It’s Supranatural! (excerpts)

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20 short excerpts from the ‘other side’ of my blog!

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Three of us stood within a circle chalked on bare floorboards in an empty, abandoned house. Some said it was haunted, so people generally kept away. The cracked panes in the window were moonlit silver. Distant thunder rumbled. Sophie, Todd’s girlfriend spoke. “Hey, I don’t like this.” – A Labour of Magick  (600 words)

Suddenly I was soaring, looking down from a great height at vast snow fields, blinding in the sun, and verdant valleys with canopies of exotic jungle foliage. I could smell and taste the tang of rushing air, fresher than I could ever remember. – A Personal Experience (200 words)

She gazed down on the mangled wreckage of two cars and a decapitated woman, bloody and spread-eagled on the empty carriageway. She could hear creaking metal and smell leaking petrol. – Ad Pacem (200 words)

“Long before you joined us, Featherstone, something very odd happened to me.” Old McMoneagle shifted in the heavy red leather armchair, his face flushed with the heat of the open fire before us. “Now I need to get it off my chest, d’you understand?” – Amid the Winter’s Snow (500 words)

Hannah smiled at her reflection, realizing that she could see herself for the first time when having her hair cut. With embarrassment she noticed a touch of silver along the parting of her straight black bob. – Copperwood (500 words)

We came upon an ancient shrine with a small stone horse. I stroked its weathered features and whispered, “we need water… Dhanybhaad!” I imagined it standing under the cold stars, desolate, longing to live and breath. – Dream of a Stone Horse (100 words)

The coach pulled up and we trouped out to gawp at an area of low cliffs with exposed basalt columns. Hundreds of hexagonal grey columns stood neatly in rows, five to fifteen feet high.
Gugga told us how visitors had once heard beautiful singing coming from amongst them. Elves it was believed. With her short orange hair and green trousers she looked rather like one herself.
“Is there a National Elf Service?” a plump German lady asked, smiling. – Elf Service (700 words)
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Aspects of the house were curious; a winged gargoyle hung by a sign – ‘Haunted Cottage’. Full of optimism, Claire and I had come to buy a saddle.
An old woman with long, incongruously black hair led us into a conservatory. “Please sit. I’ll make some tea…I insist!” – If Two Witches Were Watching (200 words)
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Once an imposing building looking over the vale, now broken staircases led to floors, half collapsed. Sheep grazed amongst the ruins and grass sprouted through stone flags. In one corner stood a rusty stove. Callum looked inside. “Hey Jed, come over here!” – Incident at Clibbon’s Farm (200 words)
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Discontent among the lottery-playing public was at an all time high. Nick Naylor sat in front of the TV, clutching a lottery ticket sweatily. Following last week’s ‘fiasco’ he’d chosen five lines of ‘lucky dip’, £2 apiece, for the not inconsiderable sum of £10.
“It had to be a scam!” said Jude, his ‘other half’, toying with her dyed auburn locks. – Luck of the Devil (500 words)
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Aspects of my death were interesting.
I’d gone to my granddaughter’s pub for a pint at lunchtime. “‘Ello ‘Enry,” says old Malcolm, a ‘regular’, whilst discussing spade design.
Soon I felt unusually tired. “Sorry Malcolm, I need a lie-down.” – Marley’s Spirit (200 words)
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“Have any of you been to a demonstration of mediumship before?”
Most hands in the hotel’s comfortable bar area went up. Miranda’s and mine stayed down.
A young man, Peter someone, tall and slim with receding hair, smiled. “Well, I’ll be making contact with those who have passed over into spirit.” – Medium Rare (300 words)
 An enormous crash jolted me awake. My heart pounded. Otherwise deathly silence. Surely I hadn’t imagined it?
With apprehension I took a carving knife from the bedside cabinet drawer. – Mirror Man (200 words)
 
