Tag Archives: hope

Fiction: Good Luck (99 words)

I feel so much better now that you’re here, you know that? I know it’s silly, and that just because you are here it doesn’t mean we aren’t any closer to our impending death, and one extra solider isn’t actually going to make or break this campaign. But, I just can’t help myself. You are my good luck charm, always have been and hopefully always will be. So, yeah, I do feel better now that you are around.

After all, if you aren’t the good luck that I think you are, it’s not like we’ll be around long anyway…

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Posted by on September 27, 2016 in Stories


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Fiction: Get Out (152 words)

This was going to be the one to break free. I was really hoping that I would be able to get my daughter out, but she just wasn’t ready yet.  Just like I wasn’t ready yet.

But this Anna, my daughter’s daughter—and yet almost my genetic clone.  I can see it in her eyes.  If I give her the out, she’ll take it, and she won’t look back.

It’ll be the end of my life, to let her out.  People here are not going to be happy-and thy will take it out on me.  But I think that I am a small price to pay to finally break the cycle.  Because with Anna gone—they can’t start the whole circle over again. With Anna gone, they’ve lost.

So, it starts tonight.  I am going to get my daughter’s daughter, my younger version, free of this hell-hole that we call our life.

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Posted by on February 8, 2016 in Lydia's Stories, Uncategorized


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Fiction: The Feel of Power (368 words)

“You’re afraid of lightning,” he called, and I stopped in my tracks. “Just the idea of a storm makes your skin crawl.  Even now, just the mention makes you want to squirm.”  I went to take another step forward, but found that I couldn’t, he’d gotten my attention.  “You’d never admit it, because you’re pretty sure that people will think you are crazy, but you’re pretty sure you can feel it in your bones when you go in and out of cell service, and even to some degree when you switch from one Wi-Fi router to another.”  I turned slowly on my heel to face him. He was still on the other side of the room, standing in the spot where I told him to stay.  For a very long minute, we just stood there on opposite sides of the space.  He seemed to have lost his nerve now that I was looking at him.  I started to turn away again, but he said “Juliet” and I turned to face him again.

He was blushing.  Not very strongly, but I could see the pink growing on his cheeks.  “I can feel it when wires come loose in their casings.  Or when a battery is about to die.  To be perfectly honest, it—uh—kind of breaks my heart when the battery’s power completely fades away. I lucked out of the thunderstorm fear, but if the power goes out and there is no electricity in the house—the silence kills me.  I lose my mind. I—well,” he fidgeted in his pocket for a second and pulled out a mini-Maglite.  “I carry this around, you know, ‘for light in case of an outage’ but it’s really just for the power of it…the white noise.  Until its batteries die, and then I’m freaking out and heartbroken all in one.”  He slipped the flashlight back into his pocket, and looked up at me, his cheeks still pink. “The point is…you’re not a freak, or at the very least not a one-off freak. If you give us a chance, we can teach you a lot.  Please.” His nerve seemed to vanish entirely as he looked down to his feet.  I genuinely didn’t know what to do.

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Posted by on June 12, 2015 in Stories


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Fiction: The Once Queen’s Dream (789 words)

They couldn’t lock her up and keep her prisoner. One of the most respected laws in the country was that a woman could not be punished for the violations of man near her. Any father who had a daughter, brother who had a sister, or husband who had a wife and planned to do something wrong would protect this law with all their might, to make sure that the world couldn’t punish them by hurting their loved ones.  Since it was common knowledge that the former Queen Margaret Michelle was a coward who fled the battle and wielded no sword of her own, the Usurping King Matthew would have been asking to have himself ripped from his new throne by holding her on the crimes of her husband.

So, the former Queen, known now just as Shelly, the nickname her friends called her, could come and go as she pleased.

Shelly was very careful, however.  She knew they would be looking for the slightly fault to have her locked up as well. She knew she couldn’t be locked up because there was too much for her to do, too much that now rested on her shoulders alone.  If she joined her husband in is his cell, all would be lost.

