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Author Topic: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread  (Read 10099 times)

Offline Carter

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #15 on: July 17, 2015, 10:02:10 PM »
Here's mine for the month.  It comes in at a total of 500 words, including title.  Having not attempted anything this short for a long time, I hope it works. 

Spoiler for Hiden:
Aqua Vitae

Wet sand shifts between splayed toes.  The smouldering remnants of our fire splutter and die as the tide reaches gently up the beach to caress our feet.  Gulls circle and shriek high above, gathering their courage to snatch the charred, leftover fish from our impromptu picnic.  The light from golden sunlight cascades onto my love’s face, obscuring it in angelic brilliance. 

“Come.  Let’s go swimming.”

The words emerge from both of us and neither, birthed from pregnant air.  Before I can react, bare legs scamper into the water, every movement effortlessly graceful as they disappear into the surf.  Feeling cumbersome and ungainly, I struggle to my feet and follow with an easy, delighted smile.  The sea wraps itself around me and draws me into its embrace.  Spray dashes brine against my lips, the salty tang igniting unwanted memories.  I try to shake free as the gulls’ chorus turns harsh and mocking. 

I stumble.  I fall.
 
I jerk upright.  The room is dim.  Only the bravest light creeps around the edges of the shutters.  All around me I hear the lazy drone of flies.  Loss and grief stir within me, as crisp and sharp as always, the memory drifting away all too fast.  I know better than to reach out, to try to grasp it firm.  I know my mind will only betray me yet again.  Already my longing for my love, for the sand and the sea, is fading as reality intrudes.  I do not want to be here in this empty husk of a house.  It holds nothing for me with its decaying timbers, the slow rotting of the lives it once contained almost complete. 

The bottle is where I left it.  Only pitiful dregs remain.  Barely even a sip.  My fingers itch and I feel the beginnings of another tremor.  My knuckles strain and crack as I push the bottle back alongside its companions.  My eyes water as they scour the fading, peeling labels, trying to decipher the faint, inky smears.  I do not think of just how little remains.  Instead I reach out and grab the nearest vessel.  It is impossible to tell to which of us it belonged.  After reliving each one over and over, I can no longer separate us and I no longer want to. 

I upend the bottle into my desperate, thirsty mouth.  The liquid dribbles down, reluctant and unsure.  It is hot on my tongue, banishing the room’s chill.  Spices dance trails of cinnamon and pepper down my throat. 

The bottle slips from my fingers.  It clinks as it nestles against the other useless vessels on the floor, their memories devoured, only fragments remaining in my fractured mind.  Anger and regret slough away as the room fades.  My heart hammers in anticipation, every breath ragged. 

The marketplace is awash with iridescence, the air heavy with cumin and chilli.  The hand in mine is cool and smooth.  It squeezes mine tight as we look at one another and share a smile. 

Offline Nora

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #16 on: July 18, 2015, 02:33:20 PM »
At last here it is, what a strugle this one was, before flowing out like it was forever there...

It's 500 words without title... I don't really have one for it either. Let's call it Of all the I come first. Weird grammar fully intended. I guess I have time to change the title anyway!  :D

Spoiler for Hiden:
Hana fell back on her pillows, exhausted by her grandchildren’s visit, in a good way.

She was grateful to her daughter for bringing them over so often. Her illness was crippling her so much, there was no knowing how long she had left.
It made every day more precious, every moment a gift to be cherished.

The raucous youths never failed to trigger memories of her own younger days, before her marriage, before her years in a lab, inhaling toxic fumes all the way up to a Nobel Prize.

This train of thought, combined with growing sleepiness, had Hana very little worried when a version of herself, seemingly in her early twenties, appeared by the side of her bed.
Yes, what good times, so many possibilities still open then, and –

“Wow. What have you done to yourself?!”

The voice brought Hana back to perfect wakefulness. It was foreign and well known. Her very own voice, as could be heard in videos, a past immortalized across youtube accounts and recorded public lectures.

