The Muse Files

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Here you'll find various questions being asked or ideas being posted. This is all to help you find inspiration. If you've got ideas you can't use just add them here.

Someone finds out that their fiancee/best friend/whatever in under the influence of a horrible monster. But when they defeat the monster it turns out everything likeable about their friend was the monster's influence, and the 'real' person is a racist, sexist, homophobic boorish slob of the worst kind. Either it ends tragically or the main character leaves with the monster.

Shapeshifters Anonymous--weres, Things, kelpies, etc. Speaking of which, are there any kelpie stories on this site? I like them.

In a world where "reformatting" your body is a popular form of self-expression, how does a person that is medically restricted from using the tech survive?

Alternatively… How does such tech become popular? How are the first users of it treated?

Similar to the Paradise setting a "Random Event" effects people, turning them into furs. But rather than being hidden from sight they are in the open. Some persecution is sure to occur, but what if the government took the stance that they were still "human" under the law and extended all protections the law offers to them?

Wierd End of the World Dream:

  • "end of the world" - but a few (one?) - survived
  • how - everything was put in stasis - contained mushroom clouds, etc.
  • why not this person
  • why can survive?! - logically shouldn't be able to
  • why did survive
  • done by aliens to save species since didn't have time to stop the bombs/explosions
  • each stasis bubble seals off own "reality" - but still bound by constants of universe - hero cannot enter bubbles - but can make way between them
  • end - transformed to help save world - why and into what??

  • man into merman transformation via brain transplant - NO - biological"merman" suit taken on expedition to Europa in addition to biological space suits and others
  • taken to Europa to swim in oceans underneath ice and find out what is there - quite deep - covered by ice - close to zero
  • what is there?

One race is surveying planet that is in space between them and another race. Transform into race to go down and see what is going on since have detected advanced weapons fire in early bronze age culture - go down - Kafer/Star Trek scenario - how does it feel to be "energized" by adrenalin? (NOTE: Kafer are alien race from Traveller 2300 -- when they get excited, get an adrenalin rush, they LITERALLY get smarter. Most of the smartness wears off when the adrenalin goes away, but not all)

Non sentient alien swarm (aka Tyrannid/Alien) paste humanity. Humanity flees across the galaxy for centuries to hide and gradually develop enough tech to fight back.

Terraforming of Mars/Planaforming of Humans. Human deciding to be planaformed/planaformed human working on terraforming equipment lured to join 'natives'/other.

SF story about a human using a hightech alien fursuit to spy on an alien culture. In essence "fursuit" is biological lifeform that fully TFs wearer into said alien -- sensations, skin, eyes, senses, etc.

"First in" scout arrives in system. Surveys planet. Animal life is odd - it seems to be very slow and methodical, and always very well armoured. Sends created life form down - created to have simple brain but no mind - it has no problems.

Goes down self - gets out - swarmed by wasps and head "explodes"

Finally wakes up - is now MASSIVE insect swarm. Apparently insects need complex brain neural connections to survive. They also absorb some of the knowledge from the neural connections they consume. His arrival triggered the arrival of massive swarms from all over for the free meal and his mind overwhelmed them. He is now a massive hive but has to survive

How? Hives are normally small because can only really feed off of dead animals. Learns to set traps, etc. and apply intelligence

Centaroid aliens arrive bringing their own planet along with them. There is no apparent means of propulsion. They are creating a 'galactic supermind' [ala Star Maker] to join the Star Maker entity they can dimly perceive now. They part their planet near Earth in the same orbit so that both planets share the moon (which now has a figure 8 orbit). The only measurable affect of their arrival are REALLY strong neutrino detection results in pools. Eventually they come to earth, turn off all weapons, and transform all life in some way to obtain their aim, and will wait until sentience on earth is ready to join the group mind.

POV character is journalist covering the opening of one of the neutrino detection sites.

