5 thoughts on “Weekend Quickie #234

  1. Come with me

    He blew a long wreath of gray that curled in the air. “You’re like a woman smoking like a chimney inside one of those umbrellas that comes all the way down on the sides.”

    Melissa jerked back. “What do you mean by that?”

    He shrugged. “I got into all that trouble because nothing was ever enough. It’s called avarice. That’s what some shrink inside told me.”

    A delirium swept her face. She spat, “You got into all that trouble because you couldn’t stop using your own product.” She seemed to remember where she was and lowered her voice. “If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t be here.”

    He drew on the cigarette and focused on the ashes. “I don’t think you want to go where this is headed.”

    She shook her head. “Let’s just get on with it.”

    He stubbed out the nub and ground it in a circle. “I’m not going to do this.”

    She looked up, stunned. “Are you out of your mind? What about me? What about us?” She shook her head. “I figured. I should have known.”

    He wasn’t looking at her. “Come with me.”

    She laughed. “And be broke the rest of my life?”

  2. Beyond the Dreams of Avarice

    Her lungs were congested and her taste buds were dulled by a cold, so the cigarette didn’t even taste good, but cognitive dissonance had been so much a part of her smoking life that she ignored it. But she couldn’t ignore it completely.

    She was coughing and blowing her nose every five minutes. She had already gone through a roll of toilet paper and had turned down several social engagements. She hated people who dragged themselves from their sick beds and coughed all over everybody while expecting them to be grateful that they had shown up. It was just damn rude.

    Yesterday she had finally put down her cigarettes and picked up a Z pack to clear up her poor old lungs.

    Food became her lifeline, but after inhaling a box of baked beans candy in one afternoon, she couldn’t stand it anymore.

    She donned her favorite leggings which showed off her toned tush to perfection and found a bench in a nearby park. Greedily, she lit three cigarettes at once, fitted an umbrella over her head and breathed in deeply. As she exhaled, she became delirious from the enveloping smoke. Sheer ecstasy. Then she passed out.

  3. “This story is going way too fast!” screamed Sonya as Daphne rushed through the park, typing away on her tablet.
    “But I must go on, as fast as I can, the words streaming through me like Sling TV, pouring through like honey! They come, they pass through my fingers that tap on the screen and fill the memory of my electronic device! They never cease! I won’t let it stop!” Daphne ran for a bench and sat, head down, creating word after word, sentence after sentence, paragraph after…
    “It’s all gibberish! All the words are in the wrong place! You’re suffering from delirium, Daphne!” said Sonya.
    “I must complete this book! If I don’t I won’t win the prize of 5000 dollars! The money!” said Daphne between taps.
    “And now avarice? It’s a cheat, Daphne! They give the prize to a wannabe writer friend!” Sonya took out the secret weapon, the toke-smoke-filled umbrella she’d prepared for such an occasion and opened it over Daphne’s head. The tapping stopped, the tablet beeps fell silent.
    “Where am I?” asked Daphne.
    “Back to the first principle,” said Sonya, sighing.
    “Oh yes,” said Daphne. “Nobody cares.” They said and watched the people walk by.

  4. The Phelp’s Umbrella

    Dirk Abrams was a cleptomaniac. He’d steal anything that wasn’t bolted down, if you weren’t looking. He didn’t need all the stuff he took. He was addicted to the “high” derived from the simple act of stealing. It’d make him delerious with satisfaction that he could get away with it.

    One day, Dirk was hanging out on the stoop, passing the time when along comes this Englishman in a bowler hat and carrying an umbrella, of all things. Dirk’s eye favored the man’s umbrella. He must have it, had never seen one like it. So, when the man set the umbrella aside to purchase something from a roadside vender, Dirk snatched it.

    Making his way through the ally, around the block and across the street, Dirk sat on a bench to admire his new umbrella. He opened it and held it over his head. Dirk thought he heard someone talking. In a distinct British accent it referred to a Mr. Phelps, and some kind of assignment involving the British secret service, international criminals, a mission, and something about, “… self destruct in 5 seconds.”

    Suddenly, the umbrella caught on fire.
    Dirk decided the umbrella heist wasn’t such a great thing after all.

  5. The future was now, but we didn’t get cool rocket packs we’d all hoped for. We got lame, teleporting umbrellas. They were corporate sponsored so when you teleported a thirty-second advert flickered up on the spot you left from and the spot you arrived to. Typical corporate avarice meant everything became advertising space.

    Early on the OS was hacked, of course, everyone blamed the Chinese. Instead of corporate adverts playing there’d be thirty seconds of hardcore porn advertising hologram sex services, flickering up complete with moans and groans.

    Everything ran on signature frequencies, any teleportation beyond official company travel was deducted from your paycheck. Hijacking frequencies for free teleports became common. It wasn’t without its risks, if you hacked the wrong frequency to teleport on you might find yourself reintegrated at the molecular level with a cockroach or fly.

    I’d seen enough horror films as a kid so I retrofitted my teleportation umbrella with a fumigation system. Just prior to molecular disintegration the rim of my umbrella would kick out a thick fog of anti-bug smoke.

    Being reintegrated at my destination in the midst of a flickering porn advert in a state of delirium from insecticide I could handle, arriving reintegrated with insect DNA… not as much.

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