The young Hana, the exact picture that every mirror had sent back fifty years ago, crept forward with an impressive realism.
Was it an effect of the new drugs the nurse had been bringing? She was sure she wasn’t on morphine, yet she must be hallucinating. And vividly.

“Just look at yourself girl. You almost look older than the ruin who spent her forties as a crack-head.” The woman’s features distorted with spite. “What am I going to get off of you? A week?”

Hana stared back silently. All her senses screamed that this was everyday normality, yet none of the scene in front of her made sense. Talking back would be like giving in to madness.

The young woman burst in an eerily familiar chortle.

“You’re not dreaming, don’t worry,” her eyes trailed to the IV stand, “nor are you hallucinating. What’s in there? Hmpf. In pain are we? I’ll ask again, what have you done with your life to decay so rapidly? We’re barely 72 dammit, not blowing a hundred candles.”

Her hands moved and for the first time Hana noticed the gun-like instrument. Her resolution broke.

“Who are you? I’m a scientist – time travel is horse-shit, what is this, illegal cloning?!”
The young woman laughed again, candidly this time.

“Mere dimension hoping, dear Me.”

“Dimension? Multiverse-type dimensions?”

“Yes. In my dimension, a genius cookie combined magic to science and permitted wild discoveries, like the tools that allow me to be here. And other things, like this.” She shook her gun.

“What do you want with me?” Hana fought to stay stoic, to be brave in the face of growing fear.

“The same as with all the others. Whatever life you have left,” was the cold answer. “While time travel is indeed horse-shit, rejuvenating by interdimensional self murder is very, very much a thing.”

“You egomaniacal bitch.”

“Whatever.”

A flash exploded, then slowly dimmed around the only Hana left in this dimension.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2015, 02:50:06 PM by Nora »
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Offline ClintACK

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2015, 06:00:23 PM »
499 words plus title: The Greatest Victory

Spoiler for Hiden:
The Greatest Victory

“I’m too old for this,” Gregory said amid tangled sheets and limbs.

“You seemed spry enough,” the woman said.  Emma.  A widow, she said.  Once they’d all said maidens.

“I meant the hunting.”  Her hair smelled earthy, of dye, but she was lean and strong and eager.

“Your bruises have bruises,” Emma said, tracing an old scar.  “You looked invincible towing the dragon’s head into town.”

Basilisk, Gregory thought.

“Like to make an impression,” he said.  “Hadn’t been paid yet.”

Part of his pay was the room – small, with a low tapered ceiling; a straw pallet on the floor; walls so thin he could hear feet shuffling in the hall.

To win without fighting was the greatest victory, his father had said.  He was a hunter, not a fighter.  The copper taste of terror, when the basilisk had charged him – an angry lizard bigger than an ox.  He’d gotten the spear set in time, just.  He was slowing down.  Experience wouldn’t make up for that forever.

He should find a nice widow like Emma, maybe kids.  Hunt rabbits.  She was watching him think.  Was she thinking the same thing?  Was she really even a widow?

Someone stumbled outside the door.

“There was a griffin,” he said.  “Up in the mountains somewhere.  Eating the sheep.”

Her nose wrinkled, she raised an eyebrow.

“Killing a griffin – heck of a thing.  Near as big as your dragon.”  Basilisk, really.  “Near as mean.  But it flies.”

“How do you fight such a thing?”

“Shoot the wings.  That’s the easy part.  Hard part’s surviving while you shoot.”  Poisoned arrows.  While it attacked a decoy.  That was a proper hunt.

“Rode into town dragging that griffin’s head.”

“Quite the hero,” she said, doing distracting things with her hands.

“I like to make an impression,” he said, “but it doesn’t last.”

The hands stopped, the eyebrow raised again.

“Most folks are glad to see the griffin dead.  They’re thinking of sheep uneaten and shepherds unmauled.  But a few are noticing their women noticing me.”

