Microfiction draft: Framing Narrative

A dead body is found in a tree, drained of blood. A police detective investigates and can’t come up with a good lead so he picks the last person who was seen with the dead body, a fiction writer, as the killer, and then starts to create evidence to establish his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The fiction writer had written an unpublished story which eerily predicted these events, and begins to suspect the police detective is in the process of framing him, since in the story, a police detective frames a fiction writer for killing a man drained of blood, who was found in a tree. On the other hand, the real-life fiction writer doubts his own sanity.

The fiction writer uses his story as a clue to the real killer. In the story, the killer was based on the writer's neighbor in the downstairs apartment. In the story, the neighbor was a vampire hit man. The vampire hit man had killed the man in the tree as a contract killing, and in a vampiric fugue state, drained the body of blood while perched in the tree.

The fiction writer calls the police with an anonymous tip. In his story, the vampire hit man has some bloody clothes in his home. The fiction writer, in his anonymous tip, says the downstairs neighbor was seen walking into his apartment building with bloody clothes on, the night before the body was found.

The police come and talk with, and then arrest, the downstairs neighbor. The fiction writer sees the detective, whom he had suspected of trying to frame him, carrying bloody clothing in a plastic bag from the downstairs apartment. Everything in real life had matched his story, as the writer had imagined it. But now, he notes the bloody clothes in the plastic bag do not match what he had imagined in his story.

The writer watches as the downstairs neighbor is put in the back of the police car. The writer's eyes linger on the detective's face in the front driver-side window as the car pulls away. The writer stands at the upstairs window a little longer. Then he pulls the shade.

Microfiction Draft: Lead

The man accidentally killed the woman during an argument. He gave her a light shove and she fell down the stairs. He knew the woman’s brother was a low level enforcer in a gang. The man put the body in his car and buried it in the woods by the highway.

After a few days of the woman being missing, the enforcer brother started looking for her. He asked around. Some people had seen her with the man. The enforcer visited the man. The man had hoped the enforcer wouldn’t come by. The man had hoped the enforcer wouldn’t know to look for him.

The man opened the door a crack, with the chain on. The enforcer asked if the man knew what happened to his sister. The man said they had spent some time together at a bar and then parted ways near a bus stop. The enforcer asked if he could come in. The man said he would meet the enforcer in public if they wanted to talk more. The enforcer said sure, and they decided to meet up at a bar down the street later that night.

The enforcer planned to hang out around the man's house and when the man left, the enforcer would break in and look around. The man left for the bar, bringing pepper spray if he needed to protect himself. The enforcer picked the lock and looked around. He found a piece of his sister’s fingernail on the carpet by the stairs—she had a distinctive design that the enforcer had seen her sporting, swirls of glittery paint on the nail. He called the bar and told the bartender to tell the man something came up and the enforcer would have to meet him another time. Then the enforcer hid in the apartment and waited for the man to come back.

When the enforcer hadn’t shown up at the bar, the man, already fearful, got more so. He came back to his house and went to unlock the door. Normally he only locked the bottom lock and not the top one, but just unlocking the bottom lock didn't work. He unlocked both locks and the door opened. He then felt intense fear. He went out back and sneaked in the back window. He got out his pepper spray. He then went through the dark apartment as quietly as possible, seeing if he could spot someone hiding in wait.

He got to his bedroom closet and opened it and the enforcer sprung out. The man blinded the enforcer with pepper spray and the enforcer fell down. The man grabbed a barbell from the bedroom floor and bludgeoned the enforcer over the head, killing him.

The man put the body in his bathtub and cleaned up the blood. He tried to figure out what to do. A missing enforcer would warrant an investigation by his gang. They might come by if they knew what the enforcer was up to.

The man should throw them off the scent by providing them with an alternative story of what happened: the enforcer got killed by their rival gang. There had been peace between the gangs but back in the day the rival gang would sometimes send a message by killing an enemy gang member and slashing an x across his face, then leaving him in a public place. The man decided he would do this.

He slashed an x across the face of the enforcer and then in the dead of night drove the body to a public park and left the body in the parking lot, face up. The next day the body was found and the police were called. The local news picked up the story. The media and cops and the enforcer's gang interpreted his death as a message from the rival gang.