Alternate plot thoughts: Humanity/other life modified into telepathic non-mobile brains (live by photosynthesis?) -- story could be one man relaying this, and then fighting to maintain his identity as the group mind slowly consumes him. End with him seeing "God"

Genetically enginnered, non-human. Treated as slaves in high tech religiusocracy US (ala Heinlein's interregnum -- same name) Is helped escaped particularly brutal master to be helped escape to Canada Meets various people, escapes patrols, lots of close calls - learns (she thinks) about what it means to be free. Final friends hug -- lots of sadness, joy POV walks into Canada

Is greeted by "immigration", led to electrocution chair. "Sorry, but we have analyzed the threat of your genetic capabilities to humanity. We can't take the chance. It's as painless as we can make it. I'm sorry."

Modified human with some vacuum adaptions, and with arms and hands replacing feet, is officer/commander/watchman of one of six ‘Hohmann Stations’ that exist in an elliptical orbit that also orbits both earth and mars on regular legs of its trip. Freight is transported to the station and latched to it, human cargo is generally carried in stasis).

Has pet engineered cyberetic octopus (lives in air, moves by jet propulsion, can interface with computer hardware, has roughly the IQ of a 12 year old)

Two months ago received unusually large transmission from earth for relay/boost to mars.

Story starts with AI from message addressing our hero. He is taking over the station and plans to reroute it to the asteroids as a base for colonies there

Story is struggle to preserve ship/defeat AI. AI has control of most functions, but critical functions (life support, drive) are locked away and require our hero’s personal activation – AI is cracking the code

Hero has to get to core, force system reset over software overrides – at end AI flees into Octopus, hides, our hero realizes it, and kills the octopus

At end begins growing a clone and prepares to read backup of its neural cortext into the clone to restore it

Person who loses their legs wants artificial legs, but demands hoofed/pawed digitgrade artificial legs

Something gloatingly, joyously human-centric, without irony. Had this knocking around for a while - a kudu is chased across the savanna by a human hunter. It outpaces him, easily, time and again, but every time it stops, he catches up, following its track. Two to five hours in extreme heat. Persistence hunting! Eventually the kudu collapses from exhaustion, heart about to burst, and the hunter, instead of bashing its head in, does... something. Kudu turns into a human, or mostly-human. Not furry - hairless and with sweat glands, a big rounded flat-faced head, elastic feet, hyoid bone, decoupled shoulders, the works. Why?

After the kudu is TFed to human...
...the hunter says, "NOW do you believe that cursorial hunting is a damned effective strategy, Harry?"
...the ex-kudu leaps on the hunter, and highly intimate physical acts ensue (i.e., the whole chase/hunt routine was *foreplay*).
...the hunter asks, "How'd it go?", the ex-kudu babbles about how wonderful the experience was, and the hunter says, "Alright, you've made your point. Next time, *I* get to be the prey!" turns out that the ex-kudu is a criminal who did something horrible to the hunter (and/or the hunter's family), and assumed the kudu form to escape the consequences; the hunter changed the kudu back to be *sure* he had the right one, and after confirmation, he puts a bullet thru the ex-kudu's head.
Feel free to use any or all of these notions... Cubist 20:34, 31 March 2009 (UTC)

To Understand a Dolphin

Part 1: Decision:

  • at dead end in research
  • virtual reality tanks/rich living on through transplants
  • transplant own brain into fetal dolphin shortly before birth
  • discussion with grad students - explanations - thoughts
  • resolution - quote - To Catch a Thief, use a Thief - to Understand a Dolphin, BE a Dolphin

Part 2: Birth:

  • awake in the womb
  • senses
  • learning to use senses and to move
  • struggle
  • boredom
  • birth
  • to the surface and first breath of air

Part 3: Youth:

  • growing up as a dolphin
  • irregular contacts as grow up
  • first hunt
  • leaving mother
  • finding "friends"
  • drifting away from humanity

Part 4: Mate:

  • joining a "gang"
  • "hunt" for a female in a group
  • victory - first pleasures
  • last report - less and less human

Human biologist on Mars. Mars is being terraformed (partially?). Story occurs in great valley roofed over/walled for higher pressure. Life forms are being developed and released to gradually adapt Mars biosphere. One of these forms is heavily modified wolves. Something has started killing the herbivorous animals -- wolves are suspected. Biologist is sent to confirm, terminate wolves (genetic "off switch"?) What REALLY happened is that "something" has been awakened, something highly Lovecraftian/non-human, and it is eating things. Thing attacks biologist, wolves come and save, one looks at her (certain level of intelligence) and basically tells her to GET THE HELL AWAY before returning to the doomed fight.

