January 8, 2019


Each Tuesday, rather than a POSSIBLY IRRITATING ESSAY, I'd like to both challenge you and lend a helping hand. I generate more speculative and teen story ideas than I can ever use. My family rolls its collective eyes when I say, "Hang on a second! I just have to write down this idea..." Here, I'll include the initial inspiration (quote, website, podcast, etc.) and then a thought or two that came to mind. These will simply be seeds -- plant, nurture, fertilize, chemically treat, irradiate, test or stress them as you see fit. I only ask if you let me know if anything comes of them.

H Trope: The Adjectival Man

Ajdin Paix√£o shook his head and said, “Are you sure we should be here?”

Magdalena Aggrawal made a face – as if she’d accidentally bitten into an orange that had been sitting on a warm shelf in a closed refrigerator for three weeks. “’course. You afraid?”

“Yes. Very.”

Magdalena – who did NOT go by “Maggie, Meg, or any other American abbreviation of my name” – shook her head. “What’s the worst thing that can happen?”

“The worst? It turns out that The Creeping Man is real and he’s mad at us for spying on his private life.”

Magdalena snorted. “It’s not like he can run us down. That’s why he’s called The Creeping Man.”

Ajdin glanced to either side then lifted his chin at the clean, dark lab in front of them. “It’s not like monsters usually inhabit science labs. They’re more associated with dungeons with dripping water and cobwebs.”

She snorted again, “This might as well be a dungeon. I don’t think I’ve seen a bar or restaurant since we started school.”

His voice lowered as he muttered, “Not like I haven’t tried...”

She slugged him just as the sound of a heavy object, like a refrigerator or a filing cabinet ground loudly across the plastic sealed concrete floor. Filing cabinets having gone extinct decades earlier – even their fossil-of-a-professor only had two in his office – that left only one of the lab’s six refrigerators. Magdalena whispered, “He lives under a refrigerator?”

“If you were The Creeping Man, where would you live?”

“In a penthouse apartment?”

“That would make Creeping really difficult, don’t you think?”

“Shut up!” she stood up, peering over the lab table, Ajdin mirroring her every move.

The Creeping Man saw them the instant they saw him. He was emerging from under a fridge which was tipped back as if it was glued to the trapdoor The Creeping Man held up with one hand. He squeaked a wet, gargled exclamation, lurching forward, releasing the trapdoor with the refrigerator attached to it.

It slammed down, cutting him in half, spattering blood and entrails and gore on to the refrigerator’s white surface and across the gray floor.

Magdalena screamed, “We killed him!” Ajdin stared then gagged as The Creeping Man – or rather half of him – began to creep across the lab’s floor toward them…

Names: ♀ Liechtenstein, Portugal; Bosnia/Herzegovina, India
Image: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_OCWXw6InF70/TKigMBk87NI/AAAAAAAAAy4/tL7MhIfL9CM/s1600/2212_1025142570.jpg

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