Winter of Whimsy and Wyrdness Week Five

This week’s prompt is a photo taken by Pablo Alonso Rovira, used by LCP courtesy of Lizette Bumbesti. For our purposes, it is called “The Fall.”

Let your imagination fall and produce a story of 500 words or less, submitted into the reply section of this post by Saturday at 6 pm PST. Remember, all stories considered for the contest anthology will contain a supernatural or magical element. See complete contest rules here.

darrelfalling

 

 

9 thoughts on “Winter of Whimsy and Wyrdness Week Five

  1. Holly Geely

    Salty Embrace
    Holly Geely, @hollygeely
    490 words

    “Why has everything gone all blurry?” Stewart asked.

    Blue Moon saw through Stewart’s eyes. The trees were swirls of green, mixed with yellow from the sunlight. A giant expanse of fuzzy blue was rushing up to greet him.

    Blue Moon rolled his theoretical eyes.

    “You’re falling, sir,” Blue Moon said.

    “Why am I falling?” Stewart wailed. He wasn’t speaking out loud, of course, as his windpipe was probably being crushed by all the force, but his telepathic voice was keyed in to his true emotions. He tried to press the panic button on the metal band around his neck, but gravity prevented him from moving his arms.

    “Maxwell pushed you out of the ship, sir. There was a mutiny.”

    “What? When?”

    “Sometime between your seventh and eighth whiskey, sir.”

    Blue Moon had tried to warn the captain, but he had been intent on celebrating the new trade agreement. By the third drink he’d been convinced they had stopped an intergalactic war.

    “I can’t believe Maxwell did this to me.”

    “You’re going to have to believe it soon, sir. You’re about to make contact.”

    Blue Moon wished he’d been able to accept Maxwell’s offer, but he was programmed for loyalty, and Stewart was his captain. That didn’t mean he was looking forward to a slow death by rusting.

    “My condolences to you, sir,” Blue Moon said.

    “Why? Who died?”

    “You’re about to, sir.”

    “Oh. Right.”

    Blue Moon sympathized with Maxwell’s decision to overthrow this idiot, but personally he would have avoided murdering poor Stewart.

    “It’s been a pleasure to serve you, sir,” Blue Moon said. It was a lie, but he may as well go down believing he was a hero.

    Then again, believing he was a hero was what usually got him into trouble.

    The ocean greeted them with its frigid and salty embrace. Blue Moon prepared himself for the long, lonely wait.

    Stewart plunged down into a spinning whirlpool. It sucked him into more blurred and swirling colours, this time in shades of electric blue and puke yellow. A deep, bellowing voice told them to “Ride the vortex” and Stewart ejected out the bottom and onto solid ground.

    “You have remarkable luck, sir,” Blue Moon said.

    “How else do you think I became a captain?”

    “That is a good point, sir.” Blue Moon scanned their surroundings. “It appears that we have arrived on your ship approximately eighteen minutes before Maxwell decided to push you off.”

    Stewart cracked his knuckles. A slow grin spread across his face.

    Eighteen minutes later, Maxwell was plunging toward the ocean’s salty embrace.

    “Have you learned your lesson, sir?” Blue Moon asked.

    “You bet I have. Pilot, go down and pick him up in ten minutes. I’m going to celebrate with a drink.”

    Blue Moon snorted with mechanical disgust. His loyalty programming did not prevent him from hoping that one day soon someone else would push Stewart out of the ship, this time for keeps.

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      1. necwrites

        Oops, that’ll teach me to have two windows open at once! Holly, that was meant for your LC submission. You are fast on the draw this week in every contest.

        Reply
  2. C Connolly

    Living Dead Girl

    @FallIntoFiction #FlashDog

    (500 words)

    First, the plummeting down and forwards. Then the jolt as the sensations settle and Beth opens her eyes, frowning. She sees trees – can hear branches snap beneath her feet as the scenery jumps around her. She glances at her hands, taking in short, bitten fingernails; dirt beneath them. Combined grit and mud. Scratches across the back; score marks. Dirt in those too. They swing back and forth as she powers forwards. Dark hair whips across her face and into her eyes.

    Suddenly, she is headlong, sprawling without warning, ankle at an awkward angle. Head turning, she can see the wire which tripped her, though she is immune to the prospective pain it should cause. Beth is watching now closely. He – they – are here somewhere; close. Ten seconds, she calculates, if the timing is bob on to the calibrations.

