barely over 500 words
Tom wake up more dumb than other day bang head on dresser.
“Ow,” Tom say. “I know not to do that.”
Then Tom not know where to go to work. Or how to get there.
“I get less smart last night,” Tom say. “Much way less smart.” Tom try to scratch head. Tom put hand in eye.
“Owwwww,” Tom say. “This day start bad.” Tom think. “I think too hard. My head hurt. Time for walk.”
Sun shine. Sky blue. Each day sun shine sky blue. Tom smile. Nice town. Young girl point at Tom, laugh at Tom.
“Why you laugh at me?”
“No pants!” girl say.
“Stop!” Tom say. Tom go back to house. Tom take dish rag, tuck dish rag in front of shorts. Tom go back out.
“Ha!” Tom say. Girl not laugh.
Tom walk to school. “Work!” Tom cry. Tom keep not think find lab down then down. Room hot. Many box whirr on many rack. Much wire. Man with giant head.
“I know you,” giant brain man say.
“I know you,” Tom say.
“I look for you.”
“What you do!” Tom yell.
“Box work last night.”
“Box that think?”
Brain smile. “Real large comp crunch crunch crunch.”
Tom frown. “Box that talk to void?”
Brain smile. “Yes!”
“No! That not work!”
“Work,” brain said. “You wrong.”
“Box work, yes, but box work is bad! All things break! I think, I break, I break. Chaos up, up up. No free idea!” Tom jump up and down. Dish rag fall off.
“Oooooooooooh,” brain say. “What?”
“Smart box make us dumb.”
“All work out. Black holes. Stuff like that. I write, you read?”
“I read! I say you write wrong.”
“It not work like that,” Tom say. “Can be near then go out! Here more than there!”
“That you,” brain say. “You wrong.” Brain stick out tongue. “Nyah!”
“Look!” Tom shout. Tom wave arms. “More here now! More more!” Tom look. Tom point. “Walk in rack hurt nose.” Tom point. “What three plus four?”
“Errr,” young guy say.
“See?” Tom ask.
“Here! I fly plane vwoosh vwoosh vwoosh me go see mom now crash plane!”
“No no here!” Tom yell. “What in this glass thing? Me take home, ask wife to smell! Cough cough die. Die die die.”
“Oooooh. Bad,” brain say.
Tom look for big grey box.
“Box write down, or box…” Tom grind teeth. “Box keep in head?”
Brain grin. “In head. Think much faster.”
Tom open big grey box pull switch. Room go dark, quiet. In the faint red glow of the emergency exit lights, Tom read the labels on the breakers and swapped the lights back on.
“Well, that should be better,” Professor Van Landingham said. looked around to see the assembled crowd staring back at him. “Let me be the first to propose that as dangerous this phenomenon was, there’s going to be some outstanding papers in it and there’s no reason we can’t all have our names attached to them if we cooperate.” No one responded. He looked down. “Oh. Before we continue, can anyone loan me a spare pair of pants?”