I ask a boon of you, my fellow Everythingians. Remember the creative writing excercize in high school where one person begins a story, and you pass it around the room for other students to add to it? With all of the intelligent, creative people here on E2, this is the perfect forum for such a story. I humbly begin this story, and ask you to add to it as you see fit. When I feel like it, I'll ask someone I respect to end it. I depend on you to make this work!

"A Story" By Everythingians

Dinka awoke with a start. The gargantuan four-post bed...the fire smoldering in the fireplace...the scent of strawberries...all told her she wasn't at home. Her mind raced as she tried to remember the events of the previous night. Full of dread, she turned to see if anyone was in bed with her. Thank God, I'm alone, she thought to herself. Now what the hell am I doing here? And where is here? Then she remembered...

Added 6-4-2001: For the love of all that's good, this has gotten way out of hand. Please, no more continuations, I beg of you.
... Aighearach, and so then she remembered that she had lost the contest, and had stayed up all night with a bunch of Geeks, playing chess and smoking marijuana.
"Hey there, get any sleep?"
"Like a rock, I forgot where I was until you came in."
"You just wish you chould forget yesterday, and that silly contest."
"Oh, pffffffff, you know I only entered for the complimentary espresso machine."
"Well, I came to tell you that we made breakfast, and it's getting cold."
"Oh! Thanks."
"See you downstairs."
exits

Dinka breathed a sigh of relief, for the strange geek had departed. With the image of Aighearach seared in her memory, and hoping fervently she had not engaged in any "funny business" while under the influence, our protagonist resolved to escape. The door was locked! Then the open window caught her eye. It was a three story drop, but the bedsheet offered some hope. If only she had enough time..

..to knot all the blankets and bedsheets together. She quickly got to work tearing the covers from the bed, whereupon she noticed something sparkling from under the bed. Moving down on her hands and knees for a closer look, she saw a complex bramble of wires and gleaming pipes. Tugging this out, it was revealed to be the jet-pack that she had mail ordered many years ago and completely forgotten. Quickly strapping herself into this, she pressed the ignition and it began to hum. Carefully edging out onto the window sill, she turned the jet-pack to full power and burst from the building into the sky.

Weaving and diving among spires pointing sunwards, below the soft rolling clouds she felt a lightness enter her heart. Now fixing in a northwards direction, the complex tangles of the city slowly gave way to smooth dotted greens of the country. Skimming over the small hills and tree-tops she finally slowed down approaching a small cottage with a smoking chimney. Landing and proceeding to store the jet-pack in a bush for safe keeping, she tidied up and knocked on the door. After several moments the door opened..
"Aye? Who're you?" the strange man asked.

"My name's Dinka," Dinka said, with a voice that sounded like her name was Dinka.

"Really?" the old man asked. "Haven't heard of a girl named Dinka for as long back as I kin remember..."

"Oh, you don't know me," Dinka said, "I just flew in on a jetpack, secretly stashed it in this bush, and knocked on your door."

"Well, Dinka. It seems the prophesies were true. The oracle said that on a moonless night one named Dinka would come from the sky and join me in a game of naked twister."

"Really?"

"No, not really. I just say that to pick-up chicks. But if you want to join us you're more than welcome. That's Tina, Johnny and Betty. Don't mind the Crisco. If you want to play you should probably pick a safety word or phrase. Mine's 'Don't Stop'. Would you like to come in?"

Dinka peered over the old man's shoulder and into the room. It was smoky and dimly lit, but she could vaguely make out what seemed to be people walking around in the shadows. Not exactly the atmosphere she would have associated with a friendly game of naked twister.

"Umm, no..." she said. "Thank you, though. Someone once told me that If I was in trouble, and needed someplace to stay for a while, that I should come here, and just mention the word S--"

"Quiet!" barked the man in a low voice. "Never, ever, say that name out loud. It might have been safe, once, but now there are listeners everywhere."

"In any case," he continued, "Now, you must come inside. Like it or not, you're involved in this matter now, and there are things you won't enjoy hearing, but that you need to know."

