Mid-Week Blues-Buster Week 19

Welcome to the Mid-Week Blues-Buster Flash Fiction Challenge, Week 19.

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.


The challenge starts whenever I post this on Tuesday and ends at 4:30PM Pacific Time on Friday.  You read that right.  Pacific Time.

This week’s song prompt features an uncharacteristically rough outing from smoothster John Legend.


The tune is, “Who Did That To You?”  Here’s the link; http://youtu.be/ozjs2d_xlSI

This week’s Judge is the Literarygrrl herself… Shana Hammaker!

That’s all you need from me.  The challenge is now open & runs through 4:30PM PST on Friday June 28.

Go write!!!!!

Posted on June 25, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. La Ville-Lumière [The City of Lights]

    They say spring in Paris is heavenly – although wearing a latex bodysuit and forty pounds of weaponry is bound to considerably lessen the experience.

    Justine Aragon stalked through the dark stone bowels of the Ministry of Justice, booted feet quiet, palm curled around the butt of the 9mm, and kicked in the door of Room 203.

    A tall man emerged from the dust, hands raised in surrender, and gave a command to his fellows. “Stand down, boys. I’m sure we can negotiate our way through this.”

    She aimed the gun at his forehead. “Screw negotiations, Smith. Since I’m alone you know who I’m here for. Give me the location and keys and I’ll be on my way.”

    He turned to his the other men. “Which one of you dumbasses put Israel Baranski in the pen?”

    One of the uniforms spoke up. “He’s wanted in three countries. He belongs behind bars.”

    Smith nodded. “True, Jacobs, but he’s protected by the law.”

    “Well she’s not and she just broke into the Ministry with the intention of freeing a prisoner. Why aren’t you arresting her?”

    “Same reason I’m not going to cite you for insubordination,” Smith said, squaring his broad shoulders. “Extenuating circumstances. Now, where’s Baranski?”

    “Corner of the south wing.”

    He eyed his team. “Sit tight and when I get back we’re going to discuss performance reviews.”

    Justine headed out the door with Smith on her heels.

    Halfway down the hall, he opened a door and ushered her inside. “Where the hell have you been?”

    She scowled at him. “Doing my job without the benefit of a safety net, per your orders.”

    His retort died on his lips when she shied away from his touch. Pinning her to the wall, he tugged down her zipper and peeled back the suit, far enough to expose the myriad of bruises and welts on her upper body. “Who did this to you?”

    “Look in the mirror,” she said, stepping back and zipping up. “You need to own up to the reality you created. The one where I’m the con dumb enough to get recruited by a government agent. The one where I’m the brass ring that gave you a leg up to the commander’s office. The one where we aren’t lovers, friends, or allies.”

    His swift intake of breath indicated that her words had struck home.

    “You didn’t believe we were going to have a happily ever after, did you?”

    His wide eyed stare told her that had believed exactly that with every beat of his law-abiding heart.

    “It’s time for you to suck it up and admit that what you to me did was wrong,” she said, opening the door and heading for the south wing.

    When they reached his cell, Baranski came to his feet and stretched like a cat after a long winter nap instead of like a man who’d been beaten, shackled, and locked away. Ignoring Smith, his steady gaze locked on Justine. “Hello, kitten. How’s the weather?”

    Her mouth softened. “No worries. Always have my umbrella with me just in case.”

    Baranski turned his attention to Smith. “Shackles first. Door second. No surprises.”

    “Had quite enough of those myself, today,” Smith said, freeing Baranski’s hands before unlocking the cell.

    Soon as Baranski was through the door, he wrapped a burly arm around Justine’s waist. When she flinched, he whirled on Smith, his massive fist slamming into the commander’s jaw. “If you hurt her -”

    Justine grabbed Baranski’s wrist. “It happened while I was on my way here, Israel.”

    He kissed her temple. “Don’t worry, baby. The bastards will get what’s coming to them but right now, we need to get moving if we’re going to make it to the Pont des Arts bridge and add our padlock before our flight departs.”

