THE HOBGOBLIN’S FEAST

After seven days he came upon a clearing in the forest.

Ten small hutches had been made, with moss and twigs for roofs, arranged in a circle around a campfire.

‘You have been busy,’ he said, poking at the dying embers. They were still warm, they couldn’t be far.

He raised his large nose into the air. It was there faintly, the scent he had been following. The smell of tasty little children. The hobgoblin licked his lips.

‘I’m coming to get you,’ he shouted and set off through the trees.

Samuel watched the hunched figure disappear. ‘It worked,’ he whispered, ‘he’s gone the wrong way.’ He shimmied down the branches to the ground. The others followed.

‘What now?’ Nathaniel asked. Samuel looked at the rag-tag bunch, all dressed in the pyjamas they had been wearing when they were taken from their beds.

‘We have to find our way out of the forest. Come on.’

They turned to leave.

‘Hello children,’ the hobgoblin stepped out from behind a tree. ‘Not so smart after all.’

He swiped with his large net, capturing Samuel.

‘Run,’ Samuel cried. The others scattered.

The hobgoblin sneered at Samuel. ‘I’ll get you one at a time if I must.’


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Copyright Eric Wiklund

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.

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CAVE ART

‘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.’

‘Why?’

‘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.


 

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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.

AFTER HAMELIN

‘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.


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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.

SNAKE BITE

‘Put your hand in.’

Charlie hesitated and looked into the dark hole in the rock.

What was the worst that could happen? It’s just a rock, he told himself.

Legend said it was the skull of an old dinosaur. Another said medieval warriors proved their strength by striking it with their sword. Others believed it was linked to witchcraft, a dark portal to a world of spirits and ghouls.

‘Prove you’re not scared.’

Charlie took a deep breath and shoved his hand into the black crater.

The disturbed adder struck the soft flesh and buried its fangs into the invading arm.


ceayr2

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.

DEFIANCE

They sat by the sea watching children play on the beach.

‘Alright?’ he put his arm around her shoulder.

The tears slowly running down her face gave him his answer.

It had taken her twenty years to return. Years of pain and guilt. She had been their teacher. They had trusted in her. She was supposed to protect them.

A school outing before the summer holiday began. A visit to the local museum for a bit of history and then a trip to the beach. It wasn’t her fault the terrorists had come that day.

The images still haunted her. They would never leave her. The panic, the terror, the fear in those young faces. The blood. The dead.

Governments fought aimless wars and encouraged segregation and hate. Religions tried to absolve themselves of blame. Terrorists continued to kill with no purpose, never furthering their cause.

She was beyond all this. She had only her memories and sorrow. She wouldn’t let them count her as their victim. She was here. She had not let them win.

This was her defiance.


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Copyright The Storyteller’s Abode

Written as part of Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. The challenge is to write a flash fiction story in around 150 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.

Influenced by events in Manchester this week, my thoughts are with all involved, especially those children and parents affected by this devastating and abhorrent act.