Thursday, June 12, 2014

#ThursThreads - The Challenge That Ties Tales Together - Week 123


Welcome back to the Weird, the Wild, & the Wicked. It's Thursday today, so get your flash ready. Writing a #flashfiction thread! Welcome to Week 123 of #ThursThreads, the challenge that ties tales together. One new thing: We now start at 7 am MOUNTAIN TIME. Want to keep up each week? You're welcome to join the FB #ThursThreads group where we'll do events and make announcements. Need the rules? Read on.

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 8 PM Mountain 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 Plus

Our Judge for Week 123:


Photographer, mom, Newfie lover, and sports aficionado, Clary Carey.



And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.

The Prompt:


“Things you wish you hadn't done.”

All stories written herein are the property (both intellectual and physical) of the authors. Now, away with you, Flash Fiction Fanatics, and show us your #ThursThreads. Good luck!

21 comments:

  1. Things you wish you hadn't done...we all have a few, but mine is probably worse than yours.
    When I was sixteen, I borrowed my mom’s car to take a ride in the countryside. I’m sorry, mom!
    The car broke down and I walked for some time finally coming upon a house as night inked the sky. Old and the paint peeling, I knocked on the door of the house and it opened. In the kitchen I saw a calendar opened to June 1940. The table had food left on it, mold and mummified on plates. Fearful I almost left but the car was far away.
    Climbing the steps I found the bedrooms dusty and the beds made with bedclothes laid out. Thinking it looked safer; shaking off dust in the small girl’s bedroom I fell fast asleep.
    I awoke to a small girl shaking me and telling me to hide then fading away.
    As I closed the closet door I heard footsteps on the stairs then a voice in the room, “There’s no one here. No one will find out what we did,” shouted the man.
    Peering out I saw no one but heard a voice say, “We should burn down this house.”
    Shortly after that I heard sounds of crackling and smelled smoke. I succumbed to smoke inhalation. I’m stronger after thirty years of purgatory and I’m telling you don’t go to the house in the woods unless you want to meet the ghosts of Hutton house.
    249 words
    @SweetSheil

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is awesome. I'd love to see it extended into a full-length piece! :-)

      Delete
  2. ~~~~~

    It was to be the list to kill all other lists.

    To write down all the things I wish I hadn’t done.

    But writing a list that suddenly, by some kind of asshole pixie-magic, came to life and threw me right back into the action every single one of those actions I wish I had never been a part of?

    Like a solar-plexus sucker-punch, rapidly followed by an uppercut, sending me into orbit among the stars.

    Turns out that the thing I really wish I hadn’t done was writing that list in the first place. Go figure.

    Karma’s a bitch.

    ~~~~~

    Word count: 100 on the nose
    Twitter handle: @AnnaLund2011

    ReplyDelete
  3. Doing Jell-o shots came under the heading “Very Bad Idea.” The fact Cord was matching Jolie shot for shot with tequila qualified him as a finalist for Dumbass of the Year. When he’d picked her up after work, she’d been in a mood so here they sat at the bar waiting for their table before he could shovel some food into her. Preferably food with lots of carbs to absorb the alcohol.

    “Drinking game.”

    Cord attempted to follow her non sequitur. “Drinking game?”

    “Yes. Let’s play.” She tossed off another shot. “Things you wish you hadn’t done.”

    This couldn’t end well. “Jolie, you need to eat.”

    “I’ll start. Going to nursing school.” She banged her glass to get the bartender’s attention. “Your turn.”

    Leaving you. But he couldn’t admit that out loud. “Suggesting we get a drink first.”

    “Oh, pooh. Doesn’t count. Thiss issh serioush.” She gulped her shot, wiped her lips with the back of her hand. “I killded a kid.”

    And there was the source of her behavior. “Jolie—”

    “Don’t Jolie me. A little girl died in the ER today. We couldn’t save her.”

