Thursday, January 12, 2012

#ThursThreads - The Challenge that Ties Tales Together - Week Five

Welcome to Week Five of #ThursThreads!

It's Thursday, so what should you be doing? Writing #FlashFiction, that's what! And I've got the challenge for you. Not only is this wonderful challenge going on, but stop by Shannan Albright's blog today for her Author's Spotlight series featuring ME! :) Everything you've ever wanted to know about Siobhan Muir. Hehehe okay, back to the challenge. :D

Here's how it works:
  • The prompt is a line from the previous week's winning tale.
  • The prompt can appear ANYWHERE in your story and is included in your word count.
Rules to the Game:
  • This is a Flash Fiction challenge, which means your story must be a minimum of 100 words, maximum of 250.
  • Incorporate the prompt anywhere into your story (included in your word count).
  • Post your story in the comments section of this post
  • Include your word count (or be excluded from judging)
  • Include your Twitter handle or email (so we know how to find you)
  • The challenge is open 7 AM to 7 PM Pacific Time
  • The winner will be announced on Friday, depending on how early the judge gets up. ;)
How it benefits you:
  • You get a nifty cool badge to display on your blog or site (because we're all about promotion - you know you are!)
  • You get instant recognition of your writing prowess on this blog!
  • Your writing colleagues shall announce and proclaim your greatness on Facebook, Twitter, and Google + 

Our Judge for Week Five:

The slick, smart, dryly sarcastic, Sci-fi author and Cyber cop, Tom Keller.
And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.

The Prompt:

"Sure you are, tough guy."

Away with you, Flash Fiction Fanatics, and show us your #ThursThread. Good luck! :)


  1. The moment I thrust the chair across the room, smashing into the bar, I knew I was in trouble. People say I have anger issues; I don’t, I swear. Something happens to me, causing the bursts of physical force and aggression. I feel it coming on and try to get away from people and untied down objects, but I am not always successful. Now as I sit here, in the aftermath, I carefully place my words together in my mind before the officer questions me.

    “How much have you had to drink tonight, sir?” the officer asks.

    “I just started my first beer.”

    “What drugs are you on?” He stares into my eyes with the automatic disbelief.

    The only drug that I can think of that would give anyone the boost of energy like this is PCP and I have never even seen it, let alone taken it. I answer, “none, sir.”

    “You are honestly telling me that you aren’t in the least bit intoxicated?”

    “Yes, sir.”

    “Then how do you explain all this?” he asks, turning slightly to observe the wreckage of broken chairs and upturned tables, including the pool table. “If you aren’t hopped up on something.”

    I contemplate the truth in my head, which I do not understand myself. “Well,” I begin, not believing that I am actually going to tell the officer this. “I’m possessed by, I think, a demon. It all started a few months ago and is getting worse.”

    “Sure you are, tough guy.”

    250 Words

  2. The couch had a permanent indent in the shape of Markus’ body. To say that he didn’t get up much was an understatement. His t-shirt had a member of all five food groups in residency. He didn’t care.

    When Marcie left, she never looked back. Sure, there was a little pang of empathy for him, but it had faded after the first year. It hurt to think of the successful life they’d led before Markus was fired from his high-powered corporate job, but it hurt worse when they couldn’t pay their bills. Did her nagging cause him to sink into this cesspool of depression? Maybe. But, it didn’t explain what he’d done with the money from the sale of his Jaguar. She wanted it; therefore, she would get it.

    The sound of the front door being torn off its hinges roused Markus from his catnap. He always took a nap between The Price is Right and Wheel of Torture.

    A huge man, seemingly made of granite, reached down and yanked him off the couch.

    “Where is it?”

    Markus looked at the man through squinted eyes. Maybe this is just a dream, he thought.

    The man shook him harder, making his eyes jiggle. Nope, not a dream.

    “Where’s what?”

    “Don’t act stupid. We want the money now.”

    “Put me down, or I’ll have to resort to my ninja skills. I’m a ninja.”

    “Sure you are, tough guy.”

    The man fell with a thud.

    “I told him. He should’ve listened.”

