Category Archives: Fiction

Short Fiction

To the Other Place

Landscape

This is now the 24th chapter of “Of Wind and Wings”.  See the table of contents here.

“Hey… Grubb… let’s take… a bit… of a breather.  …OK?”

Without waiting for The Grubb to respond, Ed stopped and leaned against a large rock.  He tried to remember the last time he was as out of breath.

Nothing came to mind.

“Sure thing, Mr. Ed.  We can stop for a minute if you need to.  It ain’t far.  Just over this rise here and down the other side.”  The Grubb sounded as fresh as if he were sitting on a sofa.

Ed looked up where The Grubb was pointing.  They were near the top, but was almost a cliff to get there.  The odd thing was that there were clear paths around the protrusion they were scaling.

“Hey Grubb, why do we have to go over this rock again?  Why can’t we just go around?  It looks far easier and will come out in the same place.”

The Grubb let out a large visible sigh, as if dealing with a small child.  “I told you before, Mr. Ed.  The place we are going to isn’t a place like you think.  It’s a place in a different place.  It’s beneath.  And we have to go this way to get there.”

“Going up to go beneath?  I’m still…” Continue reading

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Beneath #writephoto

beneath

Photo by Sue Vincent

This is now the 23rd chapter of “Of Wind and Wings”.  See the table of contents here.

“You seem awfully distracted this evening.”

Ed jolted himself back to the present and smiled.

“You have a good day with The Grubb, then?” Liza asked.

“Yes.  We went up into the mountains this afternoon.  It was lovely.”

Ed’s mind drifted back to the mountains, to the little lake with its pure, clear waters reflecting the high peaks.  He had sat beneath a tree just enjoying the peace and quiet while The Grubb studied a leaf.  Ed decided that this would forever be the place he would go in his mind when he needed to relax, his happy place.

Thinking of The Grubb, Ed remembered a question he had for Liza.

“Are there caves around here?”

“What?  Caves?”

“Yes.  A cavern system.  If not, perhaps mines or tunnels or something?” Continue reading

With Time and Quiet….

photo-15

Copyright –Douglas M. MacIlroy

“Apple was founded in a garage.”

She frowned.  Bits of metal and paper mâché were scattered haphazardly around.  There were piles of junk thrown hither and yon.  The only technology, his laptop, was open to a romantic poetry blog.

“You are no Steve Jobs, let me tell you!”  She shook her head.  “I’m leaving.”

He shrugged and continued to putter.

Three years later she was shaking her head at his image again.  This time it wasn’t in person, it was on the cover of a magazine. Gavin had just been awarded Time’s “Person of the Year” for his ground-breaking invention.

***

Word count = 100

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

***

This can be read as a continuation of Rochelle’s story….

Buckle Up, My Dear

Through the portal

For some reason I had an idea about reading a want ad where you had to go to April 6, 1971 to answer.  I Googled April 6, 1971, and this story appeared out of nowhere….

***

It started when I was looking through a want ads page from a very Alternative paper, The Random Times.  I found all of the typical things, of course.  There were the hilarious, such as “Clairvoyant wanted.  But you knew that, right?”  No name or address or number given.  Others were chilling.  How about this?  “Are willing to do anything?  No qualms or regrets?  Sent to P. O. Box”  No need to fill in the rest.

I had The Rite of Spring playing very loudly as I read.  It made a great accompaniment to the words.  The rhythms.  Those big chords.  It was fitting.

I was about to give up with a laugh when one ad caught my eye.  “Prominent Time Travel Company looking for Time System Engineer.  Apply (address deleted by editor) between 1 PM and 3 PM on April 6, 1971.”

I searched the date.  In the music I was listening to, the sacrifice was being danced to death.  And then I saw it.  April 6, 1971, the day Stravinsky died.

The music ended and The Firebird came on.

Rebirth.

It was a sign. Continue reading

Onward – #writephoto

onward

Photo by Sue Vincent

This is now the 22nd chapter of “Of Wind and Wings”.  See the table of contents here.

Note – I posted two chapters that did not follow one of Sue’s prompts.  here is a brief overview in case you don’t have time or inclination to read them (or you can skip to today’s chapter):

Chapter 20 Gossenmare Park – Ed and Liza explore Gossenmare Park.  Ed discovers that it is Liza’s ancestral home.  She also tells him a secret, that Lauren was not her husband’s child.

Chapter 21 Descending on Wings – Ed dreams of a Gossenmare Park that is like new, but with all of the eras superimposed.  It goes away leaving only the tower with Lauren singing to him.  He tries to enter, but is stopped by Liza.  He wakes up to see a memory of Liza’s mother comforting the young Lauren. 

***

“Are you ready?” Ed asked the back of The Grubb’s head.  “Onward, ho!  Let’s explore.”