    Smith sank against the wall, his face etched with pain, misery, and defeat.

    Justine handed him her badge. “No fun in being a double-agent if you can’t double back, is there?”

    They say spring in Paris is heavenly- but the truth is, anywhere you go under your own free will and in the company of the one you love, is like carrying a little bit of heaven in your heart wherever you are.

    – – – –
    696 words / @bullishink

    Note: In Paris tradition, lovers fasten padlocks inscribed with their names to the Pont des Arts footbridge.


  2. Masonic Law

    Henry had slept for a long time, after a deluge of continental wines he usually did, but It was not the sleep of a restful man.

    By mid morning he was sat on his bed studying his sore battered hands, grazed and still bloodied from whatever had happened last night. He would never remember. Henry called out to his man servant for breakfast.

    News that the body of young Lizzie Mason had been found late last night on the common had completed the circuit of the village in a whirlwind. Her beating had been brutal, her face pulverised with bare fists. Not even her father could recognise his daughter’s face. Only the ring, which had been left on her finger, and the birthmark on her shoulder attested to her identity.

    After several days hunting Stephen Mason rode into the village late in the afternoon immediately sensing something was awry. His father-in-law came out to him when he arrived at home and tied off the reigns before leading Stephen into the house. The freshly trapped game dropped from his grip and spilled across the floor with a soft thud and a flurry of feathers. He felt the news seep in before a word was spoken.

    Alone that night Stephen rocked on the bed and quietly wept. Then, as if his time was up, he suddenly stopped and vowed he would shed no more tears until there had been justice.

    In the afternoon Stephen went to the inn where the mood was somber. He spoke with all the villagers he could trying to glean everything that was known about the murder. No-one had witnessed it but Henry, the Duke of Langdale, had been seen last night in the adjacent woods by two men Stephen trusted implicitly. This only confirmed everyone’s suspicions. Henry was a cruel and disturbed individual prone to sudden mood swings who could perpetrate acts of unparalleled violence.

    There was no obvious means of recourse for the savage attack on his wife, the Duke was the Law. Justice and retribution could only be met by Stephen and he was not expecting any offers of help.

    All evening Stephen thoughtfully and methodically cleaned each of his weapons. When he was satisfied he’d finished he threw one of his knives toward the window and it lodged firm and true in the centre of the frame vibrating loudly. He carefully folded the velvet bag of knives and placed them in his satchel. As he left the house he picked up his sword and bow by the door.

    He softly closed the door looking back into the empty house feeling the emptiness. The manner of the Duke’s death was not yet set in stone, but Stephen Mason was in no doubt justice would be swiftly done.

    (465 words)

    Note: I was in a damn rush. Of to Glastonbury in 10 mins!


  3. Andy Bartalone

    We were delayed.

    The still-hot frame of the burned out Mercedes in the parking lot of the rectory was just a preview of what was waiting inside the church and orphanage.

    “Attention on deck”, the uniformed men snapping to attention as we entered into the main church.

    Overstreet walked through sections of shattered glass to the man in charge “Walcott, Report”. Walcott glanced down briefly “Sir, it would be best if I briefed you in private”,

    Overstreet nodded and he followed Walcott back outside to the now-empty parking lot. Walcott spoke in low tones for a few minutes, Overstreet taking in his words and then raising a finger to stop Walcott, his body language conveying the anger building in his hands.

    Overstreet paused and spoke: “So Mr. Walcott, what you are telling me is that our operations, the operations that we put in place, here in Cyprus, with local talent, in order to blend in, were attacked openly and murdered”.

    “Yes Sir” Walcott responded “but there is more”. Overstreet nodded, “Continue”

    Walcott: “A bunch of things don’t add up. And we found a bunch of information that doesn’t make sense in a rectory. We believe our operation was compromised here and working with the some, if not all of the people they were supposed to be watching. And the carnage inside was done with extraordinary precision. “

    Overstreet raised his finger again. Walcott stopped. “Describe it to me”. “Excuse me, Sir” Walcott responded.

