Trapping Wings

I didn’t participate last week but I wanted to try my hand at fantasy and possible humor for this week’s Twittering Tales? Or a humorous situation? Either way, this was a fun one. I wonder if I can participate in the A-Z blog challenge doing something like these little shorts?


$10,000 REWARD!
Small songbird escaped May 4th.
She has gold wings, pearl beak…’
Ell recalled the poster when she saw a bird with actual gold wings and beak of pearl.
She thought, ‘The sweet songs are lovely but I think she’s worth more than the reward.’
That day she set her traps.

© Jo-Creative PTSD Gal
Character Count: 280
Word Count: 52

Dreaming Wheel

I’m so behind on my writing and luckily I’m slow here at work for the moment. I wanted to take the time to try my hand at today’s photo prompt.


‘This is the dumbest decision ever!’ Lara scoffed buying a ticket for the Ferris wheel.
‘You said you’d be willing to try. You’ve been on some horrible dates anyway, so what’s to lose?’ Liz chided snagging one herself. The tickets read, ‘Sit and enjoy the ride. The person across from your carriage is your true love.
The girls jumped in their carriages and around they went. Lara’s turn came to meet her date when she saw Liz walking off with HER ex. Deflated, she immediately regretted everything until she saw him.
‘Hello, I’m Tucker.’
‘I dreamt of you!’
‘I know.’

© Jo Creative PTSD Gal
Word Count: 100

FOR SALE

I did my workout this morning and my body hates me. I’m in a puddle here but fell in love with the short story I was able to come up with. Positive thoughts and vibes today. Maybe another short story later.


‘FOR SALE’
Being a piano teacher I thought this piano would make a great yard ornament.
‘This is being sold as is and still plays. Will not deliver.’ I thought that was a reasonable request.
‘Must be of Christian faith and have a priest present at pickup. NO RETURNS.’
I called the number provided because this is EXACTLY what I am looking for, faith or not.
‘Do you have a strong faith and priest?’
I said, ‘I’m not much of a churchgoer.’
The seller said, ‘your choice.’

Demonic notes played all night that first night. My ad started, ‘FOR SALE’

© Jo Creative PTSD Gal
Word Count: 100

Trained Love

I needed a break, however brief, from the toxicity of work and decided to try my hand at this week’s twittering tale. This is not my usual fantasy, horror-ish theme. How about something that a young woman might have felt from a historical period? Kind of new to me but here it is.


Clara sat nervously next to strangers as her stomach turned. The echos of passing tracks below hinted her new life was soon docking.
‘Will he be good to me? Will there be love? It’s survival.’ Clara pondered.
The picture-bride was pulled closer to the station where Eli was waiting.

© Jo- Creative PTSD Gal
Character Count: 280
Word Count: 49

Crying Wolf

I have a sick little guy this morning and I’m scrambling trying to figure out what I’m going to do while he goes and lays back down. Here’s a quick little story. Happy Friday Y’all.


‘What exactly happened?’ The officer sat with a pen at the ready.
‘It was like being at a motocross race, non-stop engines revving. Windows shook and Peppy couldn’t even go outside. She just sat and shook.’
The officer looked at the little fluffy marshmallow in the corner stained with red.
Sessy continued, ‘I walked outside and warned I was going to call the cops. Next thing I know Peppy was at one of the boys’ throats and the bike was through my front wall. Is the boy ok?’
The officer chuckled, ‘He’s ok, but said it was a wolf attack?’

Word Count: 100
© Jo Creative PTSD

With new ambitions on the horizon, a quick poll will help a lot.

 

Desert Proof

Taking a little break from work and recharging my study of HTML to try my hand at another Twittering Tale hosted by Kat.


Deep in the desolate desert, a rumored oasis sits.
Shawn’s dad swore it was there but warned that it’s a wasteland for society’s failures to quell their thirst.
Ten long days he traveled and at the end of the tenth night, ‘THIS IS IT’ glowed in the darkness.
Now he sits and drinks.

