Flash Fiction- terrible minds challenge- woods

Stopping by the Woods

Part 4 of Flash Fiction Challenge 
terribleminds.com flash-fiction-challenge-the-four-part-story-final-part/

Peter MacDonald -Part 1  

Poor Dick - Part 2, plus part 1  A thorough link chain of this and other 4 part stories. Check out his site!

Casondra Brewster Part 3, plus part 1 and 2

Part 4

"Cease!" said a third woman while she pounded her fist on the wall. The pendent on her necklace shone brighter than the other two pendants. "We shall not leave this place without retrieving the chimera. Verdandi, bring the chalice, your sister and this man are in need of its strength."

The spinning stopped and the chair returned to its original form.

"Yes, Urdir, but Skuld was injured and this man spoke of the woods through poetry, and-"

"Go, my sister, haste is needed." said Urdir and she went to the women I rescued. She cradled her in her arms and a tear ran down her face. "My dear, Skuld, you should not have ridden the chimera. It would destroythe dyr without your aid. You cannot be near when the beast's thirst for blood is enraged."  

Verdandi returned with a gold and gem encrusted stemmed chalice and knelt beside Skuld. 

"Drink and your strength will be returned," she said. 

"Take but a sip; the man will need the rest to capture the chimera for us," said Urdir. 

"But," started Verdandi. 

"We cannot leave it on this land. If this man did speak with poetry, he is the keeper of this woods and must stay. You know it is not our place to change the destiny of man, but to help man achieve it. Give the rest of Thor's mead to him." 

"And it is my place to give it to him," said Skuld and she stood, taking the chalice, and walked to me. 

"Drink," she said and took one of my hands in hers and placed it on the cup. I peered into her eyes and the depth of the blue, I sawwas never ending. Her touch was soft, and as I drank, the warmth spread through my body and a surge of strength touched every cell.  

When I had drank every drop of the sweet liquid, this bit of poetry came to my mind and I recited it to the women: 

One by one he subdued his father's trees
By riding them down over and over again
Until he took the stiffness out of them, 
And not one but hung limp, not one was left 
For him to conquer. He learned all there was  

"He will subdue the chimera," said Urdir when I stopped.  

The rest of poem came to mind and had my means as to capture the beast. A howl outside announcing the beast was near and calling me out to my destiny. 

"Veroandi and I will assist you, but Skuld must stay in the sanctuary," said Urdir. 

"The beast is mine to command," said Skuld. 

"It was yours to command, but now it's hungry for you and is seeking you. The chimera will not recognize your command until its blood thirst is subdued. Give this man your pendent and the beast will hunt him. He will tame it and we will remove its form from this forest." 

Skuld removed her necklace. I stood to receive the gift, bending my head, so she could reach for now, I stood a foot taller than her. My height wasn't so great when I first entered the sanctuary. The breadth of my shoulders now seemed to fill it.

"I am grateful you rescued me and now my sorrowful duty is to send you out to complete my task."  

After she had placed the necklace and glowing pendant around my neck, she cupped my face with her hands and brought my forehead to hers. "May your strength and knowledge of the forest guide you." 

My head swam with her touch. I said in return keeping my forehead on hers; 

I'd like to get away from earth awhile
And then come back to it and begin over. 
May no fate willfully misunderstand me 
And half grant what I wish and snatch me away
Not to return. Earth's the right place for love: 
I don't know where it's likely to go better. 
I'd like to go by climbing a birch tree, 
And climb black branches up a snow-white trunk 
Toward heaven, till the tree could bear no more, 
But dipped its top and set me down again. 
That would be good both going and coming back. 
One could do worse than be a swinger of birches.  

When the words, "swinger of birches," left my mouth I knew it was time to tame the chimera. I pulled away from the lovely Skuld and went to the door that now appeared in front of me. 

"You will need this," said Verdandi and handed me an ax. 

"And you will need this," said Urdir as she handed me a skein of rope. 

Heading directly to a stand of birches, I went to work chopping down twenty trees with ease. The young birches formed through bending with my hands and lashing with the rope into a cage the size of boulder that was taller and broader than me. 

With my back to a tangle of dense wall of pines trees and Verdandi and Urdir to the right of me, I waited at one end of the cage. 

A roar echoed through the forest. The ground shook. My feet planted firmly, I held an length of rope in one hand and the ax in other. 

