This week's prompt was originally going to be "Voullez vous couchez avec moi", but I worried that might be too limiting.  Keeping in line with the Valentine's theme, this week gives you an opportunity to explore "special days".

The Judge

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Last week's winner and this week's judge is my favorite lycan, Lupus Anthropus, a regular on the Flash Fiction scene.  Check out his work at http://fulmoj.wordpress.com/

The Prompt

What a way to spend that special day

The Rules

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Nancy P
2/13/2012 01:55:00 am

Love on the Battlefield

What a way to spend that special day.

Truth be told, if it had fallen out any other way, <I>that</i> would have been strange. I was never a frilly, pomp-and-circumstance sort. Sam had nearly blown a gasket laughing when he’d seen me in a suit. As it was, <i>he</i> had shown up to our friend’s wedding with not only a prostitute for a date, but fully armed and wearing his traveling clothes. The whore was better dressed. Another nugget of truth, she wasn’t bad looking, either.

Not that the clothing or flowers all mattered one bit anymore. Bullets were flying overhead, people were screaming, glass shattered and fell around us in showers. I wished for my hat – at least that would have kept the glass out of my face.

Hannah leapt from her spot, her scarlet dress ripped off at the knee and giving everyone a show of her lovely calves. I had no doubt she’d ruined it on purpose, trying to maneuver in that contraption would have been a nightmare. I was impressed that she was still conscious, with how tightly the bodice had been laced. She rammed her elbow into one of the intruder’s ears.

A gout of blood immediately sprayed from the wound and he dropped to his knees. She bobbed down and scooped up his pistol. <I> Glass eardrum.</i> It was one of the cheapest ways to enhance a person, but it was also very easily broken. And when you broke one part of the machine, you broke the magic, then the entire thing unraveled. His senses suddenly dulled, he’d struggle to compensate for them, and any other enhancements he’d had Crafted would also be gone. It was not a nice position to be in.

I had tipped up a table and ducked behind it when the shooting started, so she slid to a stop beside me. I’ll admit it, her barely-contained chest playing peek-a-boo as she panted caught my attention for entirely too long. As a matter of fact, she slapped me to break me out of my trance.

“They’ll still be there, honey,” she crooned, passing me the pistol. I handed her a peony that had fallen beside us. More than likely, it had come from the table I’d thrown over. “Oh, you romantic.”

I peered over the table. “Two Crafted, plus the one you took down. Four more men at the doors. Leader’s by the band.”

“Where’s Sam?” At least he had weapons. I had a small knife and a stolen gun with no handy ammunition.

“Probably still at the bar with his date.”

“Handy of him,” Hannah said dryly. She wiggled the peony stem down the front of her dress. The gun I had noted jabbing me earlier came out of the pocket sewn into her dress. “So, what do you say we bounce these guys?”

No sooner had she said it than a bullet cracked through the table between us. A foot to either side, and one of us would have been talking to a corpse. “I think we should.”

Nancy P.
@ModernBard1024
500 words

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Ryan Strohman
2/13/2012 02:34:20 am

What a way to spend that special day. The children were all ecstatic, dancing around, gripping their balloons with chocolate-covered hands, faces that bore smiles as wide as oceans. Electrofiddlers played their tunes, frenetic yet rhythmic notes that forced even the elderly to dance. The entire district had converged upon the square, where the newly born babies were about to be revealed to the public.

Quen stood amongst the group in this strange land, watching the festival. He’d heard little of what this was all about since arriving. He hadn’t expected everything to be so quaint, especially given the rumors.

“Behold!” shouted Meritus, the mayor, as he introduced the four couples and their January babies.

The couples all walked onto the stage, their little bundles of joy cradled in their arms, their eyes alight with the special festivities. The fact that only four children were born in the month was an absolute rarity, as typically there were twenty or more. Meritus shook the hands of each of the parents and studied each newborn intensely, before finally pointing to the Finks and declaring them the winners. The crowd cheered, and the other couples, while appearing dejected, congratulated the jubilant victors.

Quen turned to Rutap, the crusty young man he’d met upon arriving, and inquired, “what did they win?”

Rutap smiled, his left eye looking at Quen but his right wandering toward something else in the crowd. “Oh,” he exclaimed, “little Amaxa Fink has been chosen to be an honorable Patronus!”

