The Consequences of A Soggy Banana: A Random 'Sentence' Generator Short Story Challenge
After doing so many Random Generator Challenges writing an intro is starting to get difficult. But, I also know we have new subscribers joining us who my not have heard of this challenge before.
So, let me get right to it.
Once a month I challenge myself by using a random generator in which it picks, words, sentences, or phrases I must use in a story. Once in a blue moon, I even bring it a step further, and limit my word count.
I decided to do this challenge to keep my creativity moving forward. Sometimes stories flow, and other times I fight the blank page. But, at the end, I'm happy with the results.
So, for this week, let's see how well I do when trying to use a random sentence.
Random Sentence: It's not often you find a soggy banana on the streets.
The Consequences of A Soggy Banana
It's not often you find a soggy banana on the streets. But somehow every Tuesday I would be staring at one, just one, dropped from the delivery the week before. This banana though had seen better days. The peel once a vibrant green now contained brownish bruised skin with a hint of yellow peeking through. The weather had taken a toll on the thing in the last seven days.
Two crows hopped back and forth pecking the banana every so often until one finally decided to fly off with it. The other cawing after in hopes he would share. I glanced down the alley. Beyond the dumpster littered with trash busy cars flew by with honking horns as pedestrians kept to the sidewalks avoiding eye contact.
I flipped my wrist. 10:18 am. They were late. I scuffed my shoe kicking at some loose gravel. They were never late.
Before I could dirty my shoes more a truck bounced into sight as the tires hit the edge of the side walk. It didn't take long for it to come to a halt in front of me.
"Hey boy," the driver said as he hopped out. His passenger following suit.
"You're late," I replied. After 9 months of weekly encounters this is the most we'd ever spoken to each other. It was better this way though. Not knowing information was better than knowing in this particular case.
"Traffic," he grumbled out throwing open the rear door to reveal hundreds of banana boxes. Without saying another word he grabbed a box stacked halfway in the pile and yanked. The box slid out with the top boxes falling perfectly into place. The driver tossed the box to me which I caught with a low groan as it hit my chest. The passenger snorted under his breath unimpressed.
I glanced at the side of the box. There the tiniest little black spider was stamped in the upper left hand corner. This was my box. I nodded my head, but the men didn't notice as they unloaded several boxes, which they needed to deliver to the market, just beyond the old wooden door I was standing in front of moments ago. Somehow a lone banana was already on the ground.
I walked a few blocks bumping into people here and there but no one seemed to mind as the constant bustle of the city pushed them forward. I knew the route well. Right two blocks, left one block, right three more blocks. My destination was a small metal door covered in graffiti. I turned the key and gave a push. Metal grated across the ground into a small room. I flipped a switch. The dim light flickered on. Inside on a card table sat a backpack and a note.
I grabbed the note scanning it over quickly. As per usual the regulars were listed except for a name I hadn't seen before listed on the very bottom. The coded numbers written beside the name told me to meet the person on Sunday at 4pm in the 6th location. I read the note again making sure I memorized it correctly.
I unzipped the backpack seeing it was empty. Then I sighed thinking of my next step... taking the lid off the banana box. Unlike the cute spider stamped on the side of the box there were bigger creepy crawly things inside. Before I opened the box I placed my left foot at the back of my heel sliding my right shoe off. I slipped my hand inside and stood ready for anything. I flipped the lid.
I peeked inside ready for movement, but all I saw were bananas. Phew!
My encounter with the venomous banana spider happened with my third ever pick up which gave me nightmares for weeks. Upon opening the box, the thing as big as my hand shot out. I screamed like a five year old girl as it scurried after me in the little room. It backed me into a corner and started crawling onto my foot. Finally able to think I quickly stomped as hard as possible with my other foot. When I peeled my shoe away spider guts covered every inch of leather and it took me several minutes for my foot to recover from the stomp. Surprisingly, this same incident had happened one more time a few weeks later, my girly shrieks filling the room. It was embarrassing to say the least.
I tapped the edge of the box a few times to double check any movement but there was none. I sighed with relief and pulled out the fresh bananas. There, at the bottom of the box, were 3 large bags filled with 2oz. baggies of cocaine. Without thinking I tossed them into my the backpack along with the few bananas while crumpling up the list of names and throwing into the banana box.
I cracked the door to peer out. No one seemed to be watching me. I zigzagged through the streets glancing behind every once in a while to double check, but nobody seemed to be following me.
Before my first stop, I cut through an alley to riffle around in the backpack. Using my pocket knife, I was able to open one of the bags eyeing my surroundings from time to time. I stuffed 4 2oz baggies into my pocket and set off towards the first location.
There stood Lizardman as he was called on the streets. It wasn't difficult to spot him since tattooed green scales decorated his body from top to bottom. Apparently, after a night of acid, he was struck with an epiphany that he was meant to be a lizard. The next day he went out and tatted himself in scales. From that day forward he was known as Lizardman to anyone who encountered him.
Even though still new to the game, I was slick with the transactions. I was surprised sometimes at how seamless they were to someone watching.
"Yo, Lizardman! How are you today?" I went in for a quick hand slap and bro hug. As I pulled him in I twisted my wrist upward letting gravity drop the 4 small baggies into his palm while I slid out the money. Nobody would even assume a transaction happened as all took place in the split second our bro hug accrued.
"Good man, good!" He smiled his teeth covered in yellowing plaque.
I would wait before sliding the money into my pocket for safe keeping. It was almost a dead giveaway what just happened if anyone were watching. Once I was a block or so away I would slip both hands into my pockets and walk faster making it seem like I needed to get somewhere important. No one was the wiser.
