Saturday, 27 April 2013

I'm terrible at titles!

Evening all!
There's a fat, just past full-moon, shining in through my bedroom window.  The tome is basking in the blue-white light as I write this.  We have something of a routine now, and it waits quietly for me to ask politely for new words each week.

I'll get right to it, as I seem to be suffering from a tiny case of writer's block.

My winner this week is Antonia Woodville with Infinity (4):   Antonia, this is so seamlessly written and it moves things along beautifully!  Thank you!

My runner-up is John Xero with Games:  John, that last line is really what hooked me.  The story moved quickly along, but hat last line was just brilliant.  Thank you!

As always, my deepest thanks to those who played this week.  All the entries were such fun to read.  Thanks to all.

And now as I turn to the window, I see the tome has already quietly disgorged new words.




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, May 2nd, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, May 3d.

And so the gates are open again.  Come in and leave your offerings for the tome!


  1. THANK YOU! With all the outstanding writing this week, I really thought there was no chance for the Captain, I guess he knew better. Congratulations, John, outstanding as always.
    Good words, tome, thanks..

  2. Congratulations Antonia and John! Well done. ^_^

  3. Congrats Antonia & John! Was unavailable most of last week so didn't get to play, but great stories everyone. :)

  4. Well done all round :D

    Well, off I go...

    Bring me the Head of...(10)

    Moments later, true to Conrad's prediction, Gonzo's 'link chimed; he tinkered so his colleagues could contribute.

    "Has Ame accidentally disconnected her 'link again?"

    Gonzo sighed, apprised their fixer of events, ending with: "It's like Goblinization, but isn't..."

    "Elves don't Goblinize: they're born."

    ***They keep forgetting, boss. Her features are... were, like their own; humanlike. Her aura, however...***

    "Establishment's called it 'SURGE': junk, pseudo-recessive DNA transmogrifying one's genetic endowments. Like we needed another excuse for tabooism with that dick preacher getting primetime coverage." Sighing. "I’ll come over, see how serious it is..."

    Mere seconds later Mary's astral form materialised.

    1. I really like the feel of this whole story. I find myself wondering if "that dick preacher" is going to play a more prominent role later on. As always, I want to know more. Thank you!

    2. Ah, plus ca change, plus ca la meme chose! It seems there will always be religious fanatics stirring the pot against change - whether societal or genetic. I like the mystery of what Ame may be, and the tired resignation of the boss rings true.

    3. agree with RR, always those religious fanatics and this one is depicted so well you can almost see him in your mind's eye. The resignation of the boss, yes, authentic. You must have been there a few times...

    4. Yes, the world-weariness of the boss, accepting his responsibilities, surround by incompetents and fanatics - so convincing.

  5. Well done John and Antonia, and look forwards to this week's offerings from you and everyone else as

    Opportunity knocks

    Carrion Jack, temporarily dead, had left his lodgings empty.
    Or so Tao believed.
    Unwrapping covers from his stolen letters, the first was from a Lady Hartford, detailing an endowment to be paid upon the marriage of her daughter. If there were relationship twixt cash and beauty this one, by the sum, required a veil.
    But gold was gold and Tao was pondering on impersonation when, startled from his reverie, he beheld the virgin witchling watching from the shadows.
    ‘D’you have a potion to make me blind to ugliness, or is that taboo?’
    ‘I’ll give you one to make you blind.’

    1. I would take her offer literally. Don't think Tao could be so slick if he could no longer see, but then again, women seem to be his blind spot. ;)

  6. I'm not entirely sure I'd trust her, but Tao has always seemed to know what he's doing. Well, mostly. Love the first line. This is a smooth, and entertaining read. Thank you.

    1. oh the virgin witchling watching from the shadows, what incredible lines in this!

  7. and (why am I not surprised?)

    Opportunity seized

    Under cover of his breeches, Tao’s two-days-idle-and-complaining cock bestirred itself. The double challenge of a taboo maidenhead and a woman who denied endowments Mother Nature had seen fit to bestow on her was irresistible.
    ‘You didn’t go with Jack then?’
    She’d come close enough to read, e’en upside-down, Lady Hartford’s forty sovereigns offer. Gleam of gold lust indistinguishable from that in Tao’s eyes.
    ‘He didn’t ask me.’
    A lie.
    ‘This potion... would it be honestly used?’
    Hah! Her conscience was as malleable as his.
    Upstanding still, Tao’s pseudo-avuncular arm crept round her shoulders. ‘Of course. Let me tell you how.’

    1. What a snake! I still say she could be planning to do him ill, but as he is planning the same (always), my sympathies are with her. I hope she gives him what for.

  8. I have a feeling this is all going to get a lot more intriguing than it already is. And I'm not sure I'm comfortable with the notion of those two in cahoots in any fashion.

    1. Definitely a snake! definitely not to be trusted with anything, especially women!

  9. Infinity (5)
    Methinks it best to cover this journal with something that won’t attract attention. Something written in Latin. It matters not what it is, none of them received the endowment of learning and Latin scares the hell out of their souls. Such ‘foreign stuff’ is taboo to them. And so the journal will be safe.
    I need to record who comes, the shadows that merge into beings, the sounds that are for me alone, the voices that tell me which way we are to sail for the best loot… these things are for me.
    I need to keep it that way.

    1. So smoothly told - I'm enjoying this series immensely - "the shadows that merge into beings" - lovely surreptitious.

  10. A change of focus [37]

    ‘Yanno, a Khakbethian knows it is taboo to disrespect his father...’
    ‘Until two days ago the man I knew as father left me an endowment of violent hatred, deceit and treachery. Of madness. That he was your father passes such to you.’
    ‘Do you see madness in me?’
    Thirty seconds mutual stare. ‘I see the potential...’
    Slow-blinked eyelids covered momentary pain. Opened to reveal a hitherto almost-unknown honesty. ‘I seek to eradicate it, but...’
    ‘But you fear it. Yes.’
    ‘Has your English upbringing enabled you to overcome it?’
    ‘It has given me rules to live by. Armed me against it.’

  11. RR Kovar has asked me to post this for her, as she has been plied with wine and kidnapped to see a movie!

    Family Ties

    “If the thing claiming to have spawned me is alive, then he probably activated a network to bring me in.”

    “Or down.” Trust Uncle Jim to cover the even more negative aspect.

    Nate nodded. “Explains Carlos. Interesting connections.”

    I waited for Nate to ask the taboo question, the one that might sever our ties. He stared at me, refusing, forcing me to speak first.

    “No, I am not part demon.”

    Jim snorted. “No shit. You wouldn’t have made it past the driveway.”

    True. His warding is complex and enormous. Challenging. Someday I’ll ask what he did for such an endowment. Or not.

    1. And a trebling of intrigue ... as ever, love the laconic dialogue.

  12. And so the gates swing shut again, m'dears. I shall see you tomorrow, with winners and words. Rest well.