A JUKEBOX AT EVERY TABLE… a Drabble for FriFic
A telephone rings on the Northside of Chicago…
“Hi, Cheryl, it’s Ethel.”
“It’s December 21st, I assume you want me to help you with your Christmas decorations again. Why can’t you do them early like everybody else? I’ve still got shopping to do.”
“No, no, I’m done with them. I’ve got a hankering for a chili dog, and there’s a new place in Cicero I want to try.”
“For God’s sake, Ethel, just go to the Devil Dog on the corner. You know how far Cicero is, right?”
“Yes, but this place has a jukebox at every table. And, there’s a WalMart next door.”
“Oh… okay, I’ll go.”
Roger Bultot’s photo reminded me of fun times and good eats in the past and prompted the girls to take a trip. Thanks to Rochelle for prompting me to write a story.
THEY WRITE ON FRIDAYS… a Drabble x Four for FriFic
On the Northside of Chicago, a call button is pushed…
“Ethel, lemme in.”
“Those stairs are going to kill me. What you want to show me?”
“Check this out, Cheryl; I’m writing a story!”
“What the hell is this photo?”
“It’s my writing prompt for Friday Fictioneers. I’m going to be an author!”
“Oh spare me. Is this before the oil painting, the pottery, or the garden?”
“No, I’m serious this time.”
“You are always serious, Ethel, you just find something new the next day. Okay, what’s with this Friday fiction thing?”
“A writing group that writes on Friday’s. A lady named Rochelle runs it, and she’s written a bunch of books. Look, here’s all the people and their stories this week.”
“Hmmm… if they write on Friday, how come there’s 56 stories, it’s Thursday? Besides, they look like a bunch of weirdos to me, look at that guy with the clown nose, number 53 looks cute, though. What do you want me to do?”
“Help me think of a story, Cheryl. I thought this would be easy, but I don’t see any story in this photo.”
“Quit whining, Ethel. I see a prison in this photo. Do you think Peter Abbey was in prison?”
“Peter Abbey, the guy Rochelle got the picture from. I swear you don’t pay attention to anything, Ethel. Write a story about a prison. How long does it have to be?”
“100 words, no more no less. I hear she’s pretty strict!”
“How in hell you supposed to write a story in 100 words? Maybe we better read a couple stories.”
“I have to admit, Ethel, some of those are pretty good. Just steal an idea from one of them.”
“I can’t do that if I’m going to be a real writer, Cheryl, they have to be my words. Besides, they might catch on and then I’d get in trouble.”
“Oooooh, what kick you out of being a Friday Writer?”
“It’s Friday Fictioneers because we write fiction!”
“And you write on Friday; I get it. Okay, let’s write a prison story. One for women and there’s lots of cat fights.”
“Good, and mean guards! Someone gets a shiv in this walkway and there’s blood all over.”
“I like that, better start writing this down. I’ll help you.”
“I’m excited, Cheryl, maybe I’ll be a famous author someday.”
“Don’t you mean, We, Ethel?”
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I have always written exactly 100-word stories… no more no less… and as Ethel says, ‘I hear she’s pretty strict!’ and I have never wanted to get on that little ball of fire’s bad side. But, since this is Rochelle’s fourth year heading up Friday Fictioneers, I thought I’d write 400 words… a Drabble a Year. I asked the girls to help; I wonder if they can figure out how to work the frog thing. Thanks to Peter Abbey for the photo prompt.
SCREAM… In an Imaginary Garden
On the Northside of Chicago, a telephone rings…
“Hi, Cheryl, it’s me Ethel, have you decided!”
“What do you mean which? I’m the only one you know.”
“Haha, decided what?”
“I told you, I don’t do Halloween, and I’m not coming over to help you hand out candy to brats.”
“Okay, I’ll wear a scream mask.”
“Because you love the movie?”
“Because you make me want to scream.”
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Ethel and Cheryl decided to take part in the costume party at the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads today. Mama Zen wants us to write about our Halloween costume in 65 words or less at toads. My friend Björn Rudberg wrote an interesting poem today and introduced me to Mama Zen.
THE INDISCRETION… for Grammar Ghoul Press
The Father stared, “Harlot!” Bloom of cheeks gave them away.
Young Man shrank from his reach and the ferocious bloom raised in anger.
The Mother cried.
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I’ve been wanting to write a story for Suzanne for some time… here it is. Tony asks for exactly 26 words, a story or poem using any form of the word “bloom.” Reminds me a bit of the glorious days of Trifecta, except we get seven words less. Thanks to curator Tony Lovell for the prompt. Shapeshifting 13 #46
- : a mass of wrought iron from the forge or puddling furnace
- a bar of iron or steel hammered or rolled from an ingot
- a : flower
b : the flowering state <the roses in bloom>
c : a period of flowering
- : a state or time of beauty, freshness, and vigor
: to produce flowers
: to change, grow, or develop fully
The illustration of the Young Lovers is a painting by British Artist Pete Marsh
SPRING PLANTING… a drabble for FriFic
The phone rings in a brownstone in Chicago…
“Hi, Ethel, what’s up!”
“Spring!!! That’s what, Cheryl.”
“It’s 36 degrees out, what makes you think it’s Spring?”
“The landlady is planting flowers and she always does that on the first day of Spring. But I don’t like her new planter.”
“What’s wrong with it?”
“It’s a porcelain throne, Cheryl!!!”
“What the hell are you talking about, Ethel? What’s a porcelain throne?”
“As if you’ve never hugged the Porcelain Throne, goody-two-shoes. It’s a commode. A loo.”
“For Christ’s sake, Ethel, speak English!”
