Day 16 & 17 of 365

Mylard threw a punch into the air randomly as she felt the random tug on her foot again. To her surprise, it connected with something. At first, she thought it was Tomkin, but after another scream from her rival from far away, she realized it had to be something else. Mylard swung again hitting it again. This time it hit something vulnerable. The creature tugging on her pulled away. She kicked now hitting it again. The creature withdrew.

Still scrambling in the dark Mylard found something strange at her fingertips. It was a smooth surface. When she touched the room changed again. A bright light blinded her and Tomkin. It startled the girls as the creatures retreated and what looked like the outdoors appeared. Only it was fabricated. Everything around them was fake. Fake grass, a bright light that tried to mimic the sun, strange scents that reminded them of flowers, plastic flowers for that matter were planted around them.

“Uhhhh…Tomkin,” Mylard said.

“Uhhhh…yeah?”

“Touch the black boxes. They change the room,” Mylard said. Tomkin nodded and turned around looking for any of the boxes.

Mylard spotted it across a fake pond which was made of paper. She walked over to it and touched it. The room shifted again. This time they were on a spaceship.

To be continued…

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Day 15 of 365

Both girls continued their struggle inside the strange room. Tomkin’s glasses didn’t do much to help as she tried to figure her way out of the room. She spotted something strange off to the side as she wandered around. It was a tiny black box. Tomkin walked over to it, tripping several times as her depth perception was interrupted by the strobe lights.

Mylard struggled the breath had been knocked out of her when Tomkin had fallen on top. She rolled over to her side trying to breathe and figure out how to navigate her overwhelmed senses. The stench was getting to her and she wanted to hurl. Tomkin looked like she was ignoring the smell as she walked away. Mylard pulled herself together and stood up. A little woozy but she kept her balance.

Back in front of the screens, Valrose was excitingly narrating the girls, “Look at that, I think Tomkin might be finding her way of this maze sooner than Mylard if she gets that box open. But Mylard is smart so who knows? Who are you rooting for? Remember all cash bets close the moment these girls get out of the room. If my estimations are right, and they usually are, I’m gonna say these two will figure their way out in about 10 minutes! So get your bets in!” he reminded the crowd watching the show. His eyebrows did the shuffle they were famous for.

Tomkin reached out touching the box. The moment she did all the sirens and lights abruptly turned off. They were in pitch darkness with the awful stench.

“What. Did. You. Do?” Mylard asked.

“Uhhh…I––AHHH!” Tomkin screamed as something grabbed her leg and pulled down. She found herself trying to fumble at her laser gun and shoot it but just as it had touched her leg it was gone, “WHAT THE FUUUUUUUUUUUU–––”

Mylard turned abruptly toward the sound of Tomkin’s screams but as she did something tugged at her right arm causing her to trip and fall. The surface of the ground had changed. It felt like cold dirt now instead of the flat hard room. She twisted around trying to look but the darkness only consumed her.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Day 14 of 365

Mylard found another dead end. Her frown was starting to droop and she wanted to cry. It’d been nearly half an hour of circles and she felt so confused. She took a deep breath and turned away from the dead end. She tensed hearing a scream which meant that one of her opponents was enduring something horrible. She hoped it wouldn’t be too painful, but was doubtful hearing the screaming. A moment later the intense yelling ended and the maze returned to its silence. Mylard had stopped moving during the yelling.

Taking another deep breath the young woman started again. She was remembering the last thing her sister had said to her. Just do your best Mylard. We know you’ll make everyone proud. She reminded herself of how much an honor this was and how grateful she was to be entered. It didn’t feel great to be in this terrifying maze, but the riches and honor would be worth it. She just wanted to do right by her older sister.

Turning a corner Mylard was surprised to see a clearing an in the center the glowing light of the ring. It was on a blue table and raised up. She froze taking in the sight. The rules were clear. Get the ring and place it on your finger to win. Mylard took a small step towards it, paused and searched. She wondered what would be on her way to get it. In every episode of the game, she had watched there was always something that prevented the last pair girls from getting to the ring.

Seeing nothing obvious she clutched the stun gun closer and inched carefully toward the ring. She felt like she was getting too close as she kept stepping toward it. Just as she reached the first step Tomkin appeared. Her orange hair was tangled and several scratch marks were bleeding down her stomach and arms. She looked around wildly wondering how she’d gotten to the clearing.

Mylard ran up the stairs hoping that it wouldn’t be a mistake. It was. The first step disappeared from her and Mylard found herself falling into someplace dark. She landed hard on a flat surface. Lamps flashed around her in a blinding manner and a high pitched noise filled her ears. But the thing that confused her was the stench. It was horrific and she couldn’t even describe it, but it made her want to vomit.

