In spite of the holiday (and the lazy host who didn't send out reminders), Some of our regulars still showed up to share their fantastic stories!

Table of Contents

Melinda by Robin Abess
Untitled by H.L. Pauff
Blind Date by Lisa McCourt Hollar
Getting The Job Done by Jeffrey Hollar
Untitled by Marie Frizelle (ineligible)
Hunted by David A Ludwig
The Roast by Rebekah Postupak
Storytelling by Chessny Silth

Judges Notes

Right out the gate I had zombies and monsters and vampires, oh my! But seriously, it's hard enough to pull a twist on a reader under ordinary circumstances and here I knew a twist was coming but you all still managed to surprise me. Nicely done.

Robin Abess:
I knew something was afoot but not zombies even after the cemetery was mentioned. All the focus was on the little girl. I liked the long lead up and then when disaster struck, it was quick and total.

H.L. Pauff:
You almost don't think something bad is going to happen in this but it does. I love that it took place on a train because once you get to the end, you have a greater sense of fear because you're trapped on train. 

Jeffrey Hollar:
This guardian angel is not what you would assume. He's freelance? He can be a reaper? Good portrayal of the preconceived notion because I certainly had some. 

David A Ludwig
There's a lot that isn't what it seems here. I liked the contrasts of the cute little Asian with the nasty scar and the crazy lady in a wedding dress.
 
Chessny Silth:
A tale where the monsters are expected and don't show up. There's a reversal I didn't see coming. No carnage, no terror, just a smile.

Honorable Mention

Picture
Lisa McCourt Hollar:
Such a vivid portrayal of the skeevy downside to blind dates (I met my husband on a blind date) and your descriptions and actions were so detailed that I felt dirty just reading this. It's always nice to see a lowlife get some payback...and the lowlife wasn't the vampire!

Winner

Picture
The Roast
by Rebekah Postupak

“There was something about the woman that made me uneasy,” said Paula.

“Oh, me too, for sure,” said Nance. “She almost made me ill, actually.”

“Looked fine to me,” said George. “Great car, I thought.”

“Well, you’re a man,” said Paula. “We wouldn’t expect you to notice anything.”

“Men never do,” said Nance. “Blind as bats.”

“Idiots,” sniffed Irene.

“As I was saying, something just seemed *off* about her,” said Paula. “It wasn’t her clothes, exactly—”

“Oh, no, her clothes were fine,” said Nance. “Her skirt was really cute. I wonder where she got it. It kind of shimmered.”

“It was a cute skirt,” Paula agreed. “But she still seemed, oh, I don’t know. Wrong.”

“I liked her shoes,” said Svieta. She didn’t usually speak up at these post-block-party meetings, but surely nobody could argue against such a perfect pair of candy apple red heels.

“I know, right??” said Nance enthusiastically. “What a great red! Not too perky, not too dull. I want a pair.”

Paula felt herself rapidly losing control of the discussion. “We need to talk about whether she’s right for our neighborhood—”

“Red can be ‘perky’?” said George, shaking his head in mock amazement.

Nance giggled. “Oh, you *are* a hoot, George! Like you don’t know your reds better than any of us.”

“You totally nailed the red in my kitchen,” Irene agreed. “In fact, I was hoping you wouldn’t mind taking a look at the den, next.”

Fury crawled up the back of Paula’s neck like a dozen tiny scorpions. “Back to today’s newcomer…”

“I thought she was nice.” Svieta couldn’t believe she’d dared say it. She studied the floor intently. How would the others respond?

“Bravo!” said Irene. “And since you made the motion, let me second it. Lizzie stays!”

“Who’s Lizzie?” George asked suspiciously.

“The new girl!” said Nance. “The one you said has a great car.”

“SHE’S WARMBLOODED AND I DON’T LIKE HER!”

Everybody’s mouths dropped open, and Paula suddenly realized she’d shouted the thought out loud. She hastily sat back down.

“I’m just saying, maybe we should take a little time before voting,” she said weakly.

George raised an eyebrow. “We all seem to be fine with her except you.”

“Yeah, what’s your problem?” said Irene.

“She makes me nervous,” Paula whispered. “She’s creepy.”

“I know exactly what you mean,” said Nance. “Creepy is as creepy does.”

Irene threw a barbecue mitt at Nance. “That doesn’t even make sense. Anyway, times are changing. We need to get used to the short-toothed kind.”

“Yeah. Not everybody can be lunch,” Svieta said, feeling bolder by the minute. “And it won’t kill us to let her stay.”

The room fell silent as everyone now gaped at their newest member, her words still hanging awkwardly in the air.

Paula swallowed hard.

Swallowed again, almost choking with the effort.

But it was no use. Within moments the howling laughter of an entire garage full of vampires echoed down the empty street.

Judge's Comment
It can be difficult to do character dialogue with so many voices but these were easy to follow and the personalities still came through. No way was I imagining domestic vampires and I loved the line "Fury crawled up the back of Paula's neck like a dozen tiny scorpions." Intriguing piece for sure.

9/4/2012 07:42:37 am

Congratulations Lisa and Rebekah!

I enjoyed all the stories, they all had strong voices and a vivid setting.

I look forwards to next Monday already ;)

Reply
Rebekah Postupak
9/4/2012 09:20:39 am

Thanks so much!! Congrats to Lisa for the HM. And thanks for taking the time to give feedback on all the entries--feedback is a rare gift and so very much appreciated.

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