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fiction DREAMSCAPES FICTION ARCHIVE - 2011
Brierley Grange
Louise Broadbent
In which we discover the truth about family ghosts
A Life for a Life
Barbara Jane Mackie

You are staring into the eyes of a Murderer and that Murderer is staring back at you.
Putty Thief
Amanda Donovan
"Run!" yelled my little sister.
I couldn't move. I was petrified. Rooted to the spot. My skinny legs felt as heavy as the grey, graffiti covered concrete tunnels
An Act of God

Damilola Ajayi
It all began that evening when Papa knocked on the door, fully dressed in his police uniform save for his beret. The squeaky sound of the opening door is still vivid in my mind even after seven years.
Blossoms
Ryan Madej

The probability is, despite a lack of foresight, I have lost my way. Not just metaphorically, mind you, but literally. I’ve always started out with bad directions, whether it be in life or love, and now I was paying the price.
The Lottery Ticket

Martin Green
It began as a simple scheme by two clerks who worked in the State Lottery Oversight Bureau (SLOB).
Happy Birthday Hermann
Pierrino & Sandy Mascarino
Sarah, a dark haired woman in her 20’s, was running down a Hollywood back street near a major movie studio that was in a subdued and reserved corner of the movie making community
Seeking Happiness

Maria Dastolfo
It wasn’t like someone drawing the words on your back with a finger while you tried to spell it out in your head. I was definitely trying to spell out the words in my head, "Seek Happiness"
An English Setter in New York
Robert Scott Leyse takes Zuke for a walk
Zuke's an English Setter – the wildest, most spirited, bouncing-off-the-walls-with-energy breed of dog on earth; and, at eleven months, is in the prime of exuberant disregardful-of-authority puppydom!
My Father’s Tallis
Jenny Wright
Smells can stir up old memories. Long forgotten and sometimes wistful memories that we wish would remain buried. It was like that one Yom Kippur.
Events of the Day

Martin Green
The alarm rang. 6:45. Arnold Gray reached over and turned it off. His wife Mary stirred slightly but remained asleep. How many days since they’d done it now? 23 and counting.
Rivers

J. Malcolm Garcia
It begins raining while the boy runs. His arms pump back and forth and his legs stretch in long strides as he bounces lightly off his feet.
A Story about Jack

James Nantau
There was a man who’s first name starts with J but it was not Jack and he did not live in New York. A lot of people live in New York City but he was not one of them.
Kiss-Ass Andy

Jessica Schneider
"I would do anything to protect my job," Paige could remember her co-worker Andy muttering upon one occasion
Juan the Silent - Episode One
Hannah Langley
Tonight, he would make it home. She would be waiting for him in the safe little cabin of logs and bricks
Coffee and Sex
Mary Colvin
‘Wanted to know if you fancied going for a coffee and then maybe have sex after
The Plumber
Alan Stokes
The bed's huge and white, very very white. The whole bedroom's white.
Blackfriars Bridge
Paul Valentine
My name is Sister Carmel. I understand that you are investigating the death of Monsegnieur Dwyer?’

The Effect of Blue Light on the Human Endocrine System - Richard Skinner
Prone and alone, I luxuriated in the sun. Unaccustomed to the heat, I dozed.
"Hear the gunshots last night?"

Paulito's Last Christmas
Daniela I. Norris
He rang my doorbell on a warm summer evening, as the heat of the day evaporated from the cracks in the dusty pavement like an omen rising from the cracked lips of an oracle
Naga in the Negev

Michael Chacko Daniels
After repeatedly dreaming that centuries ago he was a famous Bedouin healer in the Negev, Abdoul, son of Cochin Cohn, saw himself living in the Negev and nowhere else, if he were to remain in the land of Israel
If You Want Peace, Prepare for War
Willam Better
The Hero is one of the people in the filling station’s convenience store. He wears snug black jeans that disappear into tall black riding boots like cavalrymen wore when tilting towards each other in green fields, heroes all
Barbarism Begins at Home
William Better
So there's this guy and he's walking to class. His walk to class from his apartment is typically a half-mile, maybe more but probably less.
The Walk
Polly Card on Primrose Hill
She had been looking forward to their walk. It was the last time she would see him before he went away and she had a question to ask.  
A Morning Wave
Adam Bonus
So there I was in the middle of the pavement, soaked in my own urine with a butter knife in my hand.
Be Careful what you wish for

Charlotte Francis
6, 12, 40, 36, 10 & 22. The numbers that ruined my life.
Unhappy Dilys