The chimera was at the cage opening. I hoped my design would work and would look like a tunnel leading straight to its target, me. 

"I'm here, beastie," I said and the pedant's glow intensified. 

The chimera leapt into the cage. I dropped the lid that covered the entrance. He pushed his lion head through the opening in front of me and snorted as I took the end of the rope that was connected to lid and looped it around his muzzle. It snorted spraying me with snot. 

Verdandi whooped. 

Urdir said a bit too calmly as if she knew what the outcome would be all along, "Well done and thank you." 

"Please give this back to Skuld," I started to take the necklace off. 

Urdir stopped my motion with a smile full of knowledge and said, "Skuld will be back to retrieve it."

The Poetry is from Robert Frost's Birches - use link to read complete poem.

Here is the Part III of flash-fiction-challenge-the-four-part-story-part-three

Part I is here -lash-fiction-challenge-the-four-part-story-part-one

Part II is here flash-fiction-challenge-part-II

Part III     Who is James Appleton?

"This way, James," I grabbed his hand and started to march us up the hill.
"You must have a great view." He matched my urgent pace. A giggle escaped me thinking about the view of his bod, I was about to have.
"It's not bad considering the tiny size of the place."
"Is there a back entrance?"
"Yeah, I have a nice garden with a porch." I wondered why he asked questions about my house. Perhaps, he was a nervous as I was.
One block away from my front stoop, he stopped and pulled out his cell phone. He looked at me and held up a finger in the just a minute gesture and walked across the street. Even though he was in workout clothes, I pictured him in a dark suit with an earbud and wire. Perhaps, it was the way he scanned the area. He put away the phone and jogged back to me.
"All set," he smiled grabbed my hand and kissed my neck like we were long time lovers going home.
"Quickly," came a command as I fumbled with the keys and the front door. The door opened and he patted my butt as we entered.
"Would you like some water or juice," I asked as I headed toward the kitchen not sure how a daytime trist should start. He didn't answer and I turned to see him shutting the shades and pulling the curtains on the front windows.
"I usually don't do that until-" he had put his finger up to his mouth and shushed me. I crossed my arms not feeling the romance of his actions. He started to go around the house checking doors and windows and pulling curtains.
I followed every move and when we were in the living room again, he came up to me and put his hands on my face and kissed me passionately. I caressed the muscles along his back. His hands left my face and embraced me, pulling me closer while moving his kisses down along my neck making every part of my body tingle with desire.
"Should we move to the bedroom?" I asked.
"No," was his quick reply while pulling me down to the floor in the middle of the living room. The hard pine wood floor cooled my back.(*I have not put a filter on my blog, so at this point, it is up to your imagination.)
He pulled back, leaned on one arm, and looked at me with his sly smile. One finger trailed along my face, over my collar bone. "I've been thinking about you living in this neighborhood-"
"What, you haven't, did you know, How?"
"Shhh, Kerel, my job brought me to the area and, well today was the second time I saw you," he explained while tracing my curves. I grabbed his hand stopping him.
"What is your job?"
"I can't go into details." he leaned in and started to kiss me again.
I pulled away because I couldn't let go of a nagging gut perception that something was not right about him. It was the same feeling I had about him twenty years ago. I figured it was the guilty of having a one night stand that turned into several nights that was nagging at me.
"James, were you really a dive master or was there another reason you were there?"
"Yeah, I thought you suspected something back then." He layed on his back staring at the ceiling and the view of his chest and stomach muscles were well defined for a forty year old. "I was in the same business I'm in now. And, well, I confess that I have tried to find you over the years. You were off the grid for awhile. My job and your moving around, well,-"
A blush crossed my face, because I couldn't believe he had thought of me throught the years too. But, before I could cuddle up to him and get him to move to the bedroom, there was knock at the door.
"Shit," said James while grabbing his clothes and whispering to me, "get dressed." He was dressed before I could comprehend what was going on. The knock on the door became more insistent. Robert moved toward the kitchen but he didn't stand but crawled.
"James, what's-"
"Follow what I do," he said moving behind the counter.
I scurried after him grabbing my clothes. The banging on the door continued. I pulled on my
shirt when I heard a gunshot. James grabbed my hand and pulled me to the back door.

I wrote the second 1000 word section to flash-fiction-challenge-the-four-part-story-part-two: enjoy!

link to flash-fiction-challenge-unlocking-godhood-part-one

*note - The author of part one has background information on his web site that it interesting and gives and insight has to how this story might go.