Still, almost every day, she spent most of her time with her husband, the disgraced King.  Whenever they were being watched, they played their arts well.  Andrew acted like a tortured, broken, beaten man, one who barely recognized his wife or his quarters.  Shelly, acted as the love and heartbroken wife, tending to her husband, trying to encourage him and restore him to health.

But when left alone, they spoke quietly, in hurried tones, plotting and planning and scheming.  They even developed a code that they could use to exchange important information when they had to keep up the façade.  The only day she didn’t go to her heartbroken husbands’ side was on the first Saint’s Day of every month, she dressed carefully and went to the Temple of the Triple Gods.

Or at least that’s where she appeared to go. Once there, she was spirited away by the Priests and Masters loyal to her, so tha she could go to farmhouse where her young son was being raised without her.

It went like this for years.  And yet the happiest moment of every month was when she approached the house, and the fair little boy came running from the house crying “Mama! Mama!”  In an accent that was never quite like her own.

He always had things to show her, things he’d learned to do that month, or something he’d made her, or even just to stand against the little notch on the door to prove that he was getting taller.

Every month he asked, “Mama, when can I meet my father?”

And every month she answered, “Soon, my boy.  Very soon, my brave boy”

When he learned to write, she showed her happily that he could sign ‘Martin Mickels,’ the name that he went by as he masqueraded as a peasant’s son.

But he also showed her, in the quiet privacy of the farmhouse that he could sign Martin Andrew Michael Phillip, Prince in Honor, heir to the throne of Krall. Once his handiwork had been admired, they burned the slip. Martin understood that he was only safe as long as he didn’t acknowledge who he really was.  It was the only rule he knew not to test or push the limits of.

On the days she visited Martin, Shelly would ask to stay the night with the disgraced king in his cell. The others thought it was to make up for the lost time she spent praying all day.

But it was so those nights she could whisper all the wonders of their son into his ear, and she never left out a single detail for him. Not one solitary moment.

It was one of those nights, shortly after Martin’s sixth birthday, sleeping at her husband’s sides, Shelly had her first miraculous dream.  In her dream, she was sitting on her throne once again, the beautiful and wholly royal Queen of Krall.  Her husband stood before her, placing the Prince’s crown on the head of a young man kneeling before him.  When the young man rose, she saw it was her Martin, no longer a child of six but fifteen or sixteen, tall and strong, looking every bit like his father’s child.   And smiling warmly to his mother as his father announced him the crowned prince of the kingdom and heir to the throne.  And she knew, without a doubt in her whole being, that one day they would be successful.  That dream would come true.

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Posted by on February 1, 2015 in Stories


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Fiction: Sleeping Guardian Angel (736 words)

Bradley used to say he was psychic when it came to me, and sometimes I believed him.  Of course, when he forgot anniversaries or when we were supposed to be meeting up, my first joke was always “how about that psychic-ness, huh?” And he’d always come back with some excuse about my negativity messing up his psychic receptors.  Then he’d give me a kiss and I’d forgive him and roll my eyes at the idea that I thought he might have been psychic.

But, whenever I was having a hard time sleeping—he knew.  Even when we were kids—before we had a relationship or cell phones or anything of that nature, Bradley knew when I was having trouble sleeping.  We were eight years old when he first climbed out of his window, across the branches of the old tree, to knock on my window and ask me what I was thinking about and if talking was going to help.  Texting, phone calls, and window visits carried on through our lives.  There was never a night that I couldn’t sleep that I didn’t hear from Bradley asking me what was wrong.

After we moved in together, that’s when I learned that his psychic power could reach into his head even when he was sound asleep.   Bradley had gone to bed early because I had this misfortune to be holding Arthur when he fell asleep.  With Arthur, if he fell asleep when he was rocking and the rocking stopped in the first half hour or so, he was up and he was screaming. And Bradley was tired.  So it didn’t make sense for the both of us to sit and stare at a sleeping baby in silence, and since Arthur was in my arms—I sent Bradley to bed.

But when I was left alone with Arthur, I started to think. More than I should, more than was healthy.  I crawled into bed and stared at the ceiling, listening to Bradley snore.  I tried not to toss and turn as I couldn’t sleep.  Psychic-ness and guardian angels aside, I didn’t actually want to wake up Bradley.  We’d both been working so hard since Arthur was born I didn’t want to interrupt his sleep.

