50 Word Thursday – The Dearly Departed

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And the words:

“Miss Wonderly murmured, “Thank you,” softly as before and sat down on the edge of the chair’s wooden seat.” – The Maltese Falcon – Dashiell Hammett.

 

Her mother had been one of those forthright people who had dominated every conversation with her authority. She always gave her opinion, whether asked for or not and seemed to take pleasure in causing upset and distress to everyone. “Don’t you think, dear, you don’t have the figure for satin?” she would say and revel as she reduced her victim to a self-conscious wreck.

She would bully anyone who was unfortunate enough to cross paths with her, even her doctors in the hospital were terrified of her, right up until her final illness. She fought them until her last breath.

She’d also planned her funeral to the last detail, which hymns were to be played, what people were allowed to wear, no bright colours, she’d stipulated Black only. She was not one of those modern ladies who specified “No flowers, donations to charity only”, she wanted Carnations and roses, no chrysanthemums, she’d detested those.

“It was karma really”, Miss Wonderly said to herself as she looked around the spacious and empty hall.

The Vicar cleared his throat and gently asked: “Would you like me to hold on a moment longer?”

She was a gentle lady who’d looked after her mother tirelessly and with patience for years, but who knew the truth.

“No, thank you, vicar. You may as well start the service. No one else is coming.” She replied very softly.

Miss Wonderly murmured, “Thank you,” softly as before and sat down on the edge of the chair’s wooden seat.

[250 Words]

 

This story was written for the 50 Word Thursday Challenge. Click on the link below if you like to take part in the challenge.

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/08/08/50-word-thursday-32/

All the responses will be posted in my results post on Wednesday and then a new 50 Word Thursday challenge will begin.

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/08/13/lady/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/08/13/your-daily-word-prompt-karma-august-13-2019/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/08/13/rdp-tuesday-spacious-2/

FOWC with Fandango — Authority

 

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50 Word Thursday #31- The Results

Well, another week has just flown by! The 50 Word Thursday challenge has come to an end. Click on the link to see the post:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/08/01/50-word-thursday-challenge-31/

The Rules:

  • Find the muse within the photo or line provided and follow where it leads. It can be a story, anecdote, poem. Anything!
  • The Story must be between 50 and 250 words, in 50 word increments. (so 50, 100, 150, 200 or 250 words)
  • Link back to this post with the tag 50WordThurs so that everyone can find it, or post your response in the comments below.
  • HAVE FUN!

Here was the picture:

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and here are the words:

“If you dare nothing, then when the day is over, nothing is all you will have gained.”
― Neil Gaiman, The Graveyard Book

It has been another great week for entries, I’d encourage you to read all the short stories that are linked below, some are truly surreal and others quite enigmatic 😉

 

the cursed of the white house

https://brazycitch1981.wordpress.com/2019/08/01/a-last-request/

THE CEMETERY

https://thehauntedwordsmith.wordpress.com/2019/08/01/progress-halted/

https://padresramblings.wordpress.com/2019/08/01/down-town/

The Project

https://jengoldie493473930.wordpress.com/2019/08/01/i-dont-think-so-for-50-word-thursday-31-graveyard-tales-of-the-mind-of-christian-aug-1-2019/

50 Words Thursday # 31 – The graveyard of grave stones

Living to Die – 50 Word Thursday (Challenge)

https://debbiewhittam.wordpress.com/2019/08/05/50-word-thursday-31/

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/08/07/50-word-thursday-the-hidden-gem/

 

What a fantastic compendia of short stories.

I have been alternating hosting this challenge with Teresa, The Haunted Wordsmith, but due to the disgusting harvesting of our work without asking for permission by TYGPRESS, Teresa announced she was quitting WordPress. I am so sorry to see her go because she is a fantastic blogger and writer and has been very supportive of a good many people. I hope she has changed her mind and will continue to blog and co-host this challenge. Never fear, one way or another there will be another 50 Word Thursday prompt posted tomorrow at some point, and it does appear that TYGPRESS has been deactivated too.

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

FOWC with Fandango — Surreal

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/08/07/rdp-wednesday-fear/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/08/07/your-daily-word-prompt-enigmatic-august-7-2019/

 

 

50 Word Thursday – The Hidden Gem

 

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and here are the words:

“If you dare nothing, then when the day is over, nothing is all you will have gained.”
― Neil Gaiman, The Graveyard Book

 

They’d described the property as ‘a hidden gem with character in the heart of the old city’.

When he’d managed to book a visit, he could see the description was enigmatic at best. In fact, their intent had obviously been to deceive. You couldn’t have seen a more surreal property for sale. It was an old chapel surrounded by the graves of the dead.

As they ambled around the grounds, the property agent failed to mention the tombstones, but they were the elephant in the room, looming larger than life, but somehow glossed over.

Inside the building, they’d gone to some effort to remove traces of what it had once been. Even the crypt had been carpeted.

The price was surprisingly inexpensive, should he take it? Well, ‘If you dare nothing, then when the day is over, nothing is all you will have gained’ he thought to himself. After all, it would be nice to have so many of his relatives close by.

“I’ll take it,” he said, and the surprised look on the agent’s face was a picture.

The guy fumbled for the rolled-up forms from his pocket.

“Excellent, what name shall I put down?” he asked.

“Count Dracula.”

[200 Words]

 

This story was written for the 50 word thursday Challenge: See the link below:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/08/01/50-word-thursday-challenge-31/

I will be posting all the entries later today, so you have time if you want to take part. See the rules on the link, entries must be in 50 word increments up to a max of 250.

I have also included the following word prompts in my story:

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/08/06/elephant/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/08/07/your-daily-word-prompt-enigmatic-august-7-2019/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/08/06/rdp-tuesday-intent/

FOWC with Fandango — Surreal

 

The Island Getaway ~ FTS 2019 #14

I have been tagged by Sadje of Keep it Alive blog, in this Finish the Story Challenge,

Click here to read her post:

Finish The Story #14- 2019

Teresa, The Haunted Wordsmith began this story:

As soon as Liam read the advertisement, he knew the place was for him. Three-story newly renovated home on a private island in the middle of Hidden Hollow Lake. Owner motivated to sell.

“I will have it!” He scanned the ad for a contact number and phoned it immediately. To his surprise, the agent said the house was his as soon as she answered the phone. “What do you mean the house is mine? I haven’t even made an offer yet.”

She laughed. “Mr Owens, I have been instructed to sell the home to the first person who called, and today is your lucky day. I can meet you on the pier in an hour with your keys.”

“Oh… okay… yeah! Today really is my lucky day, isn’t it?”

Liam rushed around his tiny apartment, threw a few items into a backpack, and caught the train to the pier. Halfway expecting this to be a scam, he was gobsmacked when a professional-looking woman approached him, smiling.

“Mr Owens, I presume?”

“Um, yeah, that’s me.”

“Good. Sign here, please, and I can release your keys to you.”

His hand shook with anticipation as he scratched his name on the form.

“And here are your keys. That man will take you to the island,” she said, pointing to a man in a small rowboat. “Thank you for your business.”

He watched as she walked toward the parking lot and disappeared into the crowd. “How’d she know my name?”

“You ready?” the boatman called.

“Oh, yeah. Sorry.” He climbed into the rowboat and took in the beautiful scenery before him, forgetting all about the sales agent. “This is really pretty, isn’t it?”

The man didn’t respond.

“Ok.” Liam sat in silence until the island came into view. It looked exactly as it had in the advertisement. He rubbed his eyes and pinched himself, convinced it was a dream.

“Get out here,” the boatman said, sternly as they reached the shore.

“Well, thanks, I guess.” Liam stepped out into knee-deep water and shivered as it soaked his pants. “How do I get back?” he asked as the boatman pushed away from the shore.

“There’s a flare in the house should you need it,” he called back, shaking his head.

Liam turned around and saw …

Li at Tao Talk’s part2 :

Finish the Story 2019 #14 — The Island Getaway

… a school of sharks swimming straight towards him! As a marine biologist, Liam knew it was unheard of for sharks to swim in a freshwater lake, even though he also knew a small canal connected Hidden Hollow Lake to the Atlantic at certain times of the year. Snapping his focus back to survival, his next thought was to run the 50 yards of knee-deep water before they nabbed him.

As Liam ran 10k every morning, it was no problem outpacing his sea-hunters – or so he thought. Even as his fleet feet touched dry sand he felt snapping jaws latch onto the sole of his shoe. Turning around, he saw a 2-foot tiger struggling to get a better grip on the rubber. Liam was blessed to see a piece of driftwood at hand. He grabbed it and beat the small shark on the head until it let loose and flip-flopped and rolled back into the water.

Unfortunately, in his desperate run for his life, Liam had let go of his backpack. Even now he could see it bobbing farther away from shore. He thought of risking it and going back out, but he could see shark fins circling the pack. His wallet, phone, snacks, a few books, and a couple of changes of clothing were in there. His pockets were empty except for his trusty Swiss Army knife.

The boatman had said something about a flare if he needed it. What kind of place was this?

Liam took a deep breath and looked around. The house of his dreams was another 50 yards. As he got nearer, he saw that the curtains to the windows were open, as was the front door. Curiosity getting the better of him, he ran the final yards. Stepping onto the porch, he heard voices talking inside. Imagine his surprise when….

Paula at Light Motifs’ part:

https://lightmotifs.wordpress.com/2019/07/24/the-island-getaway-fts-2019-14/

….he found a bunch of people sprawled over sofas with laptops, iPads, and papers they periodically wadded up in disgust and flung in the corner.

“My agent was right!” moaned one woman. “This is all crap! Every word. I should have become a veterinarian instead.”

Oh no. Liam shrank back in horror. It was too awful to consider. Noooo!

A man stood up. “My poetry is top shelf. If these idiots can’t see that it’s because they’re sheep who want Hallmark card pap. But after I’m dead for another hundred years, well, then they’ll wish they’d appreciated me more.”

Liam’s heart raced with renewed terror. He’d been duped into buying the Ghost Writers’ Grievance Hotel! He’d have to take his chances with the sharks.

“Hey!” The ghost poet pointed at Liam. “Aren’t you that famous publisher’s kid?”

“Me?” Liam’s voice cracked.

The ghostwriters started to float over to the doorway.

“It is him!”

“I saw his photo in the news with Mark Manson.”

“That blogger guy? That’s not real writing.”

“Yes, it is. My friend made thousands on her mommy blog and it was very funny too. Then they turned it into a book!”

“Ridiculous! I’m talking about timeless classics.”

Liam desperately searched for a way to escape these lunatics. But they were all around him now, yapping and jabbering. It was his worst fear.

And then one of them…

Here’s Di’s Part:

https://pensitivity101.wordpress.com/2019/07/25/the-island-getaway-fts-2019-14/

…… put a ghostly arm around his shoulders and began to merge himself with his body.
‘Get out of me!‘ Liam shouted pulling at his clothes. ‘How dare you invade my personal space without so much as a by your leave!’
‘Sorry,’ the entity smirked. ‘Just wanted to touch base with the living and get some new ideas.’
‘Well sod off! My ideas are mine and I’ll do with them as I wish to thank you very much!’
With that, he turned on his heel and stalked outside to the echoes of their laughter.

Sprawled on the sand he watched the sharks nibbling at his backpack offshore.
No chance of retrieving that then. He was thirsty and hungry, but to eat he had to face them again.
What on earth was he going to do? Could he welch on the deal? After all, no money had actually changed hands, but the place was perfect for inspiration and he had been toying with the idea of writing a novel.
‘Touch base with the living’
‘New ideas’
sifted through his head and a plan began to form…………….

Here is Sadje’s addition:

………Liam picked himself up from the beach and assuming a nonchalant attitude walked back to the house. As he entered it he heard mock clapping from a few of the ghosts. Ignoring them he came to center of the living room and said loudly.  “I am offering a deal to anyone who is brave enough to take it” there was a hush in the room. Then the poet who had tried to co-occupy his body asked him what was it that he was offering. Liam cleared his throat for theatrical effect and said,  “I am offering a collaboration. If you can give me new ideas for my book I will acknowledge your contributions in the book. That way you will achieve the fame you wanted in life, posthumously!”

