#ThursThreads – Tying Tales Together – Week 446

Welcome back to the home of Paranormal & Dauntless Romance. Today is Thursday and that means it’s time to start flashing. We’re in the middle of our ninth year of weekly prompts. It’s amazing we’ve gone this long! This is Week 446 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 446:

David Ludwigbeard

Fantasy Author, and Holder of Several Stories, David Ludwig.

Facebook | Twitter

And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.

The Prompt:

“We will bring him up to speed.”

All stories written herein are the property (both intellectual and physical) of the authors. Comments do not represent the views of the host and the host reserves the right to remove any content. Now, away with you, Flash Fiction Fanatics, and show us your #ThursThreads. Good luck!

19 Replies to “#ThursThreads – Tying Tales Together – Week 446”

  1. Answering Death’s Door

    The pounding on the Penthouse’s door didn’t let up.

    And there was no escape hatch.

    And I didn’t have a gun.

    “I’ll get that,” I said.

    Chivalry, or stupidity, wasn’t dead.

    “No, don’t,” she screamed.

    “Do you know who it is?” I asked quickly.

    “Waters,” she wept.

    I froze for a second, my hand on the doorknob. “We will bring him up to speed, whatever that is,” I tossed out in my panic, her panic.

    “He’ll only run us over,” she spat out. “That’s the only speed he cares about.”

    Suddenly, my hand jerked the lever and opened Mona’s door.

    A smiling Wick Waters filled the open frame.

    “Well, Peeper. How cozy. “

    Waters didn’t wait to be asked in. He barged pass me yelling, “Mona, my condolences.”

    I glanced at Mona on the sofa.

    She’d shrivelled up like a piece of burnt plastic.

    But not before she retrieved a small pistol from under the sofa cushion and fired three times.

    Waters fell to the floor like an overweight bridge suicide, blood gushing all over the white carpet.

    Mona’s hand clung to the weapon like a bathtub safety bar.

    Me, I froze once again.

    I then stepped out of the potential line of fire.

    As I did, the pistol followed me.

    I had no idea what was percolating in her murderous brain.

    All I was thinking was…keep the mask on, safely distance, don’t get shot, and…it’s definitely the right time to maybe write up my bucket list.

    250 WIP
    @billmelaterplea

    1. The opening staccato of thoughts feels like the pounding on the penthouse door and dropped me immediately into the scene!

  2. “Do the guards have a special frequency to share information between buildings?” She led the guard back out of the breakroom. Her gut said she didn’t want the scientists in the room to know about the guards’ protocols and she definitely wasn’t interested in a firefight with them.

    “Yeah, channel two.” He held up his walkie talkie as he followed her toward the tunnel doors.

    “Good to know. What if the radios break down? How do you identify friendlies in the tunnels?”

    Jeff shot a look back toward the breakroom. None of the scientists had followed and his shoulders relaxed.

    “Passwords vary, but the one between this building and Building Two is ‘Trebuchet.’”

    Hermione snorted. “Trebuchet? Like the medieval war machine?”

    He grinned. “Yes, ma’am. Figured it wouldn’t be something we’d say underground unless it was intentional.”

    “Roger that.” She checked all her weapons and gear before she pushed open the tunnel door. “The lights are still on so no one has cut the power. Pay attention to what’s coming through the coms and stay safe.”

    “Yes, ma’am. We will.”

    “Bring him up to speed, the other guard, after I’m through the building. I’ll have him message you.”
    “Very good, ma’am. Good luck.”

    She wanted to say, No luck involved, just pure skill. But she didn’t need to give away just how skilled she was to anyone in this compound.

    “Thank you, Anderson.”

    She waved and let the door shut behind her.

    230 ineligible #Sirens words
    @SiobhanMuir

    1. Trebuchet is just a cool choice of password, but I laughed when Jeff explained it–because he is absolutely right! And I LOVE your badass women, “she didn’t need to give away just how skilled she was” makes this one for me.

  3. I heard the front door open and bang heavily. I grabbed my shooter from my desk drawer.
    “Put the bean shooter down, Forbes. This is friendly call,” The taller cop Walter Evans cried.
    “What do you want Evans?”
    “Not much where were you last Friday, Jack?”
    “Attending my daughter’s birthday. I’m not a mark.”
    “Walter, we should explain,” Brant pleaded.
    “We will bring him up to speed.”
    “You’re paly, Harold Jones was knocked off,” Brant explained.
    “What was he in to?” Evans demanded.
    “Chester, Harold nemesis doesn’t have any brunos; so, that wouldn’t have landed Harold in a Chicago overcoat.”
    “You’ll drop us a dime; if you figure this out after all he was your pal.” Evans said parting.
    I was at the hospital; but it only took a half hour to dispose of Frederick Post. No one noticed my absence. Brant hated Frederick Post for whacking his sister and getting away; an easy get for him to come on board. I wasn’t worried; by the time they found anything it would be dissolved in quick lime.
    I answered my phone.
    “We need to meet, I’ll be there in a half an hour,” Brant persisted.
    It sounded like he had cold feet; now I was worried. I shouldn’t have; the gods were on my side. Brant was killed in a motor vehicle accident on his way over about six blocks away and no one knew where he was going. Like my wife said, always look on the bright side.
    249 words @SweetSheil