    “That’s a whole lot different from you—”

    “I couldn’t save her, Cord.” Tears leaked down her cheeks.

    “C’mon, sunshine. Let’s go home.” He tossed money on the bar and urged her to stand.

    “Noth telling you.” Diamond-glazed eyes stared up at him. “My biggesth regreth. Noth telling you about CJ.”

    “Mine’s walking away from you.” There. It was said. Truth at last.
    ****
    250 words
    @SilverJames_

    ReplyDelete
  4. “I am so sorry I’m late!” Becca swept into the church’s changing room, garment bag slung over her shoulder, long black hair just so. “I had to clean up after - after.”

    Lily shook her head with a smile. “No worries, hon. Last I heard, the guys hadn’t even arrived!”

    Becca bit her lip and nodded. “Big bachelor party, huh?”

    “That’s what they tell me.” Lily’s expression was indulgent in the mirror at the small vanity the church provided. “But Drew’ll come on time.”

    “He always does!” the girls said together, as if on cue.

    Lily blushed. “I don’t kiss and tell,” she said with feigned hauteur.

    “Unless you’re drunk,” Becca added.

    The young women primped and posed for the photographer, but none of them caught a glimpse of the groom. Becca felt her heart pound so hard that she could swear her lavender gown was visibly vibrating as they freshened lipstick and as Lily did a final preening.

    Someone began playing the church’s organ and the sounds reached the bride’s room. Lily stood, her eyes glowing. “It’s time!”

    Lily’s father knocked, and Becca felt faint. She fanned herself and tried to look surprised when Mr. Jacobson handed her a note.

    “Sir?”

    His voice was flat. “Read it. Out loud.”

    Hands trembling, Becca opened the envelope. “Becca. You know sometimes, sometimes there are things you wish you hadn’t done. We did one of those and I can never look Lily in the face again. Tell her I love her. Drew.”

    = = =
    249 words
    Sandi Layne
    @sandyquill

    ReplyDelete
  5. Mack shook his head. "No, any maps we have will be obsolete."

    "Yes, sir." Bryant pulled out a little notebook and drew a few lines.

    "What are you doing, Sergeant?" Coolidge tried to get a good look.

    "Drawing a map from this one."

    "Why? I thought the Major has a photographic memory."

    "He might, but I don't, and it's always good to have a backup." She sketched a few more lines and shoved the notebook into one of her pockets. "There are always things you wish you hadn't done when you hit the field. Not having a map won't be one of them this time."

    Mack nodded. "Mr. Murphy often likes to screw with us. The less we assume we know, the better off we are." He stepped back from the table. "Let's get the squad together and head out."

    "If you have any questions out in the field, don't hesitate to call me." Coolidge gave him an obsequious smile.

    "Will do. Thank you, Mr. Coolidge."

    Staff Sergeant Bryant leaned closer as the man retreated from them, her tone wry. "You mean with our cell phones that won't work out there?"

    Mack snorted. "Yep, that's them."

    They exited the mansion and headed for the stables, gathering the rest of their crew. All eight people in his squad were damn good at what they did and never let him down. Yet we're so screwed we're gonna need a DeWalt to get us out of this.

    250 ineligible #WIP500 words
    @SiobhanMuir

    ReplyDelete
  6. Cold Comforts

    Kaia leaned against the bar, dark eyes trained on me. Calling her had been foolish, but she’d come without demanding recompense.

    “So, of the many things you wish you hadn’t done, which ranks higher: killing your father, not ensuring he was truly dead, or introducing me to your brother?”

    “Hard call. Snuffing out that thing that claimed to spawn me? Pretty satisfying.”

    “He impregnated your mother. Lying to yourself about it solves nothing.”

    I ignored that. Denial was my second favorite drug. “I can’t regret leaving him buried in the woods. Nate was dying. Well, had died and then not.” My life defied simple explanations.

    “That leaves me.” Kaia smiled, white teeth too sharp to be human. “If you hadn’t been bleeding profusely, I believe you’d have tried to stop me from kissing your brother.”

