Archive | September 2019

Running in the Bear Empire 57 – Chief of the Claw of the Bear, Wife to the Emperor

 

First: Running in the Bear Empire
🐻

The way Carrone was holding his jaw, Deline wasn’t sure if he was afraid he might say something wrong or that he might vomit.  She held his hand anyway and led him into the Emperor’s bathing chamber. 

Unlike Pethiarrie, the two Claws standing guard didn’t give Deline any trouble.  She nodded very politely to them – Seliarre, an Eagle Talon, and Teran, a Fox-Claw – and led Carrone over the tub. 

You’d want me in your bed with the Emperor there., he’d asked, way back in the cabin, before things had gotten even more complicated. 

What are you doing to do? Glare him to death? she’d countered.  The way Carrone was looking now, she thought it might be a concern. 

The Emperor was up to his neck in water, one bath attendants in the tub, kneeling in front of him, while the other was massaging his scalp and his long white hair with a scented soap.  He opened his eyes as they entered.  Continue reading

A Poll!

After the commentary on “What’s Next?” here and here, I decided a poll was in order.

PLEASE NOTE: while at the moment, all of these options are something I’d like to write, I reserve the option to change my mind once the poll closes.

(Which it will do in one week or if I have a clear and decisive winner I like before that.)

 

Last to Die

Whose blood will spill, whose heart will break
Who’ll be the last to die for a mistake

– Last to Die, Bruce Springsteen

~*~

There had always been battles.

Leander thought there were memories before the fighting, but times like this, they were hard to pull up.

He hadn’t expected this to blow up into a full blown war. He hadn’t thought the crew of soldiers, Aelfgar’s crew, would be standing shoulder to shoulder with the U.S Army.

At least not openly. He’d served, not army but Marines. So had much of Aelfgar’s crew, before they took on the job of fighting Nedetakaei who got out of hand.

Now there were monsters on both sides of the battlefield and Leander was doing his best not to side eye the Oath-Breaking assholes. Continue reading

Spoils of War 18 – The Talker

First: Spoils of War I: Surrender

In the front of the room, a man stood, taller than everyone else, taller than people ought to be and made mostly, it seemed, of leg, and he was speaking, but she couldn’t hear him.

He was still speaking, even though the floor was shaking. He looked straight at Nikol and glared.  Even though she had no idea what he was saying, his presence seemed to surge through her. 

She sat down.  She didn’t pay much attention to where, just in the nearest chair.  Clearly he was saying something very interesting.  If only Nikol could hear it.  Continue reading

Hidden Mall 82: Misplaced Friends

“You’ve always been a coward.”

The voice – her own voice – chased Abby as she walked quickly down the mall hallway.  She knew where she was going. She knew she had her Livs with her, and several others, some Sandies.  No Kevins, no Vics. Not yet. 

“If I have always been one and you know it -” Abby looked over her shoulder but kept walking; kept walking, kept walking.  She could tell in her gut that it was important, but she also knew she didn’t want this other Abby to follow her.  “-then it’s because you’ve been one too. We’re all the same at the root, aren’t we?”

That was so different from what she’d been telling her Livs that she expected ‘Via to yell at her.  Instead, ‘Via smirked at her and, to her other side, Olly squeezed her hand. 

“You’re full of bullshit!  I’m nothing like you!”

“And you know nothing about me.” Continue reading

A Landing Page of Micro- and Tootfic

I love posting tiny fics on Mastodon on occasion (see the tootplanets for one series there), but Mastodon, like Twitter, is inherently a bit ephemeral.

I’m going to begin with an archive of all the tootfics I’ve posted that I can find (mostly from the Read Me Elsewhere posts) and attempt to update this as I go.

Microfiction is very small fiction, designed to be a whole tale (hopefully), in a small package.  50-word fics, drabbles (100-word fics), 6-word fics (See the Hemmingway example) – these are subsets of microfiction.  So are tootfiction – fics designed to fit in a toot (The Mastodon version of a tweet) or, in common usage, several toots.  Tweetfic is harder (less characters, although 280 is better than 140 for this) but is the same concept.

Here’s someone else’s definition:

As Shakespeare said, “Brevity is the soul of wit.” Which translated into modern language means, “Everyone should write and read microfiction.”

What is Microfiction?

It’s a subset of flash fiction—those super short stories typically told in 1,000 words or less. Definitions vary, but for the most part, microfiction is any story told in 300 words or less, and could even be as short as a few words. (At Microfiction Monday Magazine, I use the limit of 100 words.)

Mastodon is free to join, by the way, and ad-free; you can read any of the below fic, however, just by clicking through – you don’t need to have an account!


Here’s My Microfiction

Fantasy (including Urban Fantasy)

By A Nose
Souls and Hearts
A Wish
Side Effects (warning: creepy)
The Come and Gone King (a reply)

Natha/en (fae apoc)
Rooftop – Jasper and the House converse. (Haunted House)
Once Upon a Time comes to Fae Apoc – darkfic crossover Fanfiction

Ficlet with a portion of a map sketch, Autumn, Stranded

The Pirates and Podka
Orange Sunset Parlay – The Imperial Captain wants to talk to Yonpler.
Silver Rain – on Podka, it was said to rain silver.
Blue Foraging – the Captain and Yonpler are going to have to work together.

Potions and the Apocalypse?
Po(t)tion – the trick in potions
Wav(er)ing – the trick in spells
End(ur)ing – magic in the apocalypse
Ru(i)ne(d) – Personal runes in magic
Grim(oire) – A scavenged grimoire.

Reinventing the Wheel – not sure if this is Fantasy or Sci-Fi so it’s Fantify?

