I shall never forget the sound that first time.

We sat cramped together in the dark shelter at the end of the garden, with only a flickering gas lamp providing a dull orange glow.

Rufus, only a pup, huddled on my lap, cowering and whining. Mother huddled next to me, protective arms wrapped around me. Father standing at the entrance, holding the wooden panels down as the irresistible force of nature tried to rip them away.

The wind screamed and howled through the night. It was like nothing I had heard before. It sounded alien, unlike anything known on this earth. Continue reading “HAVEN”



The cannons sprayed water through the night sky onto the roof of the blazing building.

A crowd of nearby residents gathered to watch.

The old theatre, dwarfed by surrounding modern apartments, had lain empty for several years. It was preserved and protected for reasons of architectural heritage.

Remarkably, the surrounding buildings were untouched by the flames and smoke.

By midnight the fire would be extinguished.  The damage would be extensive. Demolition the inevitable outcome.

Within a year another uniform set of apartments would have blossomed.

So long as no one looked too closely, he thought.

Copyright J. Hardy Carroll

Written as part of the Friday Fictioneers challenge hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (more details HERE). The idea is to write a short story of 100 words based on the photo prompt (above).

To read stories of 100 words based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.


‘Dan,’ she called urgently in a hushed whisper. Dan turned and saw Amy beckoning him.

He stepped back from the tour group. ‘What is it?’

‘Stand in front of us.’


‘Just stand in front of us. Look what she did now.’

Dan peered round Amy. Their daughter, Chloe, grinned at him. ‘She didn’t.’

‘Oh, yes she did.’

Next to the six-thousand year old Native American cave drawings was a freshly etched picture of a tall stickman.

Dan squinted. ‘Is that a spaceship?’

‘Does it matter what it is?’

‘It’s very creative.’

‘Cover me.’ Amy took out a pack of baby wipes.

‘That’s not going to work,’ Dan said.

‘You have a better idea?’

‘You’re making it worse, You’re just smudging it.’

‘Forget it, let’s just go.’

‘We have to follow the tour group.’

‘Dan, I am telling you. Let’s go.’

Amy dragged their daughter away. ‘Next year, can we please just take her to Disneyland.’

Dan backed away after them.

Chloe smiled as they broke into a run. Next year’s holiday was looking better.


Copyright @any1mark66

Written as part of Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. The challenge is to write a flash fiction story in around 150 – 175 words, based on the weekly photo prompt. Thanks as always to the challenge host Priceless Joy. For more information visit HERE.

To read other stories based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.


She secretly hoped they wouldn’t find them.

Why else would she have hidden them so deliberately?

She put on a brave front, pretending to enjoy the hunt.

It’ll be fine, they told her. Everyone else was doing it.

The stash of pills was duly discovered.

Her addictive personality was defenceless.


Written as part of #MicroMondays, hosted by Varad over at Loose End Of The Thread. For more information and to join in visit #MICROMONDAYS-5.

Each week we are given a set word count for a piece of micro fiction, and a quote from a book that must be included in the story. This week’s quote to be included was ‘she secretly hoped they wouldn’t find them.’ and the word count was 50.

Read other stories based on the prompt HERE.


‘Car keys?’ he asked the woman sprawled on the ground, arm fishing around down the drain.

‘House keys.’ She looked up, squinting at the silhouette of the man. He was dressed in red and orange checks.

‘Perhaps I can help?’

She pulled herself up. ‘Feel free.’

Instead of getting down to look in the drain, the man took out a flute, and began playing a jaunty ditty.

The woman heard faint squeaking. A wave of scurrying approached. A wave of brown and black fur swept out of the drain. A sea of rats.

The tone from the flautist changed. The rats stopped, turned and disappeared down the drain. Left behind on the road was a selection of keys, rings, mobile phones, money and one bloodied knife.

Her red ‘I ‘heart’ Paris’ key ring stood out. She picked up her keys. ‘Thank you.’

‘You’re welcome.’

‘I should give you something,’ she dug out her wallet and handed him a ten euro note.

‘How refreshing,’ the piper smiled. ‘Do you have any children?’

‘Two,’ she answered, unsure of the question.

‘Tonight, keep them locked securely in their room.’ He doffed his cap and skipped away playing another tune on his flute.

Copyright A Mixed Bag

Written as part of Sunday Photo Fiction. Write a story of around 200 words based on the photo prompt given (above). Hosted by Al Forbes. For more details visit HERE.

To read more stories based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.