Posted in Blogging, stories, Truth or Fiction, writing

Truth or Fiction?

Welcome to this week’s edition of Truth or Fiction. I would also like to thank everyone who has participated in my stories so far. As you know (or maybe you don’t), I will be posting a short story every week that will be based on truth or it may be the writing of my imagination. As I stated in the first story, (you can read it here) the true stories may be MY stories or of someone I know. In other words, not all the true stories are about me.

For example, last weeks story (you can see it here) was a TRUE story but it wasn’t my story. It was my mothers.

My mom shared one of the very rare stories of her past with me a couple of times. How she learned to write so fancy. I always admired her handwriting. It was beautiful. She did indeed learn it from an employer. My mom and a girlfriend ran away from home when she was fourteen. They hitchhiked to Chicago and her first job there was as a maid in a fancy rich lady’s house. It was in the early 1940s. A time when the war was still raging overseas. My mom always spoke fondly of this rich lady and the kindness that was shown to her, a young and naive girl in the big city.

So, some of you got it right, some got it wrong. Thank you all once again for joining me here. Now let’s get going on the next story. Is it based on truth or fiction?

 

photo via Pixabay

 

 

The Proposal

 

The urge to interrupt him before he had finished was overwhelming. She tried several times but her words were drowned out by his proposal. How did things get to this? She didn’t want to marry him! She didn’t want to marry anyone right now. She was young and away from her family for the first time. She wanted to live life to the fullest, not settle down with a man. Not to mention he wanted children right away. Children? She wasn’t even sure she wanted kids. Ever.

She opened her mouth to interrupt him again but he wouldn’t stop. He just talked louder, explaining all the reasons she should marry him. It was horrifying and embarrassing. Her mind flew back to when they first met. It had only been a few months since that first date. It hadn’t even really been a date. She wasn’t sure what it had been.  A foursome with her girlfriend and the guy she picked up at the bar? The two of them just ended up together when her girlfriend hooked up with some guy and he had a friend with him. The man standing before her with a ring and a pleading look in his eyes.

Her girlfriend was no longer seeing the guy she hooked up with that night. Yet, here was Mike, with his greying hair and his earnest eyes and a damn ring explaining all the benefits of being married to him.

“I’ll treat you like a princess. You won’t want for anything.”

Does he really think money is what I want? she thought.  Maybe some women would but not her. She could earn her own money, in fact, she looked forward to it. What she didn’t want was to marry a man twice her age who wanted to put her on some pedestal. Pedestals were shaky things to be on. A person would always fall off at some point. No, she didn’t want that and she didn’t want to get married to Mike, or anyone. Not right now.

“MIKE!”

“Mike, please stop.”

Finally, her words were heard. Mike stopped talking over her and ground to a stop. His smile was still in place as was the earnest look in his brown eyes. She hated what she was about to do.

“Mike, I can’t marry you. I’m sorry.”

“Baby, don’t say that. Think about it. I know I’m moving fast but I also know I want you as my wife.”

“I’m sorry. I’m not going to marry you. Not now. Not ever. I don’t love you like that.”

“I’ll give you anything you want. I have money. You won’t have to work. I have a nice house for you to live in. I love you.”

“I can’t. I just can’t, Mike. I don’t want to get married. I want to live my life, right now.”

“Think about it, ok? Just take some time and think about it.”

“I don’t need time, Mike. The answer will still be no. You need to find someone who will love you like you need to be loved. That’s just not me.”

“Just take a day or two. That’s all. Think about it.”

She knew it was the coward’s way out but she agreed. She also knew she wasn’t going to change her mind but at least it got him to stop begging her. It was so sad to see him do that. She felt so bad for him.

When he tried calling her several days later she wouldn’t take the calls. Another cowardly episode on her part but she just didn’t know what else to do. Eventually, the phone calls stopped and she hoped that Mike found someone he could be happy with.

 

 

 

 

 

Have you ever had someone ask something of you that you just couldn’t do? Or have someone propose and turn them down? How would you have handled this situation?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blogging, stories, Truth or Fiction, writing

Bettering Oneself

Thank you to everyone who read last week’s story. I must have given something away in the story as everyone got it right! Yes…it was based on true events. I was working at a casino in Wisconsin at the time and the man really existed and the story of his murders and suicide are true. He was creepy and I always got bad vibes off of him but he insisted on standing at my cashier window every time he came in. He would just stare at me and never say a word.

So, when I heard of what he did, I was shocked. Not so much at what he did but because it came a bit too close to home as one of the men he killed was my brother-in-law’s brother. It was a strange experience in my life. Ok, another strange experience in my life. Seems I have had quite a few of them as my friend Marlene stated.

