Mid-Week Blues-Buster Week 10

Welcome to the Mid-Week Blues-Buster Flash Fiction Challenge, Week 10.

This is a flash fiction challenge.  The prompt is a song.  You are not required to write about or even mention the song.  It’s there only to get the ideas moving around in your brain pan.  If you want to write about the song (or the video- it’s all good here) go for it but don’t feel like you have to.

The rules;

500 words, but it’s a slushy 500, meaning you can go up to 700 or as low as 300.

Post your entry right in the comments section of this post.

MAKE SURE TO PUT YOUR TWITTER HANDLE NEXT TO YOUR WORD COUNT AT THE BOTTOM OF YOUR POST

The challenge starts whenever I post this on Tuesday and ends at 11:59PM Pacific Time on Thursday.  You read that right.  Pacific Time.

This week’s prompt features the swingin’ sounds of The Atomic Fireballs…

The tune is… “Man With the Hex”.  Here’s the link; http://youtu.be/isAq7p-3TO4

This week’s Judge is none other than the Grand Poobah of Daily Picspiration herself, Miranda Gammella.

Okey then… That’s it for me… get out there and write, write, write!  The challenge is open from right now ’til 11:59 PM Pacific Time on Thursday April 25…

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Posted on April 23, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. I opened my eyes to wreckage. Glass fragments and torn fabric surrounded me. Burning oil and rubber steamed off hot pavement. A wide arc of blood coursed from Clay’s hairline. He gripped my arm and yanked me from mangled metal.

    The detective stepped around the front of the car and fired in our direction. The bullet ripped through asphalt and debris peppered my legs.

    We ducked and ran for the woods lining I-12. A second shot splintered the bark of a nearby pine. We reached the protection of the forest and our shoes sank in thick mud as we slogged through the marshy terrain.

    “Decker!” The detective’s slurred speech suggested injuries and I prayed he’d die before he reached us. My heart pounded triple beats of fear but surged strength into my weary limbs.
    Clay nudged my back, willing me to move faster, but the bog sucked at my feet. Too late, I realized he leapt over a fallen tree. Rough bark scraped my shins as I went face first into warm water.

    “Decker!” The maniacal detective screamed behind us. Clay stopped short and hunkered down. He dragged me into a pine bough, drew me close and whispered, “Don’t move. Don’t make a sound.”

    I concentrated on making myself as tiny as possible and worked to control my breathing. My muscles stilled but I wondered if the bastard would hear my heart racing. I held my breath to tame its rhythmic blasts and blinked sweat away.

    “Game’s over, Decker.” He sloshed through the black water and stopped. Even the mosquitos ceased their nocturnal buzz. Neither Clay nor I moved as his footsteps neared our hideout.

    “It’s too late for you, boy.” Alec’s voice sounded an arm’s reach away. I wrenched my eyes shut and steeled myself for a gun barrel against my neck. The silence thickened.

    Clay burst from the pine bough and slammed it into Alec’s face. Alec issued a heavy grunt and splashed backward in murky water. Clay charged, but Alec sidestepped and hunkered, driving into him like a linebacker and sending them both headlong into swamp water. Clay pushed himself to his knees and huffed in pain. The crooked cop slammed his fist into Clay’s nose, sending blood coursing down his lips and chin.

    Clay would die if I didn’t do something. The gun. The detective dropped it when Clay took him by surprise. I crawled over sharp palmettos and thorny vines. I’d almost made it to the muddy pool when a boot cracked my ribs. The force catapulted me off the ground and ripped air from my lungs. I landed on a cypress knee. It ripped through my shirt and skin. Squinting through pain, I trained my eyes for any glimmer that might be the gun.

    I chanced a quick look behind. Clay pounded Alec’s midsection. I swirled my fingers left and right under black water. I grasped roots, muck and slime, but no gun. Behind me, Alec groaned. I turned to see his boot explode on Clay’s chest. His face and torso disappeared underwater.

    I rammed my hands deeper in the slog, fighting the sucking mud. Clay sputtered as I grasped the barrel of the detective’s pistol. I whirled and aimed the gun.

