Tag Archives: #fridayflash

Chapter 4 – The Waterfall

Beginnings Project

Wow. It’s been almost a week since I wrote any fiction. Everyone is throwing down word counts for this whole Nano thing, and I’m barely doing anything at all. Well, not nothing, I’ve gotta finish a paper for class, and my wife’s sister is visiting from Tennessee. I decided to catch up on a week of flash fiction prompts:

Inspiration Monday
Sunday Photo Fiction
Three Word Wednesday
Sunday Scribblings 2
Friday Flash

I’m continuing Miss Alister’s Transference, click through and keep clicking through to get all the way back to here with part one. I also typed the whole thing up on my Smith-Corona Coronet Super 12, circa 1971, all stream-of-conciousness like. Here’s the 1042 word continuation:

**EDIT** I just realized, I wrote this in the wrong perspective. I’ll need to rewrite in the first person…

* * *

“There’s a storm brewing.”

I glanced toward wind chimes mounted over the cabin door and surveyed the horizon. “Not one that I can see,” I replied.

James stood just behind me, I was performing his sentry duties. “Not that kind of storm,” he chuckled.

I lowered the looking glass focused on an island – the object of my intense scrutiny. It wasn’t James’ style to lurk, shirking his duties. “Pray tell, Skipper.”

I could feel the glare from my captain, blood rushing to change the color of his face. If the man could shoot lasers from his eyes, I expected this would be an excuse to cripple me over my attempted fun. I sheathed my looking glass and took a step towards the capstan, paying heed to the anchor chain as I walked. Each step away from the captain, I felt the heat from the coin compound in my pocket.

Perched atop of the capstan, I grinned at my fuming captain. “Come on, Cap’n. Speak to me,” I hoped my smile would defuse his anger.

The captain of the Zebedee chewed on his cigar for a moment. “How ’bout before I tell you, you enlighten this salty old dog on what you saw with that spyglass of yours.”

I shrugged, leapt down from the capstan and picked up a piece of the netting that was a constant companion aboard ship. I passed the netting between my fingers, drawn to each imperfection, removing debris every few knots. I continued doing this, now second nature, as I complied with my captain.

“There’s a stream on that island there.” I tossed my head in the direction of the greenish-purple island on the horizon. “That stream has a little waterfall. Each time we port near by, I look for it.”
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Free Reads!

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To celebrate fridayflash.org selecting my story from all the entries in the 2014 Halowe’en Humor and Horror contest, I’m making Escape and Paradox free on Halowe’en day. That my story was selected was announced on Tuesday, but my story isn’t live there until tomorrow. Be sure to head over there and read my story as well as the many wonderful stories in the #fridayflash collector. There are some talented writers over there, so you should read, read, read! Then, of course, you should write, write, write!

Write your stuff and put it out there. Remember: an unread book is but a block of paper. But, and I tell you this with sad anime eyes, an unwritten book is nothing.


The Afflicted – Patient Zero

The Afflicted

Wow. It’s been so long since I’ve written anything for The Afflicted. June 13th and February 8th to be exact. Each time I saw the beautiful cover for it, I was sad that I wasn’t finishing the story. Like many professional writers down here in the dregs, I have many unfinished stories rattling around. As one of my favorite “new” authors, Chuck Wendig, has said again and again and again, “Finish your shit, yo!”

Well, I may be misquoting him, but it’s what I’ve synthesized from him. It’s fitting that the prompt today from terribleminds works in nicely with The Afflicted. I was actually pissed that I had to stop at 1000 words on the nose, but I’d rather this be a slow burn instead of a flare-out. I may wrestle another from The Afflicted this weekend. Hey, Matt! Hey, #fridayflash!

* * *

Matt opened one eye. He closed it and forced them both to open. The room was fuzzy on the edges, but he at least had a small field of clear vision. He blinked a few times and the image retained more focus.

I’m in a hospital, he thought, followed by, I’m hungry.

Matt couldn’t remember the last time he was so hungry. He tried to swallow, but something made his throat hurt. He reached to feel his throat, but a pair of hands gently held his.

“Please don’t move, Mister Siebert.”

The face of a woman in her early twenties shifted into focus, hovering above him. Even though his vision had mostly cleared from the haze, her face was still blurry. It took Matt a few heartbeats to comprehend what his eyes were telling him: The nurse was wearing an isolation suit.

