Welcome back to the home of Weird, Wild, & Wicked Tales. Today is the second Thursday of #NaNoWriMo. How’s your word count going? We’ve reached our Seventh year of weekly prompts! This is Week 388 of #ThursThreads, the challenge that ties tales together. Want to keep up each week? Check out the #ThursThreads #flashfiction group on Facebook and the Group on MeWe.
Need the rules? Read on.
Here’s how it works:
- The prompt is a line from the previous week’s winning tale.
- The prompt can appear ANYWHERE in your story and is included in your word count.
- The prompt must be used as is. It can be split, but no intervening words can be inserted or tenses changed.
Rules to the Game:
- This is a Flash Fiction challenge, which means your story must be a minimum of 100 words, maximum of 250.
- The story must be new writing, not a snippet from something published elsewhere with the prompt added.
- Incorporate the prompt anywhere into your story (included in your word count).
- Post your story in the comments section of this post
- Include your word count in the post (or be excluded from judging)
- Include your Twitter handle or email in the post (so we don’t have to look for you)
- The challenge is open 7 AM to 8 PM Mountain Time
- The winner will be announced on Friday, depending on how early the judge gets up.
How it benefits you:
- You get a nifty cool badge to display on your blog or site (because we’re all about promotion – you know you are!)
- You get instant recognition of your writing prowess on this blog!
- Your writing colleagues shall announce and proclaim your greatness on Facebook, Twitter, MeWe, and Google Plus, etc.
Our Judge for Week 388:
Programmer by day, writer by night, Katheryn J. Avila.
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And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.
“Be harder for them to find you.”
All stories written herein are the property (both intellectual and physical) of the authors. Now, away with you, Flash Fiction Fanatics, and show us your #ThursThreads. Good luck!
13 Replies to “#ThursThreads – Tying Tales Together – Week 388”
They are coming for me today. I hear their footsteps on the pavement, light, barely issuing a sound but I know they are there.
You don’t have to see a devil to feel its poisonous bile penetrate you.
I press my ear against the wall.
They are wily.
I slip down the edge of the wall and cower on the floor.
“What are you doing?” she demands.
I shush her but she pays me no mind.
“Don’t try and shut me up, you fool,” she yells back.
It is so unsettling. They’re bound to hear her ravings.
I have no choice.
I leap at her, knock her down.
She crashes against the wooden table, falls to the floor.
That quiets her.
Blood flows on the beige carpet where she lands.
It is a lovely carpet.
I return to the wall, again pressing my ear against its cold blue paint.
My companion whispers, “It will be harder for them to find you now that she is silent.”
This draws me back to her.
Blood is spoiling the carpet.
I will be blamed even though anyone can see that it is her fault.
She never leaves me alone.
Always speaking out of turn.
Bloating the air with accusations.
My companion, much more circumspect, again whispers, “make her silent forever. It’s the only way.”
He’s right, of course.
I crawl to her body, crush her breath with my weight.
I am safe.
Alone, by Terry Brewer, @stories2121, 249 words
Alone. She always sat alone. Walking to school. Alone. In the cafeteria. Alone. Walking home. Alone.
For all I knew, she only spoke when a teacher asked her a question or when she told the server what she wanted for lunch.
Everyone noticed. Some mean kids laughed about it. Sometimes to her face. She didn’t respond. There was nothing peculiar about her. She’d moved into the district over the summer. No one knew from where. She had a family, though no one knew anything about them.
I followed her one day and she got on a bus about ten blocks from school. I didn’t get on. It was a bus into the City. I followed her the next day. I rushed to catch her before she reached the bus stop. She bristled at the touch I gave her shoulder to stop her. But she stopped. I asked why she didn’t speak. She thought for a moment. She was heavily weighing her options.
“If I talk, they’ll hear me and come for me.” She cringed as she said it, fear enveloping her eyes. “It’s why I go the library every day. No one expects me to talk.”
She was sweet. And petrified. I took the bus with her, and we went to the library together. On the bus home I told her, “you know, if you’re with a friend it’ll be harder for them to find you.” She put her head on my shoulder. “I hope so. I hope so.”
