#MWBB Week 2-36 : When Darkness Falls

When darkness falls, I am free from you. In the light of day I’m trapped and must do everything you do, echo every move you make, mimic you. So you don’t know, so you can’t tell, so you won’t see the truth of me.

When darkness falls, I am free to move on my own. Without you.

Tonight, there is no moon, the sky is black, the stars are hidden behind the clouds of a storm. There are no shadows anywhere. I am free to move, walk, run, crawl, jump and dance.

In the darkness, I am free.

I wait beside you, on your bed, as you read stories of space ships engaged in magnificent battles, of fighters zinging through the vacuum, guided by heroes. I wait until you’ve had enough, and can’t hold your book up any longer. I wait as you lift your hand, and flip the switch on your bedside lamp, and the room goes dark.

And I am free.

I start by moving down the side of the bed, to the floor. I walk beneath you, looking up into the box springs, checking where the covers touch the carpet, Slip beneath the cedar chest at the foot of the bed, but nothing’s there.

Beneath and behind the chest of drawers, I find nothing. I didn’t expect to. If they are here, they will wait, hidden, until I leave the room, then they will come out, and whisper in your ear as they twist your dreams.

I check behind your bookcase, beneath your desk and chair. I carefully examine the pile of clothing you collect in the corner of the room each week, and the miscellaneous items, mail, papers, empty soda cans, and other things, you leave randomly scattered through your room and still I find nothing.

I slide beneath your closet door, into the dark world inside. I check the corners of the room, the insides of your shoes and boots, and the box of wrapping paper, looking for any signs of them. I find none.

I slip back into your room and stand at the foot of your bed, “I wonder where they are hidden tonight.” I consider staying in the room, standing guard all night. It is the only way to make certain they don’t twist your dreams. But I can’t stay. Freedom calls me. It drags me away.

Through the door, down the hall, to the living room, where my family members wait for me. My father shares the story of his battle last night, against one of them. He found it hidden beneath your father’s pillow. He shows us the new notch on his sword’s hilt, “Another one that didn’t get away.”

My mother hugs him, “My hero.” She kisses him. He blushes.

My sister suddenly looks nervous, “I haven’t checked beneath her pillow!” She dashes from the room, racing to your sister’s room. She draws her sword as she runs down the hall.

If they have hidden beneath your pillow, I will have to deal with them when I return to your room. For now, I stay with my parents. We walk to the front porch, then the foot of the driveway. It’s time to visit the neighbors. More of us, from each house along the street. We gather in the street each night, and tell our tales of glorious battles with the demons of the dark. I find I like visiting the girl three houses north of yours. I like her smile. And her growing curves. I especially like holding her hand, and dancing to the music of the birds singing in the night.

I never will forget the first night she kissed me.

Too soon, it ends. Dawn will arrive shortly. We have to return to our duties. I have to return to you.

I slip into your room, my sword drawn and ready. I sigh with relief as I see no shapes beside you, nothing whispering in your ear. I slide beneath the covers, and I wait for you to wake. And when you rise in a few short minutes, I’ll be your shadow once again.

688 Words

This is my entry for Year 2, Week 36 (Week 2.36) of Jeff Tsuruoka‘s Mid-Week Blues-Buster flash fiction challenge. This week the prompt is the song, “Long Black Curl” by Tuatha Dea. Please, go read the other stories in the challenge.


#FinishThatThought Week 37 : The Basement

I knew I shouldn’t have opened the basement door. But, I’d never been one for doing what I should. I’d always done what I shouldn’t. So, I opened the door.

And stared at a black hole. It was like someone made a three-dimensional painting of black, outlined in pale blue that flickered, fading in and out. “Cool!” I thought. “I wonder where the light switch is.” I reached into the black, feeling for the inevitable light switch on the wall. I couldn’t find it.

I couldn’t find the wall.

I pulled my pocket flashlight out, turned it on, and shined it into the black. It didn’t do a thing. The beam hit the surface of the black, and vanished.

I remembered what Diana said when I told her I was spending the night in the Thompson house. “You know. The haunted one.”

“You’re an idiot.” Yep. Her exact words.

“You know what happens to people who stay there. You’ve read about it in the newspapers. The ones that come out alive babble about the basement door being a gateway to another universe.”

“You don’t believe that crap, do you?” I’d laughed. “It’s probably just an urban legend.”

“Of course not. But, something happens to the people who stay there. Something strange. You know that.”

