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Monthly Short Story Contest > NEW RESOLUTIONS UNEXPECTED EVENTS

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message 1: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Tales of the Unexpected
Theme: Resolutions with a twist

We start 2018 will real or imaginary tales of past resolutions. Perhaps a well- meaning resolution and subsequent action has unforeseen and unexpected consequences. How does your character solve problems, overcome obstacles and be wiser as a result?

3 Elements to be included:
• An inciting event
• An unexpected friend
• A scoundrel

Setting – any time period – past historical or from your own timeline.
Plot – your choice

Length: 500 to 1,000 Words

Submission deadline: SUNDAY JANUARY 28th 2018

Genre: Fantasy, Thriller, Sci-Fi, Mystery, Crime, Comedy, Romance, or a mixture (BASICALLY, anything but erotica)

Purpose -
Some fiction writers are looking to win a short story contest, keeping in touch with making deadlines, and/or simply sharpening the skill of writing fiction. The main purpose of this contest is to sharpen plot and character skills, collect your own short stories, receive good feedback, make a good connection with other writers, and take a short break from your current novel to get a fresh view when you return to it.

Rules and Directions -
* Type in English - a minimum of 500 words; a maximum of 1,000 words; no erotica, no profanity.

* Post your title, by line, and word count total in the first line of your story posting.

* Writers are responsible for their own copyright. Authors keep all rights. PRIVACY POLICY IS ENFORCED. COPYRIGHTS AND INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS BELONG TO INDIVIDUAL AUTHORS. THIS CONTEST DOES NOT GRANT ANY PERSON THE RIGHT OR LICENSE TO COPY OR USE OTHER STORIES. EACH STORY IS PROTECTED BY THE COPYRIGHT OF THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR.

* ONE entry per person. It must be writer's original work, a final revision, and a new piece of writing. Please do not delete and re-post since this becomes confusing to the readers. Try to post your final revision.

Judging: The story will be judged on creativity, proper grammar, good punctuation, and overall good quality for story.

Voting: Please vote for first, second, and third place. Votes are tallied as follows:
First place: 3 points
Second Place: 2 points
Third Place: 1 point

You are not allowed to vote for yourself. If posting this month, you MUST vote, in order for your story to remain eligible.

Contest opens 1st January 2018 and closes on 28th January 2018

Entries must be submitted by midnight on 01/28/2018. Voting will begin at 12:01 am 01/29/2018 and will close at midnight on 01/30/18. All times are Central Standard Time. Winners will be announced 01/31/2018 by 9pm.


message 2: by Elaine (new)

Elaine Faber (elainefabergoodreadscom) | 142 comments This is NOT 'un-expected.' My book All Things Cat is now available at Amazon in paperback for $8.00 plus $3.99 shipping. HOWEVER, you can purchase directly from ME for $8.00 and FREE shipping, if interested. E-book will be out later this month for $2.99 if you prefer e-book. Message me or email directly if you want an autographed paperback .. Elaine.faber@mindcandymysteries.com

Unexpected (or expected) story to follow another day! Happy New Year


message 3: by Glenda (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
Steve, I got the word out today one-on-one messaging through Goodreads. I only got half-way through the members that I know are writers because Goodreads allows you to message only a certain number of people per day. But I know where I left off. :)


message 4: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Fantastic. Let me know if you need any help.


message 5: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (rlacy) | 152 comments Elaine, I would like the ebook when it is available.

I am off to work on my story. It's been a long time and my writing muscle has atrophied terribly. Wish me luck. I'm gonna need it.


message 6: by Glenda (last edited Jan 08, 2018 09:38AM) (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
RESCUING DIXIE CHICKS
731 words

The cold winds kicked up as Granny Way locked up her dozen chickens in their pens for the night. In the twilight she could see three pairs of glowing eyes from behind trees and bushes.

“Just you try to get my chickens, you no good vermin! You’ll be sorry you ever did!” she said more to herself than she did the animals. Meanwhile, in the hen house, another conversation was going on.

“I’m telling you, I saw three – buc-buc-buggut!” Henrietta clucked excitedly. “Three animals eyeballing our hen house! Whatever should we do?”

“We should all lay low and wait ‘till morning,” replied Chickrita. The other chickens clucked nervously at the thought of hunkering down until morning.

