Friday, 22 June 2012

The Prediction - it's all kicking off

Away from The Prediction the football is moving into the quarter finals with Euro 2012 but the place where the competition is hottest is within these pages. Quality writing week in week out and so great to see the way that everyone supports each other with comments.

As well as quality writing on The Prediction, don't forget to have a read of our collaborative story Hunted and build on the story as well. Anyone welcome to contribute.

Right, on to the trophies for this week. Without further ado......

....my winner is Antonia Woodville with Through a Glass Darkly.  Antonia - this was a kaleidoscope of images that just sent my mind into overdrive. Holding a mirror up to the world and then making us walk through to the other side. As I said in my comments, a mesmerisingly poetic piece which just deserved to win.

My runner-up this week is Cindy Vaskova with her second entry Hear the Whisperer. Cindy - the way that you ratcheted up the dialogue in this piece, building the tension, was excellent. I could actually hear the voice in his (assume it is a he) head whispering those horrid notions. A disturbing read but well executed.

My congratulations to both Antonia and Cindy for their superb entries picked from amongst a host of incredible writing. Keep it coming, love reading all the offerings that grace this site.

With more offerings in mind, let me grab my mighty tome and see what words are competing for our attention this week. And here they are stripping off eager to play:
  • Wing 
  • Immortal 
  • Facet
Think you all might have a bit of fun with those!

The usual rules apply: 100 words maximum, excluding the title, of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy or science fiction. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 9pm (UK time) Thursday 28 June to get your entries in. The winner will be announced by 9am Friday 29 June when new words will then spill forth. If you can, please tweet about your entry using the #fridayflash #100words or #flashfiction hashtags and blog if you feel like it. Please tell your friends and do give feedback to your fellow Predictioneers - everyone appreciates it!

Let's see what creations fly forth this week.....

75 comments:

  1. It took me 2 hours to get to work yesterday, instead of 20 minutes. Today I can't go to work, the entire east side of the island is gridlocked with abandoned cars and buses. Has there been a holocaust? No, a pop festival, too many people, not enough space and bad weather... so I am at home, comfortable but anxious about work. I decide to cheer myself up by finding out who won this week and it is me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Could I have a better cheering up than that??? Thank you, Phil! and congratulations, Cindy! Lovely writing, worthy winner!
    Great words for this week, Phil, you are doing the old book a great justice... and thanks again!

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  2. Back on the Internet and what an amazing surprise! Thank, thank, thank you Phil! I would never imagine being pointed as a runner-up among such amazing writers and stories! I'm blushing too much.
    And congratulations to you Antonia! Worthy winner!

    Now excuse me as I get down to read and comment all the entries from the last Prediction, and as well dream a little on the new marvellous words you Phil put for us to play with!

    Cheers.

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  3. Congratulations to Antonia and Cindy! I agree with Phil's selections 100%. Mesmerizing reads, both.

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  4. These boys won't leave me alone. They're getting a little stalker-like in my head, but I keep giving in.

    Tripping the Snare

    Another bar fight. Naturally.

    “You aren’t immortal,” I growl at Nate.

    He ducks a punch, lands another. “Nothing is. Not really.”

    The girl Nate kissed whips a bottle at his head. It wings me, instead. I hardly feel it.

    Bright light permeates the grimy, faceted window, sending dirt-tinged rainbows to dance with dust motes. I consider leaving Nate behind as recompense for poor choices. Then I see the demon in the corner, feeding the rage.

    I murmur a spell to banish the fucker.

    Nate’s head snaps up. “Seth, don’t!”

    Too late.

    The thing that is not a demon smiles. “Gotcha.”

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    Replies
    1. I'm struggling this week. And perfect posts like this one do not help at all. Even after three returns to read. Bloody good stuff Rebecca.

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    2. Brilliant one, Rebecca, but I would get the police onto those stalkers...

