Author Archive

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In dying sunlight, they whisper stories of day and night, of what was and what will be.

They say the Sun is made of burning gold, spilt from the white-sparking forge of the Smith-God Ilmaril, who hammers away in the heart of the Earth.

They say each night it passes through the gates of death and wanders in the underworld, giving light to the shades, bringing heat to the world of bones.

They say it is drawn by Velervo, firstborn of dwarfs, who sought to overthrow the gods and was condemned to toil in the skies until the Forevernight, when all the stars shall fall like silver leaves.

They say that in the end of days, the last of the great dragons, who slumbers under the waves, shall rise up and devour the Sun in quenching dark.

And as they sleep, their dreams are full of fire and dragons.


Word Count: 149

This is for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Thanks to Priceless Joy for running the challenge and Footy and Foodie for providing the prompt photo!

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Sometimes, Bob thought that he might be able to feel at home if it wasn’t for the insects. They crawled over every surface, hid in every corner. In the middle of the night he could hear them scurrying through the walls, across the floor, across the ceiling. Tiny legs in the dark.

He’d tried pesticides. Tried poisons. Tried exterminators. The insects would be quiet for a day or two. Moments of silence, precious as diamonds, shining, pure.

And then he’d hear the first movement, deep in the dead of midnight. He’d tell himself it was a dream. They were gone.

The next day they’d be back, crawling over every surface. He stomped and punched and swatted, but never hit anything. Like clutching at mist.

His sister came over for tea and said nothing, even when a bug landed on her shoulder, feelers tickling her neck.

“What do I do?” he asked.

“About what?”

“About the insects.” He pointed, finger shaking.

She looked at him and shook her head. “There are no insects, Bob.”

No insects. No noises. No crawling in the night. All in his head.

He looked down at his cup and saw an insect staring back.

He laughed.


Word Count: 200

This is for Sunday Photo Fiction.

tltweek94

In the days before the fall of Britain, in the court of Arthur, there was a boy named Gareth who cleaned pots and pans while the knights drank and boasted of their great deeds. “Beautiful hands,” they called him, jeering and drunk, while he rubbed his fingers raw on their plates.

But he knew that one day he would have deeds to boast of, that one day he would sit with them at the round table, that one day he would be a kitchen boy no more.


This is for 3 Line Tales. Thanks to Sonya for running the challenge and Scott Umstattd for providing the prompt photo!

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The tour guide stood just to the side of the carving. She smiled the smile that had gotten her hired and waited for the group to stop murmuring.

“This carving,” she said, “was made at least six hundred years ago. Nobody really knows what it was supposed to represent–”

A woman in the back made a huffing sound.

“But,” the guide continued, “we have several educated guesses…”

“Guesses?” The woman stepped forward, her battered coat trailing along the ground. “Why not simply ask someone who was there?”

The guide smiled. “Six hundred years ago?”

“Mayflies,” the woman muttered. “You’re like mayflies. Illiterate mayflies who can’t recognize a simple message.”

“And what message is that?”

The woman was silent, looking into the strange, elongated figure. The guide looked with her and thought, just for a moment, that the figure seemed to move.

“Run. The message is run.”


Word Count: 146

This is for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Thanks to Priceless Joy for running the challenge and any1mark66 for providing the prompt photo!

chicagomg

“Look, mommy,” the little girl said, pointing a chubby finger at the side of the building. “A man!”

Her mother squinted, then smiled, stroking her daughter’s hair. “You’re right. There is a man.”

Across the street, people looked up at the little figure of the man climbing the massive skyscraper, dressed in black. They pulled out phones and cameras, recording what they assumed was a brilliant piece of public performance or a publicity stunt.

The man carried off a heist in broad daylight, watched by a hundred people who didn’t lift a finger to stop him.


Word Count: 98

This is for Friday Fictioneers. Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for running the challenge Marie Gail Stratford for providing the prompt photo!

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Cold, night-black scales slithered over dusty gold. Two eyes burnt like stars trapped in amber, bright in the shadows. Foul breath swept like fog between pointed teeth.

Ruined wings drooped limply on its back – splintered and skeletal, torn and crooked, like a tree caught in a lightning strike.

She stared up from the cave floor. Even all the treasure seemed like nothing against the enormity of the ancient terror.

“But,” she stammered, “there are no more dragons.”

“There is one,” he replied. “Once we filled the sky: numberless and beautiful as the stars. I had many brothers. Many sisters. But now there is only me. I am not beautiful. And there are no skies.”

In the darkness beneath the earth, on a pile of decaying treasure, she stared into the burning eyes of the last dragon and saw a shadow dance amongst the flames.

A shadow of wings and stars.


Word Count: 150

This is for Flash Fiction for the Aspiring Writer. Thanks to Priceless Joy for running the challenge and Enisa for providing the prompt photo!

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Of all of his tools, he loved the camera best. It was a thing of beauty: lightweight, responding to the slightest touch, never the slightest hiccup with the mechanics. Others might call it crude, simple, old-fashioned, but he had always admired simplicity in machinery – the clicking of wheels, the twist of a lens, the press of a button.

He looked through the camera and saw the surge of the crowd. Black uniforms and black rifles filled his vision when he gave the slightest twist to the lens. Beyond, he saw the man himself, dressed in a white suit to match his white smile. He zoomed, focused on the face, a face that flashed across television screens and newspapers. The most famous face in the world.

He saw it again, dead center. Smiling.

He pressed the button, knowing that he would make the moment live forever.

#

The police never found the shooter. In the rush of the maddened crowd, the shock of the moment, it was impossible to secure the scene. It went down as unsolved, an atrocity without an answer.

Nobody noticed one man amongst hundreds, a little camera clasped in his steady hands.


Word Count: 193

This is for Sunday Photo Fiction. Photo credit to A Mixed Bag.