Framboise’s Story Pt. II ~ A Story From 10 Words

For details regarding the series: A Story from 10 Words, please read my about page, and feel free to contact me with your own 10 words and I will write you a story!

If you would like to read some of the other submissions, please check out the series page!

This instalment is a continuation of a submission I was given several months back.  I had promised a sequel, and here it is.  I hope you enjoy it!

“Dreams, my dear, are the subconscious mind’s way of giving voice to our deepest fears.” 

Sitting in the doctor’s office, her eyes flashing from one wall to the next, she finds herself more confined and vulnerable than when she awoke from that terrible dream.  The nightmare had followed her through every step of every day and she could not shake it.  The image of the clown would come screaming into her head, singing his manic songs, and she would find herself crouched in some corner, hugging her knees and gently rocking back and forth to a slow chorus of, ‘no, no, no, no.” Continue reading

Aubrey’s Story ~ A Story From 10 Words

For details regarding the series: A Story from 10 Words, please read my about page, and feel free to contact me with your own 10 words and I will write you a story!

If you would like to read some of the other submissions, please check out the series page!

This week’s submission came from a dear friend of mine, Aubrey Kelly!  She is the wonderful woman who took the headshot of me that adorns this website.  A multi-talented woman who I honestly think is amazing at everything she does.  I can’t say enough good things about her… except she tends to chide me about how long I take to shower 😉

Her submission details are as follows:

10 words: snow, darkness, pristine, peace, desolate, quiet, loss, love, travel, distant.

Theme; tragedy and/or drama. What can I say, I love a good depressing tale.

Oh, and a song… uhhh… if I can choose one without words then Open Set by The Gloaming. Alternatively, Rebellion by Arcade Fire.

This is the story I created from it:

Continue reading

We Regret To Inform You…

Due to circumstances beyond my control I won’t be able to publish this week’s A Story from 10 Words.  It’s been a rather hectic week and it ended in much the same fashion.

I could rush the work and produce something below my standards, but that serves no good purpose.

That being the case, I will be moving the schedule back a week and I thank all of the loyal readers of this series for your patience and understanding! Continue reading

Charlotte’s Story ~ A Story from 10 Words

For details regarding the series: A Story from 10 Words, please read my about page, and feel free to contact me with your own 10 words and I will write you a story!

If you would like to read some of the other submissions, please check out the series page!

This week’s submission came from the lovely girlygeekgirl, please stop by and check out her blog when you have time!  She is an extremely prolific writer and has something different and interesting put up for each day of the week!

Her submission details were as follows:

Words: Map, lost, gold, treasure, royal, ancient, flower, sparkle, smile, mystery

Theme: Disney’s The Little Mermaid

Song: “Colourful” by Rocco Deluca and the Burden

This is the story I created from it:

Continue reading

Lauren’s Story ~ A Story From 10 Words

For those of you unfamiliar with the series: A Story from 10 Words, please check my about page for details.

This weeks submission gave me these words to work from: 10 words – love, happy, soccer, triumph, motivated, green, Vedder (as in Eddie), endless, run, and beach; (ii) Theme – thriller; (iii) Song – “Let It Be” by the Beatles.

So, without further ado, here is: Lauren’s Story


one sexy caucasian woman holding gun in silhouette studio isolat

“You won’t get away with this, you bitch!” the man shouts from his low-backed leather chair.  Restrained as he is, his threats are a bit empty.

The woman turns to him, the waves of her tawny hair swishing back over her shoulder as she does, and gives him a wry smile.  She saunters toward him, her cranberry sheath cocktail dress hugging her body and the leg slit showing more of her thigh than makes the man comfortable.  His pulse quickens as she approaches and the smell of roses and jasmine fill his nose.  The long, toned body of the woman in the form fitting dress stirs him in ways he wishes he could suppress, but nature is not within a man’s control. 

“My dear Phillips, I will get away with it.  I can promise you that,” she says, her steel blue eyes smiling at him. 

“Others have tried and failed,” he growls.

“I’m more motivated,” she says slyly.

She sets her handbag down and reaches up behind her neck to unfasten the collar of her dress.  She pulls it down and slowly shakes her head at the old man, whose mouth has dropped open.  Spittle forms at the corners and he starts licking his lips, eyes wide.  She laughs at him and he soon learns why. 

“Don’t look so happy.  You aren’t going to get a show, you old pervert.”  The mockery in her voice brings a sneer to his lips.  As she pulls the dress over her chest and slides it down to her ankles he sees that she has a tight fitting body suit on underneath it.  She pops open her hand bag and pulls out a small plug.  Air decompresses from within the bag and the woman extracts a black lycra body suit. 

The woman slides off her high heels and steps into the body suit.  While her new outfit will not fend off bullets, it can withstand knives and most other stabbing weapons.  She pulls the zipper up her back and slides her hands into a pair of black leather gloves.  She produces a set of small knives from the handbag as well and then starts pulling at the bag, twisting it around until it transforms before the man’s eyes.  The woman wraps it around her waist, clipping it in front of her and sliding the knives back into a set of small holsters at her hips.  The bag has turned into a belt. 

“For a man adept at stealing things, you should have seen this coming.”  She says. “But then again, you’ve always lacked the proper motivation to steal things first hand.  You have little servants that do that for you, don’t you?  Well, now you know what it looks like close up.” 

The woman leans close to the chair, her wavy hair brushing his face and her sweet smell assaulting him.  He shifts his lower half around, trying to fight off nature, but the flush in his cheeks is giving him away. 

“This letter,” she says, holding a yellowed piece of paper, vacuum-sealed in plastic, “didn’t belong to you.  You stole it from hard working people who came by it honestly.”  She places her lean, strong hand on his cheek and then clamps down on his chin.  “So I am taking it from you.” 