Just then, jessicapierce came in.

and was promptly cooled and voted up repeatedly. "Hey!" jessicapierce protested. "I can't help that I'm popular."

Dinka decided that the old man's cottage was getting a little too intense, so she took out her trusty towel and wiped off the Crisco and exited the cottage. "Don't leave us!" the dirty old man called after her. Dinka searched the bushes, only to find that her jet pack was gone! "I knew I shouldn't have trusted that old man," lamented Dinka. "What will I ever do now?"

Dinka wrapped the towel around her head and cautiously entered the gloomy woods...

And boy was she ever glad she did because she ran smack dab into the open slavering fangs of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal. Poor dumb bastard stumbled away from a tasty dinner just because he couldn't see it. Unfortunately for Dinka it was now pitch dark to her, and she was very likely to be eaten by a grue. She just hoped she could find a rusty old lantern and glowing blue sword before it was too late.

Outside Cottage>east_

Dinka wandered east.

Since it was pitch dark outside, she got about three steps before she tripped over something.

"Ow!" said the thing that she had tripped over.

In the inky darkness, she heard the slithering of what might well be a groo! She thought she had a flashlight with her, but as she frantically searched through her stuff, all the could find was:

She stumbled back toward the door and tried to open it, but failed to pick the lock. Luckily, she tried again and the door sprang open. In her haste she tried three or four more times but the door was already open.
Dinka fell backwards through the door, frantically scrabbling back from the shadowy form that rose before her. Too frightened to scream, she could only stare in open-mouthed horror as the figure reared and uttered a single word.

"MULTIPASS!"

She slumped with relief, a sigh escaping her. She had tripped over a friendly Orange Julius, a harmless denizen of the area. Straightening her towel, she set out again to find her jetpack, the Julius at her side.

She had walked perhaps a mile, when she saw a light ahead of her. A voice called out....
"No, forget it. It'll keep."

Silence.

"How puzzling", thought Dinka, resuming breathing. The Julius cocked its head, looking quite quizical.

"You can't just walk out without telling me, now!" cried a second voice. "What were you going to say..?"

More silence.

Then Dinka heard running feet, coming towards her...

my sincerest apologies for this in advance, however this is always what i used to do for those creative writing stories in school.

Dinka thought she heard a noise, when a figure descended from the rafters above her. It was bearing a nametag which said Eraser_. It did not look aggressive.

"Hi." said Eraser_
Dinka was in the midst of being very confused when Eraser_ promptly spontaneously combusted.

Dinka turned back to the second voice...
"And don't forget your marshmallows!" the second voice trailed off.

"Curioser and curiouser," muttered Orange_Julius as he impaled little bits of spam on a kebob.

Dinka wandered away from the improptu bonfire and tripped over something old. She instinctively pulled out her flashlight to see what she had tripped over. "Ahah, a lantern," she thought, switching off the flashlight. "Just what I need in all this darkness!"

She tried to turn on the lantern, but instead a puff of smoke rose out of it, and with a thunderous "Kupo!" became the geriatric djinn known as...

In a Nancy Reagan anti-drug inspired moment of brilliance, our poorly wrought heroine shouted, "No!" as she removed the towel from her head and snapped the geriatric djinn right in the mug.

The thoroughtly confused djinn vanished in a puff of logic. Dinka thanked (insert deity here) that she had recently taken a night course in British Sci-fi/Comedy Literature.

She looked disconcertedly around the room. "That's funny. My lantern's gone but the room is still lit." Dinka was still puzzling over this fortuitous continuity error when she nearly stepped on Verne Troyer. "Watch where you're going!" the midget shouted.

"Sorry. I was a bit preoccupied."

"Forget it." He reached in his pocket and withdrew a small tin container. "Mint?"

"Thanks." Dinka peered at the tiny blue and red tablets in the tin. She snatched a red mint and popped it in her mouth. Out of the bottom edge of her sight she thought she saw a blob of lime green Jell-o (with pear chunks, if she wasn't mistaken) skitter across the room. Turning around to avoid Mr. Troyer, she bumps into something squishy.