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    3. Rebecca, I would normally not condone this but keep enticing them to stalk you if this is the end result. Love the description of rainbows and dust motes but even more scrumptious is that ending which is mischevious and threatening all at once. :-)

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    4. Oh, nice twist, I liked the demon in the corner, but what might it really be...? =)

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    5. Be aware of strangers in the corners of bars. Sometimes they are demons, sometimes not..
      I love the blend between a regular bar-fight and supernatural elements.
      Nice work Rebecca.

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    6. I love this, reminded me of my days as a Bouncer. I talked fights down most often and when I asked they didn't know why they kicked off in the first place. I loved the mix of the perceived reality and demonic realms.

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  5. Once again my hearty congratulations to Antonia and Cindy on last week’s wins

    This week story jumped out fully formed, I’m trying for a pulpy 1950’s serial/comic vibe, shame I don’t live back then as this avenger of the night has got legs.

    The Knight of Diamond City

    He took to wing and felt the familiar rush of exhilaration as he glided above the neon saturated city.

    The suits multi-faceted goggles took in every minute detail of Diamond City the death, drugs and violence that threatened to choke the life from it.

    It was the same every night, he knew he must act and soon.
    Hank knew that he was just a keeper of the faith, his time was transient, no immortal he.

    But for now it was enough and he was enough for the city.

    This was his city and he was its legend - The Knight.

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    Replies
    1. Love 'He took to wing' as a start, and where it took us.

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    2. like it! good feel to this one, Nick.

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    3. Think you captured the pulp aspect really well as I was instantly put in mind of Springheeled Jack in a steam punk-esque setting. I could definitely see this being the start of a graphic novel which I would love to pick up.

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    4. I agree with Phil. I could practically see the graphic novel. Beautiful description carries with it the emotion of this piece.

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    5. Some interesting possibilities here, Nick.

      I don't think it was your intent, but it can be read that he just flies overhead, watching, that he hasn't yet acted, which in itself makes for an interesting character...

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    6. Like RR I as well agree with Phil. It's an interesting conception you have going on here. New superhero perhaps?

      Very nicely written Nick.

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    7. Nick, I agree with all of the above, You have a great project here for a graphic novel. However I think it also has CGI animation potential too. I read your preamble after I read your piece, and interestingly at the end of your piece I had Woody Allen's voice from "Radio Days" in my head as the narrator. I love the work of Woody Allen BTW.

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  6. Congratulations to Antonia and Cindy. Well done both.

    A Tale From Bile County
    Part 8


    The tin tabernacle bled rust in to a parched hillside northwest of town.

    Uttoxteters bike chugged up the track in low gear. Saint plodded alongside on his old dun mare. The bone yard claimed the southern slope of the rise.

    The two men came to a halt at the cemetery gate in the shade of a towering stone angel with a broken wing and bullet holes for eyes.

    The chapels corrugated sides rattled in the wind. Uttoxetter considered the terraced slopes and pathways of the cemetery to be a strange facet of this place of dry bones and immortal souls.

    ~To be continued~

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    1. Best yet Shaun, and a cracker of an opening sentence. (Not to self: must try harder!) Excellent.

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    2. good instalment, Shaun, you need a few apostrophes but otherwise, all but perfect. Uttoxeter's bike - chapel's corrugated sides... that kind of thing.

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    3. Thank you Sandra. Bless you Antonia, what I need is an editor.
      I miss so many of the details.

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    4. A very atmospheric piece here Shaun, one that really shows off your talent for description. I'm going to be tense all week now, or at least until the next installment, as I feel that all hell is about to be let loose on Uttoxeter and Saint! And in terms of getting someone to help with editing, check out a new feature I'm going to promote at Phlambler's World from Friday, might just get you that. Shhh for now though, it's a secret ;-)

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    5. This is positively lush. dry bones and immortal souls is a gorgeous phrase. I am really enjoying this series.

