Defying Omens – Flash Fiction Challenge – Rodeo #3

Title: Defying Omens
Source:  Flash Fiction Challenge
Prompt: Write a story in three acts.
Word count:  99 words

white ship painting

Photo by Filip Mroz on Unsplash

Captain Graclynn Silver took the helm, barking orders for the crew to set sail. Doubt’s icy tendrils wheedled into her brain, clutching at her heart as the foghorn blew. Filmy sheets glazed the water’s surface, fusing with the sky to create a veil of uncertainty that did not bode well for their journey.

“Omens be dammed,” she shouted as she sought her bearings, and the ship crunched forward in search of open seas.

She tacked to starboard, advancing slowly, allowing history to drown in their dissipating wake. The fog lifted. Freed from fear, the sun promised smooth sailing ahead.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Pirate’s Revenge – Flash Fiction Challenge – Rodeo #2

Title: Pirate’s Revenge
Source:  Flash Fiction Challenge
Prompt: Write a mashup.
Word count:  99 words

The sloop bucked and rolled, as her new commander navigated the cumulonimbus clouds thundering along the squall line. They sailed in pursuit of the notorious Nose Bender, the pirate who had slain their beloved captain and stole their hard-won booty.

The Heartbreak Kid, trained for pirate antics, seized the helm and dared to spin the wheel of fortune. He took command, shouted orders, and tamed the Bodacious Mermaid. His actions earned the crew’s respect. They knew they played a deadly game. Facing sudden death, vowing revenge, they swore to fight in the bonus round, until the losing horns sounded.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Silver Lining — Thursday photo prompt

Title: Silver Lining
Source:  Thursday photo prompt: Clouds #writephoto
Word count: 230 words

the image shows the sun behind the bare branches of winter trees in a blue sky darkened by clouds.

Jessie raced outside, stopping to shove her feet into her shoes before letting the door slam behind her. At the end of the driveway, she realized she her coat was inside. It didn’t matter. She wasn’t going back. She was never going back.

The icy wind knifed through her wool sweater, finding the spaces in the closely knit fabric. Jessie pulled the sweater closed around her neck and remembered what she left in her hasty exit.

Her coat was one, she thought and shivered. There were clothes in the bedroom closet, her favorite pair of jeans among them. She hated leaving them, and the toiletries in the bathroom.

Jessie stopped suddenly, grasping at her throat, her fingers probing until she touched the sterling silver chain.  She wound her fingers around the chain, tugging the pendant free. She clutched it in her fist and closed her eyes. Thank God she thought.

Jessie heaved a sigh of relief, tucked it under her shirt, and continued walking. There was more, she knew, but she didn’t want to think about that yet. Jessie wondered if she could block it forever.

She glanced around to determine how far she had come and which way she needed to go. She blinked as the sun struggled to escape its gray shroud. A thin ray touched her face and Jessie smiled. She knew exactly where she was going.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Undying Love — Friday Fictioneers

Title: Undying Love
Source:  Friday Fictioneers sponsored by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields-Addicted to Purple
Word count: 100 words


PHOTO PROMPT © Randy Mazie

Javier sat on the cemetery wall, checking his list, and tried to ignore the bleating goat.  He promised Alma he would follow her instructions tonight and he couldn’t disappoint her. Long ago, he had pledged his love and swore to protect her with his life. She said it would never come to that.

That night the cemetery lay shrouded in eerie silence. The full moon illuminated the goat and voodoo relics swimming in a pool of blood on the discarded marble slab.

Javier knelt, marveling at Alma’s pale skin sparkling in the wan light and raised her from her slumber.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Into the Light


Photo by Mario Azzi on Unsplash

I stepped away from the console, rolled my shoulders and rubbed my neck.  The three of us had been working without speaking since dusk. The lights blinked on my panel and I waited.

Sister Minette glanced at me, pressed two more indicators on her screen, then turned her full attention on me.

“It will work, you know,” she whispered.

“I know.”

We turned to stare at Sister Prudence. Her face, illuminated by the lime-green glow of the screen, almost looked familiar.

She finished the sequence, then looked at me.

“Unless it kills you,” she said.

“Sister, we talked about this. It will work,” Sister Minette chided.

“You’re confident considering what you did to Alfred.”

“Alfred may be fine,” Sister Minette said.

“More likely he is dead. If it had worked, we would have heard. You and your damn optimism killed him. And you’re going to kill tonight,” Sister Prudence said. The veins in her neck popped as she spoke.

Sister Minette only started at her sister.

