Category Archives: Fiction

Short Fiction

Sitting in Gate Six

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PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

I looked at my watch.  Had it stopped?  I shook it then held it to my ear, a habit from another era.

Nothing.

The other people looked as uncomfortable as I felt.  How long were we going to be delayed?

I stood and stretched, but really couldn’t go anywhere.  My bags were too heavy to lug around the airport and I didn’t dare leave them unattended – that warning voice sounded dour.

Should I try reading again?

It was no use.

I walked to the counter and asked when we depart.

“Depart?  You’re at your destination.”

I then noticed her horns.

***

Word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  Read more or join in by following the InLinkz “linky“.

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Out of Place – Chapter 2

See Chapter 1

“Eric.”

The female voice calling my name was familiar.

“Eric.  Wake up.  Now!”

Was it Emma, the girl who sat near me in Econ?  She was pretty hot and I was sure she sometimes flirted with me as I talked to her before class.  She didn’t stick around after class long enough for me to find out.

“Eric, hurry.”

I opened my eyes.  It was very dark, but worse than that, I couldn’t focus.  Even the shadows were blurry.  I could barely make out the female figure leaning in close over me.

She had a hand open-palmed on my shoulder and gave me an occasional shove. Continue reading

The Return of Hope

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PHOTO PROMPT © Valerie J. Barrett

Momma made sure Poppa looked good, even ironing his faded work shirt.  He drank his “tea”, really some dandelion greens soaked in hot water, as she fussed about him.

“Now yous show ‘em what you ‘ave.”

It had been a hard year.  The heat and drought of last summer made for a lean winter, then the cold, wet spring has made it impossible to plant on time.  We all counted on this interview.

Long before I’d been born, Poppa worked in the Power Plant.  Now, after more than a dozen dark years, theys a gonna be turning it on again.

**

(Not sure if the post apocalyptic vibe came through…)

***

Word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo © Valerie J. Barrett.  Read more or join in by following the InLinkz “linky“.

Out of Place – Chapter 1

“One, two, three – what do I see?” My words were slurred.  “Four, five, six – stucco instead of bricks.  Seven, eight, nine – to go inside would be fine.  But it is three, four, five and I’ll never return alive.”

I was home for Spring Break.  My college friends were all someplace warm and my townie friends, well, in the two years at University I had outgrown the ones that hadn’t moved on.  They were all like Matt.  All Matt talked about was the “Two H-s”, hunting and hockey.  His eyes blurred if I brought up anything bigger, even local politics. Mention, say, Noam Chomsky, and his face would shut down.

I had been over to Matt’s house, but got bored with his little minded attitude and wandered away.  I soon found myself in front of number 345 Cedar Street saying that little chant I had made up when I was all of 12 years old.  “Two, one, zero – if I do it, I’ll be a hero.” I could see my breath in the cold air.

I had always wondered about old number 345, a wonder that bordered on obsession during my middle school days.

Old number 345, yeah, what a house.

Oddly enough, it sat between 337 and 351, as if an entire block was missing except that one strange, out of place house. Continue reading

Watching the Suns Set

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Photo by PHOTO PROMPT © Ceayr

“One, two, three – what do I see?” My words were slurred.  “Four, five, six – stucco instead of bricks.”

Home for Spring Break, I found myself in front of number 456.

I had never seen a person there nor a light on. Ever.  Who took care of the flowers?  I was about to find out.

I took another sip from the flask before daring the stairs.

I reached the top.  The mystery of “Malibu Home in Minnesota” was about to be solved.

Inside seemed normal at first.  Out of the windows I could see the suns set over the mountains.

***

OK, I get the hint.  This is part 2 of my FF story, though I hope it can be read as a standalone as well…

***

Word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo © Ceayr.  Read more or join in by following the InLinkz “linky“.

Out of Place

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PHOTO PROMPT © Ceayr

As a kid I always wondered about number 345. Oddly enough, it sat between 337 and 351, as if an entire block was missing.  But that was just the start.