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    6. Bit of a lull in the action here, Shaun, but you do such a good job of building atmosphere and scene. Really evocative piece. =)

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    7. I think now I should go and read the previous parts, because this one has quite the creepy tone to it which I like a lot.
      Nice job Shaun!

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    8. I suspect this is the quiet before the storm. I love the opening line, and the build of the descriptives. good job.

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  7. Well-earned wins for Antonia and Cindy last week - congratulations.

    The blacksmith’s wife [part 22]

    What if Gabriel’s consanguineous concern was counterfeit, a facet of his love for me, callous-skewed for my protection? I’d swear his anguish genuine.
    Did he believe killing his brother would jeopardise his own immortal soul?
    Or was it Mathias who yet pulled the strings?
    At whose instigation had I set forth? How urgent this message?
    Did Gabriel mean to prevent me witnessing his revenge? Or was his perfidious sibling plotting murder prior to my pursuit?
    Suspicion’s wings dispersed my fury – I turned back, electing to save Gabriel rather than the country from invasion.
    And arrived to find the forge ablaze.

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    1. the standard is sustained instalment after instalment!
      Now I need to get myself geared up for something...

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    2. Great use of language Sandra, had me reaching for my dictionary a couple of times just to keep up ;-) Love the inner conflict as she made up her mind and then, decision made, what fate awaits her now as the forge lights up the sky before her. Quality as always.

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    3. Fabulous use of alliteration and a killer last line! I am constantly amazed by the depth in these vignettes and the way they meld so smoothly to form the larger story.

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    4. Thank you Antonia, Phil and Rebecca - your comments (and the ever-rising standards of all Predictioneers) ensure I keep striving to entertain. I fear I am a serial serialist.

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    5. Great cliffhanger, Sandra, and I love the alliteration in the opening phrase, "What if Gabriel’s consanguineous concern was counterfeit?"

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    6. I definitely need to go back and read the other 21 parts.

      The use of words is absolutely brilliant. So very smooth on the tongue.

      Agree with Phil- quality without a doubt.

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    7. Sandra, a brilliant continuation I too grabbed my Oxford English tome. As always your episode behold education as well as divine entertainment.

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    8. It's OK folks - I too had to resort to a dictionary when I realised that 'filial' didn't mean between brothers ...

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  8. I didn't ask Rich for help, but what came this evening is on the lines of last week's entry. Something mysterious going on, is my blood guts and gore writer changing on me, or is he having a mid-spirit-life crisis? I will wait to find out when next I ask for a true blood guts and gore story, Pill Hill need more entries...
    So, for what it is worth, here is his entry - my entry, for the week.

    Truth or ?

    Every rainbow is a facet of the immortal one’s being. Every feather from a wing indicates an angel passing by.
    Or so they say.
    Do you believe it?
    If this is so, then what is the meaning of slime, disease and death?
    Or are we speaking of two immortals, good and evil, black and white?
    If we are, which do you serve?
    Speak not that which you wish others to hear.
    Speak only the truth.
    In the darkness that resides within you, within all of us, lies that which we do not understand.
    I ask again, which do you serve?

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    1. Oh Antonia, such deeply philosophical questions to be putting to us and ones which I'm not sure I want to know the answers to! Yet again you describe the world layered just behind ours and ask us to question our own perceptions. I've always queried myself how we can have gods who love us when such suffering exists in the world. Clever stuff.

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    2. Whoops, missed commenting on this last time round. There's something in the first two lines which make it sound as if it should be set to music (That Byrds song, 'Turn, turn' perchance) But I suspect you meant it to be deeper than that.

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    3. Speak not that which you wish others to hear. The weight of commandment is in this line, and it brings the whole piece together. I love the examination of faith.

