Tag Archives: Fiction

Friday Fictioneers 100 Word Flash Fiction–Afghanistan

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Every Friday, writers from around the world gather at Rochelle Wisoff-Fields blog to share their 100 word flash fiction stories based on a photo prompt. Here is my humble submission:

“That’s nice, you like dolphins?” Regina asked as she deftly finished wrapping Charlie’s wound.

“It was my Mom’s,” he sighed. “She bought that a couple years ago on a trip to Pensacola. That was before the cancer. She’s gone now.”

Regina stood, stuffing bandage wrappers into a large Ziploc bag.

“I’m sorry,” she said.

“I can still feel them,” he said. “My legs I mean. It feels like a friggin bus is parked on top of them.”

“That’s just phantom pain Charlie, it’ll fade with time.”

He closed his eyes, forcing back tears.

“It’s ok Regina. You can go now.”

 

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2040–A Short Story part I

Sci-fi is not exactly my genre, but I was inspired to try my hand at it by an interesting post on 3D printing and other future technology here: http://redclayandroses1.wordpress.com/2013/11/23/its-the-year-2040-what-are-you-doing/

Oliver scanned the time again. 21:46, three minutes after the last time he checked. It was just two damn easy with his new iView lenses. All his apps ran so much smoother now that he upgraded. A warm breeze blew a parched paper coffee cup down the abandoned street. He pivoted and looked to his left past a row of decrepit industrial buildings, a sleek black Mercedes SL was just turning the corner and coming into view.

“It’s about freaking time,” Henry hissed.

“Try your best to stay cool,” Oliver whispered. “These guys are used to dealing chems so they’re kinda jumpy. Just let me do the talking.”

The Mercedes cruised smoothly on a cushion of air over the rutted and pock-marked asphalt towards the two men. Oliver’s palms tingled with droplets of sweat as he clutched the paper BitCoin wallet in his pocket. He had never held this much money in his life. and it was making him twitchy. He just wanted to get the deal done and get back to the lab. Henry wasn’t helping either, with his goddamn gum smacking all the time. The car silently drifted to a stop in front of them, and after a dramatic pause the front passenger door swung open. The man who emerged was mountainous. It was hard to believe that he actually fit in the car at all. He was about six seven and about 300 pounds of solid muscle. Despite the stifling heat of late summer in Los Angeles  the man was dressed in a dark wool suit and tie. He gave Oliver and Henry a quick emotionless look, then turned to open the rear door.

A small man with deeply tanned skin that was the texture of old leather emerged from the car. He looked to be about seventy, but he moved with the swiftness and grace of a twenty year old athlete. The sun glinted off his pale green track suit as he extended his hand.

“Thomas Radics” he said.”Which one of you is Oliver?” He smiled pleasantly, but his eyes were cold and hard. Oliver switched on his Biometric Analysis app. If this guy was bullshitting them he’d know instantly. The app measures micro expressions, blood flow and temperature changes, heart rate, and about sixty different metrics. It alerts you when they’re nervous, lying, or trying to hide something. Oliver smiled.

“I’m Oliver” he replied, shaking hands. “Pleased to meet you Mr. Radics.”

“I believe you have my wallet,” said Radics. He squeezed Oliver’s hand with a youthful grip, and a deadly serious expression crossed his sun-worn face.

“I have the wallet, if you have the NPS,” said Oliver.

Radics grinned again. Oliver was pretty sure he was wearing dentures, or had caps, because the man’s teeth glowed white like a movie star. Well, this was LA after all. Radics dropped Oliver’s hand and turned back to the incredible hulk. The muscle immediately reached into the car and produced a white metal briefcase. The international symbol for hazardous biological material was emblazoned on the top in bright red paint.

“Don’t worry, it’s not dangerous,” said Radics as he turned the case toward Oliver. He held it up as if it were a prize on a game show, and then dramatically popped open the cover. Vapor hissed and wafted up from the container, it’s contents cooled by liquid nitrogen. “But I don’t know what in hell you would want three pounds of NPS for, unless you’re growing a brain in a jar.”

“Something like that,” Oliver replied sheepishly. His lenses told him that, except for a slightly elevated pulse, Radics was the real deal.

“This comes to us from Argentina,” said Radics, closing the case. “They’re the only country we have access to that still allows human embryonic cell research. We’re not used to dealing with this quantity, it was very difficult to obtain.”

“That’s why Dr. Brown was willing to pay you so much,” quipped Oliver, pulling the slightly moistened paper wallet from his pocket. He handed it over to Radics, who held it up in the light for a moment, admiring the holographic printing. He passed the paper back to the giant, and held the case out to Oliver.

“Then this is yours. I hope you put it to good use,” he said with a bit of sarcasm. The big man opened the rear door of the Mercedes. ” It was a pleasure doing business, please call us again for all your neuro-plasma substrate needs.”

“I think this should do it,” said Oliver, feeling the weight of the case in his hand. “Thanks.”

The car immediately pulled away, hardly disturbing the thick layer of soot and dust on the cracked roadway as it’s engines whined. In a few seconds it was out of sight and the two men were again alone in the street. Small brown finches chirped and fluttered in the sumacs that grew up through gaps in the pavement. Oliver turned to Henry.

“Let’s go.”

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A Green One

Not many things are more difficult than coming up with a stunning first post for a new blog. So let’s set our expectations low for this one, and maybe something interesting will happen.

I’ve been working on a novel for more than a year now and am afraid I’ll have to shelve it for a while. Giving up? Well, not exactly. It’s just that this particular story has zombies in it. This may not seem like a bad thing, but now that the Brad Pitt movie “World War Z” has come out and there’s a new season of “Walking Dead” it just feels wrong. Like maybe this zombie thing has been overdone just a bit? George Romero seems to think so. Perhaps the book-reading crowd doesn’t pay attention to what’s going on in cinema or on TV, but I doubt it. My greatest fear is that potential readers won’t make it past the dust sleeve once they discover that the story is about zombies. The reality is that, although I loves me a good apocalypse story, the zombies in the book are not the typical reanimated corpses that everyone is familiar with. They’re still very much alive, which is unfortunate for them.  Of course, there’s a twist at the end that will make the reader’s head spin.

The working title of the novel is “Necrosis”, which I picked for no particular reason other than the word sounds cool. OK, well it may be somewhat related but I don’t want to spoil the ending. It’s an FBI crime thriller that’s fast-paced and should be fun to read. I hope that I’m creating some lovable characters that will stick around for another couple of books, they’re just a fun bunch and I have big plans for some more crazy adventures for them.

The difficulty for some readers may be the rapidly shifting points of view. Each chapter is broken into several vignettes that jump from one character to the next, or from one time period to the next. This format is used by some of my favorite authors, and changing points-of-view seems to be in vogue now where it was frowned upon in the past. This tends to confuse some older readers though, and unfortunately these are some of the people who read crime thrillers! My task then is to guide the reader gently from one point-of-view to another so there won’t be any confusion. Right now I’m using paragraph breaks with a roman numeral header to delineate a change in character, place, or time. I may try posting pieces of the story here on the blog for readers to pick apart and comment on.

Well, speaking of changing points-of-view I think I’ll change mine to the kitchen and get a diet Coke. This was a pretty painless first post, but entertaining or engaging? Let’s hope they evolve in that direction!

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