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Latest Stories

May 21, 2024
Mystery Stories Marvel Chukwudi Pephel

Plant Dreaming Of Sheep

Before I begin, let me set things straight. I'm the chord of delight in a vocal. My name is Lucy. I remember I was dead conflicted. I found myself screaming in a hotel room. What happened to Jon Watts in Nelson was my fault. My vision of life had changed,…
May 21, 2024
Fantasy Stories Paweł Markiewicz

The Birdies Part IV

Vienna. July 1, 2014 Tuesday. Afternoon At 3 p.m. the party ended. Mary quickly left the university building. The woman boarded a tram heading towards the Margareten district. The weather outside was truly summary. The July sun was shining. There wasn't a…
May 21, 2024
Flash Fiction Andre Gouyneau

The Cat's Pajamas

I like Kelvin, my master. He’s cool. I used to be a black and white kitten, but bit by bit my fur became multicoloured and my mind went a bit nuts. I’d consumed more of Kelvin’s leftovers that he’d dropped on the floor than organic cat biscuits. This diet…
May 21, 2024
Poetry Alejandro Casas

The Word

Spark. First light. Then sound. Like, singing of Tibetan bowls. Silence follows. Then loud and forceful pressure. Like, a chant of Tibetan horns. Smoothed right after, by AAAAUUUUMMMM; reverberates. Calming vibrations, rapture. AAAAUUUUMMMM; reverberates.…
May 21, 2024
Fantasy Stories Paweł Markiewicz

The Birdies Part III

Vienna. July 1, 2014 Tuesday On July 1, 2014, at the Institute of German Studies at the University of Vienna, there was a warm welcome among the professors of Paweł Kowalski, a Pole who was to become a researcher at the university in the new academic year.…
May 21, 2024
General Stories Robert Pook

Interview With A Starman

Hovering Krishna-like across the luxury surface of penthouse carpet, the silken presence that is Tom Cloak glides toward the rich, red leather armchair sourced at great pains on the star’s behalf. Tom reclines peaceful, composed, meditative. Violence and…
May 21, 2024
Poetry Austin Spradlin

Memories Of Us

We spent our afternoons on the monkey barsTraded and shared one another’s snacksYou were my best friend, and I was yoursWhat I’d give to have them days back.It’s the truth that we saw each other through dark timesNow I’m sitting here reminiscing on way back…
May 21, 2024
Flash Fiction David Nash

I Gave You Power

Something in how I lay exposed on the dresser when I should be concealed. The way the sun came in red and purple this morning, I felt it in my firing pin. Something is going down. Something to test my hammer. Something to break the monotony of Joey’s addled…
May 21, 2024
Fantasy Stories Paweł Markiewicz

The Birdies Part II

Los Angeles and Bodega Bay. June 25-28, 2014 In 2014, Mary's elderly cousin Cathy Brenner called and invited her to her wedding. Cathy met and fell in love with a nice sailor named Steven. Mary decided to visit Cathy in America. The woman also had another…
April 25, 2024
General Stories Michael Barlett

Dubious Provenance

CHAPTER ONE The grizzly old man watched through the window as a Jeep Cherokee approached along the pathway leading to his cabin. He had no clue as to who the visitor might be, although the person had been there many times before. Sadly, the old man was…
April 25, 2024
General Stories Robert Pook

Debut

Glossed red leather clatters into a hallowed wicket of willow, cracking the silence within storied stands of the ‘Home of cricket.’ M.C.C., Lord’s cricket ground, two hundred years of history. Centuries old celebration of appeal, and congratulation, echo…
April 25, 2024
Mystery Stories Kownain Sid

Don't Feel Bad When I Die

(Inspired by true events) Part one: The descent into darkness "Come on, sweetie, now is the time for a bedtime story," a man tells his daughter as he begins reading from a few papers he was carrying. "Today, David is meeting his former teacher, Pinky, after…

“What are you going to do with all of those water balloons?” Tortoise asked.

There must have been a hundred of them in every color, constructing a rubber pyramid that wobbled above a red pull-along wagon. Hare grabbed the top balloon, and launched one at Tortoise’s snapper. When the balloon burst, Tortoise tasted metal in his mouth, and felt like his stomach had dropped out of his shell.

“You can’t be serious,” Tortoise coughed. “What could have made you this...this... evil?”

When Hare pelted a balloon right into his eye, Tortoise kicked his two unbound legs frantically, and rocked the chair in the hopes that one of the oak legs would give out. His hands had gone numb an hour ago, if you could call them hands anymore. Two bloody nubs chained to a wooden chair. Another balloon burst Tortoise on his stomach, and he hopelessly watched the pellets drip down his yellow bone chest.

“At least tell me why,” Tortoise moaned, spitting while he spoke, but Hare did not respond.

“Was it those nasty brats? I know it was wrong, but, maybe, it’s not you. Maybe Trix really are just for kids?”

Hare popped a blue balloon in his hand, and growled.

“You don’t even remember me?” Hare grunted through gritted teeth. “How can you already forget me, Tortoise? You ruined my life. You didn’t have to do that. You could have been quiet, or at least honorable. But no. You told the entire world about your amazing race against the Hare. And then,” Hare paused. “THAT BOOK!”

Tortoise winced. Hare looked nothing like the youthful rabbit he raced all those years ago. A dark gash ran from his gnarled right ear to his mouth, and his white fur, where there was fur, was stained a brownish-yellow.

“Oh, yeah, you got a copy of that book, huh?” Tortoise asked quietly.

“Everyone got a copy,” said Hare, dragging each word like a dead body. “My wife left me almost immediately, with the kids mind you. Lost my job, had to sell my hole to a snake, and my parents… I don’t even know. They must have changed their name and moved.”

Hare looked up at the hanging caged light, and Tortoise spotted the fur below his brown cheeks had soaked.

“I saw some dark things, after that,” Hare said, looking at Tortious with absent eyes.

Hare turned away from Tortoise, and dumped the red pull-wagon. As the balloons rolled under the Tortoise, Hare hopped around Tortoise like a pogo stick, popping the balloons with his feet. From behind his mangled ear, Hare pulled out a gold Zippo and flipped the top. Tortoise thought of screaming, but worried that would only add fuel to the flame, which wasn’t lacking for fuel.

“Well, you may not want to hear this, but this is not my fault. You took two naps and ate breakfast during a race! You, Hare, shouldn’t feel bad, but you need to take responsibility for your actions. Maybe that’s the real lesson from our race,” Tortoise surmised.

Hare considered Tortoise’s anecdote for a moment, closed the Zippo, and began leaving the room.

“See, there you go! Taking responsibility for your actions. Now, just don’t forget to untie me!” Tortoise yelled.

When Hare had nearly left the room, he stopped, lit the Zippo again, and turned to Tortoise.

“You’re wrong. That’s not the moral, because the story didn’t end that day.” Hare said before tossing the flame into the fuel underneath Tortoise. “You may have won the race, Tortoise, but life isn’t a god damn race.”

 

End

 

Bio: David Gregory is a marketing pro from Washington, DC who loves humor fiction. When he's not pretending to know something about politics, David is wrestling with his first novel, and begging people to read his humor fiction magazine at www.FunnyInFiveHundred.com.

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