Greg Mosse
Dilys was a small woman with a helmet of black hair and pasty skin. She worked shifts, enabling her to be at home when my mother wasn’t
Briar Woods
Lauren Mackintosh
The evening brought a cold that even this part of town couldn't handle. A strange cold that turned cheeks pink and brought mittens and scarves out of cupboards
Hoarding
Greg Mosse
‘How much have you spent?’ Bobby asked.
‘Not as much as you’d think,’ said Jack. ‘Most of it is staples.’
Clear Glass
M J Norris
I discovered my younger sibling had beaten me to the last pair of clean socks. Now I would have to suffer the indignity of sweat-stiff socks as well as the outsize uniform inherited from my elder sister.
Come the Revolution
Clare Sager
I threw the car keys on the table. ‘We need to get out of here.’ Clear and simple – no time for misunderstandings.
Dog
Stuart Parker
It was bright enough to give you a headache on that Sunday morning. We were off to spend the day with my least favourite aunt
The Noise -

"Oh, what great fiction I will mold from such terrible misery..."-- Jim White
Punkerslut
What was that noise? Who did it come from -- who was it looking for? Why did it stop?
Gobble Village Chic

Michael Chacko Daniels
 “Not your beloved Bell Avenue in Chicago,” I say, as billboards beckon through fog to far planetary corners.

Koffee Kulture
Leigh Pierce

"Welcome to Karma Koffee, home of the $450 dollar coffee, how can I help you?"
Shiny Summer Super Time Ra-Ra-Ra
Mark Cunliffe
This summer has been the best summer ever

Simon Says
Mark Cunliffe
Its half past twelve at night, exactly thirty minutes into 2008 and I am stood in my small back yard, looking up into the cold fresh New Year rain, completely naked

Vincent's Wine
Karen Maxwell

Nothing belonged to him. Only the dry mouth from the shots at The Sky Bar on York last night, but that was changed with his toothbrush and a coffee with milk within the hour of swinging his legs around and stepping onto the pre-fabricated oak floor. 
Fat Nasty Bitch
Jessica Schneider
Noelle Gomez was not the kind of woman anyone noticed. She was someone who, had you seen her in a bookstore, or a supermarket, you would just look on and past her,
Stiff upper Lip
Albert Rouzie hitches a ride
I’m gonna die. Jesus. Gonna die. Oh, lord
The Forbidden Town
Natasha Reid
I can no longer go it, through it, or even near it.

Stop
R. Sirmons
I am IN life. I am in the stream of it, in the middle of it, I swallow it and eat it
Still Life
Mark Robinson
And the skies above the City bleed down upon the earth its overcast haze.
The Councillor
Mark Robinson
‘I need your help. My wife; she’s cheating on me.’ There, it was out. Open.
Sarah's Globe
Laura Anne Styles
In the middle of the Vatican Museum standing before me is the biggest globe I have ever seen and try as I might I couldn’t stop myself from laughing
The Fall of Me
Tessa Foley
I did care for them. You learn to care for anyone you work with every sunlit hour God sends. I watched the children grow like weeds in Spring. I would be lying if I said it didn't touch my icy, red heart
Violence
Maria Marlais
And all women have killed themselves. They grew tired of the world, this world, our world
Life After Death
Emma Callan
I was thirty four years old when I died. I’d never thought about dying before
The Pefect Scandal
Emma Callan
‘Tell me Mr. Stead. How did you, such a respectable man, come to witness…’
The boy who never had a good day
David Tavernier
There was once a boy who looked in the mirror, and all he saw were pimples. He thought he was the ugliest boy on earth
Small Change
Rich Raitano
Small Change. That’s what they called him on the street ... because he would do just about anything for a hand full of next to nothing
Happy Ending
Saeed Tavakkol
 “Good evening, Sir. I’m calling from Happy Ending. You’ve been selected to win a prize.

The Prisoner
Tom Sheehan
The sound came once more. He stiffened. It was closer. His whole body knew it was closer. It was not just in the hearing. It approached.

The Photographer’s Model
Joseph Grant

“Life is defined by light and shadow…” The stentorian voice boomed, filling the large empty echo of the front of the photographer’s shop.

The Banished
Joseph Grant

Juan Muytado cursed them; they, who had left him here in this wasteland, alone in hell.

White Oleander
Alun Williams

We decided to run away after Betty’s parents found out she was pregnant.

