Jasper Frank’s Very Bad Day (Part II)

Hello again, everyone! This has been a fun experiment so far. I’ve really enjoyed toying with the lines, and, I hope, demonstrating that the divides between genres can be pretty thin sometimes. I hope you enjoy the rest of the story!

For Part I, click here.

Jasper Frank’s Very Bad Day (Part II)

Heeeey Jaaay. What’re you doing back so early?

It’s almost seven pm, Erwin.  I should have been home hours ago.

Oh. Well, y’know, I kinda lose track of time sometimes, in the zone. So how’d your meet ‘n greet thing go? Meet any nice wolfies?

No. And, apparently, “wolfies” is a derogatory term punishable by a two hundred dollar fine if reported on public property. Nearly all of the orientation was in legaleze, I can hardly think in English anymore. And no one at the networking lunch had even the slightest desire to turn back to human. One guy snapped at me for even bringing it up. I almost lost a hand! Wait, you’ve been on Magi-net this whole time?

Yeah, Jay. I got a sweet gig casing this one achemi-medical corp out of Shanghai. Chinese medicine, y’know? Got a guy who wants the details on the company rune-tumbler sequence. I just dive in, take a peek, and net some nice cash for my trouble.

Did you at least take out the garbage?

Naw, no time for that domestic crap.

Erwin, we’ve talked about this, you can’t live here and just-

Whoa, Jay. You can’t sit there.


Dude, you’ll shed on the upholstery.

Look, if I’m going to have to live with this, you’re going to have to deal with a little shedding. I’ll buy some lint rollers.

So they don’t, like, have some kind of opt-out for the whole Lycanthropy thing?

No, they don’t. It’s like it doesn’t matter that I didn’t want this. It doesn’t matter that I just got chomped by some random guy. They decide it’s a protected status, and I’m stuck injecting silver nitrate every month so I don’t go moon-crazy and slaughter the neighbors.

Silver nitrate? Is that, like, expensive? ‘Cause I’ve got a guy who’d take that off your hands for some quick money, you know, if you’re interested.


What, I don’t like our neighbors. They look at me funny when I go down to the laundry room.

That’s because you’re covered in bright pink tattoos. And, you’re an elf.

Hey, don’t knock the tats, these are the best in the biz. I get up to 6 peca-pentagrams a second on the nets with these, and that’s not even breaking a sweat.

You use those for Magi-net? I thought it was just a…

A what?

An elf thing? You know, frilly colors, pixie dust. That sort of thing.

Whoa, that’s not cool, Jaspy. Just because there aren’t any other pointy-ears around here doesn’t mean you got the right to decorticate.

I think you mean “discriminate.”

Whatever. Anyway, I stick the trodes here, where the tats come together on my hands, and I use the ol’ magic to get to the nets. You should see it, man. It’s beautiful. Like, a city of lights, going on forever, and you’re, like, flying past everything, and you can see all the spells and runes like big neon signs, and-

Ok, Erwin, I get it.

Right. So… what are you going to do?

What am I going to do? Get used to being a werewolf, I guess. The alchemical treatments I would need to turn back aren’t covered by my insurance, and they’re way too expensive without it.

Harsh. Well, if you think I could help with somethin’ lemme know.

Er… thanks, Erwin. Wait a second, you said your contract is to steal from an alchemy company?

Dude, not “steal.”

“Aquire.” Whatever. Would your friend be able to get alchemical pollymedicals from this Chinese company?

You mean alchemical pollymorphic pharmaceuticals? Like, to turn back to normal?


Oh! Yeah, man, that would work.

Would I… uh, need to pay you?

Naw, I could like, make that part of the conditions for receiving the rune-tumbler sequence.

You’re sure? You’re sure your employer wouldn’t mind?

Eh, probably not. I’m doing the guy, like, a huge favor. How mad could he be?

How mad indeed. To find out, look for Part III next week!


About erikthereddest

I'm a Masters student in English, and I love technology and Science Fiction. I am refining and enhancing my (admittedly novice) writing talents under the sage advice of my friends here at Lantern Hollow Press, and with the great many books I am reading from the best authors I can find.

Posted on August 21, 2013, in Cyberpunk, Erik Marsh, Humor, Lantern Hollow Press Authors, Science Fantasy, Science Fiction and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I really appreciated that I could tell the difference between the two voices here. It might be helpful, regardless, to use italics for one and non-italics for the other. But I could definitely hear two speakers. Pink tattoos… just… wow…

    • I try not to use italics unless one of the voices is coming through some sort of channel, like a phone or speaker, or is using telepathy. It’s a challenge using this tagless, dialog-only style to convey multiple speakers (it’s *really* hard to do more than two) but it forces you to decide exactly how each character talks, and I try to make the characters distinct enough that you can tell which is which without any formatting quirks.The only problem is that it can be kind of easy to fall into cliches and written-in accents.

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