Archive for Flash fiction

5×5 Fiction: Murder, Monsters and Misfortune

Murder, Monsters and Misfortune, the first issue of 5×5 Fiction, Stories Told Loud and Clear brought to us by Angel Zapata is out!

The issue consists of 25 complete stories, each 25 words long, told in 5 sentences, with each sentence comprised of 5 words. One of the stories, The Stake, is mine.

I like the idea a lot. 5×5 format is quite strict and it is a real challenge to make the final piece work as a complete story. Great idea, Angel!
Check it out here.

Teenage vampires are pathetic

I was just explaining to my husband how all teenage vampires are pathetic and whiny and not very clever. I said many things, some of which were maybe a tad insulting (for the vampires, not for the hubby), so now I wonder if those creatures, although all pitiful and pathetic, can hear me from wherever they are?

Maybe they are in the cellar? We moved to our new house recently and I am not sure which moving boxes are my husband’s and which may be Mr Teenage Vampire’s. So many are still unpacked.

Should I go to the cellar and make the sign of the cross or something on all the boxes? Does it count if I am an atheist? I mean, I CAN draw a cross, in spite of being an atheist; drawing a cross is not beneath me. Cross is a nice symbol and I like to draw. But, there are many different crosses. Which one is the best against vampires? Especially – teenage vampires?

Oh, my head hurts and burns. I have a fever.

My dear teenage vampire reader; you from the cellar; you that I suspect are sitting down in one of your boxes with the new MacBook Air and using my wireless network to surf for vampire porn and read everything I write; if you get pissed off with me and come here to bite me, I hope that you too will get fever and start burning from the inside (I suspect I have a swine flu, and everyone says that is bad). Ha! How pathetic would you be then? A teenage vampire burning from the inside with the swine flu. Oh, wait, that would be – heartbreaking. They should make a movie about you. No – you deserve a whole trilogy!

I need paracetamol. And maybe some garlic. And a pen. Which color should that cross have? Is red too provocative? You can never go wrong with black, right?

My head. My head! I have a fever and I want that guy out of my cellar!

Doomsday

Daniel’s pockets were bulging. It was not simple to walk all easy breezy with his pockets full of stones, but Daniel believed he was gliding. Not that anyone noticed that was not the case, not really. Who had time to watch people, even less their pockets these days.

The stones in Daniel’s pockets were far from ordinary, but Margaret kept on referring to them simply as ‘stones’, in spite of their respectable age and origin. Those ‘stones’ were about 4.5 billion years old, as old as the solar system, and they came from above. They were chondrites, stone meteorites.

… continue reading this entry.

Frigid (Kay’s story) @ disenthralled

Black and white. Captivating photography and writing. Moving and memorable.

disenthralled is a journal of art, photography and literature that lie somewhere between contemporary Gothic and Noir.

I am proud to be one of the authors whose pieces are featured at disenthralled. A piece I wrote, Frigid (Kay’s story) is a part of ISSUE #7.

disenthralled, ISSUE #7 : Poetry and prose by Karen Baker, J.S. MacLean, Carrie Clevenger, Kilian Conor, Paula Ray, William Doreski, Roberta Lawson, Tyson Bley, Jelena Vencl Ohlrogge. Photography by Jill Auville. Produced by Walter Conley.

Negative Suck :: March 2010

A piece I wrote, Burn Me Farewell, is featured in the March issue of Jeffrey S. Callico’s Negative Suck.

The March issue of Negative Suck is featuring the following authors and artists:

Kenneth Pobo, Ron Androla, KJ Hays, Eileen Escabar, Emily Smith-Miller, Brittany Wallace, Lyn Lifshin (Negative Suck’s first guest author), John C. Mannone, Lynn Kinsey, Lara Konesky, Kristen Shaw, Adam Moorad, and returning author Jelena Vencl Ohlrogge. (Another piece I wrote, “Some Men Talk Too Much”, was published in The Virgin Issue of Negative Suck in December 2009.)

March Pulp Metal Magazine is live

Jason Michel’s Pulp Metal Magazine‘s March issue is live!

Two of my flash fiction pieces are featured there, one of which is the previously unpublished ‘Metamorphoses‘.

Fiction by Erin Cole, Melanie Browne, Jelena Vencl Ohlrogge, Charlie Coleman and Frank Duffy.

Non-Fiction by Robert Crisman. Paul D Brazill interviews Scottish Award winning journalist & crime writer Tony Black.

Art: Jason Michel talks to Ed Mironiuk and showcases his delectable Pin Ups!

Celluloid: Paul interviews The Guardian’s very own Anne Billson.

Music: Paul takes a trip down memory lane to Liverpool’s punk/post punk scene with Jayne Casey.

And in Mr Brazill’s I DIDN’T SAY THAT, DID I? column, he talks to two notable femme fatales: Carole Parker & Anne Frasier.

