Chuckles for Speed – Nathaniel Tower
1500 words Humour / Science Fiction
Artie Frankinson thinks he has it made when he builds a time machine and travels back in time to win at horse racing, but he doesn’t realize the presence of his former self, and later former selves, will become such a problem.
Artie Frankinson smiled from his couch as Chuckles for Speed rounded the final turn and stretched its lead to 5 and a half lengths. When the thirty-to-one longshot crossed the finish line, Artie lifted his arms and squealed. After this short victory celebration he wrote down the order of finishers along with a lot of dollar signs. He hadn’t placed a bet on the race, at least not yet. A small black box covered with knobs and dials sat next to Artie, two long tubes jutting out into a small helmet. Artie placed the helmet on his head, fiddled with the dials, and disappeared.
Everything (But Death) Dies – Nathaniel Tower
2250 words Humour
Barry Yorst, possibly on the verge of his own death, encounters a very different version of Death than he has ever imagined before. Robin, as Death likes to call himself, gives Barry a deal before the inevitable happens.
He threw down the scythe, not paying attention to the hollow wood and piercing metal that crashed to the linoleum floor. “Goddammit,” he yelled at no one in particular. Barry Yorst heard the cry and quickly woke from his sleep. The twenty-nine year old electrician was stunned to see the black-hooded creature in front of him, and he was even more stunned to see the boney outstretched hand that seemed to reach for him. He decided quickly that he must have been dreaming, so he shut his eyes tightly, the wrinkles in his forehead and eyes overtaking his face. “Please go away, please go away,” he repeatedly whispered to himself.