a cure for the common block

Archive for the category “golden girls”

If At Last You Do Succeed

Rhianna stood in front of the large metal plate in her garage and pressed a button on the fob in her hand. It hummed, a few strips placed seemingly at random around the plate glowed a soft blue; then shapes emerged, unfolding from what was just a frame, and taking shape into a car. It rose up, revealing a strip along her driveway that extended into the street and in every other direction. Combining solar energy, GPS, and magnetic propulsion transportation became fast, safe, and clean. National Space Agencies could send rockets into space that would unfurl a frame of panels the size of a football field that could block sunlight for nearby telescopes, allowing them to see farther into space. Shunts for clogged arteries, lighter and stronger bulletproof material, the future was shaped by the Origami Revolution: the art of folding.

#ShortShortStories #IfAtLastYouDoSucceed


The Competition

Mickey and Gina had an ambitious plan to make their mark in the underground Den of Thieves; throughout the season they found co-conspirators within almost all of the major teams promising a share in their glory. The best part was their plan to escape jail time: since all they wanted was recognition, once they secured proof of their misdeeds they had no reason to keep the trophy and would release it, forever shrouding the case in mystery to all but those involved. When a Wild Card team not only made it to the playoffs but secured an unprecedented victory over the most successful franchise in history they realized the flaw in their perfect plan: they weren’t the only ones intending to steal the Stanley Cup. While they were spreading themselves thin with contingency plans for their contingency plans, another group was laser focused on one team and ensuring their success by any means necessary.

#ShortShortStories #TheCompetition

The Triangle

Cassandra was in a cold sweat as the loop of her running in panic ran again. The camera zoomed in on her once more and she could no longer tolerate the suspense, bolting off and begging for someone to come help them. This time as the drone looped around she was no longer among them on the feed. This time it swerved over to Jaire, who was paying no attention to the video display on his watch and was instead retching into a trash can. Emory’s eyes turned to him while Willis was still focused on his tablet. Emory saw her boyfriend heaving while Willis saw his friend wipe his mouth, glance at his watch, shake and sprint off into the distance, joining Cassandra. Looking up he saw Jaire finally pull away from the bin only to look at his watch and lose his mind. In turn they would each succumb to the self-fulfilling prophecies they witnessed, never able to break away, never able to escape the deserted island to which they were lured.

#ShortShortStories #TheTriangle

Nothing to Fear, But Fear Itself

Emory was rapt, her eyes dilated as the video flew through the air until it dipped below the clouds revealing scattered islands amid dark blue ocean. Faster and faster until it once again stopped, hovering mid-air, and fractions of seconds apart they all froze, realizing the feed was just a few dozen feet above them. A full minute passed, their individual figures barely visible, but the location undeniable. Suddenly the camera moved again – though none could see any recording device – ceasing just above Cassandra who was now in full panic. The stream showed Cassandra running and screaming, the drone following just ahead of her, keeping her face perfectly in frame, yet when everyone looked up they saw Cassandra still frozen in place, silent. Back to the video, she continued to run and scream for help throughout the resort, until the camera broke away and looped back to its original place a few dozen feet above them, hovering.

#ShortShortStories #NothingToFearButFearItself

The Operation

Willis and Cassandra, and Jaire and Emory were enjoying the leisure activities offered at the island resort: golf, swimming, badminton; and the best part was that they were virtually alone. They had reserved the cheapest dates available: in the middle of December. Being hearty Wisconsinites they knew they could handle even the coldest weather the tropics could offer, but to their delight the tiny island in the Pacific was experiencing unseasonably warm temperatures. They were taking a break, scattered around the Ultimate Frisbee park when they all got news alerts on their phones: a plane carrying a woman from Venezuela to New York for a groundbreaking operation fell off radar, and using GPS to locate her phone discovered it streaming a live video feed, spinning in mid-air without losing altitude. The gang were mesmerized and perplexed by the phone-turned-drone, when suddenly the image blurred as it sped forward, but not downward.

#ShortShortStories #TheOperation

The Vacation

Having finished his wine and tapas, George began his one-mile trek north on the tiny, windswept island off the coast of Africa. The tourist surveyed the landscape which was dappled with thousands of holes protected by walls of stone stacked upon stone. Aside from the wind the island was also known for the fact that it was created by thousands and thousands of volcanic eruptions, which resulted in rich, ashy soil capable of retaining moisture for months. This soil, especially when combined with the moisture carried by the air through the small gaps in the stone walls, created ideal conditions for the grapevines buried in the holes, creating possibly the most peculiar looking vineyard on Earth.

#ShortShortStory #TheVacation

The Engagement

Miranda was absolutely stunning in her red dress as she glanced back into the party from her balcony with a half-smile. It was supposed to be one of the happiest nights of her life, her engagement party. While her home was filled with friends and family from childhood and school, to recent friendships through her career as a dental assistant, something was off. She looked out into her garden deep in thought when Matthew approached her, briefly startling her leading to a back-and-forth mumbling of apologies and excuses. They had dated for a few months, and were friends for a decade before that, but he knew her better than anyone, possibly even her fiancee. He asked her what was bothering her and she knew he wasn’t just being kind or trying to warm her up for some kind of favor. She grieved that several of her exes, whom she still felt close to even if the romantic feelings were gone, were still trying to impress her and win her affection. Her eyes welled up because these men couldn’t just be happy for her, they still couldn’t see her as a friend.

#ShortShortStories #TheEngagement

Great Expectations

Clay and Rebecca cherished their only son, Zach, showering him with love and affection, doing everything they could to make him happy. As Rebecca walked with him through the toy aisle at the store, he pointed to a big flashy robot, asking if he could get it for his birthday; Rebecca smiled and agreed that it looked like a lot of fun, but reminded him how much he enjoyed building things and pointed to a modest construction set. His eyes lit up and he held the box, reading over the hundreds of different things he could build and his attention was immediately refocused. Clay and Rebecca couldn’t afford much, but thankfully they both knew skillful ways to talk their son out of gifts without him realizing how poor they were.

#ShortShortStories #GreatExpectations

Old Boyfriends

The realization that she may have dated a murderer – that she could have become one of his victims – visibly weighed on Lisa Shupkin as she told the detectives with grey temples about her time with Wayne Stuart Yates. She gave them a letter, a token she saved as a joke to ‘brag’ about the creepiest man she ever dated, which was about to become a piece of evidence in the trial of a suspected serial killer. It was a love letter written to – not about – her eyes, pining to preserve them forever in a jar set upon his nightstand so they would be the first thing he saw in the morning, and the last thing he saw at night. They pored over the details and Whit asked about a reference to a mantle, if it was just poetic license or if he used to have a mantle somewhere in his old house? Lisa explained with bemusement that he was referring to his stepfather’s cabin, and the look on their faces told her that this was the first they heard about the cabin and her heart sank even deeper. Lisa had been to the cabin many times, seen the things Wayne had done to animals, his “collection”; if the detectives had enough evidence without stepping foot in the cabin, the last fleeting dram of doubt about Wayne’s guilt evaporated from her mind.

#ShortShortStories #OldBoyfriends


It had been ten years since the release of Clea Mercy, Set stopped killing, suspects were cleared of any involvement and the case went cold. Then a new body lead detectives to their strongest suspect: Wayne Stuart Yates, a metal shop teacher whose mother was a trained taxidermist. The case was mostly circumstantial, but their strongest and weakest evidence was Clea’s testimony; the defense would no doubt contest that she had given it so many times it could no longer be relied upon as an accurate memory, but was now just a story that had been rehearsed dozens of times. However, with access to people from their suspect’s personal life they could attempt to corroborate elements from the story and find a new witness. Whit and Garza probed Wayne’s life as it was ten years earlier; friends revealed a loathing resentment for his mother, co-workers described a morbid sense of humor, and an ex-girlfriend was unsettled by his obsession with her eyes.

#ShortShortStories #Witness

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