“This crap has to go. All of it. I told you a few days, and now it’s been over a year. Tying up my extra bedroom.”
“But what else am I gonna do with it? You know I don’t have any other place.”
“I know that’s what you said before, yes, when we talked about this. I’m not trying to be a hardass here, but look…Over a year? Seriously?”
“Okay. I get it. Look, how ‘bout this? You lend me a hundred dollars, and I’ll go rent a storage locker. Then, you can help me move it over there.”
“Riiiight. I’m gonna lend you a hundred bucks to rent a place, spend all day loading it into my car, then drive it over there. It’ll take more than one trip, you know. Probably four or five. Plus a deposit of some sort, I dunno how much.What do you think I am? Made of money?”
She sidled over to him and threw her arms around his shoulders, squeezing up next to him, rubbing her crotch against his.
“Please?” she murmured, licking his ear. “C’mon. For me? Pretty please? With sugar on top? Angela won’t mind.”
He wanted to resist, but she was so desirable…
She continued to sway back and forth. Impulsively, he thrust his hands down her panties—she was as wet as his ear.
“We can stay there. For a while.”
“Why would I do that?”
“It’s private. Be harder for them to find you….”
“Insufferable,” Death groaned. “Completely insufferable.”
His one, and maybe only, good friend laughed. “I have to agree. I would take pleasure in sicking Cerberus upon some. Not even to hurt or maim, just for him to lick them to death with three eager heads. Imagine how many goddesses would be appalled to have their wear slobbered and their hair disheveled.”
Hades’ howl of laughter bounced off the cavern walls. Contagious. Death soon joined in, though nowhere near as boisterous. Every time Hades seemed to calm he’d let another bellow rip until he finally sighed and wiped at his eyes.
“That would be a sight worth seeing. She would hate me for eternity.”
“Doubtful. Aphrodite has always been smitten of you and jealous of Persephone. She couldn’t hate you if she tried.”
“Hmm.” Hades steepled his fingers beneath his chin. “You make a fine point. You are coming to the gathering, are you not?”
A sigh slipped from Death, sinking into the chair. “I would prefer not. I am the only god who doesn’t belong anywhere.”
“Nonsense. You are a god, therefore you belong.”
“Need I remind you I am still the outcast god?”
Hades waved a dismissive hand. “Come anyways. Take company with Persephone and I. Avoid Lucifer.” They both made a grunting sound of approval. “At worst case if you need space, escape to the Ether for a short time.”
“Be harder for them to find you.”
“You mean impossible.”
Hades grinned. “That’s the spirit.”
250 #sidestory #Embermyst #NaNoWriMo words
241 words @ragtaggiggagon
“It’ll be harder for them to find you if you lie down and sweep the leaves over your body.”
“No.” The child shook his head.
Panting, the man hunkered down in front of the child.
“I want to be found,” the child insisted, tears in his eyes.
In the distance, search dogs barked.
“They should never have found us.” The man looked back, still trying to catch his breath. “We need to pass water.”
“You mean go to the toilet?” the child asked.
“I mean we need to cross the river. It will throw the dogs off the scent.”
Minutes later, they arrived at the riverbank.
The man plunged into the waters. They rose to his waist.
“Come on,” he said. He extended his hand, his teeth chattering.
The child shook his head.
With the speed of the water, the man lost his footing and was swept under. He re-emerged halfway across the stream, head bobbing in and out of the water. He found his sea-legs, swimming to the far bank. He hauled himself up the bank and disappeared into the foliage moments after the search party arrived on the former bank.
The child stared across the river as a police officer took his hand.
“It’s okay. We got your call. You’re a clever kid. You’re safe now. It’s okay,” she said, her tone like a mantra.
He looked back at her darkly.
“It will never be okay again.”
“It’s the best trick ever,” she said, her voice hanging untethered in mid-air. “You wouldn’t believe the things I’ve seen. The places I’ve found a way into. All I have to do is hold my breath and move real slow.” She’d picked up my phone and began to flip through the screens, its casing angled toward where her face would be. It slowly began to fade, its colours losing their vibrancy, first its shell and then the components inside. It was as though I was watching it being disassembled, its battery the last piece to disappear.