The room was filled with babbling voices of all the writers and poets. They were excited and intrigued. Liam congratulated himself on his clever idea and went towards the kitchen to get something to eat, leaving them arguing the merits of a collaboration.

As he made himself some coffee and a big sandwich, Liam sensed a presence behind him. The poet and a few other ghosts were there and one of them spoke up “We are happy to take your deal. But we have a condition ……….

Now my addition:

A chill ran down his spine as he felt one of the ghostly forms touch his shoulder.

“What is your condition?” he asked trepidatiously.

The poet grinned, flashing a gap-toothed smile.

“You have to stay here with us on this Island, forever.”

Liam had somehow suspected their request and was willing to go along with it if it will help him realise his dream to become a successful published author. He had no plan to actually keep his word, however. His agile mind went over the idea, what he would gain by it.

“OK, I agree,” Liam said.

The crowd of ghosts cheered so loudly, Liam had to raise his voice to be heard over their din.

“Right, now you need to help me prepare a plotline.”

He had to admit that these literary ghosts had a talent that he could only dream of. The story they collaborated on, was one of the most original, exciting and insightful tales he had ever heard.

However, he had one major problem now……

 

Right then, who shall I tag?

How about Fandango? Fancy having a go?

FOWC with Fandango — Touch

 

 

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/26/rdp-friday-prepare/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/26/agile/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/26/your-daily-word-prompt-raise-july-26-2019/

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love, Unrequited? – A humorous love poem.

I wrote this poem the other day, but I have now added a final stanza that makes it a bit happier. I wished I could say that this poem is semiautobiographical, or at least the final bit,  but I’m afraid it isn’t. 

 

Cupid pulled back his bowstring

At his target, he took aim,

He hit me in my broken heart

Now I don’t feel quite the same.

 

It’s all a bit of a puzzle,

I’m not sure I feel so neat,

I don’t seem to sleep so well at night

And I can’t bring myself to eat.

 

I’m staring at adversity,

And productive, I am not,

Cupid! Why did you do this to me?

It was a cruel malicious shot.

 

For while you shot me well and good,

And my heart is now a flutter,

You didn’t bother to make a match

My love lies in the gutter.

 

So, Cupid please, get off your knees

And have another go,

Either cure me of this love disease

Or send me my Romeo.

 

And the new bit…

Cupid, you’re a splendid bloke,

For services, you should be knighted.

Because despite my fears and anguished tears,

My love turns out to be requited.

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 21/July/2019 updated 24/July/2019

 

I have included the following word prompts:

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/rdp-sunday-puzzle/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/target/

FOWC with Fandango — Productive

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/your-daily-word-prompt-adversity-july-21-2019/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/24/unrequited-2/

 

50 Word Thursday – When Time Dies.

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the words: “Ellen tended to be insecure and worried. And it seemed as if in recent years she had mostly worried about losing her looks.” – Michael Crichton – Jurassic Park.

 

As Ellen poked the fire, a worried expression creased her once beautiful face. Ellen tended to be insecure and worried. And it seemed as if in recent years she had mostly worried about losing her looks. Keith noticed her frown and knew from experience exactly what was bothering her.

“Look on the bright side,” said Keith, trying to be helpful, “At least there aren’t any mirrors any more.” He smiled to take out any sting in his words.

It had been twelve long years since the bombs had been dropped, nearly wiping out all of creation. Society had regressed back to the stone age. Now they eked out an existence hunting the remaining animals and using their hides to protect them from the long, cold winters. Day after day of the same constant struggle for survival, it seemed like time itself, as with so many lives, had been totally extinguished.

 

[150 Words]

This story was written for the 50 Word Thursday Challenge, click below if you want to take part:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/07/17/50-word-thursday-challenge-29/

You have until Wednesday if you’d like to take part in this challenge, then all the entries will be published and a new challenge will be posted on Thursday.

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/22/sting/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/22/your-daily-word-prompt-creation-july-22-2019/

 

Croakey Karaoke – A multiple Word Prompt Poem

 

 

When I’m singing at karaoke,

With my voice all crackly and croaky

My neighbours all shout

“Dear God! Cut it out”

When I start doing the Hokey-cokey.