A gang war exploded. By the time it cooled down, the body count was 10 people total, and 3 innocents killed incidentally during a gunfight.

No one from the enforcer’s gang came by the man’s house. No police officers came by either. He had been careful to remove any obvious evidence that could be traced back to him, and the evidence of a gangland hit was so overpowering that the cops and the enforcer's gang didn’t look in other possible directions.

The man lived out his life undiscovered. He kept the secret to his end.

Microfiction Draft: The Experience Machine

A blogger has honed his intuition by building a virtual reality device he calls an experience machine. The machine runs through many plausible scenarios by stimulating lucid dreams in the person who uses the machine. The blogger uses the dreams to test drive a wide variety of plausible ways the presidential campaign could unfold. He is able to run through many scenarios very quickly as the experience machine can slow down the experience of time, to explore many possibilities. As psychologist Gary Klein points out, gathering a lot of experience enhances intuition, so the blogger has developed a strangely accurate sixth sense when dealing with things he has thought a lot about in the experience machine.

A hacker who had been curious about the bloggers public references to a technique he used to experience much more than the average person in a condensed period of time breaks into the bloggers computer and finds the specs for the experience machine. He builds it—it requires cheap, easy-to-get materials and a computer screen, essentially. He starts using the experience machine and is blown away. He is a Trump supporter and offers to provide the Trump campaign with his expertise.

The blogger discovers that he’s been hacked and uses the experience machine to quickly develop hacker skills. He then figures out who hacked him, hacks the hacker back, and discovers emails and instant messages from the hacker to the Trump campaign. The blogger realizes the hacker is giving Trump a large advantage with his experience-machine developed insights.

The blogger uses the experience machine to figure out what to do. He spends more time on this decision than he had any other. When he comes out of the experience machine this time, he has experienced the equivalent of months of contemplation, in a matter of a few days, due to the efficiency with which he can run through experiences. He feels an electrical buzz in his head. He sits at his computer. His hands move without him feeling he is in control of them. They open up the experience machine design document saved in his computer and uploads them to google docs. He then shares the google doc with about 100 email addresses of different individuals, many of whom he only has a fuzzy recollection of their identity.

His finger hits the enter key and emails are sent to these select people notifying them of their access to the experience machine design, with a message saying they were selected and entrusted to make the best use of it, given its power and potential, for both good and bad.

The blogger then sits back in his chair, feeling as if a possessing spirit has been exorcised from him and he was in control of himself again. He feels a sense of relief from the tension of the past few days. He doesn’t know exactly what is going to happen, but his intuition says things will be okay.

Microfiction Draft: Shimmering Reptile

The painter went into the wilderness seeking the Shimmering Reptile. He used their scaly coat the way other painters used gold leaf. He had never had so much success hunting these creatures as he did that day, and filled his canvas bag to the brink with their smashed bodies--he used a club. He found the bag heavy. He put it down and went off to hunt more reptiles. He would come back to deposits the dead in the sack.

The sky darkened with storm clouds, and thunder rumbled. It was dangerous to be in the wilderness when it rained. The ground was likely to flood. He couldn't move the bag quickly. It started to rain. He couldn't move fast enough. He wouldn't leave his bag. The water poured down and washed him and his sack away.

Microfiction Draft: Familiar Haunts

A conman works in the bar of a nice hotel. A wealthy old man who lives in the hotel comes for a drink every night. The conman decides he can befriend the man and then steal from him. In conversation, the conman mentions how bored he is with his bar job and how he wishes he could help people more. The old man mentions that he is having trouble getting around, and would like an assistant to help him throughout his day. The old man asks the conman if he would like to work for him, and the conman says yes.

The conman sees that the old man's luxurious apartment is filled with beautiful old trinkets, paintings, and ancient-looking books. With his smartphone he surreptitiously takes photos of some of the trinkets and books and investigates them on the internet in his spare time. Many of the books are rare and valuable. Some of them there is no record of. Most of them have to do with occultism. The trinkets are similar.

The conman wants to sell some of these items but believes the old man will notice. He talks with a craftsman who is renowned for creating wonderful jewelry on demand. He asks if the jeweler could create a replica of trinkets if he brought the original to him, but had to take it back within an hour or so. The jeweler said he could.

