A little while ago I wrote a short story for the L. Ron Hubbard "Writers of the Future Contest". I did not win, and I know why, my story is really more horror than Science Fiction or Fantasy. But I decided that I will post each chapter here on my blog. There are 37 very short chapters, for a total of 15,000 words, about a fifth of a modern novel. Here is the start.
Maxwell and Wilton arrived at the source of the voice. It was a Guess Your Weight booth at the terminating line of game stands and concessions stalls. It was at the end of the particular row of booths and games, creating a dead end. The booth itself was stark black and white with numerous spiral images and twisted, broken numbers featured on every surface. A the center of the booth was a massive scale, a black steel plate suspended in front of the most massive spiral, surrounded with broken numbers denoting the weight of the participant.
Maxwell and Wilton looked at the booth. “Honestly,” said Maxwell. “I was expecting more?”
Wilton turned slightly to Maxwell, his eyes humorless and narrow.
“Sarcasm uncalled for?”
“I guess not,” replied Wilton.
“My greetings to my new challengers.” The owner of the beckoning voice finally became apparent. One of the spirals opened like a camera shutter, and out stepped a tall and spindly man, dressed like a mime. In his right hand he held a large, bright red antique megaphone, in his left a clipboard and pen both also bright red.
“And you are?” Maxwell decided to do the talking.
“Here to guess your weight,” the talking mime replied.
Wilton’s eyes remained narrow and fixed though a smirk pulled across his face.
“Any prizes?” Maxwell was hoping that playing into the carnival theme would help. “Or are we just playing for fun?"
The talking-mime-clown gestured to another spiral shutter where numerous stuffed animals appeared. Sitting amongst them were three familiar bundles: the White Hat Kits, more specifically the parts that had the guns in them. “Just some brick-a-brack… toys that fill one with so many hopes.”
“We’ll play.” Wilton said.
“You sure we-?”
“We’ll play.” Wilton cut off Maxwell’s question with a half growl and a cavalier smirk that said 'go along with it'.
“Well then,” said the non-mime. “We’ll start with a few questions. Then, you get to sit on my scale to see who the winner is.”