“And that makes you the same as me.” 

The woman smiles at him wolfishly, her steely eyes shining. 

“Oh, I’m so much better than you, pumpkin.”  The smile fades, accentuating the lines of her slender face, and the intensity of her glare makes the man shudder.  She draws back, placing the letter into a pouch that she attaches to her abdomen. 

“You stole this for the love of money.  I’m stealing it back for the love of discovery.  You see, I’m going to make sure the people who found this letter in the first place are taken care of.  After that, the rest of the find will go to a museum, where it belongs.” 

The man laughs, his jowls shaking along with his pot belly. 

“Thieves of a different stripe.  That is all those museum types are.  They’ll sell off small pieces of it to fund their operation, just you wait and see.” 

The woman picks up the heels she had worn into the room and twists the stems off.  Connecting them together brings a soft beep and she places the connected pieces on the man’s oak desk.  She looks around and sighs.  It will be a shame to destroy so many wonderful books. 

The old man’s eyes shoot wide and he blinks rapidly. 

“What is that,” he asks in a whisper. 

“A going away present,” she answers, scooping up her dress and stuffing it into a pouch of her belt. 

She steps around the desk and feels about underneath it until she finds the button she is looking for.  Pressing it a secret drawer ejects and she finds a pair of pistols with the words, Mother Mary, etched into them.  She takes out the two guns, along with the extra clips she finds, and winks at the old man.

“Keeping these for when you find yourself in times of trouble?”  She laughs openly.  “I guess that’s right now, but seeing as how they won’t do you any good, I’m going to borrow them.  Hope you don’t mind.” 

She steps back around the desk and gives him one last look.

“You killed a dozen people to get this letter.  I would hand you over to the police to deal with, but we all know what kind of sentence people with your kind of money would serve.  So I guess it’s only fitting to show you the same mercy you showed them.” 

The old man bares his teeth at her, spitting in her direction and thrashing at his bonds. 

“Filthy cunt!  You think to kill me?  Do you know who I am!” 

Striding past him she casts her voice back over her shoulder. 

“Who you were, old man.  Who you were.” 

His shouting voice assaults her as she leaves him in the study and she knows the six guards still need to be dealt with.  The man had not wasted his time shouting before because he had told them to leave them in peace.  He had foolishly assumed a woman in a cocktail dress that tight could not possibly be concealing a weapon.  He had been very wrong. 

From the second floor landing she sees the first two and decides it is time to get the party started.  Her lithe, athletic body was built for this part of the job.  A lifelong soccer addict who spent her days working her body into top form, this part would be a piece of cake.  Taking off at a sprint, she runs toward the staircase, raising the pistols as she goes, and she puts a spray of bullets into both men before they can think to raise their weapons. 

She reaches the staircase and puts her back to the wall.  The third guard comes rushing into the room and she mows him down before mounting the banister and sliding down to the first floor. 

Three down.  Three to go. 

She takes no joy in killing these men, but she does not have the luxury to hesitate.  They would murder her without a second thought, so it is kill or be killed.  She will take the former, thank you. 

Shouts and panic are exploding from the next room and she knows that the last three are trying to organise.  She will need to make that a bit more difficult.  Bursting into the entry way, all three heads turn toward her in stunned shock.  She presses a button at her belt and the study where she left the old man erupts, shaking the house to the foundation and levelling the rear half of the complex.

She brings the pistols up and starts firing, killing one man and winging another.  Then the pistols click dry and she realises she does not have the time to reload them.  The man she winged is down on the ground so she drops the pistols to the ground and rushes the one still standing.  His eyes flare and he starts to fumble with his automatic rifle. 

Still green, this one. 

He is bringing the rifle to bear, but he raises it too slow.  She slaps the barrel down, draws one of the knives from her hip, and drives it into his jugular.  She rips the gun from his hand, turns her head to the man nursing his arm and fires a volley of bullets at him as she walks away, Eddie Vedder’s voice floating about in her mind.

You’re still alive, she said

Oh, and do I deserve to be

Is that the question

And if so…if so…who answers…who answers…

The house continues to collapse in series of endless eruptions and she picks up her pace.  She gets out the front door just as the fire and destruction begin to flare out of control and a bullet comes flying in from the left.  She hits the deck and starts to scan the area when a black BMW M3 comes speeding in, clipping the assailant, and sending the man sailing into the night. 

The car pulls up and the passenger door flies open. 

“You missed one,” a voice says from the drivers seat. 

The woman gets up and steps into the car.  As she slides into the seat she leans over and kisses the man driving the car. 

“No, love, I didn’t miss him.  I was leaving you one.” 

She smiles at the man.  Rolling his eyes and shaking his head, he turns toward the road and peels out of the driveway as the mansion erupts a second time and the whole building begins to collapse.   

“Did you get it then?” he asks.

“I did,” she replies with a smile.

She peels the letter from the pouch on her abdomen and shows it to him. 

“The San Miguel, babe.  This is going to lead us to it.  How does a few months on the beach sound?”

The man in the driver’s seat bites his lower lip and lays into the accelerator, a look of triumph caked on his face.    

The prospect of billions of dollars in treasure can do that.

If you would like your own story, please feel free to contact me with 10 words, a theme (it can be a genre, favourite movie or book) and a song and I will write you a story as well!  I am open to any and all submissions!  They are posted every Sunday.  

Next Sunday (14th February) will be Charlotte’s Story.  Look forward to it please!

Framboise’s Story ~ A Story from 10 Words

For those of you unfamiliar with the series: A Story from 10 Words, please check my about page for details.

This weeks submission gave me these words to work from:

10 words: unknowingly, sailor, night, trinkets, sapphire, drastic, luminescent, loon, velocity, circular / Genre: slasher / Song: I Was Young When I Left Home by Bob Dylan

And this is the story I produced from it.  This week does not have an accent, but I would like to pay homage to the Silent Hill video game series for my inspiration on the setting.  I hope you enjoy it!

*Images are not owned by the author and are used without permission.  Any and all lyrics contained within that reference the song submitted were not done so with intent to plagiarise*



She awoke to a nightmare.

Blood ran from the walls of her room like sap down the tree of death and all around the smell of murder began to accost her.  A sudden and unrelenting need to flee took hold of her and she bolted from the room without a second thought.  Her bare feet slipped and slid through a mucus like substance she could guess at, but refused to look down to confirm.  Putting one hand to her nose and mouth to shut out the smell of putrefaction while also keeping her desire to vomit down, she grasped at the door handle that led from her room only to have it shoot out of her grasp.

Momentum carried her forward and she collided with the door, causing it to burst into a cloud of rot and filth.  She landed on her side just beyond the frame of the door and slid nearly ten feet through what she now knew for a fact was a mixture of blood, entrails and excrement.

Cursing and in a state of wild panic she leapt back to her feet.  She could feel the filth she had fell into coating her arm and her back, but she could not afford to focus on that.  She had to escape.  That was the only thought that continued to repeat in her mind like it was being beaten from a drum.

Run.  Escape.  Run.  Escape.  

She blinked back the fear and started to look around.  She was outside.  How had she gotten outside?  She turned back to the doorway and saw that her room was now a cube floating in space.  Above it hovered a large bowl that was overflowing with gore, and a large skull hung just above the bowl with bright sapphire eyes and a savage grin.  The blood that spilled over the edges of the bowl and coated her room was pouring forth from the skull’s gaping mouth.  She could not fight back the feeling in her stomach any longer and she added to the stench with her own vomit.

This was hell.

Just then a tinkling sound reached her ears and she spun back the other direction.  She was faced with an impossibly large, luminescent moon.  It shined down from the night sky like a diamond lying on a sheet of onyx, lighting up everything about her.  She took in her surroundings and her heart began to pound.  Sweat ran down her face in streams and all the muscles in her fingers began to twitch.

This can’t be real.  This has to be a dream

She was staring at a run down carnival.  The lights blinked on an off and the rides moved slowly about their business as if they had been waiting just for her.  Strange music tinkled from music boxes but they had the sound of being hundreds of years out of repair.  All the notes were off, either too high or too low, and a scratching sound ran underneath it all, almost like a record player that was being jostled.  The lights were wrong too, some had burnt out and others were impossibly bright.  Rust caked everything and the smell of caramel and sugar blended in with the ferric scents that had filled her nose previously.  All of this did nothing to help her fight off her nausea.

Going forward meant walking into the carnival.  Going back meant going into a pool of blood. Where the hell does one go when one has nothing but death to choose from?  She chose the carnival.  She would come to regret that decision rather soon.

Stepping onto the midway she looked to her left and right.  There were games and attractions offering prizes.  Many were just the usual shiny trinkets that one takes home from the carnival but others were not.  She stopped dead in her tracks when she saw a dart throwing game.  It offered a large teddy bear dressed in a sailor’s uniform as a prize.  That was not what shocked her.  In place of balloons were human hearts.  Human hearts that were still pumping blood all over the board they were pinned to.

Wake up.  Please, God, wake up.  

“Ah, you want to go home so soon?  But you just got here!”

The manic voice comes from behind her and she knows better than to look.  Everyone with half a mind would know what is back there.  Trapped in a nightmare like this, could it be anything other than a clown?  Is there any place more fitting than this for one such as he to exist.  Still, she spins and comes face to face with the loon.

He is tall and lanky, face covered in paint, but it is the drastic contrast between his head and the rest of his body that leaves her in stunned silence.  He is naked save for a lace neckpiece and all his parts are mismatched, purple, bloated, and stitched together with puss leaking out of him from a hundred different places.  His face is pristinely painted and a huge smile spreads across it but the haphazardly stitched together body is what truly terrifies her.

Why?  Why am I seeing this?  Why… why… why….WHY!?  

“Now, now,” he says with a smile that only the truly insane can muster, “you are hurting my feelings!”  He laughs, forcing yellow fluid to ooze out of the stitches covering his body, and she fights off the desire to soil herself.

Run, damn you!  Run!

She runs.  Turning her back on the clown, she heads deeper into the nightmare.  She bolts past a ferris wheel that looks like a roasting spit with a fire blazing beneath it and carousels with flayed human beings bobbing up and down with horses sitting on their backs.  She goes past a whack-a-mole game that features real live moles and actual hammers and finds herself unknowingly headed toward the house of mirrors.

No, no, no.  That is a terrible idea. 

She slows to think and then hears a circular saw fire up behind her and she knows who wields it.

No choice.  No fucking choice. 

She enters the house of mirrors and knows she has been corralled here, led like cattle, and that the butcher is only a few steps behind.  She twists and turns, hearing his sick laughter behind her and a new thought comes cascading into her brain.

You can’t outrun him.  He’ll catch you.  You have to fight him.  Kill him.

She stops and faces a million versions of herself reflected in the mirrors – some short, some tall, some thin, and some fat.  The question is, is there a killer amongst them?  Of all the versions of her, can she find one strong enough to face this nightmare? She hears him coming and a calm comes over her.  I have to face it.