“Wrong! I think that we should persuade Ranger the hunting dog to help us out. Why do you think he’s called Ranger?” Peckinworth flapped her wings to make her point.

“I hear tale that he picks up ducks that master has shot. That’s his job! How can we trust a beast like that?” asked Chickrita?

“He may be our only hope of surviving the night,” sighed Peckinworth. The chickens raised their voices in unison as they called Ranger. The yellow Labrador came through the doggy door of the back entrance.

“You called, ladies?” drawled Ranger as he sniffed the coop.

“Over there! Those no good animals mean to come and steal and murder us!” informed Henrietta. All of the animal eyes fixed on the furry trio standing side by side: Skeeter the opossum, Bandit the raccoon, and Roxy the fox.

Bandit looked to his comrades saying, “Remember the plan: Skeeter, you cause a diversion. Roxy, tunnel your way in. I’ll run with the goods.” The trio fanned out in the growing darkness. Skeeter weaved this way and that, bared his teeth, and hissed at Ranger. The dog barked ferociously as he pounced on the opossum. Skeeter rolled onto his back. His limbs began to twitch, and he emitted a very foul odor. Ranger laid on the ground with his paws over his nose.

Roxy dug his way into the chicken house. All of the hens jumped and flapped their wings in their pens. “Dance all you want, chickens. You don’t have a prayer,” sneered Roxy. All of the sudden, teeth latched onto his tail as Ranger dragged him out of the hen house. “Wait! Can’t we talk about this?” the fox said as he tried to distract the dog.

While the two struggled, Skeeter made his way into the chicken house followed by Bandit. The Raccoon climbed to the top of a pen. With skillful fingers, he unlatched a pen door. He quickly made his way in the pen, scooped up an egg, and made his way to where he would store the booty in some thick brush. He ran back for more. Chickadee, the hen whose pen had been invaded, was running for her life as Skeeter ran after her.

Granny Way didn’t own a pistol. Her grip wasn’t strong enough, but she did have something else in her arsenal. She ran into her back yard, and let her eyes adjust to the low light. Chickadee ran between her legs. Skeeter the opossum tried to follow suit when Granny reached out with her taser and lit him up.

“Woah!” he exclaimed scrambling off his back, “I’m out of here!” The opossum headed for the hills.

“Come back, you dumb possum!” exclaimed Bandit, as he carried another egg to stash it. Granny spied Bandit coming out of the pen with egg in hand. He started running as fast as his hind legs could carry him which was as fast as Granny was these days. Ranger nipped at Roxy who followed after the co-conspirators to the dark hills in the country. Granny was quite pleased with herself that she and Ranger were able to defend the chickens.

The next day Granny set a dog house near the chicken coop. She knew that Ranger would faithfully defend it at night. That evening, all was quiet. Ranger laid near his dog house. He lifted his head and saw four pairs of glowing eyes. They slowly made their way closer to the chicken coop. A female tabby cat sat and gave a quick wash of her hind leg.

“Sometimes it takes a woman to do a man’s job,” the cat said smugly.

“You got that right! Grannnny!” Howled Ranger.


message 7: by Glenda (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
Okay, call me silly. But when inspiration hits you, you just have to roll with it...or nip it...or tase it. :)


message 8: by Elaine (new)

Elaine Faber (elainefabergoodreadscom) | 142 comments Rebecca wrote: "Elaine, I would like the ebook when it is available.

I am off to work on my story. It's been a long time and my writing muscle has atrophied terribly. Wish me luck. I'm gonna need it."

I will let you know when the ebook is available.


message 9: by Elaine (new)

Elaine Faber (elainefabergoodreadscom) | 142 comments Glenda wrote: "RESCUING DIXIE CHICKS
731 words

The cold winds kicked up as Granny Way locked up her dozen chickens in their pens for the night. In the twilight she could see three pairs of glowing eyes from behi..."

Glenda: Loved your story. Good animal tale. Great fun!


message 10: by Glenda (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
Thank you! I figured that I needed to quit THINKING ABOUT writing and JUST DO IT.


message 11: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments What larks! Glenda - you're right sometimes you just go with the flow and let the story create itself.


message 12: by TERRY (last edited Jan 07, 2018 04:48AM) (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Glenda wrote: "RESCUING DIXIE CHICKS
731 words

I was smiling while reading. My grandfather gave me 12 chicks when I was about 12 years old. All 12 survived. I can relate to this story as I and the 12 chicks had a round with a Chicken Hawk.



message 13: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
KEME AND THE BEAR
979 words

“We are going up the mountain today to the great water falls to swim. We would like for you to go with us Keme.”

