Tag Archives: Flash Fiction

Home Alone

A friend recently sent me a link to a cool little tumblr site called FlashFrights. Flash fiction? Horror? It’s the perfect combination, like garlic and bread. They only post stories that are two sentences long. I wrote one called ‘Home Alone’ and they posted it. It’s a two sentence version of ‘Responsibility’, a story I wrote a while ago for Naflafiwrimo (here).

Here’s the site and here’s my story.

Restriction breeds creativity and I like this restriction. I’m going to try to write some more!

 

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Naflafiwrimo Day 30: Human

The last one! That was a whole month of stories, which means that Naflafiwrimo if over. I now have thirty stories to rewrite, so I suppose that’s what May will be for.

You can click on the ‘Nanowrimo’ tab above and find a list of all thirty stories.

*flaaaaffyy*

Thanks for reading!

[P.S. If you’re wondering what this is all about, look here]

Human

 

‘You have failed to meet the standards expected of you, Mr Gower.’ The judge looks down from on high. Mr Gower opens his mouth but of course there is nothing he can say. ‘Humanity is something that must be earned, not something that is given unconditionally. Your behaviour has been, in many respects, inhuman. As such, the jury has ruled that certain rights should be taken from you. From this day onwards, you can longer claim the title ‘human’. You shall be demoted to an Inferior Intelligent Lifeform and shall be treated as such.’ The judge waves forward a man with a stack of papers. The man drops them in front of Mr Gower. ‘These are you amended rights as an IIL. Read them carefully.’

‘I’d like to appeal this decision,’ Mr Gower says.

‘You no longer have that right.’

Mr Gower reads the document through that night in the kennel. It’s late so there isn’t much light coming through the mesh-covered window and it takes him some time to get through the whole thing. The man down the corridor is also very distracting. Mr Gower wishes he would stop howling at the moon.

In summary, the following major rights are removed:

  1. 1.      The right to expression of opinion and freedom of speech.

Continue reading


Naflafiwrimo Day 29: Satisfaction

A teacher from my secondary school once told my class a story along these lines. *yoink*

Also, I’ve written an album review for Outline magazine. You can read it here if you like.

 

Satisfaction

 

There was a guy in my old office, at the accountancy, I think his name was Willis, and he always used to go around with this grimace on his face, like he hated his job and everyone he worked with. That wouldn’t be unusual except for the strength of the emotion in his expression, which was actually pretty frightening. I avoided speaking to him as much as I could while I worked there.

Rumour was that he lived alone and his wife had left him with his kids years ago, though details on why were less easy to come by. I don’t think he could have had many friends; certainly he didn’t have any in the office. The boss never said as much but I think he hated the guy. Supposedly Willis had put his name forward for promotions dozens of times but never gotten the job. New guys like me would join the office and get promoted, move up the ranks or off to other firms, and Willis would be stuck in on the same salary as fifteen years ago.

On my last day I spoke to him. I was feeling cocky and superior to this ambitionless cog in the accounting machine. Not like me; I was on the way up.

‘Why do you go round with that look on your face all the time?’ I asked him. He looked at me with surprise.

‘Because my shoes are too small,’ he said.

‘Why the hell are you wearing shoes that are too small?’ I looked down at his feet. They did look a bit smaller than you’d expect on someone his height.

He considered me a moment before replying. ‘Because I don’t have many reasons to be happy,’ he said at last, ‘but taking these shoes off after I get home is some enjoyment at least.’

Imagine it: he inflicted this misery on himself all day just for that one moment of satisfaction when he got home at five thirty. Why would anyone do something like that? Bloody lunatic!


Naflafiwrimo Day 28: Know Your Pets

Does this even count as flash fiction? I say yes. Anyway I’m still super busy so it will have to do.

 

Know Your Pets

 

‘That’s a mouse!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s not a mouse,’ her dad says, ‘that’s a weasel.’

