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  • Fallen Red Ninja 6:21 am on January 25, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: flash fiction, They're made of meat   

    Just like that “You see it wasn’t so m… 

    Just like that

    “You see it wasn’t so much that I couldn’t procure the delectable that was recommended by the author but merely that I thought a more local flavour was desirable in this case”

    Mitchell was yammering on, as he does, about his changes to the recipes in whatever celebrity chef’s cookbook it was he’d bought this week. I mean I admire the mans dedication to his latest “greatest pursuit for lifelong fulfillment” but it’s a bit hard to take him seriously when you know the piles of junk rotting away in the garage. He’d had to buy a shed summer just gone so he had somewhere to put his tools.

    “And of course only the finest dark chocolate will do. But getting the colour in the shells is nigh on impossible, I don’t know how he does it.”

    What sort of man keeps his tools in a shed and his work benches in the garage?  Although considering the state of the garage, it’s no bloody wonder.

    “Chill. Heat slightly than snap-freeze.”

    At least he keeps the house in order. For a bachelors pad at least.

    “dioxode. Dried ice! Got some hellish burns though.”

    Mitch isn’t bad as far as the boyfriend front goes. He cooks weird stuff and is almost obsessive compulsive about his hobbies but a man could do worse. I’ve done and dated worse. Besides, this jumping from one thing to the next seems to keep him in great shape.

    “kept a few in the freezer as an experiment. I’ll tell you, never again! This batch is fresh this morning.”

    And his eyes. I would swim for hours in their icy depths, a rare and piercing husky blue. More’s the pity he’s a lousy shag. All enthusiasm but no technique.

    “Andrew? Are you even listening to me?”

    “What? Yeah of course.” I reply, staring with some consternation at the wildly gesticulating spoon that’s been thrust in my general direction.

    “Well? Are you going to tell me what you think?”

    Shrugging, I open my mouth and he tips the spoonful of goliath pebbles look alikes in. The coating is just sugar with a hint of chilli, interesting combo. I bite one. A unexpectedly savoury lamb flavour overwhelms my unprepared taste buds. Spitting out my mouthful in surprise, I exclaim “they’re made of meat?!”

    Mitchell’s hang-dog look tears strips “you weren’t listening at all, were you.”

    It’s a statement, not a question. He crosses the floor to where I dropped my satchel as I came in the door. He holds it out to me and opens the door. I can take a hint. I grab my keys off the table, my jacket off the back of the sofa and have just taken my bag from his out stretched hand when I notice my underwear under the coffee table. His gaze follows mine.

    “Take it. You’re not coming back.”

    And just like that it’s over. I grab the last of my stuff and slump out to my car. I should’ve listened. One time too many. And because of that, just like that, it’s over.

     
  • Fallen Red Ninja 6:30 am on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: flash fiction,   

    The Art of Scarpering 

    Warning: Foul language and sexual connotations. And a fair amount of Kiwi lingo, feel free to ask for translations. ^,^

    Harsh midday light, suddenly streaming onto my face. I try to roll further under the baby grand to escape but a voice, shrieking like a thousand angle grinders, demands our attention. (More …)

     
    • Shen Git 7:23 am on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      This is made of awesomesauce!! I love the slang, it makes this character come to life. I know him (or her!?) right off the bat.

      And that ending? Hilarious!

      (Which prompt is this for?)

    • Fallen Red Ninja 3:10 pm on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the compliments, I’m mighty glad you enjoyed it!! ^,^

      The narrator is a guy, I’m embracing my inner Ag-boy (like jocks but worse). And the end makes me giggle too!

      (It’s for the “it smelled like [fruit]” prompt. Although I fear my reference to it may have been a little subtle.)

    • theinkling 1:49 am on January 22, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      LOVE the slang. I love the character.
      And the ending is hilarious.

      I (think I) caught the fruit reference!

  • theinkling 5:17 am on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , flash fiction   

    How do I fix this? Again, over dinner. W… 

    How do I fix this?

    Again, over dinner. We just finished eating the sweetbreads. I hated the taste of animal thymus. For now, I resented Carly for making it, so I procrastinated with my answer.

    Did you take the box to the incinerator?

    I pointed to the place on the table where I’d left it that morning. In its place, there was now an empty dish.

    You’re not answering my question, Carly said. She never wavered.

    Carly also never let anything go. I took our plates to the sink and let the juices down the garbage disposal. I leaned against the sink and watched as she tried to put things away, but her hands were shaking.

    It’s been three months, she said. And I can’t get over it.

    Fix what? I asked.

    Carly walked over to me and placed her hand in mine. She’s short and likes sweaters that cling to her thinness. Exposure without exposing.

