Flash Fiction: What is Love? by @Faryna

The Unspoken Problems of True Love by @Faryna

FlasFiction

by Stan Faryna
@Faryna

Stan Faryna & The Blue Sky - Stan The Marketing Man!

 

 

Mother Washington laughed as she watched John and Cristina run – they ran with joy. Cristina threw her arms high into the air as she bounced on John’s shoulders. She squealed in delight. Cristina had never felt more free, more lucky and more happy in her life.

Mother Washington

Mother Washington

“You hang on to that young man, Cristina,” Mother Washington said to herself.

“You hold on to that young woman, John.”

Mother Washington sighed and a tear came to her eye.

“You hold on to each other real tight. Because ain’t no one ever been more meant for anyone than you were meant for each other.

You gotta know that the Devil, he ain’t going to stand for any nonsense like that. He gonna tear you apart – first chance he gets. And if’n he can’t tear you apart, he’s gonna tear you each up. With his bare hands.”

###

More awesome by mad geniuses here on the GANG!

YOHTAI Issue No. 4 #Hearthstone

One Red Shoe

With Music by @RussellBennetts & @Klassnik

What can Monty Python teach you about writing?

 

 

Other posts by Stan that you will find illuminating, uplifting or both:

You Can Do Amazing Things

A Tribute to Maya Angelou

A Letter from Osama bin Laden

A Short Story of the Antichrist

 

About Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna is writing an epic novel. All of the world is crumbling like unrepaired, ancient walls but 18 year old gamer, PVP champion, zombie killer, blogger and serial entrepreneur John Dionysius finds the woman who he’s been dreaming about all of his life – a dream in which she is murdered as he watches helplessly from the eyes of a child.

Twitter: @Faryna
Facebook: Faryna.FanPage
Google+: +StanFaryna
Website: The Unofficial Blog of Stan Faryna

You can support Stan by helping his friend, Nisha Varghese (click on Nisha’s pic to make a donation).

Nisha Varghese

Nisha Varghese is an inspiration to Stan because she lives out the truth that she is bigger than her challenges. Among them, Cerebral Palsy. She too can save the world. Make it a better place for all of us. Nisha is a light and a gift unto the world.

Nisha’s website is here.

Poetry: With Music by @RussellBennetts & @Klassnik

Poetry: With Music by @RussellBennetts & @Klassnik

 

Poetry

by Russell Bennetts & Rauan Klassnik

@RussellBennetts and @Klassnik

  Lost London Photos 06

With Music

The ice cream hut

Ate all the children,

Winston Churchill harrumphed

Turned tail and sang

Seidel’s Song to the Moon

The Battle of Stepney

Childhood dreams of an opera,

Peter the Painter harrumphed

Chased tail and sang

Continued:

http://thebohemyth.com/2014/07/06/russell-bennetts-rauan-klassnik

More awesome by mad geniuses here on the GANG!

What can Monty Python teach you about writing?

One Red Shoe

A Public Alert on Epsom Salt by @Faryna

YOHTAI Issue No. 4 #Hearthstone

 

 

 

More mad loots, mental feats and hardboiled questions by Russell Bennetts & Rauan Klassnik:

Hamlet’s Nothing: Berfrois Interviews Simon Critchley

On Modernism: Berfrois Interviews Gabriel Josipovici

The Red Bird: A Reading by Rauan Klassnik (Audio)

Rauan Klassnik: The Continental Review (Video)

About Russell Bennetts

Russell Bennetts is the founder and editor of BerfroisBerfrois is a literary-intellectual online magazine.

Twitter: @RussellBennetts

Website: Berfrois

About Rauan Klassnik

Rauan Klassnik is a poet and artist. He is author of the Moon’s Jaw, a collection of poetry that paints a portrait of rotting decadence: wastelands of body and soul radioactive with death, cruelty, and a dark gleaming perverse sexuality.

Twitter: @Klassnik

Website: RauanKlassnik

Feed your hunger at Russell Bennetts’ Berfrois. Berfrois

Semi-poetic: Progress and Prosperity by @Faryna

 

Semi-poetic: Progress and Prosperity by @Faryna

 

Poetry

by Stan Faryna @Faryna

Stan Faryna & The Blue Sky - Stan The Marketing Man!

Progress and Prosperity

I stretched out my hand to poetry

this early morning
and I felt the distance grow between words and
understanding.
Were those miles there before I had begun?
Like glass shattering, the shards scattering
across the kitchen floor like a people
fleeing, retreating
from a more perfect union – but they say
Lincoln’s a poet and poetry mends
hearts, ways, hopes, families, neighborhoods and a nation –
That would be progress!
Or prosperity by any other name.

Technology, commerce, innovation –

cannot tow a star-faring ship of state up a creek.

Lincoln Coin

The Lincoln Dollar


More awesome by mad geniuses here on the GANG!

One Red Shoe

Everything You Do Is A Snowball

What can Monty Python teach you about writing?

 

 

Other posts by Stan that you will find illuminating, uplifting or both:

You Can Do Amazing Things

A Tribute to Maya Angelou

A Short Story of the Antichrist

About Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna is writing an epic novel. All of the world is crumbling like unrepaired, ancient walls but 18 year old gamer, PVP champion, zombie killer, blogger and serial entrepreneur John Dionysius finds the woman who he’s been dreaming about all of his life – a dream in which she is murdered as he watches helplessly from the eyes of a child.