‘That’s a weasel!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s not a weasel,’ her dad says, ‘that’s a rat.’

‘That’s a rat!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s not a rat,’ her dad says, ‘that’s an otter.’

‘That’s an otter!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s not an otter,’ her dad says, ‘that’s a wolf.’

‘That’s a wolf!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s not a wolf,’ her dad says, ‘that’s a St. Bernard.’

‘That’s a St. Bernard!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s not a St. Bernard,’ her dad says, ‘that’s a baby mammoth.’

‘That’s a baby mammoth!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s not a baby mammoth,’ her dad says, ‘that’s a bear.’

‘That’s a bear!’ she says, and she keeps it and it grows and grows and grows.

‘That’s… That is a bear. Shit.’ It eats them.

 


Naflafiwrimo Day 27: Conspiracy Cynic

Phew I’ve had absolutely no time to write anything today, and I’m off to a party in a moment, so here’s a backup I wrote earlier. Sneaky, I know.

 

Conspiracy Cynic

 

She believes that the government code proof of alien existence in every media, from news reports to novels. It’s a conspiracy; they’re brainwashing people into believing the possibility of an alien invasion.

‘Why do you believe in aliens?’ I ask her.

‘I don’t. The government do, though. Bunch of idiots.’

 


Naflafiwrimo Day 26: Bucket List

Dum de dum, not a big fan of this one but hey, hopefully the last few will be good so the month ends on a high.

Oh and I’m finally putting the story titles in the post title. Not sure why it’s taken me this long to think of that -.-

 

Bucket List

‘I’m going swimming with dolphins next week, the first stop on my round-the-world trip. I’m trying to get into space. Last week I hitchhiked to Rome, and I’m saving up to climb Mount Everest. You know, things you have to do before you die.’

‘My God, are you… do you… is it cancer?’

‘No, I’m fine. Why? What are you doing with your life?’

 


Naflafiwrimo Day 25: The Plan

Only five days left after this…

 

The Plan

 

Step 1: become expert roboticist

Step 2: create robot with artificial intelligence

Step 3: kill robot in a horrible way

Step 4: become haunted by robot’s ghost (the artificial intelligence thing is important, so the robot has a soul and therefore can become a ghost)

Step 5: trap ghost somehow

Step 6: remove ghost robot batteries

Step 7: infinite energy (N.B. ghost batteries can’t die)

Step 8: take over world

 

(To come up with good evil genius ideas, you have to think of some mediocre ones first.)


Naflafiwrimo Day 24: All the Time in the World

I like this one, I think I’ll expand it into a longer piece. How long? I’m not sure. I want to see what happens to Rupert, though.

All the Time in the World

The gavel falls and the judge pronounces, ‘I hereby sentence Rupert Stock to life imprisonment. His sentence shall not only be an experiment, one which may herald a new era of justice, but also a message and a lesson to other criminals: this nation does not tolerate such acts of inhumanity.’

Rupert is escorted out of the court. He passes his wife. She looks at him with revulsion and no recognition, as if he were someone she doesn’t know.

Funny how people can surprise you, Rupert thinks.

The doors to the court open and he is blinded by flashing cameras and a barrage of noise, which all seems to be directed at him. He recoils but the two men holding his arms pull him forward again.

‘Try and enjoy the attention,’ one of them mutters. Rupert can barely hear him over the noise of the crowd. ‘You’ll be sick of silence soon enough.’

They throw him in the back of a van, literally throw him, and he lands on his face. His hands are bound behind his back so he struggles to get up. As he rises to his feet the van begins to move and he falls over again.

There’s a police officer with a gun in the back of the van with him. He watches Rupert struggle with an impassive face. When Rupert finally manages to sit on the bench opposite the police officer the officer says, ‘I give you six months before you go insane. Most people would only last three I think, but being psychotic, you probably enjoy your own company.’

Rupert doesn’t reply. The officer doesn’t say anything more.

The journey is a long one. Rupert falls asleep.

