“You shouldn’t be reading that.” The man in white spoke again, this time slower and more pronounced.
Lucy had heard him the first time, but that didn’t mean she could move to acknowledge it. She was a true deer in headlights.
The man reached into his pocket and pulled out what looked freakishly similar to a butter knife. Then it lit up into a bright blue light.
That was no butter knife.
Lucy broke out of her frozen demeanor and shot straight up, kicking the book towards him. No book was worth her life. This man was insane and she intended to get him out of her shop as soon as she could.
“Take it, leave,” she said in shaky, yet short words.
The blue light dimmed and he slipped the knife back into his pocket. Grinning with teeth whiter than his attire, he scooped up the book and left shop.
As soon as he disappeared, Lucy scrambled to the door and turned the measly lock. She sighed. That wouldn’t hold anyone back. She unlocked it again and stepped outside. The streets were busy with cars. It was still the morning rush, but she didn’t she anyone dressed in white. In fact, the only person on this street was in a dirty old hoodie and jean jacket.
She ran a hand through her hair, bringing it over one shoulder and turned to get back inside. That, more or less, wasn’t how she wanted her morning to go, but one thing was for sure, she still needed to clean.
And after an hour or four later, the first layer of grime was gone and on Lucy. She was sweating and dirty and pretty sure her face looked like she had just played in the mud.
With all of her things hanging off her shoulder, she darted outside, locking the building behind her. A shower was much needed, so much needed that Lucy failed to focus enough on the sidewalk and into a man she went.
“I’m so sorry,” Lucy said, immediately bending down to grab a bag that had fallen. She stood up and swung it back over her shoulder.
The man in front of her looked much friendlier than the one from her earlier encounter and that was enough for Lucy to feel comfortable. He had tan skin and wore a dark blue denim jacket that matched his eyes.
Lucy had dirt on her face.
“You’re Lucy Lexington.”
It was a statement and the slight blush on Lucy’s face fell pale. His own expression had turned anything, but friendly.
Having fun with this little story! Thanks for reading!
“Well,” Charlie’s mother tapped her foot, “what do you have to say for yourself?”
Charlie’s eyes veered up to the top of the door frame. “I’m sorry and next time I’ll leave a note telling you what I’m doing,” she said with fake sincerity.
Her mother gave a prompt nod and beckoned her into the house.
Charlie went straight to her room.
Her mother’s tone and her father’s indifference—and constant use of his office—were apart of her daily routine. Typically it also involved a long list of chores, but if she got her mother angry enough, like tonight, she’d forget.
Savoring the peace of the setting sun, Charlie put on soft music and got ready for bed. It was still quite early as the sun hadn’t gone down all the way yet, but sleep was a precious thing for her those days. It wasn’t coming easy.
She prolonged the unwinding process to keep her mind from roaming, but there was only so much she could do.
Charlie crawled under her covers, pulling them up to her chin, and nuzzled her head into the pillow. She squeezed her eyes shut and braced for another night of restlessness.
And then her mind went all the places she wanted to go, but couldn’t.
I’ve changed it, but in the first episode I had said it was morning. Don’t know why, since I was describing the sun setting in the first sentence…
Treehouse: Write about your own secret treehouse hideaway.
It was the tallest tree. It stood in the middle of the forest, towering over a wide stream that cut through the land.
There was a rope that hung with knots spaced equally apart the whole way down. Only the crazy people took that route—it helped they were usually strong, too.
Most people took the ladder that was fastened to the trunk. It was taller than most would want, but the end game made it worth it.
The treehouse wasn’t fancy, but instead structurally sound. There were floor to ceiling windows and everything was a beautiful unpainted wood.
A lofted area sat off to the side— another ladder led the way. In fact, it kept going all the way to the top where the best part of the treehouse, and the main reason it was there, perched on the tops of the branches.
It was as close as one could get to the clouds. A thin, but sturdy railing lined the rooftop. Overlooking the water, it was the perfect place to breathe in the fresh air.
