Friday Fictioneers: “Lady Macbeth”

 

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So, here’s a thing. I’m kind of losing my interest in this here blog. Given the huge disparity between “number of blog viewers” and “number of books bought,” I hardly think this is a useful self-promotion tool. I think this is just becoming more of a place for me to practice with various short stories that I may or may not do anything with. Like those Miniature Narrative Projects. And Lorequest is fun. Maybe I should just focus on doing that/those.

We’ll see, it’s almost a brand-new year, after all.

 

Have fun~

 


 

 

Image Copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Image Copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

 

Title: Lady Macbeth

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 100

 

 

Beauty within, beauty without. That’s the old saying, right? The voices in her head were no longer holding their dread council. And so, like a room cleared of all its furniture, Violet’s mind was her own again.

But she thanked heaven and smiled into the mirror. The voices had told her beautiful, terrible things. Those “late work nights,” the “business trips.” How could she have been so blind to her husband’s clichés?

The red beneath Violet’s nails didn’t mar her new glow. She just applied more soap and gave a toothy once-loving smile for the mangled man in the tub.

 

 

 


 

 

It’s also possible my newfound disillusionment with writing comes from the fact that it’s Christmastime and I really should be spending my time doing something else.

 

 

 

Good luck, you brave writer folk!

 

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Miniature Narrative Project 2015: Part 1

 

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Because it was such a good idea last time, I’ve decided that I’ll be doing another Miniature Narrative Project for December. This time, though, I’m going to be using The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt. I’ll do an entry at least once every three days but probably not a whole lot more than that. And each entry will be related to the last AND be related to the Daily Prompt entry.

As for word count, I’ll keep it flexible but I’ll try to keep it under 800 or something. That way I don’t just lurch into a full narrative at the last second like I did last time.

So, I guess we’ll just see where this goes.

 

Have fun~

 


 

 

Prompt: “What is your favorite sweet thing to eat? Bread pudding? Chocolate chip oatmeal cookies? A smooth and creamy piece of cheesecake? Tell us all about the anticipation and delight of eating your favorite dessert. Not into sweets? Tell us all about your weakness for that certain salty snack.”

Title: Bright Like a New Day

Word Count: 743

 

If I shined my buttons any more, I’d steal the sun’s thunder right from under it. My silly mother and father just don’t understand. There’s only three people’s approval that I need. Mine, that devilishly handsome man in the mirror looking back at me, and the Duke of the Great Chamber. Or just the Duke. He and I are on a first-name basis, of course.

Perhaps today I’ll finally make him aware of that. After I come back from my royal mission. For the Duke is hungry and his sweet tooth must be satiated.

“We can’t just move a whole town,” the foreman whines. “And there are people who live here. What about them?”

“There’s plenty of room in the capital,” I say. “They can all live closer to their beloved Duke.”

A moment of silence creeps by us. The foreman pulls his collar (which is very official— brass buttons and the noble crest and everything) away from his throat, never minding the winter chill. He must think it a noose. With a heavy sigh, he hefts his axe.

Deep below, still in the quite of the early morning snow, the town lies unaware that is destiny is about to be realized. The Duke will have his nation and he will eat so he may build that land for another day. I kick the flanks of my horse; I shall be the first to tell those in the sleepy valley of the change to their lives. Perhaps my buttons will be like a beacon to them and turn them from townsfolk to pilgrims on a quest for a better, purer home.

The town was emptied, its people, whether they were crying or smiling, were sent south to the capital, and each building was turned to splinters and gravel. Yet still I saw doubt in the foreman’s eyes. Even as we brought the caravan carrying those remnants of schools, churches, and homes back to the capital, his eyes were downcast. Perhaps he did not so fervently believe yet? Or maybe it was the thought of bandits that troubled him. I could not say but troubled with it no more. If all went well, I would never work with the disagreeable man and his unshaven face ever again.

For all the next day, the Great Chamber churched and belched black smoke into the snowy sky. Sugar was mixed with wood and stone and brick. Honey, water, flour, and whatever else the Duke had a hunger for were poured in and reshaped into a great red-brown tar-like lake. It almost looked like pudding from where I stood (at one of the many balconies scattered about the room. I was summoned, you see, to observe the conception of this newest batch). Our Duke has a sweet tooth indeed.

A tremendous glass room, rimmed with iron and casting light like a lantern suspended from heaven, hangs high above the pool and machinery of the Great Chamber. Up there, shadows and form are ideas, ideals, always shifting as if part of some spectacular fire. Only the Duke lives up there and only he determines what does or does not shape.

“My hunger,” the Duke thunders (though I think this is still but a whisper from him) in his thousand voices, “is the cement of our nation. The town of Huntsman’s Valley has brought one-hundred and thirty six new residents to our growing capital. And with this newest batch, the largest of its kind to ever be wrought, our nation shall grow evermore.”

