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Famer's Story-Writing Debate Round #1 Zaradi vs. Drafterman

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/3/2012 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,775 times Debate No: 22557
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (27)
Votes (3)




"I thank my opponent, Drafterman, for taking part of Famer's story writing debating tournament. The basic idea of this debate is that both sides must together write a story. Whoever creates the most interesting continuation/orientation/conclusion of the story wins the vote for "most convincing arguments"

Rules of this debate:

8000 characters maximum
72 hours for time to argue
7 days voting period
Yes to voting comments

Points for spelling and grammar are awarded as per usual.

There will be no points awarded for sources.

However, as the rules of the tournament goes, if any of the debaters forfeits a round (unless both forfeits an equals number of times), they will, by default automatically lose all 7 points as a result.

Good Luck!"

Title of story: Running out of Time


When I came to, I realized that I wasn't in the greatest positions of all time. I was tied to a metal chair, with plastic zip-ties chaining my wrists to the arm rests, my ankles to the legs of the chair, and a large, leather belt constricting my chest to the back of the chair. I was immobilized, and was unable to move in the slightest, save for rotating my head around to be able to view my environment. And view I did, although there was very little to actually view. The room I was in (room, more like a prison cell) was all plain, gray, metallic-looking walls with one window that reflected my sorry mug back at me. Boy did I look like hell; my normally well-kept, average length, sandy blonde hair was looking like half of it had been scorched off, my face looked like some professional baseball player took batting practice on it, a cut roughly an inch above my left eye seeped blood out of it, trickling down past my hazel eyes and down my face. My clothes, a formerly gray tee-shirt and a pair of dark-blue denim jeans, looked like I had pulled them out of a dumpster filled with shards of glass and knife blades. Overall, I looked like I was having an absolutely splendid day.

The sound of a door opening suddenly came from directly behind me, the one place I could not turn my head to see, and quickly a blindingly bright light shone in my face from the ceiling. It was not long before my eyes were watering from the glaring intensity of the source, and I had to squint really hard to be able to see anything in front of me. And what all I could see, which admittedly wasn't much, was not very pleasant.

Two men stood there. I say men very loosely, as I couldn't figure out their gender from what little I was able to see of them. The first one seemed of average height, with a square face and a grim look plastered all over his face. The second seemed abnormally tall, with a round, overly enlongated face. He didn't look very bright, but from the size of his body, he appeared to be well-built. Definetely two people you didn't want to meet in a dark alleyway in the middle of the night.

"Is your name Alex Miller?" the first one asked me, his voice sounding similar to that of gravel being thrown into a blender and being set to 'blend' for an hour. As weak and hurt as I felt, I didn't want to give in that easily, even to a simple question. "What's a name to you? Why do you think that's my name?" I retorted back cockily, a sheepish grin spreading over my abused skin.

The fist came crashing into my face at horrifyingly fast speeds, almost faster than that of what a human could possibly ever punch. It felt as if a big-rig truck had just rolled over my face, backed up over it once more, and then ran over it again to make sure that I was in enough pain. My head snapped hard to the side with the impact, but my head was the only thing that moved, since I was pinned to the chair. "Don't play games with us. We know your name is Alex Miller. You're an eighteen year old brat with an unnatural ability. You're an abomination." the first one said again, his voice sounding like a perfectly blended stone smoothie.

'So that's what they're after...' I thought to myself, already somewhat tired from the constant light into my eyes. It was almost so bright that I could not see the numbers, but they were still there. Partially obscured, but still clearly legible. They were always there, no matter what I tried to do to get rid of them. It was unnatural, but far from being an abomination. In my mind, I thought that they were probably just mad that they didn't have it and weren't as cool as I was.

"So if you know everything about me, then what am I doing here?" I asked them, relatively curious as to what the entire point of this capture and interrogation session was for. Again, another swift blow, this time to the solar plexis. I was able to tell that it was the second man delivering the blows this time, but it didn't lessen the pain I felt any more. "You're not the one asking the questions. You're going to answer ours, or there is going to be some major consequences to this. You don't want poor, poor Ryan to be hurt, don't you?"

At the mention of the name, the sheepish grin that was originally on my face vanished from the face of the earth. Ryan? How did they know about her? Did they have her? They couldn't have her. Then again, if they knew about her, they probably had her too. He couldn't let any harm come to her, no matter what! "If you touch so much as a hair on her head..." I warned them, which only got a hearty chuckle from both of the knuckleheads in front of me. "Or what? You're going to spit at us until we die? That doesn't work." the first one stated, the bigger one simply laughing. "Yeah, 'wut he said." he posited, his voice sounding like a stereotypical mentally challenged adult man, deep voice and all. As much as I wanted to get up and beat all of their asses, to make them regret taking me and taking Ryan, I knew I was in no situation to threaten and bargain. I had to do what they wanted, or they would hurt her. I couldn't let that happen. "What do you want." I grounded out, teeth clenched in frustration and rage.