A smile held strong to those who ventured up, being so at peace once there. The soft breeze wound around them, eyes lifted to the blue sky, and everything wrong with their life flew away because this was one place they would always be happy.
This prompt immediately made me think of the show, Treehouse Masters, which I love. It makes me want to live in the trees forever!
Mirror, Mirror: What if your mirror started talking to you?
The time it spent Holland to get home was cut in half compared to the usual. She expertly handled the awkward half walk, half run all the way to her house.
She practically face planted into her front door, gripping the handle to unlock it. The strength used to push open the wooden door caused it to bounce against the entryway wall. Holland kicked behind her to close it and the door clicked shut.
Lights remained off as she ran through her kitchen and living room and straight to her bedroom. Holland stumbled into her room, kicking off her shoes and bypassing the light switches. Her bedroom window was open and let enough sunlight splash in.
The rolling chair for her desk was slightly pushed away giving Holland enough room to dive and slide in to work. She yanked open her laptop that sat neatly on the old wood desk and immediately launched the internet. She typed in any keywords that could relate to mirrors, but all she kept finding were the same old tales she heard as a child. She couldn’t even find information on the lessons she learned in secondary.
Holland groaned and threw her head back. How could the internet fail her now? She leaned forward, placing her elbows at the sides of the computer. Running her hands down her face, she decided to try one last phrase.
It was a last-ditch effort for any sort of story about the supposed parallel universe. She scrolled through the pages of results, almost mindlessly. She knew it was useless, but at the same time she didn’t want to give up.
With one last sigh that let all of the air out of her body, Holland scrolled to the bottom of the page. She gave a fleeting glance, instantaneously going to close out, but something caught her attention.
The reflections that talk back: Your other self.
The headline was the only wording in the last result on the page. It was colored a bright blue.
Holland clicked on the link and it brought her to a simple grayscale website. It had a thin black border around the entire page. There were no other links, no menu, and no pictures. There were just words, a story, not even two paragraphs long.
Once upon a time in a land not so far away, there were objects with such shine and gloss that they reflected the utmost beauty onto the land. The magical items were called mirrors. They showed us a picture that was almost identical to the world around us, but held so much more depth. In fact, stand in front of a mirror and see not yourself, but someone who looks like you, talks like you, but lives a very different life in a very different place.
Our reflections are truly wonders of the world and they will continue to teach us of fantasies we’ve never dreamed, adventures we’ve never been, and tragedies we’ve never seen.
Holland slowly drew her hand off of her laptop. She stared at the screen rereading the passage again and again. The story started out like any other, explaining the wondrous world of mirrors. The fairytale-like stories that she had grown up with were always filled with joy and curiosity. Holland had never seen one that alluded to anything bad whatsoever and maybe that was why the last sentence made her skin crawl.
A shudder escaped her body and Holland slammed shut the computer. She shook her head and hastily left her desk. Her bed was unmade from this morning, so she ran right in and covered up in a cocoon of blankets. It was a bit earlier than Holland liked to go to bed, but she needed to shut off her mind for the night. With what had happened today, she couldn’t wrap her head around any sort of conclusion. Her bed was a sanctuary of fluffy pillows and soft blankets. It was all she needed to fall into a deep sleep and temporarily forget her reality and that is just what she did.
I read this prompt and knew immediately that I had to grab an excerpt from a story I haven’t finished and am not sure I will finish. We all have those, don’t we?
Anyway, some back story is that mirrors were banned “because vanity”, but really because scientists discovered our reflections were people in a parallel universe and needed our help in a war. The government wanted no part, so they got rid of mirrors before scientists could figure out a way to open a portal. Holland grew up in a world with no reflective surfaces.
…I’ll probably hit this story up again someday. Revisiting it definitely reminded me of the excitement of it.
Today’s prompt came from thinkwritten.com! They have an awesome list to get the writing flow started!
Being stuck in thick black dress pants and a high neck blue long sleeve was not Amelia’s ideal attire for a sunny afternoon, but having a job and going to college led to lengthy tiresome days with sporadic hour long breaks that she was determined to take advantage off, no matter how warm or humid the air was.
