-The best stories on the web-
Read or link to over 1000 stories listed under Stories to the left.
Submit your short stories for review as a Word document attached to an email to: Read@Short-Story.Me

Latest Stories

August 09, 2020
General Stories Schubert

The Last Shift

Danny switched on the kitchen light and peered at the clock on the wall above the cooker. It was 5.10am, the middle of Winter and two hours before the central heating came on. Butch opened one bloodshot eye, gave Danny a token wag, sighed and settled down…
August 09, 2020
Flash Fiction Andrei Sisman

Drop, Drop,Drop

Balance, in all things, the monk thought, his face calm and serene, as pea-sized drops of rain pounded the surface of his scalp like a drum. The world around him buzzed with static, yet his mind was like a lake on a summer day. He assumed the lotus position,…
August 09, 2020
Crime Stories Leroy B. Vaughn

Where'd Shirley Go?

He thought he was going to throw up as he staggered to his feet and headed towards the bathroom. Rasmussen splashed water on his face and drank water by cupping his hands and drinking from the faucet. He went back to his bedroom and looked around for Shirley,…
August 09, 2020
General Stories Stephen Faulkner

How It Was

I have often been asked how it was, how it came to be that I did what I did in the way that I did it. Often I will tell whoever has asked such a question that I have been driving for over thirty years and I have always been a very good and conscientious…
July 26, 2020
General Stories Lucy Maybelle

A Reputable Reptile Establishment

“When it feels like your world is ending, maybe it’s just beginning.” This I read in some tone-deaf article about the current state of the world; the equivalent of “keep your chin up!” for the modern depressive. And I wish I could believe it. Truly, I do. I…
July 26, 2020
Mystery Stories John Brady

Winter's Walk

White ribbons in a white landscape. The county doesn’t sand the roads except where they meet and that doesn’t happen much, so the snow gets packed down hard and stays. It won’t melt till spring. Climate change fucks up the weather lots of places but not up…
July 26, 2020
Fantasy Stories Michael Thirlaway

Waveless Ocean

The sailless ship glided smoothly across the waveless ocean. Captain Blake Osric looked over at the crew, each performing their mundane tasks, confused at how the ship was moving without wind. The vast smooth sea stretched in all directions, endless. It…
July 25, 2020
Flash Fiction C Alexis

For Hire

I was sitting, sipping my coffee, swiping my iPhone, when my eyes focused on the cork bulletin board immediately to my right. At the top, in black upper case letters were the words, “For Hire.” One particular card drew me to its interesting font, which looked…
July 25, 2020
Fantasy Stories Charles West

A New Prometheus

“Sit here, Mary, there is someone I want you to meet,” Jane said. “Who?” “You will see. It is someone famous. You will be very impressed.” Mary deferred to her step sister and sat down. There was another vacant chair with a small round table between them.…
July 25, 2020
Romance Stories Patric Quinn

Life on West 4th Street

"Hey, good evening, Frank. How’s the Farrell column going." "Going pretty good today, Pipes. Just finished. I know it’s late, but I just felt like coming out for awhile. Say hello if you were working." "Coming down here, 4th Street?" Pipes’ smile showed he…
July 25, 2020
Flash Fiction Walt Giersbach

The Lawyer Saw Green Until He met Red

Our Tullahoma Tigers weren’t all that hot as a football team. Or even lukewarm, but it was the last thing holding our dying town together now that the mill is closing. However, the real reason all the townspeople close up their shops and houses and come out…
July 19, 2020
Fantasy Stories Katya Kastro

The Year The Virus Came [Editor's Choice]

Lily was annoyed and upset. Her mom switched her virtual reality helmet into school mode and while Lily’s friends were chilling on some Australian or Brazilian beach, she was locked in her room. Lily’s mom won’t unblock the helmet until the homework is done.…

 

 

“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.

0
0
0
s2sdefault

Donate a little?

Use PayPal to support our efforts:

Amount

Genre Poll

Your Favorite Genre?

Sign Up for info from Short-Story.Me!

Stories Tips And Advice