Saturday, 15 June 2013

Barkeep! Another round!

Good evening!

It's been a pretty dull  week around here and I don't really have much to say for an intro, so let's just get right to it shall we?

Winners!

First place goes to Tony Cowin with: Child Safety Locks: As  Standard:  Tony, I know I shouldn't, but I can't stop giggling at this.  Her absolute casual attitude is just grand.  And the red pen.  In terms of horror, it's a great piece.   Well written and just plain fun to read.  Thank you.

Second place this week goes to Philamber with: Leopard Spots:  I actually cried the first time I read this.  His sorrow for her, still felt in the midst of her gruesome betrayal is such a powerful image.  Thank you.

I've given the tome a break this week, and so the lovely RRKovar has provided us with words.  Many thanks, dear!

Numerous

Swell

Invent

The usual rules apply: 100 words maximum, excluding the title, of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, June 20th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, June 21st.


47 comments:

  1. This is brilliant news and a lovely surprise. Thank you so much. Congratulations to Phil also for his stellar tale. Quality as always Phil.

    Don't worry about giggling it's the correct response. I try to add dark humour into most things I write. Good luck to everybody this week.

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  2. Congratulations, Tony and Phil! Outstanding writing, as always. Good words, I will see what the Captain makes of them. He's sailing the Bluebird around the Med at the moment, looking for they merchantmen... whilst work goes on back here on the 'real' ship, the love of his life, Infinity. The keel's been laid and the hull is beginning to take shape...

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  3. Congrats Tony & Phil! Great pieces last week, as always. :)

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  4. Congratulations to Tony and Phil! I really enjoyed both of those stories, and it was nice to have your voices added to the mix.

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  5. True Colors

    Numerous wards on the house triggered. We’d been expected. Nate ran into the fray, leaving a trail of gore and corpses, some still twitching. He’d always been careful, methodical, shrewd. If not for glimpses into the dark corner of his mind, I’d think his rampage meant the hive had won. But they hadn’t invented his rage, merely unleashed it.

    I touched everything as I passed – blood and bone, wood and stone – tasting the magic of destruction, painting a counter-curse, the worst sort of spell. Good thing Nate was swelled with blood lust and wouldn’t see me at my most monstrous.

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    1. Always love the descriptions of how Seth does magic. Feels very organic and natural, and in this I see him almost as an artist with '...painting a counter-curse'. Also very interesting imagery with the final line.

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    2. Every post adds to my personal imagining of Seth and I can visualise his face as he follows the Nate-delivered destruction - great stuff!

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    3. I'll echo Zaiure, the description of the magic is really interesting and original, and the same phrase, 'painting a counter curse', popped for me, too. =)

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    4. wonderful descriptions of magic and action wrapped into so few words.

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  6. Congratulations Tony and Phil - hope you stick around to keep us entertained and on our toes.

    A change of focus [45]

    While such occasions hadn’t exactly been numerous – fewer than a dozen – undoubtedly this promised – threatened? – to be one of the more challenging.
    Trick was, not to let it show, not until she knew where it was going, but that oh-so-familiar swelling of anticipation showed in her eyes to those who watched for it.
    She needed to concentrate.
    ‘Interview room two, Ma’am ... do you want a witness?’
    Christ – not to this!
    ‘No.’
    She opened the door, stepped in. Thought she’d have to invent a reason, an accusation, but no.
    He, smiling, understood all too well.
    She’d miscalculated, yet again.
    ‘Raptor.’

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    Replies
    1. Oh this is very interesting! What relationship does she have with Raptor?! Love the contrast of her internal thoughts with what's happening in this scene.

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    2. Interesting being in her head for a change, and I like the idea of seeing two of the other players coming up against each other.

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    3. I agree with John, it is an interesting switch to her head and what on earth is going to come out of this meeting??

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    4. I didn't see that coming! Raptor seems to outfox everyone. I can't wait to hear how these two are connected, and what it means for Pettinger.

