RESULTS – Microcosms 47

Thank you to everyone who took the time to invent a better mousetrap in Microcosms 47; in an ideal universe, the world would be making a beaten path to the door of each and every one of you for more fine flash fiction. We had an extremely respectable 19 entries in all – plus a very late entry that arrived well after the others were winging their way through cyberspace to this week’s judge.

Please keep returning to Microcosms, and retweet / spread the word about this contest among your followers and friends.

Don’t forget that Microcosms exists primarily to provide a platform for the flash fiction community to hone their skills, and secondarily to give entrants a chance of receiving an accolade from that week’s judge. We also have the vote button for anyone, not just fellow entrants, to register their favourite/favorite(s) and thus establish a Community Pick.

Remember, you can reply with a comment to any and all of the entries AT ANY TIME: It’s good to have feedback.

Many thanks to Bill Engleson for judging MC 47. Here’s what he had to say:

Next weekend, I will attend my first Christmas Craft Fair. As a crafty one, that is. And my craft? Books. My two publications. One novel and one just-published collection of non-fiction, slightly literary, occasionally humorous non-fiction with a smidgen here and there of memoir.

In the little community of Coombs BC, where goats display themselves on at least one roof in seasonable weather, a fellow author, J.P McLean, and I will ply our wares amongst the more traditional Christmas doodads and sweets. But you are not here for that. You are here to hear me (well, see me) render judgement on the murderously inspired…er…renderings…of the crème de la crème of flash fictionistas.

On the few times I have judged before, there has been a sense of loss, of not having travelled into the inner workings of my flash fiction mind and excavating. This is always balanced by the pleasure of stepping back from one creative act and plotting another, the creative, hopefully useful act of choosing favourites.

Recently I was asked to write a review for a new BC Book Review site, The Ormsby Review.

If my submission to Ormsby makes the cut, it may well be due, in part, to exercises such as judging Microcosms flash fiction. Or so I believe.

Way too much about me. Sorry. There were a lot of stunning entries this week. Nineteen! An excellent turnout for this production. Clearly all of you believed you could build a better flash mousetrap. And did.

Here are my takeaways…


Bill

 

Favourite / Favorite Lines

 

Steve Lodge – “I diligently traced the source with the help of the newly-formed Cheese Police.”
Christina Dalcher – On that grim and sodden Sunday, Jack lay in bed, a boxing glove on each hand, air-sparring and ranting about the smear of puréed food on his tray.
Angelique Pacheco – “Not sure,” he grunts, inspecting a spot on the floor
Alva Holland – Needs to go places to make somethin’ of ‘imself, not end up like his old Paw, livin’ in a place with cats in the hall, strangers passin’ the door every minute and not a moment’s peace.
Christelle Bloem – “Life is too short to waste on hatred and bitterness.
Laura Besley – Guilt comes in many guises and has long made its home in this decrepit place.
Nthato Morakabi – What is u…u…usually a bustling metropolis, pe…ppered by street vendors, pedestrians from all wa…walks of life, and the ever present b….blaring of taxi horns, has become a de…desolate, icy wasteland.”
Nicola Tapson – “No! Next time you two-time a woman you might remember where she lives”.
Rico Lamoureux – He enjoys my stories, and now that he’s at the same age I was when I first took life, I can see in his eyes…
A V Laidlaw – Richard and I often stayed at The Laurels, a boarding house in one of those seaside towns desperately clinging on the greasepaint glamour of their glory days.
Geoff Le Pard – ‘I’ll have your eggs ready soon. Just need to find Mrs. Fishwick’s teeth. Again.’
Angelique Pacheco – Miss Margarita Cansino, soon to be Miss Rita Hayworth, winked at me and kept mum.
Kelly Griffiths – I didn’t understand how skin could get carved out like that: like a lake basin in drought.
Holly Geely – Grandfather’s memoirs were a tidy chronological list of his victims, in gruesome detail.
Steph Ellis – He stepped closer to the edge, felt the wind tug and pull at him with impatience, urging him to spread his wings.
Richard Edenfield – The hush of people backstage getting ready like parents Christmas morning.
Stephen Shirres – Bob must have paid in cash as the giant, yellow machines rolled into town the next day, shaking the dust from the windows.
Firdaus Parvez – A few sycophants had made their way into the room, requesting favours. He was never short of those.
Caleb Echterling – Flapping appendages jettisoned ketchup and mustard.

