Tag Archive | prompt: 15minfic

Icon Meme

1. Reply to this post with “UNICORNS”, and I will pick five of your icons.
2. Make a post (including the meme info) and talk about the icons I chose.
3. Other people can then comment to you and make their own posts.
4. This will create a never-ending cycle of icon glee.

[personal profile] clare_dragonfly gave me these:

Keyword: Aldersprig.

[personal profile] barbary made this for me! I use it when doing 15-min-fics from Barbary’s website, or for things that seem to suit it’s along-the-waterfront mood.

Keyword: Leaf

An alder leaf, just the color I feel they ought to be. Personal-writing stuff, mostly. Or stuff I don’t have an icon for just yet. This is related to why-I’m-aldersprig, which is a longer story.

Keyword: mermaid2 (I used to have several)
Originally yoinked from somewhere on the web back when I had less-good manners about such things, it serves for both Fish Story and the flood series, and other people’s mermaid stories, and Ysabet’s fishbowls.

Keyword: Bookglasses (i’m so creative)
For readerly things and mechanism-of-writerly things

Keyword: Tea3 (I have several)

For tea-related moments – family/kin/community/comfort stuff. Also, I have that teapot.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/124779.html. You can comment here or there.

15-minute-ficlet, 30daysmeme, “Damn dragons, get off my lawn!”

Day 2 of 30 days of Fiction: “2) Write a scene with a drunken mythological creature.”
15 minute fiction prompt: “Obnoxious Dragons.”

There was a drunk dragon on my front lawn again.

The new neighbors had moved in six months ago, at the beginning of winter, into the cavern-and-castle system the ogres had vacated, mom, dad, two kids and an egg, with a pet that they called a dog, I think out of a sense of misplaced irony. And, for a while, everything had been fine. I mean, we’d been living next door to ogres. We were just glad to have the carrion smell gone (fumigated, even. Dragons make good fumigators.)

But once the weather had warmed up, their oldest kid (again with the misplaced irony; they called him Jimmy) had started joyriding and taken up drinking in a big way. Everything they did was big, of course; now take that and multiply it by teenage hormones and rebellion.

My oldest had already gone through the worst of it, and our younger two weren’t there yet; I could spare some sympathy for the Smiths (yes, really. And they were. Smiths, that is, and quite good ones at that). Their fights weren’t any louder than the harpies three doors down, after all, and everyone had had a kid slam the castle gate in the middle of a fight.

But it was a lot easier to spare sympathy when their kid wasn’t snoring a scorch-hole in my lawn. I pulled out the broom and the leather apron I used for cleaning out the incinerator, and headed out to do battle.

“Jimmy.” I poked him below the last ribs with the broom, mindful of the flame-gouts. “Jimmy, you’ve got to go home.”

He blinked at me blearily. “Oh, come on, Mrs. S., can’t I stay here?” Ever hear a dragon whine? Dogs in the next county covered their ears.

“Afraid not, James. You’re welcome to come over for biscuits and gravy when you’re sober, but drunken dragons belong in their own beds. Or down by the waterfall.” This time of year, it could handle him.

He sighed, and he couldn’t have been that far gone, because it didn’t light my lawn on fire. “All right, Mrs. S. Biscuits, really? With the brown gravy?”

“I promise, James. If you’re off my lawn before you set the gnome on fire.”

My brown gravy is the talk of the neighborhood; Jimmy was flying woozily for the waterfall before I’d finished, calling back over his scaly shoulder, “Sorry about the table, Mrs. S., I swear I’ll pay for it.”

I poked the remains of the lawn table my husband had made, and thought wistfully of ogres.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/50200.html. You can comment here or there.

Random Ficlet of a semi-erotic nature

From [personal profile] kc_obrien‘s prompt “dojo, scarlet, thunderstorm,” and it wants to be the same world as the Foundation and the Library, but pre-apoc. Written in 15 minutes on Write or Die.

The silk sheets were strewn around the dojo like long streaks of blood, bright and shiny and scarlet.

They were not even the first thing she noticed, though; by the time she’d gotten that far, she’d already noticed that the building inside the couryard had no windows, and that the walls were very thick, the doors heavy and with double deadbolts.

She hadn’t walked all this way to turn around now, even if that was the goal of the trappings – intimidate, weed out the weak, weed out those who weren’t suited. But (even if, in the core of her heart, she wasn’t certain she was suited), she was determined not to be weeded out. She had a stake in this, a stake beyond the blisters on her feet, beyond the road dust and the gnawing hunger in her stomach.

She bowed to the tatami. Her feet, blisters or no, were at least clean, as were her hands; the attendant at the first gate had seen to that. She’d also taken all of her possessions and locked them into a storage locker, everything except the clothes on her back.

It had the feel of a pilgrimage, or an imprisonment, and, from what she had been told, it would be a little bit of both and, in the long run, less of either and more of an apprenticeship.

It would be wrong to say that she was either eager or nervous. Both of those emotions had had a long time to work out of her system. She had been walking, after all, for weeks. In that time, every emotion she had about this place had come, and, in the slow repetition of her feet on the dusty road, faded.

Outside, a gong rang, echoed by a thunderclap. Through the door she had left open behind her, she could feel the wind whipping up. A storm was coming. She had known that before she began her journey, though: a storm was coming, and it would wash away levees and dams, villages and cities. What it would leave in its wake, what would be left, remained uncertain.

But what she would have here, in the dojo, would be an education that would serve her in almost any world; there were some things that were nearly universal. What she would have here would prepare her for her future, and so she had come, in lieu of summer school, to learn.

“Strip.” The voice was as loud as the thunder, and so close behind her that she wondered how she could have missed them coming up behind her. “You bring nothing, except your self, into the school.”

Such had the attendant at the gate said, but she still struggled with the blush as she stripped off her dusty pants and sweat-stiffened T-shirt. She almost hesitated at her bra and panties, but the blisters on her feet reminded her that she was already invested. The lavender underwear joined the rest in a tidy pile on the floor.

“Drop to your fours,” the voice commanded. She balked, now, but her knees, after all, and her palms, were less blistered than her feet. She dropped to the mat, arching her back as attractively as she could.

From here, the world looked different. She could see a doorway ahead that only came to the current height of her shoulders, draped in another swath of scarlet. She could see the smooth spots in the mat where others had come before. She could see where she had lain aside her pride, and where she had, in doing so, only reinforced it.

She bent further, and kissed the mat.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/48097.html. You can comment here or there.

15-minute ficlet: Moving In

Originally posted here in response to this image prompt

The planet had been, to all of their sensors, bare of tool-using life. There was nothing there that showed up using anything more complex than a stone axe. No smelting. No radio waves. No large gatherings of populations.

(Not that it really would have mattered. They had nowhere else to go, after all).

They had landed in a place that looked clear, on a body of water their initial survey told them was potable, near some purple and green vegetation that, even if not edible, would be useable in building materials. They had landed… and stared, open-mouthed, at the landscape around them.

They had seen ruined cities. They had seen corpses. All of that, they had left behind. But the ruins on this planet, where nothing was left using tools; the corpses stacked by the side of the city, like someone had been trying to be tidy; the strange architecture, built to fit those strange shapes, those twisted spines… it was like stepping into their own nightmares, twisted into alien forms.

The worst of all wasn’t the vegetation growing over the things that could be houses, the purple flowers that they soon found were flesh-eating and blood-hungry, the buildings that would never quite fit them. The worst was the statues by the waterfront, and the others, tucked in every place where a god might look, the strange and creepy edifices seeming to beg help from gods who, it seemed, had turned a blind eye.

