Tag Archives: ARG

Our 2015 Best of the Net Nominees Are…

Our nominations for the 2015 Best of the Net anthology, which honors literary work that originally appeared on the internet between 7/1/2014 & 6/30/2015, are:

“ARG” – Anthony Michael Morena (short fiction)
“Street Music” – Emily O’Neill (poetry)
“Invocation: Joan of Arc Reads the Crowd” – Jennifer MacBain-Stephens (poetry)
“9 lessons in witchcraft” – Danielle Perry (poetry)
“The Rud Yard” – Vajra Chandrasekera (short fiction)

Congratulations & best of luck to all our nominees, as well as our eternal gratitude for contributing their amazing work to our weird little zine.

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“ARG” – Fiction by Anthony Michael Morena

The Cheerleader - Norman Rockwell, 1961
The Cheerleader – Norman Rockwell, 1961

We’re absolutely giddy to present the first excerpt from our Fall 2014 issue today! “ARG” by Anthony Michael Morena is what you’d normally call “flash fiction,” but we think that’s an inadequate term for this explosive, subversive, wickedly enjoyable story. We think it should be called something like “blast fiction” instead.

{ X }

WE ALL HAVE OUR SPECIAL ROLES TO PLAY. Some of us have cameras. Some of us are handing out leaflets. Some of us are in a van idling across the street, waiting for the right moment. Everything has been planned and everything is going according to plan. We are gathered together at the park. This makes sense.  You would want to launch an alternate reality game in a highly trafficked area. Everything makes sense.

The plot of our alternate reality game centers around the fight between aliens who have infiltrated all levels of society, a cult built around resisting them, and our players. The aliens cannot be recognized on sight. There is no way to tell who is an alien and who isn’t an alien. The distinction between the aliens among us and normal humans will be up to the players to figure out. A player might even consider him or herself an alien. The pretense of secrecy suggests that everyone is being watched.

Everything is set. We have a plot, websites, email addresses, hidden objects, puzzles, codes. The flyers we are about to hand out contain an oblique warning that is actually a clue for where players can find out more. We are dressed in black jumpsuits and riot gear. We are dressed as the hidden threats among us, in Giants jerseys. This park is one of the most highly trafficked parts of the city. Its proximity to subway access and retail markets make it the perfect place to introduce our ARG. Everything is going according to plan. Everything makes sense.

Except for cheerleaders.

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