Quen had only heard whispers of the fabled protectors, and he watched keenly as the infant’s parents began to disrobe her. Meritus then took the naked infant and placed her on the table in front of him. Two androgynous individuals wearing white aprons appeared, one carrying a laser-scalpel—the kind Quen had seen used in the war to amputate the mangled limbs of soldiers.

To Quen’s horror, Meritus grabbed the laser-scalpel, turned it on, and pointed it down toward the child.

“Stop,” Quen shrieked, as he bolted up onto the stage, pushing away the mayor and the infant’s parents.

“What are you doing?” shrieked Meritus, but his question was lost in the sound of mechanized stomps as two large, vicious cyborgs appeared on either side of the stage.

“Put the child down, foreigner, and leave immediately. You are no longer welcome here.”

“But you were going to maim this poor little girl!”

“That is not your concern. She has been chosen to join us, the Patroni, protectors of our district. It is an honor here, and you have no right to question it. Now leave!”

Quen looked from one to the other, knowing what he must do. Leaping from the stage, Amaxa Fink cradled tightly under his arm, he ran as fast as he could to his cruiser, enabling the shields and spiriting away.

He did not care about their customs or the impending war. He would not allow this: removing the infant’s limbs and replacing them with weaponized robotic prosthetics.

500 words
@rastrohman

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2/13/2012 02:39:48 am

"What?"

"A way to spend that 'special' day. You know - blackout drunk, throwing fives, trying to Eiffel Tower that redhead you keep jabbering about--"

"Oh, so a Tuesday, then?"

"Bro, you are *such* a player."

"You know it. And I'm all yours. Happy Ballentine's Day, sweetie."

"Fucker, you promised not to call me that in public."

#59
@etcet

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2/13/2012 02:40:37 am

Who can't count and pay attention to the length guidelines because work keeps interrupting?

THIS GUY.

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Nancy
2/13/2012 03:13:01 am

^like

2/13/2012 06:20:47 am

What a way to spend that special day, in jail with three guys that could be named Bubba. All I wanted to do was get everything I needed for the ritual, but no, I had to be brought in with these cretins. This is such a horrible misunderstanding. Of course, the cops keep telling me “tell it to the judge.”

I headed to my favorite apothecary and picked up a wonderful blend he mixed specially for me. Next, I went to the outdoor market and purchased a fresh hen. What happened next is embarrassing and how I now sit in this dank cell. I turned the corner headed to the tailors when a crowd of people swarmed around me. I became disoriented. I dropped my hen, splat on the ground—at least she still had feathers. I reached down to pick her up. Someone kicked my poor hen and she slid across the cobbles. I lost my balance and reached forward to grab hold of something or someone so I would not fall.

The woman screamed; it appears that I took hold of her ample breast. Her man took me by the back of the neck and shoved me away from them. I pummeled into some hooligans. They took offense to me touching them and circled me before starting to punch me. I felt the bottle of potion loosen in my pocket and it came crashing to the ground, its sweet aroma wafting in the air. I quickly reached down and took the neck of the broken bottle in my hand, hoping beyond hope that there would be some left.

The boys began to back away. That is when I heard the thunder of boots stomping on the street. I looked up and before I could react further, the officer manhandled me and forced the jagged bottle from my grasp. Two of the boys that circled me escaped.

Now I sit here, waiting and hoping that I will not miss all of the night and the celebration. How I long to dance merrily with my kith and kin. I only wished to look good in the eyes of Cupid, to whom we would celebrate, so that he would show mercy on me and find me a heart to love and Bubba one, two or three do not fit the bill. GULP.

@ChuckWesJ
391 words

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2/13/2012 10:27:36 pm

What a way to spend that special day . Ronnie pinched the bridge of her nose before glancing down at the pixie who wasn’t as cheery as when he had come into the shop. Even his wings drooped, like a dog who got caught doing something it shouldn’t have. She really hated those romantic holidays. There was so much expectation to do something ‘special’ that it could ruin anyone’s day. Especially those who try to revolt against them. An Anti-Valentine’s Day.

“Dell-“ She gave a sigh. “I’m sorry, I have to watch the gate so I can’t take off. Anyway, doesn’t Mira really like you?”

The pixie’s face turned into a scowl and he stomped a foot, red dust falling from the lowered wings. “She’s too clinging. She always wants to follow me around and help me do things and I don’t want her too.” He glowered at her before his wings buzzed and he darted off in a trail of dark violet.