    Bourbon provided an excuse for silence.

    She patted my arm. “When last we parted, his heartbeat was strong and very, very fast.”

    I didn’t want to think about the implications of Nate having sought the company of a Fury, much less what they’d done. “And his soul?”

    “Tainted, but intact. Trust me, if I come after one of you, I’ll be coming for both. Your sins are too intertwined to untangle.” She leaned over and kissed my cheek. “Stay on the light side, Seth. I can always find you.”

    She stepped through the door, unfurled black wings, and disappeared.

    I dialed Nate’s number, sighed, then closed my phone. He’d contact me when he was ready.

    250 words (sans title)
    @RRKovar

    ReplyDelete
  7. "Shhh—"

    I huddled into the soothing sound of his voice. His lips grazed my forehead, soft and soothing. Beads of sweat mixed with salty tears on my cheeks. He rubbed my arm, working the tension from my muscles. I sucked in a shuddering breath.

    "Just relax."

    I curled into his embrace, wiping my face, wishing my regrets away. A man was dead, dead because of me. All because he owed me a couple grand and a few ounces of cocaine. I huddled into the voice that brought relief.

    "It's okay, Jimmy. Just a little poke, then those necessary things you wish you hadn't done will fade away."

    I trusted him, let him take the burden of my regrets. There was a little poke and warmth flooded me. I smiled, looking deep into his vibrant emerald eyes. His mouth flitted over mine, soft and warm. He brushed his lips over my cheek the bruised flesh tingling.

    "A little more medicine. Then it will all fade away. It was for his own good, Jim. He had to go away."

    I believed him. We had to get rid of people for our own good. He rubbed my shoulders, as I smiled, my worries fading as my body warmed. Another little poke and I closed my eyes, safe and secure in his embrace.

    @Aightball
    220 words

    ReplyDelete
  8. Regrets

    “Do you ever regret things?”

    “Like?”

    “Perhaps, the things you wish you hadn't done?”

    “Only one thing on that particular list.”

    “Oh?”

    “Letting you live back in Cairo.”

    “Ever the sharp tongued woman. I wish I hadn’t turned down your family’s petitions for courtship. We’d have made an excellent couple, you know.”

    “The only thing we’d make together is headlines. ‘ Woman Murders Suitor. Found Not Guilty. Courts Say: He Deserved Death.’ “

    “Fie, woman! Do you not know of the wonders that I am capable?”

    “Yet you tie up a woman who hates you and hold her over a bottomless pit. What a wonderful suitor you are.”

    “I should have gagged you.”

    “You should have checked me for weapons.”

    The shot echoed as the man staggered back. Looking down, he saw a dark red stain spreading on his right shoulder. “Oh my dear Miss Clara, you missed.”

    “My dear Count Jade, are you sure?”

    Shouts came down the cave pathway. Count Jade snarled in response. He growled as he tried loosening the ropes that held Clara. Blood slid down his hand making the knots too slippery to undo.

    “Miss Clara!” Her name echoed across the cavern from a deep strong voice.

    “Mr. King,” Clara said smiling.

    King entered the cavern casually knocking the Count unconscious. He calmly worked to free Clara. “Could‘a killed ‘im at that range, marm.”

    “Hmm, something I would truly regret. Come. Let’s be on our way.”

    “And ‘im, marm?”

    “Too many regrets,” she sighed.

    *******
    250 words including title
    Theresa Breaux
    @theresabreaux

    ReplyDelete
  9. “What are you doing, Samantha?”

    “Making a list. Why, you writing a book?”

    “What kind of list?”

    “None of your business.” Ten more days until Josh would leave for college. Two thousand miles might be far enough to keep him from poking his long pointy nose into everything I do.