Part One

The cube weighed a ton. Ok, maybe not an actual ton; but it was heavy for something its size. Standing only three inches tall, it weighed as much as the Gott family’s three and a half foot long Maine Coon: eighteen pounds. Arduously, Sophia placed the intricate puzzle box onto her desk; and the cheap, particle board groaned in protest.

The young woman had first seen the puzzle box while browsing a crowd-sourced classified ad website. A poster had provided a picture of the cube, stated that he or she had hidden it, and said he or she was giving it away to the first person who could find it. However, that’s all the post contained; at least at first blush.
Sophia had always liked intellectual challenges, and she revelled in this one. Checking the page’s source code, she found the address to three websites. Each website contained a treasure trove of riddles, ciphers, and stenographs. Fast forward two weeks, and she had solved them all. After the final problem was solved, each site revealed a number each – numbers that she figured were latitude, longitude, and elevation.
She was right.
At the coordinates, she found an old cemetery. Among all the rows of grave markers, one stood out among all the rest: a statue of angel. It was not the modern image of a cute cherub or a classically beautiful angel; but it was awesome none-the-less.
The statue stood 7 feet tall and appeared to be carved from one solid block of white marble. While the angel had two arms, two legs, and head; its face was devoid of all features and six great wings spread out from its back. Carved into the base of the monument was not a name, but rather a quote:
‘Trials teach us what we are; they dig up the soil, and let us see what we are made of.’
Given the complexity of prior challenges she had faced, this one was oddly easy. Digging at the base of the statue, she found no coffin or corpse. Instead, 7 feet down she uncovered the fascinating puzzle that she had set out to find. With a few light strokes, all the dirt fell away from the cube, as if it didn’t want to stick to the box.

The cube was a thing of beauty. It appeared to be made dozens of interconnected differently colored metal pieces. Well burnished, the box practically glowed in the dim light of the setting sun. Running her fingers over the smooth surface of the cube, it felt somehow simultaneously warm and cool to the touch.
Since arriving home, she had wasted no time in setting about solving the puzzle box. She ignored the calls from her family to come to dinner. Instead, she sat at her desk studying the complex, interconnected design. Turning the heavy cube around in her hands, surely a solution slowly appeared to her. Piece after piece shifted, slid, and eventually fell away.
The flashing light coming from her phone, coupled with its noisy vibration broke Sophia’s concentration. Looking over, she noticed an incoming call from what looked like an asari.
“What the fu…” she muttered to herself. Picking up her phone and examining closer, she saw the name of the caller: Charity, her girlfriend. Rejecting the call, she quickly typed and sent out a message, ‘Busy. Found my box. Working on getting inside.’
Before she could set down her phone, it started to vibrate again and the screen lit up. Sophia didn’t look to see what was on it. Instead, she just turned the phone off and set it back down on the desk.
Letting out a deep breath, she turned back to the puzzle box. “Almost there.” she whispered to it. A few moves later, she placed her finger on the last piece and started to push on it.
Time seemed to grid to a halt. Sophia could feel the weight of the last block as she pushed it way from the core. For a moment, she caught a glimpse of something glowing a brilliant silvery-white. Then she felt an electric tingle start to flow up through her feet.
As it rose up through her body, she looked down. Nothing appeared to be wrong. The bottom most hairs on the back of her neck started to stand up. Looking up, she saw what looked like a little creeping rivers of blinding, silver-white light creeping down through the ceiling of her room. Twisting and turning, the streams of light began to work their way downward, towards Sophia.
Instinctively, Sophia pulled her legs up and kicked off her desk hard. Still watching in slow motion as she hurled herself across the room, she saw one of the trickles of light touch the puzzle box she had been working on moments ago. As she felt the glass of the window behind her break, all the other silver-white tendrils disappeared and the one touching the box started to glow.
A loud, cascading crackling sound ripped through the air and shards of wood exploded outward from her blackened room.
When the lightning struck, a figure could be seen in Sophia’s room for the briefest of moments. It was seemed about 7 feet tall, and vaguely man-shaped. Its skin appeared to be smooth alabaster inlayed with brass around the joints. Perhaps most striking was its head.
It had 7 eyes on its head that glowed gold in the dark. One lay square in the center of its otherwise featureless face. The other six were matched pairs running back towards the side of its head. It had no mouth, nose, or ears that could be seen.
Sophia closed her eyes and time resumed its normal flow. Thick, jagged branches ripped, tore, and poked at her as she felt herself crash violently into the thick bushes outside her home.

