Tag Archives: Flash Fiction

Flash Fiction: The Kindle Crime Syndicate

3 Jul

I expressed envy at my friend’s recent acquisition of a Kindle Paperwhite. While I also am incredibly lucky enough to have a Kindle, it’s an older version with what’s basically a tablet screen, a.k.a. computer screen. So uh, ew. I mentioned that if I really want a Paperwhite, I should probably just social engineer a swap or work some kind of reduced payment scheme out. My friend, however, had other ideas…

“That,” he suggested, acknowledging my swap idea, “or become a master thief, steal one and relish in the joy that you were able to get one of your own. It never stops there though, does it?

You think, What harm will it do if I take this book? Suddenly, you find yourself stealing every once in a while – a book here, a top there, a cute pair of earrings; who will miss them, right?

Eventually it’s an unending thirst, a constant struggle to do moral good versus the unadulterated bliss you feel when you take something and make it your own. Your dark descent leads you to convince others to help you in your crimes. Your band of thieves grows and grows, until it’s no longer a band, it’s not even a network; it’s a criminal syndicate.

Your name, only known as ‘The Mice’Ala,’ is known to all in the underworld. Who is this figure? How can she manage to plunder everything within her grasp at a whim? Your thirst for lust and power grows unbounded – murder, human smuggling, these are all small and trivial steps you use to achieve your ultimate goal: complete and total domination over the human race.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, you’ll get a Kindle Paperwhite eventually, no worries.”

Well then.

Flash Fiction: The Wind is a Liar

25 May

The wind is a liar, an elusive suitor who will murmur sweet nothings as he passes by but remains safely intangible for you to ever manage to grasp. He may have you all he wants, but you can never have him. Not really.

All you’ll ever have are the murmurs. A small gust of discontent blowing in the back of your consciousness, left there by some too-strong beat of your heart or flutter of your mind. You let him in. That was the only way to trap him. To catch that one breath, leave it blowing about somewhere in your memory.

It’s the only way to hold onto him.

The sweet caress of a moment’s breeze will say that he loves you. But the wind can never really hold you. The suggestion of an embrace is nothing but a cruel trickery of the senses.

Because should you ever turn to embrace your lover back, you will find there were never any arms about you in the first place.

You will swear they were there.

But that was never true, dear one.

Perhaps you will be one of the few that insist.

And then, oh pretty lover, the wind will have made a liar out of you, too.

Waiting

2 Nov

Image

He threw his hands in the air and looked at her with angry bewilderment. “Well what was I supposed to do?” he shouted. “Change what happened? Fix everything? You know I can’t do that!”

But she only closed her eyes and gave one small, sad shake of her head. “That night, I just wanted you to come and find me,” she whispered. “You didn’t.”

Mushy-Mush and Meta

9 Oct

So, in a world of questionable literary analysis, some might call the following “poignant.” I call it kinda sappy. But I thought I’d share it with all you lovely readers anyway, because it might be worth the amusement of finding out that I TOTALLY CONSPICUOUSLY I mean very surreptitiously scratched this down and camera phoned a pic (I can make up verbs if I want to) during my art class tonight. The prof had told us to spend the first twenty minutes of class looking through the library of art books; I’d grabbed a volume of fantastic Nat Geo photography and, well, this just kinda happened. Hope y’all enjoy 🙂

Oh! Btw, I am in no way advocating not paying attention during class… no way whatsoever…

Anyhoo. The brain blurb.

Photographs

The Typewriter Men

20 Sep

typewriter men edited

Today I read writer C. D. Hermelin‘s piece about becoming a hated-hipster-meme because he happened to be photographed while doing something I think is incredibly creative and that I wish I’d thought of first (hmm… Los Angeles is on the completely opposite side of the country from New York… that’s non-compete enough, right?). But I’ll let him tell you the whole story himself – here’s a link the article.

Anyhoo. Hearing about Hermelin’s typewriter busking prompted a bit of flash fiction to bubble up in my mind and coalesce into something decent-ish. I wanted to just email the thing to Hermelin – he spends so much time writing stories for others, thought it might be nice to have somebody write a story explicitly for him for a change – but, likely because of the rude comments he’s gotten from idiots, is no longer easily accessible publicly. So instead, I thought hey, I haven’t given my lovely readers a short story in a while; how about I post it here and tweet the link to Hermelin, and then lots of people can enjoy (hopefully) the writing? Brilliant idea, right?!

Oh god, please agree with me.

Well, that’s probably enough of my jibber-jabbering. Here’s that flash fiction I promised you.

The Typewriter Men

You used to see them roving the parks every so often. But that was years ago. That was back when the men in ragged coats and ladies in tattered clothes roamed the sidewalks with their typewriters, murmuring of their wares to passersby.

