Kimberly Gould ~ @KimmyDonn
Charles W Jones ~ @Chuckwesj
Siobhan Muir ~ @SiobhanMuir
Sheilagh Lee ~ @SweetSheil
David A Ludwig ~ @DavidALudwig
Jeffrey Hollar ~ @klingorengi
Cara Michaels ~ @caramichaels
Lisa McCourt Hollar ~ @jezri1
Warren Danbar ~ @warrendanbar
Rebekah Postupak ~ @postupak
Nellie ~ @solimond
Ryan Strohman ~ @rastrohman
M L Gammella ~@MLGammella
You told a fun and complete fantasy tale with great characters. I loved the use of the term and concept of the berserker. I haven't read that term in any format in a long time. It shows a great attention to cultural detail for the depth and development of a character even in such a short venue. Nice job. @DavidALudwig
You created a story that allows us to intuit and assume a rich back story for the relationship of the characters while wanting to know the outcome and leaving us on the edge of our seats. As a result you told an almost episodic a tale of a few hundred words that seemed much longer...all by stimulating our imagination. Very cool story. I'd like to read more. @Siobhan Muir
Everyone who has has lost a loved one or a family member to Alzheimer's or some similar fate can understand the frustration of the situation for all involved as well as their fixation on certain objects or concepts as they try to hold on. But you also capture the kindness that often is exhibited by family and friends during their loved one's slow descent making the simple trip to buy the mustard a labor of love and an honoring of the affected person's dignity by allowing them relevance. This story affected me and was a simple and subtle slice of life that we can all imagine being played out in thousands of similar real life stories every day. Very well done. @postupak
By Rebekah Postupak
I’m out of mustard.
My husband, a ketchup man, laughed at me when I pointed this out, kissed the top of my head and headed out the door to work, whistling. If only I could be so cavalier.
“I’m out of money!” she chirped back. “Bank account’s empty as my ex-husband’s cold, cold heart.”
“Sorry,” I said, because there was nothing else to say. Bank account problems trump condiment problems, I suppose, even here in Texas.
Still, the lack of mustard nagged at me all day like a hangnail, and I scrawled notes on several post-its, strategically placing them around my desk as reminders to take care of it at lunch. But emergency meetings crowded out my day and somehow, ten hours later, I found myself in a dark kitchen back at home, staring into the pantry at an empty space.
No mustard. I had no mustard.
“Jackie?” said my husband’s voice behind me, and I jumped. “What are you doing here in the dark?”
“I’m out of mustard,” I said. My voice caught in my throat like a pre-teen boy’s.
“Jackie,” he said in a strangely tender tone, “what’s wrong?”
“I’m out of mustard!” I shouted. It felt good to shout. “There is no mustard in this blasted house!”
He turned the light on—why had we installed such an ugly, naked light in our kitchen??—and pulled me into his arms. I fought him at first, but his arms felt better than I’d expected and after a minute I let him hold me.
“Jackie,” he said a while later, “I saw the doctor’s report.”
I didn’t say anything. Hadn’t he heard me?
“You’re going to be okay,” he said. “It’s just one opinion. This is Dallas. Everybody has an opinion. We’ll go get another one, okay?”
I just stared at the empty spot on the pantry shelf. No mustard, not one jar.
After another long moment, he said, “Let’s go get mustard. Let’s get twenty things of it, okay? Fifty things. We’ll get so much mustard, it’ll run out our ears.”
And I cried.