Reluctant Hero – Flash Fiction

Reluctant Hero – Flash Fiction

Just another little flash fic piece… I hope you like it!

“No. No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. You cannot make me do that.”

“Ryan, I need you to do this for me. Please.”

“Uh-uh. No way am I gonna spend my Saturday night in torture. I hate noise. And sharp things. And being scratched and spit on and crowded and laughed at. No way.”

“Ryan, it’s not as bad as it seems. Really. You’ll survive… besides, it’ll be good experience. Just think of all the content you’ll have for your stories after this!”

“If I live to write them.”

“Look, you’ve gotta be there at seven o’clock sharp. Got it?”

“Lillie, they’re going to kill me. Kill me.”

“You’re a good man, Ryan.”

***

My knuckles are white on the steering wheel. How in the world did I let my kid sister talk me into doing this? Sometimes I wonder if she lives to put me in terrible situations. When we were little it was the thing with the dog and the airhorn… then the thing with the sled and the watermelons and the nursing home. And now it’s… this.

Is she trying to get rid of me or something?

I check my watch. 6:54. Plenty of time. At least I’ll die knowing that I held up my end of the bargain. I’ll die for my sister’s sake – like a hero. Will they mention something about that at my funeral? I turn onto Galloway Avenue, wondering what my funeral will be like. Yuck… I hope they don’t put flowers all over the place. Maybe I should leave a note: Nix the flowers.

Here it is – 666 Galloway Avenue. The 666 unnerves me, and the driveway is lined with the bony fingers of dead maples reaching to seize me as soon as I leave the safety of my car. Honestly, I’d rather die here in the darkness at the hands of the trees than at the clawing hands of the monsters that await me inside.

The ancient porch creaks and groans as I step onto it, and my fist reaches out to make a confident-sounding assault on the door. Shrieks and screams leak through the windows, and the edge of a curtain is pulled furtively from the window. I quickly turn my eyes to study the doorbell I neglected to see before.

The door swings open. I straighten my shoulders and smile weakly.

“You’re Lillie’s brother? Thanks so much for watching the kids tonight.”

Like Me – Flash Fiction

Like Me – Flash Fiction

I shiver. Had I known it would be this cold up here, I would have swiped another sweater from that clothesline. But I didn’t. So I shiver.

I can hear Tommy hissing in my ear now: Serves you right. You deserve worse. Knowing I should be in the clink only makes things worse, and my legs are shaking so badly now I can hardly move… but I’ve got to. I’ve made it this far, and I’m too close to the hope of a new life to turn back now.

But a tiny whimpering stops me. The scrubby bushes on my left tremble slightly. Scrambling on my hands and knees, I search. There’s a puppy, small, damp, spotted, and dirty, staring out at me with brown eyes too big for his body.

He’s alone. Like me.

“It’s okay, buddy.” I inch my hand towards him. My arm won’t stay still… but the cold’s not to blame now. I think it’s the foreign feeling of letting my guard down around another living being.

The little fellow whines again as I grasp his ribby body, but he doesn’t try to run. That’s a first. His eyes are glued to me as I lift him out and hold him close. He’s shaking, too. “It’s okay, buddy.”

While I unbutton my coat and slip him inside, he’s shaking and crying. “Shh… shh. It’s okay. It’s okay, buddy.” I let myself stroke the hairs on his tiny head. They’re matted and grimy. “Are you lost, too?” He just looks at me. He still doesn’t run.

Maybe some company on this trip wouldn’t be so bad.

Photo by Joe Dudeck on Unsplash

Stones and Souls – Flash Fiction

Stones and Souls – Flash Fiction

Rolling, plunging, falling, pounding… the roaring of the falls gave voice to the storm raging inside.

He stared at the white foam that billowed where the water hit the rocks. Veiled by mist though they were, they were there all the same… bare, silent, cold. They sat in helpless immobility, the rushing waters stripping them of life.

He felt a strange affinity.

Crouching, he let his fingers brush the thick and thriving moss that clung to a nearby boulder.

Perhaps someday…

Photo by Kyle Cesmat on Unsplash

Eternity’s Wake – Flash Fiction

Eternity’s Wake – Flash Fiction

After years of procrastination, he opened the door. The room would not empty itself.

His breath caught as he peered in at expressions of her wild glory. Bed unmade, the quilt carelessly crumpled. Bookshelves cluttered, their overflow strewn on the floor. Dresser drawers protruding, socks and jeans pouring out.

She had not readied the room for death.

He shut the door behind him, staring with vision already blurred. Where to start?

He stooped and began to gather the mementos of life she’d left scattered on the carpet. He turned over a chocolate wrapper and stared at the white paper lining. Her scrawl was smudged with chocolate. funny looking at times open loud very blunt

What in the world? A corner of his mouth twisted upwards, and he folded the wrapper carefully. A few pennies, note cards, and dirty socks later, the floor was clean. Clean was relative. She never vacuumed.

The corner of a notebook peeked from underneath the bed. He pawed at it and cradled it in his hands. The same handwriting that made the candy wrapper priceless labeled this cover July 24th, 2016 –

2016 – Eternity.

He flipped it open and paged through. Records of schoolwork. Stormy friendships. A recital and her first trip by plane. Some of the pages bore wrinkled bumps. Tear stains, he guessed. The brown spots had to be spilled coffee.

The last entry – written under a date that was seared into his heart – caught his eye and held it.

I’ve just got this feeling… it’s gonna be a great day.

It certainly was, he thought…

For you.

Photo by Martin Castro on Unsplash

Alone – Flash Fiction

Alone – Flash Fiction

Finally… I’m sharing some fiction here! Let me know if you want more.:)

The sun had long since set, but the terror of darkness was absorbed by the new-fallen snow. Soft and silent, winter’s cloak sat still and listened to the crunch of boots.

Their tread was ponderous… slow and ever slowing. At last it stopped, and the boots stood silent in the snow.

Their owner paused and cast a searching glance across the whitened fields. She couldn’t see the line where the sky should have met the snow. She could discern no variation in the color, shape or shadow.

Empty.

At last she was alone with her thoughts – no distractions, no interruptions. No one to tell her that her trials weren’t fierce. That her burdens weren’t heavy. No one to tell her that her dreams were not important.

And so she poured them out, a stream of words that rushed into the night. They spread upon the snow and melted in, scared and trembling.

She breathed in deep the frozen air, and held it in her lungs. It stung and burned, but still she held it close.

At last she let it go, a misty, frozen cloud. She smiled at its beauty. For a touch of a moment, it lingered in the air… then crept away on silence.

She turned and left her pain, her breath, to shiver in the cold.

Photo by Damian McCoig on Unsplash