 

Special Mention

Angelique Pacheco – The Road to Eternal Love AND The Summer of Change

For introducing me to two new words…that rhyme…Skiv and Spiv.

Thank you, Angelique.


Honorable / Honourable Mention

Rico Lamoureux – A Natural Calling

I love stories set in the 1950s, a sense of the tragedy of war, the aimlessness after, the discombobulation. This one gave me the chills… of pleasure, the pleasure of seeing a particularly unpleasant skill-set re-emerging in a theater, unplanned and deadly. Throughout the piece, we are reminded of the happenstance of events. Certainly this is brought home with our narrator’s choice of first victim… a nicely-done dark career choice tale.

 

Geoff Le Pard – Always Breakfast

I sometimes go to my memory to find those things I am drawn to. Memory is a useful cabinet…for as long as it lasts. This kitchen-sink story is full of sorrow and sacrifice (and false teeth) and not a single insincere step along the way. and, not to dwell on false teeth longer than is seemly, but calling the misplaced choppers “the little terrors” was a fun moment on a dreary weekend.

 

Runners-up

A V Laidlaw – His Cary Grant Was Perfect

This beauty had echoes of Hitchcock’s Stage Fright, a film long remembered. The first line sets the stage, offers the smell, the spell of the theatre…“Richard and I often stayed at The Laurels, a boarding house in one of those seaside towns desperately clinging on the greasepaint glamour of their glory days.”… instantly transporting the reader – this one at any rate. The twist of death took me unawares, but death is sometimes the price of a fast, loose life. The piece had a rich theatrical sheen to it. Much enjoyed.

 

Steve Lodge – In Search of Octavius

Where to begin. This memoir is a delicious hoot, at once a full-bodied red wine and a healthy platter of cheese. The rhyme is tasty, the humour, lip-smacking, the dollops of names used at once new and ever so familiar. This old goat enjoyed every nibble.

 

And now, without further ado, we present the winners of Microcosms 47.

 

(insert drumroll here)

 

Community Pick

Rico Lamoureux – A Natural Calling

Word Count: 300
Grandson / West End / Memoir

I arrived in London two days before Thanksgiving 1952, not feeling sentimental about my American holiday, as nine had passed since the last one I had partaken in back home. The first absence had been the only hard one, a fifteen-year-old fighting Nazis for his country, my six foot frame allowing early enlistment.

But upon taking that first life I knew I had made the right decision in following my gut, that primitive instinct to kill or be killed making me feel more alive than ever before. And so for those last two years of the war I felt the rush of life by taking it from others.

But then all of a sudden it stopped, my country giving me a pat on the back and expecting me to just turn it off.

For the next seven years I was lost, roaming the European continent before arriving in London, my decision to go down one street and not another leading me to The Ambassadors Theatre, a dazzling young lady persuading me to buy a ticket to the opening night of The Mousetrap.

As I watched the murder mystery unfold, the answers to my own dilemma began to unravel, realizing, as the characters gathered in the guesthouse to piece together the clues, what had to be done.

That night I became what the world calls a serial killer, what I call a natural calling. Starting with the dazzling young beauty outside, I strangled, I slashed, taking the last breaths of countless as I deeply inhaled each one.

Every now and then my great grandson comes by. He enjoys my stories, and now that he’s at the same age I was when I first took life, I can see in his eyes…

He’s gonna be like his ol’ grandpa.

 

Judge’s Pick

Nthato Morakabi – Broadcast

On my little island, two local psychics, one who is bravely waiting it out while the other apparently has decided that discretion is the better part of valor, have predicted disaster in the form of an earthquake, on or around December 13th. While not getting too worked up about it, I have been giving more than my usual thought to end of the world scenarios. Broadcast takes you right there, where many of us go to validate the weather…on-the-spot reporting, increasing concern, panic fused with caution and then the sense that it is all over; the world as we know it has ended. This flash piece snuck up on me, needed a few readings, each more careful than the one before, until I knew it would be the prize winner this week, a story in amazing company. Judging should never be this hard.

