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June Writing Challenge

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Postby NickyDude » Sun Jun 01, 2008 4:17 pm

Here's the first in a new series of Writing Challenges. Let's hope this one lasts. Please remember to read the rules before taking part. All entries to be in by 1st July.

Location: Train Station
Contains Tramp, Rubbish Bin, Suspicious looking suitcase, Security Guard, Public Phone




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Postby Lumin » Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:15 pm

Heh, the first time I read that I thought you said security guard...

Your footsteps echo in the eerily deserted train station. The only other sound is a series of beeps and a recorded voice repeated ad infinitum, "I'm sorry, the number you have dialed is incorrect. Please hang up and dial again." This emits from a public phone, hanging off the hook and still in the grasp of a severed hand.

The dead tramp that you assume to be the owner of the hand is propped against the wall next to an overflowing rubbish bin, with an expensive--and rather suspicious looking--suitcase resting in his lap.

Gerald, the security guard who found the body is here, looking frightened and more than a little queasy.




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Postby NickyDude » Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:32 pm

Ermm... it was supposed to be guard :blush: . Would you like me to leave it as it is our are you willing to make a slight change for your entry?

I've also added the due date in the first post.
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Postby Lumin » Mon Jun 02, 2008 12:52 am

I can change it, no problem. I originally had it written to include a guard anyway. :)


edit: fixed




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Postby Chenshaw » Mon Jun 02, 2008 7:12 pm

The Victorian train station, with green iron beams arching over the platforms, is looking a little run-down - some might say tatty; others, charming. This was once the end of the line for the steam train running to the coast from London. Now it's just another stop on the long commuter rail journey, for those few trains that stopped at all. Hanging baskets with cheerful red geraniums and straggly pansies sway in the sun, heavy, from thin iron hooks along the platforms.

Among the quaint surroundings a little scene of chaos has played out: a black and gold painted rubbish bin, turned on its side and leaking, lies near a happily spaced-out tramp squatting on the platform. Next to the station entrance a security guard appears to be waiting for a call from a red public phone box. As he waits, he eyes a suspicious-looking leather suitcase perched on the yellow line at the far end of the platform (where the first class travellers embark) primly upright as if left by a fastidious city executive.
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Postby NickyDude » Mon Jun 02, 2008 9:06 pm

Great! It like to get at least 5 descriptions to make the challenge wothwhile.
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Postby revgiblet » Mon Jun 02, 2008 11:02 pm

Lower Thannington-Thwaite train station is something of an anomaly. Due to a misprint on the plans, the platform stretches into the distance for three miles - making catching a train here something of a game of Russian Roulette.

Of course, catching a train is the last thing on your mind at the moment. The suspicious looking suitcase left here by the visitor from the planet Jrr rests on the ground a few steps in front of you. The disheveled form of Hubert the Incredible Exploding Tramp waits a few feet to your left, gazing at you intently. Neither of you dares make a move for the suitcase while the other watches.

Out of the corner of your eye you see a battered ceramic rubbish bin. You catch a glimpse of a face in the bin, peering out and trying to look inconspicious. No doubt it belongs to the inept security guard who's been spying on you since your escape from the Hancroft Corporation.

On the wall, the public phone begins to ring loudly. Hubert's stare narrows and you raise an eyebrow. It seems that the end game has begun.

What now?
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Postby Lumin » Mon Jun 02, 2008 11:11 pm

Welp, I'm gonna lose.

I suspect you guys have the unfair advantage of having actually been in a train station at some point in your lives. :(
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Postby brain in jar » Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:38 pm

"Why did the meeting place have to be here?" you whisper to yourself for the fourth time. You quickly glance over the note you found at your doorstep earlier that evening and then at your watch. "Sigh, ... 11:40pm. Twenty minutes to wait. It's too late to back out now..." you groan, straining to contemplate the best-case scenario for tonight.

Train Station

Before the rusty benches and ad posters shining by the commercial glare of gaudy backlighting, an east/west length of track stretches into the black tunnels at both ends. A public phone stands bolted to a security booth, lighting up its space with a comforting incandescent bulb. Trying to hide himself behind a rubbish bin, a tramp lies near-unconscious, clutching an unknown object. Dimly lit by the flickering fluorescent lights suspended by the grey ceiling, an unattended, beat-up leather case sits in plain view.

Out of the security booth comes a security guard. He notices both you and the suitcase.




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Postby Ren » Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:53 am

Waiting engines spit steam against the station roof, feeding the hot grey fog that envelops the platform and waters the eyes of the smartly attired guardsman and the vagrant he struggles to remove. The low clouds ebb and roll, hinting at the objects hidden within – the rim of a near-full refuse barrel, the long, black handle of a speaking telegraph and, just a few feet from the first-class carriages, a lonely leather case, too expensive to be abandoned without good reason.



EDIT: I choose this one.




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Postby djchallis » Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:39 pm

What worries you most about the train station is how normal it feels, yet how empty. You've never been outside the citadel. Nobody has. With the train station as the only way in or out you'd expected to see the place crawling with the city guards. But there's only one security guard here, wearing the usual black-visored helmet and standing in an intimidatingly robotic pose, arms folded and gun at his side.
There's an empty train on the tracks, silent and still, but you can't access it. There's a high electric fence and a force shield that would have to be turned off first. The track itself goes off into the distance until it's completely devoured by the ever-present fog that wraps around the citadel. Who knows where the train really goes, or if there's actually anything out there?
With the train-sized hole in the citadel's force shield, it feels like the fog has claimed the train station for it's own. It swirls around the wheels of the train and sits on the platform, daring anybody to use the train. Your side of the fence the hanging fog makes the station look even greyer. You can see why no-one comes here. There's an empty rubbish bin against a wall and a broken public telephone next to it. There's a tramp sitting in one corner, but you still couldn't be sure if there's anything alive left in this station.
You spot a suitcase by itself near the west of the room. It's positioned upright on the floor by itself. You look around instinctively for it's owner, but it seems completely alone. You wonder if the previous owner left it on purpose, by accident or was prevented from taking it if he was taken away himself. You wonder if the guard's decision to leave it there means it's particularly important or particularly useless; or particularly dangerous.
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Postby Ren » Thu Jun 12, 2008 11:16 pm

The disused station is lit by one bar of a flickering strobe light some 200 feet from the half-blocked tunnel where I wait wearing the shadows like a cloak. Intermittent bursts of ragged breath tell me that the tramp who calls this abandoned platform home is taking the same chance I am.

The guard inches forward carefully, torch in one hand gun in the other, sending out a thin beam that punches white holes through the black. He's found the ripped out pay phone and two wall-mounted bins but not what he's looking for. He wants the same thing as everyone else, and we all know it's somewhere out there in the darkness: the suitcase.



EDIT: I choose the other one.




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Postby Stormchild » Sun Jun 15, 2008 11:05 pm

Eastern Terminal, Platform 6

The windswept landrail platform looks like any other here in the metropolis: a polished slab of black marble with a handful of brass benches, all arranged in back to back pairs with a circular rubbish bin at each end. Looking distinctly out of place is the old tramp, stumbling around nearby and rambling quietly into what appears to be the broken handset from a public phone, perhaps from one of the call boxes further down the platform. A security guard is standing with his back to you both, looking up in disgust at the incessant rain pouring down on the glass roof overhead. Affixed to one of the iron pillars supporting the roof is a polished steel mirror, in which you can see a battered old suitcase at your feet; a suitcase that is conspicuously absent in reality.
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Postby NickyDude » Wed Jul 02, 2008 6:26 pm

This challenge is over, voting can be done here. :)
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