He could hear a soft whir coming from what he could only assume was a rebreather. Flares of condensation appeared on her mask as she breathed steadily. “I’m going to remove a tube from your mouth. On the count of three, I need you to breathe out as hard as you can.” She smiled a blurry smile. “Blink twice so I know you understand me.”

Matt’s world became nothing, a black void of gnawing hunger, twice in quick succession.

The nurse smiled again and started the count down. When she reached ‘three,’ Matt forced air from his lungs. The pitiful wheeze startled him, but the insatiable hunger overpowered his fear.

“Hung…”

“Don’t talk yet, Mister Siebert. I’ll get you some water.” She placed a plastic cup to his lips and he drank greedily. “Not so fast, there’s plenty of water.” She produced another cup and he drained it immediately.

Matt coughed and he felt his entire body shudder. Pain radiated from everywhere, but that pain was nothing compared to the hunger that dominated him. He reached up to rub his throat, but realized it wasn’t the nurse’s hand that kept him from moving but a strap across his wrist. Matt struggled to lift his head, to take in his situation, but it was also strapped down.

“What’s going on?” he whispered.

“I’m sorry, Mister Siebert, I’m not supposed to be talking to you.”
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16Sunsets, 13a

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“Get down!” Hissed Kristof.

Krystal complied, but it was obvious to Kristof she wasn’t happy about being ordered around.

Kristof watched a shadow fall across his porch. He squinted as the shadow cleared the corner. “Shit!” He whispered the ‘i’ as an ‘e’ and drew it out several syllables. “A cat.”

“A cat?”

“Yeah, I saw the shadow of a cat and I…” He paused and noticed the smile on her face. “Never mind.”

Kristof and Krystal walked back to their house. Krystal whispered, “I thought you were gonna die.”

Kristof stopped and turned to face her. “I think I did.”

“Die?”

“Yeah.” The pair resumed their walk and Kristof told her everything he and the doctor had discovered.

* * *

“Whatcha got Frank?”

Sergeant Frank Massey looked up from the file he was studying. “Hey, Jones. It’s that kid.”

“Joaquin… Something. The kid who disappeared from the precinct, um… Your carjacker?”

Massey nodded. “Something just doesn’t add up about him.”

“How so?”

“Well, he leaves evidence at each crime scene. Finger prints, fibers, video surveillance.”

“Criminals are dumb.”
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Chapter 1 – Beginnings

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#fridayflash Chuck over at terribleminds is doing a sentence prompt. I posted my sentence in his comments, but still wanted to do flash fiction today. I also wanted to try my hand at “stream of consciousness” writing on a 1949 Remington quiet-riter. My scanner is 15 years old, so I’ll need to see if I can get a better scan. Maybe I’ll just retype the thing tomorrow. I finished at 722 words and this is my debut flash for Friday Flash:

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Looking out over the destruction, I wonder to myself, “What have I done?” Granted, I can’t take full responsibility for it all. I had help in the oddest manner. I think back to how it all began…

“Hey! Give me a hand here.”

I was tempted to give the age old clap, but one look at the grizzled old man made me second guess that action. It wasn’t the cigar dangling from the corner of his mouth, tattoo across his bare chest, but the way he glared at me. It’s hard to describe what the look meant, but I recall that same look from my father – usually after doing something wrong.

“What do you need there, buddy?” I asked, weary of his response.

“What I need is someone who’s not afraid to use his back bone or get his hands dirty.”

I looked down at my hands. No one would’ve ever accused me of having dirty hands. I tried to hide my manicured hands, but the old-timer just stared.

I cleared my throat and stepped forward. “I suppose I could see what you need help with.” I knew my voice lacked authority, or even strength, but I had said it aloud.

“Afraid to commit?” He blew out a blue puff of cigar smoke. “I suppose that’s the problem with you kids these days.”

“Kid?” I thought crossly, “Who’s this old buzzard calling kid?”

Before I could voice my displeasure, the old man tossed something small at me. I caught it with a single hand, and when I opened my palm, a shiny coin was revealed.

“What’s this?” I asked, rubbing the coin between my fingers. I opened my mouth to inquire more, but my reflection in the gold stopped me. I could’ve been mistaken, but the coin featured a bust that looked mysteriously like the old man. It would have been years ago – he looked too old to fit on a coin – especially with his crazy wispy hair.

“Ahh…” he rasped, “you see it.”
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