    “Things you wish you hadn’t done? You could start it with kissing a girl, and end it with kissing a boy.” He snickered as I grabbed the first thing in reach and threw it at him. After he slammed my bedroom door, I spent too long staring at my poor, abandoned Groovy Girl doll. Poppy slumped on the floor against the closed door, but she still smiled at me. At least I didn’t break another iPod.

    It didn’t pay to argue—besides football and baseball, Josh was also on the debate team. To call him a know-it-all didn’t go far enough. If he really knew anything, though, I’d ask him how to stuff myself back in the closet, slip out again unnoticed, and make everyone magically forget I ever said the b-word.

    My list was heavy on wishes but light on how to make them come true.

    1. Patch things up with Desi
    2. Meet Ward at the County Fair and HAVE A LITTLE FUN!
    3. Break up with Ward (If he doesn’t do it first. Don’t be mean and encourage him to do it first.)
    4. Don’t flirt with ANYONE
    5. Patch things up with Desi

    250 words
    @CharleyDescote

    ReplyDelete
  10. Why oh why did he have to look so hot right now. I mean, seriously, can you really be angry at a man who is the spitting image of Adonis? I sure couldn't.

    "Baby...come on." Those chocolate brown eyes made me almost melt as he held his arms out to me, all tanned and muscular, covered in black tendrils of ink.

    "No, Eli...I mean..." I put my hands on my head and growled in frustration, trying to concentrate on the true issue here instead of what I so wanted to do to him right now. "Can I at least be an elf? Elves are cool."

    Eli got up from the couch and put his arms around me, smiling as he said smugly, "Nope, this year you agreed to let me pick. I'm Gandalf, and you're Frodo." He kissed me lightly on the nose. "No complaining."

    Sometimes in life there are things you wish you hadn't done. And next Halloween I am definitely picking the costumes.

    @bookwormattack
    167 words

    ReplyDelete
  11. The interview

    All the way from the green room, to the stage, Cassia’s entourage surrounded her, giving her helpful tips and reminders as to what needed to be discussed and what should be avoided.

    Of course, none of them thought to say ‘don’t trip over the cables on the floor’ , no once they reached the stage she was on her own—and that was exactly what happened… in front of a live audience… on national television…

    As she caught herself, and pulled herself back up Cass tried play it off, and failed. With a regretful shake of her head, she picked herself up and laughed as she was greeted by the host and ushered to her seat.

    The host introduced her as the audience’s mixture of concern, laughter and cheers at her recovery had died down.

    “Are you all right?” he asked on a salacious tone.

    Cassia laughed and nodded. “Sorry about that.”

    “No, no worries… Can I get you anything before we begin? Some water… a crash helmet?”

    “No… no… I’m fine,” she answered a little stiffly as she tried to keep the ground she’d reclaimed.

    As she sat down, the host looked at the interview cards and chuckled.

    “This is not my doing,” he swore as he read the first question and showed her the card.

    “Things you wish you hadn’t done…”

    Cass laughed. “Falling on national television is right up there,” she admitted.


    @mishmhem
    235 words

    ReplyDelete
  12. Mari loved the old woman almost as much as she loved the old house but Ms. Katherine refused to give her the key to the pantry.

    When she died she left the house to Mari with one stipulation - board up the pantry. 

    The day before the work began Mari unlocked the forbidden door and stepped inside. A chill crept towards her from the far end and she shivered as she stared into cool, whispering darkness.

    Once her eyes adjusted she found a stool holding an old leather bound book. Mari read the words at the top of the first page.

    "Things you wish you hadn't done."

    Each page had a name at the top with a list of events below. Mari skimmed the entries, her stomach turning as she read of horrible deeds done. Halfway through the book she found Ms. Katherine's page.

    Mari's lips grew tight as she read the list of her late friend's offenses. When she got to the next page her whole body stiffened. 

    The top of the page read "Mari Wagner" and below it she read the list of every regret she ever had. Stealing from her sister. The aborted child. Her first marriage. When she read "murdering Ms. Katherine" she slammed the book shut and stood, eyes wide.

