuel from an oil field 50 kilometers from base.”

    Devin was shocked. “Oil? There’s no oil on Venus! What are you talking about! Put that gun down, woman!”

    Jada flinched, but held the blaster centered on his thick torso. “Yeah, well, there was this collision, you see…oh, forget it! Grab your gear. We’re going home.”

    Devin had no desire to be ionized for his country. He’d deal with this mutiny from the comfort of Earth. “Alrighty, then. You’re the boss.”

    Jada pocketed the weapon and flung the sliding door open. They walked out, side by side, toward the waiting ship.

  14. Ember Bianco says:

    This is a great Sci-fi  piece!  plus  you get the crown for being the walking encyclopedia for the coolest made up words in a story – Yablochkina Crater  – space jockeys  great funny stuff Mitch!

  15. Clarabela says:

    The storm was monstrous! Dallas had never seen that much snow in 20 years. Her hands were frozen after she had shoveled what seemed like a hundred feet of snow out of her driveway. Her new puppy was enjoying the snow. “Look at that little runt” she thought. It was his very first snow. “At least someone is enjoying this. I am frozen to the bone.” Twenty minutes and twenty frozen toes and fingers later, she pulled the clutch on her old Chevy and drove to the grocery store.

    The aisles were filled with people with the same thing on their minds, ‘buy everything, you never know how long the storm will last.’ She rolled her cart to the check out and listened to the clerk babble on and on about the weather. All she wanted to do was to climb into her Snuggie on the sofa and read a book
     
    At home, finally was warming herself with a delicious cup of hot chocolate in a cozy chair, stirring the cup and enjoying a roaring fire. She sat there for a long time, reading, watching the fire, perhaps even dozing off from time to time.
     
    She went to the kitchen and placed the dirty cup and spoon in the basin. “I’ll do dishes later”.  Glancing out the window she could see the fine white flakes floating to the ground.
     
    No more snow!!!

    • Nice, descriptive story, Clarabela. I could almost feel the frozen toes. Now, I want some hot chocolate 🙂
       
      Cheers,
       
      Mitch
       

    • Kelly says:

      Clarabela—‘buy everything, you never know how long the storm will last.’ LOL. That’s the state motto, where I live… as soon as there’s a forecast for weather of any kind. Nice to know we’re not the only ones.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Clarabela: Sounds like someone isn’t a big fan of snow. I believe everyone should have at least one month of canned goods put away in case of emergencies like this. Last year our power was out for three days. We had to cook on the ledge of our fireplace insert. We cooked in small pans and toasted bread on aluminum foil. We put up sheets to block the heat from escaping into the other rooms away from the fireplace and we all slept in that room. For showers, we heated water in containers and had to soap up real fast and pour the one container over ourselves. one is all you got. Ironic that we had a generator, but we have no place to put it away from the rain and snow outside and it was raining and snowing practically the whole time. We can’t run it in those conditions.

      • Clarabela says:

        This was inspired by the recent crazy weather in Dallas. I grew up near Buffalo, NY and moved to Texas to escape the cold. Even 7 inches of snow is too much for me.

    • Julie says:

      There were a couple of lines in here that were just so *true*, they had me nodding along and saying ‘oh yes, that’s how it goes’. Well done.

    • Cathy Miller says:

      @Clarabela-boy, does that fit this winter! Stay warm and thanks for the good read-always nice on a cold winter day. 🙂

  16. Ember Bianco says:

    Clarabela weighs in with too much snow – frozen and frigid on the outside but warming on the inside. Nice story.

  17. Karetha says:

    She stood frozen in place, paralyzed by the monstrous obstacle that stood in her path.  She tried to tell herself it was just a runt, not a big deal at all.  Her left hand held a small basin and her right one held a spoon.  She could see the selections waiting for her.  There had to be over one hundred delicious options, waiting for her to choose!  Each one seemed to babble her name, roaring at her to hurry.  She could not move.  She clutched her utensils tightly and tried unsuccessfully to maneuver around her opponent.  The scales were all that stood between her and the ice cream.

  18. A monstrous snow storm could not, would not, stop the superstar kindergarten teacher from engaging the minds of her clutch of students.
     
    They trudged onto the frozen school patio, bundled in their many layers, dozens of tiny eyes peeped from hoods and hats and scarves wrapped about their tiny heads. The students obediently followed their teacher, their babble rising muffled from their covered mouths, like a hundred little birds calling into the wind.
     
    The group had placed a basin of water out on the porch the night before. The teacher had asked her students to guess what would happen. The child she called Runt, for his overwhelming height, his larger than usual hands and feet, had guessed first. Of course, they all guessed correctly, but it was Runt who had said it first. And because of this, the teacher now, as they stood before the pan of water, presented Runt with a stainless steel spoon.
     
