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Weekly Short Story Contests > Week 422 (August 16-22) Stories Topic: Then I Turned

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message 1: by C. J., Cool yet firm like ice (new)

C. J. Scurria (goodreadscomcj_scurria) | 4304 comments You have until the 22nd of August to post a story and from the 23rd to around the 27th of August, we’ll vote for which one we thought was best!

Please post directly into the topic and not a link. Please don’t use a story previously used in this group. Only one submission per person is allowed.

Your story should be between 300 and 3,500 words long.

REMEMBER! A short story is not merely a scene. It must have a beginning, a middle, and an end.

This week’s topic is: Then I Turned

The rules are pretty loose. You could write a story about anything that has to do with the subject/photo but it must relate to the topic somehow.

Most of all have fun!

message 2: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments Title : Hairum Scarum (Helen Singer, Chapter 23, Part Two)
Author : Edward Davies
Word Count : 1549
Rating : PG13

I turned my chair away from the main doors, going back to reading the book I’d picked up, some nonsense about a queen in the middle ages and all the terribly saucy things she got up to with random knights. It was the kind of thing that fans of the strange sexual relationships in Twilight would secretly like, and I didn’t like it at all.


I didn’t read the whole thing.

Just most of it.

As I sat there reading to myself, I heard a voice clearing just behind me. I turned around, and I couldn’t help smiling.

It was Mandy.

“Hi,” she said, beaming widely, “so, you’re still here?”

“Yeah,” I said, trying to sound casual, “Yes. I have been home though. And other places. I don’t live in the library, you know.”

“Glad to hear it,” Mandy smiled even wider at my discomfort, “so what have you been up to? Have you made any new friends?”

I look at Mandy intently. She didn’t have the blue and red makeup she’d been wearing before, I guess because it was so much earlier in the day, but her jet black hair did still have the yellow and orange flames running through it, which I still thought looked awesome.

“I’ve made friends with Fran,” I told her, “Fran Epstein, do you know her?”

“Yeah, I know her,” Mandy beamed, “we’ve been trying to get her to join our roller derby team for ages. She’s just the right type of statuesque that we need,” she pointed to herself, “we’ve already got our fair share of shrimpettes.”

“There’s nothing wrong with being short,” I told her, “as they say, good things come in small packages.”

Mandy raised her eyebrows, “So, are you saying I’m a good thing?”

I could feel my cheeks blushing, “You know what I mean,” I tried to explain to her without actually explaining.

“I think so,” Mandy smiled, leaning in closer, “anyway, I wanted to return these books.”

“You’ve finished them already?” I asked, astounded that she’d gotten through them in just a few days.

“I had some time on my hands,” Mandy told me. I breathed steadily as she spoke – it was hard to concentrate because she smelled so nice, like coconut fudge mixed with bike oil.

“Well,” I said, trying to change the subject, “you’ll have less time on your hands once college starts back up.”

“That is true,” Mandy continued to smile. On the one hand it was a little unsettling, but on the other it was kind of flattering. It did seem like she was interested in me, and it’s always nice to be admired by someone so attractive…

…Oh no!

The curse!

It looked like the Helen of Troy curse was still in full effect, and it was affecting Mandy something rotten. I hadn’t seen anybody stare into my eyes so intently since… well, it had been a long time, and it had been a little weird to say the least. I won’t go into it now.

Mandy suddenly snapped upright again, still smiling but now a little more animated, “Hey, I was thinking, did you still want to change your hair?”

I frowned, “What do you mean?”

“Well,” Mandy explained, “you said you weren’t happy with the colour – that you did it to get back at your folks.”

That’s right, I had said that. I was surprised she’d remembered.

“That’s true,” I agreed, “so, why do you ask?”

“I need some guinea pigs,” Mandy said, “our roller derby squad starts back up next week, and I’m usually nominated to get the team’s new look ready. That includes colouring hair, so I was hoping…”

“…That you could practice on me?” I finished for her. What could I say? I couldn’t just flat out say no and expect her to still be friendly when I started up at college. At the very least by not going ahead with this I’d alienate the college kids who were on the roller derby squad, maybe even those kids who were fans of theirs. So, I replied, “Sure, why not?”

“Excellent!” Mandy beamed her widest smile yet, “When can I get my hands on you?”

I swallowed nervously, “I’ll check with my dad if this afternoon is okay,” I told her, “my folks are being a little over protective because of these kidnappings in town.”

“Tell me about it?” Mandy chuckled, “My parents only let me out of the house because they didn’t want us to get a fine for my books being overdue. I didn’t tell them I’d only had them out for a few days, Anyway, they told me to get straight back home after I got rid of these books, but I’m sure I’ve got time to check out some more.”

“Go for it,” I told her, “and I’ll speak to my dad.”

I watched Mandy wander off to the stacks of books and, once she was out of sight, I headed off in search of my dad. I found him pretty quickly in the back office, looking through what looked like a catalogue database on the library computer.

“Hey dad,” I said by way of a greeting, “how’s it going?”

“Not that great,” he told me, “it looks like some payments haven’t been made for the new release book orders. We’ve got bills backdating to March!”

I smiled, “I reckon I can help you out with that, dad. I can go through the figures and be done before you know it.”

“Really? You’d do that?” my dad narrowed his eyes, “What’s the catch? What’s in it for you?”

“You know me so well,” I said, “all I ask is that I get to leave the library a little bit early, I’ve made friends with another girl from college and she wants to see if she can fix my hair.”

My dad’s eyes widened, “Hmm,” he mused, “we really shouldn’t be letting you out on your own with all these kidnappings.”

“We caught the guy,” I argued, “nothing happened last night. No one got kidnapped. It’s over.”

“This time,” my dad agreed, “well, it would be nice to see you with your strawberry blonde hair again. I guess there’s nothing she can do about making it long again? You look too grown up with short hair.”

“Then I’m less likely to get kidnapped,” I smiled, “that’s what puts the kid in the word. Go on. Please?”

“Oh, okay then,” my dad conceded, “but be back here before I close at five o’clock.”

“No problem,” I told him, feeling very excited. I wasn’t sure why, I was just getting my hair done. It wasn’t as if I was getting it done by Tomas or something. Boy, I hadn’t thought about him since Fran suggested he’d only been hitting on me because of the book, but then Mandy seemed to be doing the same thing. My cheeks felt hot just thinking about it.

I left my dad in the back office, trying to find Mandy to give her the good news. I found her looking through a rack of books. She was holding the latest Mutant Toe book in her hand, and what looked like a checklist in the other. We really did have a lot in common.

“Well?” she said, seeing me standing behind her, “Did your dad say it was okay?”

“He did,” I told her, “I just need to help him out with some work here and then I can meet you. Where are we meeting?”

“My place?” Mandy suggested, “it makes more sense because I have all my haircare products there.”

“Cool,” I said, sounding decidedly uncool, “oh, what’s your address?”

“Here,” Mandy put down her book, producing a sharpie pen she’d been using to cross items off her checklist, and taking hold of my hand. She turned it over, gently writing down her address on the back of my hand.

“Don’t worry,” she said, “it isn’t permanent ink. I’ll be home for most of the day, what with the curfew and all, so just head on over when you’re finished up here.”

“Sure,” I said, gulping, “well, I’d better get to work. The sooner I get done, the sooner I can be with you.”

Mandy raised her eyebrows.

“To do my hair!” I add with what I had to admit was a panicky voice, “Just to do my hair.”

Mandy turned back to her books and muttered something that sounded suspiciously like, “Pity.”

I walked back to my dad’s office, wondering what Mandy could have meant by that. Did she like me, like, like me like me? She didn’t come across as gay, but you never could tell these days. Maybe she just wanted me to help get Fran to join the roller derby team, or maybe the Helen of Troy curse didn’t discriminate against people whose sexual orientation might not be what society would class as the norm.

My dad turned as I came back to the office and he gave me a smile, “So, are you ready to get down to it?” he asked.

“You bet,” I said, sitting down at my dad’s desk and starting on the job at hand. It was starting to look like life in Grave’s Hollow wasn’t going to be so bad after all.

message 3: by Garrison (new)

Garrison Kelly (cybador) | 9613 comments AUTHOR: Garrison Kelly
TITLE: Incelbordination, Chapter 11
GENRE: College Fiction
RATING: PG-13 for swearing

“Oswald Roman Crow (ORC?), you’re under arrest for drug possession and conspiracy to commit terrorism. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say or do will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to legal counsel. If you cannot afford your own attorney, the government will provide you with a public defender. Do you understand each of these rights as I’ve read them to you?”

“…It’s eleven o’clock at night. Give me a fucking break.”

“Fair enough. Come on, let’s go.”

Still exhausted from his temper tantrum, Oswald couldn’t even find it in his soul to resist Detective Mia Barry’s arrest. Then again, how could he with all of his injuries? Even the tightness of his handcuffs counted as an injury to him. Things got so painful for him that he had to be given a piggyback ride to the cop car, which wasn’t nearly as humiliating under Nikita’s guidance. “Goddamn Nikita…” Oswald thought.

Mere minutes later, the dwarf found himself with fresh bandages staring across a steel table from Mia, whose arms remained folded and face remained stoic throughout this process. He could barely see over the table, but he felt every inch of his interrogator’s mile long stare. He didn’t have the disadvantage of seeing this horrifying look during their first car ride together. Now the dwarf’s lips were trembling as he tried his hardest not to break. He remembered the “making you sweat” line and tried to steel his nerves.

“…Drug possession…and conspiracy to commit terrorism…wow, Oswald. Wow! It finally gave me a reason to look at your file a little more carefully. I had no idea your middle name was Roman. Your initials are…”

“Save it, Detective, I’ve heard that joke a thousand times and I’m fucking sick of it!” The sudden loudness in his own voice sent a wave of hot pain through his body, bandages and antibiotics be damned.

“Okay, I can live with that,” said Mia, still stoic as ever. “But here’s what I can’t live with: locking up a young man like you over the world’s biggest mistakes. It’s my least favorite part of the job, but it must be done if we’re to get any answers regarding your connections.”

The dwarf gave a flabbergasted smile and shrugged. “Connections? What connections? I told you, I’ve got nothing to do with Incelbordination! We’ve been over this shit many times already! Sure, they gave me a chance, then I turned away as soon as I saw how sick these people really are! Write that in your little file!”

“Don’t worry, Mr. Crow, I plan on doing so. I also plan on writing all about how you refuse to cooperate with us because of your dirty little secret. You know the one. The secret you wouldn’t spill to one Nikita Johnson?”

“That bitch!” Oswald said in a low whisper.

“Excuse me?” said Mia with raised eyebrows.

“Look, I told her the same thing I tell everybody else when they see me smoke that shit: I have a prescription for it. I’m depressed and anxious. You can ask my doctor if you don’t fucking believe me!”

“Well, that’s funny,” said Mia as she gently cleared her throat. “Because when we tried to get in touch with your doctor, he appeared to be on vacation. His receptionist didn’t seem too eager to tell me where. I figured it was somewhere in Jamaica, South America, or maybe even Mexico. Maybe.”

“It’s one hundred percent legal, damn it!” Oswald pounded the desk with his fist and completely forgot it was bandaged up for a reason. The cries of pain suggested he was instantly reminded. “Fucking hell!”

“Well, if what you say is true, then you probably feel confident sharing this secret with Nikita. After all, she says you saved her life in that attack on your school. But it begs the question…why her life and not somebody else’s? There were other kids that needed saving just as much as she did. Why are you so attentive to Nikita?”