They slept inside the ship that night, but they could not go home, and they had nowhere else to go. The next morning, they began to dig graves for the remaining corpses, to brush out the biggest of the residences, to plan their own statues to gods they hoped had followed them.

I think it’s in the same world as “Dancing for Joy” http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/43474.html and a couple others

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/44030.html. You can comment here or there.

15 minute ficlet: Hey you Kids get off my lawn!

Originally posted here in response (well, it was supposed to be in response) to the prompt: “The fight’s begun, but not yet won / And I won’t become one more casualty.”

Fae Apoc, Apoc era.

There was a wounded godling in Nila’s back yard. This close to the city, you got the fights overhead sometimes, the wild aerial battles that looked like something out of a pre-gods movie. Sometimes you got debris falling nearby, telephone poles in the road, the occasional falling corpse or near-corpse, so Nila always kept the kids inside, just like when they’d lived out in tornado country. The way she figured it, godling fights came somewhere between act-of-god and natural disaster. You didn’t get in the way, you just tried to ride it out and clean up the damages afterwards.

But now the damn thing was flopped over like a dying fish, half in her carefully-tended koi pond, half in the flower garden that bordered it. Its wing was torn half-off, and it was bleeding into the pond and twitching, making more damage with every spasm.

“Damnit,” she muttered, peeking out between the shutters at it. “Get up, move on. Get off my yard.” But it wasn’t getting up. If whoever it had been fighting came down here to finish it off, there was going to be a giant battle in her backyard, and her garden would be torn to shreds. She needed the damn godling out of there before it was found.

She grabbed her weapons from the cabinet, sheathed them all except the broom, and shrugged into the reinforced leather biker-jacket. It had been a gift on her eighteenth birthday (that and a Kevlar baby sling); it looked like bravado rather than armor and could stop a bullet and slow down a small godling. This monster looked down and out, but she’d learned before the gods came back never to think that a wounded animal wasn’t dangerous.

She strode out to the pond, ignoring the old ache in her left hip and walking like she owned the place (since, after all, she did). “You,” she said firmly, when she was within easy earshot. “Out of my pond.”

It twisted, its broken wing flapping pitifully, and stared at her, a skinny girl carrying a broom. “Human,” it hissed. He hissed; up close, the thing was clearly male, and, if the part of him not covered in blood was any indication, not all that bad looking.

“Close, but no cigar.” She poked him in an open wound with the rowan broomstick, and was gratified by its hiss of pain.

“What do you want, little human,” he grumbled, shying away from the wood that was poison to his kind. His left ankle was twisted badly, and there was a bone sticking out of his right leg.

“Get out of my pond,” she reiterated.

He barked a laugh at her. “You are in the presence of a god and you worry about your fish?”

“I am in the presence of a fucked-up elf-fairy-alien, and it’s my goddamned yard. Get out of my pond or I’ll move you.”

“Little human…” Whatever else he’d planned to say was cut off by a rowan broomstick to the mouth. Nila played baseball on the weekend to keep her swing in shape; he toppled back into the pool, grabbing at his jaw.

“I keep telling you…” She grabbed his less-injured leg above the twisted ankle and dragged him out of her pond, trying to damage the flower bed as little as possible. “I’m not human.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/41291.html. You can comment here or there.

15-minute ficlet: Walking With Him

Originally posted to 15-minute ficlets in response to the prompt “brand.”


Shuna held still while the tattoo artist worked the ink into her beck and back, ignoring, or trying to, her mother’s hovering disapproval.

“Shune-loon,” she began again, resorting to childish nicknames, “it’s a…”

“I know what it is,” she cut her off, the pain pricking along her spine making her shorter than was prudent with Mother Dearest.

Her mother plowed ahead anyway. “It’s a brand, Shuna. It’s marking you as his in permanent ink wrapped around your neck. It’s a collar you can’t take off. Couldn’t you just get a butterfly or something?”

