W – Walking (A Flash Fiction Piece)

English: Walking through Heth woods

English: Walking through Heth woods (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The frigid wind kicked up as I walked through the woods; blanketing my face making it impossible to see.  I had to get to my destination but had lost my way and my condensation filled compass stopped working an hour ago.

I was pretty sure I was fucked. My left shoe fell off a mile back and now the sun was dropping.  The coyotes were already howling.  Did they smell fresh meat?  Did they find my shoe?  They sounded further away than where I lost my shoe.

My mind raced as I thought about the conversation I had with Jay.  Through crocodile tears, he told me he no longer loved me.  He had reconnected with a woman from his past and they just “hit it off so well.”  Plus, he added that I was “no fun anymore” since I didn’t drink.

Jerk.

The brand new watch on my wrist; a gift from him for our six month anniversary read six o’clock.  I drew back my tears and trekked on.  A part of me wished I was in the city so I could hit a bar and drink away my emotions.  But, that was stupid and childish.  It was good to be in the woods.  Being surrounded by nature was more peaceful than being surrounded by a bunch of horny, drunk men.

I never thought I’d ever think that way.  Sobriety seems to be helping me grow.

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Flash Fiction Friday – The Leaf

Carmine Carmichael smoked his last cigarette twenty minutes ago.  The sun rose above the row homes on Sutter Street as he sat down on the marble steps at the corner.  He hadn’t slept in three days, hadn’t eaten in two days and hallucinations were starting to begin.  His four-week old blue jeans felt crunchy as he ran his hands up his shins, to his knees and then his thighs.

A dead leaf blew down the sidewalk, past his battered sneakers and he thought of how peaceful the dead leaf must have felt. It was, after all, devoid of all feeling.  The leaf had lived its life on a tree somewhere as people passed it by without a thought.

Carmine knew exactly how that little leaf felt. Another leaf blew past and Carmine reached his filthy hand down and scooped it up with care. The weak stem felt dry in his fingers as he twirled it around, looking at the rips in the body of the little leaf.

“I’ll bet you were once so beautiful, little leaf, just like me.  I was a strong man once, little leaf.”

The little leaf stood lifeless in his fingers and Carmine felt his eyes well up as he clutched the leaf to his chest. Little leaf pieces fell to the ground as Carmine sobbed.

Footsteps echoed in the distance and Carmine put his filthy hands back on his thighs and watched the leaf blow away in a dozen pieces.  Carmine watched as shiny, pristine shoes stepped on and over the leaf.

Carmine knew just how that little leaf felt.

Flash Fiction Friday – The Darkness

Image: forum.skyscraperpage.com

Image: forum.skyscraperpage.com

I’m sitting in the dark now.  It stopped raining about an hour ago.  People are walking up and down this quaint little street in Newtown, Pennsylvania.  I tried to walk; I really did.  But it was just too much for me.  All the people. Man, the people.  Their eyes boring through my skin began to drive me mad, you see.  I could see everything.  Everything!  All their sins, their heartbreak, their desires seeped into my soul like rain into the dry, cracked earth.  I had to get away you see.

Now, I am isolated with the memory of a thousand different stares beaming into my brain.  It is just too much!

There is only one way to get rid of this torment.  I have to cut it out.  I have to let the tears bleed out of my skin.  I must release the screams from my pores.

It is the only way…

Flash Fiction Friday – Bullet

Reblog of a favorite Flash Fiction of mine.

English: Picture of a standard 'K Bullet' as m...