    148 words

  3. “You okay, buddy?” The handsome man asked the little boy who had just tumbled off of the slide. The little tow haired boy looked up with a quivering lip and nodded to the man. “Sure you are, tough guy.”
    I watched the exchange as I sat on the swing a few feet away. I felt the sorrow flow through my body and my heart felt heavy. I pushed off, and felt the wind sweep through my hair, as I started to climb higher. Tears started to flow, streaking my face, as I looked upwards.
    I don’t know why I kept doing this to myself. The last place I should be hanging out is the park. I should be at home, breaking the news that I found out over a week ago, to my clueless husband. I just couldn’t bear the thought of seeing the look of disappointment on his face. I can’t even accept the fact that the doctor said I can never have children, how can I expect him to?
    I feel like there is something wrong with me… like a failure. I never knew what kind of career I wanted growing up, but I always knew I wanted to be a Mother.
    I stop pumping my legs and lean back, closing my eyes, and revel in the sensation of soaring through the air. As I come to a stop, I come to a decision: I will tell him today, and no matter what happens… I will be okay!

    250 word

  4. "I think we broke him this time," Margot said.

    "No, it's alright. I'm fine," Luke said.

    "Sure you are, tough guy," Carrie said with a grin. "But how about we go have you check out anyway?"

    "I'm serious; it's no big deal." Luke tried to sit up again. "Ouch! Okay, maybe it hurts a little, but I'll be fine. Just get me an ibuprofen and I'll be good as gold."

    "Are you sure?" Margot fretted over Luke, stroking his hair. "You look like you're in a lot of pain."

    Luke gently grabbed her hand to stop her petting. In the space of a few minutes, Luke had gone from feeling like the most masculine guy in the world to being treated like a little boy. "I work out every day. I’m sure it's just a sprain. I just need to work it out."

    Margot kissed Luke eagerly and grinned. "If you insist…"

    "Margot!" Carrie snapped as she rushed back in the room, car keys in hand. "Knock it off before you really hurt him, we need to take him to the clinic and make sure he's okay."

    Margot tilted her head. "Umm, like this?"

    "What do you mean, like what? Oh." Carrie was usually the logical one, how did she miss the fact that Margot was still wearing an angel teddy, of course that wasn't as bad as her black leather outfit. And Luke, well… "Oh yeah, I guess this wouldn't really look good. I suppose we should change first."

    250 words from WIP

  5. “Here you are, in all your glory. Tie just right. Shirt fitting perfectly, outlining those muscles. You’re tall and handsome, and you have a winning smile. You look great, and yeah, you’re worth a million bucks. You know that? You can tackle anything. And you want to know something else? You will take the bull by the horns and come out of here grinning with the thought of knowing you did it. People may say you lack character or charisma, that you maybe aren’t brave enough to do something like this, but sure you are, tough guy. You are a born winner, and you can accomplish anything.”

    “Hey buddy, quit talking to yourself and move it. You’re holding up the line.”

    He turned and glared back at the sour old man, then took a step forward. Time to shine.

    “Hi, can I help you?” she asked, smiling cheerfully.

    “Yes, my name is Reggie, and I have severe agoraphobia. I’m trying new medication though, and this is my first time out of my house in seven years. Ahem. I’d like a hamburger and a small Coke please.”

    As she smiled awkwardly and called out the order, he whispered to himself, “You did it, Reggie. You did it!”

    206 words

  6. Jim slammed the door of his apartment harder than necessary, but grief, anger, and disgust disabled his “care” feature and he let them drive him into his bedroom. He managed to gather enough control to remove his dress uniform and hang it carefully in the closet, but he replaced it with only a ratty pair of stained sweats.

    The party had been great and Chris was a knockout. Pink coral dress swishing around her ass and he couldn’t touch. It just about killed him to watch Todd wrap his arm around her waist. Jim had never found another woman as sexy or beautiful, and it curdled his stomach to think he never would.

    He shuffled to the kitchen and searched his cupboards for anything to distract him from his father’s voice calling him a depraved loser and his own conscience echoing the sentiment.

    Chris’s voice shouted above the rest. Man up, Waters. You’re gonna get through this like everything else.

    “Sure you are, tough guy.” His words left a sour taste in his mouth and he grabbed the nearest bottle to wash it out.

    Drowning your sorrows will get you nowhere, Boy. Man up and move on. Plenty fish in the sea.

    “Nobody like her, Dad. Nobody even close.”

    Jim dropped his body onto his couch, tipped the bottle back, and let the burn take him away.

    227 (#WIP500) ineligible words

    1. I love your evocative language the way you can so so much in so few words. I'm learning from you every day. [I swear I'm not sucking up to the host] :)

    2. Sure you are, tough guy. ;) In all seriousness, thank you. :) This reply feature just recently came about and I like it! Now I can respond to folks. :D

  7. A Lesson Hard Learned

    Tweren't easy bein' the guy with the fastest hands in the sector, but most days Fisk was up to the task. Hell, he'd best be. Weren't a week went by somebody didn't get the hankerin' to test him.

    He was enjoyin' himself a second of some real enjoyable Malgorian jova when the man walked in. Was an all-too-familiar scenario unfoldin', it were.

    The challenger, some bright-eyed lad with dreams, done swaggered up and issued him a challenge. He done so in the usual manner, spoutin' some disparagin' insults and such. Fisk, he was expected to take umbrage, ya see. Once them customaries was satisfied, well then it was all over but the dyin'.

    So, Fisk done stood up and stared that buck square in the eye. Real easy, Fisk done raised up his hands with his palms upturned. He spoke all slow and calm like.

    "This ain't gonna go well boy. Don't make me teach ya an ole lesson."

    The kid smirked, "Gonna school me? Sure you are, tough guy. Lemme guess. Shouldn't go lookin' fer a fight lessen yer ready? Well I AM ready ole dog."

    A wry smile come to Fisk, "Naw. Lesson were: Always watch yer back."

    The lad went from confused to face-down and smoldering as Fisk's dwarf companion, Harker, unloaded the neutronic shotgun into the kid's back.

    Harker grinned like a Tergovian lemur-cat, "They never learns does they Fisk?"

    Fisk set down and drunk himself some more jova. "Naw", he whispered, "They never do."

    250 words @klingorengi

    1. I love the blending of Sci-fi and Western from Star Wars to Serenity, great imagery and use of language.

  8. "I'm not going to tell you again. Get your power-sucking droid out of here before I beat you to death with it." Coming around the counter with an EMP baton, the shopkeeper advanced on Moixa and me. I burned a few watts computing leverage angles and escape vectors, but since I wouldn't get to use any of them, they went into my purge buffer almost immediately.

    "All right, no need to be inhospitable about it. It's not even jacked in, as you can plainly see." Moxie made a slow, deliberate show of how the only points of contact I had with the shop were my feet, which were solidly planted on the insulation padding in the middle of the aisle.

    I straightened up to my full height and performed a completely theatrical lens-flare scan of our soon-to-be-former-host, revealing both an elevated stress response and a zero-charge reading on the baton.

    I plucked the baton from his hand and crushed it, but only a little bit. Cheap magnesium knockoff, probably Lunar ore, and about as threatening as an overcooked slab of soy if you were paying attention.

    "Oh, that's tough luck," I said, dropping it and turning to leave. "And tough talk to an old man, besides. Don't want to say it straight to the 'bot, buddy?"

    "Sure, you are tough," Guy said, "but next time--"

    "There won't be a next time," Moixa said, following me out.


  9. I spat out a tooth and watched it skitter across the dry ground after it hit. I owed her for that, too. “You realize this is pointless, right?”

    “How so?” Hannah was tall, outfitted with dangerous curves, red hair and an attitude problem a mile wide. If I had to be beaten up and tied, at least I had a good view, or would until she decided she didn’t like my eyeballs cruising her backside. My kind of girl.

    “I’m just going to get loose and kick your ass.” I gave my shoulders a slow roll.

    Hannah picked up one of my guns from where they had fallen. “Sure you are, tough guy,” she purred. She caressed the cylinder of the weapon like it was an old lover, giving it a whirl.