  4. The gargoyle, feet planted on the sidewalk, partially sat atop the wall along the Pont de la Tournelle Bridge, his back to the view of Notre Dame Cathedral tourists lined up to see. The cathedral, home to the Gargoyle Sentinels, had been partially demolished in the battle against the rogues. Seeing the magnificent architecture hidden by a spiderweb of scaffolding hurt in a way he couldn’t explain.

    “You are sure he is here?” Roman asked the werewolf standing next to him. Caleb’s eyes were focused on a barge making slow headway up the Seine.

    “Pretty sure.”

    “Why would the dragon come to Paris? Athens is his demesne.”

    “Where’s Sade?” Caleb glanced up in time to catch the change in the gargoyle’s expression as understanding hit. “Yeah. That’s why.”

    “Where is Sinjen?”

    “That’s a good question. Back in Washington, I guess.”

    “Washington and not Chicago?”

    “Don’t ask, Roman.”

    “Because you do not know or because you do not want to be in the middle?”

    “Yes.”

    “What about the fae?”

    Caleb let out a long-suffering sigh. “You know Ariel won’t keep his nose out of this once he catches wind of it.”

    “Of course not. We will bring him up to speed once he arrives.”

    Caleb returned his focus to the barge which caught Roman’s attention.

    “What do you find so fascinating down there?”

    “There’s a witch. Casting a spell.”

    “Yes.”

    Caleb turned a sharp gaze on Roman. “Your witchling?”

    “No. Verity is with Crevan.”

    “Then who?”

    “We should find out.”
    ****
    250 Penumbra Papers #5 WIP words
    @SilverJames_

    1. I especially love your smart dialogue with things like “because you do not know or because you do not want to be in the middle” being answered with “yes”.

  5. “Put your phone down and look at me!” Spit collected in the corner of Phil’s mouth as he yelled at the pale boy.
    The boy kept his head bowed and his thumbs tapping.
    Sergeant Phillip Collison rubbed his temples. When he’d volunteered to chaperone his daughter’s kindergarten field trip, he’d prepared himself for whining, tears, even puking. Nothing had prepared him for an insolent five-year-old emboldened with an iPhone.
    He gritted his teeth. “Son, we’re about to enter The White House. The leader of the free world—.”
    “Mom says he’s a moron. She voted for the other guy.” The boy tapped away.
    Phil bit back a string of curses and pushed himself to his feet. He searched the crowd for reinforcements. His eyes fell upon a shrewd blond who stood four feet tall and shared half of his DNA. “Zeina,” he called.
    Zeina bounded to his side. “Hey dad-dad?”
    He nodded toward the boy. “See that recruit over there? He needs to put his phone away.”
    “We’ll bring him up to speed.” She winked and skipped to a circle of girls standing next to the trash can. In a flash, they surrounded the boy. A redhead in a denim jumper whispered in his ear. His head shot up. Terror was in his eyes. He put his phone in his back pocket and nodded.
    Zeina bounced back to her father. “Mission complete, sir.”
    “What did you say?”
    Zeina put her hand on his shoulder. “That’s need-to-know information, soldier.”

    248 @laurelkileauthor

    1. I loved recruiting his daughter (and describing her as “sharing half his DNA”) to help with a problem kid, and her solution being “need-to-know” information.

  6. I shake hands with the newest recruit. He smiles at me, eyebrows raised, as if he’s got questions but isn’t sure he should ask them. No worries, we will bring him up to speed soon.

    “So, I’m Anna and I’ll be your proctor.”

    We walk over to the wall inside the front door and I show him the little white box.

    “This is the thermostat. I recommend putting it as high as you can when greeting new arrivals. Hell is supposed to be hot, right?”

    “Sure?”

    His red hair shakes as he nods, voice cracking. I dislike the nervous types.

    “I’m, uhm, Stan,” the new recruit says. “I thought you might like to know my name.”

    “Stan, eh? Be sure to introduce yourself as Satan when people arrive. It adds a little charm to the place.” I gesture to another box. “This one controls the fire.”

    I press a button and flames woosh up the walls. Stan jumps. Overall, hell is boring. The entire thing is encased in a skyscraper with nineteen floors. Each floor represents a punishment, and people work dead end jobs to repay debts on Earth.