Valrose delighted that they had reached the clearing announced, “We’re in the final stage Ringers! Shall we see who gets to the ring first? There’s a poll up and running, tap your screen to tell us who you think will win! Mylard a regular girl who just somehow by chance got here, OR Tomkin, the legacy who has to live up to the pressure of two winning women!”

Tomkin froze seeing Mylard suddenly disappear. She had been there one second and then the next she wasn’t. She looked around wondering if the panther would follow her into this clearing. She didn’t want to make the same mistake as Mylard so she skipped the first step. The second one was solid. Breathing a sigh of relief she started toward the third but found her feet glued. Tomkin jerked at them but they were firm. Confused she looked down trying to–suddenly she was falling into the abyss.

Tomkin fell hard on top of Mylard who had barely stood up before being knocked back down. The wind knocked out of both girls and all senses being confused, made everything harder. They groaned and yelled trying to find themselves in the dark.

“OW! GET OFF!” Mylard yelled pushing Tomkin hard. Tomkin found herself suddenly hitting a wall. She yelped as one of her deep scratches got pressed by something.

It became apparent that both girls were in a tiny room of some making. Their senses were meant to be entirely overwhelmed by the experience. Tomkin closed her eyes and pulled her sunglasses down. It helped a little with the light. She turned around trying to understand what was going on.

To be continued…

365 Stories | 001 of 365

Happy New Year!

I’ve decided on another 365 Day project! I’m going to write a story every day. So hope you like story time because a lot of words are coming at you this year.

Some of these might span multiple days because I don’t know where these stories end. The plots might get out of hand, but this is all for good fun practice. I’m excited to create and push my creativity.

Hope you enjoy the first one below!

~Kendall


 

The pie was fresh out of the oven when Mr. Sandburg arrived, but by the time they all ate it was cold and nearly everyone wanted to throw it away. Dinner had always been awkward for the Sandburg family, but they did their best to eat in peace without so much as a scowl or under the breath mutter of annoyance. The three brothers never looked each other in the eye and the youngest sister rarely spoke when she came. Mr. Sandburg typically read his newspaper during dinner, ignoring the rest of the family, and if someone tried to interrupt he would go to bed.

Marilyn was the youngest sister and would sit in the corner reading a book. She hardly ever looked up from the pages trying to escape into the words. Diana the eldest of the family siblings always helped prepare the dishes while her mother dictated the correct way to prep the turkey, stir the soup and cut the greens. Derrik, Fell, and Preston were brothers by blood but as far as anyone was concerned they must have had different upbringings. Derrik was the town apothecary never daring to leave the small town in which the Sandburgs lived. He didn’t stray far when he came of age. Fell was the devil child having left before he came of age, stealing from neighbors and even his own family on his way out of the town. Preston had moved away for college and independently wealthy after going into the mining business. The siblings were never friendly with each other.

Mrs. Sandburg during this particular dinner felt a little off after ordering Diana to take the mushroom casserole out of the oven and cover it with foil. She ignored the strange twinge in her upper chest and continued on telling her eldest to go fetch some water from the well. She began chopping some carrots for the salad while Derrik sat upon a stool in front of the counter watching her. It happened quite fast and Derrik didn’t know how to react, but Mrs. Sandburg was dead. She fell on the countertop with her knife skittering to the ground in a clatter.

Derrik stared at his dead mother confused about what to do. He hadn’t even stood up to check on her before Diana returned from getting the water. The eldest sister sighed while placing the bucket of water next to the sink. She did not seem distressed at the sight of her mother.

“Finally,” Preston said picking up the knife on the ground and setting it in the sink. “I was beginning to think she’d never keel over.”

“Can you take the body out to the garden, Preston?” Diana asked. “Fell help him.”

Preston nodded and picked up his mother by her shoulders while Fell reached for her legs. The two siblings carried their mother out in silence. Diana turned to Derrik who was staring at the scene with his mouth half open.

“Derrik could you clean up the carrots and slice some new ones. Dinner is nearly ready,” Diana snapped at her brother. Derrik nodded slightly shaken at the whole ordeal but he took a breath and carried on as if nothing had happened.

The Sandburg family continued with their dinner as if nothing had changed. They all sat down at the table with a single empty seat. All of them ignored each other and ate the mushroom casserole in silence. Mr. Sandburg put down his paper at the end of dinner and looked at his children.

“When do you think Mrs. Sandburg will return? I’m quite fond of her,” he asked.

“Just after the sunset, I believe she’ll awaken,” Marilyn replied looking up from her book briefly. “I can’t imagine it’ll be that hard to get up and running.”

The family tried to eat dessert but Derrik kept fidgeting. “Can you please stop Derrik?” Fell snapped. Derrik stopped squirming in his seat.

Mr. Sandburg chimed in, “Fell remember Derrik is still the newest implant. He still has the memories of the original Derrik controlling the body.”

