WarlessAmber breathed on her fingers and set her paper coffee cup on the side desk of her cubicle. She found the desk more by muscle memory than by sight. The armory was always kept dim so the screens could be visible, but without the sunlight filtering through the shaded windows it was downright dark. It was six on a snowy morning in Rochester, New York.
Amber pressed eight of her frozen fingers between her neck and her scarf before she unwound it. The effect was like ice cubes against her throat and sent a wracking shiver down her back. But now she was more awake and her fingers were sensible enough to log into her computer.
She took a drag from her coffee and opened her boss's daily email. Today it contained a photo of a man in a black turban with a dark beard and the natural kind of middle eastern eyeliner.
He was Mirza ul-Mulk. He was thirty two years old and "ongoing high priority." Today she was going to watch for him around the local mosque. The email didn't say what city, more less w
Buford"They're gone again Mom!" The distraught wail of my son wafted in through the still open door.Buford4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
I pulled my head and a load of flailing clothes out of the dryer. "Oh no, sweetie, you're kidding!" I followed the cold draft to the open door. Buford was standing at the bottom of the steps, tears welling up in his blue, seven-year-old eyes. He pointed to the spot where his Jack-o-Lantern used to sit.
My own heart sunk to the spidery frost formations on the steps. He was a timid kid, Buford. He was fiercely intelligent, and he took pride in his work, but he got discouraged easily.
His grin had been so unreserved last night when he had shown Bret and I the lop-sided cackle of his Jack-o-Lantern, his bright little face smudged with the orange-yellow juice and webs of pumpkin guts still trailing from his elbows and fingers. It had been a project of many hours of scooping and carving and even more drawing and redrawing the perfect face. It was his second one this year.
"You said it wo
Morning Walk in AutumnThe marsh is half frozen,Morning Walk in Autumn4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
splays of ice scattered
over leaves and mud.
Reed tops coated in frost
bowing to the cold.
I walk over the creaking bridge
and think of autumn,
clutching in my stiff hand
three fallen branches
and dead leaves--
a brittle bouquet
for my vase--
their stillness says
I died to make all things new.
Whales Made Us I paid and got on. A throatful of fumes followed me into my car, stapled with a tsunami of passengers. We sank in our seats and waited for the snack attendant. He came around with bags of emotion; 10 cents for Suspense, 20 cents for Laughter, 50 for Profound Melancholy. I took six packs of Nostalgia and sipped one when the train crawled forward.Whales Made Us4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
The pace leaped into a frantic chase while the lights cut out and our bodies knocked around. The train rushed, our hearts rushed, we remained at ease. Eventually the tracks straightened so that we pressed forward hard like a tongue. At last, the moment.
Outside our windows, light spit images to the tunnel walls. The film was starting. Movie previews were substituted with commercials about suicide prevention. No actors, real masochists with real problems, gagging, injecting, and slashing themselves before our night's scheduled
InsanityWe had decided to wait when I left; wait to be anything to each other. Or, I should say, she had decided. She had said it would be better if we didn't have each other to distract us while we were gone. But I knew what she hadn't said. She simply hadn't been ready even to call me her boyfriend. But that night, the night she said it, as we listened to the forest sounds beneath our feet, I had been so happy just to be near her that I almost didn't mind.Insanity3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
So we were just friends when I left. We wrote letters. It was no time to push the matter, we were both busy and very far apart, but I told her I loved her. She never made the same admission to me. Yet she wrote me, more than most people did. She called me her dear and trusted friend and begged me to be happy with that for the time being. I was.
Maybe it is only wishful thinking when I say that after she got home her letters became noticeably softer in tone. More prone to endearments. I would have been greatly enthused by this turn in chara
Zindigi Life Monsoons Ch 1When Pavarti died, the sunlight went with her. Any fledgling rays that had once, cautiously, shined down on a family so desperately in need of light, left nothing but the dust of Mumbai roads clinging to the windows. It was hastily snuffed out, like the lazy wisps of a tobacco beedi, purchased by a seedy rickshaw driver at cheap roadside stalls.Zindigi Life Monsoons Ch 14 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
We were the meager funeral procession, my father and I, the now oldest child, and we watched the two disinterested day laborers unfeelingly carry her remains to the cemetery of an abandoned church. The smug sunlight languidly settled into a distant horizon. Even as the blazing humidity diminished, sweat continued to trickle down my shoulders. The dusty white kurta pants were slowly coming apart from the makeshift knot I had tied.
Absently, I ruminated about the thick black plaits that used to run down my sister's back, how the perishing temperatures before the monsoon storms would make cotton salwaar kameez she wore to work stick to her body by
VisionsThere's a saying among my people. It was something about how you have nothing to fear from a pond full of leeches, how it's not the pond's fault. I used to remember it a lot more clearly, but that was before the loss of cohesion.Visions4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
The elders say I was sent as a warning of things to come. The medicine man never said much of anything. He waved his bones and feathers and trinkets around, he lit his grasses and fanned his smokes, and after singing his songs he just stared at me with a deep pity shining out from under his skeleton make up.
I am subject to visions. They are sudden and striking and painful to the point of debilitation. When they come, my senses stagger and die off. There is always a great sound like a huge zipper being pulled, and as it unzips, all other noises fade into nothingness. Gray static envelopes the edges of my visual field and creeps slowly and deliberately in, turning my surroundings to an indistinct slate.
I discovered this gift when I was fourteen. A robber had b
HousewarmingShe opens windowsHousewarming4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
in their wintery home, hopes
to let the cold out
when it doesn't work
she scratches matches to life
and burns the house down.
Sing To MeKarkatxJohnSing To Me4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
It's based off the song Asleep by The Smiths
To you, there are three types of pain.
Physical pain. Cuts. Gashes. Bruises. Scars.
Mental pain. Yelling. Insults. Arguing.
And Emotional pain. Sadness. Hurt. Depression.
You've experienced all of these. Some more than others. You've inflicted quite a few of them as well. But that's a whole other story.
You put the now empty container back in the medicine cabinet. You no longer have a need for it. You look at the corner under the mirror. There's a knife that and you sneer at it in disgust as you drop it into a drawer. You wash your hands off as the red-tinted water swirls down the drain. It repulsed you, so you looked away.
You dry your hands quickly and walked out of the bathroom, into your bedroom, and out your bedroom door.
You eye the door across from your own and debate whether to knock on it or not. But it would be better if you did. You knock quietly, timidly.
The door opens quickly and you jump a bit in
Journey of a Coin.Penny's life started just like every other coin's long life: having been melted, flattened, punched and inscribed, she was finally born into the world in 1971. Along with her 1,521,666,250 sisters, Penny was introduced to a new life of travels and adventures and hardships, beginning in the bottom of a Tesco cash drawer.Journey of a Coin.4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
It was lonely there, certainly not one of the high points of her existence: none of the other pennies were particularly verbose and the majority of them were dull, rusted and squalid. However, as one of the newest coins on top of the heap, Penny didn't have to stay there long.
On her first day on the job, she found a new home in the hands of a four-year old boy: his hands were sticky and grubby and soon both of Penny's shiny faces were thick with a mixture of soil, saliva and sugar. It was almost a relief when he set her on the counter in his kitchen, but when the child's mother came into the room and beat him violently for taking ten pence from the coin tin, Penny wish
Twist-Chapter 1Ichigo's POVTwist-Chapter 14 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
I snapped awake to a soft knocking on my window. I groaned, slipping out of my soft and warm bed, only dressed in a thin white tank top and black boxers. I shoved the window panels out. I heard a yelp as the swinging panels hit something. I smirked. "KING" a whiny watery voice sniffed.
"That's for WAKING me Shiro" I snapped, turning on foot to grab clothes and shower.
He grumbled, rubbing his bleeding forehead. "Sorry King I didn't mean to wake ya only see if anyone was in your room" Shiro murmured.
" And knocking on the window HELPS? God sometimes I wonder about you Shi" I sighed.
" By the way you have no duties today? No plans?" Shiro asked.
"I have a girl's night with " I started before Shiro exploding into his sinful, evil, almost insane crackle of a laugh. "What?" I asked over his laughter.
"Girl's night?" he asked.
I blushed. "Wrong choice of words I forgot you have the maturity level of a 5 year old" I sighed.
Spilled Milk 2.0The milk in the backseatSpilled Milk 2.04 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
is getting warm, condensation
pearling on the plastic jug
and dripping onto the bread.
His glass doll eyes do not see
this now, slumped against the
steering wheel, windshield
scattered across his lap like
candy from a pinata. His face
is stretched in a caricature of
surprise, saying, But I was
only going for milk.
She is impatient, pacing their
living room in her high heels,
smoothing her dress with her
trembling hands, casting acidic
looks at the green numbers on
the stove that insist on marching
onwards though he should have
been back fifteen minutes ago.
He only went for milk, down the
street, and they are going to be
late for their own party, and she
is furious, but that fury is tinged
with an icy vein of panic that is
threatening to choke her, and
she checks the clock again, the
scream of sirens in the distance
pressing against unhearing ears
as the floor mats soak up the last
warm and living parts of him,
and the milk warms in the backseat.
FFM 2011, 29.7 - The Tower"Dora speaking."FFM 2011, 29.7 - The Tower4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
"Mrs. Appleby? This is Aimee Bonner. I don't know if you happen to remember me..."
"Ms. Bonner? Of course I remember you! You were my star pupil in the 7th form. I'm so glad to hear your voice."
"That's right! That's right, Mrs. Appleby. I'm glad you remembered me. Um. I know this isn't strictly according to procedures, but I was wondering if you could help me with...a thing."
"You're being awfully secretive, Aimee. I can't promise anything before you tell me what it is."