    “Now, the punishment schedule is over here. Be sure to stick to this, because people expect it. Any questions yet?”

    Stan gulps, wringing his hands. “Why am I here?”

    That’s easy. “You were responsible for the deaths of thousands when you hijacked that plane, remember?”

    I continue his orientation while he realizes, perhaps for the first time, that actions have consequences.

    @Aightball
    250 words

    1. Karmic justice makes me very happy, and your world of life and death and the supernatural is a particularly appealing interpretation for me.

  7. Jacques de Blanche whistled at the sight of the civilian sand craft sailing safely away, excepting some superficial damage.

    “Never,” a gruff voice growled from his elbow, “whistle aboard a ship!”

    “I beg your pardon.” Jacques bowed his apology to the dwarven bosun behind him.

    “Captain Kinnery says ye want to join the crew?”

    The enthusiastic half elf nodded his affirmation.

    “That’s correct.”

    The weather worn dwarf rumbled his displeasure.

    “Yer not even paying attention to the right ship!”

    The dwarf struck his driftwood cane against the deck indignantly. Jacques’ gaze went immediately to the civilians they just saved, before turning back to the slave ship whose evil enterprise they had interrupted. Crew from the ship Jacques had booked passage on were confiscating everything of value from the crestfallen corsairs aboard the slave ship.

    “There be the booty! Clearly ye’ve never sailed before, and who’ll be stuck showing ye how it be done?”

    This drew the attention of two nearly identical humans who Jacques noticed during the brief battle.

    “We will!”

    “Bring him up to speed and show him the ropes!”

    One twin finished the thought of the other as easily as if he had started it. The dwarf stroked his beard thoughtfully.

    “Will ye, now? Alright, I’ll hold ye personally responsible fer our pretty new mate.”

    The twins flanked Jacques with convivial elbow jabs.

    “You were good in that fight!”

    “Not as good as us!”

    They presented their daggers with a synchronized flourish.

    “But not many are!”

    248 INELIGIBLE Cat’s The Pajamas words
    @DavidALudwig

  8. I stared at the list of programs on my Mother’s computer. It was awful. “How much did she install?” I read names for programs, and companies, “And does she even know?” Even though I knew she didn’t know. Most people didn’t. They simply clicked on stuff that got in the way, so they could get to what they wanted to do.

    “Can you fix it?”

    “Yes, Mom. We will bring him up to speed.”

    It’s what I did. I fixed computers owned by bean dips, who had no business owning a computer. “Should tell them to swallow their pride, and buy a fucking Chromebook. Screw that up, and fix it with a simple power wash.”

    But, Chromebooks didn’t run Microsoft Word. It was that simple. The Word application on the WEB that was totally free, and did everything damn near everyone ever did in Word, was the perfect replacement. But no one used it. “I want the real Word! ‘Cause, it’s what everyone uses!”

    Hell, even Chromebooks were a pain to be honest. They had Chrome on them. Do you know how many stupid extensions people install in Chrome? Even the ones that Chrome and Google flag as malicious, and they install them anyway?

    “It will take time, Mom. But we will bring him up to speed.”

    It was going to be a long night. I was going to need more than one Sprite. “Go to bed, Mom. I got this.”

    241 Words
    @mysoulstears

  9. She placed her palms on the counter and “ahemed” louder. The security guard flicked his eyes at her, and returned to his crossword puzzle.

    Slowly he filled out a box in black pen, and realized – too late – that his word was one letter short. He tossed the pen onto the desk.

    “What did you want again?”

    “I’m here to see Jake McLemore.” Her patience stretched as thin as his hairline. Who she was didn’t matter. The message did.

    “He’s not to be disturbed.” He pushed across the smallest Post-It pad. “If you’d like to leave a message, we will bring him up to speed.”

    She didn’t like being underestimated and dismissed, especially for being a woman. Sometimes, the sexism worked in her favor.

    Two men passed behind her and flashed their badges. The guard nodded his head, and they advanced to the elevators.

    “That’s all right.” She wouldn’t get anywhere with him this way. In the parking lot, she tied her long red hair into a high ponytail, slipped on a very short skirt and then ditched the jeans. Off came the jacket, and she pushed the girls up for full display in her off-white camisole. Final touches included chunky heels, a pair of black cat-eyed glasses, the biggest wad of bubblegum and a gift basket filled with wrapped empty boxes.

    “Delivery for Bi-o Metrics,” Natalie smacked her gum, letting the basket cover most of her face.

    The guard ogled her tits and long legs. “Thirtieth floor.”

    247 words
    @LouisaBacio

    1. I laughed at and loved the security guard filling in his crossword in pen instead of paying attention to Natalie–and getting it wrong!

  10. #ThursThreads Week 446 is now CLOSED. Thanks to everyone who wrote this week and I hope to catch you next week.

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