The Grubb didn’t say anything, just shook his head.

Ed took in the view again.  He had to admit that the more mountainous region had a certain rugged beauty, but he was ready to go more than 30 feet from the road.

They had eaten lunch at the Grubb household.  It was a giant meal, which Ed felt he didn’t need after Liza’s big breakfast.  But it was delicious.  And Mrs. Grubb was delightful.  She was witty and knew all of the local people and places.  Mr. Brown seemed particularly close, and she told Ed all about him. Continue reading

Passing of a Legend

rr-tracks-at-harpers-ferryc

PHOTO PROMPT © Dawn M. Miller

A storm rose over the bluff, thunder rolling across the valley.  A meteor raced down the track.

When it reached me, it was naught but a gust of wind and smoke.

A human scarecrow emerged from the steam.  Ragged clothes draped the ruined frame.

“Damn,” he said.  “I thought I would catch it and get out of this two-bit town.  Some tumble I took, though.  Saw those steel wheels a-comin’ at me and thought I was done-fer.”

“Harry?” The man seemed surprised I knew him.

“Yeah?”

“You died 85 years ago.  Go home.”

So ended the legend of Sleepy Junction.

***

Word count = 100

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

*** Continue reading

Descending on Wings

This is now the 21st chapter of “Of Wind and Wings”.  See the table of contents here.

***

Ed was looking down at Gossenmare Park from 200 feet up in the air.  To his surprise, it was all new.  Every building newly built, every stone new dressed and stood in place.  Every bit of earthwork freshly completed.

But how could that be?  Different structures were from different time periods.

But they were all there, sometimes superimposed on each other.  Different eras mashed up together.  And there were people from all of those eras.  Dozens of them.  Hundreds.  Perhaps even thousands.

Some of the people were little more than shadows.  Others were strong visually, but not really “all there”, like memories.  Others were almost solid and, he was sure, were totally cognizant, like living people in the present, but not currently alive.  These interacted with each other, even with different “ghosts” from different ages of the world. Continue reading

Gossenmare Park

This is now the 20th chapter of “Of Wind and Wings”.  See the table of contents here.

***

Liza held her arms straight out, cross like, and slowly spun.  Her eyes closed and a serene smile on her face, she moved forward a half a step for every revolution she performed.  After four or five turns, she did a little leap with an arm flap and skipped forward a few steps, arms swinging like a child’s.  She kicked her feet up, Celtic dance fashion, then did another slow turn.  She stopped, spun towards Ed.  Her eyes sprung open.

“I just love it here!  Thanks for inviting me! Come!”

She grabbed a hand a pulled him forward a few steps before letting go and starting her stately dance again.

She was like the young girl Ed had seen as she did her midnight dash across the moors, but this time she was also ancient, as old as the moor itself. Continue reading

Formatting

I spent a lot of time working on the formatting of my first book, Seasons of Imagination.  I downloaded a template, but it did horrid things to the book.  So I wrote down all of the settings that they used for formatting, like margin and gutter and such.  Sticking those into my original document was better.  Finally I had it.

But when I received the first copy, it was awful.  So I redid it.  And it was better.  Good enough.

I tweaked the format a little for The Fireborn and a little more for The Halley Branch.  It was getting pretty good!

Or so I thought.

After I put out The Halley Branch, someone who had read all three in paperback noticed an issue.  A big issue (I won’t tell you.  Find it yourself ;) ).  So when I started working on Embers, I made sure I fixed it first thing.

So Embers was put up with my fix and using all of the stats for my pretty good formatting.  I ordered a proof, just to be sure. Continue reading

Untrodden #writephoto

Photo by Sue Vincent

This is now the 19th chapter of “Of Wind and Wings”.  See the table of contents here.

***

“What’s it like here in the winter?”

Mr. Brown looked up from a book.  “What?  Winter?  Are you thinking of moving here for good?  You’ve been here for a while and was wondering when you’d say you were staying.”

It was raining outside.  More than raining.  The wind screamed across the moor driving the rain almost horizontal.  Since exploring the vicinity was out of the question, Ed had decided to take Mr. Brown up on his offer to help him with his research.

“No, not yet at least.  My boss is letting me do a couple of hours a work a night so I can extend this little vacation.  And I haven’t had a vacation, uhm, what you would call a ‘holiday’, in years and so have weeks of earned time saved up.”

Mr. Brown smiled.  “Ah, I was hoping…  Anyway, winters can be harsh.  Hear that rain pounding on the building?  Imagine that being snow.  Here let me show you.”

Mr. Brown pulled up a photo gallery on his laptop.  The label was “Winter on the Moors”.

“Wow, those are gorgeous,” Ed said.  “Are you photographer, then?” Continue reading