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Flash Fiction

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Flash fiction stories vary in length from anywhere between one hundred to one thousand words. The aim of flash fiction is to ensure every word is absolutely necessary. Stories in this category can cover any of the fiction genres, the challenge being to engage the reader and tell a complete story within a limited number of words.

41
Editor's Pick

Larry’s Second Chance

A near death experience and a sarcastic show-biz bumblebee give a man a second chance at life.

“You’re asking me how it’s going?” I said incredulously. “How can you ask me that? I’m paralyzed and I’m dying, for god’s sake!” “Well you don’t have to be sarcastic!” came the response. “And besides, you’re not dead…..yet. By the way, my name is Waldo. Nice to meet you.” Waldo flew over my head singing ‘Getting to know you…..getting to know all about you…..’ I learned later that he...Read On

28
Recommended Read

A Farewell Drink

A woman has one last drink with her friend.

The glow of the neon sign lit her face as she walked into the bar with a Gibson Les Paul guitar strapped across her back and carrying an urn in her hands. She set the urn in an empty stool and sat next to it, hanging the guitar on the back of hers. “Two dirty martinis please!” she called out. The bartender mixed the drinks and placed them both in front of her. She slid one over to the urn...Read On

26
Editor's Pick

Fade to Black

The winter solstice would be a long night indeed for these wise guys

  Connor Mulrooney sauntered into the members-only back room of the North Philly Irish Pub with his usual swagger, grabbed a Guinness and settled into a seat that may as well have held a Reserved sign. His chair, the one he always occupied during their weekly gatherings, notably sat right next to Billy’s — not that Connor or anyone else expected the boss to show up. He rarely did anymore,...Read On

23
Recommended Read

Last Note

My friend Alan...

“What is this place?” he thought to himself. He carried only his beloved Gibson Les Paul guitar as he kept stumbling forward. His watch read 4:20 but he didn’t know if it was A.M. or P.M. A booming voice echoed through the cavern. “Step forward boy!” A figure rose from the ground. He watched as the figure stood 10 feet tall. It was grotesque in appearance with horns of a ram and a...Read On

22
Recommended Read

The Four Hundred and Twentieth Warden

A vision of the future. A way to say goodbye to those lost too soon.

Dear Dad, It’s Julie. This is the letter we always used to wonder about. It took much longer than expected. My timeline runs parallel to, but thirty years ahead of yours, and I’ve grown older here than you are there.  You’re approaching the point where I lost you. A time when everything fell into chaos here. You wouldn’t recognize my world, but I’m still your little girl. I miss you...Read On

21
Recommended Read

Shining On

I meet up with a distant friend... Sort of.

It's unfortunate when you try something new and it all goes to pot. Big Dave is only too familiar with such misfortune, his rundown bar barely covers the rent and its faulty neon sign seems rather appropriate. Although, I kinda like the way his 'Rock Bar' trade name flickers and dies periodically, because sooner or later it always lights up and shines again. Despite its obvious...Read On

21

Logical

A strange thing happened the other day...

A strange thing happened the other day. I'm not sure whether the time had anything to do with it because it was only four-twenty in the afternoon and the rush hour hadn't yet got under way. Anyway, as I unwrapped my Penguin bar I saw a man sitting on the pavement outside a record shop. I remember distinctly the neon 'open' sign in the window above him flashing erratically on and off in...Read On

21
Editor's Pick

The Right Tonic

As his band stepped onto the stage, Tyrone stole a moment to sip his dirty martini. He ran his tongue along his upper lip as he admired the glass, savoring the lingering taste of the alcohol. With a contented sigh, he got up and walked onto the stage. During his break, the din of the bar had swelled to a jumbled murmur. The restless audience had taken to chattering over clinking glasses...Read On

20
Editor's Pick

Savages

It would be a much darker world without choice.