Like a sponge, the squishy thing enveloped her. "Who put this here?" she thought. It glowed, thereby explaining the still lit-ness of the room. She felt around it, trying to assay its dimensions and purpose, but to no avail. Finally she gave up, assuming that whoever left a glowing giant sponge in the middle of a room must have had a good reason. She had heard once that sponges were nutritious. She had long ago sucked all the nutrients out of her towel, so she reached over to one side of the sponge and tore a bit off. She ate it. It slithered down her throat. She felt herself begin to shrink, and heard distant laughter that could only be a caterpillar.

Meanwhile, Johann was getting on the plane home. He enjoyed his work, but this had been quite a long stint, and New Zealand was starting to annoy him. He was pretty tired - he was woken up when the girlfriend he had round that night in his Auckland hotel room had got up to sell a q to some geeks carrying a chess board. It didn't matter, he realised how he would be completely buggered after the flight no matter how good he felt now as he sat in his seat and buckled up the belt. Sweden was a fair distance, and it wasn't like there were any express services available at this time of week let alone at any time. He just hoped that his workmates would remember to take care of his frog. He plugged in his walkman and started listening to thrash music. Time elapsed, and he drifted off to sleep, when all of a sudden...

Rewritten by request June 19, 2000 1324

A node appeared in front of him. Before he could turn up the volume on the thrash (thereby both vanquishing the node and popping his eardrums), a miniature, animated Dinka icon flashed at him.

He was not sure whether he was supposed to double-click it. The computer came with the business-class ticket, but until now he had no time or need for such things.

He tried desperately to remember what the in-flight magazine had said about how to work this blinking, humming nightmare.

He shut his eyes and reached out - and found an old, wooden mouse.

To make it work, all he had to do was...

Rewritten by request, June 24, 2000, 09:20 E2ST

...get one of his balls out and squeeze it into the mouse. But he dismissed this idea pretty quickly and kept reading the in-flight magazine for other options. He couldn't find any, so he whispered "fuck you" and returned to his thrash music. But the computer replied, "Excuse me, please repeat the latest command." Puzzled, Johann agreed; but the node's loud and annoying voice that kept repeating "You've got mail", together with the background noise in the airplane made him have to shout. The moment everyone turned towards him, Johann thought this was a bad idea. But the node replied, "Thank you! Welcome to the mail menu. You've got mail! Thank you for using America Online"

"Dinka!" he exclaimed happily, as he saw the familiar face in front of him. But the recording said:

General Kenobi, years ago you have served my father in the Clone Wars. Now he begs you to help him in his struggle against the Empire. I regret that I am unable to present my father's request to you in person, but my ship has fallen under attack and I'm afraid my mission to bring you to Alderaan has failed. I have placed information vital to the survival of the Rebellion into the memory systems of this R2 unit. My father will know how to retrieve it. You must see this droid safely delivered to him on Alderaan. This is our most desperate hour. Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi, you're my only hope.

"What the..." Johann thought. But as he was thinking the third word, the plane took an unexpected turn, a state of dizziness embraced him, and the clouds seemed to become larger and larger... he suddenly realized that the plane and all its passengers were shrinking!

The plane landed before the entrance to node number one. Johann disembarked and hurried to find Dinka. She was talking to a 16 year old girl, so he sat and listened to their conversation...

"Ook! OOK!!! Tetrinet! Linux!" the girl said. Johann needn't listen any more; he already recognized RST. But as he was preparing to greet his friend, a powerful, skeletal creature appeared...

"Hi, I'm dem bones. Welcome to my lair!" the creature said.

...a friendly splotchypine appeared.

"Meep," said the splotchypine in a nonchalant manner, as she ate the unfriendly tic-tac.

Dinka gave a sigh of relief. And then of puzzled bewilderment as she gazed upon the splotchypine. "What... are you?"

"Meep?" asked the splotchypine.

"No, I don't know what you are."

The splotchypine nodded, and said, "Meep."

"Oh, okay. Well then, how are you doing?"

The splotchypine shrugged. "Meep," she said, in a bored, noncommittal tone.

Dinka paused a moment to reflect on how positively weird this was - here she was, having a conversation with a neo-mythical beast whose vocabulary seemed restricted to a single syllable, and yet Dinka was understanding it perfectly nontheless.