Ronnie rubbed the back of her neck, not sure how she was going to make up for the hurt feelings. Most people think that pixies have the memory of a goldfish. While their emotions do go up and down like a rollercoaster, all fae remember those who do them wrong.

There was a small sniffle and another pixie came around the sign on the counter, dripping blue from her wings.

“Mira.”

“Shut up! It’s all YOUR fault. You said this was a good idea and now look, he’s upset. He only said those things so that you wouldn’t be upset.” She glared at the human before flying off after, calling after Dell. “Deeeeelllll, come back!”

Ronnie’s jaw dropped and she stared at the spot on the window that they went through, the glass warped and colored. It clamped shut at the cackling of laughter as a blonde head pillowed on tanned arms.

She turned to look at the man who could have been a cross between a surfer or a baby faced model as he laughed his head off.

“Shut up, Ero. This is all your fault.”

“I know. That’s what is so funny too.” Baby blue eyes peeked at her over his arms. “Awww, come on, Ronnie. I’m making your day more interesting.”

“Do NOT need your help. And if I find that two pixies have jinxed me, I’m going to spend a lot of time cursing your name and making your life miserable.” She grabbed a jar of loose tea leaves and put it back on the shelf.

“Oh baby, you know I like it when you threaten me.” He straightened up and gave her a crooked grin.

“I mean it. Maybe I’ll even talk to Hera.”

The grin faded quick. “Now, now. No need to pull her into this.”

Ronnie poked a finger into his chest. “Then you better get fixing the problem, chop chop.”

“You are such a Valentine sourpuss, Ronnie. No wonder you’re single.” He snorted.

494 words
@solimond

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2/14/2012 12:06:37 am

Maintaining The Balance

What a way to spend that special day, Jake
groaned. That was the best Control had to
say?!? He'd been stuck in this flyspeck town
for three days waiting on a Clean-up Team.
Even though he'd put the body into a stasis
bag, he was certain it was starting to stink.

He'd be damned lucky if Gladys didn't
castrate him over this debacle. Her refusal
to answer the phone for two days spoke
volumes about how deep the shit he was in,
truly, was. As expected, she didn't care why
he was unlikely to be able to get back to
Seattle for Valentine's Day. Truth be told,
he couldn't really blame her.

What sane person would believe his
explanation anyway? He'd been sent here to
find and neutralize a rogue cherub. Yes, a
cherub. Cute, pudgy man-babies with little
wings who flitted about firing metaphorical
darts of love...they were real, decidedly
NOT mythical. This would have been about
where Gladys would have hung up on him
anyway.

In any event, when one of those adorable
fellows decided love was only an illusion,
things got hinky. When this disgruntled chap swapped his love darts for hunting shafts with barbed heads, things got serious. When this gifted archer started racking up a body count, Jake got involved.

Though he'd hoped reasoning would do the
trick, it never seemed to work. After a
veritable storm of arrows, his Colt Python
had ended the melee in bloody fashion.
Lesson learned? Never bring a bow to a
gunfight.

He'd been overjoyed to transition from low-
level FBI functionary to the position of Field
Agent with the newly-formed General Services Paranormal Operations Task Force -GSPOT for short. Great acronym guys! The work was exciting, the pay was astronomical and it opened up doors he'd never imagined existed.

Every job had its downside, though. His job
demanded frequent, unexpected travel. So
far, he had missed Gladys' birthday -
undocumented Medusa in Toledo, the 4th of
July - Chinese dragon in human form selling
illegally-potent fireworks and now THIS!
Something had to give soon or he would
lose her forever.

The jangle of the phone jarred him from his
reverie. It was the Chief himself!

"Jake, absolutely great work on the cherub
matter! A team will be on site within the
hour."

Jake nearly cheered. It would be tight, but
he could STILL make it back for a late dinner
with his beloved. He was so distracted he
barely realized the Chief was still speaking.

"...know it's quick turnaround, but we have
a damned succubus taking down some VERY
influential high rollers in Vegas. You leave
on the same aircraft the team arrives on. Of
course, you'll get bonus rate for the short
notice."

As Jake hung up, he was already doing
complex mental math to determine if he
had enough on his combined cards to order
everything 1-800-Flowers offered AND buy
out a Zale's Jewelers AND get it delivered to
Gladys by tonight. Hey, why not? Stranger
things happened.

500 words. @klingorengi

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