In light of my feeble attempt of resurrecting the short stories forums, I'll be posting another story of mine here, one I DO own, and one that will be
fully published and online to buy once it's complete. I've talked to ATS staff about this a few times and I believe I'm in the clear to post my
Some of you might be familiar with Doomsday by Design, as it was originally a role play I hosted here on ATS a couple years ago. I tried to revive it,
to no avail. I've tried writing AND drawing it many times, and only until I was able to complete another story of mine, my first novel, did I channel
the confidence to write this one properly.
I'm sorry, but I did NOT use many characters from the role play. A couple of them, I did. There wasn't room for all of them. If you have suggestions
as to how I could add one of the old characters later on, though, I'd love to hear it.
Also, this story is gritty, uncensored, and uses the word "window" occasionally. I don't know why, but ATS likes to replace the word "window" with an
underscore (_). Expect many of the curse words to be censored or snipped, and if you see an underscore, it was probably meant to be the word
I'll post the first chapter, and if you guys want to see more, I'll keep posting. I have six chapters so far, though I have to skim through it and do
a little editing. So yeah...
Doomsday By Design
Las Nueva Era
Ding. Ding. Ding. Ding. Ding.
There it is again... that irritating, infuriating noise...
Sandra extended an arm out from underneath her twisted and contorted blanket, groping around for the source of the noise. When her fingers made
contact with the alarm clock, she grabbed it, reared back, and launched it across the room with all her might. The tiny clock hit her television
screen and shattered into three big pieces, which scattered around the room upon impact.
She'd been dreaming of destroying that annoying clock for weeks now. Today was sure to be a good day, now that she'd finally murdered the stupid
little machine. That noise started her with a headache every single day... hopefully the thing was broken beyond repair now... hopefully, her uncle
wouldn't find a way to fix it... God willing...
Sandra sat up groggily, the window beside her bed allowing rays of weak morning sunlight to bleed into her room. It always hit her directly in the
face in the mornings, and always covered most of her bed. Too bright. Too annoying.
Sighing, Sandra climbed from her bed and examined herself in her mirror. With a few loose swipes, she managed to make her hair appear semi-kempt. The
crimson red dye shone uniquely under the lighting, her combed-over bangs invaded by three dark, black streaks. Her hair barely reached the back of her
neck, and her bangs were undoubtedly the longest of it all. Her oceanic blue eyes were mostly absent of make-up now, as she'd slept most of it off,
with a few small smears of leftover black and silver remaining. She licked her fingers and wiped them away, then opened her backpack and reapplied her
She never wore much eyeshadow or mascara; she'd use a little black on the eyelashes, and fade the black into silver from there. Makeup wasn't a
priority really, but it was nice to use on occasion.
Sandra pulled the tank top off of her body, then fully dressed herself in the nearest outfit lying atop her messy hamper. Black cargo pants, a
skin-tight black t-shirt decorated with Gothic designs, and her most expensive article of clothing; the thick, fitting leather jacket complete with
studs and numerous pockets. She'd always zip it up halfway, and conceal her hands within its front pockets when she'd walk around. It was her favorite
piece of clothing. Nothing suited her better.
Her backpack lying crookedly over one shoulder, Sandra flipped the light switch and marched out of her room. She made her way down the narrow, creaky
wooden stairs and strolled to the kitchen. Her bed room was a large attic, complete with a bed, a dresser, a small tv, a radio, an outdated gaming
console, junk food, and clothing lying amok. The home was technically a one-bedroom, but her uncle, Dorian, had fashioned the attic into a living area
when she'd moved in years back.
The silver canteen was sitting in its usual spot inside of the fridge, wedged between the milk jug and the wall. Sandra grabbed it and took a large
swig of her cold coffee, suddenly feeling much better about being awake.
Sandra carried the canteen with her as she walked out through the front door, and today, she had enough change in her pocket to fill her canteen at a
gas station on the way home. That was a nice plus.
The small house sat on top of a hill along the edge of town, and a long gravel driveway led downwards, towards the two lane road which connected her
uncle's property with the rest of the world. The top of the driveway, as well as the front porch, had an absolutely gorgeous view of the sunrise every
day, the sun peaking over the distant trees and the occasional building, the night sky fading into a swirl of red, orange, and yellow as the day began
to illuminate. Sandra never thought to pay it any mind, though. She kicked rocks on her way down the driveway, untangling the earphones connected to
her mp3 player as she did.
The thought of walking through the entire town without her music to drown out the people and the vehicles was almost appalling. The last thing she
wanted was forced contact with other people. The music would always succeed in melting away their voices and making her forget where she was
"Sandra!" A hearty voice echoed from the distance, just when Sandra was about to insert her second earphone. "Sandraaaaaa!"
Sandra winced, exhaling a long breath. Goddammit.
"Come'ere!" Her uncle hollered from seemingly nowhere, though Sandra knew exactly where he was.
Sandra veered left, approaching a mostly hidden dirt trail leading down the side of the hill. At the bottom of the hill and the end of the trail, her
uncle Dorian stood expectantly, waving her along and waiting for her to join him.
Slightly aggravated, Sandra stomped her way down the dirt path. When she reached her uncle, he'd already turned away and began fidgeting with that
old metal door again.
"The security system works now." He told her, hunching over the door's handle and punching buttons on a metal, square device. "I made a password."
Sandra nodded silently. That's great. Can I leave now?
"Get down here!" He grasped her by the wrist and pulled her into a kneeling position. "Look here. You press 'enter' before you type in the password.
Are you paying attention?"
"Mhmmm." Sandra mumbled with a false enthusiasm.
"If you need to use the bunker whenever I'm not here—now you can get in and nobody else can. Alright?" He went on. "This is important. Pay
"Ah-huh." Sandra moaned again.
Dorian turned his head and faced her. He squinted at her curiously.
Sandra blinked. "What?"
"You're not listening." He replied. "Sandra, this is important."
"I don't care." Sandra said without thinking. "Explain to me how this is important. A doomsday bunker's not gonna make a goddamn difference if
there's a nuclear holocaust. We'd all be dead."
"Explain to—alright. Alrighty then. This new flu breaking out all over the country? They're calling it a pandemic as of yesterday." He told her.
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