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October's FC Prompts: 'Falling', 'Revolt' and 'Possession'

Discussion in 'Flash Club' started by Sea-shore, Oct 2, 2017.

  1. Sea-shore

    Sea-shore aka Anne Chen Staff Member

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    Hello fellow writers!

    October's Flash Fiction prompts are: 'Falling', 'Revolt' and 'Possession'.
    Maximum word count at 500, please.

    Thanks to @Rich., @Bernard Stacey and @MaryA for the prompts, respectively.

    The Flash Club is open to all Litopians, it's *fun* first and foremost, so don't get caught up or stressed over it. You don't have to contribute, but if you are new to writing, it's a good place to start and get your toes wet. And if you're an experienced writer, flash writing can be an important part of your regular writing practice.

    You can make as many contributions as you like.

    There are no winners or losers! From time to time, some entries will be chosen to appear on the main Litopia site. So make your entries interesting, challenging - perhaps highlighting a specific writing technique?

    Remember, the Litopian code of conduct takes precedence in all situations.

    Have fun!
     
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  2. Sea-shore

    Sea-shore aka Anne Chen Staff Member

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    Possession

    Do not, I beg of you, misunderstand me. I am quite aware she is, in herself, her own person, however, I know with a certainty, unmatched in my life, that she is mine.

    Had she, upon her smooth, fair forehead, an etching - a physical etching from a surgeon’s knife dripping scarlet- of my name, I could not see it clearer, so plain upon her exquisite daisy-delicate face, that she is mine.

    She was sculpted from the purest, rarest marble and her eyes plucked from the constellation of Cassiopeia, for my delight and admiration only; she exists to answer every conceivable question I have for this world and beyond; she was born a woman, to wed me.

    Again, I entreat you, do not purse your lips so and think me arrogant, for I am verily the antonym of arrogance in her presence; I am humble as a bee, who having flown many a hill and vale, happens perchance, to settle upon the most beautiful bloom and knows her as his own, and when he finds her, he knows he has, at last, come home.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2017
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  3. Rich.

    Rich. Member

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    @Sea-shore, creepy story, scary voice!

    --

    [I don't know what to call the story that follows. It could be Revolt or it could be Possession. I'm going to cop out and let you decide.]

    --

    Revolt
    / Possession


    He stands at the sink, scouring his thoughts. He remembers.

    *​

    ‘You all right, Mum? How’re you bearing up?’

    She presses the tea mug to the side of her face. ‘Better for seeing the boys. Little buggers.’

    She flicks her head towards the garden and the sound of childish delight, eyes flashing girlish.

    He looks into his tea. ‘I know it’s hard with us being so far away.’

    She puts down her mug, sits back and starts rolling her wedding ring up to the knuckle. ‘Your dad…’ Her face wrinkles as if she’s sniffed something bad. ‘My world’s become very small. All those pills he takes. Doctor's can’t ever seem to get them right. Silly sod puts on a brave face, but… He’s not a well man.’

    ‘Yeah, I know, but what about you, Mum?’

    Her knuckle has gone white where she’s forcing the ring.

    ‘I couldn’t leave him. Not now. Wouldn’t be right. But he doesn’t understand that I’m getting old. He doesn’t lift a finger to help.’ She abandons the ring and drops her hands in her lap. ‘I used to cry a lot more. Not now though. Bloody men.’

    He searches his tea for the right words to say.

    ‘I don’t mean you, son.’

    ‘I know.’

    *​

    He throws the scourer into the sink, steps back, raises his eyes to the ceiling and scrunches up his face to hold back the tears.

    *​

    Water's cold round his thighs. Her ashes pour out of the overpriced scatter tube. Tide sucks them away.

    His father stands a little way off, chock full of pills. Still standing. There’s dust in the house in places that have always been clean.

    *​

    He wipes at his eyes. He smiles, chokes, laughs at himself. He’s not been this happy for a very long time. He ticks off items on his mental to-do list:

    —Washing up – check.
    —Hoovering – check.
    —Kids’ dinners – check.
    —Wife’s uniforms folded and ready to wear – check, check.

    Mum would be proud. And that's all that matters.



    ***​
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2017
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  4. Sea-shore

    Sea-shore aka Anne Chen Staff Member

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    Thanks! :D That's what I was going for.

    I thought your story was more like 'Redemption'? Did I interpret it right?
     
  5. Rich.

    Rich. Member

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    Certainly if that's what you took from it, it's not my place to tell you you're wrong!

    When I wrote it I was thinking about grief – a revolt against it or taking possession of it.
     
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  6. MaryA

    MaryA Well-Known Member

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    Possession


    The exorcism had failed.

