In 10th grade, I had the good fortune to make a few good friends in the midst of the painful social experience that is being a shy new kid in a private school where the other kids pretty much grew up together. My friends and I more or less did our own thing. Once you accept it, there's liberation in realizing you'll never be cool.
One of our hobbies was writing round robin stories. If you've never done one (you don't know what you're missing!), it's when one person writes a sentence or two, passes it on to the next person to add to, and so on. It can be a collaboration between two people or amongst several; most of ours were 2- or 3-way collaborations. There was no set story arc, and characters tended to appear very much at random. Video game characters mingled with manga characters and rubbed elbows with historical figures, pop culture figures, fictional characters from stories we'd both read and written, a few of our classmates, and idealized representations of ourselves. I don't know if they ever appeared in the same stories, but Hwoarang, Michael Jackson, Rufus Shinra, Kyouya Iida, Hideki Tojo, the Backstreet Boys, Richard Simmons, and Sephiroth all had cameo or starring roles in the stories at some point.
I mentioned the "no set arc" aspect of the stories very deliberately. With no set direction, a practically unending cast of characters to choose from, and only rarely a unifying theme, the stories could go on ad finitum. I think one epic spans 18 wide-ruled notebook pages. We usually found a way to finish them off in more timely ways, though. One convention became an oft-used favorite: "And then they all died. The End." This did the trick for a while, until someone decided she hadn't finished with a particular subplot. So magical resurrections entered the picture, beginning with something like, "But then, suddenly, __________ appeared and..." It was drama at its finest, and soap opera writers could've learned a thing or two from us about improbable and contrived resurrections.
We scattered a bit after that year, one friend to public high school, another to home school, and me to part-time classes at the community college. We scribbled a few more stories here and there, but they eventually began to lose the spontaneity that the originals had. We can go back and re-read them, finding humor in the inside jokes and drama that pervade the stories, but something's just not the same. The humor now stems from the memories conjured by the stories, not the stories themselves. There's no going back to that time, to that carelessness, to that complete assurance that--in spite of our peers and poor teachers--our friendships could alleviate and withstand the most trying of circumstances.
Sometimes things just come to an end. And there's no miraculous resurrection for an epoch that has run its course.
More takes on this prompt can be found at Sunday Scribblings.