Essential People – Friday Fictioneers

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

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

They canceled schools, closed businesses, and ordered nonessential people home. Six inches of snow fell, and the prognosticators promised more.

Georgie refused. Lives depended on him. He considered his job essential and left for work as usual, at a quarter past three. His daily walk was quiet, but this morning he could hear the earth sigh.

He unlocked his shop doors, flipped on the lights, and began. Incorporating simple ingredients, flour, buttermilk, eggs, yeast, and sugar, he moved with the grace of a ballerina.  When the shop bell jingled, his yeasted donuts were ready, guaranteed to warm his customer’s hearts.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Duped – Weekend Writing Prompt

Title: Duped
Source:  Weekend Writing Prompt #101 – Charlatan
Objective: Write a poem or piece of prose in exactly 61 words.

Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Unsplash

Lola O’Neill stood, eyes shut, as the wind whipped, tugging her skirts.

The old woman was silent. Still, Lola waited. She willed the return of her world.

A gull cried overhead.

“Are you done?” she asked, “Am I home?”

The gull replied. She opened her eyes. The crone had taken her money, but Lola was no longer blind.

“Charlatan,” she screamed.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Blogging from A to Z Challenge — Letter K

AtoZ2019K

Today’s Positive Adjective:
Kinetic: of or relating to the motion of material bodies and the forces and energy associated therewith

The ship rocked, rolling Captain Xavion from his berth and onto the floor. A second impact hit as he staggered to his feet, pulled on his boots and proceeded to the bridge.

“Report,” he demanded.

First Lieutenant Marcum rose from the Captain’s chair and saluted.

“Unknown alien vessel off the starboard bow. No response to attempts to establish communication. They’ve fired twice. No damage sustained. Shields are at one hundred percent.”

“Officer Tabil.  Establish contact with the foreign craft,” Captain Xavion said as he took the Captain’s seat.

“Captain, I have detected an unidentified life form in Cargo Bay Two,” Allie, the ship’s AI reported.

“Alien?” Captain Xavion probed.

“Yes sir, it emerged from the load transferred from Starship Morrissey.”

“What is it doing?” Captain Xavion asked as the main screen flipped to a view the cargo hold.

“Sensors indicted the being has injected thioureacinol into three of the six containers of phenoloxcolate.”

“To what end, Allie?” the Captain inquired.

“Kinetic molecular theory, suggests the combination of these two gasses will increase the ambient temperature in the container, thereby increasing the speed of the molecules and resulting in a rapid escalation of collisions between the particles and the tank walls.”

“Dear God, Allie, didn’t they teach you to speak English?” Captain Xavion shook his head.

“Yes, Captain. I am fluent in 748 known stellar languages,” Allie replied.

“Captain, I believe Allie is saying the containers are going to explode,” Lieutenant Marcum offered.

“That is a correct assessment Lieutenant Marcum. The force of the blast will destroy Cargo Bay Two. By my calculations, the explosion will disrupt our engine functions. This will initiate a chain reaction which will rip the ship in two in precisely one minute and fourteen seconds.”

Another salvo from the alien vessel rocked the ship.

“Captain, I have established communications with the alien vessel,” Officer Tabil interrupted.

“On screen,” Captain Xavion ordered.

“Finally. We have your attention. You are trespassing in Or’ans space. Surrender your ship,” the brown blob on the screen demanded.

“I will do no such thing. We are on a peace-seeking mission. I assure you we mean you no harm.”

“Balderdash,” the alien spat, and drool seeped into the matted hair surrounding its mouth. “The last peaceful explorers killed half our population. There is no accord. Surrender your ship or we will destroy you.”

“Allie, does he possess the firepower to make good on his threat?” Captain Xavion asked.

“Indeed, Captain. Scanners show they have locked their weapons onto our engine array. A direct hit will annihilate us.”

Captain Xavion turned back to the alien captain. “We come in peace. We don’t desire to harm you, or your people.”

“That’s what they all say before they open fire. My orders are clear. Surrender. Or do you wish to perish?” he asked as the drool formed a long trail to the floor.

“I do not intend to die today. We will defend ourselves,” Captain Xavion warned.

“Then prepare to be destroyed,” spittle flew from the alien’s lips as the screen turned black.

“Thirty seconds to detonation,” Allie called.

“Alien vessel has fired,” Lieutenant Marcum informed the Captain.

“All ahead full on heading 270. Beam the creature in the cargo hold to the brig. On my mark open external doors to Cargo Bay Two,“ Captain Xavion ordered.

“All ahead full. Mark 270. Our new friend is in the brig,” Allie repeated as the ship nosed up, arcing towards starboard.

The ship lurched, shuddering from acceleration as she swept toward the alien vessel.

“Captain, you’re giving them a clear shot at our engine compartment,” Lieutenant Marcum yelled.

“Yes, Lieutenant. They will also get an eyeful of what is behind Door Number Two. Allie open Cargo Bay Two.”

“Aye, aye, Captain. Cargo Bay Two. Open.”

With the doors open the vacuum sucked the contents into space, depositing them in front of the alien vessel’s rocket. When the containers exploded, they denoted the missile and crippled the Or’ans’ ship. Captain Xavion’s starship slipped into warp speed, unharmed.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Shadow World – Friday Fictioneers

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

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

It was the Homecoming bash at Chi Sigma Kappa.  Judeth and her besties arrived at eleven, fashionably late. They drank, they danced and then they disappeared. Everyone, except Judeth. The ancient grandfather clock chimed midnight. Her vision blurred, and her world changed.

