Mother’s Last Laugh

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photo prompt: A Mixed Bag

For twenty years, the children of Mrs. Adeline McCarthy impatiently waited for their wealthy mother’s death. Finally, the crazy old woman succumbed to a lingering illness. Harold and his sister Lizzie listened as the lawyer began reading the will.

“For the record, I am reading the last will and testament of Adeline McCarthy, dated September 1, 2017.

Both children gasped in horror! A recent change must mean one or the other would receive less than expected. Some devilry must be at work.

‘…to my son, Harold. Your love of money did not go unnoticed. Therefore, I leave you $1.00. Use it wisely.”

Harold glared at Lizzie with accusing eyes. He always knew she was a conniving woman.

“…and to my daughter Lizzie. You love animals; therefore, I leave you my priceless fox stole. May you wear it proudly to your P.E.T.A. protests”

Lizzie fainted.

Unable to contain himself, Harold blasted. “What about the money!”

“There is no money. Everything went to charity before she died. Frankly, you both got more than you deserved.

Harold raised an imaginary glass of champagne. “Cheers Mother, may you rot in hell.”

Turning to his hysterical sister, he chuckled. “fox stole… that is priceless.”

 

Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge to write a 200-word story based on a photo prompt. A Mixed Bag provided this week’s challenging photo.

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Cat-and-Mouse

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Photo Credit: Danny Bowman

The grainy photo flashed across my cellphone screen: a flat desert landscape, overgrown with scrub brush on its way to becoming a tumbleweed; dwarfed by distant mountain peaks. Intoxicated with anticipation and trepidation, I caught my breath. New Mexico: the next destination in this ruthless game of cat and mouse. A game Jasper and I played for longer than I could remember. New Mexico was home and when I caught him, I would do to Jasper what he did to my wife, God rest her soul. This time, I was the cat and he was the mouse.

Friday Fictioneer’s is a weekly challenge to write a complete story in 100 words or less based on a photo prompt. Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting this challenge and Danny Bowman for this week’s prompt.

Writer’s Block

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‘The gate remained shut for hundreds of years. No one knew what was on the other side. No one dared find out.’

Rusty combed his brain for the next line but nothing came. He loathed 10th grade creative writing with its useless themes. Like this week – Fanciful Fiction. What rubbish! Bored, Rusty peered out his bedroom window and notice the iron gate leading to a vacant lot across the street. Strange I have never noticed it before, thought Rusty. Grabbing a jacket, he darted out for a closer look.

The uninviting gate stood between concrete walls; the words Keep Out painted in bold, red letters. Along the top, rusted spikes dared intruders to climb over. Rusty was leaving when he noticed the open lock. He pushed hard and met resistance, as if blocked on the other side. One last push created an opening wide enough for Rusty to squeeze his body through, before the gate banged shut.

No one saw Rusty again. His grieving parents left his room as it was the day he disappeared. The story in the typewriter was exactly as Rusty left it. Almost.

In bold red letters were three unexplained words:

‘But Rusty did.’

Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner is a weekly writing challenge designed for both the flash fiction newbie and the more experienced writer. It is the desire of this challenge to allow writers the opportunity to clear the cobwebs from a more tedious and involved project. Becoming a part of a new and growing writer’s community might be just what the doctor ordered to rejuvenate your writing juices

Sunday Photo Fiction: The Red Rider

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Photo Credit: J. Hardy Carroll

Marcus Darksmyth, the Wolverine of Wall Street, eyes the tele-monitors hanging on the walls of his massive office. A brilliant man with a tenancy for evil, Darksmyth craved chaos. Today, using his influence with the corrupt police department, he placed off-limit signs on a perfectly good stretch of a busy sidewalk. Darksmyth chuckles as he watches countless commuters approach the barricade, override their instincts to continue and instead race across the busy street.

“This town needs are more men with balls,” Darksmyth would often say to his boardroom minions.

How he hated the lemmings of the world.

Darksmyth soon notices a young female strangely dressed in tight black leather pants, knee-high boots, and a bright red hooded cape approach the sign. If nothing else, she was pleasing to the eye. Unexpectedly, she looks straight into the camera transmitting the images to Darksmyths office. With a smile and a wink, the woman tosses the sign into a pile of rubble and marches down the sidewalk, followed by a throng of others.

The bristles on the back of Darksmyth’s neck stand up as excitement fills his being. Life suddenly became more interesting now that he was aware of the Red Rider.

 

Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge to write a short 200-word story inspired by a photograph. This week’s photo is provided by J. Hardy Carroll