Another prompt, another round of great stories to choose from. Check the stories out below and vote for your favorite!
298 words by David A Ludwig (@DavidALudwig)
Jinx became aware of dusky crimson light filtering through smoke and shadow. And Oaklie’s painted paw on her shoulder.
“You’re okay now. But don’t breathe too much smoke.”
Ahead of them, Vedania’s body lay twisted and unmoving. Jinx’s head hurt. Her thoughts blurred.
“Did, did I…?”
“It’s okay, just stay behind me.”
Oaklie’s serene voice was a sanctuary none of the bad around them penetrated. Not even Jinx’s mother, standing past Vedania, eyes burning with evil power.
“So, you managed to overcome Natazla?” Malain smiled cruelly.
Oaklie strode purposefully to Vedania’s side. Jinx followed; her hazy mind afraid of seeing the damage a part of her knew was her doing.
“It hurt, fighting my friend. But the Big Bunny wasn’t playing favorites when he promoted me over her. She peached on you, Malain. It’s over.”
Oaklie laid a single white lily on Vedania, then stood to face Jinx’s mother. Darkness ran over Malain’s body like blood, exploding into massive wings from her back.
“She served her purpose. Knowing my plan doesn’t mean you can stop me.”
The inferno Jinx refused to remember reignited in swirling formations around them, controlled by her merciless mother. Vedania’s lily withered away. Oaklie laid her ears back and sank into a fighting stance.
“I can stop you because my friends are counting on me!”
“Your friends are dead!”
A rumble of thunder preceded rain-laden winds washing away Malain’s inferno.
“Not yet, we’re not!”
Bluebelle stood with Brewer and Emathyst on the hill overlooking the others. Emathyst nodded amicably to her companions below.
“Sorry we’re late.”
Malain conjured more flames, though Jinx could tell it was less than before. Soothing light separated her, Oaklie, and Vedania from her mother’s fire. Breath shuddered back into Vedania, who pushed herself back to her knees.
299 words by Bill Engelson, (@billmelaterplea)
You hear things, ya know. Out on the street, a whisper, a chance word spoken as you pass by some nob, something you don’t even care to hear, or barely hear. It all gets mulched in the tank of traffic gobble. So, there I was, cluster-frazzled in a human herd, bouncing along in the walking wave of humanity and I hear…” She needs to be gone, Bicky, so make it quick…” or something like that, and maybe it was, “She sleeps till dawn, Bicky, so make it quick…”, enough anyways for me to slow down and look around to see where the voice was coming from. If you have ever been in that situation, big city, crowds strutting and butting and gluttoning their way like one humongous human Godzilla, well, you’d appreciate how tough it was to pin it all down.
Maybe it was that the goobers conversing were not unfamiliar. How many Bicky’s could there be in the world? The one I knew was a low-slung grifter who occasionally hires out for unpleasantries, jobs no other self-respecting contractor had the stomach for.
So, I spotted him and squirreled my way through the fleshy masses to get closer.
His companion was still in his ear. I slow shuffled even closer. He was taller than Bicky and was pressed up against him like a wet shirt on skin, inches into the alley that abutted Taylors Pharmacy. “No trace, Bicky. I don’t want no trace of her. She may have already peached me to the fuzz. A shouldn’t have pissed her off…”
They went off in separate directions.
I decide to follow Bicky.
I’d never seen him in action.
If he was any good at disposing of unwanted packages, maybe I had some work for him.
300 words by Stephen Shirres (@The_Red_Fleece)
A Peach of a Job
I’m never stealing from a friend again, especially one who asks me to do it. Simple, Frank said. An in-and out-job, he said. Now I’m being chased down fourteen flights of stairs by what sounds like a private army. All jack boots and shouts of ‘she’s down there’. I’m surprised they haven’t started shooting yet. Maybe they don’t want to damage the walls.
Nine. The floor numbers ticked down slower than my lung capacity. They’ll catch me before the bottom at this rate. I open floor doors as I go, hoping to thin out the army behind me. Hardly going to make much difference, I’d struggled against an asthmatic rabbit at the moment.
Seven. This job makes less and less sense. Frank gave me the code for the alarm. How did he forget the private army?
Four. Almost there. I might actually make this. I can see the hint of the red fire door.
Three. Two. I don’t care if it is alarmed.
One. I slam into the metal bar. The door gives more easily than I expected and thud! I ran into something squashy yet solid. The pavement isn’t squashy at all. I sit up to see Frank doing the same.
“What the hell Frank?” I pull off my balaclava. How the hell did you forget to mention the security team?”
His skin goes the same colour as the pavement the private army, in police uniforms, floods onto. Blue flashing lights flicker closer and closer.
“Miss.” The lead officer holds his hand out. “Give me the drive and we’ll let you on your way.”
I pass it over. The job wasn’t worth going to prison for.
“A peach of job in more ways than one.” He winks.
No need to twist the knife. Hopefully deserves to go down for whatever he did.