    The darkness wound itself around Mari's legs and whispered words echoed in the tiny space. Murderer. Thief. Liar.

    In the morning the carpenters found Mari hanging by her neck in the kitchen.

    247 words
    @joshbgosh

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is just great. Like a Twilight Zone episode. Gripping, scary, and creepy. Love it.

      Delete
  13. I awoke to bright sunlight and a sweaty arm around my waist.

    Shit.

    I turned my head slowly and squinted.

    Shit. Shit. Shit.

    Tom lay there asleep, face down on the pillow, mouth open and drooling.

    Tom, my ex.

    Memories pounded at my skull like a jackhammer. The fight with Jace. Walking out. Calling Tom. Drinking and dancing at the club until I couldn’t see straight.

    The rest was fuzzy. Like my mouth.

    Something buzzed on the floor and I rolled over to find my jeans in a crumpled pile. I reached down to pull my phone out of the pocket. My head roared.

    Where are you? – read the text from Jace.

    Tom groaned next to me. “What the-?” He croaked, squinting at me.

    “My sentiments exactly.”

    “Fuuuuck!” He pushed himself up and held his head.

    “Yeah, that too.”

    “What time is it?”

    “Nine,” I said, putting my feet on the floor. Shit, just moving hurt.

    Tom sighed. “Sorry.”

    “Don’t be. It wasn’t your fault.”

    “I didn’t help.”

    I attempted a chuckle. “No, but I’m not going to blame my problems on you.”

    “What are you going to tell Jace?”

    “The truth. That it was one of those things you wish you hadn’t done.”

    “You think he’ll dump you?”

    “Honestly, I don’t know what he’ll do.” My phone buzzed again. “Maybe that’s part of the problem.”

    226 Words
    @HunterFrostMM

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some tough stuff here. Very real Hunter.

      Delete
  14. With a soft touch, Rumor ran her fingers along the edges of her lover’s wings. As a fairy-shifter, she knew the feeling was akin to having one’s hair caressed. Except the gossamer-like wings were stronger and possessed so many nerve endings, it was even more sensual and titillating.

    They sat on the floor against the couch. Rumor with her legs spread wide, and Shell tucked between them. As the tension from the match released, the other woman sighed, leaning against Rumor’s stomach.

    “I can’t believe I fucked up so badly tonight,” Shell said. “I should have strategized differently.”

    Out on the roller derby track, Bomb’Shell Blue skated without mercy. She chucked opponents into the walls without caution. Alone, she softened and questioned. Rumor brushed aside Shell’s long, blonde hair, draping it over one shoulder. Hidden beneath lay her tattoo – a rich gold and Aztec blue sun god with its rays streaming out toward her muscular shoulders.

    How often had Rumor watched her archrival’s ponytail bobbing and her tight ass sway when she raced after her on wheels? Too often she’d fantasized about this moment, being here with her crush.

    Her gut clenched. Now was the moment.

    “You can’t live life regretting things you wish you hadn’t done,” Rumor whispered. “Regret those you never had the courage to try.”

    She wrapped her arms under Shell’s breasts and drew closer, pressing her lips into the center of the tat, and then stroking her tongue along the path of the design.

    248 words
    @LouisaBacio

    ReplyDelete
  15. We sat around the campfire, holding our paper and pens, wondering why we were awake at 3 o’clock in the morning. When we were all seated, Sergei commenced. “Now, we take the next step in freeing ourselves from the past.” He scribbled on his paper, “Start by naming your list.”

    “But what’s it a list of?” Shelly always asked the first question.

    Sergei answered “It doesn’t matter. What matters is what you feel in this moment, this heartbeat, this breath.”

    I wrote, “Sergei's Friggin’ List.”

    When we’d all named our lists, Sergei continued. “Now, write a list of things you wish you hadn’t done. But you may not include things like I was born. List the things you regret doing.” He paused. “No sharing. The lists are private.”