Characters: 280
Words: 53
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal


I had mentioned earlier about possibly trying to publish some of my short stories let me know what you think. I’ll start adding polls to my short stories for input. Comments are welcome as well.

 

Deli Crimes

I had time today to do this little quick dark story up for the Friday Fictioneers and thought if I took all my short stories of 200 words or less and put them into a collection would anyone purchase to read? I’d like to think I’m getting good at these. Thoughts?


Crime scene tape long weathered away. The only remains of the murders is this shell of a building. The town nominated the old market as a shelter during disasters since it was the only building with its own well and generator. The owner, old man Cecil owned the store but it was his daughter that ran the deli. Each week a newly sliced deli sandwich cleverly named such as ‘Texas Two Step Brisket,’ combo would be featured on the menu, ‘for a LIMITED TIME’ always preceded the title. The dark truth of multiple victims followed the headlines, ‘Deli Sliced Nightmare.’

Word Count: 100
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal

Survival Guide

I don’t write poetry simply because it never comes out right. I had a meltdown yesterday over something that could have been laughed at. The stress from a toxic work environment just sent me over the edge. All the after-school plans changed because the kids couldn’t make up their mind so I was scrambling. When I got home to cook a dinner that I originally had no intention of doing was the straw of the camel’s back. I turned on the wrong burner and melted a bag of rice to the burner. I picked it up and rice went everywhere. Normally, that is something I would laugh at but I just couldn’t. I cried and had the breakdown that I needed. This is what anxiety and depression looked like in my house yesterday. This is what a day’s worth of anxiety build brings when in a toxic environment. With everything still on my mind the best I could do was to get it out like this:


She has hearing like a bat,
heard every word.
Skills honed to
better hear the car door.

She can feel the tension,
its felt when walking in the room.
Her body is conditioned
to prepare for assaults.

She worries about your thoughts,
she can tell by the look on faces.
Her mind does this
in preparation for anything to come.

She’s alert to her surroundings,
without looking she knows who’s walking in the room.
Always alert because she
always had to be on guard.

She’s silent without a second thought,
already knows you don’t want to hear her.
Silence ensures lack
of violent encounters.

To you, she seems cold,
refusing to be fake.
To her, it’s about survival and her guide,
years of abusive trial and error.

Mom’s Words

One positive thing about my toxic work environment is downtime. I even got to play with this week’s twittering tales hosted by Kat. Y’all I think this is helping me find my own style and voice in writing not to mention honing my editing skills. I’m digging these short story prompts.


‘You lay down with dogs, you’ll wake with fleas,’ Sam’s mom warned. A friendship, once innocent quickly had a bad influence on Sam.
Now, just released on bail he crawled into bed.
‘OW!’ Sam pulled back the covers to find his bed swarming with fleas.
‘MOM!’ he yelled.
‘I told you!’

Character Count: 279
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal

Freshly Baked Secrets

I had the hardest time with this photo and I ended up in the weirdest place for the story but I ran with it.


Ana’s home has a bakery, ‘Fresh Baked Secrets’, in front where she sold secret recipes baked into sugary confections. On the table next to her register sat a vase full of gold trimmed roses. Customers had nothing but compliments about the arrangement when purchasing cookies.

We all know the darkest of secrets are behind closed doors and the basement was always locked. ‘EMPLOYEES ONLY’ warned the sign. This was Ana’s space where she honed skills in the darkest magic imaginable. Her cookie recipe would enchant her next victim never to be seen again. Each rose represented the innocent soul captured.

Word Count: 100
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal

Twittering Tale: Lou’s On 66

Better late than never. Here is my twittering tale for this week which was a great exercise for working on dialogue (which I need more practice). I wanted to veer away from my usual dark style for these shorts and tried to do something humorous.


‘Look, Bruce, if we go left here we’ll get right back on to Route 66.’
‘I see that Leo but if we want to eat at Lou’s we need to go straight.’
The two men argued about the Route 66 trip while their wives snickered.
‘Should we tell them Lou’s is around the corner?’
‘Yeah, and on 66?’