The conman brought the jeweler a trinket, a small geometrical piece of jewelry with rubies encrusted in it, made of gold. The jeweler examined it, took many photos, notes, and in a matter of an hour, said he had enough information to produce an identical copy. The conman then returned the trinket to the old man's apartment. This had been done late at night so the old man was asleep and didn’t notice.

The jeweler produced an identical copy in a matter of a week. The conman paid him and took the copy to the apartment where he replaced the original with it. He then took the original and brought it to various dealers in exotic merchandise. The trinket was apparently thousands of years old and had been used in Zoroastrian ritual magic. The trinket was exceedingly rare and would fetch a million dollars on the legitimate market, but given its origin, the trinket would have to be sold on the black market, and would fetch only about 100,000 dollars. The conman accepted this. The dealer paid the conman 50,000 dollars and would pay him the remainder, approximately 50,000 give or take depending on the market, when the trinket sold.

Later that week the old man asked the conman to make him a drink. He asked for an elaborate concoction mixed from various strange bottles in his personal bar. He then asked the conman to fix himself a drink—insisting he have some of the fine scotch he reserved for people who were important to him. They sat and the conman drank from the glass.

He awoke on a stone altar.

People in black hoods stood around him. He was naked. The room was lit by flickering orange light. The figures chanted. His body was paralyzed. A knife flickered in the hand of one of the figures. The knife dove down near the conman's belly. The conman could feel nothing below his neck. He could not make noise with his voice. The chanting increased, murmurs in strange languages.

Then all went silent and the flame went out. A voice, a laughing boy’s voice, sounded. "What’s this? That won’t do." Screams erupted from the room. Orange light exploded throughout the room for a moment. Then darkness again, and dripping sounds. The conman lied there listening, paralyzed. He closed his eyes and prayed for the first time in his life. At some point he must have passed out.

He awoke in the darkness. He felt sensation in his body. He moved. He groped in the darkness, looking for clothing. His hand touched something wet and cold. He recoiled. He felt around the altar. Clothing was at its edge. It seemed to be his clothes. He put them on in darkness. He turned on his smartphone, which was in his pants' pocket and used the flashlight function to see where he was.

A horrific scene lay before him. He would never be able to express the horrors of what he saw. He did see the much contorted visage of the old man, and in his mouth melted golden metal with fractured red glass. It was the melted counterfeit trinket the conman had produced.

He found a door, which lead to a large basement in the hotel. He took a freight elevator to a loading dock around back and ran off. The conman told the dealer to keep the remainder of his proceeds—he did not want money from the party who bought the trinket. He made some incomprehensible remark to the dealer: "The trinket helps them find treasure, and other things."

No mention was ever made in the news media of the horrific scene in the basement of the hotel. The conman was in no mood to inquire. An anonymous donation of 50,000 dollars was given to a church near the hotel, and the conman was no longer seen around, with his normal circle of friends, or haunting his old familiar haunts.

Microfiction Draft: The Voice from Nowhere

Otto Dick had been an SS Einsatzgruppenfuhrer who lead a penal battalion in anti-guerrilla and ethnic cleansing campaigns in Poland and the Ukraine during World War II. He had been a conman who had defrauded the Nazi Party of funds when he was treasurer of a local Bavarian section of the party in the early thirties and was caught and in the investigation myriad other crimes were discovered--extensive blackmail, shakedown work, murder for hire, pimping, pornography, corporate espionage, trading Nazi secrets with the Social Democrats and Communists--anything that could get him money or power he seemed to have a hand in.

His talents were appreciated by Himmler who thought his genius for criminal enterprises might translate to useful espionage and assassination work. Dick was offered freedom conditional on writing about applying his criminal talents to operations to further the interests of the Fatherland, and conditional upon his service as the leader of a penal battalion under close supervision by SS General Max Niflung.

The dossier was published as a book distributed to the higher ups in the SS and Wehrmacht. The main thrust of the book was that the Nazis should aim at the power elite of other countries and seek to blackmail as many of the elite as possible using a variety of honeypot style operations--tempting elite members into doing embarrassing things and then using this compromise to influence them into helping the Nazi cause, all sub rosa if possible. Hitler was impressed by these ideas and was himself of somewhat a similar mind. He employed much of Dick’s approach in his conquests, though deviated from them in his invasion of Poland which started World War II.

