So there's this place called Meetup.com where you can sign up for groups that like, meet in the real world. So I signed up to be notified if one of these started in Oklahoma City. Around July one did. I've been going for a while and I put up a challenge/writing prompt on the message board for the group. It's an old formula. Write a 500 word story using three words. I picked: imbroglio, quiesce, and nebulous. So here's what I wrote. So far no one else has written anything.
Untitled 500 words for the OKC Writers Meetup
When we arrived at "Imbroglio" the knife fight had just started. They seated us anyway and we had a pretty good view of the pit.
A thrust, a parry, a knee to the groin, an elbow to the face, and a slash across the throat left both combatants bloody but only one was standing. He looked over and we all waved and cheered.
"That was hardly worth my time," StanTheMan said and pulled up an extra chair to the table. "Your entourage is getting larger Dave. Are any of them real tonight?"
"No. Just taking some new creations out for a walk; seeing how they interact, getting some debug data for later." Dave got up and moved behind a petite woman with black pony-tails and an interesting multinational face. "Think she can kick your ass?"
"I'm not fighting a speed freak so you can have a laugh," Stan sneered and shook his head.
"Not speed, realism. She should be fun, unexpected and believable."
“Naw, I remember the last time you told me about realism over speed. I felt like a potato being peeled,” said Stan.
“Yeah, that was funny,” Dave said and chuckled. It was picked up in varying degrees by several of his entourage. Dave moved his hand and the laughter stopped. “But this time is different. I have a contract for an advanced sparring program. Stan looked over at the girl. She returned his gaze directly.
“She have a name yet?”
“Naw, but that’s customizable. I’m also working on a couple of other skins.” Dave said and touched his hand. The girl turned into a blonde-haired, blue-eyed, buzz-cut, surfer dude and then a black woman with an afro and an outfit out of a 1970s exploitation film and then back to the original.
"I'll take her out for a spin, but not in the open pit." Stan stood and raised his hands to quiesce the scene. All of the other tables and the people at them faded to a nebulous glow. Stan turned to face the woman, slowly drew a knife from his belt and attacked.
The knife hit the back of the chair. Stan was provoking a speed response to test Dave. She had rolled out of the chair but still had a gash on her arm. She kicked, he dodged and thrusted. The girl produced her own knife and they danced. Slash and crash, they moved across the restaurant taking hits and recovering. Eventually Dave tried to interrupt.
"She's tired; let's stop for now."
"I'm not. I'm having fun. Leave her here if you’re bored," Stan said while pressing his attack. His next thrust would be a kill, but she was no longer there.
"You asshole, I wasn't done," Stan said and threw his knife at Dave. It pierced his throat and a gout of blood hit the floor a second before Dave. Everyone in the party faded and was gone.
Later Dave e-mailed the sparring program to Stan and all was right between the friends.