#ThursThreads – Tying Tales Together – Week 567

Welcome back to the home of #ThursThreads. 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 567 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 567:

Dark fantasy author, archer, and horsewoman, Daelyn Morgana.

Facebook | Twitter | 

And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.

The Prompt:

“I was her assistant.”

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!

9 Replies to “#ThursThreads – Tying Tales Together – Week 567”

  1. The Breath Taker

    When I read the obituary for Gwendoline Baker Smythe, and the nature of her passing, I decided to attend her funeral and perhaps glean a story.

    It was already a national headline. Oldest Woman Alive Fails Her Final Test.

    Baker Smythe had set her initial record for a breath holding woman in 1942 as a lung brilliant twenty-year-old. That record of course was beaten a number of times over the intervening years and most recently in Brazil a decade earlier.

    Her final and fatal adventure to be the oldest woman ever to hold her breath underwater the longest had ended with death.

    After the funeral, I intercepted her companion at the end, Lucy Liverwort.

    “I hate to intrude,” I began, “But her story does fascinate me. This last, tragic effort, did anyone attempt to dissuade her?”

    “I was her assistant,” Ms. Liverwort began, “and her friend and confidante. I was not her keeper. Gwendoline was her own woman…up to the end.”

    “But surely at one hundred and three, her ability to hold her breath more than a few seconds was severely impaired?”

    “Most people thought that. She practiced. In the tub. A big tub. And we went to the public swimming pool twice a week. She put on quite a show.”

    I had to smile at that. I suppose that I was of mixed minds about the wisdom of Gwendoline’s choices.

    Still am.

    I may write her story.

    But I’ll be thinking hard about my eventual exit.

    250 words

  2. Cursing my GPS that directed me down this narrow dark dirt road, I now worried as the wind and rain picked up. Waves of mud made it hard to maneuver. My new hire/assistant Sheri had forgotten to book our client’s hotel room and everything in town was booked due to my client’s appearance in the local production of ‘A Graveyard Tale’. I quickly had found a rental home and someone who would act as a butler/ cook/ cleaner to the client. The client however was still not happy and demanded my presence immediately, thus this drive.
    The road was becoming impassible due to rutting and layers of rain and mud now flowing over the road. My car sputtered out and died. I thought about getting out of the car as the water started getting higher outside the car, but I held on tight as the car was carried like the road was a stream. It carried me a far distance as trees, mud and other debris battered it ending up against the gates of a cemetery. Looking for help in the graveyard I was surprised when the ground came up to meet me and I knew no more.
    I awoke cold and damp to…
    “I was her assistant.”
    It was Sheri, but why was she talking like it was the past? I turned around and all was explained. There before me was a grave stone with my name. It was then I saw the others smiling at me, welcoming home.
    250 words @SweetSheil

  3. The Last Time

    “It should be pretty simple,” Kate said when she hatched the idea, which meant it wouldn’t be, though simple for her and simple for me were different things.

    “If you say so.”

    And once she’d found a source for fifty pounds of rotting produce and we’d hauled it to The Brickyard, ascended the fire escape and reached the roof, it seemed simple enough, to be honest. Of course, I’d hauled the sack up there, proof that I only provided the brawn to complement her brain, that I was her assistant, nothing more.

    “Now, all we have to do is wait,” she said, her mouth against my ear, so as not to be overheard. Her breath tickled so much I nearly lost my balance, though the roof is only slightly pitched.

    It was kind of nice, sitting there next to each other, the last purplish-gray light of day yielding to the blackening sky overhead. But Kate was tracking Jackson on her phone and knew exactly when he’d emerge.

    “Now!” she said, urgent but not loud.

    And so I let the contents fly.


    It felt good, I have to admit. But some of the stuff was pretty dense. There might have been a whole watermelon in there. Jackson went down hard.

    At that, Kate went skittering down the fire escape, calling to him before she reached the bottom, rushing to him once she landed.

    I never moved, just took it all in while berating myself silently, for the last time – again.

    250 words

  4. The brain quivered like a grey blancmange. The jug of O negative was still warm and as liquid as though it had just been drained. The donor’s eyeballs seemed to be watching me, tracking me as I raised my fork and prepared to experience perfection.

    “What do you think?” Chef asked. “Is it what you expected?”

    “I don’t know,” I said, swallowing dryly. “It’s extreme. As far as sacrifices go, it’s the ultimate. To think that less than three hours ago, this was a person. A man – or a woman – who could engage in a conversation, make decisions, volunteer to give their life. It’s humbling to think they’d choose to do this knowing what would happen next.”

    Chef nodded: solemn and filled with respect. She’d suffered criticism for most of her career but had still risen through the ranks. She’d begun as a tattooist, refining and decorating the alive. And now, she’d been awarded a seventh Michelin star.

