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Broken and dying, Lt Kilner lay in disbelief where he fell. His legs were both shattered from hip to ankle inside his shredded wool trousers. The hole in his chest made a horrible sucking sound. The crimson mist from the blast that had opened him up was beginning to gently settle on the cool, soothing concrete. The rusted tin walls of the hangar still sang from the firefight, punched full of holes from a thousand bullets. Cobalt gun-smoke filled the air, acrid and distinct.

Simon twitched to life next to him and gained his feet, not much better off. He discovered the mangled muscles in his left arm as he rose. He held back a sliver of grey intestine poking through his split stomach. Simon looked down at the Lieutenant and scanned for his gun, the spent shell casing still lodged in his eye socket making it difficult to see. Blood streamed from his nose and both ears, but he had won. He was the last man standing. He shuffled over to Kilner’s severed hand, still clutching the weapon which had fired the teflon tipped bullet responsible for the sting in his instep.

He picked up the gun, put it between his knees and chambered a round, his bloody scalp flapping over his face. He stood up and flipped it back into place with a toss of his head, spine screaming from the sudden movement. Dizzy now from loss of blood, he made his way back over to the Lieutenant who had managed to locate his radio, but had neither the strength nor the opposing thumbs to use it so it lay squawking and impotent.

Simon stood over him to watch him die.
He wanted to say something; something so cool.

“Hey!” he barked locking his elbow and striking a classic pose, “I’m killing police men today and...uh...you are...uh...one...a cop, get it? I mean – this is the part where victory is acquired by me from you and the killing is yours, no – the killing is you – well, you know, like you get killed– Anything else I can, like – do you, uh...any words that will not be followed by other words because they will be, like – uh, it?”

Kilner grimaced and shook his head. He summoned the last of his strength, propped himself up on one elbow and with a cold, steely glare hissed his dying words in voice owned by the devil himself, “I think I fell on my keys.”

Date Written: April 30, 2004
Author: TheBuyer
Average Vote: 3.75

Comments:
05/5/2004 Will Disney (3): Points for style, but the the punchline felt slightly grafted on.
05/5/2004 qualcomm (4): agree with disney on the punchline, but i really like the detail-work here.
05/5/2004 TheBuyer (4): I hate it when I can't think up a cool one liner after a shootout.
05/5/2004 John Slocum (4): Excellent! After such a tremendous effort, the punchline was good, but could have (should have, god damn it!) been great.
05/5/2004 anonymous: it originally ended with, "I think I fell on my keys."
05/5/2004 Ferucio P. Chhretan (4): musn't...pass...out....
05/5/2004 John Slocum: Author - I LOVE that ending!
05/5/2004 Jon Matza: Though it took too long to get there for my liking, I must admit the 2nd to last paragraph was proof, esp "this is the part where victory is acquired by me from you".
05/6/2004 Will Disney: i like that alternate ending sentence.
05/6/2004 Maxwell Demon (3): I liked the descriptions but not the dialog.
05/6/2004 TheBuyer: The dialogue was kind of the point, but I'll take my medicine like a man...hell, I'll take anyone's medicine. Anyone got some pills to sell?
05/6/2004 Maxwell Demon: Sorry-I didn’t mean that the dialog was unnecessary-I just that I thought it could have been better, more like your alternate ending.
05/6/2004 qualcomm: hey buyer, how did you find out about acmeshorts? what the shit?
05/6/2004 TheBuyer: Fair enough.
I'm actually still kicking myself for throwing that line away; real Zen, huh?. It somehow sounded funnier when I read it outloud, but delivery is hard to translate.
05/6/2004 Jon Matza: Announcement: the dialogue was the best part of this short by far, and the actual last line was better than the discarded last line. Put that in your collective pipehole and smoke it!
05/6/2004 Mr. Pony: TheBuyer learned of Acme from Tiddlycove, apparently.
05/6/2004 qualcomm: matza: that dialogue is stinkier than an arab's left hand. the execution is tin-eared, especially the very line you cited in your first comment: "this is the part where victory is acquired by me from you". this line totally smells, because it's too clunky. for this joke to work right, you have to start the line with something believable, then have the speaker sort of paint himself into a corner. no one would start a sentence with "this is the part where victory..." he's painted into a corner from the get-go. as a result, it feels like the author is pulling the simon's strings. normally, i don't fault lack of believability, but here it would have served the joke.
05/6/2004 TheBuyer: Lerpa: Ya, Tiddlycove pointed me here.
The line right before the dialgue was supposed to set it up, "He wanted to say something; something so cool." but then he comes off like a virgin trying to talk his way into a blowjob.
Somehow, and I'm not sure how, the humour of the anticlimax was lost. I tried to write a worse victory speech.
05/6/2004 John Slocum: Your both wrong, but I'm late for a contest; you'll just have to trust me on this one.
05/6/2004 TheBuyer: and I have no idea how he found y'all.
05/6/2004 Jon Matza: Lerpa builds a solid case here that that paragraph could've been better executed. Still thought it was funny though. The Lerpa can never take that away from me.
05/6/2004 TheBuyer: John: Don't drink and type.
I don't mean that.
05/6/2004 TheBuyer: Jon: Duely {doolee?} noted.
05/7/2004 Ferucio P. Chhretan: TheBuyer maybe you could write a short about a virgin talking his way into a blowjob? Or out of one?
05/7/2004 Mr. Pony (4): I agree with everyone. Everyone is right.
05/7/2004 scoop (4): I disagree with everyone. Everyone is wrong.
05/15/2004 Pix (4): I am basing my rating on the assumption that you replace the last line with "I think I fell on my keys". Much Funnier.