Okay, so I have about too-many-ish short story ideas sitting in my google drive, and I really don't know which one I should develop first. So I figured it might do me some good if I posted a couple of excerpts on here to get some feedback, if possible. Please, comment, critique, do whatever! I honestly just need feedback on which one seems like it has the most potential to develop. I would really, really appreciate it. Anyways, enjoy. Oh, and I'm using the same names for all the excerpts here because they're all really short and I don't feel like thinking of names. Lazy much? Yes, yes I am. #1 [Desc: a couple of girls run a coffee shop in order to take care of their friend who's seen some less-than-ideal things] "It's Friday, you idiots! Come greet the Queen!" Sophia groaned at Joy's overzealous entrance. It's not like she wasn't used to it by now, but hearing the tall girl's shrill imitation of a British accent first thing in the morning was not her cup of tea. She momentarily threw a glare in Joy's direction before resuming her task of setting the tables. "Why are you even here right now?" Sophia muttered under her breath, although it was still loud enough for Joy to hear. Joy scoffed. "Am I not allowed to come in early? You're not the only one who works here." "Yeah, but I don't just work here, I pretty much live here. Isn't it, like, a twenty minute drive over from your place?" "Nope," Joy smirked. "It's an eighteen and a half minute drive." Sophia doubted that she'd ever facepalmed harder. "God, you need to see a doctor, I've never met anybody as retarted as you. Anyways, since you're here, you may as well help set up. Han's in the back room." "Oh, what's she doing in there?" Joy snickered and threw an exaggerated wink in the direction of the older girl. "You've got to be kidding me. She's getting milk, Joy. Get your head out of the gutter, if you even have one." "You're one to talk." "Joy!" Oh yeah, it was definitely Friday. --- The playful banter continued even when Han came out of the back room with a confused look on her face. ("I thought I heard my name?" "No, it was nothing, man.") But Han easily got into the Friday rhythm, she herself starting to spit out random nonsense along with the other girls as they continued to set up the cafe. It was a small place, but it carried the warmth of a happy home and the energy of a city bar. The windows faced the street, which was a less than pleasant view, but the glass sparkled, and small yellow lampights situated above the shutters gave the impression of a sunny day. Several booths were by the windows, and a couple of mismatched tables and chairs sat in the middle of the room. In a corner near the register, there was a small elevated platform - a makeshift stage, of sorts, with a guitar and a microphone. The general vibe was quite homely, and Sophia loved it. She paused in the middle of an insult aimed at Han, lost in thought. The two younger girls gave her a curious look. "You good, man?" Sophia smiled. "Just taking a moment to, you know, appreciate the fact that we have such a nice place. And that I have such lovely people to argue with." A fork flew past her head as Joy glared at her. On the other hand, Sophia caught a fleeting expression of remorse cross Han's features before the shorter girl smiled softly. Sophia sighed, frowning slightly. Of course Han had good reason to be like that, but she couldn't help but be a bit resentful whenever she caught the girl looking at her with pity. It had been four years, after all. The bell above the door jingled, and all three of them looked up. A customer. Han quickly rushed behind the register, all prepared to take care of the newcomer, until she realized who it was. Sophia noticed first, though, and barked out a short laugh. "Quinn, you're late." The highschool student scoffed at the remark, flipping her blonde hair over her shoulder in a pretense of haughtiness. "I don't even work here, Sofa, and of all people, you're scolding me for being late? Unbelievable, a loyal customer getting told off by a fool who never gets out of bed until noon." Quinn made her way over to the counter. "I don't even know why I bother talking to you." Sophia's glare could freeze a flame, but Han just smiled brightly at the young girl before handing her an apron. "Look at you, as sharp as ever." Sophia rolled her eyes before letting herself fall into a smile at the thought of Quinn addressing her by her old nickname. Sofa. "Don't let the kid get too full of herself, Han." #2 [Desc: just an unconventional idiot trying to get attention from some other girl. with the plot I have planned she ends up sending anonymous drawings via mail because she's so extra and yeah, stuff happens, gay ships, did I mention that these were all originally drafted as fanfics?] For any other person, it would have been easy enough to just start a conversation and make a lame joke here and there. But this was the Sophia, and she certainly didn't classify herself as "any other person." No, Sophia had to get the attention of the girl in front of her by ever so discreetly sticking a pencil in her hair, and laughing to herself everytime the girl moved and the pencil swooshed around in the air. That was just Sophia. She was, and always had been, a bit of a social anomaly. Normalcy was never enough for her; she always had to take herself way out there. Whether it was using her gym shirt as a mask to scare people, or digging up papers out of the trash to make random folded shapes, Sophia always managed to fit the description of abstract perfectly. She didn't mind at all. It was, of course, ever so plainly just Sophia. And so her narrowed eyes tracked the pencil back and forth as it swung around haphazardly for a good five minutes before falling out of the girl's hair with a plunk. The girl turned around. "Sophia!" "Han!" Yeah, the girl sure had a name. Han. A lovely name for a lovely figure with a lovely personality; and boy, was she ever so fun to tease. Right now, Han's face was scrunched up in a mock scowl as she stared at Sophia. Cute. "Sophia, did you drop this pencil in my chair?" Sophia let out a loud pfft. And people told her she was dense. "Nope. 