“You do make an impression,” she teased.

“So, the following evening, room near as charming as this, with a widow near as feisty.”

She pouted, laughed, and started trying to distract him again.

“Only, turns out she wasn’t a widow.  Her husband and his drunk friends came through the door with axes and knives.  There I was stark naked, armed with pillow and blanket.”

“What happened?” she asked, concerned for the first time.

“Scuffle.  Shoved one guy into another’s knife.  One minute, he’s a mean drunk and I’m a hero.  The next, he’s Mary's youngest and I’m the guy that killed him.”

“You were defending yourself.”

“I’m a stranger.  And a strange one at that.”

“Prove it,” she said, and Gregory finally let her distract him.

He almost didn’t hear the shuffling outside the door when the locals found the better part of valor.

Still, he saddled up his horse and rode on before the sun came up.  Rumors of a manticore.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2015, 12:11:05 AM by ClintACK »

Offline D_Bates

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2015, 10:00:28 PM »
So Elfy's motivational words inspired me to the challenge. Don't ask me where it came from. I've no idea how half this stuff pops into my head.

At 491 words, I give you:

The Mirror of Memories.

Spoiler for Hiden:
Mike had a magic mirror, and every morning he would ask it to show him moments from his life.

Sometimes he'd see childhood years, while playing alone in the corner of a park with his favourite red train while all the other kids had nothing but each other and the merry-go-round.
It made him laugh. Those losers probably wished they had a train as cool as his.

Other days he'd visit teenage years, and see himself chugging down beers in that same park while prank texting Kev, his nerd brother, who was locked away at home studying for his upcoming exams.
And he'd laugh. For such a brainiac, Kev had failed miserably to enjoy the best years of his life.

Throughout his twenties Mike saw many happy moments with his fourth girlfriend, Cathy… until the day she broke it off after catching him cheating on her with her hot workmate.
He smirked. She was such a prude. Done him a favour, really.

From his thirties he was reminded of many a time waking up past noon after a wicked night of partying into the early hours of the morning; he didn't even remember half the girls lying next to him.
He smiled proudly. While his dorky brother Kev and his dumb ex Cathy were starting a boring family together, he was reliving the teenage years all over again. For sure, those were the best years of your life.

Forty to forty-nine returned plenty of images from seedy bars. He didn't really know any of the other patrons, but who cared when the buzz of the booze was that good. He'd ditched job interviews to watch the game with the lads, but they were pointless jobs anyway.
Work was for chumps. He was living free, unlike Kev, imprisoned in his nine to five routine during the days and his wife and kids by night. Family was such a chore.

Although he'd not long been in his fifties, yesterday, unable to recall the previous week, Mike had asked the mirror for the details and was delighted to witness himself in his living room tripping on L.S.D. He appeared to be having a fantastic time of it, singing, and dancing, and fondling an invisible pair of titties.
Meanwhile, Cathy’s voice was raging from the answerphone in the background for him having missed his stupid nephew's christening. He pursed his lips. She so still wanted him.

Yup, the magic mirror held many an awesome memory. Today though, Mike felt like something different—something new—so he asked it, "Show me my future."

And as with every other morning, the mirror heard his request and fogged over. His throat dried as he anticipated what wondrous scene the swirling mists would reveal. Yet once it had cleared all he saw was his own reflection staring back, miserable and alone in his plain old bathroom, a lifetime of memories to reflect on, and nothing to show for them.
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Ciara: A Faun's Tale - 90,000; The K.B.G. - 100,000; Maria and the Jarls of Jotun - 90,000; The Shame that lurks in Stableton - current project; Ezra'il - Plotted. TBC July 2018

Offline Paul Birbilas

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #19 on: July 23, 2015, 11:21:25 AM »
Here's the original flash fiction story I wrote. [mild swearing]

I hope you enjoy it but if you don't then at least you can take comfort that it's only 489 words long including the title. ;)

Spoiler for Hiden:
The Getaway

Nero crashed through the car window and Slim hit the gas pedal. Tyre threads screeched as they peeled off concrete. Sirens started nearby. “Did you get it?” demanded Slim. “I think so,” he replied, in extreme pain from the back seat. Slim looked back at Nero, a mess of flesh, wires and metal dangling from his shoulder, he did not look good. “Show me.” Nero laboured with his working hand to pry open the dead fist and show a microchip in a plastic casing.