Gone

You are crying, screaming and howling, but no tears, not a single movement can hatch from your plastic-infused botoxed mask. You look present to an inexperienced passer-by, but you are fading. You are ethereal, transparent and absent; absent as I am from your life and your thoughts; your blank thoughts that could not retain me with any kind of magic superglue or sheer will. I am gone. Gone. I erased myself from everything that had you even close to its existence and now I can stop holding my breath, I can be weak and alone and start healing.

What happened to Tobias A?

Dear Tobias,

You were not at work today. Are you sick again? I suggested that you were abducted by aliens, but others just laughed off the idea.

I hope you are not abducted at all, but, if you are, it would be cool if your abductors were aliens. Cool, of course, if they return you. And I mean – you, the real you, not a clone of yours…

Oh, no… now I am scared! How will I be able to know that you are the real you when I see you again?

IF they return “you” at all…

Lady D says (Dead Wolf Lullaby)

Winter landscapes exposed me to you, Graceslayer, to your blood thirst and your favorite toys.

My dead body hangs on your wall and your little town could not be redder today.

But, Lady D says that she is lying in wait for you, Graceslayer.

Lady D says she’ll quake the life out of your retarded being. She says that in my next life I’ll get a toy made of your hide.

But… I do not want the toy. I just want to live again, howl at the moon and run free with my pack, without you in sight.

And you know what, Graceslayer – that is how it shall be; this is your last life, Lady D says. Your soul perished when you sent that bullet through my heart.

Yes, my dead body hangs on your wall today, but I shall be reborn tomorrow, while your days are numbered. Lady D is counting.

There are laws above yours, Graceslayer.

Transformation (what happens when you are not drinking on New Year’s Eve)

I am coughing.

It is the 1st of January and everyone I know is hungover. Children, too. They are sugar hungover.

Yesterday afternoon I witnessed how my friends’ status messages on Facebook and Twitter became less and less comprehensible. Soon I understood that those, usually razor-sharp guys and girls were gone. They were sucked out from behind their screens, bytes and bytes per seconds away from me, and replaced by single-celled organisms entrusted with the task of typing random stuff on and on and on.

I was not coughing yesterday when the transformation started. But now I am. I feel worse every minute, as my friends return back to how they were (or so those fast-multiplying, quick-learning clusters of cells would like me to believe).

Best Flash 2009 at NOT (Sometimes it happens… to someone… to you… to ME!)

Doug Mathewson picks my story Androids Can Be Bored as his favorite flash of 2009! Thank you Doug, I am so honored and happy!

More favorites at the NOT, Michael J. Solender’s blog (which, I must add,  he “DESIGNED MOSTLY TO ENTERTAIN HIMSELF”).

Blink|Ink Print PDF

Lynn Alexander and Doug Mathewson have produced the first issue of Blink|Ink – Print. A free PDF is now available:

Writers as Jim Wittenberg, Michael J Solender, Paul D. Brazill, Robin Stratton and others are featured there.

And, there you can also read a story of mine, Why I Hate Tolstoy.

‘Works every time’ at Blink|Ink

My story Works every time is published on Blink|Ink. The story is about 50 words long. It is about insomnia and one way to cure it. ;)

‘Androids can be bored’ ~ At The Bijou

A piece I wrote, Androids Can Be Bored, is playing today At The Bijou!

‘At The Bijou’ is a wonderful site made by Absolutely Kate.

In the most special and very original – only-Kate-can-do-it ways, every Tuesday and Thursday she is presenting chosen authors and their pieces there. Check it out and come back for more!

I am very honoured! : ) Thank you so much, Kate!

‘Some men talk too much’ at ‘Negative Suck’

My story Some men talk too much got published on Negative Suck in their first, ‘The Virgin Issue’. I am very happy. :)

negative suck is for writers who don’t suck and who write things that don’t suck.

And one piece I wrote got published there. How cool is that?! Very cool! :)

Please check out all the ten pieces – flash fiction, poems and art. Neither of them sucks, so to say, and they are hang together quite well.

[Edited : Feb 7, 2010 - the content is moved to a pdf document that can be downloaded here. Click on DECEMBER 2009 : THE VIRGIN ISSUE to download it.

Some men talk too much starts like this:

You told me I looked so sweet and naive the first time you laid your eyes on me; I was like a little floating cloud of cream and sugar and strawberries and all that drizzled with honey.

I thought you were a bit poetic, but mostly pathetic when talking.

]

‘The Secret’ at Blink|Ink Online

The Secret got published at Blink|Ink today. I love their selection of microfiction and I am very happy that they also published some of my stories (this is the second one!)

Also, please look around some more when you pay a visit to Blink|Ink Online; the design of the whole site and the featured artists section are amazing.