I continued this throughout the day visiting the regulars and slowly building up some cash in my pocket. By the time the day was over I had gotten rid of half my supply and decided to head home.
"Where've you been?" Pops asked as I came through the door.
"You know every day you ask and every day I tell you the same thing. I was at work," I replied kicking off my sneakers.
"Just making sure you aren't getting into trouble out there," Pops took a sip of his beer and flipped the TV station.
"Yeah, yeah," I slightly punched him on the shoulder with a grin on my face. "Any cool stories from today?"
"Um, let's see... We busted a guy for robbery down on sixth. The security system barred him inside once the alarm was set off. Poor fella thought it only happened in movies." I laughed at my father's story while placing one of those TV dinners in the microwave and hitting 30 secs.
"Oh and Johnson and I got a new route. Someone higher up decided it would be best for us to see some new scenery or stretch our legs a bit. You know what I think? I think someone wants us out. Jealous I tell you. We have the lowest crime rate on our route but that doesn't come without hard work you know. Twelve years on the route and what do they do? Give us a new route because someone can't see people succeed. Johnson and I will show them though. What about you... anything exciting?"
The microwave dinged, "Um, not really? Mrs. Nelson got angry and threw a hissy fit that I put her ice cream in the same bag as her frozen peas. How am I to know only the frozen veggies go with frozen veggies?" I scooped some mash potatoes in my mouth.
"That women sounds like a handful," Pops shook his head.
"She keeps me on my toes for sure, Pops," I finished eating my dinner at the table and grabbed beer from the fridge. I popped the cap off and replaced the empty glass sitting next to my father with the new one. "Cheers!" He held up the bottle.
I snatched the backpack and headed for my room. I hated lying to my father like this, but it had to be done.
A few years back my mother passed away from cancer. Not days after burying her did the medical bills start to pile up. My father, a local city cop, started working doubles to pay for them while I went to school. Every night he would fall asleep on the couch. The commercials from the TV casting shadows across the dark room. Once I turned 16, I knew I needed to start helping. Thus the market job.
The market job did start out as a real job at least for the first year. There I would swipe people's items across the price scanner, beep, beep. I also got a discount on groceries which I brought home weekly. It was something I knew my father appreciated even if he didn't say it.
One day, as I was walking out back to toss the trash, I saw another cashiers smoking a cigarette glancing up and down the alley. He waved me over spying me suspiciously.
"I heard your Pops needs some money," he said sniffling his nose.
"What's it to you?" I asked. "Wait! How would you know that?"
"Word gets around when one of the best cops in this city is hurting," he flicked his cigarette which landed in a puddle nearby. "Here's the thing, I know he's in deep. Barely keeping himself above water. Looks to me like the reason you have this job is to help him out."
I nodded my head not sure where he was going.
"Well, I have a proposition for you. I know the $6 an hour ain't shit. What if I told you I know how to make at least 5 times that per hour?"
"I would think you wouldn't be working here then," I said turning to go back inside.
"It's my front you idiot!"
I wasn't kind to strangers calling me an idiot and was about to tell him off when he pulled out a wad of cash. "This is what I made today."
I stopped for a minute, intrigued. "What do you do?"
From there the rest was history. The next day he took me on his route showing me the bells and whistles. Apparently his folks were moving so the owners of the market needed a new person to run the supply, and I seemed like the guy. After a few runs together I was on my own, and had been ever since.
I threw the backpack on the bed which gave a slight bounce at the weight. I unzipped the main pocket eyeing some of the smaller baggies scattered at the bottom. Beside them my wad of cash. I sighed as I took it out. Pops would disown me if he knew what laid in this bag and that the groceries he ate were paid for with dirty money. He was getting guys like me off the streets while little did he know he should be putting me in cuffs and hauling me off to the station. I counted the money separating my portion from the stack sliding it into a tin can by my bedside table. The rest went back into the backpack which I kicked under the bed. Pops never came into my room so hiding it wasn't really necessary.
The rest of the week went smooth as every transaction went to plan. The little white bags of cocaine lessening in the bottom of the backpack everyday. Every night I would come home to Pops watching TV and me counting the money in my room. It wasn't a great routine but it worked.
Sunday rolled around and the last listed name I memorized a few days back was the last stop for the week. Location 6 was my least favorite spot. Few pedestrians were ever seen in this area making the exchange even more suspicious than it already was. The folks who did hang out in the area weren't the best mix of people either. Shivers ran down my arm as I rounded the corner to the spot.
No one was there which sometimes happened. To make sure they weren't running late I sat down and propped myself against the brick wall acting as if I was taking a break. My stomach growled. Remembering the bunch of bananas I reached into my backpack hoping one of them was still okay to eat.
"Hold it right there!" I heard a voice yell. I didn't have to look up to know it was a cop standing in front of me.
"Take your hands out of the backpack!" He yelled taking a step closer.
Slowly, I started raising them still looking down. As my hands emerged from the backpack I heard a shot ring out. At first the sound of the gun going off made everything slow down for a split second, but then the pain of the bullet hitting my chest erupted. Blood seeped into the my shirt getting larger with every passing second.
I finally looked up. The last thing I remember is Pop's partner Johnson standing in shock. "I thought it was a gun!" he repeated over and over uncertain what to do. The banana I held in my hand slipped to the ground my body slumping with it. Before everything went dark I saw Pops sprinting towards me tears already in his eyes. He was definitely going to disown me.
This one was a little sad, and out of my range of writing which is why I stuck to more stereotypes when it came to the characters. If you are looking for something a little bit happier check out my story My Cup of Tea.
Even though my story ended sadly, I challenge you to the Random Generator Short Story Challenge. Try to use the same sentence I did and see what you come up with!
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