    She appreciated good metal, could be there was hope for us yet. After all, two of my own muscles, one in each arm, were no longer flesh and blood. The steel pistons flared with power and the rope binding my wrists was suddenly inconsequential, parting easily. Business first, then we’d talk romance. I wanted my guns back.

    Her calm should have warned me. Graceful as a dancer, Hannah dropped down and slammed the butt of my own pistol into the side of my knee hard enough that the joint should have shattered. Her composed grin melted away when I didn’t drop.

    I wasn’t the only mage-smithed one here. Hannah gave her knuckles a snap. Let the fun begin.
    250 words

    1. Great story! Thanks for entering and I hope to see you next week, too! :D

    2. I love the imagery and attitude!

  10. “Do you, Jackson Danes, take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife?”

    “I do.”

    Frannie’s smile outshone the whole universe.

    “And do you, Francesca Tomei, take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband?”

    “You bet I do.”

    Laughter rippled through our guests. My nearest and dearest—what a family we made.

    “Are you crying?” Frannie whispered, looking delighted by the prospect.

    “I’m fine.” I blinked hard to clear any evidence otherwise.

    “Sure you are, tough guy.” She winked.

    “Then by the power vested in me by—” the official went on.

    “Ladies and gentlemen, please stay where you are and we probably won’t shoot anyone.”

    The voice rang out over the small assembly as some two dozen heavily armed men and women filed in. Shock kept me frozen for precious moments until a man grabbed Frannie by the arm.


    A gun in my face brought me up short.

    “Don’t be a hero,” the man warned me. “Heroes get dead first.”

    Men were corralled in one corner of the bar, shackled around a large pillar. Women were separated and marched out in single file. Frannie held her head high behind Gemma.

    “What the hell are you doing?” I shouted.

    The leader smiled at me. “It’s slave season. These pretty Old Earthers will fetch one helluva price.”

    The doors closed with a hydraulic whoosh.

    “Did my wife just get kidnapped by space pirates?”

    “Technically, we didn’t get that far in the ceremony,” the official said.

    “You are not helping.”

    250 words of #WIP500 goodness :D

  11. “Professor Ian Nova, I am hereby placing you under arrest for high treason against Queen Sophia and the United Republics.”

    “Sure you are, tough guy.”

    Ian brushed a lock of silver hair out of his eyes to study the young lieutenant standing over him, blaster charged. Running a hand back through his hair, Ian regretted not having cut it recently. Shaving was still part of his morning routine, even planet-side, but he hadn’t gotten around to the hair in a few months now.

    “I’m authorized to use lethal force if necessary!” The lieutenant’s trembling would have been imperceptible even to Ian a year ago, but since Ian’s mind had been opened he probably had a better idea what the lieutenant was doing than the younger man himself did.

    Ian reclined on the mossy log behind him with a sigh, “Did they even tell you what I did that was worth risking good men on a planet-side manhunt?”

    “You stole government secrets and technology above your clearance!” The lieutenant moved his aim up to Ian’s head. Bad choice. Smaller target. Even at this range he’d never hit.

    “Shall I share those secrets with you?” Ian pressed his fingertips together.

    “No!” the panicked lieutenant fired on reflex.

    Ian moved too quickly for the younger man to see, the lieutenant likely assuming his shot had just been wide. Standing up, Ian turned to leave.

    “Ragnarok isn’t over; but I can stop it.”

    239 words

    1. I am really intrigued by this character and the back story. I'd love to read more about Ragnarok!

  12. Sure you are, tough guy, was the last thing I heard Johnny say, other than the screaming.

    We were just a couple of punks hittin’ up some suits for cash. They don’t usually come into this part of town late at night. So when they do everybody knows they’re lookin’ for somethin’ that’s not quite legal. Otherwise why would they be here, right?

    It was late, cold, and raining. We saw this guy, all bundled up and stumbling into an alley. We’d already scored some cash but it wasn’t enough for Johnny.

    “Man,” I said. “It is fuckin’ freezin’ out here.”

    “One more,” Johnny said.

    We followed the guy.

    Most suits just cough up the cash. Nobody gets hurt. But this guy wasn’t gonna’ roll easy.

    That’s when shit got crazy.

    I heard Johnny say, “Sure you are, tough guy.”

    When Johnny moved, this guy moved faster.

    I heard a ripping sound and Johnny stopped. Something was sticking right out of Johnny’s back. It was like a dark blade but thick with ridges like a steak knife.

    Johnny screamed.

    I just stood there. Frozen.

    Then the guy yanked the thing outta’ Johnny and turned towards me.

    I’m not a fast runner, but that night? I ran like a motherfucker.

    I can still see the guy’s face. His eyes were huge. His skin looked like it was, well, like a shell or something. His jaws looked weird, like moving side to side instead of up and down.

    Fuckin’ weird, man. Weird.

    250 Words
    redshirt6 aka Robby Hilliard

  13. Nine year old Terrence watched as it dripped bit by bit into his port. This was his third time. What do they say third time is the charm? He would beat this. He wanted to get older and become a doctor or a scientist.
    “How are you doing Terrence?” asked an angel appear before him.
    “Hanging in there and getting better.”
    "Sure you are, tough guy. I bring you news of great joy. Envision and achieve .You shall save the world close your eyes and see it all."
    Terrence closed his eyes and he saw himself older looking through a microscope scanning cells looking for signs of cancer. None, there were none. It continued to work his older self he saw had found the cure. Now in the body of his older self he answered the phone
    Terrence King? I ‘m happy to tell you that you have been awarded, the Nobel Prize for Medicine, for this calendar year. Your cure for cancer will go down in history like the polio vaccine.”
    Terrence woke with a start feeling refreshed and alive. He smiled envisioning the cancer completely gone. Six months later the doctor said he was cancer free. He knew without a doubt that the chemo had worked. He also knew that his dream had not just a dream but a vision of the future that he would fulfill and he was ready for that battle. He would make his life count and achieve this dream. That was his destiny.

  14. Ned walked past the elevator and the doors opened. He stopped. It was 3:30 a.m. at Northport Regional Hospital and the graveyard shift was almost over. It had been a routine night and he was looking forward to the weekend. Now, this.

    The elevator shouldn't have been that big of a deal. He had walked past it countless times, rode on it thousands of times, and even did CPR on a code blue inside of it once. It was usually just an elevator. The last two nights, though, it had been harassing him. Now this.

    How can an elevator harass someone? Ned knows. When a manmade object acts as if it has a personality we might think it unique or cute. When a piece of machinery has it out for you, that's a different story all together. Ned knew the elevator did not like him.

    He stood and stared at the body. Most people would have run hysterically screaming down the hall. He had almost succumbed to that urge the other night. Now, he just stared.

    "What?" he said aloud, his voice sounding thin. The bloody woman laying half out of the elevator door was not real. Ned knew this too.

    In his mind he could hear a voice, "I’m not afraid."

    "Sure you are, tough guy," he said to himself.

    The voice said, "Hop in."

    "I'm not getting in there."

    "You will...eventually.” The voice laughed as the doors closed.

    He whispered, "Never."

    "It's inevitable..."

    Somehow, Ned knew it was.

    250 Words


  15. Relentless Pursuit

    Sam could scarcely contain himself. “I’m gonna get ‘im! I’m gonna get ‘im!” he said.

    Tom looked over at him and shook his head. “What are you going to do, Sam?”

    Sam just continued obsessing, “I’m gonna get ‘im! I’m gonna get ‘im! ‘E’s not gonna get away THIS time! I’ll bring ‘im back, too!”

    “You’ve already brought him back eight times, Sam.”

    “Yeah, but ‘e can’t escape now. I know where ‘e’s goin’. I’m gonna get ‘im!”

    “You knew where he was going the last time and you still had to go after him again.”

    “I know, but he can never get away forever. I ALWAYS find ‘im. I’m gonna get ‘im!”

    Tom drew Sam in for a hug, scratched behind his ears and adjusted his collar, then threw the stuffed animal for him to retrieve again. "Sure you are, tough guy, sure you are."

