Tag Archives: friendships

Fiction: Legal Theft Project–New Car (542 words)

Blue as skies in summer, pouring out exhaust, and attracting a small crowd, he’d never seen anything like it. “It’s–um.” Grant faltered, blinking at the car as it let out another huge puff of exhaust. He was tempted to ask how much Declan had paid for the thing, but ultimately decided that he didn’t want to know, just in case it was an awful lot. “Well–It’s one of a kind. I’ll give you that. ”

“I know, right?” Declan looked like he was about ready to hug the car, and Grant really hoped he’d be able to control himself. There were a lot of people looking at them now. “She’s my baby! Have you ever seen anything so wonderful as this?”

“Uh.” Grant made a sort of waving shrug gesture. Declan seemed to take that as good enough, because he nodded in agreement and turned back to look fondly at the car like it was a child who had just taken its first steps. Grant looked around. People were openly staring and starting to point and look concerned now.

“We should probably get out of here,” he suggested, not adding ‘Before someone thinks this thing is on fire and calls 911’

“Yeah, you’re probably right.” Either Declan was oblivious to the crowd growing around them or just didn’t care. “Hey, you want to ride in her? See how she handles?”

“No thanks,” Grant said way too quickly, managing to stop himself again before he added ‘I’d like to live to see tomorrow.’ Instead he tacked on, “I don’t want to leave my car here. It’ll be a pain to come back for it.”

Declan looked a little deflated. “Oh, yeah, okay that makes sense. Next time then.”

“Mmm,” Grant answered, in what he hoped was a non-committal enough noise that Declan wouldn’t use that as a for sure agreement, but not so negative that Declan would spend the rest of the day in a funk because Grant insulted his ‘new baby.’

Grant followed Declan back to his house at a very exact distance: far enough away that if something flew off the car it wouldn’t wreck Grant’s car, but close enough that if something started to go terribly wrong, Grant could call for an ambulance immediately.

But, amazingly, the car made it all the way to Declan’s house without exploding, falling apart, or just ceasing to function all together. Grant did have to say that with the car off in the drive way, it didn’t look that bad. The paint was good and it had a nice old-school muscle car look to it—he just wished it didn’t smoke like a chimney and sound like the world was going to end anytime it was running. Maybe with a little work, it wouldn’t be that bad.

He started to feel a little guilty. Maybe he hadn’t been as fair to Declan’s first self-owned car as he should have been. “It is a cool car, Dec. Honest.”

“I’m glad you think so, man!” Declan smiled, slapping Grant on the back. “My dad says we’re going to take her up to camp this year.”

Grant’s heart dropped into his stomach. Time to start planning the debilitating stomach bug he was going to get in three weeks’ time.

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Posted by on February 17, 2017 in Stories


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Fiction: Who? (842 words)


“Cam.  That is absolutely none of your business.”

“Who, who, who?”

“Give it up, man. She’s not going to tell you.”

Cameron turned to Andrew. “You should be on my side. Our Natalie is meeting with a man with increasing frequency and she is refusing to inform us on who this man is.”

“No…she’s refusing to inform you who this man is.” Andrew said with the same shit-eating grin on his face when he knew something Cameron didn’t know.

“Oh, and I’m assuming she’s told you?”

“Well…no, but that doesn’t mean I don’t know who it is.”

“Well, Dr. Know-it-all, would you care to inform the rest of the class?”

“Well, with one glaring exception, the rest of the class already knows.” Cameron turned to look at the rest of the group. Trevor had the smallest of smiles, and Valarie looked like she was trying her hardest not to openly laugh at him.

“It’s really not that hard. I figured it out within the first week.” Valarie commented, and Camreon let out a frustrated sigh.

“Give it up, Cam, It’s my secret, and if you can’t figure it out, you’ll never know.” Natalie laughed at the annoyed look on his face.

“Can I get some clues at least?”

Natalie rolled her eyes. “I’m not saying anything. But I suppose since Andrew doesn’t actually know who it is…”

“Oh, I know.”

