Turning Point: Flash Fiction Results For Monday’s Muse Nov 30th 2015

Turning Point

Heat spread across my cheeks as Mama turned and gave me that look, the one that said, ‘Don’t make me turn this car around, mister.’ I choked on the angry retort that tickled my tongue and drew my clenched fist beneath my thighs in an attempt not to hit my sister, Harriet, across the back of her head.

Harriet snickered. 

She always seemed to find humor in making every waking day of my life miserable. Sure we had our laughs every now and again, but mostly it was war; war waged on me by the villainous troll that my parents had spent the last six years trying to convince me was actually my sister and not some rotten changeling that had crept in from the forest.

Changlings did that, came in and made people believe they were someone they were not. I read about it once in a comic, so it’s true alright. Harriet didn’t fool me. But Mama and Daddy, they were goners.

They would learn the truth one day. I would show them. But for now, it was obvious that they were too hypnotized by bouncy curls and rosy cheeks to see anything other than the enemy they tucked in at night.

So it was settled. I was going to make my escape and then show them all the truth later. My bags were already packed to go. I am going to become a changling.

Becoming a changling usually required that a kid be kidnapped and swapped out by the changling gang. I read that too somewhere.

Living in the forest wouldn’t be so bad. I loved climbing trees and creek fishing, and I could definitely do without having to stare at Mrs. Beezly another day. Life at nine was hard enough as it was let alone having to look at her all afternoon.

The only problem that I did have was not being rotten enough for them to change me out. I always managed to get the threatening look from Mama but I had never had the guts to cross…that line…never had the moxy…never…

WHACK! Cathunk!

“HENRY!” Mama screamed at me as the car yanked over to the side of the road spitting gravel, my guilty hand still raised in the air. Harriet was wailing like a stuck pig. She was going to have a nice knot where her forehead kissed that side window.

The shocked look in her eyes made my stomach burn as Mama actually whipped the car around and directed it toward home. Home and my future as a changling.

Far as I could see it, I’d earned my place today. I even managed to snicker. It was a real turning point.

THE END

These are my results for Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt May 23rd, 2018, originally posted on December 3rd, 2015.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

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Me Too: A Short Story

 She couldn’t stop laughing, not after the words that had just arbitrarily slipped from her mouth, and especially not with him laughing as well. 

It was an unfortunate nervous tick of hers–incessant laughter. She’d had it since she was a child. When she was nervous, she laughed. Scared. She laughed. Angry. She laughed. She even laughed when she as sad. Her round of giggles at her grandmother’s funeral had her ushered out of the wake and into the parking lot.

Sure, she laughed like most people, when most people laughed, but when she was undeniably embarrassed, she laughed non-stop with horrifying honks and snorts. She didn’t know if he was laughing with her, for nervous sake, or if her mortifying animal sounds were causing him to laugh at her.

But what if he was laughing out of pity, laughing because of what she’d said? The thought made her choke and pressed tears from her eyes. They tumbled down her cheeks into the chlorinated water between them. She pressed her eyes closed, too afraid to look at him anymore, even as red embarrassment crept up her neck and face.

She heard his laughter die, felt it really, and with the loss of its timber, she felt her stomach fall even more. As best she could, she suppressed the giggling that tickled her throat and covered her face with her hands. More tears pressed against the backs of her lids and for mercy’s sake, she prayed her palms would keep them hidden.

Her breath caught when she felt his fingers gently pulling against hers. She nearly fainted when she felt his lips claim hers with a sweetness that rivaled honey.

The tingle of his breath swirling in her ear caused her laughter to cease altogether and a smile to shape her lips.

“Me too,” he’d whispered. “I love you too.”

THE END

*I so enjoyed seeing this tale unfold. Romance, who doesn’t love the sweetness of love? These are my results for Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt April 2nd, 2018.

 

 

More Than Hours: A Short Story

He stumbled through the darkness, the light at his back forcing everything into angrier shadows that toyed with his perception. His fingers curved and clawed at nothing as if to anchor himself to where he was.

Where was he? He felt as if he’d been in a terrible accident like his body had been jettisoned, head-first through plate glass, accept there was no road nearby, no sound of distress from on-lookers who’d had the misfortune of watching him play with death.

No. He was alone, disoriented and meandering through dark woods with the brightest of light ebbing down into a dim glow around him. He stopped and gulped at air, wishing it was water. How he thirsted. His heart thrumming an erratic tattoo in his chest, he lifted his eyes upward and glanced through the canopy of the trees.

Dark foliage and branches like skeletal fingers wove above him, yielding very little ground to the setting sun above. It was dusk here. Here, not where he’d been only moments ago.

He’d stepped through time. How much time…he didn’t know. He felt his chest tense as his lungs fought to take in air. His fingers clumsily met with the cold metal of a ticking clock dangling from around his neck.

The Ministry of Time, but not the sanctioned ministry, he was of Ionic, a covenant far more complex than any the ministry had known of.

With careful fingers, he pried open the clocks face saw the numbers and the arms and knew their pointing and telling was more than that of hours. The year was 1936.

“1936,” the words were dry on his tongue. Still, a tinge of hope rolled through him like a wave against the shoreline. He wasn’t very close to his true timeline. But he was indeed closer.

You will never see that time again, Cassius. You’ve been blocked. In 77 A.D you are a dead man. Outside of time, you are worth more alive than dead.

The words of his Lanista echoed in his ears. No, in there were no Lanista’s in Ionic, still, the man had purchased him, purchased him from the grip of death and sentanced him to a fate fare worse.

Cassius would never see his life or loved ones again, but he would live through time, redeeming time for others. His current mission was in 1936.

Growling and shaking off the fuzz of confusion, he straightened himself as if in the Colosseum and focused his mind on the task at hand. He was still a gladiator, no matter the millennia. And like a gladiator, he would win his life back no matter where he stood in time.

THE END…FOR NOW

*More tidbits and side stories from Ministry of Time or, as you’ve just read, not the Ministry, but a branch called ‘Ionic.’ I’m sure more will come. I think I will gather up each of the other short tales that have come from this thread and create a page for them on my author site. In the meantime, you can sample the first few chapters of my debut novel, Nexus Gate 4037: The Animal, which introduces the Ministry of Time and thusly Ionic. NG 4037 will be out soon! These are my results for Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt March 26th, 2018.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Silence of Clocks: A Short Story

He silently watched the car shrink away, eaten up by the distance. Strange. Although his lips were unmoving, he had so much he wanted to say.

The good thing was that he’d learned long ago to hold his tongue, swallow his errant thoughts and words like creme soda. At that moment, however, the words had the same burn as a straight shot of liquor, nothing but fire upon his throat.

He clutched the time peace at his chest. Felt it tick beneath his sweating palm. Its steady cadence like a heartbeat. Time was precious and theirs was just about up. the clock in his hands would go still and history would continue to roll forward…or backward. In his case, it went in every direction, even sideways.

That was the way of the Ministry of Time. The linear view of years and moments no longer mattered. Somehow his new perspective didn’t make this part of his job any easier.

He sucked in a sudden breath, pressed his eyes shut and clutched the timepiece so fiercely he feared his hand would bleed. The sound of burning rubber on pavement, horns blowing in the distance like a band out of tune, and shattering glass danced around his whispered goodbye and the silence of the clock in his hands.

The clock had ticked its last tock. Her story had come to an end in the fatality of a collision. He ground his teeth as a tear slid down his cheek. He could have said something. But he knew the hell that would be paid if he had. So he remained silent…like the clock in his hands.

THE END

*Okay, I know this story seems a bit strange but every now and again, portions to a series I am working on come alive and I can’t help but write them. The Ministry of Time is mentioned in my debut novel, NEXUS GATE 4037: THE ANIMAL, coming soon. These are my results for MONDAY’S MUSE WRITING PROMPT MARCH 19th, 2018.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

 

 

Illusions: Flash Fiction by Candice Coates

They were still following behind. Good. Just a few more miles and all of this would be over soon.

She gripped the steering wheel with her lambskin gloves and resisted the urge to gun the gas. Patience, she told her self. She could hold out a little while longer. It also wouldn’t make sense to lose control of the car just because…

She blew out another strained breath and peered out her side mirror.  Guilt niggled at her insides. It had been doing so since that entire time and nothing she did could drawn out it sound, not even the radio.

She’d long since turned that off. It wasn’t helping. If anything it was making her anxiety worse and the edge to be on the other side of this stretch of road sharper than an executioner’s blade.

She eased on the gas as the destination grew larger and the car behind her pulled closer to her bumper.

