Tag Archives: Flash fiction for Aspiring Writers

Faraday Cage…

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It was a decade or more since the Faraday’s had sealed themselves away from the world, and the pathway that led through the trees to their ramshackle pile had long-since succumbed to the ravages of time.

Locals looked upon their solitude with derision. They had always been a strange family – naive and simple-minded – favouring books over apps, and community over networking. Their disinterest in all things technological morphed through time and gossip until it garnered cult status. The children who ran about in the fields with gay abandon were seen as unplugged epsilons – kept from their true potential by Luddite parents.

The very last sighting had been by a parish priest who witnessing the patriarch, Aldous Faraday, erecting a signpost on the boundary line that stated: ‘The ways of old fail to satisfy.’ With a weary smile the middle-aged man retreated over the brow, never to be seen again.

Their were rumours of course – kids venturing onto the grounds on a dare and disappearing, long finger-nailed savages, and claims of perpetual joyous laughter on the wind.

Away from prying eyes something truly terrible of fantastical was occurring…

Written for: Flash Fiction For Aspiring Writers

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Everywhere & Nowhere…

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The trees that grow in Perdition have the structure of tortured souls seeking to escape the scorched earth, reaching or hanging ashen like expended husks. They are the product of neglect and malice; of half-remembered dreams – places endured and wandered through in a distressing deja-vu.

I happen upon the clearing again. It is part of my punishment to relive the hollow discovery time and time over. I cannot remember what is it that I did to deserve such terrible retribution, or why the concept of duration should fill me with dread…

I have the suspicion that I have been here forever.

A fire has ravaged my throat and my mind. Blurred corporeal entities vie for attention. Thoughts break apart under scrutiny.

Up ahead – the outline of a figure. How long is it since I conversed with another? Silent words form on my lips and I plunge forward through tearing thorns. Despite my passionate pursuit the figure slips further and further away. I emerge alone in a clearing where hellish limbs claw their way out of the…

Written for: Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

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Filed under Flash fiction, short story

Fall back on breeding…

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Rita’s dinner-parties were the stuff of legend – a heady mix of rich conversation and frugal ingenuity. With crepe-paper chandeliers and coat-hanger candelabra she carried off an air of flamboyant spectacle.

Rita herself was grace-personified – a slight, elegant frame of dignity and decorum that desperate poverty had failed to mollify. She sported plastic earrings as though they were diamonds and wore rags as though they were modelling her.

At any given gathering attention inevitably turned to the oil painting that dominated the far wall of her pokey basement flat.

‘Ah yes, my ancestor – the countess,’ she began, as though the words were not well-rehearsed, ‘regaling the revolutionaries who’d arrived to cart her away to the gulag. If the stories are to be believed she made them wait while the portrait was painted and disarmed them with etiquette.’

Guests never failed to take the bait. ‘So, you descend from aristocracy?’

‘Yes,’ Rita always replied wistfully, ‘but alas nothing now remains of that decadent time…well…’

With subtle self-intimation her body language concluded the tale…

…Perhaps one thing.

 

(175 words)

Written for: Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

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Extrapolation (FFfAW)

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…This is the guy I was telling you about. He’s here every Thursday, regular as clockwork.

…A decade maybe? Always with the second guitar in a case that he never opens.

…No, he sets it up next to the speaker and stands away from it.

…Mostly call and response songs. He calls and no one responds. You only get one side of the…

…I think her name is (or was) Maggie.

…Because for all his many tunes he always comes back to that name – ‘Maggie Mae’, ‘Maggie’s farm’, ‘Little Maggie.’

…I see her as an Irish tearaway – unmanageable fiery red hair, a checked dress, pale legs, plimsols…

A voice that can find the harmony in any melody. We’ll make a tormented poet of you yet!

…What? And leave her guitar behind? No, I think the clues point towards something more…

…What’s wrong with a little morbid curiosity?

…By just looking at his face. Whoever and wherever she is, he finds her in the music…

 

(166 words)

Written for: Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

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I placed it here to taunt you…

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My, how he hated the emaciated sub-species. It gave him no small amount of pleasure to drive his Daimler slowly along the perimeter fence laughing heartily at their plight.

In moments of particular malice it was his singular delight to have them polish the bodywork.

‘This automobile is like you. A collection of elements brought to heel and bound up in a chamber of fiery combustion into which gas is pumped.’

Defeat came quickly and there was little time for sentimentality. He left his precious vehicle behind and fled into obscurity – abandoning his Reich and his identity.

For many years he retreated ever south, constantly in fear of capture, plummeting at last to a lowly lean-to in the woods…

…outside of which…

…one morning…

…he discovered the husk of his once proud possession.

Despite the revulsion there was something to be admired in their audacity.

‘I can only imagine the logistics involved in such a feat.’

They rose from the undergrowth and spoke as one.

‘This automobile is like you. Burnt out, expended.’

 

Written for: Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

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FFfAW: Several Careless Owners

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Our next item has an illustrious if chequered history. She (colloquially known as ‘Lorna’) first came to prominence at Alderley Asylum where an austere, ham-fisted matron murdered hymns as an added source of torture towards the inmates. The piano and the property were subsequently sold to an ivory merchant who made some magnificent improvements before losing both in a poker game to the eccentric Count Dalliance.

Lorna was transferred to the bathroom where she resides to this day. Here, the half-crazed count regaled his wife with show-tunes as she bathed (plumply curvaceous as was the style and resplendent in peacock feathers!)

Sadly in later life The Count lost his wife and the remainder of his sanity. With no heirs his estate passed to the government and was reestablished as an asylum.

Lorna was preserved as a mark of respect and has languished unplayed for the better part of forty years, waiting patiently for the right owner to caress her keys once more.

Do I have an opening bid?

 

Written for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

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