The City That Never Sleeps- test story (564 word)

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 8 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #346587

    Anonymous

    Hi, whenever I want to know if something is a good idea, I write a short story to see if the idea sticks to the wall. This a recent one, What do you guys think?

    A lonely man limped down the scuffed concrete road. In front of him, in perhaps half a kilometer, was a open golden gate connected to a long iron wall that seemed to stretch out to the side forever. Behind the wall, hundreds of concrete and steel monoliths stood, their lights bright pinpricks against the darkening sky. On either side lay seemingly endless plains, with an occasional tree. The man continued on doggedly, wrapping his cloak around him to protect against the cold of the night. He looked old, and had wrinkles around his eyes. He kept on walking, occasionally groaning from the pain in his leg. The sun dipped below the horizon as a high pitched siren screeched across the barren landscape. It seemed to shake the man out of reverie. He rushed towards the city, almost running. The golden gate started to close. The doors slowly slid together. He stopped running, and stood panting, limping ten meters from the gate. He hobbled forwards as the gates grinded to a close. The last rays of sun stopped shining. The pinpricks of light were his only light other than the stars. He ran forward. “Please! Let me in! Open the gate!” The gate did not budge. A look of pure terror crept onto the man’s face. He turned and scurried across the wall, feeling it, search for a weak spot. A sound like a mistuned electric guitar rang out, not coming from the city, but from the horizon that the road led to. It was joined by hundreds of other calls that were identical. The man turned around. Hundreds of thousands of insectile beings, each the size of a small cat, swept across the ground collectively like a wave waiting to strike. The man could not make out a single one from the millions of creatures that rushed towards him. They hit. The thousands of creatures pushed against the iron wall. The wall creaked, but did not fall. The entire barren landscape was covered man high with these creatures. Then, at precisely nine thirty the next morning, all of the creatures rushed back toward the horizon from whence they came. The golden gates creaked open, and a procession of cars marched out, going to another city or perhaps a privately owned “house”, or “fortress” for lack of better word. Cars marched in and out of the city, going about their ways. At the spot where the man had stood last night, there were only bones and a coat. A work crew marched out, picked up the bones and coat of the dead man. They walked back towards the golden gate, grabbed one small box of hundreds labeled “Accident Disposal Boxes” and carefully laid the bones and coat inside of it. They lifted up the box, and marched back inside, through the outer districts, through the slums, around the intricate skyscrapers, and into the bowels of the city. They came to a building labeled “The Alfred P. Jackson Reuse and Recycle of External Waste Center.” They marched inside and put the box into a small slot labeled “Accident Disposal.” With a whir, the machine shut the door to the slot, and dipped the coat and bones into what looked like a pot full of lava. When it took the box out, it was perfectly clean. And so a night passed in The City That Never Sleeps.

  • #654979

    Anonymous

    Can you edit this into paragraphs, double-spaced?

  • #654980

    Anonymous

    ostarella wrote:
    > Can you edit this into paragraphs, double-spaced?

    Sure:

    A lonely man limped down the scuffed concrete road. In front of him, in perhaps half a kilometer, was a open golden gate connected to a long iron wall that seemed to stretch out to the side forever. Behind the wall, hundreds of concrete and steel monoliths stood, their lights bright pinpricks against the darkening sky. On either side lay seemingly endless plains, with an occasional tree.
    The man continued on doggedly, wrapping his cloak around him to protect against the cold of the night. He looked old, and had wrinkles around his eyes. He kept on walking, occasionally groaning from the pain in his leg. The sun dipped below the horizon as a high pitched siren screeched across the barren landscape. It seemed to shake the man out of reverie.
    He rushed towards the city, almost running. The golden gate started to close. The doors slowly slid together. He stopped running, and stood panting, limping ten meters from the gate. He hobbled forwards as the gates grinded to a close. The last rays of sun stopped shining. The pinpricks of light were his only light other than the stars. He ran forward. “Please! Let me in! Open the gate!” The gate did not budge. A look of pure terror crept onto the man’s face.
    He turned and scurried across the wall, feeling it, search for a weak spot. A sound like a mistuned electric guitar rang out, not coming from the city, but from the horizon that the road led to. It was joined by hundreds of other calls that were identical. The man turned around.

    Hundreds of thousands of insectile beings, each the size of a small cat, swept across the ground collectively like a wave waiting to strike.
    The man could not make out a single one from the millions of creatures that rushed towards him. They hit. The thousands of creatures pushed against the iron wall. The wall creaked, but did not fall. The entire barren landscape was covered man high with these creatures. Then, at precisely nine thirty the next morning, all of the creatures rushed back toward the horizon from whence they came. The golden gates creaked open, and a procession of cars marched out, going to another city or perhaps a privately owned “house”, or “fortress” for lack of better word. Cars marched in and out of the city, going about their ways. At the spot where the man had stood last night, there were only bones and a coat.

    A work crew marched out, picked up the bones and coat of the dead man. They walked back towards the golden gate, grabbed one small box of hundreds labeled “Accident Disposal Boxes” and carefully laid the bones and coat inside of it. They lifted up the box, and marched back inside, through the outer districts, through the slums, around the intricate skyscrapers, and into the bowels of the city. They came to a building labeled “The Alfred P. Jackson Reuse and Recycle of External Waste Center.”

    They marched inside and put the box into a small slot labeled “Accident Disposal.” With a whir, the machine shut the door to the slot, and dipped the coat and bones into what looked like a pot full of lava. When it took the box out, it was perfectly clean. And so a night passed in The City That Never Sleeps.

  • #654981

    cypher
    Participant

    I admire your imagination, but can’t suspend my skepticism enough to believe in this story. One phrase in particular jars. If these creatures climbed on top of each other to reach a height of a man, what was there to stop them forming pyramids until they could leap over the city gates? Oh, and a nitpick – far too many people or objects “march” in your last paragraphs. I would like to compliment you on your short story but I’m afraid it doesn’t interest me enough. Sorry. 🙁

  • #654982

    Anonymous

    Oldtimer wrote:
    > I admire your imagination, but can’t suspend my skepticism enough to
    > believe in this story. One phrase in particular jars. If these creatures
    > climbed on top of each other to reach a height of a man, what was there to
    > stop them forming pyramids until they could leap over the city gates? Oh,
    > and a nitpick – far too many people or objects “march” in your
    > last paragraphs. I would like to compliment you on your short story but I’m
    > afraid it doesn’t interest me enough. Sorry. 🙁

    Thanks for the criticism, I will take it into account. I will make the fact that there is a dome clear in later drafts.

    also, sorry for the “march” thing, I wanted to make the reader feel desolate like this death is all ordinary and not cared about.

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