Amelia wandered through the sea of maples in a park that sat in between work and home. The sweat was pooling at the small of her back and her attempts to find somewhere to sit became desperate.
Fortunately, an old rickety park bench popped into view. Its white paint was chipped and short spiky splinters stuck out in every angle. Long nails, which were clearly visible through chunks of wood that had been relentlessly picked away, were rusted and worn to a warm orange color.
The untrustworthy nature of the bench did not deter Amelia and she gave it the benefit of the doubt, exhausted and ready to relax.
She clumsily sat down, earning a squeak of protest from the wood beneath her. Her purse dropped from her shoulder and spilled out into the grass. Her head fell back with a groan and she awkwardly rolled off the bench to her knees.
Amelia grasped the bag and shoved its contents back in with remnants of freshly picked grass. She zipped it up and with a firm hold, lifted it onto the bench, where it clunked and settled.
Taking a deep breath, Amelia pulled herself back up to sit, dropped her head, and shut her eyes. A noisy exhale escaped and finally, she let her mind roam.
School was the first thing that rushed to her thoughts. She carefully dove into every subject and assignment she had today. Being a business major had been the logical choice, but it really wasn’t that interesting and as much as Amelia needed to review her school day, she glossed over it for another time.
Next, work plagued her mind and, in her opinion, wasn’t much better than school. Typically, she stuck to a static schedule, but Amelia had a slight aversion of making people unhappy and developed quite a struggle saying no; consequently, shifts she would never actually want to work layered up on her already rare free time.
A strange noise sounded to the left of Amelia. Her posture straighten abruptly and her droopy eyes snapped open to reveal an innocent looking bird.
Amelia scrunched her face up, narrowing her vision, and brushed a hand through her hair. Then, by the rustle of the bird’s wings, the tiny creature appeared in front of her.
It was a sparrow.
Her head darted back and forth, checking for any passerby that would catch this incredible moment. The bird was only a few inches from her and didn’t fly away at her sudden movements. In fact, it stayed motionless with its beady little eyes pointed directly at her.
The curious bird cocked it head to the side.
Amelia’s eyes widened. “What is happening?” she whispered.
The bird took a playful hop forward and let out a happy string of chirps.
She raised her eyebrows. “You are surely the craziest bird I have ever met.” She smiled. “How are you not worried? I could hurt you!” The end of the sentence broke off in a sharp tick, Amelia suddenly becoming conscious of the fact she was yelling at a bird.
Paying no attention to her frantic realizations, the sparrow jumped another step closer.
Amelia was baffled. This strange phenomenon took her whole attention, detaching her from reality. She was certain she could sit there for hours just staring at the little bird, but because she was so in tune with her own thoughts, she nearly fell from the bench in fright when a snarling, teeth bared, massive canine pulled its leash taut.
The owner, despite being a tad wobbly on his feet, managed to hold back his pet, but the dog held up quite a fight, thrashing forward with spit spraying onto Amelia’s pants.
Normally, she would be quite disgusted with the dog’s out of control slobber, but at that point, all she could do was stare in shock.
“Sorry ‘bout that miss,” mumbled the older gentleman, who was still struggling to keep his barking buddy at his feet. “He doesn’t much like birds.”
Amelia nodded weakly at the man, not giving him much thought, and quickly focused back on the smaller animal.
The bird did not seem frightened by the dog, but in fact showed piercing eyes of a familiar inquiring expression.
Suddenly, just as Amelia was about to shoo the small creature away to safety, it flew away itself, but not without one last tilt of the head.
“Such a lucky bird,” she muttered, her eyes following the soaring sparrow. She watched as it rejoined others and flew far, far away into something unknown.
Amelia was wrapped up in her thoughts.
The raging dog disappeared. The soft breeze chilled her bones. A noisy silence filled the air.
