time and space

He played all day in his room, from the moment he was excused from the breakfast table until he was called again for lunch, and then again in the afternoon until supper was placed on the table.  His parents worried about his antisocial tendencies but all attempts to get him to play with kids his age had ended poorly, with him in tears and the other children wondering what was wrong with him.  His mom had considered taking him to see a psychiatrist, but his father had convinced her that it was probably a phase he would grow out of if given the space and time to do so.

So, they had waited, and watched, and fretted, and years had passed and still he played with his toys and puzzles and cars and games, in his room, by himself.  His parents thought they had done something wrong, that they had somehow created a rift between him and normal society, that how he spent his days wasn’t really living at all.

It became a sad, personal, joke between them, that on the rare occasions when he was seen leaving his room on his own accord that there had been a ghost sighting.  “Did you see the ghost this afternoon?”  “Did you see that spirit sneaking food from the fridge?”  “Did you see that ethereal being wafting down the hallway?”  They were jokes, but neither of them ever laughed.

Their child was a ghost of the living, and it was all their fault.  They should have forced him to interact more.  They should have required him to spend more time outside, more time rumbling and tumbling with the neighbors, more time learning what it was to be a boy, to be alive.

Each time he asked to be excused and he pushed himself away from the table they hoped that would be the time he would ask if he could go outside and play.  And each time he dashed their hopes and disappeared into his room instead, they grew sadder and more distraught, distancing themselves from their own friends and lives until they too became ghosts.

The child had no understanding of his parents’ plight or sorrow.  He was happy as could be, building worlds, creating friends, running adventures, and allowing his rampant imagination the time and space to grow to its fullest potential.

Open Door Blue Sky

 

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The curse of the introvert?  The gift of the creative?  Where others see a problem, there may not be something that needs to be solved at all…

This is in response to this week’s Inspiration Monday writing challenge:

Inspiration Monday logo

The Rules

There are none. Read the prompts, get inspired, write something. No word count minimum or maximum. You don’t have to include the exact prompt in your piece, and you can interpret the prompt(s) any way you like.

OR

No really; I need rules!

Okay; write 200-500 words on the prompt of your choice. You may either use the prompt as the title of your piece or work it into the body of your piece. You must complete it before 6 pm CST on the Monday following this post.

The Prompts:

CARDIAC ARREST

FINGERLESS

GHOST OF THE LIVING

WASHING MACHINE

FRIDGE MONSTER

a short long mix-up

They were playing cops and robbers, again, and chasing each other around the sprawling backyard.  The sandbox was police headquarters.  The lawn was the the business district.  The trees were the alleys and hidden doorways.  Sirens blared and gunfire erupted sporadically as good attempted to assert itself over evil to maintain order, to maintain the peace of the land.

“Bang!  Bang!”  LeFors leveled his gun hand at the chest of his quarry after firing the warning shots, “Don’t move, bozo, or I’ll gun you down.”

Ringo smiled, charming, unafraid, as he let his right hand ease down and he looped the thumb in his gun belt.  The lawman had the drop on him, but the desire to pull leather and blaze away was nearly overpowering.  Experience alone stayed his hand.  He would play it cool and wait for his chance to strike or slip away, “Okay, Joe, you’ve got me.”

Expecting a trap, master lawman that he was, Joe LeFors didn’t budge an inch.  He knew Johnny Ringo to be a conniving, cowardly, conman, the worst kind, and refused to do anything to give up the advantage he currently had.  He set his jaw, and with steel resolve in his voice, he ordered the Cowboy to give up his weapon, “Slowly now, loose the buckle and let your gun belt fall away.”

“You know I can’t do that, Joe,” Ringo’s smiled broadened.  His eyes danced with mischief and burned with anger.

“You’ve got no out, no place to go, no chance to get away,” LeFors countered.  “Don’t be foolish.  Don’t give me the chance to use my short arm of the law.”

“Uh…”  John’s face scrunched into a look of confusion,  “What?”

Joe frowned, “The short arm of the law.”  A second later, completely breaking character, he added, “That’s a saying, right?”

John removed his hand from its resting place near the holstered toy gun and scratched his scalp near his temple as he tried to figure out what his young sibling actually wanted to say.  While he waited for the game to start up again, Joe grew bored and started digging at an exposed root with the toe of his shoe.

“Oh, no,” John said when he figured out the confusion, “you are mixing up a couple different sayings, I think.  The ‘long arm of the law’ refers to the lengths lawmen will go to pursue the criminals they are after.  They leave no stone unturned.  They have vast networks of informants and colleagues.  There is no place the bad guys can hide safely.  And, ‘long irons’ refer to the style of revolvers carried in the old west.  Though,” John paused for a second, confused again, “why did you say short arm?  You should have said, ‘Don’t give me the chance to use my long iron.'”

