Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 61: The Surprise

This is the 61st in a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

The Surprise, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 31st January 2012

Word count: 899

The Story:

“Shhh! He’s coming,” Jack Lee said,gesturing, though in total blackness none of them could see, he felt more comfortable doing it.

“Are you sure?” a voice behind him whispered.

“Shh!” Jack whispered again.

“This feels daft,” a voice beside him whispered quietly.

“Will you shush,” Jack said exasperated.

“Gee,” the voice whispered.

The wait was torturous, but slowly the sound of footsteps, that Jack had heard, grew louder. As the rest of the people in the room head the footsteps, the tension became palpable.The room full of people was silent, no one even breathed.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 60: The Big Rig Charity

This is the 60th a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

The Big Rig Charity, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 30th January 2012

Word count: 592

The story:

“When I grow up, I want to be an astronaut!” little Henry had shouted in nursery when asked.

So obviously he’d become a truck driver. It was a good life though, he loved the open road, the checks and scorecards, miles per hour, per gallon and per tonne satisfied his OCD, and he wrote songs as he drove, kept himself entertained and alert.

Henry enjoyed his work. His personal life not so much, twice divorced, currently single, no kids. His brother looked down on him for some reason. His parents had both died while he and his brother were in their twenties, his brother was his only family, aside from two ex-wives, but he was only on speaking terms with one of them.

Still it wasn’t so bad, he spent the better part of fifty hours a week on the road, which was ample distraction from all these worries.

That’s a big part of the reason why he volunteered for the mission. That and he genuinely cared about the cause.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 59: Honest Hero

This is the 59th a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

Honest Hero, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 29th January 2012

Word count: 852

The Story:

“You’re a hero,” the young woman said as she wrapped her arms round his neck and planted a warm wry kiss in his cheek.

“Erm,” the Yorkshireman struggled to get his bearings, “It was nothing.”

“Let me shake the hand of the finest man on this island, if not the world,” the brash American said in his Hawaiian shirt.

It was all kind of comical really, the Yorkshireman hasn’t actually done much at all. Not really, yes he’d stood in front of the would be kidnapper almost instinctively, but he was still no threat to the kidnapper. Someone else from out of no where floored the guy.

The police arrived, they arrested the still unconscious kidnapper, spoke to the boy he’d tried to take, and they were asking questions of bystanders , and people would point at the Yorkshireman.

“So you saved the boy?”the policeman finally asked in heavily accented English.

“No honestly, I just stepped out in front,” the Yorkshireman, preferring honesty.

“You must be like wall,” the policeman said conspiratorily.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 58: How to Kill Demons from Another Dimension

This is the 58th a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

How to Kill Demons from Another Dimension, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 28th January 2012

Word count: 546

The story:
When it happens, it always happens fast. If you want to survive, it doesn’t come down to chance, it’s preparedness, if you’re not prepared, you die.

Trust me, I’ve been doing this a lot longer than everyone else.

I got sucked into their dimension years ago, I only got back when they’d already invaded. It’s easier to survive here than it is there. There, they have nearly nothing we would call food. Here there are still homes and shops with food in them.

If you’re hearing me, you must have survived too, you already know this. What you probably don’t know is, I can kill them.

First thing you need to know is, it’s no good once they’re hunting you, when they hunt they are extremely alert,, and even the best weapons won’t harm them. I found this out in their world, I was being hunted and I decided to fight back. I had a rudimentary blade, and as it struck I tried to stab it.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 57: To Bend a King’s will

This is the 57th a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

To Bend a King’s Will, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 27th January 2012

Word count: 752

“I am a corruption, an anomaly. I have stood upon this land for a millenia before this castle was first built, and the first castle was built a very long time ago,” the young man in worn robes said, sombrely.

“I tire of these theatrics, wizard,” the aged, “Citing your supposed age does not convince me that I should give this barbarian such a dangerous weapon. It would be madness, it makes any that holder blood mad. Barbarians are already blood mad. That’s why we lock them up.”

“This is not a barbarian, but it is true he is a beserker. The weapon was made for true beserkers, only they can control the blood rage,” the wizard said becoming animated, “The evil that approaches can not be faced by anyone else.”

“I have despatched an army, a cadre of my finest and bravest guards, and a quartet of wizards, admittedly they’re not of your supposed stature, but they can face a demon horde well enough,” the king said.

“And they will all be dead come morning. Demons, monsters, myths, legends, all very powerful and all, but they are nothing compared with the true demon that had stirred up this horde,” the wizard said.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 56: Imperial Spirit

This is the 56th a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

Imperial Spirit, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 26th January 2012

Word count: 856

Theme: race, motor racing, sport, underdog, down to the wire, photo finish, drama

The story:

“You’ll have to manage with fourth,” Rossi said over the radio into Julian’s helmet.