Twitter: @Faryna Facebook: Faryna.FanPage Google+: +StanFaryna Website: The Unofficial Blog of Stan Faryna

You can support Stan by helping his friend, Nisha Varghese (click on Nisha’s pic to make a donation). Nisha Varghese

Nisha Varghese is an inspiration to Stan because she lives out the truth that she is bigger than her challenges. Among them, Cerebral Palsy. She too can save the world. Make it a better place for all of us. Nisha is a light and a gift unto the world. Nisha’s website is here.

What can Vincent van Gogh teach you about writing?

What can Vincent van Gogh teach you about writing?

 

0…
On Writing


by John Magnet Bell
@startyournovel

John Magnet Bell

Van Gogh's TARDIS by BBC

Van Gogh’s TARDIS by BBC

 

Van Gogh’s bright images wither in sunlight.

So if your bucket list includes traveling to Amsterdam and acquainting yourself with van Gogh’ssunflowers, you’d better go soon.

Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) was a Dutch post-impressionist painter, born in Groot-Zundert, home to the oldest licensed tavern in the Netherlands, “In Den Anker.” Zundert lies 10 meters above sea level, which in Holland is something like high ground. And that was my extremely lame joke for the day. Sorry.

Now there’s a Vincent van Gogh Museum in Zundert, and a monument to Vincent and his brother Theo.

Early van Gogh is depressing as hell. None of the bright colors he became famous for, none of that rippling energy that makes the wheat fields and night skies shimmer with a million elven strokes of the spatula. What magic they contain is bleak, dour and disciplined.

Two Peasant Women Digging by Van Gogh

Two Peasant Women Digging by Van Gogh

Two Peasant Women Digging Potatoes is the work of an attentive observer but, if Vincent had stopped there, you wouldn’t be reading about him now.

Compare Two Peasant Women with this 1887 selfie,

Van Gogh's Selfie

Van Gogh’s Selfie

or Country Road in Provence by Night.

Country Road...

Country Road…

At some point, van Gogh decided to stop following History. Instead, he would make it happen.What’s more amazing is, some people are uniquely positioned to reinvent art — they’ve got it all, time and money and an education — yet they become imitators, what I call ‘advocates for normalcy.’ Van Gogh wasn’t among them. His connection to the world was fraught with misunderstanding and pain. He felt like an outsider, but that didn’t stop him: along with a dozen others, he tore at the carcass of academic painting to deliver the phoenix inside of it. They invented the twentieth century. In a way, they invented us as we are now.

So, what can Vincent van Gogh teach you about writing a novel, story, or play?

 

“It is good to love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is well done.”

 

Fight Club

I can’t conceive of a writer who isn’t intellectually voracious, perpetually dissatisfied with the gaps in their knowledge. Love is your window on the world, your starting point. People who hate shut themselves in. Why is it that ignorance and hatred go hand in hand?

Chuck Palahniuk had his character in Fight Club, Tyler Durden, say that we hold down jobs we hate to buy stuff we don’t need. Let’s not focus on the ‘stuff we don’t need’ right now. Instead, let’s think about what your work means to you. Does it make you think? Does it keep you growing and evolving as a person? Can you imagine what your life would be like if you held a different job? (Hint: if you answered yesyes, and no, you love what you do for a living.)

To be blunt about it, the kind of art that lasts demands commitment and more than commitment. It demands that you keep faith with the unspeakable weirdness inside of you. Popularity is no gauge for quality. Popular things lose their luster – how many huge hits from the 1930s are still around? I’m talking about 1930 and that wasn’t a century ago. Turn back the clock to the mid-1850s and you find that minstrel shows were the national art of their day. Do people still perform in blackface? No. Popular entertainment often expresses the worst[1] any culture has to offer, and that is why so many financially successful movies, books and songs fade from view after a while.

The crowd that feeds on the worst craves constant novelty and loathes History, Memory and Past.

Love entails vulnerability and openness. Also, that you be true to yourself. There’s no recipe for weird or unusual. It could be that you are entirely average or nondescript, but that too makes you a chimera of a human being. If you can love fiercely you have already separated yourself from the crowd.

Wheat Field with Crows

Wheat Field with Crows

“Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.”

Maybe it was Samuel Johnson who said that you must go through an entire library in order to write a book. (Sounds like him, so let’s assume.)

Getting a body of work together takes time. Each little victory makes you stronger, makes you better. A painting is the result of ten thousand movements of the hand pointing in one direction. It’s no different than a novel, a TV show or a space program.

A little discipline goes a long way. If you force yourself to write that first line you’ll want to write a second, and who knows where that might lead. Beginnings are the hardest, because a mountain looks so much more imposing before you climb it. Why do you think people talk about ‘conquering’ the summit of a mountain? You’re not really going to war against a geological formation – it’s just a really big rock and it’s got nothing personal against you.[2]

When you get to the top, you see the landscape around you. Not the steps you took. Raw hands, scraped knees, llama poop… None of that matters anymore. You’ve reached the summit!

Look, your life’s work may take you a lifetime. (Such was the case with Marcel Proust.) I’m not going to tell you to focus on the future and screw the rest; you have bills to pay, your car needs parts, your children need wine[3], but take the long view. Only you know how long it takes to do work that matters.

Let your mind carry you to the deeps of your truest self. Vincent did:

 

“What am I in the eyes of most people — a nonentity, an eccentric, or an unpleasant person — somebody who has no position in society and will never have; in short, the lowest of the low. All right, then — even if that were absolutely true, then I should one day like to show by my work what such an eccentric, such a nobody, has in his heart. That is my ambition, based less on resentment than on love in spite of everything, based more on a feeling of serenity than on passion. Though I am often in the depths of misery, there is still calmness, pure harmony and music inside me. I see paintings or drawings in the poorest cottages, in the dirtiest corners. And my mind is driven towards these things with an irresistible momentum.”

FOOTNOTES

[1] Michael Bay, Uwe Boll, Lady Gaga, Madonna, Britney Spears, among others; I can’t think of a single writer to include in that pantheon – or pandemonium, as the case may be.

[2] I’d like to read a story someday where a mountain pursues a grim vendetta, chasing some poor sap all over the world. Hey, if the Final Destination movies can substitute DEATH for an actual slasher/psycho killer, why not a mountain. Just imagine the protagonist waking up to a mysterious rumbling and a marked commotion in the streets. He looks out the window and sees the mountain bearing down on Galveston, Texas, traversing the sea. And it’s coming for him.

[3] If you’re French and happen to live in the Simpsons universe.

Flash fiction by John Magnet Bell that you will find perfectly woody:


My Girlfriend’s Iron Petticoat
The Toll Booth Inside You
The Angels of Provenance

About John Magnet Bell

John is a professional translator, writer and photographer. He writes about writing and he writes unconventional flashes of fiction at his website, Start Your Novel. Why? John explains his passion here.

Twitter: @StartYourNovel
Google+: JMBell
Tumblr: http://johnmagnetbell.tumblr.com/
Website: Start Your Novel

Please support John so that he can keep writing epic prompts! You can buy his shocking art at society6: http://society6.com/johnmagnetbell

Salute The Morning, John Magnet Bell

Salute The Morning, John Magnet Bell

A Public Alert on Epsom Salt by @Faryna

A Public Alert on Epsom Salt by @Faryna

FlasFiction

by Stan Faryna
@Faryna

Stan Faryna & The Blue Sky - Stan The Marketing Man!

 

“Kill him! Kill him! Kill him dead!”

An elderly man in jeans and a white tee shirt with Captain America’s shield on his chest shouted at the angry crowd surrounding the terrorist, his white hair tossing across his forehead as he shook his clenched fist.
The terrorist had been caught in the pharmacy – trying to buy one dozen one pound bags of epsom salts. To make a bomb – undoubtedly!
Epsom Salt
A translucent white, plastic garbage bag dotted with yellow smiley faces covered the terrorist from head to crotch. It was bound with an electrical cord around his waist.A baseball bat swung and connected with the area presumably where the terrorist’s face might be. Red splattered across the inside of the bag and began to soak the front of the terrorist’s gray and black, snap button, plaid wool shirt.
The crowd closed in. A knee was brought up into the terrorist’s stomach, an elbow down on his chest and a kick shattered the knee cap.
As the terrorist fell, a man in a black suit kicked him in the small of the back and a mother, infant in her arms, kicked him in the head. On the ground, a grandmother of four granddaughters brought down her combat boot on his abdomen – ripping the shirt apart.Pools of blood spread out under the head and stomach.They were patriots. They were good citizens. The G-man – gray suit, white tie, and black shoes – congratulated them on their valor.
Everyone in the crowd congratulated each other. The only good terrorist is a dead terrorist – a phrase that was repeated endlessly and affirmed from one person to another.
The elderly man approached the body with morbid curiosity, knelt down and untied the twine. He wanted to see the horror on the terrorist’s face. Or what was left of that face. He wanted to savor the victory in all it’s terrible splendor.

The terrorists had caused them so many troubles – 22 percent unemployment, 200 percent price inflation, 13 percent value added tax, epidemics, power outages, unclean water, and nuclear power plant failures. If it happened and it was bad, the terrorists had done it.A Congresswoman from Arizona had even suggested that the terrorists were now using alien technology.
That’s what they had been told. Everyone knew it was true.
The grandmother in her pink jogging suit and Pikachu hoodie bent over and began to pull the unbound bag up. She did it enthusiastically despite the protests of the G-man. A few more inches revealed a gently and perfectly rounded stomach – a pregnant stomach. The congratulations, jokes and boasts stopped dead. The terrorist wasn’t a man, after all.

When the unrecognizable head slid out from the bag, blonde hair streaked with blood slapped against the asphalt. The only thing to identify the woman was a silver locket that held the picture of the elderly man now weeping and gnashing his teeth beside her – her father.

More awesome by mad geniuses here on the GANG!

One Red Shoe

Everything You Do Is A Snowball

What can Monty Python teach you about writing?