We argued about my plan for hours. Until she finally made me promise I wouldn’t open the basement door. “I promise. I won’t open the door. OK?” It was a lie. But it was what she wanted.


She didn’t need to know I was going to explore that basement. I didn’t tell her.

I stood there, staring into the blackest black I’d ever seen. I stuck my hand into it, and my hand vanished. I could still feel lit. I could move my fingers, wave, make a fist. My hand was fine, even though I couldn’t see it.

I stuck my arm in, up to the elbow, and watched it vanish. I moved closer, until the black was between my elbow and shoulder. I bent my arm, and poked my fingers back into the room. I laughed as I wiggled my fingers. “What the heck, why not?” And I stepped into the black.

And fell on my face, hard. Everything was black. My ribs hurt, and I’d probably broke my nose. “Jesus!” I shifted, on the ground, got to my knees and stood up. I couldn’t see a thing. It was that dark. I waved my hand in front of my nose, and couldn’t see it.

I couldn’t see my watch to check the time, and my phone didn’t work at all. It wouldn’t even light up. I tried to find my way out, but couldn’t. I had no water, no food. I wondered long it takes to starve to death?

I heard one thing, a while back. The only thing I’ve heard. Diana. “I told you not to open the basement door.”

490 Words

I wrote this for Week 37 of Alissa Leonard‘s Finish That Thought. Please, go read all the creatively shared stories in this week’s challenge.

#MWBB 45 : Runaway

Shelly saw him sitting at a table, by himself. “Damn, he’s cute.” So, she wandered over. She knew what she wanted. What she always wanted. One night. One chance to feel alive. To feel real. No strings. No repeat. One night.

She walked up next to him, “I don’t want to drink alone.”

He pulled the chair next to his out, but said nothing. Shelly took the seat. They both sat there, listening to the band, watching the bodies on the dance floor. She started tapping out the rhythms of the music on the table. He watched her.

“I wanna dance!” She stood up, and grabbed his hand to pull him to the floor. He resisted for a moment, as if thinking. Then, let her lead him to the floor. She didn’t know if he could dance. She didn’t care. All she wanted was an excuse to touch him. To put her hands on his shoulders, back and chest. To bump her hips into his. An excuse to feel alive for the night. Before she returned to reality tomorrow.

He let her lead. Let her do what she wanted. Touched her shoulders, her back. Met her hips with his.

They danced. Shelly loved it. Loved the motion. The contact. She loved being touched. She loved to touch. To feel. Alive.

When the music changed, and a ballad started, the floor filled with couples. He grabbed her, pulled her close, pressed his chest to hers, his hips to hers. She drank in the smell of him. The feel of her head on his shoulder.

They danced until she needed another drink. She led him back to the table. He ordered her drink, and his. She drained it. Leaning into him. Letting her hands move. To his thighs. To his stomach. To his belt, and more.

“Let’s leave,” she whispered in his ear.

They went to his place. Shelly got what she wanted. One night. To feel. To be alive. She wanted everything. She did everything. Tasted every inch of him. Felt every inch of him. One night. To lose control. To groan. To moan. To whisper, “More. More. More.” To cling to the motion. Back and forth. In and out. One night to feel whole. One night her emptiness left her. One night she wasn’t alone. One night she felt alive.

Spent, she pretended to sleep. And waited for him to sleep. Then, she slipped away. Got dressed. Left. One night. That’s all she wanted. One night. To feel alive. To feel real. Before she ran away again. To hide in a world where nothing was real. And no one felt a thing for anyone.

No one would ever hold her again. No one would ever touch her heart. No one would ever make her cry. No one would ever hurt her again.

Like he had.

She’d always make sure of that. She’d always run away.

485 Words

This is my entry for week 45 of Jeff Tsuruoka‘s Mid-Week Blues-Buster flash fiction challenge. Please, go read the other stories in the challenge.

#VisDare 5 – Obscure

She walked out of the darkness on my first night above ground, and stood next to me. She wore only a sheer cloth which covered her from head to toe. She had pale blue eyes, hair black as night, full lips, and curves I’d only dreamed about. She was stunning.

“Who are you?” I asked.

She held a finger up to her lips, indicating I should be quiet, so I said no more. She took my hand, I let her lead me into the darkness. As we walked I heard a soft, musical voice that gradually grew stronger, clearer. I listened to the voice, and thought how beautiful the it was.

She stopped walking, faced me and placed my hand on her shoulder. I heard one word, though she never spoke, “Leighla.”

I thought my name, “Taran.” Leighla smiled and led me further through the darkness of the night.

150 Words

This piece is the second in a continuing story I’m working through for Angela Goff’s Visual Dare. Please read the other entries in this week’s Visual Dare challenge. I like all of them.

#VisDare 4 – Stairs

I’d seen the stairs countless times. No one knew where they went. We only knew those that climbed the stairs never came back.

Our lights were our sun, they defined our days. We worked when they were on, we slept when they were off. There was no sun, no sky, no clouds. Only stone walls and rock ceilings everywhere. Our open spaces were our green houses and animal farms. Our water came from aquifers, and we only used what we needed for the farms, and ourselves. This was how things had always been.

But the stairs were always there, tugging me toward them. Until the day I started climbing. I climbed for endless hours until I saw a bright light ahead of me. It drew me in, like a candle draws a moth. I climbed out of the only world I’d ever known, into the light of day.

150 Words

This piece marks my first attempt at Angela Goff’s Visual Dare, a weekly flash fiction challenge. It was fun, and I will try it again. Please read the other entries in this week’s Visual Dare challenge.

Depression’s Just A Feeling

I’ve noticed something today.
An old friend in my life.
A feeling that I’ve had.
Many times before.
A feeling
With a name.


And I find myself surprised
To find it today.
To know it’s there.
At this time of year.
Well into the spring.

I’ve always thought
It was a winter thing.
That as the days grew shorter,
And darker.
My depression
Gained strength.

But I’ve come to realize
That my depression also grows
In Spring.
Something I’ve never known

It was this time of year
In 2010,
When my depression
It became more
Than I could control.
More than I could handle.

And I came apart.

It was this time of year
In 2011,
When my depression
Once again.

It was visible.
In the things I did.
In the things I wrote.
In the way I behaved.

Everyone could see it.
It was plain as day.
To everyone.
But me.

And today.
When I was on my way
To work.
I saw it myself.
Felt it.
And the darkness
That it brings.
Right there.
In my car.

But this time,
I’m different.
I’ve changed.
For I no longer am afraid
Of the depression
That I feel.

It’s a part of me.
A feeling that I have.
Like laughter.
And like fear.
Like smiles.
And like tears.

Like holding one whose heart aches.
And whose soul cries tears of pain.
And like those days
When all you know
Is rage.

Like everything I feel.

I’ve learned.
I understand.
And I accept.
Everything I feel.

And that’s what my depression is.
A feeling.
Nothing more.

My feelings are a part
Of who I am.
And I no longer
Deny that they exist.

I am good and evil.
Darkness and light.

Just like each day
Here on Earth.
Where the sun rises,
And it sets.
Every day.

What if the sun
Should never set?
Would life be the same?

So I’m not afraid
Of my depression
It’s just something
That I feel.
And nothing more.

And like everything I feel,
I know
That in a little while.
With a little bit of time.
What I feel
Will change.

And my depression
That I’m feeling now,
Will fade with time.

That’s what feelings do,
I’ve learned.
They change.

And in the meantime
I’ll acknowledge
What I feel.
And I’ll accept it.
And keep enjoying life.

For every feeling
That I have
Is another part
Of the life
I’ve been blessed with.

And I find I wish
That everyone I know
Understood that
Like I do.

Fairies : The Night That Sunshine Cried

Sunshine saw him get up
In the middle of the night.
She saw him walk out of the room.
And she followed him.

He went downstairs.
And he stood
In the middle of the floor
Of the Family Room
Of the house.

Sunshine wondered
What was wrong.
What had caused him
To wake up
In the middle
Of the night.

As she watched him,
He looked up
At the ceiling
Of the room.
And then he screamed
A silent scream.

Sunshine knew that scream
All to well.
She’d screamed it
Many times herself.
That silent scream of pain.
It meant that something
Dear to him
Was now gone.
Was forever lost.

She watched him,
And she couldn’t help but see
The hurt there
In his eyes.
As he looked up at the ceiling,
And he asked just one word,
And then she watched him cry.

Sunshine felt how very much
His heart ached that night.
She couldn’t help but see
The tears that his soul cried.
She was so afraid
That he’d lost someone
That had been close to him.

She watched him
As he walked up to
The pictures that he kept.
Each one stored in a frame,
Kept upon a bookshelf.

He picked up a picture,
And sadly smiled at it.
“Why did this have to happen
To you?”
He took that picture with him,
And went to the sofa.
Where he sat down
In the dark.
And held that picture up,
So he could stare at it
For a time.

