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Monthly Archives: July 2014

Fiction: Royal Homecoming (468 words)

It was hard for her to take him seriously.  It wasn’t that he didn’t look the part, because these days he certainly did.  He was so much taller than when she last saw him.  He had their father’s strong jaw and their mothers blue eyes that could cut to your soul if you let them, perfectly cut blonde hair, and broad shoulders all dressed up in the well-tailored fashion—he looked every part the King that he’d become.

But it was very hard to take a man seriously when you once watched him run around in his underwear with his pants on his head.  And by one she meant every time their mother took her eyes off him for longer than three minutes all the way up to his seventh birthday.

But, in spite of all that, she remembered her manners and curtsied low.  “Your grace, I swear my allegiance to you as our one true king, if you will welcome as much.”

“Your allegiance is greatly appreciated and humbly accepted.  Rise, subject, and take my blessing.”  It was the practice often recited phrase, but he rushed through it as quickly as his mouth would allow him.  She stood slowly and gracefully as she had been taught, but saw that the regal king wasn’t there anymore, but her little brother bouncing on the balls of his feet and waiting for all the pomp and circumstance to be done.

He grinned his goofy smile and waited until she was fully standing before he rushed forward and pulled her into a hug.  “Oh, Lizzie! It’s so good to see you.  I’m glad you’ve come home. I thought you might stay abroad the full ten years that Father sent you for.”

“And miss chance to see you rule, Arnie? Not a chance.”  Even though he was much taller than her now, she still held his face on both sides and pulled him down so she could kiss him on the forehead the way she did when they were little and she helped to tuck him in at night.

“So, you’ll stay?  I know you enjoyed being an Ambassador for Father and you do good work with keeping relations healthy, but I would love it if you’d be on my council, Lizzie.”

She straighten up, and with a formality that could almost be considered mocking she dipped into another proper curtsy.  “I’ll do as you wish, Lord, Grace, and Brother.”

“No, no, no,” Arnold almost whined as he pulled her out of the curtsy.   “You are my big sister and the only person who gets to decide completely for themselves.  Do you want to stay, or do you want to go?”

Elizabeth smiled her own version of his goofy smile.  “I’d like to stay with you, Arnie.  It feels good to be home.”

 
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Posted by on July 31, 2014 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Rough Night (258 words)

“How bad is it?”  Mara lifted her chin so that Andy could get a better look at where the knife had been held.  Andy shrugged and reached into the little first aid kit he’d gotten out earlier.

“We’ve seen worse—about a quarter-inch long, but not deep at all.  I don’t think stitches are necessary. Want me to tape it up for you?”

“Yes please,” she put her fingers up to the cut and pulled them away red, “Only a quarter-inch? Huh—It feels worse than that.”

“Well, you were also almost strangled.  So maybe you’re confusing the knife cut with the rope burn.  Disinfectant now, hold still.”  Andy applied the little bad to the cut and Mara winced and swatted feebly at her brother.

“I suppose that could be true.  This was not my best outing ever, huh?”

“I would say not.  Stop talking and let me finish this.”  Mara tapped out something with the toe of her boot against the ground as Andy finished with the cut, but Andy wasn’t listening to what tune she was making.  “Alright, you’re good.”  He said, turning to put the excess materials away.

“Hey, Andy, do you think that we could not mention this one to Col?”  Mara asked, reaching up to touch the tape under her chin.

Andy smacked her hand away lightly.  “Don’t want to confess that you messed up that badly?” He laughed when she nodded sheepishly.  “Alright.  But if he asks me point-blank about the rope burn on your neck, I’m going to tell him.”

“Deal.”

 
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Posted by on July 30, 2014 in Stories

 

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Fiction: The Family Way Part 27 (329 words)

After finals, life became much easier. I knew that wouldn’t be par for the course after the baby was born, so I was grateful for the reprieve.

Seniors weren’t required to attend the last week of school after finals, since they didn’t have schedules to set up for the next year or summer work to get assigned, so Marta went on almost full time bed rest, and I got the chance to sleep in on a Monday.  On Tuesday, Bradley finally moved in with us full-time, bringing with him the crib assembling services of Mr. Wilson, the interior decorating services of Mrs. Wilson, the old TV from his bedroom, and the first “Andersson-Wilson Dinner party” which consisted of pizza for most of us, a sizeable slice of leftover beef lasagna for Marta, and a sing along screening of The Sound of Music.

The rest of the week, Bradley and I put our minds to getting the house as ready as we could for the baby, such as getting the nursery as close to done as we could.  Marta had been locked away in her room because she kept trying to help and giving me and Bradley little panic attacks about heavy objects or paint fumes or whether or not she’d be able to get back up once she sat down on the ground to do—well, goodness only knows what Marta would decide to try to do.   So—we provided her with snacks and juice and Bradley’s laptop logged into his parents Netflix account and told her to not get out of bed.  She discovered that Netflix had all seven seasons of MacGyver and all five seasons of Chuck, and then it was hard to get Marta out of bed for everything else.

