#FlashMobWrites 1×18

Welcome to #FlashMobWrites Week Eighteen

*JuNoWriMo Edition*

Come one, come all! This is an open flash fiction challenge with a musical inspiration, hosted by authors Cara Michaels (formerly of #MenageMonday, #WIPflash, and#RaceTheDate) and Ruth Long (of the wicked fun #LoveBites and #DirtyGoggles challenges).

Mob Rules

  • The challenge begins: Fridays @ Noon EDT (Eastern USA)
  • And ends: Saturday @ Midnight PST (Pacific USA)
  • Word count: 300-500 (no less, no more)
  • We love you and wish to heap praises (and random prizes) on you, so be sure to include your name (no, it doesn’t have to be your real name) and a way for us to get in touch (Twitter handles are encouraged)
  • A prompt choice is offered by each judge. Choose one and include it in your story as given.
    • The prompt may be split between sentences, but no order change or dropping words.
    • Words may be added before or after, not in the middle.

GUEST JUDGE

Because JuNo is ending (thank all the gods) and Ruth and I are totally exhausted.

Our own decorated Mobster, Silver James, is guest judging this week. You know how we’ve been ‘shipping Corke around here for the last several weeks? Well, hot damn, she’s got a whole book of goodness for us to drool over (and prizes, of course):

hard_target

Ship it with me… CORKE!

Prizes

BOSS: $10 iTunes gift card to fuel your writing soundtrack + an ebook from Silver’s backlist (READ ALL THE BOOKS!).

UNDERBOSS: an ebook from Silver’s awesome backlist

The Inspiration

For your musical enjoyment only. You do not need to reference the video or song themes in any way for your story.

The Prompts

Silver James: “I’ll leave this life behind”

Cara Michaels: “to be the last one standing”

Ruth Long: “these iron bars can’t hold my soul”

Now pick your prompt and post your story in the comments below!

Advertisements

32 thoughts on “#FlashMobWrites 1×18

  1. I’m standing here waiting for them to come. I could say I don’t know how I got here; but that would be a lie. I know I got here by first of all being naive, foolish and looking for love. But let begin at the beginning I met Jacob in high school. I was shy, vulnerable, fourteen year old girl with a bad family situation. Okay let’s be honest, my dad was a drunk and my mom was drug addict. I was ripe for the attentions of a grade twelve student. Jacob asked me out and we began to see each other. Soon we were sleeping together. At sixteen I found myself pregnant. Jacob said let’s get married and we did. Soon we had six children three boys and three girls and never enough money to go around. It didn’t help that I married a man just like daddy. Jacob drank, and when he drank he got mean and hit me. I could take it despite the broken skin, arms and limbs I loved him. At least I thought he did, until he started hitting the kids. That’s where I drew the line. When he started hitting them I stepped in and took the beatings he meant for them. I yelled at the kids to go to their rooms and they did. But as the blows fell I begged him to stop and he didn’t. He almost killed me when I saw the frying pan and picked it up. Jacob went down with a thud as I hit him on the head. He was dead.
    I killed him I don’t deny that, but it was self-defense. The court appointed lawyer was no help and I was convicted.
    I could say I wanted to be the last standing, but the truth is soon I’ll leave this life behind. The thing I regret most is my children. I love them so, but my aunt has stepped in and promised to look after them, keeping them together. I hope they and God can forgive me. They here know calling for me to put on the chains. I walk down the hall and they strap me down before they inject the drugs that will take my life. I feel the drugs with in my veins burning, but I accept my fate, these iron bars can’t hold my soul. I soar above it all and am surprised to be forgiven and welcomed with all-encompassing love. I have found the love I seek. I need look no more.
    441 words
    @SweetSheil

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Hazel Twigg

    Ace had more bedrooms than the Plaza. Quarry also seemed impressed. We each got one.

    Even in the comfort of my temporary fortune, I still went to sleep needing to count sheep. Unfortunately, they were all jammed in a rancid smelling boxcar and resented my calculations. They were bleating and nuzzling each other and it was impossible to get an accurate count.
    Around dusk, there was a light knock on the door and Quarry came in.

    “We’ve been requested to come to dinner.”

    “I’ll be along shortly, John.”

    I took my time, luxuriating in the borrowed comfort of the room. In 10 minutes, I made my way downstairs. I could hear Ace but there was also the sound of the voice of a young woman.

    “Ah Woody, come in come in. Get you a drink?”

    “Sure Mr. Longworth. Anything you have.”

    “Ace, Woody. And “anything” never does. A man’s got to KNOW what he wants, and expect it.”

    “Then, a brandy would suit me fine.”
    Longworth went to a Credenza, found a bottle of Brandy and poured me a bucket full.

    “Sit there, Woody, next to…”

    The girl cut Ace off, extended her right hand and said, “Gabi Laird. Welcome to Crowbar City, Mister…”

    “Elwood Staples…Woody,” I replied, and shook her firm and quite lovely hand. “How do you know I’m a newcomer?”

    Ace jumped in. “That’s easy, Woody. Gabi runs the Crowbar City Grill. There ain’t nobody she don`t know. Everyone has eaten there at one time or another.”

    Gabi Laird was the best sight I’d seen in weeks. A glance at John told me that he also appreciated her just being there. Even Clint, the 5th and final member of our impromptu quintet, almost smiled.

    “Ace is exaggerating. Maybe during the war everyone who wasn’t confined ate at the Grill. Peacetime has eaten into my profits.”

    “War has always been good for business,” John offered.

    “So it’s just a question of when the next one starts, you think?” asked Longworth.

    “Death, taxes and war,” I butted in to take any heat off Quarry.

    Stella came bustling in with steaks, spuds and salad.

    While we ate, Ace got down to his business. “Reason I invited Gabi is that I wanted you and her to meet, John. That’s not the only reason but she’s part of what I want you to do for me.”

    “Fire away, Ace.”

    “Three years ago, Gabi’s aunt, Hazel Twigg, vanished! She owned the Grill. Monday night, October 11th, she locked up about 8 pm. Night the Yankees won the World Series. Skully, her main cook, left before her. Hazel always wanted to be the last one. Standing across the street, a local rounder, Hap Granger, said he thought he saw her get driven away in a jeep.”

    “And no trace?” John asked.

    “Nope! Nothing! So that’s the job. Find out what happened to Hazel.”

    “It’s a tall order,” John said, “but we’ll give it a shot.”

    “Good, you can start in the morning.”

    500 glasses of brandy
    @billmelaterplea
    http://www.engleson.ca

    same data as the other one but I needed to do a salvage edit. Sorry for the trigger finger.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Blood Sport

    Society’s thirst for violence grew out of proportion. Arenas were packed with dysfunctional cretins aching to fill their need for blood. Baseball altered their rules to include duels to the death. Pitchers were encouraged to headhunt batters at least once per inning. Stealing a base suddenly became punishable by a two minute fisticuffs challenge between the runner and either the catcher or infielder. Who would have known that hockey and boxing would be the tamest of sports.

    I’m Jax Feller and I was a two time champion of Dodge Bomb, the bloodiest sport in modern times. The crowd surrounded two teams of six players in a concrete enclosed arena. To ensure the spectators safety, they watched in another location and their images were projected in a massive green screen above us.

    To play the sport, a player had to be super agile. Better than cat-like reflexes were a must. Evasive maneuverability and the strength to throw exploding shot-put grenades while avoiding them from opponents added to the complexities of the game. Each player had to live with a kill or be killed mentality.

    As I lined up in position, a safe distance away from my so called teammates, I realized that being born into the working class had condemned me to a short life expectancy. Only the corporate blowhards, politicians, and celebrities were usually exempt from this blood sport.

    Last month I lined up and witnessed firsthand how teammates could turn on each other. After blowing my opponents to hell, the rules of the first match had changed by the second. Someone in corporate had decided that winning as a team was boring. It wasn’t enough to watch body parts flying and burning in the flames of liberty. No, now I had to be the last one standing. I wasn’t ready for the freedom death brought. I had to keep winning because the carnage quenched my thirst for power.

    I am Jax Feller, the wounded champion of Dodge Bomb, and the gatekeeper of hell on earth.

    346

    @Nomar_Knight

    Liked by 5 people

  4. Fallen
    500 Words
    @msbbrumley

    “I found her on the pavement.” Jason’s hands were clasped on the table in front of him. One light illuminated the metal surface. Uncomfortable, he glanced at the darkened corners of the room.

    “Just lying on the pavement?”

    “Yeah.”

    “Hard to believe.” The officer scrubbed a hand across his stubble.

    “I don’t make this stuff up.”

    “Where’d she go?”

    “I told you I don’t know. Did you find the last one?” Silence met his question. Jason bowed his head, expressing a sigh before murmuring quietly to himself.

    When Jason looked up, the officer had raised eyebrows. “Finished?” The word held no irritation.

    Jason nodded. “Yes, I need to get back.” The chair scraped loudly across the floor.

    “You sure you have nothing to add?”

    Jason’s hand was already on the door knob, his black cassock belted in the middle, his clerical collar digging into the neck thickening with middle age. He looked over his shoulder. “I have a long history of cooperation. I want to find her as much as you do.” He pulled the door open, his robes swirling about his booted feet.