Sci-fi

Cure the Cure
Tootplanet Resumes 
Bird Brains

Horror

Don’t Approach

Misc

Cake Walk, weird.

Tootfiction Already Posted on this Blog


Various Blog-posted Microfiction

100-Word Fics

I went through a phase where I was on 100- and 50-word fic community on Livejournal, back when that was a thing. 

50-word Fics

Try the password “suddenly!” for pre-2007 posts.  

General Microfiction

Kink Bingo prompts 

a story over many micro-intervals,to a kink-bingo prompt set

 

Running in the Bear Empire 56 – His Grace by the Claw of the Bear Herself

 

First: Running in the Bear Empire
🐻

“You can’t tell me you’re not nervous.”

“I can tell you that,” Deline contradicted.  Carrone’s hand was sweaty in her own. “But why are you nervous?”

“I’ve been sleeping with the Emperor’s second wife,” he muttered, “in case you didn’t notice.  And — and here is your bracelet on my wrist saying that I’m pretty much stuck with whatever you want…”

“Which means that nobody is going to yell at you, even if someone was going to, for sleeping in the bed I wanted you in,” she pointed out.

“I’ll note you didn’t actually say you weren’t nervous.” Continue reading

In Even Paris & Rome

I was listening to “Home” on the radio last night – turns out it’s originally Michael Bublé but I listen to country – and, not for the first time, it struck me that the narrator sounded a little cursed. 

So here we have this. 

🛬 ✈️ 🛫

The taxi smelled strongly of mould and smoke and seemed to hit every bump on the way from the airport to  the hotel. Blake tipped the driver $20 anyway. It was probably not the lady’s fault, after all.

The hotel was a nice one — they always were — but the building next door was undergoing demolition.   The banging followed Blake up the stairs — he’d learned, about elevators — to the tenth floor and into his room.

His next plane tickets and hotel reservations were waiting for him.  Only once in all his time had they not been there, and that time didn’t bear thinking about. 

He shook out his clothes from his carry-on — after losing checked luggage three times, he’d given up — and hung them in the bathroom, put a laundry bag put for Housekeeping, and sat down at the rickety table.

He picked up the room phone and dialed.  555-908-7857. He’d dialed that number so often he called it in his sleep.

In his dreams, someone picked up.  In the good dreams, she picked up.

“The number you have dialed is unavailable.   Please hang up.”

Blake hung up.  He pulled a tiny bourbon from the hotel minibar — legit Kentucky bourbon,  here in… he checked the hotel stationery — Rome. He drank it straight straight from the bottle, finishing it in two swallows, before he considered the hotel stationery again. 

He pulled the curtains open to look at the demolition,  opened the window, and let the dusty air wash over him.

The hotel-branded ballpoint pen worked.  He pulled over a clean sheet of paper and began.

Aug 12, 2011

Rome looks like dust today,  but the sky is bright blue, like the river down past Johnson’s where we used to fish.  

I want to come home.

I slept well on the plane, despite the crying baby.  I feel bad for the kid. It wasn’t her fault.

I want to come home.

All in all, it’s a good day.  I hope yours is going well, too.

I miss you,

Why won’t they let me go home?

Blake. 

 

He folded up the letter carefully, smoothing each crease.  He dug the box out of the bottom of his carry-on, a cookie tin he’d bought, sharing the cookies with the pigeons in — he thought it had been Paris, it might have been Versailles — until he had the perfect size for his rubber-banded stack of letters. 

He had to push the lid shut over the letters now.  It would be time for a second tin, soon. 

Just let me come home

“I want to travel the world.”  He tested the words. They sounded dirty, dusty now, now like they had when he was twenty and full of himself.  Forget this stupid town.

Who knew the elders of his hometown were quite so temperamental — or quite so magical?

According to his tickets — and they were never wrong — he’d be here for almost three whole days.  Blake changed his shirt and headed out for a drink, giving the tin of letters one last pat on the way out. 

 

What Next?

Hello!

You may have noticed that I have come to the end of Haunted House!

This leaves me with a slot for posting things and being uncertain what to work on next.

So I thought I’d ask you guys!

Options include:

  • Leave the slot open and work on getting Haunted House edited and ready for publication
  • Leave the slot open for rotating prompt calls of short stories
  • Pick up one of the following:
    • Beauty-Beast
    • Purchase Negotiation
    • BeeKeeper
    • Post-Scar City
    • Post-Scarcity Mystery
    • Catboys in Cages
  • Pick up something else (your suggestion)
    • Portal Closed has been suggested & seconded
    • Desmond’s Climb has been suggested & seconded
    • Bee-pocalypse has been suggested
    • Science! (the Chickens) has been suggested
    • Fairy Town: Whitney & the Crossroads Park, or Katydid’s series
    • Space Accountant
  • Start a new serial (your suggestion)
    • Dragons next Door
    • Aunt Family
    • Things Unspoken

Note: I have Kael’s Tower earmarked to work on when I finish Hidden Mall, and Funerary Rites was giving me a lot of trouble the last time I tried to work on it, thus why they’re not on the list.

 

Post-Scar City – continued

So … let me know what you think about this one?

The Earthers that greeted them as they disembarked were nothing like Adeline had expected. 

They were wearing clean, smooth skirted jumpsuits that were clearly some sort of uniform, little booties with flat heels, and masks covering their noses and mouths.  They immediately handed Adeline and the other Habitaters with her the same sort of masks. 

“It can take up to three weeks for the immune system boosters to completely kick-in,” one of the Eathers explained.  “Until then, you want to avoid as much fluid-to-fluid contact with new people as possible.”

Adeline shared a look with Geordi.  As if they didn’t know basic health protocols! Continue reading