Her temple poured on overdrive and she dropped her head into her worn out hands. “If only I could fly. If only I could…” she trailed off, shaking her head.
Amelia had always wanted to fly. When she was younger, and even a bit now, she desperately wished for her own Peter Pan to come and take her away. She didn’t even have to go to Neverland, just to the sky. If she could just soar through the air, she could get away, if she could just be like a bird.
“They just make it happen,” Amelia said.
It was a simple statement, but she looked up from her hands with a different glint in her eyes. A small smile rose to her face and she glanced up seeing even more delicate fliers.
Birds. Incredible creatures.
A ringing in the distance broke her out of her daze. It was her cellphone. Amelia reached for her purse and plopped it on her lap. It was a massive thing loaded with papers, notes, and useless junk.
Amelia finally touched the smooth surface and frantically pulled the out phone worried that it would stop ringing. She really did need to clean out her purse.
“Lee! Hey! Are you still coming over tonight? I really need your help again!” said Mary, a friend from school who needed a little too much help with her coursework.
Amelia opened her mouth, but hesitated. “Actually,” she began shyly, “is it possible to help you another night?”
“It’s due Monday, but I’m leaving for the weekend, so no.” Mary didn’t hide her disappointment.
“Okay,” Amelia paused and looked to the sky, where birds still flew through the free air, “I’m really sorry, but I won’t be able to make it tonight.”
“Are you sure?”
Her eyes were still set on the sky. She took a deep breath in and slowly let it out. “Yes, I’m sure.”
Amelia was not the first to hang up. In fact, she held onto her phone for a few moments of cloudy silence, eyes looking up.
When her vision dropped down, her screen was black, and the shadow of a grin appeared on her face. Amelia stood up from the bench and slid her bag on her shoulder. She started down the grassy path towards home with casual and slow strides, leaving her car behind.
She would come for it tomorrow.
This story is quite a throwback. I wrote the original version in 2011, my senior year of high school, in my independent study creative writing class.
This one is spruced up a bit because wow, that was almost seven years ago…
This story will remain one of my favorites forever because it’s taken directly from me. It’s actually the inspiration to my first tattoo (that I also got when I was 18). I have the words ‘aspire’ on my right side mid-back with lots of birds flying around it.
Fun fact; my name also means small bird in arabic.
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed reading this short story of pushing for your dreams and the freedom to achieve them. It’s always a good reminder to have and one I continue to need.
Write a story using a different letter for each sentence (repeats allowed, but not consistently).
After herrun, Josie wandered slowly back to her house, trying to delay her meeting with lovely Aunt Betsy. Betsy did nothing to actually be an aunt, or an adult figure for that matter. Confident, yet ignorant, she moved in after Josie’s parents passed in a car accident when she was very young.
Dad and mom were words Josie never knew and though it hurt, she was okay with that. Eventually, she learned they loved her more than anything and that was enough for her. Freak accidents happen and there is nothing anyone can do about it.
Gradually, her steps became slower and shorter towards her front door. Halfway home now and Josie didn’t hold in her groans. Ideally, Betsy would be gone for work, but she knew today that Betsy wanted to talk with her.
Josie was close now and she could see her aunt standing on the front porch. Knobby knees peeked out under Betsy’s pink fluffy robe and she had rollers in her hair. Laughing lightly, Josie couldn’t deny Aunt Betsy gave her a good chuckle on occasion. Most of the time she didn’t give a care in the world about what others thought of her and Josie looked up to that.
Now, Betsy was looking right at Josie with arms crossed. Overly intense would describe the look on her aunt’s face. People would definitely be staring if it wasn’t only six in the morning.
Quietly, Josie made her way up the porch stairs and right through the front door, letting Betsy follow behind her. Right now all she wanted was a shower, but she knew better than to leave her aunt hanging.
“So,” her aunt started, “when were you going to tell me about this?” Two pieces of paper sat on the kitchen counter in front of them. Usually, Josie brought her mail to her room, but this seemed like an easy way to break the news.
