Welcome back to the home of Paranormal & Dauntless Romance. Wow. Year 10. A whole decade. I’m astounded.
Today is Thursday and that means it’s time to start flashing, like we have for 10 whole years. It’s amazing we’ve gone this long! This is Week 554 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 554:
College professor, equality enthusiast, and romance author, Louisa Bacio.
Facebook | Twitter | Instagram |
And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.
“That’s a long story.”
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!
10 Replies to “#ThursThreads – Tying Tales Together – Week 554”
The Boys in the Back Room
“Couldn’t be more serious.”
“He’s really gonna run again.”
“He’s never stopped. He’s like that vibrating rabbit…you know, huckstering batteries…”
“Yeah! That’s dead on. Even kinda resembles the critter…Bugs?”
“No, not that iconic lepus… don’t think so. Anyways, what are we gonna do about it?”
“Not WE we. The Party. “
“I don’t think you should be mentioning we we. Too much dirty laundry attached to that expression.”
“Bite my tongue. Don’t know what I was thinking. We, the Party, have got to get in gear. There are other viable candidates. And younger. And less toxic. But how do we get him to step down. He’s a dervish and never shuts up.”
“You know what I think?”
“You mean, what you REALLY think as opposed to what you say in public?”
“Stop quibbling. What I think is that we just clam up. Let it all play out. He’s got court cases up the yin yang. Something’s bound to stick, doncha think?”
“I do think but he’s as slippery as a greased pork chop. I wouldn’t count on the judicial system to have much impact.”
“What’s about the hush money thing…with, what’s her name, Windy whooseit..?”
“It’s not quite “windy” but that’s a long story that I don’t think will ever blow out his candles. Holy moly, it started over seven years ago. The man is Teflon.”
“So we just wait him out?”
“Life’s too short. Fingers crossed. Maybe a miracle will happen.”
The thick wooden door closed with a resounding thud that echoed off the close quarter walls. The jangling of keys and click of the steel lock was insult to injury. Footsteps retreated down the long hall only a moment later, and eventually ceased in silence. Only the occasional skitter of rats and clatter of chains to break the quiet.
Matt sank against the wall, sliding down the rough stone to sit with arms propped on one knee. He let his head bang softly against the stone.
What a mess he was in now.
Not only was he in shackles in the worst place possible, but this best friend was missing. Even worse, he had no memory of the last twelve hours which led to this blasted cell. All the worst-case scenarios ran through his head. More so for Kailyn, not himself. He already knew he was a goner in this realm. Labeled traitor long, long ago.
A quiet pst came from his right. At first, he ignored it. His next-door neighbor had other thoughts, the hushed whisper becoming more of an annoyed shout.
“What?” Matt snapped, turning his head to see the gap in the stone and one eye peering through.
“You look all clean and plump yet.” The prisoner’s voice was raspy. “You must be new. What’d you do? Musta been drastic to land yourself in a prison of a nearly lawless realm.”
“That’s a long story.”
Mutiny and rebellion were a lot more complicated when family was involved.
Elaine heard him before she saw him, the sounds of the tea service preceding him up the stairs.
The man that appeared was no one she recognised.
“You’re awake,” he said, his spectacles large and owlish. “I was hoping I wouldn’t have to wake you. You’ve been through a lot these past few weeks.”
He’d brought her tea and biscuits, the blue and white banded cup and saucer matching the pot. The sugar bowl and cream jug were mismatched. The bowl was made from clear glass. The cream was in a gravy boat.
“I’m sorry. I don’t remember your name. In fact, I’m at a loss. Where was it we met? And what am I doing here?”
The stranger nodded apologetically. He set the tray he’d been carrying on the night table beside her bed. He began to pour her a cup, spilling it in the saucer, swearing as he filled it to the brim.
“You’ll find the forgetting goes away. It’s a common occurrence, a side-effect of the trauma you’ve gone through. Drink your tea. It’ll probably help calm your fears.”
A thought began to intrude. The man had said she’d been here for weeks. Why hadn’t somebody missed her? There should have been someone – an employer, at the very least.
“You’re going to have to explain this,” she said. “There’s something I’m missing here.”
The man shrugged. “You were someone in need. I happened to be available to help. As for the rest, that’s a long story.”
250 words – twothirdzrasta.blogspot.com
I slept with an evil sorceress at my seventeenth birthday party. I was drunk.
Five years later, she left the daughter I didn’t know about in my care. And turned me into a cat. Supposedly, the kid can learn the magic to break my curse. She doesn’t know I’m her father, but she knows I’m cursed.
People call her Spooky.
She and I spent five years searching for her mother. These days I care more about protecting the kid than regaining the human form I barely remember.
Finally finding mommy dearest didn’t help anything. She and her evil spellcaster alliance are too busy fending off a massive attack on her villainous lair to care about an eleven-year-old girl and her cat.
Now, Spooky and I are fleeing down an alpine game trail while that battle rages on. And I’m pretty sure a deer is chasing us.
“Come on, Blackie!” That’s what she named me. “We’ll be safe soon!”
Rounding a corner, we encounter a big blue elf wearing a hide robe and sitting in the middle of the trail. I thought all elves were ride-the-wind skinny, but this one is pleasantly pillowy.
“Where are you two off to in such a hurry?”
Spooky clenches her fists. This is suspicious timing for a stranger to show up.
The elf turns her attention to me, “Perhaps you’ll tell me?”
That’s a long story, lady. And it’s not like you’d understand me.
“I understand you, and I have time.”
Maura didn’t know why she was hosting this gathering. She wasn’t the queen bee of this particular hive despite the other women’s belief. She first thought it because she was an ADA. She almost snorted out loud. At this point, it was her former job. There was nothing like an attempted assassination to prove just how little job security you had. Had it not been for Ronan’s intervention and his men’s prompt actions, she’d be dead but not buried because as District Attorney, Alex Crenshaw would ensure her body was never found.
She studied the women as Shannon acted as waitress. The brunette had a crush on Mick, Ronan’s brother, but as far as Maura knew, they weren’t together. The redhead, Fiona, was very definitely with Bowie, who was Shannon’s little brother. The Irish mob believed in keeping it all in the family. The third woman surprised her. Sophie McNaara was the daughter of a rival mob boss but she’d arrived Callum’s arm. Callum was one of Ronan’s inner circle. The other newcomer was Maggie O’Brien. She lived on the block and had been escorted in by Declan Donahue. He was the mob’s attorney and they’d faced off in court enough times to know he was smart.
“So,” Shannon said, handing her a glass of Bailey’s. “You and Ronan. Together. We’re all ears.”
“That’s a long story.” The women continued to pester her so she said, “It started with a dance and ended when my boss tried to kill me.”
250 just-squeaked-in-under-the-wire words from Moonstruck Mafia WIP
We should have been helping our True Mate find her sister so she wasn’t unhappy anymore.
His Brother’s reproach made his guts tighten. No one had expected Nora to be gone so long, but it took the new Luna looking into it before anyone thought to look for the older Farkas sister. Not even Nora’s parents thought anything of it, but Kyle remembered Eloise looking worried long before her wedding preparations.
Eloise sighed. “Okay, thank you. I get nervous talking to the Alpha.”
Kyle frowned. “Even with the Luna?”
“No, the Luna is a good friend and I can talk to her. She’s down-to-earth. It’s her mate and his father that make me nervous.”
He’d noticed that about both the Farkas sisters. While Nora had been guarded and defensive, Eloise had simply kept her head down and withdrawn whenever she interacted with the Alpha. She’d even been quiet around Jeff.
“Why is that? Jeff’s a good guy. So is Richard.”
Eloise sighed. “That’s a long story I don’t feel like telling right now, but just know I’m glad you’ll be going with me. When do you want to do this?”
Kyle glanced at his watch. “I get off work in a half an hour. Let me text Jeff and see if he’s available to talk around then. Then I’ll text you.”
“Okay. Thank you again. Bye.”
She ended the call well before he was ready and he stared at the silent phone.
What the hell had just happened?
250 ineligible #CallowwoodPack words
Taking a can of Budweiser, Jake handed his friend a Spotted Cow.
“Tower, the good stuff’s for us, cheap stuff’s for the brats.” Jake poured the Budweiser into a large pot on his charcoal grill.
He tossed in chopped onions, and after checking the temperature, added the brats.
“Boss, we feedin’ an army? Tower asked. “Scratch that, I’m calling cryptic.”
Jake nodded, “ask your one question.”
“You’ll shoot straight?”
“As best I can, you called cryptic.”
“How’d you score 50-yard line seats in New Orleans for the Saints and the Packers on Sunday Night Football and a first-class flight?”
Jake shrugged. “The flight was frequent flier Miles; it was a use ‘em or lose ‘em thing.”
“The rest of it, that’s a long story.”
Tower sighed, “so…”
“It involved zombies, a plant elemental, a few hundred bats and a couple of chupacabra.”
Tower shook his head, “so a normal business meeting.”
“Yeah, and things went so well, they invited us down for a party, but…”
“But what?” Tower asked.
“I might’ve implied we tailgate up north better than they do down here.” Jake smirked.
”And they took offense, so we’re doing a cook. What we up against?”
Jake shrugged. “Oh, you know, a full-out fish broil, Crawfish, etouffee, Jambalaya.”
“Boss, anyone ever tell you not to let your mouth write checks your grill can’t cash.”
Jake smiled, “as a matter of fact, one of them goat vampires said just that.”
There he lay, not sure how far out into the cropless field. The tire on the overturned car next to him was still spinning. The air smelled like hot metal. The sky was everywhere. Stars, stars, and stars.
One star pulsated more than all the others. It grew. It descended. Then it was upon him, and a being emerged and silently urged him in a way that made the concept clear. “Come with me. Let me show you.”
And he left the cool earth and rose into the night, into the light high above the fields and the single lane road that led from the place he and his friends lived to the place they were going.
He passed through the light and was born again into a world much like this one.
And in a second, a fast-forwarded segment of eternity, he watched seas rise from sand and creatures walk out of those seas. Beyond that, though, evolution took a path beyond his own comprehension. Yet somehow, he was left with an innate understanding of peace and prosperity. Perfection.
Somehow within the segment he lived an entire lifetime, built relationships, began a pilgrimage into the stars. And he descended to a blue planet. To a spot high above the fields and a single lane road that led from the place he and his friends lived to the place they were going.
What did he learn? Well, that’s a long story.
Hide and Seek
Funny thing, memory. It seems the older we get, the more there is to remember. I can remember how it felt, laying in the hammock at my grandparents’ summer house. I was nine, I was avoiding an argument by not being there. I loved the rocking motion. I felt safe.
I hadn’t really been able to put things into words at that point, and it was just easier to not be where people could ask me questions. I think I’d always been hiding. Life was just easier that way.
The following summer, the hammock was still there, but after a year, it was filled with water, mud, and mosquito larva.
I was twelve when I finally found my voice enough to ask why everyone changed when we came to visit, and everyone looked at me like I’d grown another head. I thought I’d said something wrong, but I wasn’t– and people started thinking.
The fighting stopped and I was at peace. I can remember that, but I can’t remember what I wore yesterday. That’s a long story in and of itself, but it seems the more there is to remember, the better the older memories feel, filtered, lovingly archived, and slightly out of focus.
The newer memories are sharp, like knives that cut into your soul and take a piece of you when they leave. I’ve heard them talking, but I can ignore them, as long as I have places to hide.
They’ll never get the truth out of me.
250 words (not including title)
#ThursThreads is now CLOSED. Thanks to everyone who wrote this week and I hope to catch you next week.