Friday, May 10, 2013

FSF Challenge - Goggles



Lillie McFerrin Writes
This week's writing challenge from
Five Sentence Fiction
( Lillie McFerrin Writes ) is based upon the prompt:

 Goggles



I admit it. I've stolen the idea for this – well, at least the main character if not the premise – from The Rogue Tinker's story. In the spirit of Dieselpunk, I offer Wardrobe Malfunction.

In truth, I just wanted to use the word Dieselpunk in a sentence because I'd never heard of it before today. Dieselpunk. I kind of like the sound of that...





Wardrobe Malfunction


Image from http://lilliemcferrin.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/DGBHop.jpg


It was Ysabelle's job to keep the huge analog computational engine that controlled the city's infrastructure working, and she had climbed high up the face of the metal beast to investigate a problem, finding herself in a situation that required both hands to maintain a secure grasp upon the greasy framework of the device. She had been listening for a ticking, or perhaps a squeaking, or some such improper noise when the entire device came to a stop with the loose strap end of her safety goggles jammed tightly between the teeth of the gears by her head, pulling her face uncomfortably close to the mechanism should it break free and begin working again. Now she was confronted by the choice of pulling her head out of the leather helmet – to which the goggles were attached – freeing herself and possibly enabling her to work on the strap, but exposing her long, coppery curls to divulge that a mere slip of a girl was all that was keeping the metropolis from chaos and that she had obtained the male-only position of Clockwork Steward under false pretenses, or risk a gruesome death by falling into the cogs if she let go, as two hands would be needed to liberate that small bit of dried animal skin bringing civilization to its knees. Perplexed, she clung to the metallic monstrosity, sprawled in mock crucifixion, trying to envision a third possibility, but no other option seemed even remotely possible. The city was facing ruin if the machine failed to run again, and she was facing death to make it so.



Please visit the The Rogue Tinker and read his FSF story


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

12 comments:

  1. Wow...very well done. You had my total attention.

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    1. Thanks! I think Ysabelle may need to take a remedial course in workplace safety - if she survives!

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  2. Very nice predicament, and excellent description of how the most complex systems can fail from the tiniest of causes.

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    1. Thanks! You had a great idea in yours and I thought I'd take it in a slightly new direction. I'm learning a great deal from reading the other FSF posts, and it amazes me the different ideas everyone comes up with.

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  3. I like this! It drew me in. Am not following on GFC :) Funny how we all have such different interpretations!

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    1. Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

      One of the most interesting things about putting my writing on a blog is discovering what others like and don't like. I often think I have a really great little FSF post which is then met by thundering indifference only to have those I feel are questionable receive the most hits/comments. I'm learning - or trying to!

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  4. It's fascinating to see the diversity of stories written from just a single prompt word - I thoroughly enjoyed yours, it was wonderfully descriptive and put the reader right in the thick of the action.

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    1. Thanks! Seeing the different ideas that people come up with, some of which really surprise me, is one of my favorite things about the FSF challenges.

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  5. It's okay, Dieselpunk has no Health and Safety Exec...I loved this, you and the Tinker had it perfect! Lovely bit of tension too!

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    1. Thank goodness! I was afraid she might be in for a hefty fine. I'll have to read some more of Tinker's stuff. I promise not to steal them all.

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  6. Wow this is good. It had me completely entranced. I love the line '...that small bit of dried animal skin bringing civilization to its knees.' Great use of language and punctuation forming those gloriously long sentences. I'd love to know what happens to Ysabelle - I'm trying to imagine a third way.

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    1. Yeah, I think these may be the longest sentences I've ever used in a FSF challenge, perhaps in anything! I couldn't figure out a way to tell everything that was happening without them.

      As far as Ysabelle is concerned - she seems to be pretty smart or she wouldn't have gotten as far as she has already, so I'm thinking she'll figure her way out of this one, too!

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