 Sometimes he’d see lights up there. Some said it was elves, others, teenagers fooling around. Once he’d climbed there with Scott, his collie, but Scott had whined, refusing to budge. Tom proceeded alone amongst tumbled chimneys and abandoned rooms, open to the sky. No-one there save sheep grazing in the dusk. – Orwyn’s Ring (200 words)
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As was his custom he took a concave mirror, painted black, from a drawer, removing a silk wrap. He gazed into it, letting his mind quieten, ready to receive impressions.
He sensed himself at a Salzburg opera house, invisible, watching an audience dressed in finery. A quartet played the just-completed concerto. The listeners were enraptured. Good! – The Scrying Game (200 words)
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Possible reasons for going up Thaxby hill were to stretch my legs or gaze out to sea. But today was different. Old Mark Bamber, who lived nearby, said he’d heard a dog barking up there every night for the past week. – Titus (200 words)
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The attic was eerily dark, lit only by the occasional shaft of sunlight penetrating through the roof, in which sparkling dust particles gyrated. Draped furniture in the gloom seemed ominous and ghoul-like. The air smelt both musty and mouldy, like the decaying air-raid shelters she’d played in as a child, cold and silent even on a summer’s day. – Voices from the Ether (1000 words)
 
Sitting at the piano was a pretty little girl with blonde hair and a white dress, practising scales. She would play them perfectly going up but stumble on the way down. After a while she looked up at me and smiled. “Hello, are you from the future?”
“I don’t know. Probably,” I said. – Walls Have Mouths (782 words)
 
Nearby stood an ornate antique desk. On impulse she opened a drawer; beneath photographic magazines, an envelope.
Inquisitively she looked inside it – photographs, and what photographs! – What the Devil? (100 words)
 

Smoking newspaper in the grate awoke her. Sitting up, disoriented, she gazed at the glowing coals. The room, dark panelled and dimly lit, was silent… – Yesterday’s News (100 words)



Don’t forget to check out some of the other stories on my blog. There are over 100! 
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If you are interested in joining a fortnightly 300 word story group please contact me and I’ll send details.

Having a Laff (excerpts)

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20 Little Excerpts from the Humorous Side of My Blog

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It was a dull claustrophobic December day and flakes of grey-white snow were settling on the terrace behind King’s Antiquarian Booksellers. Maggie Swann, matriarch of Swann’s Rare Books, crossed it to enter an annex. Inside, in eerie silence, anonymous leather-bound volumes filled dusty bookcases. –  A Merry Dance (1000 words)

Deeply absorbed in my lunch at Olive’s, I heard my smartphone buzz with a message. ‘Please bring October figures to the Saudi meeting. Vernon.’
Damn! I’d forgotten it’d been rescheduled; I had just ten minutes! I ran outside to a nearby taxi rank, ominously vacant. – A Night on the Clown (200 words)
Vulgarity is the poor man’s religion!” said Sheldrake, battling against the loud chatter and raucous laughter of the Crown and Anchor’s early evening trade.
“Who said that?”
“Oscar Wilde.”
“No he didn’t!”
Sheldrake banged the table. “Well he should’ve done!” – Chivvers’ Foibles (200 words)
After the office I’d address my lascivious thoughts of the women there. I had my little ‘collection’ – hair shirts, a lightweight five-tailed ‘discipline’, and others. Dissatisfied with Hail Mary’s and the like, I’d mop up the blood with an old towel. Perhaps I was a little…odd? – Cilice Sod (200 words)
‘Parker’, that’s what they calls me, on account of I’m a nosy sod, know what I mean. Anyways, I’m a pot-man at the Universe club and the guvnor tells me to ‘keep an eye out for anything untoward’, know what I mean? – Cocksure (200 words)
“Police state, that’s what this bloody place is becoming!” Arthur complained, looking up at the mandible poking incongruously from beneath a peaked cap.
The policeman’s protruding eyes swivelled down at him… – Don’t Mind the Police! (100 words)
“World domination’s never actually been my bag dear boy,” said Charles, striding across his study in a purple dressing gown and paisley cravat. “And there’s my bad back and dicky heart to think of, you know.” – Double Trouble (200 words)
I took a short cut through the adjoining park, passing along a walkway, bounded by burgeoning shrubs, to a fountain, sparkling amongst pink rosebushes. A statue of Pan stood nearby.
I enjoyed the gentle sound of water. Then, something black loomed, I looked up and saw two nuns. Their countenances were grim and masculine. –  Get in the Habit! (500 words)
“Excuse me, I’m sorry to interrupt your conversation.” A lady in a long red dress stood at our table. “Only, my husband and I have a disagreement.” She gestured to a corner of the crowded restaurant, to a man with coiffured white hair. “And we’d like you to decide who’s right.” – Hopes and Arrows (200 words)

Through Lincs’ fair wolds, did roam at large
the evil Sprogge, oh loathsome beast!
Half plant, half man, half monstrous thing
on teeny tods did feast.