Five Indian youths about Keme’s age stood in a group awaiting an answer. It was early morning. The air was cool and misty.

Keme was a little taken aback at this invite. In all of his eighteen years of life he had never been asked to join this group before.

“We will be back before dark and maybe bring some rabbits home for supper.”

“Sure. Let me tell my mother I am going.”

The hike to the falls was easy in the beginning but later they would have to maneuver the steep side of a mountain with a path that allowed only one person at a time. As they approached this area Keme started to feel concerned. At first he thought it was because the narrow path across the mountain slope presented a danger to anyone who was not familiar or treated the path carelessly. But as they got closer his feeling of apprehension became stronger. He remembered experiencing feelings of danger like this when a pit viper lay curled beside his path ready to strike. And again when his mother had cooked some poisonous mushrooms when he was nine years old. His mother did not take his warning seriously at first but when she examined the mushrooms closer she recognized the telltale faint orange coloring on the underside around the outer edge which distinguished the Destroying Angel from it’s benign cousin, the Meadow mushroom.

“Why did you gather the poisonous kind mother”, Keme had asked?

“They were growing in the meadow so I thought they were Meadow mushrooms. The Destroying Angels do not grow in meadows. They spring from dead wood in the dark forest. Everyone knows this. It never occurred to me to check for the orange ring on the under side. Oh no…. I must warn Cybra”, said his mother. “She gathered with me yesterday. I must go to her now and hope it is not too late.”

As his mother ran out of the hut, a dark shadow brushed Keme’s arm. He knew instantly that it would be too late.

Approaching the narrow path Keme’s feeling of dread grew stronger. Up ahead he noticed the trail forked as it approached the narrow ledge. One path would take them across the slope and the other path went upward climbing higher onto the mountain. Two of the boys were already on the path crossing the slope. It was Keme’s time to go next. The three remaining boys were behind him. Turning to look at the boys he noticed a shadow hovering over them. He knew this was a warning.

Without hesitating, Keme starting climbing rapidly up the mountain path as fast has he could. He heard someone yell “where are you going Keme”. Then he heard a rock whistle by his head. Keme now knew his instinct was correct. The boys had planned to push him off the mountain slope. It was not unheard of for a person to accidentally fall from the slope to their death. It would be a very believable story back in the village.

Faster Keme climbed as more rock pelted around him. One stone hit him in the head just above his left eye. For a moment he fell to the ground disoriented as more stones whizzed past. Springing to his feet Keme bolted behind two large boulders that lay beside the path. He could hear the boys coming up the mountain slope so he knew he had to find a place to hide fast. Wiping blood from his eye he scanned the surrounds behind him. There was a large group of trees about fifty yards away with a heavy growth of ferns growing underneath. He made a dash for the wood hoping his pursuers would not see where he had gone. Once under the cover of the trees and ferns he quickly found a spot in the thickest growth and laid down trying hard not to breathe.

Two of the fastest boys ran past the boulders heading up the trail while the other three followed behind. When the first two boys did not see Keme up ahead they returned to the boulders suspecting Keme had left the path and was hiding nearby. They soon found the Aspen grove and began searching, hacking the vegetation with sticks. One of the boys found some disturbed ferns and followed the broken leaves until he found Keme curled up on the ground. Calling to the others they all gathered around Keme lifting their sticks and stones preparing to kill him.

Keme readied himself for the painful death he surely knew was about to come. Standing up hoping to beg for mercy he noticed the boys were looking past him with looks of horror on their faces. Then they dropped their sticks and stones and ran away as fast has they could.

Wondering what it was the boys saw behind him, Keme slowly turned to see a twelve foot Grizzly bear standing only a few feet away. Keme’s head began to pound and his vision blurred. Dizziness overcame him and sent his body collapsing to the ground.

When Keme awoke, the sun was just peeking over the horizon filtering through the Aspen trees. Though the morning air was cold he felt nice and warm. It soon became evident to him the reason for his comfort was because the Grizzly was curled around him sleeping.

When the bear opened his eyes, Keme braced himself for what might happen next. To his surprise, the bear began to lick the dried blood from his face. When he had finished, the big bear rolled over on his back, stretched out and began scratching his belly.

Keme knew this would be the beginning of an unlikely friendship.


message 14: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Terry - Great to see you back. How long has it been? Thoughtful stories with a soft but strong message. Well done.


message 15: by TERRY (last edited Jan 07, 2018 04:44AM) (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Tidings Steve. Thanks for your comments. I think it has been over a year since I posted here. The two stories I posted are exerts from a longer short story I am working on about an Indian boy name Keme. Had to cut them down to under 1000 words.


message 16: by Glenda (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
That was excellent. I could see it as a movie in my mind. Those indian boys got off easy though. :)


message 17: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Thanks Glenda. They did get off easy that time but the story is not over.


message 18: by Patricia (new)

Patricia Lovett | 341 comments Great story Terry. Glad I could exhale after a few minutes of tense terror. An unlikely source of rescue.


message 19: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Kind of you to say Patricia. I am not very good with writing but I am trying to learn. Have a Happy New Year. T........


message 20: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Terry storytelling is a skill learned over time, experience and patience. You do have the ability of the campfire storyteller in terms of ideas and plots - so you are already ahead of the game.

Now comes the crafting with character and description. Taking time to include all the senses in describing a person or situation - feel, taste, see, hear and touch - to spend a moment to immerse yourself within the action.

Online you can find a whole directory of descriptive alternative words to suite the senses. Take a look.


message 21: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Thanks for the tip Steve. Good advice.


message 22: by Patricia (new)

Patricia Lovett | 341 comments Thanks for the tip Steve. Steve wrote: "Terry storytelling is a skill learned over time, experience and patience. You do have the ability of the campfire storyteller in terms of ideas and plots - so you are already ahead of the game.

N..."



message 23: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments The tricky thing with short stories is to have the time to weave in a little descriptive magic. Stories are often plot driven and have little opportunity to use colourful prose. There is a temptation to 'tell' rather than 'show'.


message 24: by Glenda (last edited Jan 08, 2018 10:35AM) (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
TERRY wrote: "Glenda wrote: "RESCUING DIXIE CHICKS
731 words

I was smiling while reading. My grandfather gave me 12 chicks when I was about 12 years old. All 12 survived. I can relate to this story as I and th..."


I had to Google images of the chicken hawk just now. I didn't know these predatory birds ate chicks. I wanted to use "Granny Way" as my protagonist. She was my great grandmother who lived in the hills of Tennessee. My mom likes to tell the story of how a pack of dogs attacked her. Granny Way came to the rescue and beat the dogs off of my mom. She sounds like a tough old lady.


message 25: by Patricia (new)

Patricia Lovett | 341 comments Great story Glenda. I especially enjoyed the names. This one must have a fun one to write.
Glenda wrote: "Okay, call me silly. But when inspiration hits you, you just have to roll with it...or nip it...or tase it. :)"


message 26: by Glenda (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
Thank you, Ms. Patricia.


message 27: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (rlacy) | 152 comments The Book (953 words)

‘Ten steps to Ensuring You Keeping Your New Year’s Resolutions.’ I picked up the book and thumbed through the pages, perusing the bold subsections with titles such as ‘Celebrating Baby Steps’ and ‘Climbing Back on the Wagon.’

I put the book back on the pile and picked up a thick yellow and black volume that looked more like my speed: ‘New Year’s Resolutions for Dummies’. I flipped through the pages, zeroing in on the hints denoted by little drawings of targets.

A drawing of a clock reminded me I was supposed to meet my best friend, Diane, at the food court at 6:00. Glancing at my phone, I saw I was going to have to hustle if I didn’t want to keep her waiting. She only had a half hour dinner break and would give me the evil eye if I was late. I hurried to the check out and made my purchase, then trotted toward the food court, dodging teenagers ambling along eyes glued to their phones. The thought flashed through my mind that they would be such easy pickings.

Seconds after I reached the food court, Diane arrived and waved when she caught sight of me. “Happy New Year!” Standing on tip toe, she threw her arms around me, giving me a hug that was enough to reignite my faith in humanity. Maybe even enough to spark a little faith in myself.

“You look like a million bucks,” I told her. She absolutely radiated cuteness, with her pert nose and thick auburn hair. She was the most perfect person I had ever met, and I have always been in awe that someone like her would pick me as a friend. I sincerely wished I was attracted to her, but it just wasn’t happening. All things considered, I guess it’s just as well I’m not.

