Thursday, 5 July 2012

The Prediction - putting the fear into everything!

Why hello there, nice of you all to pop round once again for another installment of The Prediction. I decided to post my results and new words this evening as I always write this on a Thursday night before bed and then schedule it to appear on the Friday morning. Do you prefer it this way or would you rather wait for Friday for it to appear? Do let me know.

Also, another change for this week  I am going to give you two weeks to get your entries in. I'm out for drinks with a friend who just recovering from a v. serious illness on Thursday night and then it's my wedding anniversary on Friday (yes, that's right Friday 13th and it was also Friday 13th when we get wed five years ago up in bonnie Scotland). So, rather than try the impossible and fit everything in, I thought I would postpone judging until Thursday 19th July. Hope it gives you all more time to play and that you will forgive me my indulgences just this once and we will return to weekly after that.

So, let's announce the winner from last week and let you have some delicious words to play with over the next fortnight.

Just one winner this week and I am sure that you will all agree that RR Kovar's poem Cross-Step deservedly takes the crown. Rebecca - I absolutely loved this piece, the rhythm of it, the descriptions, the playfulness and then the final reveal about the fate awaiting the ladies. I am sure that I will be reciting this to myself over the coming weeks and must make sure that I don't slip it in amongst my son's nursery rhymes!

No runner-up this week as I just couldn't choose between the rest of you so do give yourselves a well earned pat on the back for some quality entries :-)

Now I have been having words with the book after throwing up such an awkward trio of words last week. Now I think that I have tamed it this week but I am not sure I shall every see that index finger of mine again! So, fully fed, here are the words which it spewed forth this week:
  • Rock
  • Formal
  • Protege
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.

Remember, you have a fortnight this time, so you have until 9pm (UK time) Thursday 19 July to get your entries in. The winner will be announced by 9am Friday 20 July 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!
Hoping that you're all going to rock my world with your fabulous entries over the next fortnight.

51 comments:

  1. Congratulations Rebecca, a fine piece, as Phil said a lovely Rhythm which in my opinion evoked the dancers. Loved it.

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  2. Yes, definitely, Rebecca's Cross-step was an impactful piece indeed, well done. As an early riser I appreciated finding this here and now but would not insist on a reular basis ... please continue to do whatever suits you, Phil. As for the words - I shall have to take them slowly if I have a whole two weeks to polish.

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  3. I am placing a scarlet L on my shirt. L is for loser. Sorry for taking liberties Mr. Hawthorne. I have not written or responded in too long. I have tons of excuses but no good reasons. Sorry friends. Here is a go at the story aspect and I will be back to comment when we have a carpet of lovely stories. Please forgive the time away. My attempt:

    The Ordinary

    Morning was crisp and formal; another beginning. The sparkling city's oldest train ran north; her protégé ran south, waking. In their bellies beat the ordinary; paper cups of coffee for smiles and sleepy salutations. The sister trains met below their city, moving the ordinary sons and daughters; each person full and alive. But a spark popped and the mad took then torched the sisters. Ideas became bombs; ordinary sons and daughters died, hands to their faces pushing away flames, melting. Now under rock and acid dust the ordinary sons and daughters wait for yet another beginning.

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    1. The very ordinary tone of this enables the tale it tells to seem extra chilling.

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    2. Marietta - wow, this is powerful. I commute daily and this struck a chord with me, particularly with the anniversary of the 7 July London bombings having just passed and being a commuter that day (although I don't know if you necessarily meant the link). So many of the 'ordinary' were affected that day and this captured the sense of that day so well for me.

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    3. Agh! How could I have missed this? I love the description and the way the prose seems to rock like the train. And the dreadful conclusion brought me back to standing on crowded platforms while the announcers told us terrible things about delays.

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  4. Rebecca, many congratulations, superb writing.
    Marietta, this has impact on many levels, some great images here to think on.
    I have had a 'dry' spell, broken when Rich came in with a story for the Wolf Craft anthology, called Sacrifice. That in turn led to this piece...

    “We could call ourselves Protégé,” Kyle suggested. Taylor groaned. “Can’t you come up with something original, you waster?”
    Kyle bristled. “Any more insults and you’ll lose your drummer!”
    “As if we’d notice…” Carl mused, watching them both. “What about Cannon? We make enough noise when we rock.”
    “Nah, don’t like it.” Taylor rubbed his multi coloured hair. “Do we go formal, or informal?”
    Carl thought for a moment. “Informal, I think. We don’t do dressing up, do we?”
    “What about Sacrifice?” asked Kyle. “It’s what we do.”
    “Right on!” said Taylor. “Can I do the first on stage beheading?”

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    1. Madam Antonio, I love a good rock gods rock the devil story. Please tell us more about wolf craft anthology. Where might we find the complete tale?. I am picturing sexy rocker boys doing not so boyish things. Excellent. Thank you for sharing.

