Tag Archives: flash

Saved by Giraffes, a Christmas Flash [325]

Santa’s hand hovered over the plate for several moments before he decided upon a particularly festive Christmas cookie. Mmm, it looked buttery and delicious…

As soon as he lifted the treat from the plate, an alarm shrieked. The lights in the house came on and a couple ran out from a back room. They looked incongruous ~ wearing happy holiday pajamas but holding scary baseball bats. Santa didn’t have any bats in his sack, just some stuffed giraffes, an electric toothbrush, and a pair of slippers. It was the end of this route.

“Hold on there,” Scary Man said. “We need to see some ID.”

Santa backed up. “ID? But I’m Santa. Look at my beard! And my red suit.”

Scary Woman laughed. It was a scary laugh. “Anyone can buy those at the party store. We looked outside and didn’t see any reindeer. Explain that!”

“They’re tired and hungry,” Santa said. “I let them hang out at the diner down the street and wait for me. The lady there said she’d give them some oatmeal.”

Scary Man remained skeptical. “Where’s your driver’s license?”

Santa reached into his bag.

“Hey!” Scary Woman raised her bat. “What are you doing?”

“Offering you a gift,” Santa said. “It’s what I do. Your other ones are wrapped, but this is extra.”

Scary Man rejected the overture. “A giraffe? Honestly, do you think we’re idiots?”

“Wait, honey,” Scary Woman said. “When I was little I had a book called A Giraffe and a Half, and it was one of the last books Mom read to me before she died.”

“Awwww.” Scary Man hugged Scary Woman, and they weren’t so scary after they put down their bats and held stuffed giraffes instead.

“Can I have my cookie now?” Santa asked as they went upstairs to bed.

Whew, that was a close call. He picked up his sack, stuffed in all the gifts, and left with his cookie. It really was delicious.


Photo courtesy of HW Daily Writing Prompts


Prophetic Graffiti [flash 99]

She wrote at night, streaking the wall with crimson paint and demonic black scrawls. Swirls and waves and death and pain. The moon provided a teaspoon of resentful light. In the morning, the townsfolk chased her away, ignoring the warnings she’d painted. Crazy witch, they muttered. Birds screamed off into the pale sun and rodents scurried for high ground. Horses refused their feed. Late that afternoon it came, with a shrieking wind and a sudden crack. Then there was water. So much water. It covered the town and the wall and the warning. A raven circled overhead for days.


Prompt and pic via the Carrot Ranch

The Sentinel [280 char]

The earth rang

From the shores of Mayotte

To the peaks of Chile;

Waves rippled and buzzed,

Traversing the oceans,

Vibrating the plates–

We missed this call.

He didn’t though:

Lupine ears on alert,

Paws stilled in snow.

The moment passed;

He resumed his patrol,

On guard, alone.


Via Twittering Tales #113 and inspired by this article in National Geographic.

Into the Dark [flash 99]

“Is he sure this is the right spot?” Z47 whispered.

Z13 gasped. “Do not question our leader!”

“Our ship is far away.” Z29 observed.

Their leader approached. “We have planned for this moment. Fifty soldiers. This precise location. Line up and prepare to detonate when I signal.”

They followed his orders. And indeed the land spasmed and the waves heaved as the ship sailed into the dark. Would the blast be strong enough to shift the plates and cause a 9.7 earthquake half a world away at the G20 Summit as their leader had calculated?

They would never know.


Prompt via the Carrot Ranch.

Good Exercise [flash 187]

Leanne put her picnic basket on the backseat and then settled herself into the front. As she buckled her seatbelt, she said, “Thanks for the invite, Marcie. It’s such a perfect summer day.”

“After the snow storms that kept us inside all last winter and spring, I thought we should do something outdoors.” Marcie turned on the radio to a soft jazz station.

“What’s Edwin up to today?” Leanne asked.

Marcie stomped on the gas. “He said he wants to leave me, Leanne. Just walk out on all we built together.”

“Oh no!” Leanne touched her arm. “Maybe it’s just cabin fever. All that dismal cold. I’m sure he’ll soon remember his love for you and the strings that bind.”

Marcie shook her head. “I’ve already lost him. But I had the last laugh. I always do. I have a surprise in the trunk. Did you see the shovels in the back?”

“Shovels?” Leanne repeated.

“After we have our picnic, we’re going to get some exercise in the fresh air!” Marcie gripped the steering wheel tightly as she zoomed down the road. “It’ll be good for us!”


Photo prompt via The Haunted Wordsmith.