    The officer nodded. “Alright. Well, let us know if you find another one.”

    Jason did not answer, already striding down the corridor, his right boot squeaked with each stride.

    Must’ve stepped in something.

    His pace did not slow, and he burst into the night, nearly knocking into a rough looking man.

    “Hey, watch it!”

    Jason tilted his head to the side, knowing the street lamp would catch the thin line of white circling his neck.

    “Oh, sorry, padre, have a nice night.”

    Still means something… sometimes. He turned toward the parish, the gothic cross just visible over the roof lines. A train whistle sounded from far away.

    His heart tripped in his chest when he heard an unexpected voice close behind, low, almost purring. “Hello, Father, I have sinned.”

    He whirled, an image of a spinning dervish flashed in his mind. “I’ve been looking for you.”

    Woe leaned against the building, a cigarette hanging from her mouth, the cherry glowing as she inhaled. When she stepped forward, Jason’s eyes tripped down her body. A leather jacket over a mini dress, black leather boots laced up to her thighs. Bare legs, no makeup. Something stirred in him. “You look like a teenager.”

    “I’m twice as old as Westminster.” She coughed.

    “Angels shouldn’t smoke.”

    “Fallen angel, Father.” She took another drag. “I’ll leave this life behind. At least, I can die now.”

    “After our talk, I had hoped you wanted to be the last one standing. We need you.”

    She flicked the cigarette across the sidewalk. “Maybe. Maybe not. I hear the last one didn’t fare so well, isn’t he locked up somewhere?”

    Jason sighed, his shoulders drooping. She waited, and he let the silence stretch. Finally, he nodded. “The last time I saw him, he was screaming, ‘These iron bars can’t hold my soul.’”

    “I’m not sure I even have a soul, Jason.”

    He gave no answer.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Pingback: #FlashMobWrites 1×18 : Savin Me | My Soul's Tears

  6. Zachary cried as they took down the flag in front of the capitol building. Some folks watching patted him on the back, not realizing his tears were not happy tears, but tears of loss, tears for his country as people nailed another nail into its coffin.

    It wasn’t like he wanted slavery. He knew it was wrong to own other people. And he did think everyone was equal. But, that didn’t make everyone the same. Black and white people were different. They didn’t belong together, they belonged in separate places. And them homos, they were sick people, had some virus or something, and were infecting everybody.

    He knew what to do. The Bible said if a man was sick, cast him out. If he lived, let the church leaders figure out if God had healed him before letting him back in.

    Them people wanting the flag down wanted to have black and white people get married, and make babies, have men marry men, and women marry women. And that was sick.

    “It’s time to start fixing all this shit. Time to start getting rid of the sick people, so the diseases they got won’t infect everybody.” That’s what he said that night, to his friends in the chat room. And they all said the same thing.

    Zachary prayed a lot that night. “Grant me the strength to take down Satan’s minions, oh God almighty. Guide me, and my aim. Protect my family from the evil people of this world. Keep them pure and safe.”

    At sunrise Zachary gathered his two handguns, and assault rifle. He signed in to the chat room one last time. Several of his buddies were there, checking to see if everyone was ready. They wished each other well. They wished each other victory. They prayed.

    It was time to save his country.

    He drove his car as he hunted Satan’s minions. People with that cursed rainbow flag thing, men kissing men, men holding hands, women kissing and holding hands, people walking with them. The weak, infected, sick people who didn’t know they were supporting Satan.

    He found a group of six men, holding hands. He watched a couple of them kiss each other. Made him sick to watch. Several couples were with them, men and women, shaking hands with the sick men, everybody laughing, smiling.

    He parked his car, climbed out, pulled his rifle off his back, checked it was ready to fire, and screamed, “For the glory of God!” People screamed, cried, ran. He made sure he shot all six of the sick men, made sure they were dead. Then, he got in his car, started hunting more of the sick.

    “If it’s my time to die today, Almighty Father, then I’ll leave this life behind, and join your heavenly army.” He hoped he didn’t die, but if that’s what it took to save his country from Satan, then so be it.

    487 words
    @LurchMunster

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Life

    The others say she is dead. But they are fooled into thinking it’s a human, a woman even, by the feminine features of its face mask. They are wrong. It’s an Artificial Life Unit, not a human. Its circuits are intact and there isn’t any reason why it can’t be fixed.

    The Life sits on the chair, its hands resting on its knees and its head up and looking straight ahead. Its eyes are closed. Every time I turn on the power its eyelids flicker, open for an instant and show its pale blue eyes, and I think this time it’s going to work. But then the eyes close again and there is nothing. Without power its skin is cold and the cutaneous molecules become rigid. You can tap your fingernail against it.