'Course not." Han stared at her for a bit longer before sticking her tongue out and chucking the pencil onto the floor. It was all Sophia could do to keep herself from bursting out into manic laughter. This Han. So oblivious. After retrieving her pencil, she carefully stuck it back into Han's hair, and then proceeded to poke the girl in the back. This time, Han turned around with a real scowl. "What is it now?" Sophia grinned. "I think there's something in your hair, Han." The said girl patted around the back of her head, brows furrowed. The longer it took for her to find the pencil, the more Sophia wanted to cry tears of laughter. Seriously, this girl was something. But eventually, Han's hand stopped, eyes widened, and she pulled the "foreign object" out of her mess of hair. "Hey! Sophia!" A hard slap found its way to Sophia's head, and she finally let out her tears; both of laughter and pain. Han was far less amused. "Do you know how much hair I lose in a day? And now you had to go and stick that pencil in my hair - do you want me to be prematurely bald?" Sophia's eyes creased up into crescents, and her grin spanned the entire width of her face. "You - you probably shed more than my dog!" Cracking up at her own joke, she once again felt a sharp pain hit the back of her head as Han turned around with a face of distaste. Naturally, though, it was fake distaste - you could see the laughter in her eyes. And naturally, pain and all, it was worth it. Always, just to see Han smile. #3 [Desc: so yeah um wow depressing space thingy] Most of her memories of her younger brother were livid recollections. She was always angry at him, because - Gods above curse you, Alec - the boy was far too sensitive. He cried over every single little thing, be it a quick snide remark from her mouth, or he got grounded for as little as an hour. Always, every time, he cried. Not even little silent tears, full, blown-out crying. It drove Sophia insane. Maybe it was the fact that she herself was so devoid of sentiment and empathy, or that she grew frustrated with her own complete lack of tears or emotion. But whenever that child started crying, she couldn't help but feel rage bubbling inside of her. What right did he have to whine like that? What right did he have to cry? What right did he have to call her a bully, just for some offhand comment? "You're such a bully!" What did he know about getting bullied? The kid was popular in his school, always getting elected for Student Council, always chased after by hordes of lovestruck girls and surrounded by admiring friends. Sophia was only ever pursued by the kids who threw rotting food at her. She was only ever surrounded by mocking classmates who left her with a shattered self-image and an empty heart. She accumulated scars, as opposed to the chocolate gifts her brother garnered day by day. But she could never bring herself to tell him about her own state of living, and perhaps earn his sympathy. Even though she was almost always upset at him, Sophia cared for Alec more than the rest of her family combined. Desperately, she wanted to protect him. Don't burst his little bubble, let him live out his youthful happiness. Let him be the person she never was, and never would be. It broke her heart to suffer alone, and it nearly broke her entire being. Still, Sophia always wore a jacket to cover her bruises, an indifferent face to cover her shattered heart. That was why she had enlisted. To protect Alec. That was why she now stood at attention, blaster in her hands as they boarded the spacecraft, headed off to some God-forsaken planetary territory that was being bombed by the Empire. To get away from it all, but still feel like she was doing something. The perfect paradox, the perfect shield, the perfect lie. Yeah, that was why. #4 [Desc: well, I think what I had in mind was something about a psychiatrist moving in next door to a troubled girl who never leaves her house, and the way that they communicate is through two adjacent second story windows that have roses growing under them] She leaned out the window and eyed the black mop of hair across the way. "You wouldn't happen to have any good stories, would you?" Sophia's head popped into sight, chuckling good-naturedly. "And pray tell, what's a psychiatrist going to do with stories of mine? Dissect them and tell me how nuts I am?" The Canadian made a crazy sign with her finger and stuck her tongue out. Han laughed. "I could if you wanted me to. But no, I was thinking we could just share stories. I've got more than a few lively haunts up in my little window." A grimace graced her face before Sophia shot back, "Is this another one of your fancy psychiatric tricks?" "Well, if you think about it hard enough, yeah. But I don't tell most of my patients about the time my grandmother chased her husband into a tree with a gun." A paper ball flew from the window opposite Han and smacked her in the face. "What the heck?" "That's what I should be saying to you. What kind of story is that? You're weird." A grin broke out on the psychiatrist's face again. "Of course. I already knew that. So, is that a yes?" A hesitant silence rang out between the two windows, and a gust of wind blew through the rose bushes below. "You gotta stop throwing those corny jokes through my window, though." Sophia grimaced at the thought of Han's terrible humor. She didn't even think biology pick up lines were a thing until she opened her window one day and found another crumpled ball of paper, reading: Are you helicase? Cause you make me wanna unzip... YOUR JACKET HAHAHA. Seriously, Han was the worst. As if Han could read her mind, she chuckled, propping herself up on the windowsill with an elbow. "No promises, love." "You're a terrible person, Han. Fine, we