“The itsy bitsy Popet ran in a frantic fit,” the clown sang, his voice high and impossibly happy.  “Down came the happy man to slice her all to bits.  Out came the hack saw to make her into mince meat, and the itsy bitsy Popet was gobbled up hands and feet.”

She waits, knowing the demon will not make this easy.  She has nothing to fight with, but this is her nightmare.  She will think of something or die trying.

The clown comes smashing through the mirrors in a shower of glass, his perfectly painted face smiling for all the world like death was a pleasant afternoon stroll.  The circular saw spits out smoke from behind it as he swings it down toward her head.  She dives forward, just under his arching swing and rolls toward the other side.  Her shoulders and back are cut up from the broken glass and an idea strikes her.  She glances around and finds what she needs, waiting for her attacker to come back.

“Now, Popet, it isn’t nice to run from your Uncle Smiley.  Come on over and give us a kiss, bitch,” he says, his voice high and bright.

He raises the circular saw over his head and she lunges right at him, driving a large piece of glass right under his chin and into the back of his throat.  Blood cakes her hand and she knows she has cut herself deep, but the velocity of the blood now gushing from the clown’s neck tells her he is hurt much worse.

She leaps back and watches as the clown falls to his back.  His body twitches and blood continues to sputter from his wound for several moments.  She draws breath in heavy, shaking gasps as her fingers continue to twitch.  She can feel blood running down the fingers of her right hand and knows she will need to dress the wound if she does not want to get an infection.  This thought alone drives her to a manic laughter.  This entire nightmare is one never-ending infection.

A slow clicking sound begins to register in her ears and she turns to face a man in a brown suit with a bowler hat and a half smoked cigar hanging from his mouth.  His amber skin and golden eyes tells her this man is far more dangerous than the clown could ever have hoped to be.  She begins looking around for another piece of glass when bowler hat shook his head slowly.

“I ain’t your enemy, girlie.  So don’t bother.  I come to send you home.”

She looks at him in disbelief.  How could he send her out of her own nightmare?  The man steps closer and she realises that she cannot raise her arms.  She is paralysed.

“It’s time to pawn that watch and chain, little missy.”  He places a warm hand over her eyes.  “Now, go on home.”


Sitting up bolt right in her bed she looks left and right for signs of blood and finds only the room she has always known.  She takes a deep breath and steadies herself.  A laugh escapes her lips, sad and relieved at the same time, and she wipes a cold sweat from her brow.

It was just a dream

Then she holds her right hand in front of her face and finds a long scar running down her palm.

In the distance she can hear Bob Dylan singing as a shiver runs down her spine.

I don’t like it in the wind
Wanna go back home again
But I can’t go home thisaway
Thisaway, Lord Lord Lord
And I can’t go home thisaway” 

The voice of the bronze man fills her ears and she begins to tremble.

“You done well, Popet, but you ain’t done yet.  No, no.  You ain’t done yet.”

She lets out a scream known only to the damned.  The nightmare was not over.

It had only just begun.


If you would like your own story, please feel free to contact me with 10 words, a theme (it can be a genre, favourite movie or book) and a song and I will write you a story as well.  They are posted every Sunday.  

Next Sunday (7th February) will be Lauren’s Story.  Look forward to it please!

Rachel’s Story – A Story from 10 Words

This is a very special edition of A Story from 10 Words.  Rachel is a friend I met at UCLA who asked me one day to write her a story.  That simple prompting led to the first novel I ever completed.  Rachel serves as the inspiration for the main character of that story (the prologue for which you can find here.)  She is a wonderful girl and a good friend.  I don’t know why her characters end up violent and scary.  I honestly don’t.  Though she didn’t help her cause with the words she submitted.  So, without further ado, Rachel’s Story.

These were the 10 words I was given: blood, guts, hoops, fruition, amaranth, coffee, eagles, company, chip, naked

The theme was: East of Eden, Steinbeck

And the song was: Iris-Goo goo dolls

Here is the story I made from it:

“I believe that there is one story in the world, and only one. . . . Humans are caught—in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their avarice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too—in a net of good and evil. . . . There is no other story. A man, after he has brushed off the dust and chips of his life, will have left only the hard, clean questions: Was it good or was it evil? Have I done well—or ill?”

― John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Sitting in a pool of one’s own blood and guts is as good a time as any to ponder life’s mistakes. 

The sun breaks through white lace curtains to accost my face and dust particles dance before my eyes like fairies.  My nose is filled with the ferric scent of spent life and I can feel all the lies I’ve told myself coming to fruition.  For good or ill, it ends here.

Running my hand down my cold, naked body the days and miles of hard living flash through my mind in black and white.  My skin is sweat slick and hardened from labours beyond count but I refuse to bemoan my suffering.  There is no honour in hardship nor call for self-glorification.  I had suffered of my own doing and I shall bear it in the same silent manner through which I earned it. 

Heavy boots strike hard wood and I hear my clock ticking.  My hands reach down between my legs and I feel the pool building up.  A life was ripped from me only moments before and now fate is coming to claim a second.  I’ll be damned if I take it lying down. 

Pushing myself into a sitting position, hair clinging to my haggard face, the bed shrieks out in protest.  Smoke fills my nose from a billowing fire made of blood red bricks.  One at a time, that was how it was built, and, like my own life, it came to house a blazing inferno.  Now here I am, left with only the blood running down my legs to keep me company, and I feel a hot fury creeping up inside of me like flames slowly eating wood. 

Placing my feet on the cold hardwood floor it saps the heat from my body and I fight off a shiver that rattles my spine.  I only have so many steps left and I have to make them count.  The chips are down and it’s time to cash in.  Have I overplayed my hand, or underplayed it?  Have I sold myself short?  These are the questions only a dying person asks themselves and I am not going to die.  This fool of a man thought he plucked himself a rose when in fact he had laid his hands on amaranth.  I am the undying and I won’t be had so easily. 