 

 

Other posts by Stan that you will find illuminating, uplifting or both:

You Can Do Amazing Things

A Tribute to Maya Angelou

A Short Story of the Antichrist

About Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna is writing an epic novel. All of the world is crumbling like unrepaired, ancient walls but 18 year old gamer, PVP champion, zombie killer, blogger and serial entrepreneur John Dionysius finds the woman who he’s been dreaming about all of his life – a dream in which she is murdered as he watches helplessly from the eyes of a child.

Twitter: @Faryna
Facebook: Faryna.FanPage
Google+: +StanFaryna
Website: The Unofficial Blog of Stan Faryna

Paradise Encrypted by @StartYourNovel

Paradise Encrypted


FlasFiction


by John Magnet Bell
@startyournovel

John Magnet Bell

I fell asleep to the whistle and crack of far-off mortar fire, shivering under the standard-issue blanket. I fell asleep cursing the thermal implants that refused to warm me, but the wretched bastards on the other side of the wall had worse things to worry about.

###

 

More flash fiction by John Magnet Bell that you will find perfectly woody:


Polyester Sun

Stratospheric Beast
The Angels of Provenance

About John Magnet Bell

John is a professional translator, writer and photographer. He writes about writing and he writes unconventional flashes of fiction at his website, Start Your Novel. Why? John explains his passion here.

Twitter: @StartYourNovel
Google+: JMBell
Tumblr: http://johnmagnetbell.tumblr.com/
Website: Start Your Novel

Please support John so that he can keep writing epic prompts! You can buy his shocking art at society6: http://society6.com/johnmagnetbell

Krag Tee Shirt by @StartYourNovel

Krag Tee Shirt by @StartYourNovel

Do you have an awesome story to share with us? Join the ranks of mad geniuses that make Geeky Antics rock. Email your proposal to stan.faryna@gmail.com

One Red Shoe by @Chil_SEo cc: @harukimurakami_

One Red Shoe

Short Story

by Byung Chil
@Chil_SEo

Byung Chil 400x400

 

“Char?”

Charlotte Walker didn’t hear him call her by his nickname for her. She was somewhere else. Maybe, ferrying souls across the river Styx.

“CHAR!”

Charlotte heard Michael this time. She put down the book she had been reading, Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami, turned to him and smiled shyly.

Kafka on the shore

Kafka on the shore

Her blue lipstick on her pale face suggested that she looked like one who ferries souls to Hades. But her hazel eyes were warm, alive and kind.

“I’ve been looking everywhere for you,” explained Michael as he bent over to re-tie the laces on his red Converse high tops.

“I’ve been right here, silly. I always eat my lunch under the Bodhi tree. You know that!”

Tires squealed and a black car crunched with a sickening sound into a telephone pole next to the library. Charlotte and Michael watched in awe as the Honda folded around the pole.

“That’s Sophia’s Honda,” Charlotte whispered, disbelieving.  Not knowing what to do, the two immediately ran over to help Sophia.

The scene they found was beyond their imagination. The windshield and driver’s window had blown out in a thousand shards. Sophia’s body had been flung through the windshield, slapped against the tree and thrown back onto the roof of the car. She lay still on her back. Her bloody face was unrecognizable.

Michael checked for a pulse but found none. Sophia was dead.

Without Michael saying a word, Charlotte burst into tears.

“She can’t be dead! She’s my only friend.”

Michael held Charlotte tightly as she spoke in his ear between her broken sobs.

“She had something important to tell me – just an hour ago she had left a voice mail saying that she had found my sister’s phone number.”

“The sister that ran away when you were 10,” Michael asked as a policeman told them to step back from the scene of the accident.

Paramedics inspected Sophia’s body, pronounced her dead, and covered her body with a blanket. The blanket lay over Sophia like a gloomy cloud hanging over a sad, desolate town.

“The sister that I hadn’t talked to since I was 10,” explained Charlotte as she sobbed.

“I wouldn’t talk to her because she abandoned us. She tried to keep in touch. She’d call when my father worked the night shift, but I wouldn’t talk to her. She’d try to stop me on my way to school and she’d hold out some candy and I would run away.”

“Why did she run away?” asked Michael.

“Because she was stupid,” shouted Charlotte.

“So why would you want to talk to her now,” whispered Michael.

“I need to know something. I need to know why she ran away.”

Michael turned and threw up. His lunch of instant noodles and gummy bears poured out across the asphalt, painting it with rainbows of grossness only Picasso could discern.

He didn’t want to tell Charlotte why he had been looking for her.

The police had phoned the office. Her mother had committed suicide an hour earlier. She had stepped off the sidewalk in front of a moving school bus. But she had left a letter for Charlotte in a brown grocery bag of fruit – a bag which she had put down just before she stepped in front of the bus.

Michael felt dizzy. It was too much. His stomach was in knots. Charlotte had a splitting headache.

He clumsily handed Charlotte a note with a name and phone number:

 

Officer Ray Kim
6336 4251 5151 4233

Then, Michael ran. He ran faster than he had ever run before and Charlotte watched him go – the way he ran reminding her of how her sister had run away that night she abandoned Charlotte.

 

The music was loud. Loud enough to control her. Men Without Hats’ song, Safety Dance, blasted on the speakers.  A handsome, young man put two shot glasses in her hands for the third time and she slammed down the Exorcism – Polish Spirytus with one drop of pure Bulgarian lavender oil. 196 proof vodka. 50 bucks a shot.

Charlotte knew how to forget all of her problems, sorrows and loneliness.

Her new friend left and came back with two more shots, but this time he gestured for her to follow him to a dark corner. Charlotte followed. Two more shots and she’d be perfect.

Alone with her new, un-named friend, she slammed the Exorcisms as he kissed her neck and pushed her against the wall. She liked the physical attention but there was no connection. There never was. She felt like a mannequin. She was just there.

She just wanted to fuck him. Get off. Get through the stress. Go home and go to bed. She didn’t care who he was. What he dreamed about. She didn’t even know his name.

“I’m Philly” he said as he unzipped his pants, lifted her skirt up and pushed inside of her. She wasn’t wearing panties.

As he pumped her, Charlotte watched a guy take their abandoned table and slam a bottle of Grey Goose. He put the bottle down hard with a trembling hand and fell over. The stranger’s body shook in involuntary seizures as she convulsed in multiple orgasms.

The orgasms gave way to a splitting headache. That had never happened before. Not normal.

“Fuck,” she thought to herself.

She always had splitting headaches when people died.

She rudely pushed Philly away from her, lowered her skirt and then straightened her blouse.

“Let me take you home,” Philly offered.

“Your dick’s too small!” she shouted at him as she walked past him and out of the club.

“That’s not me,” Charlotte said out loud to herself as she walked down the street.

“This is not me. I’m not a bitch. This is not a solution and I’m not a sociopath…” she chastised herself.

“CHAR!” someone familiar yelled at her, stopping her train of self-pity thoughts to a halt.

A black Audi R8 stopped alongside the sidewalk and Michael leaned out of the passenger window.

“I’m sorry, Char. I’m so sorry I ran away this afternoon.” He paused to look at Charlotte but her glassy stare was enough for him to continue.

“I… I hated giving you that phone number. I didn’t want you to hear it from me. Because I don’t want to be the one that gives you bad news.”

The air was perfectly still as their stares at each other. It is as if the universe conspired to make this moment embedded in their memories – etched deeply like a mark on a stone.

Charlotte was the first to break the stare. Michael held it like a delicate flower.

“Fuck off,” Charlotte shouted back at him as she turned her back to him.

But Michael didn’t give up easily.

“I’m stupid like your sister. But I wonder if maybe she didn’t want to hurt you either.

Char, I’ll do anything if you can try to forgive me…”

He said it with conviction.

With that, Charlotte faced him. She held his glance as she looked back at him. But this time fear and helplessness shone in her eyes.

“Anything?” she asked again with the voice of an eight year old girl begging to let her out of a dark closet.

“Anything.” Michael confirmed with a hint of a smile in his lips.

 

 

Charlotte walked over to the car, opened the door and slid into the passenger seat.

Tears for Fears’ song, Shout, played on the car system.

“You’ve been drinking,” said Michael, matter-of-factly.

“Don’t,” Charlotte stopped him.

She reached up to the stereo and turned up the volume, put her head outside the window and shouted with all her might.

“Feeling better?” Michael asked when she sat back in the passenger seat.

“I didn’t do anything to deserve this,” Charlotte yelled at Michael.

“Huh?” he replied.

Pure confusion and anxiety resounded in his voice.

Michael didn’t know what Char was talking about.

Charlotte took a deep breath and repeated herself again in a whisper:

“I didn’t do anything to deserve this…”

The words reminded her of her mother. She had heard her mother whisper those words a thousand times like almost a mantra. Maybe, more often than that. Charlotte’s mother would say those words softly or sometimes barely audible as her father beat on her mother with angry fists, not stopping too as if being motivated by the incessant mantra of her mother.

Charlotte remembered her father’s eyes as she sits powerless in a corner, bright and burning with rage, as he beats on her mother. She remembered how his fists would rain down on her mother’s face as if the verbal abuse isn’t enough to break her.

Memories like that were why Charlotte couldn’t have a boyfriend or a husband. She just couldn’t trust a man. Her past was also the reason why she didn’t make friends at all. She was so ashamed that she had come from a broken place. A sad place. A violent world.

Charlotte remembered her older sister, Sarah, creeping up behind her father with a kitchen knife as he beat on their mother one night. It was on a honey moon. A Friday 13th.

She recalled how the knife gleamed with malice in her sister’s hands. How everything went in slow motion as she raises it behind her father’s back.

“What are you doing?!” Charlotte shouted at her sister who was shocked and taken aback by her pained voice.

Her father saw the knife and laughed with surprising joy and satisfaction. Sarah dropped the knife, ran out the door and never came back to the house again.

 

 

“Is there anybody in there?” asked Michael as the car sped across the highway and out of town.

Pink Floyd’s song, Comfortably Numb, was playing, but Charlotte didn’t hear him or the song.

“Char – I love you…”

The words cut through her. She didn’t know what to say. Or how to react. Michael was cute but not her type. Charlotte was attracted to assholes – not nice guys.  The only thing remotely sexy about Michael was his car.

She said nothing. As if she didn’t hear him say it. Her silence tortured Michael. It felt like eternity, but he still pushed on.

“Char – I love you,” Michael repeated. This time he said it with more boldness and ambition in his voice.

Still nothing.

“I don’t do love,” Charlotte finally replied to him.

“What does that mean?” asked Michael, baffled.

“I don’t do relationships.” She said flatly.

“Why?” asked Michael with a deep sadness in his eyes that she recognized. She saw that bottomless sadness in the mirror every night as she brushed her teeth and got ready for bed.

She saw herself in him.

“It’s complicated.”

She said this as she crossed her arms around her chest.

“How complicated?”

She turned to him and started to pour out her soul to Michael.

“Shit happened in my childhood, Michael. I can’t trust people – no one . People can’t be trusted. They hurt each other. People abandon each other. People punch and kick…”

She looked away and slowly shook her head.

Charlotte couldn’t believe she was saying this out loud. The only other person she had talked to like this was Sophia. But Sophia had felt the same way.

Sophia had been the first to confess to her that she believed a happy family is a lie. That love is a lie.

The cake is a lie.


 

A Bach Concerto for two violins came up on the play list. Was it a coincidence? It reminded Michael and Charlotte of high school rehearsals. They both had played the violin but that was something they did not know about each other.

“My father beat the hell out me,” Michael said in whispers.

“Because my mother cheated on him. Often.”

Michael paused. He had difficulty saying what he needed to tell her.

“That was their problem, Charlotte.

Michael paused again.

“The demons that consumed my mother and father do not consume me.  I’m not going to beat the people that I love. I’m not going to cheat on my wife. The demons of my father and mother live in them – not me.

Me, I was washed. My heart and soul were set free. My cup has been filled…

I am born again, Char.”

He said all of it like it was the highest truth in the world. Like how one would say the sky is blue when there is nothing else they could want in the world.

“What does that mean, born again,” asked Charlotte.

Maybe, Michael understood. Charlotte wondered. Was it possible?

“It’s so simple, Char. It’s so simple and easy that it’s unbelievable.

Are you ready for this?

You just got to let go of the broken-ness. Because you don’t need to own broken things. No one does.”

Charlotte had no idea what Michael was talking about. The only thing she knew was that she wasn’t going to give herself to this guy. No matter how sweet his words were to her soul.

Sweet words were lies. That’s how Sophia explained it and Charlotte couldn’t have said it better herself.

Michael spoke again.

“Only when you are free, can you see. I can’t explain it so I’m not going to try. I can’t talk you into freedom. No one can do that. But I can show you what being free means. I can show you.

I can show you how fearless is my love for you…”

Michael pulled over to the emergency lane and brought the car to a stop. Charlotte slipped her hand into her hand bag and found her pepper spray and ripper knuckle-blade. She was ready for him.

He took the keys out of the ignition and gently handed them to her with a warm smile.

“The car is yours. I know you like it,” explained Michael as he got out of the R8 and shut the door behind him.

Charlotte just froze in her seat. She didn’t expect this. She wasn’t prepared for whatever was happening.

“My lawyer will give you the title. His name, address and phone number are in the glove compartment.”

Michael walked in front of the car and stopped on the side of the road about twenty feet away. He leaned against a speed limit sign and lit a cigarette.

“What are you doing?” Charlotte hollered from the window. Tears flowed from her eyes. She was confused.

Michael held her gaze once more in the eternity of that moment. Charlotte looked at him. She was confused. She felt so lost.

“The thing is that death will follow you wherever you go. I don’t know why. But it’s not going to stop until you let love come in. Until you know and live out love, anyone that loves you and wants to help you out of this sinister arrangement… they are going to die.

Like Sophia. Or Mr. Thomas from the office. Or your mother.”

Michael stopped. He was looking for words he couldn’t find. Then he let out a deep sigh and said two words that wrapped it up. Like a complete rotation of all the planets around the sun. A total circuit. It was a death sentence and a gift.

“Or me.”

The words hit Charlotte in the stomach. She felt the world was like an airplane breaking apart just after take off. She cried uncontrollably.

“What the fuck are you talking about?!”

It was more of a plea than a question.

The faint light of two pairs of headlights shone on them from the distance.

Maybe, Michael was talking crazy. Charlotte slipped into the driver’s seat, started the car, and rolled forward to where Michael was standing.

“Get in,” she pleaded.

“My time is almost up,” he replied calmly.

Deep down, Charlotte admitted to herself that Michael was right about something. He had figured it out. Something that she never wanted to admit to herself. The names and faces of the dead were more than she could count. The names of her dark wardens, however, she could not escape: Death, Despair, Fear, Hate, Jealousy, Pride, Self-Deceit and Vengeance.

“Fuck it, get in!”

She said it between sobs with her head laid on the steering wheel like a prayer.

“Like I said, I love you…

That’s why I had to say what you had to hear. You had to hear it from someone that loves you.”

Michael paused to take a long drag on the cigarette.

“You know what that means and I’m ok with that. Because you deserve a chance, Charlotte. You were created to love, to be a light and to shine bright. To be heroic. To be amazing.”

“Shut the fuck up and get in!”

Michael continued.

“And love, love is not just a word that we say to each other to confirm our connection or commitment. Love is something we do for each other.”