    Feel it, she said. Redundant. I couldn’t feel anything else.

    Should I call the doctor?

    Don’t bother him now, she said. It’s been twice this week.

    You got rid of the clothes, I said. I rubbed my thumb over imaginary terry cloth and imagined it seared by fire.

    I suggested we go outside and set up the telescope. Friday nights we always stargaze, and it was such a beautiful night out. Clear, too, no smog.

    I can’t, she said. No more closeups.

    Her lips started to tremble. Finally I walked over to her and put my hand on her waist and led her away from the kitchen and where the box had been on the table. The food rankled in my stomach, but I helped her sit down and let her watch the blank screen while I fell asleep on her shoulder.

     
    • roxythekiller 3:36 am on January 22, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      I reread this one twice over, to get a feel for it. Maybe this is just me overthinking things… but it’s as if there is a third person in the story, a ghost who is sensed but not discussed. I like how the female lead consumes those around her, even as she feeds and acts affectionate towards them. She demands things from them, feeds them what they do not want, and keeps them indoors… to herself.

      Maybe it wasn’t your intention, but she casts a shadow over every part of the story, like an ill-fated Southern beauty. There is something very morbid about this story. I like it!

    • Shen Git 4:50 am on January 22, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      It feels like a variation on Hills Like White Elephants. Roxy’s right, there is a third person here. My guess is a baby that miscarried, though Carly wouldn’t necessarily be thin after that.

  • Chase 3:52 am on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , flash fiction   

    Being a travel writer was, perhaps, the … 

    Being a travel writer was, perhaps, the best job in the world. Unfortunately, it meant being forced to swallow down some of the most disgusting things in the world. Cathy tried to avoid it where she could, but when she couldn’t, she had forced herself to become an expert at faking the happy noises and nods that indicated she was enjoying it — and not vomiting. She had plowed through flame-broiled guinea pigs, boiled sheep’s intestines, and more than a few types of raw fish.

    What was sitting in front of her, though, she couldn’t place. It didn’t appear to be particularly animal or organic. She couldn’t even pronounce what it was called.

    “Must eat,” her host, who was really very kind though persistent, prodded. She was one of the few here who spoke English, though broken, and it was hard enough to get an answer out of her normally. But still, she did not want to ingest anything she didn’t have any idea about. She would eat it, she was sure, but not until she knew. It was one of those rules.

    “Animal?” she asked. She was so far beyond trying to use full sentences, that she was trying to break it down into something her host might actually understand. “Cow? Pig?”

    “No, no. Eat!” the host cried, pushing the plate a little closer.

    Cathy glanced around for the translator that had been sent with her, but he was trying to convince another member of the host party to explain something about the local fauna to him, and it would be a few minutes before he’d return. So Cathy steeled herself, and took a tiny nibble. For all that it looked like something that might have been scraped off the bottom of a swimming pool, it wasn’t bad. Her host was watching expectantly, and she nodded hugely. “Is good, is good!” Cathy said.

    Her translator returned a few minutes later, when half the plate had been devoured. “You got it figured out then?” he asked, grinning broadly.

    “I still don’t know what it is, but it’s delicious.”

    The translator blanched a little. “You don’t? Well, the last guy, you know? They didn’t like his article much.”

     
    • theinkling 5:18 am on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      This was AWESOME.
      Loved the ending!

      I almost snorted cookie!

    • Shen Git 4:58 am on January 22, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh mai gawd I could retch. GOOD JOB!

  • taraskelt 1:25 am on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , flash fiction   

    Warning: This story contains graphic vio… 

    Warning: This story contains graphic violence/gore scenes.

    (More …)

     
    • theinkling 1:53 am on January 22, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Oh man. I don’t think I should’ve read this while eating popcorn.

      That however, was the most unusual thing eaten during the prompt! great job!

    • Shen Git 5:00 am on January 22, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Highly unusual, indeed! I keep wanting to tilt my head at this, like that’ll make it easier to see where the line between reality and… whatever they’re doing is. I like to believe this is a snippet from a really gory supernatural story.

  • sickheartss 11:54 am on January 20, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: flash fiction,   

    Blue eyes slowly opened up, blinking away the last remainders of sleep. The bed was old but comfortable, the sheets worn but warm, and none of these factors helped Bert rise in the morning. But as his senses began to awake along with him, he quickly came to notice that the bed he normally shared with his friend was empty, the space besides him cold.

    He sat up, confusion clear in his expression. But then, he noticed that it smelled like strawberries. Something that was totally unusual, when you were two older teenage boys living on your own for the first time, in the slums of New York City. The apartment usually smelled of musk, sex, or drugs. Not something sweet like fruits.