Past Tetford Church the Sprogge did lurch,
its eyes did mulder and burn.
It munched upon a teeny tod
then tavern-wards did journ.

Legend of the Sprogge (poem)
Hating the idea, I am nevertheless obliged to cooperate with Mellors’ latest ‘prank’, another outrageous practical joke for his YouTube channel.
I hide behind a tree with my video camera focused on him. He sits, smirking, on a camping stool at the side of a path. In front of him lies Frank, especially selected on account of his prosthetic leg. – Legless in the Park (200 words)
‘Pulpit John’ was the title of a colourful biography, published by St. Patrick’s Church, about Father John McCormick. Garlic on his breath now wafted through the confessional screen there.
“Bless me Father…” – Mysterious Ways (200 words)
“Wigan’s the place for podiums!” said Sue, waving her baton at an imaginary orchestra.
“What about Amazon?” her sister Shirley replied.
“I want to go to the podium shop!” The baton flew across the room hitting the cat, Dr. Evil, on the head. – Peer’s of Wigan (200 words)
The audience hushed and the curtain opened. A woman sat at a table drinking Blossom Hill chardonnay and reading a letter. “Oh my God!” she exclaimed, standing up and bursting into tears.
A door opened and a teenage girl dressed in torn jeans entered. “Mum, I need twenty quid!” – Play with Emotions (200 words)
Goddamit! The president recalled the previous evening when he and the First Lady had hunkered after a chicken curry. An aide had been sent out for a native Indian dish, returning with something aromatic and fiery. Very fiery.
“OK, …I need the rest room…” – Rest Room (200 words)
In the bar were about a dozen people seated on wooden benches at old oak tables – the furniture looked like it had been there since the pub was built. At the back of the room a small fire burned in a large fireplace, surrounded by bottles, horse brasses, unrecognizable farm implements and other dust-covered relics of the rural past. – The Black Swan (590 words)
From a speck of jelly-like substance, the organism had doubled its size every hour. Now just twelve hours later, it was pushing up the laboratory ceiling, a huge white blob of viscous cellular material. – The Blob from Outer Space (200 words)
Holmes took out a magnifying glass and looked carefully at the marks.
“One and five eights between the studs Watson. Don’t you see – the Bridlington quartz mine!”
“Good Lord Holmes! But…?” – The Final Mystery (100 words)
She looked at herself in the mirror. Long brown hair, good skin. Not much wrong there. Maybe it was her breath? She cupped her hand over her mouth and nose, inhaling the odour of garlic – but who didn’t like garlic?! – The Neighbour (200 words)

She thought of her little village, Saltby St. Mary’s, recalling balmy summer evenings at the cricket pitch, sipping champagne by the walls of the ancient church, only the occasional ‘thwack’ of willow on leather breaking the peaceful silence. – The Saltby St. Mary’s Murders (200 words)



Don’t forget to check out some of the other stories on my blog. There are over 100! 
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If you are interested in joining a fortnightly 300 word story group please contact me and I’ll send details.

Hibars and Lobars (excerpts)

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20 Little Excerpts from the SF/Fantasy Side of my Blog

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For no reason I went round the back and peered through our dining room window. I was surprised to see my parents, turned away fortunately, and my sister Judy comatose on the table. – A Controlling Interest (200 words)

