flash friday · General · Short Story · Writing

Friday Flash: First Day

This is my first Friday flash in months! Months and months and months! It is exactly 304 words, which is alright.

The baby grinned toothlessly into the camera. Its little fingers gripped the bare mattress.

Than it plopped its butt onto the bed and the blue blanket balanced atop its head slid down until the baby was completely covered, from the top of its bald skull to its bite-size toes.

The baby shrieked, whether in joy or distress, I couldn’t tell. I didn’t know enough about babies. But I knew what I was going to do next. It sure was loud. Nice, healthy lungs on this child. Maybe it knew this was the first day of its new life and it was celebrating with noise.

I turned off the camera and looked across the room at its mother. She looked like she was trying to scream louder than her baby. The bright pink ball gag kept her silent, though. Mostly silent. Tiny sounds still came made it through.

So annoying. Maybe I needed to cut off her tongue. But then she wouldn’t be able to scream when I wanted to hear her. Hmm.

The sweet sounds she would make later were worth a little irritation now, I decided.

“Come to Aunt Rosie,” I told the baby. “You know you love me.”

I reached forward and yanked the blanket off the baby. The baby was startled into silence, looked at me with big blue eyes and scrambled forward on hands and knees.

My sister said the baby was a boy, but how could anyone know? The baby wasn’t old enough to decide on a gender. And I would keep it alive until it did.

For now, its mother would do. She would last until this little one grew up enough for me to decide what to do with it.

Tomorrow was soon enough to take another picture. I would keep a collection as it grew up.

reading · Writing

The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Chapter 1.3: Supernatural Aid

Chapter 1.3: Supernatural Aid

This is after the hero has accepted the Call to Adventure! Maybe he refused it first, but he has

accepted it now. So the hero’s journey continues!

Chapter 1.1 was about the Call to Adventure.

Chapter 1.2 was about Refusal of the Call to Adventure.

This section is about supernatural aid. That is:

For those who have not refused the call, the first encounter of the hero-journey is with a protective figure (often a little old crone or old man) who provides the adventurer with amulets against the dragon forces he is about to pass.

So the hero finds a helpful figure, someone to give him things to help survive the trials and tribulations ahead. Things like amulets as mentioned in the quote above; knowledge probably counts, too; maybe weapons and trinkets as well.

I guess the helpful person could be the mentor figure. Like Obi-Wan in Star Wars and Dumbledore in Harry Potter. Luke gets his light saber from Obi-Wan. Harry gets advice.

Frodo’s ring probably counts as an amulet, too. But he gets from Bilbo; does that make Bilbo the helpful figure? He also gets advice from Gandolf. Maybe both Bilbo and Gandolf are helpful figures.

Then there is this line in the book:

What such a figure represents is the benign, protecting power of destiny.

So . . . is the helpful figure assigned to the hero by fate? By god? I don’t know. But I think this  means the helpful figure is a cheering squad, reassuring the hero and telling them can do this, no matter the odds. Maybe the helpful figure even shows them how to do whatever they need to do.

Protective and dangerous, motherly and fatherly at the same time, this supernatural principle of guardianship and direction unities in itself all the ambiguities of the unconscious – thus signifying the support of our conscious personality by that other, larger system, but also the inscrutability of the guide that we are following to the peril of all our rational ends.

I take this to mean that the helpful figure is basically like a parent and does a lot to sooth the insecurities of our hero.

And look! The guide, that thing that marks a new period in the hero’s life is here, showing the way to the end.

The book also says this about the helpful figure:

Not infrequently, the supernatural helper is masculine in form. In fairy lore it may be some little fellow of the wood, some wizard, hermit, shepherd, or smith, who appears to supply the amulets and advice that the hero will require.

Most of the helpful figures in the examples the book gives are actually female. I thought about ignoring this, but yeah. Although in the stories I was thinking of – Harry Potter, Star Wars – the figures are male. So there you go.

Really, I think the most important thing about this section is that hero finds someone to help the hero survive the adventure, usually by providing helpful objects or advice.