A female has moved into my territory, a healthy young blonde, ripe for breeding and bearing good child. She could be my mate, once I've captured her, subdued her and proved my worth as her man. Sounds easy enough, but this female is small, flighty and quick. One stray sound and she's off like the wind, racing through shadows to seek cover amongst the ruins and rubble. I've no hope of...Read On

20

The Girl

A Young Girl's Hope

Reader Discretion Advised The story you are about to read contains mature language and themes. By choosing to read this piece, you agree that you are 18 or older and do not object to such content.  * * * A young girl of only sixteen, with no love or care from home. Only knowing anger and hate, parents who never wanted her, she runs. She thinks she'll get all she truly needs, if...Read On

20
Recommended Read

Black Birds

Two long lost friends team up for an old job.

  Black Birds Cold night air pinched at the darkness. Frost painted featherlike patterns on the windscreens of the parked cars along the street. Grass huddled together beneath their icing sugar coating. A neon light at the corner of the street failed to notify anyone of the great deals Joe’s Café had to offer, the street had been plunged into darkness. The power outages were getting...Read On

18
Recommended Read

Straight or Left

*Winner of a weekly flash fiction contest on Indies Unlimited*

Which direction should she go? Tanya had to make a decision. And she had to do it quickly. Taking a deep breath and pursing her lips, Tanya depressed the accelerator. Straight it would be. Straight away from her lifetime home. Straight into the unknown. Straight onto the longest bridge in the world—ironic for someone panicky about crossing bridges, but that was how desperate her...Read On

17

Cold Feet

My feet are cold. I wiggle my toes in my new brown boots and realize they are very cold. I wish I could take them off and warm them under my blanket. That is all I want right now, to crawl in under my blanket and not move for a long time. Not until this is all over and done with. “Are you okay?” My attention is brought back to the doctor in front of me. His dark brown eyes are looking at...Read On

16

Red

How does Red feel? Like another night of dark dreams, fighting through shadows that resemble fists. There are times when I grow tired of this and think, but only for a moment, that it would be so easy to open my veins and finally be free of them. Then, the thought is gone and with eyes shut tight, I try to remember which is the dream and which is the waking moment and sometimes I remember....Read On

16
Recommended Read

Killer's Bliss

She heard whispers. Quiet and menacing, they coursed through the darkness like little scratching claws on worn, wooden floorboards. She stood still with her eyes closed shut, waiting for the silence to ensue again. But it never came. Those whispers intensified as the dark years crept on. Quiet and menacing whispers were no more. Now, terrifying and chilling screams inhabited her...Read On

15

Kyaamuya

Mother and daughter preparing for the evenings dinner.

“Momma,” 9-year-old Kaiah asks, “When I'm done grinding the corn, can I go over to Shumana's to visit before dinner?” Manci looks over at her daughter and shakes her head. “No my dear. It's no time for a little girl to be out after dark.” “But why?” was the immediate response. “You know perfecting well why. Tonight is Kyaamuya.” Her mother reminded her. “ It is a sacred time . The night...Read On

15

Lodgers

Houses sometimes held onto what happened inside them.

The house stood at the entrance to the block, dwarfing all the other houses. John and Alice learned a bit of the history of the house from the previous owner, who was a bit of an amateur historian. The original owner of the house, a Mr. Reginald Bowens--the man who built it, gave it life, brought it into the world--was a railroad scion for C&S Railways. The smaller houses in the...Read On

14

The Notice

To this day, I can still remember the feeling inside me when she showed me that piece of paper. I knew that things would never be quite the same after that. This was the first time I remember my soul go cold, and I could feel something inside me shut down. I suppose it was my mind and body's way of protecting itself, since it became clear to me that no one else ever would. I was sitting...Read On

14

Red Vines and Tortellini

"No candy." She glares at me, her nostrils flaring with every breath, fists clenched so tightly she’ll have fingernail marks on her palms. I'm watching an impending meltdown. Its cause? Red licorice twists, and my refusal to count them as a dinner component. "RedVines and tortellini" — her impromptu addition to our grocery list — amuses me, but the rules have to be enforced regardless....Read On

14

Routine Training Mission

A routine training flight goes terribly wrong.

Yogi and Casper had just taken off on a routine training flight. The weather wasn't perfect that day. Forecast for low lying cloud cover, but it would help in their training. The two fliers climbed to the designated altitude and formed up to begin their mission. A low level sortie this time, hugging the ground to avoid detection. Casper called to Yogi to verify the flight plan. ...Read On

14

Web of Love and Lies

Blindly I refuse to see the writing on the wall as your sweet voice caresses my bruised ego. My mind won't accept the bitter truth. Old lies escape your lips disguised as a new start to our fractured lives and battered romance. I'm led into a long forgotten land where promises shine like the midday sun and kisses are sweeter than ambrosia. Old dreams are awakened from their ancient slumber...Read On

14
Recommended Read

Disconnected

Leaning as far over as she dared, she peered under the lake’s gently rippling surface. She could see all the way to the silt and rock bottom but couldn’t discern a black rectangle protruding from it. The phone was gone. “Stupid, stupid,” she muttered. “Where is it?” She risked leaning even farther, searching beneath the canoe but the old wooden vessel creaked in protest and tilted...Read On

14

All about the nice VA lady and a new iPhone

I'd been making gestures at my computer for years, well, at least one particular gesture...

How’s by you, Grady Lee? Funniest thing happened yesterday. This nice lady from the Veterans Administration stopped by and said what I really needed, I mean with my having gone from hard of seeing to being blinder than any known bat, was one of those so-called smart Apple iPhones. I told her I knew a bit about the thing, how you made gestures to work it, and let her know I'd been...Read On

14

Pennies

Don't you want to know what blood tastes like?

The woman in the mirror spoke to her. This was before she covered all the mirrors in the house. This was back when she was like eleven, maybe twelve, before all the crazy shit happened. Back when they first moved into the house. The woman had been in her mirror for some time. Hiding. At first, Em didn’t even now she was there. She thought it was her own reflection. Em noticed the woman...Read On

14

Mother of Glass, Mother of Tears

Mirrors are a kind of window.

“You’re fat,” the little girl inside the mirror said to Em. It was long past midnight. Em’s parents and sister were in bed. Em was standing in front of the closed door of her room, where her Dad had hung the full length mirror. She regarded the reflection. The person in the mirror looked just like Em. She wasn’t Em, though. She wasn’t even a little girl, though she looked like one. She...Read On

13

The Spelling Bee

Fun With English, Opus 1

Some words that don't exist, really ought to.   "The word is 'peppier,' pronounced 'pep-ee-ay'," announced the spelling bee moderator. "Definition, please," replied the entrant, launching by rote into the set of questions she had been taught to ask. "One who grinds spice onto a diner's food at a restaurant." "What is the origin?" "'Peppier' is faux French." "Faux French?" ...Read On

13

The Painting

Written for a 250 word flash fiction contest...the picture here being the writing prompt...

She stepped back and admired her handiwork. The painting had taken her months to complete. Someone in her grieving group had suggested she go back to painting after her husband died, and it seemed like a good idea at the time. She hadn’t painted in years, rarely finding the time after the kids were born. Now that she was alone again, she certainly had plenty of time. Time, the thing that seems...Read On

13

The Virtue of Patience

Oh come on! It’s a school zone when the lights are flashing or children are present, like the sign RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU says. No lights, no kids—you don’t have to go twenty miles an hour NOW, you idiot. Okay, we’re past the school zone...that means you can speed up. Damn it, don’t tell me you’re going to creep along all the way to the roundabout a quarter of a mile away. Why yes, yes you...Read On

13

Deleted

Gerry stared at the computer screen, disbelieving, his eyes wide open. “Oh no,” he screamed, throwing his arms in the air and falling back in his leather office chair. “It can’t be. I can’t have done that.” Furiously, he pecked at the keyboard but knew it was futile. All his work of the last three days, writing and revising, rewriting and polishing, all to no avail. He would have to...Read On

13

Every Little Thing

She couldn't shake the nagging feeling that she'd forgotten something. But what?

Cheryl rifled through her purse yet again, racking her brain to figure out what she had forgotten. Cell phone, check. Wallet, check. Keys, check. (Duh. She couldn’t have driven to work without those, now could she?) Gym card, check. She opened the wallet and confirmed (well, reconfirmed — no, actually, re-reconfirmed) that her driver’s license, cash and credit cards were all present. With...Read On