Joe looked down at the snub-nose cap gun still clutched in his small hand, shrugged, and replied, “It’s not very big.  Small seemed more appropriate.”

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Tuesday?  Check.  Silliness?  Check.  Flash fiction?  Check.

It must be.  It could only be.  It is…  another Inspiration Monday writing challenge:

Inspiration Monday logo

The Rules

There are none. Read the prompts, get inspired, write something. No word count minimum or maximum. You don’t have to include the exact prompt in your piece, and you can interpret the prompt(s) any way you like.

OR

No really; I need rules!

Okay; write 200-500 words on the prompt of your choice. You may either use the prompt as the title of your piece or work it into the body of your piece. You must complete it before 6 pm CST on the Monday following this post.

The Prompts:

NEW NAMES

LEARNING TO FAIL

UNREAL

SHORT ARM OF THE LAW

WRONG VICTIM

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I swear I didn’t even mean for these brothers to have names that started with the same letter.  I’d noticed I was doing that frequently in my more recent posts so I was going to avoid that… but, then I picked the two historical characters I wanted the brothers to be playing as and started writing.  It wasn’t until the end that I realized both their names started with “J.”  My mind is a silly place of happy coincidences.

Have you seen the movie “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid?”  How about “Tombstone?”  Do you like Westerns?

Did you have favorite games to play with your brothers/sisters growing up?

older brothers are confusing

Charles put down the comic book, his eyes wild with mischief and his mouth twisted in a matching grin, and he pushed himself off his bed.  He quickly raided his closet and changed into a mash up of costumes from the past several Halloweens.  He checked his appearance in the mirror hanging behind his door and continued changing articles here and there until he was satisfied with his look.  Then he pulled open the door with a resounding thud and raced through the house trumpeting, “I am Galactus.  I am the devourer.  Earth is mine!”  With a maniacal laugh he flew out the front door, slamming it shut in his wake.

Cody, playing quietly in the room adjacent to his older brother’s, snuck to his own bedroom door to ensure that Charles had in fact left and wasn’t playing some trick on him.  He’d fallen victim to too many of his brother’s shenanigans recently to take anything Charles did at face value.  However, as Cody confirmed he was safe for the moment, a look of confusion crossed his small face, “The devourer?  Earth is his?  He’s an earth eater?”

He returned to his playing shaking his head.  Charles was so silly.  Cody never knew what his brother was going to be like from one day to the next.   Cody had just offered him some mud pies the day before and Charles hadn’t had any interest, but today it seemed he had changed his mind.

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Short and silly, but hopefully it got a chuckle or two out of you.  This was written in response to this week’s Inspiration Monday writing challenge:

Inspiration Monday logo

The Rules

There are none. Read the prompts, get inspired, write something. No word count minimum or maximum. You don’t have to include the exact prompt in your piece, and you can interpret the prompt(s) any way you like.

OR

No really; I need rules!

Okay; write 200-500 words on the prompt of your choice. You may either use the prompt as the title of your piece or work it into the body of your piece. You must complete it before 6 pm CST on the Monday following this post.

The Prompts:

COST OF LIVING

EARTH EATER

ORANGE JUMPSUIT

UNREAD

SECOND BEST

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I know you want to play along with the silliness, and there are some great prompt words this week.  So… what are you waiting for?  Pick one, write a post, link it up, and share it with the rest of us!

addiction

On my drive this morning, I caught a hint of movement through the windshield.  It was a flash of light at the edge my vision, all color and no shape.  I pondered the possibilities of what I had seen.  A raindrop perhaps?  A coyote slinking off into the darkness?  Gorlak come to fetch me?  I thought we had an understanding, but nothing is certain when it comes to hell-demons.  Each idea was more sinister than the last, but my journey continued and nothing further came of the disturbance.

It made me miss the days when I drove into the rising sun and how the beauty of those moments would inspire the words to shine within me.  I couldn’t wait to get to a computer and transfer images, sentences, characters, lines to the screen.  That urgency is gone now.  Sure, I could write about the darkness surrounding my truck, the claustrophobia setting in, the madness that follows, but who wants to read about the demons I battle?  Real or imagined.  There is no inspiring light.  There is only the struggle to keep my eyes open and the truck between the lines.