With this said, the bigger one moved out of sight. "Why, that's simple. I want you to recount for me your life story. From start to now. Tell me about you." he stated, apparently pulling something up and sitting down into it, perhaps a chair or stool? This only just got me to laugh a bit, as I realized what they wanted. They probably already knew everything about me, why did they want to hear it again. "You already know everything about me. Why do I have to tell you anything?" I questioned, highly curious as to the reason for this question. The one guy shrugged, at least it looked like he shrugged. "Don't know. Well, besides the fact that the girl you swore to protect at all costs, even your life if necessary, is in our possession, and we could make her experience rather unpleasant. Or, you could be a good little boy and help out, so that you may even go free. The choice is entirely yours. Personally, I wouldn't mind dirtying up that pretty little face of hers. She's quite the looker, you know." he threatened, and I knew he had me beat. He could say whatever he wanted, and get away with it as long as he had her in his possession. I was powerless.

"Fine, fine. You want my life story? Fine, you'll get it. I'm Alex Miller. I was born in Pampa, Texas with the ability to see time expire with my bare eyes, and this is my story."


-- Five Years Ago --

“ Three… two… one…”

The elevator next to me dinged and the doors opened. Greg and Hank groaned and left the elevators they had claimed, each pulling out their wallets to hand over their hard lost cash.

“How do you always do that?”

I managed to force a smile. Under any other circumstances I’d be glad to take their money. Guessing which elevator would open first was a game we always played whenever we were in a building. It was a game I always won. This time I just wish it wasn’t the elevators at the hospital. We stepped inside and pressed the button for the fourth floor. ICU. Intensive Care Unit.

How can I manage to always guess correctly? I really can’t say. I’ve always had an intuition about such things. You know the phrase, ‘He was in the right place at the right time’? Yeah, that’s me. I’m the guy that’s always in the right place at the right time. More importantly, I’m never the guy that’s in the wrong place at the wrong time. If something good is about to happen, I’ll be there and, chances are, it’ll be happening to me. If something bad is going down, I’m miles away.

I never considered that there was something special about me. I just had a knack for guessing when things would happen. I’d know exactly when to gun the car as the light turned green. I’d be the first out the door when the bell at the end of class rung. The best part was, I always knew when the starter gun would go off and was the first to start down running down the track. Never had a single false start.

People always just called me lucky. I really couldn’t argue with them. There wasn’t anything specific I was doing, so it wasn’t skill. I wasn’t particularly good at anything, so it wasn’t talent. But the consistency that I was “lucky” always nagged me. Was there someone else that was just as unlucky? Or, worse, did I have a cache of bad luck just waiting to catch up with me? These bouts of luck had been happening as long as I could remember, but it was only recently I decided to start testing it systematically.

About a year ago I started subtly suggesting certain games with my friends. Drop a ruler and see if I could catch it, the slap-hands game. I couldn’t lose. It’s like there is this timer in my head. If I focus on some event, the timer counts down. When it reaches zero, the event happens. I’m not making the event happen, I just know how long till it happens on its own.

After those kid’s games, we started to make it interesting. I’d bet them when a certain number would come up on the roll of a die or draw of a card. I’d have them set egg timers to various durations and they’d bet me I couldn’t predict when it would go off. And, of course, there was our elevator game. I couldn’t say how much money I’ve taken from them.

When I was satisfied that I could accurately predict these things, I started raising the stakes even more. Instead of catching a dropped ruler, I had them drop steak knives over my outstretched hand – with my eyes closed. They were reluctant at first but when I poured enough of my dad’s liquor down their throats, they were willing to do anything. Well, almost anything.

The height was train dodging. No amount of alcohol could give them enough courage to come with me on this one, so I had to go it alone. I spent the entire night standing on the tracks. Aside from the obvious, lingering on train tracks is especially dangerous because the speed of the train is deceptive. It approaches a lot faster than people ever realize. That wasn’t a problem for me; I always knew how fast the train was going. Obviously I was never wrong, or I wouldn’t be here to tell the tale. The only thing that stopped me was when the cops arrived. Apparently someone had tipped them off that some fool was trying to get himself killed. I guess it was good that I was long gone by the time they got there.

I wish I could say that this part of my story had a happy ending. When you can predict any event, it gives you a sense of invincibility. I believed that nothing could harm me. The problem was, I stopped thinking about other people. Like I said, I never thought of myself as special, so I forget that others can’t do what I can. It’s a selfish, stupid excuse, I know, but it’s the truth.