Part 2

The seven eyed face floated in her mind and she had an inclining of seeing the eyes before. Using the chair's wheels, she pushed herself out of the bushes and on the sidewalk that wraps around the back of her house to cement patio. The motion of pushing the chair along with her feet brought back childhood memories. She scooted to the patio and when she was in the middle, she kicked off with one foot and spun. Pushed and spun, pushed and spun; again and again until the world was a blur. She drew up her other foot and leaned into the spin to keep it going.

The memory of playground fun flooded her mind.  

"Come on, Sophia," said Tom. "You're the best at pushing. You make it go the fastest." 

"I'm getting off is she spins itIt's the spinny-thing-of-death when she does it," said Susie. 

"Okay," said Sophia. 

Susie jumps off, but two other boys jump on when they see Sophia spit in her hands and grasp the bar. Sophia pulls the bar towards her stomach and then back out and sets her feet.  

"Ready!" She runs in the worn circle path circle.  

"Faster, Faster," the boys yelled. Her speed increased with each turn. She ran around four times as she had counted each time she the tall pine tree pass in her vision. On the sixth turn, a figure stood before the pine tree. Seven eyes glowed. 

She catches her right foot behind the heel of her left and stumbled. The figure stepped forward like a mom's reaction knowing her kid is about to be injured and will need her. Sophia caught her fall and jumped on the roundabout. The pine tree spun into her view and the seven eyed figure was gone. 

Sophia stopped the desk chair, her dad's chair, from spinning and stared at the house. Her life had been a breeze up to 10 months ago when her dad died. Sophia grew up being good at academics, sports (especially running), and puzzles. She obtained what she desired with ease.  

The only failure in her life was the end of the 8 year relationship with her highschool/college boyfriend. His reason for ending it was he couldn't handle not being better than her in at least one thing. The disappointment from this healed quickly as he was still her friend. Nothing changed except the once a week sleepover at his apartment and the fact he was blissfully happy with a new petite girl friend who giggled.  

She found the change a mere bump in her life. Another hiccup was when she broke her arm and the basketball team felt devastated she wouldn't be playing for the big tournament in three weeks. But, to the doctors surprise, the bone healed rapidly and she was back to her normal active self after two weeks. 

She missed her dad and the ache in her heart from his daily absence didn't lessen though friends told her it would. Beth told her the best way to get over the loss would be to sell the house. The house she grew up in with her dad wouldn't be put up for sell if she could help it.  

She stared at the house which now had a smashed window and a burned out electrical system from the surge of power that shot through the puzzle. 

"Okay," she said out loud. "Time to stop daydreaming about seven eyed monsters and asses the damage."  

She walked through the broken window half thinking the monster would be waiting to explain everything to her. To tell her, the puzzle was a way to find intelligent humans to recruit for their secret spy organization.  

The logical part of her thought was how could I let my ego get in the way of seeing a prank- an ultimate internet troll gotcha-an elaborate puzzle game-set up to bomb the lucky solvers dwelling. I wonder if my phone survived was another thought to crossed her mind while eyes scanned the wreckage and took in the incomprehensible sight before her. 

"Damn," she said as she kneeled before the seven puzzle pieces floating around a glowing gold orb. Gently, with one finger, she touched and pushed the closest puzzle piece. It bounced in space but found its same hovering spot.  

With a small hesitation of a child taking an un-asked for cookie, she touched the orb.
Images of her as childhood danced around the floating puzzle pieces. One was of her pushing the roundabout. Another of her breaking her arm and a seven eyed figure in the back ground. In fact, all the images showed where she had seen, for a brief second, a tall figure in the background of her life. Once she comprehended the link between the images, they disappeared. 

She touched the orb again and the color changed to blue and a faint sound of bass notes started to make a repeating pattern.  

Her phone buzzed. She scanned the ground. When she spotted it, a name flashed but she couldn't read it

The bass hum from the orb grew louder. She grabbed her phone, tapped accept, and said, "Hello?"

"Is it you who summoned a hag?" said a woman twirling a parasol above her head to young man with curly shoulder length black hair. 

