Archive for the ‘Flash Fiction’ Category
VisDare 17: A Cat’s World
In an effort to get back into the writing saddle after a bought of illness, I’m hitting Angela Goff‘s Visual Dare today with a fun little tail. Tail… get it.
Memories of a Ninth Life
by J. Whitworth Hazzard
Confirmed. Attack pattern delta.
“Begin your run on the Salmon transport. Stay in his blind spot, kid,” I said.
Betcha a bag of ‘nip, the rookie blows it.
“Stow that shit, Mr. Blinkers. No one’s going to botch anything.” Bingo and Mr. Blinkers pounced hard on the kittens coming up the ranks. You had to have thick fur to run with this outfit. Crying over spilt milk ain’t an option.
Whatever you say, boss.
“Be ready to move when he hits the cargo bay. Just like we practiced it.”
Ten meters… five meters…
The van came screaming out of nowhere; Le Boucher on its side in bold red letters.
“Abort! It’s a trap! Get out of there, kid!”
I hissed and bolted awake. My human shushed me and stroked my greying fur, but I couldn’t shake the fear.
Some nightmares never leave you.
DFQWBS: A Simple Proposal
So Anne Meade (@ruanna3) is getting married. In addition to a traditional wedding–which I’m sure will be spectacular–Anna’s friends, Laura James and Miranda Kate are putting together a flash fiction tribute to the Bride-to-be. Anna’s all about creativity and whimsy and is a huge supported of the flash community, so we all jumped at the chance to write a little tale in honor of her upcoming nuptials. I don’t get invited to a lot of bridal showers (ok, ANY bridal showers) but a writerly bridal shower is something I can get on board with. I will miss the finger sandwiches and tea though. I do love a good finger sandwich. The crunchy thumbs are my favorite!
If you’d like to join in, you’ve got another ~20 hours. Rules are HERE.
And now without further trumpeting and mucking about, here’s my entry:
A Simple Proposal
By J. Whitworth Hazzard
She could take the lousy hours, the terrible pay, and the corporate-image-required fake smile. But these Goddess-damned epaulets were ruining her image. Her beautiful lavender gossamer dress, hand made by fairies and enchanted wombats, looked ridiculous with the would-be sailor uniform of park employees bolted on.
The mice had long abandoned the Dark Fairy Queen’s ticket booth, scurrying far out of their way to avoid a zap from her wand brought on by boredom and rude tourists. She sat, night after night, at the entrance to Fair-ey Tales World™, trading in the dirty silver pieces for faux-gold tickets to enter the park. She was optimistic at first. Working an amusement park will be fun, her friends convinced her. The woodland creatures disappeared first. Then her fairy friends stopped coming by.
“Oh, I totally forgot about our plans. You know how it is.”
“I’ve just been so busy with the new spring tinkering schedule.”
“I pulled a wing muscle, gotta stay in tonight.”
Mierella sneered, “Traitors. The lot of you.”
Mierella’s wand sizzled and snapped, the sudden pop breaking her reverie. A handsome Prince stood at the corner of her booth looking expectingly, like he was waiting for a response. How long had he been standing there staring at her? Mierella’s heart skipped a beat, then she spotted the bratty blue epaulets sewn onto his royal doublet.
“Oh, you work here too,” Mierella’s voice trailed off. “I said… nevermind.”
“You look sad. A beautiful woman like you should never be sad. Is there anything I can do? Prince Erlick at your service.” He bowed deeply.
“I’m not sad. I’m annoyed. I shall warn you but once, Sir. Beware the Dark Fairy Queen’s wrath!” Mierella’s wand crackled with dark energy. Her gown swayed back in the rising current of magical wind. The lights dimmed in the ticket booth and a purple aura surrounded her. “All shall love me and despair…”
Prince Erlick, “I don’t know about that whole despair bit. Look, I have to give another tour but afterwards I was going to go over to Cinderella’s Ball for a drink.“ He shuffled his feet for a bit, then smiled, bowed and moved on.
Mierella looked at him in shock. He wasn’t cowering, or trembling, or fleeing in terror. He simply smiled and walked off towards the cotton candy stand. What a strange Prince!
An hour later the Prince came wandering by her booth. This time he looked even happier and a little stumbley. He walked by her booth three times, back and forth, mumbling to himself and trying to wink at her without success.
“Cinderella’s a bitch. How about you come have a drink with me? Do evil queen’s drink?”
Mierella snorted with shock. “I’m the ‘dark’ fairy queen, not the evil fairy queen. It’s not the same thing. It means I can be sarcastic and mischievous. I’m not evil, you cheeky man.”
“Heavens, I do apologize your Fairy-ejesty.” Prince Erlick bowed a little too deep and took an extra step to recover his balance. “That’s a relief. You know what they say about ‘evil’ girls…” He whispered but didn’t finish the sentence.