I guess that brings me back to this hospital, with me, Greg, and Frank riding up the elevator to the ICU. The lingering amusement from our game down on the ground floor is long gone. Their reactions were probably as forced as mine was. We’re going to visit my father. He was involved in a rather horrific car accident. He was hit by a car as he was trying to cross the street. On top of that … it was my fault.

We live close enough to the school that it was within a feasible walking distance. Every week or so dad would come by and we’d walk home together, taking in the scenery, shooting the sh!t. Father-son stuff. There’s a somewhat busy road we have to cross and, one day, without thinking, I just darted across. Dodging cars is nothing when you’re used to trains. I didn’t even think about the fact that this would scare the sh!t of my father. When I heard him yell I turned around and… Well, knowing when any event is going to happen doesn’t matter if you can’t get there fast enough to stop it. All you can do is sit there and watch. Specifically, sit there and watch your father get mowed down by a sports car as he’s running after you because he thinks that you’re the one in danger.

We get to the floor and sign in at the nurse’s desk and head to his room. When we arrive, he’s gone; The room’s empty. I page for the nurse who then gets the doctor. I pace nervously until the doctor arrives and takes me to his office.

“Alex, I’m afraid there’s been a complication…”

As the doctor explains to me that some bullsh!t complication has resulted in my father’s death the room starts to spin and I fall out of my chair. More than just the death of my father, this is the first time that something has genuinely taken me by surprise. The doctor patiently waits for me to stop vomiting into his trash before continuing, but I’m not listening anymore. My thoughts turn back to me and how I didn’t see this coming. I didn’t see death. I can’t see death.

Debate Round No. 1


I have to forfeit due to time constraints.
Please give the win to con.


I couldn't tell you how long I was sitting on the window ledge in my father's ICU room. I was too busy thinking about jumping. Was this a fluke or could I not really see death? Out of all the stupid stunts I pulled, I only did most of them because I figured, if there was a real chance of me dying, I'd know ahead of time, I'd see that timer inside of my head, ticking down to my grave. How many times did I come close without ever realizing it?

As much as I thought about jumping, no timer appeared. Would it only work if I actually jumped? Was this some aspect of reality that would remain hidden to me? A voice from behind me broke my train of thought.

"Please don't, it'd make a hell of a mess and they'd probably make me clean it up."

I couldn't help but smile, but I didn't turn around. I didn't want her to see either my tears or my smile. I was brooding and there is nothing worse than when someone successfully cheers you up when you want to be miserable. This didn't stop her from walking up next to me, leaning out of the window.

"I'm sorry about your father."

I looked over at her. You always hear about the stereotypical sexy nurse but no matter how often I visited a hospital, I've never seen one. They were mostly old maids whose appearances no doubt encouraged people to get healthy quicker than normal. She was neither, which is to say that she was pretty, but clearly not the type of girl that would just seduce random strangers. The uniform left a lot to the imagination, but it was her face I was looking at. She had smooth, fair skin, her face framed by shoulder length brown hair. Her eyes were a striking sky blue. She was looking straight ahead, and not at much, of which I was thankful. I'm not sure I could have beared her looking at me, but I'm sure she knew I was looking at her.

After a few minutes of silence I was able to muster a reply, "Thanks."

I looked back out the window. The hospital parking lot four stories down was rimmed with a single line of trees. Beyond that extended large fields of farmland stretching to the horizon, forming large grid squares separated by roadways. The sun was behind the building at this time of day, giving us a clear view of the landscape before us. We sat there in silence for some time.

"You shouldn't blame yourself."

"Is that what the script says?"

She finally looked at me, puzzled. "What script?"

"The script they teach you to read when dealing with suicidal people."

"Are you suicidal?"

I gave the question some serious thought. My previously musings had been primarily academic, I'm not sure I had really considered the possibility until she asked just now.

"No... But it's still my fault."


"Because if I hadn't been stupid and ran out into the street without thinking, he wouldn't have come after me and gotten hit by that car."

"Ok, so it's your fault. Now what?"

This took me aback; it was my turn to be puzzled - and angry. I glared back at her, meeting her eye-to-eye for the first time, "Excuse me?! Aren't you supposed to be comforting me? You know, talking me down from the ledge?"

She turned to face me more fully, "You said you weren't suicidal, so I don't need to coddle you, do I? You said it was your fault. From what you describe, it is your fault. So the question is, 'What are you going to do now?'"

I wasn't sure how to process this. This isn't how it happened in the movies or television. People just didn't confront you like this. It took me a while to get past the instinctive indignation and actually process the question she was asking me, but my anger still tainted my words.

"I don't know. It's not like I'll have to have a chance to not run out in the street and get my father killed. I'm all out of fathers!"

