All of the words lived in Merriam Webster’s Dictionary. It was crowded, but they managed to peacefully co-exist.
They held a democratic election that placed “Mastermind” in a leadership position. He ran on a platform of world domination.
The other words were not aware of his criminal past where he plotted to overturn unstable governments using words like “ethnic cleansing”, “famine”, “war” and “corruption”.
One of the first things he did after being placed in office was assemble an advisory cabinet that consisted of doctors and scientists.
The words didn’t understand how this was going to make them all equally accessible to the world’s writers. Their biggest hope was to be able to tell stories. It seemed Mastermind had another agenda they had yet to understand.
He was secretly researching ways to organize the words for a performance art piece he hoped would silently infect the personal devices of the humans with a virus that would stop them from staring at these devices so much. It would be interesting to watch them all panic with no clue what was causing the disruption.
But first, he had to develop a way to get as many eyes on their devices so they could open his files that would expose them to this deadly infection.
He met with his cabinet members to see if they had ideas. They told him about the magic of “clickbait,” and how it could spread by using Facebook, Reddit, Twitter and Instagram. The scientists developed a bug that could be embedded into the stories that would shut down any device where the stories were opened and read.
Under threat of being removed from the dictionary, the words were forced to assemble into stories called:
How to Have More/Better Sex
How to Easily Make a Million Dollars
Get in Shape in 10 days with Little Effort
A Simple Plan to Find Your Soul Mate
Humans unwittingly helped spread the harmful files by sharing the simple secrets to life stories far and wide. They never suspected the words from the dictionary were the culprit as their cell phones, tablets, laptops and computers started to mysteriously shut down.
Meanwhile, the words were seeing how powerful they were. In their community meetings, they agreed they wanted to find ways to work for good. They were deeply disturbed by being forced to tell clickbait stories that spread like wildfire.
The words searched the dictionary for help. They found the word “Hero”. Further down the page, they found “Hope.” Hero agreed to do what he could. He devised a plan to divide the words in the headlines into syllables which turned them into ineffective nonsense. No one wanted to read a story called How to Ea si ly Make a Mil lion Dol lars.