No Time for Complaint: A Short Story #AmWriting #SciFi #Fiction

He stared down at his phone, relishing the reminder he had saved as his home-screen. Without it he would fall to shreds, he would never be able to stomach what he had to do.

“Stop complaining. Stop complaining,” he mumbled the words under his breath, wiping the sweat from his palms down the side of his jeans. He always got nervous on these assignments. He wasn’t cut out for this line of work.

“What’s that, sir?” The driver asked, his water gaze-liquid from his senior age-glanced back at him through the rear view mirror.

Harvey smiled, forcing the heavy corners of his mouth to stay upward. “Nothing. Just talking to myself.”

The driver nodded and returned his gaze to the road. “It will get worse when you get older, the talking to yourself. You tend to forget a whole lot more when you get to my age.” The man chuckled.

Harvey’s stomached roiled. “How old are you exactly?” He couldn’t resist the urge to ask. He envied people like him, those properly balanced upon the threads of time.

“Seventy-eight this December,” he smiled through the mirror again. “Me and the missus have been going strong for fifty-eight of those years.”

“Oh,” Harvey’s head was beginning to pound. He shouldn’t have asked.

“Yes indeed! Me and Gladys have ourselves five strapping sons, thirteen grand kids, and three great-grands.” More laughter. “There are blessings to old age.”

“I would agree,” Harvey sounded more bitter than he’d intended. At this rate, he’d never know what it was like to be old, really, old…properly dead. As far as his accounting, out side of his thirty-one apparent years, he was more accurately two-hundred and forty-six.

His phone buzzed in his hands. A text message, the same as his home-screen came across his phone. “Stop complaining…Do your job…You are on borrowed time. Mr. Lemon doesn’t abide panic-attacks.” Harvey’s fingers cramped they curled in so tightly. He couldn’t help but panic!

He was going to panic. He always did when he was done ruining someone else’s life.

The car stopped and as if he was breaking through the surface of water moments after the threat of drowning, Harvey pushed open the door and forced air into his lungs.

Three deep breaths, and he was in the necessary fog that he needed to not complain, not panic, not make a mistake as he tore one more poor soul from the threads of time, sentencing them to a fate similar to his own.

At least Mr. Lemon would be pleased.

THE…NOT SO END

*These are my results for Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt July 17th, 2017. If you find yourself confused, I apologize. This story is another thread woven into the world of  Mr. Lemon, Madelyn Haze, A Necessary Call, and so many others. If you stay tuned and follow my Author Site, you will get to find out a little more about Mr. Lemon and this world of his through my Debut Novel NEXUS GATE 4037: THE ANIMAL, Book 1 of THE MINISTRY OF TIME SAGA, Coming this FALL 2017/WINTER 2018! Stay connected and stay tuned!!!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Divorcing Perfect: The First Step in Sowing Seeds for Creative Success #SeizetheDream #Goals #MondayMotivation

Welcome to Week 1 of “Sow the Seeds, Seize the Dream 12 Week Creative Course.” I have to say that more than anything I am super excited about embarking on this journey with you.

No matter what your creative goals are, I want to see you soar!

Taking the steps, harnessing the faith and courage to walk on the waters of our curious creativity, is a grand thing and certainly not one to be taken lightly.

This is a big deal. You, making the decision to find your creative voice, to try something outside of your comfort zone, but oh so impressed upon your heart with a million ‘what ifs’ is a big deal.

The reality is everything will be as good as it is meant to be in the stage of development that it is in.

Today we begin with a simple but necessary introduction to the path we are going to take. Like with any journey, it is important that one counts the cost and gets ready for the road ahead.

The biggest hurdle we as creatives must leap over (we as humans) is that of ‘Perfectionism.’

  • PERFECTIONISM: The inability to accept anything that is below the standard of perfection.

Today, I just want to talk to you about how crippling ‘perfectionism’ can be and give you a few steps to move beyond this so-called giant.

I remember for over a period of five years I had gathered a mouthwatering collection of art supply, from paints to pens, paper, canvases … you name it, I pretty much had it. All of it gathered to create glorious art, but all of it gathered little more than dust as the fear of making something less than perfect crippled my hands from moving.

For five years my creativity bottle-necked because I was afraid to mess up the cotton fibers of my papers. I was simply afraid, afraid my results would not match my original design, afraid I would fail, afraid I wouldn’t measure up to the expectations of others … simply afraid.

