The Club by Ashleigh Seton-Rogers

Prompt: The Club | Word count: 750 words | Genre:  Comedy

Astrid strolled slowly into the school.  It was dark out and the place was deserted.  She wasn’t sure what to expect.  And if it hadn’t been for the light up ahead, coming from one of the classrooms, she would have fled.

A Facebook message had started all this.  It had said something to the effect that she would ‘benefit greatly from this gathering’.  She had tried to look up the person “Glynis” who had sent the message, but their profile had been set to private and except for a pic of a cat as the profile pic, there hadn’t been much go on.  Nearing the door, she heard chatter and the scraping of chairs.

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Coming Undone by José Enrique

Prompt: Coming Undone | Word Count: 1200 | Genre: Fiction

04:52

He closed the door, with conscious effort of minimizing the creaking sound, which it had been making since a month or so. With a ten-hour shift job at a warehouse floor, he had not had enough time nor energy to fix the door, or buy the carpet which he noticed every day on his way to work, or finish his first novel which still was only few pages written. When he was just few stairs down, he turned back and stared hard at the closed door which he could see only partially as the stairs were awfully helical. For a split second, it seemed as if he would run back to the door but he noticed that he had only few minutes to the bus to work on his wrist watch, gifted from his work for his long service of 9 years in the company. While running on the street towards the bus-stop, he still managed to gaze quickly onto his bedroom’s window. He made it to the bus-stop just in time.

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The Old Dairy by Adriaan Snyman

Prompt: The Old Dairy | Word count: 1200 | Genre: Drama / Comedy / Something in between

“He is coming undone,” Barry said, taking a sip of his tea from the plastic cup.

“You what, mate?” John asked who just entered the leisure room at The Old Dairy.

“Steve over there,” Barry indicated with both his eyes and the cup in his hand to a middle-aged man dressed in a white overall, sitting in the corner of the room with his head hanging forward. “He is coming undone.”

“What are you on about?” John asked while pouring himself a cup of tea from his metal flask.

“Tell him Steve,” Barry mocked with a grin on his face. “Tell old John, what does the doctor say?”

Feeling sorry for himself, Steve didn’t move.

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The Glass Jar by Sarah Muzaffar

Prompt: Going Home | Word Count: 497 | Genre: Drama

She looked back one last time, as her slender fingers clasped around the door knob. She retrieved her steps looking longingly at the picture on the coffee table. Her small world captured in a frame.

No, I cannot do this. I have to go. If I stay any longer, I will never have the courage to leave.

She turned the knob and shut the door behind her.


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Coming Home by Mia Botha

 Prompt: Going Home | Word Count: 500 | Genre: Drama

Warning: Violence

You kick him off as you come up, sucking in big gulps of air, you cough and cough again, fighting with the covers on the floor and stumble after him into the bathroom, pulling at the shower curtain to regain your balance, but you slide down, gasping as your lungs beg for air with tears running unchecked down your cheeks. A merry string of red beads ring your neck, each embedded with his fingerprint. This wasn’t supposed to happen.

O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,

What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming, 

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Softly Forging Jade by Daniel Casey

Prompt: Conversation with my spouse  | Word count: 1200 | Genre: Sci-Fi/Space Opera/Drama?  Warning | Implied Suicide at end of story

Kelton shook his head; two painful busy weeks since the last attack. Living with Art’s constant screams in his head, the only relief was chemical sleep. He prayed for no more friendly deaths on his hands. He thought back a couple of years to his conscription; pulled from his honeymoon barely a week into the new marriage. His bride was left standing on the launch pad as he and the other conscripts were blasted out to the first of many training stations on a collision course with the first wave of Tessera. He’d been home twice since then; the visits always strained by the knowledge he wasn’t there to stay.

Checking his messages absentmindedly as he shucked his uniform, he noted that leave to call home had been granted,sixty minutes of comm-wave time for personal use. His heart lifted. His heart tripped a joyful beat as he thought of his girl, remembering her voice. As always, there was a hint of strain. Funny, he thought to himself, how almost dying made one appreciate life more. He was half done his tour, two more years and they could be together. He could get on with his life and they could start the family they always wanted. His whole focus changed. He took care in showering and dressing so he’d be nice and clean, presentable for his comm-wave to her.

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A White Lie by Kathy Gates

Prompt: A white lie I Word count: 2500 I Genre: Women’s fiction

A light rat-a-tat on the door. Laura sat up straight. “Yes?”

Michael, her office neighbour, appeared with two cardboard cups. “Hey, grabbed you a cappuccino. No sugar, no chocolate sprinkles, right?”

“Perfect! You’re the answer to an old lady’s prayer.”

“Cheers, grandma. Shared the lift with your last clients, if looks could kill,” he pointed at himself, “Collateral damage.”

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A Wrong Gone Right by Anusuya

Prompt: A White Lie | Word Count: 2500 words | Genre: Slice-of-life

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I jump onto the bike, yelling, “Come on, let’s get away before she reaches the door.” Even as we zoom away, I can hear her calling out to us, reminding us that we aren’t wearing the helmets as mandated by the city’s laws.
I cannot help but wonder at my mother’s tenacity. I mean, doesn’t she tire of pointing out the same thing day in and out to a husband and son who seem to never listen to her warnings of danger lurking around the corner? After all, she is the one who always says philosophically, “Everything happens as per God’s will.” Well, if God had to will a head injury or a traffic fine on me or Dad, I’m pretty sure no helmet would stand in the way of His wish! But somehow, I cannot get myself to say this outright to Mom when I see that anxious look on her face. But then, it’s quite irritating to have her always whining about how I’m courting death by driving without a helmet. Which is why I try to escape before she realizes I’m gone.

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The Witch’s Daughter by Rachel Dye

Prompt:  A white lie | Word Count:  2500 (exactly) | Genre:  Historical Fiction

The spring sun failed to warm Agatha as she watched her mother slowly ascend the stairs of the scaffold. Her mother’s long brown hair was streaked with more gray then she remembered, and had been cut just below her ears. Was the hangman concerned her long braid would interfere with the day’s justice or had the town magistrate wished to humiliate the proud woman? Likely both, Agatha thought.

 Her mother appeared unfazed by her starring role in this tragedy. She looked almost peaceful, as though she was at home, instead of facing the wooden instrument of judgment. The urge to look away warred with Agatha’s desire to see her mother. If she dared remove her gaze, she might miss any small acknowledgment before her mother was ripped from this world.

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Debrief by Kathy Gates

Prompt: Conversation with my spouse | Word count: 1200 | Genre: Women’s Fiction

Laura hurried through the crowded restaurant to where Dan sat at a table overlooking the marina. He glanced up and smiled, her heart missed a beat. A wonder she didn’t have a medical condition, his smile had caused uncountable missed beats over the last twenty-four years.

‘Sorry love.’ She kissed him on the cheek and sat down. ‘Prang on the bridge.’

‘Yep.’ He held up his phone. ‘Saw the traffic report. How did the session go?’

Laura pressed her lips together. ‘Um, how can I put this?’ She shrugged. ‘An unmitigated disaster.’

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