    “Damn it Man, describe it to me” Overstreet raising him voice. “Why don’t I simply show it to you Sir” Walcott started walking back inside.

    The Overstreet and Walcott started to make their way through the rectory, walking room to room pointed out where they bodies were.

    Walcott: “There was one priest in each of these rooms, three shots each, two in the chest and one in the head from a small caliber pistol with a silencer” Walcott paused “We suspect there were at least two shooters. The same for the rooms on the lower level and in the common room of the orphanage, except the victims look to be Russian mob by their tattoos, all the same except one of them who was not shot, but had a broken neck, as well as about a dozen other broken bones.

    That is where we found a box of ledgers and a couple of laptops.” Walcott paused “The techs worked on them for about twenty minutes and concluded that there was some sort of operations for selling children.The sight is completely clean except for the box that was left for us, we found no brass, fingerprints or other physical evidence.”

    Overstreet: “Selling Children?” pausing “Bloody Hell, get all of that back to headquarters, I have to go check on something”


    As Overstreet approached the table he slowed to make sure he wasn’t too deliberate.
    “Good evening Gentlemen, I thought you were supposed to fly out of here two days ago.”

    Kelly and Bickell looked up and Kelly spoke “Sir, we were delayed” and Bickell chimed in “Yes Sir, there was something we needed to take care of, it couldn’t wait”

    “Do I want to know” Overstreet asked. Neither man responded.

    Overstreet thought for a moment “Well then, let me buy the next round”.

    543 Words


  4. My Lost Siren

    She walked the surf-tormented shore, every day, and every day I watched.
    Sometimes she walked and her sodden robes trailed behind erasing her footprints, and sometimes, like today, she ran. Sometimes her hair flew out behind like spray from angry waves, and her feet splashed as she sprinted across wet sand, and urgency rang out in her echoing sobs. Sometimes she stood, like a pillar, staring, with eyes already laden with salt, and I watched, my own eyes brimming with briny tears caused by wind and sorrow.
    Today she arrived with dawn’s breeze and fear caught in her throat. Her skirts billowed and she ran. The wind lifted her tears from her cheeks, swirling them like tiny pieces of sea-glass, before dropping them into the glittering waves. She ran, blinded by tears and the glistening sun, until the ocean wept at her feet. There she stopped to catch her breath. Her toes sank into sand and icy ocean swells licked her ankles, and I reached out my hand. Noisy sobs echoed across the bay, and I yearned to take her in my embrace.
    But I sank back as hooves rang out, and an ebony stallion charged across the beach.
    She fell to her knees, her face in her hands and she sang to me like a lost Siren.
    The horse halted beside her and its rider slid off, his boots splashing into the sea, and he grasped her arm lifting her to her unsteady feet. Waves crashed and his horse stomped and whinnied, and I clenched my fists. His fingers tightened around her fragile, purple-ringed wrists and her shoulders shook in his hold.
    I felt tension build, and anger roil.
    His words spat into her face like surf whipping off a wave and she fought to pull away. His black steed neighed and churned the sand in agitation, and he tried to swing her up onto his horse. She baulked, resisted, and his hand stung her cheek, and as her head swung back and an anguished cry carried on the wind, I rose.
    Her wretched Siren song of misery carried across the waves and there was no holding me back.
    I whipped up my army and my white horses galloped forward, crashing and dancing, and tossing their bleached manes and tails. As we advanced, his ebony charger reared and knocked him to the ground, before screaming and circling in retreat.
    Nursing his bruised ego more than his winded chest, he held onto his prize and ignored her cries of protest and fear. Waves rolled over the couple and I rushed closer, my white horses carrying me on. His fingers held tight as water drenched them both, until he finally threw her aside as he struggled to prevail.
    My horses thundered into him, rolling across his body and dragging him back into the pitching surf. They showed no mercy and, as he writhed and grappled with the ocean, my breakers thrashed and tore his breath from his worthless throat. They pummelled and pounded until he lie broken in death beneath the waves…and I turned to her.
    She knelt at the shore, her hair falling in soaked strands about her face, and her tears falling into my salty embrace. She raised her head and gazed at me, her lips glistening in early morning sun. She sang…and the Siren, who could not win against him, sang to me. The girl who could not beat her human nemesis sang and calmed an ocean, and I, Poseidon, knew I would watch her forever.

    (588 Words)



  5. Elijah’s Revenge
    Bu Lisa McCourt Hollar

    Elijah pushed back the brim of his hat and stepped back against the building, hoping to blend into the shadows. The moon was full tonight and lit the street well. He could see Dolly and the man she was speaking to, just as clearly as if the sun were high in the sky. Of course if the sun was out, he wouldn’t be there. Neither would the man.

    “It’s taken me three years, Parker, but I’ve finally found you.”

    The man looked in his direction and smiled. Elijah wondered if he’d heard him. A wagon went past, blocking his view. A couple of drunken yahoos leaned out the side and leered at the girls hanging around the saloon door. When it passed, Dolly leaning against Parker and whispered something in his ear. She put her hand on his back, and then lowered it. She was really trying to earn her pay. Parker grinned, wolfishly, and took her arm. Together they walked towards Baker’s Lodge. Elijah followed at a discreet pace.

    He waited outside of Room One until he heard her scream. The sound was cut off almost immediately. Elijah kicked the door open. Parker was bent over the woman, his mouth on her throat. The smell of blood greeted Elijah. Parker looked up, grinning with blood stained teeth. Just like he had three years ago.

    “I wondered if you would decide to join me, or continue to hide in the shadows.” He tossed the barely breathing woman towards Elijah. “I’m afraid there’s not much left.”

    “I didn’t come for her blood, I came for yours.”

    Parker laughed. “Still angry? I would have thought you’d have moved on by now.”

    “She was my wife.”

    “Was. Before you died and were reborn a god. When that happened, she became food. Maybe I made a mistake turning you. You can’t seem to let go of the past.” He looked pointedly at Elijah’s badge. “Still fancy yourself a man of the law… and what’s this?” He reached behind Elijah and pulled a book from his pocket. Elijah just stood there, allowing him to take it. “A Bible?”

    “I do the Lord’s work now.”

    Parker laughed. Elijah waited for him to stop and then continued. “It took my dying to find God. All those years Janice tried to get me to go to church with her. I never knew my best friend was the devil.”

    “Overly dramatic. I did you a favor.” He nudged the prostitute towards Elijjah. “Now drink and then we’ll go out and have fun.”

    “I’ll tell you what, how about I rip your head off instead.”

    Parker rushed him. Elijah stood there waiting. He reached up, grabbing his former friends head and twisted. Parker’s eyes widened in surprise and then Elijah gave his head a hard jerk. Parker’s head came off, covering Elijah in blood. Elijah closed his eyes, thanking the Lord for the bountiful meal he was about to consume.

    Word Count: 490


  6. (WARNING: Potential triggers for violence and rape. There is foul language.)

    I looked down at her face. I had to memorize it, every line and curve. She couldn’t sleep without heavy sedatives but at least those had finally worked. I’d known her since she was 16 years old. Family isn’t always defined by genetics or blood, sometimes it just is. We’d been through a lot together helping each other grow up even though I was twelve years her senior. I stared at her hairline where there was a line of black stitches closing the split from her head being slammed into the concrete. Down to the black inky spread of pooled blood under the skin around her eyes and her swollen broken nose. The high cheekbone on the right side of her face red and skinned from being scraped against the stucco wall before she was thrown to the ground. Her perfect cupid’s bow of a mouth was slightly open though I knew her jaw was wired shut so her bones would have a chance to knit back together. Her bottom lip was split looking like a smashed red strawberry. I had to know every single place a blow had landed. I cataloged it all and then headed out.

    I sat at the bar head lolling as I loosely held onto my…um… how many whiskey’s was that? Whatfucking ever. I decided it was time to head out but I needed the bathroom first. I hung onto the bar to get my balance. Shit, worst fucking week ever. I walked very carefully to the bathrooms at the back of the bar. I went in and did my business, then took a deep breath and stumbled out the door into the back hallway. Strong hands caught me as I almost fell.

    “Hey there sweetheart, you look like you could use a little help. Let me walk you to your car.”

    “Um…hey I’m ok.” I mumbled as I squinted up to see a big skin head with a fair number of neck tattoos including the ubiquitous swastika common among the fine young men in this part of town. He walked me out the back door, into the alley.

    “Fresh air is what you need. Pretty women like you shouldn’t wear such whorish clothes if you don’t want to end up in dark alleys getting taught a lesson.”

    I frowned up at him and tried to pull my arm out of his grip, “What are you talking about you asshole. Let me go.” He slapped me and pushed me face first against the stucco wall. I felt his hand in the middle of my shoulders, pressing me against the wall.

    “Foul mouthed too. Not a surprise. You cunts are all the same.”

    The side of my mouth quirked up in a smirk as my hand closed over the handle of my carbon steel folding knife in the pocket of my jeans. The hook on the blade would pull it open and locked by the time it cleared my pocket. He stepped back and started loosening his belt and I pulled and swung back with as much force as I could, sweeping across his chest. He jumped back as the knife cut into him giving me room to move.


    He looked shocked as blood blossomed across his white t-shirt. I moved to the side, kicking his left knee from the side with everything I had. I needed to get him on the ground fast or the size disparity would get me killed. Luckily being underestimated can make for a big advantage. I heard his knee crunch with a sickening sharp crack, he screamed and went down. I stepped back and sent my size eight purple Doc Martin right into his nose. Another satisfying crunch as his nose shattered. He collapsed to the ground rolling over to the wall trying to protect his face so I kicked his head right into that stucco wall. That was the magic hit and he stopped moving, not dead, just unconscious for a moment.

    One phone call plus a cop’s business card in his pocket would get him painted a snitch and dead at someone else’s hands.

    Done and done.

    Word Count: 691


  7. Little Gem

    As he shoved the spade into the ground, the music blared in his ears. He loved his new MP3 player it fit so snugly in his favourite plaid shirt. His hips moved from side to side as he kept digging. He ignored the drips of water falling on his head from the surrounding trees. The light drizzle had been going on all morning. He needed to get this done.

    He felt it before he saw it as the spade snagged the necklace. He threw the spade down and knelt beside the small hole. As he scrabbled in the dirt he felt for the pendant and pulled hard. It came away easy. He registered the cold flesh it had been resting on as his fingers brushed against it, but he was unconcerned about that; he was only here for the stone. It was the ticket he needed.

    The song came to a crescendo as he stood and he danced, swinging the necklace in his hands while he played out the final drum beats. Then he looked at the hole that remained and filled it in, covering it carefully to make it look untouched. Then he went back to the cabin. It wouldn’t be long before she arrived. He needed to be ready.

    When he heard the tires on gravel he was stoking the fire, having already prepared the drinks. He moved over to the stereo and picked out one of his favourite CD’s. There was nothing like movie soundtracks and John Legend had it licked.

    He heard her footsteps on the gravel and then on the deck. The door was open and she walked straight in. He was standing by the fireplace and grinned on sight of her. She had on a short, tight dress; she knew what he liked. She paused for a moment, then went up to him and gave him a long kiss. She wasn’t messing about tonight.

    A while later in bed, after she’d been satiated, he handed her a little box. She looked at him with a raised brow.

    “For me?”

    He smiled not speaking. She opened the box and froze on sight of it. He waited. The fear in her eyes when she looked at him again gave him a kick. It’s what he’d been looking for. He could feel the tension in her body through the sheets, and even the subtle movement as she tried to move away from him. His smiled remained, but it no longer reached his eyes.

    “Party’s over now, baby.” He said in a crooning voice, running his finger tip along her sheet covered leg. She was rigid.

    She whispered, “Where is she? What did you do to her?”

    He paused, and replied, “Are you sure you want to know? It’ll be much more fun finding out yourself, don’t you think?”

    He heard her swallow, her mouth having gone dry. It was a sound he’d heard a lot.

    The next morning he pocketed the pendant, which was now on the floor. He knew he should bury it along with her; make sure nothing could be found, but he liked feeling it in his pocket, it brought back such sweet memories, he wanted to keep it there for a while.

    He plugged his earphones in and tapped the player; he had work to do. He grabbed the spade on his way out the door, dancing down the steps as he went.

    570 Words


  8. Judgement Divine

    “I want you off the case, Marx. We need room to do our job.” The balding officer shifted his bulging frame deeper into a worn leather chair. It creaked under the abuse.

    “Not happening, Lieutenant.”

    The older man pursed his lips. “I’ve seen this before, son. It never ends well.”

    Evan Marx faced his superior officer, not bothering to hide the ragged pain lurking behind tired eyes and nodded. “Yes, sir.”

    “I’m watching you. One wrong move, Marx…”

    Dismissed, he strode past three donut-ripe deskhens feigning disinterest and entered his own office. He slammed the door and fell into his chair. The file lay open on his desk and he pushed aside a day old coffee and slid it closer.

    “Hey muchacho.” A heavy Latino accent sang from the other side of the door.

    “Go away.”

    The door opened and Kevin Moruiz flashed a brilliant smile. “Hey man. How you holding up?”

    Evan shot the man a cold stare and ran a hand through hair that hadn’t seen a comb in two weeks.

    “Right. Listen, we got him. Routine traffic stop. Dude’s got some of her things in his car.”

    Evan’s heart flipped as he fingered the Glock in his holster. He grabbed his keys and Moruiz followed, spouting details on the way to the patrol car. He slid behind the wheel and gave the car hell until they reached the corner of Anthum and Gale where police strobes lit dark streets.

    “Hey man, don’t lose your head, okay?” Moruiz pleaded. The car door slammed before Moruiz had his seat belt off.

    Evan snaked behind three officers, their guns drawn. In the center of a circle stood the man who’d stolen her. Clean cut and shaven, he looked almost sane.

    He crouched and snuck beyond the officers, headed for the subway stop he used every Sunday to meet his Aunt Shasta when he was nine. The shaft’s tunnels led to an oversized manhole he’d found by accident once and he headed for it.

    Evan reached the manhole and lifted the lid, climbing into the fresh night air once again. He drew his Glock and crouched on the ground beside a tall, brick platform. Stairs shielded him from view of the officers. Evan flipped the safety and aimed.

    “She was always mine, Marx.”

    Fire burned up Evan’s chest and roared in his ears. The man smiled again.

    The officers opposite them grew nervous and shouted orders.

    “You knew it. From that day in the courtroom when I first saw her, you knew she was mine.”

    The hateful memory forced itself into a clear vision. Her face, her pleading eyes.

    I can’t do this, Ev. I thought I could testify, but seeing him… He murdered my mother.

    You have to, Joss. He has to be put away.

    “You didn’t expect I’d be acquitted. You didn’t expect I’d come back for her. Your partner. You loved her, didn’t you, Officer Marx?”

    Evan swallowed the ache singing his throat and lined up the Glock’s sites with the bastard’s adam’s apple.

    One of the uniforms shouted again. “Marx! Put the gun down!”

    Evan closed one eye.

    “You can’t kill me and bring her justice too, Evan.”

    “Stand down, Ev,” Moruiz pleaded.

    “She died screaming your name, you know.”

    Evan eased his finger onto the trigger.

    The monster’s smile fell. “You can’t kill an unarmed man. You’ll never be a cop again. You’ll spend the rest of your life behind bars. That means something to you.”

    “You sure about that?”

    Evan emptied the Glock into the man’s chest, seventeen bullets. One for every year he’d spent with Joss.

    @Valeriebrbr 602 words


  9. Awesome entries from everyone! Judging was a blast!


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