Thought I’d share a tidbit of creative nonsense: I recently attended a local writers meetup group that met at the Nerdvana coffee shop up in Frisco (a favorite haunt of mine). The challenge of the evening was a simple free-write assignment in which we were given around 20min or so and nothing but a blank page. We were given three words, and then were to write a scene about it. No looking back, no editing, just straight writing for 20 minutes.
Those words were: “return”, “wear”, and “theft”.
Being the snarky sort I am, I just made that my title, and now I give you my 20 minutes of random, entitled:
“It’s called Return-Wear and it’s taken the nation by storm! For the first time ever, enjoy a worry-free try-before-you-buy clothing experience! No more gazing longingly through storefront windows wondering how that cocktail dress might fit you, or if that tuxedo really matches your eyes for that upcoming best friend’s wedding. With our patented –”
“Freaking proximity ads!” Dex growled as he fumbled for the flashlight he had dropped from the startle. “How do you shut these damn things off?!”
“Like I know?” Paz shot back in a strained, tense whisper.
“It’s all about the nanomachines, friend,” the ad cheerfully continued. “Tap your Return-Wear ID into the store display’s Cybertech RealYou Input Reader, and in a flash your Return-Wear Nanosuit will take on the form of that dashing outfit in the store window!”
“Stop talking. Sign off. Skip ad. SHUT—”
“Dex!” Paz snapped as a blonde strand loosened and swept across her sharp blue eyes. “Just ignore it!”
They were both shoving as many of the “Return-Wear” nanosuits as they could clumsily grab into their black duffle bags. Displayed in the default storage setting, the nanosuits took up only a few square inches of space each, folded impossibly neatly and stacked 20-30 per pile.
“Dex….” Paz squeezed between hurried breaths, “why the frickin’ frick did we decide to bust into a Cybertech store for our first score again?”
“Do big if you’re gonna dream big, kid. Wasn’t that the line that overpriced prick’s book fed you? So…”
Paz’s young eyes narrowed in warning.
“…we’re doin’ big.” He shrugged, deciding wisely to cut himself off short.
“THANK YOU, VALUED CUSTOMER!” jolted them both upright as the suit Dax just grabbed shimmered and shifted to life. “Your 30-day Return-Wear trial starts NOW!!!”
The neatly-folded square of default-gray expanded, pouring itself off the shelf and up Dax’s arm like a tiny reverse waterfall. Less than a second later, he was sporting a default-gray skin-tight bodysuit.
“Dax Lars, your trial RealYou ID is 127-XJ44! No commitment required – If you don’t submit a form of payment in 30 days from today, your Return-Wear Nanosuit will disengage and return itself! Simple and hassle-free, the Cybertech way!”
“What the –”
“Dax Lars, do you consent that your unique biometric data be tracked along with your geo-location implant chip by Cybertech Industries for the next thirty days?”
“What do you mean ‘consent’?! I didn’t –”
“THANK YOU VALUED CUSTOMER! Don’t worry about finding a return drop-off – we’ll find you!”
He turned with a knowing wince to meet Paz’s piercing, damning stare of needles, which he could only meet with a sheepish, defeated chuckle.
“It’s not that I’m angry,” her typically mousy voice stated quietly and cooly, “it’s that I’m just really disappointed.”
Bonus Audio Feature!
While I’m pursuing my dream of scifi writing, my best buddy is pursuing his dream of voice acting, so he offered to lend his talents to my amateur-hour piece here for his own practice, and thus I give you the audio drama version. <— Click it!