Tag Archives: jibberjabber

The Castle [184 words]

“Hello,” said a friendly voice. “How are you doing?”

The old man turned on the crumbling stone steps and stared at the teenager who was interrupting his journey. “I am fine,” he said. “But you are naughty for startling me.”

“Sorry, Grandpa,” the boy said. “But I’ve been so worried about you. I thought you were asleep in your bed, but then you went missing.

“I am not missing,” Grandpa said. “I’m right here. Please do not deprive me of peace and quiet on my quest to climb the tower of the gods.”

“But Grandpa, this is a Wendy’s.” The boy took the old man’s arm. “Let’s go home, OK?”

The old man blinked and looked around. Gone was the misty forest and decaying castle. In its place was a parking lot and a fast food restaurant. His face hot with shame, he allowed his grandson to help him hobble down the sidewalk.

“Don’t worry, Grandpa,” the boy said. “I’ll just tell everyone we went for an early morning walk.”

“Thank you.” The old man smiled as a silver dragon disappeared into the clouds.

~*~

Written for Sadje’s What Do You See 38.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Image credit – Stefan Keller – Pixabay.

Shattered [148 words]

This place was unfamiliar, though pretty in an odd way, and he struggled to remember how he got here. His mind was completely blank. He took a few tentative steps along the cliff path, trying to process the smooth boulders and brassy water below him, all gleaming under the afternoon sun. Evening would fall soon, and he still had no idea where he was.

He tripped and looked down at his shoes. They were untied and covered in splotches of mud. No wait… it was blood! Suddenly, his memories came rushing back in an unstoppable flood. His heart shattered and he sank to the ground, moaning in despair.

A man a few hundred yards away lowered his binoculars. “Shoot him now,” he said to his female companion. “He’s no longer any benefit to us.”

“Will do,” she said. She pointed her weapon at the man with the binoculars.

~*~

Written for Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge 74.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Decisions [flash 100]

Woman choosing a set of stairs

She caught a glimpse of him slipping indoors, and she followed, suspecting he was evading her. Barefoot, she padded softly across the cool floor in the dimly lit room. It smelled of oranges in here. Soon there was light again, coming from the top of a staircase. There was also a darker set of stairs. Which was the right way to go? Her instincts told her to head for the light, but she began to worry that it wasn’t the path he’d choose. As soon as she reached the bright staircase, she impetuously turned and headed into the deeper darkness.

~*~

Written for Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge 73.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

The Safe Zone

Anxious bitmoji

She’d finally escaped to the safe zone. Now she could have a respite from his impulsive behavior. She didn’t even want to imagine what crazy thing he was doing while she was gone. It was so nice just to relax, even if the air was a bit gelid in here. Next time she would bring a sweater.

Ugh! She heard him outside the door. Dammit, he’d found her… and she had been so careful too. Suddenly, it was quiet again. Too quiet. Cautiously, she opened the door and peeked out.

“MROW!” her kitty dashed into the storage room and began biting her feet.

Dang. Her respite was over. “Luckily, you’re cute, Rambo,” she said to the mischievous furball. 🐱

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Image credited to Bitmoji.

Inheritance, Part 4

[Earlier episode here.]

Deep within the castle’s empty halls and silent rooms, its furnishings long ago sold for coin, was a solid oak door, locked from the inside. At the bottom of a rickety staircase was a second door, also locked, but without an obvious place for a key. Simon chanted the arcane words he had learned long ago from his grandmother, and the door slid open into the wall.

“Welcome to my shop!” Simon said to Mandy, the reporter who was blackmailing him. She had threatened to expose his past, linking him to a recent murder, unless he gave her a chunk of his inheritance.

Mandy’s eyes grew wide at the vista spread before her. This was a home within a home, complete with bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, and what appeared to be a chem lab. “Wow! What’s going on in here?”

“I’m searching for the formula to remove the curse from the treasure,” Simon said. “Without it, the gems are useless except for perpetuating evil, as Belinda was doing.”

Mandy nodded. “The police were closing in on her for the killings of those children. I received a tip about it, but then she was found in the river.”

“I couldn’t convince Grandmama to give me the counterspell, so I stopped Belinda another way.” Simon’s mouth twisted at the memory of dumping her body. “It had to be done. She was too far down the devil’s path to change. I didn’t know the police were onto her.”

Mandy rolled her eyes. “That’s the problem with vigilantism. What’s that smell though?”

“Cookies!” he announced. “You mentioned you love peanut butter, so I baked some.”

Mandy reached for a thick, golden brown cookie from the plethora on the plate Simon presented. She bit into the sweet and salty treat with pleasure. After her second one, she said, “You didn’t put anything weird in these, did you?”

“Who, me?” Simon smiled.

~*~

Written for Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge 72.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Inheritance, Part 3

Gloomy castle at night

[Please read Part 1 and Part 2]

Simon was awakened by a loud pounding. Then the bell’s sonorous chimes vibrated through the room. Blasted thing! Should be abolished. He struggled to become fully alert through his hangover. Good thing he had fallen asleep in his clothes! Whoever was out there seemed to be breaking down the door of Gloomhaven.

He stomped through the castle and flung open the front door, glaring at the woman standing outside. “What is it?” he snapped succinctly, not bothering with the usual politeness.