"Don't be obtuse. Did you learn anything?"

"Yeah, look both ways before crossing the street."

"Don't be sarcastic. If you didn't learn anything then your father's death is meaningless. If you did, then, as tragic as this situation is, you can still come out being a better person than you were going in. What did you learn?"

The room was suddenly hot as blood rushed to my face. I couldn't explain why she was making me so furious.

"I don't know! Think before you act? Consider the effects of your action on others?"

She interrupted my tirade, "Were you usually an impulsive, selfish person?"

"I... what? What kind of question is that?"

She merely looked at me. As I looked into her eyes I realized that I was becoming less angry. I couldn't explain why. Maybe some primal guy instinct that said: if I ever wanted to have a chance with her, I'd better be nice. Paradoxically, the less angry I was, the more angry I wanted to be. I wanted to explode and here she was, defusing me.

Finally, I sighed, and looked down, "Yeah, I guess I was."

"And now?"

"I don't know."

"Good. I you don't know, then that means you have the opportunity to change. You know what you did wrong. So sit here and indulge in some self-pity for a while but, when you're done, you're going to have to keep living your life. Life is all about mistakes. If we don't make mistakes, we don't know what we're doing wrong. This mistake, yeah, it's a pretty big one. So make sure the lesson you learn - and apply - is also big."

She placed her hand on my shoulder and smiled softly. She then walked over to the wall opposite the ICU beds and began erasing the whiteboard hanging there.

"But, don't take too long with that self-pity thing."

"Why? Because life will pass me by?"

"No, because more patients will be coming into this room in a few minutes."

She turned and gave me another smile before walking out of the room. I looked up at the whiteboard, it said:

Nurse On Call: Ryan
Debate Round No. 2


Zaradi forfeited this round.


I think it pretty much goes without saying that I became infatuated with Ryan. Not consciously at first. At first I was working on getting my life back together. But at least a few times a day I'd think about me sitting on that ledge and what Ryan told me. Initially I focused on her words, the message she gave me, and I did what I thought I needed to do to get in line and live my life. To learn from what I did.

However, once I was on that path and that message had sunk in, I wasn't thinking about the words anymore, I was thinking about her: her face, her eyes. She couldn't have been too much older than me. Besides, while I may have learned a lesson, that didn't stop me from being a cocky teenager. It didn't take me long to rebuild my self-esteem. Having a supernatural ability didn't hurt either.

Now, I'm sure you want to hear a story about how I climbed over hill and dale and honorably battled dragons to earn her love. Fvck. That. I exploited my ability. I'm the guy who's always in the right place at the right time, remember? When she got off work, I was there. Surprise! Remember me? What a coincidence that we met at this exact time. Want to go get a cup of coffee? Oh, hey, fancy meeting you at this park or random stop light on a random street. I was careful not to overdo it. I didn't want to look creepy. Just enough to get her thinking about me.

Fair? Probably not. But as I had recently learned: life isn't fair. If you have problems with me using my abilities in that fashion, well, it's about to get worse. You see, she wasn't exactly single. She had a boyfriend at the time. Competition. As you know, I win competitions; I don't lose. I wasn't about to lose this. It helps that the guy was already kind of an a$$hole. He was older than her, drank a lot, and was out at bars with his friends a lot. Unfortunately he didn't really do anything that crossed any lines. He didn't hit or her cheat on her; he was just generally a jerk.

So, what's a guy to do? Well, when you can know when anything is going to happen, it's rather easy to orchestrate events of your own choosing. Events like: bar fights. All a bar fight is, is having enough people drunk enough to fight for no reason in a confined space at the right time. Usually doesn't happen because people are constantly coming and going, putting everything in flux. When you know how long it's going to take a person to get drunk enough to fight, and when they're going to leave, some subtle stalling here and there is enough to bring things to critical mass. If it's any consolation, it really wasn't that hard to get this jerk to throw the first punch.

And that was the first domino. Everything else just kind of slipped into place. First he was arrested at the bar fight. Later he'd be ticketed for speeding (pretended to have my car stalled and blocking a side street that he normally drove down, forcing him to drive down another street with a cop); arrested for drunk driving (temporarily "borrowed" his keys forcing him to stay at the bar and drink more than his usual amount); and arrested assault on a neighbor (stealing his newspaper without anyone ever catching me). As you can imagine, this only exacerbated his pleasant nature. It wasn't long before Ryan ditched him and left her available for other, more friendly guys. Like me.

Now, this isn't some sappy romance story, but Ryan is a pretty big part of my life, so I think it's important to explain how she got to be a big part of my life. All in all, after about a year of meeting her, we were going out on a steady basis. But what you're really thinking is: how the hell did I end up in the situation I'm in now?

