Category Archives: Fiction

Short Fiction

Shimmer #writephoto

between-shimmer

Photo by Sue Vincent

There was a shimmer of light, a shift of the shadows.

The room came into focus.

“Blow out the candles, Mikey!”

It was Mike’s sixth birthday party.  All of his friends were there.  He knew how it would end up, the disappointment and hurt feelings.

The world turned and the light shimmered.

He was in an auditorium full of people.  He heard his name and walked to the podium to receive his high school diploma. As he took it and shook the principle’s hand he could feel the years of struggle and hardship ahead.  One back-breaking minimum wage job after another, often followed by months or years of unemployment.

The auditorium spun out of control, the shimmering and flickering light dancing in strange patterns. Continue reading

Visitor

asian-bus

PHOTO PROMPT © Fatima Fakier Deria

“Here we go, now.” My companion had a huge smile, almost a laugh.

I will admit that I was a bit bedazzled with all of the bright lights and the vertigo-inducing twirling of the people.

And then I saw the funny little vehicle.

It stopped. A door opened and people started to pour out.

And more people.

And more.

I began to laugh. Of course there would be a clown car.  I should have known.

After the last of them had dissipated into the surrounding crowd, my companion pulled me forward towards the waiting tiny vehical.

“This is our bus.”

***

Word count = 100

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

Light #writephoto

Photo by Sue Vincent

It was just after the first real snow of the year. A couple of wet inches, which might be gone by noon or may last all winter, greeted us.  It sure was pertty, that untracked white. I smiled at the sight, though dreaded the cold winter ahead.

A chill ran through my bones as I thought of last winter.  Not everyone lives through winter, see? At least not out beyond the frontier. Yeah, it was pertty an’ all, and I was as happy as the others, but…

“I say winter is here, no matter the calendar tells us. Let’s get our tree today,” Pa said as we stood around gaping the changed world.

The young‘nes whooped.

My mind went back to that cold, earthen mound.

“Oh, what fer?” I asked.

I remembered Christmas in Illinois and the days we actually had real gifts.  Now it was all just stuff Pa made and all. The young‘nes didn’t know no better. And this year, of all years…

Pa frowned his earth stopping frown. Continue reading

Locked Doors

jhardy-storage

PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

Martha sat, rocking, smiling into the sunlight streaming through window.

John sat in the far corner, unnoticed and forgotten for the moment.

Elisabeth tiptoed in and handed John the album. Martha didn’t notice.

John flipped to a random page. A beautiful young woman in a military nurse’s uniform smiled up at him. England, 1945.

He glanced at Martha.

Another random page and there was his and Elisabeth’s mom as a baby. 1951.

Another page. Paris, 1979.

Another page, another memory.

“It’s all there, but the storage doors are locked.”

John looked up. Elisabeth was watching Martha, tears in her eye.

***

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“.

Glass #writephoto

glass

Photo by Sue Vincent

Jay looked across the lake at the distant mountain. Nothing was moving over the glassy water.

Good.

He slipped the kayak into the water, stepped in placing his little backpack on the floor between his legs, and pushed off. After a couple of hard paddles to get the boat’s momentum up, he relaxed into a routine of gentle, quiet, yet efficient strokes.

Silent. That was the key word. Didn’t need anyone to hear, and there were a lot of ears, not to mention the Guardian.

After several minutes, Jay glanced back. The kayak created a small wake as it sliced through the smooth water. Eddies swirled where his paddle had pushed the water back, propelling his tiny craft. The shore was receding, but still near, too close. There was no movement, his theft had yet to be discovered. Continue reading

Nostalgia

rivington-st-shul-roger-b

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

Its doors long closed and shuttered, the place of worship was a reminder of a bygone era.

D stood enchanted, staring at the ancient façade, a hint of nostalgia and regret on his face.

“Come on,” Y said. “We’ll be late.  Why did you stop anyway?”