So, thank you again for participating last week and guessing correctly! Now, onto this weeks story.

Is it based on truth…or fiction? You tell me!

 

 

Bettering Oneself

 

She sat at a small, scarred wooden table which wobbled if she didn’t stick a magazine under one leg. A dim flickering light shined down on the paper she so studiously copied from. A short stub of a pencil was wrapped in her hand as she tried to copy the flowing letters on the piece of paper.

The lettering itself was of the alphabet. Beautiful flowing cursive letters of the ABC’s done in black ink that was a bit smudged and dirty from constant use. Her mouth pursed in concentration, her black curly hair falling in disarray around her hunched shoulders. Her brown intense eyes, usually seen with a sense of sadness behind them were focused on the letters she so diligently copied.

Behind her lay in darkness, as the dull flickering bulb was not strong enough to penetrate the shadows of the small room. A single small bed sat neatly made next to her and an even smaller window sat above it. Curtainless, the glass clean with a tiny porcelain figure of a woman sitting on its tiny ledge. The figure had been broken at one time and one could hardly see the lines of glue holding her together. A broken beauty in a stark bare world.

The woman, girl really, should have been in bed. Her workday started early in the mornings. She was up at 4 am every morning but Sunday. That was her one day off a week. Tomorrow was only Saturday. She promised herself a few more minutes of work with the stub of pencil, then she would crawl into her bed and go to sleep.

Her maid uniform was neatly hanging in her tiny closet. Pressed earlier in the night so that any errant wrinkles were ironed out of existence. Her employer, Mrs. Hightower, hated an unironed uniform. She said it was a slight towards her if any wrinkles should be present. The young woman didn’t want to slight Mrs. Hightower. She had a lot of respect towards her employer, if not outright love.

Mrs. Hightower hired the young woman six months ago over her better judgment. She knew in her heart the woman was more a girl, at least two or three years younger than the eighteen she stated. She was small, young and vulnerable. She was also quick, smart and willing to learn, Mrs. Hightower found out within the first few weeks. They quietly settled down to a routine.

The girl was fascinated with the flowery, flowing handwriting of Mrs. Hightower. In her mind, it was a symbol of wealth and breeding. She wanted to learn to write like that, so secretly she started copying the beautiful penmanship of her employer. She already copied her speech, her walk, her posture of shoulders back, spine straight. Young women didn’t sit with their legs crossed either. They kept their persons clean and neat along with their surroundings. It was lessons learned that would stick with her for a lifetime.

By chance, Mrs. Hightower caught the young woman picking an example of her handwriting out of the trash and asked her what she was about. The girl stammered out an answer. Embarrassed that Mrs. Hightower caught her stealing a piece of trash, she thought for sure she would be fired. Once it was explained why the girl wanted the castaway, unfinished letter to a friend, she stood a moment in silence than smiled.

She turned, sat at her writing desk and pulled a clean sheet of paper out of a drawer. That’s when she started to write out the alphabet for the girl stating that if she wanted to learn she can’t have her learning only half the alphabet when she could learn it all. With that, she handed her the paper with the letters on it and several blank sheets of paper as well.

“Never stop trying to better yourself, my dear.”

The girl with the big brown sad eyes and dark curly hair turned off the dim bulb, crawled into the small bed and closed her eyes to sleep. Four in the morning came quickly for young girls who were far from home and trying to better oneself.

 

 

 

So, what do you think? Is it truth or fiction? Have you ever had an employer you really admired? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blogging, stories, Truth or Fiction, writing

A New Year, A New Start

Happy New Year, everyone!

Surprised to see me? I bet you are!

I’ve been wanting to start my blog up again and what better time then the new year? I’ve been warning a few people for quite some time now that I was going to start writing on my blog again. Now here I am!

There’s going to be a few changes to the blog. Nothing major. I’m just going to focus more on why I started this labor of love six years ago. Writing. Stories. Imagination. Fun.

As you might have noticed I’ve changed the title of the blog. It’s now “Stories to Tell”. That’s exactly what I want to do. Tell stories. The twist is this….well maybe not so much a twist as….well, ok, maybe it is a twist. For me, anyway.

The stories you will read here might actually be based on truth. Not all of them. Some of them. The others will be complete figments of my very vivid imagination. I will post one once a week, (day of the week still to be determined). What makes this idea a bit twisty is this…..

YOU, the reader, get to guess if the story I post is based on truth or fiction. In the comment section, you write whether you think the story has truth in it or is it a made up story. The following week I will post another story and tell you if the story the week before was truth or my imagination.

