May 28: Flash Fiction Challenge – Sleepy Square-Dance

Charli Mill’s Carrot Ranch prompt this week:

May 28, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story using two words that contradict. Examples include champagne and hard-rock; rosemary and sewage; duck down and firecrackers; sleep and square-dancing. Use one of these or make up your own. Go where the prompt leads!

I’m afraid my brain was unable to come up with something original, soI used one of Charli’s examples!

Sleepy Square-Dance

The upbeat music created a jaunty atmosphere in the air. All around Jack, there were revellers dressed up in what they considered to be true ‘Square Dancing’ attire, i.e. a check shirt, some with fringes, denim, and obligatory cowboy boots.

It was all rather surreal. He was sitting in a church hall in the UK, not America!

Trying to stifle a yawn, he caught eyes with Jill. Oh great, now she’s coming over.

“Come on, sleepy head, I know you’re tired, but a bit of a dance will wake you up!” She grabbed my arm, dragging me up.

Help!

May 21: Flash Fiction Challenge – The Big Birthday

Charli’s Carrot Ranch prompt:

May 21, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about 100 candles. What do they light, and why? Think about contrast or symbolism. Are the candles large, small, or stars in the night? Go where the prompt leads!

The Big Birthday

“Hurry up, you goose. The first ones will have melted before Nan gets a chance to blow them all out!” Jane grabbed the box of matches from her brother, Nathan, who was carefully trying to light the one hundred candles needed for their grandma Maisie’s big birthday.

She started lighting from the other side, and soon, the huge strawberry cream cake was alight with tiny flickers atop the candles.

“Come on, Nan. Time to blow the candles out.” Nathan gently woke his snoozing grandma, who woke to a sea of flames in front of her.

“Fire! Help!” she cried.

May 14: Flash Fiction Challenge – Life Crossing

Charli’s Carrot Ranch Prompt this week:

May 14, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that answers the question, “What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you are in absolute danger?” Go where the prompt leads!

Life Crossing

I had only just pushed the wheels of the buggy onto the road, after checking to see all was clear, yet the roar of the engine was close. Either I had missed seeing this approaching car, or the driver wasn’t driving at the designated speed limit.

Knowing I wouldn’t be able to reach the other side, I grabbed the buggy handles and jerked it back, as fast as I could.

Heart beating as if it would break out of my ribcage, I checked inside.

Bless him, he was still asleep. But I knew our lives had flashed before me.

May 7: Flash Fiction Challenge

Charli’s Carrot Ranch fiction prompt, this week:

May 7, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story to nourish. The characters can nourish or be nourished. What else can be nourished? A tree? A setting? Does the sunset nourish the soul? Go where the prompt leads!

Solo Nourishment

Mae gently emptied the last of the water from her watering can into the flowerbed.

The roses were doing rather well, all things considered.

All around her, news filtered in of the deaths of people around the world, and even some friends.

It had been tough.

Her usual routine of seeing her grandchildren at the end of each school day, with her feeding them nourishing snacks, and sometimes dinner, if her daughter was running late, was gone.

They couldn’t meet one another.

A video call sufficed, and the odd drive-by wave.

At least she could still nourish her garden.

April 30: Flash Fiction Challenge – Boards

Charli’s Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction prompt:

April 30, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that features long boards. They can be used in any way you imagine, including a name for sporting equipment. How are they used and who is using them? Go where the prompt leads!

The Board

Jonah let himself into his house and popped his keys on the sideboard when a strangled grunt of a noise startled him. It came from the living room.

He dropped the bags and rushed in to find his mother laying on her stomach, or rather, hovering, on her arms and feet.

“Mum! What’s the matter?” He went to help her up.

“Go… away… Jonah… I… am… trying… to… do… a… two… minute… long… board…” She struggled for breath, before the alarm beeped on her phone.

He laughed as she collapsed onto the floor. “Board? Oh, you mean a plank?”

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