“You have a guess, but can’t be positive unless I confirm it, which I have not and will not. Anyway, I guess you can ask Andrew a few questions, and he can answer.”


“Eh, I’m just as bored by this trek as you are. Watching you struggle to figure out what is obvious to everyone else may keep me entertained for a while.” Natalie smirked and took a few steps ahead of Cameron. He lagged back near Andrew, and thought about his first question.

“Okay. Here goes nothing. Who is it that Natalie is dating?”

Andrew looked at Cameron incredulously, “You had to know that wouldn’t work, Right?”

“It was worth a shot. Okay, first things first. Do I know this man?”


“Okay, do we all know this man?”


“Even Trevor and Valarie?”

“Even Trevor and Valarie.”

“O-ho, so that means he’s somehow involved with The Project. Dating within the office now are we?” Cameron called up to Natalie, and could see her shoulders shrug as she laughed.

“So…who has known him the longest?”

“Well, personally, I suppose I knew him first, but I think Natalie may have known of him longer.”

“Does he work inside The Project Building?”


“But he does know about The Project?”

“Oh, I’d say.”

“Wait, he is…human…right?”

“Cam!” Natalie sounded slightly offended.

“Yes, he is human.” Andrew laughed.

“And is he a scientist?  Or one of our military protectors?”

“Military, through and through.”

Cameron walked for a couple of minutes in silence and Valarie rolled her eyes. “Come on. I’ve never taken you for a stupid man, but you certainly are acting like it.”

“You could just tell me who it is and put us both out of misery.”

Valarie looked around, but was met with both Andrew and Natalie’s ‘don’t-you-do-it’ faces. She sighed and turned her attention back to Cameron. “Come on, he’s a military man that we all know, who Andrew met before anyone else.” Cameron just looked at her and she rolled her eyes again. “Come on now, it’s right in front of your face.”

“Time’s up.” Natalie called as she approached the dig site. She smiled back at Cameron who looked extremely frustrated. She smiled sweetly at him, then began to get all of the work gear out of the bags, “and just because next week is my week off, don’t think you can go prying for more information. I will find out, and Trevor will make sure that my revenge is extracted, isn’t that right?”

“Indeed, I will.” He said stoically.

“Thanks, T.” She smirked as she walked backwards away from the group. Cameron grumbled as he followed her to their positions behind the military guard.

“Welcome back,” Major James called chuckled as he saw the annoyed Cameron go to his work spot, “I can see you had a pleasant walk as well.”

“Major. What are you doing here? I thought you had the week off.”

“I do.  But I traded this weekend for next weekend with Samuels. I agreed to stay though Monday and then I don’t have to come back next Friday.”

“You know, Natalie seems to have this week off, too, starting Monday, through next Sunday.” Valarie commented casually.

“Hmm, imagine that.”  Major James was the picture of innocence. “Well, time to do my rounds.  I’ll check back on you in a moment.” And he headed off.

Valarie started pointedly at Cameron until the gears finally clicked into place.

“Wait a minute…do you mean…Natalie and the Major…” Cameron turned and looked at Andrew as he walked by.

“I knew you’d get there.” Andrew laughed as they got to work, “You can’t be that slow.”


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Posted by on December 14, 2015 in Stories


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Fiction: Making Amends (233 words)

Louisa had forgiven him.  Corey knew that.  It had been a long time of anger, and then some very pointed discussions about why doping someone’s applesauce with Benadryl a bad thing, and then an addition to the roommates agreement that said she had every right to drive herself crazy with exhaustion, but he had every right to be openly vocal about his concern for her, no matter how annoying she thought that was, so that he no longer felt like Benadryl was his only option.  They hugged and made up.  She had completely forgiven him.

And yet she still always cooked her own dinners these days.

But she had been in a bad spot when Corey tricked her into ten hours of sleep.  Her brother had died so suddenly that no one really knew what the proper protocol for that was.  She had been awake for nearly forty hours straight, with only a handful of cat naps n the two weeks before.  She was starting to worry him—and that’s why he’d broken out the trick his mother had used on him when he couldn’t sleep as a child. He felt like drastic actions had to be taken then, and he wasn’t entirely sure that he hadn’t done the right thing in that moment.

But, he understood entirely why Louisa was happier when he didn’t have access to over the counter allergy medication.

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Posted by on November 24, 2015 in Stories


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Fiction: An Old Love Story [part 7] (1166 words)

11/4 (An Old Love Story)

“Can  I ask you a potentially awkward and personal question?”  Hamish asked quietly as I put down the letter, “Normally, I would shy away from the social unacceptable questions—but this is a unique situation and, and I mean this with the best of intentions, you don’t seem to have too many qualms about potentially awkward questions.”

“You make an excellent point, and turnabout is fair play I suppose.”

Hamish nodded and then pointed at the letter. “That says Fiona Lucille Carson-Scott, but your mom said to ask for Fiona Carson when I called, and I’ve only heard you introduce yourself as Fiona Carson, so—What happened there?”

“Oh, Well,” I picked at my nails, even though I knew it was a really bad habit, but I just couldn’t help myself.  “My Dad’s kind of a dick.  When Mom changed her name back to just Carson, I changed mine to Carson as well.  I didn’t really want to be associated with him anymore.  Andrew is still a Carson-Scott, because he doesn’t believe in denying our past or some other bullshit that he’s got in his head, and he’ll introduce himself as such when on his own, but he doesn’t mind when people assume that he’s just Andrew Carson like Mom and me.”

“Well, if you don’t mind me prying a little farther–”   Hamish pressed on. I couldn’t fault the boy for trying his luck.  Heaven knows I would have.   But still.

“Did Grandpa Dougie never say anything about my dad leaving?  He really didn’t like my dad–I thought for sure it would be something he’d ‘I told her so’ to everyone he could after Dad left.”

“He–might have said something.”   Hamish was already moving down the row of folders, seeming to follow some organization system that he’d set up earlier.   “When was it that he left?”

“Well, that’s kind of a complicated question.  Uh–I guess the last time would have been 2003.  Yeah, around September of 2003.”

“Two oh oh three, September of Two oh oh–yes–three.”  Hamish muttered to himself as he went about folders, pointing at them and passing them over until he came to a purplish folder around the middle of the table, which he opened and began to leaf through.  “Ah yes.  Here’s something.  He mentioned your father here.”

Dearest Lily,

The most beautiful Thunderbird came into the shop today.  Charlie let me work on it because he knew that out of everyone in the shop, I would have the strongest appreciation for the old girl. He also really wanted me to impress the owner, because apparently he’s got quite the classic collection, and Charlie would love to be the guy’s go to mechanic for that kind of thing.  The guy left with a smile, so I think I did my job well enough.  Let’s see if he comes back, though.  Time will be the real judge.

I am loving that book you suggested, by the way, so go ahead and get your ‘I told you so’ face on. I know you want to.  I’m having a hard time locating the sequel, though—so if you can find it over there in Scotland, feel free to ship it my way.  I’ll send you some money if it’s expensive, okay?

My Best Wishes,


P.S.  Lillian’s Timothy is gone.  He’s been gone for twelve days now.  We don’t think he’s coming back.  The grandkids are coming to say with me for a little while.

“Wow.” I read the letter over two or three more times, and then set it back down.  “Props to Grandpa Dougie, I guess.  I mean, I knew he  never said anything to mom, I think because he knew she was suffering enough, but I can’t believe he didn’t lord the fact that he was right to someone else, someone removed from the situation or whatever.  He tended to be a proud and a bit cocky man my grandfather.”

“Maybe he didn’t want to be right.  He knew how much that was hurting your family, and he’d hoped to be wrong so strongly that he felt no joy in being right.” Hamish suggested gently.

“Yeah.  Yeah. Maybe.  I guess you want to know what happened, huh?” I turned away from the letter and tried my hardest to smile at Hamish.