300 words
Newscaster / Snowdrift / Romance

Broadcast

“Good e…e…evening South Africa. I am T…Thandiswa Nkomo, and th…th…this is Live News. It has…s…s been q…q…quite an eventful year, h…h…ere in the u…usually sunny southern hemisphere, with po…po…political debacles, br…broadcast agency fiascoes, water cr…crises, and presidential skirmishes…s…s. However, if y…y…y…you look be…hind me, at the cas…cascading snow that has c…c…completely encompassed most of the Johannesburg CBD, you…you will realise that this weather ph…ph…phenomenon overshadows a…anything that 2016 has brought.”

“T…t…traffic has come to a co…complete standstill and drivers ha…have evacuated their vehicles in the f…f…fear of being trapped under the biggest s…snowstorm to ever hit Joburg. What is u…u…usually a bustling metropolis, pe…ppered by street vendors, pedestrians from all wa…walks of life, and the ever present b….blaring of taxi horns, has become a de…desolate, icy wasteland.”
“I c…can’t do… this.”

*
“Ahem. Evening folks, you watching at home along with us here at the Live News studios, are witnessing a brave young lady and an exceptional camera crew, who are trapped at the corner of Marshall and Mooi Street. Thandiswa Nkomo is…
“Is she back? Can she – she will? Okay.”
“We return to Thandiswa and crew…”
*
breathes

“We do not know how long this snowstorm will continue for. Emergency services are unable to get through the piles of snow that have blocked every road into and out of Joburg. We’ve managed to get some heating but I can tell from the crew that it won’t last long. This may be… our final broadcast.”

breathes

“My name is Thandiswa Nkomo. Twenty four years old. My crew consists of Pieter Kroukamp, camera man and Ian Markus, technician. It has been a great honour to serve you as part of Live News.”

sniffs

“To our families and loved ones…”

sniffs

“To Lesedi Musi, my fiancee…”

“I can’t…”

*End of broadcast.

 

Congratulations, Nthato. As the Judge’s Pick, you are invited to judge the next round of Microcosms. Please let me know whether or not you are interested ASAP!

RESULTS - Microcosms 48
RESULTS - Microcosms 46
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19 comments for “Welcome to Microcosms!

  1. zwoodle
    26 December 2015 at 4:15 pm

    We’re going to do a soft launch on 1 January. We’ll be e-mailing everyone shortly. Stay tuned!

    1+
  2. 12 September 2019 at 5:20 pm

    What’s happened to all the stories from last week’s competition?

    0
    • KM Zafari
      12 September 2019 at 6:31 pm

      They’re all still in the system but not displaying on the front end. Part of the glitch I’m trying to resolve. :/

      0
  3. 13 September 2019 at 6:37 am

    Who is Stoner, please?

    1+
  4. 13 September 2019 at 11:20 am

    Ghost; Haunted House; Comedy
    298 words

    The Gang, Fifty Years On

    “Hey guys, it’s our anniversary. It’s fifty years since we got together and solved our first case.”

    “That’s right. Why don’t we do something to celebrate? We could stay the night in the old, haunted house.”

    “I’m not really sure. None of us are as young as we used to be, we’re all in our late sixties now.”

    “Yeah, and I’m not sure that I want to stay up past my bedtime.”

    “Oh, go on, it’ll be a bit of fun. It’s not as though any of us get much of that anymore.”

    “It just won’t be the same without the dog.”

    “You’re right about missing the dog. I even miss that annoying little one that accompanied us on some of our later adventures.”

    “OK, it’s a date then. We just need someone to drive us out there before it gets dark.”

    “I’ll organise some supplies. Some drinks, a snack, spare walking sticks, and a flashlight for each of us.”

    “I’m not sure that I see the point. We never managed to find any real ghosts or monsters, never in our entire career. It was always a scam of some sort, and always one carried out by ordinary, everyday losers dressed up in costume.”

    The overnight stay was uneventful until just before dawn when they heard someone moving about downstairs. Silently they crept down the stairs only to find a fat balding man dressed up in a sheet going, “Woo… woo…” As it was obvious something untoward was going on, they phoned for the police. When they arrived a few minutes later the police arrested the would-be ghost. As he was taken away the last thing the gang heard him say was, “And I would have gotten away with it too, if it wasn’t for those pesky pensioners!”

    2+
  5. 13 September 2019 at 11:52 am

    http://www.engleson.ca
    @billmelaterplea
    300 words
    Stoner; Ghost Ship; Comedy

    That’s Some Spooky Shit, Man–Sailing the Silvery Seas with Long Joint Spliffer

    Man, I had more wobbles than a bobblehead.

