Well, since it seems like I’m just going to be doing Flash! Fiction from now on, I think I’ll just be posting my work here every Monday, since Monday is when the winners of each contest are announced. There’s no real coloration between those two things but it gives my blog something to do between the Friday/Saturday of Friday Fictioneers and the whenever-I-get-to-it of Five Sentence Fiction.
Criteria (must use word): Theatre
The air of opening night always tastes like blood— my blood. No matter the play, no matter the audience, it’s always red blood.
The theatre is filling up quickly and loudly, noble lords and ladies from all across the country have come to see our troupe’s first performance of The Duke of Colborn. For a play about an all-black-clad madman locking up and eating people in his cellar, the powdered ladies seem very excited to see it.
I just wish our troupe leader didn’t take so much inspiration from it. My bruises from my last botched rehearsal still haven’t healed over. At least my costume will cover them up. He saunters near us behind the curtain, ever-smiling, ever dressed in red— even in all black.
“Are you ready, my band of harlequins?” our leader bellows. “Are you ready to put on your demon faces and weave nightmares with your graces?”
The older amongst us agree like cultists, low and groveling.
The younger, myself included, can barely hide whimpers.
He looks at me with butcher’s eyes. It’s the look he saves for his favourites. He will be portraying the Duke tonight. And I will be portraying his first victim.
The crowd is going deathly silent now. The red curtain is rising.
I think I might come to really like Flash! Fiction since it’s got plenty of restrictions, including a photo prompt that I’m probably not going to show since the pictures aren’t in creative commons and I don’t feel like doing it. But the 190-210 word limit is fun and open-ended. Plus I’ve got all of 24 hours to actually do the darn thing, so hey, it’s a different kind of fun.
And so far my stories have followed the path of distorted, evil people doing distorted evil things.
I’m fine with that.
Good luck, you brave writer folk!