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.

Serial Cuppa Maker


100 words about a landlord serial killer
photo by Alondra Olivas 

She didn’t want to come in for a cuppa with her new landlord, but to say no would have been impolite.

‘How do you take it?’

‘Two drops of milk, half a teaspoon of sugar, please.’

‘How very particular,’ he said. ‘Never heard that before.’

‘Do you make lots of tea, then?’

She should have declined, in a polite fashion. He appeared nice enough, but something about him scared her.

‘You could say that.’

He handed her a cup.

‘Hope it meets your standards.’

She nodded, even though it tasted funny.

Poison, she realised as she tumbled off her chair.


Story 12 of 31 for Story A Day May – this is what happens when I listen to Nick Cave’s Murder Ballads while writing…

Could the Timing be Worse?

31 one words about meeting the love of your life just before you're executed
photo by Taken 

The moment they look at each other they know they’ve met The One. In disbelief, they laugh.

‘Now? What a bloody joke.’

They kiss goodbye before – holding hands – they face the firing squad.


I was a bit uninspired today, but as it’s Writing Prompt Wednesday, I plucked a writing prompt from the reader: goodbye (okay, I only used half of it).

Drunk Late Night Texting

100 words about last words
photo by Steve Buissinne 

I know texting you is a violation of the injunction, but I am almost literally on fire. I’m sitting in the bathtub, breathing through a wet washcloth. I called 999; I don’t think they’ll make it in time.

I never apologised. I wonder if I’d apologised, we’d be in this mess. I would still have hit you, though. I wish I hadn’t hit you. You should see me now – anger management has turned me into a new man. I wish you could have seen him.

So, I’m only texting to tell you that you’ve nothing to fear from me anymore.

Final Ascent

100 words about dying on a mountain
FFfPP week 3 photo prompt from Public Domain Archive 

I brought Dad’s photograph with me.

The climb is more difficult than I remember. My nine-year old legs didn’t tire as easily as my skinny, 38-year old legs do. I wish I could blame loss of youthful energy.

‘If this was the last thing you saw, wouldn’t you die a happy bunny?’

When the food shortage got worse, I suggested we come back. There’s neither snow nor fog anymore, only relentless heat. View’s still worth it, though.

But Dad didn’t make it, he was too malnourished. He died two days ago, holding the photograph in his hand.

So will I.

What news to wake up to

David Bowie mural in Brixton
CC BY-NC 2.0 photo by Duncan C (mural by Jimmy. C

It’s just gone 7am and you are thinking about waking up. You are questioning the music selection on the BBC 6Music Breakfast Show – how are you supposed to wake up to this subdued stuff? It’s 7:11, it’s January, you don’t need gloom.

You’ve got plenty of gloom yourself.

And then Shaun Keaveny says the words which do two things: justify the musical mood and wake you up with a jolt. You heard that wrong. It can’t be true.

You let it sink in.

And you wonder: Will he sing Under Pressure with Freddie again?

You’d like to think so.


Let’s all thank our lucky stars that we were – for a while at least – alive at the same time as David Bowie.

Traditional Early Bird Special

100 words about going on after your spouse has died
photo (c) Louise of The Storyteller’s Abode 

I enter the China Boat. The waitress leads me to our table and brings me a pot of jasmine tea. She leaves me to study the menu even though we both know what I will order.

I’m keeping up our tradition: China Boat every Friday after payday. It’s still not easy, what with all the memories tied up with the place: Frank proposed here, I told him I was expecting and he finally confessed he’d seen the doctor about his headaches. He made me promise to keep coming after he’s gone.

It’s not easy, but a promise is a promise.


No, I haven’t forgotten that I’m supposed to be writing 100-word stories rather than poems. This one is for this week’s FFfAW.