The door creaks open and I can feel his eyes on me like cold death.  Feral and hateful, he wants that last inch and I won’t give it.  He’s going to have to come and take it.  I come face to face with a mirror and have to marvel at what stares back.  A bloated heliotrope wreak conveying all the beatings one woman will take to live a lie. 

He’s talking now, his voice is cold and hard like his fist, telling me to get back in bed.  Smoke and stale coffee waft into the room along with a heavy violence in the form of a man who uses words like I love you as an accusation.  I have been guilty and I let his curse damn me.  But now I hear the screams of new life and the answer is suddenly so clear.  Why couldn’t I see it before?

“I’ve been lying down for too long.” 

My voice is small and far away, like talking to myself at the bottom of a pool.  I know he hears me but I doubt whether I spoke the words or just felt them.  Either way, it doesn’t matter. 

He’s furious and stomping over to me.  He thinks this is going to end the same way it always has.  He thinks nothing has changed.  When he was striking me I had no one to blame buy myself — sometimes you have to bleed just to know you’re alive.  The moment he pried that life from me though I became responsible for more than my own suffering.  The game has changed.

“Did you hear me?”

He’s shouting.  He places his hand on my shoulder to turn me toward him, to look into his hateful face and I can’t be happier to oblige.  It’s time to rise, time to fly with the eagles.

He never thought to look at what I was holding in my hands.

I put the barrel of the shotgun just under his chin and he only has a moment to register what will come next.  The snarl is gone.  All the hate and violence he’s unleashed is reduced to a simpering child.  But he only has a moment.  By the time he could think to defend himself I have relieved him of the obligation. 

“I want you to know who I am,” I say, hoping my words will follow him to hell. 

His last thoughts are spread out in chunks all across the room and the blowback cakes my body in gore to match what’s coating my thighs.  I drop the gun to the floor and the doctor comes rushing into the room.  He looks at me and I know what he sees — a veritable pinwheel of carnage.

“What have you done?” He gasps.

“What I had to.  I jumped through his hoops, bent and twisted myself in the vain attempt at being perfect, but no more.  There are those that will say what I’ve done was evil, but that’s the prerogative of man — to judge the right and wrong of a life they haven’t lived.  It’s only I that have to bear the burden of this choice and my conscience is clear.  I haven’t done ill this day and I don’t have to be perfect anymore. ” 

Looking down at my blood stained hands I can’t help but feel free.    

“I don’t have to be perfect, so now maybe I can be good.” 

*Several lines were borrowed from the works of John Steinbeck and The Goo Goo Dolls.  I did that to honour the submission with no intention to plagiarise* 

If you would like your own story, please feel free to contact me with 10 words, a theme (it can be a genre, favourite movie or book) and a song and I will write you a story as well.  They are posted every Sunday.  

Next Sunday (31st January) will be Framboise’s Story.  Look forward to it please!

Paul’s Story – A Story from 10 Words

This was what I was given:  Randy (aka: Mentor), Butch (aka: Gus), and Paul (aka: Lucky) – 10 words: trout, deer, bear, tent, fire, cold, snow, boat, cigars, beer.  Setting: Convict Lake

And this is the story I made from it:

(Today’s accent is going to be, “old west cowboy.”  Again, trust me, reading it in this accent will make it more fun!  Enjoy!)


image courtesy of: 

“Well ain’t this a happy heap ‘a horse shit you got us in to, Lucky.”

A shot rang out in the clear California morning and the bullet richoceted off rock, sending a resounding echo bouncing off the nearby mountains.  Snow had been falling for nearly two days and a thick layer covered the ground where three men crouched behind a cluster of fallen aspen trees. 

“We got enough on our plate without having to listen to yer bitchin’, Gus.”

“Ignorin’ me is what got us here in the first place.  We were supposed to be fishin’, that was the plan.  Drink some beers and catch some fish.  Then you two jackasses decided it would be a good idea to chase after ’em convicts made a run for it outta Carson.  Now I find myself knee deep if slush, freezing my balls off and likely about to get my fuzzy ass shot in the bargain.” 

Lucky turned toward Gus with a laugh on his lips.

“Two of us came out here to catch fish, that’s for sure,” he said in an harsh whisper.  “One of us came out here to bait the hooks and run his mouth.  You wanna take a guess as to which one that is, pretty boy?  Now, you don’t shut yer trap you ain’t gonna have to worry about them convicts blowing your ass off, ‘cus I’ma do it for ‘em.” 

The Mentor turned back to his two friends with a slow, steady glare.

“I don’t suppose it would be too much to ask of you boys to focus on the problem at hand.  We got six men out there looking to put us in the dirt and, contrary to the plans a’ you two princesses, I don’t intend on cashin’ in today.” 

More shots rang out and the bullets were getting closer to the target.  A deer bolted from the brush and rushed out into the clearing between the convicts and the three lawmen.  The convicts saw only movement and a chance to empty their cannons into a moving target but it proved to be the perfect distraction. 

Three of the convicts erupted from behind cover and the mentor twisted around the fallen trees and laid to.  He pulled the colt from his hip and fired six shots fast, fanning the hammer with his free hand.

Lucky spun around and placed his rifle across the barrier of trees, zeroed in on the nearest target and fired off three rounds.  He worked the lever action with quick jerks and fired with tried percision.  This was a man who knew how to kill when it was called for.