‘The Sneeze’ at Blink|Ink Online

My short story (microfiction, about 50 words) The Sneeze is published on Blink|Ink.

Anniversary

This time I did everything right; I booked our favorite restaurant and bought her a pair of expensive looking earrings (I got her flowers only once, the first time we went out; just seeing me holding the bouquet at the door made her cry; I thought – crap, what have I done now, my mom says roses always work… It turns out that my wife-to-be is actually not overly emotional; she just has a strong allergy to pollen).

My girl came out of the bathroom after not more than half an hour late, but I was fine with that; I had some time to deliver a daily dose of “yes, mom” and “no, mom” on the phone.

In the midst of thinking how lucky I was to be with that gorgeous woman who also had (most of the time) the sweetest personality to match, I noticed an impatient look on my darling’s pretty face; her left brow was twitching (now, maybe that is not a condition that requires medical attention, but I really get scared from looking at it, and being scared often can’t possibly be good for my health…); she had asked something, apparently, and now she was waiting for an answer.

I felt like in a bad dream; my brain paralyzed, stuck in a wrong moment; but still I could hear myself very well when I responded with one firm “yes” just to see those perfectly shaped lips getting distorted with anger while her freckles were disappearing in the sea of red that took over her whole face within seconds.

The love of my life ran back into the bathroom, slamming and locking the door while sobbing and at the same time screaming (at me, evidently): “You… you… happy jerkaversary, you jerk!!!”.

Not my shoes! (Bad bad George)

BlackWhiteShoes4

I went to bathroom #4 and saw the clothes tossed all over the floor; the shower was on, steam crawling over the walls; my black and white satin shoes with small quirky bows were getting exposed to the humidity in large amounts; why were they not in their box and what were they doing here?!

The whole search for my shoes started when I could not find them this morning so I went from room to room trying to trace them; and – George.

I was sure he snatched them; I saw how he looked at them yesterday when I had them on when we met him for dinner; but we had a deal – play with whatever you want; you may borrow my hats, my sunglasses, or even dresses as much as you please; but NOT MY SHOES!

George, that prick with wide hairy feet, who kidnapped my shoes, must have had plenty of time to try them on while I was sleeping (a mental note – inspect the shoes for yucky hair traces after you find that lying cross-dresser and pull his ears out) and when I came in he must have just dropped them on the floor and hid in the shower!

George, you coward and thief, you so crossed the limit this time; we will never be staying at your place when we are in Como again; you may try to sweet-talk me, but good luck with that!

I do not care that my hubby is delighted that I am pissed off with someone else (for a change) this early in the morning, and is not likely to support my decision to end our friendship with you; I do not care that your precious arse is naked and no one who does not pay you 25 million dollars or is not intimate with you gets to see it; get out of the shower and explain what you did to my shoes; NOW!

The Foreigner (a close encounter of the third kind)

The first question she popped out caught her new friend off guard; or… did it? She could not read people’s faces that well back then, especially not a face like his, but however he behaved or whatever he said would not have mattered that much; she had already decided that the only interesting person she saw since they came here will become her new friend.

“Why are you black?”

“Wow, that’s a good question; well, my mom was black and my dad was black; I guess that is why I turned out black, too…”

“I like you.”

A lady came nearly running all the way from the other side of the hotel lobby, murmured something even she herself did not understand, and then started dragging her daughter away from the tall guy who was waving back to the little girl whose eyes were turning into waterfalls.

A Perfect Crime

You said I was perfect for you; isn’t it amazing how you could feel that after knowing me for only an hour we’ve spent together in the moving car?

I talk a lot and I am not used to people actually listening, but you do; and I usually feel so lonely but no, not now when I am with you, isn’t that amazing?

No, I have no friends or family, no, I have no one; there are seldom days when I do not feel like the most miserable person on Earth, and here you came, being so kind and talking to me with such a genuine warmth in your voice.

Why are we stopping in the middle of the forest, did something break?

Is that a gun in your hand?

But, you said I was perfect…

The Mirror Whisperer

- Am I real?
– Why wouldn’t you be?

- I am not visible.
– You do not have to be visible in order to be real.

- I was visible recently. Now, when I look at you, I am not. I have changed.
– Do you think the change was from “real” to “unreal”?

- You tell me. I can not see my own reflection in you. How’s that for “being real”?!
– Hmmm, have you ever heard of vampires?

… continue reading this entry.

Paper Cut

On a sunny summer day I was lying on a pier, with my head resting on your lap. There were no waves. The turquoise sea was calm, almost silent.

I heard the buzz coming from the people sitting in a small café on the beach and shouts of children in the background. They were there, cut and pasted from another time, another place. They did not see us, in spite of the train of my dress covering about one-third of the pier, coloring it red. We were there in our own invisible bubble, more real for us than reality itself was; non existing for others.

