May Writing Contest Winner
We have a winner for the May writing contest. Please congratulate Jon Recluse on his win for this month’s sci-fi short story titled, “An Evening with Bob”. He did an outstanding job and I know many people enjoyed it. Jon is not a published author, but this is the second time he has won the contest since it first started a year ago. If anyone would like to see his other work, you may check out this page where it has all been grouped together with links to where it originally appeared.
This was not an easy win, as Jon had some tough competition. Tim Greaton came in as a close second place with his entry, “Wilfred’s Rest”. It was quite the entertaining story as well. Though both he and Jon (as prize winners) are not eligible to win the next three contests, I do hope to see them both back. We have had many who returned, including these guys, during their waiting period just to challenge themselves with another dose of writing under my unusual guidelines!
Both contestants have already been notified of their eligibility to receive their gift cards and are in the process of receiving them. Thanks to everyone who participated. We had some outstanding entries this month and I look forward to seeing more in the future. For those interested in next month’s contest, I have already posted the stipulations. The theme is zombies and gives some guidelines that must be followed when writing it. You can find further information on the Monthly Writing Contest page. No one can submit an entry until the contest opens on June 18th, but you can at least get started. If you are not subscribed to the blog, please do so if you don’t want to miss important updates on future contests.
Finally, for those of you who didn’t see the winning story, here it is:
An Evening with Bob
by Jon Recluse
I was driving back to the office from Old Man Kadiddlehopper’s farm, having finally convinced him that it wasn’t aliens that were messing with his daughter, Beula, but the local fraternity. In shifts. He didn’t take the news much better than if he really was going to be the grandfather of a bugeyed monster. Although, considering Beula’s looks, the possibility was still in play. But, my work was done. Kadiddlehopper paid me what he owed me in cash and threw in a jug of his moonshine as a bonus, if I could run down the one Beula swore was the daddy, a football player named Nad. Life was, if not good, at least keeping it’s head above the sewer line.
I had just turned onto Old Highway 16 when I noticed the lights approaching. They were coming in fast, quiet and from the air. I briefly wondered who I had annoyed that owned a stealth helicopter with a mauve searchlight, when I got a clear look at the aircraft. Check that. Flying object. Because, from where I was sitting, it looked like a giant pink spongeball. I leaned on the gas to get myself away from whatever it was and considered the possibility that I was high from the fumes leaking from the moonshine. I should be so lucky. The thing put on a burst of speed, caught up with my car and the last thing I remember, the lights got very bright before I lost consciousness.
I came to sitting behind the wheel of my car, but I hoped to Hell I wasn’t on Jupiter, or in Kansas for that matter, because I knew that, without opening my eyes, that I wasn’t on Old Highway 16 anymore. Unless the moon had become a disturbing shade of puce while I was out, because the lighting was wrong. Then something spoke.
“Are you awake,Mr. Chase?”
“Maybe. Does Mr. Chase want to be awake?”
“Awake, we can talk. Open your eyes, Mr. Chase.”
“Will I regret it if I do open them?”
I got a hurt silence for that one, and decided what the Hell, things couldn’t get worse. If it did, I would just bang my head against the steering wheel until I didn’t care anymore. I opened my eyes and saw what was standing on the hood of my car. It wasn’t wet your pants and scream like a girl horrific, but I was still thankful that years of hard drinking made it easier to swallow.
It was about 4′ tall, with an egg shaped body, short little legs and huge feet. It’s arms were like an orangutan’s, long and held over its head. Only it didn’t have a head. It’s shoulders were set just below the smallest end of the egg shape, so only a little hump lay where a head should be. It did have a face, though. Big, green eyes, two. No nose. And a wide, lipless mouth in a big smile. Smack dab in the middle of it’s belly. It appeared to be naked, perfectly smooth, sexless and pink as a rubber sponge ball. It gestured for me to exit the car and hopped down from the hood.
I opened the door and stepped out onto the rubbery pink floor of some kind of loading bay. It appeared to be the same material that my host was made out of. My mind filed that piece of info away and then set it on fire. The alien beamed up at me and offered it’s hand. It sported 6 fingers and two thumbs.
” I am Bob, of the Bob, Mr. Chase. My apologies for meeting like this.”
I shook it’s hand, which was also rubbery.
“Pleased to meetcha. Bob of the Bob?”
