Category Archives: Fiction

Short Fiction

The Ball – the Old Mill

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  Invitation.  The Table of Contents is here)

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With a look over my shoulder, I entered the mansion. I let the door close naturally behind me.  The hall was empty when full of light, but as the light faded with the shutting door, Martha became visible.  When the door was completely closed, she looked full and solid, the middle-aged version of Martha.  She was wearing the party dress, I realized that Mike was right, that the dress custom tailored for the 15-year-old Martha fit the middle aged one very tightly, making her look both a little ridiculous, and slightly sexy at the same time.   We walked towards each other and stopped a little more than an arm’s length apart.  I pulled out my invitation.

“I’ve returned, but this time with invitation in hand,” I said.

“And you are just in time, Mr. Baxter,” she said.  “The ball has begun.”  I grew aware of the faint music from above us.  “I need to say a few words so you truly understand what you are about to witness.”

“Sounds good to me.”   She turned old for a flash, then returned to middle-aged.

“First, understand that you can see our world more than most of the living, so we can see you better than we can see most of the living.” Continue reading

Derelict #writephoto


Photo by Sue Vincent

I crested a small ridge and the countryside became familiar.  It wasn’t anything that could be seen, not any feature or landmark, it had to do with the scent of the air, the feel under my feet and the quality of the sunlight.  I inhaled deeply and knew that I was almost home.

I was but a child when I was ripped from my parents’ arms and given an unbalanced spear and loose fitting leather cap.  I was told to kill or be killed, that king and country depended on me and my fellow farm hands that were rounded up to be shipped to distant lands to fight for noble arguments none of us understood. Continue reading

What’s for Dinner?


PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

From the outside the building appeared amazingly intact.  Jish and Flav hid in the rubble as lookouts, guns at the ready.

Morque knocked the door down with his massive shoulder.  I stormed in, releasing a protective bolt.

It was no good, the building had long ago been ransacked and burnt out.

Poking through the wreckage, just in case, I heard a weapon discharge outside.  It was followed by a barrage of concentrated high energy particle beam weapons.

A Goony patrol had struck.  I knew my people.  The dilapidated restaurant was a strike out, but we’d have fresh meat for diner.

Continue reading

Invitation – The Old Mill


(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  Amy and Jessica (Part 2).  The Table of Contents is here)

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I had just finished my dinner and was trying to decide how I’d handle the evening when I heard a loud knock on the door.  Walking to the front of the house I couldn’t see anybody in the drive or parked on the road.  Nobody had driven away either.  I assumed that whoever had knocked must have walked to the house.

I stood for a minute, looking out the window, but there was nothing.  As soon as I turned my back on the door, the knock came again.  I spun around and opened it, yet there was nobody on the doorstep or any place else that I could see.  I walked onto the porch and then down to the drive.  I looked around.  Not a living soul was around.

Going back into the house I discovered a card on the porch by the door. I picked it up and read it. Continue reading

Goodreads Review of Seasons of Imagination


A couple of weeks ago I received a great review for Seasons of Imagination on Goodreads and I totally forgot to put up a post to brag about it to let you know about it.  the review came from Carol Masciola, whose book The Yearbook (in my words, a YA time travel romance with a physiological edge) I reviewed last November. Continue reading

Inside Out #writephoto


Photo by Sue Vincent

After working with the raw materials of life in the charnel houses, I discovered that there was more to the state of being alive than the simple physical constructs of bones, tissue and organ.  However, try as I might, I could not place it.  Modern science had not given me the secret and my instruments did not give me the power to look deeply enough to discover this secret.

It may seem obvious to the normal person that once a spark of life is created from a seed, be it the seed of a vegetable or the seed of an animal, the growth of that life is somehow predestine.  Each and every one is unique and it is impossible to mix and match between species, let alone members within a given species.  What is this germ of an idea that makes each life and individual?  I am a man of science and say it must exist in the structure of the matter, not just a God-given trait.  There has to be a scientific explanation for how this process works.

Yet science failed me. Continue reading



PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

It stuck out, an old railcar pushed into a corner of town long after the trains had stopped running.  Back in the day, shiny chrome welcomed day trippers from Boston, but it had turned dingy and grey.

An old woman, the original owner, a perpetual cigarette hanging from her lip, served me.  The coffee was bitter, the eggs greasy and the toast older than the diner.  The next youngest customer had half a century on me.

I never returned.

I passed the empty lot today.  What the health-inspector found came back.  It’s been 20 years and I still felt nauseous.

Continue reading

Amy and Jessica (Part 1) – The Old Mill

Mill Building

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  Lyndsey 3.  The Table of Contents is here)

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Thursday turned out to be a great day at work.  You know the type; the ones were everything goes exactly right and it makes you feel that anything bad that has happened in your career was totally worth it.  That was my work day.  Everything went so smoothly.  Everyone, from the customers to the executives to the coders beneath me, all had good things to say.  I can’t imagine things running as smoothly as they did that day.  And yet I had a hard time enjoying it.  I felt that the gods were playing with me.

Near the end of the day, I sent just that in a text to Lyndsey, “Work was fantastic – the gods must be playing with me”.  She answered, “I know exactly what you mean :- (“.  I’m sure she did.

When I got home, I wasn’t surprised to see Jessica’s truck in my driveway, but there was a car I didn’t recognize.

As I got out, Jessica came around from the front of the house with a woman in tow.  After a half of a second, I realized that it was Amy Lansing. Continue reading

Lyndsey 3 – the Old Mill

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  The Mill at Night.  The Table of Contents is here)

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Wednesday was long and tiring.  I spent a large chunk of the day in a meeting with the top executives and was grilled about some issues in the development department.  Thankfully it wasn’t a problem with any of my teams, so nobody was pointing at me, but since I was acting for Kunhal, the buck stopped at me for the day.  I sent a few random texts to Lyndsey and she responded in kind.  I was hoping for a good conversation with her in the evening.  I needed it.

The beginning riff from Led Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love” shouted out from my cell phone.

“Hi Lyndsey,” I said.

“Hey Gill.  How’re you doing?” she asked.

“Much, much better now that I’m talking to you.  It was a very long day.” Continue reading

The Mill at Night – The Old Mill


(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  The Library 2 (part 4).  The Table of Contents is here)

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I knew my eyes were open, but there was nothing, nothing at all.   My numb mind could only repeat the obvious, that it was dark, pitch black.  I started to take a step, but stopped, feeling dizzy, disorientated.  Where was I?  My eyes began to catch glimmers.  I saw that there were windows and some stray beams were entering through them.  As my eyes adjusted, I could tell where I was.

I was in the old mill. Continue reading