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    2. Timely, today being the 50th anniversary of the Stones first live gig (though I don't think they've done beheading)

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    3. You had me smiling throughout this piece Antonia :-) A great touch for the comedic which you should definitely deliver more of if this is anything to go by. Spinal Tap as done by Hammer Films I reckon. Very, very enjoyable.

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    4. This is such a fun piece. The dialogue is fresh and hits the right notes. I could totally see this happening in a garage.

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  5. Thank you so much! I should remember to try poetry more often. The boys, as is their wont, asked if I would get the **** on with their story. So I did.

    Cornered

    “Seth Boudreaux.” The words were formal, weighted.

    Compulsion failed. “That’s not my name, True or otherwise.”

    “Clever. Your mother was my finest protégé.”

    “She’s dead.” I didn’t admit culpability.

    The thing flicked its fingers and ripped open Nate’s chest. “I could pluck his heart like a cherry pit.”

    I slapped my hand over the wound, healing it.

    “Don’t DO that!” Nate rocked back, pulled his gun, and shot the monster.

    I might have been next, but the thing rose. “You will listen, boy, or you will mourn.”

    Nate fell, vomiting blood. “Don’t,” he rasped.

    But he knew I had to.

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    Replies
    1. A compulsive pair, a wonderfully addictive series.

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    2. Poor Nate, being used as a bargaining chip to tame Seth. I love the almost comic book style action to this where people are ripped asunder only to be mystically glued back together. There's a sense of Hellboy to this tale in my mind.

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  6. Very cool characters. Getting better and better. I love the dialogue, very edgy.
    Another good one RR.

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  7. If a piece sits unfiddled-with for 24 hours it must be ready still has not applied but I am in danger of drowning this ...

    The blacksmith's wife [part 25]

    Godfrey Janninge, of the Cooper’s Arms gave us a bed, wherein we slept for more hours than we’d been wont to do together, waking only with the rising of both sun and Gabriel’s morning need.
    At the acrid-reeking forge a stiffly formal youth waited to serve notice of arrest for stealing letters. Gabriel raised his fist with sufficient menace that he rocked back, new-broken squeak, ‘I am a protégé of the Earl, harm me and ‘twill fall ill on you!’
    ‘Begone, stripling, tell your lord he must come himself for me!’
    ‘Sir, ‘tis your lady wife he wants, without delay.’

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    1. Nice end to this one. I could feel Gabriel's self-importance deflating as the whippersnapper delivered his message.

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    2. Fabulous depth to this, with some great visuals. new broken squeak is a wonderful phrase.

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    3. Oh this lady seems to be a bit of trouble, I wonder what she has up her sleeve, or skirt

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  8. for Marietta, Wolf Craft is new Static Movement anthology, only opened this week. Rich has been working overtime... it won't last...
    Rebecca, I agree with Marietta, edgy dialogue, it works well.
    Sandra, another stunning instalment!

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  9. Read RR Kovar's "Cornered" just before bed last night. Staggered out of bed this morning, and wrote this, fully formed, in five minutes,before coffee! These boys are even invading my dreams now...pushy buggers.

    Choices

    “Even monsters have protégés, boy. Sometimes, they even look human. We kill them, too.” That’s what Jim used to tell me.

    “Don’t!” I glared up at Seth as he placed his hand gently on my head. It was a formal gesture. A decision made.

    The hot rock of pain in my gut eased, and I stopped spewing blood onto the feet of the thing that looked so human.

    I reached for my gun again, raised it slowly, deciding. God help me, he looks human. I pointed the gun at my brother. The thing chuckled softly, and then everything went black.

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    1. Oh, the menace in a soft chuckle. Nice one.

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    2. cold and gory and full of images that we should not explore. Ravenways, love it.

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    3. To Antonia and Sandra: Thank you both so much! I'm glad you're enjoying hearing from Nate in all of this. I'm having a grand time!

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    4. Aaargh, what a tough decision to contemplate! Great writing as you capture the inner turmoil well. And then you leave us on tenterhooks at the end! Very good.

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    5. Nice! I did not see it going that way, but I love the turn.

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    6. Seemed human indeed, what happens next p,ease

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  10. Really struggled with this week’s selection of words, this was the third story I came up with and I’m still a bit meh with the final result. I know what I want to say and the feel of the piece I’m after but it’s been difficult to get it to flow and sound right, just having a bad week I think.


    First Time

    With the formal part of the prom now over, a local rock band takes to the stage playing tuneless covers for the crowd of assembled teenagers.

    We make our excuses and slip out of the hall.

    I’ve told her my secret; she thinks that tonight will be her first time, her first hunt as my protégé.

    My hand moves to the back of my cummerbund and pulls out the knife.

    ‘Change of plan pig’ I say as the blade reflects across her face, framing her sudden understanding and dawning terror.

    ‘Run pig, RUN!!’

    God I love it when they scream.

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    Replies
    1. If cold-blooded chilling was what you were after, you've succeeded more than adequately.

