Flash Fiction: His Knees

This was written for Carrot Ranch’s Flash Fiction Challenge. Each week’s challenge is to write to a prompt in exactly 99 words. This week’s prompt is grit. I haven’t done one of these for a while for no good reason. I got distracted by other things and haven’t come back to it until now.

This is based on a book I’ve been equally, actively trying to write and trying not to write. It’s a huge project with a lot of research, and it’s emotionally wrenching. Sometimes I attack it. Sometimes I retreat from it. It’s about a man who’s looking back at his life while contemplating and trying to talk himself into suicide following the loss of his wife and daughter in a school shooting. It’s called A Pillar Of Salt. Maybe this will reignite that creative fire and get me working on it again. This is tweaked to conform to the prompt and not necessarily how the book will go.

“Now, I’m lost and I’m weary, so many tears
I’m suicidal, so don’t stand near me
My every move is a calculated step
To bring me closer to embrace an early death
Now, there’s nothin’ left

Will I survive till the morning to see the sun?
Please Lord, forgive me for my sins ’cause here I come”

– 2Pac “So Many Tears”

His Knees

He fell to his knees as a bomb exploded in his chest.

It was P.J.’s school on the news. Sae was dropping her off. She’s not answering her phone.

Again on his knees at the graves. “God, if you’re there, take me too. You can’t take them and leave me.”

Alone in the dark on his knees with the gun to his temple.

“Just fuckin’ do it!”

“She wouldn’t want this.”

“She’s gone. I can’t live without her, without them.”

“You have to.”

“I can’t.”

“You can’t pull that trigger either.”

“I’m scared. I’m too weak.”

“You’re too strong.”

Friday Fictioneers: Hurricane Rachel

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields who provides us with a photo prompt. Each week’s challenge is to write a 100-word story inspired by said photo prompt.

PHOTO PROMPT © Jan Wayne Fields

The driveway seems like an odd place to set-up a tent. Instead of pitching my tent in the driveway, I went metaphorical. This is a story, not a cry for help.

Hurricane Rachel

It came in with a wave and a smile.

She came with a sweetness I’ve never known. It took no time before she was always on my mind. I could never wait to see her. She became the highlight of my life.

She had somebody, but I couldn’t fight my feelings. I fell hard. Finally, I couldn’t hold back.

She left me holding the shattered remains of my heart when she refused to acknowledge my existence, which I only made worse with my persistence.

It came in with a wave and a smile but left me twisted, tangled, and suicidal.

#TellTaleThursday: An Exercise In Finality

This was written for #TellTaleThursday with Anshu & Priya. Yes, Thursday was yesterday. Thanks for noticing my tardiness. It’s up to 250 words on the prompt. This week is a visual prompt.

photo-1496024840928-4c417adf211d

The picture is of the Hindu celebration of Holi, which is also known as the festival of spring, the festival of colours (the other side of the world is still stubbornly clinging to that extra U), or the festival of love (or louve?). I am not going to attempt to write a story about a holiday I’ve only learned existed in the last 15 minutes. It looks to be a beautiful holiday in spirit and practice. It’s very colorful or colourful. Here’s a Wikipedia link. I was very close to giving up on this week all together before I found my story.

An Exercise In Finality

Too many heartbreaks, failed relationships, and unrequited loves finally got to Craig. He decided Denise was it. She was the last woman who would break his heart.

Craig turned to friends, but no one wanted to hear his tale of heartbreak and woe. He turned to alcohol and bhang but only felt worse in the morning.

Feeling helpless and hopeless, Craig did something he never imagined he would do. He got on his computer and started researching guns. He bought a 9mm Glock. He took a handgun beginners class and went to a shooting range.

At night, he lay in bed with tears streaming down his face holding his Glock to his temple. This became a nightly routine as he tried to work up the nerve to end it and made damn sure he knew how to use his gun so he wouldn’t get it wrong.

It turned out to be a good thing that Craig didn’t rush. He learned that shooting oneself through the temple isn’t always fatal. It was just as likely to end in serious brain damage. From then on he repositioned the gun to under his chin.

Day after day, Craig walked through his lonely existence. Night after night, he cried and prayed and tried to find the nerve.

One day, Craig walked into a coffee shop. That’s where he saw Sae. Her eyes shone like the sun through the dark clouds in his soul. He saw all the colors of the rainbow in her smile…

Flash Fiction: Stop Sign!

This was written for Carrot Ranch’s Flash Fiction Challenge. Each week’s challenge is to write to a prompt in exactly 99 words. This week’s is sign. It can be literal, like a stop sign, or metaphorical like a twinkle in her eye. It could even be about Ace Of Base if you like old poppy dance music or the M. Night Shyamalan movie about (SPOILER REDACTED).

I accidentally wrote two because the muse said so, and I am at the mercy of the muse. Is that too flashy? One’s kind of sad. The other’s really sad. I’m not sure which is which.

Stop Sign!

She knew she wasn’t ready. How did she let things go this far? She put up the stop sign, but it was too late.

“Stop! Please!”

He didn’t heed her plea. She tried to push him off. The more she fought, the more aggressive he got. She tried to squirm away, but he forced himself on top of her. She wasn’t strong enough. Her head was spinning from the alcohol.

She felt ashamed. She thought it was her fault. She didn’t tell a soul.

Now, she has a baby she can’t stand because he reminds her of her rapist.

Megan

Megan lost interest in the things she used to love. Simple pleasures eluded her. She started sleeping more and found she couldn’t concentrate. She avoided her reflection. She became more reserved and withdrawn.

She asked for help in subtle ways. She made multiple attempts to talk to friends, but nobody understood. They thought she was being dramatic. Friends started avoiding her. So, she buried her feelings deep down inside and tried to play it off like everything was fine.

One day, her sister found Megan in a bathtub full of blood. Nobody took the time to read the signs.

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