Others Blogging on This Topic:

  1. Adapting The Hero’s Journey for a Heroine from Kristen Pham
  2. Step 3: Supernatural Aid from Down The Rabbit Hole and Back
  3. Supernatural Aid: Looking for Guidance on Our Unschooling Journey from Living Joyfully
  4. What is the ‘Supernatural aid’? from frankindischleck
flash friday · Writing

Friday Flash: Unexpected Homecoming

Wrote this quick! I think it worked out.

He stumbled down the stairs. Shelia was here, Shelia was here, his beautiful baby girl.

She wore a long white dress, but stared down at the cherry wood of the steps. The top of her head was bare.

He slowed down when he noted a silver chain trailing behind her. It ended in – No! No!

His brother fisted the other end of the silver leash.

His brother’s smirked and mouthed the words: “I win.”

No, he would fight this. It wasn’t over yet. He wouldn’t allow his daughter to suffer.

flash friday · General · Short Story · Writing

Undead

This flash was inspired by the letter U!

She pondered the picture.

It showed a lady, dead from drowning. She knew that face.

She glanced over her shoulder at the rest of her class; they wandered the room, looking up at the photographs on the wall. Her teacher was across the room, with most of the kids.

She turned back to the picture. It was colored, but not pretty. She took a step a closer and peered closer at the woman’s face.

She took her wallet out of her bag and slipped out a picture hidden away behind her school id and transport card. The black-and-white photo was yellow with age and tattered at the edges. Grandmother was young in this picture; she grinned into the camera, knee-deep in the ocean, holding up her printed maxi out of the water.

She studied the picture on the wall, then her wallet picture and back again.

“Girls and boys!” The teacher clapped her hands. “Gather around now. I want to introduce to artist. She composed these photographs with herself as the model.”

A woman who looked exactly like the picture of her grandmother stood beside the teacher.

flash friday · Writing

Ory and the Big O

So this is today’s Friday flash, inspired from the letter O. It’s not quite what I intended. The letter is O and the only thing I could think of is Big O. Wikipedia has an article on it.

Ory saw the mailman first, dragging the mail cart behind him. Ory  listened, still and quiet in front of the door, to the scratches as the mailman opened the mailbox. The mailbox lid was loud as he snapped it shut.

Only then did he ring the doorbell.

Grinning, Ory yanked open the door. The mailman held a brown box before him. Green tape sealed the sides. The word BIG O was stamped all over in the box in a lurid, eye-searing pinks and yellows.

He signed for it, snatched it into his arms, slammed the door shut and sprinted with it into his room. Ory laid it gently on his bright green pillow. His red O scissors made quick work of the tape.

While fluffy foam nuggets spilled out of the box. He reached in and dumped handfuls on the floor. More handfuls. Two more handfuls.

Finally, he dug out the matching t-short, shorts and lanyard. He held up the shirt in front of him in the mirror. It was green, with a pink and yellow BIG O in the middle.

He thought: Finally ready for Big O camp! Finally!

flash friday · General · Writing

I is for Ice

This is a piece I wrote for #FridayFlash with the letter I as my writing prompt.

She pirouetted through her door.

Sunlight flooded the living room from the skylight overhead. She danced through the rays. Step, step, jump, arms at shoulder length, step, hands above her head, be graceful, turn her head just so.

She stopped on the final pose, and laughed. It was too perfect.

“You got the part,” her husband stated.

Lovely man.

She straightened, smiling up at him. “No.” But she would as soon as full dose of ice worked on her.

flash friday · Writing

C is for Creation

I decided to write a Friday flash with a title that starts with C, because of the A to Z challenge. This is what resulted.

 

Rain drizzled down, a steady, punishing stream of water.  

It wound down the body of the stone statue, past its blind eyes and dripped on ground already soaked with rain.

And me? It left me dry. My sister didn’t dare touch me, even here, far from land and age of our power. She still stayed clear of me, left me in a circle as dry as the sands of our birth.

Well, she would not touch her either. This rain wasn’t true, as fake as the rosy color on her cheeks. She wasn’t grieving. How could she? She had done this, shoved my beloved into a deep ditch and poured water she couldn’t breathe.

I brushed my fingers across the statue’s damp eyes. They were large in life, one brown and one blue, and so beautiful.

I would deepen my sister’s oceans until she thought she was winning; I would dry up her rivers and lakes; I would turn her land into the sands for our family’s graveyard.

And I would start here, on this island.

flash friday · Writing

Friday Flash: Lost

I wrote this real fast and I’m not sure how it came out so . . . here you are!!!

She eyed the mob screaming on the palace steps and fingered the gold ring in her skirt pocket.

Oh, this was bad. Very bad. Not that she could understand what they was saying, but it couldn’t be good.

Good thing she wasn’t responsible for this; she’d only arrived in the country just three days ago.

She rubbed the distinctive flat head of the ring. It was all good, she reassured herself. Everything was fine. She would get out of this.

“What they saying?” she asked. For a boy who thought they was twins, he sure was stupid.

He smiled at her, happy as a child with a handful of sugar. “Do you recall the temple we visited yesterday? A . . . an artifact, I suppose you would call it, disappeared from there yesterday.”

Horrified, she looked up into his bright purple eyes. How had they discovered it so soon? She had stolen it only hours ago, right before dawn. “But I thought . . . guess you was wrong about only the royal family being able to touch it. Just silly folktales afterall.”

He smiled, shook his head. “Come. You were stolen so young, you still don’t understand our ways. Your ways. Mother wishes to see you.”

flash friday

Friday Flash: The Honored Hemorphidite

Gentle reader, I was present at the Olde Circle yesterday evening when an astonishing thing happened.

“2900! 2900! Who wants to go for 3000? 3000, people. Going once, going twice, gone! The gentleman in the yellow hat has won the antique robot!” A small woman whispered in the auctioneer’s ear. “Ah! Forgive me, I meant to say, the honored hemorphidite in the yellow hat has won the antique robot.”

A shocked titter begin in the upper gallery and spread down to the peons in the lower seats. Who could blame them? No one has seen a hemorphidite in such marvelous surroundings in, well, decades.

A brightly dressed, tall hemorphidite descended from the upper gallery and walked to the stage. But before – she? he? it? – could reach the stage, a woman handed him a trolly with the robot on it, staring sightless ahead. The robots’ power switch was turned to off.

It, we shall say, offered the woman a card; it was a black card, but I regret I was not close enough to see which credit company it preferred.

The honored hemorphidite, gentle reader, gathered the trolly to its impressive bosom and made off with it.

No one knows where it went. All I know, gentle reader, is that somewhere in this city is a hemorphidite with an old robot.

Perhaps it decided to assuage its loneliness with the stark, broken lights of a robot.

General

Friday Flash: Sweet Sixteen

Today’s Friday Flash! It still needs work, I think, but I am not sure exactly what.

Crazy color smeared across her face. Pale pink on her eyelid transformed into neon pink on her eyebrow. The left eyelid was colored light blue, but somehow bright blue dotted her cheeks. Her hair was powdered with lemon yellow. Similar colors spilled down her shirt and the new white shorts she’d wanted to wear for her birthday party.

“What are you supposed to be?” he asked.

She burst into tears. Oddly, her tears made no tracks through the color on her face.

His wife chose that moment to come in and scowled at him. “She’s a Neon. Her ability is to spread color on every surface.”

He winced. That was the most useless Neon ability. Invariably, they were house painters, interior designers or fashion designers. Artists, too, many times.

Too bad his baby girl could only draw stick figures and hadn’t the fashion sense of a poodle.

“Come here.”

“Papa!” She threw herself into his arms. “What am I gonna do?”

“I don’t know, sweetie.” He closed his arms tight around her. “We’ll figure something out.”

They had time. She was only sixteen.