Character Count: 280
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal

Cursed Melody

Y’all, I’ve been working on this since Fandango first posted the photo prompt for the weekly flash fiction. I suck at writing but no one gets good at something unless they are practice. This screamed fairytale and I’ve been working on this since Monday. I stopped when I was over 1000 words and went back to do some major chopping. I like the questions that I’ve left unanswered. Now to figure out a twittering tale and get ready for tomorrows short story. Happy Thursday Y’all!


Once upon a time, there was a beautiful young woman. It wasn’t her young skin, long silky hair or feminine physique that had men fighting for her affection. It was her light, quick flautist abilities that held their affections. Her small nimble fingers gently kissing the keys of her flute giving it a song that went straight to the heavens.

Brenna’s only secret was a curse given to her as she grew in the womb robbing her of her voice. No one knew the awful truth because her songs entranced all who visited. The deer would even come and pay their condolences of her fate. The curse that dwelt within her has the darkest of melody and it leaks out in deep notes throughout her music. The only way for this curse to be lifted is for someone to hear those hidden notes and play them in Brenna’s presence as an accompaniment to her song.

Day after day, Brenna sang through her flute. During the times of a silent Brenna and flute, she was surrounded by people waiting for her tunes. One spring morning she noticed a young woman following one of her deer back into the woods but couldn’t get her attention and shrugged it off. Over the next few weeks, the same young woman listened to Brenna, say hello, and then follow the same dark-colored deer into the thicket. It was a dark stormy day and Brenna felt more sorrow than she had in a long time. The rain was loud enough so only she could hear the melody. It seemed like every hidden dark note danced in the drops that fell on her Brenna’s dress.

Brenna’s head bowed she played with such feeling the deer started to gather around her. Among her antlered friends, the young woman sat patiently waited with a flute in her hands. Brenna started another stanza when the girl began to play all the hidden dark notes from Brenna’s curse. The sky opened to let sunlight shine on the two girls playing a beautiful accompaniment of sorrow and cheer. The dark deer rested in the young girl’s lap and when they were done silence fell around them. Brenna asked, ‘What’s your name?’ but the young girl didn’t answer only patted her throat and handed her a piece of paper:

‘My dear sister,

It is my turn to bear the burden of the curse our father brought upon us girls. Take my voice and sing to my tune. Help find a way to break this spell.’

Stunned, Brenna looked up, ‘Sisters?’

Word Count: 427
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal

Friday Fictioneers: Painful Panes

I HAD to write this quick short story…it’s Friday after all. I promise I’m going to lay down after this. I know there is more back story here but I haven’t quite figured it out. I think this is a great starting point though. Don’t you?


‘I’ve only seen these panes from the inside. What am I supposed to do now?’ Tess asked the nurse.
‘Well, you’re going to live and prove to others that you are just as normal and sane as everyone else,’ Tess’ nurse reminded her with a gentle hand on her shoulder.
Tess picked up her suitcase turning to give the mental asylum one last look. All she could remember was the pain she felt looking to the outside world through those very same panes of glass. No one was there to pick her up but everything she’d done was in self-defense.

100 Word Count
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal

Twittering Tales: XOXO

It was one of the most trying days that I have had in a long while yesterday when I had started writing this. I’m surprised it didn’t turn out darker or more moodier. I’m a little late but luckily the character counter that I used remembered (still had it in the counting box) so I didn’t have to start over. I’m glad I finished it.


This will be the first Valentines day without her husband. XOXO was always the first candy heart he’d give Ruth. She bought her own box two days prior but couldn’t open it.
Waking up on the 14th Ruth decided to eat her candy. On top of the unopened box, a candy heart sat, XOXO.