“Control of the media. That’s what’s going on!” Frank’s pale blue eyes were staring, his face flushed, and his mop of ginger hair tousled. “I’m telling you what I saw. There were a couple of hundred others, at least. They saw it too!”
“Calm down darling, I’m not saying I don’t believe you. It’s just…. – A Saucerful of Bullshit (400 words)
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Hating the feeling of apprehension, Pythis went upstairs for the luggage. Two large packs were thrown down the stairwell, tumbling like dice. One spilled outside, just as his father led an animal past. It resembled an anteater but with four long ostrich-like legs. – Another Splash (200 words)
There was no receptionist, just two lift doors, one orange, one green. Each one had a large shiny silver button to the right of it. Here goes! I plumped for the orange door and pressed the corresponding button. The door whispered open, revealing a spacious mirrored interior and I stepped inside. – Are You Being Served? (1414 words)
In the near future a device is invented which, when implanted into the brain, gives the user access to intense sexual gratification by simply pressing a button. However, the government then decide to tax the use of the device. – Biggest Brother (SF prompts, 459 words)
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When I’d called into the Black Swan’s usual Tuesday evening music event, I hadn’t really expected to be snowed on.
A local pianist was noodling on the piano whilst a young chap, with short black hair and a comb-over dyed purple and green in part, was brandishing some brass rings at a table.
“We’ve a magician tonight, Andrew someone,” – Black Swan, Green Lizard (700 words)
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The act over, he slept, waking to the burning light of twin suns. He reached out but she‘d gone – for now, back to her kind. – Dumb (100 words)
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Noticing a black beetle-like car approaching, his heart skipped a beat – The Police! The vehicle cruised to a stop and a metallic voice rang out.
“Who are you and where are you going?”
“Who, me? Just walking home.” – Encounter on London Bridge (200 words)
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When he looked it wasn’t there. Thomas Edison Jr., proprietor of Inventions Я Us, shifted a pile of complex schematics, exasperated. Where on Earth was his cigar cutter? – Inventions Я Us (300 words)
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Steven smiled. “Obviously I can’t tell you everything but we use tiny little drones that look like insects. They use facial recognition technology. They inject various poisons, all are undetectable – death looks natural… You’d just leave a window open…” – Little Pricks in the Night (200 words)
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Now silent, the powerful car ploughed on through the night. In all lanes of the motorway, relentless traffic – headlights dazzling, red tail-lights shining, occupants invisible. – Lobar Limbo (200 words)
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We’d been out to dinner, where we’d discussed my forthcoming sex change, and taken a backroad home. Normally moths sparkled in the headlights and sometimes hares ran on the road. Tonight, nothing moved save wraiths of hovering grey-white mist. – Mementoes (200 words)
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“Inventions of the subconscious mind, landscapes of the night – dreams!” Professor Quint spoke dramatically. The students paid rapt attention.
“Dreams can have the most fantastical plots – it’s as if your subconscious mind is instantly composing a complex screenplay. – Mind Your Subconscious (200 words)
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‘It was incredible and completely unexpected; the sensations as our fingers touched was electric; my heart skipped a beat and I momentarily forgot to breathe.’My Name is Ian Z. McPhee (627 words)
A hush fell and a neat, grey suited man appeared. “Ladies and Gentlemen, a star known as Nibiru and its four planets are approaching Earth. This is being suppressed!” – Nibiru (200 words)
“Have you thought how many grains of sand are on this beach?” said Julie, lowering her bright blue rubber bikini top to rub sun cream into puffy white flesh. She let a handful of sand trickle through her fingers. “100, 200, 300…” – Playing God (300 words)
At midnight, whilst the moon threw shadows like huge gravestones across the street, he would walk, seeking the aroma he desired. His face was gaunt and sallow, his lips thin and red, and his eyes as black as infinity. – Steal a Little Dream (500 words)
From a speck of jelly-like substance, the organism had doubled its size every hour. Now just twelve hours later, it was pushing up the laboratory ceiling, a huge white blob of viscous cellular material. – The Blob from Outer Space (200 words)
His companion Matt steered the rover in the direction of six thimble-shaped buildings. “Look at all that shit on them!” Hard to believe they had once been white. Now they were barely distinguishable from the rolling red Martian hills behind them. – Tiny Demons (600 words)
“Faster than thought!” reflected Dr. Smeaton, sitting in Obama Lunar Base. A screen showed a scene on Earth, a pubescent girl with protruding teeth connected to electrical equipment. – Where is Your Mind? (200 words)

 Don’t forget to check out some of the other stories on my blog. There are over 100! 

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If you are interested in joining a fortnightly 300 word story group please contact me and I’ll send details.

So Many Ways to Die

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20 little extracts from the dark side of my blog

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Exiting the lift, his stomach lurched.
Grant appeared. “Hello Jonathan, ready?”
“Hello, no, I need the bathroom.”
“There’s one right here. It’s just been renovated.” Grant gestured to a door, labelled ‘Danger, Keep Out’. – The 100th Story (200 words)


Neither Jan or Jen, my workmates, believed me. “Look you guys, I overheard Ahmed on the phone, talking about dimethyl mercury and something about roses.”
Jan raised her painted eyebrows. “What’s that then?”
“I looked it up, it’s a deadly poison.”
“You must have misheard!” Jen laughed as the phone rang.
“Hello, Indigo Flowers. Yes, we do sunflowers…” – Adrenalin Junkie (200 words)


“King size cappuccino please.” Mr. Hughes chose the same as he always did, sighing at his lack of imagination. He stood at the platform kiosk, tall, thin, in a worn blue suit.
“£2.60.” The cashier, unsmiling, blinked big green eyes beneath a copper fringe. – The Coffee Break (200 words)