    I take a screwdriver and prise open the panel on its back. The problem is in the control interface between the power source – the heart as some of them call it – and the neural substrate. The problems it developed, the tremble in the hands, the lapses in memory, suggest so. I make a few more adjustments in the circuits, take out some modules, blow on the connections and slot them back in. I don’t know how many times a circuit’s failed because some dust has broken a vital connection. Once more, I try the power. Once more there is nothing.

    I remember the first time we turned the Life on. Its eyes opened and looked at me and I could sense the intelligence behind those blue eyes. It was going to be the first of the new Life Units, the first to mimic emotions. Perhaps that is why the others so easily confuse it with a human. When they smiled, it smiled. It is so easy to make that mistake. Even I did once. I was leaning across her when she – at that moment the Life was a she, soft breath and a slight flush on her cheeks – tilted her head up. Her lips slightly parted as if the instinct to kiss was always inside her. Our lips touched. But of course it must have seen a kiss in a thousand videos she’d watched on the internet. It’s so easy to be fooled.

    It is three in the morning and this is beyond me. So I’ll leave this Life behind in the storage vault tonight, but I will come back tomorrow, and I will fix her.

    409 words
    @AvLaidlaw

    Liked by 3 people

  8. THEY ARE COMING by E.F. Olsson

    Footsteps pounded through the thick tall grass. Heavy breathing and panting cut through the calm night air. Josh was the first to appear at the top of the hill. He adjusted the oversize backpack from slipping off of his shoulder. He looked back with a smile as Ray and Diane arrived – each carried bags that were stretched to their max by the contents in it. Ray leaned over out of breath. He began to dry heave.

    “You have to be quiet,” Josh demanded. “They’ll know where we are going.”

    Ray looked up at Josh. He couldn’t hold the chunks in any longer. Josh looked away in disgust.

    “Can’t we leave a bag and come back? These are too heavy,” Diane said.

    Josh bite his lips. He pulled a flashlight from his coat. He flashed the light out into the darkness of the open field before them. At the opposite edge of the field a light signaled back.

    Behind them, in the woods, there was a rustle sound moving closer. Ray stood. Diane looked to Josh.

    “I can’t carry these any longer,” Diane said.

    “The house is up ahead,” Josh said. “You agreed that you would carry the share. We can’t leave anything. You two have already slowed me down enough that they found us.”

    “We appreciate this,” Diane started. She stopped as grunts sounds echo in the darkness. She gripped her bags from the horror of what was approaching.

    “Let’s go. Fast.” Josh runs into the field. Diane regarded Ray as he swipes the remintes of puke from his lips.

    “You can do it, Ray. You must want to be the last one standing. I want to be,” Diane said. “Safety is just right there.” She started to run off behind Josh.

    Ray tried his fastest to move. His knapsack began to stretch at the seams – a hole split in the bottom of the sack – out fell a can of corn, then another, then other. The bottom of the sack burst open. Food fell out to the ground. Ray stopped nearly falling over.

    The large white house up ahead. Josh was approaching the boarded front door. All the windows were boarded. In the attic window, someone was watching with binoculars.

    There was a strange gurgling sound behind Ray. He froze as tears fell from his eyes. Diane yelled from the porch of the house. Josh quickly covered her mouth with his hand. The door cracked open. A man stood there holding a shotgun. Josh yanked Diane into the house.

    As the door closed, Diane yelled out for Ray.

    The rustling sound grew louder. Ray staggered back as a dozen people appeared. They were dead. Shells of who they once were. Their faces were all rotted and decayed – just loose skin on bones. Ray fell to the ground as the dead jump on him and began to bite out chunks of his flesh.

    Once the dead were done with Ray, they stood and looked at the old, dark, farmhouse.

    (498 words)
    @EFOlsson

    Liked by 3 people

  9. “Go home, Graham.” I hated saying the words, but I needed him safe. In my mind, I kept replaying the fight, only I didn’t make it to Graham. I landed short, or I overshot the jump. And the vampire drained Graham before I recovered enough to stop him. “You’ve been a huge help, but this is fully a LOCI matter now. You’ll be briefed when the case is closed.”

    “What?”

    “You can go.”

    “You keep saying that like you fucking expect me to agree. ‘Pack up your fancy bags and snag a first class flight home, Graham. The world is too dark and scary for the genteel likes of you.’” He spun me around by the shoulders. “This house? This proper and titled existence my grandmother clings to so fiercely? This is my so-called home. I’ll leave this life behind in a heartbeat, Red.”

