Thursday, March 20, 2014

#ThursThreads - The Challenge That Ties Tales Together - Week 113

Welcome back to the Weird, the Wild, & the Wicked. Happy First Day of Spring 2014! Are you feeling it? ;) It's Thursday today, so what should you be doing? Writing #FlashFiction, that's what! Welcome to Week 113 of #ThursThreads, the challenge that ties tales together. 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 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 113:

Rock nerd, paleo-geek, mining geologist, and comic book aficionado, George Varhalmi.

And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.

The Prompt:

“You would not listen.”

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. He tried to see through the illumination provided by indirect lighting. The room lingered in a murky sort of twilight, heavy with the smoke of incense and candles. It was warm, but not enough to relax him as he tested the restraints. The leather was soft against his inner arm. He just couldn’t see very well.

    “I could better appreciate this with my glasses on, Mistress.”

    Her whip cracked. “Hush.”

    He tightened his jaw against a moan, but it escaped anyway. The whip whistled in the air over his body, never touching him but promising… He shivered.

    He needed this.

    “Please,” he begged, clenching his fists.

    The shadowy form of his Mistress moved closer, her fragrance subtly intermixed with the incense of the room. She dragged the leather ends of her whip over his chest and he bucked against the table, his hips seeking hers.

    “Clearly, you need further control,” she whispered near his ear.

    He almost climaxed. Until she covered his eyes with a red cloth. This startled him enough that he no longer sought her with his body, but only with his ears.

    She said, “You would not listen. And now you will not be able to.”

    That was too much. “Mistress?”

    She pinched his shoulder and he trembled.

    He hated to do this but he needed to, too. “Shamrock.”

    Immediately, she removed the ear protectors and blindfold and produced his glasses from somewhere and slid them tenderly up his nose. “Better?”

    Relief flooded through him. “Thank you.”

    Word count: 250

  2. “I want to go home.”
    “You can’t go home ever again,” Cheryl explained.
    “But mom...”
    “Don’t but me. “
    “You think because I’m a teen you can boss me around and I have to do everything you say,” complained Katrina.
    “No, I think because I’m your mother I want to protect you.”
    Katrina stamped her feet ran up the stairs and slammed the door of her bedroom.
    “It’s dark, now I’m going to work now. See you later,” Cheryl yelled up to Katrina.
    Five minutes after Cheryl left the house Katrina went to her old home. Cheryl finished her shift and started home to Katrina. Her phone rang and she answered it and then rushed to their old home entering she came upon Katrina standing over a body.
    “Mom, I’m sorry you were right.”
    “You would not listen.”
    “I’m sorry,” cried Cheryl wiping away blood tears.
    “He denied I was his daughter and he hit me with that. Just because that one time I killed my sister. I was hungry,” Katrina exclaimed pointing out a wooden stake.
    “This is why I told you, you could never go home again. Don’t worry; I’ll help you get rid of the body. But next time listen to me.”
    “I will mom. Believe me I will.”
    After disposing of the body of Thomas Ketchum in a shallow grave, in the woods, Katrina and Cheryl moved to another town. Cheryl taught Katrina where to hunt safely and to not bring home her kills.
    248 words

    1. Sweet. Daughter's never believe their mothers until it's too late.

    2. Wow the family picnics must be delightful ;)
      Terrific tale!

  3. "Just because that one time I killed my sister. I was hungry," -- I can just hear that. And, sorry, I was smiling when I did.

  4. "You do not believe yourself better than me, even with your mythical status?"

    "No. Just another woman trying to find her way home." Bethany shrugged. "I'm not trying to take your place as Lead Mare. I have my own problems." She scrubbed her face with her hands. "Man problems just like you. Only, they're trying to tell me who to..." She glanced at her centaur companion. "Mate with."

    The Lead Mare tipped her head and smirked. "And this is different from me, how?"

    Bethany blinked. "The males tell you to whom you'll mate? Really?"

    The other woman shrugged. "It is the way it is."

    Bethany snorted. "If I was as strong as you, I'd fight it."

    "Believe me, you would not."

    "Listen, different species or not, we're still people with a voice and an opinion. We're not chattel."

    The centaur woman tipped her head, her charcoal braid falling over one full breast. "You really believe this, human?"

    "Hell, yeah, I do." Bethany strode toward her and held out her hand. "My name's Bethany Stanton."

    The Lead Mare stared at her hand as if it consisted of an odd shape and texture, but slowly reached out to grasp Bethany's thumb in her fist. Bethany closed her hand around the Mare's thumb and shook gently.

    "I am Idrissa Plainsrunner, Lead Mare of the Forest Edge clan."

    "Very pleased to meet you, Idrissa." Bethany released her and stood back. "Now, how are we going to going to convince the males we mean business?"

    250 ineligible #WIP500 words

  5. Billy stood on the sidewalk across the street, laughing, and pointing at the dead dog in the middle of the road. My dog, Sam. Billy had just run over him with the truck his parents got him.

    I stood on the sidewalk, looking at Sam’s mangled remains. He had broken bones everywhere, and his guts were coming out his mouth.

    Billy glared at me, as he sang, “He’s looking over his dead dog rover, laying on the black asphalt! One leg’s broken, another’s just gone. I ran over Rover with my big damn truck!”

    Dad sent me inside, before I could do anything, or say anything. “We’ll let the lawyers handle this.”

    Like hell we would.

    The next morning, I watched Billy get in his truck to go to work.

    I knew he would put the key in the ignition, then put his foot on the brake, and turn the key to start the engine. And I watched his truck catch fire when he did. I watched him try to get out of the truck, as the fire spread quickly. I knew he couldn’t.

    Billy had wanted war. “I’m gonna take care of that damn dog of yours!” he’d screamed at me.

    I looked across the street, as his truck burned, with him in it. Have I mentioned how useful the Internet is? Amazing, what you can find on it. “I warned you not to hurt Sam. You would not listen. You should have listened.”

    245 Words

  6. Jasmine entered the club, certain her date had left long ago. Another Friday night wasted.

    She lifted her hip onto one of the high stools at the bar, crossing her long legs and hooking one stiletto on the bottom rung of her seat.

    “Pomegranate Martini, compliments of the man at the other end.”
    She leaned forward and found the last man she expected to see. With a flip of her golden hair, she removed him from her line of sight. Her colleague may be arrogant, but the drink she’d take.

    “I knew you would not listen.” Jasper took the seat next to her. “You can’t date while you’re on the job, unless it’s with me.”

    “I will date.” She pushed back her glass and stood. “But it won’t be with you.”

    “I didn’t peg you as a girl who needs compliments and pampering.” He took a slow sip from his tumbler. “That’s about all these last two guys could offer. They certainly don’t know how to handle a woman like you.”

    “And you think you can handle me?”

    He rose and trapped her against the bar. “You’re welcome for the drink.”

    “Why me?” She looked into his eyes.

    “Say yes and I’ll show you why.”

    She reached back and brought her drink to her lips.

    215 words

  7. They were on the run again. Antonio looked at Miyuki but she refused to acknowledge him. When he spoke, his voice was plaintive. “Why won’t you say anything to me?”

    “Why should I bother,” she snapped back. She advanced the throttle as she glanced at the dashboard. The cruiser picked up speed. She switched to the stern camera. The pursuing craft continued to match their pace.

    “I thought we were far enough away, that we’d have time to get some supplies and make repairs before they…”

    “I told you it was too soon. I told you there wasn’t enough cover but no, you would not listen. I hope you’re happy now.” An explosion behind them on their right rocked the cruiser.

    “WHAT? Are they crazy? They could hurt you!” Antonio was frantic. “We need to stop—to turn ourselves in.”

    “NEVER! I’m never going back there!” Antonio looked at Miyuki. Her clenched jaw told him that she would run until she dropped but she would never willingly go back. She looked at him and smiled. “Don’t worry about the missiles. They’re just trying to scare us. They wouldn’t dare harm me. Daddy would have their heads.” She grabbed the throttles again, flicked off the locks and jammed them as far as they would go.

    Antonio hung on as the cruiser leaped like a startled horse. The pursuers receded in the distance and soon they were alone.

    Miyuki smiled. “How does it feel to be the bodyguard of the runaway princess?”

    250 words

  8. I swallow a lump in my throat, watching a small, sharp point catch the sun. Sunspots dance before my eyes as it drags along the worn hardwood floor. Four inch heels snap at the floor, and a slender, strong wrist snaps the point toward my left calf. Blood drips down my leg, pooling over dried blood from yesterday.

    "You would not listen."

    Her voice is mechanical. I made her mad. I watch the sharp point as it snaps forward, slashing into my stomach. Tears prick my eyes.

    "I told you that sale was mine. It was a special request. You were permitted to answer the door. You were not permitted to make that sale. You lost me money. Two grand, gone. And now you will pay."

    The room pitches forward. Something crunches when the floor smacks me in the face. My back stings. The room smells of copper. I heave a breath, licking dry lips. Copper. My mouth is filled with the taste of copper. My blood.

