#SwiftFicFriday W126 – Vote!

#SwiftFicFriday W126 – Vote!

Another prompt, another round of great stories to choose from. Check the stories out below and vote for your favorite!


The Lout

I always steered clear of Larry Hughes. He had an aura about him. I hesitate to say it was dark but that pretty much sums it up.

He came from a pretty well-off family. His father owned a men’s clothing store and had a piece in a number of other enterprises in town. I don’t know if that was common knowledge back then but later it became part of the Hughes Legacy.

Frances, or Fritzie as her friends called her, his older sister was the polar opposite. Thoughtful, a fun kid so it seemed to me, and I suppose others in town that Larry just woke up on the wrong side of the womb at birth and never looked back to examine himself.

He went out for football and rugby and did well. He not only had size and speed but a ferocious look that could intimidate lesser players.

I was one of those.

I was quick to leave my hometown and not look back. I can’t say that Larry was the principal reason but it was part of the mix.

I would go back every couple of years and each time I went, Larry Hughes has positioned himself further up the leadership ladder of the town.

Five years ago, he was elected Reeve, Mayor to some.

I wasn’t surprised to read this headline in the Gazette: Hughes Slams Opponents. Citizen’s Petition Calls for Police Investigation.

Threats, midnight calls, charges of bullying, two allegations of inappropriate sexual overtures towards female staff at City Hall…all of it adding to the memories I had of Larry, how his life had seemed to me, and how it likely still was.

The irony couldn’t be avoided. I was now his lawyer. The money was too good to turn down.

Heaven help me!

300 words by Bill Engleson (@billmelaterplea)

“MORNING!” Frank’s heavy fist hammers failed to knock the bedroom door from its hinges.

“I’m already up!” Mistress groaned groggily.

The house creaked critically at Frank, who belted his thunderous laugh and tromped to the stairs. The house pulled the next step from under him, causing the cadaverous construct to tumble down to the first-floor landing.

Frank resumed his guffawing after confirming his head was still attached with a vigorous shake. He rose unsteadily to his feet and missed his sharp kick at the house wall, sticking his foot in a junk pile.

“Filthy butler! Find your own filthy project!” the goblin working on the junk pile sneered derisively.

“HA!” Frank expelled, wide-eyed, at the bony little worker.

The goblin slunk around to the back of the junk pile and began hammering at it. Frank pulled his foot out and tromped to the pantry. It was time to feed the dragon. First, he pulverized the ten-pound steak with his huge fists until it was soft enough for the ancient dragon. Next, he hid the foot-long pill in the folds of meat.

Frank tromped out behind the house with the steak over one shoulder. He grabbed the wooden beam on his way by the garden shed. It took both hands and the beam to prop the dragon’s mouth open, and during the procedure, the steak slipped from Frank’s shoulder to the ground.

While Frank was reaching for the fallen meat, the wood creaked and snapped! Frank stared at the wall of teeth next to him a moment before laughing loudly and tromping back into the house.

“NEED HELP FEEDING DRAGON!” Frank declared in the library.

“Help feeding the dragon? You mean from me? What can I do?” the tall stiff professor tilted his head.

“BEAM BROKE.”

295 words by David A Ludwig (@DavidALudwig)

“You want more?” His voice thundered overhead. “Or are you ready to quit?” He drove a foot into my side, and I curled into an even tighter ball. There was nothing but pain in my world; I could die now and be grateful for the relief.

“You’ve a lot of stuff for someone who’s a waste of flesh.” I heard him pulling out drawers, emptying them onto the floor, opening cupboards then wrenching off the doors as a further assault on me. He was finished with hurting me directly for the moment; he was destroying everything I owned now. What better way to break someone already too far gone to feel any further pain? I wanted this to be over – oblivion couldn’t come to me soon enough.

“I know you’re awake. I can sense your defeat. It’s invigorating, like snorting a line but an added twist of despair.” I heard him settle on the only remaining chair in the room, imagining him assessing the remains of everything I’d owned and kept about me. I’d never had much money; that made the things I had more precious to me. I didn’t care that they were cheaply made and that many of them hadn’t been new when I’d got them. Every item had a patina of persistence and grit running through it. That lout could never understand the validity of that. He’d never had to save for the things he needed; he’d only had to ask for anything he wanted, and it would be given to him.

I could almost feel pity for him. His family had only had property, lots of money and friends in high office. His sister had died of an overdose.

And then there’d only been him.

The poor little rich boy had become an only child.

300 words by Mark A Morris (twothirdzrasta.blogspot.com)

The Lout’s

Conversation between two friends.

“I can not get over it, I mean I thought that person was so cool and well, nice!” Jerri said.

“I know right! I mean talk about having everything and then throwing it all away. What kind of a lummox does that?” Kelsey asked.

“Lummox, that’s a good one Jerri! Your nice way of saying a complete and total dolt?” Jerri laughed.

“Well, if the shoe fits, right? Honestly though, it would take a true bumpkin to cause that marriage to fail, I just don’t get it.” Kelsey shook her head despondently.

“Don’t take it too personally Kelsey, celebrities get married and divorced all the time. They don’t live in the real world. It’s why they act out, use drugs and alcohol and basically misuse and abuse each other. I say they’re all a bunch of buffoon’s if you ask me.” Jerri said.

“I don’t think it’s pc to use buffoon’s anymore Jerri, you know? But I get your meaning though. To have that kind of talent…” Kelsey began.

Jerri interrupted, “… and to be born with those looks! Aye yi yi!”

“I know right! Complete idiocy!” Kelsey continued.

“I believe he’s a total lout to be honest!” Jerri admitted.

“Wait, what?” Kelsey couldn’t believe her ears. “I was talking about her, not him!”

“The Lout’s,” they said in unison before breaking down into peals of laughter.

231 words by Gypsie-Ami Offenbacher-Ferris

“You threw yourself at me, in my mama’s house, and you just see how that’ll affect future invitations to brunch.” I gave her a sweet smile over Attila’s shoulder. “Who’s she gonna believe, Brenda Leigh?”

Her face twisted into an ugly scowl. “You sonuvabitch—”

“Stop.” I don’t know where that voice came from, but it was hard, cold, and angry, and it shut Brenda Leigh up immediately. “You just insulted my mother, the woman whose invitation you prize so much. You can insult me all you like. You can call me names and whine that I ignored you. But you can’t insult the hostess whose son you want to fuck.”

“I didn’t insult her, I insulted you, you sonuva—”

“Bitch, yeah. You’re blaming the woman who bore me. I’m gonna give you a chance to take your entitled ass on outta here without bein’ escorted. I’m sure Attila won’t mind makin’ sure you get to your car safely.” I crossed my arms over my chest. “Y’all drive safe now.”

I stood there and waited with an eyebrow raised as she gaped at me. I could practically read the emotions sliding across her face as they cycled through her awareness, and figured I was in for a tongue-lashing.

And not the kind I prefer.

“Well, I’ve never been treated so badly in the Whitmore household, but I tell you this, Paul Whitmore the Third. You’re an ungrateful, uncouth lout, and I want nothin’ more to do with you.” With that, Brenda Leigh spun on her heels and matched her curvy ass to the end of the hallway and down the stairs.

I blew out my breath in relief and squared my shoulders before shooting Attila a smile. “You ready to go find out what my father’s been up to?”

300 words by Siobhan Muir (@SiobhanMuir)

Meeting Mr. Darcy

Jane and Elizabeth Bennet surveyed the floor, gliding over their mother and their youngest sisters making fools of themselves with militia officers. They set upon a packet of men who were too obvious in their attempts to seem disinterested in the ladies who sat or stood along the sides of the large room. The chairs had been moved along the walls and the Bennet girls’ other sister was playing some type of Bachian dirge that was more likely to deter than encourage dancing.

Their attention was suddenly taken well to their right. A stout gentlemen with unruly hair barged in, bashing against several guests and causing one footman to nearly lose the tray on which glasses were placed for those desiring more champagne.

“Who is that lout?” Jane said. Lizzy thought it unusual for Jane to speak so about someone, but in truth Jane could think of no other term that so perfectly applied to the awkward and brutish gentlemen, though to give him the benefit of the doubt he might have been quite inebriated.

“Him?” Lizzy said. “I have no idea.”

A voice behind them said, “He is my brother-in-law, Mr. Hurst. Married to my sister Louise.”

The two Bennets looked to the speaker. And though Lizzy found after a smile and nod she could turn away, Jane found that she neither could nor wanted to do so. It was only when the brutish but decidedly not awkward gentleman beside him nudged him that Charles Bingley caught his breath.

250 words by J P Garland (@JPGarlandAuthor)

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