    “Runt, would you please scoop some water onto the spoon?” She asked.
     
    He looked at her mutely, first confusion then delight playing at his small eyes. He laughed. A big laugh. A roaring laugh. He bent over the basin, gave a tiny jab at the ice that now filled the pan and laughed some more.
     
    Now they were all laughing. The teacher’s eyes mirror the sparkle in the eyes of her students. “Delicious!” She pronounced.

  19. sefcug says:

    I found some time again to do a submission.
    The following is my submission (in order):
    *******

    The Abominable Snowman (AS) Incident
     
    Bob was way out in the frozen wasteland looking for an abominable snowman when he heard a monstrous roar.
     
    Quickly, he ducked behind a snow bank. Looking up he was surprised to see a runt, instead of the giant creature he was expecting.
     
    The little (eight foot or so) creature stopped, washed its paws in a wooden basin of melted snow, pulled out a spoon, and proceeded to eat at least a hundred red M&Ms.
     
    After it finished eating the delicious morsels, at least they appeared to be delicious to him, or maybe a her, there was no real way to tell, the AS left muttering some babble about the lack of meat to complete the meal.
     
    Little did the AS know there was a lot of meat behind the snow bank, enough to eat for days probably. All the AS needed to do was to get Bob in its clutches for a very short time to secure the meat.
     
    Once again Bob was shocked, as he had no idea that an AS could speak.
     
    The AS left roaring loudly, just like it did when it came into the area.
     
    Moral: Be aware of everything around you, and don’t make loud noises until you are sure they are appropriate, or you are likely to miss an opportunity.

  20. Ember Bianco says:

    Steve – I love mystery Morals – What an incredibly smart way to tell a story – this was definitely a treat.

  21. Ember Bianco says:

    Thanks Walter – I liked this touching account of what life throws our way and how animals can do unexpected  wonders.

  22. Shane Arthur says:

    @Walter: I can’t criticize this piece because you had me guessing at a few points and I guessed wrong both times. Love when that happens. Well done.

  23. Cathy Miller says:

    @Walter-love, love, love the creativity!

  24. Laurie says:

    His endless roaring babble echoed through the frozen landscape.  She had took the runt out of the puppies her friend was trying to get rid of and you would have thought that she’d brought home a horse!  He was monstrous when he saw the puppy when he got home from dinner.  Hadn’t he told her a hundred times he did not care how badly she wanted a dog that he couldn’t stand them?  Look at her sitting there spoon feeding that puppy the delicious chicken that should have been his dinner.  Oh no!  She isn’t going to bath it in his grandmother’s antique wash basin!  He’d had enough, he just wanted to grab the dog out of her clutch and take it to the pound!

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Laurie: That was both interesting and sad. I don’t believe we get enough sad around here, and surprisingly, I enjoyed this. Odd but true.

  25. Ember Bianco says:

    Laurie – Tyrant! – meanie! – awwwh  cute lil puppy – I hate that guy! BTW didn’t Shane warn you that this was going to be addictive?

  26. Laurie says:

    Yes I was warned it was addicting!  It is too, just hoping I get out of this dark phase of writing… LOL!  Although, sounds like what was needed to give a bit more in that area!  😉  I figured you’d either hate the guy or be one of those guys cussing the girl….

  27. With a monstrous babble, the din of a hundred spoons clattered into the delicious frozen mountain. The roaring of the crowd rose to NASCAR levels. The runt of the litter was the first to hit the bottom of the basin. He clutched the trophy lurking there, a smile breaking the chocolate smear that was his face. The 2011 Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Eating Contest had a new winner!

  28. Aaron Pogue says:

    The First Myth (part 7)
    For a long moment the two stood there, frozen in tableau as the roaring of many hundred men at war washed over them. While Addan watched, the prince summoned his courage. Then he turned away from Addan, away from the doors, and swept in great, regal strides toward the stone wall directly behind the throne.
     
    “Where are you going?” Addan called, hurrying after him. “Those are your people, aren’t they? This is what you meant by war, isn’t it?” The strange word suddenly felt right. It was monstrous, but it was a perfect fit for the cacophony behind them. “You’re just going to leave them?”
     
    The prince finally stopped at that, a pace from the wall where a great tapestry hung over cold stone. He whirled on Addan, towering over him fierce and terrible. “I must leave them!” the prince said.
     
    “Why? How can you?”
     
    “Because they fight for me. For me, son of man, so I might find some escape. They give up their lives out of love for me, and the only thing I can do to honor their sacrifice is go!”
     
    Addan reached behind his back, fumbling with the clasp on his leather bowcase. “We cannot just leave. Even if you must, let me go and help them.”
     
    Laughing disdain flashed in the prince’s eyes again, but he kept it out of his voice this time. “How could you help?”
     
    Addan withdrew his bow. He pulled another raven-feather arrow from his quiver and fitted it to the string. “I can kill a rabbit on the run and drop a black bear in full fury. I think I can answer for some of your enemies.”
     
    The prince nodded, his eyes measuring. “I believe you,” he said. “But I count seven shafts in your quiver, and there are seventy thousand enemies beyond those doors.”
     
    “I needn’t slay them all to lend some aid–”
     
    “No, ” the prince said, shaking his head. “Your valor is delicious, but these are no normal men or beasts. No matter how true your aim, you wouldn’t slay a one of them.”
     
    Addan shook his head, furious. He clutched at the prince’s sleeve. “Even so, if I could just–”
     
    “No!” The prince’s bellow shook the throne room, and for a moment the thunder without reduced to a babble. All too quickly it resumed, and the prince dragged Addan toward the wall.
     
    “You may have been the alpha male among your pack back home, son of man, but here you are the runt.” He swept aside the tapestry to reveal a plain stone wall, but then he touched it three times — at crown and collar and belt — and a doorway appeared in the wall. He cast a look back at Addan. “I mean no disrespect to your dignity, but as you said, this is a strange world to you.”
     
    The prince tried to drag Addan through the doorway, but he still balked. “I thought you brought me here to help!”
     
    “By basin, spoon, and taper, you’re a stubborn one!” the prince growled.
     
    “Among my people, we don’t leave other hunters in the jaws of the wolves.”
     
    The prince grabbed Addan by both shoulders, as  though he meant to reason with him, but instead he gripped tight and twisted. With a surprising strength, he lifted the younger man and heaved him through the doorway. Then he turned and spoke a word and the door was gone.
     
    The bitter sound of battle cut off instantly, too, but Addan could still hear it in his memory. He scrambled to his feet, but there was no way back now. He stood at the end of a narrow, dark corridor,  and glared at the prince.
     
    The prince met his eyes and sighed. “Enough,” he said. “Enough. I understand your passion.” He trailed off, sharp pain in his eyes. “I’ve lived this memory countless times, and there is no way to help. It feels real, but it can only end one way. The end result was decided long ago. There is no way to help, but there are countless ways to die.”
     
    “Then why–”
     
    “I brought you here to see,” the prince said. “That is all you can do. I want you to see what they did to me, and to my people.”
     
    Addan sighed. “This is already done?”
     
    “A thousand thousand years ago,” the prince said. “So watch and know.”
     
    He took a step down the hall toward a bright corridor beyond, then cast a look back over his shoulder. “And stay close,” he said. “You cannot die a true death here….” His eyes flicked momentarily to the bow in Addan’s hand and he licked his lips. “But you can know great pain. Pain to make the projection feel like a minor burn.”
     
    Addan blanched at that and the prince smiled, though it did not touch his eyes. “Indeed,” he said. “Stay very close.”

  29. We sat in front of a roaring fire, eating delicious, frozen, vanilla custard with a spoon.  Bobby laughed. “Most people would be sipping brandy or hot chocolate on a night like this. Here we are, stuck in a blizzard, eating frozen custard!”
     
    Something scritched frantically at the back door. I looked at Bobby. He looked just as startled as I felt. More scratching sounds at the front door. Six sparkling eyes at the window. I let out a shriek to rival a B-grade horror movie queen.
     
    “What the hell?” Bobby got up to investigate.
     
    “Don’t let it in!” I cried. “D-d-d-B-b-bobby, nooooo!” I clutched at his shirt as I babbled. I envisioned hundreds of monstrous creatures, all eager to scoop our brains out with our spoons and lick their lips while they savored the creamy gray matter.
     
    Bobby the Intrepid, over there, had his hand on the doorknob. Turning, turning – oh, God, he let them in!! He gave me a quizzical look as he set out a basin of water for the little family of raccoons: mother, father, and three babies. All cold, and doubtless hungry. I began to breathe again. The smallest of the babies, the little runt, began to explore the cabin. When he came out of my room wearing my shower cap like a beret, I couldn’t help but laugh.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Holly: Love how you started this then changed direction. Well done and cute too. Although I’ve seen one with rabies (and a skunk with rabies too). Not so cute in that state. 😉

      • They’re all cute, from a distance (provided they don’t have rabies). But they can be very bold and aggressive (almost made it a family of possum, but DANG, they’re just not cute on any level at any time). I once had a big raccoon in my back yard. He was staring at me. I ran inside, grabbed the camera – barely dared hope he’d still be there, but he was. He let me get within about three feet of him. I snapped the photo – when the flash went off, so did he, and I thought he was going to jump up onto my FACE. He just sort of reared back and hissed at me. Creepy.

  30. […] To see the submissions by others, or to participate yourself, visit Creative Copy Challenge #117. […]


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