The knock comes again, louder and insistent.“It’s OK mum, I’ll get it.” Her youngest, Jamie, just turned twelve, thunders down the stairs, having momentarily disconnected from his x-box.
She hears a man’s voice. Then Jamie appears. He flicks a mop of black hair out of his eyes. “He says he’s selling pumpkins. Do you want any more?” – A Flick of the Knife: A Halloween Story (600 words)


Eighteen hundred hours. OK, go, go, go!
Twenty metres away across the moonless sand, a lone sentry stood. Behind me, black parachutes, like water holes in the desert.
Orders were ‘no shooting’ – ours not to reason why! – Femme Fatal (100 words)


Entering the library, she selected an ancient volume, résumé du diets, showing me illustrations of impossibly thin Elizabethan women. Juxtaposed were strange recipes – samphire stew, starling fricassee, fox meat in aspic, others stranger still. – Fox Meat in Aspic (200 words)


Without speaking, they climbed a wide staircase, their shadows playing against the rough stone walls whilst their breath misted in the cold air. At a landing she hesitated. “Which way?”
The man gestured to the right. Soon another staircase appeared on the left. “This way.”
A figure awaited them at the next landing. His head was that of a falcon and above it was a vertical orange-yellow disc. – Here Comes the Sun (500 words)


Through Lincs’ fair wolds, did roam at large
the evil Sprogge, oh loathsome beast!
Half plant, half man, half monstrous thing
on teeny tods did feast.
.
Past Tetford Church the Sprogge did lurch,
its eyes did mulder and burn.
It munched upon a teeny tod
then tavern-wards did journ.

Legend of the Sprogge (poem)


Hating the idea, I am nevertheless obliged to cooperate with Mellors’ latest ‘prank’, another outrageous practical joke for his YouTube channel.
I hide behind a tree with my video camera focused on him. He sits, smirking, on a camping stool at the side of a path. In front of him lies Frank, especially selected on account of his prosthetic leg. – Legless in the Park (200 words)


Now silent, the powerful car ploughed on through the night. In all lanes of the motorway, relentless traffic – headlights dazzling, red tail-lights shining, occupants invisible. Huge trucks sporting rows of blazing spotlights on hibars and lobars resembled speeding Christmas lights. Beyond the central barrier the lights of equally unrelenting oncoming traffic… – Lobar Limbo (200 words)


“Let’s stop at Thaxby, I want a wee!” my partner Saffron had giggled.
“OK.”
We’d been out to dinner, where we’d discussed my forthcoming sex change, and taken a backroad home. Normally moths sparkled in the headlights and sometimes hares ran on the road. Tonight, nothing moved save wraiths of hovering grey-white mist. – Mementoes (200 words)

He covered his face. Stop, PLEASE…
Then he was gliding over an alien landscape – dark fathomless canyons, volcanoes hurling spume to enormous heights, gigantic crashing waves in a chemical ocean. – The Real Doctor Lamont (200 words)

He was a large, squat man, bald and heavy-jowled, with a hooked nose and large moist pink lips. He would sit between seven and nine of an evening, nursing a pint of ‘mild’, occasionally exchanging brief pleasantries in a hoarse whisper. – Sheldon’s Secret (200 words)

A young doctor, pimply and onion-breathed, shone an intense white light into my eyes. “No response I’m afraid, amantidine doesn’t seem to have helped.”
Damn you! I can hear you, see you!Speechless (100 words)

Stephen spoke into his helmet. “Approaching the pods.”
His companion Matt steered the rover in the direction of six thimble-shaped buildings. “Look at all that shit on them!” Hard to believe they had once been white. Now they were barely distinguishable from the rolling red Martian hills behind them. – Tiny Demons (700 words)

She awoke, realising she’d drifted off. The room was dark and cold, the fire almost out. The radio was hissing loudly. Against the hiss a voice was speaking, faint, distant in time and space, as though from another planet. – Voices from the Ether (1000 words)

Sitting at the piano was a pretty little girl with blonde hair and a white dress, practising scales. She would play them perfectly going up but stumble on the way down. After a while she looked up at me and smiled. “Hello, are you from the future?”
“I don’t know. Probably,” I said. – Walls Have Mouths (782 words)

