Thursday, April 10, 2014

#ThursThreads - The Challenge That Ties Tales Together - Week 115

Welcome back to the Weird, the Wild, & the Wicked. Did you miss me last week? It was a tough time, but hey, it's Thursday today, so what should you be doing? Writing #FlashFiction, that's what! Welcome to Week 115 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 115:

Corset enthusiast, promo whore extraordinaire, and erotic romance author, Cat Johnson.

And now your #ThursThreads Challenge, tying tales together.

The Prompt:

“He runs alone.”

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. The life of the abused

    The sun is a red ball of fire on the horizon as the other leaves the bedroom. He turns, looks back over his shoulder at him, statue still. Both shame and satisfaction fill his heart as the door closes.

    The skies are a blue the sun is shining, birds play catch and go fuck as the mating ritual begins. It is spring and with it a sense of rebirth and renewal. People are coming out of their homes where winter has kept them cloistered, all except one who hides in his imagination, writing tales of conquering heroes and alternative worlds. And the day passes.

    The sky is painted now with deep and pale purples, pinks and orange.
    He runs alone escaping thoughts of abuse, and torments of the soul.
    He dreams of nights where no one will creep silently into his room with promises of pleasure that reduce him to tears and fill him with pain, leaving him numb.

    And then it is night and it begins again.

  2. A handsome, dark haired man stood at the bar sipping whiskey, looking at the women around him appreciatively. Two women entered the bar one dressed in a red dress her flaming red hair thrown over her shoulder and the other dressed in black, black pants black shirt, matching her jet black long hair. All eyes turned to look at the pair. The man stared at the two women and smiled at the dark-haired woman who turned away and ignored him.
    Violeta, the dark head one asked, “Are you sure, Kiera?”
    “Yes, he runs alone. Like all alpha males, he thinks he needs no one, until the right woman comes along.”
    The man walked up and set a whiskey and set it in front of Violeta.
    “I didn’t ask for a drink,” she protested.
    “I didn’t ask to be intrigued by you,” he answered,” I’m Lucian and you are?”
    “She’s Violeta Sparks,” Kiera answered.
    “Shall we dance Violeta?”
    “Okay,” Violeta answered.
    They danced and Violeta sat down. He sat beside her asking questions. Violeta excused herself to go to the bathroom, but crept outside. Seconds later Violeta noticed Lucian in the distance over a male.
    “Do you share?” asked Violeta
    Lucian removed his fangs from the male and said “Have a drink on me.”
    Violeta moved in and with one swift movement pulled a stake from her bra and put the stake in Lucian’s chest. The society would be pleased, one less, lone vampire running around to reveal their presence.
    249 words

  3. Word count: 250

    = = =

    He runs alone.

    The chilly stillness of the moments just before the sun casts its rays upon the earth is his favorite part of the day. His feet hitting the hard ground with a sure rhythm, his favorite sound.

    He doesn’t even need to chant, anymore. The message is affixed in his memory.

    “The High King has been overthrown and I sit in his place. I await your pledge of fealty.” And there are the names of those who died to help the new Ard Ri—the title this people have for the High King. Warriors who, so the legends say, will see Valhalla and dine in the great hall of their fathers.

    To the right, the sun slides out of the great sea, yellow and white. The runner grimaces, wishing to be out of the light for he is vulnerable alone. It is the fastest way to travel—no one else has his speed and endurance combined—but he is without defense, save the sgian that he won from the dead hand of an opponent. Still, as he turns up a rise in the land, he sees the village close to the large lake and nods. He has arrived.

    “Your news?” they demand of him after giving him a skin of cold water.

    He tells it. They exchange a glance. His tired limbs cannot defend him when the men grimly slice his throat.

    A northern man runs south, taking their answer to the new Ard Ri.

    He runs alone.

    1. Wait? Is this your entry, Siobhan? Or someone else's? Still, dang!

    2. No, not mine. The author couldn't post this morning so I posted for her. :)

  4. Antoine, in wolf form, paced back and forth. Another man touching his woman unsettled wolf and man both. But she wasn’t. He snarled as Rudek Tornjak approached. Rudy was mated to Antoine’s niece, Isabelle.

    “Easy, my friend. Sean seeks only to heal your woman.”

    His wolf relaxed at Rudy’s acknowledgment. Sean was also mated. The combat medic did not want Antoine’s woman.

    “Will you change? Stay with your woman?”

    Torn, Antoine was uncomfortable in human form around these other Wolves yet inexorably drawn to the woman. Deep down, he feared hurting her. Angry at the thought, his wolf decided.

    Rudy watched the lone wolf disappear before returning to the others. He understood Antoine’s situation.

    DJ opened her eyes, and started fighting.

    “Easy, Deputy.” Mac took charge, as he always did.

    She assessed her situation, studied the faces surrounding her, and felt hollow that one was missing.

    “Where is he?” Why should she care? The man was nothing to her. She clung to that even as her hands trembled and her heart clutched so hard she couldn’t breathe. She pushed against the hands holding her down.

    “He runs alone.”

    She stared at Rudy, fighting her shattering emotions. He was gone? The thought left her empty, devoid of everything but despair. The men exchanged looks, communicating something she couldn’t grasp and she slipped back into unconsciousness.

    DJ awoke, panicked. A man loomed above her. Antoine. Her savior.


    His word branded her. Soothed her. Beyond understanding. She didn’t care.

    “Yes. Yours.”
    249 words from the world of my Wolves when I really should be writing about cowboys...


    1. "His word branded her." -- Powerful sentence!

  5. A guy removes his muddy canvas shoes as he leaves the beach. His girlfriend hands him napkins from her purse, cursing his idiocy in their first language. A bearded man with long hair approaches. He runs alone in sweat-soaked tee and flannels. Rather than a spliff, he has bottle of water in one hand, i-Pod in the other.

    Whipping earbuds out, jogging comically on the spot, breathing heavily, mouth shaped as though whistling, he filters air into his lungs. The couple stare. He hands his water bottle to the guy. Covered in sweat, there are specks of white spittle at his lip’s edges.

    “Use this...” he wheezes, “to clean your feet.”
    “Yes!” the jogger insists, fierce earnestness in his azure eyes.
    “Thank you. The shops, they are far.”

    Enough water remains to wash both his feet and his shoes if he’s sparing.

    “I drank some already, so...” The hippy means there isn’t much left but also that there is a risk of germ contagion from a stranger’s offer. The couple understand his statement perfectly.

    “No. It’s great. Thanks.” The man bows slightly.

    The hippy sets off again along the promenade. The woman says, watching:

    “A bit like Jesus.”
    “Yes. Long hair and...beard,” her boyfriend says.
    “No. I mean he washes your feet.”

    They exchange glances for a moment and then laugh at the potentially sacrilegious thought, reverting to non-English, as she holds out a napkin.

    243 words

  6. Hi, my name is Warren C. Bennett. You can find me on twitter @warrencbennett. My post is 238 words long. (With all apologies to Cake, heh.)

    The blacktop goes on both in front and behind, the track laid before is always unkind. Churning and yearning he strives for the bend, not knowing the past or even the end. He's driving and striving as fast as he can, only he hasn't fallen through the ocean of sand.

    Yet, he runs and guns and aims for the end, hoping in vain for a third or fourth wind. The past is behind him and the future before, if he doesn't finish he can't settle that score. They come at a distance but not far behind. He's pumping and jumping with nary a whine.

    History in balanced hangs in his head, his friends that started with him have ended up dead. The light of the sun beats down on his back, he can't stop or think or show any lack. The distance is great and he runs alone, but he runs for humanity and runs for his home.

    Bullets whiz by him as he sees the gates, he running for life and running for mates. He hears the creatures that follow him close, snarls and grunts coming from the host. His foot his the pavement of the town up ahead and suddenly thoughts fills him with dread. There are no monsters and the town isn't here, his head plays tricks with all that is dear. He continues on this lonely road, forever he runs and he runs alone.

  7. The crowd started cheering as the first runners came in. Those were the marathoners, the ones who did this all the time. My husband was probably near the middle of the pack, given his training times the last couple weeks. Biting my lower lip, I edged closer to the first aid booth and listened to their scanner. A number of runners had already been taken from the race for overheating, exhaustion, and other injuries, but so far, Jimmy seemed to be okay.

    My husband was running his first marathon. Running had done wonders for his asthma, but his training had been a challenge. It didn't help that he runs alone. I was standing as close to the first aid booth as I could get, one ear on their scanner.

    A cheer went up and I glanced up to see a group of runners heading for the finish line, exhausted smiles on their faces. Someone touched my shoulder and I jumped.

    "Jacoby, he's gonna be fine. Come on."

    I followed my friend Anthony back toward the finish line. Forcing myself to focus, I saw another group of runners. Blinking, I spotted Jimmy.

    As soon as he was over the line, I ran for him, crushing him in a hug. He grabbed some water and downed half the bottle.

    "You did it!"

    He nodded. I let go, his inhaler tight in my hand. "You made it, too," he panted.

    Blushing, I nodded. I can't help it if I'm a worry-wart.

    248 words

  8. The wind howled through the trees. Feet pounding against damp grass. His heart beat with staccato of his pace. Faster and faster, fury filling his blood and the air.

    Her scent filled his nostrils during the pursuit. She laughed, drawing him forward.

    The taste of blood cut through his other senses, and he soared, remembering the high from the first bite. His lips upon her throat. The way the vein pulsed beneath his tongue. Hunger grew from deep within his soul. The thirst for substance bound with knowledge and companionship.

    A stretching sensation ripped through his mouth, as his teeth elongated. He caught her. Bare skin against bare skin, they tumbled to the ground.

    “Don’t feel afraid of hurting me,” Madeline said. “The pain amplifies the pleasure.”

    Sven understood the complex duality. The longing to be alone, and yet part of something bigger. He fought against the bounds of society, anxious to do what he wanted, rather than what was expected. He dropped out of school, searching for his place within the hierarchy of the world, and found himself here, within her arms and her control.

    His teeth punctured her neck at the same time as his cock plunged into her pussy. She arched into him, urging him to take more, to plunder her. The crunch of dry leaves beneath their bodies. Every nerve ending on fire, they sizzled under the full moon.

    Usually, he runs alone. Tonight, he’d given himself to her.

    And life would never be the same.

    250 words

  9. ~~~~~

    Planetary solitude.

    He had never been seen with anyone by his side. He had kept to himself at all time.

    He had felt so alone as his whole world turned grey and polluted.
    Achingly alone. Abandoned.

    Why in the whole world he’d opted for staying behind, when everyone else had upped and left, was beyond belief—to willfully put oneself in the position of being the last on a whole world.

    He looked outside, and saw the moons setting, knowing the time was drawing near.


    What had they said when he was chosen? Right. Those words.

    “He runs alone.”


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

  10. "Silence." Bethany's escort swiped at her, but she ducked.

    "Back off, Captain. I've done nothing but cooperate with you. If this is how you treat prisoners, you have no honor." She stood out of reach and kept her gaze moving. She didn't want one of the others to grab her.

    A rumbling snarl echoed from the captain's chest and his expression turned thunderous, but she stood his ground and prepared to dart under them if need be. These guys were big and fast, but sometimes small, quick, and smart could work against them.

    "Stand down, Captain." The older centaur tilted his head and something shadowing a smile curled his lips as he gazed at Bethany. "Where did you find her?"

    "In the ceremonial grounds, General."

    "What were you doing there on this holy day, human?"

    How did she answer that? "Taking a walk, sir. I didn't realize it was a holy day. And where I'm from, nothing was going on."

    "Where you're from?"

    "She said she came through the Rifts, sir," the captain supplied.

    Bethany gulped. “Rifts?”

    “The portal at the Guardian’s Copse." The general nodded and his smile vanished. "Has it been thoroughly checked?"

    "I left Corporal Tredon to oversee the final closing."

    "No one else?" The general shot a look of disapproval to the captain.

    "He runs alone, sir. He says it's for safety reasons."

    "I would think today of all days he'd choose to have reinforcements. Send a small party back to him to be sure."

    249 ineligible #WIP500 words

    1. Oooh, like how you worked the prompt in there!

  11. Bobo got laid last night.” Diaz sashayed up to the bar, batting his eyelashes. “Spotted him this morning.” He hunched his shoulders and peered left and right. “Doing the walk of shame back to his truck. His lady friend likes it rough by the look of yesterday’s uniform.”

    Laughing at D’s antics, I signaled Elvis for two drafts.

    “Know who the unlucky lady is?”

    “If I had to guess, he’s finally worked his way into Miss Paradise Hotel’s pants.” He downed half a beer in one gulp. “A class act like her should kick him to the curb, but he came slinking out from her dirt road.”

    “Are you serious? He was with Danielle Foster?” Happy hour forgotten, I snapped up straight. “But she—there’s no way.”

    “Jealous?” Diaz eyed me. “What happened to your no-humans resolve?”

    “Not jealous.” I dug my keys from my pocket and threw a twenty on the bar. “And not human. She is bad fucking news and he knows it.”

    “This is some newsflash, brother. You keeping secrets from me?”

    “First I’ve seen you, man. But if he’s with her, he’s not on our side anymore.”

    “Be smart.” Diaz gripped my arm before I could bolt. “Don’t let him know you’re on to him.”

    “What if he runs?”

    “Alone?” Diaz shook his head. “He’s too chicken shit to go out on his own.”

    “Then he runs to her, and believe me—that is so much worse.”

    He chugged his beer. “Guess you’re gonna need backup.”

    250 #WIP500 words

  12. Nathan and Louise exchanged nervous smiles. The air on the battlements was invigoratingly damp and charged with anticipation. Gusts of wind rose from the stone underfoot, curved from behind towers, and distorted the appearance of the route around the keep with its ferocity.

    “Well, I guess I was wrong.” Louise tied her dark hair with a single blonde streak back tightly. “Apparently they do let boys become valkyries.”

    Nathan nodded and coughed slightly.

    “Thank you, for doing this with me. Don’t tell anyone, but I was really nervous in the great hall.” The scrawny boy whispered.

    Louise pushed her square glasses against her face. She paused, then took her glasses off entirely and tucked them in a vest pocket.

    “I don’t think I’m in good enough shape to make the cut, but I’ll try to stay close enough to warn you before you hit any lightning traps.”

    The older girl placed a hand on her friend’s shoulder, which he put his own hand over thankfully. Their stern judge in gleaming armor approached the youths.

    The senior warrior nodded to Louise, “Come with me.”

    “But, aren’t we about to run the lightning trial?”

    The valkyrie turned her eyes toward Nathan.

    “He runs alone. If you are also serious about becoming one of us, you may go after.”

    The friends exchanged another glance, panic replacing excitement.

    224 words
    (I'm back! Thanks for keeping me in the flash fiction loop! Hoping to get back into the swing of writing after my hiatus.)

  13. Years of tobacco smoke and stale liquor assaulted my senses as I heaved open the wooden door of the old saloon and entered. Modern times did away with the batwing doors from the Westerns I’d watch as a kid. A shame, really. It was much harder to imagine a crook in his ten gallon hat, jangling spurs, and twin pistols pulling open a cumbersome door like this before escaping on his horse. The lawmen would’ve always won the day. And where would be the fun in that?

    As a “law man” myself, I’d rather have a challenge. But that’s me. And those were the movies. This saloon was real – real enough to be a historical landmark in the small town of Branch where I worked.

    Complete with honest-to-goodness cowboys, too.

    At the end of the brass-edged bar stood one I’d never seen before - with a mop of disheveled, midnight black hair, trim hips, and an ass that filled out his faded Levi’s enough to make my heart pound.

    “Who’s the new guy?” I asked Paul, who played bouncer on nights like these.

    Paul’s eyes followed my gaze to the sculpted back of said man, who chose that moment to turn and catch me mid-stare. I smiled at his chiseled features and he slowly turned back, seemingly unimpressed.


    “Name’s Russ from what I hear,” Paul said. “And he runs alone.”

    “We’ll see about that.” I removed my hat, polished my badge, and made my way over with a grin.

    250 Words
    Hunter Frost

    1. Oooh Hunter. Like this new storyline from you! Hmmm.

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


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