can swap stories. But be a better person." The grin on Han's face only grew wider. "Once again, no promises." "Screw you." "I see we have a deal." A barrage of paper balls flew between the two houses before Han burst into laughter once again and shut her windowpanes with a wink. It was a better day than most. #5 [Desc: literally about somebody who can't open a box to save her life, and somebody else who tries to help her open the boxes] Sophia stared at the contraption in front of her. Small, flimsy looking, yet somehow impossible to properly open. A box of cereal. Slowly, carefully, she reached out and gingerly grasped the cardboard tab which was labeled pull tab. Her fingers then pinched more firmly, in a confident manner. "Sophia, you look like you're about to undertake a life or death mission." Glancing up shortly, Sophia glared at Quinn who was watching her with a more-than-amused smile from across the lunch table. "Yeah, it's just a cereal box, Sofa." Joy chimed in too, only to shiver at the ice-cold stare she recieved from the girl next to her. "It's not just a cereal box, Joy." Sophia's facial expression contorted into one of intense concentration as she focused on the little cardboard tab. "It's a test of skill and ability, a devilish contrivance set upon this planet to weed out the weak, and leave only the strong and intelligent..." Her words trailed off as she slowly started to ease the tab back. The top of the cereal box slowly opened, bit by bit, until it was about halfway removed. Sophia inhaled deeply through her nose, exhaled slowly and deliberately, and pulled back the tab with as much force as she could muster. The sound of tearing cardboard ripped through the tense silence. "Curses upon Kellogg's!" Joy rolled her eyes at the girl who was now staring pitifully at the terribly mangled cereal box in her hands. Quinn just sighed. "Geez, these theatre kids." --- Han heard a yell echo throughout the cafeteria and winced. It really was nothing new; at least she'd stopped jumping in her seat and banging her knees against the table every time that girl screamed. What was her name again? "Sophia! Jesus! Calm down!" Ah, right. Sophia: freshman, skilled dancer, excellent actor, and... eardrum breaker extraordinaire. Every day for weeks Han had watched her try to open a variety of godforsaken boxes, from milk cartons to today's latest disaster - the cereal box. The girl was more than a klutz; her shoelaces were never properly tied, her uniform was always out of place, and not to forget that she could hardly get through the day without dropping something, somewhere, anywhere, everywhere. It was no surprise that she couldn't even open a cereal box without making a mess. But wow, it was really starting to take a toll on her ears. Sitting in front of Han, Will looked up from his book, brows furrowed. "You would think the administrators would have done something about her by now. She's really quite a disturbance." Han nodded wholeheartedly. "I honestly think I'll go deaf if she keeps yelling like that." "What did you say? I couldn't hear you." Han's other friend, Grace, glared across the room at Sophia. "Because some idiot made me deaf already!" The youngest of their trio earned a hard stare from Will. "Good grief, Grace, calm down." "What? I can't hear you." Han giggled at their antics before taking another look at Sophia from across the lunch hall. The clumsy girl was sprawled all over the table, one hand desperately clutching the cereal box. It was quite a comic sight, but then again, wasn't Sophia always? Her hair was a bit of a birds' nest, her uniform completely askew... Han chuckled at the sight before turning back to her friends' conversation. "Yeah, if someone could just show her how to open the god-forsaken box - " Will groaned, almost losing his composure. "Again. Calm down, Grace. It is a good idea, though." Grace threw her hands in the air exasperatedly. "Of course it's a good idea, it's my idea, and for the last time, I. Am. Calm." She frantically gesticulated, catching sight of Han in the process. Han blinked at her. "Anyways - Grace, what's this great idea of yours?" "Ah, well," Grace pointed at Sophia vigorously. "We were discussing a plan to save my holy ears, and I came up with the genius idea of teaching her how to open a box properly." Eyebrows raised, Han turned to Will, who nodded. "That is quite the idea, actually. Although..." She looked at Sophia again, who was now attempting to tie her shoelaces with the help of her two friends, yet somehow, still failing miserably. "... I feel like she might require assistance in more than one area." --- Han buried her face in her pillow, trying to muffle the constant pinging notification sounds coming from her phone. The plotting had turned out to be quite the trying task, and they had gone on for hours texting and calling, making attempts at an elaborate master plan to shut Sophia up. Sophia was such an eccentric character that she brought in far too many extra variables. Good grief, this is hard. Sighing, Han turned her head to the side and peered at her screen. iamthegreatest: k so we still dont know who's gonna do it do we SirWill: If we did, you wouldn't be asking, obviously. iamthegreatest: wow thx einstieng iamthegreatest: *einsgtein iamthegreatest: **ienstein iamthegreatest: i give up SirWill: Even people as moronic as you should know to enable autocorrect. iamthegreatest: CAN YOU NOT READF MY USERnAMe iamthegreatest: and dont even start with that autocarrot stuff iamthegreatest: *eat a carrot iamthegreatest: oh my god SirWill: ... SirWill: Okay. Han sighed. Again. This was going to be a very long evening. --- OKAY WELL THAT'S A WRAP, THAT'S WAY LONGER THAN I EXPECTED OOPS. Um, so I would still really appreciate it if you gave some feedback, and maybe if I get enough good feedback for one and I'm feeling inspired I'll finish one of these thingies and post it here for your reading enjoyment. Anyways, thanks!