“Tales for sale,” they’d coo softly. “Tales for sale.”

They’d write you anything you wanted, the Storymongers. Tales of heroism and tales of hate, tales of love and lust and longing. Tales of fae and fall magic, of winter and the tulips to come. They’d write you tales of infancy and tales of old men, tales of every young woman’s want and tales of what burns beneath a new man’s cheeks. They’d even write you tales of yourself, if you asked them.

Though they’d always frown a little before. Ask if you were sure, really sure.

And always, we’d laugh. Of course I’m sure, we’d say. It’s just a story. What harm could come of that?

That was before I knew.

That was before anyone knew.

That was before the government tried to make us all forget we knew.

You see, the Storymongers did not really write us tales. They wrote us our histories. Because they were the only ones who had never forgotten.

In a time where no one can remember what happened beyond yesterday and your few alone have not lost the memory, perhaps it is best for one’s kind to dress in rags and tatters.

Yes, you are more likely to be abused.

But that’s only if they notice you.

And Storymongers are the ones who did most of the noticing. That’s why their stories were so coveted – even by the fur-and-diamond ranks who pretend to care nothing for those uncanny fruits of ink-smudged fingers. The Storymongers, they could look right at you and know.

It didn’t matter what they knew. Because really, they knew everything.

They knew what story you wanted and why you wanted the one you did. They knew what story you needed to hear and what other story would be the one you’d think you’d need anyway. They knew the story of your parents – how they met, how they fell in love – and, sometimes out of it – and how somewhere in all that chaos they came together and made you. They knew the story of your parents’ parents, and their parents beyond that… All the way back. Forever.

They knew the stories of the wars and bombings, of plows and reaping, of pacts and princes and popes and pills. They knew the stories of everything. All the way back. Forever.

I suppose that’s why, when the government finally found out about them, they were declared to be so dangerous. In a time where people have forgotten what happened before breakfast, it is a tremendous threat to your power for someone to know more than you. Even about yourself.

Especially about yourself.

I suppose that’s why they’re in hiding now, the Storymongers. But they say you can still here the click of their keys in the night, the haunting slide of a changed line feed in a faint howl of wind. And every so often, as I walk through the park, a single page of orderly black type will blow across my path. I will pick it up and tuck it in my coat pocket. I read them all, every day. And that is how I remember.

Everybody’s Drug

6 Feb

drugs

Everybody’s got their drug. The coffee-chugging woman waves to the man smoking his first morning cigarette. The pothead passes by the crack addict, whose friends are locked into the heroin-driven pattern of wake up and shoot up.

Everybody’s got their drug.

In a chemically-regulated society, you can pop you pills for happiness, inject beauty and nip and tuck away flaws. Just swallow speed for smarts, or if you’re a purist, merely force down a couple capsules of letters like A and E or D and C before lunchtime for a wealth of health – or at least that’s what the doctors say.

Everybody’s got their drug.

Alcohol is liquid courage. Green tea will calm the soul and curve the waistline. Monsters hide under the bed and under the car seat, tell-tale signs of instant energy. And don’t forget that latte; contentment is just a sip away – at least that’s what the advertisements say.

Everybody’s got their drug.

Morning Joe

2 Jan

Just a spot of flash fiction for you all this morning. Happy hump day!

morning joe coffee 2

Morning Joe

He took a long sip of coffee and then spluttered ferociously. “What is this stuff?” he coughed. “It tastes like cat pee!”

“Oh,” I looked down at the table guiltily. “It’s, erm some old coffee.”

“Jesus!” He began wiping the spots of sprayed coffee from his sports jacket. “How old?”

I shrugged. I honestly didn’t know. I’d just found it in the pot. Good to know it wasn’t worth drinking. I pushed my own mug away from me before I could start automatically bringing it to my lips.

“So,” I ventured, dodging his eyes, “how are you?”

I could feel him glowering at me. “Fine.”

I shuffled my feet under the table. “You don’t sound fine…”

“I’m fine, dammit!” His fist met the table with a loud thump! “Why can’t you ever just take what I have to say?”

I felt the tell-tale clench of my throat and prepared myself to bite back tears. “Sorry.”

Across the table, he melted. “No,” his voice was suddenly all softness and rich notes, like a properly brewed cup of coffee, “no, I’m sorry. It’s just early, and I’m, um, not adequately caffeinated yet. It’s my fault for being so irritable.” He looked down at the spurious brown liquid before him. “It’s, uh, really not that bad. Really.” He took a long draught. I watched him make a face but swallow the joe anyway.

Well, he was trying. Not succeeding very well, but trying.

And it helped a little.