Welcome to Fiction Forge Indy! We are a group of four writers in Indianapolis that love to talk about anything that has to do with writing. We all met at the Indiana Writers Center and come from four very different backgrounds with interests in Fantasy, Mystery, Humor, Romance, and Historical Fiction. Prepare to be informed and entertained! Oh --and by the way, we hope you share your thoughts on the craft of writing, too.
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
The "Other" 2: The Awakagrumblnappining
I am a firm believer in leading by example. To that end I give you, dear readers, the second installment of what not to do.
Don't try this at home, kids.
Spokane watched as the crowd absorbed
Admiral Channel. He let out a long sigh as soon as the Admiral was out of
"Damn." he heard Morgan
Spokane looked back at his companions
and found them both staring at the disk under his hand. He picked it up holding
it up to the light. He scrutinized it for a moment or two to no avail. He knew
sooner or later he'd have to do something with the stupid thing, but he had no
urgent desire to hurry.
Morgan leaned forward taking the disk
from Spokane's hand. He sat back holding it in front of him, twirling it
between his fingers. Spud's face framed a question that Spokane didn't need to
hear to understand. He nodded his ascent saying flatly, "Best get it
Spud shook his head as a halfhearted
smile waned across his lips. He reached into one of the pockets of his vest retrieving
a small, black square. He placed the device on the table, while holding his
other hand out to Morgan. Morgan let the disk slip into his palm, and then placed
it into Spud's outstretched hand.
The device was nothing more than a
thin square with a slot in one side. It was a projection box designed to
display information encoded on disks like the one Spud now held. It was a simple
piece of equipment which was standard issue to everyone in the Business. This
meant that it was almost always defective.
Spud pushed the disk in with his
thumb and waited. Spokane was mildly surprised when he heard the characteristic
hum issue from the box. "You fixed it," he said half question, half
Spud flashed his big cheesy grin. Spokane
grunted out a chuckle. An image began to coalesce above the box, resolving into
an astrogation map with a large red "X" dominating one area. A set of
coordinates and dates appeared just below the "X" in neon green
letters. Spokane stared at the map for a moment, and then waited a moment
longer. Nothing else appeared. Spokane looked at Spud, who only shrugged. Spokane
leaned forward resting his arm on the table still waiting for something further
It soon became apparent that the map
before them was the sole content of the disk. Spokane hung his head in
frustration. Without lifting his head, he asked in an aggravated tone, "Do
either of you even know where those coordinates are?"
"Of course not," replied Morgan.
Spokane sat back in his chair,
raising his head slinging an arm across the back of his chair. He looked at the
map again. The coordinates meant very little to him. He had a general idea of
the area they indicated, but anyone could have figured that out from the large
"X". 'A pilot should know more about things like this," he
thought to himself. "Still, things like this are best left to
"Where did Pavlov go?" he
"He went to the bathroom about
half an hour ago," answered Morgan. "He must have flushed
Spokane and Spud began to laugh,
while adding their own pertervations to the theory of their navigator's fate.
Things became progressively worse, until a particularly slimy remark from Spokane
sent them all into hysterics. Eventually, Spud laughed himself out of his
They found Pavlov standing at the end of a long hallway
staring down at the floor intently. He did not seem to notice the approach of
the trio. Spokane looked down to the floor and saw three colored lines under
his feet. He turned, following the track of the lines with his eyes. They
transected the length of the hallway as far back as he could see. He turned
around again, following the lines up to where Pavlov stood. At this point, the
hallway intersected with another and the lines became intermixed with three
other sets of colored lines.
"The bartender said to follow
the yellow line," stated Pavlov still staring at the floor.
Spokane looked down again to find
that the center line of the set in their hallway was indeed yellow. He followed
the line up to the intersection, then promptly lost it in the maze. Spokane
blinked, shaking his head trying to clear the jumble of colors from his sight.
"The yellow line?" asked Spokane.
Pavlov nodded. "It leads to the
bathroom," he said still studying the cluster on the floor before him.
The color struck Spokane as oddly
appropriate and just slightly logical - in a stupid sort of way. He briefly
wondered how long and at what expense it had taken the station's planners to
come up with such a brain fart. The more pressing question, however, was how
long Pavlov had been standing there trying to find the bathroom? It wasn't a
"Pav?" said Spokane
Pavlov lifted his head, turned, and
looked at Spokane. There was a pause as Spokane waited for him to say
something. After a moments pause, he raised his eyebrows in a questioning look.
Spokane knew that look. He had come to learn in the eight years that he had
known the man that he spoke more with expressions than with words.
"Do you know where beta-zed
105.36 mark 0.0037 is?" finished Spokane, reading the coordinates he had
scrawled on his hand.
Pavlov smiled a weak smile. Spokane
accepted this as meaning that he had received the information and was
formulating an answer. He waited a moment, then a moment longer. Pavlov's smile
faded as he asked through a sigh, "What zone?"
Spokane nodded feeling the same
satisfaction that he felt when, on the rare occasion he succeeded in using a
computer properly. He lifted up his hand and peered at his palm. "Zone ...
Nine, I think," he replied squinting at the smudged writing.
"That's right," affirmed Spud
Pavlov reached down to his belt,
flipping open a small case and withdrawing the contents. The device he produced
resembled a calculator with an overlarge screen. A modern day map. Spokane
listened to the steady stream of clicking keys and responding beeps as Pavlov
entered the necessary data. Shortly, there came a succinct and resolute beep. Spokane
waited patiently as Pavlov studied the screen, thinking to himself, 'I should
have one of those.' He pushed the thought aside with a mental note to try and
do something about it later.
"Nowhere," annouced Pavlov.
Spokane's eyes widened. "It must
be somewhere." he said cautiously.
"Yes," he replied.
"You don't know where it
is?" countered Morgan.
"Of course I do," he
answered in an indignant tone. "It's in Nowhere just past Pentor."
Spokane exchanged wondering glances
with Morgan. Spokane shrugged as he began to wonder whether Pavlov's bladder
was a bit to full. He was about to ask the exact question when Pavlov spoke.
"I can get us there, but
Spokane, Spud, and Morgan
all groaned. "Come along Pav," said Spokane. "We'll tell you all
about our new fearless leader on the way back to FRED."