Gus turned the opposite way, bringing his scattergun to bear.  The blast boomed in that wide open space and birds peeled off into the grey sky.  A rabbit broke from cover and the other critters followed their lead, fleeing their homes to escape the sudden invasion of violence.

The three convicts who had presented targets all fell, bullets tearing them to shreds and painting the snow with their life’s blood.  The mentor had placed all six shots into his man’s chest, caving it in and throwing the man back into the tree behind him.  Lucky set his shots a mass, putting two in his target’s chest and the last right between his eyes.  Gus hit his man first, but it took his the longest to die.  The buckshot tore his chest to shreds and several pellets riddled his face as well.  An ear was torn off and the man was lying face down in the snow screaming as the three lawmen ducked back down.

“Three down, three to go,” Lucky said.

“Don’t reckon those other three‘ll surrender peaceful like,” Gus added, sounding resigned. 

“You could always go on out and ask,” the mentor said, grinning at his brother. 

“I’ll pass.  I got me a date with a nice fat trout in that there lake and I wouldn’t want the fate of the triple crown left in the hands of you two amateurs.” 

“Mentor, please let me shoot him.  I promise we can find you a suitable replacement.” 

“Ain’t no use, Lucky.  You shoot him he’ll only get more irritatin’.” 

“Don’t see how that’s possible.” 

“Shows how little you understand.  I been acosted by his stupidity since my first breath and I guarantee I got more sufferin’ commin to me.”  The mentor turned toward Gus and was greeted with a shit eating grin.  “God don’t let trials like him end easy.” 

“Yeah, old Job ain’t got a thing on you, that’s for damn sure.  How you put up with his mouth for this long I’ll never understand.”

“It’s a’cuz I’m so damned pretty,” Gus added.

All three men had a good laugh at that and the firing began again.  The lawmen ducked down instinctively and the mentor began reloading his Colt.  Lucky checked his rifle and Gus gripped the boom stick close to his chest as they waited for the firing to cease.

“You all gonna die, law dogs!  Come on out ‘ere and get your desserts, damn you!” 

That was Greer, the worst of the bunch. 

“Way I see it, we just cut your number in half, Greer.  Why not come on out yerself and we’ll introduce you to a nice California collar?  Least that way you can go God with a clear conciense,” Lucky replied. 

This was answered with more bullets.  These men wanted to go out guns blazing.  They had escaped prison and made it this far, the last thing they wanted was to surrender to three over-the-hill lawmen. 

“We ain’t gonna see no end to this but by blood my friends.  What say we get it over with?”  Lucky said without the slightest hint of fear.  This was a man who had stared death in the face more than once and he was not going to blink now. 

Gus and Mentor both nodded their heads.  It was time to take the fight to the devil.

Mentor bolted from cover, fanning his Colt and making for a small spread of trees off to his left while Lucky vaulted straight over the cover they had been crouched behind, firing his rifle as he went.  Gus followed behind, his shotgun barraging the surrounding trees with pellets and sending wood chips flying. 

The three men raced forward through the snow, guns blasting apart the trees and sending a roaring thunder of noise rebounding off the mountainside.  Canfield broke from cover first and Mentor venilated him before he could bring his iron around.  Maxwell followed and Lucky near took his head off at the neck with a shot that struck him just below the chin.  Greer was all alone and he decided to make a run for it.  He panicked and turned the wrong way, only to come face to face with Gus and his shotgun. 

“Guess you shoulda’ surrendered after all, asshole.” 

Gus put a hole in Greer’s chest the size of a man’s closed fist.  Greer dropped to his knees in the snow and then fell down, face first. 

Gus rested the barrel of the shotgun on his shoulder and turned toward the other two men. 

“Well, now that I got you two jackasses outta’ this mess, what say we find that boat and get to fishin’?” 

“It’s nearly sundown, we can’t fish in this.  So what say you set up the tent, your highness, seein’ as how you ain’t never caught anything out here but a cold? 

Mentor laughed and holstered his Colt.  “I’ll see to the fire, gentlemen, and I’ll leave you two to figure out who puts up the tent.” 

After some fuss the men had their camp set and a fire going.  Lucky passed cigars out to his two friends and the three men sat before the fire arguing over who killed who first, who killed the most, and which one killed the biggest man.  Little did they know that the lake they sat before would forever be named for this very shootout: Convict Lake.  That was not important to them then though, what was important was they would live to see another day, which meant one more chance to fish together — and argue like old women.

This is the meaning of friends.  It’s the ones who go to war with you.  They walk in knowing what’s on the line and they never blink.

Friendship is also about history.  The longer you live the more you will experience those moments that only your true friends understand.  Words are exchanged and simple phrases that mean nothing to anyone else, but everything to you.  In those moments your true friends are revealed and it creates a bond that stands the test of time. 

Here’s to true friends and the dangers we face in their name.  Here, too, is to simple pleasures like fishing, beer, and cigars with your brothers. 

Just beware the bears.

If you would like your own story, please feel free to contact me with 10 words, a theme (it can be a genre, favourite movie or book) and a song and I will write you a story as well.  They are posted every Sunday.  

Next Sunday (23 January) will be Rachel’s Story.  It is a very special edition of Stories from 10 words as the Rachel I will be writing the story for is the namesake and inspiration for the main character of my action fantasy novel, Sisters of Fury.  Look forward to it please!

Amanda’s Story -A Story from 10 Words

Amanda’s Story

These were the 10 words I was given:  Cheez-it’s, pizza, sleep, gym, laughter, music, rain, chocolate, sweatpants, love. In a log cabin

This is the story I wrote:  (Do me a favor and read it in a British accent.  It will help 🙂 )


The rain assails my cage whilst anticipation draws out as endless as the sea.  That a life can wither in such a way I had known not.  Had it come to me by word or by way perhaps I would have been better prepared for such desolation.  Alas, I am beset. 

