The Necessary Tools


“Where’s my level?!”

She crouched in front of her son, “You checked your backpack?”

He trembled. “No! It’s not the 43-511 model! I brought the 1794485 pocket model today!” His hands clenched the fabric of his jeans. “That goes. In. My. Pocket!”

“Breathe,” she searched her purse. “One, two…”

“Do not say three!” He threw his bag to the floor. “We need to go home! I won’t make it…”

She pried his fist open, placing a level in his palm.

“It’s not my 1794485,” he tilted it then looked up. “4 inch? 246-D?”


He bit his lip. “Okay.”



Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

October 28, 2015 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) include a tool in a story. How can it enhance the character, tension or meaning? It can also be a story about a tool or a character’s obsession for tools. Go where the prompt leads.


Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig




Sarah B Ruth's Grave - sig

I could never wear white. Washes me out. But you pull it off. Probably your dark hair. Olive, that’s my daughter, changed my burial dress to this white thing. Can you believe it? Jealous little witch. Delicious scandal and I couldn’t gossip to anyone! Well, she got the last laugh. I’m stuck forever being photographed in white!

Get on with it then. I usually like to perch on the pillar but, in autumn, the leaves are a bit scratchy. How about I stand next to the grave? Hello?!


Ooh! You’re one of those people! This should be fun…



Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

October 21, 2015 prompt: Cemeteries – In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about a final resting place. You can take any perspective that appeals to you from the historic to the horrific. Just don’t scare me too greatly. You can also choose to write about those buried before they came to their final rest. An extra challenge is to discover a story or character from a local cemetery. I double-dog dare you to join me with your own cemetery day!


Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig

Love and War


BlogBattle Sarah B Mars - sig


“Keep it down!”

“Can’t hear you!”

“What are you doing up there?”

“Practicing battle techniques!”

“That’s it!” Jupiter stormed to the throne room. “Juno! Make your son stop this at once!”

“He’s your son too, dear. And, honestly, who made him God of war? Let me think…” She tapped her chin. “Oh, that’s right. You.”

“Nice. And who gave him his own holidays?!” Jupiter shot back. “You!”

“At least I didn’t name a month after him! By all the Gods, what did you think that would accomplish!”

“Hey!” Mars shouted, “Keep it down!”

Excuse me?!” Juno spat. She rose from her throne, gown trailing behind her, striding upstairs into Mars’ room.

“Gods, I love that woman,” Jupiter chuckled.

“Mars!” The door swung open at Juno’s voice. “You had better…” She gasped. “WHAT is going on up here!”

“Mother. Calm down.”

“Do NOT tell me to calm down! Greeks are not welcome in my home! Especially her!”

Jupiter cringed and bolted up the stairs. “Okay, okay. Let’s everyone just… Blast it, Aphrodite! I told you not to come back here! We’ll have to call over to Mount Olympus again.”

Juno turned slowly, eyes blazing. “She’s been here before? You…KNEW!”

“I…just the one time…I was going to tell you, love, I just…” Jupiter took a step back. “Mercury!”

“No need to call Mercury,” Hermes smirked, “I’m here now and all is well.” He turned to Aphrodite, “I’ve been looking for you, sweets.”

“Of course you have,” she purred, cleavage heaving.

“Oh, please,” Hermes gagged. “Get over yourself. Zeus sent me.”

“I’m here,” Mercury appeared, out of breath. “What’s he doing here?” He flung his arm toward Hermes.

“Just leaving, message boy,” Hermes grinned.

I wanted to send for Zeus,” Mercury whined.

Aphrodite twirled her hair, “Why don’t you both bring me home?”

“Hey…” Mars whimpered.

“You don’t own me, little God-ling.” Aphrodite sneered.


“Oh, alright.” She ran her fingertips over his chiseled chest, “you are my favorite.”

“ENOUGH!” Juno screamed. “Get! Out!”

“Hermes,” Jupiter pleaded, “take her back to Mount Olympus.”

Mars wrapped his arms around Aphrodite’s waist. “No. I love her. She stays.”

“Aww…that’s so sweet,” she turned and kissed him. “And expected.”

“Hermes…Mercury…I don’t care who takes her home. She goes.” Jupiter glanced over at his wife. Juno’s eyes bulged, her face red. “Now!”



“Hey, did you hear that?”


“Sounds like thunder.”

“Oh, mother says thunder is just the Gods fighting.”




#Blogbattle is a weekly writing prompt for flash/short stories hosted by Rachael Ritchey 

Read more stories and vote for your favorite here.