“Doesn’t change the nervous energy rolling off of him,” Fell retorted. “This family is by far the worse family we’ve taken over. None of these siblings talk to each other and the controlling mother–”

“–Fell, you’re just as prone to the feelings of your host’s body. After all your host is incredibly suspicious and a kleptomaniac,” Diana interrupted. “Father, how long until we can rid ourselves of these feelings?”

Mr. Sandburg rolled his eyes. Marilyn was the one who answered, “We’ve only assimilated into the hosts for the last week. The only ones who are past the feelings of their hosts are me and father. Even then we’re all still forced to listen to their thoughts of horror and express ourselves in this sill manner. I wish Marilyn would shut up about how she really misses being in control of her own body. It’s not like she lived anyway. She’s never gone outside of this town. I’m sure Preston’s body has got better stories than what I get to experience.”

“Would you two stop fighting. We’re 5,500 years old and you two still fight like that married couple you were in the middle ages. I swear one of these days I would love to just assimilate alone,” Mr. Sandburg said. Fell and Diana looked away from the table.

The Sandburgs had been controlled by aliens for the past week. The process of taking over a family or herd always took a week or two. First, the head of a household or alpha, depending on the type of animal or body, would be taken by Mr. Sandburg. He’d learn how to control the body he was in and navigate through memories the creatures had. From there it was important that he’d help assimilate his second in command, in this case, Marilyn. From there Diana, Preston, Fell, Derrik, and their mother was the order of taking over this particular family unit. All under the control of aliens that had lived on earth for thousands of years.

It startled the family of aliens when someone knocked on the door. They all turned to stare at the door hoping that the person would just go away, but they knocked again. Marilyn looked to Mr. Sandburg who rose to his feet, warily. He opened the door a crack to look outside. A young man by the name of Ellis was standing outside holding flowers. He smiled at Mr. Sandburg.

“Mr. Sandburg, how are you this evening? Is Diana home?” he asked grinning and trying to look past him.

“No,” Mr. Sandburg’s alien retorted. The real Mr. Sandburg tried to control his body by shouting out Help! We’re being invaded by aliens! but only his alien heard.

Ellis’s grin faltered. “I’m sorry Mr. Sandburg, did I offend you? I didn’t mean to. Is there anything I can–”

“You can leave,” Mr. Sandburg’s alien interrupted.

Ellis, taken aback tried to swallow his pride. He held out the flowers wondering what he had done to offend him. “Could you give these to Diana when she does return. I’d love to take her–”

“Leave now sir,” Mr. Sandburg’s alien snapped. He shut the door in Ellis’s face.

He turned to face the family. His face was dark.

“Do we have to leave so soon?” Fell asked. “I swear we just took over these bodies.”

“I haven’t even been assimilated for more than 10 minutes,” Mrs. Sandburg’s alien said entering the room from the backyard. The mother walked over to the counter. “Also, why did I have to go last this time?”

Marilyn rolled her eyes and looked at Mr. Sandburg. “Should we leave?” she asked.

“I’m not certain,” Mr. Sandburg replied.

“I think we should let Diana go out on a date,” Fell replied with a mischievous grin. Mr. Sandburg glared at his son.

“I don’t recommend it. Even the real Diana doesn’t like that boy,” Diana’s alien said. “I say we just ignore it and carry on.”

“But don’t you want to have fun?” Fell asked. “I think we’re entitled to some fun.”

“What is our goal with these bodies?” Preston interjected. “Should we even be having fun in them?”

Ellis knocked on the door again interrupting the discussion. He had only walked as far as the driveway before turning around, plucking up some courage to ask why Mr. Sandburg already hated him. Mr. Sandburg opened the door again.

To Be Continued…

Because I can

Long day. I plan on updating my animation stuff tomorrow instead of today. I want to make sure I’m uploading content that’s actually a progression rather than just content for the sake of content. In the meantime, I have a quick video I made just because I could in After Effects. Little experiment in mattes. Sorry for lack of music, I’m tired and don’t feel like hunting down the right sound at the moment. Will possibly add to it this weekend.

What story do you see?

Day 8 of 365.

Let’s talk stories in art. Below is a quick manipulation I created out of my own photographs & stock photos from Unsplash. I guess it’s not really talk so much as what do you think this photo represents to you? I have my own reasons for the type of narration I want to express through this. I don’t want my personal statement to make any type of impression of your interpretations, so I’d rather not say anything at all (at least not until tomorrow’s blog). I do ask that everyone, who looks at this, to really think about what kind of narrative you take away. Especially since this is a very abstract piece.

I believe that stories shouldn’t always be told to us, sometimes you have to make up your own. These stories can be personal, shallow, narrative, a documentary, and much more. It’s up to the viewer to really make the stories for themselves.

Today’s story experiment is to see what stories you can think of. Please leave a comment or tweet at me with the story of this manipulation.

underneathideas

~Kendall