Woe that a bird such as I could be so imprisoned, abjectly cast into the pit of suffering reserved for creatures of grey and black.  These colours were intended for grander presentation; the music of my life to be played before the masses. 

Whilst not my liberator come for me?  Knowest he not the way?  Hath dangers untold befallen him in the gallant quest to deliver this gem of ages into breaking dawn only to outshine it.  Weep, for truly my plight is unmatched in the annals of man. 

Speed, my love, speed.  Your flower withers evermore. 

Rising from my bed I chance to the window only to find that the downfall will not abate.  Even gods seek to prolong my exile.  I am cast from the eyes of both high and low.  Will my anguish never cease? 

A knock.  The door hath been struck.  Could it be fair prince?  Hath he braved the way to be at the side of his one true love?  Am I to be stolen away, loosed into the sky where I belong.  Oh, I pray it so.

Dashing to the door I fling it wide to bathe in the sight of my hero.  What hath fate rendered? 

The rain cascades off his magnificent form and I behold a creature made from sinew and fine silk, Michelangelo’s David hath come for me. 

“Pray, tell, my brave knight, to what end hath you sought this place?”

Silence fills the night.  His powerful mind spins from the perils he hath overcome to stand before me.

“Are we doing this again?” he asks, and I am less than pleased at his failure to grasp the weight of the situation. 

“Again, my love?  Surely this is the first our eyes have met!” I shout, pleading with mine eyes. 

“Right,” he says, shrugging his massively muscled shoulders.  “So, the first question was something about why I came here, right?” 

“I say,” I say, “thine words are vulgar.  Could it be that thou dost not seek copulation on this fair night?  Perhaps I would be better served to sleep, gods know I love it so.”

The musculature of his face shows that he hath grasped what lies in the balance should he fail in his task. 

“Most assuredly not, my fair princess.  I have traveled far in search of you and I just got finished at the gym so my, I mean ‘mine’, mine mind is not quite caught up to mine ass.” 

“Ass?  Really?” I query, disquietude getting the better of me.

“Yes, fair maiden.  I hath worked it to exhaustion for thine pleasure.  I present it,” he says, turning to produce his derrière.  “Is it not lithesome?  Is it not supple?”

“Your fortunes are turning for the worse I fear and I may have to seek solace in sleep after all.”

“But maiden, I have ridden long on the back of my great stead, Ford Bronco, to be at your side!”

That fate would send me such a creature!  He hath no even the wit or extravagance to choose the Mustang instead.  Miserly halfwit!  Be gone from my sight!

“I have no time for such games.  I shall pine away until my loins are of no use, certainly not to one such as you.”

“No, dearest damsel, do not turn from me.  Do not shut me away from this, the log-iest of cabins, to be cast out of your sight and denied the beauty of you and your finest of faded sweatpants.”

I pray he can see the vexation upon my visage.

“I have come, enduring wandering pathways with terrible reception and a lack of GPS whilst Siri, my ever troublesome companion, lead me to ways unknown.  I have soiled my finest raiments, purchased from the greatest smith in all the land – Dick, of Dick’s Sporting Goods.  He hath crafted this fine chest piece in the style of the very Thomas Edward Patrick Brady, Jr., the noblest of all Patriots, so that I may woo you.  Do not let these efforts be in vain!  I pray you!”

“Seriously, Joe, you suck at this.”

“I can’t be good at everything.” 

His laughter undoes me.  I can’t help but smile, the big dope.

“Okay, so you aren’t prince charming.  How are you going to make up for that?”

“Well, I brought you chocolate, Cheez-it’s, and pizza.  How does that sound?”

I love this man. 

People think that love is complicated.  That it’s a grand gesture that can only be understood on a large stage in breathtaking moments with elegant words.  That isn’t true.  Love is in the little things.  The small gestures.  The minute understandings.  Love is being close enough to someone to know how much leaving the last piece of chocolate in the box for them will mean.  It’s driving out of the way to get to the store that sells their favourite snack just because it’s Tuesday and you love them.

Shakespeare wrote beautiful words and his love always died. 

Real life isn’t always full of beautiful words, but if you look hard enough you will find that it is full of something even better. 

It is full of simple love. 

Simple love is the kind that never leaves you.  It never betrays you.  Simple love is rocking chairs and holding hands even when your hands can’t hold anything else.  Simple love is grandchildren and forever. 

Here is to simple love and the hope that it finds you every day.

Here, too, is to real men who know that loving Tom Brady is never simple. 

Sorry.  I had to ruin it a little there. 

If you would like your own story, please feel free to contact me with 10 words, a theme (it can be a genre, favourite movie or book) and a song and I will write you a story as well.  They are posted every Sunday.  

Next Sunday (16 January) will be Paul’s Story.  Look forward to it please!

A Story for Anonymous

This was a request that came along with one of my, “Your story from 10 words” submissions.  I didn’t have words to work with but a theme and a basic sketch of what was needed.  I hope this is what you were looking for and my heart goes out to anonymous.  Many of us have been here:


Sitting in a place so full of ghosts how can one not be afraid?  You try to find a quiet place to sort out your thoughts and you are chased by a never ending noise.  Is it pain?  Is it fear?  Is it self doubt?  You can call it what you want but its haunting.  It’s unrelenting.  And it never stops talking.  It won’t, for one damn second, just shut up and let you think.  Now it’s back again and I am digging my fingers into my skull, too tired to cry, too full of thoughts to sleep, and too confused to know how to fight it off.  Why is this happening to me. 