  16. Joey had to admit, the scrawny little runt had an almost limitless capacity for pain.

    He'd been sure that the kid would start squealing the second Joey laid the bat across his face. Or when he'd kicked the kid into the glass coffee table, or wrestled his bony palm onto the bright red spiral of the electric stove and held it there until the apartment reeked of scorched meat.

    The kid wouldn't give. Nothing but screams and bewildering intransigence.

    "C'mon, kid," Joey said as he stood over the kid's battered body. He twirled the fire andiron until the cruel wrought-iron barb faced down. "This is really getting excessive."

    "He ought to be dead," Frank said. He ran a hand through the slick, greasy landscape of his hair. "I've never seen anybody take this much punishment."

    Joey knelt beside the kid. "Fess up, kid. We're like seconds from killing your dumb ass."

    The kid grinned, a red crescent full of broken teeth. "Sure you are, tough guy."

    "Just give us the information. What's so important that you have to take this kind of beating? What's the boss want from you?"

    Suddenly, the kid's hand closed around his throat. His larynx collapsing, Joey batted at the kid's scrawny arm, which might as well have been a steel bar.

    The red grin widened.

    "I'm about to show you."

    246 words / @surlymuse

  17. The three girls peeked around the corner, looking for the car. The streetlights glistened on the roads, wet from the rain, and the full moon, overruled by the clouds, provided no nightlight.

    “I see it!” Gidget yelled, turning her head and knocking into Norah, who knocked into Lorna.

    “Jeeze, Gidget!” Norah snapped, grabbing Gidget’s nose and twisting it. “We’re right next to you.”

    ”Ow – ow – ow!” Gidget cried.

    Lorna started to giggle.

    “What are you giggling at, Lorna?” Norah said.


    Rubbing her nose and head, Gidget grumbled. “Freakin’ Impala Girl. Why can’t we be called to find Lamborghini Man or Porsche Dude. Why do we get stuck with the Impalas?”

    After successfully identifying the mystery owner of a car that was left for weeks in front of Gidget’s house, she got the crazy idea to start her own detective agency. The fact that the owner of the car ended up being her neighbor meant nothing. Gidget found her calling; then she called Lorna and Norah.

    Norah motioned the girls to follow her around the corner. The three walked towards the car.

    “Who called you about this car, Gidget?” Lorna whispered.

    Norah turned to the two girls. “Shhhh!” She said, while still walking.

    BAM! Norah walked smack into a light post, followed by Gidget and Lorna.

    “Dammit, Norah!” Lorna exclaimed. “Watch where you’re going- or I’m gonna slug you!”

    “Sure you are, tough guy.” Norah said, poking Lorna in the eyes.

    Gidget laughed. “Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.”

    :: 247 Words by @Lenore_Diane

  18. The crack of thunder made the kids jump. They hid under the covers and shivered with each other, pulling it up when the resulting white flash lit up the sky.

    Calliope adjusted the grip on the carbon rifle, narrow gaze locked on the door. She was dirty and tired and wanted a hot meal but with the storm going on, it was going to have to wait.

    Something outside gave a guttural howl. Lily, the littlest of the kids started to cry softly while Moira shushed her. “Keep quiet, Lily. It will be okay.”

    The boy in the corner gave the quivering kids a look before standing next to the older woman. “Let me help.”

    “You’re too little, kid.”

    “I can help. I’ve handled a gun before.” He puffed out his chest.

    “Sure you are, tough guy.”

    He gave a scowl and looked up at her. “You can’t handle them all alone.”

    Calliope smirked. “Because I’m a woman?”

    His mouth opened and closed with a click of teeth. He looked down at his feet and up again. “Let me help. Moira was helpful. She saw that vision that saw them coming. But it’s my turn now. I should be helping to protect the kids.”
    She glanced down at him and he glared back at her. He was a kid himself, trying to grow up to fast to be a man.

    A closer howl caught her attention. They were outside the cabin.

    “Grab the six-shooter, kid. It’s going to get dicey.”