The kingdom is battling a cold this week, runny noses, sore throats, decreased energy, and confused thoughts.  After safely making it to work I stared at the computer screen trying to force out the words that normally flow from mind to screen with little prompting, but for a long time there was nothing, and then there were only snippets, fragments of a sentences, partial ideas.  Muddled, all of it.  Yet, the need to write never went away.  It is an addiction, a craving, a desire that cannot be ignored.

So, I filled the space with letters, grouped into words, then sentences and paragraphs, so that it might appease the writer.  Of course, he can never be appeased, not truly, not fully.  The writer is only ever temporarily satisfied.

And so I journey on.  Searching.  Seeking.  Questing for the next idea he can twist for his purpose and abate his need.

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Don’t mind me, I’m currently enjoying the perks of Sudafedrine coupled with Advil.  I don’t bother with sending grammatical corrections for this one.  I think I was jumping between tenses.  I tried to fix that and am fairly certain I failed.  So, yeah, I know…

Anyway, I have no idea if this post makes any sense.  It is in response to this week’s Inspiration Monday writing challenge, and while I did use one of the prompt words, I’m not entirely sure it actual fits with the normal theme for responses.  Also, I’m not sure I can complete a sentence right now without a few extra commas and a bunch of fragments that probably don’t need to be there for the purpose of the sentence….  Um, yeah, here’s the prompt:

Inspiration Monday logo

The Rules

There are none. Read the prompts, get inspired, write something. No word count minimum or maximum. You don’t have to include the exact prompt in your piece, and you can interpret the prompt(s) any way you like.

OR

No really; I need rules!

Okay; write 200-500 words on the prompt of your choice. You may either use the prompt as the title of your piece or work it into the body of your piece. You must complete it before 6 pm CST on the Monday following this post.

The Prompts:

NEW FACE

UP THE DRAIN

COMPLIMENTARY COMPLIMENTS

THROUGH THE WINDSHIELD

DIFFICULTY SWALLOWING

 Any of that jump out at you?  I guess I’m in reading mode today since writing mode is currently missing.  So, write a response, link it up, and publish it to keep me from posting something else today.

it’s a good game

“Let’s play Drop.”

“What’s that?”

Charles thought through his answer before responding.  He needed to choose his words carefully if he was going to convince his brother to play along.  “It’s a new kind of magic.”

“Magic?”  Casey’s eyes brightened at the word.  “Like the card game?”

“No, it isn’t a card game…”  Charles launched into a brief explanation of the game, what their roles would be, and what the potential outcome was.

Casey’s eyes grew wider as the plan was formulated, he was more excited than he could ever remember being.  “I’m nervous, though,” he confided.  “We’ll have to be quiet.  We’ll have to be patient.  And you know how I hate sitting still, my feet go to sleep and then when I try to move they feel like they are being stabbed by pins and knitting needles.”

Charles ignored the wrong expression, there was too much at stake to worry about such trivialities.  “Think of the glory.  Think of the rewards!”

His brother nodded in appreciation of what they would accomplish if they were successful in this new game, this mission.  “Okay, let’s do it.”

They quickly gathered the items they would need to play the game and then secreted through the house to get into position.  Once ready, their eyes met and they shared a moment of silent conversation, as only twins can do.  Reassurance passed back and forth.  They were doing the right thing.  They would win this game.

Charles dropped the heavy book, a reference manual of some sort he had seen his dad use on more than one occasion while completing the Sunday crossword, on the glass top of the desk in the study.  The accompanying clap echoed through the house, but Charles and Casey didn’t even notice as they were already on the move.

“What was that?”  Their father’s voice carried up the stairs.  The boys dove into their hiding place and began the hardest part of the plan.  They had to wait, hope he would come up to investigate the noise, and wouldn’t see them as he passed their hiding spot.  If it worked, if he moved down the hall to see why his book had fallen onto the desk, they would sneak down the stairs and victory would be theirs.

They would steal candy from a grownup.

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Oh, I don’t know.  I was in the mood for something silly, and this is what my brain provided based on the prompt words for this week’s Inspiration Monday Writing Challenge:

Inspiration Monday logo

The Rules

There are none. Read the prompts, get inspired, write something. No word count minimum or maximum. You don’t have to include the exact prompt in your piece, and you can interpret the prompt(s) any way you like.

OR

No really; I need rules!

Okay; write 200-500 words on the prompt of your choice. You may either use the prompt as the title of your piece or work it into the body of your piece. You must complete it before 6 pm CST on the Monday following this post.

The Prompts:

SILENT CONVERSATION

CANDY FROM A GROWNUP

LET’S PLAY DROP

PINS AND KNITTING NEEDLES

NEW KIND OF MAGIC

I couldn’t pick between the prompt words.  So, I used all of them.  It seemed like the thing to do.