Flash Fiction Results…

The winners are…

1st: Michelle Trottier

2nd: Ben Heacock

3rd: 3-way tie – Alicia Pronovost, Andrew Banas, and Karagh Linzi

We’ve posted some of the entries today (keep scrolling down to the “Responses”), and more in the near future. See the prompts from the earlier post (https://pulpcity.wordpress.com/2009/04/09/flash-fiction-creative-writing-prompts/)

Thanks to everyone who participated. Nearly everyone who wrote received votes – which shows just how close the contest was, and just how strong the writing was.

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3 thoughts on “Flash Fiction Results…

  1. Flash Fiction – Michelle Trottier

    The mail arrived earlier than usual. Henry slowly rose from his chair and shuffled his feet across the faded carpet. It was a beautiful day. His cat Francis raised his head from his usual spot on the antique table in front of the picture window and watched him as he made his first big move in hours. These things didn’t come so easily anymore: simple movements, daily routines. His back ached and his mind was aware of what was missing. His overcoat hung limp around his shoulders; he had shrunk within it. How many years had he had this raggedy thing? He couldn’t remember. Marie was still here. He knew that because she bought it for him.

    He undid the lock and opened the heavy wooden door. He could hear a woodpecker in the trees, and spring was obviously on its way. He stretched his tired arms to the mailbox and reached inside, grasped a bundle of paper, and pulled it out, careful not to strain his side. He closed the door behind him and made his way back to his chair. Ungracefully, he sank into his chair and began sifting through the mail. After moving a couple of cheap catalogues and coupon booklets, he noticed it. A green handwritten envelope. It was the first piece of interesting mail he’d received in months. There was no return address. He opened it, and inside were a few sheets of folded paper with a familiar script. He was almost afraid to remove the papers, to read them, as if he would be invading her privacy again. He was always invading her privacy, though he had no idea what was so important that she had to keep so many diaries, or why each diary had a little lock on the side and there were no keys to be found anywhere – not even in her bureau drawers! “What young girl doesn’t hide things in her bureau drawers?” he always asked himself. He never did find out where she hid those keys.

    He retrieved the letter and began to read. Like the loyal man he is, Francis leapt down from the table, crossed the room, and joined Henry in his chair. Henry’s eyes gradually began to water. He never did understand why his daughter hated him, and she was all he had left. They could never talk to each other. She never liked sports, and she always kept to herself. He couldn’t understand that. And for some reason, she always blamed him for Marie’s death, even though she had cancer. If the doctor said there was nothing that could be done, what was he supposed to do? He held Francis. Francis looked up at him, so serene and silent, with eyes big and blue. For years he had waited for his daughter to write, and now that she had, he felt nothing but bitterness. Still, he could never pinpoint what it was that had happened. He knew what he had to do. Without giving it a second thought, he dropped the letter in the trash and turned on the television.

  2. Flash Fiction – Ben Heacock

    “We all discover certain strengths.” The old professor turned to him with a wrinkled grin. “You will find yours, my boy.” “Mr. Goodright…” the boy stopped for a moment. “Are we safe to explore that kind of question?

    “Don’t think for a minute you aren’t. Life is an exercise of that very question! Why, most people spend their life not knowing, James. They go pondering that very mystery. True strength is a tough find, many are simply complacent, and forget there was ever a doubt at all. Those are the people to be wary of. The situation we are in now is indeed a cause of that. There’s comfort in obedience.”

    The lights in the old boxcar they sat in flickered as they jerked to a stop. As the doors opened a crisp fresh air replaced the musty odor coming off the ancient upholstery. He helped the aging scholar to his feet, and together they stepped off into the cold night air of Paris. The officer on watch looked them over suspiciously, his hand palming a gun which shined off the city lights, black and deadly. The pair tried to quicken their pace to avoid the dominating stare of this man.

    A break in the old pavement caught the professor who lost his balance, cane slinging at the officer’s feet as he stumbled feebly down. The young man helped him up, brushing him off gently. The officer stared at the cane, disgusted at what he saw, he muttered under his breath.

    Noticing his presence again, James pleaded to the imposing form. “Won’t you help him? Give us the cane please!” James stared into the cold harsh eyes of the man. Unsympathetic, he walked away and disappeared into the shadows and mist of the city night. James watched in utter disbelief. “What just happened? The police always used to help, right?”

    Mr. Goodright stopped and grinned as if the valor of youth was at once rekindled. “Ah, James… Your mother read you those stories? Marvels of human goodness and kind people? That’s good my boy, very good. I can remember when children were taught to love and understand. Before the world war you know.”

    “Number three?” James looked up quizzically.

    “Yes my astute colleague. Number three.” Mr. Goodright stared dreamily up at the stars. The sky was clear and they twinkled brilliantly. What wonder they still had was there for any to see, if they wished. “Humanity had a lot of hope then. Hope for something better. It’s still there I believe, you can’t really destroy it, despite how hard the wicked may try. We’ve only set ourselves back really…” He got his footing and made his way down the street.

    He always had a way of making James smile like nowone else could. Maybe that was why he insisted he stay with is family after he was fired. Yes, definitely why.

    “Come along, I know the best place to get a delicious roast beef for us both, James!” James started running towards him, and that’s when he saw them. Two men in rags, desperately thin, armed with menacing knives. James watched in horror as they stabbed Goodright over and over, destroying him. They took his money, they took his life.

    “What, kid? Piss off.” He cut James’ cheek and disappeared. James looked for strength.

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