In theory, we had eight more weeks, two months to finish the preparations, but after the scare from two weeks ago, we weren’t leaving anything to chance.  We wanted to be ready for Arthur whenever he decided to come.

 
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Posted by on July 29, 2014 in Avery and Marta

 

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Fiction: Before Bed (220 words)

Kayla laid in bed going over the day’s events.  She hoped that doing this would help her make connections that she hadn’t before.  Trigger something in her mind that would help her remember something, anything, about who she was before they found her wandering in those woods.

She had the feeling that almost everyone else knew something about her that she didn’t.  It was an extremely disorienting feeling. Of course, it made sense in a way.  Almost all of them had met her before she lost her memories, so they would all know something more than she did, no matter how small, but it still kind of felt like they all knew one something that they weren’t telling her.  Maybe paranoia was a side effect of memory loss, or maybe she had been paranoid even then.

But she still felt like everyone on base had a secret that they shared amongst themselves that she would never get to be privy to.  All she could hope for what that people would slip up, that a mistake would be made somewhere along the line and they would reveal more than they intended to.  Because “Learning to be herself now” was all well and good, but Kayla was desperate to know who she used to be.

And could anyone really blame her for that?”

 
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Posted by on July 28, 2014 in Kayla's Stories

 

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Fiction: Cut and Run (131 words)

She wondered how hard it would be to actually cut and run. She knew that was kind of a silly thing to wonder. After all, she was comfortable here, she had friends and she had a family, a decent enough job, a nice enough home…

But she couldn’t help but wonder, how much would she really miss it? Would it chase after her, haunt her every step of the way? Or would it set her free? A release of a weight that she didn’t even properly realize how heavy she was carrying?

But it was always just wondering.  Because really, would she ever have the guts to get up and go? Would she ever find that kind of strength?  The easy answer was no, she most certainly would not. But what if—

 
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Posted by on July 27, 2014 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Family Night Out (192 words)

“I had to convince Mom to call you–you know?” Charlie looked over at Marie and squeezed her hand.  Marie in turn gave her sixteen year old son a small glare.

“Is that so? A seven year old had to convince you to call me?” Charlie asked with a laugh, and in complete disregard of his mother’s glare, Drew nodded, “How did that conversation go?”

“Well–She said she didn’t have the energy to date–so I promised to be less exhausting if she gave you a chance.”

“Really, Marie?”  Charlie laughed.

“Yes, it’s true.  Although, the little jerk forgot his promise about two days in.  Between the two of you, I haven’t gotten any rest in years.”

“I’m very uncomfortable with the implication of that sentence,” Drew whined, pulling a face.

“I’m very uncomfortable with the fact that your son is suggesting your making sex jokes,” Charlie countered.

“I’m very uncomfortable with the both of you anytime we’re in public,” Marie sighed, looking nervously at the family sitting at the table behind them,   “Finish your ice cream, both of you.  I’m ready to go home before you decide to spill any more family secrets.”

 
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Posted by on July 26, 2014 in Stories

 

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Fiction: Ixi Agency Part 26 (279 Words)

Frankie, in his entire conscious memory and probably in his entire life, had never been faced with an error on the charms.  But as he stood in the central hub of the mall, trying to figure out which way to go, he clutched at his charm and thought about Agent Six over and over again.

And all he got back was “Agent Error. Information not available.” He’d never gotten that before.  He’d gotten terrifying messages like “Agent Incapacitated” and even “Agent Deceased” but he’d never gotten “Information not available.”

He had never known panic until that moment.  Frankie looked around at Joey and Hank, each clutching their own charms and seeming to get no more information than Frankie himself. Joey looked eerily calm.  Hank looked like he might start to cry.

“What do we do?” Frankie asked Joey, trying to keep the edge of panic out of her voice.  “What would Willow have done?”

Joey looked calm still, but he moved quickly, looking down each pathway, trying to decide which the best lead was. But then there was a scream, and a young woman came running out of the rest room.

All three of them were off like a shot, running towards the restroom.  They found Marcy there, on the ground, bleeding from the back of her head. Hank gasped covered his mouth with his hands, stood back against the opposite wall, now silently crying.  Joey ran forward, checking the wound and Marcy’s pulse, beginning to bark orders at Hank, who immediately jumped into action.

But Frankie was focused on one thing, Willow’s VI charm laying against Marcy’s chest.  “Oh, Willow.” He sighed, mostly to himself.  “What did you do?”

 
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Posted by on July 25, 2014 in Ixi Agency