“Why isn’t the question you should be asking yourself.  Why doesn’t matter.  Focusing on that question is what is holding you back.”

The voice.  The demon I am forced to fight.

“I am not here to hurt you.  You have to stop fighting me and listen.” 

I can’t do this.  I can’t turn it off.  Fear and pain are all I have left to defend myself.  They are the shield keeping all the feelings I don’t want to feel out.  If I drop them, I’ll die.  I know it.

“You won’t die.  This isn’t the end.  Please, just for a moment, stop and listen.” 

I can’t listen, I won’t listen.  These ghosts are going to be the end of me.  I feel so alone, so trapped in this confusion.  There has to be a way out.  I did everything right.  Was it me?  Is there something wrong with me?  If I think about it long enough I will find the reason.  If I take all the little pieces of my shattered heart and line them up it will make sense.  I will know why this happened.

“What happened wasn’t about you.  Selfish decisions are just that, about the self.  You didn’t make the decision so how could it have been about you?” 

Because it happened to me.  It hurt me.  It’s killing me.  That’s why it’s about me. That’s why I have to find a way to fix me.  I have to change whatever is wrong and then it will be right.  Then I can fill this hole, this gaping chasm I feel inside of me.

“Torturing yourself will never fill that hole.  Self hate cannot counter unfeeling vanity.  The only thing that is going to fix it is to open your eyes and see.”

There is nothing to see but this.  There is no world but this growing cancer.  Everything was right and good and now it’s all spinning.  I want it to stop.  I want to understand. 

“If you want it to stop, you have to stop it.  This is your life to control, so do it.  Have you still not figured out who I am?”

You’re a damn voice in my head, one of the thousands that won’t just let me be.  You are a demon.  It’s your fault this happened.  You must be that broken part of me that caused this.  You brought me here.

“No.  That isn’t true and you know it.  You know who I am.”

Hate.  Hurt.  Fear.  Regret.  Frailty.  Insecurity.  Sorrow.  Tears.  You are all the feelings I can’t stop feeling.

“No.  I’m not.  I’m you.  I’m all the best parts of you and I can’t stand what you are doing to yourself anymore.”

No, no, no, no, no, no.

“Please stop.  I love you so much.  I don’t want you to hurt anymore.  I want to help you but you have to let me.”

I can’t listen to you.  I won’t.  You are a liar.  You are a deceiver.  Satan, be gone! 

“No.  I will not leave you.  I will never leave you.  I will be with you, rain or shine, sorrow or joy.  I am the one thing that can never, ever turn its back on you.”

Where were you then?  Where were you when this all fell apart?  Why didn’t you warn me?  Why didn’t you save me? 

“No on is capable of that.  The future is made of emotion and it fluctuates like the tides.  Somedays the swells are up and somedays they are down.  It’s anyones guess what tomorrow will bring.  That is what makes love so wonderful.  It’s unpredictable.  If it were safe it would not feel half as good.  It’s like jumping from an airplane or riding a rollercoaster.  The thrill is in the danger of it.  The hope that we all hold on to is that the person we have placed our faith in will never let us down.  The challenge you now face is what to do when that person does let you down?  How do you pick up and move on?  How do you let it go?

I can’t.  It’s impossible.  It’s too hard.  it hurts too much.

“Of course it hurts.  No one is telling you it shouldn’t hurt.  But let me tell you something, something I think you haven’t realised.  Do you know what you are doing every time you let yourself fall apart like this?  You are giving him one more moment of your life that you can never have back.  You gave him so much, none of which he deserved, and now you’re letting him take more of it for free.  Every tear.  Every moment of pain and sorrow.  All of it is a gift to a man who wasn’t worth the world you’ve already sacrificed.  It’s time to stop letting him have you.  It’s time to decide that this is your life and he can’t have it anymore.”

My breathing steadied and I’ve unclenched my fingers.  I can feel it.  The weight that I’ve been shouldering for far too long feels like it’s getting lighter.

“Here’s the secret.  I’m not supposed to tell you this, but I love you too much to hide it from you any longer.  You have to stop being you and start becoming me: the you before he came along.  You have to remember who you are outside of the context of this relationship.  There was a day you were different.  Do you remember? 

“We all change as time goes on.  New jobs, new cities, new relationships, new homes, everything we experience changes us even if we don’t’ want it to.  Stubborn people who can’t see past their pride will say they are the same person everywhere they go and in everything they do, but this is a lie.  We are all chameleons.  We change colours and adapt.  It’s how you protect yourself from the predator known as life.  So you changed when he came along.  The way to move past it is to change again.  Become stronger, become smarter, raise your head up and look forward.” 

I am.  I will.  I can see it now.  I can feel it now.  This wasn’t about me.  This had nothing to do with me.  It was done to me but it wasn’t because of me.  It was about him.  Only him.

“Life is a priceless gift.  Whatever you may believe about the road beyond this world, you have only this one chance to be you.  Every single moment is precious, so don’t waste a single one.  I promise there will come a day that you will be past this and look back, cursing all the time you wasted twisted up over a man and a moment that is so trivial in the grand scheme.” 

It comes down to a question; lay down and die or stand up and walk.  Live or die.  Surrender or fight.  The seconds are ticking away, seconds I can’t have back.  It’s time to face the ghosts.  It’s time to face myself… it’s time to forgive myself.  This is my life and I am going to own it.  Every moment of it, I am going to own it.  Thank you.  Thank you for not giving up on me.

“You are never alone.  How ever abandoned and isolated you may feel, I will always be here.  I am always with you.  You are stronger than you know, now stand up.  It’s time to leave this place.”

Yes.  It’s time.  I am finished here.