“What the hell is this thing, Slim? Why was there a security firm? They almost killed me!”

Slim smirked. “They were probably aiming for the chip. Why is it guards always have terrible aim?”   

“Answer the bloody question!” shouted Nero.

Slim glanced at the rear-view mirror; half a dozen lights were chasing them. “It holds a lot of dangerous information.”

Nero felt exhausted. “What a complete waste of time.” 

“Do you trust me?” The car swerved right violently.

“No.” replied Nero looking indignant.

Slim laughed. “You’re smarter than you look.” He reached into his pocket and pulled out a small metal cylinder. He pressed it three times and tossed it out of his window. “Let’s make a deal.” An explosion behind them cut away all other sounds for a moment. “What is it you truly want?”

“Right now, I’d like to stop my arm from gushing blood and oil everywhere.”

Slim struggled controlling the speed of the car. “You’ve done me a great service tonight. Fixing your arm is a given. After that, what do you want?” Nero caught a glimpse of a sign as they sped past some orange pylons.  Work Ahead. He never wanted to move this fast again. Maybe it was the blood loss making him feel ill. “I’ve always wanted to own a bar.” He lamented, probably due to the realization it looked increasingly like that would never happen.

“Nero, the Bartender! Hah! That sounds awful.”  Slim had every right to criticise his dream but it wasn’t welcome now, not while he was bleeding to death. “Very well but the agency you stole from will be looking for you. Disappear for one year and when you return you’ll have a bar to come back to. You have my word.” Nero looked down at his mangled arm; then into the mirror and saw a few security vehicles still chasing them. It was just an empty promise for a dying man. He nodded drowsily. “Okay.”

“Good! We’re coming up to the end.” Nero struggled to look up. The road ahead was peppered with a few more construction pylons and all that was beyond them were a hundred feet of ramp. Nero couldn’t believe this was how he was going to die. “We’re fucked.”

“Do you trust me?” asked Slim.

“No!” He screamed in terror.

Slim grinned wide as the car flew off the ramp into the cold embrace of the night.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2015, 12:19:18 PM by Paul Birbilas »

Offline Hedin

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #20 on: July 24, 2015, 04:29:11 PM »
Gulp.

At 499 words (not including the title) I give you The Bond.  May I never look at this page again.

Spoiler for Hiden:
Beep! Beep! Beep!

The beeping of the heart monitor greeted Alex as he groggily came to and found himself laying in a hospital bed.  He had no recollection of what put him in his current state, only that his body felt like he’d been used as a punching bag and his head was buzzing.  Alex was in the midst of making sure everything was present and functioning when a nurse walked in.

“W-W-What happened to me?” he asked her.

“You were struck by lightning; you’re pretty lucky to be alive,” replied the nurse as she checked his vitals, “How are you feeling?”

“Well I feel like I got ran over by a semi and my hea- …Did you say I got hit by lightning?”

“Your co-workers said they saw a flash of light followed by an immediate boom. When they looked outside they saw you laying on the ground unconscious.  You don’t have any burn marks that you typically get from a lightning strike but that’s the only explanation at this point.”

The nurse finished checking his vitals and told him that she would go inform the doctor that he was awake and get him something for his aches.

After the nurse left Alex laid back into his pillow and started to massage his temples. The rest of his aches seemed pretty minor to the buzzing going on in his head.  Actually, thought Alex, it seems to be more like a hundred people inside my head talking all at once. On a whim Alex decided to try something.