Dick reputedly was a lazy commander, spending little time working. His approach, unsurprisingly, was to hire some male prostitutes to proposition priests and other bachelors, and then photographs would be obtained of these single men, those who fell for the honeypot, in compromising situations. Then Dick told the compromised men to infiltrate guerrilla bands or try to start their own if possible. Dick would then gather information about guerrilla movements and seek similar blackmail opportunities within the guerilla groups his agents had penetrated, often gaining the ability to more or less control the guerrilla groups for his own purposes.

When the Nazis were overthrown in 1945, Dick had created an organization comprised of members from practically every imaginable ethnicity, political background, military or government or business affiliation, into a network centered in Eastern Europe. Officially, he died in a plane crash in Bavaria in May 1945, but a book emerged in 1975--a historian at the Univeristy of Bonn, Professor Paul Ritter, had been delivered the book--it had been left with his secretary, who did not recall seeing who had left the book for him. A note on the book explained the book had been written by Otto Dick. Dick had faked his death, the note claimed, converted his network of influence built up during the war into a criminal organization, and quietly ran it until his death in 1974. He compiled his writings into a book that he entitled, “The Voice from Nowhere”, dedicating it to Duke Lothar von Gotha.

The authenticity of the book was debated, but the case for its authenticity was considered compelling as all claims, that could be independently confirmed, were confirmed, as World War II historians poured over the documents. One tantalizing problem was whether quotations in the book attributed to Duke Lothar von Gotha, writer of the lost book, “The Book of Life from Death”, that were not from any extant fragment, were authentic. The author of the book, whether it was Otto Dick or not, claims to have come across a complete text of Lothar’s book, and found it greatly useful in exercising profound influence over events of the world through indirect but highly effective means. More sensational still were many unverifiable claims about high ranking members of the power elite of the world having been compromised by Dick--no one was exposed in the book. The final judgment about the text was that it was plausibly genuine but some claims were impossible to judge as true or false, and so the historical community would remain agnostic or skeptical of them until they were corroborated by further information. According to Professor Paul Ritter in a 20-year retrospective piece in the New York Times, he has been told by several people who were underlings of powerful people, that their bosses had fretted over being outed by the book when it had emerged, supporting the notion the book was genuine.

Microfiction Draft: Hot Shot

A killer murders his ex-girlfriend. He confesses to an attorney. The lawyer wants to benefit from the high profile case. The lawyer sets out looking for someone else to hang the crime on. The lawyer’s PI manufactures evidence to cast suspicion on another man, not enough to get him convicted, but enough to create reasonable doubt. The lawyer wins the trial and the killer goes free. He then kills another woman. He tells his attorney of it before anyone else finds out, and the attorney has his PI help the killer cover up the crime. The killer and the PI cremate the body and scatter the ashes. Then the PI gives the killer a hot shot of heroin, arranges him so that it looks like an accidental overdose and reveals to the killer in his last moments that the attorney didn't want to keep cleaning up his client’s messes, to protect the lawyer’s own reputation.

Microfiction Draft: Forms of Protection

An ancient monster emerges from a cave and starts killing people. It's man-sized and covered in a thick armor-like skin impervious to all conventional human weapons. A reporter follows the monster through its killing spree. It appears to eat humans. The reporter follows the beast back to its cave and dives in after it deep into the earth. He finds an elaborate underground structure of passages and halls littered with skeletons of humans, as well as seemingly dead monsters of the same type as the one who just went on a killing spree.

The reporter finds the living monster seemingly in hibernation in a hall. He finds a boy resting with the monster. The reporter tries to quietly get the kid away from the monster but the kid wakes and screams and bites the man. The monster stirs but is lethargic and only makes a halfhearted attempt to chase after the reporter who escapes to the surface.

The reporter writes up an article with documentation in the form of video and photos taken with his smart phone. The cave area is cordoned off and the military engages in some operations around there, presumably in the caves. The child is not identified even though his picture is in the media--one of the photos the journalist took was of the kid's face.

A folklorist from the local university emails the reporter and tells him the Native Americans in the area had stories of a rock monsters that kidnapped babies and used them as lures and as watchmen and guardians to protect the monsters while the monsters slept. The boy would have been kidnapped locally around eight to ten years ago, probably as a baby.

