The Secret Ingredient (Flash)

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Rob inherited his family’s failing dairy farm sometime in our university drunken haze years. He was one of those that fell by the wayside in our quest for meaningful adulthood in the city – any city. Lilla grew up to be a journalist. She’d fallen into working at some barely existent magazine while trying to get her dream job in publishing. She didn’t get the dream job … Continue reading

Once, Upon Reflection (Flash)

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Once, I knew a girl who didn’t like mirrors.

She told me so, apologetically, when I brought her back to my room. I dragged the throw Mum had given me from under the single bed and covered the mirror that came with the room.

“It’s okay,” I said, trying to be reassuring. “Lots of people find their reflection disconcerting.”

She frowned at me. “It’s not that.”

“Sure … Continue reading

Insomnia (Flash)

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Laurie never did sleep well – and she always manages to disturb me when she’s restless. I’ve never been sure whether or not she does it on purpose. So tonight is a night like any other, then, with me dragged from the warm and comfortable bed by the creak of floorboards under her pacing feet.

I say nothing, not even wiping the early stages of sleep from … Continue reading

Ten Inch / Silent Sonata (Flash)

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The Background

This is a piece of flash fiction written following a Twitter brainstorming session (Storified here: [External Link]) as part of The Future Fire’s [External Link] ten year celebrations (Indiegogo campaign here: [External Link])

The Story

I had a love who was a vinyl collector before it was cool. Or after it was cool and before it was cool again. … Continue reading

You Were Water

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I built my garden on bedrock, packing the soil so that it was solid earth beneath my feet. Winds that disturbed the surface upset me, blew dust in my eyes, made me cry, but I weathered them.

You were rain. You dampened down some of the dust. You whispered, “You and I can make a garden that blooms.”

The young shoots grew, so I believed you.

You … Continue reading

A Hero’s Quest (or: Jen’s Homework)

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The Background

The weekend just gone, Jen had some homework from school that involved using some cut out prompts to make up stories (oral telling) with a basic hero’s journey / monomyth approach [Wikipiedia article: External Link] – not that it’s explained to seven-year-olds in those terms, of course. It goes without saying that I made a pain in the unmentionable of myself, so Jen … Continue reading

Broken Bear (Short)

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Old Harle paused and looked at the raven that perched insolently on the lord’s thatch. When it called and nodded to him, he nodded back without thinking. It had been a decade since he had drawn a sword or swung an axe for his lord. He had thought his chance of a warrior’s death well passed. He changed his course and limped into the hall. His two … Continue reading

The Toy Plane (Short)

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Once upon a time, there was a Survivalist with three sons. The one thing that they all loved was their apple tree. They liked the apples so much they counted them every morning. They liked the apples because the tree had belonged to the Survivalist’s dead wife and because each fruit was as good as a whole banquet.

One morning, they noticed that an apple that should … Continue reading

How Otter Made The World (Flash)

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In the beginning, there was water and there was Otter. Otter played Chase-Tail to entertain herself and the pretty bubbles she shed floated upward.

Otter got bored of chasing a tail that was so easy to catch. So she made fishes that she could chase and that tasted better than her tail when she caught them. Their scales fell through the water as Otter ate.

Then Otter … Continue reading

The Modern Pentathlete (Flash)

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Yes, Officer. You want to know about Miss Chung.

She was much loved by our fellow citizens. She was born and raised on the Moon. Born the same minute as our Glorious Nation. Their paperwork was signed at exactly the same time, in fact. We all considered it a good omen that Miss Chung became an athlete while away at University. There will be some among our … Continue reading