“My handler said it would be temporary. That it would help me infiltrate embassies, the most secure government chambers. ‘And even if you are detected,’’” she said, repeating the words of her briefing, “’It’d be harder for them to find you. And you’ll always escape.’” She’d moved again and she was now beside me, her breath ghosting against my ear. I wondered if she’d feel the way I remembered her in my arms, if she was the same person if you stripped away the changes they’d made. She’d been training in multiple martial arts when I’d last seen her and I’d remarked then upon how she’d seemed leaner and more still behind her eyes. She’d already begun the change, and I’d not known, dismissing it as the strangeness distance and time apart bring. But that was before she’d become a chimera, her DNA spliced to make her a mythological, like Wonderland’s Cheshire cat.
249 stories of Alice ~ twothirdsrasta.blogspot.com
Hope hunched against the passenger door of the pickup, the man’s words playing through her head. Be harder for them to find you. No it wouldn’t. Once the Hell Dogs picked up her trail, they’d sniff her out, but she’d be gone before then. She wouldn’t let anyone get hurt, not even strangers. Maybe, though, when she took off again, she’d leave a note behind so Mr. West could call her family, let them know she was okay. Well, as okay as she could be given she’d been kidnapped, escaped, and was on the run to keep everyone safe.
She couldn’t figure this man out and that worried her. She hadn’t trusted a soul until a big man with dark hair and haunted eyes tore open the door to the cell where she’d been raised. Nate Connor. The man she now called Dad. She hadn’t known her name or how old she was. She’d simply been a number, a lab rat locked away in a secret facility out in the bayous of Louisiana. And then Nate entered her life. Along with the other Wolves. Wolves were secret. Had to remain secret. Which is why she had to keep running. She had to protect the Wolves and their mates, Protect Liam and Micah and Gracie. Even Cody, though he didn’t carry the gene. She couldn’t let them be experiments.
Trust was fragile, like a dandelion. Could she trust Mr. West?
“Yes,” he said, like he could read her mind. “You can.”
250 #WIP words
Plain black robes, standard issue scythe; a Deather but not of rank. There are only a few Deathers with rank and each have colorful robes. Pulling a wallet-sized photo from my sparkly purple robes, my breath catches.
Jesus! She’s back in the park where the other woman was killed!
Is she near?
Yes, and I’m betting she’s a Deather.
Jesus has never cared for the spotlight so where his father enters a room with a fanfare, Jesus poofs into existence. I nod toward the woman.
“You sure that’s her?” he whispers, as she walks around a small garden a few feet from us.
I nod, handing him the picture. The dark curly hair, blue eyes, it’s her all right. The Savior hands me back the picture, nodding.
Before we can move, another woman joins her. We wait to see what happens and then I hear them. It occurs to me that Jesus can eavesdrop.
“Once Abigail’s out of the picture, we’re free.”
Great, it sounds like murder for hire.
Jesus steps forward, smiling.
“Ladies, nice evening for a walk in the park?”
It’s supposed to be harder for them to find you, doofus.
I got this.
Out of nowhere, The One True Death appears, sweeping both away. Jesus returns to me grinning.
He holds out his arm. “Shall we head off to that movie you promised me?”
I shake my head at his hopeful smile, then whisk us away to the theatre.
As his dark hooded brethren filed out of the ritual chamber, Theodore Marius noticed the pink puddle behind the altar. The showy saccharine substance stood out conspicuously in the chthonic chamber.
Theo pretended not to notice and moved to what passed for the kitchen. The garish pink splotch on the wall was no less subtle than the puddle.
The pink ring in the tub changed Theo’s mind about bathing before bed. His last stop was Annie’s room, the only unabashedly girly and charming space in the cursed compound.
“Not everyone will appreciate you the way I do,” Theo sighed. “If you want to go outside, you need to be harder for them to find you.”