    I started my list with:

    1. Letting people talk me into keeping that job.
    2. Never telling Sarah how I felt.
    3. The fights I had with my brother.
    4. Never calling my Dad.
    5. Losing Barbara.

    I added things I could never forget. Mistakes I’d made throughout my life. Sergei waited until the last pen stopped moving.

    “Now, it is time to let go of the past, stop letting it hurt you, stop letting it get in your way.”

    Sergei burned his list in the fire. Then each of us did. And when the sun rose, I knew I’d finally cauterised the wounds my regrets had always carved in my heart and soul.

    I was free.

    239 Words
    @LurchMunster

    ReplyDelete
  16. Tamara Khokhar believed Carl upstairs with his pals. He watched her kissing a guy, then leaving the bar with him. They returned ten minutes later, the guy high-fiving buddies, Tamara relegated to their party’s edge, ostracised.

    Carl approached.
    “Let’s split,” he smiled.

    On the bus, she snoozed. The mark on her back – of what looked like a toilet handle’s imprint – was documented by his camera-phone.

    In bed, he spooned her, noting her stickiness.
    “You score tonight?”
    “No!” She moved away.
    He watched the ceiling.
    “Any things you wish you hadn’t done, Tam? Going bareback tonight? Your horrific lies?”
    “I don’t care, see?”

    Her resumé – on his desktop – contained her devout parents’ postal address. He wrote an anonymous letter. Dates correlated with what her parents already knew, veracity unimpeachable.

    “Mom’s bedbound since your letter.”
    “I don’t care. See?”
    “I hate you.”
    “Better than when you loved me.”
    The line went dead.

    His web history contained her cousins’ and pals’ Facebook accounts. She had cuckolded many, their social media walls now enticing. Carl set up a blog and dummy account.

    A week later, Tamara’s number came up again.
    Expecting conflict, he said calmly:
    “How’s your family history of depression working out now, Tamara?”
    Tamara's mother croaked:
    “Daughter hung herself from tree in park five am. Dead. Are there wrongs you made, Carl? Lies? Please, speak truth. Speak truth for Tamara memory. Please. And we forgive!”
    He stared speechless at the phone, listening to Mrs Khokhar’s sobs, before he retched.

    247 words
    @ragtaggiggagon

    ReplyDelete
  17. Nathan walked the length of the football field and back to dissuade his anger. Yet, fury continued to vibrate throughout his tired limbs. Had she been honest maybe things would have been different. She’d lied and lied… and he’d swallowed those lies like a starved man. He took a deep breath and decided on a shower to diffuse the inner beast. His inner Hulk wanted out, badly. His doorbell rang, he stomped over and swung the door open.
    “Are you Nathan Tanner?” An extremely thin detective asked.
    “Yes, I am. What this about?” Nathan’s anger grew, but he was sobering from the rush of adrenaline.
    “Do you know a Summer Gutierrez?”
    He snorted, “I do.”
    “May we come in,”
    “Why?”
    “We’d like to know your whereabouts the last few hours.”
    “I’ve been here and you do not need to come inside,” Nathan said, but still opened the door further to allow him entry. Once inside they sat in his living room.
    “Ms. Gutierrez was found dead earlier today. When was the last time you saw her?”
    His world spun. Some invisible knife stabbed the last shred of his heart. He sat down and stammered, “Aro--around lunchtime.”
    “Where?”
    He asked him “how” several times, but the damn detective only prodded for answers. But answered none. After they left he stared out the window, holding a .44 caliber. He answered his phone on the second ring, and a deep voice said, “She lied. She loved you. How’s that for things you wish you hadn't done.”

    Twitter handle @chattmor

    ReplyDelete
  18. #ThursThreads is now CLOSED. Thanks to everyone who wrote this week and I hope to see you next week. :)

    ReplyDelete

Comments are on moderation, so they'll become visible once I've read them. Words, words, words. I love them. Have you a few to lend?

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.