Solo Shadow

Continuing on from my recent themes of animals and hunt scenes, I wrote this story for the weekly prompt competition at Ad Hoc Fiction. This week, my word was “solo” and my word count is at exactly 150. Enjoy!


He glides through the air, his powerful wings allowing him to swoop low over the ground as he scans the night. All he needs is the slightest movement – the snap of a twig or unnatural rustle of leaves – and he will dive to the floor in a desperate flurry of feathers. It doesn’t take much. The unwary rodent puts one foot wrong, and the game will be up.

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September 2016

He swoops lower: did that leaf just twitch because of the wind, or because of something else? He focusses in, and spots a vole scurrying from one bush to the next.

He dives.

The vole is plucked up by his fierce talons, just as his wings begin to beat furiously, attempting to carry him upwards. He looks down to see another vole looking up at him. It squeaks at the sight and scurries away, now a solo shadow racing into the darkness.

Hesitation

Hesitation
Photo prompt 04/07/17. Credit: Kecia Spartin

This short story was written for the Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers Challenge, which invites writers to interact with one another through weekly photo prompts.

My word count for this piece is at 175. Enjoy!


He doesn’t see me. He flexes his neck as he preens himself, but still he doesn’t see. It’s almost cruel, plucking him from the world without the slightest bit of notice. I want him to turn around; even if it is just the tiniest glimpse, I want him to see.

It’ll be too late, of course; even if he does see, it’s too late. He’s mine.

It shouldn’t matter, I think to myself. If anything, this is better; he’s stupid. He’s not being careful, so, in a way, it’s his own fault. I’m an innocent, just trying to survive, and he – well if he really cared, he’d be more careful.

I’m being careful. I’m looking all about myself, even now. The world’s too dangerous not to, but apparently nobody ever told him that. I stick my tongue out into the air, feeling along the leaves. I can taste him; I can taste his feathers and sharp little beak that will desperately squeak as he tries to escape.

Should have been more careful, then.

I strike.

Hesitation 2
21/05/15

 

Stowaway

This piece of creative writing is for the purposes of the competition at Ad Hoc Fiction. With only 150 words and this week’s prompt word, “crate”, this competition gives its winner free entry into the Bath Flash Fiction Award, which boasts of a prize of £1000! Although this is not a lot of words to demonstrate any writing prowess a person may or may not have, this competition runs weekly and is a chance to interact with different writers. I hope you enjoy!


There hadn’t been a quiet day at the docks of Kellford Town for almost ten years. It was the centre of business, with people bustling about, merchants flooding in, and goods overflowing from every stall. It was a hubbub; a bursting collection of noise, colour and people.

There were women calling out, desperate to sell their flowers; beggars waiting for the inevitable clink of a dropped coin; and strong-looking men busy loading crates from one ship to another. These were well-built crates, but heavy.

Perhaps they were even heavy enough for a little extra weight to go unnoticed.

I nestled down in my crate, listening to the noise all about me. They’re too busy, I thought. They’re rushing around out there with their money and their noise, but by the time night falls and the docks finally clear, only then will they realise that their little serving boy has disappeared.

Word Count: 150.

Untouched

This piece of creative writing is for the purposes of the Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers challenge. With weekly photo prompts and a 75-175 word limit, this challenge offers a fun, interactive way of encouraging new writers.

 

This week’s photo prompt was provided by The Magicsticgoldenrose and my word count for this story is at 173.

Thank you and enjoy!

 

Even the sunlight didn’t dare touch her. It bounced on the lake below, almost daring her to join it, but it couldn’t penetrate her musty, little room.

She had thoughts like that all the time…of joining the sunlight…of being free.

The need for human contact sometimes grew so powerful that she actually opened the window and perched on the outside ledge.

It was her father’s fault. Ever since disease had taken her mother away, her father, a jealous and rather ruthless king, had refused to let the outside world harm her. He was convinced that something terrible would happen, and he was so afraid.

He just didn’t want to lose her.

One day, he’d taken her from her room whilst she was asleep, found the smallest room in the castle, and stowed her away there, so that no one could ever hurt her, not even the king, himself.

She hadn’t seen another person in almost six years, and, as she looked towards the lake once more, she knew that she never would again.

Burnt Out

This short piece of writing is for the purposes of the competition at Ad Hoc Fiction. With only a 150 word count and a weekly word prompt, this week’s word being “burn”, this competition gives its winner free entry into the Bath Flash Fiction Award, for a chance to win £1000!


The rain beats heavy against the window, rapping angrily as though it is desperate to come inside. I see it as an angry loan-shark, beating at the glass as its greedy eyes stray towards what little furniture I have left. It wants to tear it apart, taking it away from me on a stream of gushing floods.

I turn away from the window to bend low over my work, trying to shut everything out as my paintbrush moves up and down, almost mechanically. I don’t have long here now. They know I can’t pay what I owe, and I know they’re coming for me, but still my paintbrush moves up and down, creating careful little brush strokes on the page.

Before me, my last remaining candle continues to burn. Its flickering and dying, but it still provides some light. When that goes, I will know that my time is up.

Invisible

This piece of creative writing is for the purposes of the competition at Ad Hoc Fiction. With only 150 words and this week’s prompt word, “blend”, this competition gives its winner free entry into the Bath Flash Fiction Award, which boasts of a prize of £1000! 

This is not my world. I am not part of it. Whilst the people rush by above me, loud with sound and colour in a mesh of endless chatter, I stay here. I crouch in the suburbs and hide in the dark, waiting… for what, I do not know, but I wait. I watch. I blend.

Occasionally I will meet my “equal”, skulking about beside me. We are not the same, though. We will never be the same. No one is like me. Whilst they tiptoe through the shadows, hiding from the busyness of the world, they are loud and clumsy. They can’t do it like I do. They do not become the shadows. They can’t blend.

They are the rejects, the outcasts, but they still belong. I don’t. I’m not part of this world. I do not hide in the night: I am the night. I am new. I blend.

Lean into Me

This piece of creative writing is for the purposes of the competition at Ad Hoc Fiction. With only 150 words and this week’s prompt word, “lean”, this competition gives its winner free entry into the Bath Flash Fiction Award, which boasts of a prize of £1000! 

An avalanche of emotion ripped apart my soul and threatened to throw me from the Earth’s orbit. I rocked and fell forwards, landing face down in the dirt where no one could see me. They tried to pull me up again, but it was no use.

I didn’t want to see them, I didn’t want to hear their voices, because they didn’t look like her and they didn’t sound like her. No one ever would again, because she was gone and I was alone.

Then soft hands were about my shoulders, gentle, but firm. They pulled me up and hugged me close, a gentle whisper telling me not to open my eyes.

“Lean into me,” she whispered, and, as I was reborn into my childish state, I clasped onto my mother with both hands, sobbing into her chest. I was alone, but I was home.

My Jar of Flies

This piece of creative writing is for the purposes of the competition at Ad Hoc Fiction. With only 150 words and this week’s prompt word, “jar”, this competition gives its winner free entry into the Bath Flash Fiction Award, which promises a prize of £1000! 

I keep a jar of flies at my bedside.

I’ve had it for as long as I can remember, watching them fly and buzz as they crawl over each other in their desperate need to escape.

I don’t hurt them, after all, prodding them or poking them, like some corrupted child.

I only watch them.

I think.

I think how I am not a fly, and how lucky I am.

No one helps a fly.

No one cares.

I like watching my jar of flies. Whenever I am scared or put down, I just stare.

I’m okay, because I am not a fly.

People care.

I am not a fly.