Thursday, July 18, 2013

#ThursThreads - The Challenge That Ties Tales Together - Week 79

Welcome back to the Weird, the Wild, & the Wicked. Wow, where did half the year go? It's Thursday again, so what should you be doing? Writing #FlashFiction, that's what! Welcome to Week 79 of #ThursThreads, the challenge that ties tales together. 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 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 Plus

Our Judge for Week 78:

Antique collector, gardener, and m/m romance author, Andrew Grey.

And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.

The Prompt:

“No secrets worth keeping.”

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! :)


  1. Noura had been staring out the car window; Baba had been driving, mother singing. They'd been on the way to the mall to buy something for Noura. Fatima had sought a promise something would be bought for her. Baba had said they would see.

    Fatima had wished aloud SHE were the younger sister.

    Baba had reminded her -- gently -- that wishing for such things was sinful. Fatima saw his hazel eyes smile in the rear view mirror.

    Fatima had glared at her younger sister, then whispered a curse word.

    Apparently Baba heard. Fatima heard his tisk, saw his eyes darken in the mirror.

    "For that, no dessert tonight."

    But Noura hadn't heard. She was still staring out the open car window at ... something.

    Mother asked: "What are you watching, Noura?"

    Silence. Baba abandoned the mirror. Mother turned on the radio.

    "I see them," the three-year-old had whispered to Fatima. "I see the devils." As though imparting a deadly secret.

    For some reason, ten years on, there were, for Noura, no more secrets worth keeping. This morning, she entered with groceries and announced that a redhaired boy named Crazytown was outside writing out detailed instructions for blowing up their building. She insisted his intricate bomb designs were laid out on the sidewalk in luminescent purple chalk. Also his lifelike sketch of Fatima emerging "naked, naked" from the shower.

    "Crazytown sees you, but not like I see you," Noura shouted out the window at a pedestrian. "He sees you naked."

    (250 words from @bytoropov(

  2. “No secrets worth keeping.”
    “This one is.”
    “Why do you believe Paul is worthy of your trust?
    “Allan he’s known you all of three weeks give him time to open up I’m not going to break my trust with Paul. Paul is a stand-up guy.”
    “Allan quit berating my sister Kelly, I’ll tell you,” Paul cried walking in on them, “It’s a bit of a long story and you’re going to find out anyway. Ten years ago I was still trying to find myself and I dated this girl.
    “You were dating a girl?”
    “Yes, and I was a smoker too.”
    “But you treat your body as a temple.”
    “I didn’t then and I did something stupid.”
    “This girl and I broke into some dudes house to score some money for drugs.”
    “Yes, drugs. I was stupid. We broke in and I left my DNA behind on a cigarette butt. That’s come back to haunt me. Going for a police check to get that job as a pre-school teacher come back to haunt me. I was arrested. Kelly got me out on bail. I’m pleading guilty tomorrow and throwing myself on the mercy of the court.”
    “Don’t tell me it’s over.”
    “No babe. I’ll be there even if you go to jail. I love you the person you’ve become.”
    “I love you Allan.”
    “I know you silly man,” Allan cried taking Paul in his arms.
    “That’s more like it,” cried Kelly.
    “Thanks Kelly,” they both exclaimed hugging her.
    250 words

  3. She was flirting with me but that was one rabbit hole I wasn’t about to jump down and tried to play it off as if I hadn’t heard her the first time.

    “What was that?”

    Her eyes narrowed and I wondered if perhaps I had carried it all a bit too far this time.

    “I asked you what is in the case you constantly drag around town with you.”

    The ancient battered leather suitcase sat at my feet beneath the counter. It was quite large, scratched in more places than not, the leather cracked and split on the rest of it. I knew she couldn’t see it from where she was standing so I guessed she must have seen me carrying it in when I entered the diner.

    It never left my side and I never opened it in public but suddenly I wondered if perhaps she might just be the one.

    I protectively placed my size thirteen Rockport on top of the suitcase and instinctively reached for the tiny brass key hidden in the small fob pocket of my 501’s. Still there. I was okay.

    I leaned slightly over the counter towards the pale waitress with more red hair than I had ever seen in my life and whispered, “It’s a secret.”

    She grinned broadly then as if she had heard it all before and replied, “No secrets worth keeping.”

    I pondered her words for only a moment before pulling the key from my pocket and unlocking the case.


    250 words

  4. Lara’s Secret
    By Lisa McCourt Hollar

    “Lara, was that Michael I saw driving away?


    Lara’s back was turned, but Stephanie thought her voice sounded strained, as though she’d been crying. She put her hand on her friends shoulder. “Well, he is coming back, right?”

    “I don’t know.”

    “What do you mean, you don’t know?”

    Lara turned around and brushed past her friend. “I’m thirsty. You want a drink?”

    “No. Was he cheating on you?”

    Lara laughed. “Michael? No way. He’s a saint.”

    “Then what happened?”

    “He asked me about the basement.”

    “So? I’ve wondered about it myself. You’ve kept it locked tight, ever since David’s death…“

    Lara flinched, but ignored the pain she felt at her son’s name. “You’ve never pushed me. Michael went down there. He tried to break the lock.”

    “No secret’s worth keeping, not if you lose the one person you love most.”

    “If he knew, I would lose him anyway.”

    “I don’t understand. Lara, what’s in that room? A shrine? It’s been ten years, you need to move on.”

    “Leave it alone Steph.”

    Stephanie’s eyes fell on the crowbar by the basement steps. She waited until Lara reached into the fridge for a beer.

    “Stephanie, please… you don’t understand.”

    Lara chased her down the steps, but Stephanie was already prying at the weakened lock. It didn’t take much to finish what Michael’s started. The lock broke, the door opened and inside the room, a roar sounded.

    “David never died,” Lara sobbed. “It would have been better if he had… Stephanie, run!”

    Word Count: 250

  5. I am currently engaged in a stare down with my fiancé. I know he’s hiding something from me but he won’t tell me what.

    “No secrets worth keeping,” I told him.

    He kept quiet his mouth set in a thin line. He itched his arms, his body twitching. I know he’s high but I want him to tell me himself.

    “Some are.” His voice was whisper quiet.

    “No secrets worth keeping.”

    He vomited. I stepped back, out of the mess. He shivered. I glared. We’ve done this before. I dare say we’ll do it again. This is life with a drug addict and alcoholic.


    “Go on.”

    “I-I can’t handle it. I’m—“

    I waited. He itched and twitched. His tiny body, all six feet four of it, was covered in a sheen of sweat. He was huddled in a squat on the floor, hugging his knees to his chest. His teeth chattered, his eyes rolled up in his head. But this time, he avoided a seizure.


    “I figured. This is the third time you’ve relapsed, Jimmy. This will be your third trip to rehab. I suppose I’m lucky I found you before you died. It’s over a hundred degrees out here and the humidity isn’t good for your asthma. I’m taking you to the hospital. From there, it’s back to rehab.”


    I lifted him off the hot asphalt, cradling him in my arms. I’ve done this before. I dare say I’ll do this again.

    247 words

  6. #ThursThreads is now CLOSED. Thank you to everyone who wrote today and I hope to see you next week. :)


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.