Monthly Archives: July 2013

Solving Crimes

Another week of  Flash Fiction Challenge from Chuck Wendig.  This week was a list of pretty random words.  

An unopened envelope.

A dead man’s guitar.

A rocking chair.

A chess piece.

A road sign.

A child’s toy.

A leather mask.

An animal skull.

An iron horseshoe.

A police officer’s badge.

I picked road sign, leather mask, animal skull, and a police officer’s badge.  I took a somewhat stretchy interpretation of the items.

Solving Crimes

The light blinded me as my hover car took an abrupt stop at the flashing neon sign. The roar of traffic caused me to slam my windows shut. After all these years in the city, you’d think I’d be used to it. I checked the clock on my wheel. “Dammit.” Late again, my partner is going love that.

My car sat itself behind Verona’s car. Verona’s is my partner. I tumbled out my car and let out a low whistle. This house was big. It took up half of what my apartment complex did. Walls made of glass, and holographic decorations everything, some rich guy died.

I jogged up to the house huffing and puffing. One of the deputies on duty held out a hand to stop me. “Sir, I need to see your badge.”

My eyes rolled as I pulled out my badge, the contiuning ribbon of my badge number, and name going around the bottom. “I’m a detective, are you going to let me in?” I’m an arrogant jerk.

As I stepped inside my eyes turned into saucers. The walls were covered in holographic animal skulls. “That’s pretty freaky.”

“It is. But, you should see the body, Doug.” Verona gravelled voice came from behind me. I stepped back to look at her. Older lady with gray hair, she kind of looked like someone’s grandma. “Over here, slow poke.”

A groan rumbled in my throat. “Hey, I was only five minutes late this time.”

“Whatever.” She replied as she stood above a reeking human body.

A few strides and I stood over it as well. The man’s body was twisted with multiple slash marks across it. A big blade had slashed him apart. Scraps of fabric is all that was left of his fancy suit. “That’s pretty freaky too. What’s the score so far?”

“No wife, no kids, few friends. No obvious reason to kill him. Techs haven’t gotten here yet.” She let out a loud sigh. She tapped her finger against her holopad. “Techs are you like you, half competent, and always late.”

“Don’t shower me with compliments, Verona. I might get a big head.” I adjusted my hat, and looked around. The rest of the place was pretty untouched. None of the furniture had even been moved. “Was all the doors and windows checked for break in?”

Verona eyed me before checking her holopad. “Yes, they were. No sign of it anywhere. And, as you see no struggle. Pretty strange. If someone attempted to hack me apart, I’d struggle.”

I nodded. Not much for me to say, cause she was right. The crime scene didn’t make sense. “I wonder if the body was dumped here.”

Verona knelt down and looked over the body. “I’m not sure. I’m not a tech. The blood seems leaked into the carpet.”

You right, you aren’t a tech.” I awaited the eventible glare. “I’ll check his bedroom. Call me once the techs know what’s going on.” I held up my holopad downloading the blue print before I wandered to the bedroom.

The hallway was painted in geometric pattern of black, gray, and white. Yeah, real classy guy with his dead animals and modern art. The bedroom was almost as classy with pictures of naked ladies, and mirrors on the ceiling. There’s a possible murder suspect: the fashion police.

There wasn’t anything in the bedroom that might give me a clue. A chuckle reverberated in the room. I swung around. A scream got trapped in my throat.

A massive, burly figure stood in a beaten leather mask. In one hand is a massive blade swinging absently. He gurgled at me.

“Hey, big fella. Why don’t you put the weapon down.” I pretended to rub my neck switching on my comm button.

The man laughed lunged forward blade flying at me. I closed my eyes as the pain hit, the crunch of bones filled the air. Everything went numb.

Verona’s voice came over the comm. “Doug, what happening?”

“Found the blademan.” I croaked.


Filed under Babblings, Writing Challenges

The Day of The Fall

It came as a surprise. I would like to offer a piece of wisdom and say all dramatic events do. But, nothing I know stands anywhere near the devastation of The Fall. I can close my eyes and see the horror of it every day.

The private train transport shot across the city as it always does. I lingered watching the conductor mess with the controls. Happiness flooded my every pore, because we were about to make some exclusive trade rights with Vorsheein for rare metals.

A casual glance to look through the window shattered everything. Huge, fiery balls were raining from the sky. “What is that?” For a moment I couldn’t process.

Then, all the knowledge, fear, horror, and rage slammed into me at once. “Get the General Bolin on the line, someone’s bombarding us.” One of our beautiful spires exploded into shards. I dropped to my knees.  Burning bits of fire struck other buildings, and trains. The spire swayed once before crashing taking out walkways below. My eyes shut thankful I couldn’t hear the screams.

“Rillan, what can we do?”

I looked at my assistant. She had thick curly blonde hair, and friendly green eyes. She recently joined my staff. “Send an alert for everyone to move to the lowest levels of the city, and get underground. Also, tell people to go to low population areas, and places outside Amarran.” Almost our entire planet was covered by Amarran, our great city. An accomplish that now tasted like ash in my throat.

An ear splitting sound shredded my thoughts as the entire train shook. The track next to us was twisted, and torn. “We aren’t safe here. We need to speed up and get out of here. Also, launch small fighters at the ships bombarding. Distract them, if nothing else.” I pushed against the ground as the Council, my assistants, and military leaders scattered to do what needed to be done.

I leaned against a chair. I felt useless. Thousands, if not millions, of my people were dying and all I could do was bark orders. A’oi didn’t have a true military, only enough to deal with pirates, and planet side security. As the train sped up building broke into pieces, the air crackled with fire, and all the glory we made of our enslavement died around me.

I wished my mother, Rilas, was still alive. I always thought she would know what to do in a crisis. But, she had been dead a very long time. Besides, seeing all this would break her heart.

“Rillan, why are being attacked?” The girl, Pean, asked her voice shaking.

I whipped around to give a quick answer. When I realized I didn’t have one. “I should know, but I don’t.”

She dropped into the chair and began to sob into her hands. I didn’t blame her. I only didn’t, because I wanted to stay strong. “We never threatened anyway, we never attacked anyone.” She managed between the sobs.

A frown wrinkled my forehead as we reached a point outside of Amarran. “Stop the train. We need to get out. They’ll start targeting trains once they are done bombing the cities.” The few not doing anything started to get the emergency exit ready. Pean kept crying. It helped for some reason.

There wasn’t even warning of the attack. I couldn’t think of a single race who would benefit from attacking us. We weren’t powerful and we often stood as one of the few neutral parties in negotiations. A fiery rage, much like our burning city, shot through my body. I wanted to kill someone, anything responsible. I took a few deep breaths and forced myself to calm down.

“Rillan, the lines are ready.” The head of my personal security tapped me on the arm.

I managed to nod walking over to the hatch in the train. I grabbed the metal hooks and jumped. The air rushed by me as I descended to the ground. The burnt acrid smell was everywhere. I slowed, automatically, and settled on the moss. I let go of the hooks as they shot back up. My security force landed a few moments behind me. And, soon the train was empty of the twenty -five people who travelled with me everywhere.

“Is there an underground tunnel nearby? If so we need to get inside. Whatever military isn’t being occupied needs to gather up rations, food, any emergency supplies and meet us at.” I stopped. “Bring me up a map of the underground tunnels so I can figure out a good location for us to meet, and I need the overlay of the city.”

Pean wiping tears from her eyes pulled out a computer and showed me grid underneath the city overlay. My eyes searched over it. When I saw the best spot. I marked it on the map with a few key strokes. “There. It is near the central of the planet, also where all the tunnels intersect even from other continents, and it is mostly away from the city. Send those coordinates on a secure channel. Make sure the military swept from their location up to there. People fleeing will need assistance. Plus, we haven’t been in the tunnels much since the Jirth left. Who know’s what’s in them now.”

The messages went out. After all the business was concluded we started to march to our nearest tunnel entrance. Pean grabbed my arm. “Are we going to survive this?” Her eyes devoid of hope, and her eyes empty of tears.

“We survived the Jirth, we’ll survive this.”

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Filed under Amon, Single Shot Stories

A Date for a Soul

This particular flash fiction challenge gave me a lot of trouble.   We are suppose to use this random plot generator to come up a plot.

I got “protagonist goes on a blind date.  Another character is a date with secret powers.”  Which is a great deal of symmetry none the less it was a huge pain in the ass.

A Date for a Soul

The rich smell coffee tickled my nose. I straightened out the yellow carnation pinned to my dress. I looked around, and I didn’t see my date, who was suppose to have a matching carnation. I chewed on my lip before sliding into a booth close to the door. My friend Cyndi set me up with what she called ‘very available, very handsome man’. Yeah, right. If he was so great why is he on a blind date?

Then, he appeared. His hair dark and neatly trimmed. Very handsome with cool gray eyes. The carnation stood out starkly against his white dress shirt. Those soulful eyes rested on me. A warmth rushed through me. He took long strides before sitting in the booth. He held out his hand. “I’m Vincent, nice to meet you.” His tone was as cool and as detached as his eyes.

I gave him a firm handshake. “I’m Lily, I’m happy to meet you.” Inwardly, I groaned. Did I need to gush? I’m such a loser. Okay, I’ll admit it, I haven’t been on a date in a while.

He nodded as motioned at the counter. “You want some coffee, a pastry?”

“Sure, black coffee, and whatever looks good.” I felt a warm blush on my cheeks. I hadn’t even bothered to look at the menu.

He got up. I took a peek at his backside. Hard to check anything out in the slacks, but it was worth a shot. The place wasn’t busy he came back with a piece of chocolate cake, and two coffees. “It looked good.”

“Thanks, it does look delicious.” I took a sip of coffee to hide my awkwardness. I lifted the fork and cut off a small piece.

“Lily, before you eat that, I need to talk to you about something.” His hands glided across the table to hold mine.

My heart shifted to much faster speed. “Oh, what about?”

“This wasn’t exactly a blind date for me. I’ve known about you for a while. I’ve been wanting to meet you.” His eyes peered into mine.

I felt myself blushing and melting all at once. “Really?”

He did a half shake of his head. “Not like that. Cyndi set me on this date, because I wanted to offer you a deal. I’ve been waiting for this chance.”

The blood drained from my face. I tried to pull my hands away, but his grip held me tight. “Are you going to hurt me?”

A small chuckled escaped his throat. “Hardly. Stay calm. You only have to listen. Can you do that?”

My eyes flicked back and forth. “Okay.” I could scream if he got any weirder.

His eyes seemed to bore into me. “I appear to be a normal person. I’m not. I’m a soul broker. I know you aren’t happy with your life. I can change that for you.”

I couldn’t argue. I worked as graphic artist for a big firm. What I really wanted was to pursue my own art. For years I’d wanted to get married. And, since I went on a date once a year that wasn’t happening. “How would you change it?”

His thumbed rubbed my hand in circular motions. “Anyway you would want. Do you want money, fame, glory, opportunity? You tell me what you would really want, and I’ll tell you what it would cost.”

This is crazy, really crazy I thought. He had to be insane. Cyndi set me up with a date with an insane person. “If this is true, what did you give Cyndi?”

He smiled. “She got married last month to refined, and wealthly gentlemen she’d met only a month before. Do you think that sort of things happens without intervention?”

A whirlwind romance she’d told me. “I guess if your crazy nothing will happen.”I took a deep breath my lungs rattling. “I want to be able to work on my art. I don’t buy a lot, and I could even live in a studio. That’s all I ever wanted.”

“Easy enough. Here is your offer. Your soul has the potential to be a great mathetican. For this lifetime and one after I’ll keep it, then it shall return to you. And, what you desire will come to pass. “My hands were free. Vincent leaned in as if to give me a kiss. “Do you agree?”

“Yes,” I managed. Yep, I’d lost it. I was making deals with this unstable person in hopes he’ll actually take a part of my soul.  And, I was even excited about it.

He sat back as I felt a tug deep within me “You’ll be getting a phone call. Have a nice life, Lily.” With that he pulled out the booth and left.

I stared at the cake and took a bite. It didn’t settle my nerves like I hoped. My phone started to ring. I pulled it out my pocket the number was unfamiliar. An eerie feeling hit my spine and I swallowed hard. I slide my finger across the screen answering it.

“Is this Lily Williams?” A deep, male voice asked.

“Yes, it is. Can I help you?” I asked trying to keep my voice steady.

“I’m an estate lawyer. A Fredrick Collins has written you into his will. He passed away yesterday. I’d like to make an appointment with you tomorrow morning about it. Will you be free around nine?”

“I can make it at that time.” The benefit of working from home, your schedule was your own.

“I’ll be at three-five-eight Baker Street. I’ll see you then, have a good day.” The phone went dead. I blinked at it once. I lifted my eyes to the door. I started to believe.




Filed under Babblings, Writing Challenges

Planet of Jirth, Part 21

I stood in the stadium. The ‘leaders’ of the my people arrayed behind me. The massive gleaming, metallic walls filled with seats made me feel small. The orange sun beat down relentlessly, as we were standing in the middle and none a touch of shade got near us. I wish I’d brought a pavilion. The Jirth had brought a large selection for their own people. I saw Miek along with the other Leaders on the platform. A few Einlari the Jirth had judged worthy were sprinkled through out the crowd. The Council hadn’t arrived yet. I wondered which Councilors were coming. They hadn’t told me.

Leader of Jirth stepped up the podium. “Teacher of Einlari, you need to be on the platform. The Council requested you.”

I swallowed hard. Toff patted me on the arm. I took a fast walk and made onto the platform. “When are they getting here?”

“Council will be here soon.” Leader of Jirth looked away. As did the rest except Miek.

Shouts caught my attention as arms pointed upward, Einlari arms. I caught the word “Shuttle!” as I looked up. A small land ship was descending in the only open area in the stadium floor. A flutter started in my stomach. The door swung upward as two armored figures stepped out in full armor. I couldn’t tell their race but if I had guess they’d be Gamore: big, stupid, and powerful.

A Daie stepped out. The short, barely up my hip, featureless, flat face with slits for a mouth and eyes. Then, a Runnil with furry bodies, and large antlers. A large bulbous, slimy creature with spindly arms, a Groanic. I have never seen one in person before. A slithering, scaled creature with thousands of eyes and arms arrayed on his back, an Iijii. Last, a large eye creature with ten arms with suction arrayed in them and two fingered hands. I wasn’t sure of what race it was. My knowledge of the galaxy wasn’t as extensive as it should have been.

The Daie approached first and rest formed a line behind it. They moved onto the platform. “I shall be the speaker for the Council.”

A Jirth ran up and placed a some steps so the Daie could reach the top of the podium. It struck me as funny, I managed to not actually laugh however. Daie stood for a moment in silence and then the strange, lilting voice echoed across the stadium. “People of Einndias I require your attention.”

The whole place stilled. The quiet hum of life ended. The only sound was the remembered echo of the Daie’s words. “I am from the Intergalactic Council. I am the ranking senior member. Twenty-six standard cycles ago Rilas, Teacher of Jirth, Member of Go On Don came before the Council and requested her people be freed. The speech was full of passion, and desire. It drew the interest of many members of the Council. But, her commitment did not end there. She pushed on many of her contacts forcing them to bring up the agenda to keep it fresh with in our minds. It is solely by her effort that the Council stands here today. Her commitment, and desire to protect her body has led to this decision.” The tension felt thick, and I could hardly breath. I suspected the answer, but I still did not know it.

“We have agreed to allow the Einlari to go free. And, in addition to be acknowledged as members of the Intergalactic community. They may have one representative on the Intergalactic Council, and they may bid for spaceships as their resources allow. There is one stipulation. Rilas, Teacher of Jirth, and Member of Go On Don must stay planet side to assist with integration process. Therefore, she can not serve on the Council.” The Daie turned toward me. “Do you agree?”

The shocks of the last minutes caused me stuttered out, “yes.” Cheering began to rise up in the stadium. I glanced over at the group of Einlari I brought and they looked ecstatic.

Miek took the platform. “Einlari debt is paid in full.” It stepped down. More cheering rose up at its proclamation. I doubt they knew what it meant.

I did. We were not only free, but an acknowledged race. We would never have to be worry about being enslaved again, it was prohibited by Intergalactic Law. A race on the same level of the Jirth. All I had wanted to do was to give them freedom, instead I had earned them a place in the galaxy. My knees gave out as I landed on the hard surface. The pain barely registered. All those years had meant something. Tears raced down my face.

Strong hands cupped my face, lifting it so I looked into Juin’s eyes. Those soft brown eyes filled with the same happiness. “Rilas, you did it. You did it. You more than did it. We are free, forever and ever.”

“I love you.” I said then blinked. I hadn’t meant to say it. But, I decided to let it stand. “I have so many decisions to make, but this burden is gone. Now, all my toil will be building something greater.”

Author’s note: This is the end of the Planet of Jirth.  I hoped you enjoyed the story.  I’ll be starting another long fiction in a couple of weeks about Gulla Valik, whom there are a few flashes.   Vallen’s Freedom and  Gulla, The Rebel.

Also, I hope to have a free ebook of Rilas’s Saga available by November 31st.


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Filed under Amon, Rilas and Jirth, Story Chains

Death Sex Assassin

This week’s challenge was to use one of ten winning lines as a starting point.  This one is actually set on Amon.  I read the line and this was the first thing that popped into my head. A little weird, but I like it.  


Death Sex Assassin

“Truth be told, I’m not sure any of them are actually dead.” He finished up his boring story while massaging my breast. I let out a breathy moan as expected. I don’t know why clients felt the need to impress me. They’d paid the noble house for my services. With Graan it was always the same. ‘I’m an important mercenary, I work for a noble.’ I do too. This is Amon everybody works for a noble, or is one. I didn’t even listen anymore.


The door flew open as a man wearing bland slacks and with long blonde hair stepped inside. His arms swept up as I realized he had a huge rifle. I fell off the bed as the air crackled. Graan grabbed his gun and fired over the bed. He shouted at me. “Don’t worry babe, I’ll protect you.”


I snorted. As if I wanted some half baked, sex addled mercenary to protect me. I scooted my bare ass across the plush carpets now littered with bits of my dresser and bed curtain. My fingers wrapped around a gun hidden behind the dresser. I might be a high price prostitute, but I didn’t expect the house to keep me alive.


Graan popped off a few with a roar. “You won’t get me assassin.”


Ko,” I cursed under my breath. Assassin, unlike the other worlds, isn’t some guy who just kills people. An assassin is an elite operative. For the first time I wished I had been listening to Graan babble on.


“Hey, assassin. I’m not involved in this. Can I go?” I raised my voice as loud as I could manage.


Graan turned and gaped at me. His bright blue eyes a little watery. I valued my life more than our business arrangement.


The assassin chuckled. “Mirsi, you’re the only woman he ever sees. My clients aren’t interested in letting you wander off. You’re suppose to go with me.”


I gritted my teeth. That probably meant torture. I’d already been tortured once for the what I might know about a client. I really didn’t feel like going through it again.


Guns blazed from both sides of the bed. Each one tore up my delicious bedroom. Hot, thick blood drops splashed my whole body. The feeling was familiar, and unwelcome. The copper taste coated the inside of my mouth. Graan’s arm bleed freely dripping all over my ocean blue carpet.


I eyed the emergency button, however the assassin hovered by it. There wasn’t a chance I could get it without getting killed. And, I wasn’t really sure the security would be willing to attack an assassin. I dropped to my belly sliding under the bed. Neither men paid any attention. “Graan, give it up. The family knows you betrayed them.”


The sound of spit came from behind me. “They don’t know ko. I didn’t betray them. I did the job I was paid for.”


“That’s not what I heard from my clients.” Assassin replied with the elegant mix of arrogant disregard. I kept crawling until I could see part of his shoes from under the duster.


“Not my fault the kid was stupid and ran out front. I did my best.” Graan’s voice seemed quaver to me. I wondered if he got the kid killed.


The assassin fired a few shots. My time was short. As they started to fire back and forth I let loose my own shots. A yelp as the assassin was unexpectedly shot in the foot. My aim could use some work.


Even as his body hit the floor he fired under the bed. I rolled out. I still got several in my upper thigh. Not the first time I’d been shot, and it wasn’t any more fun this time around.


Graan leapt over the bed firing down at the assassin. He moved around evading the shots. I jerked up to my feet watching even more blood stain my carpet. I squeezed the trigger as I moved forward. The assassin couldn’t avoid both us. The bullets pounded him, and he let out a shuddering final breathe.


Graan let out a hoot behind me. I turned my gun still clutched in my grip. “What are you so ko’ing happy about?”


“I knew you were faking him out, babe. Now, I can get you out of this house, and we can be together.” His blue eyes beaming at me. He ripped what was left my bed sheets into strips. The strips got tied around his bleeding arm.


Of all the things I’d ever heard, this had to be the dumbest. Did he think we were lovers divided by the cruel house matron? “Graan, I’m not running away with you. I worked hard to get into this house. I can have whatever I want here. And, if I did run the house would chase me till I was dead.”


“I gotta plan, we can go off world. My Nobles wanna kill us, and I spend most of my time off world anyway. I only came here cause the contract was so good.” The big blue eyes locked onto the dead body. “Look how it turned out.”


A terrible, and worrisome thought struck me. “Why do they want to kill us, Graan?”


“Oh, they know about our love. I tell you all my secrets. You probably know more about their organization than they do.” He laughed, as if it was funny.


I limped to the other side of the bed and looked at him. “Sorry, this isn’t going to happen.” I lifted the gun, tugged the trigger, and watched his brains decorate my wall. His body slumped down at my feet. Today was turning out to be familiar in the most unpleasant way.



Filed under Amon, Single Shot Stories, Story Chains, Writing Challenges

Planet of Jirth, Part 20

My apartment was barely enough for a bed, bathroom, and a kitchen. I hit the glowing blue panel by the door to check my messages.

There was one from from Juin. “Rilas, I haven’t heard from not surprising considering, but don’t tire yourself out. You’re no good anyone if you die from exhaustion. I talked to the Go On Don, and I will be there for the speech. They didn’t want me to go. You know, their usual Go On Don can’t be involved in politics argument. I told them either I go, or I quit the Go On Don.” He laughed. “Which convinced them perhaps it would be best for me to go. Take care of yourself.”

Against my will I smiled. I knew he shouldn’t be risking his training to be at speech, yet it made me happy. Maybe, I did love Juin?

A knock at my door jerked me free of my thoughts. With a groan I hit the command and it glided open. I blinked at the Jirth standing my doorway. By the glossy brown robe it was Leader of Jirth. The mottled brown spots across its body stood in contrast to the nearly white skin. “Leader of Jirth, what can I do for you?”

It bowed showing off the full fringe of hair on its oblong head. “Teacher of Einlari, may I come in?”

“Of course.” I stepped the side allowing the large creature ample room to get by.

With the strange, flowing gait it moved a few steps into the room before turning to face me. It folded its three fingered hands together. “I suspect the judgement of the Council will be that Einlari will no longer be our vassals.”

“I suspect that as well.” I wasn’t sure what the Leader wanted. There was only ten of them at one time in Jirth society. I had only met one my entire life. And, for one to come to my apartment, unannounced, unescorted was beyond strange.

Its skin flushed an array of colors in the dim light. “Einlari do not look upon us with favor. I understand. Some of my people do not, however I was chosen for my ability to understand other races. I do not wish to enmity between Jirth and Einlari. If Council does not free Einlari, I will make the Jirth free you. I am also prepared to waive the payment offer you gave the Council, and allow your people to keep all the profits.”

I stumbled back a bit in surprise. “Why are you telling me this?” I wouldn’t have dreamed of even asking to not be taxed.

Einlari may not acknowledge it. Jirth don’t either, but you are Leader of Einlari. You protect them to your own suffering. You always think of them before yourself. You work to benefit them. I acknowledge you are a being of great honor. The generations ago of Jirth did not treat you well.” Leader of Jirth pulled itself fully upright brushing its head against the ceiling. “I will not this mistake. I will not let the rest of Jirth make it either.” Its skin didn’t change, or flush at all during the speech. It was honest, and with even emotions.

Something clicked in my mind. Jirth generally do not think themselves as individuals. Yet, there was a single Go On Don Jirth living. “Miek, you are Miek, aren’t you?”

A flush of red confirmed it as it tipped its head. “I am. I will see you in two days, Leader of Einlari.” A flush of pleasure swept through me. Leader of Einlari the title sounded right to me.

I moved out the way sitting on my bed. It tapped the panel, the door opened, and it left. I let out a half laugh, half sigh. “Okay, now I’m going to bed before anything else happens.”


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Filed under Amon, Rilas and Jirth, Story Chains

Lovely Thing

Okay, this week Chuck Wendig did a challenge but it was for a one liner.  That really didn’t seem to be enough content for an entire post.  So, instead I went back one of the challenges I did and came at again.  I went back to the random character generator.  The challenge was to pick one you randomly generator.   My original story was “Are you Hungry?”.   I’ll tell what random phrase I got this time at the end so I don’t ruin the surprise.

Lovely Thing

A pair of long legs walked on cracked, dry soil. They were attached to a narrow chest with a ragged, but bright shirt. On top of that was a narrow, impish face. The man brushed his black hair behind bejeweled ears as he sung a little song to himself. “Come on Lassie, and dance with me. We’ll dance til there is nothing more to see.” Around him were rolling fields filled with grain. The sun burned bright above, but he looked cool, and relaxed.

A smooth gait took him forward as a young girl pulled a mule down the road. He waved at her. “Lovely girl, may I beg you a pardon and ask you for a drink of your water?” He gave her a touch of bow.

Her cheeks were touched with a bit of pink. “Oh, sure.” She reached down and handed him the flask from her hip.

As he took the flask, he swept up her hand with a light kiss. “Thank you, sweet darling.”

Her eyes fluttered as she ducked her head. “You needed be so kind. It is a just a bit of water.”

“True,” He held out the flask. “However, since I’m about to rob you I feel it is needed.”

She whipped around knocking him down. “I don’t think so.” The flask went spinning spraying water everywhere. The mule startled and sprinted forward a few feet.

He laughed, tossing the girl off. “Its only grain. Is that worth your life? Come now, I have no desire to harm you.”

She landing with a thud, dust flying up around her. She sat up her hand pressed against her side. “That’s what promised to the lord. If you take it, we’ll starve. You are stealing my life, bandit.”

The bandit flinched as he wrapped his hand around the mule’s rope. “We all are trying to survive, my girl. I pity your plight, but I must look after my own first.” He pulled the mule down the road.

A scream from behind caused him to whip his head around. The girl tackled him. Her small fists punching him hard into his face. “You lying pig. You wearing a king’s ransom. I won’t let you.”

A scowl bloomed across his smiling fascade as he took her fists in hand. “Enough,” He twisted her arms shoving her down. “I never met such an improper girl.”

She fixed with a utterly incredulous face before breaking out in a laugh. “Are you lecturing me on proper behavior? I can’t believe it.”

“Are you going to stop this nonsense, I don’t want to hurt you further.” He grinned at her. “You aren’t going to win. Let’s not make it any harder on either us.”

She spat at him kicking at him with her legs. She twisted hard as tried to punch him. A lucky shot caused him to howl and let go. She scrambled away snatching the mule’s lead as she ran.

The bandit lifted his head with narrowed eyes. He sprinted up to her knocking her hand away with a slap. “I need the grain to live. You and yours will be fine. Don’t make this any worse.” He wrapped the rope around his hand backing way from her.

Her dark eyes flashed as wiped a bit of blood from her hand. She launched up again her eyes boiling with rage.

He deflected her knocking her aside. She bounced against the ground and smashed into a fence post with crack. A grasp as she wrapped one arm around her chest. The bone in her other arm poking against her skin. A yipping cry emerging from her throat.

The Bandit face turned stark white. “Sorry, sweet thing. I didn’t want it be this way. If you weren’t so stubborn.” He sighed and shook his head. “I’ll let someone know your hurt further down the road.” He crossed his heart with one finger. “I promise.”

Tears ran down her face. Her back stood straight as she closed her eyes. “I curse you bandit. I curse you endure a curse of your own making. I curse you, I curse you, I curse you.” Her words rumbling omiously and for a second the world seemed darker.

He chuckled. “Ah, good ole’ melodrama.” He turned and made his way down the road. He saw a farmer passing by. “Hail friend! A young girl tripped and fell into a fence post down the road. She might need a healer of some sort.”

The farmer lost his friendly grin. His eyes twitched. “I’ll send for the healer, but I won’t go down the road. Those people aren’t right.” The farmer rushed over to his cart taking off with more speed than wisdom toward his home.

The bandit shrugged. “The girl was pretty odd.” He walked a while longer before stepping off the road. He came before a stop before a river. “Seamus, get the grain, I need more gold so I can go home.” The second he mentioned home his feet started to move. The bandit’s feet kept moving even when he tried to stop them. “What?” He snapped.

Another man emerged as Bandit’s feet didn’t stay still. “What are you doing?” Seamus asked dropped a bag onto the Bandit’s hand.

“I don’t know. Take the stupid mule, I’ll be glad to be rid of it, and the memories of that pretty thing.” Bandit voice started to rise in a bit of panic.

“What pretty thing? Did you steal this from a young girl, a bit pretty?” Seamus asked his voice rushed with a touch of panic.

Bandit nodded, his feet pulling back to road. “Yes, why? What is happening, Seamus. Tell me.” His voice growing higher, and faster with each word.

“Oh no, friend. She’s a witch. I hope you didn’t do anything to upset her very much.” Seamus noted taking the mule away.

Bandit’s eyes grew wide as feet carried him away the gold still jangling in his hand.

Random Generator Phrase was “Charming bandit doomed to wander the world.”


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Planet of Jirth, Part 19

I barely remember the following weeks. I travelled the planet talking to local Einlari trying to find who they each looked to as a leader. It was complicated by the fact they were convinced I was sent to spy on them. As if the Einlari would bother. My elation about the ruling kept me from getting worn down. I found about fifty people who could be considered leaders. I explained the situation to them.

“The Intergalactic Council is coming to announce whether or not we’ll be freed from the Jirth.” I realized they didn’t know what the Intergalactic Council was, but I decided to say it anyway.

A cacophony of objections filled the air. “Quiet! What is a matter?”

“Why didn’t they free us earlier?” An older man, Toff, asked. He was one I thought would make a good administer.

“They manage the whole galaxy. It has thousands of races. In order to get them to even hear my plea I had to build up power. Then, after I delivered my proposal I had to keep on my contacts so it would get moved up the list. Honestly hearing back in less than fifty years is impressive.” I held up my hand to forestall any objections. “I’m guessing they are coming here to free us. But, they want to make a big show of it, so Einlari will be more likely to join the Intergalactic Council. Look like the big heroes.”

Toff snorted. “Politics. I think we should go with her. If she’s telling the truth I don’t want to miss it. And, if she’s lying we are already caught.”

I bowed deeply to him and got them into the transports. I had only a few days to get them back and settled before the announcement. As they sat down in their seats all them, except Toff, sat on the opposite end of the transport from me. I gave Toff a single lifted brow. I wondered what prompted the warm gesture.

He snorted. I was beginning to understand this was a habit of his. “Unlike them, I doubt you’d go through a huge charade to capture us. The Jirth don’t care as long as we work. Better to be on your good side, then hurt your feelings.”

I smiled. “How delightfully practical of you.”

He flashed a dark grin. “Yeah, I’m too old for anything else. Besides, I believe you have been working for our people this whole time. I don’t think Jirth would have taught us to write, or do anything but menial labor without someone making them.”

“Once…” I paused but he motioned for me to continue. “They didn’t want to allow us to start doing the more technical jobs like running the computers, or customer service jobs. Instead they wanted to ship our people off world to mine. I fought so hard. I had to beg the Go On Don leadership of this sector for help. I wasted a lot of good will on it.” My eyes closed. I went to the mines they intended to send the Einlari. The idea of them slaving there brought tears to my eyes. They would get injured, lost, and die of mining sickness in a few short years. The Jirth wouldn’t send anyone, but millions would have died.

Toff padded my knee. “The Council is coming here. Focus on it. Perhaps your fight is over.”

I shook my head as I wiped the tears from my eyes. “If they free us, my work is starting all over. It will be better work is all. I’ll need to find leaders, restart government, get people used to running the planet. And, keep things from changing too fast.”

“It will be work with more joy, I’d hope.” Toff responded tersely.

I realized he didn’t like me crying. I almost laughed. Never had a met an Einlari man who was okay with a woman crying, not even me. “It will be.”

The transport ride continued in relative quiet. We stopped at the small hotel meant to hold them. I filled them in. I organized with the transport to pick them up in two days to be delivered to the stadium the Council had designated. I headed home.

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Filed under Amon, Babblings, Rilas and Jirth, Story Chains

Grey Eye Suicide

Another Chuck Wendig weekly challenge.  This time was to go to hit random and go from there.  I got Powers Via Possession.  Normally, the person chooses this road and gets control.  I decided to go a different route.  Anyway, super fun to write.

Grey Eye Suicide 

A powerful force lifted my eyes as I fought to keep them shut. “Leave me alone.” My strength always failed, eventually. My body was no longer my own. I stood up and walked over to the window. The spirit curled my first up punching the window. The sharp crack echoed the pain. It gripped a shard of glass and sliced it across my wrist. It let out a howl to my throat before fleeing.

I dropped to the ground with a wheeze. I knocked my phone off the night stand. One hand wrapped around the injury, and the other punched in 911 leaving the numbers stained crimson. The line rang once before a soothing feminine voice answered. “911, what is the nature of your emergency?”

As stupid as it was I laughed. What if I told the nice operator lady the true nature of my emergency? I wonder how she would react. “I cut my wrist.”

There was a long pause. “Sir, did you try to harm yourself?”

“No, I lost my temper and punched my window, but it’s bleeding badly.” The blood pumped out of my wrist flowing around my fingers. I knew I might die. But, I no longer could summon up the willpower to panic.

“Do you have something you can tie around your upper arm to slow down the blood loss?” Her tone as calm as mine. I could feel her suspicion and doubt behind it.

I pulled my medical kit from under the bed. I let go of my arm long enough to tie a tourniquet around my bicep. I watched the blood become a slow stream. I yanked out a pack of gaze pressing it against my flesh.

“Sir, are you there?” A touch of worry caused her voice to rise.

I debated on whether or not I should answer. My wrist looked as if I did try to kill myself. One time in psych ward was enough. No, the injury was terrible enough I knew I needed a real doctor. “Yeah, I’m here.”

“Has the bleeding slowed, sir?”

“A bit.” A presence swirled around me. “I’m going to walk around, I’m feeling tired.” Using my elbows against the side of the bed I pushed myself up.

“Sir, you should stay here and talk.” An insistent patience filled her tone.

“I’ll be fine.” I stepped into the bathroom in my tiny apartment, and shut the door. The being swirled behind me a face barely visible in the glass.

“Mercer, do you see me?” Crackling with static the voice bored into my mind.

“I see you, smell you, and feel you. What do you want from me?” My face seemed so pale, bleached of my warm summer tan. I hated all of them.

A slithering hiss as he wrapped around me. “I’ve sent my friends to show you that I am powerful. Are you afraid, Mercer?”

I didn’t have to think about it. “Fuck you.”

It chuckled again blurring my vision with its wispy form. “I need your help. Don’t you help lost spirits, Grey Eye?”

“Would you go screw yourself already?” I started to feel antsy the paramedics would be here soon, and I didn’t want to be caught talking to myself.

“Help me and I’ll free you from being a Grey Eye. No more spirits, no more being bothered. You could be free of all your obligations, and all your worries. A normal life.” The creature murmured into my ear.

“Said the devil.” I retorted. A demon, it could be only a demon. “I don’t deal with demons.” They loved to corrupt Grey Eyes.

“You might die, or be locked away. Doesn’t that scare you, little Grey Eye?” It sputtered around me. I heard the knock at the door.

I tumbled out the bathroom and swung the door open. The paramedics grabbed me and examined my arm. “You’ve lost a lot of blood.”

I scanned the blood all over my apartment. I was afraid I had to agree. “Yeah.”

They pushed me in my chair and started to pull off my slapped together bandages. They shared a look. Their thoughts written all over their face. “We’ll have to take to the hospital.”

“I didn’t try to kill myself.” I let out a long breath. “I know what it looks like. But, I didn’t.”

They both gave me sage nods before helping me up. They didn’t believe. Once we were in the ambulance one started to stitch up my wound as we chugged along the street.

“Why’d you do it?” There was no blame in his voice.

I let out a snort. “I didn’t.”

“Is that the truth?” His dark eyes held disbelief and pity.

My head tilted at him. “The truth,” I let the words linger. “The truth is harder to believe than I’m simply a depressed man who slit his wrist.”

The guy’s eyes widened. “And, what’s so crazy about it?”

“What if I told you I was a Grey Eye, a person who is controlled, and manipulated by spirits and otherworldly beings against my will? Sometimes they take over my body and act our their desires. And, one of them slit my wrist.” A bubble of hysteria leaked out in a laugh. “You see that’s insanity. I barely believe it myself.”

He went still. “My grandmother was a Grey Eye.” His voice so quiet I almost missed his words.

“Are you serious?” Most Grey Eyes never got involved with others.

He nodded. “She got married before it manifested. She wrote a memoir about it. She used to meet with other Grey Eyes. They used to help. Don’t you meet with others?”

“Hell no, they want to help the spirits. I don’t care about them. I want to be free. Freedom, Freedom, Freedom!” I shouted sensing some of them swirling around me. My rage scared them off as they skittered to the away.

“How do you get free?”

“When you die, and I’m not ready.”


Filed under Babblings, Writing Challenges