“I–uh–aye, I’d really like to know.  But if you don’t want to tell me that’s perfectly fine.  I’ve never been very good at minding my own bloody business.”

“Yeah–neither have I.   My dad was never really a settling down type.  He was a nice enough guy in the long run, I guess, but he wasn’t any kind of family man.  He was extremely superstitious, like Grandpa Dougie hinted in the letter about my birthday.  He was a perhaps overly spiritual man, who believed that he should always follow the way the “Winds and Workings” guided him, no matter how inconvenient that might be for other people.  He was stubborn, and although he never meant to be, occasionally quite cruel.  And, on top of it all, He was a gambler and an adulterer.  He’d come and gone a couple of times before in our life following “his winds” to Floyd for a couple of months, or up the coast to Maine for three quarters of a year, but the final straw came when he was supposed to pick Andrew and me up from school.  When Mom could finally get free from work to come get us, we’d been sitting on a bench in front of the school for three hours.  Four and a half days later, we learned that our lovely father was in Melbourne, Australia–literally half way around the world, and “he didn’t know when he’d be free to come back.”  Mom made it easy for him and told him to never get back, there was no way in hell he’d be allowed in our house again.  And–he hasn’t–been back or been in our house.  I haven’t seen him since.  We know he was still alive as of three years ago, because the child support checks came through right up until Andrew’s eighteenth birthday–but that’s all we know. I was so angry–properly angry.  I still kind of am.  I mean, that was a really shit thing to do to a family.  And I don’t know if I’ll ever forgive him if even given the chance.  But yeah.  That’s what happened to my dad, and why I dropped the ‘Scott’ from my name.”

“Well.  Yeah, okay. I can follow that.  I think I would have taken the Scott out of my name too.”  Hamish admitted gruffly.

I gave myself a little shake, literally, to snap out of it.  I didn’t tend to get as angry as I used to about my dad, but it still didn’t make me the happiest person in the world to think about him.  “Enough about all that though.  What about you, Hamish? Any skeletons in your family’s closet you’d like to share with the class?”

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Posted by on November 4, 2015 in An Old Love Story


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Fiction: An Old Love Story [Part 6] (681 words)

I took my time getting ready and heading out.  If we had three days to go through the letters and make a plan, I didn’t think I needed to be there ASAP today.  I mean, how many letters could their really be?

It took me about fifteen minutes to get from my house to the 19th street parking garage.  I always parked there because it was free to residents in the off season, (January was considered the dead center of the off season) and It didn’t get robbed as often as some of the more sketchy parking lots in the area.  It was twelve blocks away from Hamish’s hotel, but it wasn’t a bad little walk down the boardwalk.  After all, the tourists were gone, and it rarely got that cold in Virginia Beach.  There was something calming about walking down a nearly deserted beach listening to the waves crash.  It made the whole place feel like home, it made me feel like I was some place safe, someplace I belonged.

But as soon as I stepped foot in the Hilton, I felt like I didn’t belong there.  I’d lived in this city my entire life.   I’d been in the restaurant attached to the hotel once or twice, but the only time I’d ever stepped into the hotel proper before was when I was dressed to the nines for my senior prom.  I felt so odd in my jeans and a t-shirt now. But, I tried to swallow my discomfort and look like this was the kind of thing I was used to doing as I headed towards the front desk.  “Hi, yes. My name is Fiona Carson. I was supposed to be meeting a Hamish Duncan.”

“Oh yes, of course. Right this way, please.”   She led me up a flight of stairs and around a corner before indicating to a conference room where Hamish would be waiting for me.   I walked in, and nearly lost it. There were a lot of papers in that room.  Nearly the entire conference table was covered with folders or binders, all which seemed to be stuffed full of letters.

“Holy shit. How many letters did he write?”

Hamish looked up from where he’d been scratching in a notebook around the middle of the table.  “A lot.  A lot more than a lot.  You see what I think he might have had feelings for my grandmother?”

“Yeah.  I’m starting to get that.  I wish we knew how often she wrote back–or was Grandpa Dougie just a little on the creepy side with a hint of stalker in him.”