Almost with a battle cry, she thrust her hand beneath her car seat and pulled it out again, thrusting it out the window.

“Here!” She didn’t mean to shout. Neither did she mean to splash milk that smelt like it had spent far too much time in the blazing heat of the car at her brother-in-law.

“Daddy!” Her nephew, Felix, giggled at his father making his aunt’s mouth fall open. It was as if the child was the real-life Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde the way he switched from wailing fog horn to angelic being descended from the heavens.

Illusions, they were all illusions.

At least she had played the part of the dotting aunt for a spell, another illusion. The smile on her sister’s face mirrored by that of her brother-in-law were true, however. And that is what made the illusions all worth it.

THE END

*A strange twist to my tale. The story of the flustered aunt won over that of the potential assassin. Such is life. These are my results for MONDAY’S MUSE WRITING PROMPT MARCH 5th, 2018.

Certainly Absolutely: Flash Fiction

This wasn’t like the last time he’d kissed her. This time, something about the play of his lips against hers had changed. The gentle ebb and flow between give and take made her toes curl in her ballet flats.

She placed her hands on his shoulders to keep herself balanced, lest she melt like a puddle of wax at his feet. The heady scent of his cologne and his masculinity mixed and mingled only to intoxicate her senses further.

Oh, but how this moment awakened her and frightened her with the same power.

The last time, the first time he’d kissed her, it was little more than a peck on the lips, accidental really. This time he’d slowly snaked his hands around her waist, gazed into her eyes with a mixture of confidence and uncertainty before pulling her into his embrace with his wordless question heard only by her lips.

Certainly. Absolutely. The words whispered without sound. She would love him…because she already did.

THE END

*Every now and again, touches of romance are required to sprinkle the pages of my creative journal. These are my results of MONDAY’S MUSE WRITING PROMPT FEBRUARY 26th, 2018.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER! 

The Fog: Flash Fiction by Candice Coates

I’m not lost, I just don’t know where I am. I’m not lost, I just don’t know where I am…yet.” He whispered his mantra several more times over, hoping that if he said it enough that the words would become true. Still, the panic that tightened around his throat like a noose would not give.

This happened to him occasionally, the mental fog that dropped him into thick darkness only to clear when he was somewhere completely unknown to him. It was his fault, he knew that. He’d gone to a place he’d been warned not to go.

To him, however, the warning seemed more like a dare and just couldn’t resist the urge to rebel. “Put to death the flesh…” The fraction of a scripture he’d heard his father pray echoed in his heart, rippling against the pools of panic that sought to drown him.

Fidel had allowed his flesh to rule him that night, the night he’d first stepped into the fog.

The Stone Room. So many different hidden meanings the name of the establishment held. It had left his brain addled and his body a vessel seemingly no longer his own. A year and a half ago, the place had shown up in his stomping ground.

A friend of a friend, some shifty guy who was always on the verge of panic, was the one to see it first. He’d gone snow white and nearly stumbled into the path of a car in his attempt to go the other direction. Everyone laughed at him, thought he’d had one too many to drink when he begged them all to stay away from the place.

Fidel couldn’t resist. He wasn’t one for highs beyond those that were aged in barrels and gave a bit of a burn on the way down, but he wouldn’t be spooked by some greasy-haired punk who was scared of his own shadow.

So like a fool, he let his flesh take the lead and he stepped into The Stone Room. He’d been getting lost ever since; snatches of time that seemed like only seconds turned out to be days or even weeks. His first fog, he was missing for two complete months. The only thing was, on his side of time, he’d been wandering for just shy of three hours, lost.

“You should have listened to me,” the voice was disgruntled, bitter, but Fidel recognized it. The shifty, greasy, guy.

I should have, but I didn’t. He wanted to say those words, but his flesh…it always seemed to get the best of him especially when he was angry. “You weren’t saying nothing.” He narrowed his eyes, his jaw ticking. “What are you doing here?”

Shifty frowned. “The same as you, lost in this fog.”

“You’d both better figure out what you have to do to get out of it. The more time you waste, the more debt you pay.” I pretty girl, no more than twenty-two yelled from across the vacant street.

Fidel considered her, cleared his throat. The invisible noose on his neck was chafing. He’d never seen a soul when he was in the fog, but now he’d met two.