Can you relate to that?

Many of us have a dream but do nothing with it, not because we are careless, but because we have become overly careful. Many times this ‘care’ which is actually insecurity and worry is birthed the fear of not being good enough.

The reality is everything will be as good as it is meant to be in the stage of development that it is in.

As the book of Ecclesiastes 3:9-11 puts it: What profit has the worker from that in which he labors? I have seen the God-given task with which the sons of men are to be occupied. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.”

A five-year-old playing a mean tune of “Chopsticks” has done a fantastic job even though that song doesn’t compare in the minds of many to “Moonlight Sonata.” But if the five-year-old continues to try his or her hand at simplistic tunes until their muscles have learned to flow into something like “Jingle-Bells,” then there is hope that they will grow into pieces composed by Mozart and Beethoven.

This truth holds the same for ALL CREATIVES. We have to make peace with the truth that growing in our creativity is a messy business and will require some keys being played out of tune, some colors being poorly mixed, even some words being used out of context.

The mistakes are all a part of the growth process and actually, some things birthed out of imperfection have actually proven to be quite perfect. Here are a few examples:

  • Cream Cheese: Cream cheese was the IMPERFECT mistake made in 1872, created by American dairymen, William Lawrence of Chester, N.Y. In Mr. Lawrence’s attempt to create the French cheese called Neufchatel, he imperfectly, yet perfectly, created Cream Cheese which is a hit! I mean what is a bagel without cream cheese, and don’t get me started on cheesecake.
  • Ganache: I heard it on a Food show years ago that this chocolatey delight was created by a chef ‘accidentally’ and thusly, imperfectly knocking cream into some heated chocolate. In his attempt to create something else, this confection was invented.
  • Chocolate Chip Cookies: In 1938 American Chefs,  Ruth Graves Wakefield and Sue Brides imperfectly yet perfectly came up with just about every cookie lover’s dream. Now, according to some, the chef’s were attempting to create a chocolate cookie, believing that the chocolate chips would melt in the batter only to find that the did not, but no one is complaining over that!

The point of these delicious examples is that there are people the world and time over who have stepped out of their comfort zones to attempt something new to them only to be blessed by the results of their imperfection. (I used food examples to whet your creative appetites.) They had a dream and vision for something and what they ended up with, although imperfect by some standards, ended up being better than they had imagined. They didn’t just set out to be perfect they set out to take hold of their creative dreams.

Today, we have the same opportunity as the folks mentioned. We can step out, divorcing the fear of perfectionism, but raising our expectation for something good to happen in us and through us creatively over the next 12 weeks.

CREATIVE FAITH IN ACTION:

  • Commit to a new definition of perfection. Find perfection in the ‘completion’ of each creative step required to get you from dream to vision, not in the flawless result of what you currently view as perfect. (For each person, this will be different. What is needed for an amateur make-up artist to complete is not the same as an aspiring author. )
  • Commit to attempting your creative endeavor while embracing the glory of imperfection. As Zig Ziglar put it, “Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly . . . until you can learn to do it well.” 
  • Commit to acknowledging the goodness in each effort you have made toward your dream and call it ‘good.’ As in the dawn of Creation, The Lord God, at the end of His daily efforts of Creation, He blessed His work and called it GOOD! Yes, He had a bigger picture in mind (end result) but He acknowledged the goodness in the steps He’d made toward that goal. We have to do the same.

SCRIPTURE FOCUS:

ADDITIONAL READING:

COMMUNITY QUESTIONS:

  • How have you defined perfection?
  • How has your definition affected your creativity?
  • What advice would you share with others who have struggled to take hold of or regain their footing in conquering their dreams and goals?

Please share your wisdom and advice in the comments below.

FOR MORE INFO ABOUT THIS 12 WEEK JOURNEY, SEE Gearing Up to Prepare for Your Creative Success: Seeds We Sow

(Also, get yourself a journal and write dow your thoughts. It will be great to see how far you’ve grown in the coming weeks!)

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Gearing Up to Prepare for Your Creative Success: Seeds We Sow #MondayMotivation #SiezetheDream #Creative

“The little seeds sown today become the fruit trees of our tomorrows.” ~Candice Coates

The Word of God says that whatever we sow that we shall also reap (Galatians 6:7). When it comes to our creativity, like our faith or life in general, we still reap what we sow.