 

 

They call it a thoughtless act

Well, I’ve never had that much tact,

And tactless though I am,

I don’t give a damn

I’ll keep on singing until I’m attacked.

 

 

Though they cry it gets on their wick,

Well, honestly, I don’t care a lick

They say it’s a cacophony

But I shout back with joy and glee.

“Have gratitude the walls are quite thick”

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 17/July/2019

 

I have included the following word prompts:

 

FOWC with Fandango — Cacophony

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/17/karaoke/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/17/rdp-wednesday-gratitude/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/17/your-daily-word-prompt-tactless-july-17-2019/

 

Kira’s Sunday Scribbles – The Saga of the Incorrigible Ape.

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This poem was written in response to this great picture from Kira’s Sunday Scribbles.

See the link below to view the original post:

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/14/kiras-sunday-scribbles-47/

 

It was a tale to be told,

A saga extreme,

Of a man who’d grown old,

And lived by a stream.

It was his secret escape,

His quiet retreat.

Then he met a mountain ape,

The one with big feet.

The giant lifted him up,

So tall and so lofty

and gave him a squeeze,

you might think him a softy.

Then to break all expectations,

Bigfoot swallowed him whole,

Despite the man’s protestations

He showed no control.

But he had his final revenge

And that’s without question

He gave that poor ape

Terrible indigestion.

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 16 July 2019

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

 

FOWC with Fandango — Escape

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/16/quiet/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/16/rdp-tuesday-lofty/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/16/your-daily-word-prompt-saga-july-16-2019/

 

Twittering Tales – The Proposition

Photo by Zoë Pappas at Pexels.com

He was charming and handsome, yet when he invited her to his apartment amongst the rowdy throng, she felt repulsed.

His gold wedding ring glinted tellingly. No doubt it would be the old saga of a wife that doesn’t understand him.

She needed an escape, after all, he was the boss.

[280 Characters]

 

This tale was written for Kat Myrman’s Twittering Tale challenge, click on the link below to see her post. Why not have a go yourself?

Twittering Tales #145 – 16 July 2019

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

FOWC with Fandango — Escape

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/15/rowdy/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/16/your-daily-word-prompt-saga-july-16-2019/

 

Multiple Word Prompt Poem – In Marble Halls.

I wrote this poem in January, but today’s words of the day are Marble and Opulent and it seemed to fit:

 

IN MARBLE HALLS

I dream I dwelled within marble halls,

In sunlit splendour with contented sighs

The opulent gilded and painted walls,

Were a glorious feast for tired eyes.

In my sleep, I toss and moan and garble

For though I dream, I sense disaster,

In my dream, the walls are marble,

But in reality, they are but plaster.

I prefer my dreams, for though they lie,

They ease my pain and soothe my heartache

From wakeful worries where critics decry

The consequences of the choices I make.

In marble halls where my demons forsake,

And lie in dreams, from which I will not wake.

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 21/January/2019

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/14/oppulent/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/14/rdp-sunday-marble/

 

Today’s word prompts are Marble, Plaster, Dream and Derivative.

These made me recall an old lyric of a song written by Michael William Balfe with the word by Alfred Bunn in the Opera, The Bohemian Girl, written in 1843. It was later arranged and recorded by Enya.

Here are the Lyrics:

I dreamt that I dwelt in marble halls
With vassals and serfs at my side
And of all who assembled within those walls
That I was the hope and the pride
I had riches too great to count, could boast
Of a high ancestral name
But I also dreamt, which pleased me most
That you loved me still the same
That you loved me, you loved me still the same
That you loved me, you loved me still the same

I dreamt that suitors sought my hand
That knights upon bended knee
And with vows, no maiden heart could withstand
They pledged their faith to me
And I dreamt that one of that noble host
Came forth my hand to claim
But I also dreamt, which charmed me most
That you loved me still the same
That you loved me, you loved me still the same
That you loved me, you loved me still the same

 

And here is Enya singing it beautifully. 

 

 

 

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/01/21/dream/

FOWC with Fandango — Plaster

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/01/21/rdp-monday-marble/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/01/21/your-daily-word-prompt-derivative-january-21-2019/