WILL YOU JUST BE QUIET!

Immediately the voices stopped and Alex sighed contentedly at the relief.  Now that he could concentrate he tried to puzzle out what had happened.  But before long the voices started coming back, first as whispers and then gradually growing louder.  Since his previous tactic did not work, Alex decided to go a different route.

Ok, since you apparently can’t stay quiet can you at least speak one at a time?

Once again everything went quiet.  Alex was starting to believe he was imaging things when he heard the voice of what sounded like a ten year old girl pop up in his head.

“Hi!”

Umm…hi?  Who or what are you?

“My name is Nerida. I am a Celitride.”

Well hello Nerida…what the hell is a Celitride and what are you seemingly doing inside my head?

“We Celitrides are able to grant special abilities to people, provided they can accept our bond.”

Abilities?  Bond?

 “Right now we are just latched on instead of fully bonded.  If you are able to bond with a Celitride, and each bonding is unique, they can gift you an ability.  My bonding begins with a tale and after the process is completed I can gift the ability to control water.”

So you’re saying I could control water?

“If the bonding works you will be able.  So Alex,” she continued, “would you like to listen to my tale?”

Alex hesitated, considering the offer.

Offline Rukaio_Alter

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #21 on: July 25, 2015, 03:52:15 AM »
Fun Fact: My original concept for this was a horror story. I have literally no idea how this happened.  :-\

Anyway, at 500 words, this is The Amazing Scientific Study of Dr Carlton Kellis
Spoiler for Hiden:
This is the scientific journal of Dr Carlton Kellis. I have been tasked to study a mysterious object that fell to Earth two days ago. It landed in a field in Iowa, where it was reported by concerned locals and delivered by package to my lab. The object itself has been nicknamed ‘The Sphere’ due in part to its spherical nature and the general unimaginativeness of those handling it. I look forward to studying it.

Day 1: No visible changes. Have spent the day examining The Sphere. The exterior seems to be made from some reflective material and it has a strange square pattern engraved on the entirety of the surface. Current use is unclear. Ideally I would like to examine it closer, but until the samples return from the lab, direct contact is forbidden.

Day 2: Still no visible changes. The Sphere is odd. While it has shown no autonomy, it has a strange presence in the room. Every so often, I swear I see some strange shape moving in the squares. This warrants further investigation.

Day 3: Further investigation has been completed. The strange shape turned out to be my own reflection. Have upped dose of anti-anxiety medication. No other visible changes.

Day 4: The Sphere is alive. I am certain of this now. I hear it whispering to me when I’m not looking. It whispers such sweet tales of fear. I feel myself slipping away every second I am in its presence. What horror would send this to us? What do they want? Can they want? Was this a harbinger of their madness? I feel it twisting. It twists us. It twists all things. The Sphere will leave nothing. I will not escape. I can already feel it inside my mind. It is inside me. It was always inside me. And I am inside it. There is nothing but screaming.

Day 5: Day 4’s entry disregarded. Have fired intern who tampered with my anti-anxiety medication. No visible changes to the Sphere.

Day 6: I have cracked the true purpose of the Sphere. It appears to be a star map of some kind. I unlocked its secrets by shining a powerful light at it in a dark room. The stars were then projected on the nearby walls. This could be a tremendous leap in our knowledge of Astronomy if true. We are currently searching for a recognizable focus point to help decipher it.

Day 7: The study has been called off. Apparently, there was an error at the packaging company the Sphere was delivered by. We were accidentally sent a disco ball that the neighbouring scientific center ordered on Ebay for their annual dance. This error was discovered during the aforementioned dance when the ‘Disco Ball’ began bleeping and exclaiming ‘ALL HAIL GLARTOK’. Studies are set to begin tomorrow. The current Sphere is no longer available for study as it was thrown out the window in a pique of fury. Conclusions are enclosed below. Apologies for the language.
5 Times Winner of the Forum Writing Contest who Totally Hasn't Let it All go to his Head.