“Hold still, please,” the tattooist murmured, cutting off her frustrated exclamation. She made herself relax, her forehead resting on the face pillow, and tried not to wonder what her mother was up to. She couldn’t even see her feet anymore.

It was the tattoo artist who spoke again, a few minutes later, sounding apologetic. “This glyph, miss, are you sure this is the one you want?”

She knew without looking which one was in question. “That’s his Name,” she murmured in response. “And that’s where it goes.”

“His Name?” The capital N suggested the concept wasn’t new. “That…”

“You see why I worry,” Shuna’s mother put in. “A Name like that and she wants to mark herself as his?”

“Mmmn. I see. But it’s her choice, isn’t it?” There was a challenge in the question that made Shuna smile.

“It is,” her mother agreed grudgingly. “But this isn’t how I brought her up.”

“I hear that a lot, here.” The needle was still working, avoiding the central glyph as the artist continued the pattern down her spine and around the sides of her neck.

“And what do you say, then?”

“I say…” Shuna fought not to jump as the needle hit the skin at the center of her neck, beginning the glyph, “that parents set children’s feet on a road, but it’s up to them where they walk it.”

“Even with him?” Her mother’s voice was getting hysterical as the inevitable was etched into her.

“Even with Death, yes.”


This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/41186.html. You can comment here or there.

15 minute ficlet: I Serve (Content warning: Implied abuse)

Originally posted here in response to the prompt “smear.” It’s, ah, um, fan-fiction for a roleplay in my Tir na Cali setting that [personal profile] kc_obrien is running for me.

Anascha smeared the lotion down Castor’s back in long, gentle movements, minding the welts and bruises, and the lacerated rough patches by his shoulders. “Damnit, Cass, what did you do this time?” she muttered into his ear. She didn’t think anyone was listening, but you never really knew. Not here. Not in the Lady’s household, where having friends was a luxury none of them could afford. Not when even the Lady couldn’t trust anyone… and if their owner wasn’t allowed that freedom, then her slaves wouldn’t be, either.

“I…” he groaned, and then put his face back on the pillow. “Gods below, Ann, that stings.”

“I know, but it will numb everything in a moment.” She worked with a quick and practiced hand, spreading the goo over his whole back, his ass, his upper thighs. She’d done this before, and damn the risk in helping others. Even Castor. “What happened? You didn’t…?”

“I’m not a complete moron,” he hissed, as the lotion touched an open laceration. “There’s no way out, and I’m not going to sell what little integrity I have at a bullshit attempt. No.”

“I know, I know,” she soothed, moving up to his neck and working in above and below his heavy steel collar. “I just thought… she’s going to be angry at you for a really long time, you know.”

“I know.” He flopped against the bed with a sigh. “She has every right to be. But I belong to her now, Anascha. We both do. And I’m going to serve her as loyally as I served her sister. My honor demands it.”

“Right up to the assassination attempts?” she murmured against his ear. He stiffened again, and shook his head.

“Of course,” he muttered tiredly. “I will do what my lady demands of me. I always have.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/40957.html. You can comment here or there.

15 minute ficlet: Reasons

Originally posted here in response to the Lyrics Prompt “I don’t need your reasons – I know you’re good.”

“I don’t need your reasons.” Junji took the photo from the too-thin, too-blonde woman. “I’m here to do a job.”

“But…” She gestured with manicured hands, fruitlessly.

“But?” Junji shrugged, studied the picture, and handed it back. “You have something you need done, and you’re willing to pay for having it done well. Right?”

“I know you’re good… I mean, I heard you were good,” she faltered. “You come really well recommended. And,” she muttered, “no one else would take the job.”

“Well,” Junji shrugged philosophically, “it’s that sort of job. That’s what I get called in for.”

“You don’t mind?” She seemed to be saying I’d mind.

“Why should I?” She didn’t answer You learn to stop caring. “It’s money they aren’t getting, and I am, and after all…”

“A girl’s got to do what she’s got to do to survive.” The blonde nodded, understanding. “Even if you have to take the jobs no-one else wants.”