    Dripping water ran down the walls of the monastery cell. A framed image of St John of the Cross lay in broken glass on the bare floor, the candle flame faltered invisible in the morning light. The smiling priest and his resident demon got up, nodded to me and left the room.

    *

    A week earlier, Fr Charles Beckwith, retired Bishop of St Paul’s, had asked me to humour him by enacting an old ritual of exorcism. He believed he was possessed.

    ‘Nothing obvious, mind. A quiet persistent voice in my ear, a sly creature lurking at the edges of my mind.’

    I agreed, reserving the right to suggest he see a psychiatrist afterwards.

    He came to my cell. As darkness fell, I lit candles, set out bell and book. Made the sign of the cross over his kneeling form.

    In the candlelight his face narrowed, his mouth twisted a little.

    ‘I’m calling on whoever might be in there to answer to a Man of God,’ I began, feeling foolish.

    The priest I knew as Fr Charles smiled up at me.

    ‘Your name is Cynthia,’ he replied in a sly, soft voice. ‘I know that much.’

    My blood ran cold. This horrid secret was known only to a few.

    At the age of 15 -- a stocky, cheerful boy -- I suffered an attack of appendicitis and was sent for x-rays. The doctor and two specialists informed my parents I had a womb and uterus along with male genitals. What used to be called ‘hermaphrodite’, intersexed. A female identity lurked inside me.

    My mother had longed for a baby girl she planned to call Cynthia. My father, appalled, said I was a freakish sport of nature. The three of us agreed we would never speak of this again.

    I turned against Cynthia’s body. Her unseen womb haunted me like a ghostly threat.

    Celibacy and a disembodied faith offered one solution. I entered the seminary after school and became a Carmelite, an enclosed monk.

    The demon leaned back, waiting for me to respond.

    ‘What is your name?’ I said loudly, going into the rite. ‘Exorcizámos te, ómnis immúnde spíritus, ómnis satánic potéstas….’

    ‘I have been many things to many people,’ he said. ‘I have slipped through many nets. Once we were Legion, but you can call me Fallen Angel, Lucifer or simply Fr Charles. Would it help if I assured you I am the Way of the Left-Hand Path, your penumbra of Shadow? That you are both Madonna and death-dealing Kali?’

    ‘Leave now,’ I said and held up the crucifix. ‘Begone.’

    ‘Charles doesn’t mind me hovering about,’ said the demon, mildly. ‘Do calm down, my dear.’

    I could not focus on him or the sudden intolerable brightness. Within me, the woman I might have become was stirring. It hurt to breathe. I threw off my stole, sat down heavily. My mouth, unwitting, curved into a smile.

    ‘Cynthia,’ said the presence. ‘Ah Cynthia, I wondered when you would join us.’
     
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  7. Katie-Ellen Hazeldine

    Katie-Ellen Hazeldine Venerated Member Founding Member

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    She drove them to the Falls of Shin. He sat silent; there was no knowing what he was thinking - if anything.
    Remember, she said, our first time here to see the salmon leap?
    He frowned but not in annoyance. Was that a spark in his dull, cod eye? Then turned his face away again, staring out at the rain.

    She parked and got out. No need to lock the car; she coaxed him out. Guided him stumbling, down the narrow pathway to the viewpoint with its broken rails.
    A salmon leaped, taut as a bow, pitching its will against the fury of the water. And then another, battling to spawn; and did they know arrival meant their death?
    Let's go, my love? she said and took his hand. Kissed it, held it to her cheek.
    And then at last he looked at her. Really looked, seeing her, like he used to. No sign of dementia, his eye re-kindling golden salmon fury.
    Life's been good, he said. The pride of my life, my loveliest one. Nothing to gain by staying. Let's go now, girl.

    They leaped hand in hand.

    The separating fall was fearful, fearless. Thunderous. Final.
     
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  8. Chase Gamwell

    Chase Gamwell Venerated Member Staff Member

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    I just saw the new Blade Runner movie, so excuse the blatant cyberpunk noir fan service.

    Revolt (500 words)

    There was a hotel at the edge of town that no one visited anymore. It was a modest establishment powered by an aging solar network; enough to keep the lights on, but grime covering the panels and the incessant rain made them flicker like candles.

    The result was a gloominess that couldn’t be replicated in the city. There it was all neon streets under gray skies.

    Detective Breyta let out a deep sigh and squinted through the relentless sheets of water that pelted the windshield of her car. This has to be the place.

    With a groan, she replaced dry silence with thundering wetness. Hunched against the rain, both hands sunken deep into canvas-lined pockets, she cursed the murdering psychopath that had wandered this far out.