    “Quinn?” he called out, voice almost wary as he climbed out of bed. His hair was messy and his eyes were bloodshot, the track marks on his arms showing up easily on the pale skin of his inner arms. Signs of the fun he had every night and paid for every morning, even if he was shouting at no one it surely wasn’t the weirdest shit he’d ever done. He was answered by the sound of the few pots and kitchen appliances they actually owned, and Bert felt his heart calm down just a tad. He doubted someone would of broken in past the barred windows and eight locks just to cook breakfast in his piece of crap kitchen.

    “Quinn?” he asked again as he turned the corner to see his blonde haired lover in the kitchen, a few sloppily home made pancakes resting on a plate. Bert didn’t need an invitation to walk over and rest his chin on the other boys shoulder, a few small laughs ringing in his throat.

    “Did you really get up and make breakfast on your day off?” Bert asked, actually sounding a bit amazed by his discovery. Quinn just rolled his eyes in reply before leaning in to press their lips together, before returning to working over the stove.

    “I really did, believe it or not,” he began, “But early to rise, just means early to bed, and that means taking you with me.” The smirk on his face growing as he finished his sentence, watching how Bert’s expression changed as he took a few seconds to get what Quinn meant.

    “Oh,” Bert whispered, before breaking out into a few laughs. “Ohhh… okay,” he quickly added then, straightening up before picking up one of the already made pancakes, and biting into it just like that.

    “…These have strawberries in them?” he asked, finally noticing the little fruity bits inside. So that had been the source of the mystery smell. Bert didn’t look up in time to see the grin that grew on Quinn’s face at his remark, but he almost didn’t need to. He knew it was there.

    “There are some in the fridge too, along with a couple things of whipped cream. They were on sale for a dollar each, and I figured we could actually eat one, and use the other for getting high.” Quinn finally turned to look back at Bert then, only to find the other boy already looking back up at him.

    Bert didn’t say anything at first, trying to make himself look tough. That he wasn’t that easy, maybe. But the smile slowly grew again, and even stuffing the rest of the pancake into his mouth and chewing obnoxiously couldn’t hide it forever.

    “Well played, fucker,” he finally said then, scratching at his scalp.

    “Just, uh… lemme know once you wanna go back to bed. And bring the strawberries. They’re my favourite.”

    “I know,” Quinn replied, smugness dripping from his tone, and just laughing as Bert flipped off.

     
    • roxythekiller 3:10 pm on January 20, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      This story manages to be sad and uplifting at the same time… and Bert’s a sweetheart. Sex, getting high, and making breakfast in the morning.

      Domestic bliss, eat your heart out! These two are cute 🙂

      Just a thought: Don’t ruin this great OS by donating it to the fanfiction-verse, where teenyboppers won’t give it the love and affection it deserves.

    • Shen Git 12:00 am on January 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      This is a cute one! It feels like a real moment. Playful, with push-pull. I would definitely want to keep reading.

      And Roxy’s right, the teenybopper slash-shippers wouldn’t appreciate it. But maybe I’m just scarred from too much time near them. 😀

  • Shen 6:23 am on January 20, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , flash fiction   

    The founder was under no illusion when … 

    The founder was under no illusion when it came to the empire he had birthed. His humble nation now stretched across the continent and spanned seas to distant isles. It took him a lifetime to paint the map purple, and his son spent his own life fighting to maintain his father’s trophies. Dissident nibbled at the edges, but the heir cut them down.

    Some empires last for millennia, or so the legends promised. A thousand years of bloodshed, or a thousand years of prosperousness.

    He expected his empire to die young, the cement hardly dry.

    He confided this misgiving to only one other, his mute concubine. He was confident that she, prize of a raiding party that had traumatized her into speechlessness, would never tell his secrets. Not being a man of letters himself, he never suspected her of possessing this most dangerous skill.

    Orissa, beloved pet of the first emperor, kept a diary every day of her tragic life. The early volumes were lost in the raid. She took greater care with the volumes she filled at the palace, each a work of art. She sewed the books herself with silk, board, and drawing paper used by the seamstresses. The beginning pages of each journal began with an account of her labor.

    //This heavy damask is hardier but it is also harder to work with! My fingers are raw even with the thimble to shield them…//

    She hid them where she knew her lord would never look: in the ceiling of the nursery. Well out of reach of little children, she kept the secret for more than thirty years. She had always meant to tell her two daughters where she kept the old books, but she died falling down a flight of stairs.

    Whether or not she was pushed has always been a matter of great speculation. Perhaps the only person to know what may have happened was her best friend, another concubine, who found Orissa’s last unfinished journal and secreted it away. She ensured that the book went to Orissa’s younger daughter, who cherished it and gave it to her son. Raised to be a man of war, he deposited it on his wife, who wisely hid the scandalous insights it contained from their children. So it went, for seven generations. The concubine Orissa’s final journal was nothing more than a family curiosity.