“Life’s not fair.
I know that,”
He said.
“I know it rains
On everyone.
Both good and bad.”
And then he shook his head.
“I know that means
That bad things happen
To good people.
For no reason
At all.”

He looked up at the ceiling
Once again.
“Why her, God?
Why her?
Why does she have to die?”

Sunshine watched him
Through the night.
She was there watching him
When he pressed that picture
To his lips.
When he stretched out
On that sofa,
Resting his head
Upon a cushion.

He placed that picture
Next to his head.
And then he closed his eyes.
And though he tossed
And turned,
Through the rest
Of that night.
He did sleep.

Sunshine watched.
And when he was asleep.
She flew up to the sofa.
And hovered there.
Right in front
Of the picture
That he’d picked up.
And she used her fairy magic
To bring a single ray
Of sunshine
Into the darkness
Of the night.
And shine it right upon
That picture
By his head.

It was a picture
Of one of his best friends.
He called her

Sunshine knew
By the words he’d spoken
In the middle of that night.
That Jean was not alright.
That he thought
That Jean was going to die.

Sunshine looked upon the face
Of her human friend.
And she understood
Why it was he’d cried.
Why he’d awakened
In the middle of the night.
She knew why his heart ached
Within his chest.
And why his soul
Cried tears of pain.

And on that night
As she watched over him.
Sunshine cried.
Tears feel freely
From Sunshine’s eyes.

And as the tears fell from her eyes,
Drops of rain fell from the sky.
And the more she cried that night,
The more it rained.

It was as if the sky itself
Shared with her
The pain she knew
That he was in.
And the sky joined in
And cried with her
That night.

It was then that Mystica
Flew into the room.
She flew right up to Sunshine.
And gently placed a hand
Upon her shoulder.

Sunshine tried to smile
Right then.
And found that she could not.
How could she smile
When her human friend
Was in the pain
That he was in?

Mystica hugged Sunshine.
The first fairy
That she’d cared for.
The first fairy she’d adopted
Into the family
They’d become.

And she let Sunshine cry
Upon her shoulder.
For a time.
Then Mystica whispered
Oh, so quietly,
My dear child,
What has happened
On this night?”

Sunshine took Mystica
To the picture
That rested on the sofa
Right next to the head
Of their human friend.
“He’s said that Jean
Is going to die.”

Then Sunshine broke right down.
She cried like she hadn’t cried
Since she was a little child.
So very long ago.
When the fairies
In the castle
Named her Rain.

And as she cried,
The rain came down
In torrents.
As if the sky itself
Could feel the way
Her heart ached
On that night.

Mystica held her
As a mother holds her child.
She’d raised her
Like a daughter
Of her own.

And when Sunshine tears
At last dried
On that rain filled night.
Mystica had spoken
One more time.

My child.
Part of my heart
And soul.
You know
That we will help him.
And if there is any way at all
That we can help his friend.
Then we’ll do that too.”

Sunshine almost smiled.
“I know,
I know.
I’m sorry that I’ve cried.
But I had to.
For I felt the aching
Of his heart.
And I saw the tears
That his soul cried
Upon this night.”

Mystica looked outside.
“The dawn will be here
Very soon.
It’s time for us
To return to his room.”

They flew.
Up the stairs
Into his room.
The other fairies
Had awakened.
And were there upon his desk
Waiting for the two of them
To return.

Mystica saw the questions
And concerns,
In the eyes of all the daughters
She’d adopted.

“His dear friend Jean
Is very ill.
And very likely going to die.”

The other fairies

“But I promised Sunshine
We will help him
Through this awful time.
And we’ll help
His friend Jean

Merlin the dragon
Spoke right then.
“You’re not a child
My dear friend Mystica.
You are full grown.
A master of the skills
Of the White Magic
In your heart and soul.”

Mystica smiled.
“I know.”

Merlin looked around,
At all the fairies in the group.
“Mystica’s right.
We’ll take care of them both.”

It was then
That Sunshine smiled.
And the light of dawn
Shined in.
And filled the room.

“We’ll take care of them,”
She thought.
“We’ll take care of them both.”

And then she settled
In the place upon his desk
Where he kept her.
And fell asleep.
She knew she needed rest.
And as she fell asleep that day
Her smile returned once more.
For Sunshine knew
Mystica would teach them all
What it was
That they could do
To help their human friends.