Friday, 29 June 2012

Sixtieth Friday Flash: River Fire

River Fire by Irena Lazovska (Copyright 2012)



River Fire was tired, she sat on her haunches on the top of a tower in the middle of the city, her mobile police scanner scanning for trouble. Her shift at St. Trinity Hospital as a nurse had really taken it out of her, but she promised herself just one more hour of vigilance before calling it a night. She would most probably be the laughing stock of the hospital if they knew she did this. 

oOo

Tony was walking from work. It had been a long shift at the convenience store and he was looking forward to getting home and having a nice long shower. A shower to wash away all the mental and physical muck of the day.

“Give us your money, punk!” hissed a man in his late fifties. There were another four or five about the same age crowding around Tony.

“What is this? The geriatric gang?”

“Laugh it up bub and I will cut you,” the old man produced a large serrated steak knife.

“Take it easy! All I have is a credit card.”

“Alright, we're going to go draw some money.”

“You know what, screw you, I earned this money, go get your own.”

The man swiped away with the knife and sliced Tony's arm.

“Ouch! Okay, okay... there's an ATM down the street.”

After a few paces something red dropped in front of them. In the darkness of the night it was like a fiery angel descending from the heavens. She was all red Lycra, curves and a heart shaped face. Her red eyes gazed at them.

“Looks like the midnight entertainment has arrived boys,” said the man with a knife.

“In your dreams,” said the lady with a husky voice.

Tony didn't know whether to laugh. What was this? Amateur hour?

“Get out of the way dame, we got a payday coming our way.”

“Not tonight,” she said, moving in, punching and kicking one of the guys to the ground. The knife guy let go of Tony and went for the caped girl, Tony tried to stop but he was too slow, he sliced her across the midsection.

“No!”

“You fool,” shouted another of group. “We didn't sign up for this.”

“Run boys!” The old men hobbled and limped down the road.

Tony went over and gathered her in his arms. “Are you okay?”

“So much blood lost.”

“I would have been okay, you didn't have to risk your life like that.”

“It was my duty, just do me one favour.”

“Sure.”

“Make sure I don't go to St. Trinity Hospital?”

Tony found the request odd, but he would honour it.  

Friday, 22 June 2012

Fifty Ninth Friday Flash: Tiny Terrors

Ceramic Figurines by shigeki hayashi

*This is a follow up to Endless War, Desolation and Bear Necessities


It had been a week since Amy had escaped Sergeant Whiskers. A week of hard slog. She was determined to put as much distance between him and her as possible, there was a good chance he was dead, but she wasn't going to take the chance.

Amy looked around from the rise in the road, no sign of him, no sign of anyone, just the overgrown road she had travelled along winding its way down the side of the mountain. She breathed a sigh of relief, ruffled bear's ears, and carried on up toward the town the signs had been promising wasn't too far away. She was hoping it wasn't bad as the others she had encountered.

Coming in closer she saw that most of the buildings had been blasted to bits, but just as she was about to give up hope and head onto the next town she stumbled across a supermarket. Compared to the other buildings it was still at least standing, and even from a distance she could see that the shelves were still packed.

“Oh, look bear! Food.”

Bear just growled. He had been rather grumpy lately. She hoped any food they found would calm him down a bit.

Amy switched her powersuit to manual and moved towards the surprisingly still intact glass store front. Even through the closed doors she could smell the stench of rotten food, but hopefully the tinned goods were still good. Extending a blade from her forearm she pushed it between the doors and wedged them open. Bear sniffed the air and ran in.

“Wait!” But he wasn't listening and was gone. She just hoped he didn't eat something that would make him sick.

It was deathly silent inside. No in store music to grate on your ears, no shoppers to navigate around, it gave her the creeps. She shook her head, no reason why it should. She was born during the war, raised in an army base. All she knew from the life before was through educational videos. Looking around she wondered if they had actually lost anything, but she had no time to contemplate. Her suit began to beep. She switched on her heads up display. There were other life forms in the building and they were heading towards her. She wasn't overly concerned. It was most probably racoons or something, what did she have to worry about? She was in a suit of powered armour.

Moments later small black forms launched at her from the shelves. A sense of dread shot through her. It couldn't be! They were just a myth. Not supposed to be real, but yet there they were cutting into her armour with power torches. She threw two of them off and legged it away. She just couldn't fight them. But they followed. If she didn't do something soon they would get through the armour and to her. She only had one chance. Backed up to the end of the aisle and with the little armoured suits advancing towards her she bypassed all the fail safes and engaged the process. One of them leaped for her face. Its red electronic eye cold and soulless. She watched in horror as its powertorch cut through her helmet and visor.

She pressed a button. The EMP burst into life. The tiny powered suits on and around her jerked and fell over, the red light in their electronic eyes fading. Her own suit sagged. She checked herself as she clambered out of the suffocating suit, no cuts she could see. Just as she was about to rush away and find bear she began to hear a strange noise she hadn't heard in a long time. It was babies and they were crying. So it was true. Their immature brains being used as cheap processing power and drugs pumped into their blood to prevent growth. Abominations, but maybe, just maybe they could be saved. She quickly dashed over and used her combat knife to open up the face plate of the first one. It was a baby maybe a year old. She quickly did the same until they were all free. Five of them in total. Five new mouths to feed.

Amy wondered if bear would like their new companions. She was hoping they would bring out his soft side. 

