a cure for the common block

Archive for the month “July, 2012”


Izzy went to work, just as she had every week day for the past 5 months, and quickly entered her identification number (her birth date) at security, 0-5-1-6-7-9, but as she strolled to her office she thought about the number she had just entered; that wasn’t her birth date, that wasn’t the number she had entered hundreds of times before, was it? An internal debate brewed, she was sure it wasn’t the same number, but that number was accepted, she entered it without hesitation, then she found herself checking her own license to settle the argument, and despite it contradicting several memories she trusted it as the undisputed truth and never gave it a second thought. This came as a great relief to Dr. Stanley, who was in control of the experiment “adjusting” and studying Izzy’s mind, and wondered how else he could override her memories.

#ShortShortStories #Checkpoint


Go Fish

The toad sat perfectly content in the soothing, muddy water, with just his eyes peering above the surface, scanning for a quick meal. Soon, a junebug flitted from twig to twig, searching for.. whatever junebugs search for, the toad wasn’t really concerned with what it was up to, only waiting for it to fly within reach. As it passed overhead, the toads jaws opened and flicked his long, sticky tongue, instantaneously capturing the bug and drawing it into his mouth. Unfortunately for the toad, this junebug was born with a particularly durable exoskeleton, as well as a gland that secreted a vile-tasting oil; within seconds, the toad spat out the little beetle and submerged itself in the murky depths, attempting to cleanse his palate.

#ShortShortStories #GoFish

Dead Man’s Party

Alvin was very satisfied with himself, he was so pleased with the precision of his plan; he had done everything right, he was beyond detection. He quietly slipped through the door, taking a look around to make sure all was clear; silently hiking up the stairs, one at a time. He peered through the rails to see the bedroom door barely cracked open, a sight that was simultaneously relieving and challenging, but he hadn’t reached the door yet, and the second story floor tended to creak under rushed movements. His fingers curved around the edge of the door and pushed gently, blocking the ambient light with his large frame, and he watched her body slowly rise and fall with shallow breaths. Foot by foot, he stepped closer, then took a deep breath as he shifted into bed and under the covers in one, slightly clumsy move, and she unconsciously welcomed her husband back into her warm embrace.

#ShortShortStories #DeadMansParty

Hush, or Synchrony: Part II

Penny walked home from school, her ponytail bouncing left to right – thumbs tucked under the straps of her backpack – as she hummed and sang to herself about the clouds and sun and birds. Then she saw a tall man across the street standing near a tree and she froze. Her thoughts flipped through a dozen words in the mental thesaurus of her vocabulary: boding, creeping, lurking, ominous. Her hand slowly reached into her pocket, her small fingers clasping something as she watched the stranger. She sighed with relief as she saw a puppy leap from behind the tree and the man lean down with a baggy in his hand. She pulled the whistle out from her pocket as she remembered the words of the nice gentleman who spoke to her class about Stranger Danger, “In case you need help.”

#ShortShortStories #Hush #TheGentleman



Faye took the ball given to her by her father and rolled it between her palms as she rocked back and forth, concentrating and focusing her energy, pushing her thoughts into the vessel. She held out her hand and examined the ball, searching the tell-tale “rings of thorn”; she picked it up between her thumb and forefinger, gave it a kiss, and set it in the pot with a twist. As it spun around and around, it left a smokey, glowing trail that expanded and flowed, creating rolling plumes that slowly filled the cauldron until it overflowed; with a smile Faye softly blew away the smoke, eager for her present. As the daze cleared she found a newborn dragon crawling its way around; she dipped her hand down to pick it up, studying the beauty of its movement, and considered appropriate names for the ancient creature.

#ShortShortStories #HappyBirthday #Witch

Lovers Walk

Moira watched Kade walk toward her through the fog, seemingly out of nowhere, and his piercing eyes hooked her; he introduced himself and without hesitation told her that he loved her. She didn’t understand what she saw in his eyes, but she trusted him and believed him and convinced herself that she loved him, too. He took her hand and with a smile that dissolved any doubts or suspicions, told her to follow him. They walked around the corner to a park Moira didn’t recognize, with a candlelit picnic waiting for them. Fear crept along her spine as Kade attempted to explain that this was where they first met as children, first kissed as teenagers, where he asked her to marry him as adults, and he stepped close to her, his toes touching hers, and told her that this was where she said yes. He begged her to remember, and gazed into her eyes, hoping, waiting to see the glimmer of recognition.

#ShortShortStories #LoversWalk

School Hard

Mr. Gianse diligently worked over the essays, not just looking for good grammar and citations, but for comprehension of the material and some sign that the students were learning. He came upon Riley’s paper and furrowed his brow, because while Riley was an exceptional student and his essay was everything one would expect from the best and brightest, Mr. Gianse knew he couldn’t take credit for inspiring such well-crafted work. He stumbled into class the next day, exhausted from toiling all night, only to be met with Paul, Fey, and Tim’s last-minute submissions sitting on his desk. For several years, he kept Paul’s essay on file as a reminder of why he teaches; true, he only made an 81, but he showed greater passion and commitment in that two-page, poorly structured mess than anyone else in the class.

#ShortShortStories #SchoolHard

Empty Places

Xin stood up and tried to recall the previous few moments, piece together how she arrived; she turned to examine her surroundings, but there was nothing to examine, she was literally surrounded by nothing at all – well, almost nothing. She stood on solid… something, but as far as she could see in every single direction was white emptiness; as far as she could walk in every direction was the same. She sat down and considered her circumstances, was she here by chance or by purpose? She assumed it to be a pocket Universe, that it was created by an advanced alien intelligence, and that they transported her there, for reasons she did not yet know. While Xin was exceptionally bright, she underestimated the number of people who disappear each year due to spontaneous wormhole events. #ShortShortStories #EmptyPlaces

Fear, Itself

Darren paced up and down the hall, his wingtips clacking on the tile floor; he wanted to be in there with her, but he understood why he just made things worse. He was a nervous wreck, doubt and paranoia flooding his brain about his abilities as a father; a relationship is one thing, it’s a partnership of equal responsibilities, it’s balanced, but raising a child, caring for another living being so helpless and dependent, it was almost too much for him. Darren took off his tuxedo jacket – revealing sweat stains under the pits of his shirt – and flapped his hands trying to cool off; just then, the doctor came out with news: twins.

#ShortShortStories #FearItself

Fool For Love

Jude nervously tapped the cue ball and sent it rolling gently down the green to hit the side of the twelve, which then spun into the corner pocket; the cue ball, after the collision, twisted off to the other side, and Jude held his breath as he watched it line up perfectly with the eight. Jude’s demeanor shifted dramatically to that of a man with a guaranteed victory. He didn’t even look as he knocked the eight ball into the pocket with one hand, extending the other to his opponent, waiting for the money owed. As he strutted out of the hall and closed the door behind him, he shifted once again, relieved to have won back the money lost the night before, happy to be able to buy a gift for his daughter on her birthday.

#ShortShortStories #FoolForLove

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