    Bobblehead?

    Bubblehead for sure.

    Or Stubble head.

    Like man, that cat had a gnarly beard. Facial hair all wiry and dense. I could feel it, man. Spikes shooting out of his face like fireworks.

    Bazooka hookahs, man!

    Reefer creepers!

    Maybe it was the Maui-Zowie? Or the BC Bud? Or, get this, the Alberta Muerta?

    Made that up, man. Killer weed, though.

    Whatever it was, it was some magic shit. Maui Cowie poop, eh.

    Hah! I don’t know what that is.

    Anyway, I’d been up all night zinging in the shower, tingling in the tower, baying at the full moon, a giant silver dollar beauty, when I got the urge man to go down to the waterfront, watch the river flow.

    You ever done that, man? The river! Love the river. Like its dark, man, and late. The taverns have all closed. Streets littered with the soulful. Sky’s storm ready. Clouds gathering like jumbled sheets on a bed that’s never been made. Guess you know where that metaphor comes from. Anyways, you can feel it. Something’s gonna burst. So, I go down to the river and I see it through the thick fog. Like its out of the movies, man, full masted, skull and crossbones flapping’ in the night wind, and that ain’t no Errol Flynn standing at the helm. Not on your booty. Its someone eerie as hell, with some yo ho hoing and a bottle of bong…and I’m thinking, Bong? James Bong?

    There I am, staring at this vessel, double o sevening away, and this dude starts walking the plank and says, “Sorry Mate, no gambling tonight. The Jolly Better’s closed tight. City ordinance.”

    “Bummer, man” I bleat, “and me with the munchies and a pocket full of pieces of eight.”

    0
  6. Geoff
    13 September 2019 at 7:32 pm

    Stoner, haunted house, drama
    295 words
    Gardening
    ‘Hi Pete. How’s it trucking?’’
    Pete blinked, hoping his neighbour was another bad trip.
    ‘Garden’s looking great. Not many weeds. Ho!’
    Pete sucked in air, disorientated by the lack of smoke. I need to cut back oxygen. ‘Hi Greg. You after a packet?’
    ‘I was just wondering how you get them so… leafy?’
    Pete licked the paper. ‘You planning your own? Take some seeds, man.’ He sealed another joint, willing him to go.
    ‘I don’t think so. What’s the secret?’
    Pete looked at the soil at his feet. ‘Peace and love, man.’
    ‘Seriously. We grew cannabis at college but that was inside in Cheltenham. You manage outdoors, in Scotland in January…’
    ‘I rely on my relatives.’ He kicked the dirt, exposing the head of a femur. ‘That’s Auntie Jane. The plants love her.’
    Greg’s eyes widened. ‘That’s your aunt?’
    ‘Think so. Hang on.’ Pete put down the Rizzla packet and bent to the bone. ‘Yeah? You sure? Right ho.’ He looked up. ‘Uncle Portius. They look the same at that age, don’t they?’
    Greg rubbed his eyes. ‘I must be passive smoking your product. Did you just talk to a bone?’
    Pete laughed. ‘Course not. Bone’s don’t talk…’
    ‘But…’
    ‘They’re ghosts. I you like I can do you some Mexican spicy and my second cousin’s torso as a starter kit…’
    Greg backed away. ‘Maybe later.’
    Pete started another joint and covered the bone. He’d need another dozen for the school run. ‘Thanks Ponti, I’ll get you that pint of Ruddles later.’ He looked down the rows of fecund and fullsome plants to a slightly saggy group by the hedge. ‘And I’ll pick up some dubonnet and lemon for Granny Emmaline. Wouldn’t do to let her crop get peaky, what with festival season nearly upon us.’

    2+
  7. 13 September 2019 at 10:25 pm

    http://www.engleson.ca
    @billmelaterplea
    300 words
    Stoner; Ghost Ship; Comedy

    That’s Some Spooky Shit, Man–Sailing the Silvery Seas with Long Joint Spliffer

    Man, I had more wobbles than a bobblehead.

    Bobblehead?

    Bubblehead for sure.

    Or Stubble head?

    Like man, that cat had a gnarly beard. Facial hair all wiry and dense. I could feel it, man. Spikes shooting out of his face like fireworks.

