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A 154-post collection

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 #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 #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 #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 #02395-F205: In Search of a Meaning

"Hey, Internutter, what's my story? Where am I and what am I doing here? I would really like to know." -- Anon Guest

Oh, shit. It's one of those. Every author gets them, sooner or later. The character who has to argue with everything, including their author. Fanfiction dot net used to be rife with them back in the day. The fact that it's happening now? After so much time spent honing my wordsmithery? That's embarrassing.

"Hey, I'm talking to you. Pay

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Challenge #02381-F191: Viva La Revolution

The peppy one with beautiful blond hair is always in black and the one with dyed-black spiky hair is always in soft pastels. -- Anon Guest

She wore braids. Neat, tidy braids she wound into a knot of a bun in the back of her head. The only thing that changed about that 'do was the length and volume of the hair, and that was progress that was annually cut back. The rest of her choices were pretty much anything she liked

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Challenge #02379-F189: For a Thousand Years

"I believe there's something good in him."

"That's childish."

"So? Children can be right too." -- Anon Guest

"We're talking about a man who has rounded up millions of people, put them into life-endangering camps when he and his cohort couldn't outright kill them, denied them basic human rights, denied them humanity, cowed the populace with both his super-loyal adherents and threats of physical and legal violence, and is one hundred percent in favour of eliminating anyone who isn't a member of

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Challenge #02363-F173: The Ego Won't Be Landing

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDs5Abg0M9A -- AmberFox

There is, in fact, a Starman waiting in the sky. He is not leaning back on his radio, as the song once said, but is seated comfortably in a red roadster, wearing a stylish spacesuit. He posed so that he could, with a glance, read the dashboard display that says, Don't Panic!

He does not say anything. He does not do anything. That's because he is, in fact, a dummy. An effigy of

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Challenge #02356-F166: Strange... on a Train

"May I scare you?"

"What?"

"May I scare you. I want to scare someone but just doing it outright would make me feel guilty. So, I was hoping someone would give me permission to scare them." -- Anon Guest

"Well, it's going to be a bit more difficult than jumping up at me and yelling 'boo'," said Mae. "I know it's coming, now. Jumpscares can't work if they're anticipated."

"Oh, I know this," said the amenable stranger. "I have an entirely different

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Challenge #02355-F165: A Peculiar Friendship

It had waited 3 hours for her. It had planned it's attack for days on end. It knew exactly how to take her down, and it would have already done it, if not for one question.

"Are you scared too?" -- Anon Guest

Ze who hesitates is lost, -- Ancient wisdom.

Unfortunately for Grethagh, terror of the darkness, it was remembered too late. This was its first hunt, and taking its time to enjoy it had seemed like a rational choice. Now?

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Challenge #02349-F159: Encounter After Bedtime

So, what would you do if there WAS a monster under your bed? -- Anon Guest

From ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggedy beasties, and things that go bump in the night... Saen took a deep breath. Dark plus imagination lead to some degree of fear, and tonight's degree was too harsh to handle. Crying about monsters under the bed was too childish, now. She was six. She could read and dress herself and pronounce funny dinosaur names and being scared of monsters

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Challenge #02346-F156: Darby O'Gill Sends His Regards

https://cheeseanonioncrisps.tumblr.com/post/169821900050/a-lot-of-humans-are-weird-posts-play-with-the

Dear InterNutter,

Since you have blessed us with all your lovely writings of the many wondrous worlds you have created while juggling life, kids and painful weather phenomenon I would like to give you something to enjoy reading instead of writing about. Although it's not mine to give, please enjoy it.

Thank you! -- Amberfox

[AN: the text in this link is way too long to transcribe, so please read it in a new tab

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Challenge #02339-F149: Taking Account

Political Hopeful scouting for votes and says "Those Words" - "How can I help?" You can spin this anyway you like. -- Anon Guest

There's two ways to be a Politico of the People. One is to take the vocal majority's word and run with it all the way to a populist poll... and the other is to actually listen to all of the people. The latter is far more difficult to do and harder to accomplish, so many Politico's don't even

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Challenge #02336-F146: We Can be Heroes

Almost everyone remembers where they were the week the Sun turned Green. Scientists the world over confirmed it was an interstellar dust wave caused by an ancient supernova that had interacted with our atmosphere.

Humanity had continued mostly unaffected. But this was the stuff of comic books and movies. the changes were subtle at first. People noticing enhanced benefits from consuming certain plants, others started tapping into new abilities, and as time progressed things became... strange

now we had almost legitimate "supers"

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