"Dinka? Hello?" came a familiar voice.

Dinka awoke with a start. But she wasn't asleep, rather she was amidst a hypnagogic hallucination which had crept upon her consciousness - she really should see a doctor, as these were the warning signs of narcolepsy. As her conscious state and mobility returned to her, she could only vaguely say odd ramblings. Finally, her dissociative state gone, she consciously opened her eyes and saw--

The splotchypine.

"Hello?" asked the splotchypine.

"Oh, you can talk?" asked Dinka.

"Um, yes, I've been talking to you for the last few minutes after I saved you from a rabid tic-tac. You seemed to be quite lucid, at least."

"Oh, I could have sworn that you were only saying 'Meep,' but I could still understand you."

The splotchypine shrugged. "I think you have a problem with your--"

"Reticular activating system? Yeah, I know. I've been meaning to see a doctor about that."

"Actually, no, I was going to say 'lifestyle,' since you appear to have gotten caught up in some sort of strange... thing, from some place called Everything."

"Oh, and how would you know about that?"

"Well, you're talking to me, for one. It's not every day you run into a splotchypine who just saved your life from a rabid yet ineffective breath mint whose main selling point is its caloric content and not its actual effectiveness, and all this stemmed from..." The splotchypine paused to scroll back many pages in her web browser. "Ah, yes, a 'What would you do to have sex with thefez?' contest. You were apparently in the lightning round."

Dinka nodded. "Mm," she said, like Sasami or some other cute anime girl, verbally asserting the affirmative.

"Well," said the splotchypine, "I hate to say this, but I've got to be going. It's been surreal."

The splotchypine planted a sudden kiss on Dinka's lips. This caught Dinka off-guard. But before she could regain her composure and respond to the sudden, but brief, moment of transitory passion, with a soft poof the splotchypine disappeared, leaving behind a quickly-dissipating cloud of asterisks.

"Yes, what an odd day it's been," mused Dinka, as she went on her way.

And then Dinka awoke. She always had nightmares after watching Alice in Wonderland, but this was the first one featuring Johann. She hadn't thought about him in years, not since her time with the hooloovoos. But she had been young and naive, that was all behind her now. She wandered into the cargo area to see if any of the crew were up for a game of russian twister.

The cargo hull was dark. Still tired, Dinka shook the sleep from her eyes, and happened to catch the presense of someone else in the room. Or something. Whatever it was, it was cowering in a corner of the cargo hull drinking an Neon Orange Julius. For a while, it didn't move. And then suddenly, it continued not to move. Glancing around, Dinka saw a light switch, directly beneath a sign that appeared to say "Cargo Area Lights", although it in fact said nothing of the sort. As she was making her way to the switch, the thing in the corner called out to her. Much to her surprise, it spoke her native language of ½, and it was politely asking her for...

...her ticket stub.

Puzzled, Dinka searched her pockets, twice, but to no avail... she hadn't purchased a ticket! "Oh, dear," thought Dinka, "And how am I to solve this problem?"

Quickly scanning the cargo hold, she noted the presence of perhaps fifty large magnetic shipping crates, stuck to the floor just behind where the odd little critter was speaking from. Catching hold of an elusive idea, she shouted, "It'sovertherebehindthoseboxes!" When the critter, taken somewhat by surprise, slithered over the crates to validate her story, she spied around again, found that the ceiling of the cargo bay was cris-crossed with crane mounts, and leapt, in the micro gravity, to one.

Below, the strange creature, who from above looked very much like a subtly amorphous gecko, came back from beyond the boxes. "Oi! You blasphemed the ticket Gods! Wh... where are you?"

Frightened, Dinka curled as small as she could, very aware of the fact that a six-inch strut can't hide a one hundred and thirty pound woman. However, it presently became clear that the pseudo-gecko had very poor tri-dimensional perception, and ADD to boot, and broke off the search quite quickly, to Dinka's endless joy. Quietly, she maneuvered herself into the air, and drifted leisurely to the other end of the massive (and massively empty) cargo compartment.

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