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    2. This is frighteningly chilling at the end Nick. You've captured the essence of the psycopath with those last few lines to make for some uncomfortable reading. I hope that I never meet this deviant on a dark night!

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    3. This brings up classic 1980s slasher films, so vibrant and disturbing.

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    4. Wonder what will happen when he catches her

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  11. And Gabriel's response:

    The blacksmith's wife part 26]

    ‘Protégé? Is that a fancy word for buggery? The maybe formal term such men as he use to confer honour to their dirty practices?’
    Gabriel’s hand grasped the boy’s embroidered collar, forcing him to quickstep in reverse, tripping over stacks of see-saw rocking, fire-black beams, turning ever pinker as he choked.

    I shouted ‘Stop!’ and Gabriel, the devil, let him go so quick he fell back into sooty-puddled horse-shit, ruining shoes and stockings and staining his fancy-skirted coat.

    I restrained Gabriel while the boy scrambled up. Ice in his voice (and breeding) ‘Be sure my Lord shall hear of this!’

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    Replies
    1. gets even more intriguing as it goes!

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    2. I have some terrific images of what sooty-puddled horse-shit looks like now! :-)

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    3. Fabulous! I love the movement in this piece, your words provide the feeling of stumbling while remaining smooth.

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  12. Hi all, sorry I've not been around to comment, has been an incredibly hectic week! Day off today for anniversary fun later but thought I'd pop in to check what's been offered up this week.

    Superbly crafted tales, as always, is the answer! Will see if I can grab some time later to comment and maybe put a piece in myself. Remember, there's still another week to go until we bid adieu to this week's words so keep the entries coming and do tell your friends.

    Right, off to spend some time with Mrs Phlambler :-)

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  13. congratulations on the anniversary, Phil!

    I dropped by to mention to something to all Predictioneers - a site called
    alfiedog.com
    the owner takes short stories on a royalty basis and has loads of stories for sale at a proper sensible price, like 37p for starters. Check it out! I have loads of stories there already.

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  14. Evening everyone, life back onto a less hectic pace at the moment so a chance to post a story for your enjoyment inspired by the old public dissections given to medical students in the 1800s.

    Ritual

    The ritual was centuries old, a formal rite marking the passing from protégé to practitioner. Hundreds of eyes stared at him; could they see his hand shaking from the gantries?

    Jochan looked at the body lying naked before him. His first incision would be critical. Jochan breathed deeply, steadying himself as he sliced into the flesh.

    Within minutes he had removed the leg, creamy fat and bloodied tissue rolling round the bone like lettering in candied rock.

    His master smiled up encouragingly from the table. Three more limbs and he would be finished. If his master lived he passed.

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    1. The juxtaposition of candied rock with creamy fat and blood adds immensely to the horror of this grisly scene.

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    2. I agree with Sandra, that's the most riveting contrast, but there are so many more elements that pull this story together. It's really good, start to finish.

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    3. The encouraging smile from the teacher really screams out, makes me need to hear the entire story

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  15. For those who want to play, I have added the next installment to the Hunted chain story which is in the older posts on this site. http://phlambler.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/hunted-collaborative-chain-story.html?showComment=1342558060314 Jack Duncan has just stumbled upon the most horrific of scenes. Come play and let us know just what did it or reveal something completely different!!!! :-)

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    1. Just read your installment Phil - it'll be a challenge to take the next step for sure, but I'd've though there were plenty here who could oblige, in spades.

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  16. It's been a bit of a mad couple of weeks, so I don't know if I'll get a chance to comment this week, sorry, did manage to scribble a quick entry down last night though...


    As(sass)in

    Silas pushed the barrel of his Glock 29 forcefully into Jonah’s left temple.

    “You’ve become a liability, Jonah.”

    “And you’re giving me a headache, Silas.”

    “Ain’t nothing compared to the one you’re about to have.”

    “That a fact?”

    “That’s the plan. Consider this your formal dismissal.”

    “Consider this my resignation.”

    “Funny. I, uh-”

    Silas’ eyes went wide, he rocked slightly as his gun clattered to the floor. He coughed blood into Jonah’s face and crumpled sideways, revealing a blonde teen with a dripping knife and crooked smile.

    Jonah smiled back.

    “You never met my protégé, did you, Silas?”

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    1. If ever a demonstraton of the effectiveness and power of dialogue was required this is IT (along with Seth and Nate of course). Stunning (which is one of those over-used words but completely right here)

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    2. Love, love, love this! So much history implied in terse, tight dialogue. And the literal twist of the knife at the end was perfect.

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    3. John Xero you have a talent, good to read fun to think about

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  17. Just on way home from night out. Will close doors when I get in but you have approx. 1 hour to get any last minute delights in :-)

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  18. Hi honey, I'm home!!! Right, a bit late but I now declare the shenanigans for this week officially over. So stop that last minute scribbling, put your pens down and I shall be back with the results forthwith. :-)

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