Friday, 15 June 2012

Fifty Eighth Friday Flash: Reflection

Artwork Copyright: Irena Lazovska 2012



Everyone was waiting for her. Kady went and checked herself in the mirror, and dropped her skies in shock. Was she hallucinating? Staring back at her was her seven year old self. Big eyes, rosy cheeks and a look of wonder on her face. Her younger self was wearing a Smurfs top. One she had worn until it fell apart. Maybe it was a prank? But as she moved her younger reflection moved too.

“Dunkin!”

Her cousin came running in. “What is it! We are going to miss the bus at this rate.”

“Do I look different?”

“Just your usual self, why?”

“Nothing,” said Kady.

“Girls,” said Dunkin with a sigh.

“At least I'm not named after a doughnut joint,” said Kady picking up her skies and rushing out the door, not looking at the reflection again. Maybe it was just a lack of sleep.

“Would you cut that out already? It's not my fault my parents can't spell.”

Up on the slopes enjoying the time with friends Kady forgot all about the strange incident that morning. Making the most of their break from college The longest and most difficult ski run of the resort was in front of her.

“Come on Kady, are you chicken?”

“Of course not dough boy.”

Dunkin rolled his eyes. “See you at the bottom, meanie.” Dunkin stuck out his tongue and launched himself down the slope and disappeared within seconds.

“You can do this, Kady,” she whispered to herself.

A guy stopped next to her. He was wearing reflective eye wear. Kady glanced and looked again when saw her younger self reflected in the man's eye goggles. Her younger self was shaking her head and finger, as if saying, no, you can't do it.

“I'll show you!” she said and launched herself down the slope.

Everything seemed fine for the first minute or so, but she soon picked up speed and didn't know how to slow down without hurting herself. Avoiding a stopped skier she found herself going off course. Through trees, amazingly she missed them all. Suddenly a warning sign popped up. Warning: Long drop ahead. Her body stiffened as she panicked. There was orange netting to stop her going off the edge, but would it be enough to stop her?

Just as she thought she was going to smash into the barrier a hand shot out and stopped her. Pulling her to the ground. Her skies went skyward and she landed on her back.

“Kady! What are you playing at?”

“I...I don't know.”

“Here, have some of this,” Dunkin said passing her silver flask. “It will boost your spirits.”

It was her younger reflection again. She looked disappointed. Like she had wanted her to go over the edge. Was her willingness to self-destruct so bad?

“Dunkin, can you hold me, I'm scared.”

Dunkin considered it for a while. “Will you promise to stop making fun of me?”

“I promise.”

*The closest I've been to skiing is going down a slope in a inflated inner tube, so it might not be the most realistic story. 

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Fifty Seventh Friday Flash: The Prince and the Frog


Image source: Glass Frog

Prince Jeremy wandered away from his younger and handsomer brother's engagement party. His brother was to marry the prettiest woman in all the lands. A girl he was supposed to marry, but she had caught John's eye. He fought it at first, but he soon saw that she shared his brother's feelings. He might be older, and the heir to the throne but he wasn't going to get in the way of his brother's happiness.

Jeremy cursed his luck and kicked a rock. It shot off and landed in a pond, disturbing a frog, it croaked. Jeremy sat next to the pond. If he wanted to he could choose any lady in the kingdom, but he didn't want that. He wanted something more, but he wasn't sure what.

“Kiss me...” whispered the wind.

Jeremy turned around. There was nothing there.

“Kiss me, you fool!”

Jeremy turned to the frog. “Was that you?”

Ribbit!

Jeremy had had almost a whole bottle of wine, he shrugged, picked up the amphibian and planted a kiss on its rubbery lips.

There was a loud popping sound. He opened his eyes. Standing before him was a beautiful woman with a dress made out of lily pads.

Jeremy laughed. “I've drunk way too much.”

The girl came closer and looked at him with her big wondrous eyes.

“Umm... how about a dinner and a play sometime?”

The girl just smiled. There was a buzzing sound nearby, a moment later the girl's tongue shot out and grabbed a fly.

“Well, I guess that's dinner sorted.”

“Ribbit!”



Friday, 1 June 2012

Fifty Sixth Friday Flash: A Bird Fossil Made out of Rubbish


Image Source (the closest image I could find)

 *I don't have a fiction piece prepared so I will tell you about the dream I had last night. I don't remember them often so I thought I would write it down before I forget. It seems to jump around like a The Simpsons episode. Pieces may have been created post dream to fill in the gaps. I'm not sure what I'm trying to prove here, but it may convince you I'm at least a little crazy.

It opens up to a massive concert hall. There are two men in suits dancing in front of a large jazz band. The crowd loves it. Later at the Red Bull sponsored after party a reporter asks one of the front men some questions.

“What's next for the band?”

“A world tour. It will be tricky once we get to places like Egypt.”

Next there's a truck sliding and struggling along an icy road. It comes to a skidding stop on a big snow covered field. Men get to work setting up. In the end there's a massive tent with long green guide ropes to tie everything down.

“We forgot the stage!” someone shouts.

“Don't worry, we'll just hold the concert outside.”

Everyone seems to think this is a good idea.

A moment later (could be longer) I'm browsing a flea market. There's an art piece in a glass tank. It's a bird fossil made out of rubbish created at 11:11am on the 11th of the 11th 2011.

Leaving the market stall I'm knocked over by a group of men running away carrying oversized car exhausts. Picking myself up I shrug and carry on.

A stall holder then reaches out and hands me some money. Perplexed I just stand there.

“Come in, I will give you a free dental check up.”

I've been having some trouble so I go in. Then I have a horrid inside mouth view of him fiddling with my teeth. In the process he loses one of my fillings, but he doesn't seem to be very bothered or keen to fix it.

Stuck in a foreign country with a missing filling I wake up soon after.