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Challenge #02413-F223: Forbidden Prize

My soul longs for it, craves for it. I want- no need it! -- Anon Guest

It's always out of reach. Beyond my grasp. Close enough to see. Too far away to touch. Tempting. Always tempting. I want it, I need it, I love it from afar, but I cannot even hope to touch it. It is beyond my means. I know this, yet I try anyway.

There are a thousand plans. Deception and trickery. Argument and debate. Ingenuity and engineering with the materials I have to hand. All are failures. Some have come close, but that has just made the torment of denial all that much harsher, more torturous.

The last one, an intricate structure of platforms and balance, had me closer than ever before. My only mistake was in making it too far from my ultimate goal, and in alerting the eternal guardians to my presence so close to the forbidden prize.

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Challenge #02412-F222: One Little Slip

(Kid is getting in trouble for deviating from the timeline after an accident involving wild magic led to them seeing the results of following what the (some evil and some doing what they feel they have no choice but to) grown-ups in their life want them to do, when the god in their bedroom doing the yelling is panicked because they're supposed to be responsible for the timeline going the way it should, since it did result in eventual victory over things

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Challenge #02411-F221: Take the Baby Steps

(after an AI with a soft spot for humans somehow terraformed Five Minutes In The Future's Pluto into a 1G habitable world, while keeping it the same size and distance from Sol)

At this point she may as well just terraform the rest of the system. Maybe Luna first. Then Venus. Like a trail of breadcrumbs.

"Come on humans! You know you want to~" -- RecklessPrudence

[AN: Happening in a close neighbour to my Amalgam Universe]

Well. Would you look at that?

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Challenge #02410-F220: The Visionary

Personally I thought it was a ludicrous idea, but once again we have been shown to never doubt the power of a mad scientist with a blank chequebook. -- RecklessPrudence

I'm not crazy, as the song says, I'm just a little unwell. Actually, I'm not mad, either, just... vexed. Like the entire world has this illogic to it that I just can not understand ever and it annoys the living snot out of me. Obviously, if we were not in mixed company,

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Challenge #02409-F219: Escape From a Hell-Planet

It's also worth pointing out that [Name] and Considering Long Term Consequences have a distant, if cordial, pen-pal relationship. -- RecklessPrudence

It's hard to think long-term when your long-term is what other people call 'tomorrow'. Living through the day was challenge enough on the world I used to call home. Planning a week ahead was madness. If you had asked me, there and then, what my plans would be for the weekend, on the day before it... I would have stared for

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Challenge #02408-F218: To Prevent Apocalypse...

(Someone complaining about why the gods didn't handle [Sealed Evil in a Can (horror from beyond reality flavour!)] earlier)

[Person who has more insight into how the gods work than others]: It's probably a combination of [god in important relevant position who got the job because all the other gods eligible for it, including the one(s) doing it who knew HOW to do it, died fighting OTHER horrors from beyond reality literal aeons ago] not knowing how to do their job,

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Challenge #02407-F217: Come Around Again

That feeling when you nearly die saving someone only to have them handed over to what you were protecting them from while you're unconscious. -- RecklessPrudence

"Go," I said, my voice barely a whisper. "The people in that tavern are friendly. I just... I need a little rest." The last one, to be precise, but you don't tell a five-year-old any of that. "Go tell them who you are. They will help you."

She may be six in a few weeks, but

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Challenge #02406-F216: Fight For Friendship

I now have two goals: kill the gods and lift [Name] out of depression. -- RecklessPrudence

It is a terrible thing to have ones gods betray you. The Lady of Death has but one philosophy, so she tends to listen to those who are loyal to her. The Goddess of life and creation, on the other hand, has a lot of Views about who her worshippers should associate with.

By showing mercy to a Gnoll, Tan the Merciless has been forsaken by

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Challenge #02405-F215: What Wrong For Right

You know, when people do a quick Google search of their dating partner's name, they usually don't get series of international headlines pondering the ramifications of whatever that person happens to have done this time. -- RecklessPrudence

There's pros and cons to dating someone famous. Pro - everyone knows who you are. Con... everyone knows who you are. Alongside the paparazzi getting into your underwear drawer and looking for skid marks - so to speak. It's slightly more interesting when you're dating

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Challenge #02404-F214: The Nature of the Beast

Humans have DETERMINATION in spades, monsters have magic... what about werewolves? What happens when a human contracts lycanthropy? Are they the key to turning DETERMINATION into magic, or vice versa? -- RecklessPrudence

[AN: Welp. Definitely not earning anything from this year's anthology]

Legends tell of a Monster with a Human SOUL. By the light of the full moon, the Human body transforms into that of a Monster, but there are terrible differences... this new Monster has no magic, and still harbours hatred

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Challenge #02403-F213: Come From the Woodwork Out

“My heart feel like it gonna implode, and my body feels like shit”

“Well this is the Edge, you have been awake for 72 Terran hours, two days ago”

Fun fact if awake for more than 3 days, humans will hallucinate or so symptom of insanity. -- Anon Guest

[AN: Feeling a lot like Hudson Hawk at the end of his movie RN. Check my Hub site tomorrow for details.]

"Does... that explain why you're so... shiny?"

"You could probably explain it

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Challenge #02402-F212: Macgyvering it

You know, after seeing how humans break video games, aliens shouldn't ve so surprised by the dumb things humans think of to solve problems. Also, they should practically expect said dumb things to work. -- Anon Guest

There is a saying, If it's dumb and it works, it wasn't that dumb. It should be no surprise at all that the Humans were responsible for coining it. Humans have a song celebrating how they do, or did, 'all the dumb things'. Reports of

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Challenge #02401-F211: Nothing Up Their Sleeve

After humans meet aliens, they witness an alien do what we now call magic. After a explanation it turns out human can use magic, but the earth has a natural 'magic jammer' in the atmosphere that blocks magic. Humans then push the know magic research to the max and open new doors for the galaxy in magic. -- Anon Guest

[AN: This is obviously not happening in Amalgam Universe]

"What was that?" demanded the Human.

Theroq put their wand back into its

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Challenge #02400-F210: From the Ashes

Who comes to the aid of someone marked as "bad"? Where is the villain's hero? -- Anon Guest

Morality is not a binary switch. One does not flip from 'good' to 'evil' or vice versa. There's a sliding scale of evil that moves from refusing to tip your restaurant waitstaff through parking in disabled parking spaces to outright deciding that hungry people need to deserve to eat before one can give them food. After that comes definite evil, like not paying employees

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Challenge #02399-F209: They Can't Have Nice Things Anymore

Aliens learn about the furry/scalie communities, which lead to both awkward and helpful situations. -- Anon Guest

"Huh. How about that?"

This surprised remark was not unexpected over morning nourishment hours, since many were prone with checking their news updates. Someone, somewhere, was bound to find out something interesting that was worthy of a similar comment. Therefore, Grux, who preferred to huddle over their morning nutrition and stimulants, said, "How about what?"

"Humans..." this delivered with a seemingly mandatory eye-roll. "There's

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