“Easy for you to say,” Julian retorted as he cambered left for the sweeping corner.

“You’re twenty seven seconds up on Garner, just keep it clean and bring the car home,” Rossi instructed.

Julian didn’t reply, he settled into the fight off the championship, this race wouldn’t decide who got the trophy, but it could easily decide who didn’t.

The damaged Mercedes thundered down the straight coming out of the corner, but quickly became the sound of a dying gear box as it tried to find fifth.

Through the next corner Julian barely braked, he wasn’t carrying enough speed to afford the luxury. He sped over the home straight towards the start-finish line and started his final lap.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 55: A Rose Between Two Thorns

This is the 55th a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

A Rose Between Two Thorns, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 25th January 2012

Word count: 724

Theme: science, experiment, patience, right way, slow way, pioneer

The story:

“You need to go faster Paul, a lot faster,” a tinny voice said over the sub space comm output.

“I can’t,” Paul the pilot started to say while struggling to hold the ship on course against all the laws of physics it seems.

“Invert the port side thrusters, they’ll give you a bit more,” the tinny voice instructed.

“If I do that, forty percent of my active control will go,” Paul shouted back, barely holding the ship on the right course.

“Trust me, invert now, it’ll work out,” the tinny voice said.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 54: The Killing Ghosts

This is the 54th a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

The Killing Ghosts, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 24th January 2012

Word count: 697

Theme: alien invasion, resistance, war, survival, humanity, myth, legend

The story:

I got so scared, I felt I was alone facing things that shouldn’t even exist, never mind being in a relatively unimportant city in England. Whether they should be there or not, it was irrelevant.

The day had been going so well, I had a date that night, my job was going well, everything in life was grand. A few months earlier I’d Peru much had nothing to lose, but the day they came, I lost everything important, except my life.

It was mid-September when astronomers first saw the objects in the night sky, they were a wonder, unexplainable, mysterious globes of compressed liquid. Of course we didn’t just assume they were peaceful – though we didn’t even know about brains then. When it was obvious that they were on a collision course with the Blue Planet the US military took control of all efforts in regard. to the strange phenomena. They’re best efforts didn’t even cause the globes of liquid to waver, they kept coming.

Still life went on, the world split into three types of people. First off the were your traditional end of world types, (most figured them for loons, including me at first), then there were eager and excitable scientist types, lastly there was everyone else who couldn’t conceptualise what was happening, it was just this thing in the news. Sure it was the topic of many conversations but we didn’t understand, and it was years away.

So it was quite a shock when the center of Leeds was rocked by an immense exclusion as a globe crashed right into it. I’m told this was only a small one, but I was within five miles of impact it never felt small. It was the advanced unit, there to probe and test how we’d react, the rest of their armada arrived a month later, with sporadic advanced drops in medium cities around the world in between.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 53: The Second Chance

This is the 53rd in a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

The Second Chance, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 23rd January 2012

Word count: 865

Theme: saviour, hero, sacrifice, ultimate ultimate sacrifice, religion, end of the world, saving grace, fate

The story:

“Okay, I’m sorry it has to be you,” the professor said, his voice echoing round the damp dark cave, illuminated by only a couple of battery powered lanterns. Eric thought the Professor looked gaunt, these past few weeks had been tough on the whole group, but the Professor had seen his hopes and dreams smashed too.

“I volunteered, I know what I’m doing. I knew this quest of yours would be dangerous, and I volunteered anyway. Just make sure the people outside, know it was my honour to have been with them on this, and make sure the world knows how close it came,” Eric said nobly. “Well if I pull this off anyway.”

“You have my word,” the Professor said sombrely. “Right do you want me to go through this again?” he asked gesturing to the three inch cables protruding from the wall.

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Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 52: The Rookie

This is the 52nd a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

The Bleeding Heart, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 22nd January 2012

Word count: 831

Theme: lost cause, grief, road less travelled, determination, love, serendipity

The story:

“We go in by the numbers, we don’t know what hostiles we’ll face. Keep it clean, come back alive,” the lieutenant said to the gathered troops.

“Yes, sir,” the troop replied in unison.

Thus began the long wait for private first class Rory Simmons, it was his first combat misson, after basic he’d served two years as part of guard unit protecting stores Gamma Sigma, an area too far inside of the Commonwealth’s territory to be under much threat, and in two years there had been no action, except drills.

The private had gained acceptance into an active combat unit on his lieutenant’s recommendation, and his training certificates in seventy one distinct weapons. It was rare for a soldier to be trained in more than the weapons they would be assigned. Even then, it had been an uphill struggle, he’d had a black mark in training, (he’d panicked in a training op), but lieutenant Gabriel Gibson, or The Horse as he was nicknamed, took a chance. Note all Simmons had to do was payback that chance.

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