“Your words, not mine.”  Hamish replied, before hoping out of his chair and heading towards a folder towards the front of the table.  “Come here, though, I think there’s a letter here that you might find particularly interesting.”

June 22, 1991

My Dearest Lily,

My Lillian had her baby—it was a beautiful wee girl, tiniest thing I think I’ve ever seen.  Only just six pounds. The doctors want to keep her for observation because she is so small even though she was carried to full term.  Lillian is beside herself with worry, but the babe doesn’t seem to be unwell, just small.  She’ll be out in no time.  Still, Lillian won’t tell us her name.  It’s one of those superstitions that her Timothy taught her.   Apparently, it’s bad luck for anyone other than the parents to know a baby’s name until she’s sleep in her own crib.  It’s a load of complete rubbish, but I suppose in this instances I have to accept my daughter’s wishes because what else am I going to do?  She’s just such a strange girl, my Lillian, but I love her.  I wish you’d come and meet her one of these days.

You know how I would love to end this, but you asked me to stop,


PS The little angel came home, fit as a fiddle.  My eldest granddaughter is named Fiona Lucille Carson-Scott.  Isn’t that just a beautiful name?


I couldn’t help but smiled at that.  “Cool.  Very Cool.”

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Posted by on November 2, 2015 in An Old Love Story


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Fiction: Early Mornings (627 words)

Everything was quiet.  That was Piper’s favorite part of waking up early.  It meant that everyone else was still asleep, and she could look at the world completely unobserved. Almost like Piper had frozen time, and now the whole world was hers for the taking.

It was especially nice after nights like last night.  She’d had fun with everyone at her house, marathon-ing movies and going toe to toe on random entertainment trivia that would get none of them any further in their lives.  But even though her apartment was packed with sleeping party guests on every comfortable surface, it was quiet and still.  Almost too still.  After a night like that, she wasn’t usually the first one up.

Piper did a quick head count and found that Candace, her friend and fellow quiet early bird wasn’t in the living room where everyone had crashed for the night.  Piper tried to calm the ball of unease in her chest.  They had all been drinking last night—had piper not noticed Candace go? If she’d gone—where did Candace go and did she arrive safely? Piper peaked out the window to see that Candace’s car was still out there—so at least she hadn’t driven anywhere. But it wasn’t out of the realm of possibilities that Candace had wandered off for a walk and fallen asleep somewhere outside.

Vince.  Piper had one desperate last thought of her roommate. Vince wasn’t drinking much last night, so if Candace decided she wanted to go home, maybe he offered her a ride.  If he didn’t take her home, he’d still make an excellent addition to the search party rapidly forming in her head.  She knocked urgently (but quietly—no point in waking everyone else up just yet) on Vince’s bedroom door.  It seemed to take forever, but then the door opened slightly to reveal a sliver of bed head, bleary-eyed, thankfully wearing at least his boxers, early morning Vince, who greeted her with a “shh!” and a “What?!”

“I’m a little worried,” Piper confessed.

“Why are you a little worried?” Vince leaned his head against the door frame, closing his eyes again already.

“Because I can’t seem to find Candace, but her car is still here. I’m worried that she had too much to drink and wandered off somewhere.”

For a second, Piper thought Vince looked guilty, but it went back to sleepy just as quickly. “Candace didn’t have too much to drink. She’s fine.”

“Did you take her home when I wasn’t paying attention?” Piper pressed.

Vince hesitated for a second. “No.”

“Then how do you know she’s fine.”  Piper set her hands on her hips and was prepared to not walk away without an adequate answer. She took the safety of her friends very seriously.

Vince opened his eyes, looked her over, and seemed to realize this.  He sighed, turned to look back into his room, and then took a small step back away from the door.  Piper could see his bed, and sitting on it was a bare shouldered Candace, clutching a sheet to her chest, offering Piper a timid smile.  “Sorry to worry you,” Candace offered.

