Through the Vortex

sandra-crook (1)

Copyright – Sandra Crook

Archibald revved up the engine and smiled at the sweet sound his beloved motor made.

‘Good God, man.  Are you truly going to pass through the vortex on that monstrosity?’

‘By Jove, she’s coming, Alfonse. Is it ready?’

Alfonse nodded and stepped away from the motor, giving it a long sideways look that spoke envy.  Next to him the vortex shimmered, swirled around like bluish air.

 ‘In three, two, one.  And now!’

Archibald adjusted his goggles, stepped on the pedal and zoomed through the warm air; a tingling feeling consuming his whole body.

On the other end, he blinked his eyes open and gasped.

Other vehicles sped past him, swerved around him; shiny, four-wheeled ones with sleek lines, honking loudly in trumpet-like noises.

Archibald looked down at the motor that used to be his pride and his chest deflated.

Done for Friday Fictioneers.

This week, for the first time since I started participating in this challenge, I decided to relinquish the struggle to keep my words inside the one hundred word limit.  Please forgive me, don’t hunt me down and punish me! The thing is, I had it at 100, but the story was incoherent.  There’s too much plot for so few words; or maybe I’m still too unskilled to pull it off.  Either way, this week I have given you 137 words of Steampunk.  Hope you enjoy it.

44 comments on “Through the Vortex

  1. We’ll give you a note this time, but shape up for next week! 🙂 But there are some pretty easy things you could do to cut words and still keep your enjoyable story such as “revved up the engine, smiling”)–cut one. “Giving it a long sideways look that spoke envy”…”with a long, envious look”–cut three. Anyway, just a couple ideas.


  2. It’s a modern chitty chitty bang bang or Wind in the Willows! Well done, very lively!

  3. Penny L Howe says:

    I liked this so much. Fun for me to read. A terrific romp from reality to fantasy!

  4. Carrie says:

    Poor Archibald…he was so proud of his fabulous motor. What a shock to see the future!

  5. Couldn’t help but deflate along with Archibald’s chest…. Too, too sad for Archibald.
    There’s nothing nicer than to ‘become’ the character… Three cheers to you; I became Archibald. 😉

  6. I agree, a very fun read.

  7. Lyn says:

    Poor Archie. He shouldn’t be worried though, his motor is fantastico and there will be some people with bright shiny motors who gladly swap. Now if the vortex can take him back to the turn of the twentieth century, he could join Modo and the Permanent Society and fight The Clockwork Guild.

  8. camgal says:

    That was lovely..felt bad that his pride and chest was deflated though lol 🙂

  9. All I saw was Emmett Brown and Marty Mcfly – really enjoyed this oh and over 100 (ssh I won’t tell anyone) 😉

  10. Dear Sandra,
    This was a fun read. I could see the poor guy seeing 20th or 21st century cars for the first time and being a little intimidated, but hey, how many of those can travel through time? Clever. I’ll forgive the 37 words…this time 😉

  11. Entertaining and insightful.
    Clever and enjoyable.

  12. Sandra says:

    I really got caught up in this – well done!

  13. jwdwrites says:

    Very funny piece Sandra, I especially liked the dialogue and the names. Poor Archibald, I bet he wishes he had never left his time! 🙂

  14. D’oh. I feel bad for him. Hopefully he can hitchhike back through the vortex. 🙂

  15. elappleby says:

    Great fun and I’d rather see 137 coherent words than 100 incoherent ones!

  16. Joe Owens says:

    Oh how easily our pride can be stamped down! I liked the flow and the transition from a feeling of superiority to nothingness.

  17. This is a fun story. His machine was actually much sweeter….it travels through time.

  18. kz says:

    aww poor Archibald! i still think his time machine’s cool ^^

  19. Alastair says:

    That was fun 🙂

  20. Nick Johns says:

    Loved the feel of this tale, the tone is just right for a certain type of steampunk.
    I started compiling some suggested cuts to bring it down to the 100 and found that Janet had already suggested them. Note to self – must read the comments!

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