The reporter scours records and finds that such a boy fits the profile--kidnapped from a family outing in the woods near the caves. The journalist contacts the mother and they go to the cordon set up by the military and tell the guard there about the possibility the mother's child was kidnapped. The guard at the cordon arranges a meeting with a general, who explains that special forces were able to rescue a child, but were not able to find the monster.

The mother goes to the hospital where the child is. The kid is unruly and is restrained in his hospital room. The mother and the reporter look in on the kid through a window and are disturbed by his screaming and thrashing. The lights go out in the hospital, gun fire is heard, and the lumbering figure of the monster is seen. The monster makes its way to the room where the kid is, smashes open the wall and rescues the child from his restraints. The monster and child make their way in darkness towards the exit. The reporter and mother shadow the monster.

A policeman roaming the corridors of the hospital runs into the monster and pulls his gun. He fires in the darkness as the monster's shadowy figure. The mother and reporter yell at him to stop as the child is with the monster. The monster drops to his knees and is motionless. The gunfire ceases. The lights flicker on and the monster remains frozen, on its knees, holding the boy in his arms. The boy is dead from a gunshot.

The mother and reporter and officer approach the monster but it doesn't move. The police and military swarm the hospital. The monster never moves again, apparently dying from some unknown cause, as no bullet pierced its armor-like skin. Its body is taken by the military. Later, the mother is asked if she wishes to do a DNA test to see if she is the boy's mother, and she declines.

Microfiction: Beast in a Cage

A terrorist is wandering in a desert. He is traveling in the night and it's a full moon. It seems there is a monster following him, something human in shape but with grotesque elements. The monster disappears in the distance and the terrorist sees the creature no more in the night. He falls asleep in a cave and awakes to see a large statue that had been obscured by the night's darkness, standing before him in the cave. He comes out of the cave to find a caravan setting up camp outside in the daylight. A traveler sees him and yells to the others that it is the one who has been following them in the night. The travelers attack the terrorist. He is grabbed hold of and brought to the center of their camp. There, sits a wagon with a cage on it, containing a bear-like animal, covered in what looks like camel fur. The travelers throw the terrorist into the cage and he is torn apart by the creature. All the bits of his body fall out onto the dust below through the bars of the cage. The statue becomes animate and emerges from the cave and flies over the camp, scattering the terrified travelers. It gathers up the pieces of the dead man and puts him back together. He awakens, having passed out from fear. He sits in a square where he had planned to blow himself up with explosives. There had been a crowd. Now he is alone.

Microfiction Draft: Encounter

Boston was on lock down because of a terrorist attack. It was starting to rain. I had just woken up, got too much sleep. It was 6pm. I got out of bed and got a beer. My head hurt. The muscles in my neck were tight. I went outside and walked to an old Puritan cemetery near my house. I stopped at a grave and a man's voice sounded behind me. "I study these grave stones," the man said. "You a professor?" I said. "Yes. At Harvard." The man nodded to the headstone. "That gentleman is said to have cursed Cambridge at his death. The explosions last night were 300 years after his death, to the day. An interesting sign. The Puritans believed in signs. Everything had significance. For example, meeting someone in a graveyard at twilight could be construed as meeting with the devil." "I'm not the devil" I said. "I wasn't talking about you."

Microfiction Draft: The Book of Life from Death

The decorative sword which Cassandra designed had been modeled after an ancient sword she had seen at the Museum of Fine Arts. When she saw the sword she was fascinated and read everything on the web that she could about it, but there wasn't much. It had been owned by a Knight named Lothar von Gotha or Lothar the Dark of the Knights Templar, who fought in the crusade to bring Christianity to the pagan Prussians in Eastern Europe. The sword was reputed to possess supernatural powers and when Lothar came into its possession by means unknown near the end of his successful campaigning, he left the Knights Templar and returned to his father's duchy. His father and brother died and Lothar became a Duke and gained in wealth and power till his death at about ninety, very old now, extremely old then.

Apparently Lothar wrote a book, called ‘The Book of Life from Death’ about the dark arts, and his theory of how they could be used, ironically, to do good. The dark arts were about destruction. If they were turned towards destroying the destructive forces in the world, they could be thought of as good.