    A sound to her back and Beth is scrabbling to force herself onto her knees. She rolls into a kneel, foot still pinioned.

    “No more running, Jo?” the first man says. The blade is already out in his hand. Beth concentrates on him. Dark hair, ill shaven, 6’2, she thinks. Caucasian. Then she looks at his companion. Tanned skin. Shorter; more stocky. Now, she is noting their clothing.

    “Doesn’t seem much point, does there?” Beth answers. She gestures towards the trap holding her leg prisoner.

    “Sensible girl,” the other man says. “No point making it difficult. We’ll enjoy it more if you do. Guaranteed you won’t.” A quirk of his mouth brings out a scar to the side of his lip.

    “Seeing as we’re being so polite now,” Beth says. “How about some introductions? Don’t believe I got your names before?”

    With that, the first man is laughing. “Got to give you,” he says. “That’s one we haven’t heard before – and we’ve heard plenty by now.” He gives her a hard look. “Makes no difference,” he says, shrugging. “Not like you’re going anywhere, is it? Blade,” he answers, brandishing the knife. “The bad girls get it,” he adds, looking into Beth’s eyes. “Seems like you do too.”

    Beth nods an acknowledgment. “And you’re…?” she adds, shifting her gaze to Blade’s sidekick.

    “Frank,” he answers.

    “Really?” Beth asks, gaining herself a look from both men before Frank nods.

    “Not known to lie. Going to tell you the truth now about what’s going to happen next. Might want me to fib about that.”

    With the words Beth lets herself fade – the familiar blur into darkness. She has what she needs for now. Once the world stops spinning around her, she opens her eyes. “Jo Ames,” she says. “Mid twenties. Welsh. You got the ID on the perps?”

    Agent Hill is nodding. “Just watch your timings. No more playing the odds. Don’t want you falling amongst the fallen. “You do enough.” With that, he is frowning at her. “You’ve knocked a month off your expectancy,” he adds. “Hope it was worth it.”

    Beth nods. “’s what I live for,” she says, shrugging, before turning away.

    Reply
  3. Image Ronin

    Jigsaw Falling Into Place

    Beneath the suspension bridge, car lights blurred furiously as Arcane clambered up onto the railing. Cold rain bound his trench coat to his skin. Arcane gazed down into the valley below, beside the road the river surged, water boiling as if alive. On a grainy loop he could still hear Tabitha’s pleading voice, her desperate lunge at his coat sleeve as he walked out of her life.

    That had been three hours ago, when clouds of self-pity and despair had fashioned reality. Now parted by the grim light of certainty.

    Not long now. Lighting up a cigarette, Arcane dropped the packet into the racing torrent below. Counting the seconds as it spiraled into the darkness.

    1 .. 2.. 3.. 4.. 5

    That should do nicely. Arcane took another swig from his hip flash, tequila burning like his soul.

    ‘Are you okay sir?’

    A copper, compassionate eyes set into a stern face. One hand on the tazer hung from his pocket the other held out, beckoning, encouraging a return to terra firma.

    ‘Good thanks, you won’t be needing that.”

    The copper bashfully removes his hand from the weapon. If only he understood what he faced he would probably have wished for a bazooka not a hipster cattle prod.

    ‘I think you should get down from there sir, its not safe.”

    “Isn’t that the point? I’m sure you’d agree that for anyone stood here safety is the last thing on their mind.”

    “Well, whatever it is that’s bothering you sir surely it isn’t that bad. I mean there’s always tomorrow.”

    “True, there’s always a tomorrow, I’m just positive that neither of us want to find out what kind exists if I don’t jump.”

    “I’m not sure I follow sir, now how about you come down from there eh?”

    The officer’s colleague, who till now had been skillfully moving his way to the right of Arcane, lunged forward. A swift incantation and Arcane sent both officers slamming against their patrol car. The impact causing steel and glass to crumple, red and blue lights flickering into life.

    ‘Trust me gents jumping is the last thing I want to do.”

    Peeling the coat from his body, Arcane let it fall into the water below. He was naked from the waist up. Crimson writing, writhing like serpents, covered his skin. The only part of his body not covered was his stomach that pulsed with a dark emerald light. He put his hand to his belly, an expectant mother seeking reassurance.

