Back on the usual spot. It’s nice to get out of the dark box in the attic.

The first minutes were rough as always – turned upside down, shaken around, played with like a toy, before being settled on the mantelpiece.

The youngest is tall enough to reach me now, so I had a couple of rude awakenings, plucked from my perch at risk of being dropped, until the parents came to my rescue.

A nice tree this year. I wish I could smell the fresh pine, but I’ll settle for the gentle glow – new lights I think. There was lots of laughter while the tree was decorated.

It was only on the big day itself I noticed mother crying. Later on Grandad turned up on his own. I assume it was old age and nothing worse, but the day was lessened without the presence of Granny.

There were more presents than ever. The youngest got a small drum kit from Uncle. The parents weren’t thrilled. Even through water I can hear the vibrations when he starts banging.

It will be back into the box soon, forgotten about until winter returns. I can’t wait to be shaken upside down again.


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.



The mist hung over the fields, obscuring the rising sun which vainly tried to burn the haze away. As the orb rose in the sky, the darkness crept back, revealing the white frosted land.

Johnny walked along the slick pavement, the overnight ice frozen to the surface making it treacherous underfoot. The annual work Christmas party had been deemed a success. He had been among the last to leave the club and ended up getting the early morning train back home.

He felt the taste of her lips still lingering on his. The smell of her perfume drifted up from his clothes. It had been a mistake. At least they had the holidays before they had to face each other in the office again. She was in a relationship, he knew that but he couldn’t resist. When she had arrived at the restaurant in the leather pencil skirt and sparkling top, he knew he was in trouble. Continue reading “CLEARING MIST”


Five hours she had been stuck on the orbital road. They had barely moved an inch while the snow continued to fall.

The glowing streetlights fought off the encroaching darkness, the car’s heater battled the creeping cold and the radio staved off the loneliness.

Some had abandoned their cars and started walking. She had too far to go. Best to sit it out.

The feeling of helplessness circled her. In a car going nowhere, unable to get off a road that always brought her back to where she started.

If she ever got home she had big decisions to make.

Copyright Sandra Crook

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.


‘What is it?’ Gheorghe asked, poking at the pieces with the end of his pen.

‘Bones, stripped bare of any flesh.’ answered Mihaela, the forensic officer in charge of the scene.



Small blessing, Gheorghe thought. He had worked for the UN at the end of the Bosnian war. He had seen mass graves of human remains. Still, it was a crime and he was the detective on call. The tip-off had been anonymous.

He tried to pick a fragment of bone up. It crumbled in his gloved hand.

‘Brittle. They’re disintegrating.’ Mihaela remarked.

‘What would do that to bone?’

‘Hydrofluoric acid. Tests will tell us for sure.’

‘How many do you think?’

‘Looks like a few thousand, if each container had one inside it. We’re still opening them.’

Gheorghe turned away from the pungent chemical smell. It stank, but not as much as the scandal he had stumbled into the middle of.

The Mayor of Bucharest had promised to rid the city of stray dogs.

Now Gheorghe knew how he had done it.

Copyright Yarnspinner

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 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.’

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.