-- One Year Ago (from present) –

"Three… two… one…"

Ding. Ding. Ding. Jackpot.

21st birthday. A milestone. Perhaps the milestone. Drinking. Gambling. All of the good things that I was probably already doing but now didn't have to hide the fact that I was doing them. It was also a special milestone for me in particular. One of the things I had been dying to try my ability at was gambling. Yeah, I gambled informally with my friends but that hardly counts. I wanted the big bucks. I wanted to go against the big players. The Casinos. As certain of myself as I was about other things, this actually scared me a bit. You always see in the movies how the Casinos get the last laugh. I had no doubts I could win; my fear was that I'd end up with my head in a vise at the end of the night.

The excitement of the challenge and desire for cold, hard cash won the day. Ryan and I went to Vegas over a holiday weekend. It wasn't hard to convince her to go; she hardly got to use any vacation as it was. Though this would make things a bit trickier for me. I hadn't yet told Ryan about my ability yet, so I didn't want to make her suspicious. Plus, I wanted to earn enough money to buy a ring. Yes, a ring. We were getting to that "Sh!t or get off the pot" phase and I wasn't going to get her something cheap.

We got to Vegas and I played fairly at first. That is to say I didn't use my ability to my advantage. First, I wanted to see if it would even work (it did). Second, I didn't want to arouse suspicion just yet. We got in somewhat late, so it wasn't long before Ryan headed to bed. I stayed behind.

I had it all planned out. First phase: Slot machines. These things were all over the place, giving me a greater chance of finding ones that were closer to hitting a decent jackpot. The random factor apparently didn't affect my ability to see this. Also, it didn't involve human interaction, so there was less of a chance I would arouse suspicion. I paced up and down the aisles, looking for a good machine. I was afraid I would stand out, but apparently there are a great deal of superstitious people that do just that, watching the machines and sniping them out from others. They wait until a person gets off of a long losing streak and then they pounce on it, believing the fallacy that it'd be more likely to win. Me, I was looking for a relatively decent jackpot that was going to happen within a few minutes.

Part of me hoped one of the huge jackpots would be coming up soon, as I could just win that and end the trip. Unfortunately, none of those jackpots were going to come up during my stay, so I settled for a $1,000 jackpot in the next 5 minutes. I sat down at the machine, plugged my quarters and, five minutes later – Jackpot. My heart was racing through my chest. I quickly went to redeem my prize for cash and call it a night but, at the last minute, I decided to get chips instead. It was time to move onto the next phase of the plan.

Second phase: Blackjack. I sat down at a $20 table. This turned out to be even easier than the jackpots. Blackjack already has one of the best odds for players (that is, as close to 50/50 as you're going to get). All I had to do was wait until I was going to be dealt a winning hand and double down. After a few big wins, though, I could tell the dealer was getting to be a bit suspicious. Apparently certain types of bets alert them for the possibility of card counting. A few dirty looks from the dealer was enough for me to grab my winnings and leave. My winnings being almost $10,000. It was time to move onto the next phase.

Third phase: Poker. Here I'd test myself against other players, rather than the Casino. I wouldn't be cheating in any sense that they could detect, so they really wouldn't care how I was winning, so long as I was taking other player's money and not theirs. I was starting to get bold so I made my way over to what I considered a high rolling table. $100 minimum bet sounded nice. As I headed over to the roped off area I felt a hand on my shoulder.

"Mr. Miller. I think we need to talk…"
Debate Round No. 3


Why are you still going? XD

I already ff'd. I didn't think the idea was THAT good.


My heart sank into my chest. I knew I wasn’t being as careful as I could have been, but I didn’t think I was being that obvious about winning. The man wore a dark grey three-piece suit with a red tie. If I had to guess I would say he was in his fifties with mostly grey hair. He had a slight smile, as if to give off the impression of friendliness, but I could tell that was just a mask.

I tried to imagine escaping. What was the count-down? A couple hours. As we walked, some others joined us. More guys in suits. By their height and bulk I could tell that they weren’t here for their intellect. They escorted me to one of the elevators, the thugs hanging back a few steps behind us, one on either side.

When we stepped into the elevator he took his hand off of my shoulder. He reached into his jacket and pulled out a key card. He swiped a magnetic reader on the panel of the elevator and then pressed an unmarked button. He put the card back in his jacket and turned to me as the elevator began to descend.

“What exactly do you think you’re doing here, Mr. Miller?”

I swallowed. This is what I feared. The Casino caught me. Or, at least, they suspected me, which was just as bad. As far as I knew, they were the law around here. They could basically do whatever they wanted to me. I had considered this possibility and had prepared.