    “The world is dark and scary,” I said. “And you have no idea what it’s like not to have this—as stifling and annoying as it may seem—to back you up.”

    “Blood isn’t everything.” He cupped my cheeks. “You of all people know that.” With a heavy shake of his head, he said, “I stood between my mother and grandmother. Not because I wanted to. Because they both needed me to. I’m an easier target for Grandmother’s anger and a buffer for Mother’s longing.”

    “Longing for what?”

    “Acceptance. The one thing Grandmother doesn’t have it in her power to give.”

    I wrapped my hand around his wrist.

    “Maybe I haven’t spent much of my life killing insane vampires or hunting supernatural serial killers, but I’m a detective. What we humans do to each other is just as awful and terrifying as your monsters. And they call on people like me to explain not only who or how, but why.” He slipped his left hand beneath my hair, fingers tangling in the curls. “I’ve built my life around trying to understand people. Love should trump everything else, but it rarely does.”

    I turned my cheek into his hand.

    “Don’t shut me out, Red.” He dipped his head, resting his forehead against my temple. “Just once in this fucking circus of a life, I want to be accepted. Welcomed.”

    “Wanted,” I whispered.

    “Yes.”

    “You’re wanted, Graham, I promise you that much.” I slipped closer to him, circling my arms around him. “My world is better with you in it.”

    “Then don’t kick me out.”

    “I need you safe.” My hold on him tightened. “I can’t lose you.”

    “What makes you think I can lose you?” He tipped my chin up. “This isn’t a one-sided thing. You want me safe as much as I want the same for you. So let’s agree we keep each other that way by staying together.”

    “We protect each other?”

    “Exactly that.”

    “Okay, but—don’t die on me.” I snuggled back in, resting my ear over his heart. “I won’t be held responsible for what happens to the world if you do.”

    @caramichaels
    499 WIP words

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Unfortunately

    Another night. Another prison door slammed shut in Jude’s face. He clenched the bars, taking in the long, dimly lit passage lined with cells as the snapping of footsteps echoed in the distance. He chuckled to himself before laying on the thin, stained mattress; at least he had one this time. Getting himself comfy, he closed his eyes and inhaled deeply. He liked this; alone, peaceful with time to think. He loved the irony that his cell and incarceration (however temporary) facilitated his hunger, his passion, his drive. A drive he couldn’t ignore.

    There she was.

    Naked.

    Trembling, like a baby deer.

    Her pale blue eyes widened as his hand found her throat, pressing his thumb down hard. Shock etched her face as she realised her fate. With the instinct to survive, she fought, pushing at him, flailing her arms, her hands, trying to claw his face, trying to remember all the self defence training. That only heightened his pleasure as her final breath rasped in her throat . . .

    “Hey, just so you know,” he shouted, “I’m having the time of my life here. These iron bars can’t hold my soul. And very soon they won’t be holding me either. I have the best lawyer.” Footsteps marched towards him and the jangling of keys made Jude grin as he pulled himself up. “Told you I have the best lawyer.”

    “Your lawyer doesn’t know you’re here.No one knows you’re here, I’m afraid. This is a place you can’t get to . . . or get out of,” said the calm, cold voice of the guard. He was tall, extremely thin, almost skeletal. With sunken eyes, he stared at Jude, his thin lips almost a smile.

    “I know my rights. I get a phone call and I get to meet my lawyer and I get fed. I’m starving!”

    “Yes . . . in a normal prison. But, unfortunately for you, this is not one of those. Sentence has been passed. Your fate is sealed.” As he spoke he stepped closer to Jude.

    “You can’t touch me!” Jude mustered.

    “Unfortunately for you, yes I can. Your fate cannot be changed. You were right on one count though, these bars can’t hold your soul. But I can.” He reached out his long, bony arm, pressing his hand against Jude’s chest. “We can’t let your soul remain any longer. Unfortunately for you that means ripping out your heart.”

    His fingers with long, sharp nails dug beyond the fabric, into the skin, deeper and deeper. “You see, it’s all very well preventing you from repeating your evil, but we can’t stop you thinking about it. And that just urges you on.” Despite the screams, the guard’s voice remained calm as his hand twisted, buried up to his wrist. With a sudden jerk, his hand was free, clasping the still beating organ in his blood soaked hand.

    474
    @Lizzie_Koch

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Dang! Y’all are a dark and bloody lot this time around. And I’m really glad I’m judging rather than “entering” because…whoa! There’s some mighty fine writing this week!!! I’ll be making my picks and notifying Cara and Ruth today. They’ll have information on how to claim your prizes.

    Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s