TWA Tournament Round 4 – We Don’t Need No Thought Control

“Gravedigger” by Danny Brophy


“Passengers” by David Webb

TWA 57 Main Card-01Greetings, short story lovers, and welcome to our fourth and final quarterfinal match of the 2015 tournament.

This go-round we have Danny Brophy stepping into the arena. Danny has written tales of a sentient snowman and lost treasure, as well as the Bear Pit favorite, “This Man.”

Battling him is David Webb, who, while not an arena regular, still has made two appearances here thus far handling both Cthulhu and the devil.

Their prompt?

Our mind is your own. At least that’s what most people like to think. And yet ever since Odysseus sailed past the sirens, the idea that others can control our thoughts and actions has been a common one in literature.

We felt it was time for the arena to get in on this action, and so we have made it this week’s prompt: Mind Control. Characters in literature have been controlled through everything from hypnosis to microchip implants. They have become the unwitting pawns of aliens, Svengalis, and North Korea. They have been used as assassins, lovers, and fall guys, all while someone else is controlling their brain.

Our authors’ task this week is to write us a story in which a character’s mind is controlled by another. We don’t care if they go scifi with it and have an alien telepath, or take a realistic approach with a conniving manipulator of emotions. We just want to see someone’s mind taken over by someone else.

Who is the puppet and who is the puppet master?

Let’s find out.

Danny Brophy leads off with “Gravedigger.”

David Webb answers back with “Passengers.”

The Mind Control Match-Up has begun!

We have two judges that will render their decision next Monday. The third vote comes from you, the readers. We ask that you read both stories objectively, and then leave a comment below or on the story itself. Authors are not allowed to comment on their own stories, but we’re sure they’ll be checking in here. We’ll tally up the totals and announce our champion on Monday.

And remember, if you like one of this week’s stories, vote it up in the new all-time best of list (new stories appear at the bottom).


Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply