Midweek Musings 1×08

With some editing deadlines looming large, we’re taking the weekend off from #FlashMobWrites. But we’re not leaving you with a week bereft of new tuneage.

I’ve been waiting impatiently for this band’s new album for a couple months, since hearing their alt hit, “Renegades.” Well the album, VHS, finally dropped yesterday. I’ve listened through a few times already, pleasantly surprised by the stylistic variety of the band’s sound.

This is one of my favorite tracks from the album, and after watching this live performance I’m even more impressed by these guys.

So take this anthem to trying to be a better person–and not always succeeding–and see where it leads you. Guidelines are after the lyrics, and post your stories in the comments below!

I’m nothing but a low life
Thinking ’bout my own life
I can’t help myself from falling
Can’t help myself from falling
I’m nothing but a low life
Thinking ’bout my own life
I’m trying to fight the good old fight
But after it all, I’m still just a low life

Wanna be a better man, but it’s a hard life
Without that love inside you, it’s a cold bind
I started to reflect on all that’s been before
Started to wonder, but, but you can’t be sure

Now please tell me I’m broke
It’s much easier that way cause I just let you down
It’s much easier that way

I’m nothing but a low life
Thinking ’bout my own life
I can’t help myself from falling
Can’t help myself from falling
I’m nothing but a low life
Thinking ’bout my own life
I’m trying to fight the good old fight
But after it all, I’m still just a low life

There are words in my mind in the candlelight
Cold hands on my heart keeping slow time
And I started to reflect on all that’s been before
Started to wonder, but you, you can’t be sure

Now please tell me I’m broke
It’s much easier that way cause I just let you down
It’s much easier that way

I’m nothing but a low life
Thinking ’bout my own life
I can’t help myself from falling
Can’t help myself from falling
I’m nothing but a low life
Thinking ’bout my own life
I’m trying to fight the good old fight
But after it all, I’m still just a low life

I’m still just a low life
Nothing but a low life
I can’t help myself from falling
I can’t help myself from falling
Still just a low life
I’m nothing but a low life
I’m trying to fight the good old fight
But after it all, I’m still just a low life

I’m nothing but a low life (nothing but a low life)
Thinking ’bout my own life (thinking ’bout my own life)
I can’t help myself from falling (can’t help myself)
Can’t help myself from falling (can’t help myself)
I’m nothing but a low life (nothing but a low life)
Oh, I’m thinking ’bout my own life (thinking ’bout my own life)
I’m trying to fight the good old fight
But after it all, I’m still just a low life

The Guidelines:

  • This is a non-judged free write session.
  • Use the prompt anyway you’d like.
  • Post anytime between now and next Wednesday (1200 EDT).
  • Keep it under 1,000 words.
  • Leave encouraging comments for other participants.
  • Most of all, have FUN!

13 thoughts on “Midweek Musings 1×08

  1. Fallen

    He was built like a tower, tall and strong, his hands broad yet long. If you split him into an apartment block the lift doesn’t quite reach the top floor, his mind a closed door.

    His dreams are in the basement his thoughts always low, he has many times reached the depths of depravity, no deeper could he go.

    I have been assigned to be his mentor in this apartment called jail, the walls he tries to derail. If his block had an address it would be Mentally Deranged lane, he feels no pain.

    He tries to smile but it doesn’t beguile. It’s shaped like a sneer its coldness jeers. I’m meek in his presence but fascinated by his essence. It’s unfortunate that although not everything fits well, his parts don’t really gel, women fall under his spell. I find that he gives me palpitations, and would lose my job for him no hesitation. I think that I can change him my common sense dim.

    We’ve had conjugal visits that no-one has approved, the apartment block has moved. He brings me to heights never before reached, security has been breached. I approve all his mail and hover over fine detail. He gets what I approve of not the ladies swearing undying love.

    We plan what we’ll do when he is free I’m already breaking the binds of matrimony. My divorce is looming the costs booming. I’m mesmerized and leading the way to my soul’s demise.

    I’ve reported that I think he was temporarily insane and therefore now that he’s well to keep him locked up there’s no gain. Lauded for my credentials my lift would go to Suite Presidential.

    His release date is set, the prospects make me wet. On the blessed day I await with bated breath, hidden from colleagues view, can’t show myself, not yet. He walks through the gate and no emotions does he demonstrate. I wait until he gets some distance from the prison and toot the horn with precision. Three beeps we had agreed, when we were planting the seed. His steps quicken as I beckon.

    About two feet from the car he collapses I couldn’t tell how much time lapses. Blood spurts from his shirt he is mortally hurt. Standing there triumphant is a dad in his daughters photos clad. He has avenged her killing to go to jail he is willing. He salutes me with glee I fall to my knees in misery.

    I now reside in hell no-one rings my bell. I owned up to everything reality stings. Sacked in disgrace I hide my face. He haunts my days and nights I write my plight. It’s become a best seller, its reviews stellar. It brings me no enjoyment, I pen my torment.

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  2. Pingback: Midweek Musings 1×08 | susanburns1968

  3. Bluefins, Rothschild, and Big Green

    Not everybody is cut out to be a hero. And hell, if the world was full of ‘em, then there’d be nobody to rescue, amiright? I have no intention of going all cape-and-tights. Just need somebody to explain why my favorite fishing spot is drying up. It’s in the middle of the ocean, or near enough to it, that ‘drying up’ is technically impossible, improbable at the very least, but still, it’s something somebody ought to be looking into.

    As it happens, I know just the someone to call. Course, there’s a drawback to every plan. The one in front of me is a bit more troublesome than your everyday drawback and to be honest, that’s why it’s taken me so long to put my foot in it. But a man’s fishing spot is sacred, something you can’t let slip away. Been fishing in that same square mile since I was a minnow on my pa’s rowboat. Can’t sit by and let it go the way of giraffes and pandas.

    So now here I am, tying up at Kettleman’s Dock like it’s Sunday morning and I’m just strolling in for a cuppa joe and the hometown news. Don’t need no radio station or newspaper to tell me what’s going on. I can see with my own to eyes. Hell’s on a rampage. Again, that’s why I stayed out on the water so long. Got plenty of rations too. A couple cool hideaways. A cove here and there. A half submerged cave. No shortage of work. No shortage of places to scavenge from. Like I said, it’s just the one thing that’s bothering me. The little Bluefins I like for breakfast are petering out and I need to get that nipped in the bud. Or reversed. Got no idea what to do about but Rothschild will. Just have to get past these damn green bastards first.

    Don’t know where they came from. Don’t care. So long as they don’t get between me and Rothschild, or me and my fishing spot, I got no beef. Yeah, they did shoot the shit out of the city. And the planet for that matter. But I got the ocean all to myself, so I got no complaints. Well, except about the Bluefins. And the fact that I have to go ten miles inland to retrieve Rothschild. Oh, and the fact that I’ll have to hoof it that far since public transportation, all transportation, in fact, is a thing of the past. Chalk that up to Big Green again. Come to think of it, they’ve really become intrusive. Problematic, even. Might have to deal with ‘em. Right after Bluefins and Rothschild.

    Rothschild. Now there’s a real piece of work. Brain about as complicated and ingenious as any I’ve run across. Comes with a scowl like a chicken standing on the center divide at rush hour and a left hook sweet as anything you’ll see in a cage fight. Truth be told, I wouldn’t have come for her if not for the Bluefins. I waited for her the day those tin buckets landed. Waited the day after too. And the day after that. She never showed. And I’m not the needy or clingy type. But by god, those fish are not going to go off the map without me making a god awful fuss first. And for that kind of hail mary, I’m going to need Rothschild. Isn’t that a bitch?

    I can see the headline now. Viktor Kovaks and Ursula Rothschild Singlehandedly Save Washington State’s Bluefin Population. That is, I could see it if there were newspapers around anymore. But like I said, media outlets are gone the way of the dinosaur. If somebody doesn’t do something about these big green numbnuts, the human race isn’t far behind. But that somebody isn’t going to be me. No, Bluefins and Rothschild. That’s all I came for. And god help the man, woman, or creature, who gets in the way of my objectives.

    – – – – –
    @bullishink / 663 lawki alien wip sketch

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Pingback: #MidweekMusings 1×08 : Lowlife | My Soul's Tears

  5. The wolf lead Kelly into the clearing, where the woman was standing. She wore one of Frank’s shirts, Kelly recognized it. The woman saw the wolf, saw Kelly, and looked terrified. “Jessica sent me. It’s OK. It’s alright.” The wolf stretched out on the ground, his tail wagged.

    Kelly looked around, her eyes searched the trees, the brush. Nothing. No sign of Frank. “Frank brought you here, didn’t he.”

    The woman nodded.

    “Is he still here?”

    She shook her head.


    The woman looked terrified, and Kelly could understand that. She’d been used the same way. By a group of six men. She’d thought it would never end. The things they’d done to her. She fought, she cried, she screamed, she tried. But one against six. She lost. They used her. They beat her.

    She knelt on the ground, held out a bag of nuts and berries, and a container of water. “These are for you.”

    Frank watched from the trees. He hadn’t expected Kelly to show up. One of the others, yes, but not Kelly. He wanted to step out of hiding. Hug her. Ask how things were at the village. Ask how Valerie was.

    The wolf yipped, leaped to its feet, and raced into the trees. “Frack!” Frank silently cursed. It raced to Frank’s side, and yipped and ran in circles. “Frack!”

    Kelly saw the wolf race into the trees, saw it yipping at a tree, running in circles. “Frank?”

    The wolf bounced around, “Yip! Yip! Yip!”

    Kelly raced into the trees.

    There was nothing to do but step out of hiding. Frank gave up. “Hi.”

    Kelly plowed into him, nearly knocked him over, “FRANK!” She wrapped her arms around his neck, and hugged him like she would never let him go. “Thank, God!”

    “Hi, Kelly.”

    She grabbed his hand, and hauled him back to the clearing, where the woman waited. The wolf parked beside the woman, then nuzzled her ankle. The woman smiled.

    “I see you rescued someone.”

    Frank said nothing.

    “Was she alone?”

    He shook his head.

    Frank hated to see sadness in Kelly’s eyes. “Oh.”

    “A trap. She was bait.”

    Kelly placed a hand on the woman’s shoulder, “Oh, you poor dear.”

    “He…” She tried to speak.

    “How many were there?” Kelly knew, it was several. She knew, with Frank, it didn’t matter. None of them would have walked away.



    He shook his head. “Not saying.”

    “Valerie cries every night.” She didn’t let go of his hand, “Every night, Frank.”

    There was no answer. No response.

    “What happened? Tell me, Frank. What happened?”

    “Take her to the village.” He started to walk away.

    The wolf cut him off. It whined, and stayed in his way, no matter where he turned. Kelly grabbed his hand again, and the woman grabbed his other hand. Neither would let go. “Please.”

    He wanted to run. To get the hell out of there, and never come back. But, Kelly’d said, “Please.”

    “I can’t.” He squeezed both their hands. “I can’t.” He shook his head.

    “Why, Frank? Why?”

    For the first time since he’d saved her, the woman spoke, “Broken.”

    Kelly stared at him. “Broken?” She looked in his eyes. Frank wanted to look away, but found he couldn’t. “Broken?” She held his hand tightly, as if he might run if she let go. “Frank?”

    “You said it’s safe. With Jessica.” She wouldn’t let go of his hand. “I’m afraid.”

    No one spoke for a while. The only sounds were the leaves in the breeze through the trees, a soft, quiet rustle.

    “I don’t belong.” Frank finally spoke. “Not there. You build things. Have hope.” He tried to look at Kelly, but couldn’t. “All I do is kill things.”

    The woman shook her head.

    Kelly embraced him again. “Please. At least visit. One night.”

    He needed to say something. Anything. “How is Valerie?”

    “I’m not going to tell you.” Kelly wouldn’t let go. She held him like he’d vanish if she did. “You’ll have to come check on her.”

    He didn’t move, just stood there. She swore he’d stopped breathing. “There’s a heart in you, Frank.” She pressed her head to his chest, “I can hear it beating.” She smiled at him. “And you saved her.” She nodded at the woman. “You could have walked away. Left her to die. But you didn’t.”

    The woman whispered, “I’m afraid.” Frank saw the fear in her eyes. She knew him. Knew he wouldn’t hurt her.

    “See, Frank? See? I felt your heart move when she spoke. I did. You’re not evil, Frank. You’re not. You save people. Like me. Like her.” She looked in his eyes again, “You still have a heart.”

    The woman whispered, “Don’t leave me alone.”

    Frank sank to his knees. He couldn’t breathe. Couldn’t think. Valerie held him, wouldn’t let him go. “You brought her this far. Won’t you take her the rest of the way. Just to make sure she’s safe?” She pressed her cheek against his, “Please? I know your heart. It’s still alive.”

    Frank cried. He held Kelly, and wept.

    And the woman whispered, “Broken.” She knelt beside them both, “Take me where it’s safe.”

    Where it was safe. Where broken, wounded people, like Kelly, Gina, and the others went to heal. Safe, where the woman who’d lost everything a few days ago could start over. Maybe learn to smile again.

    And maybe the ache in his chest would finally start to fade.

    “Take me where it’s safe.”

    915 Words

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  6. Zee is for Zombie

    They never look as dead as they should.

    They still walk, run, breathe. Sometimes they almost talk. That’s how they get you. It’s the perfect predatory disguise. They’re alive just enough to make you wonder. To make you pause. By the time you realize you’re mistake, they’ve cracked your skull like a pistachio shell and dined on the tender nut inside.

    My strategy? Shoot first and settle your account with whatever power you believe in later. For an even sharper edge, try atheism. One hundred percent practicality, zero guilt. As far as I see, any sort of higher being out there has given us up for dead. Nobody’s ever wanted me anyway. I’m just giving what I get.

    “Zombaby at eleven,” I murmur. I drop my binoculars and set my eye to the scope, shifting my rifle to my northwest. “Cute little bugger, aren’t ya?”

    I’m no sniper, I’m not even a hunter. Life experience is one helluva teacher though. I squeeze the trigger. His head pops like a watermelon at that old comedian’s show. A rifle bullet isn’t much subtler than a sledgehammer.

    Slinging the rifle over my shoulder, I trot to the body. If I’m lucky, the kid’s got something useful on him. I’m right on top of him when I see her crouched in the grass. I don’t know how the hell I didn’t spot that copper top of hers.

    “Shit, shit, shit.” I backpedal and bring the rifle up, stopping just shy of pulling the trigger.

    I’m getting too cocky for my own good.

    “You did this.” Her husky voice accuses me even as it saves her life. Her rigid expression is locked on the boy. The silent tears turning the dust on her face to fine mud tell me she’s really alive. All the way alive. “You killed him.”

    “Uh, yeah.” Point to Captain Obvious. I kneel to draw the laces from his shoes.


    “Is that actually a question?” Not too bright this one, the color of her hair aside. “I like my brains in my head.”

    “He didn’t know you were there. You could have let him go.”

    “So I should have let him sniff you out? Find out if your brain is as gingery as your hair?” I make a show of pondering as I search his jeans pockets. “Or maybe you get away with a scratch and become another brain-etarian for me to watch out for. Brilliant fucking plan.”

    “What if he wasn’t—? I mean, it’s hard to tell sometimes.”

    If she’s noticed that much, maybe she’s not beyond saving. Surviving. I meant, surviving. Only ass I saved was my own.

    “Then I did him a favor.” Score. Pocket knife tucked along his right hip. “This is no world for kids.”

    “Who are you to judge?”

    “I’m not the judge.” I stow my meager treasures in my trusty messenger bag. “Just the executioner, gorgeous.”

    “You’re heartless.”

    “I’m who I need to be to survive.”

    Some folks find a genuine turnaround in prison. God, Allah, Willy Wonka—whatever. They embrace a new life, repent and all.

    That shit don’t work for me.

    I’ve danced the catch and conviction two-step since I was fifteen. Girl with a record has limited employment opportunities. I don’t have the body for stripping and I shot the dick off the shit for brains who thought my “no” really meant “go for it,” so the pimps worry for their clientele. So he bled out before first responders arrived. Not my fault they were late to the party. “Justice” called it manslaughter and tried me as an adult. I called my four years with good behavior time well spent. Since then, it’s been mostly petty stuff. A little housebreaking here, some GTA there.
    Light fingers and a steady gun hand aren’t black marks now. They’re essential survival skills.

    She stands, arms crossed tight over her chest. She’s bruised, scratched, clothes torn.

    “Any of those scratches I see from one of them?”

    “No.” She stumbles back a few steps. “Don’t shoot me. Jesus Christ.”

    “Ain’t coming to save anyone by the look of things.” I scan our surroundings, feeling uncomfortably exposed. Someone like me could be in the cover of the trees. “Save your Catholic guilt.”

    “I’m Methodist.”

    I smirk at the saucy answer, thinking we make the start of a fantastically offensive joke. A Methodist and an atheist walk into a bar…

    “I’m sure there’s enough guilt to go around.” She’s a sweet sight despite being a hot mess. “If you have any plans to be more than prey, come on.”

    “I’m not going anywhere with you.” But she’s got a stubborn streak overriding her common sense.

    “Whatever.” I shrug. “Just FYI, sun’s setting soon.”

    “I can see that myself.”

    “Then you know the packs will be more active. This midget was likely the early scout.”

    “You talk about them like they know what they do.”

    “They aren’t dead,” I say. “But they’ll trick by playing dead as easily as they trick you by playing alive. They’ve got a powerful need to eat and they’ve figured out in a few short months they get better results when they organize. I’m not saying anything recognizable as a human being is still in those bodies, but you’re damn right they know what they’re doing.”

    “All I want is a night of decent sleep,” she whispers. “A night I don’t wake up at every little sound. A night every little sound doesn’t feed right into my nightmares.”

    “We’ll get one when we’re dead.” I orient myself toward my safe house. “You might get yours before me, though. I’m not ready to go just yet.”

    I get ten steps before she stops me.


    I oblige her.

    “What’s your name?”

    “Zee,” I say.

    “Zee the Zombie Killer.” She snorts. “Cute.”

    “Better than Zee the Zombie. Alive is this way. You coming?”

    “Yeah,” she sighs. “Lead on, Killer.”

    If she expects me to be insulted anytime soon, she’s got a long wait ahead.

    1000 WIP words

    Liked by 1 person

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