Spoiler for Hiden:
Also, <Insert GOD EMPEROR OF THE WRITING CONTEST joke here>

Offline JoeWalter

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #22 on: July 28, 2015, 09:27:55 PM »
The Blade of the Lost - 488 words plus the title. Really the first short fiction I've ever written and it was not easy to keep the word count down! Hope you all enjoy!
   
   
Spoiler for Hiden:
 
           The man sat before the hearth and shut his eyes, seeing his wife’s face in the darkness behind his closed lids, recognizing that she was too young to look so weathered.

         Does she think the same when seeing me? he wondered, knowing he bore the same aged look. Do they all?

         His wife and the townspeople were a long distance away now and it had not been easy to leave them with the war still waging. They were a close-knit village, well isolated from the politics of the King, but geographically positioned between the Kingdom and the neighboring empire, while an ocean known to swallow ships and a mountain range prone to avalanches placed them on the only passable route between the two nations. The war between the two had brought battles to their doorstep a dozen times, each one claiming more of his brethren’s lives.

         Sitting now before the hearth, a finger tracing over the dusty cover of the tome in his hands, he thought back to his twentieth name day when he’d expected to be given the blade that hung locked in a case above the hearth. The blade of the lost, it was called, for it was said that any leader wielding it could never lose, so long as his cause was just, for all those who’d fought for just causes in the past would lend their strength to it. A thousand years it had been the symbol of hope for his people. He had known the hope it would bring his townspeople during this crisis, but instead his father had given him the massive historical tome, claiming he must appreciate the people who had fought in the past before he could wield such a thing. He’d tossed the tome at his father’s feet, leaving through the door with disappointment in his heart.

         Word came a year later that his father had fallen ill and passed. He had thought of traveling to retrieve the blade many times in the two years since, but could never bring himself to do so. He had never been close with his father, but he had always believed the man had loved him in his own stoic way.
When word came that troops from both Kingdom and Empire were advancing towards them, so many that they’d undoubtedly be swallowed by the ensuing battle, he knew he had no choice. Even if it sullied his soul, the sword was the only thing that might rally his people enough to somehow hold off both forces. It had seen miracles done before.
         
         He sighed as he traced his finger over the tome, remembering his father and feeling an intense regret that he they never reconciled.

         He opened the cover as a tear fell from the corner of his eye, finding something folded within the first page. One last gift from his father. The key to the blade of the lost.
         
    They would hold.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2015, 04:35:11 PM by JoeWalter »

Offline troll

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #23 on: July 30, 2015, 10:39:24 AM »
Looong time lurker here!

I haven't written something in a long time but this month's theme? Hard to resist.

I present you my (a bit unconventional?) entry at 205 words excluding the title:

Coda
Spoiler for Hiden:
Aliens consumed our world.

It's still there, but not recognizable anymore. Nor able to support the dwindling few of us, the scattered survivors of their feeding.
Where it was once green from all the meadows and forests, it's now black and brown. The soil, churned and polluted, bare of all the minerals, is mostly dead.

Where it was once blue, from all the lakes, rivers and oceans, it's brown and green. Oily and full of acid.

They were like locusts. Maybe worse. Locusts destroy the harvest, but the aliens destroyed everything. There will never be a harvest again.

We few who are still alive have resigned. Why try to rebuild, when the aliens may come back? Our planet may recover. But we won't.

We are not angry. Just sad. For us, and for them.

They couldn't help it, it's simply their nature. What a terrible, terrible curse to live with.

Insatiable and destructive, their own planet was the first they devoured. They didn't have a choice but to move on. And on.

We know that there is no help for us, so we pray for them, those who call themselves humans.

Who are the monsters of their own stories.

Offline Eli_Freysson

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #24 on: July 31, 2015, 12:45:20 PM »
Well, I pulled it off. 487 words. My thanks to ScarletBea for giving her thoughts.

The title is "Hungry"

Spoiler for Hiden:
The hunger lived.

It was her whole world. A sharp agony that moved her among the crypts and tombstones as strings move a puppet. The hunt could not be stopped. A sweet, living balm for the pain of partial death was nearby.

The old grounds had long since fallen into disuse and nature had crept back into this place of memories and death. Bushes and branches and vines all sought to impede her way and interfere with the hunt, but she had become a skilled predator and nimbly wove her way through without a sound.

This was a good night. The sky was dark with clouds and she needed only worry about being heard.

She passed a particularly old mausoleum and something made her look up. For a moment she remembered looking up at the severe arches and engraved holy symbols with the clarity of a blue sky, with warmth on her skin and within her veins.

Was it a memory? Had she ever truly been anything other than this? One of the soft, warm ones that huddled in their houses?

It didn’t matter.

Her prey came into view: A woman in rags making camp by a small tree.

It took her a few moments to put context to the situation. Context was important, she had come to realize. Some hunts were likelier than others to bring hunters; soft, warm ones made strong by numbers and purpose and the chants of holy men. There was a time when she had tried to forget all about them and their ways for the strange pain and memories it brought. But those feelings were a thing of the past now. The hunger was the only pain that mattered, and context made her a better predator.

This woman was an outcast. A shamed one, cast out of the place of houses and plentiful prey. No hunters would come because of this one. There was no need to divert the hunger elsewhere.

She moved with quick, graceful steps and the pain became almost sweet now that it was so close to being sated.

She pounced upon her prey. Habit made her stifle its scream with her left hand even though no-one was around to interfere. The prey struggled frantically but it was soft and weak, like they all were. She sank her fangs into the soft flesh of the neck and her ears filled with her own satisfied moan as life poured into her.

It was a fleeting ecstasy. Warmth and sensation flowed through her veins and dulled the pain to almost nothing. For a moment she was alive.

She stroked the woman’s hair as its heart slowed and stopped, for reasons she no longer remembered. Then the moment passed, and only the hunger lived. It had retreated from the warmth but never went far.

Something made her put her arms softly around the dead prey and squeeze. Then she went back.
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Offline OnlyOneHighlander

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #25 on: July 31, 2015, 04:15:59 PM »
Made it just in time. Here is my story, 491 words, and it's called Last Regrets.

Spoiler for Hiden:

Last Regrets

‘Dead?’

‘Dead.’

Count Globulus stopped writing. He set down his quill, unhooked his spectacles from behind his drooping, pointed ears and guided his eyes through their cataratic fog to his faithful servant. ‘How?’

Scrofula’s arthritic fingers played around the rim of his battered iron helm. What to say?
‘It appears,’ Scrofula started. Too quietly. His master could not hear him. He started again. ‘It appears he choked on a chicken bone.’

‘A chicken bone?’ The Count gave one soft chuckle. It was a private joke, between him and the universe. ‘Well, well, well. How about that.

‘Was it,’ the Count pushed a yellowing finger nail under a stack of cracked papers. He flicked through them. His schemes, his plans, his evil plots, all recorded for posterity. As if it would care, he thought. ‘Was it at least an evil chicken bone?’

‘Alas no,’ Scrofula said. ‘Quite the opposite. I’ve heard the chicken in question defended its coup against the onslaught of a particularly vicious fox. Mortally wounded, it fought the creature off. This is why the farmer gave it to him, presumably thinking a heroic chicken deserves a heroic stomach to lie in.’

‘A heroic chicken. Yes. It would be.’

The Count stood. He would do no more writing this night. He walked to the window and listened to the still dark.

Silence.

No mobs, no torches, no righteous priest banging on the castle gate. Even the wolves had gone.

It pained Scrofula to see his master this way. The last few decades had not been kind. To be slain was one thing. But to be forgotten... The life had gone out of him, which, for a vampire, was saying something.

‘When is the funeral?’