It was July 2008 and we were flying into remote Sierra Leone.
“Not long Bwana,” said Emmanuel, my Tanzanian pilot.
“OK Mani. D’you know the area?”
“Yes. It’s dangerous.”
Ten long years of civil war; Everywhere was dangerous. – The War and Starvation Diet (200 words)

Arranging her music, Eloise sat at the piano in her uncle’s empty chateau. Nearby stood an ornate antique desk. On impulse she opened a drawer; beneath photographic magazines, an envelope.
Inquisitively she looked inside it – photographs, and what photographs! – What the Devil? (100 words)

Smeaton pressed a button. A random number appeared behind him, occluded by a metal plate.
“Seven.” Tibby smiled.
The plate slid up, revealing the number seven.
Hmm.. “Another?”
“Alright. Sixteen!”
“I haven’t pressed it yet!”
Doing so, number sixteen showed. – Where is Your Mind? (200 words)

Don’t forget to check out some of the other stories on my blog. There are over 100! 

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If you are interested in joining a fortnightly 300 word story group please contact me and I’ll send details.

Violets are Violet, Letters are Read

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20 (more) little extracts from my new blog.

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Deeply absorbed in my lunch at Olive’s, I heard my smartphone buzz with a message. ‘Please bring October figures to the Saudi meeting. Vernon.’
Damn! I’d forgotten it’d been rescheduled; I had just ten minutes! I ran outside to a nearby taxi rank, ominously vacant.
Hopping impatiently, I saw one approaching. As it stopped, someone with orange hair, a bowler hat and striped tights pushed past.
“Oi, I was here first!” I protested. – A Night on the Clown (200 words)
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Neither Jan or Jen, my workmates, believed me. “Look you guys, I overheard Ahmed on the phone, talking about dimethyl mercury and something about roses.”
Jan raised her painted eyebrows. “What’s that then?”
“I looked it up, it’s a deadly poison.”
“You must have misheard!” Jen laughed as the phone rang. “Hello, Indigo Flowers. Yes, we do sunflowers…” – Adrenalin Junkie (200 words)
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Later, I entered a surreal landscape, castle after vibrantly coloured castle – red, yellow, purple…
A young woman with short blonde hair and huge circular earrings appeared.
“Hello, I phoned about the disco dome,” I said.
“Oh yes, come this way please.” – Bouncers (200 words)
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“Vulgarity is the poor man’s religion!” said Sheldrake, battling against the loud chatter and raucous laughter of the Crown and Anchor’s early evening trade.
“Who said that?”
“Oscar Wilde.”
“No he didn’t!”
Sheldrake banged the table. “Well he should’ve done!” – Chivvers’ Foibles (200 words)
 
Hannah smiled at her reflection, realizing that she could see herself for the first time when having her hair cut. With embarrassment she noticed a touch of silver along the parting of her straight black bob. She winked and admired her vibrant grey eyes in the mirror. – Copperwood (500 words)
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“World domination’s never actually been my bag dear boy,” said Charles, striding across his study in a purple dressing gown and paisley cravat. “And there’s my bad back and dicky heart to think of, you know.”
It was the summer of 1943 and sultry in his spacious Piccadilly flat. – Double Trouble (200 words)
 
Sheldon paddled nonchalantly, maintaining his favoured position in the middle of the pool. He watched the other ducks near the bank scrabbling for bread with disdain – his mother had always told him that he had superior intelligence.
He missed his mother. The others intimated that she’d “gone visiting” but he knew better. – Duck Surprise (200 words)
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Eighteen hundred hours. OK, go, go, go!
Twenty metres away across the moonless sand, a lone sentry stood. Behind me, black parachutes, like water holes in the desert.
Orders were ‘no shooting’ – ours not to reason why! – Femme Fatal (100 words)
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I took a short cut through the adjoining park, passing along a walkway, bounded by burgeoning shrubs, to a fountain, sparkling amongst pink rosebushes. A statue of Pan stood nearby.
I enjoyed the gentle sound of water. Then, something black loomed, I looked up and saw two nuns. Their countenances were grim and masculine.
I smiled and said, “this fountain’s so pretty, isn’t it?”
Silently they circled around either side of the fountain and grasped me forcefully by the elbows. –  Get in the Habit! (500 words)
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He led her to a lift and all three descended several stories before entering a laboratory. Huge transformers hummed, switchboards blinked, relays clacked…
A door slid back revealing a small chamber.
”What year did you require?”
“2031.” – Inventions Я Us (300 words)
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I felt myself to be in a soft, warm place where I was happy. Then I noticed a bright light above and in front of me. I focused on it and saw it was a naked light bulb hanging down on a cable. The room jolted into view and I saw it was bare except for a desk strewn with papers, a stool and a couple of battered filing cabinets. A peeling radiator pumped unnecessary heat into the room.
I made to stand up and to my horror discovered that I was bound to the chair; my arms and legs both strapped down. The door opened and a familiar figure entered. – Bound in Morocco (7224 words)
On the other side of a burnished desk, a grey-suited young man (“just call me Steven”) fingered his blond ponytail. “We’re speaking the same language, yes?”
“Mmm..”
“Well, assassination’s from twenty thousand for domestics, fifty to five hundred for politicals and by negotiation for HOS.”
“HOS?”
“Heads of State,” Steven replied drily. – Little Pricks in the Night (200 words)
 