Junji eyed her, beginning to understand the client. That wasn’t good. She didn’t like the kinship-feeling. She didn’t like thinking of her clients as people, or her targets. They were money-in, money-out. They were what she had to do to survive.

Ack. She looked at the picture again, studied the way his nose tilted just to one side, the expensive suit that didn’t actually suit him, the very very charming blue eyes. “Not your son. Not your husband. Not your ex, or your lover.”

“The boss’s son,” she murmured, gratified and embarrassed all at once. “I’m divorced, single, and my daughters live with their father.”

“And he’s…” Not a rival. Too far above her in the hierarchy to be that, and too young. They were on different tracks completely.

“Really, really good with his tongue,” the woman whispered, her blush suggesting the blonde had once been normal.

“Ah.” It helped, Junji was surprised to find, to know something about their reasons. “I’ll deliver him to you tomorrow, as per our agreement.” And probably not take the opportunity to try out that tongue herself.

“I know you will,” the woman smiled. “You’re the best.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/40612.html. You can comment here or there.

15 Minute Ficlet: Hallowing New Ground

Originally posted here in response to the prompt “Hallow.”

I think it’s Fairies (Tir na Cali) in Spaaace

The ground was barren, without a place for the holy beings to call home, without a place of concretion where they could talk to their gods. Some worried that, so far from home, their gods would not hear them, even if they did the rites to hallow the proper land; others worried that the land itself would be improper, no matter what rites were done over it.

But they had moved to a new land before, and if this one was a bit further away (light years further, a whole different star system further) than the last one had been, those who kept the memories and those who kept the faith still remembered how to do things, and they knew that the gods would follow. The gods were of the people, their children, after all, and they had been more thorough this time than last in bringing all of the gods’ children with them.

The land might be strange, the ground and the sky devoid of the gods’ touch, but they knew what to do to consecrate the ground and call their deities home. The seasons might look strange underneath the violet-shaded moon, but they still turned, and they had landed as spring was about to pry its way out of the depths of an icy winter.

“Come to the hill with me,” the priestess said to a young noble, his eyes still glazed with cryo-sleep.

“Come to that valley with me,” the Lady said to her body-slave, to the slave she loved despite all rules to the contrary.

“Come to the grove with me,” the Priest said to the Heir, the woman who, here, would be queen, “and we will make love, and we will make children, and we will call the gods home.

“Lay here in the grass,” they called to their lovers, “and we will hallow this ground for our gods.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/33442.html. You can comment here or there.

15 Minute Ficlet: Tomorrow and Tomorrow

Originally posted here in response to the lyrics prompt: “The more the light shines through me, I pretend to close my eyes / The more the dark consumes me, I pretend I’m burning, burning bright.”

To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!

Tomorrow stepped onto the platform and faced herself, faced Yesterday. Sometimes it seemed as if her entire life was stepping onto this platform and taking her own hands. Sometimes, because of the nature of things, it _was_ that her entire life was stepping up here and holding her own hand.

She braced herself, although she told herself every day that she wouldn’t. She tensed, feeling herself stiffen across the platform, as the shift change took over her.

When the magic poured through her, there was no moving. There was no feeling, no sensation at all except the shift.

The light poured through her, shoved through her, roared through her. It blinded her, deafened her, made her nothing but a window, a portal to push through. She could not close her eyes, but in the tiny corner of her mind that was still hers, Tomorrow pretended to. The light rushed through her, and the world was lit.

And the dark engulfed her, froze her, took over her every cell. It devoured her, consumed her, until there was almost nothing left; she was vessel to hold it and nothing else, and she was dying of the cold. She couldn’t expel it, but with her tiny bit of self, Yesterday imagined she stood in the middle of a fire, finally warm.

The void passed out of her, and the day passed into Tomorrow.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/29817.html. You can comment here or there.