We went through the line for a slice of pizza then grabbed an empty table just before a group of tweenagers got it. Sitting down, Diane reached for the book store bag, which I had set on the extra chair.

“What’d you buy?” Giggling, she took my new book out of the bag and held it up for the world to see. “Seriously?”

“Okay, I know it’s a big joke, but do you mind…?”

“Oh, yeah, I’ll put it away if you tell me what your resolution is.” I made a grab for the book, but she deftly jerked it out of my reach. Finally, she relented and handed it to me, and I shoved it back in the bag, hoping that was the end of the discussion.

No such luck. “Really, Micha, what could you possibly be so serious about changing that you actually bought a book? I mean look at you: what is there to improve?”

“I need to hit the gym so I can lose a L.B.s. I need a little encouragement.”

“Okay. If you don’t want to tell me, then don’t, but please don’t lie to me.” She looked at me from under her lashes, a little pout on her lips, just begging me confess.

I didn’t take the bait. That was just going to have to be enough for her. I changed the subject and the rest of the meal went by without any further discussion about the book or my resolution.
Soon it was time for her to go back to work, and I gave her a big hug, relieved dinner was over.

As, I was leaving the food court, I passed Mrs. Crumbs Cookie Shop. There was a woman in yoga pants buying a dozen chocolate chip. I gripped the book tight, reminding myself of my resolve, a few beads of sweat forming on my lip. It was going to take every bit of my inner strength to give up on my favorite treat.

As I walked on, I noticed my hands were shaking, and felt my resolution crumbling. I sat on a bench and took the book out of its bag hoping it would offer some pearls of wisdom to help me fight the impulse that gripped me. I flipped the book open to a random page and read:

“Remember, you are in control, not your cravings. When you find yourself thinking about giving in, occupy your mind with something else. It can only focus on one thing at a time. So, if you are thinking about a puzzle, for example, your brain can’t obsess about chocolate.”

It seemed like sound advice. I needed a diversion. Maybe a movie. I quickly walked to the theater, my head down so I wouldn’t encounter any further temptations. I bought a ticket without even worrying about what was showing.

By the time the movie let out two hours later, the mall was almost empty. I exited and was walking toward my van when I caught sight of a woman walking ahead of me. My palms started to sweat, and my breath caught in my throat. She was perfect; the kind of woman who kept me awake at night. I quickened my step when I saw she was heading toward the car parked next to my van. It would be so easy.

The weight of the book broke through my reverie and I remembered my resolution. Oh, but I needed a fix. Perhaps sensing my intention, she looked back over shoulder and quickened her step. Reluctantly, I stopped in the shadows, and watched her drive away. She would never know how close she had come to being headline news.

As I continued to my vehicle, I felt oddly pleased with myself. I tightened my grip on my new book, grateful it had helped me keep my New Year’s resolution... at least for today.


message 28: by Glenda (last edited Jan 08, 2018 12:12PM) (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
Rebecca, is Micha a serial killer?

...I quickened my step when I saw she was heading toward the car parked next to my van. It would be so easy...Perhaps sensing my intention, she looked back over shoulder and quickened her step. Reluctantly, I stopped in the shadows, and watched her drive away. She would never know how close she had come to being headline news."

I love the detail you put in your stories.


message 29: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (rlacy) | 152 comments Thank you, Glenda.

I think he is, but he hasn't divulged all his secrets yet.


message 30: by Elaine (new)

Elaine Faber (elainefabergoodreadscom) | 142 comments Oh my, Rebecca, you about scared me to death. Indeed, Micha was up to no good. Thank goodness for the book!


message 31: by Elaine (new)

Elaine Faber (elainefabergoodreadscom) | 142 comments A SHORT, SHORT LOVE STORY 953 words

He came often to the park to rest in the shade beneath the trees, to bask in the sun or visit with friends, but, never had he seen such a lovely creature as he beheld that late autumn day. He stared, entranced by her beauty.

Afraid to move for fear she might disappear, he stood, immobile, his gaze roaming across her soft, supple body. He gasped, realizing he had ceased to breathe.

As though carved in ivory, she stood ankle deep in the pool, peering into the murky pond. She tipped her graceful head, revealing the back of her long neck, pale and white beneath the afternoon sun.

Each day he returned to the pond hoping to catch a glimpse of her. Each day, his heart surged when he found her motionless and lovely, wading in the pool. She filled his thoughts by day and his dreams at night.

Compelled to declare his love to any ear that would hear, he spoke often of her to his friends.

His mother tried to dissuade him from his infatuation. “Forget this foolishness, my dear son. A union between you is not possible. Like black and white, the differences between you are too great.”

Throughout the winter, in despair, he vowed he would not return.

Come spring, cherry trees bloomed pink and white. Children laughed and robins sang. Little boys ran through the grass, flying red and green paper kites in the pale blue sky.

Compelled to see her, he came again to the pond and found her, wading into the water. Yet again, he had no courage to speak, feeling unworthy of her love. Adoring her from a distance, he sat on the grassy shore. The afternoon sun warmed his back and its rays reflected off his beloved’s snow-white head as she gazed into the pond, seemingly intent only on the unimagined thing she sought beneath the water. What so captivated her attention?

Gathering his courage, he was determined to speak. Today, he would tell her how beautiful she was; how long he had loved her. But each day as before, he returned home, having spoken not a word.

For a time when he came to the park, he waited in vain. His heart nearly burst with concern. Was she ill? Had she found another love?

One late afternoon as he waited, she limped toward the pond. She was hurt! He should have protected her. Why had he not declared his love sooner?

His heart throbbed. He stepped forward. He must speak! The words seized in his throat.

She paused at the water’s edge.

At last, with a gasp, he found the courage. “Wait, my love! I must tell you what is in my heart.”

She stepped into the water, seeming not to hear or understand his declaration.

Didn’t she care even a little? Surely she had noticed him, day after day, hovering on the bank, even though he was too shy to speak. Couldn’t she see how he felt? Was her heart so hardened that–?

He turned at the sound of giggling. Two boys threw stones into the water. Each struck the water with a plop, each stone coming nearer and nearer the ripples surrounding the place his darling stood.

As she waded deeper into the pool, a stone struck the back of her head. She stumbled.

How dare they strike his beloved? He rose up in a rage and flew at the boys. Again and again he struck at their heads, their shoulders and their legs. They fled screaming toward their nannies, nattering on the painted benches beside their prams parked in neat rows.

The chilled water covered his feet as he rushed into the pond.

His precious took a step, stumbled, and then another, and collapsed on the shore.

He rushed to her side and stood helplessly as she lay slumped on the mossy embankment.

Slowly, she arose, and yet, not a word did she speak. Not a glance in his direction. Perhaps she was blind. Perhaps she had never seen him on the shore and never realized how much he cared, how much he wanted to help her.

Then, she took a few steps, started to run…and lifted gracefully from the riverbank into the darkening sky. She circled overhead and disappeared behind a cloud...

He knew she would never return. He would never again stand beside the pond; never again see her beautiful pale body wade into the pool, her graceful neck lean into the water. He lowered his head and tears trickled from his tiny black eyes.

The world stood still. Children ceased to laugh. The robins ceased their songs and as if the sun had followed his beloved behind the gathering clouds, a shadow passed across the grass.

Again, in his mind’s eye, he remembered his mother’s warning. “Do not return to the pond, my son. Such a union as you desire is not possible. Like black and white, the differences between you are too great.”

There was a fluttering sound and he looked up. She was coming back! Dare he hope that she loved him after all?

She circled in a graceful arch over his head and swooped down, down, as if to send him a final good-bye. Then she spread her wings, turned and flew into the setting sun.

Though unspoken, he felt her words in his heart. “It’s not as if I didn’t care. I knew you were always there, loving me, and helping me. But, can’t you see, my dear? We can never be together. Even though our hearts are one, we cannot overcome our differences. I am an egret and you are a crow..."


message 32: by Steve (last edited Jan 09, 2018 01:46AM) (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Message for Terry.

As you know I'm hosting and managing the voting process this month. We all welcome your participation and are delighted to see you back in the competition. However, you need to decide which one of your two Keme stories you would like to go forward to the judging element.

I mention this competition rule:
ONE entry per person. It must be writer's original work, a final revision, and a new piece of writing. Please do not delete and re-post since this becomes confusing to the readers. Try to post your final revision.

