The following story is 100% true. While I have truly enjoyed pushing my creative brain to write these flash fiction stories this month–and I have had great opportunity to use them to develop some background for my novel–this month has been a challenge to say the least. I needed the opportunity to get away for some “me-time” but in most cases, I forced that opportunity into my afternoon at the expense of spending quality time with my two little kids. A constant struggle for the stay-at-home mom!
The woonchaj waited in a cave deep inside the big, gray mountain. It closed its eyes and felt for a signal—just like it had every day for the last 500 years. As much as part of the mountain as the animals and plants that lived there, it had been in this world for longer than it could remember.
A slight tremble of earth, soft steps of a hare, a whooshing wind through the pines. The forest was telling the same story it had every day. Deep, deep, deep into the core of the mountain, where even the woonchaj itself didn’t understand the strange connections between this world and another, a man screamed. The woonchaj sent a tendril of comfort to the man and the screams quieted.
The little girl loved to play in the woods but every time she went out, she had trouble finding her way back. Because of this, she never strayed far from home. The Spirit of the Woods loved to hear the girl’s sweet voice, singing her little songs she made about the birds and rocks and trees. When the girl stopped coming into the woods, it missed hearing her voice, so one day, when the girl was playing near the edge of the forest, the spirit came to find her. It said, “sweet girl, why don’t you play in the trees anymore?”
I think I’m lost, the cat said to herself. She had hunted in the woods outside the village many times but had never traveled so deep into the foothills. A tame house cat, she never assumed she could compete with her wild cousins.
My feet swing back and forth under the shopping cart handle and I start counting each swing, “1, 2, 3, 4, 6, uh, 4, 8…”
“You forgot 5, bud,” my mom says. Her voice is muffled through the mask.
A plate flew past Sira’s head, catching a stray wisp of hair before landing with a satisfying crash against the wall of the great hall. To her right, a teenage boy heaved a wooden chair up and then slammed it into the stone floor, breaking three of its legs. Anger swelled—no, boiled—within Sira, overpowering any shred of sanity left in her mind and emerging as pure irrational hate.
Sira watched a gray mockingbird bob its tail up and down on the wooden fence and wondered about how the birds could tell each other apart. Was it smell? A slight differentiation in their black and white tail feathers? Maybe the way they sounded? As she studied the bird, Rhetta, their black mare, snorted and the bird flew away, its quick wings a blur as it pushed itself up across a gentle breeze.
I stare out the window of the car, watching the red trolley whoosh by, its horn blaring a dull warning.
“Is it winter?”
In front, my mom doesn’t answer. She’s pushing the buttons that make the sound come out of the speakers. I hear lots of noise, some fun music, and boring NPR. My parents always listen to NPR. They were so impressed when I learned how to tell Google to “Play NPR,” but now they just tell me, “Ok, that’s good, Ben, you don’t need to turn it on right now.”
Jenny Jemima had never been in love until she met Steve. They had fallen in love one New England summer over their shared passion: antiquing. Steve was a history buff and loved finding rare items that had, supposedly, been owned by well-known people in the past. A chamber pot once owned by Benjamin Franklin was one of his prized possessions.
This story was written for Day 8 of the Flash Fiction February Challenge. The prompt today is to write a story in one sentence. Their eyes meet for the first time after the darkness fades, the invisible chains of his cursed mind falling away, and she sees her own face reflecting back at her; onlyContinue reading “The Meeting (A One-Sentence Story)”