There’s a pause without silence. The Duke’s words echo and bounce around all the shined steel walls.

“Purdon,” he says to me. Me. “I would like you to watch as I take the first bite. Note that with all of these balconies, none of my ministers nor officials are here. You alone have been summoned to watch this new age be ushered in.”

For just a moment, the swirling light in the heavenly glass room seem to all focus on me. I wish I could smile. But I’m far too overwhelmed, the strength of my body leaving my skin but empowering me soul. I can’t turn my eyes away as the globe comes down from the ceiling on chains and pulleys and the glass opens up like a blossom in spring. If only those simple folk of Huntsman’s Valley could see what their sacrifice has created.

They would probably weep as I did then. And still do.

 

 

THE OTHER DAILY PROMPT ENTRIES

 


 

 

PINGBACK:

<a href="https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/pour-some-sugar-on-me/">Pour Some Sugar on Me</a>

 

So that was weird. Similar to the last one (link way at the top of the entry), this story might end up being somewhere in-between an over-detailed children’s tale and one of those childish-seeming tales that actually has bizarre, dark undertones. Like Adventure Time or something. Except for the whole nuclear war things…

 

 

Good luck, you brave writer folk!

 

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Friday Fictioneers: Access Denied

 

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It would help if I knew what day it was so I could get these done on time.

As it stands, here’s another more formless “soundless fury” that I spun to try to explain my state of mind, rather than craft a new narrative.

 

Have fun~

 


 

 

Image Copyright: Roger Bultot

Image Copyright: Roger Bultot

 

Title: Access Denied

Word Count: 100

 

Draw sword, wake the horde, batter down this door.

My hatred of slant rhymes stalls my fury. Futility picks up whatever slack left behind. This door is wood, brick, or steel, whatever I can’t break down. Eden is more of a man, a door attendant, than a garden (though he’s standing in one, smiling sagely). I cannot bribe him for he has all that he wants and I can’t ask for time before he’s locked it all away in glass.

Eden IS timeless, like all great art, existing before the first clock clicked.

The crack in the door glows golden.

 

 

 


 

 

I don’t even know how to interpret these. They’re just my head piecing together its own distaste for time slipping away from me yet again. Maybe one day, sooner than later, I can remember how to be proud of my mind just being itself again.

 

 

Good luck, you brave writer folk!

 

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Flash! Friday: “In the Dragon’s Shadow”

 

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Looks like this is going to be one of the last Flash! Friday’s. Like, period I guess. So this’ll be one of the last times I scramble incoherently to scribble out something that looks good as of right now that I’m sure I’ll cringe at later.

But hey, it’s still fun!

 

Speaking of which, have fun~

 


 

 

Guidelines: Must include a dragon and use photo prompt (on page)

 

Title: In the Dragon’s Shadow

Word Count: 160

 

The Dragon’s still there, lying atop my city’s skyscrapers like it’s His mound of gold. And also like we’re his food, part of a scurrying platter. History would make it hard to disagree with that.

But I took it upon myself, to continue the fight. Yet I’m no dragon-slayer. I fight against the march of nature blessing the strong and forgetting the weak. My sword is chalk, my armour is darkness, my foe-slaying arrows are memories. My battlefields are the front doors of homes made empty by His hunger, where I inscribe lonely epitaphs.

Tonight, I fight the hardest battle and inscribe the most painful epitaph of my life, through a labyrinth of smoke and ash and back to the house where I sat on the porch all night with someone I had wanted to live my life with since the day I saw her eyes that blazed with heaven’s fire throughout history.

“A beautiful girl lived here,” I write.

 

 

THE OTHERS

 


 

 

I was thinking the story would almost be like Reign of Fire with the dragons in the modern world. Except, you know, not as cripplingly stupid. Really, the first 20 minutes of that movie was fine. It was everything else that was wrong!

 

 

Good luck, you brave writer folk!

 

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The Daily Post 11: “Climate Control”

 

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I’m actually doing one of these BEFORE midnight! Which means I might actually get it done and not fall asleep in a lump!

 

Have fun~

 


 

 

Title:

Prompt:

 

I definitely say that climate has some kind of effect on people’s moods. I mean, ba-dur. It doesn’t have to make any kind of consistent sense, though. Like how some people love hot summer days and I think that just outside of the window is the world slowly being baked to death beneath the unflinching fire of the sun. So to heck with that, time to completely steer myself away from this original point!

So I prefer to think about how weather can affect your thought processes and imaginations. Like how storms for me charge up something deeper and more brutally natural about the world. So, I’m further developing a philosophical trend of thought for a novel/novel pair of mine that involves the trinity of Machine, Sentience, and Nature and Nature certainly isn’t the way we like to think about it on our padded modern world. Nature, as we like to think of it now, can be easily corralled and persuaded to move or be removed so it can fit neatly into our little gardens or groves out behind our homes and other nice stuff like that. When in reality, if nature had its way, it would tear off our faces and wear them as trophies after sucking all the nutrients from our brains, of course. So when I see stuff like thunderstorms and droughts and snowstorms and hurricanes, I can’t help but be reminded just what the ruling of the world’s natural order is:

Humanity likes to think it’s at the top because of its creation of machines that allow it to survive the natural world. And yet, without that assistance, humanity would be consumed in an afternoon by a system that doesn’t care if it lives or die. Nature doesn’t care for art or culture or great legacies because it created all of those things in its earthy, pulsing womb. All that has been created or ever will be created is the product of the natural forces around us that provided all of the atoms and materials and the laws of physics and energy that makes every one of our human creations (from the material to the imaginative and existential). Again, when I see storms blasting bolts of sky-splitting energy or a rainstorm turning a desert into an ocean of flowers (Have you seen those Atacama Desert pictures? That’s what I’m talking about!), it makes me realize just how tiny we humans still are, even with all of our machines. Everything that we make seems to have an edge of disdain for it- disdain for the natural world that seeks to disempower and unmake us at every turn. I suppose that’s something that we humans can be thanked for, the feeling of scorn that drives us to pursue progress at an almost homicidal rate just to ensure that we aren’t subsumed by a force that can crack the freaking sky open with a flick of its finger.

I think I had an ultimate point I was going to try to get at with all of this but now I’m afraid I’ve lost it. Oh well, that’s part of the fun of doing these- the point arises from the process. It also helps that this is usually how I make my little diatribes. I usually just make noise and say things until I realize there was a point there all along that I just wasn’t able to see.

I suppose I could say here that it’s not just weather that affects our moods but our moods affect how weather appears in our eyes- from something to be afraid of or annoyed back to something from which all awe and self-reflection as a person and as a species springs.

If that was all a bit too high-brow of you, here’s a stupid thing I made up recently:

Being killed by Satan should now is called (by me and nobody else ever), “brimstoning.”

 

 

THE OTHERS

 


 

<a href="https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/climate-control/">Climate Control</a>

 

 

There was another dumb thing I made up that I wanted to add up there but then I forgot it. You’ll be spared, readers, this time.

 

 

Good luck, you brave writer folk!

 

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Friday Fictioneers: “Old, Familiar World”

 

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I feel like I’m obligated to write something about Thanksgiving this time around. It’s a shame I don’t also feel obligated to submit these darn things on time!

 

Have fun~

 


 

 

Image Copyright: Sandra Crook

Image Copyright: Sandra Crook

 

Title: Old, Familiar World

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

 

When I was a boy, a ship carrying my family, a wolf-eyed father and a mother with dawn in her hair, departed for the sunset horizon. I was to wait until the New World was ‘settled and civilized.’

Thus I watched for the ship from a grassy seaside cliff every day.

Years passed and not even the gout stopped me from climbing the cliff. I came less often after I was wed. And even less after my son was born. I promised to never leave them for new worlds— no family should have to wait like widows on a watch.

 

 

 


 

 

For those who are wondering, I didn’t actually have a historical ship in mind when I made this. Just any old early England/Ireland-to New World voyage where everybody died because of the cold/the Yetis/Odin cultists. Not like that narrows it down any.

 

 

 

Good luck, you brave writer folk!

 

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Flash! Friday: “Land of the Lost”

 

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I think, in honour of my first Flash! Friday entry, I should coincide similar satanic themes with this penultimate entry. It was going to be creepier at first, but I had too much fun randomly capitalizing words to make them seem important. Which automatically makes it biblical, I guess.

 

Have fun~

 


 

 

Prompt: Photo Prompt and Character (Hunter)

Title: Land of the Lost

Word Count: 160

 

Sometimes they come to us from darkened forests, their eyes wide and deer-like. Others fall down from the burning sky, flailing as if they were trapped in fog. Some are young, some are old. Most go mad when they see our welcoming smiles. The rest are worth all the Kingdom’s gold.

I see myself as a connoisseur of sorts, a hunter of the forlorn and lost; when they show up in our town, it falls to me to shepherd them. The most spirited and fiercest of fighters are the best catches; my butcher-eyed friends see them as a challenge. After all, the stronger the wall, the more spectacular the fall. And the greater the faith, the stronger the convert.

It’s ironic that when our Great Enemy finds His precious ‘lost children,’ He won’t like what He finds.

I should write a letter to the Boss: ‘Curiosity should become the eighth deadly sin.’ He’d get a hellish laugh out of that.

 

 

THE OTHERS

 


 

 

I think I laid this on a bit thick this time around but hey, if Mr. Stan can be the subtle master of lies, he can also ham-fisted and brimstoning. Death by Satan, now called “brimstoning.”

Hilarious!

 

 

Good luck, you brave writer folk!

 

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