#FinishThatThought 33 : I Ran For The Door

I ran for the door, but someone had taken the keys. I paused, looking at the car. “Crap!” I pounded the roof, causing the metal to dent. I grabbed my phone, and punched speed dial for 6, my lawyer.

“What is it now, Harry?”

“The keys to my car are missing.”

“They’re not missing, Harry. And they’re not your keys. They’re her keys.”

“You mean…”

“She got the car too.”

I looked up at God, and the universe, and screamed.

“Now, Harry. That’s no way to behave.”

“No way to behave?” I stomped my feet. “No way to behave!” I held the phone out at arm’s length, and looked at it like it was stupid. “Really? Really?” I pulled the phone in, “She got MY car too?!”

“What can I say? The judge agreed with her.”

There were times I wanted to shoot that woman. Times I wish I had. Every time I reached that point, I suddenly calmed down. “Yeah. I can see that.”


“Where you recommend I stay?”

My lawyer was nothing, if not honest. “Skip town, Harry. Get a job somewhere. Making enough to live on. The judge will adjust how much you pay her.”

“Skip town?”

“Yeah. Start over.” There was a pause. “And, Harry? Don’t sleep around this time.”

“Yeah. I know.” I paused, remembering the times I never went home at night. The times I woke up the next morning in some gals apartment, or home. And she was in the bed with me. Naked. And it was obvious what we’d done.

“How many?” I asked.

“Too many, Harry. Too many.” After a moment, he said, “Use your credit card, Harry. While you still can. Get a ticket on a plane. Go somewhere you can find a job.”


“Anywhere.” He laughed. “You can even catch a taxi to the airport. And Harry.”


“No screwing around.”

He hung up. I stared at the phone. Then looked down at my crotch. “You know how much trouble you’ve aused?” Of course, it didn’t answer. Other than to send chemicals racing through my body. “And after all this, you still want to find a gal to bang?” I shook my head.

I ordered plane tickets to Phoenix. The flight left the next afternoon. I flagged a taxi. When to a bar. Had a drink. Danced with a pretty girl. Woke up the next morning, naked, in her bed. With her. I didn’t even remember her name.

I looked at my crotch. “Will you ever learn?”

418 Words

I wrote this for Week 33 of Alissa Leonard‘s Finish That Thought. Please, go read all the creatively shared stories in this week’s challenge.


#55WordChallenge : The Fence – Part 15

We rode for hours through the forest, then beside a lake. After sunset, we reached an ancient city. “Welcome to Old Phoenix,” the woman said.

We stopped outside a church, where an old, disheveled woman sat in the dark, backlit by light from a partly open door behind her.

“Meet Alice’s mother,” the man said.

55 words

This is part 15 of the serial story I’m working on for Lisa McCourt Hollar‘s #55WordChallenge flash fiction challenge. Please, go read all the other entries in the challenge this week. It’s flat amazing what gifted writers can say in just 55 words.

#VisDare 26 : Engraved

After Mastermind left, I took Alice’s hand, and we walked the streets of old Phoenix. The cats watched us for a time. Then, one stopped in front of me, “Please follow.” We did. The cat led us out of old Phoenix, down a quiet path to a small, old house next to the lake.

“I’ve never seen this,” Alice stepped closer to me, looking at the cat, “What is this place?”

The cat walked to the door of the house, and mewed. A few moments later, the door opened, revealing an old man. His face etched with his age. “Welcome, children.” He motioned us to come into his home.

“Who are you?”

The cat answered, “The ancient one. He was here at the beginning.”

Alice stared at the cat. “The beginning?”

The old man smiled. “Many centuries ago.” He walked back inside, and Alice and I followed.

147 Words

This is part 21 in the continuing story I’m working on for Angela Goff’s Visual Dare. Please read the other entries in this week’s Visual Dare challenge.

#VisDare 18 : Inspect

As we walked through Old Phoenix, Alice shared a story. “When I was a little girl I didn’t know about the animals. My mother took me to the pier, and we walked all the way to its end. She closed her eyes, and thought real hard, and a big fish jumped out of the water, onto the pier. It looked at me, and I heard it in my head. It said, ‘Hello, Alice.’ I studied that fish from mouth to tail, and couldn’t find anything that made it talk. But I heard the fish again, ‘Please don’t eat us,’ it said.’ That was the day I learned to talk with the animals.”

Alice held my hand as we walked. She didn’t say anything, but I heard her ask, “Will you stay with us, in Phoenix?”

“Yes, Alice. I will stay with you.”

145 Words


This is the 14th piece 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.

#VisDare 17 : A Cat’s World

The images on the wall came to an end. Alice smiled. “You really think I’m pretty?”

“Prettier than any woman I’ve ever seen.”

She hugged me. I didn’t mind at all. “Tomorrow, I’ll take you to Old Phoenix.”

I slept on the sofa in her home that night, and dreamed of her.

After breakfast, Alice and I walked over the hills behind her home, into the ruins of an ancient city. “This was Phoenix, Arizona.” We walked down streets lined with buildings. “This is where we met the animals.”

I noticed cats, dozens of them, along the streets as we walked. I heard dozens of different voices in my head, “Alice is visiting! Who’s that with her? Is he safe?”

Alice watched me looking at cats. “You can hear them, can’t you?”

I nodded yes.

“And yet, you came from one of the caves. That’s never happened before.”

148 Words

This is the 13th piece 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.

#VisDare 11: Whorl

“You can talk to snails?” I asked.

“Yes. And so can you,” Alice smiled.

“What else is different here?”

She laughed. “You are.”

I heard birds singing overhead. She took my hand, “Close your eyes, I want to show you something.”

I closed my eyes, and heard her in my mind again, “What do you see?”

“A field, with a fence, and some trees. And a building of some kind,” I thought to myself, knowing she heard me. “But they’re strange. Like I’m seeing all directions at once.” The sky surrounded the land. There were even mountains in the distance. Everything was whorled around the center of the image.

“It’s what the birds see,” Alice gently squeezed my hand. “They see differently than us.”

I opened my eyes, “You called this place Phoenix.” She nodded her head. “What is it, really? And who are you, really?”

149 Words

This piece is the eighth 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.

#VisDare 9 : Alone?

The train left the tunnel, running above ground. It stopped at a train station. Alice extended her hand, and smiled, “Please?” I could not resist the light in her eyes, so I took her hand. She led me from the train.

“Welcome to Phoenix,” she gently squeezed my hand.

She laughed when she saw my questioning look. “Phoenix?”

“It’s a story you’ll learn, in time.”

We exited the station into a large courtyard. A tall stone monument stood alone, near the train station. Drops of water fell from the sky. I let go of Alice’s hand, and sat on the base of the monument.

Alice sat down beside me. “You’ve never seen rain, have you?”

“Rain?” I looked up, letting the small drops of water strike my face. “I think I like rain.”

I took her hand, and we sat in the rain.

147 Words

This piece is the sixth 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.