So I sat in a box for the last, oh, I don’t know, seven years?  Just sat there on a shelf with dozens of other boxes on other shelves with the others and I am finally free.
I don’t know who opened the box and put me in the chamber of freedom, but his fingers were fat like crinkled sausages and they smelled like shit. I guess some uprights never wash their hands.
“There you go my pet,” the upright says. “You are such a special little bullet. You were born to do great things.  You are going to change history, my pet.”
The upright talks a lot.
It’s freaking dark in here.  I have waited my entire life to get out of that damn box. I am a special bullet.  I don’t mingle with common bullets.
Seven years I have waited for this.  I don’t know what to expect. I just hear the voice.  I guess the voice thinks I can’t understand, but I can. I hear it talk about me.  It talks about my velocity, my speed and my distance.
It’s weird, you know? I don’t know what any of it means.
I can hear the upright speak as I sit here waiting for my moment of glory. He told me I was going to change history.  I don’t know what that means really…  but it sounds important.
Before the upright put me in here, it held me close to where the voice comes out.  It told me all these things.
“You’re so beautiful,” it says.
“You are the most special bullet ever, little bullet. You are going to make poppa so proud,” the voice cries.
I wanted to concur or validate the voices wishes. But what the hell, I’m just a bullet after all. A special bullet it tells me. But I don’t know what the means.  I don’t even know what my purpose is.
“Oh, special bullet. Be straight and true with your aim, young one.  Guide your soul into the heart of that bastard and save us all,” the voice screams.
The upright put me in something cold and long.  It’s dark in here.
Wait.  I just heard a loud bang and now I am zooming through the air toward another upright.  I don’t understand any of this.
Now I am in something hot, dark and wet. This is so odd.  I was happy in my box with the others.  I don’t feel so special anymore. Where is the voice?
I hear other voices now.  They are making high-pitched noises.  They are screaming, “He’s shot! He’s shot!”
My shell is gone.  I am now a flat piece of metal.
I still don’t feel special.

Friday Flash Fiction – Resistance

Minetta Tavern

Minetta Tavern (Photo credit: Gandhu & Sarah)

Carson Smithers sat on the bar stool as the clock struck the eight o’clock hour.  He had been on that bar stool for the last three hours staring at the now warm beer on the ratty coaster in front of him.  The day’s work had ended in shambles along with a verbal tirade from his boss in front of his co-workers; even Jenny, the hot girl from the cubicle at the end of the hall.

“Hey, buddy, you gonna drink that or do you want a fresh one?”  The burly bartender asked as he wiped the old, wood bar down with a wet rag.  Carson watched as the bartender methodically picked up coasters, wiped, put coasters down, and wiped all the way to the other end of the bar without missing a piece of the bar or spilling a drink.

Carson looked up sheepishly and nodded while he pushed the perspiring glass to the edge of the bar and pulled his cigarettes from his pocket.

The jukebox started playing an unfamiliar country western song as someone broke the rack on the pool table.  Carson counted three balls that dropped into the pockets without looking at them rattling around on the fuzzy green felt of the table.

His eyes gazed across the pool table, across the jukebox, across the blonde-haired woman with the heaving breasts and over to the repaired wall to the left of all the action.  He remembered making that hole over ten years ago in a drunken rage over a different blonde-haired woman so long ago.

The bar stool shrieked as he pushed it back with his legs to stand up.  All of the memories that flooded back reminded him of all the reasons why he stopped drinking and took steps to change his life.

The bartender rushed down to Carson, “hey buddy, you leaving already?  You bought two beers and didn’t take a sip from either.  What gives?”

Carson tossed a ten-dollar bill on the bar and said, “Sorry, man.  I got to get to a meeting.”

Flash Fiction Friday – The Broken Road

There was this road; this cracked, steamy, dilapidated road that I had heard about in a bar about twenty miles outside of the small town of Centralia, PA.  The gentleman (and I use that term loosely) that spoke of the road was so inebriated, I could scarcely tell if he was just telling some whacked out story handed down through generations or if there was truth to the tale.

But I had to know.  That was my nature.  I had to get to the bottom of everything.  So, like a snake slithering back into the trees, I slipped out of the bar unnoticed, and headed for Centralia. I drove around that bright, sunny Sunday afternoon and then I saw the sign:

CENTRALIA – 2 MILES

Yes!  I overheard the road was closed.  And why wouldn’t it be?  Apparently, it was in no condition to handle any kind of traffic.  There were cracks and graffiti; steam and overgrown weeds. I came around a bend and I saw the cemetery on Highway 61 that was mentioned. It was old Highway 61 I was searching for and it shot right off of new Highway 61.

I had made it!  I could go back to the city and tell everyone about the broken road I had stumbled upon.  Well, I could have.

You see, there was a large crack in the road, I hadn’t noticed it really, if you could believe that.  I was too busy gazing at all the profane graffiti on the sun-baked asphalt while catching glimpses of steam shooting out from cracks far down the broken road.

There was no rumble when the ground opened wide and swallowed me whole.  It was almost as if the broken road had been waiting to feast on something to quell its burning innards.

I always did have terrible timing.