Redemption
James C. Clar

"Liam, I’m not much of one when it comes to pets"

Moon Steere
Mark Cunliffe

The year is 1744.
A big fat harvest moon shone that night upon the forests of the village of Moon Steere as Tom Carter ran for his life

Greetings from Caen
Gordon Bourgon
France, July, 1944, near Caen
Hello my little snowflake. Do you remember when I first called you that? My little snowflake. That terrible winter when we were twelve

The Ghost in the Machine
David Tavernier
There was once a computer named Daniel. All day long he'd sit and wait for someone, anyone to help him out of his misery.

Jubilee
Mark Cunliffe
Bryan Sutton walked down the steps into the basement club and felt awkward. If truth be told Bryan Sutton felt awkward pretty much everyday of his 24 years of life

On the Fringes
J Kaval
When did the devil enter me? How did he get inside? I’ve no idea. He started meddling with my life
.
The World of Hunter Killer Robots
Daniel Tavernier
No one knew young Jorb3. He was one of the sole sane human beings left on the planet. He didn't want to adapt to the new order of systematic incorporation into the new Humanlike Borgian race.
Riders of Dragon Number 19
Michael Chacko Daniels
Gray’s blue eyes disconnect from the mists flirting with Alcatraz, the former prison island in San Francisco Bay, during Chinese New Year week
Crazy
Alan Stokes
I'm all over the place. Too much is happening in my head. I need to slow down for a bit. I've told them that - shouted them that - but they just won't listen to me. They think I'm okay.
The Getaway
Martin Green
Ok what's going on? Why are you here son?
Sound of Death
Heather Parker
Helen covered her ears, desperately trying to block out the incessant, thudding sound of Death. How did it choose its victims? What quirk of fate decided who would be alive when the planes finally returned to Israel, their bellies empty?
The Hardest Part
Adam Graupe
Joe dropped his wedding band off to have it polished at the jewelry store; without the wedding band, Joe was a free man.  He stepped inside the candy store and saw Amy alone in a sleeveless dress.  He stared at her thick bare arms and wanted to rub them.
Playing Cupid
Martin Green
He was glad to see that Anne Lewis was there.   Paul had introduced Anne, a widow, to a friend of his, Gary Palmer, a while ago in the hope that something would develop
The Wave and the Thing
David Russell (For Kids)
We looked up and saw it. The biggest, most gigantic wave anyone of us had ever seen. And it was coming right at us
In the Grand Tradition of Grand Traditions
Charles E Accetta
In a neatly trimmed fenced-in Southern California backyard, an older gentlemanly type person stood facing the back of the property with his arms raised to the sky.
Freud in the Fridge
Guy Edwards
It was the morning after the house warming party in my new flat that I found a book on the interpretation of dreams by Sigmund Freud on a shelf in the fridge. That was the same party that I met the Marxist chemist, wearing an oversized dark blue beret, who had argued convincingly that Marx had stolen his ideas on communism from organic chemistry.
The Literal Day
G David Schwartz
September 7th, 1948 began typically and promised to be non-eventful. The fact that I was an eyewitness to the startling events I am about to relate is one of those accidents of history
The Mystery of the Missing Mother
Mary Colvin
No one could quite pinpoint exactly when Mother vanished although they spent some time trying to figure it out.
The Blue Plastic Bag
Rani Drew
It was on one such rainy and windy day that a blue plastic bag found out its outreach. The story of its trajectory goes like this.
That Old Black Magic
James C. Clar
Tom and Karen had come to Hawaii in a last ditch effort to "save" their marriage but it just wasn’t working.

The Adjunct Detective
Michael Hammond
Legendary among road-weary part-time professors, adjuncts, Stu Hanagan, for more than a decade, rode public transportation from school to school, college and university, teaching composition and literature courses
The Adjunct Detective: The Case of Well-dressed Gentlemen - Michael Hammond
T
emporarily distracted from his work, Stu Hanagan peered out the window of the Albany Park branch of the Chicago Public Library, watching the winter weather worsen until the intersection of Foster and Kimball slowly disappeared into a swirling mess of white.

The Positive of Negative
Karen Murray Gow
Bang, bang, thud, "hurry up," a deep satanic voice bellows from the other side of the toilet door. Squatting over the stench, of the well soiled bowl, pigeon toed around an incontinent puddle; I manage to un-wrap the stick.

