Posts Tagged ‘fantasy’


There had been magic once in the city – sorcerers with runes and chants, creatures made of thought and fear, shadows that whispered – but then the Order had come. They carried rods of harnessed lightning, the power of new technology, and they stamped out the old ways with ruthless efficiency.

But in some parts of the city, the shadows still whispered.

This is for Three Line Tales. Thanks to Sonya for running the challenge and Matt Palmer for providing the prompt photo!



They never expected her to survive: not with an arrow in her side, her horse dead, her water gone, and miles of bitter desert ahead.

She limped on, a trail of red specks marking her way through dust and rocks. Her throat burned and her body ached, but she pushed on.

She collapsed feet away from the gate of the high wall. Soldiers rushed her inside, giving her water and laying her on a soft bed.

“Riders,” she said. “Riders on the eastern border. A thousand men, war-ready, with bows and steel.”

Then her eyes closed and she was still.

Word Count: 100

This is for Friday Fictioneers. Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for running the challenge and Danny Bowman for providing the prompt photo!


In the ruins of the hall, the mad king kept his court. His tapestries were crawling ivy, his musicians cawing crows. He sat upon a throne of skull and stone, his sunken eyes glowering at his subjects: foxes and badgers and feral cats, a snarling court of white-toothed beasts.

Nobody came here, not anymore. He was sealed away with his madness, only old bones for company. Sometimes they whispered in the dark, telling him the secrets of the dead.

Each morning, he stood at the gate, watching golden light spread over the hills, never able to take that first step.

Word Count: 100

This is for Friday Fictioneers. Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for running the challenge and Roger Bulltot for providing the prompt photo!



Fingers pulled back on the bowstring. Sparrow could feel it fighting her, all the power of the strained yew struggling to break loose.

Below, the sounds of battle raged, a warring tide of blood and steel. Swords struck against mail; maces clashed with helms.

She shut it all out, ignoring screams and shouts and ringing. Her elbow brushed against the leaves of her tree as she breathed deep, eyes closing as she centered herself.

Then, in the flutter of a sparrow’s wings, she took her shot.

The arrow soared through the maelstrom of battle, striped feathers catching the wind.

A scream rang out, then a shout.

“The King’s hit!”

Arrows thwacked into the bark of Sparrow’s perch. Soldiers charged up the hill and into the trees.

The King lay on the battlefield, an arrow sticking from his ruined eye.

And Sparrow was gone, vanishing into the shadows of the forest.

Word Count: 150

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


Three cups balanced on three poles. The wind stirred the rising steam.

And then they were there, the masters three. One wore scarlet, dark cheeks covered in curling white. One wore leaf-green, gold eyes twinkling. The last wore black and none could see her shadowed face.

“Each year we do this,” the scarlet master said. “And each year it makes no difference.”

“Drink,” the green master replied, raising the white rim of his china cup to his lips. “And be at ease.”

“We are at war,” the scarlet master snapped. “I am never at ease.”

But she drank her tea.

The shadowed master said nothing, still as stone.

A sigh issued from the scarlet master’s lips. “I will tell you how this meeting will go. I make demands. You refuse. She says nothing. You make offers. I refuse. She says nothing. We drink tea. She doesn’t. We bow. And we go back to war.” Grey eyes flashed, lightning in a storm. “It has been so a thousand years. One more shall make no difference.”

“Even after a thousand years,” the green master said, “hearts can change.”

The shadowed master sipped her tea and smiled a smile made of night.

This is for Sunday Photo Fiction. Thanks to Dawn Miller for the prompt photo!


They say that on her long and winding road, All-Mother Macca met a great serpent, his body river-long, his teeth knife-sharp, his eyes star-bright. The serpent devoured her and for three days she lay in his belly. On the third day, she struck through his heart and cut her way out, leaving his bones to become the high mountains of the lonely north.

This is for Three Line Tales. Thanks to Sonya for running the challenge and Samuel Zeller for the prompt photo!


The bus moves slowly, grinding its way along the forgotten roads, the long, silent stillness of the in-between. There is nothing for miles, nothing but the road. Night has fallen long ago, black shadows stretching over barren earth. The road is cracked and full of potholes. White and yellow lines have long faded to near-invisibility.

There is only one passenger, a woman with a small duffel bag and a long, dirty coat. She smells of old sweat, drying filth, and back alleys. One of her eyes is a piercing grey. The other is a gaping hole.

She has not paid for her ticket and he has not noticed.

Between long, dirt-trapping nails, she turns a golden coin. It glints in the light, sometimes looking one way, sometimes another, the faces changing: one moment presidents, the next pharaohs, then skull-faced things older than either.

“Where’s your stop?” the driver asks.

The coin spins.

“Turn here,” she says. Her voice seems full of old secrets.

And the bus turns, away from from the road, out into the darkness of the night. A new road stretches before it, like shimmering glass that reflects only shadows.

The driver does not notice.

Word Count: 197

This is for Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner. Thanks to rogershipp for running the challenge.