Please let me know what you would like to do.
Many thanks
Steve b


message 33: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments I'm really pleased with the vigour of the stories submitted so far. Excellent Work!


message 34: by Glenda (new)

Glenda Reynolds (glendareynolds) | 934 comments Mod
Elaine wrote: "A SHORT, SHORT LOVE STORY 953 words

He came often to the park to rest in the shade beneath the trees, to bask in the sun or visit with friends, but, never had he seen such a lovely creature as h..."


Ah, Elaine! Just as I thought it was a cat and a bird! Loved your story.


message 35: by Shelly (new)

Shelly Heskett | 181 comments Elaine, you always trick me until about half way and then I think is it or isn't it I love it.


message 36: by Shelly (last edited Jan 14, 2018 01:00PM) (new)

Shelly Heskett | 181 comments Family Event
By Shelly Heskett Harris
1000 words
Ruby and Thelma were sisters and they were sitting in a back booth of Woolworths, sipping cokes and wishing they wanted something for the house so they could buy it. It’s between Christmas and New Years. A time of taking stock and making decisions .

“I just wish ..” Ruby said getting up. “.Never mind, Lets us go walk around the mall,” Ruby was a small woman almost frail, she kept her hair blond and when she fixed up, still rated a whistle or two. Thelma had kept hers. She was full blown woman with all assets still in place. They were married to men who carried lunchpails and left for work at 5 am, to beat the traffic.

“I can’t believe we finally have a day to ourselves, without children, and can’t think of a thing to do.” Thelma said. Usually they had Ruby’s three grandchildren. while her daughter, Betty, worked
.
“I’m so sorry.” tears welled up in Ruby’s eyes. “I don’t know what to do.”
“Aw honey, tell me about it.” Thema guided her to an out of the way bench behind a six foot plant display and when they sat down, Ruby started talking between sobs.

“Keeping the kids is killing me. I am so tired and my back is killing me. I know it’s a terrible thing to say about your grandchildren, Chrissy is 4, Johnny 2, the baby, Freddy 9 months. and you know how much I love them.. She dug in her purse for a dry tissue and went on with her story.

“The baby, weighs 20 pounds, you know, he is so heavy. I’m tired all the time, as soon as John picks the kids up, I go to bed.”

Why don’t you tell Betty? You have always had good a relationship with her, haven’t you?

“It is that husband of hers. he told her he would not pay $800 a month for daycare.”

“He pay?”

“Of course it would come out of her paycheck. She makes more than he does and he resents it.. Don’t get me wrong he’s a good father, but he can be a horse’s ass.”

Betty, was a carbon copy of her petite mother and her husband, John,was a dark-haired, handsome guy, Betty stopped at her mother’s to pick up some of the baby’s clothes. Ruby sat her down and told her just what she had told Thelma Betty took it well and told her mother how sorry she was and that she didn’t realize how hard it was for her.

When Betty got home, she made a pot of strong coffee for strength to face John. She loved him, goodness knew, but he had a short temper, and sometimes he scared her. Finally, she heard him and the kids. She hugged Chrissy and Johnny and held the baby..She fed the bunch and when the kids were quiet she told John how hard the baby sitting was on her mother and they would have to start looking for a daycare.

He erupted. “I ain't paying no $8oo a month when your mother does it for nothing. You don’t make much more than that. I tell ya what...”

The doorbell rang. Sylvia Belton from the Baptist Church, which they attended spasmodically, had all of the brochures, pledge cards, and tally sheets in a box. They were to prepare packets for the members

“We did agree on tonight?” Sylvia asked..

“ Oh yes,” Betty helped her into the house and cleared off the dining room table. Johnny climbed up on one of the six chairs, he tried for the table, but was quickly put on the floor and sent to the other room. Chrissy was sitting quietly on her knees on the extra chair,. The baby was in his playpen happily chewing on a toy. .When they were settled the two women began collating the packets
.
John came into the house from the garage and yelled that the dishes hadn’t been done and Johnny was on the cabinet eating macaroni off of the dirty plates. Betty excused herself
and went to retrieve Johnny

“This is why keeping them is so hard on my mother.” Betty removed Johnny and faced her husband. “

“You can tell your boss you quit and just stay home with the kids, we’ll eat beans and find a smaller house.” John sounded like a wilful teenager
.
“I’ve just gotten a raise.”