The true stories will not all be about me and my experiences. They could also be about people I know and their true experiences! I didn’t want to make it too easy for some of my readers who have followed me throughout my six or so years blogging. I gave out a lot of personal information through the years. This evens things out a bit for newer readers. Or…I’m just devious that way.

So, this is also a call out in a way. If anyone has a true story they want to share with me, so I can write a story based on your experience, get in contact with me through my contact page.

With all that said, let’s get to the first story! Is it true? Or not? You tell me!

 

Photo by Katya Austin on Unsplash

 

Stone Cold

 

She had only been on the job for a couple of weeks. She enjoyed it even if she had to work the night shift. Now that was something to get used to. Usually, the shift was from 5 pm until closing, which was usually around three or four in the morning. She had never had a job where she worked nights. If it hadn’t been for her co-workers she wasn’t sure she would have made it past the first week. They were a great bunch of ladies and gents. Always having a fun time even if they were on the clock.

The job dealt with the gambling community. Not the high rollers like in Vegas but the retired group that had nothing better to do with their time than spend a few hours putting coins in the slot machines. Usually, they were a quiet group, the coin droppers. Sometimes you might get the odd one but all in all unassuming.

Weekends or holidays were the big days. That’s when the working public came in to spend their paycheck or part of it. They’d get busloads of people from the big city farther south. She didn’t mind though, the busy weekends brought in bigger tips and new people to watch.

Her job was exchanging money for coins or paying out winnings. It was interesting. Every once in a while she might even see a big winner at her window. Sometimes she dreamed of winning big somewhere and what she would do with the money. Big dreams.

One weekend she was exchanging paper money for rolls of quarters to one of the regulars when she felt a strange prickling on the back of her neck. Like a cold draft of air brushed over her. She shivered a bit and looked around and found a stranger staring at her. He was behind a couple of excited older ladies, lined up at her window. She only glanced briefly at him and turned to ask the ladies what they needed.

That glance was enough to see he had stone cold eyes. They stared at her without blinking.

As the old ladies walked away the man took their place at her window, still staring coldly at her, and tossed a twenty down on the counter. He didn’t say a word. Just stared. After a brief hesitation where she waited for him to state what he wanted, she decided to ask him hoping that would make him go away quicker. He was giving her bad vibes.

“Would you like quarters?”

He only nodded his head in the affirmative. She slid a roll of quarters his way and picked up the twenty to put in her drawer. After picking up the quarters he turned and walked away all without saying a word or taking his eyes off her. She doesn’t think he even blinked. It was a busy night, so she just shrugged the encounter away thinking he was a bit odd but harmless.

She saw the man with the cold eyes once again that night as he stood in her window to collect his winnings. Once again he didn’t say a word, just stared at her. She counted out his money and pushed it across the counter to him. Picking it up he pulled a twenty out and threw it down on the counter in front of her. For a minute she was confused. Did he want more quarters? Smaller bills? What? Abruptly he turned and walked away. That’s when she deduced that the twenty he threw at her was a tip.

After that first night, he came every weekend and they went through the same routine. He stood at her window, staring with cold eyes, getting his quarters, then cashing out at the end of his night. A few times a co-worker would tell him that they could help him and he would shake his head no and stay where he was, even if he had to wait. He always tipped her twenty, no matter if he won big or not.

Once she asked her co-workers if they knew who he was. They informed her that he was the new owner of a small bar she was familiar with. She used to know the man who owned the bar before the strange man. Most of the people she worked with just said he was a bit on the weird side.

This routine went on until she left her job and moved on to something else. A few months later she had heard from a friend that the strange man, with the stone cold eyes, had committed three murders before he took his own life. He killed his ex-girlfriend and two men he disliked. She gasped when she was told that the man also had a ‘hit’ list of some sort.

She shivered and wondered what would have happened if she stayed at that job. Would she have become a name on his hit list?

That night as she lay in bed and tried to sleep, all she could see was a set of stone cold eyes.

 

 

 

 

 

So, is this story based on truth? Have you ever met a killer face to face? How would you feel if you found out you did?

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blog challenge, Fiction, Flash Fiction, writing

A Challenge Accepted!

Two posts in one day for me! Wow, I must be in the zone. LOL

Frank over at A Frank Angle has issued a challenge to write a flash fiction piece on the picture below. It has to be 150 words or less. It’s been a while since I did a challenge like this, so I’m kind of rusty. Hope you all enjoy it and zip on over to Franks to read all the other great writings, including Franks!

 

Footprints in the Sand

 

He was told that he would be alone at this outpost. Then why is he seeing footprints that aren’t his?

Looking around he didn’t see anything for miles. Just sand. Lots of sand.

He radioed back to headquarters about the footprints and waited. No one did anything on their own. If it wasn’t an approved activity dire consequences would occur. He knew that. He’s seen it in action. He didn’t want to be the next person it happened to.

