Mid-Week Blues-Buster Week 2.13

Welcome to the Mid-Week Blues-Buster Flash Fiction Challenge, Year 2, Week 13.

Week 2.12 was a wash with only two entries submitted. I hope to do better this week.

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. IF YOU’RE NOT ON TWITTER GIVE ME AN EMAIL ADDRESS OR SOME OTHER WAY TO GET A HOLD OF YOU!

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

This week’s song prompt is… let’s just say it’s something special. It’s one of my favorite tunes by one of my favorite bands.

So get ready to enjoy the dulcet tones of… Motorhead!

The tune is… “Ace of Spades”. Here’s the link; http://youtu.be/HpwUTJsI3xI

This week’s Judge is the sultan of Office Mango… flash fictioneer extraordinaire… Laura James.

The challenge opens the moment you read this post and runs through MIDNIGHT PACIFIC TIME on Friday June 13th.

Now go write!!!

 

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Posted on June 10, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Ah, The Ace of Spades!! What a track! Pounding baseline, dirty as hell guitar wailing over Lemmy’s glass-gargling vocals… Play it in your head now and follow along…

    The tip of her boot tickled his crotch under the table, knocking his inspiration sideways and his concentration even further down the losing streak that his evening was turning into. Saul adjusted himself, slapped his wife’s foot to the ground and lay down the hand that was going to lose him more than just dignity.

    “Shee-it. I gotta fold guys.” There was a pause, and he fished out a battered roll-up from behind his ear and lit it, aiming blue smoke across the green felt. A second pull, and he was ready.

    “Goddammit Lexie, how many times have I told you to leave me the hell alone when I’m playing? Jeez girl, I’m trying to break even here babe and you’re teasing the shit out of my…” he raised his eyebrows knowingly, shades dipping low to cast a sly glance at the rest of the gaming table briefly, “My concentration, if you know what I mean gentlemen?”

    There was a chuckle from the table, as low and guttural as the homes they all should have been back to hours ago. In the background, exhausted bar staff buzzed around the exits, trying to pluck up the courage to leave their final unwelcome customers.

    “Win some, lose some darl’ that’s just how it goes, yeah?” Lexie knocked back her fifth of Whiskey and sat up, pouring another as she lay her cards down onto the table. There was a groan from the rest, muttered swearing, and a flurry of hands folded down just like a house of cards. She grinned, a vicious twist of cynicism hidden behind her pouting apology,”Oh I’m sorry bay-bee, did I do a naughty thing?” She scooped notes and coins towards her, loving the way that the rest of the players sat back in their greed, waiting for the next in. Typical men, she thought, flashing a smile and a wink, always playing for the high one, double up or quits. Idiots.

    “Just a minute sugartush, let’s just see what’s going on underneath that jacket of yours…” Saul took another drag of his cigarette, struggling to peel his eyes away from his wife’s cleavage. Damn she was fine!

    He rocked back on his chair, arms folded neatly across his chest, face stubbled and stony. Gambling was for fools, no matter which way you threw your dice. Snake eyes were watching you from every corner of the room, and each pair had an axe to grind or a vested interest in your success or failure. Even though the table was full, here, the pair of them only had eyes for one another.

    Lexie sorted the cash casually, tossing her hair to the side as she took in her husband’s accusation. She slowly placed the coins into towers, folding notes into even piles of $100, all the while keeping her eyes fixed upon his. Something in the room began to build between them, some kind of heat, tension.

    “I know you wanna see me, loverrrr,” she let the word roll from her tongue, dripping intent in a glance. She spread her hands out, hooking back the cuffs of the leather jacket, “but read ‘em and weep – nothing up these sleeves, darl.”

    She sat back in her chair, raising a toast to his suspicion.

    “Dammit Lex, I see it in your eyes. You are up to something lady!” Saul slammed the chair back down to the floor and kicked it backwards, standing up furiously. He dwarfed the others in the room and they knew his temper of old, so suddenly the table was cleared, the bar staff found a good reason to finally leave the club, and Lexie had a good view of her man. My GOD he was impressive!

    Without breaking eye contact, she leaned back on her chair and put her boots up on the table, making sure that Saul could take in all she had to offer. She felt the heat in the air between them, and knew what was coming next.

    She toasted him once more, “What can I say, Lover? I’m holding all the Ace’s, in spades…”

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  2. Yeah. I’d pissed her off again. “Being me, babe. Being me.” I waved at her from my wheelchair. “Doc said it’ll be two weeks before I can walk.”

    She rolled her eyes. “Sometimes I wish it’d be twenty years.”

    “I’m betting I’ll be up in 10 days.” I grinned, and she gave me that over my dead body look. I hid my grin, and looked at the floor, between my knees. “Yes, dear.”

    I knew she got tired of me hurting myself. Sprained ankles, separated shoulders, cracked ribs, broken wrists, I’ve had them all. It’s a thing. A play hard thing. She don’t understand. I work hard. All day. Every day. That’s why I play hard. And the harder I work, the harder I play.

    Stress management. I told her that, once. “It’s a stress management thing.”

    She said it was more of a stress manglement thing. I think she meant I was letting stress mangle me. Or something like that.

    “Bobby called and told me he’d hauled you’re sorry ass here.”

    “Bobby’s lucky he didn’t end up in here with me.”

    “What happened this time?”

    I’d known she’d ask that question. Her way of asking what stupid thing I’d done this time. “I always wanted to rappel down the cliff at Mount Black. You know that.”

    “So, you talked Bobby into going with you?”

    “Bobby and Kale. You gotta have two spotters when you rappel. You know that.”

    She took a deep breath, and slowly let it out. I took that as a good sign she wasn’t gonna punch me in the face. “So, you had two spotters, and still broke your leg?”

    “It was a freak thing. No one saw that rock coming loose.”

    “Tell me what happened.”

    “I started down. It’s about a hundred feet, you know. Bobby stayed at the bottom, Kale went up with me.” I didn’t tell her about the climb up. How Kale fell down three times, and had bruises on his ass, and both knees. I swear, that boy can’t carry a toothbrush with him, and walk down a flight of stairs without killing his self. I bet he’d be walking with a limp for at least a week. Skinned his knees all up. Tore holes right through his jeans.

    “We hooked the gear to the biggest damn tree we could find, and dropped the line to Bobby, and waited till he screamed he was ready. Then, I started down.” So, we didn’t pick the biggest tree. We picked one that worked. The tree wasn’t the problem. And we picked the highest point we could find. The longest way down.

    “About thirty feet from the bottom, I found a rock to stand on. It stuck out of the cliff.”

    She shook her head. “Idiot.”

    “Yeah. I know.” I stood on the rock, and it held. Until after I started down again. “I started down again, and I got maybe ten feet when the rock came out of the cliff, and fell. Sucker smacked my leg. I’s pushing off the wall, and the rock hit me while all my weight was on my leg.” I looked at my lovely wife. “It was an accident.”

    “I know. I know.” She shook her head. “You’re gonna be the death of me, you know.”

    Yeah. I knew. But what else could I do? I worked hard. So I played hard. That’s just how it was.

    574 Words
    @LurchMunster

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  3. The roar of the engine thundered over the ear-pummelling music exploding from the speakers, tyres spinning furiously as they kicked up huge clouds of dust. He turned the wheel this way and that, jerking the vehicle into erratic spasms as it bounced over the sandy terrain.

    He was grinning, laughing even, as he rocketed towards the end. Not The End, of course. That was behind him, a mighty flash on the rear-view mirror quickly gaining speed.

    He fixed his eyes on the road ahead, turning up the speakers as high as they could possibly go, until the music was almost just distorted noise. His smile widened at at that. Most people thought it was noise anyway.

    “Turn that racket down,” his mother used to snarled at him as a child, as he spent his days alone in his room head-banging.

    As a man, he’d took it further, joining a band to make such ungodly noise, truly testing the limits of his rebellious streak.

    And now here he was. In a stolen car, in the middle of a dusty road somewhere in America, blasting out an anthem from one of the loudest, ugliest British metal bands in the world, as he raced Armageddon.

    “There ain’t no way you’re taking me down!” he screamed, his voice lost in the din.

    Sweat poured from him as the fireball that had consumed most of the planet was trying to finish the job. He was going to die, of course he was. But ever the rebel, he was going to do it on his own terms!

    His foot was to the floor, wet palms glued to the sticky leather of the steering wheel. Everything smelt of burning, of fire, of melting plastic and toxic fumes.

    And then he saw it.

    There, through the dusty windscreen, the great crevice yawning open before him. One of the biggest cliff faces in the country, a great big hole slap bang in the middle of the sandy plain.

    His eyes caught the reflection of the wall of fire gaining from behind. This is it. This is how it ends.

    The car practically leapt off the cliff edge, his stomach lurching as if on a roller-coaster. And for a few short, precious seconds, while the rest of the world burned, he flew, soaring through the air.

    He sang in time with the song, as he tore through the sky in his battered car, the end of the world right on his tail.

    “That’s the way I like it, baby, I don’t want to live forever!”

    428 WORDS
    EMAIL: coryeadson.derby.uni@hotmail.co.uk

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  4. Betwixt and Between

    “Spit,” the man demands. Sal obliges, cupping her saliva in her right palm, where it mingles with the blood pooling from the cut across it. She slaps it into his hand, where their fingers grasp each other firmly. “Sealed,” the man says, confirming it is done. His eyes flare for a second, flame red, across the black enlarged pupil, before returning to an indiscriminate grey.

    “I leave it there?” Sal asks, casting her eyes towards the gravel where the crossroads intersect, which shows recent signs of digging. The spade she brought with her is still standing in it, partially buried, enabling it to maintain its upright position. He nods. “Don’t I get to know your name?”

    “Nice try, doll,” the dark suited man says. “You don’t need it; not now. Plus, if I tell you, you’ve got leverage for as long as I give you, although it isn’t that long to play with in real terms. Doubt you’d have enough time to do much damage with it. Still, never try to play a player. I’ve been around too long to fall for that. You’ll know my name before the end. Once you do, you won’t want to – but it’ll be far too late by then.” He smiles at her, without apparent guile, though it does not reach his deadened eyes. Sal does not smile in response. “Still your man though, given you’re getting what you wanted.”

    Sal opens her mouth to protest, before shutting it again, cutting off the words. “I’m used to high stakes,” she says, instead. Surprisingly, it produces an impromptu laugh from the bony stranger.

    “Can’t push the ante past this point,” the man says. “You’ve dealt yourself the dead man’s hand.” His tone is mocking now that the deal is sealed and there is no reneging from it.
    “Can’t live forever anyway. Wouldn’t want to,” Sal responds. The words falter as she breaks off, leaving the silence to speak for her once she is done.

    “Hmmm,” the man says, pointedly.

    “When will it take?” Sal asks sharply. “You’ve got yourself your deal; it’s done. What about Sara?”

    “Already taken care of, my sweet. See for yourself shortly. Good as new. She’ll live out a healthy life.”

    “Minus a mother.” Sal’s tone is bitter, briefly.

    “You knew the stakes when you signed. Gambling’s always been a fool’s game. Take it from an expert; I’ve seen enough of them to know by now. All players in, seats open, playing for the high one; born to lose in life.”

    “Nice to know that’s how you get your kicks,” Sal says.

    “I haven’t even started,” the man replies. “There’s the second round yet. You’ll like me much better than my final friends, I can promise you that. They like to play more than me, though they’re less polite about it.”

    Sal shudders at the words, though she tries to keep from shaking so it can be seen. “Will I see them?” she asks. “The hounds?”

    “Yes.”

    “Will I know when they’re coming?”

    “You have about a year, give or take. No more, possibly less.”

    “But will you warn me?” Sal prompts, again. “Do I have time to prepare, to make plans?”

    “Not so much,” the man says. “Unfair, you think? Maybe so. I told you though – I always make sure I hold the winning hand.”

    “The ace,” Sal says.

    “The only card I ever need,” the man agrees.

    “My need,” Sal clarifies.

    “Precisely so,” he says.

    “Can I leave now?” Sal asks.

    “Enjoy your time,” the man, whose name she does not yet know, invites. “You’ll hear them coming. They tend to bay when hunting their prey.”

    “Sara can’t see,” Sal warns.

    “Not part of the deal,” is his response. “You’ll have to take your chances – and, after all, how will you know one way or the other, when all’s said and done?”

    Sal turns on her heel swiftly, before turning back for a final glance. He is gone. She does not know if recovering the cylinder containing the graveyard dirt covering the sliver of bone and her photo from underground will help. She has less than a year to find a loophole. All part of the game, perhaps.

    (700 words)

    @FallIntoFiction

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  5. The streetlights were out, but I didn’t need them. The alley was a tunnel of lost hopes – dumpsters, rats, and lots of broken pieces of things that weren’t even worthy of taking the effort to throw them into the dumpsters. Razor thought I’d give in when he chose the site for the meet, but I was all-in. I didn’t have any options left, other than to go through with the whole thing, and that was how I was going to beat him.

    I could hear what had once been broken glass grind under my feet as I stepped from the cab. I’d had to tip the driver my last $20 to take me to this part of town, and he sped away before I’d closed the door. Two of Razor’s men moved behind me, guiding me without speaking to the spot where they planned to kill me. Probably Bingo and Knives, I thought. They were dumb, but they’d do what they were told until the day they died. No way out there, or so they thought.

    Halfway down the alley, a wan light shone from a single bulb. It marked the door of Razor’s club, though why anyone would want to belong to such a club was beyond me. Well – that’s not true. Five short months ago, I was knocking on the door, giving the password I’d bought for two hundred bucks and some false testimony to the cops, hoping against hope that they’d let me in. I thought I had been out of options then. Little did I know what being out of options really meant.

    The door swung open without a creak, and Razor stepped out. So, he was going to take care of me himself. That, from what I’d heard, was a rarity, and it made what I was going to need to do just that much harder. He hadn’t gotten control of the east side because of his charming personality, and the stories of how he’d gotten that nickname were what had kept me up all night on my plan.

    “I was gonna say that you’ve got balls, showing up like this, but you really just are that fuckin’ stupid that you think you’ll get out of here.” Razor’s voice was flat and high, barely above a whisper, and I knew that my plan would work. When he was angry, half the city could hear him.

    “Oh, you kids are all the same. You’ll get one over on old Razor. Let me guess – you’ve got a plan where you’re going to get Knives to stab Bingo in the dark, and from there, all hell would break lose, until your moment came, and you’d be gone.

    “Nice try.” I wasn’t even sure what happened, but suddenly my left side went numb. Knives was there, though, holding me up with one arm while his other drove a stiletto right through my spine. He worked it around a bit, then pulled it out, and that’s when the pain hit. I cried out, once, and fell to my knees. Razor knelt down next to me and put his hand on my shoulder. “I’ve got a dozen men, plus me, in this alley. You were fucked from the second you knocked on my door, but it took you five months to die.”

    Razor stood back up and flipped a switch, flooding the alley with light. I could see them all now, even as my vision was starting to grow hazy. He drew his foot back and kicked me hard, right in the crotch. Watching me curl up into a mewling ball, he laughed. “Guess you do have balls after all, kid. Now, I gave you to Knives first because he drew the Ace of Spades, but all of my boys are going to get their turn tonight. It’s been a while, and they need the practice.”

    645 words
    @drmagoo

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  6. Devil’s Cards
    @BryantheTinker, 425 words

    Two figures sat under the full moon, staring at each other intently across the top of a tree stump. Neither moved as the night breeze swirled across empty bottles, mixing the pollen of roadside jasmine with sulfur. Motionless on the stump, centered by the rings of time, a deck of cards sits surrounded by a ring of 5 tokens of clubs, spades, and the most dangerous of all: hearts.

    “Getting late, my friend. Looking at the cards won’t change them. Looks like I’ve got you this time.” The red glow in the well dressed gentleman intensified briefly, anticipating his victory.

    “You really need some new lines. You’ve said that each of the last 3 months.” His opponent, eyes sharp despite the rosy glow of whisky warmth on his cheeks. “Besides, you live forever. I’ll lay my cards when I’m good and ready, and if you don’t like it, you can go to Hell.”

    Both figures chuckled at the familiar joke. Ever since Daniel first called up the Devil, they’d been meeting every month. Over time, the pair had progressed from merely one hand of poker, to conversation, and eventually to genuine camaraderie. The Devil, with his silk clothes and top hat, joined Daniel in a few drinks, and they talked about the travels each had been on over the last 28 days.

    After the snickers died down, the Devil rubbed his beard in thought for a minute. “You know, this is our 150th hand, and there’s still something I don’t understand.”
    Surprised, Daniel blinked and reached for his whiskey. As the Devil didn’t elaborate while Daniel took a drink, he inquired. “What is it?”

    “Every month, you gamble your eternal soul on one hand of cards. Now, you’re good, don’t get me wrong, but why? Why risk everything over and over again? If you’ll just make a deal, you could have riches, power, whatever.”

    “Don’t want those, though. I don’t share your greed, the play’s the only thing I need. The way that I like it is with the stakes pushed up high.” Daniel shrugged. “Besides, I like your stories.”

    “I’ll tell you all the stories you want, and probably more, once we finish this hand. No way you can beat me this time.”

    “We’ll see.” Daniel replied coolly, knowing full well that they’d have this conversation at least one more time, in a month. After all, he was still holding the Ace of Spades.

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  1. Pingback: #MWBB Week 2.13 : The Ace Of Spades | My Soul's Tears

  2. Pingback: Ace | The Mind of Evermore (and the Things Inside it)

  3. Pingback: Mid week Blues Buster, year 2 week 13 | Project Gemini

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