Friday Fictioneers – Parenting Troubles

Copyright - Douglas M. MacIlroy

Copyright – Douglas M. MacIlroy

This rather hilarious photo was put up by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for the Friday Fictioneers challenge.

Our oldest daughter has an unfortunate habit.

It’s not picking her nose, or wetting the bed, or even the insistence on wearing those rather horrendous pink striped tights.

Oh no. She likes to curse people.

Little Beth down the road lost her hair. Next door’s Jimmy now has a twitch which no therapy in the world will cure. We won’t get into what happened to the poor girl who came to babysit. (I just hope she develops some strong neck muscles. Quickly.)

She’s really more vindictive than little girls ought to be.

I think she gets it from her mother.

Sunday Photo Fiction – Dead Beneath the Paint

54 04 April 6th 2014

Copyright – Al Forbes

1 Year on WordPress! Please check out the Sunday Photo Fiction blog to read the other submissions and for instructions on how to submit your own piece.

I stare into the mirror. Blossoms are braided through my hair, and the earthy scent of crushed petals clings to my naked skin. Behind me, the paint is peeling in the corners of the room, the cracks growing larger as time filters through the door in the form of women who paint me and strange men who seem to be pleased by the sight of me. At first, I could not fathom why.

Through the window, another day is dying. When I can no longer see my own reflection, more time will pass through the door. I count the seconds in glances and reverent whispers.

In time I came to understand what I was; artwork. A beautiful picture to be admired. An adornment worthy of royalty.

I have been sold.

I wait for my grand unveiling.

Friday Fictioneers – Rehearsal


Studio Lights from Kent

Copyright – Kent Bonham

Time for Friday Fictioneers, click the link to be taken to the page of Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, where you can find instructions for taking part.

So, about that thing you saw the other day…

Yes, that incident. On the stage.

I understand that it must have looked very odd, given that we weren’t wearing clothes, and we were in that position.

Yes, I know he’s your husband, I quite understand why you were so upset about it. But you see, it’s really not what it looked like.

No, we really weren’t doing that.

No, of course I don’t think you’re an idiot.

You see, we were rehearsing a scene for the play. That’s all. Nothing untoward about it.

I’m afraid they’ve sold out of tickets.

Friday Fictioneers – Unbelieving Eyes

Featured Image

Copyright – John Nixon

Friday Fictioneers Central is where you can find the instructions for submitting your own 100 words story and the other submissions. A bit rushed this week, but I’m determined to keep on schedule with my blog posts.

The peace I’ve found in these woods for the past two years is sunk in an instant, like a ship dashed on the rocks of its home port. My feet involuntarily step backwards. He turns and sees me.

“Nat?” He smiles, almost politely.

“You’re back.”

“I never thought I’d find you here. You always said these woods were ugly.”

“I guess, after two years, I learned to see the beauty you saw.”

“There was another thing I said was beautiful, and you didn’t agree.”

I stand bashfully behind a dead looking tree trunk.

“I still have trouble believing that.”

Sunday Photo Fiction – A Conversation with the Ocean

Fog lingering around Dover Western (Cruise) Docks. [Image has been adjusted so it can be seen properly]

Photo by Al Forbes, who runs the Sunday Photo Fiction blog. Check out the other submissions and instructions for entering your own story here.

How many men have you swallowed up? How many times have you pushed yourself inside their lungs and separated them from the oxygen they so desperately need?

You consumed the body I threw to you last night, when you were considerably less placid than you are now. A single image flickers on my inner eye: Her dress billowing in the wind, legs flailing, wild auburn hair concealing the face I thought I loved. You were the one who dragged her down, your tumultuous surface a match to my own rage. I roared with the wind, damning her to your cold bed, where her beauty could rot and she’d have no choice but to be faithful.

I stand on the deck, calmly facing the fog that covers you like a blanket. I can’t see exactly what’s ahead, but I’m not concerned. After all, it wasn’t me that killed her. It was you.

Friday Fictioneers – The Stairway of Angels

Copyright -Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Copyright -Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Please click here to be taken to Friday Fictioneers Central, where you can learn how to submit your own 100 word piece based on the prompt and also see other people’s submissions.