"Yes, thank you for..." 

"Skip all the pleasantries. The purse better be heavy with coin for this country has barely left the primal stage." 

"May I know your name, my lady?" 

"Name? My Lady? I'm a hag and my name is not your business." 

"But Miss, you don't appear to be a hag. Your youth and dress is of a young courtier."

 "Yes, yes, yes. I am a sight to behold. Flattery is nothing to me and as I said skip the pleasantries. What of my talents do you want?"  

"We need to distract the queen and have the prince married off to someone who will fill the treasury." 

"What I have learned of this primitive burgh is the queen would be distracted by wealth and perhaps, with filled coiffures, she will come out of reveling in the past." 

"She has built a railroad."  

"And a ridiculous thing that is; not connecting to any other countries. Bah." She held out her hand to receive the purse. She weighed it and poured out a bit of coin into her hand.  

"Mmm, you have paid me to do the deed, but you'll pay me another equal amount when the deed is accomplished. Do you agree?"  

"Yes." She stepped away from the man and stared at the castle barely visible through the trees. On the crook of her arm was a large bag. She dumped the coins in it and walked back to the man. "I have a way to accomplish what you ask. Meet me here tomorrow but at dusk. This country's sun is harsh to my skin."  

"But, these woods have thieves."  

"Do you think a hag is concerned with the treachery of men?" 

"No, I just..." 

"You think of me as a lady with female sensibilities. Are you not from the country of Batablar? Women there are not considered frail and in need of man's protection." 

"Yes, I am but how-" 

"Your accent. Tomorrow at dusk and bring me some fine castle ale too. This country makes my throat dry."  

"What of your talents will you use? We want discretion." He said with slight panic realizing if he or his cohorts connected to the hag in anyway it would be bad for all involved.  

"Do not worry your head of my deads. Be gone." He turned and scurried toward the castle as a drop of rain hit him on his nose.




"Wake her!" I hear and I am conscience, but keep my eyes shut frightened by what I will see when I open them. I was on a skyscraper roof with blood gushing from my nose and then black spots formed in front of my eyes. That was it. 

A sharp prick stings my elbow and cool liquid goes into my vein. I jolt upright and my eyes pop open without me wanting to do so. 

"Hello, demon and lay back down, please," said the man next to me holding a needle. I lay back down. On the other side of the bed, stands a woman in a white lab coat with her arms crossing her chest. Her arms are folded in front of her and she taps a pen on her arm. 

"Time for Jack, Dr. Falbrit?" asked the tall well built bald man to her right. 

"Of course, Mult," she said. 

As Mult comes closer with a clear box, a spider the size of the palm of my hand peers out of it. Its neon green back is metal but the hairs on its legs are real. I am not getting what is happening as my mind, in vain, tries to understand the passage from the roof to seeing people in lab coats. 

Mult opens the lid to box. "Meal, Jack," he said as if the spider were a dog and he had commanded him to sit. The spider takes slow steps and its legs rest on the edges of the box

It leapt on my chest. I scream and scream again. My body is rigid though I want to do something to get the spider off me. Blood starts to flow out of my nose

"Stop the blood! Don't let her move," commands Doctor Falbrit.  

The spider sits on my chest staring at me with its eight eyes. I continue to screaming. 

"Shut up, demon," said the man who still had a needle in his hand. "I'm stopping your bloody nose." 

stop mid scream and clamp my mouth shut and swallow the blood

"First, I'll cauterize the vein which keeps popping and with a nifty injection, it will be healed permanently. Don't move. You wouldn't want me to get your eye instead." The spider was still standing on my chest

"Why can't I move my body?"I asked as he retrieve a later cauterizing tool out of a panel in the wall

"The first injection woke you and paralysed your muscles from the neck down. No worries. Its not permanent."

"Stop chatting with the demon and get on with it. Jack needs to get to its job," said the Doctor.  

He moved quickly and stopped the bleeding with the laser cauterizer which I had experienced before in hopes of stopping my constant nose bleeds. I didn't see that after the laser cauterizer he pulled out a three inched needled syringe from the wall. My focus watched the spider and I wondered at its purpose. 

"This procedure will pinch and sting..." said the man. 

"Oh, for God's sake. She's a demon who cares if she hurts her or not," said doctor Falbrit. 