… continue reading this entry.

The Voice of God

“You should go out and meet some new people. Or some old friends of yours.”
“I have no friends.”

“Of course you do. Anyway, you should not be alone all day long, every day. You must feel lonely.”
“I am not lonely. I am not alone either, God is often with me.”

… continue reading this entry.

Dear Joe

Dear Joe,

Take a deep breath and keep your eyes wide open. You knew the truth all this time, yet you refused to believe in it.

You stood there for some time and stared without blinking, Joe. They were approaching, all of them. They were coming closer and closer while the smoke caressed my body, attempting to hide me from them.

My bones were heated to stay warm for all the ice ages to come, and you, my love, you were the only one who did not whisper God’s name and make the sign of the cross over your heart, horrified after I broke into laughter. You were the only one who dared to come close to the stake and spit on the witch from The North. Did they praise your courage in the years that followed, my darling? I am laughing again, Joe… but, tell me, did you spit in an attempt to extinguish the fire, or because you hated me for leaving you?

I am being honest, Joe. I admit – I left you. It sounds like a fairytale – you loved me because I put a spell on you, while I did not care. But, when I fell in love with you, Joe… you are the only one who knows how I can love.

I brought you back to life and broke the spell. You could have left, but you stayed, Joe… and I, I came back. Eight hundred years later, I still love you.

The Sandbox

Max was playing in the sand. The castles he was making with help of a small, plastic sand shovel were quite simple in shape and lacked many details. Still, he was doing the best he could. He was humming and looked happily engaged in his sculpting activity.

The Blue Fairy silently glided from a cloud and came to Max from behind. She tenderly touched his head. Max got so scared when he felt her touch that he dropped the shovel, jumped aside and yelled.

… continue reading this entry.

The Frog

LittleGreenFrog

Stop telling me that there is no frog in our flat. I heard it this morning again and I know it is here somewhere.

Yes, I know that we live in a city, but everyone has to live somewhere. Frogs have to live somewhere, too.

Yes, I know that we live on the 17th floor, but frogs can jump. I know they can not jump that high, but there are elevators.

No, they cannot press buttons, but they can enter an elevator when someone else does and travel with that person.

No, it did not ring the bell, and no, it did not have the key to our apartment. It probably came in when you opened the door going to or coming from work.

No, you would not have noticed that. You would not notice a frog if it sat on the top of my head.

Wait, I hear it again! Won’t you please shut up? I prefer listening to the frog.

No, this frog does not have nicer voice than you do; it is the content I like more. Stop making sense!

Grandmother dearest

-You look taller. Is it the shoes? Wait, no, these are your old shoes, right?
– I guess I just got taller.
– You also look slimmer. I like your dress, I do not remember you wearing it before. I did not think that Laura Ashley style was your cup of tea, but you do look sweet in it.
– You were not born yet when I used to wear it. It was in fashion back then.

… continue reading this entry.

The Orchid

phalaenopsis equestris alba

It was cold, very cold. It seemed that he was alone in the apartment. Probably in the whole building. Maybe in the whole city. It certainly felt like that. The change occurred while he was sleeping. There was no sound and that felt new. He could not remember experiencing the complete silence ever before.

He has been awake for several hours now and the electricity apparently went off while he was asleep. That has never happened before.

… continue reading this entry.

Pink

They were pearly whitish-pink in color, tiny, deceivingly transparent and delicate, steadily moving forward on the top of the balcony fence.

Those light pink, small legs were carefully avoiding drops of evening rain collected together into miniature puddles on cold metal. They reminded me of our hands. I wanted to touch them and hold them; they looked so warm and alive.

***

I wandered around the apartment that night, tormented by insomnia. In the moment that must have been an odd synchrony of our paths, I looked through the glass balcony door and saw those fragile pink legs engaged in movement; a hairy grayish body and a head with a long nose above; small dark eyes that did not register me behind the glass.

I was always horrified by a mere thought of those creatures. I used to scream soundlessly before the imaginary pictures of them. Yet, all I cared about back that night was not to scare it. I moved carefully and silently away from the door.

Duality

MyEye

On some days I get reminded that someone made me a dual creature. I am human and I am robot.

They do not know that I know that I am robot as well. My human being is hiding it from the robot intruder and from them. It is my own little secret.

Today I opened the dishwasher after the washing program was done and the steam from it fogged my left eye lens. My robot reflexes were fast, but this time my human perception was faster. The robot reflexes quickly moved my head away from the steam, turning it to the right while instantly rolling the semi-organic lenses down, covering the previously exposed hard robot lenses.

The movement came too late for my left eye, and that is how the human perception came into the picture; I saw my robot eye lens fogging for a few milliseconds, if that long. Anyway – long enough. I am human and I am robot.

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