    Bazooka hookahs, man!

    Reefer creepers!

    Maybe it was the Maui-Zowie? Or the BC Bud? Or, get this, the Alberta Muerta?

    Made that up, man. Killer weed, though.

    Whatever it was, it was some magic shit. Maui Cowie poop, eh.

    Hah! I don’t know what that is.

    Anyway, I’d been up all night zinging in the shower, tingling in the tower, baying at the full moon, a giant silver dollar beauty, when I got the urge man to go down to the waterfront, watch the river flow.

    You ever done that, man? The river! Love the river. Like its dark, man, and late. The taverns have all closed. Streets littered with the soulful. Sky’s storm ready. Clouds gathering like jumbled sheets on a bed that’s never been made. Guess you know where that metaphor comes from. Anyways, you can feel it. Something’s gonna burst. So, I go down to the river and I see it through the thick fog. Like its out of the movies, man, full masted, skull and crossbones flapping in the night wind, and that ain’t no Errol Flynn standing at the helm. Not on your booty. Its someone eerie as hell, with some yo ho hoing and a bottle of bong…and I’m thinking, Bong? James Bong?

    There I am, staring at this vessel, double o sevening away, and this dude starts walking the plank and says, “Sorry Mate, no gambling tonight. The Jolly Better’s closed tight. City ordinance.”

    “Bummer, man” I bleat, “and me with the munchies and a pocket full of pieces of eight.”

    4+
  8. Angelique Pacheco
    14 September 2019 at 4:56 am

    Stoner; Ghost Ship; Comedy
    135 words

    Green Boo-ty

    I saw through the haze
    A ghost ship’s hallways
    Twisting and turning
    The maze was daunting

    A ghostly dancer beckoned
    “Get naked,” she reckoned
    My mind said, “Okay!”
    My body said, “Let’s play!”
    The scene was rearranged
    And the actors were exchanged.

    The captain wore coat tails
    He clung onto the rails
    He shouted for pirates
    And called us bandits
    Zombies took me to the ledge
    To walk the plank to the edge.

    When I came down
    We were back in Cape Town
    I found myself at the pool
    Standing starkers like a fool

    The mystical dancer
    Was a Trans performer
    Security was cuffing me
    No zombies could I see.

    Don’t ever take the green stuff
    It can be quite rough
    Make sure you buy local
    Not pirated forms of diabolical.

    4+
  9. 14 September 2019 at 6:19 am

    stoner/ghost ship/comedy
    WC: 365
    http://www.awalker.org
    @zevonesque

    One More Sausage

    Fred was hungry. It was his semi-permanent state. Always eating; yet as thin as a rake that had been split in two–his acquaintances assumed he was looking after some tape worms. His best buddy, Havant, had just as voracious an appetite. Being a dog it was expected.
    Their holiday to France wasn’t going well. The language was unfamiliar and the food was not as good as anticipated. It was four days before Fred discovered that they were in Hamburg. And, whilst it was just two letters shy of his favourite word, it wasn’t in France.

    Things began to look up when they went for a couple of currywurst after a big breakfast. They got chatting to a groovy guy by the wurst-stand about all things sausage related ,which had got them a) excited and b) hungry again. Being at the wurst-stand that had been easy to deal with. There was always room for one more sausage.

    They shared a funny cigarette with Groovyman, which made them giggle. He said he’d never seen a dog smoke before. Fred said it happened regularly, usually when he’d spilt cooking oil on Havant.

    Groovyman enquired why he was called Havant. Fred explained that it was short for Havant A. which left him none the wiser. He then told them about the sausage barge, where the price for a four hour trip includes an ‘All That You Can Eat’ buffet. They weren’t going to miss this opportunity, so they heading down to the docks with big loping strides and stupid grins.

    At the docks everything was a bit blurry. Clearly they were in danger of fainting from hunger. So they got onboard the SS Hamburger with expectant bellies and an aim to make the buffet their home. Havant A. realised something was amiss when their boat passed through a series of locks without the gates opening. The lack of taste to the buffet wasn’t an issue, but the lack of substance was. When the captain turned up minus his head even Fred thought something was amiss.

    Then they smelled the Sausage Cruise pass in the other direction. It was a good job Havant could swim and Fred could float.

