Down to the Wire



My first story for the super-fun in which the participant actually spins a digital wheel of sorts; this determines the character, setting, and genre one must include in his/her story. Mine landed on actor/battlefield/sci-fi. The story had to be submitted by 12:00 am Eastern Standard Time. I began writing at 11:45 pm and clicked “submit” with less than 10 seconds remaining–hence the title.

Congrats to Stephen Shires for his winning story which you can read here.

Down to the Wire

T-minus 15 minutes and counting. That’s what remained for perennial Razzie award-winning actor Dick Masterson. It was one of those surreal moments—you know the kind where you put yourself into a situation you know you have no business being in. Like being in a B-movie.

And Dick Masterson had been in far too many of those.

You know, the kind where you can see the wires attached to the space-ships.

But Dick Masterson had a job to do.

He’d leapt to the phone when it rang; it wasn’t his agent as he’d hoped.

It was, as a matter of fact, the president of the United States.


Dick played it smooth. “Yes, Mr. President. What can I do you for?”

“Dick! We need you again. America needs you again. The WORLD needs you again.”

Dick lit a cigarette and blew the smoke into the mouthpiece. Just another day in the life of Dick Masterson. He rolled his eyes and wondered what it could be this time.

“Dick! Are you hearing me?”

“Yeah, Mr. El Presidenté.”

“Well? Can you do it? I’m telling you—. Di— t’s a fu—ing m-ss o—r h—.”

“What!? ”

“Tu—on — te-evis—n.”

Dick did as the commander-in-chief told him, at least what he could piece together.

And there was Ilene Newsready, the sexiest reporter on television. Believe you me, Dick, good ol’ Dick Masterson, knew all about Ilene Newsready. “As you can see…” she said while hundreds of green laser beams from outer space exploded in the distance. She pressed her hand against her ear. “Breaking news. I’m getting a report right now. The president has called Dick Masterson!” She smiled her relief and knowing he’d be watching stared straight at him. He thinked she might have even licked her lips. Lots of ladies licked their lips when they thinked of Dick.

Dick hung up the phone got busy saving the world.

He had less than a minute to go.


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