I muffled a scream, my only defense at the moment, when the needle came towards my nose. Yes, I definitely didn't want him missing and sticking me in the eye. The needle pricked my skin at the tip of my nose which I felt but then nothing. But the time it took for him to push the fine needle up along bridge of my nose was one of the longest moments I have ever experienced. 

He turned his face away from the doctor and whispered to me as he work. "This will alter and strengthen the vessel cells in your nose.It works on your human cells and will prevent the nervous blood release your demon cells cause." 

Once the needle reached the bridge of my nose he pulled it out slowly while pushing down the syringe releasing the liquid along the bridgeThe liquid was cool and my eyes started to water for the sensation. 

"This is the only procedure you'll have without pain," said Mult

When the needle was free from my face, Mult said, "Jack, do it."  

The spider went into action. It's skin was black, hairy, and real but the mechanical parts were neon green. The two front legs started to move which were neon green. One lengthened toward my neck while the other placed its tip above my heart. The man who fixed my nose and he mouthed, "Don't scream." 

It took every fiber not to scream, but I didn't. A pinching prick was at my neck and on my chest when the spider touched the two spots. The doctor's face seemed with the joy a child has when they received a new toy and get to play with it. Her new toy was me.

Captain Hank Myer  

With my mind made up to rescue the demon girl, I assessed the situation as my airship force training had taught me. There were three against me and the girl who didn't know me and I was dressed as one of the men who would have attacked her if she hadn't passed out from a bloody nose. She might be terrified by me and not understand that I am rescuing her. In my jacket breast pocket, a stun gun, barely charged, sat because Rock and Cross issued it to me. My pants pocket held a pen. Brut force was my only real weapon.

scream echoes, a breath, and another scream and another. 

Desperate for some type of weapon besides my hands, I searched the labEverything seemed small and delicate. Silence fell on the lab. It was harder to handle than the screams. What have they done to her? Is she bleeding again? Her face flashed across my mind and though he had only been with her for minutes her intense eyes would never leave his mind. Her strength and beauty was seared into his soul. 

He found a heavy metal foot long canister. It would do and would serve the purpose of taking out the brute that held the spider. The Brut being his biggest concern. 

He runs to the cell and stops to listen. Silence and a shuffling of feet are the only sounds. With his hand on the door knob, he turns it and is thankful it isn't locked. He burst in ready for the fight.  

Finding his first target as he enters, he hits the brute's head with the canister. The metal twang is satisfying as the hulking man slumps to the ground. He hopes the other two are as easy. Shifting the canister, he grasps the handle and backhand swings it across the woman's head but doesn't make impact as she sidesteps the blow. He catches sight of the spider with its neon front leg at the demon girl's neck which distracts him. 

The woman comes at him with a scalpel. He ducks away and comes back swinging the canister across her head. With another twanging sound, she is knocked out.  

The small guy is behind the bed and his hands go up with a plea for him to stop, "Jack won't stop now. I shouldn't let you take her because..." 

The thug started to moan and her rescuer didn't want to deal with him again. He drops the canister, pulls his pen knife, and snaps it open. Using its blade, he flicks the spider from under its belly and up. The spider flies off but leaves two neon legs still attached to the girl; one on her neck and the other at her chest. 

The demon girl grimaces as he does this, but she doesn't move. She answers his question before he can form the thought. 

"They drug me, I'm paralyzed. Please, get me out of here."  

Before this sentence is out of her mouth, he reaches under her legs and around her shoulders and lifted her off the bed. She was remarkable light for her six foot two inch frame. The spider legs sticking out of her would be dealt with once they were safe. 

He headed for the stair well and bounded down three flights of stairs in silence

She said breaking the silence, "I can feel the needles from the spider legs."  

He stopped and a tear escaped her eye and rolled down her cheek. His movements were causing her pain

"What can I do?" he asked. 

"I don't know but the paralysing drug is wearing off." 


"Yeah, maybe I can walk in a moment and you won't have to carry me." 

"Your light, I mean, I thought you would be hard to carry, but its like you're a bird." 

"You never been around a half breed demon befor?"  

But before she could explain that the demon side of her created an aether effect on the human cells and made her six foot two inch frame buoyant instead of weight in his arms, a stairwell door opened and shuts. He scooped her up again and continued down the stairs. He would get her to safety before they dealt with  her pain, her paralysis, the spider leg needles, and learning about her demon blood.

terrible minds flash fiction A Forbidden Tryst, A Lost Comic Book, A Spider

A demon girl, a bloody demon girl, a bloody beautiful demon girl laying at my feet unconscious and I, along with the five other black suited men surrounded her, am supposed to take her for scientific experiments. 