    2+
  10. 14 September 2019 at 4:03 pm

    stoner; ghost ship; comedy
    287 words

    Oscar

    The USS Bronson departed the solar system on the first Wednesday in October, carrying 420 tons of prime marijuana for trade on the rim. Its wormhole jumps were automated.

    By the first jump, the crew, consisting of Oscar Slama, was baked. He sat in the captain’s chair with a bowl of chips in his lap.

    In front of him, he appeared.

    “Wha…?” he said.

    “Don’t freak out,” Oscar 4-6 said. “I’m just more you, in the fourth, fifth, and sixth dimensions.”

    “Whoa,” Oscar said.

    “Got a light?” asked Oscar 4-6.

    After a second wormhole jump, as the ship navigated n-space on its trip to the rim planets, Oscar 7-9 joined the others, who, using a bong, were now ozzy. He immediately commenced baking brownies, a smoking blunt held between his clenched teeth.

    Croned, the three talked about the meaning of life with others who joined them subsequently.

    “It definitely has something to do with this yup yup,” Oscar 64-66 said.

    “Dude, it’s like … like … life,” Oscar 90-92 said.

    “Having trouble finishing my sentenc… ” Oscar said. Oscar 99-101 refilled his bowl with organic, unsalted puffed peas.

    “How many are me?” Oscar said. “I mean, how many of dimensions of me are they …?”

    “Infinite,” said Oscar 19948892…

    More wormholes, more dank. Infinitely more Oscars, steetched.

    “Let’s all squeeze in together,” Oscar said. “Dudes, I am so fazed …”

    “Dude, not out here in n-space. You got to stay spread out in n-space.”

    “No, squeeze in,” Oscar said with the frown of the chonged.

    They burned the crops. They squeezed in, all infinity of them.

    The ship flew on, empty of Oscars and budda.

    The Oscars looked around.

    “Where are we?” they asked themself.

    “In this universe, we’re God,” said the part of Him most lit.

    “Dude!” they said.

    0
  11. Diego Piselli
    14 September 2019 at 5:04 pm

    THE BARGE
    Stoner, Ghost Ship, Comedy
    282 words
    The rumor had spread with lightning speed, fuelled by media coverage.
    A mahogany barge, loaded with Lebanese weed was floating somewhere in Amsterdam canals, unattended
    Smokers in coffee shops hotly debated the matter. Abe swore he saw it moored near Singel canal; Alwine claimed to be certain that the ship was far in the harbor; Rastafarian waiters fabled about an Iranian merchant, owner of the barge tugged along his princely yacht, vanished with a Circassian beauty.
    Eventually, on a warm summer Saturday night, the Quest had its beginning.
    Hordes of stoners, old hippies and weirdos of all kinds gathered in Dam square and started scouring all the canals, walking on the banks, boating or paddling in muddy waters: braver and youngsters went so far as to swim in the smelly current.
    The Quest was unsuccessful, but Saturday phantom barge hunting became a fixed meeting. If interest decreased, the press reported a new sighting and people got back to the endless hunting. Hunters set up groups and association named by famous weed smokers of the past. Each group had a leader, a hymn, a flag.
    And every Saturday evening Mr. Janssen, managing editor of “Amsterdam Today”, savored happily the silence of his flat in Central Amsterdam, a little nest in a medieval alley crowded with coffee shops. No more yelling, no more stoners’ noise. No more frantic strolling of excited people along the cobblestone street.
    All the smokers had gone away, searching for the barge.
    His little article full of question marks and drop hints about a mysterious barge had proved useful, and he could eventually savor domestic pleasures in peace. “Marijuana enthusiasts are like children,” he said to himself “they believe anything”.

    6+
  12. 14 September 2019 at 7:44 pm

    @the_red_fleece
    http://www.theredfleece.co.uk
    stoner/ghost ship/comedy
    Word Count – 260