The Luncheon
Rebecca Stonehill
It was a muggy day on this, the 40th wedding anniversary of Edwin and Frances Durrant. If they were being honest with one another, they would both have preferred to be elsewhere

Confessions of a New York City Street Peddler
Dr. Howard Karlitz
It's February, 1980, and David Gordon is standing in front of a class of delinquent kids in a South Brooklyn juvenile detention center trying to teach reading a short story called 'Young Pablo Picasso'...

In the Shadows of the Past
Joeseph Grant
He remembered the very first time he saw her, when he told himself that she was the one. But he had been wrong about her
Terrorism
Allison Fine
It was Sunday; he did not have to be anywhere and most important he did not have to be at Brown Harris Stevens Brokerage where he worked as a real estate broker

Purple Maiden Chapter One here
James Skinner

Purple Maiden Chapter Two
James Skinner
The Purple Maid
en - - Chapter Three - Wrong Wreck
MV ‘Franconia’, off the Cies Islands, Galicia. June 1999.
James Skinner

He couldn’t research further into the actual U-boat without going back to the Navy and that would mean going above his boss’ head. ‘Who’s really behind this anyway?’ he thought.

The Other Side of the River
Bill Hedman

Willie James wasn't a big guy in the way that some guys are scary big, he was just big. Caldwell was scary big. An altercation in the locker room after football practice touched the flash point when Willie said, "Cal'wel, watch yo sef, dynamite come in small packages!"

Shoot Out at Conner's Arcade
Anne S. Armand
"Stop or I’ll Shoot." It was in all of the papers. Made the headlines in the SHORE TIMES. Even saw it on the news channel from Boston.

Uncle Pringle & the Scam Artist

Martin Green

Life is good, thought Sidney Rothenberg, sitting in a lounge chair at poolside of the most luxurious hotel ...

Starting Over
Daniel Haight

38, divorced and staring down the barrel at alimony and child support. The awkwardness of his son’s visits – the inevitable moment when his son would look up at him and say, "Why did you have to leave Mom?"

Turn Right at Souldrop
Gareth Draper

Jeremy slammed on his breaks as he approached the disused petrol station that stood by the side of the road on the left, narrowly avoiding the crawling car in front.
Dunnottar Castle: August 1957
Doug Brownie

It was a cold day in Hell. The crack as her head hit the rocks 20 feet below seemed uncannily loud to the boy

Nausea
Pierre Edgcumbe
My Carbonated head fizzes and spits, giving a nauseating effect. It has begun.
The Sad Bauble
Steve Dubowski

Christmas Day came late to the Timmins household that year. Mr Timmins was working away overseas until Christmas Eve and nobody felt “Christmassy” until they were all together
Nubility by Piotr Wesolowski
Morelos watches as Boeing 747, a delayed charter flight from Budapest, touches the ground. Rubber burns on hot tarmac raising clouds of thin smoke; wheels squeak like dying lobsters.
The Dream by EN Heim
Why am I having these bizarre dreams? This vacation we’re on is weird.
The Last Child
Michael Hammond

Fistfights, car wrecks, and frequent arrests told the story of Jim’s twisted life
The Ticket
Piotr Wesolowski

The ticket came in on Monday; it indicated the stadium, the row and the seat. It was delivered by registered mail.
Dr Death
Marcel D'Agneau

Time to go. Time to die. All about my mother
The Curse
Piotr Wesolowski

Tonight, again, he was humiliated.
‘Go! Go! Don’t waste my time!’ Sirelis said.
Prelude to Everything
James Novoa

A serene shadow key stroked its light to dark patterns amidst a lonely ember light
Frank Dryhandel
Jay Marvin

Everytime they had an argument she used it against him; it was like a slug in the gut. He hated his job
The Hoopster and The Hopster
(Young Fiction)
David Russell

He told his mom he needed to shoot some baskets
Bring Me the Head of Padraic
O Conaire

Joseph Guderian
Frank’s life allows little silliness, filled as it is with job, school, his art, and above all, the family. Sometimes after a few pops with his best friend, Ligos, the pair get silly, parodying the Irish types they both know so well:
Premonitions of angels
Abigail George

Just keeping on
Flecked with dizzying introspection, difficult, monstrous yet inspiring new things that bring you joy
Remembering Elaine
Martin Green

Next morning a stunning girl who was in my lit class stopped me on the way out and asked, “Are you the one who hit somebody at a party yesterday?” 

