Here is the last of the play-off round contest for this week. There will be another four next week (Mon-Thur). The voting for all nine bouts will remain open until noon on Sunday, September 22nd.
Your task remains simple…read the submission from each WRiTER carefully and leave your vote for the sample that resonates with you the most. Whether you've been following along from the beginning and have a familiarity with each of them, or this is your first time here...no matter...it's just a matter of choosing the one you feel deserves to move forward. If you haven’t already done so in the previous rounds, please offer some critique if you have time. Anyone reading this can vote (after signing up on this LinkyList) so blog/tweet/facebook/text/smoke signal everyone you know and get them to take part in the fun. Vote on as many bouts as you can get around to. Whether that is one bout, or all nine, how much you participate is up to you.
Here’s something else to keep in mind for this round...every vote counts. That’s because the contestant who doesn't win their bout but garners the most votes amongst all of the other losers, will become a wildcard winner and still advance to round 2.
The winners will be posted late in the afternoon on September 22nd and then round 2 will kick off the following Monday with all new 500 word submissions from the nine advancing contestants.
Good luck to all of the WRiTER’s!
In this corner welcome back to the ring for a second time.....MultaPaucis.
Remington arrived at work punctually the morning after the gala. He hadn't imbibed enough to leave him uncomfortable this morning, and he applauded himself silently for that. Many new bodies awaited his consideration in the cold room of his mortuary. They required a clear head and palate.
He trotted down the stairs and locked the door behind him, whistling a merry tune as he pulled out his handkerchief, tucking it over his piercing-blue tie.
The five bodies were very dead, their skin pallid and stiff to the touch. Always good to make sure. Poor form, cutting into someone still living. Downright incompetent. There had been a case nearby where a mortician had cut into a live man, who then woke up screaming, and the mortician had stabbed him to death from fear. The whole story made Remington grimace, embarrassment he shared professions with the man, and he'd vowed never to make such a clumsy mistake.
He went over to the label station, where he jotted down a quick label for each of them, taping each label to a toothpick, which he laid neatly in a row on a plate. Next over to the fridge to pull out—Hm, which one this time? I've had too much of pears—grapes, nice and fat with ripeness. He laid the bunch of grapes beside the toothpicks, and picked up a scalpel.
Then over to the first body, removing the cloth over the inner leg area which would be covered out of modesty during any type of funeral. A few sure slices and he removed a wedge of flesh, stabbed it through with the correct toothpick, and laid it on the plate. The other bodies received the same treatment, a tiny wedge out of each leg, until he had a plate full of flesh and grapes, neatly arranged so that nothing touched.
Then he plucked up the first morsel, a piece of an old man who reportedly suffered a heart attack. He held it up to the light, examining the color and how much light got through. It was as could be expected, a pale, thin color, hardly dimming the light. He waved it around, then sniffed. The smell of decrepitude and decay. Then he took a deeper breath. Under the initial smell lay earth, as would be found in someone who worked hard. That was more promising.
He put his teeth around the toothpick and pulled the slice off, chewing it slowly while breathing in, exhaling through his nose. He rolled the flesh all around his tongue, making sure to take it in with all his taste-buds. It was, firm, heavy, mild, and dry, with a gamey aftertaste. Brentley returned to his label station, where he spat the flesh into his small, silver bucket. Then he washed his palate with a few grapes as he wrote notes on a sheet of paper.
Good enough for basic necromancy components.
And taking the spot on the other side of the ring for their second go-around...Sing Sing.
The sun dropped its load through the broken plate glass window and onto Burgundy’s eyelids.
‘Damn curtains! Ain’t worth shit!’ he grumbled as he rolled over to face the wall. Strips of peeling wallpaper and crumbs of flaking plaster tickled his nose as he breathed.
Still grumbling, and now coughing, he threw off the stained bedspread and hung his legs over the edge of the bed. He grabbed a bottle of whiskey—a rarity in times when the dole came in the form of pill-packs and alcoholic drinks almost required the donation of a kidney to pay for--from the nightstand. He unscrewed the top and swished a healthy swig around in his mouth. After swallowing, Burgundy chased the drink with three pills he sprung from a blister pack marked Breakfast.
The rats were out and about this morning, the rats being the scum who lived in the outer sections or ‘the Jungle’ of Tower City. He could hear the shouting and fighting, the sirens of the cops who sometimes ventured this far into the gated ranks of hookers, drug dealers, gangsters—basically, whoever upper society didn’t think good enough to lick the crud off their boots. This is where Burgundy had grown up. He knew its ins and outs like he knew the stress lines creasing his brow and the corners of his lips. This hellhole was home.
The motel room he’d holed up in over the last few weeks was dark and dingy. Blobs of brown stains marked the ceiling as well as the carpet. Ratty, faded blue curtains hung at the window. The bedspread wasn’t any better. The toilet almost always clogged when flushed and he hadn’t even bothered to look in the bathtub, let alone climb in for a shower. The smell emanating from the drain put him off. Still, the place was the best he could afford with the slim savings he had managed to stash away for a rainy day. It was cash only from here on out as swipe cards were out of the question.
Big Boy rested on the nightstand beside the bed. Burgundy picked it up, pointed it at the window and looked through the scope at the dilapidated building across the street. He didn’t have any friends. In Lower Tower City people had pimps and baby-mamas but no one had friends. But that’s how Burgundy liked it. People were shifty, unreliable. They lied. He narrowed his eyes. They backstabbed. He got up, walked over to where his lightpad waited for him on the dinette table, and set his gun on it. He loved the thud it made against the wood top. Big Boy, on the other hand, always did what it was supposed to: blow the shit out of anyone Burgundy pointed it at. As long as Big Boy was cleaned and oiled, it was always ready to roar. Who needed anything more than that?
Burgunday flicked the switch on his lightpad. No new messages.
Leave your vote and we'll see you back here next week for the remaining match-ups!
Remember the WRiTE CLUB motto, it’s not about the last man/woman standing, it’s about who knocks the audience out!