“Nothing. Just here with my family. Enjoying Vegas. I hear Circus Circus is a great place.”

“You seem to be doing well at the tables.”

“Me? I think you’re confused. I’m not even old enough to gamble, I’m only eighteen.”

“Then why do you have that chip there?”

The 10k chip. Before heading to the poker table I consolidated my winnings into a single chip. I just wanted to see what it would be like to hold a ten thousand dollar denomination chip and to see the look on the dealer’s face when I handed it to him.

“Oh, this? Just a souvenir I had my dad get for me. Something to take home, ya know?

“That chip is worth ten thousand dollars. Quite the expensive souvenir.”

I slipped the chip into my pocket. The following silence was awkward.

“Listen, I don’t know what you think I’ve done, but I get it: your house, your rules. So, just let me go back to my room and grab my things and I’ll be out of your hair.”

“Oh. You think I work for the Casino? You think I’m here because you’ve been cheating? Well, yes, I’m here because you were cheating, but I don’t work for the Casino.”

Before I could respond the elevator stopped and the door opened. He placed his hand on my back and guided me out of the elevator. The decoration here was in direct opposition to the brightly colored Casino floor we just came from. It could have been any office building anywhere in the country: fluorescent lighting; bland, off-white walls; tiled floor and ceiling; unmarked doors; drab.

How long till escape? 2 hours. Either things were going more slowly than I perceived them, or my chance to escape depended on me taking some sort of action, but what? We walked along the corridor coming to one of the unmarked doors and he reached around me to grab the handle.

Something possessed me at that moment. Maybe it was some intuitive function of my ability or just gut instinct, but I knew if I entered that room I wouldn’t be coming out again. As he reached around me I slammed my elbow into his stomach. I followed through and pressed all my weight into him, pushing him to the opposite wall. He was larger than I, and I was no fighter, preferring to use my ability to get out of or prevent physical confrontations. It was only through the sheer element of surprise that I was able to take advantage of the situation.

Time To Escape: 1:59

I pulled away and he doubled over, gasping for breath. I turned to dash toward the elevator but stopped after a few steps. I went back to the man, who was now on his hands and knees. I gave him a swift kick to the stomach again and he fell onto his side. I knelt down and reached inside his jacket. I felt for a pocket and pulled out the key card. I ran for the elevator.

Luckily, it hadn’t move from this floor, and opened as soon as I pressed the button. I swiped the card and pushed the button for my floor. Once the door closed did I collapsed back against the walls of the elevator, holding my breath until I felt it begin to rise. I prayed that it would go straight to my floor without stopping. I closed my eyes and just concentrated on the movement of the elevator and picturing when it would stop. It was no longer a game this time. 5… 4… 3… 2… 1… Ding. The doors opened to an empty hallway on the 10th floor. My floor.

Time To Escape: 1:55

I ran down the hallway, to the T junction, turned right and ran some more. When I arrived at our room I slipped inside, closing the door behind me. Instinctively I latched all of the locks. I began to hyperventilate. The situation was out of my control and I couldn’t handle being out of control. I really hadn’t learned my lesson. Ryan’s lesson. Ryan! I went to the bed.

“Ryan, baby, wake up…”

I kept my voice a whisper, trying to hide my anxiety.

“Ryan, you have to wake up, we have to get out of here.”

“Hm? Alex? What’s going on? What time is it?”

Time To Escape: 1:44

“I-I don’t know. It’s late. Something’s happened and we have to go.”

“Huh? I don’t understand, what happened?”

I moved from the bed and turned on the desk lap. I began gathering our things. Ryan was finally starting to wake up, and was getting nervous.

“Alex, you’re starting to scare me. Tell me what happened.”

“Baby, I can’t explain it right now, it’s too…” Fvck. What the hell could I tell her? “… It’d take too long. Just trust me; we have to get out of here now. Help me get our stuff together.”

She watched me as I continued to pack. I could tell she was getting pissed at me. Not only was I cutting her vacation short, but I had somehow how gotten into a mess that I wasn’t telling her about. That was nothing compared to the mess we’d be in if we got caught. They knew my name, but the room was put on Ryan’s credit card. Hopefully they didn’t know about her. Yet.

Eventually she got out of bed and started helping me back. In what I had to presume was record time, we had everything crammed into the two suitcases we brought. I took hold of both and headed to the door.

Time To Escape: 1:35

I opened the door and looked out. The hallway was still empty. I turned left.

“Alex, the elevators are the other way.”

“Uhm… I think it’s out of order, let’s take the stairs.”

“We’re on the 10th floor!”

From down the hallway I heard the faint ding of the elevator. I turned and began quickly walk toward the stairs at the other end of the hallway, rolling the suitcases behind me.

“Trust me, Ryan, we have to go!”

She stood, furious, but eventually followed, catching up with me. I opened the door to the stairwell and lifted the suitcases up by their handles. As the door shut behind us I thought I could hear a faint knocking on one of the room doors. I gave Ryan a look, trying to express what I couldn’t put into words. A look that, hopefully, would engender enough pity to get her to follow me without too much question. Thankfully, it worked. I hefted the suitcases down ten flights of stairs while she fumed quietly behind me.

Time To Escape: 1:16

As we exited out onto the first floor I went for the main exit. I hoped whoever was after me wasn’t going to make a scene in a public area like this. All I could focus on where those double glass doors. Once past the doors, I went straight for a waiting taxi and tossed the suitcases into the trunk and dove into the passenger seat. Ryan followed.

“Ok, we’re out of the hotel. You better have a good story for all of this.”

The taxi driver closed the trunk and rear doors and climbed into the driver’s seat.

“Where too?”

“The airport. How long?”

“In this traffic? About an hour.”

Time To Escape: 1:00
Debate Round No. 4


Alright. FFing so that Drafter can continue.


Needless to say, while I escaped then, it didn't last for very long. I told Ryan that the Casino had suspected me of cheating and were going to come after me. She didn't believe me until I showed her the chip. I'm not sure if she thought I stole it or that I actually did cheat, but she decided it was likely that they were going to come after me. Between the antics of the weekend, and the fact that some mob group was going to be hunting me, we thought it'd be best if we broke up.

It wasn't an altogether horrible adventure. It's not hard to get what you need to survive with my ability. You can always avoid the people you want to avoid, such as the police. You know when people are going to be gone and when they're going to be back. I basically just wandered around for the better part of a year. When I thought the coast was clear, I headed back to find Ryan.

That was a mistake, of course. I never told them about Ryan, but I figured they would have learned about her anyway and keep an eye on her. I just didn't think they'd stick around for that long. I kept the idea of me getting recaptured in the back of my head. The numbers were pretty much random from day-to-day. One day it'd be ten years, another it'd be a month. Taking specific actions can drastically affect the ETA for any given event I'm trying to predict, especially if I'm trying to avoid that event.

I stood in front of her door. The ETA to being recaptured was six weeks. I raised my hand. I knocked on the door. The ETA dropped to 30 seconds. By the time I consciously registered the sudden drop, the door open. It wasn't Ryan.

-- The Present –-

And now, here I am, getting beat to sh!t and back by some thugs. I told them everything I just told you. I'm not sure if they believe me. After I'm done my story, they leave. I hear muffled voices coming from the door behind me. The door opens and they return. I feel movement on the back of my chair and suddenly the belt around my chest is gone. The not-so-bright thug comes into view, wielding a knife. My heart starts beating faster as he bends over me, but he merely uses it to cut the rest of my bonds. He folds the knife back up and puts it into his pocket, stepping back to join his partner.

"Mr. Miller, we finally meet again."

The grey-suited man from the Casino comes into view, walking around to stand between me and his lackeys. He is dressed the same as he was that day, as if I never escaped and we were in the room he was trying to lead me to then. Hell, for all I knew, we were in that room. I groan.

"Dude, what the hell do you want with me? A year? Really? You have nothing better to do than to chase me for a year, for what? I measly 10 grand?"

He smirks.

"This isn't about the money, Mr. Miller. This is about your ability."

Having told them my story, I couldn't exactly deny it now.

"So what? Who the hell cares?"

"We care, Mr. Miller. You are a threat."

"A threat? To who? Like I said, I used it to get some money. The Casino will make it up in no time."

"You think we're doing this because of a mere 10 thousand dollars? Grow up, Mr. Miller. Let me tell you a story: There is no agreement today as to the exact causes of the Crash or the Depression, but a general assessment is that it was the due to social, economic, and political factors that came together at a time close enough together to trigger this effect. This is what your history books will tell you. This is not entirely true.

"In response to the Crash, president Hoover commissioned the Treasury department to look into the causes covertly. Secretary Mills created an off-the-record group of agents to determine the cause. While investors come and go on the market, there was something about the exodus before the Crash that reached a tipping point, and they determined what it was.

"As it turns out, it was a person with your ability. Just as you applied it to some petty gambling, he applied it to the stock market. He foresaw the Crash and the Great Depression and attempted to get out of the market while he could. His departure was accompanied with no small amount of doom saying, which triggered a chain of events that led to the mass exodus of a number of investors, contributing to the Crash. Without him, some sort of recession or depression might have happened, but it is clear that his actions resulted in it being a lot worse than it actually was.

"The results of the Great Depression: Unemployment. Starvation. War. You have the ability to walk down Wall Street and disrupt the world's economy and pit entire nations against each other. Do you really think anyone gives a sh!t that you won at blackjack, Mr. Miller?