    An attendant met her at the front door, his worried face all the more harrowed because of the flickering lights. “Detective Breyta? Thank you for coming so quickly.”

    She scowled and shook the rain from her coat. “My job. Now where’s the body.”

    Taken aback by her curtness, the attendant blinked. “T-this way.”

    The room was cramped, but murderers didn’t need much space to do their thing. The bed filled most of the room, so that’s where the body had been left, carefully arranged as if on display. The white sheets beneath the victim were stained with blood, but not from a crime of passion. Instead, the crimson strokes had been painstakingly crafted into an intricate pattern.

    Wings? Breyta stepped closer and leaned over the bed. What else?

    The vial immediately caught her eye. It was thin, no longer than a cigarette, and half full of a viscous liquid that caught the flickering light, reflecting it in a rainbow of colors. She immediately knew what it was.

    Revolt.

    She took a deep breath and removed a thin slip of glass from her coat pocket. The screen sprang to life when her eyes focused on it. “Chief.”

    A chirping tone issued from the device, then the screen darkened and a face appeared. “Breyta.”

    She managed a thin smile. “I’ve got another one.”

    “Fuck. Where?”

    “This one’s far out.” She turned away from the bed. “Edge of the city.”

    The chief frowned. “Fine. I’ll send a coroner out. You get back here. We have things to discuss.”

    Breyta didn’t even have time to nod before the glass went dark. She shrugged and pocketed the device, then turned and walked into the hall.

    The attendant was waiting, a look of apprehension heightened by the flickering bulbs. “So?”

    She leveled a finger at his chest. “Lock the door. I’ve got people on the way.”

    Before he could protest, she stalked past.

    The Revolt killer had been an issue for weeks, but had never left the crowded confines of the city’s center. Something had changed. No doubt, that was what the chief wanted to discuss.

    Breyta paused outside, under an overhang, and lit a cigarette. In the distance, she could see city lights.

    And among them hid a killer...
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
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  9. Amber

    Amber Member

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    ** We're supposed to pick one word right? It was too late by the time I realized we only needed to use one.**

    Falling for him was the easy part. It took no will, no self-control, to step into his skin. His insides so much roomier than mine, I wore him like my father’s suit. I regret to say, he lost his sharp edges once I took up residence so that like me, he wobbled this way and that, in the most unstable of ways.

    Notification of his possession bounced along arterial highways until reaching his heart, the messenger encountered a roadblock. “Turn back,” the sign said. “There’s no more room.”

    More messengers were dispatched. Each of them returned with the same news.

    Drastic measures were taken. I staged a revolt.

    I meant to make his heart pay attention.

    And so it did.

    The moments before his heart stopped were some of the most exciting of my life. His entire body was alert, more alive than he’d ever been before. The space around me shook and became rigid with petrification.

    Then he was gone.

    He took his heart with him.
     
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  10. Sea-shore

    Sea-shore aka Anne Chen Staff Member

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    You can choose as many prompts you like. :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2017 at 9:37 AM
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  11. MaryA

    MaryA Well-Known Member

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    Falling

    She’s falling through the cage of time. She falls over and over again. She falls asleep, she falls awake. She fell again yesterday. She won’t fall if you string together that safety net you call love.

    She’s falling like a theatre curtain, right through the stage. She tumbles down without props. Who caught her once, twice, not the third time? She fell like a performance on fire, singing all the way down.

    You saw her falling. She fell through birds, animals, trees. Her body snagged on itself. She became the frozen waterfall, falling in stasis. Bits of her stayed behind.

    She fell and fell. From dawn she fell, she fell like Milton, she fell like Lucifer. Thank God she’s not your daughter. Not mine, not anyone’s anything.

    She’s falling again. She’ll bounce back. She’ll get back on track. A relapse like a blip. She fell and repented. She fell to hell and back.

    She’s falling. Apart.

    Strong as the darkness of a well, but falling from sight. Her little speck in a wide sky that doesn’t know her.

    She got up and fell. She’s falling, falling, falling. You can say goodbye but she can’t hear you. She’s falling through the cage of time. The stage is on fire. The birds have flown.

    The pieces of her are voice, eyes, a ghost of what was smile, wrist, that shrug, her clouded vision. All falling, all going, going, gone.

    She’s falling like temperature, like cold rain on a grave, like a grey day, like. Don’t say it.

    From dawn to dusk she fell, she slid down the slide on her fifth birthday, she failed her university entrance exams, she lost her virginity without consent, she fell over and over. She fell all her life, she fell.

    Who’s falling now?
     
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  12. Katie-Ellen Hazeldine

    Katie-Ellen Hazeldine Venerated Member Founding Member

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    A little sparrow...
     
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