Welcome back to the home of Weird, Wild, & Wicked Tales. Today is Thursday and that means it’s time to start flashing. We’re half way through our eighth year of weekly prompts! This is Week 395 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 395:
Scottish Word Slinger, Dauntless romance author, and #ThursThreads host, Siobhan Muir.
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And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.
“He had a point.”
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 395”
How Jonesy died was never fully revealed. He had accumulated a considerable number of years. The heft of those years had worn him down quite a bit. You could see it clearly on his face, sunken cheeks, once rosy, now pitted with scars, eyes starched deep with time, the weight of sleepless nights back of Pressinger’s Mall, against that grate, a weight like an ever accumulating dump of snow on a rickety roof.
Most days, he showed up for hot soup at the Hall. I’d talk to him in between my tasks and we’d usually have a reasonable conversation going, wide-ranging and enjoyable.
He was a well-read guy and held strong opinions about the state of the world.
“Take Trump,” he’d say quite frequently to preface whatever direction he was considering moving our lunchtime dialogue and I would invariably add, “Not on your life, don’t want him,” and he would punctuate the jibe with, “He’s not going away anytime soon.”
He had a point. Irrefutable. Perhaps prophetic. It wasn’t that he supported the American President. Quite the contrary. He would frequently add something along the lines of, “those followers of his, they see his faults. In that respect, he’s the most human man alive. A living breathing tribute to human error. That’s his appeal. Weird, huh!”
Then one day he was gone.
Winter had gotten too vengeful.
Too hungry for another lost soul.
A quiet man with too much sorrow, Jonesy just let go.
I’ll miss him.
250 winter words
“Are you sure you want to do this?” Ryker looked at her, thinly veiled fear hovering in his eyes. “If I take you to the Dragos’ hideout, there’s no guarantee I can get either of us back out.” He had a point, but Bysen wouldn’t let his fear mingle with her own.
“I just need you to show me.” She reached out to him, placed her hand on his. Bysen had no intention of risking him getting captured by his old masters, but she also couldn’t pass up this opportunity. “You don’t have to go in with me.”
“That was our deal, Ryker.” She cut him off before he could argue, startling herself with the volume of her own voice. Looking around to make sure they weren’t overheard, she continued, “And aren’t you bound by your word or something?”
“The benefit of only being half Fey.” He offered a half-hearted smile, pulling his hood farther down as a small crowd passed them by. “I’m only bound by some of the rules.”
Bysen waited until the crowd was out of earshot before speaking again.
“Please, Ryker. Saving my brother from that poison means nothing if I don’t know who targeted him. Just show me where it is.”
Ryker held her stare for what felt like hours. His charcoal gaze seemed to be looking into her, and Bysen wondered what he saw. Was it the same thing everyone else did? A sorry excuse for an elemental?
“Fine.” Resigned, he looked away.
250 WIP fantasy words
“Holy shit, Noona.”
“Language, Tae-yah.” I picked up the vaguely forkish utensil next to the steaming platter of food. Some sort of meat, a starch, veggies. It smelled decent, though. Like it probably wouldn’t kill me, at the very least.
“Ho-ly fuck-ing shit-balls, Noona.”
“Jesus, Tae.” I dropped the fork with a hiss, slapping my hand over his snout. Kinda like holding a gator’s mouth shut. “What? What is it?”
“‘izard,” he mumbled around my hand.
“A lizard?” I gave his scaly self a no shit glance. “I know you’re a lizard, dude.”
He pried my hand away.
“A wizard.” Tae’s pupils almost swallowed the molten gold of his irises. “Didn’t you see him?”
I cast a surveying glance around the room. The whole place looked like an SCA cosplay convention, us included.
“Exactly which one of these people looks more like a wizard than the rest?”
“Gray robes? Long beard? He had a point? On his hat? Like some kind of Gandalf-looking wannabe?” Taewoon bounced on the bench as he spoke, words coming out rapid fire, all curling up at the end in a question.
“Tae.” I grabbed the boy’s wrists, tugging down gently, grounding him as it were. “You are a walking, talking dragon man. How is a guy with a pointy hat more interesting than you, bub?”
“Well, he—wait.” Maybe the steam coming in low key curls from his nose was the lizardy equivalent of a blush. “You think I’m cool looking?”
“The coolest, baby brother.”
250 #TeamRPG words
My heart pounded in my chest and I leaned against Michael’s body to get comfort as much as hold on. When he’d told me I was in danger, I hadn’t believed him. But then the detectives showed up to the news station and now my place had been tossed, he had a point about the danger factor.
And you knew he was right anyway.
Yeah, I’d known at the gut level that something was off the minute I saw the dead ADA. I didn’t have proof, but I didn’t trust the cops to have my back. I wasn’t sure I could trust the Concrete Angels any better, but so far Michael had rescued my ass enough times to give him the benefit of the doubt.
I closed my eyes and snuggled closer, wondering what the hell I was going to do now. How did I fight someone I couldn’t see? If the cops were looking for me, that was far larger than I could take on. Plus, they’d taken my laptop and external hard drive. I still had my tablet, thank goodness, but they also had my Kindle.
Michael had seemed surprised and bemused when I’d told him about my preferred genre of romance reading. Not that most guys thought about a woman’s romance preference, but it seemed to catch him off guard a lot more than usual.
I snorted. What, didn’t he think angels could be hot and sensual? Little does he know.
244 ineligible #ConcreteAngelsMC words
The casting director turned to me. “You,” he said. “What can you do? I’ve seen everybody else’s auditions. Every one but yours.”
I hadn’t planned to be here: I was only here now because it was too cold in the street. But I’d witnessed Holly’s brilliance blaze while she’d performed, and I’d been elated when she was accepted.
“Me?” I replied. “I guess I’m just a shield-bearer. One of the people who contribute on the sidelines but never get the spotlight.”
“But yet you’re here now, commanding my attention. Didn’t you read the poster? ‘I’m casting for the next bestselling Broadway star. Bring your ‘A’ game. Be prepared to shine. No time wasters.'” He opened up his case and slipped his computer inside. He’d already decided he’d done for the day. I was just another opportunity to chew somebody out. Although, as loathsome as he was, he had a point.
“I guess I got nothing. I’m more of a broom-pusher than a performer. I’m one of those guys who materialises when the curtains are drawn, sweeping up popcorn and redistributing any sequins which have fallen. I’ve got passion, though, and I’ve got a voice. Maybe you’ll need someone to whisper the prompts when the professionals falter. I can do that. I can be here for rehearsals too, following the script and listening for mistakes, making sure nobody misses their cues.”
The director smiled, surprising me. “I like your attitude,” he said. “Maybe we can work together. I need a narrator…”
two-hundred and forty-nine plus one singular, sensational non-WIP words ~ twothirdsrasta.blogspot.com
“And don’t contact the cops.”
He had a point. But his warning had nothing to do with my organization. Contacting the local authorities would compromise the mission. We were operating outside the laws of any country, hunting down human traffickers and bringing them to justice. One way or another, though killing was not an option unless they presented an immediate threat.
“Where is Daniel?” I demanded. Daniel was not just my superior but my lover.
“If you want to see him you will do what I told you.”
I didn’t believe he was holding Daniel hostage as he claimed. But he was likely watching him. Following him.
He hung up and I immediately called Anaïs who headed our organization.
“Come to Rue Montorgueil, Clémence,” was all she said and I ran to the Métro. Rue Montorgueil was where our headquarters were.
When I got there all the members of my team were waiting.
“He’s already dead,” Anaïs said, without emotion. “Or he will be before we can get to him.”
I argued we had to look for him but she wouldn’t hear of it.
“We have a mission,” she said. “That’s our priority. Daniel took too many risks. He was aware we couldn’t back him up every time.”
I sat through the meeting without saying a word. Then I went to my get my gear – and my weapon – from my locker and left to find Daniel on my own. I knew I’d be in trouble but I couldn’t abandon him.
THE LAST WORD
“He had a point.”
She threw up her hands, aggravation and frustration evident in her attitude. “Of course, he had a point. He always has a point. That doesn’t mean he’s right.”
“Doesn’t mean he’s wrong.”
“Who’s side are you on?”
One of those questions a smart man never answered, like Do I look fat in this? He stared. She looked away first. Smart woman.
“Have you tried talking to him?”
She rolled her eyes. “He’s a man.”
He looked at the tips of his boots, fighting the urge to grin. He cleared his throat to stifle the laugh threatening to choke him. “I’m a man.”
Cocking one brow he gave her one of those looks.
Hands waving, lip curled in a decent facsimile of a snarl, she growled—literally—before managing to say, “You know what I mean.”
“Don’t be obtuse.”
He allowed a dry chuckle to escape. “Pot, kettle, black.”
Her eyes glistened. He was supposed to feel bad for making her cry. Yeah…not happening.
Hands back in the air as she sniffled. “Fine.”
“Okay, then.” He glanced at his watch. “Does that mean we’re done here?”
Tears disappeared behind a scowl.
Sighing internally, because men don’t sigh out loud, he crossed his arms, resigned. “What else?”
“I worked so hard. Everyone was there. He walked in, took one look and left.
Without a word.”
“He told you he hates surprise parties.”
“Everyone says that.”
“He meant it. And he had a point.”
250 totally random “free writing” words that will probably appear in a book in the future, and the final count doesn’t include the title because…well, it doesn’t.
“He had a point. He needed a job.”
“He did not! He could have taken another job. I told him that he should never step into that place.”
“You said something bad would happen to him,” I admitted, “ But did it?”
“Don’t be ridiculous Sally. He broke his leg. He crashed his car and he dumped the love of his life.”
“He says she’s the love of his life.”
“Who looked after him for years kept him on the straight and narrow and out of jail?”
“Are you saying I did?”
“Sally you’re undervaluing yourself Thomas is a cad.”
“He’s my husband.”
“I can fix that. He married you for your money you know!”
“Daddy made him sign a pre-nup. He loves me I know he does! He’s forgotten about the pre-nup”
“He didn’t forget.”
“No that’s why I’m here, honey. You see he tried to hire a hitman to take you out; but I was on to him and he and his girlfriend sent an order to an undercover cop.”
“Why?” I asked crying.
“He doesn’t deserve you.”
“I should have married you.”
“You should have.”
“Ask me again later,” I answered.
Ray will never know I planted the seeds; that Thomas and his girlfriend didn’t send the letter. I’m very convincing, for I forged and planted their fingerprints. I’m just enjoying seeing them suffer and rot behind bars. You know what they say ‘Never push a loyal woman to where they don’t give a damn.”
The bell over the door alerted Honesty to the arrival of Sheriff Bragg at the provincial library. She was watering planters of yellow roses—her own personal touch to brighten the building—but she smiled warmly and nodded to the stone-faced law keeper.
Heavy hobnailed boots brought him straight to the modest librarian, over whom he loomed large. She sighed, seeing the next planter past him.
“Good morning, Sheriff Bragg. Can I help you with anything today?”
His iron gaze bored conspicuously through her, not content to merely look at her.
“You worked quite late last night.”
Honesty laid a thin finger aside her chin. Her analysis of the lawman was less penetrating, but just as thorough.
“Yes, I had an idea for a new filing system and got carried away. I actually woke up here this morning.”
“The estate up the road was burgled.”
“No!” Honesty gasped in horror. “Lord Farrow’s handsome home?”
Bragg scowled at the lovely librarian.
“We already know who did it; but if you could help resolve this more quickly, that would be best for everyone.”
“I’m afraid I didn’t see or hear anything.”
Bragg leaned over Honesty to smell the roses behind her.
“It’s a stupid thief that leaves a calling card.”
Bragg’s face was barely an inch from Honesty’s, eyes locked with hers. She unflinchingly held his cold stare.
“A single black rose. You have a lot of roses here.”
He had a point, but that was half the fun.
The Dark Plane is where the Death Business really gets going. From Death herself down to us Deathers, there’s money at every level and no such thing as an unexpected death. And there’s my Dad and me: Death Negotiators. It’s our job to keep you alive.
“Busy night for you two. Good luck.”
Dad and I head to our first stop: a train bridge outside of a tiny Iowa town. There stands a man in his fifties, thin, muscular, his skin leathery from outside work. His chest heaves as he holds the railing, nothing but a dry creek bed below.
“Austin? Listen to me, please.”
Dad inches forward, me behind him hundreds of feet off the ground. We’re in no danger, our horses will save us. Not so Austin.
Dad reaches one hand out. “You have kids?”
His shaky, booming voice is filled with anguish. “Three. Their mom’s locked up in some psych ward. I can’t keep my oldest out of trouble. What’s left for me?”
Dad takes Austin’s hand. Sirens in the distance mean more help is coming and we have to act fast to get him off here.
“Plenty. If you go, what happens then? We can get you help. But first you have to get off this bridge. Those sirens are coming for you and then you’re going to be locked away, too.”
A tense few minutes pass and then Austin jumps.
“Is that all you’re going to say?”
The man’s tone was sharp, nasal and almost as annoying as he was.
“What else do you want me to say?”
“I want to know you’re going to stand up for me:
Most of the time I would, but since I didn’t know which way he was going to jump these days, I couldn’t guarantee how I’d react. “If you say something I could get behind, I’m there— but I’m not going to follow you blind. You know where I stand and you know which side of my bread is buttered, the rest is up to you.”
“So, you’re going to dictate the terms of our friendship?”
I rolled my eyes. “The terms of our friendship are the same as they always been – be honest, be true, don’t take BS.”
“I’m not asking you to violate that.”
“Yeah, but you aren’t telling me which part is going to apply.”
“Be honest, be true…”
He smiled, taking a sword from its wall hanging. He inspected it for a moment and then lunged at me, backing me up to the wall, the tip of his blade against my breast bone.
I smiled. He had a point, and as long as it was one thrust away from my heart, he had my support… at least until I could draw my Sig-Sauer.
228 words, not including title
#ThursThreads Week 395 is now CLOSED. Thanks to everyone who wrote this week and I hope to catch you next week.