“Virtually every one of my friends has left,” Josie said, “and I’ll be damned if I’m staying here alone.”
“Well,” Aunt Betsy said, with a stern look across her face, “I’m very proud, Jo. Xerox it because I want a copy.”
Youthful grins popped out on both of their faces, as their true feelings of each other were revealed. Zero chance that copy would happen, but Josie was finally accepted into art school and they were finally both happy.
Have you ever been in a frustrating place in your life and it leaks onto your friends and loved ones? It’s much more common than you think.
Thank you for reading! My take on this prompt led me to use each letter of the alphabet in order—a great writing exercise it turns out!
Dancing: Who’s dancing and why are they tapping those toes?
The rhythm is steady, aside from a few late taps that cause the next to be much louder from trying to get back on beat.
She smiles because of it.
Music has always been her thing and she loves to she others enjoying it, even if they lacked any sort of rhythm.
That’s why it’s so beautiful to her. Music doesn’t discriminate. It’s there for anyone and everyone to love, to create, to listen to and it’s always there. No matter the situation, music is there to calm, to relax, to rejuvenate.
She gets lost just thinking about it. Closing her eyes and letting a smile grace her face, she takes it all in, beat by beat.
She can sit there for hours in the little live music cafe down the street. At least, it seems like hours, even if it’s just a few minutes.
That’s even more beauty of it. She can leave her reality and relish in a whole new one brought on by a melody laced with words, or perhaps a melody alone.
She opens her eyes and scans the floor. Tapping toes are everywhere. Another smile pulls at her lips because tapping toes only comes from one thing.
Sometimes I think these need to be longer, but then I remind myself there’s no rules to writing, just many guidelines (aka grammar–definitely follow grammar guidelines).
My goal with these prompts is to be writing everyday and pushing my creativity, my way of weaving words together, and my story lines in general.
It’s working very well so far.
Join in the challenge of pushing our writing limits with me! Write a prompt everyday and make sure to let me know, so I can read and cheer you on!
The Unrequited love poem: How do you feel when you love someone who does not love you back?
It’s the weekend and time to run the monotonous errands of buying groceries and miscellaneous items for around the house.
I roll of out bed and wobble straight into the bathroom, barely managing to walk around corners and desperately trying to rub the sleep from my eyes.
It only takes an hour or two to get fully ready. I’ve dressed, cleaned up, and eaten breakfast. It’s time to get on the road and I haven’t spoken a word.
The trip around the grocery store goes quick. I have a list that is extremely similar every week and I know right where to go. A few closed mouth smiles to strangers are given as I walk, but mostly I keep my head down. I mumble a thank you to the cashier, but only if I decide to not do self checkout, which is quite rare.
I leave, rushing to my car, with only a few bags to carry.
The next store goes the same and before I know it, I’m home again. It’s quiet because it’s empty, so I immediately turn on some music or a movie to fill the space.
Everything gets put in its place and I collapse on the couch, mumbling a curse word because I sit on a remote that changes the channel. My voice is a bit hoarse. That is probably the third word I have said all day.
I get all comfy with blankets wrapped around me and sink into the couch when I realize I left the entryway light on and my snack on the bar table. Groaning, I roll out of my cocoon and drag my feet.
After I get settled a second time, I channel check because my movie is over. Strangely there is a holiday movie on even though the holidays have passed. It’s about a couple, so I move on, but mostly I move on because it is about the holidays.
I finally land on some reruns of my favorite series and drift off to sleep.
I think the hardest part about loving someone who doesn’t love you back, or the more common being alone and growing up alone, is watching people who have someone to do simple daily tasks with them. They always have someone by their side to make decisions, to have fun, to grab the remote when it sits all the way across the room.
I think its hard to be alone and have no one to talk to about silly little things, but knowing it’s happening to others.
Story prompt #2! Already broke my goal of one a day, but that’s okay!
This one kind of veered from the original prompt, which is normal. No one knows where their writing will go!
Here’s the link to 365 story prompts if you want to join the challenge of writing as many as you can!