Cassandra was fascinated and asked a friend of hers, Gregor, if she could use his Harvard College Library access to research the book. Gregor came along with her to the library and they found that the book did not appear to exist anymore, but some of the book had been copied-out by an antiquarian by the name N.S. Keynes at the turn of the 20th century. Cassandra and Gregor found a collection of Keynes’ papers at Harvard’s library, and in it, information about Duke Lothar.

Keynes had hired a research assistant, Harry Ian, a friend, to help track down rare manuscripts, and Harry found that the Lothar text did indeed exist in a library of an ancient English family, the Cravenwood family, in Sussex. Harry began transcribing the text with Keynes over a few weeks, but during this time they both started to have strange dreams of floating, as if on a cloud. over lakes of fire connected by many little lava-filled rivers, and up from below came howling sounds of an unclear origin. Keynes and Ian decided to stop working with the text, and returned it to the Duke of Cravenwood. His home, the ancient Foresthill Manor, had a fire in its library shortly thereafter. It destroyed many of the family’s books, one of which appears to have been Lothar’s text.

Microfiction Draft: Allston Vampire


Aaron was a serial killer. He was stalking a young man whose name was Edgar, on the streets after the bars let out in Allston around Harvard Ave. Aaron followed Edgar to an isolated spot and tried to knock him out with a taser. The shock had no effect on Edgar, who pounced on Aaron and bit his neck, drinking the blood that gushed forth.

An art student named Cassandra saw Edgar attacking and brandishing an art piece she had made in metal working class, a decorative sword, chased off Edgar and called an ambulance, while stemming the bleeding from Aaron's neck with her scarf.

A book had been dropped at the scene, a journal written about murders. A detective, Baxter Fenmore, found the book at the scene and read it. He noticed similarities to real murders and investigated further. Not finding any leads on Aaron's attacker, the detective looked into Aaron as the possible writer of the journal. He found the writing matched a sample Aaron gave and got a warrant to search Aaron's home, where he found trinkets and pictures of many men who had gone missing.

Baxter returned to the hospital to arrest Aaron but found he had succumbed to an infection. In the morgue Baxter visited the body out of morbid curiosity and was knocked unconscious. When he woke he was in the ER being treated from a blow to the head. The doctor on duty, Dr. Donald Ellis, told Baxter there had been a grotesque body desecration. Aaron's corpse had had a metal spike driven through his chest and his head had been cut off.

Microfiction Draft: Just the Prank He would Play

A terrorist genius has developed a remarkable autonomous AI, powered by an ever-growing bot-net, to develop and execute strategies for terrorist ends, using purely what is available through the internet and other networks of computers. The AI assembles a team based on terrorist website postings, brokers arms deals using dummy email accounts and the like, and sets into motion plots, one of which is to kill journalists at a newspaper.

Ten journalists are killed at a German magazine famous for boldness against the terrorist cause. The AI via email tells the terrorist genius to go to a coffee shop across the street from the German magazine and sit at the big front window. The terrorist genius then sees terrorists in paramilitary outfits and masks go in to the magazine office with assault rifles. The terrorists kill ten journalists.

Weeks later, the terrorist genius is thrown a surprise birthday party. His small circle of friends don't know who specifically sent the invites. They joke that the terrorist genius sent the invites. A surprise party thrown by the birthday boy himself would be just the prank he would play. One for the birthday cards he gets is made of black paper and has on it the famous photo of the Vietnamese Buddhist monk who immolated himself in political protest. On the back, the terrorist genius' own handwriting appears scribbled--a forgery--saying, "I will not tolerate injustice." None of his friends say they gave this to him. Later they will recall the note and speculate what it meant, given what they would come to know.

In the news over the next few weeks, the police make several high-profile errors due to acting on incorrect information in their computer database systems, which causes the police to raid several incorrect addresses, terrorizing well-loved, high-profile and innocent people of the Minority Group, the people the terrorist genius wishes to mobilize against the Oppressor Population.

The terrorist genius has a hobby of long distance running. He goes for a run through the countryside and sees a micro-drone following him. Feeling threatened, he runs to dangerous exhaustion, collapses, and is brought to a hospital by an ambulance that was prompted by an anonymous call. He leaves the hospital with medication. There is confusion and delay at the pharmacy, due to a computer system problems, but he gets his pills. He takes one immediately, as his pain is strong and he's been without medication for longer than expected due to the pharmacy delay.