So, he waited.

When he didn’t hear back from headquarters the next morning he did his usual walk around the area. It was protocol. You didn’t go against protocol.

He saw new footprints. With strange holes next to them. Whoever it was, it was barefoot and fairly small. He couldn’t figure out the holes. A stick? Where would they get a stick in this godforsaken wasteland?

Hearing a sound behind him he spun around and gasped. A small woman holding an antique firearm was standing there. She was pointing it at his chest.

 

 

 

That’s where my imagination took me. Hope you enjoyed it and will go visit Franks blog to read more. 

 

 

 

Posted in Fiction, Flash Fiction, Wednesday Whatever!, writing

Wednesday Whatever! ~~ A short story

Today I decided to do a little bit of writing. I went to *Random First Line Generator* and just decided to do a short story with whatever first line I happened to like.

Below is what I came up with for the first line of:

The footsteps were moving away.

 

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The footsteps were moving away. She took a deep breath, drew the hood over her head and turned to dart in the opposite direction when her ears picked up a slight sound. She froze, her nerves tingling. If she was caught they would kill her. No questions asked, no hesitation.

The sound of faint buzzing came from behind her. Damn. One of those mechanical tracking devices had caught her scent. If she didn’t move fast she was dead and she wasn’t ready to die today.

Reaching into her pocket she withdrew a small vial. After smashing the vial into the ground she ran down a flight of stairs barely visible in the darkness. Inside the vial was a concoction of her own making. A vile and long lingering scent that would confuse the tracking device long enough for her to make her escape.

Her lips curved up into a small sneer as she raced around the next building. It would take more than a few slow-moving guards and a bloodhound machine to stop her. She knew it had been a risk to come this close to her enemy but it was also the only way to get the information she needed.

Carson could make demands, yell and fret all he wanted. It didn’t make any difference. Sasha was always going to do what she wanted when she wanted. How else were they going to free her father from the prisons of Alazaban?

Her father was all the family she had left in this desolate wasteland of a world. She wasn’t going to lose him to a loathsome, ego-maniac like Drakon.

Drakon was a self-made lunatic. He had money, power, and men behind him. She had herself, Carson and a few rag-tailed friends. Sasha felt the odds were still in her favor. After all, Carson was the best mechanic around and could build things from almost nothing. Her strengths were that she was a genius with chemicals.

With the two of them and her few friends, she would make Drakon sorry he ever took notice of her that fateful day last year in the market. She wasn’t about to give in to Drakon’s demands.

Because she refused his advances, Drakon took her total dislike of him and made her the promise that she would pay for her stupidity. He called it stupid, she called it survival. It was well known what Drakon did to his former lovers when he got tired of them. She wasn’t going to suffer the same fate.

He kidnapped her father and told her she could trade herself for him. Wasn’t going to happen. Sasha was going to get her father back…or die trying.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in His Days (about the husband), Humor, Mi Vida Loca, Wednesday Whatever!

Wednesday Whatever! Jan. 11, 2017

I’m going to tell you a true story. It’s a bit funny, a little sad, and a slice of my life as it is now.

It deals with the husband. Many of you know of him. I write about him sometimes. He’s had his share of hard times the last few years. Debilitating back pain, colon cancer and all that comes with battling that. Now we find out he has cataracts, in both eyes.

He is dealing with it all like a trooper. The man is strong in many ways.

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But…..sometimes our life is like a comic skit. A dark one, maybe, but a bit of dark humor never hurt anyone.

It happened one day last week. The morning started well enough. I mean, I managed to get up out of bed. I always figure that’s a good start to any day. I have a routine in the mornings. It helps to have a routine when you are still half asleep and need to do certain things first thing in the mornings.

I dole out the husband’s daily pills. So, I count out his pills and walk out to the living room where he is still sleeping. I put his pills in his daily pill container and still half asleep go to make my first, much-needed cup of coffee. Didn’t really look at the husband as he was buried under his blankets. Usual morning.

I grab my cup of coffee and head down the hallway to my home office. After firing up my computer I do what I normally do every day. I check out WordPress, briefly bring up Facebook, and then go into my emails. Same old, same old.

About an hour later I finally hear the husband’s shuffling feet coming down the hallway to his bathroom. Again, same old stuff. A few minutes later I hear him coming towards me. Probably just to say good morning. Ok. No problem.

He stops in the doorway, as our two fat cats have decided to lay in the open doorway and believe me, you can’t walk over both of them. They take up too much room. He stands there and starts talking to me. I only listen with half an ear because…well, I only had one cup of coffee and I’m reading….and well, ok, sometimes I’m a terrible wife.

