Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2017/09/24

I stared at the picture. She floated there, halfway between the ceiling and the floor. Filling the room with water had been difficult. I’d spent weeks sealing the door, and the windows, so the water didn’t leak into the yard, or the hallway. I was quite happy with the result. A ground floor room, filled with water. And the walls didn’t collapse. They held, against all that water. That I’d made them from cinder block, packed with concrete, and steel bars probably didn’t hurt. That took months also. Making them look like normal walls took weeks. Getting the plaster layer right, with the right texture, and color, had taken ages, and I’d had to tear it down, and scrape it all off several times.

The result had been worth it. The image was priceless. Beautiful. Perfect.

As difficult as it had been to get the room straight, the hardest part had been her. I’d needed someone who could hold her breath for half an hour. They don’t make humans that way. But it had to be half an hour. That’s how long it took the water to settle when it was stirred. How long it took every bubble to fade.

So, I’d had to make her.

I’d had to find a way to build a five foot four inch blonde, with blue eyes, and killer legs. A doll. That’s all she was. A doll. Life size. I’d spent a thousand sleepless nights trying to get every detail right. The hair. The lips. The skin. The fingers, and nails. Toes, ankles, wrists, eyes, nose. All of it. Every detail.

I remembered the wigs. I’d torn boxes of them apart to get all the right hairs. And I’d placed each one. Thousands of them. One at a time. I had to get them the right color, the right length. I threw entire bags of wasted hair out in the trash. I’m certain the trash people wondered what I was doing. And I wondered how many women had needed the wigs I’d destroyed.

Her skin was textured plastic. It felt all wrong to touch, but it was perfect to look at. Perfect to see.

The ballet gown was hand made. The sequins each placed perfectly. Each where it had to be. Each part of an intricate puzzle. Only when they were all placed did the gown look perfect. The seams, and the skirt with all it’s separate feathers, and bits of fabric.

She was a work of art. My work of art. I’d learned that when I was making her. As I’d learned I’d never find her in this life.

She’d made the perfect picture. One I’d love forever. My perfect image of a woman. The woman I wanted. The woman I could never have.

And I knew, as I’d known when I was making her, I would never find her. Never know her laugh, her touch, her smile. Never learn to love her. To care for her. She was everything I wanted. Everything I dreamed of. And everything I would never find.

All she would ever be was the woman in the picture. And I would grow old, and die. And live my entire life.

Unloved and alone.

536 Words

Miranda Kate‘s weekly short fiction challenge is in it’s 22nd week. You can read about the challenge here. This week, I tried something different again Hope it’s worth the effort. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that show up. They are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.


Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2017/09/17

See. They close the pier every day, at frickin’ 0100 hours. And then they open it again at 0400 hours. And I do my job, and clean up after the dirtiest, filthiest animals on the planet in that three short hours.

Oh, sure. Everybody knows there’s fishing line and hooks under the pier. That’s what the damn thing’s there for. Fishing. And they still make people so stupid they drop the line straight down from the pier, and watch it get washed into the pilings, where they’ll never get it back again.

Every three months I sell the lead weights from the fishing lines to a local shop. And that shop sells them right back to the idiots that lost them in the first place. Hell, I put an X on one of them. I’ve sold it back to the shop three times now.

They got signs right on the pier. “No littering!” And they got big ass trash cans right next to the signs. And every damn day I pull paper cups, empty soda bottles, burger wrappers, paper bags, and those damn little ketchup packets, out of the water and sand. Every day. Why? ‘Cause people are fucking stupid, that’s why. And they’re fucking lazy. Can’t bother to walk six damn feet to put the wrapper in the trash, so just hang it over the rail of the pier, and quietly let go.

I mean, who cares? Right? Who cares?

And every now and then, I have to do something with a dead seagull that choked on that shit, or a turtle that got tangled in it and drowned.

And I have to ask. I have to. What idiot parent takes their baby fishing on a god damned pier? Seriously. It’s not like the baby’s going to catch anything. Poor kids. Sitting there all day, frying in the damn sun. Daddy or mommy periodically adding another layer of that sunscreen shit to them, to keep them safe from the sun. Poor kids probably thinking, “Can we get the fuck out of here, and go somewhere with an air-conditioner, and shade?”

Everybody knows what babies do, right? Shit. In their diapers. And I pull fucking pampers full of shit out of the fucking ocean every fucking day. Throw one of them bitches in the ocean, and then wonder why you can’t catch any fish. Idiots. Fish see that sucker, and they know, “Shit! It’s Shit! I’m outta here!” And they all leave.