Last year, the Rock and Cross Science group hired me. My recruitment consisted of a man approaching me after the graduation ceremony from the skyship academy and telling me my first year wage and benefits. If I had known a portion of my job would be to man handle poor unfortunate half demon/half human creatures, I would have settled for working my way up in another company with a skyship fleet or entered Skyship Force. Most of my peers entered Skyship Force. 

"I'll keep the rag to her nose so she doesn't bleed to death while someone else carries her," I said, taking charge and wanting to be the one handling her head as the others might not be gentle. I cradled her head with one hand and held the already soaked with blood rag to her nose. I couldn't tell that she was part demon by looking at her delicate face and fiery red hair.  

The set of pure defiance in her jaw she gave us when she descended the ladder from the pirate skyship she'd been kicked off and betrayed by danced in my mind. If she hadn't passed out, she would have fought us.  

The sight of blood streaming from her nose when she leveled her head to face us wrenched at my heart. Her manner spoke of everything I lost by taking this overpaid private pilot and henchman job. Damn, I wish the money wasn't so good. I thought about quitting daily until I fly to a foreign land and sleep in a top notch hotel then I tell myself I will quite next week.  

The other men were like drones. They rarely spoke and didn't interact with me. The other two times I did this duty, the demons were boys in their early twenties. Rock and Cross paid large sums of money to skyship pirate captains for half breeds demons. Since the first boy, I researched into the medical and scientific divisions of Rock and Cross but of course everything out for the public was all about how they helped the everyday person. I couldn't find anything that even intrigued me. 

We descended the stairs and fortunately the holding cells were on the top floor and down the hall from the labs. If I had to carry her further, the tugging at my heart would be hard to ignore. I'd run away with her and protect her from these scientists. With the company looking so glossy to the public, the nature of the experiment couldn't be good.  

The boys, after I place them in their cells, haunted me when I flew. Flying skyships had been pure joy from the moment I took command of the wheel on my father's ship. Now, the exhilaration of flying Rock and Cross's top of the line ships came with regret and guilt. The joy left me with the stares of hatred from the boys bored into me. 

The girl demon was to be placed in cell number six. Once she lay on the bed, the other men left, but I still held the rag to her nose. I was about to check to see if the bleeding stopped when her eyes opened and her head lifted. The rag fell to the ground. 

"Hi," I said. 

"My comic book. Where. I lost it?" she said and then her head flopped to the side. She passed out again. 

The bleeding had stopped and I should leave but couldn't. Her vulnerability of being unconscious, her determined stance when she momentarily face six men, and my attraction to her kept me from leaving.  

From the stories, I was feed about demons, I assumed they were hideous dangerous creatures. The three demons I put into cells didn't appear different from me and she was beautiful. I grabbed a wad of toilet and wetted it from the fixtures in the room, and cleaned her face of the blood.  

Her red lips stood out from her creamy complexion. The temptation to touch my lips to hers became a desire. I bent my face towards hers.  

"Miss," I said an inch away from touching her lips with mine. At the moment my lips grazed hers, footsteps started to coming down the hall. I stood and two men and one woman entered the room.  

"You should be gone," said the woman with a stern I-dare-you-to-defy-me glare.  

"She's unconscious and her nose was bleeding," I spit out as an explanation though I don't think they wanted one.  

"Leave, now," commanded the woman. The bald man behind the woman had a clear box held between his hands. I looked at it as I passed by it. A black and neon green spider the size of a lens in my airship goggles scurried. I walked out. 

My hand reached out to turn the knob and head down the hall to the elevators. I was scheduled to fly Rock and Cross Skyship One to Belarus in one hours. One hour gave me enough time to pack a bag and get to the ship. Pulling my hand back, I turned and stared at the lab's machines. The demon girl would not be left in the hands of the Rock and Cross scientists.

Flash Fiction for terrible minds flash-fiction-challenge-who-the-f***-is-my-dd-character

Meticulous tie fling Ranger from the now dry swamp who suffers from nosebleeds

You wouldn't know it from my current location of standing on the sidewalk looking up at skyscrapers, but I am from the dry swamp land. The swamp was long gone years before I existed, but a fossil of a sea creature I found in the desert waste lands is always in my pocket. My hand clasped the shape and touch the spiral curve moving my finger along its bumps. Wherever I wander, this bit of my home is in my pocket. 