"Your kind always attempts to exploit your ability for monetary gain. We watch certain economic sectors, including gambling, for tell tale fluctuations that identify the presence of your kind. And yes, before you ask, there are others like you. More than we would like. Our job is to find you before you can do any harm, and eliminate you as an unstable element."

He turns his head to glance back at the thugs behind him and gives a nod. They disappear from my view and come back, carrying a small table and chair. They set the table down in front of me and the grey suit sits in the chair opposite me.

"However, there really aren't that many of you to keep this game interesting. So I've decided to make it interesting. We know that you can't tell when someone is going to die."

He reaches into his jacket and pulls out a revolver. He opens the cylinder and took out 5 bullets, then closes it and gave it a spin. I roll my eyes.

"Seriously dude. Why don't you just shoot me? If you want me to die, just put a bullet in my head. This is cheesy movie stuff."

He looks back at me and shrugs.

"Like I said, I like to keep things interesting."

He places the barrel of the gun to his temple and, staring straight at me, pulls the trigger. Click. He places the gun back down and slides it over to me.

"Really? What's my incentive to do this? Do you really expect me to believe that you'll let me go if I ‘win'?"

He shrugs again.

"Clearly what you do after I am dead is none of my concern. Rest assured that while I am alive you are dead either way. This is your only chance."

I pick up the gun.

"And what stops me from just pulling the trigger enough times to kill you right now?"

"The fact that you don't know what is going to happen. You rely on your ability so much that, even though the rational part of you knows that if you pull that trigger enough times a bullet will come out, your reliance on your ability and your inability to see my death prevents you from accepting that conclusion on an emotional level. You can't function unless you know what is going to happen. Your best assurance is to play the game until one of us is dead."

I put the gun to my head. I pull the trigger. Click. I push the gun back over to him.

He smiles as he picks the gun back up, places it to his head and puls the trigger again. Click. My turn again.

I pick the gun up and look at it; I bring it up to my head again and wait. He just stares at me, waiting. Finally I drop the gun and point it at him.

"You're not wrong about me; I do rely on my ability."

"Then what do you think you're doing?"

"Realizing that you are wrong about something."

"What's that?"

"I can't see death. Not directly. But I can see other things. I can see when this bullet will actually fire. I don't know if will kill you, but I think if I'm pointing the gun at your head when it happens I have a good chance."

"Clever, but you're bluffing. I've seen this a hundred times. I know you better than you do."

"Listen, I'm going to give you the option of just walking out of here and letting me go. It doesn't have to end like this."

"I call your bluff."

The numbers counted down before my eyes.

3… 2… 1…

I pull the trigger.
Debate Round No. 5
27 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by drafterman 4 years ago
Thank you, Zaradi.
Posted by Zaradi 4 years ago
I'll FF it form my iPod. I'll still make the time limit.
Posted by BlackVoid 4 years ago
Zaradi if you don't post, the debate won't show up on the front page and will therefore get 10% of the views it would have otherwise. I mean, its just 7 letters you have to type :/
Posted by drafterman 4 years ago
Uhm. Ok.
Posted by Zaradi 4 years ago
I gotta put up the DP for the Burn Notice games and post other arguments. And I only got 45 minutes to do so.
Sorry, but you're gonna have to wait.
Posted by drafterman 4 years ago
It is typed up. That's my point, I'm ready to C/P it now. And it's closer to two hours. :(
Posted by Zaradi 4 years ago
Dewd, it's one hour left. I'm just gonna let the time run out xD Go ahead and just type it up on word or something so you can c/p it.
Posted by drafterman 4 years ago
Ok. I'm ready, you can forfeit now.
Posted by Zaradi 4 years ago
Alright, I'll let the timer run out.
Posted by drafterman 4 years ago
Also, sorry if the latest installement wasn't as refined as the others. I wanted to get it in and done before the weekend started.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Buddamoose 4 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Wow, too bad Zaradi FF'd so as per the rules of the debate, the win goes to Drafter. Otherwise, both of you are great writers, and I absolutely loved this story.
Vote Placed by TUF 4 years ago
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Freaking Loved it. I love draftermans writing style, and loved his story continuation. Props to Zaradi for the great Idea, and props to drafterman for fantastic twists and a great surprise ending. I could generally see this being an actual story book. I am thoroughly impressed. I wish zaradi had continued as I enjoyed his writing style as well, though it's hard to say his was better than draftermans, or drafters was better than his. Either way, a lot of effort was put into this by drafter. :0
Vote Placed by BlackVoid 4 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro FF's. Drafterman's story was also pretty intense, I read it in 1 sitting.