    250 words

    #WIP500 bit for my Steampunk world

  19. I wait between the borders. Where it isn’t light but it isn’t black; a grey of many shades that sucks the color from my eyes. But I stay between the borders just a speck of dust in a sandstorm knowing you’ll return.
    I hear your voice echoing in the distance just a noise too far to call but I know you’re on your way. In the chaos of the borders there are shadows that lick upon my heels. They try to sway my echo into a goodbye of many ages until I hear the truth within that speaks of your endeavor to join me soon.
    “I’m just beyond the border.” His words would echo.
    “So you are, tough guy.” I’d smile and close my eyes to the darkness because I will stay within the borders waiting for his return.

    139 words

  20. Tom wasn't sure whether the bigger mistake was playing a song about a transsexual getting beaten up, called 'Sure You Are, Tough Guy', or being in a glam-rock band called 'Aladdin's Tights' that decided to risk gigging in a squaddies' pub. The mood as they closed out the set had been... well, not tense. A guitar string is tense. More like the air had started screaming, just a tiny bit higher than the range of human hearing.

    Contemplating the beer garden fence that now stood between them and the safety of the van, Tom decided platform shoes and dangling, lacy cuffs had also been a bad idea.

    Paul squeaked as a trio of thick-set, buzz-cut soldiers walked out of the pub. They approached the Tights like an oncoming 18-wheeler, and Tom found himself pressing back against the wall.

    The squaddies shared an odd, awkward glance. Ed started to stutter something and gave up.

    Finally, the one with the ugly scar down his cheek said, "You boys ready to play for us again?"

    "Y-y-you're not going t-to beat us up?" Paul was actually crying.

    Scarface said, "Actually, we were hoping you'd come back next week."

    "What?" Tom's scrotum had pulled so tight, his voice came out high as a choirboy's.

    "We... ah... it turns out all the regulars are closet trannies." Apart from the scar, the big man's face was beet red. "Where'd you get those shoes?"

    236 words

  21. Title: The End of the Cycle

    David and Alana raced down the street of downtown Wardville, the skies darkening as they ran. The destroyers were gathering power quickly. If they didn’t get to the town hall in time, it would be too late. She couldn’t believe what was happening. Alana barely had time to digest everything she had found out about who and what she was and the significance of her pendant before she and David were literally running for their lives.

    It had been an interesting day to say the least.

    They burst through the doors of the town hall and were encased in darkness. Alana gasped in surprise, expecting there to be at least emergency lights on. David grabbed her hand and squeezed it gently.

    “You ready for this?” she asked, as her eyes scanned the room, looking for the men who were the cause of all the evil happening.

    He nodded with a smirk. “No place I’d rather be. I’m strong like bull,” he said, affecting a fake Russian accent.

    “Sure you are, tough guy.” Alana laughed, her heart lifting before they got down to business.

    183 Words

  22. #ThursThreads is now CLOSED. Thank you to everyone for writing and see you next week! :)

  23. King of the Hill
    by Lisa McCourt Hollar

    Barry ran up the beach, heading for the hill that led to the lighthouse. The wind whipped through Sandra's hair and laughing, he reached out to snag a strand of it as he went rushing passed her. He hadn't felt this young or alive in ages.

    His gut protested a bit, but he finally managed to bypass the young beauty and beat her to the top of the hill, where they collapsed in a fit of giggles.

    Looking into her eyes, he thought about kissing her. For a brief moment, he considered it, before he remembered she was out of his league. So, reverting to his usual defense against intimacy, he reverted to comedy. Standing at the top of the mound he declared, "I am the King of the Mountain!"

    At that point, the door to the lighthouse burst open and a zombie stumbled out, it's mouth unhinged and ready for seafood. Barry screamed and fell backwards as the undead creature leered down at him.

    A bullet through the Walker's head saved Barry. Turning towards Sandra, Barry grimaced in embaressment.

    "King of the mountain? Sure you are, tough guy."

    Word Count 188

  24. I think mine was posting before 7 but not sure. My phone froze. Guess next week I will write faster..;lol

    1. You were so close and if your phone froze... I'll let the judge make the decision. Thanks for writing. :)


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