Wednesday Briefs: Ghostly Blues Part 2

It’s time for another edition of Wednesday Briefs. Yay! Are you ready for more of the story I started last week? I sure hope so! This week, I chose a prompt composed of three words. The words include: cemetery, cranky, and charm. I think I put them to good use in the story!! Let me know what you think by leaving a comment *grins*

Here we go . . .

Ghostly Blues in the Big Easy, Part 2

by

Avery Dawes

The next day I tossed and turned, only managing a little sleep. One of the downsides of working odd hours meant I passed the daylight hours buried under the covers, taking full advantage of my awesome blackout drapes. It didn’t hurt that my windows faced west—thank you, Damien for that! After my grandma passed, I inherited her shotgun-style house. While it was cute, it needed work, and I didn’t have the time or energy for repairs. Then, along came Katrina, and well, it was more cost-effective to bulldoze the house than rebuild it. Damien had a fabulous mansion in the Garden District so he offered me a place to call home. Last year we adopted Brock so the three of us lived in the mansion and ran our consulting business out of the carriage house. Talk about a nice commute!

“Luce, you awake?” A light tapping sounded at my door. Brock. Maybe he found something helpful in his research.

I groaned, a tad cranky. I loved my bed, but I guessed it was time to face the day—er, night.

“D just made a pot of fresh coffee.” Brock knew the magic words to get me to move faster. “Come down to the library once you’ve got your face on.” Continue reading “Wednesday Briefs: Ghostly Blues Part 2”

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Wednesday Briefs: A New Story Start

I’m back! It’s 2019, and I’m trying to be better about writing and blogging (among other things). Avery has a new story idea for an urban fantasy tale set in New Orleans in 2025.

Just as a refresher, Wednesday Briefs are short pieces–500 to 1000 words. They also have to include a writing prompt. The prompts for this story include: the Big Easy (in the title), a character playing the piano, and a beignet. I was lucky I had so many prompts from which to choose!

Be sure to see the list of other authors at the bottom of the page! There is more free reading to be had!!

But, for now…

Ghostly Blues in the Big Easy

by

Avery Dawes

The lights of the French Quarter blurred as we sped down Bourbon Street. Nearly 2:30 a.m.—most people were either passed out or sleeping. Not Damien and me, though. My vintage Ford pick-up was out of commission, so Damien was stuck chauffeuring me to and from work. Thankfully, he didn’t seem to mind. Well, not too much.

Lost in thought, I nearly missed the shimmer of an apparition which materialized in front of Damien’s sleek Mercedes.

“Stop!” I shrieked, throwing my left arm protectively toward Damien.

Damien stomped on the brakes, and I lurched forward. The sedan slid to a squealing halt on the wet pavement.

“What the hell, Lucia?” Damien shot me daggers as he glanced around us. “I don’t see anything. Why am I slamming on the brakes?” Continue reading “Wednesday Briefs: A New Story Start”

Wednesday Briefs: More Girls & Ghouls

The last installment of Two Girls & Some Ghouls. I apologize for making you wait an extra week, but I think you will find the wait was worth it. My story is more polished now. It’s a definite improvement from my draft!

The writing prompt Avery used for this week was to have a ghost in your story. I think Julie was helping me out with that one!! The story meets the word count; it’s over 500 words (but nowhere near the 1000 word limit).

I hope you enjoy what happens between Private Mansfield and Alex! Check out the links below for the other Wednesday Briefers!

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Photo courtesy of Kevin Mitnak

Two Girls & Some Ghouls (Part III)

by

Avery Dawes

Private Mansfield grew quiet, as if he was letting what he’d heard stew in his mind for a bit prior to making any additional inquiries. “And my wife? Is there anything good which you can tell me regarding her life?”

I looked to Steph. Truth be told, his wife had remarried when the war ended. Maybe five or six years after that, she’d died while giving birth to her fourth child, who then passed a couple of days later. Death and more death. Poor Private Mansfield. I definitely wouldn’t be sharing those particular tidbits with him.

Steph shrugged her shoulders, as if to say “I’ve got nothing.” Okay, so this was all me. Hmm, maybe there was some way I could spin it that wouldn’t be so painful. “She missed you very much after you passed in battle, and she made sure to take very good care of your son.” Technically what I told him wasn’t a lie, but definitely an oversimplification of his late wife’s timeline, leaving out the happily ever after (well, happily for a couple of years!) with another man.

The private nodded solemnly, then proceeded to scratch his thin beard. I wondered if he believed me. Was it possible that he saw through my thinly veiled omission? “Very well then,” he said at last. “What about my grandchildren? Can you tell me anything of them? Were you able to find anything about their lives?” Continue reading “Wednesday Briefs: More Girls & Ghouls”

Wednesday Briefs: More Girls & Ghouls

It’s Wednesday, and we all know that means it’s time for some flash fiction! Woohoo!

This was another “free” week so Avery didn’t have to worry about including a prompt. Her story meets the 500-1000 word count. So, good there. Last but not least, be sure to check out flash fiction pieces from other Wednesday Brief authors. Their links are at the bottom of the page.

