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The TFP Plotto Machine Output #9

Discussion in 'Tilted Art, Photography, Music & Literature' started by Baraka_Guru, May 12, 2014.

  1. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member Donor

    What is this? Visit here for more details: What is the TFP Plotto Machine? (Writers wanted) | The TFP

    Here we go!

    The TFP Plotto Machine Output #9:

    Here are the guidelines:
    1. Write a story based on the Plotto output above (no variations, omissions, or substitutions).
    2. Optional: Borrow lines from stories from Plotto Output #9; rearrange them, scramble them, but create a new context based on the Plotto codes above.
    3. The story must be no more than 1,000 words.
    4. All genres and styles are welcome.
    5. Post your story in this thread by midnight (your local time) on Tuesday, May 20.
    Other stuff:

    Please post general questions/comments in the main thread listed above.

    This thread is reserved for:
    • Discussions of the Plotto output above.
    • Story outputs.
    • Discussions/feedback of story outputs.
    • Other posts related to this specific Plotto output.
    Happy writing!
    • Like Like x 2
  2. AlterMoose

    AlterMoose Slightly Tilted

    I only missed the deadline by.....that much. Any chance we can get an extension on that, O great, wise, and benevolent Mod? I'm working on something right now, and I don't want the project to fizzle before it has a proper chance to get off the ground again.
    • Like Like x 2
  3. AlterMoose

    AlterMoose Slightly Tilted

    This was a whimsical little romp for me. Enjoy.

    Sam awoke from a most peculiar and upsetting dream. As many dreams do, it began to fade as soon as his eyes were open, but he was left with a vague image of an old slot machine and he could not shake the feeling of….wrongness, of disjointedness. It was a feeling that stayed with him as he fixed his breakfast, like dull white noise in the back of his mind, just enough to be distracting. As he read his morning news feed, he couldn’t shake it; almost like the pictures were of people he knew he should know, but they seemed more like characters from a favourite story.

    The buzzing only intensified as he went to work in the mailroom on the ground floor of the Turing Group. Walking toward the imposing glass doors, he looked at the marble sculpture of two interlocking rings that was the company logo and he felt a disturbing certainty that something was definitely not right, like the rings were spinning around each other. He sidled up to the sculpture and surreptitiously rapped on it with his knuckles to make sure it was solid and still. His sore hand told him it was, indeed, inert stone, but he was certain there was something….fictitious about it. Trying in vain to shake off the surreal feeling that had haunted him all morning, Sam took a deep breath, squared his shoulders, and went inside.

    As he tried his best to stroll nonchalantly through the lobby, trying to pretend that the people around him were real, all the morning chatter seemed to center around a programmer on the top floor, a Dr. Markos, who had been found dead the morning before. Sam had delivered mail to Markos’ office from time to time. He was a nice enough guy, though a bit awkward. Seemed to know computers better than people…. Computers. Sam was struck by the sudden notion that Markos was somehow still alive. Inside a slot machine...no, that was daft. A computer? That was clearly impossible.

    Wasn’t it?

    By lunch, Sam was certain he did not belong in this world. His brain was howling and he could not function. Hoping to get a grip, he told his manager he needed to take the afternoon off. His skin looked like wax and his eyes were wild, and his manager gave no argument.

    Sam shambled out into the sun and arbitrarily decided to walk in the same direction as a piece of paper drifting down the sidewalk. The paper stopped. Sam kept walking. The paper stuck to his heel. When he peeled it off, he saw it was part of a Lotto ticket, with the numbers 8-34-10. On an impulse, he stuffed it into his pocket.

    As he staggered through the city streets, he came to believe that he wasn’t in the real world. He came to believe that his dream from the night before was more real than this. Every person he saw, he was sure he could read their stories like loose pages torn from a book, drifting about on the breeze. There was a boy out of time who was somehow connected to Dr. Markos back at Turing. He passed a butcher shop, and he was certain the owner had fed his wife to her friends, and they paid him for it.

    This world had become a disjointed nightmare; the only real thing he could think of was the slot machine from his dream. The Machine consumed his thoughts. The Machine became his compass. The Machine was everything. If he could find it, somehow everything would be fine.

    The Machine led him to Rose Street. Sam spotted the blue neon cross indicating the Rose Street Mission. He was getting close. His palms and forehead broke out in a sweat, and he began to feel feverish. The Machine was here, somewhere; peace was close.

    When he stumbled inside, one of the missionaries—somehow Sam knew him to be Quinn—looked up from the serving line and nearly dropped his ladle. Quinn came around and met him just inside the door. Sam rasped, “I know you can fix things for people, Ragman. I don’t know how I know, but I do. Where’s the Machine?”

    Quinn looked terrified as he stammered the words that he never in his career thought he would say to someone. “I can’t help you. You….somehow, you don’t belong here. I’m sorry.”

    Without another word, and before anyone could stop him, Sam bolted for the back room of the mission. There was a back door onto an alley. Sweat was running down his face, tears were streaming from his face, and his breath came in ragged gasps. There, across the alley, half-covered by a mildewed blanket was a broken-down slot machine. Sam let out a cry of despair and triumph and swept the blanket from the machine. Rather than pictures, the tumblers had numbers on them. It currently read A8, B34, C10. A ragged sob tore itself from his throat and he reached out a trembling hand to pull the lever.

    Smooth and silent, the tumblers spun his destiny. One lifetime after another spun and recombined, until at last, they began to click into place. A2. B6. C12. Like a carnival fortune teller machine, a bell rang and a small slip of paper dropped into a slot below the tumblers. “Your random Masterplot is… A married person, challenging, in a quest of love, the relentless truth that ‘East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,’ rescues integrity from a serious entanglement.”

    Jack awoke from a most peculiar and upsetting dream. As many dreams do, it began to fade as soon as his eyes were open, but he was left with a vague image of an old slot machine and he could not shake the feeling of….wrongness, of disjointedness. He looked at his wife sleeping soundly beside him, found himself grounded and comforted to find her there, and settled back in to sleep.