    "You will give me all your sales from here on out."

    I lay there, the sharp point slashing my low back open.

    "You will also give me any invited clients."

    Black threatens the edge of my vision.

    "And if you ever do this again, I'll do so much worse than whip you."

    Can't—she grabs my hair, my neck cracking as she yanks my head back.

    "Do not cross me again."

    The floor meets my forehead with one last, resounding whack.

    248 words


  9. ~~~~~

    And there it was. The grand finale, the end.

    The one way out.

    You would not listen, and I would not speak.

    As the car veered over to the opposite lane, and the oncoming headlights shone straight into our car, you turned to me, and said, “Never. Never, no one, ever.”

    I understood, at last, what you had been trying to tell me for years. You would not share me with anyone.

    You would not love me—yet you would also never let anyone else love me.

    The wickedness of it all floored me.

    Because I could have loved you.


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

    1. Ack! Wow. Classic theme, tragic enactment. Nice!

  10. Cord flicked the blinds and watched dust motes dance in the sunlight. He hadn’t stepped inside this room in years. Part nursery, part playroom, it contained the detritus of five boys growing up. Clay’s bookcase full of biographies and histories. Chance’s hard-plastic palomino spring horse, its metal frame rusty. Mud-encrusted equipment bags full of leather gloves and baseballs belonging to Cash and Chase.

    He found what he’d been searching for over in the corner. The Barron family cradle. The wood carved and shaped by the hands of his great-great-grandfather. Five generations of Barron babies slept in that cradle. He rubbed dust off with his hand, fingering the spindles turned on a hand lathe. Five generations. But not the sixth. Not his son.

    Jolie robbed him of that by stealing his son away, by running without a word. He’d missed five years—six since he wasn’t around for her pregnancy, either.

    You would not listen.

    She’d flung the words at him, like they shielded her from responsibility. Well he was fucking listening now, wasn’t he? But she was the one turning deaf ears on him. Fine. He was a gawdamn Barron and so was CJ. Cordell Joseph Barron, even if his damned birth certificate listed Davis for a last name.

    Cord pulled out his phone and speed-dialed Chance. If she wanted war, he’d bring it.

    “What’s up, bro?”

    “You know what to do.”

    239 words

  11. She knew it was a mistake. Didn't matter. She would go ahead and do it anyway. He was just too sure of himself. The fact that he was so ruggedly handsome was no reason to resist challenging him.

    Okay, yes, that annoying little voice in her head told her for the sixth or seventh time not to do it.

    Did she listen? She never listened. Her silly pride always got in the way.

    She went up to him and accepted his challenge. Ride the bronco for twenty seconds or forfeit the new jeep she was struggling to make payments on.

    So there she was, sitting in the mud, on her bum, wet, dirty and humiliated.

    You would not listen so don't expect pity, her inner voice said.

    She had to admit the voice was right. Actually she didn't remember a time the voice was wrong. If only she would listen to it.

    "Congrats, Savannah, you did it. Twenty-eight seconds." Carly beamed with pride for her sister.

    "You mean I get to keep my jeep?"

    "Never mind the jeep, sis. Go get the man. He's what you really want, you're just too stubborn to admit it."

    Cate Derham
    189 Words

  12. "You would not listen, you did not know how."

    The variation on the classic words from Vincent by Don McLean are running through my head as I drive down the interstate. I took some liberties with the lyrics I know, but there is no one to mind, no one who cares. I don’t blame you, it simply is, and there is no going back now anyway.

    Has it been twelve years already? Since we met and married on impulse, driving to Maryland on a cold and dreary Friday in March? It was raining that night I remember, and I was worried about how the pictures would turn out. Silly really, little girl nonsense.

    We built a life, we built a home. Our sweetest conversations came not from our lips but from our bodies, we touched when there were no words to say.

    The lost of our child built a wall of silence too deafening for our quiet whispers of pain. When I spoke of him, you simply turned your head and pretended not to hear.

    Last night we slept in separate beds, in separate rooms, the dying remains of a love disappearing in the gray shadows of ash between us.

    Now I drive away on another rainy afternoon in March from an unfamiliar courthouse where a stranger that I hadn’t invited in sat behind a bench and told me we are no longer married and I am no longer a wife.

    I wonder what I will be tomorrow.

    248 Words

    1. Those lyrics and that song were the very first thing I had in my head. Bravo for using them! :)

  13. Great story, Cynthia! Pulls at the emotions.

  14. I sat down and tried not to pay attention to his orange jumpsuit. “I have to—”

    “You have to shut up. And you don’t say anything to anyone.”