“This is foolish, and it’s your fault,” Sister Prudence continued.

I placed my hand on her shoulder. I could tell she had forgotten my presence as she jumped and turned ready to attack.

“Listen,” I said, “I know you have your doubts, but I don’t. If we don’t do this now, we will lose our window. Besides, didn’t you say this was my destiny?”

The console pulsed, lights flashed, and alarms sounded as a light filled my vision and the sisters faded from view.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Day of Blood

Red clouds

Photo by Laura Vinck on Unsplash

Crimson robes fluttered, flowing behind Bellona like a boiling sea. The doors of the great hall slammed, and Lucina ran to keep up with her sister.

“What are we going to do?” Lucina asked.

Bellona didn’t respond. She wished she had worn her breastplate and whip to the audience. Still, her tongue had provided a brutal lashing.

“Did you have to provoke him?” Lucina panted, intercepting her sister on her march through the palace corridors.

“What?” Bellona’s voice echoed on the marble walls. She stopped before colliding with Lucina.

Lucina trembled as her sister’s proud anger pounded on her soul.

“Bellona, he means to kill you,” Lucina whispered. She clutched Bellona’s sleeve and saw the fire in her sister’s eyes ebb.

“Believe me, I know it. If he wants war, then he has pissed off the right girl.”

Bellona petted Lucina’s hand and attempted to smile. But the anger won.

“Genius thinks he is a special god, but he is a snake. I will chop off his head and condemn his writhing body to the eternal flames of hell.”

Lucina flinched and clenched Bellona’s sleeve wadding into a crumpled ball.

“I will not allow him to continue his assertion that genius is only within the domain of men. Tradition dictates we bestow genius on every human being.”

“What will you do?”

“We are going to the Field of Mars. There we will assemble the Bellonarii and send a messenger to mother. I swear. He will have his day of blood.”


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Until Death — Flash Fiction Challenge

Title: Until Death
Source:  Flash Fiction Challenge
Prompt: Write a story about Cora Kingston.
Word count:  99 words


Photo credit: Canon Fodder on / CC BY-SA

Cora read Papa’s letter again, hoping the words would change, knowing they would not. Her beloved John had succumbed. Typhoid. She pressed the letter to her heart and closed her eyes, remembering the last time they had been together, the day they said goodbye.

She was excited. Papa arranged for her to accompany cousin Olivia on her Grand Tour. They would be gone a year and when she returned, she and John would marry.

The thought grabbed her heart, squeezing, constricting, making her wish for death.

She sat, immobile, cold, her life disintegrating. Papa’s letter fluttered to the floor.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Write

Diamond Dust — Thursday photo prompt

Title: Diamond Dust
Source: Thursday photo prompt: Beneath #writephoto
Word count: 110 words

the image shows a gnarled, winter tree, and the sun glowing behind the hills, reflecting in the waters of a clear lake.

I dipped my toe into the icy cold water and felt the chill spread through my body. The weak warmth of the winter sun would soon slide below the horizon and allow me to advance my work.

Father Boreas raced ahead of me, preparing the way for my transformation. Reaching, slowly growing, my touch crept forward in geometric progressions. I inhaled gasping gusts of air, harvesting heat from every surface, and exchanged the gift with crystalline beauty.

The sky devoid of sun, the deep darkness of the void reflected blackness and despair. But hope ascended with Sister Selene’s silver chariot and she smiled at me through falling flakes of snow.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Art Depot — 3 Line Tales

From Sonya’s 3LineTales at Only100Words.
You can find the original prompt here. Thank you, Sonya.

photo by Jan Genge via Unsplash

Otto knew he would never understand the newfangled galleries.

Corrugated metal, curved plastic baffled walls he thought looked more like grain silos than repositories for great art.

He visited intending to condemn, to demand a proper exhibition space, but his opinion changed when he walked in the door.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

O Tannenbaum — 100 Word Wednesday

Title: O Tannenbaum
Source:  100 Word Wednesday: Week 100
Word count: 100 words

We passed the tree lot as we were finishing our Christmas shopping, and Sissy begged me to stop.

“Can we get one?” she pleaded, painting on her ‘Daddy’s best girl’ smile and clasping her hands under her chin.

Who was I to say ‘no’? Besides, it brought back memories of my childhood.

We loved it.

“It is a Charlie Brown tree,” my wife stated.

“It is full of needles.  They’ll drop and make a mess,” she proclaimed.

She banished the tree to the den, far from her picture postcard perfection.

Christmas morning, we discovered Santa’s gifts under our beautiful tree.


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer