Welcome back to the home of Paranormal & Dauntless Romance. Today is Thursday and that means it’s time to start flashing. We’re at the beginning of our ninth year of weekly prompts. It’s amazing we’ve gone this long! This is Week 479 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 479:
Fantasy Author, and Holder of Several Stories, David Ludwig.
And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.
“Yet there was something there.”
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!
14 Replies to “#ThursThreads – Tying Tales Together – Week 479”
The doctor looked at the x-ray report, to his patient, and back to the x-ray. “I don’t understand; it shows nothing, yet there was something there in the last three. The crystal webbing we saw in your bones is gone.”
The young woman simply smiled. “I told you there was nothing there. Can I go home now?”
He sighed while trying to find some reason to keep her. The new plague was still spreading through the country, and any patient he could keep safely within the walls of the hospital until a cure was found was one more human he could save. “You could stay. It’s safer here.” He really didn’t want her to go.
She flipped her hair back and whispered something under her voice until a shimmer spread along her neck. “I’m not safe anywhere, and you and your patients are safer without me here.” A witch-mark appeared— the bindrune of her family line, her strength, and her specialty— and then faded away. “I needed the IV to flush what I was poisoned with so that I could heal myself. I stayed long enough to build my reserve for going back out. I’m immune to the virus by my birthright.”
He had known she smelled different than the others, and he let his eyes shine briefly before he locked his wolf away. “Stay a few more days, please?” He didn’t want her out with hunters searching for her. His wolf wanted her.
Word count: 244
The imagery of the magic, crystal webbing and the witch-mark especially, really appeals to me.
The scruffy guard returned. “Nothing.”
Both men stared at her. One asked, “Are you sure?”
Sophie inhaled, steadying her nerves and controlling her temper. Calmer, she said, “I’m not prone to flights of imagination.”
The men exchanged looks that argued her assertion.
The big one, who was in charge apparently, said, “Not done lookin’ yet.”
“There was something there.” The shrill tone in her voice worried her. She couldn’t appear hysterical or weak. Not with her father’s thugs. Not when they’d snatched her off the street and dragged her to this alleged safe house.
“Stay here,” he ordered, heading outside.
Something howled. Every hair on her body stood on end like she’d been touched by an electric wire. She’d heard that sound before. On a trip out west. In Yellowstone. A wolf. Her guard gripped his pistol with nervous fingers. A noise at the window caused her to shift position so she could look without being obvious. Were claws scraping glass? Another howl, then snarls and muffled screams. They both whirled to face the door.
“Fuckin’ A,” Scruffy barked. Gun held out, he threw open the door. And disappeared.
Sophie saw only a black muzzle, with very sharp and very white teeth, grab Scruffy’s gun arm and then the doorway was empty. She didn’t breathe.
A huge black wolf charged out of the shadows and melted into a naked man. Callum Fitzpatrick.
He grinned. “Didja miss me?”
“What the hell are you?”
“That’s a story for another day. Time t’go.”
250 Irish Mob Wolves WIP words
I love how you built up and resolved so much tension in so little space.
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 ineligible #WIP500 words
There’s a lot of life packed into this flash, and I love how you broke the prompt up. I’m definitely invested in Mike, Sierra, and their situation, plus bonus points for the mama bobcat moving kittens.
The little boy nudges me. He looks like my cousin’s youngest, his hair pushed back above his left eye. He’s wearing holed jeans, his knees scabbed where I can see them.
He smells of cherries and lime.
If I didn’t know better, I could mistake him for a kid.
“Go on,” he says. “Go fish.”
I put my hand into the hole and grope around.
The aperture in the top is just black, so dark my wrist appears to finish where I pushed it inside. I sense the box’s lining against my fingertips, icy cold and slick with a distressing wetness that persists. I can feel a grainy texture of corrugated leaves, parting easily when I slide them aside.
“Keep going,” the boy says. “I know you’ll find it. It can be a little shy at first. If you catch it by surprise, it’ll be quicker, but I guarantee you’ll know it when you do.”
The boy takes my other hand, lacing his fingers between mine. His palm is sticky and oven-hot as though he’d just drawn it from a pan of boiling water. I turn to see his crimson eyes gazing into mine, his misdirection diverting my attention for an instant.
It was all that it needed.
I’d forgotten the box, thinking it was a trick he was playing. But yet there was something there, waiting to strike. It was like a motile eyeball equipped with a barb it used to anchor itself, its intentions most definitely not benign.
twothirdsrasta.blogspot.com ~ 250 words
Your sensory details are exquisite, I especially like the boy smelling “of cherries and lime”.
Crown Princess Isabel de Blanche wished a good night to her parents and each servant and guard she passed as her lady in waiting escorted her back to her chambers. Lady Grace helped Isabel from her cumbersome gowns that she thankfully wasn’t required to wear at play by herself. The lady in waiting put away the princess’ things and the two exchanged their goodnights.
Once Isabel was sure she was alone she retrieved the dagger she had snuck from the armory from behind her dresser. Drawing the blade from its case, she brandished it against imagined adversaries. Striking her best fighting stance, she glanced in her mirror to see how close she came to the adults’ form.
Reflected movement made the princess spin and level her dagger at her armoire! This was the top floor and Lady Grace had checked the room. Isabel should be alone. Yet there was something there. She could scream and a guard would come running. Or she could investigate herself.
“Who’s there?” the princess’ voice trembled like her dagger.
A girl Isabel’s height stepped out from behind the armoire empty hands raised. The other girl wore an extravagant naval coat and hat. Her silver eye not covered by her eye patch reminded Isabel of a cat’s. The princess’ heart was racing but this was too interesting to let the adults spoil if she didn’t have to.
“What do you want?”
“Would ye let me stay the night? Maybe in exchange fer a story?”
250 INELIGIBLE Cat’s The Pajamas words
Starting my day, the same as I always do, the rat race gets to me again. Harry says I should let it go, but I can be the only someone who hates this life?
Harry quotes Lorne Michaels all the time and says, “Sometimes the wheel turns slowly, but it turns.”
I respond, “You go round and round, until you end up where you started over and over again and want to get off.”
Life can be so boring. If it wasn’t for the benefits that you get like food and lodging, you’d get off that track, before you could blink an eye. Yet there was something there worth staying. No, I’ve had it!
I’m making my plan to jump off that rat race. I know that’s said all the time but I’m going to do it. I wait until the end of the day and I get paid then I step off and dart through the open door.
“I hear, “Get back here, Willard. The world is a dangerous place, you know.” But I ignore him and continue I’m off the rat race. I’m free!
It’s then I feel the teeth penetrate my body, and it hurts.
“Spit Willard out, Sabbath.” Harry commands and I feel the teeth retract.
“You’re very lucky Willard. Sabbath could have killed you. Luckily he obeys me unlike you now be a good and I’ll bring you one of those pumpkin seeds you love.”
I relax, life’s good in my rat cage.
I like the bit about pumpkin seeds, it makes me think we’re talking about a literal rat race.
I needed to ramp up the case. Be more directive. Henderson was dancing all around about the whereabouts of Henry Samuels. All Louella wanted was her daddy back again. It was looking like that might not be in her best interests.
Now, I wasn’t a social worker, but I felt a detective’s duty of care to ensure her well-being. How to do that wasn’t exactly crystal clear.
Henderson had boldly stated that Henry, needed “to be dead.” That was pretty harsh. Unequivocal.
Yet there was something there.
“Okay,” I came back at him, “Do you or anyone in your sphere know where he is? If you don’t or you do and you won’t tell me, then you’re wasting my time.”
“I don’t know. And I don’t care. You’re wearing my hospitality a bit thin.”
Aside from Midges offer of unspecified delights, and Henderson’s second rate brandy, there’d been not much hospitality offered. There were still four other residents of the house who might know something. Maxine and Penny, sisters. or mother and daughter, it had been Greek to Louella, Charlie, Midge’s male counterpart in the nude-body painting realm, and Zeke, who lived in the basement and worked nights.
“Maxine and Penny here?”
Nope. On tour. Back next week.”
“Oh. And Charlie?”
“Might still be home.”
He took me down to see Zeke, knocked.
Zeke’s door was ajar. I pushed it with my pinky.
The body told the story.
You’ve assembled a compelling cast of characters here and this feels like classic timing for one to turn up as a body.
#ThursThreads Week 479 is now CLOSED. Thanks to everyone who wrote this week and I hope to catch you next week.