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I glance over at him briefly when he asks me a question. Just a quick look. Then I do a double take. I sit back in my chair, grab my glasses to put on for a better look…..and ask him….What the hell did you do to your face!?

His face ….. it was cherry red with what suspiciously looked like hives! It looked terrible. I mean, really, it looked like it should hurt like hell.

This is pretty close to how our conversation went……..

“What the hell happened to your face?”

” Why?” (Rubs his face and grimaces)

“It’s red! And terrible looking! I also think you have hives!”

(Rubs his face again and looks at his hand) “Really? Must be from that cream you gave me.”

“I didn’t give you any cream.”

“Yes, you did.”

“Nope, I didn’t. So what cream are we talking about?”

“The cream you gave me. It was on my shelf.” (He has a shelf next to his bed where he keeps all his stuff.)

“I didn’t give you any cream!”

“You must have. Why would I have it then?”

“Why would I give you cream? I would remember if I gave you any cream and I don’t so I didn’t.”

“Then, why do I have it?”

Well, I had to admit that one had me stumped. So I get out of my nice warm, comfy office chair and say……

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“Show me this cream.”

We both shuffle back down the hallway to the living room where his bed and shelf are. And where this baffling, notorious, cream is. He digs around his shelf and triumphantly hands me this small tube that I swear I have never seen in my life!

As I’m trying to read the small print on this small tube I hear him say…..

“See! You gave me this moisturizing cream, so I used it last night on my face because my face felt dry.”

“I have never seen this tube before.” I murmur as I try to read the small print. When I read what it says I start to laugh.

“This isn’t moisturizing cream…..it’s shower gel.”

“Then why did you give it to me?”

“I didn’t give it to you! I would remember and I don’t, so I didn’t give it to you!”

“Then why do I have it?”

I just sigh and look at his poor face. I don’t know why he has it. It’s not something I would ever buy.

“Did you not read the tube before you used it?”

“I couldn’t make out what it said. I just assumed since you gave it to me that it was moisturizing cream. So I used it all over my face in the middle of the night and then went back to sleep.”

“Well, it’s shower gel. A cheap gel and obviously you are allergic to it.”

He uses his forefinger to scratch at a hive.

“Don’t scratch it! Go splash some warm water over your face to make sure the gel is all off. Don’t rub your face dry, pat it dry. You don’t want to irritate those hives.”

“Why would you give me shower gel?”

I grit my teeth and say, “I. Didn’t. Give. It. To. You.”

He goes slowly towards his bathroom, mumbling….”Well, I don’t know who else would give it to me. Had to be you.”

I just shake my head, throw the tube in the trash and give up the battle. We could go on for hours.

I get him a Benadryl for the itching and send him to the pharmacist to see if they had anything for the hives. They tell him just to keep taking the Benadryl and to use a cream they sold him for the itching.

He was miserable for a couple of days. I still don’t know where the cream came from. I have my suspicions but I gave up that particular battle. I did tell him to please…PLEASE….show me anything he wants to use or take before he does so I know it’s ok.

Welcome to my world……..

 

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Posted in Fiction, postaday, stories, writing

The Talons Reach (A New Halloween Story)

I don’t put disclaimers on my stories. Until today. This story has some things in it that relate to domestic violence that might trigger some people. Do be warned. Thank you.

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The Talons Reach

I remember a night like this one, many years ago. The skeletal limbs of the trees were brushing the dark sky in a maniacal dance as the wind blew in small bursts of rage. The gray clouds scuttling in the night as everything was covered in a cold drizzle of rain.

A perfect night for Halloween that was, just like tonight. Exactly like tonight. I was married back then. Married…What a joke. More like imprisoned with a jailer who was both cruel and unrelenting. Cruel in words and deeds and unrelenting in heaping them upon my person.

I still hear his mocking words as he walked out the front door that last night. That Halloween that will be forever remembered as my night of freedom.

“Clean yourself up and straighten the house before I get back. I swear you can do nothing right. My dinner was five minutes late! And it was not hot enough. Why I married such a slovenly, slow, dim-witted and ugly woman as you I will never know. I will be back in a couple of hours and this house better be spotless.”

In silence I watched him as he left, slamming the front door. I heard the lock being turned and a few seconds later his car leaves the driveway. I remember the pain of the punches he left on my body before he left that night. The dinner plate upside down on the floor with the food splattered against the dining room wall. The slow drip of the spilled wine glass laying on its side on the table.

Just another night in my nightmare of a life. If you could call it a life. It was more a slow and agonizing death. As I knew he would kill me one day. He would kill me and somehow blame my death on myself and get away with it.

