Archive | October 30, 2014

…Had a Great Fall, a story of the Aunt Family for Impossible Situations

“It can’t be done.”

Asta looked at the pile of books, then at the broken lightbulb spread across the table. She looked back at the books, and then, finally, she looked at her cousin. “It has to be done, Maeve.”

“You know what the Humpty Dumpty rhyme really means.”

“I know.” Asta bit her lip. “Once something is done, it is done. Once someone is cursed, he is cursed. Once a vow is vowed, it is set in stone.”

“And yet…”

“And yet I need to break the vow, un-curse the curse. I need to put Humpty Dumpty back together again.”

“And what makes you think you can succeed where all the king’s horses and all his men could not?”

Asta lifted her chin. “Because I am the Aunt.”


written to [personal profile] kelkyag‘s prompt.

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The Bridge, a story for Thimbleful Thursday

“There’s no water under the bridge.” Geoff stopped midway across the plank structure to stare down at the stones. “I mean, there’s a lot of rubbish, and some moss, but there’s no water at all, even standing water.”

Before Elora could stop him, he’d vaulted over the railing – nearly ripping it off in the process; it wasn’t very well-built – and started digging in the rocks with his shovel. “The bridge isn’t recent. But if this was a streambed, there should be some sign of water under here. I mean, we haven’t seen any evidence that the stream has moved.”

“Well, one, it could have moved further ahead of us. Two, it could be the dry season. And three—” Elora was growing very uncomfortable having Geoff down there. “—they could have built the bridge for some other reason than water.” She offered him a hand. “We don’t know why they didn’t want to walk over that area, that area you’re standing right on right now, but we know it was important enough for them to waste rare timber on it. Come on, please?”

Geoff didn’t move. “I. I think I know why they built a bridge. I’m… I’m sorry, Elora.”

~

To September 25th’s Thimbleful Thursday prompt, approx. 200 words

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Thought Experiments

“I’m going to ask you to imagine…”

The classroom, as a single individual, shuddered. They all closed their eyes obediently; they grasped the padded edges of their desks carefully. They began to imagine, as they were told. But they did it all with the air of someone being told to walk themselves to the electric chair.

The teacher either did not notice or did not care. The lights went down, certain switches were flipped, and the electrodes attached to the students’ skulls began to do their dirty work.

“…that you and your tablemate were partners in a crime. A theft. And you are now in separate rooms in the jail, while the DA speaks to you about confessing.”

None of them opened their eyes. They could not if they’d wanted to, and they didn’t need to. They knew who their tablemate was; that never changed. And the scene was already playing out in their heads.

Carrie looked around the interrogation room. The DA was a tired-looking man in his late fifties, his trenchcoat old, his hands older. “We know you did it. The question is if you’ll confess first or if your partner will.”

She could feel the handcuffs around her wrists. She could feel the cold seat pressing against her bum. She could feel, more, the panic making her heart race, thump-thump, thump-thump.

The DA looked at a monitor. “Looks like your partner panicked and died. You’re off the hook this time.”

In the front row, one student slumped. The teacher flipped two switches.


Written to [personal profile] thebonesofferallettersprompt.

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No Monster, No Lurking

Let some vampires lurk in the shadows. Let some of them hide in dark alleys, creeping along for their prey. Let some of them scrabble from day to day for their blood, hoping to get enough to survive, hoping not to be noticed.

Antonius had decided many, many years ago that he would not lurk, he would not scrabble, and he would not creep. He had decided that he would not leave his prey wounded and dripping in filthy alleyways. He wouldn’t sneak into vigins’ bedrooms to steal a sweet taste. He was not going to be the one you didn’t want to go home with from a bar, nor the one that showed you why good girls and boys didn’t walk home alone at night.

Those vampires were monsters, beasts, creatures. Antonius was a gentleman, and he was blessed well going to act like it.

But, of course, he was still a vampire, and as such, he needed blood to live.

He studied human physiology for decades, practicing on volunteers and “volunteers,” learning how much he could take from any donor without killing, then how much would cripple the donor, and then how much would leave him sated and the donor still walking.

It was long work and hard, but it gained him status among scientists. He learned how to handle blood transfusions when it was still an infant technique among human doctors. He learned how to screen for blood-borne diseases, and then, because he liked having a clean food source, he learned how to cure them. He learned how to keep a sanitary environment, so that his donors did not grow sick from associated contaminants – and because he enjoyed working in a well-lit, clean environment.

Not for Antonius the back alleys, not for him the grubby lurking in the dark. No. He would take his blood with science, not violence, and he’d do so in the shining halls of the laboratory.

After all, he was a gentleman, and no monster at all.


Written for the Three Word Wednesday prompt Blood, cripple(verb), lurk.

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Weaving a Plan, for #Thimbleful and #FridayFlash

“I never thought this would come in handy. Those underwater basket-weaving classes you took in college, your ‘easy a’s’…” Amelie shook her head. “I thought you were coasting.”

“Everybody thought I was coasting.” Brent finished the repair with an elaborate knot. “It’s hard to explain that you know you have to learn something. So I went with Liberal Arts because it allowed me to dabble…”

“And used your psychic powers to take classes you knew you were going to need?”

“Well…” Brent swam up. Below, a basket wrapped around a shifting seal, holding an Old One in their place. “Yes.”

~

To this week’s Thimbleful Thursday prompt, 100 words. Also for Friday Flash.

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