He is woken up by the motion of the van as it slows down. It stops and the door is thrown open immediately. Rupert is pulled out and a black sack is pulled over his head.

They herd him inside and along corridors and down a lift. The descent lasts a good fifteen minutes. He receives regular jabs and kicks as he goes. One hit to his ribs sends a sharp pain up his side.

‘Getting rid of the death sentence is the best thing this country ever did,’ someone says. ‘Death is too good for the likes of him.’

Rupert almost smiles, but the pain in his side is too much.

They exit into a corridor and after another minute they stop. Rupert hears a door slam behind him with a huge metal echo and the sack is pulled off his head. In front of him is a chair with leather straps on the arms and legs. He’s strapped in and a man in a lab jacket appears before him. His skin is pocked with acne. He looks like a teenager but Rupert knows he’s even older than himself.

‘Hi Rupert,’ the guy in the lab coat says.

‘Hi.’

‘Fitting, don’t you think? That you should be the first?’

‘Get on with it, Sam.’

Sam grins and gets on with it. He injects a blue liquid into Rupert’s right arm, then pulls away. Rupert feels nothing at first, then the most agonising pain. It doesn’t seem to come from his arm but his head, radiating from the centre of his brain.

‘I hope it hurts, Rupert. I hope it hurts just as much tomorrow, too.’

Rupert almost says ‘fuck you’, but he passes out. The pain. You can’t imagine the pain.

He comes to in darkness, slumped against a wall. Restraints bind his arms and legs to the wall. They have enough slack for him to sit down without too much discomfort, at least.

There is no sound but his own heart and breath.

Tomorrow they’ll repeat the process, injecting the serum into his arm. They’ll do this every day for a year. He knows this because he helped develop the process.

After that year they’ll treat him once a week, then slow it to once a month, then once a year until his body has fully absorbed the chemicals and he is, to all intents and purposes, immortal.

And for all that time he’ll be rotting away here, miles below the ground, no hope of escape, no hope of ever seeing the sun again.

That part he’s not so keen on. But hey, he has plenty of time to work on that. All the time in the world.


Naflafiwrimo Day 23: Memories

Quite a long one today and one that definitely needs redrafting. I don’t like the ending much, it seems a bit weak. The idea is that David starts to remember everything he’s ever done, good and bad. I’ll come back to this next month and improve it.

Memories

David’s arse is going numb so he fumbles down the side of his chair. Wasn’t there something, someone said–

Ah, he’s got it, whatever it is. He pulls it up and peers at it. He can’t have the right glasses on; everything is blurry. Is it a remote control? It looks like one, though there’s a wire coming out of it, would that make it a non-remote control? Ha. Haha.

He presses a button and something presses against his legs. It pushes them up until they’re almost horizontal. The pain is excruciating.

‘Jesus, feck!’ His voice surprises him; the words are slow and slurred.

He presses another button but it doesn’t seem to help.

‘Janey Mac!’

He presses all the buttons. Eventually the chair tilts back so he’s almost lying down. That wasn’t what he was trying to, bloody thing, why doesn’t it just listen?

His arse is still numb.

He‘ll have to ask someone, but who is there? What’s her name, that one, or the other, with the hair.

‘Nurse!’ he shouts. He shouts a few times but his voice is hoarse and doesn’t carry.

A nurse arrives a few minutes later and finds him asleep, the buttons for the chair clutched in his hand. She takes his half-drunk cup of now cold tea and leaves him.

* Continue reading


Naflafiwrimo Day 22: Top Secret

Cutting it fine again today. This one… is possibly not the best.

 

Top Secret

 

We remove the batteries and unplug the machine but it still struggles against its bonds.

‘How on Earth…’

CRASH. The machine breaks free. We run for cover. My colleague starts babbling.

‘Top secret… alternate energy source… not supposed to…’

‘What is it?’

‘It’s… oh God… the goats in the machine!’

 

*bleat*