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    4. Oh, nice, Antonia! =)

      Two immortals, or one that does not know every aspect of its own self? Many, or one divided? ;)

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    5. thank you for the good words. Sandra, I know that Byrds song well, but for once no song featured in this - they usually do. It's Rich being introspective, or saying, hey, look, I can do something different... as there is another writer around at the moment and we are going in a slightly different direction. I wonder if he wants to tag along. Or something. Like most spirits, he isn't saying more than 'here it is, let's get going!'

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    6. "In the darkness that resides within you, within all of us, lies that which we do not understand."

      Somehow I doubt my strength to delve so deep and discover the answer, the truth.
      You raise question which we pass in silence. The asking however stays forever.

      Very strong piece Antonia.

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    7. Which do we serve indeed Antonia, I think a deep question all of us subconsciously ask of ourselves each time we delve ever deeper with our writing. A very deep piece, that made me ask many questions.

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  9. Congrats Antonia and Cindy, I look forward to catching up and reading your entries. Not been about much lately due to poking around in dark places, and that horrid four letter word "WORK!".
    Just managed to squeeze one off this week.


    Consort

    It started off with stomach cramps, a bitter malady that bent me double. When the final facet of my agony manifested, it forced me onto all fours shrieking like a dog. Finally the homunculus issued forth from betwixt my thighs tearing my manhood as it left my body. I looked at the cat face of my newborn. Cloven hooves, assuring me of his immortal parentage, as he took to the wing the brackish scent of sulphurous brimstone wafted across the air.
    Consort with the devil aye I did Sir, now I am jointly both father and mother to his child.

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    1. Good grief - exactly what sort of dark places have you been poking around in I wonder ... but glad I am that you penned this account at least.

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    2. William, what is it with Predictioneers in the past few weeks as, yet again, I have to cross my legs as I wince at the tale! This is such a great piece and you've created a lovely twist to the 'son of satan' mythos. The description is superb and the concept is wonderful. Top drawer.

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    3. What a fabulous, horrific tale! The use of scents really makes the scene come alive.

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    4. William, that is horrorful. So vividly horrific I had to invent a new word to fit... Excellent piece.

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    5. I have to agree with the others, it is indeed horrific, or as John so succinctly put it, horrorful. What a great word!

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    6. Horrific it is!

      Very interesting idea behind the birth of Satan's child.
      Me likes this twisted tale William...

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  10. Greetings, fellow Predictioneers, how wonderful it is to see you all here for yet another week with your delicious offerings, all ripe and juicy!

    I have to admit that I was stumped with these words but then a bit of Queen popped into my head as I started to question the origins of life, the universe and everything. Why not take a look at where my mind ended up.

    Who wants to live forever?

    Dust lay thickly across the celestial halls, the building decaying around them, whole wings laid waste by the ravages of time. Their footsteps echoed mournfully down abandoned corridors, the first sound for millennia.

    Images played into their visors, different facets flickering as they searched for the source of life itself. And they wept when they found it.

    Skeletal bones towered over them, seated on an ornate throne taller than the Himalayas. Depression hung there, heavy in the air, as they stared up at the immortal who had chosen to die, four words etched at its feet.

    You would not listen!

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    Replies
    1. And what a clever use of 'wing'. I like the ambiguity of scale here too.

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    2. I really enjoy the juxtaposition of the technology with the god-like skeleton. One wonders what happened after the immortal gave up the ghost.

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    3. Nice one, Phil. As RR says, I really like the mix of tech and fantasy. Really interesting concept and one I could see being expanded.

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    4. different, exciting in its concept, love the mix going on here. Clever.

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    5. Ooh Phil! I have chills. The seated skeletal bones on enourmous thrones is forever engraved in my mind.

      Very good stuff, very fresh and imaginitive

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    6. I read your piece last night, just before bed. I live one weird life today my job took me to a Napoleonic redoubt. A huge hole in the bricks that I had not seen before roused my interest. When I asked the curator who made this hole, she replied "Time" and exhaled. Your piece flashed into my mind. I shuddered! Thanks for getting under my skin, again! ;)

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  11. Homesick

    Areius tossed the stripped chicken wing aside and fumbled around inside the bucket for another. He was slumped in a threadbare armchair, feet up on the table, takeaway balanced on his mountainous belly. Grease dripped from his fingers and chin.