“It’s a toilet, dammit! In front of my house!!!”
Ethel and Cheryl have returned to Friday Fictioneers! Rochelle threatened to steal this photo from TedBook’s DAILY PICS, and it looks like she did! To read more stories based on this photo or write one of your own, click on the frog.
Huffing and puffing, Cheryl never thought she’d be doing this. Hated the outdoors, liked looking at it, just not being in it. It had all started with a phone call.
“Hello, Ethel. Before you ask again, remember Caller ID. What’s up?”
“Birds! Let’s go Birding!!!”
“What in the hell are you talking about, Ethel? What’s ‘Birding’?”
“It’s where you look at birds. They’re really pretty, and you learn a lot.”
“Really? Just what are we going to learn? And how are you such an expert”
” I got a book at a yard sale, it’s all the rage now. You go out in the woods and look at birds. I’m going Saturday; please say you’ll come.”
So Cheryl, against her better judgment, agreed to go.
“Dammit, Ethel! Slow down! I don’t like this mud. I see one more barbwire fence, I’m quitting. Are you sure you know where we are?”
“Don’t be such a baby, of course, I know.”
“Well, all we’ve seen are brown birds, I haven’t learned a damn thing, and where’s the pretty ones in your book. I need a coffee.”
“I don’t know; I thought we’d see them. I think the road’s over there, I’m ready for coffee.”
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I don’t think I’ve done a Sunday Photo Fiction before. My friend at Momus does and his will be SciFi, probably a star cruiser crashed in that field. When I saw this photo prompt, a story started writing. Go read Eric’s and the other SPF Stories also.
Best Friends… a story by Ula Grace
I was five years old when they moved in across the street. They had a little girl the same age as me, and I wanted to meet her so bad, but I was too shy. One day as I was playing in the street on my trike, I was riding it up and down the road in front of our houses, I fell over. I started crying and then there she was, kneeling next to me asking if I was ok. She leaned down and kissed my knee, “There. All better.” She said, smiling.
I looked up at her and smiled back, “Yeah, all better.”
From then on we were inseparable, we did everything together, I waited with her in hospital while her baby brother was being born. I held her hand on the first day of high school, as we walked through the doors, I helped her get ready for her first date, she was so excited. I was there when she came home that night; I was the one who comforted her when it all came crashing down. I was the first one who she told her biggest secret. I was the one who picked her up off the floor of the cafeteria, the one who dried her eyes and cleaned the cuts and bruises. I was the one who kissed all the wounds.
The one who kissed her lips and whispered, “All better.”
And I’m the one who has a diamond ring in my purse, the one who is desperately hoping that she will say yes.
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A short story by frequent contributor Ula Grace. Miss Grace is familiar to regulars as TedBook’s foreign correspondent and is the author of ‘The Cuban Diary’ found here. She attends Spring Street International School and is currently in the ninth grade.
The illustration of the little girl on the tricycle is by Tom Hessel
UGLY FRUIT? NO, GUAVA!
“No way am I trying that!”
“Come on Cheryl, its delicious. Don’t be such a baby.”
“I’m not a baby, Ethel, I just don’t like the looks of it.”
“But Guava’s rich in vitamin C and helps cure bad breath.”
“So, now you’re saying I have bad breath? That’s rich coming from you, Ethel.”
“No! I mean it’s good for you.”
“Never, it’s an ugly fruit.”
(My apologies to my friend Suzanne for not writing something Ghoulistic in my first post at the GGP)
The Prompt for Chimera 66 Micro-Fiction Challenge #4 is:
An edible pale orange tropical fruit with pink, juicy flesh and a strong, sweet aroma.
- • Challenge submissions must be fiction or poetry.
- • Submissions must be exactly 66 words.
- • Submissions must use the prompt as specified.
- • Submissions are written for this challenge, and do not pre-date the kickoff post.
- • One submission per spectre.
- • Please put lengthy explanations at the end of your post, not at the beginning.
- • Don’t forget to add the code for the challenge badge to your post.
- • And don’t forget to have fun!
- Here is where to find out about THE GRAMMAR GHOUL PRESS and read other stories… They are scary, not like mine.
THE BOOK OF THE MONTH CLUB
“‘Diamond Jack had his hideout next to the Rattle Snake River’. Ethel, I’m not reading this trash?”
“It’s historical fiction, Cheryl. Set in the Old West.”
“Historical fiction, my ass! Look at the tv antenna on top of the house on the cover. How old is this West? Are they riding horses and robbing stagecoaches?”
“I haven’t gotten that far yet, they’re just hiding out.”
“Well, that’s what hideouts are for. When you signed us up for a book club, I thought we would be reading best sellers, not dime novels that cost $15. And you know I don’t like Westerns.”
“That’s not so, you like Clint Eastwood.”
“I love Clint Eastwood, but not because he was in Westerns.”
“Well you have to be in the book club. Just pretend he’s Diamond Jack and read the damn book! There’s sex too, and don’t tell me you don’t like sex. You read Lady Chatterley’s Lover.”
“That was historical, Ethel, no television antennas!”
Trying to make time to write some stories again and thought I’d try this group my friend E. A. Wicklund of Momus News writes with.
Here are the instructions… “Are you ready for Mondays Finish the Story challenge? This is a flash fiction challenge where we provide you with a new photo each week, and the first sentence of a story.Your challenge is to finish the story using 100-150 words, not including the sentence provided. Don’t forget to use the opening sentence…“Diamond Jack had his hideout next to the Rattle Snake River”. Get creative and have fun finishing the story!”
Look here for other stories for this week’s… MONDAYS FINISH THE STORY
Photo by Barbara Beacham