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Photo courtesy of Kevin Mitnak

Now, time for Part II of Two Girls and Some Ghouls

Last week, Private Mansfield politely asked if I could find out what became of his wife and young son after the war. I sensed the emotion behind his strong façade and gave him props for not shedding any ghost tears. Using the dates and locations he provided, I thought I might have a chance at finding what had become of his family. Needless to say, it didn’t take much convincing for me to help. His story had touched an unexpected nerve. He and his wife were newlyweds when he left his home outside of Staunton to fight for Virginia. They’d quickly married once she learned she was pregnant—bet that was a big oops back in the 1860s! Thankfully, the baby had been born healthy and had his mother’s beautiful blue eyes. I could tell Private Mansfield thought the world of his son, and not being able to hug and kiss him one last time before he passed was tearing him apart.

I promised Private Mansfield I’d see what I could do. I spent my two days off scouring library archives and old newspapers as well as talking with a number of knowledgeable ladies at historical societies all up and down the Shenandoah Valley. Late in the second day, I finally found the information I had been looking for. I hesitated to tell him all I had learned. While there was some good news, some of the family’s history was definitely bad. Continue reading “Wednesday Briefs: More Girls & Ghouls”

Flash Fiction: Two Girls and Some Ghouls

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Photo courtesy of Kevin Mitnak

It’s that time of the week . . . Wednesday Briefers time! Are you ready for some flash fiction? I sure hope so!

This is a new story start for Avery. It’s F-F paranormal with some romance. There weren’t any prompts this week so it’s a freebie! Remember, the stories have to be between 500 and 1,000 words. This is just a start for this story so you’ll have to come back next week to read the next installment!

Two Girls and Some Ghouls

by

Avery Dawes

The narrow parking space at the end of the lot was calling my name, so I swung the Jeep Wrangler into position and parked as far away from the overhead security light as possible. Getting a ticket for parking in the Battlefield’s Visitor Center lot after dark was not on my agenda. I looked through the windshield. The sun had already dipped below the mountains in the distance. The violet purples of twilight were fading to deep midnight blues. Before long, the black sky would be filled with pinpoints of white starlight.

My Jeep was filled with all the tension of a Mexican stand-off. My girlfriend had wanted to see me work—or so she said—but now that we were here . . . her crossed arms and stiff posture said otherwise. Not one to beat around the proverbial bush, I sliced through the tension with blunt honesty. “Steph, it’s fine. You don’t want to be here. No problem.” I pulled the keys from the ignition and held them out to her. “Take my keys, grab a cup of coffee, and meet me back here. I promise I won’t be angry with you.” Disappointed, sure, but I wasn’t going to share that with her. Continue reading “Flash Fiction: Two Girls and Some Ghouls”

Guest Post: Poet Hannah Six

A Slice of Lime (Day 372)

Simple afternoon  blistering in lavender shadows
book on the table  eyes drifting closed as you doze
Your dreams flicker like bubbles rising in a glass
and I cling to the side  a slice of lime my life preserver
It seems the ice melts more quickly as summers fly
past those other people we used to be  though
the woman who sells tomales from door to door in
my neighborhood will tell you  it wasn’t always this way
(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

I picked this poem of Hannah’s to share in part because of the picture she used (it’s one of her own). It reminded me of summer and warm temperatures–something I would love to have now. Winter is dragging on; I’m done with cold and dreary.

If you want to read more of Hannah’s poetry (including Haiku), stop by her site here.

Wednesday Briefs: Fontana of Mischief

Welcome to another edition of Wednesday Briefs! This week, I wanted to do something different. I wanted to write a speculative fiction piece. I think I managed it, but you’ll have to let me know in the comments. The piece is under 1000 words so it meets the flashing criteria. It’s also set somewhere I’ve visited, making it extra-special to write. I hope you enjoy it!!

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Fontana of Mischief

by

Denise L. Wyant

I peered out the car’s windshield, anxious for my first view of the Fontana Wellness Center and the surrounding lake.

“I can’t wait to try the mineral baths,” Julie, my bestie, exclaimed. “No water’s too hot for me!”

Darcy and I laughed. Iceland was known for its geothermal springs and hot pots—what we know in the States as hot tubs—and I was pretty sure they’d be a lot toastier than the ones back home.

Feeling mischievous, I turned, facing Darcy in the backseat. “Are there rocks surrounding Fontana? If so, maybe we’ll see some elves.” I winked, knowing anything supernatural freaked out my former college roommate.

“Don’t go messing with the elves, Merrill,” she retorted. “Our guide this morning warned us about them. All the bad things that have happened to people and machines when they try to build roads through big rocks.”

I shook my head. I didn’t believe in ghosts. I sure as hell didn’t believe in elves, or huldfólk as they were known here. “There’s got to be a logical explanation that our guide failed to mention.” Continue reading “Wednesday Briefs: Fontana of Mischief”