I've Really Lost My MindThe young man smiled, with just a touch of embarrassment. “I seem to have lost my mind.”I've Really Lost My Mind7 months ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
The female attendant looked at him. “This is a railway ticket office.”
“You want the lost property section over there.” She pointed at a counter where a severe-looking man was rearranging misplaced umbrellas.
“Thank you!” The young man nodded politely and headed across to the other section.
The lost property attendant looked up as the young man approached. “Is it an umbrella you want?” He indicated the display.
The young man appeared to be tempted for a moment by a purple one decorated with cats and dogs, but then apparently remembered why he was there.
“No,” he said. “I’ve lost my mind. I’m pretty sure here was the last time I used it—I was trying to work out what would be the cheapest ticket to Inverness on a weekday in June, outside peak hours, travelling with my back to the engin
Red, Yellow, and BlueToo poor to purchase more art supplies, I learned to paint only with primary colors; I covered canvas after canvas--or reclaimed wood when it was a choice between painting or eating--with saturated sentiment. Canary yellow was the color of the dress you wore the day we met--and it harmonized perfectly with your straw colored hair--while cadmium red matched both your tempting scarlet lips and the fire I saw in your eyes. But ultramarine blue didn't suit you, and I never once used it until the day God or Guilt or some Guy stole you from me.Red, Yellow, and Blue7 months ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
ItchyFirst anniversary: Paper.Itchy1 year ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Our love unfolded.
Seventh anniversary: Wool.
It all unravelled.
His EyesIt has been three months since we heard from the mainland.His Eyes6 months ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Speculation abounds. Some catastrophe has befallen them there: a plague has ended them, perhaps, or a war, or something so dreadful that we cannot even imagine it. We are left here to starve, slowly, as we wait for news and supplies.
At noon we saw a boat on the horizon.
Through the spyglass we saw that its occupant was a lone boy, and that his skin was patterned with lesions. Sula saw something in his eyes, he said, though he would not speak more clearly of it; but he was so shaken by the sight that he begged us to shoot the boat down at a distance.
We were without choice but to obey. We pitied the boy, perhaps, but if he carried a plague – as indeed he must have – any show of mercy might have doomed us. We fired the cannon as soon as he came within range.
At nightfall we burned the flotsam brought in by the tide. There was no sign of the boy's body. With luck the current carried it away, to be eaten by the fish.
Plain-and-MousyThe King and Queen had produced no children of their own, and so a proclamation was made throughout the kingdom and all the surrounding kingdoms. Anyone who wished to try and prove themselves worthy could come and apply to be the heir.Plain-and-Mousy8 months ago in Short Stories More Like This
Naturally there were many, many applications—the potential princes and princesses travelling from far and wide. Each applicant came before their Royal Majesties and stated their case, extolling their own virtues and qualifications for the role. Some were dismissed almost immediately; others were allowed to reach the end of their speech before being rejected. But eventually all the applicants were whittled down to just two possibles: Plain-and-Mousy and Tall-and-Lovely.
The two young women stood before the King and Queen on their thrones. Plain-and-Mousy was quivering with excitement and enthusiasm. Tall-and-Lovely was calm and self-assured.
The Queen addressed them.
“We will assign you both three tasks. After they are completed we will
Bullet When I was a kid, I wanted to be Superman.Bullet2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
They said he was faster than a speeding bullet. Not just any old bullet, moseying home after a long day at the office. A speeding one, tearing up the atmosphere like nothing in the world could stop it. I wanted to punch through the sound barrier and carry on and on, away from everything.
I started running a year after my mom died. I was nine years old, but already fast enough to beat my army dad to the corner of the street. There was a local cop with a big brewster moustache who was always dragging me back home. I forget his name. His sedan could run faster than my legs, and his hand was quick enough to grab my collar. When he was still fetching me back two years later, he stopped by to have a word with my dad.
"He's pretty quick on those legs of his," he said. "You thought about getting him to do sports? Might burn up some energy
Antikythera mechanismElise sunk down with the rest of the ship, dragged down by her brass innards. Wordlessly, she begged her creator to let go, but she knew he wouldn't. He'd brought her to life out of love, and he would do anything to save her. Elise watched him struggle and drown, her perfect sculpted face impassive while her mind whirred and clicked behind it in turmoil.Antikythera mechanism2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
She hit the seabed and was swallowed in a cloud of mud as the carcass of the ship broke apart around her. Over the ages her gears seized up and her alabaster curves effervesced and decayed, macerated by the sea. Still her soul lingered on. Aphrodite had infused life into her copper heart, and it would never stop now. Never.
She lay in the Lethe for the longest time, while the lives of men went on oblivious above. When she was dredged up, she was no longer recognisable as an entity, let alone the paragon of femininity she had once been. She was limbless and worn, a sentient pebble. They held her in their hands and probed her jammed up m
It's Always Blackest Before the ThroneCurriculum VitaeIt's Always Blackest Before the Throne6 months ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Snake Cult Leader
General in the Legions of Shagamemnon
Reason Left Last Job:
Green, three-boobed alien women wanting to be taught the Earth-concept of love.
Has own armour (black leather with spikes).
Interviewer’s notes: This guy seems perfect!
I realise there is no way for me to get this letter to you but I feel in need of a sympathetic ear at the moment.
Things haven’t been going too well. I thought the dungeon was the way to go in order to gain power and riches but people somehow completely misinterpreted the whips and chains. Thought it was a place offering… erotic satisfaction. It all made me terribly uncomfortable.
So I gave up and swapped genres from Fantasy to Sci-Fi. But things didn’t improve and now I appear to have ended up in Gritty Realism. I’ve managed to get a minimum w
ResearchSome writers frequently delete browsing history.Research2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
KonjukuYou think you are a pebble.Konjuku2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
That's not the most romantic thing to say to someone, so you'll have to forgive my clumsiness. You think you are a pebble. That you have been worn down and eroded to the point where all corners have been smoothed out. That you have allowed the awkward elbows and ankle bones, the stutter and the scars, to be rubbed out. That you've let them wear you down until you are no longer abrasive when you come into direct contact with what they expect you to be.
You are not a pebble.
You are not small or part of a greater pattern. You are not disposable, at the mercy of Poisedon's temperate shifts. You are not the sum of the parts around you. You are not a pebble.
You are soil; and some may say that that's not the most kind thing to say to someone. People will walk all over you. By that, I mean that you will rise to new heights and be the beginning of something beyond what we have now. Like a sharp cliff you will become the platform that others have to build from
The Crazy Kind"How much is that dragon in the window?"The Crazy Kind3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
"What, Balthazar? Keep dreaming kid it takes a special kind to care for a dragon."
"The crazy kind."
"You take care of him."
"Aye, that I do."
"Yeah, yeah, don't go pointing out the obvious. What do you want a dragon for?"
" How much you got in your pocket kid?"
The Undeath and Death of Yves CarabinYves Carabin was kind of undead. It was a complicated situation. He was also a private detective. That was complicated too.The Undeath and Death of Yves Carabin3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
He left the bar a little wiser than he'd been when he walked in half an hour ago. He was also a little drunker and his knuckles were a lot sorer. His trenchcoat whipped in the wind. A few drops of rain came down sideways to herald the gathering stormclouds. Yves turned up his collar and lit a cigarette with his eye socket.
There was a girl he used to know. A djinn. One time he got himself shot in the eye. She mended him with smokeless flame. Resurrected him. That was the first time. A couple of glowing scars on his back attested to the others. He wasn't sure if he counted as a wight or a revenant or just a plain old zombie. All he knew was that he had a heartbeat again and he owed her for it.
He puffed on his gauloise and regarded the embers as he exhaled. Fire reminded him of her. When it had been her turn to die he'd spent day after day and night after night try
Watching Butterflies--FFM 17Sometimes, he wishes he had someone to talk to. Ray sits on a bench, his rusting, creaky elbows perched on his rusting, creaky knees, and watches the butterflies. Cumulonimbus clouds stretch across the sky above his head, the kinks in his metal spine curved against the wood and groaning with the breeze.Watching Butterflies--FFM 173 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
"Let's put him here," they'd said, a gleam in their eyes. "He'll make a great tourist attraction!"
They'd glued him to the bench, molding his rusting, creaky feet to a slab of heavy concrete. "Feed the birds with Ray," they'd yelled. "He's a great listener!"
And for twenty years, he was. He'd heard war stories and sex scandals and all the secrets a child could keep bottled up in their chests. He'd heard sob stories and comedic reenactments and over thirty-two million declarations of love. He'd kept count. Sometimes, people came back more than once. Often, Ray had been ignored.
Golden TicketThe candy factory? But I'm diabetic.Golden Ticket2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Tactical Espionage ActionKurt Plissken reloaded his gun. Then he reloaded it again. Sneaking behind an enemy guard he raised his combat knife and prepared to perform a stealth kill. Then he did a forward roll directly into the back of the guard's knees and set off an alarm. Spotlights and red laser sights swept to his position, and a dozen gunshots later he was dead. This wasn't how things were supposed to go.Tactical Espionage Action2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Back in the 90s Kurt had been the best of the best, the foremost name in tactical espionage action. He and his player had been an unstoppable team, training relentlessly together until every mission had been mastered and every secret unlocked. In the fifteen years that followed, he'd been content to gather dust in the loft, secure in the knowledge that he'd done everything there was to do and seen everything there was to see. His legacy would live on in his player's pro skills, and his save file stood as a monument to his illustrious career.