I was reading a blog post the other day and the guy said it perfectly. Love is about being a gift to each other. To love is to be a blessing unto each other. That’s when I understood your problem and what I had to do. It was a sudden realization. It was a spiritual gift.”

Michael spoke with confidence and warm enthusiasm.

He no longer looked to Charlotte’s begging eyes. His gaze went through her to some point of space and time ahead of him. It was waiting for him with a warm welcome.

“Fuck you, Michael. I don’t need this shit!” she yelled.

Michael smiled at Charlotte. He knew she had heard him. In time, she would understand everything that he had said tonight. But not just now. He was ok with that too.

Charlotte pressed on the gas and sped down the road. It was impulsive. She was on the edge of feeling something. She didn’t know how to handle it. It wasn’t just one thing. It was a lot of things. Fears, hopes, anger and-

Two cars sped past her in the opposite direction. College kids hung out the windows and cheered her with bottles of vodka.

 

She slowed down, turned the car around and went back to get Michael. In the distance, she could see the tail lights of the two cars zig zagging. She felt a lump in her throat.

Capital Cities’ song, Safe and Sound, played on the radio.

“Please let him be safe and sound,” she whispered. It was her first prayer ever.

When she got back to where the speed limit sign was, the broken sign lay on the ground and Michael’s right shoe lie beside it.

###

More awesome by mad geniuses here on the GANG!

Do zombies do face palms?

Everything You Do Is A Snowball

What can Monty Python teach you about writing?

 

About Byung Chil

19 year old Byung Chil reads Haruki Murakami novels, writes short stories, plays the violin, and rocks DOTA 2.

One Red Shoe is Byung Chil’s first short story.

Twitter: @Chil_SEo
Facebook: Byoungchil

Do zombies do face palms? by @Faryna

Just because she’s dead doesn’t means she’s stupid.

FlasFiction

by Stan Faryna
@Faryna

Stan Faryna & The Blue Sky - Stan The Marketing Man!

The back of her head was pressed against the door, she did a face palm. Was it an aha moment? Or was it an acceptance of an inescapable inevitability? Or a physical reflex of memories or déjà vu.

Do zombies do face palms?

She was beautiful. It didn’t matter to him that her irises were silver or her pupils were rings of yellow and black. It didn’t matter that her lips were violet without lip stick. Her form and features were perfect.

The disease had not robbed her of everything. There were also memories – memories, fears and anger that were uncorrupted by the HK-63351 fungal-virus. 

It didn’t matter she was a zombie, Daryl thought she was hot. The violet hair was a total turn on.

“I know you can hear me,” he said from the other side of the door as he pulled the handcuffs out of his back pocket.

 

zombie girl

The Dilemma of Biological Imperatives



I know you’re in there. Somewhere inside that body. I know that you don’t have to be controlled by this thing. That you are more than your hunger.

I know that you can still love and be loved.”

She gasped for air. A tear slipped from the yellow-white edge of her eye.

“I’m going to open the door and if you can’t say something, maybe you can hear me out. Maybe, you can just listen to what I have to say. Consider my proposal…”

The door unlocked. She slid along the wall out of the way of the door.

“You’re so fucking beautiful,” Daryl said as he gently opened the door and admired her.

He was going to tap that.

She turned to him, gently put her hands on his unshaven face and lifted her lips to his.

He closed his eyes and she bit off his nose.

###


Other posts by Stan that you will find illuminating, uplifting or both
:

You Can Do Amazing Things
A Tribute to Maya Angelou
A Short Story of the Antichrist

About Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna is writing an epic novel. All of the world is crumbling like unrepaired, ancient walls but 18 year old gamer, blogger and entrepreneur John Dionysius finds the woman who he’s been dreaming about all of his life – a dream in which she is murdered as he watches helplessly from the eyes of a child.

Twitter: @Faryna
Facebook: Faryna.FanPage
Google+: +StanFaryna
Website: The Unofficial Blog of Stan Faryna

You can support Stan by helping his friend, Nisha Varghese, meet her campaign goals in a fundraiser to eradicate AIDS: http://www.justgiving.com/Eradicate-AIDS

Nisha Varghese

 

Everything You Do Is A Snowball by @StartYourNovel

Everything You Do Is A Snowball


Flash Fiction


by John Magnet Bell
@startyournovel

John Magnet Bell

I must shield my true purpose – the cops must not capture the data stored in my elbow. Oh! Not the data in my elbow. Wait… Those women in the orange truck! They are cops. I can smell it. I take shoes off and pad over the snow. Surprise!

###

Inspiration

Have a look at the news item that inspired the prompt:
Half-dressed woman attacks vehicle on I-5

Certain drugs can trigger psychosis. Yet others can trigger schizophrenia in susceptible people.

What are the symptoms of a psychotic break?


From Wikipedia:

Symptoms of psychotic breaks vary greatly, usually depending on the circumstances of diagnosis or any contributory substance ingested. Symptoms can range from harmless, sometimes unnoticed delusions, to violent outbursts and major depression.
Where a bipolar disorder is involved, cryinggrandiosityinsomniairritability, andpersecutory delusions may all or severally manifest themselves as symptoms. (Emphases mine.)

What are the most common schizophrenic delusions?


From Helpguide.org:

◊ Delusions of persecution – Belief that others, often a vague “they,” are out to get him or her. These persecutory delusions often involve bizarre ideas and plots (e.g. “Martians are trying to poison me with radioactive particles delivered through my tap water”).

◊ Delusions of reference – A neutral environmental event is believed to have a special and personal meaning. For example, a person with schizophrenia might believe a billboard or a person on TV is sending a message meant specifically for them.

◊ Delusions of grandeur – Belief that one is a famous or important figure, such as Jesus Christ or Napoleon. Alternately, delusions of grandeur may involve the belief that one has unusual powers that no one else has (e.g. the ability to fly).

◊ Delusions of control – Belief that one’s thoughts or actions are being controlled by outside, alien forces. Common delusions of control include thought broadcasting (“My private thoughts are being transmitted to others”), thought insertion (“Someone is planting thoughts in my head”), and thought withdrawal (“The CIA is robbing me of my thoughts”).

 

Imagination

 

I also imagined the half-dressed woman character as a film director with a predilection for obscure Japanese films and comics. What follows is an interpretive list of the films/comics/TV shows she would enjoy in her spare time, because I truly have no idea what any of these things are —

In which a silver-clad weirdo ruins a wonderful birthday party by setting the birthday ogre on fire and chopping her friends to pieces.

In which a woman returns home from work and finds her grandfather hosting gladiatorial tournaments on his tongue, instead of making dinner as he promised.
In which the heroic Graublar Shoggis III drives off grotesque little invaders from his home planet — for they only have two nostrils and wear red pants, both of which are anathema to the Mighty Goddess Barzulax.

Other posts by John Magnet Bell that you will find perfectly woody:

Captain Chunkypants

Stratospheric Beast

The Last Edwardian Stylite

 

About John Magnet Bell

John is a professional translator, writer and photographer. He writes about writing and he writes unconventional flashes of fiction at his website, Start Your Novel. Why? John explains his passion here.

Twitter: @StartYourNovel
Google+: JMBell
Tumblr: http://johnmagnetbell.tumblr.com/
Website: Start Your Novel

Please support John so that he can keep writing epic prompts! You can buy his shocking art at society6: http://society6.com/johnmagnetbell

Krag Tee Shirt by @StartYourNovel

Krag Tee Shirt by @StartYourNovel

Do you have an awesome story to share with us? Join the ranks of mad geniuses that make Geeky Antics rock. Email your proposal to stan.faryna@gmail.com

 

The Greatest Show on Earth is on Andaman road

The Greatest Show on Earth is on Andaman road

FlasFiction

by Stan Faryna
@Faryna

Stan Faryna & The Blue Sky - Stan The Marketing Man!

“I think I see something moving in the trees!” Dana gasped and pointed to a group of nearby trees as the tour bus inched down Andaman road.

 

George threw a bunch of bananas through his open window. Two young Jarawa scampered from behind bushes to the bananas laying at the side of road. Their eyes looked so full of joy. Dana snapped pictures with her iPhone.

 

The Jarawa young clicked and chanted. They stretched out their little hands and moved their fingers as if squeezing fruit.

 

“OMG!” said Dana. “I think they want more, George.

They’re trying to communicate with us! Do you see how they move their fingers? It’s so cute how they do it!”

A third Jarawa young appeared. He was holding an empty two liter plastic bottle of Coca Cola. He started to dance. His little black penis jiggled as he danced for the people on the bus.

“Do you think they like Coke,” George wondered outloud.

He took a last sip of cola and threw the half full can out the window. Cola exploded from the can and the three Jarawa dove for it. The victor pushed his lips forward against the top of the upside-down can to catch the last drops of Cola.

George laughed.

A thin, old Indian man with black skin and pink lips started yelling at George in perfect British English.

“Are all Europeans so primitive in your consciousness? These are human children. You are the animal. The Jarawa are not monkeys!”

“Mind your own business,” George replied. “We paid 100 Euro each for our seats. We’re all here for the show.

Are you here for something else?”

The old man smiled as he continued to point the video recorder at George’s face.

“I came to document the animals on the bus,” he finally answered George.

Postscript:

This flash fiction is based on a real life photo safari. It was inspired by a short documentary about a human tribe called the Jarawa – a so-called stone-age tribe that lives in India’s Andaman Islands.

Other posts by Stan that you will find illuminating and uplifting:

You Can Do Amazing Things
A Tribute to Maya Angelou
A Short Story of the Antichrist

About Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna is writing an epic novel. All of the world is crumbling like unrepaired, ancient walls but 18 year old gamer, blogger and entrepreneur John Dionysius finds the woman who he’s been dreaming about all of his life – a dream in which she is murdered as he watches helplessly from the eyes of a child.

Twitter: @Faryna
Facebook: Faryna.FanPage
Google+: +StanFaryna
Website: The Unofficial Blog of Stan Faryna

You can support Stan by helping his friend, Nisha Varghese (click on Nisha’s pic to make a donation).

Nisha Varghese

Nisha Varghese is an inspiration to Stan because she lives out the truth that she is bigger than her challenges. Among them, Cerebral Palsy. She too can save the world. Make it a better place for all of us. Nisha is a light and a gift unto the world.

Nisha’s website is here.