“I hope you’re not riding in your condition,” Mierella smirked.
Prince Erlick shook his head. “Can’t. They towed my noble steed last week. Bastards. Hey, Aurora is having an after-ever-after party. It’s right over the hill. Whadya say? One drink!”
The Prince got down on one knee and took off his hat, perching it squarely over his heart. Mierella looked sideways at the creature. There wasn’t a hint of trickery or malice in him. In the glow of the marquee lights, he looked honest, kind, and courageous. For a down on his luck Prince, he looked downright–regal.
“One drink. No tricks. No poisoned apples, or enchanted roses, or cursed spinning needles. Got it?”
Prince Erlick smiled earnestly. “My beautiful queen, I would never dream of using someone else’s fairy tale to win your heart. Our fairy tale is going to be original, wildly adventurous, and epic. And if you but take my hand… it starts, right now.”
My wedding wish for the couple is a simple proposal: happiness. Find it in each other through the smallest acts, the tiniest gestures, the plainest words, and in everyday living.
Visual Dare #10: Whimsy
I’ve been falling way behind in flash fiction entries in the past couple weeks, but on today’s snow day I got a chance to complete Angela Goff’s flash fiction challenge for the week. Make sure to check out her blog and follow her on twitter (@angela_goff) she’s always doing something interesting. 150 words of visual daring. Enjoy.
The meeting took weeks to setup. The negotiations over the smallest, most-obscure bits of protocol drove Sgt. Jemson nearly mad. The opposition was known for being slow to trust and paranoid. But the war was coming to a close. It was time to learn how to make peace with them.
“Do I have to touch him?” General Brigham whispered.
“I’m afraid so,” Sgt. Jemson said. “They’d consider it rude not to.”
“I know what you mean, Sir. There’s no telling where they’ve been.”
“Here they come. Pull my bodyguards back.” General Brigham watched the opposition advance, slow and steady. When their envoy finally reached out to extend his greetings, the General smelled it. A faint whiff, but distinct and met with murderous intent.
General Brigham roared in fury, “They’re not ambassadors; they’re assassins! Let slip the shells of war!”
Love Bites Blog Hop: Been There
My lovely and talented friends, collectively known in this case as the Inklingettes: Ruth Long, Sarah Nicholson, Lisa Shambrook, Elisabeth Koch, Angela Kennard, Afsaneh Khetrapal and Laura James, are running a great flash fiction contest for the love-hating curmudgeonly anti-slush crowd. Love bites. Amen to that. 250 words of love gone astray. Just in time for Valentine’s day.
by J. Whitworth Hazzard
Aaron was so nervous he felt like he was going to yak before he could get the words out. Melody’s hair flowed like golden rivers of satin in the summer sun and her coy smile turned his insides to jelly. She held his hand and laughed at the antics of the children on the playground, oblivious to the terror Aaron felt that she might say no.
“I love you.”
Melody blushed furiously and turned, trying to hide her ear-to-ear smile. Aaron’s spirit soared with hope.
“Will you marry me?”
Melody pulled her hand out of his. She looked unpleasantly shocked.
“How can you ask me that, Aaron?” Melody’s smile, the light that gave him the courage to get through breakfast and face the tortuous grind of his miserable existance, was gone. “I can’t. We… can’t.”
“It hasn’t been very long, but I know how I feel. I’ll die without you.” Aaron’s heart poured out on the asphalt between them. What he intended as sweet nothings turned to sour expressions on his love’s face.
“Um… ok, first of all that’s just creepy. And second of all, my father will kill you.”
“I don’t… there’s got to be… but I love you. Don’t you love me?” Aaron’s eyes brimmed with tears.
Melody took a step back and opened her mouth to answer but nothing came out. She turned and ran.
Aaron stood alone on the playground. Crushed. And tardy when the last echo of the recess bell faded.
Visual Dare #4: Steps
I’ve been meaning to get on board with Angela Goff’s flash fiction challenge and never had the timing right. 150 words of visual daring. Enjoy.
A few narrow stones steps is all that separates me from the light, denied to me since I was a child and given over to the Warmongers to raise in the dungeons. My feet refuse to take the steps.
The Priest warned me. He knew.
You cannot defeat the horrors of the maze by becoming one of them.
My muscles still shiver from the last battle, but it’s not exhaustion that keeps me from climbing the stairs. I slew everything in my path and cast aside pity, empathy, and pain. Killing the gate keepers unleashed something brutal inside me. Something that craves the shadow and chaos of the dungeons. The humanity inside us that deserves to walk in the light is long dead in me.
I cannot climb the steps.
I will stay here in the darkness and take my place among the pantheon of monsters.