With high eye-brows, an offended Oswald asked, “Are you suggesting that I only rescued her because she’s hot? Do you think I’m that desperate for a girlfriend? I punched through a glass door just to get to her! My hands look like shit! They feel like shit too! I didn’t do it because I expected anything from her!”

“Of course you didn’t, Oswald. After all, she hardly notices you in that class. Well, she knows who you are now, but did she really know you at all during those first few weeks of spring quarter? She seemed to think the same thing everybody else thought: that you were just there to fade into the background. I bet that just eats you up inside. I bet that chills you to your involuntarily celibate bones.”

“This is fucking bullshit!” shouted Oswald, sending another tremor through his body. “Goddamn it!”

“You really should take the bass out of your voice, my friend. You should save that lung power for when you take another hit of Mary-Jane. I heard that’s a popular drug in prison.”

“No! You can’t lock me up! You can’t fucking do this!”

Leaning her face closer to Oswald’s, Mia angrily whispered, “I can do whatever I want to you, little man! I could ship you off to Gitmo if that’s what you so deserve. A terrorist is a terrorist no matter what color his or her skin is.” The dwarf took short, nervous breaths at that remark. He eased up a bit when Mia leaned back and talked in her normal voice again. “But I’m not going to do that to you. You already know too much about Incelbordination. You’re too valuable to me. Then again, I could always ask one of the chubsters in ski masks if you’re not willing to cooperate.”

Taking deeper breaths now, Oswald shrugged and said, “I don’t even know what I could help you with! If you actually did your homework on these guys, you’d know that they do their shit online! They don’t use the same chat room twice! That’s the whole point! They thrive on anonymity because they don’t want Dickless Tracys like you sticking their noses in their business! You act like you’ve never done this before, Detective!”

“And you act like you’ve never written an English paper before!” That shut up Oswald in a hurry. “You’re already chest deep in shit, which isn’t unusual for someone as tiny as you, but this time you’ve got to take shit seriously. We’ve seized your computer, just like we always do whenever we book someone. My tech guys are working diligently to see if there’s anything on your hard drive that will connect you to Incelbordination. If you’ve got something to tell me, say it now and make my tech guys’ job a lot easier.”

Oswald folded his arms and said, “Get me my lawyer.”

“Oh, don’t worry, you’ll get plenty of legal counsel in the morning. You’re probably going to need it.”

“What do you mean in the morning?”

“I’m glad you asked.” Mia stood up and knocked on the interrogation room door. “Take the suspect away.”

Oswald thrashed around in his chair as soon as two uniformed police officers entered the room with sadistic frowns on their faces. “No, wait a minute, you can’t do that!”

“I can’t what, Oswald? Get you your obligatory public defender? Are you sure you want to do this right now while you still know everything?” The dwarf said nothing and sunk in his metal chair. “You’re staying in jail for the night, my friend. Normally, you’d be back at your dorm in an hour or so, but you’re hiding something from me and I want to know what the fuck it is. Take him away, boys.”

The two cops grabbed Oswald by the wrists and guided him out of the room while snapping orders like, “Let’s go! Move it!” During his trek to the holding cell, Oswald tried to figure out what it was he was fighting for. He could have just confessed everything and hoped for an easy ending.

But he had dealt with cops before and knew it was all happy horseshit. The cops often took the side of his bullies during those more illegal assaults in high school. Apparently, the feelings of football stars and cheerleader girlfriends were more important than that of an involuntarily celibate midget.

Now his feelings mattered even less in this dark and dank jail cell. Just one puff of Mary Jane was all he was secretly asking for. One cloud of smoke to dry away his forming tears. One taste of sweet cannabis nectar to cleanse his palette and get him ready for the bologna sandwich he was sure to get. It would do wonders for his bodily pain as well as his emotional. Then again, pain was the police’s business and business was booming.

message 4: by C. J., Cool yet firm like ice (new)

C. J. Scurria (goodreadscomcj_scurria) | 4304 comments Polls are up!


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