If you sow seeds of laziness or even fear of failure and choose not to make the time to create today, tomorrow you will have nothing but the fruit of regret.

But if you take the time, get your hands dirty and press past your barriers and fears, sowing seeds of action, even when it seems fruitless, soon and very soon you will eat of the fruits of success.

I want to help you sow your creative seeds! I want to help you find your success.

Success isn’t solely found in book deals or high priced paintings, but in the knowledge that you accomplished a challenging goal. In your efforts, you grew. That is always worthy fruit.

Let’s grow together!

MISSION FOR THE NEXT FEW WEEKS:

Over the next 12 Mondays, I would like you to journey with me in sowing seeds to capture your divine and creative vision for tomorrow.

We will:

  • ‘Turn the soil’ of our creative ground and prep it to be fruitful
  • Relay proper foundations to build creatively upon
  • Learn how to design our personal roadmaps to ‘creative success’
  • Find out what it means to Dream, Imagine, Believe, Do, and, CONQUER!

WILL YOU JOIN ME?:

Will you make a commitment to join me in this journey? If so, please

  • Follow ICFTS if you aren’t already
  • Invite others to join by spreading the word and sharing this post on social media
  • Make a commitment at the end of this journey to Sign my GUESTBOOK sharing how ICFTS has blessed you and helped you grow creatively

I look forward to sharing this creative table with you.

COMMUNITY QUESTIONS:

  • What steps have you taken to walk into your creative dreams thus far?
  • What were/are some things that were/are holding you back?
  • What advice would you share with others who have struggled to take hold of or regain their footing in conquering their dreams and goals?

Please share your wisdom and advice in the comments below.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

The Blessing of Trusting the Lord: A Word of Encouragement

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Psalm 56:3-4Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God (I will praise His word), In God I have put my trust; I will not fear.What can flesh do to me?”

 

In life, we all come to a place where we face fear. It could be something as grand as the fear of crashing your car or the fear of a needle during a check-up at the doctor’s office. But as with all things, there is always the choice of choosing to live beyond the fear, and we can do this by trusting in God.

Jeremiah 17:5-8 Thus says the Lord“Cursed is the man who trusts in man And makes flesh his strength, Whose heart departs from the Lord. 6For he shall be like a shrub in the desert, And shall not see when good comes, But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, In a salt land which is not inhabited.“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, And whose hope is the LordFor he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, Which spreads out its roots by the river, And will not fear[a] when heat comes;But its leaf will be green, And will not be anxious in the year of drought, Nor will cease from yielding fruit.

Something I want to point out about the two men mentioned in the verses from Jeremiah. Both men were righteous men of God, but the first man turned His attention from the goodness of god and began to trust in other men for his preservation.

The fact of the matter is, no matter how sincere others are, no matter how sincere we are, we are bound to fail each other time and time again.

But failure is not in God! Not only that, but all of His promises are yes and in Christ, amen (2 Corinthians 1:20). He will do what He said.

When we chose to trust Him by faith, no matter the circumstances we trust Him we can:

The Word of God is full of words that don’t assure as that we will never experience or face fear, but rather that God is trustworthy to deliver us from whatever it is that has us afraid. Psalm 91 is a perfect example of that. Verses 9-16 express, like in Jeremiah, what the reward of those who trust in Him will be:

9Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge, Even the Most High, your dwelling place, 10 No evil shall befall you, Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; 11 For He shall give His angels charge over you, To keep you in all your ways. 12 In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone. 13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.

14 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. 15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. 16 With long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation [Yeshuati=Jesus*].”

Psalm 91 shows us the trouble will try to overtake us and cause us to fear, but as long as we continue to make Yeshua Jesus our refuge and trust, He will cause us to overcome every scheme that comes against us and He will prosper us.

So, how do we, in the face of trial and fearful things continue to trust in the Lord? We do so by staying in and meditating on His word daily.

It is in His Word that we are assured of His goodness, in His Word that our trust and love and faith grows. It is in His Word that we obtain Salvation/Yeshua/Jesus! the Living Word! (John 1:1-16, Colossians 1:15-20).

So let us rejoice in His Word and trust in Him taking our rest in Joy for He is faithful who has promised (Hebrews 10:23, I Thessalonians 5:24) and He has promised to keep all who trust in Him! And oh, what a blessing it is!

Jeremiah 15:16 “Your words were found, and I ate them, And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; For I am called by Your name, O Lord God of hosts.