    And I was her assistant.

    “I feel like I’m breaking through,” said Chef. “Surpassing infinity. Whenever I reach a limit, it chokes me for a while. And I can’t settle until I’ve smashed my way beyond it.”

    Soylent Pizzas had begun small. Chef had been called Carla then, and she’d only the one shop on a disregarded back street in Maine. And then she’d added pineapple for a topping…

    Who could have known where it would end?

    237 words – twothirdzrasta.blogspot.com

  5. Ronan was used to cop shops—the bitter scent of burnt coffee, the sour stench of sweat, and the caustic aroma of ammonia. T’was a mystery people thought they could disguise the stink of human misery with pine-scented cleanser and bleach. Of course, as a Wolf shifter, his nose was more discriminating than most. Beyond the smell was the interminable wait. He might have been rash as a lad but he was a patient hunter now.

    The door of the interview room popped open and banged against the wall. He glanced at his watch. They’d made him wait only an hour. Two detectives wearing rumpled suits strode in followed by two uniformed cops. It was the fifth person that grabbed his focus. Was she here in her ADA capacity?

    “You have the right to an attorney, Mr. O’Connor,” the younger detective said.

    Ronan glanced at Maura. Her lips were pressed into a thin line and she studiously avoided meeting his eyes. “Care t’explain why I’m here, Detective?”

    “We have a few questions for you.” When he didn’t speak, the man continued. “Maxine Markwell.”

    “And who might that be?”

    “She owns a shipping company.”

    “Does she now. I—”

    “Was her assistant present?”


    “In Markwell’s office.”


    “It goes to the allegations made against you.”

    “What am I accused of?”

    “Murder, according to the assistant.”

    He leaned back, amused. “Since I never met Ms. Markwel—”

    “Let him go,” Maura interrupted. “He didn’t do it.”

    Good t’know she was on his side.
    250 Moonstruck Mafia WIP words

  6. “I know she’s your wife, but that couldn’t have been an original story.” His Lordship laughed boorishly.

    “I know but give her the moment. It’s not like she has much else” was his guest’s drunken answer.

    “She did it though.” I replied.

    “Did what?” The guest asked with languid indifference.

    “Don’t worry about him.” His Lordship said dismissively. “He’s probably in love with her.”

    “He thinks she wrote the story.” The guest laughed condescendingly.

    “Of course she wrote it. She has more talent than anyone else in this house. But she did more than write it, she lived it.”

    “Are you mad?” My master growled as he struck me. “You’re insulting my guests and disparaging their good names.”

    “I believe you and my husband were doing a good enough job of that, your Lordship.”

    My mistress snarled from the doorway, a large shadowy figure looming behind her.

    “So please apologize unless you want further unpleasantness. And dear husband, go clean up before anyone realizes that you’ve soiled yourself.”

    “Who do you think you are?” My master raised his cane to strike me when he was grabbed by a storng gray hand.

    “I was her assistant. I gathered the bodies. I guarded the lab. And I made sure no one interrupted milady’s experiments …”

    My master stammered as the gray figure entered the room.

    “Yes, your Lordship…my great work…creating life…the story was just a ruse…to keep people from thinking it was possible.” Mary Shelley said with a smile.

    247 Words

  7. “So much blood…”

    “Rough first day?”

    “The limbs… The organs! Not where they’re supposed to be…”

    “You get used to it. Eventually.”

    “It’s not right. The screaming. People aren’t supposed to sound like that. I still hear the screaming.”

    “Hey, just be glad we’re on this side of it and not out there.”

    “No one’s getting out, are they?”

    “I mean, some people do. But yeah, realistically, it’s not going to be us or anyone we know.”

    “She showed him his heart! Held it up for him before putting it back and patching him up…”

    “Oh shit, you were in the same bay as Lorelai? No wonder you’re so shaken.”

    “I was her assistant.”

    114 words

  8. In tense

    It’s amazing how a few letters can change everything.

    I am, I was. We are, we were. Time changes us all.

    She was my world, I was hers but I wasn’t her world. I was her friend, I was her assistant, but I was never more. I was her rock, her safe place– until I wasn’t there. I should have been there, but I wasn’t, and I will regret it, ever more.

    It’s amazing how one letter can change everything. Love, loved, live, lived. Fire, fired. Alive, a life lived. It can be so intense, until it changes. In time, in place, in meaning –

    It is all in tense. And in the telling. The meaning, and the lettering. That’s all it is, and all it will ever be. I was hers until I wasn’t and she wasn’t mine. She always stood apart, a part of something else.She is.

    No more. All ways. Always. That is the truth we all avoid, and all it takes is a letter or two to change the meaning– or just being given space.

    179 words (not including title)

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