“Good morning!” she said brightly. “Are you Simon Shadows?”

She was pretty, thought Simon, but he didn’t want to encourage her. He had a long day of important tasks ahead. “What of it?”

Undeterred by his rudeness, she smiled sweetly and said, “Nice to meet you! I’m Mandy Mirth, a reporter for the Daily Crier.”

Gah, a reporter was the last thing Simon wanted to deal with. “I’m not giving any interviews,” he told her. “I’m in mourning for my grandmother.”

“I’m so sorry about her passing,” Mandy said. “She was an unusual person and so very interesting.”

Simon nodded once. “All right then. If there’s nothing else?” He began to close the door.

“What do you think about the dead body found in the river?” Mandy said.

“What?” Simon tried to process this. He hadn’t checked the news all weekend due to sorting through ancient books trying to find the formula to lift the curse from the stones. It was imperative that he find it before–

“Oh! You didn’t know,” Mandy said. “Sorry to startle you with bad news. But one of Dr. Dopple’s rescue dogs found it. He trains them you know, as a hobby.”

“What… what kind of body?” Simon definitely needed to hurry up and find the counterspell, but he also had to know if anyone suspected him.

Mandy continued cheerfully, “A human one! A woman. And my contact at the lab says that she may have been poisoned first because she didn’t drown, nor did she have bruising or wounds.”

“Well, that’s terribly disturbing,” Simon said truthfully. “I am aghast that there may be criminal activity in our village. You may quote me, Mandy.”

“I don’t want to quote you, Simon.” Mandy stepped forward, her tone now serious, her green eyes narrowed. “I want a share of the inheritance.”

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Images from Pixabay.

Unpredictable

Man in sunglasses

He had a history of being unpredictable, but she thought she could be the one to tame his wild streak. When he was happy, she encouraged him, and when he was cranky, she tried to soothe him. She built her world around his moods, devoting all her energy to an attempt to understand him. But it was never enough, for he was an endless abyss of needs he could not even articulate. She listened in vain for clues, but there was nothing, just naked silence, echoing back from infinity. Finally, she gave up and locked her heart away. And then one day, he announced he was leaving, in the softest whisper, but it did not go unheard. Ghosts climbed out of the darkness and packed his suitcase.

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Image found at Pixabay.

Inheritance, Part 2

Dark gloomy castle with moon

[Please read Part 1 first.]

As soon as Belinda stepped back into the woods, Simon hurried over to the bag she’d left under the lantern. He picked it up and peeked inside. Ah, yes! The ancient objects gleamed in the faint moonlight. A ruby winked up at him and seemed to emanate a deeper, darker hue as he gazed, transfixed. He touched it, shocked at its heat, as if it had just been released from a kiln. Shaking himself out of the trance, Simon stuffed the bag in his backpack and went after Belinda.

Her steps were lighter and faster than before, and it took him several minutes to catch up. He didn’t want her to end up on the main road and be seen by a passing car. Simon got close enough to shoot her in the neck with a dart a few yards before the tree cover ended. She cried out in pain and surprise.

Simon watched her put her hand to her neck and stumble. “Hello, Belinda,” he said.

“You!” she gasped. “I thought you were in prison.”

He smiled. “Not anymore. I’ve come back to claim what’s mine.”

“You’ll never win.” Belinda swayed and grabbed onto a tree. “You and your evil… evil… gran…”

Simon watched her fall. He felt for a pulse and then picked her up. Though he was strong from all his workouts, it was still a struggle to carry her body to the river and dump her in. As she floated away, he turned back to where he’d parked, sweaty and out of breath.

But by the time he pulled into the long, curving drive of Gloomhaven, he was calm and breathing normally. The mission had been a complete success! Simon hummed as he leapt up the stairs, banged open the door, and flung the bag of treasure on the sofa next to Grandmama.

“I did it!” Simon grinned, wondering why she didn’t seem more alert and excited. “Grandmama… the ancient relics. Look! Now our we can restore our home to its rightful splendor. Repair the ruin. We will rule once more!”

“You touched them,” the old woman said weakly. “I warned you.”

“Well, I…” Simon had known he wasn’t to touch any of the cursed jewels. “Just for a second. The ruby. It was burning up.”

She nodded. “Gabriella’s stone. You broke my spell.”

“What do you mean?” Simon watched in horror as her beloved face turned ashy and her eyes fluttered closed.

“It’s time… nothing to be done.” She sighed and sunk deeper into the pillows. “I’ve had an extra hundred years. Give or take. No reversing the curse…”

“Grandmama! No!” Simon watched her shrivel and fade. She’d been the last of her line, and the only one who had cared about him. Now, he was alone.

Though he still had the bag of stones…

~*~

Written for Sadje’s What Do You See?

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon

Image from Pixabay.

Soul’s Dark Night

Demons in the dark with glowing eyes

Ripples across a receptive mind
Disturb the soul’s dark night;
Awakening comes slowly as
Suggestions of connections
Form then dissolve again.
There is no space
For revelations
Until ancient demons
Are forced to vacate.
Some go quietly;
Others scream in outrage,
Their claws sunk deeply
In the foundation.
When the last devil is pulled
From the cave,
You stare into its face:
A mirror.

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Image credited to Pexels.

Written for Mindlovemisery’s Sunday Prompt.