    It had been his arrogance that had allowed the demon in. He had become emboldened by his skills and notoriety. Convinced that he alone could rid himself of this troublesome freeloader.

    Not realizing who gestated within him.

    Now time had run out, in an hour hell would be born, crossing into this world, into this dimension.

    Everything would cease to exist yet even knowing that all he wanted was to hold Tabitha one more time.

    An intake of breath.

    Arcane stepped off into the darkness.

    499 words
    @imageronin
    #flashdog

    Reply
  4. voimaoy

    Falling to Earth
    @voimaoy
    500 words

    To fall, to fly, the lightness defiance of gravity. He wanted the hollow bones of birds. He wanted to fly too close to the sun. He wanted to fly to the stars.

    Now, he is falling, life flashing before him, flickering cinema. Popcorn sticky fingers and arm around a girl. While they’re kissing in the balcony, let’s sit back and watch the show.

    Here’s his first appearance, a gleam in his father’s eye. Dad looking like Mick Jagger in this picture, That shaggy dark hair and the cheekbones. Yes, he has his father’s eyes. Blue eyes reflecting the sky, the first time he saw a tree, that indescribable yellow-green of light though leaves. No words for the beauty of this world.

    This world below him, he can almost see the patchwork of fields and towns. Earth spins as he rides the thermals, wind-blown as a milkweed seed, fine as spider silk, stretching from the earth to the moon.

    The moon, a white sail over the rooftops, riding the night’s black waves. He has his first telescope, a birthday gift. His father showing him the stars. “There’s the Big Dipper. See? Orion’s Belt. That bright star is Rigel. That’s where you got your name.”

    His name on her lips, the girl kisses his mouth. Cat, her name was.

    “Cat, what is that? ” a voice says. He cannot see the speaker.

    “A girl,” Rigel says. “A girl, I knew once.” The girl with hot-pink hair. ‘The stars are fire,’ he said. ‘No, we are,’ she said.

    Distant now, as any star.

    “So, this is your reality,” the voice says. Out of the corner of his eye, he can see the face. Is this an angel, an alien? The black eyes are flat and black, expressionless voids or mirrors. No, a mask. A helmet? “I am sorry, I cannot breathe your air,” the being explains. “But you must keep breathing in and out. That’s right. You’ll be home soon.’

    Countdown commencing, green lights, all systems go. Rigel spots the object up ahead. It is not registering on the the radar, but he can see it is there, a shape in the clouds. The beam reaches out, fingers in his mind. The light is blinding bright.

    He is falling, falling into the light. A tunnel opens, and he can hear music. Something classical, maybe. He is standing on a pathway, in a park, watching a yellow labrador retriever chasing sticks in the afternoon sun.

    “Welcome back,” A familiar voice with his name in her mouth. He turns to see her face, brown eyes twinkling with amusement. “Where did you go this time?”

    “Carmen!” It’s been so long, he thinks, or has it? Next she’s going to say–

    “These episodes, darling…I’m worried.”

    “No, honey, it’s all right,” he says.

    Her eyes narrow in the sun. “You saw them again, didn’t you? The UFO, the alien.”

    “No, of course not. I’m here. I’m home.”

    Rigel watches as a girl runs by. A girl with hot-pink hair.

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  5. zevonesque

    Sideways
    A.J. Walker

    Samuel was falling. He could feel the wind continually pushing hard against his back, like a bullying shove. There was something wrong with the dream though, normally he’d wake up just before hitting the imagined ground, but it wasn’t happening.

    Snippets of traffic and crowd noise came through to him as the buffeting continued. He thought he could hear a familiar voice, but there was no-one falling with him. His head was mashed by the conflicts in the sound and vision and he couldn’t make any sense of it.

    Smudges of blue, green and grey and hard black lines continually flashed by in his peripheral vision in blocks he couldn’t make out. His brain was lost and he thought he was going to pass out.

    He tried to focus on something and looked at his feet. He could see he was wearing his green and red striped walking socks as plain as day. His jeans were fluttering in the wind and he noticed the yellow mustard smudge near his pocket and he could see the bulge of his keys. It was so real.