His adorable pink goo girl looked up with wide eyed innocence, but not understanding.
129 D&D character words
“Maria, she’s endangering herself and us.”
“Daddy, what do you suggest?”
“Be harder for them to find you. We are in hiding do you understand that? If the wrong people find us…”
“Blah, blah, blah.”
“You talk to her, Maria, she’s insisting on going to the school dance. I’ve had it short of locking her in her room,” my dad threatened.
“Sarah’s eighteen, finding her own way and she needs to hang out with other teens,” mother protested.
“We are all nature’s surprise evolution. The rest of the population isn’t ready for us.”
“They’ll just have to get used to us!” I exclaimed.
Mom and dad talked for awhile and then Mom said, “We’ve decided you can go to the dance but no levitating, no telekinesis of any kind.”
“Thank-you, I’ll be careful, I promise,” I answered crossing my fingers behind my back.
At the dance I was the belle of the ball. I hadn’t promised my mom and dad I wouldn’t use my magnetism. I did tick off some of the popular girls but they deserved it. Then I met him, Samuel. He drew me to him like he was a magnet.
I knew he too was an evolutional anomaly. I snuck out night after night and we talked He was all alone and had used his abilities to feed and clothe himself.. Then my dad decided to move again. Samuel and I were married last night. We’re all moving now, one big happy abnormal family.
“Shit!” Hermione wrapped her sleeve around the guard’s leg wound. “They must have bombed the fuckin’ lab.”
Dr. Martell frowned. “What do you mean, they bombed the lab? As in explosives?”
She wanted to snap at him, but he looked like one of those white-coat science geeks who’d never been on a hiking trip much less in combat.
“Yup. That’s exactly what she means, doc.” The guard wheezed as Hermione tightened her makeshift tourniquet. “So what are you gonna do, Captain Wilcox?”
She swung her gaze around the lab. Broken beakers and test tubes lay strewn around the floor and the walls had sustained some damage. “First I’m gonna do some reconnoitering to find out if we can get back to the surface.”
The guard shook her head. “No need. When any kind of attack happens, the system is programmed to shut down all stairwells and elevator shafts. It goes into lockdown to protect the research and substances.”
“Why are they here? What do they want?” One of the lab techs shot Hermione a fearful look.
“They want Dr. Martell and his research.”
Martell gaped. “What for?”
“My intel says they wanted to weaponize it.”
His face blanched white. “But that’s not what it’s for. The venom I’m studying is already toxic. They don’t need my research.”
“Tell them that.” She shook her head. “But first, it’d be harder for them to find you if you weren’t wearing that.” She pointed at his nametag. “Time to go anonymous, doc.”
249 ineligible #TeamSirens words
“The private party really paid off.” Jack moved through the liquor bottles, clipboard in hand, recording the bottle levels. “I worried about giving you up from the main floor. You should have heard the whining. But we pulled in a third over what we expected, so they can suck it. When they’re dropping cash like that, I’ll hear their complaints about a single night without you.”
“I did a thing.” Tan stuffed his backpack into the storage cabinet behind the bar. He watched his co-owner from the corner of his eye. “At the party.”
“Tell me something surprising.” Jack sighed and glanced up from the Sapphire bottle. “Figured it out after a dozen people were waiting to ‘meet’ you this morning.”
“Kick your ass. What the fuck were you thinking, Tan? Dude’s famous. Even I know who he is.”
“I didn’t know. But he’s internet famous. Not the same thing.”
“Convince the internet. They’ve spent the last—” He glanced at his watch. “Ten hours tearing apart that video of you two.”
“It was just a kiss.”
“And you’re just going to have to be harder for them to find. You come to work like it’s any other day?”
“It is any other day.”
“No, it’s the first day after you kissed a celebrity.” Jack set his clipboard down. “A celebrity with a large local following.”
“I’m talking psycho fans.” Jack sighed. “They’re out for blood, and thanks to that vid, yours is in the water.”
250 WItS WIP words
#ThursThreads Week 388 is now CLOSED. Thanks to everyone who wrote this week and I hope to catch you next week.