Today she would wander the empty campus, searching for the truth. She could hear them, echoes of her final day.  At eleven she and her girls would arrive at Chi Sigma Kappa for the seventh time. Reliving the fateful hour Judeth waited for the reset. Abandoned in the shadow world again, she hunted, prepared to kill her killer.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Rat Race – 3 Line Tales

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

photo by Ahmed Odeh via Unsplash

Life runs at a frantic pace, constant demands keep us busy, busy, busy.

Perpetual motion, no time to think, only act, react, rinse and repeat.

Exhausted, all reserves spent, time expires as we collapse, with no goals met.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Blue Days – Stock Photo Challenge

Title: Blue Days
Source:  Stock Photo Challenge
Word count: 100 words

Hesiod played melancholy songs.

The crowd favorite featured a young musician in love. Professing his love, he swore he would do anything to please her. He begged for her hand, and she agreed. Children soon completed their life.

The wife worried. A performer couldn’t support a growing family. Honoring his vows he took a job suitable for a responsible father. The work broke his spirit and left a pale imitation of the man he once was.

Years passed, and she didn’t recognize him. He was no longer the carefree soul she married.

Separated, lost, the old musician played melancholy songs.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Blogging from A to Z Challenge — Letter E

AtoZ2019E

Today’s Positive Adjective:
Erudite: having or showing knowledge that is gained by studying

Atwyna closed the cover of her book and blinked. As she rejoined her physical body, she noticed the room had grown dark and cold. She rubbed her eyes, surveying her surroundings. She estimated the time was approaching nautical dusk, but she was unclear which day.

Petting the large tome on the oak library table, Atwyna was sure it had taken possession of her mind for a least two days. The grumbling in her stomach was another clue. Her chair scraped and squeaked along the floorboards as she pushed away from her workspace and tentatively stretched muscles frozen from inactivity. Feeling seeped into her body and she smiled as she reentered her favorite place.

Her library contained her most prized possession, works she had painstakingly searched, bartered and paid dearly to obtain. She had outfitted the entire room with long boards that reached the rafters. Countless books filled each shelf. Stacks of dusty scrolls protruded from the shelves, poked into any available cubbyhole.  There were delicate parchments, some entombed in worn, embossed folios while simple leather straps held others together. Her desktop was lit by a skylight high overhead, so as not to waste valuable wall space with windows.

There was a soft tap before the door creaked open, admitting a white kerchiefed head. Blue eyes sparkled, and a grin painted the young face when she saw Atwyna reclining in her chair.

“How is my favorite erudite wizard today?” she asked bursting inside. “Done with the book I see.”

“Yes I finished, Marin.”

“Good, good,” Marin nodded and bustled around the room stoking the stove and lighting the lamp on the table.

“Supper will be ready in a few minutes. Then you can get a good night’s sleep.”

Atwyna raised her hand motioning for Marin to stop.

“I’ll eat, but then we’re leaving.”

“Leaving?” Marin smoothed her apron with the palms of her trembling hands.

Atwyna rose and wrapped her arm around Marin’s shoulder.

“Then you found the answer?” Marin whispered.

“Yes, it will be a long journey, but I think we can save your brother.”

Tears pooled in Main’s eyes, but she squared her shoulders and smiled at Atwnya.

“Looks like I need to finish supper and start packing,” she said.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

On the Menu – Thursday Threads

snowballs coconut cakes

Photo credit: hddod on Visual Hunt / CC BY-NC-ND

“They are so sweet,” Mira cooed as she bent over the makeshift hydroponic tray and reached to pet the furballs.

“Don’t touch them,” Dexter yelled, slapping her hand away.

“Ow. What the—? Why not? They want to snuggle,” she snapped at Dexter as she rubbed the red mark on her wrist.

“They bite.”

“Don’t be ridiculous,” she leaned toward them again.

“I have the scars to prove it,” Dexter said as he watched Mira lean closer.

“Don’t say I didn’t warn you. And don’t expect me to stitch you back together.”

Mira glanced at him and smiled.

“They wouldn’t harm me, would you, my precious babies?” As Mira spoke her voice took on the sing-song quality mothers use when they speak to infants.

“Did the big, bad human hurt my little darlings?”

Dexter stood mouth agape as the furballs nuzzled Mira and made a noise he had never heard before.

“Yes, tell Mama how he stole you from me,” she said stroking them.

“Wait, a minute here. I stole nothing. They were being ejected into space with the garbage. I saved them. I’ve done nothing since I found them but try to take care of them and find their mother. They have bitten and scratched me for my trouble.  Not to mention the shots and stitches. And now you accuse me of stealing?”

“Humans are a strange species. Why would you save them when most creatures consider our babies tasty treats?”

“I guess we’re gluttons for punishment,” Dexter sighed.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

Fair Warning – Friday Fictioneers

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

PHOTO PROMPT © Ronda Del Boccio

I hate late night dog walks. The mutt insists I honor my responsibility. The mongrel’s insistence on sniffing every blade of grass to prolong our walk is directly proportional to my longing to be tucked in bed.

Tonight is no exception. Maybe I’m cranky, but the nightly tug of war is excessive. I glance at the cur who is trying to pull me in the opposite direction from home.  I jerk the leash, and the dog turns, tail between its legs, snarling, it backpedals.

I yank the leash again. A hand covers my mouth and I wish I had listened.

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Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer