Posts Tagged ‘ffftpp’


Sam sat in his taxi as the raindrops pattered against the windscreen, looking up at the dim stars battling to be seen in an expanse of grey. The day had been as dull as any other.

A woman leapt into the street, black coat flailing around her, her hand stuck out. He pulled over and she darted in, her bright eyes flashing.

“Follow that car,” she said, pointing to another cab.

Sam raised an eyebrow. “Is this is a joke?”

“Is this?” She threw a hundred-dollar bill at him. “It’s yours. Just follow the car.”

Sam slammed pedal to floor and his cab sped off in pursuit of the other. Through winding streets they travelled, one after the other. At last, the cab ahead pulled up at its destination: the gleaming glass and warm lights of a hotel. The passenger got out: an old man with a crooked nose, the collar of his heavy coat turned up.

“So what is this?” Sam asked as he pulled over. “You a detective or something?”

There was a sharp pain in his neck, then nothing at all.

She smiled. “Not exactly.”

Sam sat in the raindrops pattered against the windscreen, looking at nothing.

Word Count: 200

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



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.


Saphire-blue waves kissed the green-tinged stone of the cliff. An opening loomed in the rocks, a gaping jaw that led only into grim labyrinths.

Velloa felt the weight of the shadows and the moistness of the air. Her boat was naught more than a battered hull with a split mast and ragged sail. Across the North Sea she had sailed to reach this lonely isle. There would be no turning back.

Raising her hood over dark locks and sun-browned skin, Velloa stepped into the the cave. In shifting shadow she saw swift shapes, black as night, small as children. They were the dream-keepers, the name-knowers, the metal-shapers.

At labyrinth’s end, they kept her prize.

Velloa walked the narrow paths, tunnels branching and writhing like the roots of an old oak. Whispers echoed around her, promising her secrets if only she would follow them, but Velloa kept to the true path her grandmother taught her.

Keep to the dark

Follow the silence

Love not daylight

Trust not whispers

In darkness dwell the dwarren

And their ancient book

At last, she burst upon the inner chamber. Among looming statues stood an altar.

And upon it, a leather-bound book.

The Rune-lore. 

Word Count: 198

This is for Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner Week #28.


The Wall was raised over months of work, cement and barbed wire dividing one tongue from another, one people from another. Soldiers walked from one end to the other, their rifles clicked like beetle’s pincers as the desert sand lapped at their boots. They didn’t hesitate to fire. Their eyes were hidden behind black sunglasses: the windows to their souls had been nailed shut.

The Soldiers understood what the Wall was, what it had to be. It could not be cement. It could not be brick. It could not be steel.

It had to be the wail of mothers and the dreams of children. It had to be drunken slurs hurled like arrows. It had to be the shriek of rifle fire and the stillness that followed. It had to be ghosts and heroes.

The Wall had to be sorrow and despair. It had to cut not through the land, but through the soul: Us and Them, People and Unpeople. It had to cut deep enough to bleed, to make one thing into two.

Earthly walls can be crossed. They can be climbed, tunneled under, slipped around.

But walls within the mind can never be breached.

Word Count: 196

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


Standing on the threshold, fingers on rusty metal, you wonder whether to take that last step. Once you go forward, there is no turning back.

You have forgotten everything: family, friends, love, loss. Every moment from birth until five days ago is a blank, a haze of impenetrable gray.

The memories have slithered away like eels from a net. (This metaphor comes easily. Were you a fisherman? A marine biologist? Or just weird?)

You do not know your name, first or last. You do not know whether you have ever loved, whether your mother ever held you in her arms, whether you have ever felt your heart shatter like porcelain.

You know only what was in the note: It has all been wiped clean, brain scrubbed until it gleamed, fresh and new as a baby’s. You have been destroyed, burned in the fire. Take your new birth. Embrace it. Move forward.

The Truth is behind a locked door. If you want to know, you must open it.

But once you know, you can never forget. You cannot be made clean again.

So you stand on the threshold and you wonder: Is it worth it?

Word Count: 194

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


They had made him. Whatever – whoever – he had been before, he no longer was. They had shaped him and twisted him, turned him into their soldier, their superman. His jet black skin, harder than diamonds – that was them. His sculpted muscles, like some Renaissance statue – that was them.

His hatred, his rage, like Achilles at Troy – that was them too.

They had made themselves a monster, gene by gene, surgery by surgery, and now he had turned upon them.

He looked up at their shining glass windows, gleaming like diamonds in the sun. Screams and shouts came from all around him. People were running, ordinary legs carrying them as fast as they could. He could have caught them all if he wanted to, broken them into little pieces. But he had no quarrel with the panicked crowds. He was saving all his fury for the people in their tower of glass and steel.

He walked towards the doors, calm and slow, then shattered them with a flick of his finger. Alarms blared and security rushed towards him, but they were nothing to him, just ants standing in his way.

They had made him and he would unmake them.



The road wound like a snake over the treetops. A soft wind blew through the leaves. It was a lonely spot, tranquil and serene.

The cars raced in, streaks of red and blue, tires etched black trails into the road, engines roaring and squealing. The trees quivered like frightened children.

Eve’s foot was pressed to the floor; her messy blonde curls were pinned to her forehead with sweat. Her empty holster pressed into her side as she swung her car into another turn.

She saw her pursuer leaning out through the window, firing a handgun whilst keeping her other hand on the steering wheel. Black hair trailed over a scar and piercing eyes.

A bullet struck the body of Eve’s car, a black mark ripping through the paintwork. Eve knew that it could easily have hit the tires or the engine – or the back of her head.

The cars raced out of sight just as swiftly as they’d entered, passing beyond the line of trees and the curve of the road. The roars of their engines faded into the distance and it seemed as if every tree breathed a sigh of relief as all became silent and tranquil once more.

Word Count: 200

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