He hails a cab and starts to feel like he's on fire. He starts screaming for water to cool him. The cab stops. The terrorist genius leaps out of the cab in front of a government building, one that would not have been on his natural route from hospital to home, and screams for water. Several people walking by, with uncanny readiness, throw cups of liquid on him in response, then disappear into the crowd. He sees banners being held in the crowd--it's a protest of the recent bungled police raids on innocent Minority Group members. He smells gasoline. 

His cell phone goes off with a ring that he's never heard before--it's a blaring voice, "We terrorists are with you! We will die for you! Here's proof!" It's a simulation of his own voice. The phone feels searingly hot in his pocket. He then bursts into flames. His screams escalate. He can't see them, but many people with smart phones around him, with uncanny readiness, record the event on video. He also would not know it, but historians would later say this was the moment when the terrorist movement began to gain a considerable following, and considerable power, in its unusually effective fight with the Oppressors.

Microfiction draft: The Breeder King and his Talented German Monk

A hypnotist is a fan of the ghost writer and antiquarian MR James. Researching James, the hypnotist finds that MR James had made a study of the so-called "Breeder King," a noble who lived in Ukraine in the Middle Ages, and reputedly impregnated all his female serfs, and otherwise sought out means of breeding his serfs with each other to enhance certain traits. The Breeder King's servant, a brilliant and persuasive German monk, managed the king's breeding program. The monk was an expert in animal husbandry as well as methods of classical rhetoric. He was renowned for remarkable persuasive abilities as a member of court. The monk wrote a text in German, an unusual choice in a time when monks wrote texts in Latin, on persuasion and politics, which survived, being passed to different aristocratic book collectors throughout Europe over the ages. Hitler was said to have come into possession of this text when, as a courier during World War I, he visited a German military headquarters in an ancient French chateau, whose libraries he perused, and found an old copy of the text, which he was mesmerized by. He is said to have stolen the text. Goebbels makes reference to it, wishing to learn from it, though Hitler refused to let anyone read it.

Microfiction Draft: Preoccupation with Blood

A wealthy man goes to a giant old house he's inherited in rural Maine. He brings four high priced hookers. He talks about how he fantasizes about breeding humans for intelligence or physical prowess and what a society would look like if he could do that. He imagines humans breeding as soon as they could and being paired with people with similar talents or positive traits. He imagines cloning most sexually attractive women for his own private collection. A vampire has made his home in the old house unbeknown to the group. The vampire listens to them interact and decides that in order to get the most out if them he will drain them of their blood slowly and collectively so they don't notice until they are to weak to do anything about it, on their last day at the mansion. Then he'll extract whatever he can of value from them. Debit card PINs, credit cards, cash, checks, jewelry, car and house keys, whatever, and then disappear the group in the woods. He kills them in the last day and decides to go to a Halloween party they were all planning to go to, dressing up as a vampire.

microfiction draft: the devil is driving and he lets people off at different points


A bus is going to the afterlife. The vehicle is shaped like a whale on the outside. The devil is driving and he lets people off at different points. It's unclear if the people let off at early stops are good and those let off late are bad or vice versa. The devil makes comments that muddy the waters. A business man tries to barter with people on the bus to get a different ticket than what he has. One of the people he tries to barter with explains that he can't barter with the businessman, as he is merely a robot taking up space, and shows his gears. A stripper is unsure if she should trade tickets with the business man. The businessman is let off at his stop. He is in the woods in the twilight. A puppet descends from a tree holding a guitar. He plays a song about how he's a puppet with more strings than he seems to need--he plays all the six strings on the guitar, but he doesn't know who is playing his marionette strings, and why some of the strings don't move.

draft fragment microfiction: hitler's third book

hitler’s third book has been discovered in the library of an old german aristocratic family. an historian had been looking for the book, whose existence had been hinted at. the historian interviews family members about the history of the book. it was owned by the patriarch of the family who was an enthusiastic nazi. a serial killer starts killing members of the family after kidnapping them and questioning them as to the whereabouts of the book. the serial killer learns that the historian has run off with the book, after the first sign that a serial killer was after it. the historian studies the book as he moves from hotel room to hotel room. the book talks of a saint who in discussion with others puts forth his philosophical views. the serial killer catches the historian and tortures him, but can’t get information as to the hiding place the historian has put the book.