    Samuel couldn’t understand. He always wore a coat when he was out, but he was wearing only a T-shirt in December. Where could he be falling from? He tried to recall what he had been doing but the constant fear of splattering across a pavement made it impossible.

    The voice came through again. He though he heard it say ‘stop’.

    He noticed something in his right hand – it felt like a pebble. He couldn’t turn to look at it because the wind was too strong. He closed his hand around it – granite cold and comfortable – after what seemed minutes he decided the word was ergonomic. And still the world passed in a blur. He began to cramp as if he was going to throw-up.

    His little finger felt the edge of something on the pebble and Samuel felt compelled to press it. Nothing happened.

    A voice came through again. ‘Use some force, Samuel.’

    He moved the pebble around scared that it would jolt out and disappear forever.

    His thumb circled the indentation. It was a button. But he had no idea what would it do.

    ‘Use some force.’

    He closed his hand and with his thumb pressed the button as hard as he could.

    The world started to resolve itself. The wind slowed and the smudges passed by slower and slower. He could move his head and his brain began to work out the world around him – revolving him. Sideways – he hadn’t even been falling. He’d been traveling horizontally. Backwards at tremendous speed above the city streets.

    The buildings and parks, the roads and the people, he could see them all now.

    The wizard had told him to face where he wanted to go and imagine the destination. He must have been holding it wrong to go backwards like that. He’d definitely need practice, but he knew he wouldn’t be using public transport again.

    (500 words)
    @zevonesque
    #FlashDogs

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  6. necwrites

    Portents and Eventualities

    Sky-reader Meilan limped across the snow-dusted desert, far from the light of paper lanterns and pit fires, to scan the skies for a portent. Apathetic stars blinked back at her. Impossible. The way the earth shuddered with eventuality, the portent should have made its sky-streaking plummet through the atmosphere days ago.

    She worked the tip of her staff into the resistant dirt. The whimpers of the eventuality filtered through up the twist of wood and alloy. Where is he? Where is he…?

    Tension pinched the arid air, the tension of a babe straining to be born without the assistance of contractions. That portent needed to fall.

    “I’m a reader, not a midwife,” she grumbled as she made her way back to her pavilion. Sky-reading was a passive endeavor, and that’s how she liked it.

    At her age, even sky-walking was a chore. Her sky-form felt attenuated and stuttery as it poked its way into the night. She hadn’t sky-walked since the Blood Crusades. The memory of that devastation clutched at her heart and hardened her resolve.

    Whenever an eventuality is created, its twin portent comes into being. Like entangled particles separated by time and space, eventuality and portent strain toward each another. Sky-readers watch for portents, which manifest as a shooting stars, to determine the nature of the eventuality.

    There it was, a winged mongoose body huddled in a midnight nest, peeking out with eyes wide enough to reflect the moon.

    Meilan tried for motherly: “Hey, little one, your sister is waiting for you.”

    I can’t! it squawked. People will die.

    Meilan flinched. “That’s not your responsibility.”

    I can stop it, it insisted, coiling in on itself.

    “Who told you this?” she demanded.

    Snuffling and fluttering, the portent refused to answer, but not being particularly adept at subterfuge, it couldn’t keep its gaze from a certain trajectory: Rilan’s pagoda. Meilan dropped out of her sky-walk.

    Time to pay the young sky-reader a visit.

    Ostentation was the lot of the novice. Banners streamed like comets from tiered eaves. Roof tiles glittered with stardust. As soon as she crossed his threshold, his rationalizations came as thick as the incense smoke cloying his entryway.

    “You think you’re the only one who’s tried to change things?” she snapped.

    That halted him up. “You?”

    “At about your age.”

    “What happened?”

    She sagged against her staff. “What should have been a mildly troublesome skirmish over a defiled sanctuary.”

    She waited for him to line up his knowledge of history with her apparent age. He gasped.

    That old clench twisted her guts.

    Rilan threw himself into sky-walk so fast his physical body nearly cracked its skull on jade tiles.
    Meilan hobbled out onto his balcony as a fiery trail cleaved the sky. A portent of a dire eventuality, yes. She didn’t blame Rilan for wanting to intervene.

    She sighed, but the knot in her heart held fast. Knowing she’d averted another Blood Crusade did little to mitigate the sin of causing the first one.

    497 words
    @rowdy_phantom
    #flashdogs

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