D just shook his head, took one last look at the temple and followed Y to the gleaming glass tower in front of them.

How different the city was in the days of old; the shifting demographics, the people changing like the seasons.

In some ways D wished that there were still humans around.

***

Word count = 100

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

Glow – #writephoto

frosty-dawn--glow

Photo by Sue Vincent

“Ouch! Damn…”

I could feel the warm glow on my cheek where the twig had slapped me.  I rubbed it. Was I going to get a welt?

Wiping away that unbidden tear – I was sure it was from the pain of the slap not something else – I continued on my way.

“Damn” was right. In fact, it felt too weak for the turmoil surging through my brain.

I pushed another leafless branch out of my way, but was careful this time that it didn’t slip and smack me as the last one had.

I was going to my little private spot on the ridge. “Private”, though it was the worst kept secret in the village.

Perhaps even worse than my love for Anita. Continue reading

Final Battle

I enter a corridor. It is a trap. I know it is, and they know that I know.

A quick scan revels nothing. There are no obvious explosives, no beams or triggers, nothing. Innocent.

I move slow, slow and methodical.

There is a book that talks about moving to blend in with nature so your footsteps cannot be detected, to mimic the wind across the sand. What can I mimic as I feel my way down the giant spaceship’s most important corridor? And yet I know my movements stay below that ½ decibel over background that is so important.

A door. Closed. Locked.

I know I can enter, but at what cost?  I would lose time and make a racket.

I scan as well as possible, yet I can’t tell if the room behind is occupied, there isn’t enough data.

I think for a tenth of a nanosecond and move on. I wouldn’t forget that the door was there, a potential enemy, a menace. Continue reading

Web #writephoto

Photo by Sue Vincet

Mr. Stevens said his goodbyes and left me alone in the ancient manor house. This would be my first night in my ancestral home, and, unfortunately, I’d be spending it alone since Margret was stuck in New York for at least another week.

Father had told me of the existence of the manor, but I had never really thought of it as a real place or ever dreamed I would be the last of my breed and so inherit the place.

Actually, for the most part, Father, didn’t mention his old homeland, but I had once asked him about the manor, being a bit more persistent than usual. He only said that it was owned by Hugh, as was any occupant. He had hated his visits to the ancient house and called his uncle cruel. “Though related by blood, he was no relation to me or my parents.”

I also discovered Father had spent a lot of time there as a child, though he grew up in in distant London. Beyond that cryptic remark about Hugh, he said absolutely nothing about the visits. He had moved to America as a young man and never returned. He hinted that the Alntic Ocean was barely big enough to separate him from his uncle.

Sso this was not only my first night in the old castle, but my first trip over the pond. Continue reading

Encounter with Martha – The Old Mill

The following is a clip from my WIP, The Old Mill – this is NOT a finished draft!

They had been planning the adventure for months. It was a rite of passage in Amesbury, one that had been going on for decades, though every generation thought it was original.

The Five Inseparables were going to visit the Goode Mansion after dark.

Amy Lancing was able to borrow her parents’ car for the evening. Although the quiet one of the group, she reveled in the control that being the driver gave her. And this wasn’t just any night with the car. It was special and she would do everything in her power to make sure their adventure was perfect.

The traffic up the hill from Amesbury was light. Great. Amy took the left onto Miller Road, as she’d practiced a dozen times. She slowed down as she passed the driveway into the mansion and began to scan the woods on the left. Just down a small incline and across a bridge and perhaps another hundred yards there was a turn off into the woods. It was supposed to be secret, but even in her headlights she could see that were many tire prints in and out. Right, the worst kept secret in the county.

Amy turned and pulled the car into the woods as far as she dared. She turned off the lights and shut off the engine.

The five 17-year-old girls piled out of the car, all giggles and trying to “shush” each other.

Amy looked at the other four: Jess, Lauren, Stacy and Kath. She shook her head. They had no clue and would be lost without her. Continue reading