The Neurophages

Avatar Author: Pyropunk 51 (PPP LoA) Programmer by day, weird ideas haver by night. Official member of the League of Awesomeness. I will henceforth go by the self chosen title: The Purveyor of Pyromaniac Prowess. Long live the League! READ, REPLY, FICL... Read Bio

Miles R. Merryweather could feel the steam pipes creak and groan under his slippered feet. The noise was almost, but not entirely drowned out by the squeaking of the gears and it drove him nearly insane but the heat emanating from the pipes was comforting and made his office feel almost homely. He meekly manipulated his autoscribe to mark the next vellum sheet “READ” and plopped it into the air-chute.

steam-powered space flight – ten years ago nobody thought it was possible he reflected as he got up to stretch his legs. He climbed down the metallic steps to his bunk right next to the boiler room. The periodic puffs misted his glasses and when he raised his arm to wipe them his elbow accidentally bumped an inconspicuous lever.

HISS sussurated the door next to lever.
oh shit Miles quickly cleaned his spectacles and read the plaque.
EXILE it read, and underneath in cursive no unauthorised persons
Cryogenic vapour spilled out of the dimly lit closet and enveloped his feet.

Miles started shivering.

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Oh no! This story doesn't have a prequel. Want to fill in the blanks and write one?

Comments (9 so far!)

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  1. Avatar Pyropunk 51 (PPP LoA)

    In a coal-powered one-way spaceflight, a young milquetoast office drone stumbles across an exiled angel which spurs him into conflict with a sneering wizard, with the help of a girl who’s always loved him and her discomfort in formal wear, culminating in a daring rescue preceding a giant explosion.

  2. Avatar DoItForScience


  3. Avatar Ridcully Calvert

    That’s a seriously convoluted storyline.

    But I like your take on it, and the hissing steam valves in the room – it felt authentic.

  4. Avatar Pyropunk 51 (PPP LoA)

    i think i can make it work. i just watched the end of Hellboy II. Some goo steampunk visuals there. I’ll see how I can work them in.

  5. Avatar cthulhuburger

    I love the detail of his glasses fogging up. To be honest, I think that may have been what drew me in and made me want to read this whole story.

    My only suggestion would be that you have “almost” twice in your second sentence, which is a bit much.

  6. Avatar Pyropunk 51 (PPP LoA)

    thanks CB. edited.

  7. Ahfl_icon THX 0477

    Made me think of ‘The Mutant Chronicles’, rather cheesy made-for-TV movie that it was. Still, definitely a good job getting across the milquetoast and drudgery bits to the character and his existence.

  8. Avatar ElshaHawk (LoA)

    Don’t you love the wondermark prompts? :)
    Astronaut/fireman (as they call those in charge of boilers) You would have to live near the boiler in that ship, it’s ALL boiler! And the fact that he is still in the mail room, no intercoms here!, is just crazy. Way to go with this prompt!

  9. Avatar Marli

    Its fun how you can put a piece of your life into a story. This is so well written.