An Unread Essay

There was recently an essay contest that made the news last month. I thought about entering but it would literally be a drop of water in a bucket of millions of writers. It was for a mansion of a house and all a person had to do was write an essay and pay the $25 entry fee. The money earned from the entry was going to a domestic abuse charity which is something I could get behind. Why didn’t I do it? Well, $25 is a tank of gas for me or money needed to purchase ingredients to cook dinner for a night. This is what I started. Please understand, I’m not wanting pity. It’s just an essay written that I never submitted. Viewer discretion is advised. Read at your own risk.


I wouldn’t take the house you are offering for a well-written essay. One chosen that would hopefully move the reader enough to choose the most deserving writer. I know what it’s like to live in an abusive situation and in a beautiful home both at the same time. I would sell the mansion but not for what you would think.

I knew to escape my situation I would need to further my education. My first day of college was great and I felt an accomplishment until I got home. That night when I got back from a day of classes, getting lost, and learning the ropes of things I realized my mistake. My abuser wasn’t proud of his wife coming back from class, didn’t ask her how her day was, not even a hug. Instead, he was upset that there wasn’t dinner and his property disobeyed him. I can still feel the words sting before the broken rib snapped under his fist. I remember feeling the earth come to a halt. I retreated into myself and waited for it to stop hoping my body can withstand the force of anger. I could feel the earth start to spin again and from the comfort of inside my soul, he was done.

I wrapped my battered body with bandages and made one of the best meatloaves ever. The potatoes were thick and creamy and the meatloaf was seasoned perfectly and was careful to make the right amount of eye contact. When he was done with dinner I made sure the kids were washed and ready for the next day and as he slept that night I looked over my agenda for classes. I devised a meal plan that involved a crockpot and weekends of cooking meals and freezing.

What’s the ending, you may wonder? I found my strength and escaped my abuser and graduated college. I also accumulated a mountain of student loan debt and C-PTSD. So, no. I wouldn’t move into the home but rather sell it to pay off my debt. Helping rid me of the final shackles of my past and my abuser. I would purchase a house that I can sustain without debt and donate the rest to women that are still shackled by their abusers.

 

Twittering Tales: June’s Integrity

I am absolutely beginning to LOVE these Twittering Tales hosted by Kat. I needed something to get my mind off my job interview today (that I know I won’t get but still what they hey). This week was a little more challenging because we finish the story after 23 characters were provided leaving us to work within 257 characters (including spaces and punctuation). The wheels were turning and like a wall, WHAM! I was hit with an idea. Tons of editing later, I even surprised myself. Happy Tuesday Y’all!


It starts with one word, integrity. It’s the truth between the moment of awareness and a final decision.
June saw hate begin to rumble towards the crone once trusted with healing, ‘MURDERER!’ The child had died from fever, nothing more. June stood shielding the crone, ‘COWARDS!’

279 Characters
© Jo-Creative PTSD Gal

Friday Fictioneers-The Peaceful Appetite

I had nothing. No ideas. Not a clue what to write about for my Friday story. Then I came across this picture prompt for Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. I thought how perfect! My short stories have been rather long and this helped with a word count maximum. I edited this quite a few times so that was also helpful. Next…What in the world am I going to take a picture of today?


The Peaceful Appetite

Photo credit: Renee Heath

‘I QUIT!’ Tabitha said grabbing her bag. There were no tears, no explanation, and no looking back. Thinking about that last day in a ruthless society, she grinned staring at her backyard for the week. She knew leaving was the right decision.
‘Mommy, are we going to tell stories tonight?’ Tabitha’s daughter asked through a toothless grin.
‘Yes, love.’ Her daughter was just an infant when she went off the grid. Now, four years old. Lucille can read, write, paint, and is an avid storyteller.
‘What’s the story for tonight?’ Tabitha asked Lucille.
‘Erm…The Peaceful Appetite.’
Tabitha started, ‘I QUIT!’

 

 

Innocent Cutouts

I’m a day late but thought I would try my hand at this. This is a nice little exercise hosted by Kat helps get the wheels turning. There are a lot of sweet stories about cookies (no pun intended) and I wanted a twist. I’ve been really working at adding twists.