Counterspell [flash 113]

“What did you do to the beast?” Cerwin cried. “You were only supposed to make him docile, not put him in a coma!”

Zully hung her head. “I’m sorry. I tried to follow the spell perfectly, but he fought. He’s so strong, so vigorous.”

Cerwin poked the beast’s foot with a stick, but he remained motionless. “Whatever shall we do?” she moaned.

“Never fear!” Jiva ran up to them with a bottle in her hands. “I’ve conjured a counterspell. Zully, sprinkle a pinch of this powder on the flames next to his head.”

Zully, in her eagerness to rectify her error, dumped the entire bottle into the fire.

“Nooooooo!” screamed Jiva and Cerwin.

Light Bulb Moment

Me: Oh no, one of the bulbs in my ceiling fan light has burnt out and now I’ll have to climb on a ladder to change it, which will be difficult to do one-handed, since I can’t let go of the heavy glass cover at the same time.

Also me: Why don’t we just start using the floor lamp instead? It has three bulbs and provides plenty of illumination.

Me again: Brilliant idea!


Via Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt

You Already Know [flash 350]

After a long, arduous journey, Gareth found the crumbling steps at the north edge of the Silver Sea and began climbing. Hours later he wondered if he was in the right place. His legs trembled from exertion and his breathing grew shallow. With all his will, he forced himself to keep a tight grip upon the handle of his lantern; if he dropped it, he was sure he’d die. The steps had become even more treacherous at this height. Plus, the winds circled him with icy tentacles.

Finally, he saw a faint circle of light ahead. It grew brighter with each step he took until it outshone the sun. Gareth felt filled with energy from its golden radiance. As he reached the platform, he was pulled into the circle as if by a thousand magnets. Even though he thought he might burn up, he felt powerless to resist and oddly unafraid.

Once inside the circle, Gareth took deep gulps of the clean, fresh air as if it were the sweetest wine.

“Whaddaya want, kid?”

Turning to his left, Gareth saw a grumpy guy scowling over the New York Times.

Yes! It was him! Retired police lieutenant and advice maven extraordinaire, Stan the Help Man!

“I need some advice,” Gareth said. “I’ve been dating this really great girl for like five years and she wants to get married. Everyone thinks we should get married. But I got this job offer to study penguin poop in Antarctica for a year. She says I have to choose between her and the birds. I love penguins so much, but I guess it would be dumb to choose penguin poop over a lifetime with a great girl, huh?”

Stan looked up from his paper and shrugged. “If ya gotta ask, you already know the answer.”

“Whoa!” Gareth said. “You are as brilliant as they say. I guess I do know! Thank you so much! I’m totally making a big donation to the Stan the Man fund.”

“Happy to help, kid.” Stan returned to his paper. “You know a five letter word for big fat idiot?”


Prompt photo via Helene

Mmmpie [flash 259]

Every year, the folks at the soup kitchen lined up for their Thanksgiving meal. They were very grateful for a warm place to spend the afternoon, along with wholesome food to fill their bellies. Most of them were used to cold and hunger, especially at this time of year.

“Does anyone know who donates these pies?” Darlene asked. “They’re so delicious. This light, flaky homemade crust is simply divine. I love the pumpkin.”

“The apple is my favorite,” Pete said. “Full of cinnamon and raisins. My guess is that it’s the church lady who brings the mashed potatoes. She’s very generous.”

Doc shook his head. “I saw her come in. She didn’t have any pies. I think it’s the nice gal from the party supply store who gives us the paper plates and stuff. She’s very sentimental, a real pie type.”

Darlene laughed. “What’s a pie type, Doc?”

“She’s just sweet. Always asks how I’m doing. She gave me an old coat last year her husband didn’t like anymore.”

“I could use a coat,” Pete said. “The guy who brings the turkeys is swell too. He usually gives me a couple bucks when he gets gas, but I don’t think he brought the pies.”

The three friends ate and talked and kept debating which of the pleasant folks at the soup kitchen brought the pies, but none of them had noticed the unsmiling man standing discreetly outside the door, providing security.

Yes, it was none other than retired police lieutenant and pastry baker extraordinaire, Stan the Pie Man!



Photo and word prompts via The Haunted Wordsmith

Poof! [flash 93]

The madman didn’t pause because tonight was the night. Everything he had planned would come to fruition before the sun rose. Yes, he knew he was moonstruck with the power he had stolen, but the ultimate goal was now within reach and there was nothing to stop him. He reached for the device to broadcast one last final lie to the population that remained in thrall to his every word.

However, from a tiny shed on the edge of the world, the teenaged hacker began the program to stop him.