“You have religon, Mr. Chase?”
I nodded for the giggles.
“Well, we do, also. Our creator, BOB, made us in his image. Ergo, we are the Bob. I am Bob of the Bob. See?”
I didn’t want to, but I nodded again.
“How do you know me, Bob of the Bob?”
“Please, just Bob. You are known through many dimensions, Mr. Chase. Even mine. I am a dimensional traveller. I come from one down, three diagonally and up yours. I need your help with things that go hump in the night.”
“Bump in the night, Bob. Things that hump in the night involve a different kind of detective.”
“So sorry! Bumping in the night. Yes! My ship is haunted, I’m thinking, so I come find you.”
“Haunted by what, Bob? The restless spirit of another Bob?” I was gonna need therapy after this.
“Oh, no! Bobs don’t have ghosts. Bobs are recycled. I have been Bob of the Bob 1,734,892 times. Ghost is ghost of something else. Or not ghost, Bob not sure.”
Lot’s of therapy.
“What do you mean, you aren’t sure?”
“Ghost solid, Bob thinks.”
Great. Solid alien ghosts. I should have been a proctologist.
“So, where do you see this ghost, Bob?”
“Running around ship, yelling, different places. It is big, like you. Bobs are peaceful. I have no weapons. I hide from it.”
” How long since the haunting started?”
“Two days. Since I came here to check on cows.”
I didn’t want to know, and I didn’t ask. But I was gonna have my hand sterilized if I got outta here.
“Kadiddlehopper’s cows? The one named Beula?”
“No, cows. Beula’s no cow…….is she?”
“Close. What else does the ghost do?”
“Steals food. Touches controls. Leaves puddles, sometimes piles that stink. Writes on walls. I show you.”
I followed Bob out into a corridor that was defaced by gibberish. I couldn’t read it, but I didn’t expect to be able to. I had seen this kind of thing before. I knew what I was dealing with, now.
” Bob, I think I can help you.”
“Thank you, Mr. Chase! How may I be of assistance?”
Suddenly, a wild scream echoed down the corridor, followed by thumping footsteps, running hard. Bob dove into the loading bay, bounced and landed behind my car. I pressed myself against the wall hard enough to sink in and waited.
From down the corridor came a white sheeted figure, bouncing off the walls like a deranged cartoon character, yelling “BOO!”. Just as it reached me, I stepped out and clotheslined it across the chest. The “ghost” hit the floor and bounced a few feet until it finally came to rest against the far wall, out cold.
Strolling over, I pulled off the sheet and took in the low brow, block head and letterman jacket. Two for two. I caught the ghost and baby daddy in one shot. Things actually stopped sucking for a moment. I didn’t get comfortable.
“Bob, come on out”
“You caught the ghost?” He looked down at the napping frat boy. “That is not a ghost.”
“No, Bob, that is a hitchhiker you picked up at Old Man Kadiddlehopper’s farm.”
“What do we do with him, Mr. Chase?”
“I have a pretty good idea, Bob.”
After securing Bob’s “ghost”, and explaining what needed to be done, we dropped the frat boy off at Old Man Kadiddlehopper’s. From 60 feet up. He hit the compost like a meat carpet. I hopped out from a safer height and introduced Kadiddlehopper to his future son in law, or fertilizer, as the case may be. The old man was so beside himself with gratitude, he never noticed the pink ball floating in his front yard. Bob took me back to Old Highway 16, thanking me every second of the way. After putting my car back on the roadway, he gave me a hefty bag of gold and silver bars, a doohickey to contact him if I ever wanted to chat and asked if he could be my interdimensional agent. I patted the little dope on the shoulder and told him to call me before accepting any jobs on my behalf. These carjackings on lonely roads weren’t good for my mental health. With a final wave, he went back to his ship, and with a loud raspberry, vanished into the whatever. Shaking my head, I climbed back into my car and sat quietly, wondering if I ever would repeat the events of this evening to anyone. After some contemplation, I realized that even my own bartender would have me carted off to the screwball academy, where I would spend my days hanging around with the assorted nuts, playing Go Fish and waiting for a big Indian fella with a pillow. With a sigh, I started the car and headed for the questionable, but familiar insanity of hearth and home. I only slowed down once, to run a little blue guy holding a card that said “Uranus” into the ditch. I needed a drink.