~Poiema, Poetry in Motion

*The word used for ‘My Salvation’ is Yeshuati in the Hebrew. The Name of the Savior is Yeshua/Jesus.

The Bend: Flash Fiction Results of Monday’s Muse May 16th 2016

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The Bend: Flash Fiction

The road was still dark though the fog had cleared. Still they hadn’t seen another car for hours. The same lurching feeling that they’d felt in the fog returned but with a greater degree of clarity.

It had happened.

The shockwave that had rocked him to the ground several hours ago, the one that had left his ears bleeding and his sight spliced to a sickening double, had come at the exact time that he’d predicted.

“They should’ve listened to me,” His words trembled from his lips. White knuckles gripped his steering wheel as he rounded the bend. Tears blurred his vision again before trickling down his face.

His breath hitched. He hadn’t cried in years, not since his first  prediction. Kelley, his sister. He’d told her that her breaks would give out, said he’d seen it in a dream. They’d fought over the keys. He became enraged by fear, busted out her window as she fought to drive off.

She died. The car didn’t stop, just as he’d told her. He’d fought to save her life and all he could think about while he sat in a prison cell for his sister’s murder, was how her last thought of him was one of fear.

That hadn’t been his first prediction, not really. He’d had several up until then. They’d come at random, like pebbles sliding down a mountain face, the gentle warnings of an ominous danger just up ahead.

They started after his own recovery. A bad high mixed with a fall into an empty swimming pool with a rain slick bottom and a lovely jolt of electricity from a construction lamp falling on top of him.

The predictions began the moment he opened his eyes and just like they pebbles they grew weightier with their warning. The last was the shockwave that brought the fog.

No one listened then, having dubbed him a murderous lunatic junkie. How he wished they were all right about him. He wished he had been every slur they’d called him just to have the suffocating emptiness that had been strangling him for hours to lift away for good.

He pressed the gas and picked up speed. Maybe he shouldn’t have found cover from the shockwave. Maybe he should have done like everybody else and stayed above ground. Now alone, he thought that he should just end it all.

Who would he tell of what he’d witnessed? So far it was evident that there was no one left. A moan crawled up his throat and burst forth in a flood of more tears. He bit the back of his hand and let the speedometer climb higher and higher and higher until–

His wheels screamed to a halt and with the agility of a NASCAR driver, he managed to bring the car to a safe stop only several yards from the young woman standing at the side of the road.

THE END…?

*I love the way freewriting goes in whatever direction it pleases. This story kind of made me nervous in a what’s-about-to-happen kind of way. Other writer’s know what I mean by this. These are my results for Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt May 16th, 2016. If you are interested in seeing the original prompt and rules, and maybe even give it a writing try yourself, you can do so by following this LINK.

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

What They Say: Flash Fiction #Blogbattler Week 50

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What They Say: Flash Fiction

“The only time I want to see a whole lot of red inky letters on paper is when Jesus is talking in my Bible, not when I have to hand you back your manuscript!” Mr. Hopeheld drummed his fingers on his desk, the frustration in his eyes melting in to compassion.

“Don’t look so chewed up. You and I both know you can do better than this. This,” He stabbed his pointer finger into the tome upon his shiny desktop. “This was a distracted effort of lifeless words and that just isn’t who you are.”

The tempered rebuke from Lloyd’s publisher  a week ago had nearly given him an ulcer. The sad thing was Mr. Hopeheld was right in all he said. The only problem was that him being right had not helped Lloyd one iota. He’d only told him what he’d already known.

Lloyd didn’t believe in writer’s block. The truth was he always had something to say, always had some character whispering in his ears, flashing pictures of their questionable misadventures before his eyes.

But the sudden fearful indifference that had wrapped tight hold of him like sodden leather was what made him shrink back from his laptop. Even now he felt his pulse thrumming in his ears as he stood looking at it from across the room.

Last thing he wanted to do-again-was write thousands of words of garbage fit for nothing more than the lining of a chicken coup. But the moment his love for storytelling had turned into something akin to tree kicking he just couldn’t bring himself to do it…not like he should.

Problem was he had signed on to write what he was told by others; by his critics and naysayers, by blog reviewers who did nothing but spew acid upon the written attempts of those who’d actually stuck their necks out to accomplish their dreams. Those hacks could only trash others while building themselves up on platforms of how they would have done it better. And the readers were eating it up.

Lloyd had even eaten it to his own demise.

Rolling his shirt up over his head he turned from the desk again and screamed. He’d done this to himself. Even Mr. Hopeheld had said so.

“Lloyd, who cares what your critiques say. It’s your fans who matter. When they start ripping you apart on their blogs then you know you have a problem. But these guys, these soul-suckers who always know how to ‘do it better’ never ‘do it.’ They are irrelevant.” He picked up Lloyd’s manuscript, all 350 pages worth, and tipped it in the wastebasket.

Lloyd felt the color drain from his face. Hopeheld took hold of his shoulders. “You get your behind back to that condo of yours and you write again, but this time you write from your heart, you write it for you first, with your audience in mind second. And when you write your story, let your words be pure, true, engaging. If you don’t like it. If you’re not moved, we won’t be either.” He clapped him on the back for good measure as if he were his coach. “Go move us, son. Do what you were created to do. Move us!”

Pulling his shirt back down over his chest, Lloyd put on his game face. He’d written a great story before. He was going to do it again. No matter what his critics had to say. Who were ‘they’ anyway?

THE END

I hope you enjoyed this weeks entry of the blogbattle! The Keyword: PURE and my Genre: CONTEMPORARY...I think. To read more stories from other battlers, please click HERE and head on over the the fab blog of Rachael Ritchey!

Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

What She Said: Flash Fiction Results For Monday’s Muse Jan 11th 2016

Results for Monday's Muse Writing Prompt are in! To see the original post you can do so by following this LINK.

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What She Said

 

Slurping, he sucked in his lips cooling them with his tongue, dropping the spoon back into the bowl with an unintended but dramatic splash. Looking forward, his heart all but stood still. The soup had burned his lips almost as badly as her words just had.

“I-I’m sorry. What did you just say?” He reached for his napkin and methodically dabbed his mouth, his eyes fixed on a nondescript spot on the table as he perked his ears to listen.

“I said I know who you are.”

That’s what he’d thought he’d heard her say. His eyes stared coldly at her back, the white hot glare of the sun from the window made her look as nothing more than a dark silhouette, a demon come calling for payment.

She turned around and faced him, her arms drawn tightly around her middle. Washed in black or not, he could still see the tension in her shoulders. She was afraid…of him. That was good at least.

She said, “Generally what happens when a liar is found out, I have them removed from the premises. There’s a lot of paper work and legal dribble involved. Its usually not pleasant for those who find themselves in your position. The liars that is.” He could feel her eyes staring hard into his.

Odd, for a frightened woman she was very forward. He kept her gaze but allowed himself to take in the sounds from around his office and out side the doors. It would stand to reason that if she truly knew who he was then she would have a small army waiting just outside the door. Odder still, none of the sounds outward were any different from any other day.

“Your name isn’t Wallace Dayworthy. I know of another name but I don’t want to be too presumptuous. What is your name exactly? ” She tilted her head.

He leaned back. If this was a stalling tactic, which he doubted, or a game of cat an mouse, he was definitely drawn in. Fear, questions, knowledge, but her standing right there in the room, not moving, not leaving, knowing or at least believing she knew who he was was extremely attractive to his condition.

“Why?” Was his simple response.

The tension in her shoulders shifted as she pulled her arms from her chest and gripped the window sill until her knuckles were nearly white. “If you are who I know you are, then,”

“Then what?” He had a bit of growl to his voice. It wasn’t intended, but the scent of fear drew him out. She either needed to show her hand or let him leave without any scene being made. It would be bad for everyone if there was a scene. Bloody bad.

“Then I need your help…Tribecca.”

His name, his hidden name, shivered from her lips, laden with desperation. He all but flinched but not just from her calling out his name.

His attention perked with what she’d said. This was a first. Someone needed his help.

The End…I suppose…maybe

The Right Time: A Song And Word On Seizing Our Moments

There is indeed a time and a season to all things, but how many times have we used this “truth” out of context, and as a means to hide behind our fear, allowing great opportunities to pass us by?

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…(Ecclesiastes 3:1-8)

God does indeed have a plan for all of us. He has the perfect times set up for each and every one of us. I am not a believer in “coincidences” but “God-incidences,” however even with a beautifully orchestrated God-incidence if we are insistent upon finding every reason for why we shouldn’t make a move, we will miss our moment.

Some moments  don’t come around twice. They are truly once-in-a-lifetime events.

So I encourage you to, yes, pray without ceasing. Seek the face of God and allow the wisdom of Yeshua Jesus to guide you in His perfect way and will in all that you do, but don’t let fear of waiting for the “perfect moment” to rob you of the moment at hand.

If you’re waiting for the right time The right time will fly right by you Always planning, never moving Always praying, never doing It ain’t living if you’re just spending your life Waiting for the right time” ~Warren Barfield The right time

There is no such thing as a perfect moment, only the right time and most of the time the right time happens when it looks impossible.

Many of us  like to say we are waiting on God…but have you ever considered that maybe God is waiting on you?

The time is now! Step out on faith, and don’t let your “moment” pass you by.

~Poiema, Poetry in Motion

The Drop: Part 2 of The Sickle #Blogbattle Week 17

Tis Tuesday and another grand day for a Blogbattle! This week's word is "Drop." To read more blog battle entries, click HERE. To read Part 1 of The Sickle, click HERE.

The Drop

Clovis felt like he had been running for days. He might as well had been. The way his tongue had glued to the roof of his mouth from the strain of unrelenting thirst was a sure sign that he would be a dead man…and soon.

He had been a moving target for several hours, running into the face of the sun towards the rocky cliffs ahead of him, hoping to find some kind of shelter. But with each determined stride, with each kick of the living dust that swirled around his feet, the farther away the mountain seemed to be.

Its promise of temporary shelter snaked through him pressing him forward, battling against the relentless distance that taunted him. It was almost as if the mountain was moving away from him.

He knew better. The soaring heat of Hydra Colony, and the glare of its suns were baking away his reasoning. He still had not gotten the chance to register what was happening or why Empire had disconnected him. He could only focus his mind on shelter, and the thirst that was quickly drawing moisture from his pressed lips.

Better dehydration killed him than them to get their hands on him.

The XX, what Empire had dubbed the denizens farmed in Hydra Colony, were too basic, too far gone from human or true terre to be considered female.

They were devoid of reason and even lacked the necessary organs to reproduce. They were all but maddened clay forms, incomplete, lacking the finishing touch from the hand of God.

Shrill cries and hoots similar to that of aggravated baboons echoed against the rock face of the  mountains causing Clovis’ jaw to clench. The sound was beyond threatening and he had yet to formulate a plan for survival beyond running.

Foolishly, he chanced a look behind him, squinting past the blisters that were lingering just beneath his burning skin. At least six XX’s had emerged from the living dust just after he had collected the viable sample, and were now in hot pursuit.

Hot. How long would it be before the colony was completely cleansed by the fire that came after every Sickle trial? By the sudden rise of ferocity of the suns, Clovis reckoned he would survive a week at best before he was roasted alive.

That was at least a full five days before the fires ignited, putting Hydra Colony back at zero.

Another shrill cry, followed by a cacophony of others distinct from those that had previously assaulted his ears broke out behind him. Again Clovis looked back, just as his palm touched the rough surface of the mountain, and a prayer for a clear path to safety parted his lips.

Horror clawed up his spine with a chill that knocked the heat from his skin. Something large, larger than the XX’s had come upon them with neck break speed. Roaring like a lion, it tore down Clovis’ pursuers with blurring movements, dropping their lifeless forms to the dust.

Clovis choked down a terrible cry of his own. Six dead meant at least 36 would rise in their places, never mind the others who probably crawled upon the mountain, hiding in the darkness.

Tearing  his eyes away from the beast he could only assume was born of his blood and the living dust, Clovis took to the mountain, gripping the Sickle with an unyielding hold.

Sharp rock threatened to break his skin, forcing Clovis to change his position several times, costing him precious time. The panting of the beast behind him bounced around him.

It was drawing close, too close. Clovis needed a plan. It was that, or die at the age of 40.

He finally pulled himself to a flat surface dropping his head to his chest, taking in deep breathes through his nostrils, anything to quiet his movements and mask his position.

A shadow sliced across his path causing him to startle. He slowly drew upward from his seated position, shifting the Sickle in his hand, praying no dust lingered upon the mountain. Blood would be shed before it was all said and done, Clovis just intended for it not to be his.

Again the shadow zipped past him, dancing to the music of bare feet against stone, and breaths shallowly and carefully drawn. With each pass, Clovis moved backward, slid behind a rock, climbed over a low over hang that kissed a narrow cave opening just at his feet, until he finally realized what he had done.

“You idiot,” He chastised himself. He had allowed his fear to surrender him to the hand of his appointment, allowing them to push him directly in to the position they wanted him in, and all with the movement of their shadow.

Before he could process, before he could undo the damage he had done, the roar of the beast cracked against his eardrums. Stunned by the closeness  of the sound, Clovis blocked his ears, losing the focus he so needed to keep himself alive.

By the time he righted his swimming equilibrium, it was too late. The shadow of the beast began to fill the area around him. Clovis  swallowed down the dryness of fear.

“I will not die this day!” He hissed, readying himself for the creature’s arrival, unprepared for the hooking hold that had grabbed him by the ankles dragging him down to the ground from behind.

Clovis hit the ground hard, chest first and winded, careful not to lose the Sickle, but unable to stop the rough hands as they jerked him backward, forcing him through the darkness. Down, down, down, he tumbled, unable to gain purchase with control, until all he felt was rushing air around him just before he hit bottom.

Stunned, he struggled to open his eyes. The drop should have killed him.  But it may have saved his life…

THE END OF PART II

To read Part 3 “Awake” Click HERE

Less than 30 words shy of 1000. I actually tried to write a bit less BUT that clearly didn’t happen. I also wanted to try a different story line all together BUT that didn’t happen either. The Sickle just stuck with me, as did Clovis. I had to give him another week or else I am certain I would have gone mad. 

I hope you enjoyed it. Please feel free to leave feedback and be sure to check out other entries of this blog battle.

Cheers!

Quake: Results For Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt June 1st

Howdy all! Today is Wedesday, and as promised ( a day early), I bring to you my results from the Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt from June 1st. To view the original prompt and rules, click HERE. Also, keep in mind that you can always do the prompts at your leisure. These prompts are designed to stretch and inspire!

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The biting kiss of the scorching sun upon his parched eyelids is what woke him up, but seeing the bloody prints that ended at his body is what fully knocked the sleep from his eyes.

He clawed around with his hands, narrowing his eyes against the glaring sun and tried to right himself. But it was to no avail. Pain, not just from the burn of exposure threatened to throw him into fits of tearless whimpers if he didn’t take it slow and easy.

How could he take it slow and easy?! He had no idea how he had gotten where he was, with only a faded recollection for the cause of his pain. Trevor took careful breathes and forced himself to at least sit upright, giving him a better view of the bloody foot prints that had been pressed into the cracked clay earth.

Seeing the prints, and knowing that they ended with him should not have been too much of a cause for panic, blood aside, but the fact that they were massive dog prints that ended where he lay was enough to make his bones quake with cold fear.

It could have been a coincidence. Maybe a stray wolf, with paws the size of a kodiak bear cub had sniffed him out and thought to end him during the night, but thought better of it. Trevor did smell worse than rotted meat set ablaze by hell’s fire, not to mention the other unsavory odors that assaulted his senses. But sadly that thought didn’t seem likely either, especial since the swirl of dry mud that he sat in fit his body and the lone hand print of a man fit his like a glove.

“No, no, no!” He moaned like a drunk punched by the hard-knuckled fist of hangover. Images flashed against the screen of his mind, of darkness, and skin ripping pain, brought on by danger that ended in blood…but not his blood.

If he hadn’t already thought himself crazy, he would have blamed the images on the Absinthe he had downed. The bartender had warned him to water it down. He didn’t.

Why?

Growling with panic he shot to his feet, clarity dropping against his mind like a sodden dishcloth. Absinthe was the only thing that made him forget, forget this, the thing that he had become. It made him forget the things he did when he hungered. It muddied the thoughts of truth with pure fiction so much so he could not tell the two apart.

Trevor could live with what if’s, but being abandoned by Absinthe’s sway…

Feeling the hateful truth fresh upon him, living it again made his muscles tremble and his back arc before bowing forward. He refused to fight the quake this time, instead he let the pain have him, the shift take place.

The desert was certain death for a man far from civilization, hungover or not. But it was just another byroad for a werewolf on the prowl.

THE END

I really like this story, even though it seems a bit dark to a degree. But I like it enough that I am considering interviewing dear Trevor, and finding out how he became the deadly beast he is, a beast that has no need for the moon in order to be. Time will only tell what may or may not come from Trevor, but I am willing to give “Quake” a shot, even if it is in the form of a Novella. 

Cheers!

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