    He wiped his hands on his filthy vest.

    The house’s owners scrabbled on the floor, naked, mewling. They gnawed at his meagre leftovers.

    “Bored!”

    He slouched further back. Immortality was such a drag. He’d explored every facet of foul humanity, every whim, sin, desire and degradation. Maybe Lucifer would take him back, at least it was always warm down there.

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    1. And he's still only adolescent!! Love the whole concept of this John, vividly depicted and economically delivered to my mind, to feast upon. Thank you.

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    2. superb last line! capping a perfectly formed piece. Good one, John!

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    3. The attitude and descriptive phrases combined to make me think of an immortal, surly teenager, and then thank all that is holy that mine will grow out of this some day. The bit with the owners was truly chilling.

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    4. Great idea John and so vividly told. I had a lovely picture of a demonic slob, bored, watching Jeremy Kyle on the box, as its pets scrabbled amongst its detritus. The last line made me chuckle. Excellent as always.

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    5. This is gruesomely brilliant and so vividly drawn I can breath in each smell around his highness The Immortal bored demon.

      Very good John : )

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    6. I think I might have been Areius when I was a teenager. You've captured the angst and torture of a better life in the future but suffering an eternity to get there. A well observed piece

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  12. I circled the words a few times until this vision of them was caught in my mind.

    Betrayed

    I watch as he descends; a graceful act, his body language fluent in the art of tranquility.

    Whit every fiber of my being I praise and love the perfection he carries.

    His barefoot do not touch the grass beside the lake; only pure light licks the tips of the stalks.

    His gaze traces the facet surface of the lake.

    Whit a swing he catches himself in a white winged embrace and leaps into the water.

    I question why.

    But as crimson invades the clarity I know.
    I cry as he walks out feeling the ground beneath.

    The immortal now mortal.

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    1. Wistful and lightly-told - a vision indeed.

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    2. This feels like a dream, both romantic and sad but ultimately hope-filled.

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    3. What a beautiful story Cindy. Why the angel descended I do not know but, whilst tinged with sadness, I feel that there is a higher reason for his actions. Like Rebecca, I feel that there is a real sense of hope for the future and my heart tells me that he has done it for love. Lovely writing.

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    4. Cindy, you've left me breathless, with intrigue

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  13. I was caught by surprise when another play with the words formed in my mind. I sort of blame the influence behind it on dark cabaret music.
    So, second entry and it goes by the name of:


    Don’t believe in God till you need saving


    Immortal you say? Then you add fun.

    But no fun I read on your wooden expression, your words quiet facet but in lack of persuasion.

    What good will I have in being immortal when the world shall
    continue to spin out of order?

    Now you throw in some punches, verbal of course, and tell me that with the price there too come some props.

    Wings you say? I wonder… Always fancied to fly to Atlanta.

    Envision that freedom…

    Agreed!
    Let’s seal this gather with Mr. J Walker!

    Payment? Course’, tell how much green?

    What… my soul?!

    Oh, curse my greed…

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    1. I like both of these, but this second one is seriously good, IMO

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    2. It reads almost like a song. The blues, I'd guess. Gotta watch those crossroads bars. Deals made there tend to stick.

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    3. A deal with the devil, for who else would ask for your soul, is rarely one that works out well. I agree with Rebecca that this plays out like a song from the deep south.

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  14. Sorry, bit late closing the party up this week, was ok bashing a ball around a tennis court as the weather has taken an unexpected turn for the better.

    So, as people sip away at the fruit punch, I say no more, no more. Thanks to all who have entered and those who have commented. I'm off to deliberate on this week's winner and choose new words plus launch a new idea on Phlambler's World. More news tomorrow.

    G'night y'all.

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