The Price of Survival

  • supervisor/foreman on orbital construction platform
  • late in shift – goes by airlock where the new organic (shudder) suits stored for C shift – show hatred, distrust, quesiness
  • disaster – collision alert – hatches sealed – trapped with suits
  • doors hiss shut – jerks of vector changes – lights go out – restart dim and red
  • now what?
  • wait for rescue – try radio contact – nothing – but should be safe *but had vector change – could be on collision or in decaying orbit
  • opens door and looks at suits – description – horror - stories
  • wait or not to wait?
  • would be stupid to die over a little fear – should be safe – but….
  • part of him starts to wonder what it would be like
  • goes over to largest EVA suit – reaction gas bladders are full on suit
  • how much air left? How much power? Starts to feel hot – a vac suit would be wonderful
  • creeps forward and touches largest one – warm, inviting, alive
  • suddenly clam shell front opens…
  • shoves self back into wall (freefall) – hot to the touch – breathing heavily
  • no choice
  • backs into suit
  • reaction – skin crawling – slides arms into slots, legs into slots *air is getting very hot – creaks and groans in metal in background
  • settles in – not too bad – but still open
  • afraid? – how to seal? – sweating now
  • panic? – can’t move arms – tries to wiggle fingers – touches something – suit seals…
  • NO! – tentacles, goo in lungs, etc.
  • then fine/free – moves around – no problem – wish knew how to use reaction jet – can sense them but… - then drifts into far wall – so that’s how – feels like farting
  • makes way to airlock – opens inner and then outer door – in space – fear, sensation, feeling
  • makes contact with rescue stick – gets ready to jump out – there is a collision/explosion likely soon
  • then pauses – just a minute – remembers the other suits – better rescue them too…

Two high tech races infiltrating primitive world. Each posing as "god". Objective is to gain theocratic control of culture, instill a technic society, and advance their techbase sufficient to join the respective empires. Done this way so that the world "seems" to do it on their own, to maintain the "cold war" status between the two races and not escalate the situation

Astronaut working on orbital construction. Accident of some kind? Has air and environment, but no jets, no safety rope, nothing to push against. A multi-tonne girder is drifting *SLOWLY* towards him -- will *SLOWLY* crush him (Why can't move? Trapped somehow?) Psychological story about his reaction to pending unstoppable death. Live at end? How? Push against girder somehow? Give enough of slow gradual vector change so that girder will only crush leg?

Zombie Apocalypse Extreme, or how your dreams tell you that you watch too much Stargate: Atlantis. Story is about survivors of a Zombie Apocalypse. They are trying to survive/get somewhere. Region they are in is flooded, some kind of ground subsistence (from nuclear strikes/earthquake). Are attacked by "super zombie/wraith" that is smart, fast, STUPIDLY TOUGH, and sucks out your life energy. Find one, somehow manage to kill it. Survivor group includes at least one military. End up on island surrounded by shallow water -- top of underground parking garage. At some point lost one character. Hope they got all of the "wraiths" - manhole covers pop open, another superzombie/wraith comes out -- it's the former character. Kill it due to grenade sacrifice of another survivor but military type is bitten/infected by virus vector. Radios base, states area MUST be nuked. Absolutely. More superzombies come out, surrounding him, waiting. He can feel the change. He keeps talking in the radio as mushroom clouds appear on the horizon. "Got you, you bastards". Rest move forward-- nuclear annihilation.

Writer is woken up and grabbed by military and whisked off. Turns out alien has landed, and the description matches EXACTLY a book that said writer got published recently. Questioned, taken to observe alien -- alien sees him/her -- "You!" Turns out alien/human are somehow linked -- either by third party, soul sharing, or whatever. Alien whisks human off as he's needed to fulfill some task?

Person becomes animal chimera in order to be "legally non-human" in order to get a lethal injection because of some incurable disease

Boy gets turned into a puppy and ends up being the pet of the girl at school that he likes.