THE END…FOR NOW

*Time restrictions…I tell you. I feel like there is a story here. I don’t know how long or short, but I feel like there is something. I want to know more about The Stone Room, Fidel, Shifty, and Pretty Girl. Where are they? What is this debt they pay? What is this fog of time? I hope you enjoyed my results for Monday’s Muse February 19th, 2018!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Debut Novel Coming Winter 2018

Hello Friends and fellow Creatives!

It brings me great joy to finally be able to share with you the teaser chapters for my debut novel, coming out Winter 2018, Nexus Gate 4037: The Animal!

NG is the very first book in the Ministry of Time Series!

Being that this is my very first go at indie-publication, I have found wisdom in taking my time with the process. My desire is to bring you a rich story that keeps you on the edge of your seat while igniting the depths of your imagination.

This book is my first ‘hello’ in the publishing world and I want to be heard with clarity.

Please enjoy the preview of the novel by reading the teaser chapters, and if you haven’t already, follow my author page, www.candicecoates.wordpress.com.

Nexus GateThe rules of Time Surveillance have been broken.
The past has stepped into the future. 

The threads of time are now tangled and retribution will be dealt…

Will the past devour the future or will they unite in order to survive the threat of the present?

BOOK FLAP AND TEASER CHAPTERS FOUND HERE!!!

 

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Fair: Random Words Inspired by Art

Nothing about him was fair, though he was lovely to look at, and that was the cruelty of his form. His stature, his eyes, his lips, his thighs, all of it cried foul because his perfection was purely masculine, undeniably man, but still rivaled the glory of woman.

He was lovely, and he knew it. He walked with his head tilted just enough so that his eyes looked down upon all from the slope of his nose. The gesture was unnecessary because he stood nearly a full head and shoulders over all.

His way was like that of a peacock, full of pride and glory, yet captivating. His skin was like flawless ebony that glowed from the rays of the sun. He was like the perfect night, challenging the majesty of the day and he was certainly winning.

THE BEGINNING…

I have no image to share with you all besides the one that I have painted with words. This composition of words came from my meditation upon art, searching for my muse for the next step in my creative journey.

As I searched through images created by artists that inspire me, the mingling of different genres and styles created this man in my head. I don’t know where his story will lead but I am grateful and delighted to see how one form of creative expression has given life to another. 

Visual art has born that of written art.

If you are curious as to my creative journey, I tell you that this is a part of my Creative Faith in Action, prompted by my Free Creative Course; Sow the Seeds & Seize the Dream.

Thank you for reading, and do please share your thoughts and comments below!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Hopeless: Flash Fiction #AmWriting #MondaysMuse #CreativeWriting

No matter how much he stared outward, no matter how much light he allowed to pierce the darkness of the room through the sheers that blanketed the window, he still could not bring himself to step outside.

Was he afraid? Yes. Admitting that he was as full of fear as his bones were of marrow was no hard thing. It was easier than breathing for him. Sometimes even taking in a breath seemed too difficult a feat.

This game was best played in the shadows. The less of him that anyone noticed the better.

His fingers flinched with the phantom vibration of his mobile phone. He clenched his hands together and felt the familiar sting of tears. He was happy to be in the darkness even though the sun was just outside the window. The darkness hid his fears, his shame, his salty tears.

Frustrated with the foolish picture he painted, the loneliness of his empty hands, he snatched the curtains closed cutting off all traces of natural light before throwing himself down onto the sofa behind him.

“Three more days,” he heard his voice crack just as he heard the garage door swing open. He would stay hidden for three more days. Just three more days.

The pointed tips of brown heels stepped into his downcasted sight line. The familiar scent of soft perfume tickled his nostrils, and then came her voice. It sent a shiver up his spine that made him wince. She was the source of his fear.

“Jordan, I hope to goodness you haven’t been sitting in here moping like somebody shot your puppy in front of you. Your homework better be done and the trash had better have been gathered.”

He dared not look up. “It is.” he all but hissed.

“Good. Now fix your tone and stop feeling sorry for yourself.” She opened the curtains fully. “You haven’t even been grounded for a full twenty-four hours.” Mom mumbled something about Dad fixing catfish for dinner with coleslaw.

A tear slid down Jordan’s face. He wouldn’t last three more hopeless days, not in the darkness, not without his phone, or food. They were definitely punishing him.

He hated coleslaw.

THE END

*I hope you enjoyed my results for this week’s Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt September 4th, 2017. 

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!