The Ticket

PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox

The public square was cordoned Monday, the carousel erected the following day, operational by mid-week. On Thursday, Audrey decided to visit the impromptu amusement.

She’d witnessed the carousel’s construction while riding the metro every morning to her well-paying but draining job. Leaving for an early lunch break, she walked the block towards the square.

Audrey heard music as she passed the concrete barriers for the metro. Funiculì, Funiculà. Her favorite childhood song.

“Greetings.” Audrey hadn’t seen the speaker, yet somehow knew she was being addressed. She turned and saw a man in a motely suit, smiling and bearing a ticket.

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction challenge.

Curious

PHOTO PROMPT © Krista Strutz

Karl hadn’t seen an eagle perched this close to the ground. He’d seen them lurking high in trees near the shore and soaring over the lake, descending with deadly grace to snatch fish from the water.

He was suddenly curious how close it would allow him to approach before flying off.

As if understanding the human’s intent, the eagle locked its predatory eyes on Karl before he completed his first stroke. Thirty feet, twenty… ten…

Karl was close enough to see the the sharpness of the beast’s ebony talons.

He paddled in reverse slowly, the eagle glaring at his retreat.

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction contest.

Practice with Care

PHOTO PROMPT -Brenda Cox

Phase shifting is like dynamite — helpful when used properly, deadly if misused.

Misjudgments are frequent among newbies. Passing through an object in front of you without also passing through the ground underneath takes concentration. Even the best-trained shifters make mistakes once they begin practicing in the field.

Like this guy. Late on his courier run, he phased through a concrete barricade with ease. But when he saw the worker in his path he phased again, panicking the worker. The courier phased in too soon, bike tripping over a cable.

The residual energy in the bike hurled it into the building.

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction contest.

First Ride

PHOTO PROMPT© Lisa Fox

“Didn’t know they made motorcycles in 1914,” Henrietta said, hoping to get the gaunt man’s attention in front of the exhibit.

“Oh yes,” he replied. “Owned one myself.”

“You collect antiques?” He was becoming more interesting than Henrietta had hoped.

“No. I was a boy at the time. I remember my first ride, down a dirt trail near my family’s lakeside cabin. I thought if man could build such a wonderful machine, there was no limit to what we could achieve.”

“That’s… impossible.” He looked no older than thirty.

“Not at all,” he replied, turning to Henrietta with red eyes.

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction contest.

Invitation

PHOTO PROMPT© Ted Strutz

“Lateral stabilizers.” Detective Jenkins squatted in front of the discarded parts. “Definitely from a K-47. I can call in the serial numbers, but if they aren’t from the Altarax droid I’ll eat them for lunch.”

Her rookie partner bit his lip. “But the AI in K-47s is too advanced to be this careless. If the droid knows we’re after it, why leave such a large breadcrumb?”

“Because it wanted us to know it had been here.” Jenkins stood and brushed hair from her face. “It wants us to follow its trail. We’re being led.”

“A trap?”

Jenkins smirked. “An invitation.”

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction contest.

Asking a Lot

PHOTO PROMPT© Roger Bultot

Is the human in this exhibit entirely isolated?

Close examination of the objects behind the human demonstrates he has at least one companion.

So why doesn’t he ask a companion to capture his image?

He’d probably answer that doing the task himself gives him more pleasure than having assistance.

Does he also enjoy producing a lower-quality image?

His process is more important than the product.

Is this what humans call “living in the moment?”

Perhaps.

Could one argue that obsession with immediate activity, without concern for its consequences, is causing their material shortages?

You’re asking a lot of this image.

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction contest.

Petrified Ambition

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

Thirty years ago the field had been a dense forest of poplar, birch, pine, and fir. A wealthy industrialist bought the land and had it clear-cut to build a summer home, yet as the last remaining trees were being uprooted he lost the property in a bitter divorce.

Two stumps were left among the acre of wildgrass. Their tops were smooth from the saw’s blade, the bark on their sides cracking and peeling off like scabs from a wound.

The tallest objects remaining in the abandoned field, the two lifeless remnants served as tombstones to a petrified ambition.

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction challenge.

Wait a Little Longer

PHOTO PROMPT © Russell Gayer

The van was just outside the layer of crushed stone of the beach’s parking lot, far enough into the neighboring woods to have vines growing through its wheels. Just like Jeron said.

“Think anyone’d notice if we opened it now?” asked Walter.

Nevin shrugged. “No, but why risk anyone seeing what we take out? Do it tonight, like we discussed. Listen to the police radio, wait until they’re distracted on some incident.”

“But we’re so close. This is killing me.”

Nevin smiled, and pulled out a vine from the front wheel. “Might wanna think about your word choice, son.”

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction challenge. I’m not sure why but I’m currently unable to add my links to the site, but I’ll keep on posting here.

No Business

PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox

“Those tables look fine,” Sheila said. The outdoor furniture she pointed to did indeed look undisturbed.

“We don’t know how much damage the storm caused,” Roland explained. “Power returned an hour ago but might not stay on. We can’t risk being open.”

“You don’t understand.” Sheila balled fists into her hips. “The client asked to meet here, right here, at 10. You’re interfering with my business!”

Roland couldn’t contain his frustration, waving towards the uprooted trees. “Call your damn client, change your plans. I have bigger concerns than your damn meeting!”

Shelia turned away. “This is your problem, not mine!”

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash fiction challenge.

Walking Memory

PHOTO PROMPT © Alicia Jamtaas

“You sure you remember?”

“Don’t worry, Marcy,” Harlan called ahead to his granddaughter as he slalomed the uneven terrain of the forested ravine. “Can’t tell you exactly where it is, but I’ve walked this path enough times that my legs know the way.”

Marcy stopped, turned to him. “So we keep walking until your legs figure out where to go?”

Harlan pointed ahead. “There.”

She looked where he pointed. The moss-covered roof of a small cabin was barely visible. “OK,” she replied. “But that doesn’t mean what you’re looking for is there.”

The old man smiled. “Oh it’ll be there.”

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly flash-fiction contest. One picture, 100 words.