Santa and the Siren

 

Everyone at the holiday ball noticed Rhonda.

While most women drank champagne in elegant, black gowns or shimmied to Jingle Bell Rock in red velvet, Rhonda wore yellow.

Hair color was not mentioned, but they talked.

Her face was not seen, but they stared.

No one left the party that night without having glimpsed the woman in yellow. Yellow and nothing else.

One kind-hearted woman said the dress was “sheer”. Rhonda heard snippets of conversation—some crude, some accusatory.

She smiled, thinking of her senior prom ten years ago.

Ignored, unnoticed, invisible. Not even worthy of a sneer or snide comment. An overlooked young girl in a yellow dress.

 

Sitting on Santa’s lap, putting her lips next to his fur-trimmed hat, she whispered to the man in the suit, “Not a wallflower anymore, eh, Jim?”

 

 

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That Female Pirate with the Axe…

 

I thrive upon the open water. With freedom and fury, the violence inside me unleashed. Sword and pistol held steady. Stealing treasures of gold and those of blood. I fight with lethal force, kill without mercy.

Yet I ask mercy for the parasite in my belly. Fools give it. And I live. The child won’t.

After birth, I return to sea without regret.

A different name. They still know me. Breasts I will not hide, hair like flame. They respect me. Fear me. Know they will wake with an axe in their drunken skull should they cross me.

 

 

I decided to re-post my pirate flash this week for the Carrot Ranch challenge of the importance of a name.

After her capture, Anne Bonny returned to piracy (although there are accounts of her settling down, marrying, and having children). Either way, she is said to have changed her name. Between first and last names, this woman had a trunk full of identities. Changed for numerous reasons (hiding gender, nicknames, hiding heritage, marriages, hiding from the law…), the famous pirate (Andy McCormac, Anne McCormac, Anne Cormac, Anney, Anne Boone, Bonney, Anabel, Anabelle…but mostly recognized as Anne Bonny) was well-known during her lifetime and remains notorious regardless of what she was called.

Sometimes power is in the name. Sometimes power is in the person without one.

 

 

Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

 

December 15, 2016 prompt: Names In 99 words (no more, no less) explore the importance of a name within a story. It can be naming an experience, introducing an extraordinary name, or clarifying a name.

 

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Heated

 

Sprinkling bits of earth

Mahogany coffin gleams

Sunlight contemplates

My heated cheeks, icy eyes

Let his spirit find no peace

 

 

I’ve taken on another of Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday challenge. This week’s challenge was to write a Tanka poem (5/7/5/7/7) with the words ‘peace’ & ‘spirit’ in it. Conjures up holiday feels, right? So, naturally, I went a little dark.

 

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At Home

 

The other 5th graders’ desks were covered with pink and red Valentine’s cards. Hers was empty. At home, her tears were met with laughter and reminiscing of “school days”.

Rumors went round the 7th grade about her and Marcus Paloni. She stood alone. At home, her tears were met with suspicion and annoyance of “gossip girls”.

Peter Morris dumped her three days before prom. It was a prank. At home, her tears were met with wistful sighs and talk of “childhood crushes”.

At home for Christmas.

Her tears were met with anger and accusation. Other people have “real problems”.

 

 

Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

 

December 2, 2016 prompt: Not Allowed In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about something or someone not allowed. Go light, go dark, go where the prompt leads you.

 

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Headstone #WritePhoto

 

cracked-ice

 

“It used to be a lake,” she prodded the patch of ice with the toe of her boot, cracking the glassy surface.

He bent to wipe some dirt from the shards. “Nah. Maybe a stream. A tiny one at that.”

“Look,” she pointed down the path. “It goes on for, like, miles.”

“It wasn’t a lake,” he rolled his eyes. “Too much overgrowth on either side. Too thin.”

She looked at the sky, blowing out a puff of icy breath. “It’s what my grandma says. A lake.”

He reached inside his coat pocket, and pulled out a pack of cigarettes. “Smoke?”

“She says my grandpa died fishing. And lots of other people drowned here. It’s like a frosted graveyard this time of year.”

“Huh,” he lit a cigarette and sat on a nearby rock. “Well…not sure what to say, actually. Um, sorry.” He peeked around her at the sunset. “Nice place to die. I mean… Nice view for, you know, the ones…”

She crouched next to him, tracing her fingers on his leg, staring at his lap.

He froze.

“Get up,” she grabbed his jeans, pushing him away. “That’s not a rock.”

 

 

This is my first attempt at #writephoto, a weekly writing prompt for poetry/flash/short stories hosted by Sue Vincent – Join in the fun

 

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