How I hated him. I hated him with a passion I thought he had beaten out of me. That passion burned bright and fierce that Halloween night as I got up off the floor and slowly walked to the bathroom. I turned on the light and took a good look in the mirror and my hate burned brighter.

As I wiped the drying blood off my face I didn’t shed a tear. Not a one. As the water in the sink turned pink I vowed that it would stop this night. The pain would stop. I would not, could not, take it anymore.

As I made that vow the lights flickered rapidly. I closed my eyes for a moment and then opened them as I heard a screech. It was a long spine-chilling screech like fingernails on a chalkboard in slow motion.

I don’t remember being scared. More curious than scared. I poked my head out the doorway, my pains nearly forgotten for the moment. The lights flickered again. Once. Twice. Thrice. Then I heard scrabbling coming from the living room. Like bird talons against the marble floor.

I walked into the room, not even hesitating. Looking back, I should have been terrified. Yet, I wasn’t. I had been living a life a terror for years, nothing much could compare to that.

I stopped inside the room and watched as an enormous black raven lifted its wings as it took a step towards me. I stood still, letting it approach. How did it get in? Then I felt a breeze and looked to my left and saw the patio doors open with the wind and rain blowing the curtains aside.

I heard that godawful screech again and jerked towards the raven. Its talon had left a long deep groove in the floor in front of it. It’s dark round eyes peered at me as it’s head tilted a bit to the side. I had never seen a raven that big before with eyes that were almost….human. Almost.

Do you know I never said a word? I saw that human-like bird and never said a thing. I just stared at it as it stared back at me. Then I could have sworn it smiled. Indeed, it wasn’t a pleasant smile but it did smile and then it slowly walked to the patio doors and left.

I closed the doors behind it and turned and walked away. I cleaned up the dining room and calmly got myself ready for bed. Then I waited. I waited for my jailer to arrive and I waited for something else. I waited for retribution.

***********************************************

I heard the car arrive in the driveway and I knew he was home. I sat up in bed and my heart began to pound. I listened for the key in the door but the wind decided to pick up just then and all I heard was it howling through the trees.

Then I heard another sound. That scrabbling noise like I heard earlier that night. Even through the wind and the trees, I could hear it. Maybe I was looking for it. That noise of the raven. Maybe that’s why I heard it and not his key.

I knew he would stop in the living room and pour himself a Scotch. He always did. He was a monster but a monster who was a creature of habit.

The small lamp on the nightstand flickered just as I heard the crash of the patio doors opening. I thought I heard an oath quickly cut off just as a loud screeching noise made the hair on my arms stand on end. I knew that sound. The sound of a giant talon against the marble floor of the living room.

Then I heard him scream. A long scream that slowly dwindled down to a low moan. I heard something I never thought I would hear. I heard crying. I heard my jailer crying like a lost child.

I walked to my bedroom door and opened it. I looked down the hallway and listened. Nothing but the crying was heard. The wind had suddenly stopped and so did the rain. I put one slippered foot in front of another and walked to the living room. I was afraid.

I was afraid that my monster would be there and I would be his victim once more. I stepped inside the room and at first saw nothing but the open patio doors. My body stiffened as it heard a now familiar scrabbling noise. As I turned I was able to see him on the floor, sobbing with his hands over his head and curled in a fetal position.

The raven was next to him and staring at me. It’s head tilted once more in that questioning stance, his talons still and silent. His large black eyes watched me as I glanced from it to the man blubbering on the floor. The words coming out of his slobbering mouth not making any sense at all. Just mindless gibberish.

I smiled. I shouldn’t have I know but I did. I smiled at the raven and nodded once. The huge black soulless, almost human eyes just blinked once, twice, thrice and then it lifted it’s wings in one grand gesture and walked out the patio doors.

********************************************

That was years ago, of course. My jailer is now jailed. Not in prison, oh no, but jailed none the less. I had to commit him to the hospital for the mentally insane in the next town. The poor man thought he was being followed by a giant man-eating raven. He had to be medically institutionalized for his own good.

I visit him every now and then, especially on All Hallows Eve. He seems quite…restless that day.

I also started a group for people who have been abused mentally and physically by their spouses. It’s been active for years now. It’s very successful, although the members insist on staying anonymous. This Halloween I will be helping a very nice woman down the block who moved into the neighborhood a few months ago.

I wonder how her monster feels about ravens?

 

 

 

Happy Halloween everyone!

 

 

 

 

Posted in Fiction, Flash Fiction, postaday, stories, writing

The Prey (A very short story)

The Prey

She sits on the ridge overlooking the valley below. Still as silence, her ears pick up the tiniest rustling off to the left. Her nose twitches as she catches a slight smell of the nervous creature scuttling away from her.