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  7. Fallen

    She was waiting in my bedroom, and I barely recognized her. Her pale belly was swollen and grotesque, the flesh an amalgam of horrid watercolors. Cotton candy hair, poorly dyed, hung in dreads about her shoulders, and the bright, expressive eyes I remembered (perhaps invented?), stared dully from beneath blackened lids. I was unsure she even knew where she was.

    “Angela?” I said, and watched the way her mouth sagged. I’d dreamt about her numerous times, but I’d never imagined this.

    “It’s yours,” she said suddenly, eyes sharpening on my hooves. “Demon spawn.”

    Ouch. ”Whatdya do, pawn your halo?”

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    Replies
    1. Sharply drawn perfection this, Zaiure - impeccable and entertaining - loved it all. And the final line so very satisfying.

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    2. The first paragraph painted such a scene, of a history and a present, and the treachery of memory, and then the second half just twisted ever so wickedly. Fantastic.

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    3. the ability to paint word pictures and then twist what we think is happening is your trademark and your talent.

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    4. the flesh an amalgam of horrid watercolors is so striking an image. This whole piece was really visual, and the last line was a nice gut punch.

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  8. ... and patients bring their own reward

    Her reasons for travelling with the men were numerous.
    Tao needed delivering to his brother for revenge (as promised),
    Jack needed to acquire gold (and quickly)
    and she needed their protection, both on the road and for the future.
    Knowing Jack’s affliction and that the widow was doomed to short-term disappointment she invented for herself the role of physician, offered her a herb-based cream.
    ‘As soon as he starts to swell, release him from his breeches and apply this in an upward motion, with your fingertips.’
    The widow expressed gratitude until the sum of three guineas was smilingly requested.

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    Replies
    1. Ha! It's easy to be grateful while it's free... ;)

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    2. so many want excellence for nothing... good one!

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    3. Hah! I love how quick this witch is on her feet. She's just as squirrely as her companions, but I like her better. I'm really looking forward to finding out what happens next.

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    4. I agree with RR, she's becoming quite the interesting character. I love how it's somewhat shifting over to her perspective and I'm curious how it's going to turn out for her.

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  9. (rise)

    George's companions were dressed as he was, in rags, with patches so numerous there was more repair than original garment. One of them looked up, ginger hair tufting from under his woollen cap.

    "Who's this then?"

    "Olivia. You almost blew her up."

    "Saved her, more like." He winked at Olivia, "Harry, ordnance expert."

    A boy with a pox-scarred face snorted, "Are not." He saluted Olivia with a spanner, "Charlie."

    "Am too."

    "You just found a bag of dynamite."

    "Like a toolkit makes you an inventor."

    George shrugged, "They're brothers."

    "So the gang swells. Another hungry stomach."

    "And this is Ruth."

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    Replies
    1. Great dialogue, especially the way you capture bickering kids without reducing them to being less than fully-realized people. Funny how well an introduction works as a cliffhanger.

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    2. Loved the dialogue and the 'ordnance expert'. ;) Excellent humor in this and I agree with RR that you captured the kids wonderfully. They feel young, yet have definitely had unique experiences surviving on their own.

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  10. Oh dear. Just as I was getting comfy ... why do I have the feeling that Ruth is bad news? Love the laconic tone of the boys.

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    1. writing crisp dialogue is not as easy as you make it look. Love this.

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  11. No snot this week, I promise.

    Peace of Mind
    “I didn’t even invent the thing” he dragged on the cigarette and squinted out of the window with red-rimmed eyes. “I don’t even know who did. Never met him. They just brought me here, showed me the prototype and set me to work.”

    I put my hand on his shoulder to reassure him.

    “Don’t out yourself down. Think of what you have achieved – a toy, built to amuse and teach infants now used to remake society itself. They enter as dissidents, and emerge as model citizens”.

    But he just smiled at me, and I eased him gently into the machine.

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    1. No snot maybe, Matt, but just as insidiously terrifying, as is all your writing here. And novel-sized too.

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    2. yes, the back story here has so much potential.

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    3. This is nice! A lot of story packed into it, and an ending with real feeling.