    “But, they said they’d reduce the charge—”

    “What did I just tell you? Fucking shut up. That’s bullshit. They look at my record and they see a guy working on hitting bottom, not some organized shit. They’re just fishing.” He pointed a dirty finger at me. If the plexiglass wasn’t there he’d be shaking me by the shoulders or holding my t-shirt in his fists. “I can’t protect you in here, Mickey.”

    “That’s no reason to—”

    “That’s the only reason that matters now. You would not listen before, but you’ll listen now. If you say anything to anyone I’ll kill you myself.”

    A few minutes after I started studying the grease stains on my jeans, he knocked on the glass. I looked up. Tough older brother or not, he was afraid. Almost as afraid to go to prison as I was to let him go alone. To be the one left behind again. Only this time Kurt wouldn’t be there; only me.

    “Nobody will ever know,” he said.

    He’d said the same thing while we drove to the warehouse, and then again while we watched the news report about the guy who died trying to put out the fire.


    230 words

  15. Tracy struggled against the silken ropes that tightened held her in place. There were several people in the shadows, she could hear their clothing rustling, but only three were in the light that she could see, two men flanking a woman. She felt like a pig that was about to be slaughtered.

    “You would not listen. You were told to keep away and yet we find you sneaking around, trying to find something that isn’t there. Now you’ll be punished.” The woman strode forward, one long black nail trailing down Tracy’s cheek. “Most of us don’t want a thrall that we didn’t hand pick ourselves. We don’t know if you would be of any use at all other than for your blood.”

    Tracy jerked her head again, brow furrowing. Her teeth tried to work the gag they pulled too tightly in her mouth. The woman’s eyes narrowed and she reached up and grabbed a handful of suspended woman’s hair and yanked. “No use trying to get away now. You were warned!” She snapped a finger and a collared man who kept his gaze to the floor came forward with a crystal glass.

    “Thomas has stepped up and said he would take you. Generous no?” One of those nails tore the gag out before she poured the viscous liquid down Tracy’s throat.

    Her throat convulsed as she tried to swallow and not drown. The woman didn’t care how much got in, as long as some did.

    “Prepare for your worst night.”

    250 words

  16. “Where do you think you’re going!?” Her voice boomed like a thunder clap.

    I glanced up from my suitcase as she hurried into my room.

    “Well?! Answer me, Michael!”

    The rage no longer fazed me. I knew it came from somewhere deep and ugly and sad. She lashes out because she’s scared. I used to be afraid of her, but now I just feel sorry for her.

    “I’m moving out, Mom.” I continued to pack my clothes, ignoring the tension in her angry stance.

    She laughed. “Oh please. You won’t last a day on your own.”

    “I’m eighteen,” I said, folding a pair of shorts.” And, I’m moving in with Jared.”

    Her wild eyes narrowed and she crossed her arms over her chest. “How dare you tarnish our family name by living in sin.” She looked me up and down with such hatred, I thought she might spit at me.

    “Because we’re not married? Or because we’re gay?” I asked, sarcastically, and moved over the closet.

    “You’re not gay,” she growled.

    This time I laughed. “Really, Mom?” I held up a t-shirt with a rainbow on it. “You would not listen the first time I told you, but it’s getting old now.”

    I threw the shirt at her. “Keep this. Hopefully one day you’ll finally get it.”

    217 words
    Hunter Frost

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

  18. The Tattoo

    I got the tattoo on impulse. You would not listen to anything I had to say to show you how I felt, so I gathered together all my savings and went to a tiny shop in a disreputable part of town, where a huge grizzled man with a long beard, a bald head and about a million tattoos scattered all over his body grunted at me and gestured to the chair where I was to sit. I’d thought carefully about what I wanted. What would show you I meant the things I said. I decided to have him decorate me with a rosebud that was slightly opened, showing the promise of the beautiful flower within.

    An hour and quite a lot of pain later, I left the shop with the new adornment on my upper arm and mumbled instructions on how to care for it. I waited to show it to you until it was healed properly and then I presented it to you.

    You looked at my arm for a long time, and then your eyes met mine. For the first time, I saw a glimmer of something that might be the beginnings of understanding the depth of my feelings at last. Finally you spoke.

    “It’s lovely.”

    You smiled at me so tenderly and my heart leapt, and then you turned away, taking the arm of your husband, taking the pieces of my heart with you.

    239 words {including title}


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