    “Get off him.” Danger carried my words, even and low, to Alec. He turned from Clay’s still body and snarled.

    “Stupid bitch. You gonna shoot an innocent cop?”

    “No,” I smiled, bold and confident as he started toward me.

    “I’m gonna kill a dirty cop.”

    @Valeriebrbr
    583 words

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  2. Broken

    Crushed blades of grass made him almost as sad as the broken daffodil stems. Golden yellow trumpets drooped and withered and his heart sank as he shuffled down the path, his hand reaching down to lift a flower with as much gentleness as his frail body could manage. A tear dropped from his hooked nose, but even that had no more than a moment’s restoration power for the doomed bloom.
    He glanced about his garden, turning his arthritic neck and surveying the damage. It wasn’t the first time and wouldn’t be the last, but every time he stood and gazed, his tears welled and his heart froze, just a little bit more.
    Emerald grass was battered and churned where feet had converged and turned the small patch into a veritable bog. Mud spattered across blooms that now struggled to stand tall. Scarlet tulip petals, stained with saffron yellow, splayed open and wide, their stamens and pollen laid bare. His orchestra of daffodils slouched, bewildered, petals torn and creased, and stems snapped and broken. Mounds of purple aubrietia lie crumpled beneath foot and burgeoning clumps of bluebells were flattened and trampled. Primroses stared at him from rumpled beds and cowslips’ had been creamed, the innocent victims of the garden massacre.
    He closed his rheumy eyes and clenched his tired, bony fists, his brittle finger nails biting into his hardened palms. In his mind he saw the feet of reprobates and hooligans dancing in his garden, screaming and whooping while he hid behind his curtains, and his dry, cracked lips pursed tight.
    He remembered his body jumping in fear as stones from his path clattered against his window. He recalled his heavy heart and the way his shoulders gently bounced as he wept. He felt the twinge in his back of his neck as he’d bowed his head, and how hot tears slipped down his furrowed face, and slid down inside the open collar of his shirt, soaking his grey, wiry chest hair. He recalled the rage that had built and the tension that had gathered in his old body and the strength his anger had given him.
    The boom, as something large hit the window, and the subsequent crack of glass like a frozen lake waking, had roused his wrath and turned it into something terrible and he’d flung open the door and stared.
    Now a football lay abandoned in the middle of his swampy lawn and he stared blankly, wondering why the boys hadn’t retrieved it when they’d scarpered. His eyes caught the mud, now dried in a strange circle on the cracked window, and he shook his head.
    He hobbled slowly up his path, his joints creaking with pain and age, and he sighed in deep disappointment. As his door clicked shut, curtains from neighbouring home swung back into place, the football quivered as three young toads cowered behind it…and the neighbourhood quietly mourned the loss of three more of their intrepid, but foolish, young boys.

    (497 Words)
    @LastKrystallos

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  3. Title: Spats

    Katy was mesmerised by his spats. The speed they flew at as he danced making the black and white merge into one. Her eyes then moved up his legs to his body, taking in the bright yellow striped zoot suit he wore, and finished on his fixed grin. One hand remained on his Trilby the whole time the song played. She’d never seen anything like it.

    She looked over at her dad who was nodding along to the beat on the other side of the small stage-side table, and pick up her sarsaparilla drink. She sipped it as she looked round at the other patrons in the small club.

    It wasn’t often she got to spend time with her dad, and then, much like now, it was just as a hanger-on, while he was ‘doing business’ at one of his clubs. She knew he’d have rather left her at home with a sitter, but tonight there hadn’t been anyone. So she got to wear the blue frilly dress that her aunty had bought her last birthday, and sit here with the adults.

    When the song stopped, her father beckoned the dancing man over. Then he whispered something in the man’s ear and the man turned giving the same fixed grin he danced with, and introduced himself. Then her dad told her he’d be back in a minute and the man sat down next to her as another band started to play.

    He was pleasant at first, chit chatting and asking her how she liked the show, and how often she came here with her ‘pop’ as he referred to him. But then he starting asking her odd things, about her age and whether she had a boyfriend, and what sort of things she got up. She didn’t really like it, but tried her best to be polite. Then he put his hand on her leg and she didn’t like that at all.

    Katy looked around for her dad, and spotted him standing at the back of the room talking to a man who looked angry. Her dad’s face was side on to her and she could see he wasn’t happy either. She hoped he might glance her way, but he didn’t and the man in the funny suit was starting to slide his hand up her leg. He even leaned over and started whispering things that scared her a little about what he wanted to do to her, she didn’t understand them all.

    She could feel her heart pounding, and focused on the sarsaparilla in her hand instead, drinking it dry, and not stopping at the slurpy noises. And then he licked her ear. She jerked her head away, resisting the urge to scream, and he grasped her face to try and hold it in place, his hand now hurting on her leg as he gripped it hard. She resisted as much as she could, trying to pretend nothing was wrong and that this wasn’t happening; focusing on the performers on the stage, but she could feel his breath in her ear and his fingers at the top of her leg, rubbing places she didn’t think he should.

    Then her dad was there, grabbing the man by the tie, pulling him out of his seat and punching him hard in the face. The band faltered and the music died, and everyone heard him call the man all sorts of words she didn’t know the meaning of. The two big doorman came up and took him away. Her dad knelt down in front of her, tears shining in his eyes, and he said the words she had always wanted to hear, “I’m never going to leave you alone again sweetheart, I promise.”

    621 Words
    @PurpleQueenNL

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  4. Title: Another World

    Cassidy took her friends advice, if she was going to get a true feel for Louisiana she had to spend time in the country. She needed to get a real idea for her newest horror romance novel about a Were-Panther and his bride to be. She knew more than most living in Atlanta but born in the country there was more to life than what was seen in the cities. She wanted to see the real flavor of the Cajun atmosphere.

    The young man who had told her about the ball seemed charming enough with his deep dark brown eyes. She was quick to take notes on his odd pupils when she was back in her car, they were odd in a way she would spend a lot of time describing them in her next novel. They were perfect for her lead.

    She had searched for the Voodoo Eclipse on the web and knew immediately it was something she wanted to experience. Once a month on the full moon the club would host a swinging dance, costumes of many varieties and she could only imagine what would happen when the moon was high and the patrons were as well.

    It was harder for her to find something to wear. She couldn’t just stroll into the club with her hair back in a ponytail with t-shirt and jeans. She didn’t want to stand out having seen the pictures posted on the website. Something she couldn’t help but smile about, there was a map to the club as they made it clear most gps would only get her lost.

    The thrift shop she found was a blessing, mostly for the long flowing white dress, it was a size too big and longer than she wanted. A quick trim with scissors took care of the length and a couple well placed over sized belts fixed the rest of her look. She was lucky, she had packed her favorite boots and though they looked out of place with most outfits but with stocking and the dress she felt happy as she peered in the mirror.

    “This isn’t real…”

    She felt like she had stepped into the pages of a novel, the front yard had two large full willow trees. The club itself looked like an old plantation home, lights strung across the porch and into the yard making a walkway. She crossed the yard and as she walked up the screaming steps the man appeared from the shadows. She had not seen him before but he startled her as she reached the top. He never said a word or even looked her in the eye as he opened the door.

    Cassidy was just as shocked by the inside, the long stairway just inside the front door but to its left was a dance floor filled with dancers. She couldn’t contain her amusement, mouth open there was a band across the room on a small stage jumping and dancing and having a good time. She could barely make out the music all her senses were on fire one after another grabbed at her demanding attention. She could smell the sweet candles as they hung high but she couldn’t identify the scents but it was not long before she again found herself starring. The women in their sleek dresses swinging with their partners in their pressed clothing and none of them gave her even a glance as she circled about the room. She had finally closed her mouth but forcefully held there as she could not stop biting her lower lip. With each step she felt her heart in her throat. It was magnificent.

    He stepped into her path, leaning on his cane she slowly looked up into his eyes. He was much taller than her, frighteningly so. But the eyes were familiar and she knew them immediately. Though he was much older than the boy who had told her about the club the odd pupils were distinctive. He starred down into her and he smiled showing his enlarged canines. She felt her heart stop in the fright of the moment, she felt as if she had stepped into another world.

    (695 Words)
    @ashviper

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  5. Lemon Drop Shots

    Kaylee pulled Amber through the drunken crowd of Bourbon Street with purpose.

    “Where are you dragging me?” Amber whined. The afternoon hurricane binge was starting to fade; it was time to start refueling as far as Amber was concerned.

    “I saw a fortune teller in one of the shops; I want to get a tarot reading.” Kaylee said.

    “Kaylee, fortune tellers are a total scam; especially here. Everybody knows that.”

    Kaylee ignored the chastising tone of her best friend. There was no better place than New Orleans to have her fortune read in her opinion. She spotted the shop wedged between a bar and strip joint. She pulled Amber off the street and into the incense filled air.

    “Hello,” said the man behind the counter. “Are you searching for something in particular?” Kaylee tentatively eyed the sign next to the register; the man followed her gaze and smiled.

    “You’re in luck,” he said. “Madame Zaroni is finishing a reading now. She will be available in a few minutes. Please, have a look around the shop while you wait.”

    “Madame Zaroni?” Amber scoffed. “Kaylee, you can’t be serious. Fine, waste your money on whatever you want; but we get a drink after this, ok?”

    “OK,” Kaylee muttered. Just then a young man and woman burst from a back room, arm in arm. They laughed and stumbled to the front door. An older woman emerged from the room after them. The scarves and beaded jewelry were so stereotypical, Kaylee almost lost her nerve. There was no way this wasn’t a scam. But before she could collect Amber and leave, the man was ushering her toward the old gypsy-looking woman.

    “You have another customer, mama.”

    The woman eyed Kaylee with distrust.

    “Very well, I will see her. Go. Bring her friend as well. No sense wasting time with two readings.” The woman turned and walked back into the room at the rear of the store. Unsure of how to back out at this point, Kaylee followed.

    “Sit there,” the woman barked. “Money first; put it on the table.”

    Kaylee obliged then sat staring at her hands while the woman rummaged through a small box. She pulled out an old deck of cards and placed it on top of the twenties the girl had just laid down. Amber entered the room then, looking disapprovingly at Kaylee as she took the only remaining seat. The old gypsy ignored the new girl and focused all her energy on Kaylee.

    “You have his mark,” she said.

    “Whose mark,” Kaylee asked?

    “The man with the power,” the gypsy replied.

    “What power?” Kaylee suddenly felt uneasy.

    “Voodoo.” The fortune teller picked up her deck and began to shuffle the cards.

    “What, are you channeling David Bowie or something,” Amber asked. “Kaylee, come on. This is stupid.” Amber grabbed Kaylee’s hand and stood to leave, pulling the other girl from behind the fortune teller’s table. A gnarled hand latched onto Kaylee’s free hand and tugged her harshly back to the table.

    “She does not believe; but you do,” the gypsy said. “You have his mark and he will come for you. Do not go with him.” The warning sent a chill up Kaylee’s arm

    “Now you’re just being creepy on purpose.” Amber yanked Kaylee out of the room. “Let’s go to the Old Absinthe,” Amber suggested.

    “Yeah, ok.” Kaylee looked back toward the rear room and saw the woman standing in the doorway crossing herself. The old woman suddenly spit on the floor. Kaylee nearly knocked her friend down escaping the store and the odd old woman. The ran back up Bourbon Street, collapsing in a fit of giggles at the bar. They moved to the back corner and ordered the first Lemon Drop of the night. A few hours later, Kaylee saw him. He was sitting across the bar watching her drink. He was beautiful but it was his eyes that sealed the deal. She downed one last shot then walked out of the bar with a strange man full of power and bright red eyes.

    (678)
    @BrewedBohemian

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