The Dangers of Daydreaming
Ann Sharratt
The day I chopped my sisters finger off, I learned the harsh consequence of not paying attention
Mourning for Moaning
Jasmine Marie

Look, I’ve no time for banter. Is there anyone else in the house besides you?
I'm Not Dead
Barbara Jane Mackie
Did some bloke once say ‘Dying ain’t easy?’
Rad
Martin Green
I was 23 years old when I came out from New York to San Francisco in the 1960’s and, looking back, was even younger as regards experience of life.
Off the Lights of Pokrovka
Joshua Walker
The lights from the cafe, behind the shimmering, humming glass, dazzled his eyes. It was 6 p.m. on a slushy Moscow Tuesday in March and Sveta was looking through the front door.

Tragedy of the Spring-Breeze King

Daniel DiPrinzio

"All I wanted was to make people happy, to add an element of luxury to hygeine, and this is the thanks I get?"
A Natural Selection
Anne Greenwood

"Be quiet."
"What now?" Matt griped. They’d barely moved at all in the last hour. All he wanted to do was go down and watch Sponge Bob.
Déjà Vu
Carrie Anne Riddle

It's strange going back. Stranger still, that it happens to be exactly twenty five years to the day since I left. I always swore I'd never return.
The Wait

Esha Nag
Ameera couldn’t wait to get home. It was getting dark and the warm Shamal winds made it difficult for her to remain on the streets any longer. Besides, it would soon be six and she was expecting Salim any moment now.
Amy and the Waitress

Chris Castle
Hmm. Thinking about lilies and funerals at seven am. Not a good sign. But then she’d been whoo-hooed already so maybe it was the day for it.
Twilight of the Gods
Keith Leonard
Stan watched fascinated as the woman squeezed between tables, a plate of sandwiches balanced precariously on a tea cup.
Wild About Harry
Charles Ausherman
I asked Dad what his father did for a living. He answered, "Well, son, your grandpa was a salesman who just went from titty to titty."
An African Bride
Fisayo Talabi
She sat, legs crossed, staring at the menu. With the corner of her eyes, she watched Felix sip his glass of water as he looked through the menu too.

Fountain kerb
Chris Castle
"You’re last day today?" she said. She looked down to her sandwich, looked back up.
"Yeah. Bit part dies then its back to the stars I guess."

Gingerbread Men

Steve Slatter
First, ask Mummy to turn on the oven to 170. You might have to wait for her to do this because she’s always busy.
Joe the Bear

Adam Graupe
Joe, a 500-pound Brown Bear, worked for Pine Tech Incorporated. He plodded away from the time clock, down the hallway and slumped down into the chair in his cubicle.
T.S. Eliot Goes to London
Sitting in a room when in comes some guy brandishing a syringe and shouting, ‘yum yum yum’. everyone gets up and screams but I’m thinking hang on a minute this is silly
The Loan

Martin Green
“Nick’s going to ask you for that loan.   I knew it when they announced those furloughs.”
6 December 1987

Greg Mosse
For most of my childhood I didn’t live in fear. You don’t when you are small. But you become aware of it later, as you grow up and the world begins to show its teeth

From the Journal of Chas. Templeton, Esq.
Greg Mosse
what a rude awakening, before dawn and before my people were abroad, with the banging of a phantom fist upon my shutters

A Sensitive, Thin Man
Lars Flatmo

Reclining on my father's dirty living room couch made from raw white silk, I see through the drawn bamboo blinds my friend's short frame rapidly advancing across the front lawn towards the front door.
Verisimilitude
James C. Clar
Dayton Apana sat at a window table in the Honolulu Coffee Company café. The window was open, the trades were blowing
The Telephone
Christine Lawrence
It was on the skip. Steve was cycling home from work, just another long day in the factory, when he saw the skip sitting in the street just around the corner.
Evening Singing

Julia Gordon
Evening came with the singing of insects, every little voice chirping and wanting to be heard. Kelly was at home with a bottle of wine
In The Dark
Piotr Wesolowski
Groping and dragging his feet past cracked, edgeless steps, he followed a dark narrow staircase that led to the exit downstairs

$20 a Gallon
Adam Graupe

The Inspector growled, “I am from the state department. What is the meaning of charging $20 a gallon for gasoline?”
Pocketworld
Paul Valentine
Basildon was designed for traffic and adults: It was a soulless place for a child. You couldn’t walk anywhere in a straight line;- had to flow down concrete rivers across the contours of cultural vacuity
Red Irony
William Bryant
He was getting old, and it had been too long since my last visit. I couldn’t help feeling sorry for him - living alone way out in the country like that

Granddad’s Chocolate
Edmund Sandoval
Granddad’s been hoarding the chocolate bars again because granddad’s crazy and he thinks his Vietnamese girlfriend is still alive.
Too Soon
J.A. Laraque
That flashing red light torments me. I’ve waiting been thirty seven years for this. What do I do?
The Composer
Richard McGarry
Mattéo Ranvier was intently contemplating Ana Lucia Beltrán’s eyes as he stared out of the window of an airbus bound for Paris. Those rapturous and dark eyes, like burnished amber, yet profoundly sad as if they had been taken hold by some hidden, unspeakable tragedy
Village Boys and Fret Boards
Jessica Patient

As soon as I saw the acoustic guitar I knew it was going to be your birthday present

Many Happy Returns
Mary Colvin
Party dresses. I had party dresses when I was little. With sashes, rainbow sashes. And party shoes. Shiny red t-bar shoes that winked at me as I danced
Barren
Laura Anne Styles
When I was twenty five my boyfriend Harry had his drink spiked. To this day I have never seen someone so sick.
An unusal Sunday in Dagoba

Lakunle Jaiyesimi
Sundays are unusually hot days! Nature has her ways for perfect orderliness. Or maybe, it’s the Sun god at work, who has chosen that day for itself alone. The god comes out in full armour, with bristling rays poured on all the earth without discrimination.
Up On The Shelf

Gordon Ray Bourgon
My path to recovery has taken a detour, and I don’t know if I’ll ever find my way again.
A Leg to Die For
Sidi Cherkawi Benzahra
My grandfather took his leg to Lalla Fatima and she invoked the spirit and did all she could do to heal his leg
Darwin
Adam Graupe

“Connie, I found the solution to our problems.”  Darwin reached into his front pocket and removed a Powerball lottery ticket

First Day
Christine Churcher

Monday morning, nine a.m., I tremble as I pass through the long, cold corridors, the acrid smell clinging to the inside of my nostrils
Richard's Story
Claire Holland
I am suddenly reluctant to pick up the phone because I know that I am not going to like what I hear.
Banana Falls on Ant
Jerry Billstrom

Fishing for time in Cuba
Office Tyrant
Martin Green
“Didn’t I say I wanted that report  today,” asked Blair, his deep voice soft but menacing.
Uncle Pringle and the Bookmaker 
Martin Green
Bob’s story was familiar but had a singular twist.   He’d become a gambler

Starbuck
James C Clar
It was one of those nights that the word ‘balmy’ was simply born to describe. The palm trees shrugged their shoulders and rustled overhead in the light trades as I walked my dog east along Ala Wai Boulevard.

Satisfaction Guaranteed
Richard Radford
Sunset hit the parking lot outside Globe-Mart, splashing neon light across the acres of SUVs and minivans packed into tight rows.

The Lady’s Curse
Natalie Tehrani
The Tower

Adaira felt the tower walls edge closer, imagined the spiders creeping from their damp beds to crawl over her skin. Outside the fields stretched for miles, laughing with silent scorn at her weakness.
The Man in the Orange Suit
Adam Graupe
The driveway winded and twisted through hills and pine.  A mile up the driveway stood a shack surrounded by hundreds of destroyed televisions.

The Wedding Gift
Joseph Grant
The car had been a wedding present for him and his young bride from his new in-laws. It made him uneasy to drive such an expensive car

How To Disappear Completely
Mark Robinson
"You have reached the How to Disappear Completely automated helpline; you will shortly hear a list of options; please consider these carefully before selecting the corresponding number on your keypad."

Stereotypical People
Julia Gordon
Jennifer was excited walking down the street in her tight red jeans. In the new jeans, the birds seemed to be singing just for her. It was a bright and fresh spring day, and Jennifer was bright and fresh

The Nestbury Tree
Ayodele Morocco-Clarke

It all started to kick off when the Shepherd of the church which was located at the far side of the compound behind the house, pronounced that the Nestbury tree in the yard was a haven for witches and had to come down
The Samaritans of Terror
James Skinner
Let the good guys win for a change
Of Turkey and Chicken
Sidi Cherkawi Benzahra
I was eight, going on nine when my family lived in a small house in the suburbs of Rabat, Morocco. The suburbs back then were dusty, hot, and poor.
His name is Nathan

John Brackenridge
I saw it from when he got to being a teenager, but it was coming from before that. He was at school most times, didn't miss a day unless it was for something important. Not like some of them other boys
.
Red Like Me

Lisa Timmerman
Zittau, Germany, 1933
I have never waited this long. My situation is my secret. Until they return.

Carpe Diem
Will Collins
She was the jewel in the crown of Liquorice’s dancers: as delicious, elegant and alluring as any vintage wine; the most requested dancer; the most fascinating treasure.

Merton's Pizza
G David Schwartz
Merton's dream was about to be fulfilled. The  good Lord willing, and a little bit of luck, Merton would have what he had been nagging me about for the last twelve hours. Merton was about to be satisfied.
Surviving the Moroccan Bath
Sidi Benzahra
When I was six, or probably seven years old, my mom always took me and my sisters to the public bath. Whenever we built up a good thick layer of dirt on our skin, or had gone two weeks without washing for some reason or another, she would take us there.
La Creta Returns
Dean Borok
Like Satan, she was known by many names, all of which related to that most alluring and reviled aspect of the female physiognomy.
The San Juan Bagels Parking Lot
Dean Borok
La Creta dwelt in perpetual fear of the parking lot, separated from the factory by the Taliban shish-kebob garage where resided the The Forty Thieves of the spicy halal chicken and rice wagons

The Texas Long-Haired Rifle Association
Jim Parks

It took me a minute or two before I realized that Harry wasn't trying to pretend he didn't know me
Little Toy Pocketknife
Floyd Frank

Gary Horton used to have a Swiss Army knife that I enjoyed ridiculing
Starting Out
Martin Green

I was pretty excited about getting the job on my first interview until I discovered that my salary would be $75 a week,
Coming of Age in San Francisco   
Martin Green
“The new campaign stinks,” interrupted Fiegelman.

College in America: Weed 101
Alan Stokes

I found Flyn in our dorm, smoking a joint. There was a kid with him. I asked what his name was and he said his name was Zack. It seemed incredible but I let it go.

I With-Stood  Them All
Ibukunolu Babarinde
When clouds cover the face of the heavens, it may just be for a little time; when it will yet be dark as if the night will never be stolen by the crafty hands of the dawn.

Full Circle
James C Clar
Dayton Apana got up early and went for his usual run from his condo on Ala Wai Boulevard down to where Kapahulu intersected Paki Avenue.

Things You Never Knew You Never Knew
Emmanuel Iduma
I am going to tell you the truth. I have lied for so long and I am tired of living a double life. You know how it was when we first starting seeing each other

Hurricane Bobby: A Survivor’s Story
Antonia Greco
Showing up wasted at the bar you work at on a day off can be quite disconcerting, yet quite comical. Ah, yes. I said it. Drinking off of the clock: For those of us in the bar industry, we’ve all done it, we’ve all seen someone do it, and we’ll all do it again.

Soldiering On
Mark Cunliffe
The air around the soldiers was filled with a frequent and incessant distant clapping sound and an equally incessant but much nearer metallic pattering sound, almost as if a demonic and somewhat industrial thunderous rain was falling down upon them

The Last Hour
James Nantau
The fire pit was equal distance between the hundred year old cabin and the shallow lake. It was laid there by his great grandfather and it was still the perfect place for it. How many fires, conversations, songs, laughs and tears took place around that venerable pit over the countless years, Cory could only imagine.
Claw
Luke Gittos
Apparently if you stand by the thing for a while, and wait and wait and wait for loads of people to use it, and loads of people don’t get any prizes, you can go in and get the prize, because the machine has more money than the actual toy is worth. I saw it on a show about how to wins things from people. Great show.

Abroad
Thea Zimmer in Italy
Celestial in the semi-dark, the ruins loomed outside her window in the early morning glow—the arches of the basilica, like stone carcasses, full of more holy ghosts than she had ever known.

Standing at the Feet of Giants
Michael Hardie
‘Thank you kindly, good Sir,’ I call after the man walking past me, with his suit neatly pressed and eyes firmly blinkered.
Loving Titi
Fisayo Talabi
With one last look in Sade's face, he shook his head and someway, somehow, the words came out loud and clear. "I'm sorry, but I can't do this anymore. I still love Titi."

The Missing Piece
Floyd Frank
There is a number of little things in my life that make me remember my mother

One More For the Road
Gordon Ray Bourgon
They agreed: one more, that’s it. The killings were getting harder.

The Cruel War
Andy Echevarria
They stood face to face, tears falling down their faces. The war had finally come to them

Language of the Birds
Ryan Madej
I vaguely remember the day I saw the article in the newspaper mentioning rather matter-of-factly that Rene Elias had vanished.

My Date with Britney Spears
Adam Graupe
I stood in the entryway of the Denny’s Restaurant waiting for my blind date Marcy to arrive. She told me on the telephone that she looked like Britney Spears

Nightmare
Christine Lawrence
Carol stood up, doing up the buttons on her coat, and got off the bus at her usual stop. She walked hastily along the street, without a glance to either side, her stiletto heels tap-tapping on the shiny paving slabs.

It Was Just Another Manic Monday
Randall W. Pretzer
It was just another day at work she thought. A typical Monday. No customers. She had four more hours before her shift ended. It was days like these that she begged for a customer
A Junk Story
Aram McLean
The man who opened the building’s front door for us looked to be in his late eighties. Grizzled whiskers sprouted from a lined face beneath a black old-fashioned cap. Bill and I stepped up to shake his hand
Taxicabs and Burger Vans
Steve Slatter
I still wake up with a start whenever I hear a door slam in the dead of night. I listen without breathing for as long as I can, hoping I won’t detect the diesel throb of a taxi drawing up, or hear a familiar deep voice asking to go to the Central Rail Station
Thanksgiving: Kinds of Love
Martin Green
It rained the day before Thanksgiving. This worried us because our youngest son, Gene, who was 21, was driving from Berkeley to spend the holiday weekend with us in Sacramento
Single-action Bookmaker
Richard Bell
Returning to consciousness, Dave became aware of a dull, throbbing pain at the base of his skull.
Waiting
Marcia Dumler
"I love dust," she said to herself as she sat back in the comfortable reclining chair. "Dust, you can count on it always being there."

Come With Me Tonight
Randall Pretzer
I told her to come with me tonight. I told her I know the roads were always bright but if she gave me a chance I could show her the light. She wasn’t buying.

Galapagos one
Gordon Ray Bourgon
Q hid behind a fat willow, its bark scarred with ancient declarations of love and obedience. She watched Them arrive out of a smoky western sky. She ran a hand over her swollen belly.
My Mom
Jude Perera

Mom did her best to patch us up; but my hurt was too deep, I couldn’t hack it anymore. The bastard never said a word in defense; I wish he had
Eyes Together, Eyes Apart
Bruce Harris
I am supposed to be seeing this as a celebration. Why does it feel so much like a betrayal?
Burglar's Love
Piotr Wesolowski

'A few more steps and I’m in,’ he thought. Cautiously, he dragged his feet along a cement ledge three stories above a busy street in Havana.

The Bathroom Tried To Swallow Me Whole
Christopher Williams
Fifteen Coventry Road, Ilford is a large detached Victorian town house about half a mile from Valentines Park and was for many years my paternal grandparent’s home

Playschool
Tom Harris

It was with great reluctance that I accepted the role of the Archangel Gabriel in the school play all those years ago.

My Niece
Jude Perera
Cheeky, dimpled smile, chubby cheeks, head slanted in a lovable and affectionate pose. It looks faded and grainy; but it’s my favorite photo of her
Eli
Pierre Edgcumbe

Eli always rang at nine o’clock on the dot. He would ring once and then hang up the phone. That way Rose knew everything was okay
Death of a Snowflake
Mike Wysminity

“What a fitting life it is.” Those words were produced from an individual admiring the freshly fallen snow upon the unemployed tree branches.
Karma in a parking lot
James Leonard

Help will come soon. It has to.

The Fine Line Home
Dietrich Kalteis

I could flag a cab, stop a half block from my parents’ door, take off through the neighbor’s yard, dodge the steep fare, save the tip
Cymbaline on the CCTV
Chris Castle

She played the plan over in her head until she fell asleep and found it even then, lodged inside of each of her dreams.
Swimming Towards Marriage
Martin Green

You’re hiding something.  Don’t forget, you’re not getting any younger. 
 
First Flame
Bruce Harris

I put down the magazine. I have to think, the kind of thinking which needs solitude.
‘Rob’, I say, ‘I’d like a bath. Can you manage?’

Manhattanhenge
Oswaldo Jimenez

It’s the Vernal Equinox in Manhattan.  Purple shadows stick to everything in sight as the sun sinks at the far edge of West 42nd Street. “Shorty” Walker wobbles forward and back trying to escape from his shadow, but sinks right back into it, like an animal trapped in a tar pit.
The Wounded Swallow
Oswaldo Jimenez

John Wayne Marshall had been dead four weeks before his neighbors had reported him missing.

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