Jesus, humans are stupid.

Beer cans. My god, the beer cans. And the plastic six pack rings. It’s like people think they’re having fun, drinking beers while tossing a hook and bit of lead tied to a long nylon line into the ocean all day. “Man. This is the life.” Chug. Belch. “Caught anything Bob?” And throw the empty can off the pier.

So that I have to fish your fucking beer cans out of the sand and water, so the same guy can do the same thing tomorrow. “Caught anything, Bob?” Belch. Throw another can into the ocean.

I tell you what. I think Mr. Beer Can thrower, and Mr. You Shit In Your Pamper, should do my job for a month. They’d fucking grow up.

537 Words

Miranda Kate‘s weekly short fiction challenge is in it’s 21st week. You can read about the challenge here. This week, I tried something different again Hope it’s worth the effort. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that show up. They are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.

#ThursThreads Week 282 : We’ll Have To See About That

What Pastor Greg couldn’t explain to his congregation turned up on social media Monday morning, after the church was torched. It was great fun to watch him react to the spread of his browsing history, in particular, his visits to the dark web. He started receiving phone calls at dawn, with his most stalwart supporter, Mrs. Simmons, asking if it was true that he regularly watched child pornography.

From there, the phone calls began to happen ever couple of minutes, until Pastor Greg gave up, and turned off his phone, and then logged out of his email accounts.

Around ten that morning, he did what I’d hoped for. He made a visit to a chat room on the dark web, where he started a conversation with a certain person named Harry. Of course, Harry told him not to worry, it would all be taken care of.

I found it interesting how he visited the same Harry visited by Tiffany. I thoroughly enjoyed Harry’s last words to Pastor Greg, “Go visit the page. You know where. It will help you relax.” The page was a live feed of grown men sexually assaulting young girls.

“We’ll have to see about that, Harry,” I made certain to echo Pastor Greg’s video selection to every social media network. It made quite a splash.

219 Words

I finally got around to writing part 14 of the Armor 17 story I started way back in Week 239 of #ThursThreads. I really should write more. It’s Week 282 of #ThursThreads, hosted by Siobhan Muir. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are always fun to read.

Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2017/09/10

They came through the walls, one black, one white, like good and evil, or perhaps darkness and light. There was no sound, no thundering of hooves, no cries of horses, not even the sound of them breathing. All I hear was silence, and perhaps my own heart beating.

I watched them race across the room, and vanish into the wall on the far side. As if they’d never been there, never existed. But I knew I’d seen them. As I sat there, staring at a the darkness of the night, wondering if I’d sleep any, or if sleep was a gift I would be denied that night, they’d come through one wall, and left through another.

I know they were real. I felt the air move as the raced through. Felt the floor shake and shudder from the pounding of their hooves. Saw the prints they left in the carpet, temporary and soon to fade away, so I would be the only one who saw them. As if a dream came to life. A race perhaps, of darkness and light.

What did it mean? What could it have been? Why had I seen them? Would my imagination create something like that? So real? The only thing missing being sound?

I spent hours that night, staring at the walls of my room, unable to sleep, unable to shake the feeling that my world would change on the day to come, leaving me forever changed.

There had been similar nights, with similar apparitions. The night so long ago, when I was still young, and saw Jupiter shining in the night, from the window of my room. The next day, my then girl friend told me we were through. My world had changed, and I was never the same.

Another night, when I stayed awake, and spoke with the cat, who patiently let me say anything I wished, so long as I scratched her ears, and tummy, and hugged her now and then. She’d fallen asleep on my lap, and I had refused to move until she woke. The lightning and thunder of a storm had awakened me several hours later, to find the cat had left my lap, and wandered to the dining room. I found her body there. My world had changed again, as I’d lost someone I’d truly loved.

My mother stood beside my at my computer one night, I couldn’t tell you the time, other than it was an absurd hour, on a night I was disturbed, and spent all night staring at meaningless words on a computer screen as I tried to find a way to sleep. I’d known I’d fail. And my mother silently walked up, and stood beside me, and held my hand. I never heard a sound, but I knew what she’d said. “Sleep my son. You’ll need your rest. It will all be OK. You’ll see.”

Dad called the next morning, while I slept on the floor next to my computer desk. I answered my cell phone. “Son. It’s me. Dad. You need to come home now. It’s Mom…”

And my life had changed again.

