Miscreants – an ISG Writing Exercise

These three words were chosen:

  • Moon
  • Boxes
  • Snacks

And these blurbs were written within five minutes….Enjoy!



Ophelia wasn’t sure quite what to do.  She pursed her lips and tapped one long fingernail delicately against them as she thought. Jackson had been quite a pain lately.  Nothing seemed to work to bring him in line.  Ever since the moon had frozen and refused to revert from full all the weres and shapeshifters had been irascible. She grunted. That was an understatement.

She looked at the miscreants sitting before her, all lined up in their cages, neatly boxed and restrained and wondered what to do.  She really couldn’t have them eating each other.  She had a plantation to run, and until recently the cats and mice and other critters had all been willing to forgo their shifted persona animosity. She’d made every sort of threat she could, but nothing worked.

In a final burst of frustration, she told them, “In China you’d be a delicacy, a snack for the most discerning palates, and this your last chance!” She felt a certain satisfaction at the sudden silence that descended over the room.

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Joey tossed another box of snacks into the truck’s cab. Technically he didn’t need them, but he always felt better when he had a stack of things to eat.

The moon was high and the air was crisp. It was the perfect night for a run and Joey was especially excited because his new girlfriend was going on the run with his pack. A sort of meet and greet if you will.

It was his first time bringing a girl and he was curious as to how it would go. Being a rat shifter wasn’t always the best or the safest, but they were his family. If they didn’t like her, he’d do his best to get her out of there before they ate her.

He shuddered inside slightly. He had neglected that detail after inviting her to meet them. She was a dog shifter after all, she should be able to outrun them if need be. He hoped.

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“If you would stop staring at the moon, we would have already unloaded all these boxes, man!” Joe snapped at his companion. Gary glared at him, and there was something feral in the look that made Joe uneasy. He was starting to realize how very little he knew his co-worker. “Look, if you didn’t want to come in and help me, you should’ve said so.” He shook his head, willing the feeling away as he picked up another box.

“Yeah right,” Gary muttered, leaning down to grab a box, hefting the weight easily in a way that made Joe jealous. Gary didn’t look big enough to be so strong. Joe wondered if he’d be stronger if he stopped indulging in so many snacks. “And tell the boss’s son no? Am I nuts?”

“I’m not just the boss’s son,” Joe argued. “Tonight, I’m just a co-worker who needed help because Tommy got sick.”

“Sick,” Gary repeated. “More like hungover.” He walked the box into the new house, bounding up the ancient porch steps with way more grace than should be possible. “Besides,” he said, dropping the box in the entryway and moving aside to let Joe set his down on top of it, “this is weird. Who insists we move their stuff only at night anyway?”

“Vampires,” Joe joked, and Gary stiffened, eyes widening and nostrils flaring for a second before his face resumed its normal disinterested look. Gary glanced around the room, seeming to scan the boxes more carefully.

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The Moon Surprise

They found boxes on the moon. After months of testing, and observation and just hundreds of thousands of dollars and man-hours, they discovered what was there.

And the world was in outcry, fear, and above all: curiosity. The implications of these boxes were something to be pondered about in stuffy rooms and with scientists of all fields.

Where they aliens? Had that been what had placed these strange, seemingly plastic containers?

In certain circles, these boxes almost took on a religious connotation. Taken as a sign and an omen and a gift from up above.

Of course, they sent up astronauts. Of course they did. Funding happened in very little time and those brave men and women trained for such flights went up, on the backs of humanities achievements and indomitable will.

It was a momentous day, millions tuned in to the broadcast. It was the original moon landings but in the digital age and with the attention of conspiracy theorists and enthusiasts alike.

The three men and one woman that would go down in the history books approached the boxes and opened them with the reverence that clearly the boxes deserved.

And found that it contained Hairy Ape Snacks, the center of the greatest marketing stunt of all time.

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The moon was almost non-existent. Britta stared out the window at the lunar eclipse, something supernatural should be happening to somebody right now but all she was doing was sitting at home eating snacks. She felt stupid, like something should be happening to her right now. She looked around her dumpy new apartment, still filled with boxes. She felt a twinge in her gut and got excited for a moment, but it soon passed and she realized it was just her stomach gurgling. Damn potato chips. They weren’t very good for werewolves anyways.

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