Week 32 Prompt: Mars
Genre: Humor




Mars – God of War
Jupiter – King of Gods (Father of Mars, Husband of Juno)
Juno – Queen of Gods (Mother of Mars, Wife of Jupiter)
Mercury – Messenger of the Gods


Aphrodite – Goddess of Love
Hermes – Messenger of the Gods
Zeus – King of Gods (Father of Aphrodite)

One of Those Days


After getting a flat tire, breaking the heel off my shoe, and cracking the screen on my phone, the heater went. I called the repairman and made it to the post office just after they closed. That’s when I noticed I dropped my ATM envelope full of cash.

We spotted it at the same time, the man and I.

I, in new shoes, he, in tattered socks, dashed toward the envelope. He picked it up, looked around, and asked, “Did anyone drop their money?”

He stood.

I waited.

He walked.

It was the first time I’d smiled all day.



Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

October 14, 2015 prompt: Serendipity — In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that reveals or explores a moment of serendipity. How did it come about? What did it lead to? You can express a character’s view of the moment or on serendipity in general. Use the element of surprise or show how it is unexpected or accidentally good.


Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig


Dinner for Two


“I dare you.”


“It’s just lipgloss, not a car. Anyway, you won’t get caught.”

“How do you know?” Cindy glared.

“It’ll be hidden in that oversized backpack you always carry.” She patted Cindy’s bag.

“I don’t need it,” Cindy slapped her friend’s hand away.

“You know you want it,” she taunted. “C’mon. It’s pretty and you don’t have any money.”


Two buses later, Cindy stood at the end of her street. She kicked rocks along her path, ran up the dirt drive, and pushed the door open. “Mama? I’m home!” Unzipping her backpack, she shouted, “I brought dinner!”



Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

October 7, 2015 prompt: Stealing – In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about a thief or a theft. Consider motives and repercussions. Is the act a matter of perception? Is it a daring maneuver or a desperate bid for survival? Think about different instances of stealing.


Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig


See Emily Play


BlogBattle Sarah B - Emily's Snow2 - sig


Emily reached her fingers out to touch the glowing snowflakes. Frosty pine-scented breezes blew in from the forest. She giggled, her brown eyes lighting up, as she watched squirrels scurry up trees and bright red cardinals land on snow-covered branches. The sun grinned then dropped. The moon danced into the sky. Stars settled in her hair. She laughed and took off running along the ground, bare feet landing with soft thuds on plush, purple carpet.

“She’s no better,” Emily’s mother studied her little girl crouched in the corner. “You promised…”

“I said we would try,” the doctor corrected.

“Please. Bring her back to me.”

The doctor stared at the tiled floor, “Emily has been here for three months, Mrs. Stevens.”

“Exactly! Enough! Get her back here from…wherever she is.”

“She’s stable.”

“What the hell does that mean?”

“Her vitals are good…”

“I don’t give a damn! She belongs at home! With me.”

“I appreciate what you’re going through.”

“You don’t!”

“I’m sorry, Mrs. Stevens.” The doctor reached for a tissue box.

“I hate this. I don’t understand any of it. I don’t know if Emily’s in pain…” She grabbed some tissues. “Do you even know where she is? If she can hear us?”

“We haven’t been able to reach her. There’s nothing wrong with her hearing, physically, but I can’t be certain what she’s processing. I think,” he glanced at Emily, “she can sense when you’re here.”

Sense me? She’s my daughter. Is that all I get? Can’t I go to her? Tell her to come back?”

The doctor hesitated, “Mrs. Stevens.” He cleared his throat, “I’m not sure she wants to come back.”

They looked over at the little girl in the hospital gown.

Emily’s hand twitched. She grimaced with something resembling a smile, staring with dead eyes at the twirling snowflakes and playful squirrels.




#Blogbattle is a weekly writing prompt for flash/short stories hosted by Rachael Ritchey 

Read more stories and vote for your favorite here.

Week 30 Prompt: Reach
Genre: Drama


The Trip I Said I’d Never Take


I didn’t know why I was going. Not really. I needed to return to the place of devastation. It’s changed since Papa lived there. What did I expect to find?



These words meant the wrong things to me when I was a child. No one told me I didn’t understand. I thought ‘liquidation’ was something to do with cooking.

Stupid little girl.

I heard the grown-ups talking and tasted sadness under the anger. I became sad, too. Their shattered lives broke me as I grew to understand.

But I could never understand.

I lived in Sorrow’s shadow.


Sarah B sorrow's shadow - B&W



Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

September 30 prompt: Returning to one’s roots – In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about a return to home. What does it mean to return? Is it to reconnect, discover or let go? It can be a town, house, farm, castle or ruins. It can be a country or family, one of origin or one adopted. What does the return impart?