“Oh well, hell, Mrs. Astor, guess I’ll quit and be one of them stay at home dads, and wear a little apron so my pants don’t get dirty.”

“Don’t be silly, we just put the kids in daycare.”

Sylvia Bolton sat very still and wanted to be anywhere but here . The couple had forgotten her.

“I’m going to get cigarettes.”

“You’re going to Blackies. If you would quit beer we’d have …”

John moved over one step to be directly in front of Betty and looked down at her. His eyes wide and his eyebrows raised. “That is enough“ he said in a quiet voice. She shrunk back, Johnny was hanging on her leg and she picked him up and watched his dad leave the house

Sylvia cleared her throat. Betty was very apologetic. Sylvia said, it was probably God’s doing.

“There is a new service at the church you will be interested in. It is called Mother’s Day.

We have the lowest charge per week and if someone from the family will work one day a week there is no charge.” Sylvia knew it was wonderful news. Betty almost cried with happiness and the kids sensing something was up were dancing around and clapping.

This was the noisy greeting that met Ruby and Thelma when they answered Betty’s call to “come right over”. They talked to Sylvia and then joined the kids in the happy dance.

The phone rang, it was John, “Honey, I’m sorry I ...what is all the racket?

“Come home, baby and find out.”


message 37: by Shelly (new)

Shelly Heskett | 181 comments My story bunched up on the paste. I hate that, it makes it hard to read. I have it in paragraphs on the original. Why did it do that?

The last two lines are for you romantics. Other wise I would have cut it off without hearing from John.


message 38: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Elaine - nice twist - won't give a spoiler in case other's read this post!


message 39: by Shelly (new)

Shelly Heskett | 181 comments Rebecca wrote: "The Book (953 words)

‘Ten steps to Ensuring You Keeping Your New Year’s Resolutions.’ I picked up the book and thumbed through the pages, perusing the bold subsections with titles such as ‘Celebra..."


Beautifully done.You led us right down the rose path and then the twist. well done.


message 40: by Steve (last edited Jan 11, 2018 05:35AM) (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Rebecca - I know you refer to Micha as a male - but what if he was a she? Now a leading female character as the mysterious villain would be sweet.


message 41: by Patricia (new)

Patricia Lovett | 341 comments I loved the opening. It pulled me right into your story.Shelly wrote: "Family Event
By Shelly Heskett Harris
1000 words
Ruby and Thelma were sisters and they were sitting in a back booth of Woolworths, sipping cokes and wishing they wanted something for the house so t..."



message 42: by Steve (new)

Steve Bridger (dooch) | 131 comments Shelly when you post a story you can edit it and re-post by scrolling down and look at the bottom right - where you will see Reply/Edit/Delete/Flag.

Just click on Edit - separate the paragraphs in the text and then on the bottom left click - Edit Post - submit the revised layout to the stream of Comments.


message 43: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
TERRY wrote: "Tidings Steve. Thanks for your comments. I think it has been over a year since I posted here. The two stories I posted are exerts from a longer short story I am working about an Indian boy name ..."


message 44: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Steve wrote: "Message for Terry.

Sorry about that. I will keep Keme and the Bear. Toss out Keme and the Horse. Thanks.



message 45: by TERRY (last edited Jan 13, 2018 10:25AM) (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Elaine wrote: "A SHORT, SHORT LOVE STORY 953 words

I like your story. Well written. Now I know what Steve meant by "spoiler".



message 46: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Shelly wrote: "Family Event
Interesting Shelly and the situation could make for much discussion.



message 47: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Rebecca wrote: "The Book (953 words)

I like the way it read and agree with Glenda about the detail. Maybe I missed something but I was thinking Micha was a lesbian.



message 48: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
TERRY wrote: "Rebecca wrote: "The Book OK, after reading what Steve said, I must have missed something. Sorry.


message 49: by TERRY (new)

TERRY | 537 comments Mod
Steve wrote: "The tricky thing with short stories is to have the time to weave in a little descriptive magic. Stories are often plot driven and have little opportunity to use colourful prose. There is a temptati..."

Good advice - thanks.


message 50: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (rlacy) | 152 comments Thank you, Shelly.

Steve, the thought crossed my mind for the character to be female, but this is one of those times that the story wrote itself. I saw the whole thing as I read the prompt. Micha had a story to tell, I guess. Hopefully the guy I know named Micha is nothing like this character.


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