‘Two days, Master. Shall I prepare the carriage?’

‘No. That will not be necessary. I will go alone this time, if that is alright with you?’

‘As you wish, Master.’ Scrofula turned to leave.

‘Scrofula?’ The Count’s voice drifted, as if speaking more to himself. In a way, he was. ‘Have I been... a good employer?’

‘The worst, Master. The absolute worst,’ replied Scrofula.

‘You are too kind, old friend. It does not suit us.’

‘Yes, Master, but it is true.’

*

The Count’s shadow poured into undertaker’s parlour. He did not want to go to the public service. It would not feel right. That was for the legend. He would pay his respects to the man.

Time had not been kind to his nemesis. Rolls of fat spilled over the parlour table. The body was large, and yet, small, much smaller than he remembered. Empty.

The Count put a hand on the chest. Cold. But then maybe that was him. Hard to tell anymore.

His eyes wandered. There, by the embalming tools, white and weak, the chicken bone.

The Count took it in his fist and crushed it, letting the dust fall to the ground.

‘It should have been me,’ he said. Then he was gone.
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Offline ArcaneArtsVelho

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Re: [Jul 2015] - Flash Fiction! - Submission Thread
« Reply #26 on: July 31, 2015, 11:09:48 PM »
Ok, finally managed to write something today. I hope you like it.

498 words, including the title which is The Fall.

Some violence and bad language.

Spoiler for The fall:
The Fall

Bairon lay on his back on the sand, panting in strained breaths. His head and body were aching, his ears ringing with waving shouts and laughs. His eyes were wide, spinning from person to person. He tried to push himself to somewhere safe, but his hands and legs were trembling.

A man, muscular and scarred, walked towards Bairon and knelt down next to him so that the man lying on his back would hear him over the uproar. “Deep breaths, boy,” he said. “I can see your anxiety and embarrassment. You feel like everyone is looking at you, pointing their fingers and laughing. You think they are commenting on your situation with their friends. You’re certain that all their shouts, all their ridicule and pity, are directed towards you.”

“You... They... The voices...” Bairon mumbled.

“Look at me!” the scarred man said, arresting Bairon’s wandering gaze. “I tell you a little secret, boy: Most of the time people don’t give a shit about you. They barely even notice you at all. The thing is, they are too busy worrying about what other people think about them to spare any time to really think about you.”

Bairon’s breaths were deepening as he watched and listened the man beside him. But he didn’t speak, and his hands were still shaking as he ran his fingers through the sand.

“I fell. So what? That’s what I’d normally think if I were in your place, boy. Unfortunately, this is one of those rare situations that doesn’t fall into the normal category. You see, this time literally everyone is looking at you. They all either ridicule or pity you. They all love or hate me.” The scarred man raised his sword, and the crowd of the arena burst in cheers and a few boos. “Hear that, boy? They are chanting ‘Champion’.”

“I sti—”

The crowd gasped—some out of excitement, others out of disgust—as the scarred man pummeled Bairon’s face three times with the knuckle guard of his sword.

“Only one thing left to do, boy. The crowd is waiting for it with anticipation. They saw me hitting you on the ear with the flat of my blade. They saw how you staggered and lost your sword; how you fell over after I kicked you in the chest. They saw how I punched you when you were defenceless on the ground. Now they want to see me killing you.”

The scarred man clutched the grip of his sword with both hands, pointing the blade down to Bairon. The boy raised his head, spewing blood from his mouth. He wasn’t shaking any longer. “Wait,” he whispered.

The scarred man lowered his weapon and bowed a little closer. “What is it, boy?”

“I lost my sword and fell. So what, old man?” Bairon wheezed. “I still have my knife.”

With a gasp, the crowd went silent. Then it erupted in cheers and boos.

There was a new champion on the arena.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2015, 11:17:40 PM by ArcaneArtsVelho »
Everything I wrote above is pure conjecture. I don't know what I'm talking about.

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