Old number 345 was a typical Mediterranean Revival with bold turquoise shutters, a tile roof and adobe walls.  My sister Karen joked that Malibu Barbie lived there.

It was a bit out of place in northern Minnesota.

The flowering plants were great, particularly when it was 20 below zero.

I thought perhaps when the owners moved house, they did it literally.

Of course the truth is far stranger than that.

***

Word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo © Ceayr.  Read more or join in by following the InLinkz “linky“.

The Yearning #writephoto

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Photo by Sue Vincent

Meg crested the small hill and stopped.  A last fragrant breezed wafted up from the ocean as the sun slipped down for the night, causing the sky and water to flame.

Her heart bounded and for a minute she felt like a little girl, full of the desires of youth and pull of the sea and distant lands, the deep unending yearning, the yearning to be someplace, anyplace, else.

She brought herself back to the present and found An watching that same sunset.  She gave a knowing smile and walked over to her granddaughter.

“He’s out there someplace,” she said to the 24-year-old woman.  An didn’t respond.  “Yes, out there beyond the horizon.”

An gave a slight nod.

Meg drew closer to the young woman and watched the last flashes of light play across the water. Continue reading

Another Day in Paradise

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PHOTO PROMPT © Susan Eames

Yeah, Ma, things have really changed since I’ve been here.  These cruise ships now are larger than major cities and are filled with phone-zombies.  You know the type.  Surrounded by beauty and all they see is a screen.  Occasionally they’ll take selfies with their phones, but other than that it is all texts, Twitter, Twatter, and Whatnot.

Everybody is constantly on their mobiles, and I mean everybody.

Wait a minute Ma, someone is shouting at me.

Sorry, gotta go.  I was climbing a tree to get a tourist some coconuts when I called.  Yeah, I’ll post the coconuts on Instagram.

***

Word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo © Susan Eames.  Read more or join in by following the InLinkz “linky“.

Transition #writephoto

Photo by Sue Vincent

I dream of open spaces and sunlight.  I dream of freedom. I dream of adventure and romance.

I dream of her.

This transition has not been easy.  I was always a wild one, forever on the move, forever starting a new adventure.  To be locked away with no hope of escape doesn’t suit my nature.

And the cruelty of it all!  Just across that small courtyard that I can glimpse through an opening that I can never pass pass, just there, always in sight but forever out of reach, is where she is.

If only I could see her one last time, catch a glimpse of her smile.  If only I could hear her melodious voice one last time, I’d be content to settle here forever in my personal prison.  But no! She is kept just out of reach.

It was a dark night.  We had a rendezvous and she was late.  Impatient, I went to her abode to find her, to find why she hadn’t met me as promised.  Stupid, yes, but I was young and in love.

I thought I had entered the gatehouse unobserved.  I thought I had been sly.  I thought I had been crafty.  But he had been craftier, that jealous husband. He was waiting as patiently as I was impatient.  He would catch me.

Before I knew he was there, my throat was slit with the same knife that had taken her life.

I dream of open spaces and sunlight.  I dream of freedom.  I dream of adventure and romance.  I dream of her.

Although 300 years have passed, the transition from living to dead, from physical body to ghost, has not been an easy one.

***

Written for Sue Vincent‘s #writephoto challenge.  This weeks challenge, Transition, is here.

The End of Innocence

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PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

The kids’d a been looking forward to the party for ages.

Got em dressed in their finest and had em outside to play games and drink the last of the soda while Derek packed up what he could and destroyed the rest.  They weren’t getting our things, no way!

“Fireworks for your birthday,” I said when the sky lit up and the ground shook.  The kids clapped at each new blast, but I could tell they were getting closer.

“Going to Nana’s,” I lied as we got in the car.

No going back, I thought as I stroked Em’s hair.

***

Word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo © J Hardy Carroll.  Read more or join in by following the InLinkz “linky“.