Aspects of my death were interesting.
I’d gone to my granddaughter’s pub for a pint at lunchtime. “‘Ello ‘Enry,” says old Malcolm, a ‘regular’, whilst discussing spade design.
Soon I felt unusually tired. “Sorry Malcolm, I need a lie-down.” – Marley’s Spirit (200 words)
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“Let’s stop at Thaxby, I want a wee!” my partner Saffron had giggled.
“OK.”
We’d been out to dinner, where we’d discussed my forthcoming sex change, and taken a backroad home. Normally moths sparkled in the headlights and sometimes hares ran on the road. Tonight, nothing moved save wraiths of hovering grey-white mist. – Mementoes (200 words)
 
Growing vegetables was old Tom’s passion. In the valley below Tillyvelyn he would work the rich black loam. On summer evenings he would sit, smoking and gazing up at the ruins of Glebe farm, high in the valley.
Sometimes he’d see lights up there. Some said it was elves, others, teenagers fooling around. Once he’d climbed there with Scott, his collie, but Scott had whined, refusing to budge. Tom proceeded alone amongst tumbled chimneys and abandoned rooms, open to the sky. No-one there save sheep grazing in the dusk. – Orwyn’s Ring (200 words)
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“Wigan’s the place for podiums!” said Sue, waving her baton at an imaginary orchestra.
“What about Amazon?” her sister Shirley replied.
“I want to go to the podium shop!” The baton flew across the room hitting the cat, Dr. Evil, on the head. – Peer’s of Wigan (200 words)
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Inventions, the new play by Bella Dalton was showing at the Garrick theatre and Bella sat in the audience incognito, the play about to begin.
The audience hushed and the curtain opened. A woman sat at a table drinking Blossom Hill chardonnay and reading a letter. “Oh my God!” she exclaimed, standing up and bursting into tears.
A door opened and a teenage girl dressed in torn jeans entered. “Mum, I need twenty quid!” – Play with Emotions (200 words)
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Goddamit! The president recalled the previous evening when he and the First Lady had hunkered after a chicken curry. An aide had been sent out for a native Indian dish, returning with something aromatic and fiery. Very fiery.
“OK, …I need the rest room…”
The president tried not to run. Once inside he braced his knobbly brown legs and gripped the towel rail tightly. – Rest Room (200 words)
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It was on a bleak February morning in Woking, whilst waiting for a number six bus, that I had the top of my head taken off. I remember a young couple arguing heatedly opposite the stop, absorbing me in their altercation so that I lost awareness of the bus pulling in. The vehicle’s wing mirror and my head collided and I came off worst. – Saint Teresa of Woking (1167 words)
 
Violets are violet, letters are read.
A lover’s words, preserved blindly, best left unsaid.
Envelopes bundled, tied with a band.
Numberless bundles, like grains of sands.
 –
Love, Let Us! (acrostic poem, 62 words)
 =

Don’t forget to check out some of the other stories on my blog. There are over 100! 

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If you are interested in joining a fortnightly 300 word story group please contact me and I’ll send details.

Tiny Yellow Kites

monarch-butterflies

Twenty little extracts from my new blog.