    Clang! Clang! Clang!
    The sound reminded Midshipman Smythe of the death march if it was played badly by a toddler on kitchen pans. What was scarier was the lack of bodily panic symptoms. His heart hadn’t tried to explode. His stomach hadn’t emptied like a freshly flushed toilet. Nothing was doing nothing in fact. Peter, the welcome guy, had warned him about this but it took some getting use to.
    “Is that her Midshipman?” His Captain pointed at the blue haired girl hitting the ships pipes.
    “Yes Sir.”
    “Madam.” The captain pulled herself to the full height of her tall frame. “How did you get on board?”
    “I don’t know man.” She didn’t look at the captain. Instead she gazed off to the left, as if following an excitable fly.
    “Madam, I am very much not a man.”
    She blinked three times, each time she forced her eyes as wide as she could. “You are so pale…wo-man. Did I get that right? Wo-man.”
    She giggled to herself.
    The Captain did not see the funny side. “Madam! How did you get on board this ship?”
    “Space cakes.” Her hand becomes a rocket which follows the same trajectory as her imagined fly. She takes the same level of interest.
    The Captain groans. “Midshipman?”
    “Yes Captain.” He clips his heels together, disappointed at the lack of noise. Another thing he has to get use to.
    “Go find the Chaplin. Tell him to prepare for a bio-exorcism. I won’t have a breather on my ghost ship.”

    3+
  13. 14 September 2019 at 10:09 pm

    @EdenSolera
    150 Words
    Unmasked Villain; Spooky Location; Drama

    Inferno

    Flames flickered in the oppressive darkness, solitary among thousands. A tall woman strode around them, her high-necked red dress flowing dangerously close to the light. Watching her, bathed in the shadows, were hundreds of people, their breathing heavy in the air of anticipation.

    She spun to face them, her eyes flashing as they reflected the flames. Her voice thundered through the deadened space. Disdain blanketed the group, suffocating even the bravest of her followers.

    Weakness was unacceptable, this they knew, but they had still managed to disappoint her. All fell to their knees, bowing their heads to the shame brought on by her piercing glare.

    She reached down to grab one of the candles, holding it in such a way that her face was cast in a ghostly light. Swiftly, her fingers were enveloped in the burning wax. Everyone else hissed, shocked, yet impressed by her stoicism.

    Flames smoldered still.

    2+
  14. Lindsey P
    16 September 2019 at 9:48 am

    I guess mine didn’t get saved…oh well.

    1+
    • Lindsey Pittenger
      16 September 2019 at 9:51 am

      298 Words

      Bookworm; Mine; Mystery

      The Case of the Canned Canaries

      As they ventured further down the dimly lit tunnel, Miranda pulled her book closer to her face, squinting to make out the words, comparing them to her surroundings. Everything seemed to be just as she’d expected. The construction of the mine shaft seemed stable and matched the text, which eased her growing sense of claustrophobia, but there was something that still just didn’t seem right. She hadn’t noticed that she’d slowed to a stop until the man behind her nearly knocked her over.

      “Oomf—sorry about that. Need to watch where I’m going a bit more,” he said with a sheepish grin.

      “I’m fine,” she said, clutching the book to herself and waving him away. Ignoring the dismissal, he pointed at her treasured cargo.

      “So what are you reading down here that’s so important to gum up the traffic?” he asked jovially, lowering his pickaxe from his shoulder.

      “Oh, this?” She held up the book. “It’s just an old book about mines. I figured I’d bring it along for some good-natured analysis. This mine seems similar to the one in the book, but the thing that’s been concerning me the most is the canaries.”

      “Canaries?” he asked, confused, briefly glancing around the shaft as though he’d missed something.

      “There aren’t any,” she said matter-of-factly, reopening her book, “Here, they use canaries as a warning system for noxious gases to keep people from dying, but this whole time we’ve been here, I haven’t seen a single one.” The look on her face fell as he burst into laughter.

      “I’m sorry,” he said, pointing to a box on the wall. “I think this sensor is that canary you’re looking for. Don’t worry, we are monitoring the safety of the air down here. At any rate, hope you’re enjoying your tour!”

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  15. 16 April 2020 at 9:11 am

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    0
  16. Richard Mills
    27 April 2020 at 8:00 pm

    The only reason this has one star is because the flowers were beautiful.
    The owner Mike is a nightmare! We ordered flowers for my Dads memorial and
    all but one arrangement was delivered. Of course it was the one from my sister and myself.
    When my mom called the shop they refused to refund her the
    money. Blaming it on the funeral home even though their delivery person didn’t follow protocol.
    My mom called him directly several times and he never returned
    her call. How despicable! When I called him he finally answered.

    After 30 min of arguing with him about a refund he reluctantly agreed.
    It’s been three weeks and no refund!! You are a horrible business owner MIKE!
    He kept saying to me \ https://mvsnoticias.com

    0

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