The investigators couldn’t find the culprit for the devastating loss of life. The cutout shapes of flour and sugar seemed harmless rolled out on the counter. The kitchen once full of warmth and life was now a cold and quiet scene.
‘Do you suppose she meant to do so much damage?’

Photo by Oleg Magni at Pexels.com
279 Characters
© Jo Creative PTSD Gal

I want to really start committing to submitting my short stories for publishing either online magazine or print. Any advice on where to start? I have searched online and sites are asking for payment just for the list. Advice, sites, places for submission would be GREATLY appreciated.

Future’s Past

I know I know…I’m SUPER behind. I had such bad writer’s block today and then this happened. I tried keeping it short and may revisit for edits but here is my Friday story. Now for my 365 Day project.


Another girls night out and it was Polly’s turn to choose the activity. She was tired of the club scene and getting hit on by random guys. She didn’t care for going to the movie and show events because either the food was bad or the show. Polly didn’t have an artistic bone in her body so she loathed the drink and paint events that her friends would drag her too. Polly realized that most of the activities they do on lady’s night out involved alcohol. She and her friends were all moms and craved an adventure but she felt that they settled for mainstream hum drum ‘mom’ activities. Not tonight.

Polly was the black sheep of the friend group but she’s been that since they were all in high school. She was the quiet nerd copywriting for the school newspaper and her friends were cheerleaders or popular. She was even the last one to have a child. Her fiance got cold feet and left her before they could even stand at the altar. Her friends were supportive but she knew they judged her and her parenting which is why she only really hung out with them on their lady’s night. She wasn’t reclusive but she didn’t seek out socializing. Now that her daughter was a teen it was easier for her to see her friends a few times a month without worrying about a babysitter.

Her night to choose and tonight it wasn’t going to be her go-to usual midnight matinee at the local theater. She planned out a psychic reading for all of her friends and a ‘blackout dining’ experience. She has always wanted to do both of her choices but never spoke up but tonight something was different. She felt braver. The other 5 women showed up ready to go and she knew that as long as there was booze involved somewhere they would be game for whatever she suggested. The girls walked in after a brief tap on the door and a ‘yoohoo’ yodled inside. Polly greeted them and quickly told them, ‘Ladies, I have a unique night planned for us. First, we will be getting a psychic reading and I’ve reserved 2 hours for all of us to be read then we will be having a blackout dining experience.’ The other’s quietly stared at her and then the chatter of acceptance and hopeful what-ifs filled the space.

The girls arrived at Madame Quinn’s parlor promptly on time even though the carpool of women got lost twice. One by one the women went behind the black velvet curtain to have a future told to them while the others peruse Madame Quinn’s shelves of knick-knacks and herbs gossiping about whether or not Quinn was a fake and the fortunes were true. Polly was the last to disappear behind the curtain to an unknown future. ‘Sit down dear.’ Quinn motioned for Polly to sit across from her. ‘I don’t know what to do,’ Polly stammered. ‘Just relax and place your hands palm up on the scarf.’ Polly slowly put her hands on the scarf as instructed and Quinn gently cradled her hands around Polly’s. ‘You’re not like your friends. You appreciate the soul of things and live in moments. You shouldn’t worry about your daughter so much. Her future is everything a mom can ask for her daughter.’ Polly relaxed. ‘You have many pasts and this conflicts with your future. Your several futures.’ Quinn said slowly and squinted her eyes at her hands then met Polly’s eyes. ‘What does that mean?’ Polly asked. Quinn continued,’ You have a love from your past that you keep missing in each life. You continue to miss him in the future.’ Polly slid her hands out of Quinn’s and slumped back crossing her arms, ‘I had a man that I loved and he left. The love of my life is my daughter.’ ‘Child, the man that left is not the same from your past. He doesn’t know he’s looking for you. But you need to see. You need to be aware of your body. It will tell you if you listen. If and when you find each other futures change from lifetime to lifetime.’ Quinn said gripping Polly’s wrist, ‘Just listen.’ Polly stood and thanked Madame Quinn, paid for the services and tipped. All the girls loaded up in the van and headed to dinner. Polly could see Quinn standing outside with a hand cupped to her ear.