He'd been happy up there, but it had come as a pleasant surpris
Spray Your Sins Away!It was a scene of utmost suspense, the cliché that often made its way into romantic comedies and commercials. Inside Dick's We-Carry-Every-Item-Imaginable-for-the-Filthy-Rich, two different people reached for the last can of Sins-B-Gone in cinematic slow motion. One hand was French-manicured and wore an ostentatious diamond ring (inscribed "Love forever, to my Richard"); the other had "Vermilion Vixen" nails and was likely to never wear such a wedding ring. Fingers from both hands closed in on the blue spray can like eager vultures, plucking it off the shelf in synch. Both ladies blinked in confusion before they realized the other was there.Spray Your Sins Away!3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Sweetie, I believe I grabbed it first," said the Richard-loving woman.
"No dear," the Vixen replied, "I'm sure I did. I certainly need it more that you do."
The two women stared each other down without batting their fake eyelashes. It wasn't difficult for eitherBotox injections did wonders to their blank facades. The first
Keys to Unlock YouThese skeleton keysKeys to Unlock You2 years ago in Visual & Found Poetry More Like This
and the betrayal of your own flesh,
like whistle blowers:
There when hell freezes over.
Mo (1,315w) The first time they met, Mo smiled. In her head, the girl knew that smile was one that the world would call “ugly”; however, she was still a child so her heart was bigger. Her heart smiled back.Mo (1,315w)9 months ago in Short Stories More Like This
It was a wintry Friday in February. Beth was almost thirteen—possibly the worst almost in a girl’s process of growing up, the almost of never catching a break from her own mirror and wishing her body would just make up its mind already. She poked at her soggy corn flakes and plucked at the itchy new strap of her bra. Wished her breasts were either big enough to actually make some shape, or small enough that she wouldn’t have to bother. Her parents lounged their way into a late morning with black coffee and yesterday’s crossword puzzles. This was a typical family snow day: nothing out of the ordinary was supposed to happen in t
Two for TeaJohn loved tea. Just the thought of it made him feel warm inside. Sometimes it even felt as though tea were a part of him. But then, he was a teapot.Two for Tea2 years ago in Humor More Like This
No. He had to face it. He was an ex-teapot. It was six months since the last time he'd been used to make tea. Six months since he'd ended up in this charity shop. He'd started off in the window, then been moved back to the table, then onto a low shelf, then a top shelf and now he was residing on what could only be called the 'junk shelf': sharing space with a haggard baby doll, some statement jewellery and a couple of battered paperbacks. He couldn't help but feel bitter. Yes, he had been through the wars but he knew he was still capable of providing good service. Of fulfilling the role for which he had been created.
It was nearly closing time. The shop had been empty but one last customer had slipped in. She had a few shopping bags with her: her last call before home, John guessed. He hadn't seen her before but the male volunteer
Systematic Amnesia [10.2.12 Daywrite]They came for us at four in the morning. We had stayed up all night, of course we had, peering out of the windows into the darkness, foreheads pressed up against the icy glass. Our breath fogged our vision, but it didn't matter. We knew no number of sentries could keep us safe when they finally came.Systematic Amnesia [10.2.12 Daywrite]2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
So they waited most of the night, just one more step in their game of playing with our minds. We were tired when they came, fearful. Edgy. But they arrived in silence, just a whisper as they surrounded our house.
Then Cole's cell phone rang. Its trill in the deathly silence shocked us all out of whatever level of unconsciousness we each happened to be in, and we all stared at him with wide eyes. The only people with that number were supposedly in all in the room with us.
"It's them," he said, voice tight. "They're doing it again." It was a power play of course, and we had all known it long before he said it. We were just clinging to that last hope
I, BULBOUS: Page 1IT was a dark and stormy night.I, BULBOUS: Page 12 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
Or rather: it is, at present, a dark and stormy night.
You open I, BULBOUS to page 1 and already, on page 1 of I, BULBOUS, you find yourself trapped in some sort of lair and, resisting your best readerly instincts to put the book down and do something better with your time, you keep reading, eyes scrolling across the page and down the paragraph, rolling like a twin pair of pinballs along the predetermined course of some great textual Rube Goldberg machine whose denouement, though as yet unimaginable to you, is - or so you imagine - crushingly unimpressive, and still you read, and the further you read, the lower your eyelids droop, and deeper and deeper you fall under the spell of The Author, and thus, less and less escapably - which is to say more and more inescapably - do you find yourself trapped in the aforementioned lair, which, little by little, is becoming more and more populated with detail.
The aforementioned lair, like th