"Well, ah, you see, it's a matter of...uh...invading realities? Maybe I better explain...."
"Ms. Bonner, if you have a haunting or a poltergeist or anything of the kind, you really ought to be calling the authorities, not me."
"If you'll just let me explain Mrs. Appleby, please."
"Oh, very well."
"It's like this. I have a freezer in the cellar, where I keep frozen berries and mushrooms and things. It's quite roomy, although I usually manage to keep it filled to the brim. Anyway, I was going down there
A Zombie StoryJohn looked at the sunset, it was a beautiful one, but he felt no joy in that. During this age, night was the second worst enemy out there. He turned on the flashlight and checked the barricades of what was once a school. Everything was locked, boarded up, sealed, and secured. Everything looks good here, He said into the transceiver.A Zombie Story8 years ago in Horror More Like This
Ok, just check the generator and get inside, Was the response. John paused.
ok, he replied and walked towards the generator. It was hidden between the school and a low building that was next to the school. The walls were close together so it was hard for large groups to travel at once to it. As he neared it, he heard a cracking sound from a tree branch he had stepped on and he hesitated a moment. Near it were a few cracked bones covered in dried blood. He gulped and looked at the generator. The walls seemed to close in and it felt as though the generator was getting farther away. Sure is a long walk
SalemI.Salem4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the bright scarlet egg of dawn
nests in my head.
when it is time, it will crack my
skull like a shell
and be born.
I have a witch's fingers and a
witch's eyes, rough pewter lenses
through which I see the world.
I have sabotaged their crops,
I have plagued their children,
I have eaten their livestock in the night
(so they say)
and I hear the whispers in the streets.
they will be willing to kill
for their conviction, though
I am not willing to die for it.
I am no longer human.
I've been branded
with an ugly mark
of fear and desperation,
one terse syllable that cuts
like a switch.
a thin reddish line splits the horizon;
I set my ribs on hinges
so they can get to my heart.
a damp wooden platform,
a rough rope necklace
I am not a Spartan
carried home on his shield.
this is not an honourable death.
Writing Tournament Round 2Today is the last day to submit to round 2!Writing Tournament Round 24 years ago in Personal More Like This
For the list of surviving participants, go here: http://writers--club.deviantart.com/journal/Tournament-Round-2-Participants-List-280378841
Submit your entries here: http://writers--club.deviantart.com/gallery/34850690
It will be a grand competition spanning three rounds of literary challenge! First of all, you must be willing to write for each of the rounds over the coming months. There will be judging at the end of each round and those who progress to the next round will have to write a new piece for the next round's theme. A new participants list will be released upon the announcement of the new round.
Theme: Fighting for Freedom
Interpret at will!
Prose and poetry are accepted. You can submit one entry per round. We readily accept poetry!
There is no minimum word length, even six word stories
To Dream of FallingI dream of falling.To Dream of Falling5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
It's not a dream common to angels. After all, we have a pair of wings--or two or three--and we can use them. We float upon the air, dance among the stars, shape the clouds with our breath, and so on. All that lovely wordplay to describe an indescribable. A joy, a graceless power. Flight.
Humans dream of it often, I am told. It makes sense. They have no wings save for what they create with their hands. Airplanes, hang gliders, helicopters. Kites. They are obsessed with the sky, more so than the angels themselves, many of whom will fly three thousand miles rather than walk across the street.
And yet I dream of falling.
And in my dreams, I always start out as what I am--a bookish secretary pushed into a role never intended for him--and I always end as a human.
And the first thing I feel is falling.
Sometimes I jump off the edge of one of the Heavens.
Even ThoughThere will be no caged fingers,Even Though4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
no tendons finely tuned to A from tension.
There will be no clenched teeth, gritting rosin,
to make the final singing note growl.
There will be unwinding bed-sheets,
hands slowly releasing the tuning pegs.
There will be slowly sliding scales
as the four limbs loosen past playing.
There will be a simple, quiet exit,
not to ovation, but to a hushed audience
who anticipate an encore,
even though it is uncertain.
Fancy-Shmancy Character Brief––––––––––––––––––* BASIC IDENTIFICATION *––––––––––––––––––Fancy-Shmancy Character Brief2 years ago in Literature Templates More Like This
Birthday: Day Month, Year
Birth Sign / Guardian:
Immunities & Resistances:
Illnesses & Disabilities:
Illness (Cause, Effect) Illness (Cause, Effect)
No oceanNo one sleeps the night the army comes home,No ocean4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
and memory storms the shore, bipolar and sexy.
You always knew where to go and what to drink,
where to find the crows that stalked the summers
left lying wrinkled on shorn boardwalks,
Augusts headless and Julys scuttling over hills.
When you were gone I fucked Arthur Rimbaud
in a Parisian basement. He hooked his eyelashes
under mine and made waves on my skin.
Tolle, lege, like the parable tells me.