Originally Posted by DTrain
(Contest details below)
I got an idea -- Come up with your own story!
Assuming that the song is simply a drug induced trip -- come up with a story of what every-day regular thing someone might be doing while stoned to produce a trip that fits the description given in Rosetta Stoned.
Alright, I'll bite. Here's my entry. My inspiration came not only from Rosetta Stoned (and, of course, Lost Keys), but also from Vicarious. (I'll go into more detail after the story)
Here's my entry (1204 words):
START OF ENTRY
Sarah burst through the door to Chen's office.
"Your work-study kid's gone fucking bat-nuts."
"What?" Chen looked up at the director. "What happened?"
She was already halfway out the door. "Come now before he fucks up the whole morning's broadcast!"
Chen hustled down the studio hall. Fluorescent overheads and flashing "On Air" lights whizzed by. He only barely matched Sarah's spiriting gait. Too much time behind a desk.
"What's happened?" he blew out from sweaty lips.
"Don't know," she called back, shouting between gulps of air, "We were sifting through the feeds. Editing the promos." They turned to corner, towards the main editing suite. "Suddenly there's food flying, and he's running around yelling _holy fucking shit_!"
The end of the hallways was lined with floor-to-ceiling windows, each of them tinted. Enough to keep the glare out, but still let tour groups get a glimpse at Where It All Happened. Not that there were any tours during the graveyard shift.
_And thank the sweet Gods for that_, Chen thought. He could see the kid, silhouetted against the stacked rows of television screens. The suite was soundproofed, but the lurches and flailing arms shouted "raving lunatic" louder than words.
Sarah skidded to a halt, and reached for the door.
"Wait!" Chen shouted. She threw him a look over her shoulder. "Are we just going to barge in there?"
"Yes," Sarah hissed, her eyes darting back and forth between Chen, and the plethora of delicate equipment inside the suite. "I'll distract him. You pull some kung-fu shit on him."
"It's judo shit," Chen shot back. And if he'd been keeping up with it, he wouldn't be this out of breath from a quick run. "I--" But Sarah already had the door open, and was through.
The moment the door had opened, he could hear the kids' raving. "Fuck me!" Then, wordless syllables strung together through loose lips.
Chen waited with his back to the wall, daring not to let his presence be known until Sarah could pull off whatever distraction she had in mind.
Sarah's own words filtered through, abating the kid's noise. "Calm down. Calm down. It's alright. You're in a safe place. We want to help you."
Chen stole a quick glance around the doorframe. She'd maneuvered her way between the kid and the screens. His back was to the door. Now was as good a time as any. With knees bent and arms out, he slunk into the editing suite.
Sarah had his attention. She stood before him, hands out, all brown hair and curves and citrus body spray. The kid wasn't moving, but was hardly still. Even from the doorway, Chen could see the kid was a vibrating ball of potential energy waiting to be tipped the wrong way.
The kid tilted his head back, looking up at the screens. His arm swayed slightly to the left. _There!_ Chen saw the opening and took it. He lunged forward, snagged the dangling wrist and twisted. He followed through, hooking the kid's leg, and put every ounce of his overweight into it. They went down together. The kid didn't struggle. Instead, he relaxed.
Chen didn't dare let go of the fetal grapple, no matter how relaxed the body he held became.
"Call security," Chen growled.
"Forget that," Sarah said, shaking her head. "If management gets wind of a work-study hopped up on fuck-knows-what while on duty, you can kiss your outreach program goodbye."
"Like you'd complain about that," Chen said, trying to keep the bitterness out of his voice.
"I may not like working with high-school drop outs," Sarah said through clenched teeth, "But I'll be fucked if this little shit sends the whole program down in flames-- and you with it. We handle this ourselves."
"I--" Chen scrunched his nose. Goddamnit, he wanted the kid relaxed, but not _that_ relaxed. He broke the fetal hold before the kid's soiled pants could seep into his own. The kid rolled onto his back, head lolling, eyes staring at the screens.
The kid wasn't going anywhere. Chen got to his feet. He smoothed down his blue-grey suit, and shook his head. "I chose him. From all the applicants, I chose him." He shook his head. The kid's eyes fluttered.
Sarah put a hand on Chen's shoulder, and gave a little pat.
Chen shrugged it off, and turned his back on the kid. He didn't know how to handle this. He crossed his arms, and stared at the screens, trying to concentrate on anything but the roiling feeling in his gut. Disappointment.
A loop of commercials ran on the kid's station, interspersed with bumpers for the sci-fi weekend. Sarah's viewing station had the live news feeds off the satellite-- all recorded for later reference. The editing station had a few freeze-frames. One, a pillar of fire. The other, a long-shot of a middle-aged woman in handcuffs, face illuminated by the red and blue of cop cars.
"I was deciding on the lead story for the morning news just before," she waved her hand at the kid.
She stood beside him, shoulder to shoulder. "Green-zone bombing, great footage, two dead" Sarah replied, "Or house-wife poisoned the tea of her husband. Report says she kissed him goodbye."
"Local couple?" Chen asked.
"Forget it then. Shift them to third spot. Lead with the bomb. Will you have time to do the segments?"
Sarah nodded. "The kid worked up both before I put him on commercial duty. Grumbled plenty about." She threw her hands in the air, and mocked the kid's voice. "Oh! So much death in the news. Oh!" She rolled her eyes.
Chen sighed, and turned his attention back to the kid. He'd curled up into a ball, and was staring at his own reflection in the looking-glass walls. "What do we do?"
"Belleview's three blocks away. Dump him in the detox, and scram. Let them take care of him."
Sarah cut him off. "He'll get the message. And the others in line in the work-study program-- they'll get the message, too. Come on, grab an arm. We'll take my car."
By the light of the flickering images of all the news stories that could be, Chen and Sarah dragged the kid from the editing suite.
The nurse tucked the chart under her arm, and made her way down the finally quiet hallways. The emergency room was calm at last. With the last of the priority patients tucked away into rooms or cop cars or body bags, the reporters had called it a night and left. All what remained was the bottom of the triage list. One case, in Exam 3. He seemed blasted out of his mind, but--
She knew a dead head case when she saw one-- and this boy wasn't one. No obvious physical trauma, vitals are stable. Something had sent him off, but it wasn't chemical. This one would have to be looked at by the doctor.
She caught a glimpse of the white lab coat topped with scraggly locks of gray hair zipping away from the coffee machine. She hustled to catch up with Dr. Watson.
"Excuse me, doctor, do you have a moment?"
END OF ENTRY
I thought about what everyday thing could cause a bizzare trip like "described" in Rosetta Stoned. And that got me thinking about what other everyday things 10,000 Days contained. And there it was, track 1. The stories of death and misery that completely surround us, all the time, that have become accepted background noise. But when you're the sort of person who _isn't_ a "monster" who doesn't get joy from those stories-- then suddenly becoming hyper-aware of them might be tramatic.
Hyper-awarness caused by a drug trip? Or by over exposure? Or one that lead to the other, in either order? Or both? Ask Dr. Watson. =)