(links open in new window/tab)

She awoke, realising she’d drifted off. The room was dark and cold, the fire almost out. The radio was hissing loudly. Against the hiss a voice was speaking, faint, distant in time and space, as though from another planet. – Voices from the Ether (1000 words)

An enormous crash jolted me awake. My heart pounded. Otherwise deathly silence. Surely I hadn’t imagined it?
With apprehension I took a carving knife from the bedside cabinet drawer. – Mirror Man (200 words)

Howie stood transfixed, unable to move as the demure young lady standing next to him at the zoo put down her handbag and started to climb calmly into the tiger enclosure. – Tiger Tiger (200 words)

Something silver flashed and for the first, and only, time in my life I saw the glint of a Fokker Eindekker. I felt my guts emptying. –  A Design for Death  (200 words)

She wished she were on the street corner in the slums, becoming one with the other percussionists in a giant rhythm, uncaring of social status for that glorious moment! – A Friend in Need (200 words)

It was a dull claustrophobic December day and flakes of grey-white snow were settling on the terrace behind King’s Antiquarian Booksellers. Maggie Swann, matriarch of Swann’s Rare Books, crossed it to enter an annex. Inside, in eerie silence, anonymous leather-bound volumes filled dusty bookcases. –  A Merry Dance (1000 words)

She gazed down on the mangled wreckage of two cars and a decapitated woman, bloody and spread-eagled on the empty carriageway. She could hear creaking metal and smell leaking petrol. In one vehicle she saw herself, intact but lifeless – Ad Pacem (200 words)

At sunrise next morning, hundreds of men stood, knee-deep in the ocean.
The sea was glassy, the scene eerily silent. Then, far out in the water, a green tail thrashed. The crowd cheered. – Another Splash. (200 words)
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I approached the bar and an attractive young woman with a mohican haircut and a face tattooed with strange symbols moved aside to let me through the noisy throng. She wore a red dress with strategic gaps, revealing a shapely, tanned body. “Howdy stranger!” she said. – Are You Being Served? (1414 words)


Ibrahim is like a tiger in a cage. He must be fed on a diet of violence to keep him under control, to keep him of use to us.” –  Bound in Morocco (7224 words)

We came upon an ancient shrine with a small stone horse. I stroked its weathered features and whispered, “we need water… Dhanybhaad!” I imagined it standing under the cold stars, desolate, longing to live and breath. –  Dream of a Stone Horse (100 words)

Entering the library, she selected an ancient volume, résumé du diets, showing me illustrations of impossibly thin Elizabethan women. Juxtaposed were strange recipes – samphire stew, starling fricassee, fox meat in aspic, others stranger still. – Fox Meat in Aspic (200 words)

Through Lincs’ fair wolds, did roam at large
the evil Sprogge, oh loathsome beast!
Half plant, half man, half monstrous thing
on teeny tods did feast.
.
Past Tetford Church the Sprogge did lurch,
its eyes did mulder and burn.
It munched upon a teeny tod
then tavern-wards did journ.

– Legend of the Sprogge (poem)


I’d scarcely known her before she moved in with me. She appeared out of nowhere one day with just a bagful of possessions: a mirror, toiletries and the like. She was so beautiful though, that I couldn’t turn her away. – My Name is Ian Z. McPhee (627 words)

A hush fell and a neat, grey suited man appeared. “Ladies and Gentlemen, a star known as Nibiru and its four planets are approaching Earth. This is being suppressed!”
A murmur of surprise swept the room. – Nibiru (200 words)

Two butterflies flying high above trees
Like tiny yellow kites
Drifting far apart
Coming together miraculously
To kiss again.

The Roaring Sun (poems)


She thought of her little village, Saltby St. Mary’s, recalling balmy summer evenings at the cricket pitch, sipping champagne by the walls of the ancient church, only the occasional ‘thwack’ of willow on leather breaking the peaceful silence. – The Saltby St. Mary’s Murders (200 words)

Faster than the speed of sound, he flew on a November afternoon. He wasn’t malicious, but he had a mission. He’d heard it said that his kind had killed untold millions of people and animals…-  The Story of a Bullet (200 words)

It was July 2008 and we were flying into remote Sierra Leone.
“Not long Bwana,” said Emmanuel, my Tanzanian pilot.
“OK Mani. D’you know the area?”
“Yes. It’s dangerous.”
Ten long years of civil war; Everywhere was dangerous. – The War and Starvation Diet (200 words)

Jason Christopher Smith regarded the text message. ‘Jason, please to come EXACTLY 30 minutes early for a special preview! Lucifer.’
His phone indicated 7.29 p.m. Perfect! He pressed the lift button. – Lucifer’s Kitchen (500 words)

Don’t forget to check out some of the other stories on my blog. There are over 100! 

 

If you are interested in joining a fortnightly 300 word story group please contact me and I’ll send details.