Her ears twitch as she catches another sound, louder and less cautious than the small mouse she let get away. Her body tenses. Ready to leap or run, depending on whether the movement in front of her becomes prey or predator.

Crouching in the tall dry grass, she watches with intensity as a large shadow emerges from the bushes below. A human. She sniffs the air and catches a familiar scent. Her human. Is the human looking for her? Maybe.

She watches her human walk to a large rock and sits down. Suddenly she smells something heavenly. Food! Her human has food. How long has it been since she’s eaten? A long time. Her stomach gives off a small rumble. She is so hungry.

Cautiously she slinks toward the human, she doesn’t want to be spotted. Not yet. Not a sound she makes as she slowly gets nearer.

The human moves and she stops, shifting her body lower to the ground. Her muscles quiver with the effort to hold still. Her long tail behind her like a velvet rope, still.

Suddenly she hears a soft murmur. Her human, calling her name. She dares not move in case she’s spotted. Let the human call for her. She will respond when she’s ready, if at all. She hears her name once more, louder now. As if that will force her to move. No! She must be careful.

Once again she smells food, stronger now as she is closer. Ah, how nice it will be to eat once more. She must be strong. Slowly her foot moves forward. Then again. As if in slow motion her body slithers through the long grass toward the rock.

The human reaches down and places something on the rock next to them. A trick? To try to catch her unawares? Never! She is too smart for that. She stops and crouches down as the human moves slightly. The smell of whatever was left on the rock almost too much to bear.

She must have that food or she will perish! It’s been so long since she last ate! When was it? She tries to remember. She can’t think with that smell wafting down to her. She will have it. Now!

Her whole body starts to quiver. Her butt moving back and forth, her tail twitching. She must chance it. Human or no human she must have what smells so enticing! Her back-end moves faster, her legs tense, ready for the jump.

She springs! As she lands on the rock she has the piece of fish in her mouth within seconds. Ahhhh, such delicacy! Such flavors!

The human laughs.  “Slow down! You just ate this morning, silly cat.”

 

cat-1722754_640

 

 

 

Posted in Blog challenge, Fiction, Flash Fiction, postaday, stories, writing

Tuesday’s Challenge

Today’s challenge is going to be a little bit different. I’m going to give a line of dialog and then you can add to it. I think short and sweet should do. Use the line of dialog somewhere in your writings. Let’s keep it at 200 words or less. Have fun!

The line of dialog to use is: “I’m too old to start again.”

 

 

http://wprasek.com/
http://wprasek.com/

 

 

“Come on, Ruthie, it’ll be fun.”

“I don’t know Bertha, it might be too soon.”

“Now you know it’s been five long years since Albert’s death. You need to be livin’ a life again!”

“I’m too old to start again.”

“Nonsense! You’re only sixty-four years old, still a young woman.”

“Now who’s speakin’ nonsense, Bertha? Young woman! Don’t be tryin’ to talk me into something I’ll probably be sorry for later.”

“It’s only a dinner date. It’s not like you’re gonna marry the man.”

“Easy for you to say, you’ve still got your man. It’s not so easy to start over. I never did like datin’.”

“Don’t look at it as a ‘date’, look at it as a free dinner and one you don’t have to cook.”

Ruthie closed her eyes, leaned back into her chair and sighed. Bertha had been trying to get her to go out and have some fun for ages now. She was getting tired of fighting her best friend of forty years. Maybe she was right. It had been five years since Alfred passed from a sudden heart attack. She just felt that she was betraying Alfred’s memory going out with another man. Not that anything would come of it. She was ok with being a widow.

“Ok, Bertha, I’ll do it.” Ruthie just hoped it wasn’t a mistake.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Fiction, Flash Fiction, Humor, Photo Challenges, postaday, writing

Tuesday is Challenge Day!

Hello, People!

Hope everyone had a nice and safe weekend. For today’s challenge, I found a picture to write a one hundred word story about. If you want to join me, please feel free to do so!

 

heavybox

 

 

The Punishment (102 words, I couldn’t resist the last two words. ha!)

 

“Come on, Ethel! Move faster!”

“I can’t! My knees are giving out.”

“If we don’t move faster, they’ll put more bricks in the box!”

“I’m doing the best I can, Ed. If you weren’t so damn argumentative we wouldn’t be in this situation!”

“I didn’t think he would be so uncivil about things.  So just keep movin’, Ethel”

“My knees are never going to be the same.”

“Could be worse, Ethel. The last man who argued with him had to clean out the sewers in nothing but his underwear.”

“Maybe this will teach you that you can’t argue with politicians.”

