Leanan Sidhe

100 words about a failing musician who enters into a deal with a faerie muse
photo via Unsplash 

He sprints off. Ignores the groupies. He needs to ponder the implications.

‘Nobody in my dressing room,’ he whispers to his bodyguard.

The number of notes he hit tonight were by far outnumbered by those he missed. His career, his dream is over.

‘Hello darling.’

She’s stunning. But he’s not in the mood.

‘Who let you in?’

‘Don’t blame your man, he isn’t meant to see me.’

She twirls her index finger. Is that magic?

‘You need my help.’

A statement.

He nods.

He’ll come to regret this, no doubt. Tonight, though, he’ll do anything to keep his dream alive.

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Microfiction Challenge 15: Freedom

100 words about transforming into seals and escaping
What Freedom! by Ilya Repin

‘You must take off your coat and dress.’

‘Pardon?’

Everyone had warned her to stay away from him. She’d insist he wasn’t bad, merely different. Yet as the icy water seeped into her boots, she wondered if she ought to have listened.

‘It won’t work if we’re dressed.’

He shrugged off his coat in a grand gesture.

‘Trust me?’

Her freezing fingers fumbled with the fastenings.

When they had shed their clothes, he touched her and turned into something else and so did she. Slipping into the water, she found it warm and breathable. Fin to fin, they swam away.

***

Written for Jane Dougherty’s Microfiction Challenge #15 – yep, I finally made it. Still on the Akismet naughty list, though, so I won’t even bother commenting this week…

Perplexed: Am I Spam?

photo by Evan Daniels
photo by Evan Dennis 

So WordPress seems to have decided my comments are spam. If you joined Three Line Tales last week and you’re in the upper half of yesterday’s round-up, it might be worth checking the comment spam on your dashboard. I gave up when I realised nothing I wrote got published, mind.

Now, I don’t know how WP (and/or Akismet) decide what constitutes spam. And I won’t be able to find out this week because of course this happens while WP are away on their annual get-together.

Just as I was going to ease myself back into blogging regularly, as well.

Fall

100 words about a man who messed with black magic
photo by Phylor for FFfAW 81 

Janey kneels by the headstone and lights a candle. Her demeanour tells George she knows he’s watching.

She hasn’t always done it, George would say if he talked to people. At first, she scared him she’d turned so wild. He might have expected it, given what he’d done. But he was too happy she’d returned.

Never lasted, though. Every time the leaves turn, Janey needs a boost. One of them gave her back her conscience.

She still looks like his Janey, but with every woman he’s put in her grave, Janey’s turned. They may well come for him this time.

Top Three Stories – July 2016

three lines about a shared journey

If I included shorter stuff in the Top 3, Shared Journey would definitely be in it. But I don’t, and my favourites are all stories I wrote for Nortina’s fabulous Moral Mondays (I suggest you check it out if you’re not already playing) :

Your favourites (according to the stats):

  1. Sacrifices
  2. Better Than She Knows Herself
  3. Souvenir Tattoo

This month is going to be a bit tricky, because it’s the summer holidays and I’m preparing an international move. I’ll try to write at least one 100-word story a week, though, otherwise the August Top Three is going to be a sad affair.

Hose Pipe Ban

100 words about a faceless bureaucracy who doesn't care about people
FFfAW week 75 photo prompt (c) Louise 

‘You call this a garden? It’s a small vegetable farm.’

Melanie shrugs as she lugs the hose around to water the beds farther down.

‘To-MAY-to, to-MAH-to.’

‘I believe they’re part of the problem.’

The inspector stabs his clipboard.

‘Did I miss the memo when they made growing food illegal?’

‘I don’t care what you grow. I care about excessive water usage.’

‘It won’t rain. We’ve emptied the last of our water tanks days ago – and we always keep more than we’re required to by law. ’

‘But not enough. You cannot use the hose.’

‘People will starve.’

‘The law’s the law.’

Undecided

100 words about a woman who doesn't want to decide
Nortina’s Moral Mondays this week is all about getting off the fence 

‘These. No, those. No, hang on, I don’t know.’

‘Where have I heard this before… Both?’

‘Both would be greedy.’

‘You don’t usually show such restraint. Both would mean we can get out of here. At this point, I’m willing to pay that price.’

‘You aren’t paying for anything, mister. I buy my own shoes.’

‘Prove it.’

‘There’re arguments to be made for either.’

‘I understand these. But those? They’re flashy and look like elaborate instruments of torture.’

‘Sometimes, a girl needs flashy.’

‘I wish you’d decide.’ (He dosen’t say: On one pair of shoes. Or one man… On me.)

Souvenir Tattoo

100 words about a Chinese character tattoo that doesn't say what its owner thinks it says
FFfAW week 74 photo prompt (c) TJ Paris 

‘ What does it says?’

‘Superstar.’

‘Seriously?’

‘The tattoo artist swore.’

‘And you believed him?’

‘He makes money from tourists. Why would he lie?’

‘Because he sees you walking in and knows he’ll get away with it. Because it adds to his collection of pictures of Western bimbos who thinks they’re superstars.’

‘He said it’s a traditional character, so maybe you can’t read it.’

‘Superstar. In traditional Chinese? You know, I hope it says idiot.’

‘Shouldn’t you know?’

‘Why? I was born here. And my grandparents came from Hong Kong. Mandarin is as foreign to me as it is to you.’

Selling Out

100 words about money being the root of all evil‘You remember my friend Janice?’

‘Course I remember her, Nan.’

‘Her daughter, she’s a lawyer and she could use some help. Lot of unfair dismissal cases and such. It’s not human rights, but it’s a start.’

‘Nah, human rights, that’s so five years ago. I was young and stupid.’

‘Idealistic, I’d call it. Didn’t you study law to help people?’

‘Well, I didn’t know the options then, did I? The internship I did earlier this year, the firm want me back.’

‘The internship you hated because it was so tedious?’

‘Tedious. And unpaid. You should see my starting salary, though.’

Unwanted Advice: Creativity Loves…

This is a story about a girl who received a piece of advice she didn’t like. One of her creative writing teachers said: Creativity loves boundaries.

100 words about creative writing advice
(c) Sonya

No, said the girl, I don’t like boundaries. I don’t want to make anything off limits. I want it all.

But all is quite a lot. Sometimes, all staring at the girl proved too much.

Maybe, said the girl. Maybe I’ll try a boundary.

One hundred words. I’m going to limit myself to 100 words, said the girl. See how it goes.

Bumpy is how it went, at first. Now, though, it’s going well.