Flash Fiction Friday – Rise and Fall

Arch, Tory. The east end of the island is prob...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I watch the sunrise over the ocean like a wild animal creeping out of a forest den.  It will be full daylight soon and the pain will come.  Sure, I could run back inside and hide in the darkness of the cave. However, that would prolong the inevitable and I want to see the sun.

Last night got so out of control.  How could I let Lily go with the others? I could smell their abhorrent kindness. The way Kaud, the leader, stroked the small of her back as they walked into the cave drove me mad.

He knew it drove me mad and he knew I would do something foolish. What a foolish idea, charging at Kaud!

I heard Lily shout, “I never loved you, Vol.”

As Kaud broke my neck, Lily broke my heart.

Now, I stare at the sun, so blinding and pristine, as I whither to a pile of forgotten ashes.

Flash Fiction Friday – Hide and Seek

Sherry sat at her kitchen table stone faced.  Her cell phone sat on that same table, stone faced as well.  Moments ago, it vibrated in a violent rage as she stared out the rain-covered window.  She knew who was texting her. He had been texting her for the last four days.

The messages were non-stop. Some of them were cute, some of them were funny and then they got a little flirty.

That was in the beginning.

This morning she was having none of it. She sat at the table, her bright yellow mug filled with extra strong, sweetened coffee and stared at the phone.

Today, she would end this.

She took a sip of her coffee and closed her eyes as she savored the taste.

Bzzz, her phone sounded.

I miss you.  Please talk to me, the message read.

She picked the phone up. She wanted to text him back, “go to hell!” But she knew better. The phone buzzed in her hand.

“One New Message” the screen read.

Her thumb hovered over the button to read it. A nauseous feeling came over her as she pushed the button to open the message.

I love you.  Please let me show you how much.  Better yet, why don’t you just turn around… 🙂

Sherry’s face drained of color as she heard the floor creak behind her.  She tried to stand up, to run, but fear cemented her to the chair.

Then she felt the hot breath on her neck.

The game of Hide and Seek was over.

Friday Flash Fiction – Between

“So wait, I don’t understand.  I can’t have any of them?”

“Oh, you can have a few, but not all the ones you think are bad.”

“Well, what about that one?” Evil said as he pointed to a small boy teasing a cat.

“Well, it’s like this.  I can’t believe I have to continually explain this to you.  They have free will.  I can’t make them do anything. All I do is help them in ways they often do not understand.”

“So how are you helping that boy?  Or better yet, the cat?” Evil rolled his eyes.

“That boy has a choice. Again, free will.  I can do this,” Good said and made the breeze blow a giant branch from the tree.  The branch startled the boy and the cat took off running.

“Nice,” Evil said. “It would have been better if the branch hit the boy in the head, but hey, to each his own.” Evil shrugged his shoulders and looked to the right of the Earth.  “So wait,  I don’t have anything to do with any of all these self-absorbed jerks roaming the planet?”

“Nope,” Good said and kicked back on a bright, puffy cloud. “It’s all their own doing.  They’ll curse me and blame you.  It happens all the time.”

There was a long silence and Evil said, “you wanna go mess with those people who won the lottery last week?”

Good shook his head and laughed, “Ok, come on.  Let’s go pretend it’s all our doing again.”

Friday Flash Fiction ~ Goodbye

image: fragrantica.com

Carmine spread the fuzzy, orange blanket out so pristine, he was sure he could bounce a nickel off it.
Everything had to be perfect.
He walked gingerly over to the bedroom window to peek outside to the street. The sun was shining bright, just as the weather man had assured him last night it would.
His eyes darted over the room.  The framed photos of flower gardens, the knick-knacks of dolphins and starfish on the black iron shelf in the corner by the door.
He looked at the dresser with the brass colored tray atop the white doily his mother had made when she was eighteen.  He had heard that story a hundred times. If only he could hear it once more.
The dust fell away as he slid his fingers down the edge of the dresser toward the bottle of Wind Song just to the edge of the tray.  His hand stopped just short of it.
“Why, Ma?” Carmine whimpered as he looked to the closet where her favorite red sweater hung.
He stood silent as he waited to hear her voice one more time.  Just once more.
There was no answer, no chirping bird, nothing.
Carmine shrugged and walked out of the room.
It was time to go talk to the detectives again.

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