"You can't stand here. Everyone can see that you are a tie fling," says a small creature at my left shoulder.

"What do you mean? Because I'm not in a suit? There are..." 

"Your height! Don't you see that you are a least a half a head taller than everyone around you? And, your stillness. No normal human is still, at least not in the city. Follow me before you attract danger." His nose twitched with every syllable. By his stature and twitching, I guessed he is a mole halfling who, I was once told, rarely come out in the day and prefer the city sewers. 

"I won't go with you. If you are so observant, you'd know I am a sky pirate ranger waiting to join my ship." I sniff at the beginnings of another nosebleed. Whenever I am the least bit agitated, I get one and this creature is agitating. 

"A girl, a girl ranger on a sky ship. Never heard of such a thing," he walked around me looking at every inch of my 6 foot 8 inch frame. I was taller than the human men around me and my meticulously tailored ranger uniform didn't fit the dress on the city streets. I was standing out while standing still.  

"You are already catching the eye of everyone who passes. You know, in the city of Vusilla, creatures are not allowed on the streets between 8 and 7." 

"If that is the case, what are you doing here, near me," I pulled out my hanky and placed it under my nose. In a pinched nasal tone, I continued. "You are attracting way more attention by circling me. Stop it." 

"Come, you must come with me." 

"No," I hissed wishing the ladder would drop and I would be rid of this creature. I tilted my head to let the blood drain down my throat instead of into my now soaked hanky. "Come on, its 11, where's the ladder."  

The ladder appeared as the mole halfling yanked on my coat. I shoved him with the hand not pinching the bridge of my nose and with the same hand grabbed the ladder. The ship's bow was peaking through the cloud bank towards the top of the skyscrapers. I placed the one bloodless corner of my hanky in my mouth hoping that this placement would catch the blood before it hit my clean shirt and started to climb. The sky ship also rose taking me further from the ground and the mole, and the world of men. 

"You can not leave," shouted the mole halfling. He jumped and grabbed the last rung of the ladder. The tug and jolt of the ladder told me he clasped a rung. Shaking the ladder, I hoped he would drop.  

The blood would gush if I tilted my head down, so I kept my head up trying not to be covered with blood, again. The mole climbed below me as he puffed a breath with each rung he ascended. When I reached the bow of the ship, Rasnalph was waiting with a clean wad of cloth.  

I grabbed the cloth as I swung on the ship. On board, I spit out the bloody hanky and put the fresh one to my nose. The mole halfling hoisted himself on my ship. 

"Where's the captain?" I asked Rasnalph, but before he answered, the captain was greeting the mole halfling. 

"Glad you're aboard, Bissbort," said the captain while shaking the mole halfling's hand. I stop myself from asking the questions crossing my mind when Bissbort looked at me. He gave a barely perceptible no shake of his head and implored me with his eyes not say a thing about what had happened on the ground. 

Yaldit was at his post watching the ground through the brass telescope, "The land of men is oblivious to what's really going on as usually. Well, at least the men in the city are. We almost tangled with men picking up Samige in the farmland." 

"Good to have you back on board, Areanne. Who's the shorty?" asked Rasnalph. 

The captain announced, "This is new crew member is Bissbort and he will be directing our mission to and through the land of fog. His commands are my commands." 

Bissbort hooked his thumb through his faded green vest, puffed out his chest, and announced, "The mission is of utmost importance and this crew was specifically chosen for this task. That is... except for Areanne." He pointed his stubby finger at me. "You will get back on the ladder and descend. We are hovering over the building of Rock and Cross for your immediate departure." 

I stood staring at Bissbort not believing what I was hearing. Rasnalph, my friend of 9 years, shoved me towards the ladder. Without a word, I climb back on the ladder, descended, and kept my head tilted back.  

A group of six men in black suits surrounded me when I jumped to the ground. My mind was blank. The rag Rasnalph had handed me was soak through with blood the moment I leveled my head and held it to my nose.

"This way," was the last sound in my ears before blackness over took my vision, and I slumped to the ground.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for writing a Part III to my story. I was hoping our hero would turn out to be a man of mystery. 8-)