“Damn Trump!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blog challenge, Fiction, Flash Fiction, postaday, writing

Another Tuesday, Another Challenge

Today is another writing challenge for me and for whoever wants to participate. I still haven’t decided what to call these challenges. So every week it’ll probably be called something different. haha! If you have any ideas on what to call them, please leave a comment with it. I’m open to ideas.

Today’s challenge:…….I went to the Random Story Title generator and just clicked it and thought….whatever comes up I’ll (and you also if you want!) write a flash fiction piece from that title. Luckily, the generator came up with a fun title. Let’s see what I can do with it. In five hundred words or less.

 

boy-720752_1280

 

The Haunted Attic

 

It was three o’clock in the morning and I should have been in bed asleep. Instead, here I was with a small flashlight and a thudding heart trying to climb the attic stairs so they wouldn’t creak and wake my foster family. This was my fifth foster family in less than six months. The system labeled me as a ‘difficult’ case. Hey, just because those other foster parents were lame wasn’t my fault. They always take the adult’s word over mine, so I finally stopped trying to state my case.

This couple I landed with a couple of weeks ago seem ok. I mean, unlike the other ones, they didn’t beat me or make fun of me. They were actually kind of nice. The woman, Julie, was funny most times. The man, James, was more reserved but never raised his voice and always spoke to me like I had brains. Which I do. Have brains. I just didn’t show them much at the Home for Abandoned Children, having brains meant someone older would try to beat the crap outta you.

The last foster parents acted like I was their personal servant or something. Always ordering me around and if I didn’t do want they wanted fast enough I’d get a slap or a kick. So I got even one day and put a dead fish in their bedroom. Hid it good too. Man, that smelled after a day or two. They called the Home and off I went again. It was worth the beating I took. That dead fish smell is gonna last a long time.

I finally reached the attic door. I turned the knob and was rewarded with a small click as the door opened a crack. For the last couple of weeks, I’d been hearing soft footsteps every night above my head. The attic was above my bedroom. I asked Julie about it one morning and she just laughed and said that the house was old and I was probably hearing the creaks and groans of an old house. Then she gave me a few cookies and told me to do my homework. She didn’t make fun of me. So I let it go.

Until now. I was laying in bed and those footsteps overhead woke me up. I know they are footsteps! So, I’m here checking it out.

I ease the door open and was glad that the door didn’t squeak. I shine the flashlight around and don’t see anything much. A lot of dust, a few cobwebs and stacked up boxes. Then I spotted something in the dust on the floor. Footsteps! I knew it! So, I slowly opened the door wider and slipped inside the attic and closed the door behind me. I saw a light switch next to me on the wall and flipped the overhead light on.

Footsteps were clearly visible in the dust of the attic floor. I followed them. They stopped at a small door behind some boxes. Taking a deep breath and with my hand shaking, I slowly opened that door and stepped through. Wow! Smiling I thought to myself, I’m going to behave so I can stay in this foster home. It has the coolest attic ever!

 

 

 

 

My short story went slightly over 500 words. Give it a whirl! Tag me if you do and let me know. Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

Posted in Blog challenge, Fiction, Flash Fiction, postaday, writing

One Hundred Word Stories

Hello, people!

Today I thought I would start a new kind of series here on my blog. Not sure what the name will be. Maybe you can help me with that. On Tuesdays, I thought of writing 100-word stories.

I used to do something similar a few years ago where I’d write a hundred word stories from a picture prompt. It’s not as easy as it sounds. I thought, why limit myself to just picture prompts? Why not go for word prompts or subject prompts? Or as I did last week and took a random first line and added to it.

I had forgotten how much fun those flash fiction stories were to write. It also helps hone my writing skills. So I would say it’s a win-win situation. Of course, any of you are welcome to write along with me. If not write, then read and give feedback. It all helps.

Today I’m going to write about a random subject. There are all sorts of word/sentence/etc generators out there. It’s fun and educational! Let’s get started……..

The random subject the generator came up with is: Write about someone who irritates you.

 

alcohol-428392_1280

 

*The Loudmouth (99 words)

 

Everyone in the bar heard him. Drunk as usual.

“My siblings have no respect! I’m the oldest, they should listen to me!”

A few customers moved down the bar, hoping he’d get the hint and shut up. They’d all heard it before, many times the last few weeks.

“My parents loved me more than those morons. They did!” He argued with imaginary foes. “They left everything to me. Those idiots will find out soon enough.”

**************

“Mr. Stevens, your parents will is quite clear…your siblings get the majority of your parent’s estate. They left you ten dollars.” The lawyer stated.

 

 

 

 

*(Yes, this is based on someone I know)

 

 

 

 

 

Do you have any ideas what to call my new blog series of flash fiction? I’m open to ideas. Thanks!