“Oh. No. Don’t, uh, er…Don’t worry about it.” Piper rubbed and hand nervously on the back of her neck.  “Congrats, uh, I guess,” she added because she didn’t know what else to say.

Vince raised an eyebrow. “Thanks?  If you don’t mind.  I’m going to shut the door now.” Piper nodded like an idiot as he swung the door slowly shut, not stopping until the latch clicked into place.

She stared at the shut door for a couple of minutes longer before heading back to the kitchen to make a strong cup of coffee.  She had a feeling that today she was going to need it.

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Posted by on May 31, 2015 in Stories


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Fiction: You, Me, and Karma [Part 5] (684 words)

Being only four in the theatre, we all felt free to add our own running commentary as the movie went on.  All in all, it was the most fun I had in a movie in a very long time. As the credits started to roll, I skipped down to where Zach and Amanda were both collecting their things.

“That was fun.”  Zach said.

“Most fun I’ve had in ages.”  Amanda added.

“I think fate has made good friends of us.”  I grinned.

“Indeed,” Zach answered. “Listen, Amanda and I were going to head out to dinner.  Would you and your brother care to join us?”

“That depends. Where are you going?”

“The Virginia Steak House. It’s right off Laskin Road.”

“You are an angel of a man. That’s my favorite restaurant in the city,” I answered,

“Mine too!” Zach’s sister spoke up, “Zach thinks it just alright, but he’s a push over when it comes to me.”

“That’s a sister’s power. Quite convenient, eh?”

“What’s a sister’s power?” Adrian asked, finally coming down the stairs at a more normal pace than I had.

“Nothing. You want to go to the Steak House?” I asked.

Adrian looked at me quizzically and said something strange.  It took me a moment to translate, because I was not used to Adrian using the language so blatantly in front of other people anymore. We’d long outgrown trying to confuse people. Where do you know this guy from?

I’ve met him a couple of times.  He’s a cool guy.  Steak house?”

“What language is that?” Amanda asked.

“Hmm? Oh.  It’s something we made up when we were very young. Sorry.”

“No. That’s awesome! Why didn’t we do something cool like that when we were little?”  Amanda smacked her brother’s arm.

“Because I am simply not that cool.” Zach answered, “So will we see you at Dinner?”

“Yup. We’ll meet you there.”


It wasn’t until I was in the car with Adrian that I realized how potentially awkward this whole evening was about to become.   I mean, I had just invited a man who I had only met three times, with two of those instances involving dumping stuff on each other, and the third had mostly involved me sleeping in the chair next to his.  And now we were heading out to dinner, each of us with a sibling in tow.  I mean, what did I really know about this guy?  I knew that he had a girlfriend.  I knew he had a coffee habit he was trying to kick.  I know we had similar tastes in movies, or at least, in that particular movie.  That really wasn’t very much to go on, was it?  For all I knew, he could be some kind of really creepy stalker.   You know—with a teenage girl accomplice.  That kind of thing happened all the time, right?

“We’re not standing them up.”  Adrian said suddenly.


“You’ve over thinking things. We’re going to the Steakhouse.”

“Why are you so gung ho about meeting this guy?”

“I’m gung ho about you getting out of the house, about you meeting new people. About occasionally getting out of your comfort zone.  Besides, if we went home and told this story to Melissa, can you just imagine?  I mean.  Really, we’d never hear the end of it, you for chickening out and me for allowing you.  No, I won’t have it.  We’re not standing them up.”

I guess I made some kind of face in response, because Adrian laughed.  “Come on, don’t be such a chicken shit.  Come on, I mean, really. What is the worst that can happen? We have a terrible dinner and a new story to tell when we go to the family reunion.”

“I guess you’re right.”

“Damn straight I’m right. Besides, I was promised a steak. I want my steak.”

I rolled my eyes.  My brother was actually a rather predictable creature when all things were considered.

I resigned myself to the plans I had created and doubted within a matter of minutes.  Worse comes to worse, I would still have a delicious dinner.

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Posted by on December 27, 2014 in You Me and Karma


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