Part 45: Challenge 5 Results
First place, getting 3 points, is Beltom, detailing Trilby's unending plight.
As I look back through the pages of this journal, these notes of that dreadful experience within the Clanbronwyn Hotel, a thought occurs to me. This catalogue of information that occurred within that premises may no longer comfortably claim the name "Notes". I see spread out before me, sheets of papers, piles upon piles covering the desk before me, like so many ominous towers, their evil knowledge locked in ink. What had begun as a simple record of the events at that demonic hotel had grown into something far greater and far more monstrous.
I glance to my side, and spy the small brown folder, the words "Clanbronwyn Hotel Incident" emblazoned across its front in dead stencilled text. My mind boggles as I fail to comprehend how I will fit the record of my ordeal within the miniscule space they have provided. I stand, my chair falling back against the wall, sending a slight, but noticeable tremor through the room. A rumbling noise draws my attention, and I see to my horror that the towers of paper are shaking, the will of the Earth's gravity drawing them to itself. I watch in horror as the piles sway towards me. I try to run, but the door is locked. Blast my paranoia, the key is still on the table! As I turn, the last thing I see is the monstrous shape of the paper abomination, crashing down upon me like a tsunami.
As the dust and paper settles I realise that I myself, am fine. I appeared to be trapped underneath the mountain of paper and notes I had accumulated. If any should find this paper, let them know. Let them know that the verbosity of their descriptive writings will in turn come back to haunt and hurt them, as they did with me. As I feel the weight of the myriad sheaves pressing down on my back and spine, driving the air from my lungs, I have but one last request, that the...
It would have appeared that agent Trilby was unable to complete his final message to the world, since the paper he was writing on had run out of space.
In second place, getting 2 points, is Seventhrib and his explanation of why Trilby had a hard time getting through high school.
The shaft of the pencil was dark blue and hexagonal, with a rubber at the rear end. I gave it a cautious rub and discovered to my disappointment the rubber would prove useless should I have need of it - it was hard and smooth, obviously intended more for show than to have any practical application. It was set into a small, grooved metal cylinder which attached it to the pencil's end, a cylinder which was bent from the attention of a distracted writer's molars. I couldn't recall, but this might have occurred when I lent the pencil to that lady in the corner shop signing her receipt. Had she placed it in her mouth briefly? I sniffed the end but this was inconclusive. Perhaps it had the aroma of a lady's saliva, or perhaps I was simply imagining it. The business-end of the pencil was pleasingly sharp and clean, looking keen and ready to be employed. Unfortunately by the time I had finished writing the description of it in my notes for the benefit of posterity, it was somewhat worn down. I considered examining the sharpener, and then perhaps using it.
I am writing my notes on cream paper in a pocket-sized moleskin notebook. It was a present last July from my Aunt, who thinks I'm a journalist because of my hat, and because of my habit of transcribing to paper word-for-word every conversation I have with anyone. I'm almost as fond of the notebook as I am of writing in it, which I often do after peering closely at objects, when they are utterly mundane and common, and indeed also when they are horrifying beyond belief and sometimes trying to kill me. Then at night I go over my notes and add a few more adjectives or adverbs if I think they are appropriate, and sometimes a prologue to the description and occasionally a brief postscript at the end to describe my feelings and whether I was hungry at the time. After this I close the notebook and think about what it might be like to touch a woman. Then my eye will catch my bedside lamp and I will feel compelled to write about it in my notes. Finally I draw a little stylised picture of my hat. I restrain my urge to describe it
Finally, keeping with my consistent inconsistency, I'm awarding a tie for third. M.c.P somehow managed to write the following 770 words without stabbing himself, and emoticon most closely emulated the actual in-game style, so I'm rewarding both of them with 1 point.
The morning of my arrival at Clanbrownwyn Island saw me gazing at the ocean from the window of a small hostel on the docks. The thick fog of the morning hung like a drape across the sky, though the red rays of dawn could be seen piercing the veil in these early hours. I had slept poorly the previous evening, haunted again by vivid dreams of welding masks and machetes. This close to the location I would begin my self-assigned mission, I began to entertain thoughts of abandoning my quest, as with every moment I pursued the Idol I felt I approached some yawning, cold precipices from which I would never return. Even in so quaint and peaceful a town as I found myself on the cold, dewy morning did little to settle my nerves at the though of the horrors that likely waited before me.
The owner of the hostel came out of the kitchen, carrying the morning's breakfast which I had requested earlier. She brought the tray over to the table I was sitting at, and placed it on the table with a smile and a nod. I smiled back, though my heart was not in it. I could help but imagine her with a mask over her face and a machete in her hand, approaching slowly but with dark, bloodthirsty promise. She left without a word, as she had evidently ascertained I was not in a talkative mood. I watched her close the door with a small "click" behind her, before I turned to my breakfast.
It was a somewhat meager affair. Several rolls fresh from the oven sat on my plate, steaming somewhat in the morning air. It wasn't much, but I had little appetite in any case, this close to my eventual goal. They sat on my plate cooling a bit while I reviewed the other things before me.
A small teacup sat next to my plate, a dainty affair with an interesting floral pattern around the rim. It was not the finest china, but I did not expect such from this small, out of the way hostelry. Nestled inside was a grey teabag, sitting smugly in its little container. It was Earl Grey, a type I had no particular liking for, but the hostel did not have any Darjeeling varieties when I got there. Alongside the teacup was a matching teapot, warm to the touch with hot water. It was a quaint set, and I would likely have appreciated it further were it not for my overriding apprehension of the day to come.
Finally, a pair of small butter packets sat in a saucer with a lacy, gold filigree design. They might have been margarine instead, but I did not recognize the brand the maker, and in any case was not willing to check its contents at the moment. Even if I had, I wasn't sure I could tell the difference anyway.
That was everything, though it was better fare than I had most mornings in my heady days as a professional thief. Those times I did have the opportunity to have what Americans liked to call "the most important meal of the day", I remember it was particularly popular on the continent.
Perhaps that's why the call it a "Continental Breakfast".
The rolls were passable, though they left a dry feeling in my mouth that I couldn't attribute entirely to the food. It was not very filling, but I wasn't entirely bothered by that, reasoning I could probably get a better meal once on the island. The tea was unfortunately rather bland, but I did not trust the processed sugar packets on the side table enough to make the tea any more enjoyable.
Unfortunately, I did not have time to enjoy my breakfast, as looking at the clock on the wall demonstrated that the morning ferry to Clanbronwyn Island would leave within an hour. I hurriedly gulped down the remainder of my tea and rolls, as the ferry left only twice a day and I did not wish to miss the opening of Professor Chahal's antique show.
I took the small packets of either butter or margarine with me. I had found that such packets were usually to tasteless to notice when spread on my morning meals, and were fairly unhealthy otherwise. However, even if I didn't wish to eat them with my meal, I had been saved many times previously by a handy bit of melted fat in my pocket. I stuck them next to my trusty lockpicks and began to make my way to the docks.
I removed the paperclip from the corner of the folder. Upon examination, I saw that it was a thin metallic strand that had been folded into an oblong spiral by some mechanical process. I assessed the inch-long device between my fingertips. The surface felt cool to the touch--and firm, yet clearly it retained enough pliability to allow documents to be slid into the inner loop. As I stared at the tiny object in my hands, I felt a subtle pounding in my head, like the beat of African tribal drums. Inexorably, my other senses became muffled, and the ambiance of the office faded away until none was left but the devilish helix in front of me. Those malignant coils began to draw the whole of my being into them, and I felt as if I were about to pierce a veil into another world. Just as suddenly, the feeling passed. I feared for my sanity.
Challenge 6: You Make Me Go To Space For Stupid Reasons
By Wednesday evening, record yourself doing a dramatic reading of a scene from the series. As always, entertainment is more accurate than fulfilling the direct text of the challenge, so dramatically reading some of the above contest entries, an abridged version of a scene/plot, a complete fabrication that isn't creepy self-insert fanfiction, etc is perfectly acceptable. I recommend Tindeck for hosting, but YTMND, Youtube, or something else is fine.
edit: Everyone has being doing an awesome job on the challenges, and they have indeed breathed even more life into the thread. Thanks for having fun with them.