Welcome to the monthly round up of all my #ThursThreads tales. It’s October and Halloween is just around the corner! Are you excited? Do you dress up? My whole family does because it’s just so fun. The Muirlettes are going for a steampunk pirate/ Elven assassin vibe this year. I’m just going as a sorceress because of my upcoming release the week before Halloween. You can see the cover in earlier posts and on my blog.
Most of these bits are of upcoming tales, written to prompts from the #ThursThreads #flashfiction challenge I host each Thursday. We’re starting with Week 478 through Week 482 and I’ve collected them in one place.
September had five Thursdays, so you get an extra tale this month along with their dates and prompts. Happy reading!
Week 478, September 2, 2021
Prompt: “You need to be careful.”
“Marbles!” Kendra threw her arms around the demon. “I’m so glad to see you. I’ve missed you, sweetie.”
Sweetie? Phinn rolled his eyes. “You’ve got to be kidding me.”
“Hey, she’s saved your ass quite a few times so you need to work on your animosity.” Kendra narrowed her eyes before turning back to the tracker demon. “Show us the way to Summer, Marbles. We need to visit Phinn’s mom.”
“What? Since when are we visiting my mother?”
“Since I’m pretty sure she’s the only one who can help us get out of this situation and this realm.” She waved her hands at him to get moving. “Unless you know how to get us back home?”
He scowled. “No.”
“Well then.” She crouched in front of the demon. “Can you find Phinn’s mother?”
“You know you need to be careful around that thing, right? And bringing it to my mother’s house is a recipe for disaster.”
Kendra rolled her eyes. “The only recipe for disaster we have goin’ on is staying here. Marbles, show us the way.” She rose to her feet and waited for the tracker demon to pivot.
The insane creature shot a look over its shoulder at him and he got the distinct impression it was tired of his antics. What the hell? But Marbles turned its attention toward the southern woods and strode off into the snow. Kendra followed in its footsteps without a backward glance. Phinn had no choice but to trail after them.
249 #CloudburstColorado words
Week 479, September 9, 2021
Prompt: “Yet there was something there.”
Mike could never afford the tuition at Rocky Mountain Preparatory Academy. But some of the wealthy parents had gotten friendly with him at the store and recommended Sierra for their scholarship program. She’d just started attending that fall and had impressed her teachers with her work ethic.
His daughter was smart and creative, just like her egg-donor, and it didn’t surprise him in the least that she was doing well. He worried that her economic status might make her a target of the privileged and entitled rich kids, but so far there hadn’t been any problems.
Sierra continued to chatter about her friend when she stopped mid-sentence and gasped.
“Daddy! I saw a bobcat! Stop the truck!”
He quickly pressed the brakes and slid to a stop, then put it in reverse to slowly back up.
“Where did you see it? Was it really a bobcat?”
“Yes, yes, I saw it.” Sierra pointed at a concrete block wall surrounding someone’s yard. “See? It’s right there. Do you see it?”
He squinted, hoping to catch movement in the dim evening light. He held his breath and waited. He couldn’t see anything along the wall with the tree branches waving in the evening breeze. Yet there was something…
“There! Do you see it now, Daddy?”
A mama bobcat leapt to the top of the wall with a fluffy little bundle of spotted fur in her mouth.
“Oh my glory. She’s moving kittens! I can’t believe it. Will they be okay?”
248 #WIP500 words
Week 480, September 16, 2021
Prompt: “You could stay.”
“Sierra’s from a one-night-stand between friends. I wanted to keep her, but her mother wasn’t ready for kids.” He snorted. “Frankly, neither was I, but I asked her to carry the baby to term and I’d take on all the parenting. She graciously granted my wish and we parted ways once Sierra was born.”
“And you haven’t heard from her since?”
Mike shrugged. “I get a postcard or an email every now and again, but it’s few and far between. She travels a lot as an environmental activist, and she doesn’t have time for a family. It worked out well enough for me—we were friends, but not much more than that.”
“And you have a great daughter out of the deal, right?”
He nodded. “Exactly right. I sometimes worry that Sierra doesn’t have any siblings since I come from a family with five kids, two brothers and two sisters, but she seems to do very well making friends at school. She mentioned Sedona on the way here.”
The doors to the theatre opened and the kids came out to the foyer to find their parents. “Looks like rehearsal’s done.”
“So it does. And tomorrow’s the big night.” She rose with him as they waited for their kids to come out of the auditorium. “Hey, uhm, if you could stay a little longer, I’d appreciate it. I need to check with Sedona, but I’d like to talk to you again before you leave. Would that be okay?”
248 #WIP500 words
Week 481, September 23, 2021
Prompt: “It wasn’t a question.”
Mike nodded and grunted to the old man to keep the conversation short.
Amanda had abandoned the counter and perused the electric hand tools section as he rung up the older man’s purchases. He kept going over what she’d proposed and found himself leaning toward accepting. What was the best that could happen? He’d be married to a beautiful, driven, dynamic woman who loved her kid and had money to spare. He’d have a fancy house that he wouldn’t have to take care of, his bills would be paid, and he’d end up with a place to live and a vehicle that wouldn’t break down every time there was a snowstorm. And he’d only have to stick with it a year.
Are there any downsides to this?
It wasn’t a question. It was short term and beneficial to all parties. Declining the offer made as much sense as throwing out a winning lottery ticket. Once the door closed behind the older gentlemen, Mike returned to the counter and Amanda stepped up, her gaze both hopeful and expectant.
“Okay, so I want to be clear. What you’re asking me is to marry you for a year.” Mike pushed down one finger with his other hand. “In exchange for being your husband, you’ll one, buy me a house; two, buy me a new vehicle; three, pay Sierra’s tuition until high school; and four, possibly have sex with me. Have I got that right?”
241 #WIP500 words
Week 482, September 30, 2021
Prompt: “That’s a promise.”
Mike chuckled as he squeezed Amanda around the waist.
“What’s so funny?”
They sat down to their reception meal with Val and Sierra, and did their level best to keep the food from hitting the girls’ dresses.
“I was just thinking of Mr. Tisdale’s visit and how he definitely didn’t get what he wanted.”
Amanda smiled and shook her head. “He was persistent that day. Too bad my assistant couldn’t find any open times in my schedule until after our wedding.” She shrugged but her eyes sparkled with amusement. “Guess he’s too late now.”
“Damn right, he is.” Mike leaned over and kissed her cheek. “And he won’t be getting anywhere near you romantically. That’s a promise now that I’m your husband, even temporarily.”
“You’re still okay with that deal? You really are doing me a favor.”
He reached over to squeeze her hand. “Okay doesn’t begin to cover it. I’m happy to help. And you’re doing me a favor, too. The new truck is nice and the help with all Sierra’s school fees and supplies is a godsend.”
“I’m happy to do it.” She squeezed back. “Plus I kinda like spending the evenings with you talking about mundane stuff like homework, what to make for dinner, and who’s picking up the kids.”
“Weird, right? So domestic.” He laughed. “I like it, too. And if I didn’t tell you already, you look absolutely stunning. Thanks for asking me to marry you.”
She kissed his cheek. “Thanks for accepting.”
248 #WIP500 words