Category Archives: Flash fiction

“Flash Fiction 99 word Challenge for the Carrot Ranch Literary Community

 

fence

“Wow, look at that Dad,” The dad in question was trying hard not to show his own excitement.

They were standing high on the cliffs watching waves crashing into the beach below. Not only waves but numerous figures standing on multi-coloured surfboards rushing in with each breaker.

“Dad, “ his son pleaded, “can we get a surfboard?”

“Sorry Davey but you know that they are expensive and how often could you use it?”

“Awww,” the disappointment showed.

The afternoon was spoilt.

Next morning Davey went out before breakfast. Worried, his father went to find him. Then he saw the fence.

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Sue Vincent’s #Thursday photo prompt: Wishes #writephoto

wishing-tree

Maisie and her mother Jeanie sat nervously at the kitchen table. Thomas, Maisie’s father and husband to his long-suffering wife Jean was late home from his Friday market. Both knew what this meant. Red-eyed the younger children had all been sent to bed top to toe in the back room despite the eldest boy Declan’s protest and all of their cries.

Eight o’clock came and went, Maisie picked up the shovel and scuttle and skipped out the door. She turned left along the ash and cinder path around the side of the cottage to the woodshed. She would need to pick up some more slabs of peat turf for the fire. They were getting low, she realised, and she would have to remind her mother when she got back indoors.

As she was picking up the turfs she heard the wooden garden gate squeal then close with a loud bang. It must be her father. Clasping the scuttle to her breast she ran back to greet him. She stopped, he was standing with one hand resting on the low wall staring up at the darkening night sky. “Dad, dad, “ cried Maisie and rushed to hug him but he brushed her away and stumbled his way to the front door muttering words that she couldn’t understand.

Tears came into her eyes as she realised that her father was empty-handed. It looked as though he had brought nothing back from the market. She waited outside undecided as to whether to enter. She imagined that her mother would soon be getting him ready for bed.

Plucking up courage she walked in. Jean turned around and then back to her husband who was leaning against the large china sink and in icy tones hissed, “ and I suppose you haven’t got the ribbons you promised for our little lassies birthday tomorrow?” The look on her father’s face said it all as both Maisie and her father found tears forming in their eyes despite her efforts to hide them. She turned and ran into the small back room ignoring her father’s pleas for her to wait a minute. Her anger remained with her as she fell asleep.

The next morning Maisie awoke, she had slept the whole night in her clothes. Realising the time and that she would be late for school she grabbed a piece of bread and with a cheerful, “Bye Ma,” scooted out of the door not waiting for any reply or any best wishes for her big day.

In fact she felt quite light-headed, the sun was shining and everything would be new and an adventure. There was no use worrying about her beloved father but she knew her anger would pass by the evening. Once again he would scoop up his little girl in his arms and both laughing loudly, he would whirl her around till they both felt giddy.

She followed the path down to the woods for the walk to school was only about half an hour if she went through the trees rather than the cart track that led between Mr. Thomas’ fields. Then she saw it. All her prayers seemed to have been answered. A tree was leaning across her path. It’s branches festooned with thousands of gaily coloured streamers, torn cloth pieces, ribbons and flowers. She realised it was a wishing tree. And it knew that this was what she was wishing for as she selected the finest ribbon she could reach for her hair.

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Thursday photo prompt: Crossing #writephoto

crossing

Cardeen crouched low on his steed’s broad neck. Flecks of foam escaped from her wide, flaring nostrils and hung in long, white streams from her sweat-soaked mane.

He knew that she could not continue at this furious pace for much longer. Her eyes wide and bloodshot, her hooves thundering on  the hard baked earth of the forest path.

Cardeen smiled, behind them there was no sign of his pursuers but  he could not afford to slacken her pace. They would be safe only after crossing the bridge which he knew could not be far ahead.

The sun had set and evening was jut beginning to close in as dusk came down and as they rounded a bend, ahead of him between the trees he spotted the bridge ahead. The border between Devon and Cornwall, the river Tamar which raged below.

Taking one hand off of the reins but keeping the pressure on so that she would not slacken her pace he adusted the leather bag slung from his shoulder.

With only fifty yards between he and the bridge he caught a movement in the corner of his eye. His heart sank as from between the trees emerged the red tunics and white waistcoats of a small group of soldiers. Two  had muskets raised. He tried to coax one last effort from his already exhausted companion. A puff of smoke showed that one shot had been fired. The first one missed but hearing another report he instantly felt a blow on his chest.

He felt a damp stain below his throat and his grip on the reins loosened. The horse started to slow and came to a halt about ten yards from the bridge. Cardeen felt himself sliding off the saddle to one side.

As his feet landed on the ground he wrenched the leather bag from his neck and swinging it around his head managd to throw it with it’s precious cargo into the middle of the fast flowing stream.

A smile of satisfaction passed over his face as he realised that the documents in the bag would no longer be legible even if they were retrieved. The evidence of treason against his Lord, the Duke of Cornwall would not be found despite his having failed  in his attempt to bring the letters back to the castle as his master required.

His eyes closed and sinking to lie on the damp soil Cardeen passed away knowing that he had done his duty.

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I.L. Wolf #Ten Word Photo Prompt: Sepia

scarecrow

Mistakenly they sought protection in the shadow of the totem.

 

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MlMM’s #First Line Friday 22 June

The strangers with her on the rooftop paused in unison. They seemed confused, unsure what to do next. They had got her this far and so far no hint of what their intentions for her were.

Her mind raced. Looking about her wildly she couldn’t, in fact refused to believe that twenty  minutes  ago she had been walking through the cobbled streets of the finely preserved National Trust show village.

There had been no sign that there was some form of medieval pageant but  she had found herself grabbed bu a pair  of swarthy, dark-skinned men in what looked  like authentic peasant’s smocks. If the dirt was anything to go by.

Despite her protests the two men had grabbed her and speaking in a strange accent, at least it sounded like an accent but the words weren’t even recognisable, had put a rope round her waist and started to lead her towards the public house she had just passed, “The vine.”

It had seemed empty before but now she found it to be full of the costumed townsfolk. Baleful eyes were cast in her direction as she was roughly dragged through the door.

Still unable to make her captors understand what she was saying and in total confusion, tears started to form; they pulled her through an archway at the side of the old wooden bar.  Despite her situation she found herself marvelling  at  the authenticity of the bar. It really was like stepping back in time as she noted the two large oak barrels standing on the dark brown, knotted, roughly sawn plank that doubled as a bar counter. Behind which there were a range of earthenware pots with unknown contents. There wasn’t even a price list. Then they started to ascend a granite staircase between two rough whitewashed walls.

The people had formed a procession behind them, there were giggles and shrieks of laughter but it was more at her than with her and there was no humour  in their loud clamour. From the dark staircase they  burst out into the light  and she saw that they were on a wooden balcony that overlooked the  street at least two storeys below. A rough shaped beam was crudely attached to the handrail and looking up she saw the rope that hung from it over the edge. It was knotted at the bottom with a noose.

Only then did she start to scream.

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One for the diary

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June 21, 2018 · 10:52 am

Twittering Tales #89 – 19 June 2018

new-twittering-logoegg-3471439_1280You’ve been doing it again haven’t you?

Who me,  I  don’t know what you mean.

Breaking into those eggs, don’t deny it, your whiskers are all yellow and sticky, yeuk!

Well, you have to get in when  they’re still fresh or they’re all chewy. 236 characters

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Sue Vincent’s Thursday photo prompt: Remains #writephoto

O hear me, ye faithless for I have a warning to retell.

My name is M’neptah and I was formerly the tutor of the son of my sovereign master Thutmose, Lord of all the dominion of Egypt.

On the night of my death I boarded the barge that traverses the Land of Nut and was brought before the one they call Anubis, before whom I knelt in subjugation.

He placed before my bowed head a finely wrought gold balance and with one swift move placed his hand upon my breast. From within he took my heart and laid  it gently upon one of the scales. From his head-dress he plucked a feather and placed this on the opposite scale.

To my horror the weight of  my heart was greater than that of the feather. I begged forgiveness for my unknown sins, committed whilst upon this Earth. It was to no avail . My heart was cruelly thrown into the jaws of the crocodile Ammit to be devoured and thus prevent me continuing my journey to the afterlife.

That is why you see me as I am now, devoid of flesh and condemned to lie unburied for eternity.

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Sunday Photo Fiction

faithful

It was no good, I couldn’t rest with that strange looking animal sitting next to my bed. I pushed the lid aside and started to crawl out from under the marble. My visitor showed no sense of alarm, just sat there with his tongue protruding and a silly grin on his face. Shaking the dirt and dust of decades from my shroud I sat beside him and gently patted his head.

“I think you’re a bit late if you’ve come to rescue me. And aren’t you supposed to be a Saint Bernard or something bigger like that. What happened, did you shrink after getting wet in the snow? Your brandy bottle seems to have changed, a little handbag is it nowadays? I suppose that’s down to advances in medical science. After my time in there I think I’ve seen the light so the lantern is a waste as well. Anyway feller, I think it’s time for you to go home, no way are you going  to save my life. Should have come around a long  time ago for that but Thanks anyway.”

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Thursday photo prompt: Turrets #writephoto

pinnacle

 

Being an extract from the log of HMS Fox, brigantine, 9th. Sept. 1869

Awakened at the first bell of the morning watch by Captain of the deck second lieutenant Ffoulkes. Weather fair, sea calm, no fog.

Lookout had reported sighting land on the larboard bow but charts suggest he was mistaken and would face punishment if found to be asleep and dreaming whilst on watch.

Called for  my telescope and astonished to see what appeared to be a major town in the distance with houses, rivers and a large abode set high upon a hill.

With First officer, proceeded to check charts and called for a line to be passed down to confirm depth below the keel.

Soundings confirmed depth greater than fifty fathoms. Drew in lead.

Ordered change of course to proceed towards anomaly but before half a league covered lookout reported no land in sight.

Believing it to be apparition or mirage  I ordered the ship back  to original course to maintain blockade off the coast of Alaska.

Editor’s note. Upon examination of Admiralty records in Greenwich maritime museum, I discovered numerous reports of sightings of ethereal lands and cities off Alaskan coast and Alaskan Indians include such sightings in their mythology. Another mystery of the sea.

 

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Filed under Alternative history, As you read it, Flash fiction, Inspired by fable, Self compositions