So I wondered, as I sat there, staring at the walls, and the darkness in the night. Would my world change the next day? Would anything ever be the same? What was it the horses had tried to say to me?

I knew, the only answer was to wait. To see what happened.

When tomorrow came.

577 Words

Miranda Kate‘s weekly short fiction challenge is in it’s 20th week. You can read about the challenge here. This week, I tried something different again Hope it’s worth the effort. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that show up. They are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.

Dear Andrew…

Dear Andrew,

Wherever you may be, in whatever part of existence, whatever dimensions we find ourselves when we’ve passed beyond the veil of this life. I wish to speak with your soul for a moment, if I may. Because, there are things I would say. Words I have never spoken. About this world I remain within. This world you could no longer live within.

I know the darkness, you know. The agony. The torture. Where you pray, “God, please. Shoot me. Put me in a car wreck. Break my bones. Crush these hands. Anything. Anything, please. I don’t care what it is, so long as you take the reason my soul aches this way from me.” Where all you want, all you dream of, is for your heart to no longer bleed, and your soul to no longer cry.

In know the darkness, and I always have, where no one understands, and no one sees. Because they are too wrapped up inside the world they elect to live within. With their looks into the mirror each morning, and the same words Bob Fosse said before every scene in “All That Jazz”. You know those words too, I know that. “It’s show time!” As he took his pills, washed them down with alcohol, and dulled his heartache with tobacco.

It’s so horrible, isn’t it. To know how many wake each day, and rather than think, rather than feel, rather than look at the flowers blooming in their gardens outside, or the clouds in the pale blue sky, they look in the mirror, and they say unspoken words. I know you heard those words too. The same words I hear every day. “Don’t think. Don’t feel. Just do it. Just do the job.”

For some of us, well. We can’t live that way. You know. We just can’t. We try, God how we try. And we stare at the ceiling every night, after everyone around us has long since gone to sleep, and we wonder how long, how many more days, we can keep doing this. How many more days we can keep living a lie. How many days we can pretend everything is OK. How many days we have to wonder how many people were shot to death. How many people went to bed hungry. How many haven’t eaten in days. How many drowned everything in another six pack of beer. Or ate the entire box of cookies and watched TV until they passed out, so they didn’t have to notice what they felt.

I’m so sorry, Andrew, that I didn’t say these words to you sooner. That I didn’t say to you, “I know the darkness.”

Now? Now you will be a memory to most. Some, those who truly were close to you, will always remember you. Your smile. The time you spent with them. The way you made it all OK, no matter how awful their day had been.

And, you will be myth. A story they tell their children, and their friends. “You musn’t be like him.” They’ll do what people do. They’ll speak of you in whispers. “He shot himself, you know. It’s so sad. We never saw it coming.”

And the darkness will stay right where it is. People will get up each day, to go to work. And just like Bob Fosse in that movie. They’ll take their pills, wash them down with alcohol, and then numb their bodies, and their feelings with tobacco. Or they’ll drink their coffee, and eat too many donuts, and have a toke or two, so they can cope. So they don’t have to feel. So they don’t have to think. So they can look at each other, and nod their heads, and say, “It’s all good.”

They’ll never admit otherwise, you know. They never will. Someone they know starves to death, and they’ll do what they always do. You’ll see it on Facebook, and Twitter. “It’s so sad, what happened.” And then, they’ll get up the next morning, and make like Bob Fosse again.

And slowly kill themselves, one day at a time, until they can’t feel anything at all.

I know the Darkness, Andrew.

And it breaks my heart to know that darkness finally broke your heart, and left it bleeding. That it beat your soul until only tears, and bruises remained.

And it breaks my heart to know.

Nothing will change.

Nothing will change.

Nothing will change.

And I know. That’s why you had to leave. Because, you saw that truth too. You saw.

Nothing will change.

Whatever dimensions you live in now, somewhere beyond the veil of this life. I wish you happiness. And joy. And all the things the darkness in this life takes away. May those who know, who you are now with, take care of you, and help you heal, so you can shine the light you are meant to shine. A light this world only seeks to destroy.

I hope, Andrew, you don’t mind that I speak these words now. I know I should have said them sooner. But, sometimes, my own war with this darkness we live within blinds me to everything but the bleeding of my own heart, and the tears my own soul cries.

Be at peace now, my friend.

And someday. We will meet again.

Your friend,