The women arrived at the restaurant where they were blindfolded and given instructions that they will be aided by the staff that has night vision goggles and guide your hands to plates and glasses. The women stumbled as they were lead to their table and no matter how hard Polly tried her there wasn’t any light for her eyes to make adjustments too. Everyone except Polly ordered a spirited drink whereas she opted for water. The meal was already preplanned so there were no menus just the drink order that needed to be placed. The women talked about Madame Quinn and what their futures held for them and when Polly was asked she replied, ‘I need to listen to my body.’ Giggles then the conversation was interrupted by the waiter, ‘I will be coming around on your left and placing a plate in front of you. Once the plates are placed I will guide your hands to the plate and the silverware is on your right.’ Polly’s hearing was overcompensating for the loss of sight. She could hear the plates being set on the table and her’s was last. She could hear hands being guided by the waiter with the sound of fabric scrapping against the table cloth.

Polly could feel the waiter on her left and her body temperature dropped. Her hair raised on her arms and she could feel a magnetic pull on her chin and look up in the darkness and she swore she saw the outline of a man. Polly whispered, ‘Thank you,’ as he guided her hand to her plate. The touch sent an electric pulse to her heart and instead of skipping a beat she felt a pang of sorrow. She could hear him walk away and wondered if he felt what she did. The women ate and chatted but now Polly was distracted and offered the occasional, ‘yup’ and ‘really’ in the conversation when warranted. The meal ended and the waiter guided the women to the hostess area where Polly could feel the pang in her heart as the waiter bid them goodnight. She was quiet on the way home and snapped out of her quiet mood when the vehicle pulled up in front of her house. They said their goodbyes and squealed about how they haven’t had this much fun in a long time. Polly quietly entered her house, kissed her daughter’s sleeping forehead, and went to bed.

Polly tossed and turned all night with dreams of a faceless man and woke up late. She decided to go to the coffee shop by her house. Waiting in line she could feel the pull and pang. Her mouth went dry and she could hear a familiar shuffle even over the noise of the coffee shop. She turned and looked directly in the eyes of a man behind her. She noticed his breath quickened and he swallowed hard. ‘Do I know you?’ Polly asked. ‘You looked at me the same way last night. I was…’ Polly interrupted, ‘Our waiter.’ He nodded, ‘I’m Zack.’ ‘Im Polly.’ Coffee orders were placed and they sat talking like they had known each other for years. Morning turned into afternoon and they were talking into the evening, ‘I need to get home,’ Polly said sadly. Zack gave her his number and they made plans to make plans. Polly watched Zack walk away and it felt like she was losing something important.

For weeks the pair talked and grew closer together. A couple of years passed when Zack asked Polly to be his wife. Her friends were bridesmaids and her daughter the matron of honor. She could feel something crushing her from the inside and thought it to be wedding nerves. ‘It’s past time to say our vows,’ Polly told her daughter and feared that she was being left again. ‘Polly, I need you to come with me.’ The priest motioned for her to follow. The walked down a long hallway that was behind the main room where she was met by two officers. She already knew the bad news and zoned out the man telling her about the wreck. She sat on the floor surrounded by white fabric but all she could feel was emptiness. After the church was cleared and she changed out of the dress she wandered around the city where she found herself in front of Madame Quinn’s parlor. Quinn was waiting outside for Polly and wrapped her in a warm embrace. Polly began to cry and yell, ‘WHY!? I found him! I listened just like you said! What the fuck Quinn?! What did I do wrong!’ Quinn took Polly’s hand, ‘My dear child, I told you many futures. This future wasn’t the one that was meant to be. Your soul now recognizes his. It will be easier next lifetime. Go home, raise your daughter, grow old, you’ll marry a man that will keep you company and you will be surrounded by your children and grandchildren. Your soul will now remember what to do and who to recognize. A future’s past only foresees a soul’s constant.

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