The heat in Mathas’ fingers was absorbed by the metal balustrade as he climbed the marble steps. His eyes were on the clouds above, calculating the immensity of the distance to his goal.

This stairway was a match to the legendary gates. The bannister was wrought of silver and studded with milky pearls, reflecting the white skies. They called it the stairway of angels, but angels can fly to heaven with their wings. Only the fallen need stairs.

Blood dripped down Mathas’ back from the two brutal wounds below his shoulder blades, marking every painful step on the marble below.

Sunday Photo Fiction – Ignorance

51 03 March 16th 2014

Copyright – Al Forbes

This week’s entry for Sunday Photo Fiction. Click the link for more stories and instructions on how to submit your own entry.

I can hear you muttering through the kitchen door, no doubt adding to the thorough list of sins your ex-girlfriend committed against you. This tirade started about an hour ago, when the bottle of whiskey we shared had been considerably depleted. Our other friends made excuses and left shortly afterwards, but you stayed, determined to spit out every bitter feeling and burn what was left with alcohol.

I ignored the tears when they began to appear, ignored to urge to tell you the truth: These words are hurting you more than they will ever hurt her.

I pour a glass of water and open the kitchen door. You’ve finally stopped talking, but your eyes are closed and your mouth is slack as you lay across my sofa. I lean over you to inspect your face more closely, wondering if you’re caught in some lonely, hateful dream. I slowly bring my lips to your ear, thrilled at the risk you might actually listen to me for the first time tonight.

“You didn’t deserve her.”

Friday Fictioneers – Pollution

Here’s my Friday Fictioneers piece for this week. Please check out Friday Fictioneers Central to submit your own 100-word piece and to read other submissions.

“The water is dirty,” I tell my mother, who stands next to me on the bridge.

“It is,” she agrees, looking over the waters we’d paddled in on hot summer days. The once clear brook is now a filthy brown. “The soldiers upstream are muddying the river.”

“When will they move? When will the river be clean again?” I ask, impatiently.

She doesn’t answer immediately. Her frown firms up as she stares at the horizon, making her jawline and cheekbones appear as a sharp silhouette against the sky.

“When the soldiers move, we will not be worrying about the river.”

Sunday Photo Fiction – Lady Thalassa

50 03 March 9th 2014

Copyright – Al Forbes

Another entry for Sunday Photo Fiction. Click the link to find instructions for submitting your own stories and to read other people’s submissions. Didn’t submit anything last week as I was preparing for a job interview that was south of London. (South of London? To a northerner like me, it might as well be a different country.) Going past all the flooded fields on the train was a source of inspiration for this story. ;)

As a child, I never saw winter. You may have heard that there are places in this land which are impervious to the changing seasons. I was born and raised in one such place.

The forest south of Karob has a centre that’s near impossible to penetrate. The foliage is as thick as the walls which guard this kingdom. If your nurse or mother told you fairy tales, she may have described the garden of the water goddesses. Did they describe the trees that never lost their leaves? The turquoise fountain warmed by a never-retreating sun?

I was never the same as the other child-sprites. I was somewhat more opaque. I could never meld into my natural surroundings or hold conversations with the river like they could. I was glad when my father came to collect me on my sixteenth birthday.

Unfortunately, there was no place for a bastard child like me in court, even a half goddess. It wasn’t until the floods came that they began referring to me as “Lady”.

Sunday Photo Fiction – Lunar Promises

48 02 February 23rd 2014

Copyright – Al Forbes

Click here to submit your own flash fiction based on the photograph, and to read other stories.

In the village where Sian was born, a small housing estate was being built to the west. The area had previously been an unremarkable, empty field. It had also been the spot where, every month, Sian’s mother had greeted the full moon at midnight. The moon gave her gifts of rare herbs and dispensed words of advice in reward for her diligence.

Sian’s mother had been dead for five years, and Sian had not dared to meet the moon herself in that time. She left the hospital where her brother was being treated, knowing that she had to do something. The skies were cloudless and the timing was perfect.

Walking through the empty construction site, she had no idea whether her presence here would be acknowledged. The moon had every right to refuse her, and this place was perhaps no longer as sacred as it once was.

Sian paused. The moonlight filtered through the giant metal frames, and then solidified in front of her.

She kneeled, sobbed for forgiveness, and pleaded until a deal was struck.