    In the 175 years that passed the nursery was redecorated numerous times. It was expanded, became a classroom, shrank, was a nursery again. The furniture disappeared in the blink of an eye, but the molded tiles on the walls were slower to change. It was only when the current prince-apparent threw a hard rubber ball that ricocheted against the wall and smashed the aging plaster of the ceiling that anyone bothered to do something about its condition.

     
  • o1iveman 5:43 am on January 19, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , death, flash fiction, hipster, that other prompt   

    Cassie always thought she would die … 

    Cassie always thought she would die young. Her death would be something flashy, but not too flashy, just… different. She didn’t want to end up being a story on the evening news or a fail on the Internet. She just wanted to be someone that regulars at the coffee shop whisper about every now and then.

    Her ideal death would be a pair of jeans so tight, that the lack of circulation would ensure her death. Subtle enough to be under the radar, but cool enough to be talked about.

    The jeans would be a gift, of course, from an obviously unfashionable aunt that hadn’t seen her niece since she was in grade school. she would only be wearing them because the sweater-wearing social elite that was her family told her to. Cassie would begrudgingly agree to wear them to her family reunion, where her father would be telling the family a set of agonizingly corny jokes. He would be telling the joke about the monkey and the toaster when she would fall down on the vomit-colored linoleum– with stark white legs and a dead look on her face. It would be a beautifully ironic– Cassie never liked her father’s jokes, especially the monkey ones.

    She’d be cremated, but not in one of those huge ovens everyone else gets cremated in, she’d have her friends fire up an old barbecue grill and burn her up there. Even after death, Cassie wanted her friends to remember her as a trendsetter.

    Besides, the cremation-by-barbecue grill made it easier to have her funeral on her apartment building’s rooftop, so that it’d be kinda like Clerks but without the hockey. After her family stuffed her ashes in a urn, the afterparty would be on the rooftop, with a bathtub of PBR and burgers from the grill (Another grill, of course.). There would be bands like Audios Muchachos and Sparrow Implosion playing sets. Assuming they didn’t sell out. She promised herself that she’d die before she would see them sell out. Which would turn out to be true- Hopefully.

    It wouldn’t happen like that. Turns out Cassie and her guy friends were having a rooftop party, and she had too much to drink.

    She didn’t even notice the ledge.

    She would be a story in the evening news, and an “LOL” on the internet. She would have her wake in a dreary funeral home and her body would be buried in a old fashioned cemetery. There would be no music for the reception, because presumably, both bands sold out.

     
  • theinkling 4:34 am on January 16, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , flash fiction   

    I always figured he’d die young. I scra … 

    I always figured he’d die young. I scrapped the line and threw it away.

    Why did I have to kill him at all?

    The mad demands of an editor too bloodthirsty for words. I could not bring myself to kill him. We were in love in a way. I damned him, tore him, pushed him into walls, and he still came back to the page, sighing under the invisible direction of my pen.

    The phone rang.

    “Did you kill him yet?”

    My apartment, dark except for the failing lamp on my desk, felt like a funeral.

    I whispered no.

    The raspy voice on the other end turned sour. Within two minutes, my editor cut the call. I took the pen from the drawer (where I kept it, uncapped) and brought my character, my paper love, to the precipice again. And then I pulled him back with ropes of ink.

     
  • taraskelt 2:45 am on January 16, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , flash fiction   

    Julia 

    Sebastian always figured that he’d die young. His death would be spectacular. He’d fall off a careening vehicle in the midst of a car chase, he’d be gunned down by the city police force, maybe even die choking on a bad apple. But he did not imagine that he’d find himself on death’s door at the hands of dear, sweet Julia. She smiled at him over dinner;  more of a smirk, really, as his body began to shut down, his fingers convulsing as he scrabbled at the tablecloth, ripping it down along with him as he half-stumbled from his chair to crash to the floor a mere three steps past.

    “You should have listened, Sebastian dear, I told you the ring was mine.”

    He laughed as a light foam began to drip from the corner of his lip, painted pink with blood. “You’ll never get it, you know.”

    “And why not?”

    Sebasitan merely laughed, choking slightly at the feel of his throat closing up. “I’m the only one who knows where it is,” he said with a toothy grin.

    No, this was not how he’d seen it at all.

     
    • Shen Git 3:59 am on January 16, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Intriguing! You could certainly spin this into a larger piece. There’s real hatred in here…

    • f 5:07 am on January 16, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Oooh, this was awesome.
      (I agree with the Git.)

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