“Those Magic Muffins” – Final Part

* sorry about the delay in releasing / finishing the rest of the story, but I have been pretty busy lately. So at long last here is the last part of the ‘short’ story…..

Jimmy suddenly woke up with a start on his living room couch. He had no idea how long he had been sleeping. And he had no idea why he had slept on the couch so early in the morning. It was afternoon now and Jimmy was a little off still. He soon regained some of his senses and started to slowly remember what had happened earlier. He remembered the rats had eaten his magic muffin, or at least the most of it. What they had left Jimmy himself had finished off, and that was when he passed out on the couch. He still felt a little sickly and his stomach was jumping in cartwheels inside of him. He sat up and soon after this he felt just a little better. And then he started to remember all of his fears about the rats growing to gigantic proportions. And then he suddenly felt sick again. He knew that he needed a game plan to deal with this situation. He was getting ready to put on his shoes when he remembered that his left foot had grown larger than his right foot. His left foot was the only thing that had grown so far. He thought about it for a while and then decided to try again to put on his shoes. But it was not no use, because he could not fit the shoe onto his overgrown left foot. So instead he put on flip flops, which still fit.

While in the middle of thinking about what to do about the giant rat problem, he suddenly saw a rat run across the kitchen. It was still normal sized, but looked aggressive somehow. Jimmy Footballs was still concentrating on this when his phone rang. It was his landlord. He was late with the rent and he had completely forgotten about it. He made some excuse to the landlord and hung up. But then he realized that he did not have enough money to cover the rent for this month. Mainly because he had spent so much money on the magic muffin. Suddenly a new plan formulated in his mind. Why not just move out and leave the apartment to the rats? He considered this strategy and realised that he did have other places he could move into, even on short notice. So he began to box up as much of his stuff as he could. He only packed his most important stuff. He would leave the food and other crap that he really didn’t need behind, he decided. He made a phone call to a friend who owed him a favor and asked for help in moving. And it was agreed. Then he called another friend in another town who had room for a roommate and asked if he could move in. The answer was yes, much to Jimmy’s relief. Jimmy sat back in the couch and was well satisfied that his game plan was a good one and that it would be successful. But then he remembered that he still had not considered his uneven sized feet problem.

After a short period of thinking about it, Jimmy realized that his only alternative was to buy a pair of shoes of the larger size. So he headed to the local shoe store and soon found a suitable pair of shoes that were the larger size of his left foot. And he bought the shoes. A little while later his friend helped him pack up his stuff and after moving most of his things, drove him to his new apartment. For the next few weeks Jimmys life slowly returned back to normal. The only thing that still wasn’t right was his left foot was still longer than his right foot, but this did not bother Jimmy as he had gotten used to it by now. A little more time went by. And Jimmy’s life was by now back to what he would call normal. Then one night Jimmy was watching a news program and was a little intrigued when he saw a teaser for a story about giant rats that were taking over buildings in a nearby city. Jimmy wondered if this had anything to do with his apartment. So he waited for the story and was surprised to see that the very building that he used to live in was in the story. He was even more surprised to learn that the rats had grown to about the size of large dogs. The one photographed by this news channel was about the size of a German Sheaperd. And Jimmy knew that he was ultimately responsible for this infestation of giant rats.

‘Those Magic Muffins’ Part 3 – by Shane Zentz

Jimmy Footballs slept very well and had some really unusual dreams too. In his dream, he ate the magic muffin and immediately grew to over ten feet tall, way taller than he wanted to be. And also in his dream he just kept growing and growing and growing, until he was over fifteen feet tall. Too tall to even get out of his apartment, let alone to drive his car or play his guitar, which looked like a child’s little toy in his hands. He realized that this was becoming a nightmare because he could not get out of his apartment, he couldn’t even stick his head out the window because it had grown too fat. He needed to crawl on his hands and knees just to move about in his apartment and even then he was barely able to do it. He dreamed that he fell into a deep sleep and when he awoke he heard the faint sound of someone knocking on his apartment door. The knob seemed so small to him that at first he was not able to turn it, but with some practice and work, he was eventually able to do it. The door swung open and he saw a very small looking figure looking up at him. This figure then got a very frightened look about their face and screamed, then turned and ran away. Jimmy started to sweat profusely. He then started to panic. It was just then that he awoke from his dream in a panic and in a puddle of sweat as well. He wiped the sweat from his brow and slowly raised himself up in his bed. He looked around his bedroom and everything seemed to be right, just the right size. He then looked down at himself and realized that he had not grown to over fifteen feet tall, but was still around five and a half feet tall. At first he was a little relieved, but then he was a little disappointed that he did not seem to have grown at all, even though he had already eaten a sizeable portion of the muffin.

Jimmy went through his normal morning routine, the usual, the three S’s. But after all of that he was getting dressed when he realized that something was not right, his left foot seemed to be a few inches longer than his right foot. And he knew that his feet had always been symmetrical and even, but now that did not appear to be the case. The more he studied his left foot the stranger that it seemed to him. And now he compared it to his right foot again, side by side. And sure enough it was at least three inches longer than his right foot. Jimmy scratched his head and thought about all of this for a few seconds. He wondered if first his left foot would grow and then maybe his right foot would grow and then to be followed by the rest of his body. That must be it, or at least he hoped that that was it. He put his right shoe on first, he always put his right shoe on first. Then he went and tried to put on his left shoe, but the fit was really tight. Too tight. He could not squeeze his left foot into the shoe. ‘Oh Well’, he thought. Who needs shoes anyway. So he went barefoot this day. It was no problem because it was a Saturday and he had nowhere to go and really nothing to do, so being barefoot would not be any kind of a problem. He just hoped that his right foot would grow to match his left foot by Monday when he would have to return to work, otherwise he would have to buy a pair of shoes and only utilize the left one. So, Jimmy made his way to the kitchen to have his breakfast, and he did so barefooted.

He nearly spewed when he fixed his eyes on the large box that contained the magic muffin. He could very clearly see that some rats had eaten several holes into the box. He was shaking his head back and forth as he approached the box and continually saying “no, no, no”. He arrived at the box and slowly peeled back one of the top flaps holding the box closed and glanced inside. He realized that his worst fears were becoming realized before his eyes. Rats had indeed gotten into the box and not only that, they had eaten away the most majority of the magic muffin. just then he began to think about what could happen if indeed the magic muffins actually would work. He could go from having an average rat problem to having an enormous rat problem, the kind of problem that one would very often see in those cheesy horror movies from the sixties and seventies. He went from being very angry at the rats to then being very scared that maybe they would grow to a monsterous size. And rats that are that large would obviously have the run of his apartment, he would simply have little or no say at all. All of this thinking about very scary things had given Jimmy quite an appetite, even though the thought of rats eating his muffin had destroyed his appetite only seconds earlier. Down at the very bottom of the box was a tiny little piece of the muffin left, just enough for breakfast, Jimmy thought. So he picked it up and looked at it. He could not see any rat crap on it or anything like that, just little rat teeth marks on it. So, ‘what the hell’, Jimmy thought, and he ate the magic muffin down in just three quick bites. He let out an enourmous belch and suddenly felt very queezy and quite ill as well. So he went to his living room to think about what he should do next…..

"Those Magic Muffins" Part 2 ….. by Shane Zentz

Jimmy Footballs recruited the help of a few friends to help get the giant muffin back to his apartment. It was a strain and a struggle but with a great effort the stinky muffin was home. Jimmy also needed the aid of a gas mask every time he opened the box that contained the muffin. He had convinced his friends that he had purchased a used washing machine because he did not want them to know that he was going to eat this smelly muffin in order to grow taller. And they seemed to believe him, although they did comment on the funky smell eminating from the large box. Jimmy later went to the liquor store to buy some strong spirits that he knew he would need in order to eat the foul smelling muffin.

After returning from the liquor store, Jimmy quickly took a few drinks. He drank enough to start to get a nice and mellow buzz on, not flat out drunk, just a numbing high. Enough of a high to be able to stomach the stinking muffin. So then he took out a plate and a fork and a knife and made his way over to the big box. He opened it and the pungent smell slapped him square in the face causing him to back up and almost causing him to fall over backwards. He regained his composure and told himself that it was only a muffin so how bad could it be? He then cut a good portion from the giant muffin, about the size of a large steak. He noticed how it was large and heavy but it was also spongy and pretty easy to cut. Although when he cut into it it seemed to stink even worse. Jimmy walked over to his small dinner table and sat down with plate in hand and a very unsure look on his face.

Jimmy steadied his nerves with another drink. He then built up his courage enough to be able to cut into the muffin that lay before him. He cut off a reasonably sized bite, not too large and not too small. He examined the piece of muffin that was nailed to his fork carefully. Then he smelled it and when he did he noticed that it did not really smell that bad if he smelled it close up, but as soon as he pulled it away from his nose the horrible smell returned with a vengance. He closed his eyes and opened his mouth and as steadily as he could he raised the fork to his mouth. Then he inserted the fork with the piece of muffin on it into his mouth, being careful not to touch his lips to the muffin itself. Then he suddenly bit down onto the fork and just as quickly pulled the fork out of his mouth, leaving only the muffin in his mouth. He chewed quickly and almost out of control, as if that would somehow make it better. When he was through with the wild chewing, he commanded his throat to quickly and powerfully suck the food down into his stomach.

Jimmy waited to see if he was still alive. And sure enough he was! He waited still a few more minutes to see if he would have any kind of reaction to eating the bite of the stinky muffin, but he still felt fine and above all he was still breathing. He considered the taste of it and realized that it really wasn’t half bad, or at least not as bad as he had expected. Once he realized that it was not killing him and that it did not taste half-bad, he devoured the rest of the muffin on his plate as quickly as he could. Then he finished his whiskey as well. He walked confidently to his sofa and sat down and turned on the TV. Minutes later he still felt fine, but did realize that he was getting very tired very quickly. So he turned off the TV and walked to his bedroom, where he practically collapsed onto his bed and fell immediately into a deep sleep.

Bad Benz

Bad Benz

by Shane Zentz
It started to shake. Only just a little at first, but then, more and more. The air wistled through the cracks in the windows and windsheild. The lights of the others passing lit up the interior. The whole body shook with a dip in the road. The suspension was suspended up and then suspended down, and on so down the road. The smell of burning oil and rotten old metal filled the air inside the car. More shaking and more shaking, and I keep saying, “Just a few more miles, just get me home”! A strange noise eminated from the rear of the car. Somewhere from the rear. An odd noise. A noise never before heard, from this car or from any other. Was it a sign? Was the car finally dying? Would the car make it home? There was that noise again. Only a little louder this time. More threatening. Another light on the dashboard. A new warning light this time. One that has not come on before. One whose meaning was completely unknown. Was it a serious issue or something minor? Did it have something to do with the new noise coming from the backseat? More cars pass by as if the Benz was standing still. Still more cars go by. The Benz is still going, very slowly and very, very unsurely, but still going. Somehow still going. Only a few miles to home now. “Only a little more to go now, just keep going”, I say to the Bad Benz. More smoke coming from the rear of the car and the engine seems even more sluggish now. Sputtering every so often as if trying to take it’s last exhausted breath. How much further could it go? Would it make it home?