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    4. This is some top-flight horror, with enormous implications just outside that window, and us left to imagine the worst. Losing one's self to become a "model citizen" is just so chilling.

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    5. Definitely chilling, and I'm very curious about the machine and this world. You're really good at introducing worlds I want to read about. :)

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  12. Infinity 11
    Enemies are numerous, the swell endless and no one has yet invented a machine that can make the decisions needed on a minute by minute basis. One boat load of enemies is sunk, the great God pushed the merchanteer into our path and we had him by the portholes as he hove to. Fight? Not a one of them could punch through custard, let alone my crew. I put aside my comments, they fought well, they deserve the bounty. And they will have it, when we find a secluded shore and can spend time dividing it up between us.

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    Replies
    1. 'punch through custard' - what a fantastic image! And the voyage goes on ...

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    2. Real feel of the sea in this, and I too love the custard line. =)

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    3. Oh my, such casual murder in the name of profit. This is a nice reminder of how brutal pirates can be, even as the captain speaks reluctant praise for his crew.

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    4. Sounds like he has quite the capable crew! Pirates don't survive long who aren't just a wee bit ruthless. Loved the custard line as well. :)

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  13. Two at once tonight...

    Flashback(18)
    -------------

    The girl crumpled, energy spent. Conrad whistled; crouching, he removed a damper focus from her neck, and tutted as he noticed numerous but fading welts where the collar had touched the skin.

    ***
    Nasty inventions, these things.***

    'Nina' chimed in over the 'link: "Your end done? I just bagged us a 38k bonus..."

    ***Complications. Kid knew the big red guy-***

    "Ask him how- Wait...
    knew?"

    ***The Oni’s not talking.
    Permanently.***

    "Well, fffff-ain't that just...
    swell..."

    ***So, we clean up and complete?***

    Gonzo: "Agreed. 'Nina', swing past the cache and bring his 'Scoot': it's the least we can do..."



    Bring Me the Head Of(13)
    -----------------------


    She lay half-dozing, reluctant to face the numerous swollen, achy body-parts waiting to ambush her if she stirred. Sleeping wasn't a safe option, though: inventively tortuous nightmare reruns on "AmeTube" again...? Ugh...

    She couldn't wholly escape her memories; she'd been in similar circumstances in Mary's hotel-room, dreading the transition between blissful unconsciousness and facing the grim reality of life without her brother.

    "I'll admit from the photo, I wasn't expecting an elf..."

    Ame's eyes flew open; a strange elf lounged in an armchair near the luxurious sofa she reclined on.

    "I'm Mary: your brother hired my team to rescue you."

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    1. Thank you for a double-dose this week! I'm curious to see how everyone interacts, now that their stories have become woven together. 'Nina' seems a bit put out, which should heighten the tension.

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    2. Love the continuation of Flashback. Reminds me of a FPS game. ;) I like their tech and the pace of the scenes.

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  14. Wrack and Ruin

    The dead were too numerous to count. They wore khakis, polka-dot dresses, button-down shirts with ties askew. No wonder the street had been empty. A boy no more than fourteen, skin marbled like French cheese, lunged for me. I rebuffed him with a flick, then severed his spinal cord, so he could not rise again. Magic swelled with my anger at so many ordinary lives disrupted, now ended.

    Ahead, Nate continued the carnage, long out of magic. None of the scenarios I’d invented in my head came close to his blood-drenched glee.

    He turned, dripping. “And now, brother, your turn.”

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    1. So clever how you contrast the innocence of polka dots with death and carnage, so vivid the Franch cheese and Seth's severing the spinal cord while shocked at Nate's killing spree raises the horror again. And that final line ... Hope Colleen doesn't keep us waiting to find out how Nate deals with this.

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    2. With the opening I almost thought it was a different zombie story. ;) I agree with Sandra about the contrast between the clothing and boy and the following violence. And what an ominous final line!

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  15. I wandered in this morning and realized Colleen had left the gates open. I'm just going to close them now, shall I? Feel free to keep commenting while she ruminates on winners and new words.

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