Whether or not it was psychic-ness, or I’m just not as good as lying still as I thought, Bradley rolled over and pulled me in by my waist.  “Wanna talk about it?” He mumbled, voice still thick with sleep.

“Talk about what?”

“Whatever it is you’re thinking about over and over again that’s not letting you get to sleep.  We both know that I can’t sleep properly until you can sleep properly.  So—what can I do to make it better?”  Bradley buried his nose in my hair, snuggling a little closer.   I considered saying nothing, just waiting, seeing if Bradley could fall back asleep without me waking him up anymore. But, if he used to crawl into a tree in the middle of the pitch black night to find out what was wrong with me, I doubted lying still would trick him.

“Don’t you wonder what he’ll look like when he grows up?” I whispered.

“Like you and Marta, I’d assume.”  Bradley whispered back.

“Yeah, but he has a father, right?  What if he takes after him? I don’t know what to expect.  I don’t know what we’re going to see as he grows up.”

“You’ll see our son,” Bradley answered easily, and I rolled over to look at him.   “It doesn’t matter who Marta slept with or that his father didn’t want to know him or that he might grow to be taller than both of us.  We adopted him. We promised to love him and we promised to care for him, and I don’t know about you but I already love the hell out of that kid and I cannot wait to see how he grows up.  Don’t you love the hell out of him?”

I blinked up at him.  “Of course I do. He’s my sister’s baby.  He’s our kid.  I love him, more than anything else.”

“Then, does it really matter what half his genes are? I mean, after the doctor has checked him for genetic markers for diseases, of course.”

“No,”  I relaxed, “No, it really doesn’t matter.”

“Excellent.”  Bradley buried another kiss in my hair, “Sleep now? Before he wakes up to be the loud version of our son?”

“Yeah. Sleep now.”

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Posted by on December 23, 2014 in Avery and Marta


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Fiction: Late Night (373 words)

He waited up for her. He wasn’t sure if he could say or do anything to make it any better, but he waited up anyway.  He switched back and forth between different games on the Xbox, too restless to stick to one story line, and tried not to count the minutes that she was gone.  The longer she was gone, the worse it actually was.  No distraction was working. He finally just paused the game, controller still in hand, watching the clock on the wall as it ticked forwards.

At 3:43 and 42 seconds, he heard her key turn in the lock.   At 3:45 and 2 seconds, she came into the living room, dropped her bag at the door and looked at him with a sigh.  He didn’t ask how she was.  She didn’t voluteneer how it went.  For a moment there was stillness and silence in the house.  He took one hand off the controller, and she sat down next to him, curling into the space between his arm and chest, letting him regrasp the controller around her.  He un-paused the game and played like he’d actually been playing before she got there, not like he stared at a paused screen for hours.  She sat there curled in her little ball and watched him play for about ten minutes, and though he didn’t feel her move even a finger, he could feel her relaxing, just a little.

She reached out and tapped his wrist.  He got to a point where he could pause, and then let go of the controller again to let her out. When she stood, she leaned down to kiss him right at the top of his forehead.  “Thanks for waiting up for me.”

“Anytime.”  She patted him lightly on the head, before heading down the hall, kicking her bag ahead of her.  He gave the game one last chance to hold his attention, but nothing.   He looked down the hall and saw her door was pulled tightly shut, which meant he was sleeping alone tonight. He expected as much.  He crawled into his own bed, and tapped out a song lightly on the wall above his headboard.  Morse code tapped back the title of the song.

She was going to be okay.


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Posted by on December 21, 2014 in Stories


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Fiction: Small Promises (99 words)

Hey, I know that going into these things is always a gamble—the feelings I’m feeling now might not stick around, and I’ve got nothing but your word that you feel the same way.  More likely than not this is going to end in heartbreak and there really isn’t anything we can do about it except hope that this is it, the final time, we’re actually meant to be with each other.

So—I know it’s not fair to ask you make me promises yet, but can you at least promise that you won’t break my heart on purpose?

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Posted by on December 9, 2014 in Stories


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