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First blog post

Well! I took a deep breath and jumped.

This is my very first blog. I’m kind of nervous and excited to get this started.

I’ve been writing stories on the Writer’s Digest Creative Writing Prompts forum every week for the past two years. It’s been a wonderful learning experience to take their prompts, no matter how weird or specific, and turn them into two or three completely different stories. I’ve written stories on there that I normally wouldn’t have considered writing – science fiction stories, vampire stories, and so on. My fellow forumites, who are awesome writers, have helped me with their suggestions and comments to grow as a writer.

So, after much mental fidgeting and nail biting, I finally decided to create this blog to give my prompt stories a proper home.

Hope you enjoy them!

AK

Sophie’s Shadow

Some days I’m free.

Free to be myself.

Free to do what I want.

And I am happy.

Then, she comes.

Then, Sophie comes. And I am not happy. I am not me. I am not free. She holds me prisoner with the brilliance of her eyes and the flirtatious lilt to her laugh. She makes me feel dirty and cheap and out of shape and out of sorts.

But I adore her.

I adore Sophie with her brilliant green eyes and her laugh that seems to come from the sun. I walk in her shadow, hoping for a touch of her light. She sees me and she lets me follow her. And that is all that I want.

Until she leaves.

And she is gone.

Sophie is gone with her light and her glory.

I am no longer confined to her shadow.

I am bright.

I am brilliant.

I am beautiful.

I am happy.

Then, she returns.

Then, Sophie returns. And I am again her shadow. Her ugly, malformed shadow. I long for her to look back at me and see me and acknowledge me. When she does, it’s like God smiles at me. I live for those moments, but they are always too short. And she never stays

Sophie.

Sophie always leaves.

And she sets me free.

She sets her prisoner free.

Free to just be me.

Me without her.

Until she returns.

Raven’s Alternate Reality

Author’s Note:  Yet another alternate reality moment for my Ambrose and Elsie characters. This time, it’s Raven’s turn. 

James Arden returned to the house in a state of badly rattled nerves and messed up emotions.

When will Miss Farlington understand? We cannot be together. It can never be. We can never be.

I wish we could be.

He set the lemonade carafe on a side table in the hall.

How can I go back out there? How can I face her again?

I need to calm down.

I am a butler.

I must be calm.

He entered the parlor to pull himself together.

The parlor wasn’t empty.

A woman sat on one of the stiff-backed chairs.

“Excuse me.”

She rose from her seat to reveal her close-fitting yellow dress.

He bowed. “I was unaware that anyone was in here. I will leave you be.”

She had marigold hair and black licorice colored eyes. “Well. Aren’t you an interesting fellow?” Her voice made him think of fresh cream on a summer day.

She strolled over to him in a way that made James think of a cat. A very dangerous cat.

An irrational fear gripped him. He turned to leave with at least a minimum of decorum.

She grabbed his shoulders and held tight. “Do you have any idea how good you smell?”

“Madam, I need to—“

“You need to just shut up. I don’t care for prey that talks and talks.”

His face turned pale as he understood what he was dealing with. “Vampire.”

“mm. Yes. Vampire.”

“I am deeply sorry, Miss, but I am not interested in becoming a creature such as yourself.”

“Too bad.” She dug her claws into his collar.

He elbowed her hard in the ribcage.

She gasped and staggered back.

He pulled a stake out of his sleeve. With a couple of expert touches, the stake transformed into a full scale javelin.

She opened her mouth to speak.

She was too late.

He thrust the javelin into her heart.

She fell dead.

He dusted off his gloves. “I never thought I’d have a need to make use of that particular skill set.”

James Arden sat down in the seat she had vacated. He thought about his near death experience. He thought about his life as a whole.

He thought about a great many things.

He stood.

Life is so short.

He walked over to the dead vampire and reclaimed his javelin.

For some, it is shorter than average.

He shrank it back into a stake and slid it up into his sleeve.

I may not know how long I have to live.

He let the house and returned to the party.

But I know what I want my life to be.

He found her in the crowd.

May Rose Farlington.

He smiled.

I know.

He strode over to her.

She glanced at him. “What do you want? Sir?”

“I have come to apologize, Miss Farlington.”

“Oh.”

He crowded into her space and she did not back away.

He kissed her.

He ended the kiss before she could properly react. “From now on, I will call you May Rose.”

Joy brightened her face.

He kissed her again. A long and tender kiss.

Her fingers slid up the sides of his head, ruffling up his hair.

James Arden broke away and opened his eyes. He looked at May Rose Farlington with all of the love he had kept so carefully concealed. “My own May Rose.”

Oops! I Think I Forgot Something Important.

All right! Today’s the day I escape and stay escaped.

Okay, let’s see. I have fifteen white shoelaces, a bunch of wires I found inside a tv set, forty-nine shiny candy wrappers, sixty-five pieces of sugarfree gum, one dozen chicken eggs, a bowl of sparkling rice candy, and a tofu proton pack.

Yes.

I am going to create a transporter from scratch and escape this Area 51.

***

Well. I created the transporter without any problems, but I may have forgotten a small detail.

Unfortunately, I can’t recall what.

The device transported itself to points unknown.

And I’m still here.

*sigh*

Back to the drawing board.

I will get out of here yet.

 

The Bad Ending That No One Wants To Read

Author’s Note:  On June 16, I posted a story where Elsie rides off into a thunderstorm with Ambrose.  I decided to top it with the most unlikely of scenarios.  Just because the thought of it was way too WHAT THE HECK? GAH! PLEASE NO! to pass up.  Fair warning: This is not for the faint of heart.  😀

Elsie walked up the long, winding drive.

Ambrose had moved to Seattle with Barbara for unknowable reasons.

Hildreth had joined a Tibetan monastery in Toronto.

And Elsie’s mother had married Barbara’s father. They were currently on their honeymoon somewhere in North Dakota.

Elsie was alone.

She reached the top of the cliff.

A mansion stretched before her, all ablaze with light.

She smiled.

“I won’t be alone for long.”

She marched up to the front door and kicked it open.

“No point in knocking nicely.”

She headed into the living room.

And he was there.

Mark Caten sat in a comfortably-sized wingback chair, reading the newspaper.

Her smile grew.

She walked over to him and swipped the newspaper out of his hands.

“Hey! I was reading about a delicious calamity in South America. Oh. Hello, Elsie.”

“Mark.” She dropped the newspaper on the floor and admired the man sitting before her. Why did it take me so long to see how gorgeous he is? “You have always been the worst person on the planet. I’ve never liked you, even when I worked under you. I hated you. But…” She brushed the back of her hand against his face.

He smirked.

“They say that hate is simply love in another form.”

“Huh? Who says that?”

“Mmm. I don’t know. People.” She kissed him and he took it very well.

As she pulled back, he smirked. “It’s about time you saw how magnificent I am.”

She laughed whole-heartedly. “We’re going to be so happy together.”

“Of course. You’ll be a lucky bride. Married to the epitome of manly perfection. No. Better than that. Married to the epitome of godly perfection. There. Much more accurate.”

She kissed him again and again. “Mmm. Mrs. Elsie Caten. I love the sound of that.”

“Yes. Yes. Of course you do, cupcake.”

Writing About….Suspicious Behavior

Whenever I have to wait at the doctor’s office or at the grocery store, I pull out my notebook and do some secretive writing on one of my off-line stories.  I’ll even do it when I’m having lunch at work. I sit in my corner and write and sometimes snigger suspiciously.

I always wonder what I look like to the people around me. Maybe they think I’m recording their conversations for posterity. Maybe they think I’m drawing satirical pictures of them.

Most likely, they don’t even notice.

All the same, I always feel like I’m being super suspicious. Especially when I chuckle at what I’ve written.

But the writing secretively isn’t as bad as me doing my zoning out thing. If I’m trying to find the right way to phrase a certain part or action or what have you, I’ll sit back in my chair and fold my arms across my chest and stare long and hard at the nearest blank wall.  I’m especially guilty of doing that in my doctor’s waiting room.

In that case, I’m sure I look like I’m in a bad sulk about having to wait, which isn’t true. I’m actually having fun, figuring details out.

So, if you catch me in public writing furiously or staring fixedly at the wall, don’t worry. It isn’t about you. It’s just me having fun.  😀

I Have Problems

You think you have problems? Ha! You’ve got it easy.

Yeah, you heard me. Eeeeeassssy.

Now, you want someone with problems? Well. Just look at me. I have problems.

I mean, it’s bad enough my dad’s Harry Potter. That’s a lot to live up to. But then he had the “genius” idea to name me Albus.

Albus.

As in Albus Dumbledore.

So, yeah. The whole wizarding world is expecting big things from me.

Tough on them. They’re gonna be disappointed.

After all, I wasn’t born under a lucky star, a malevolent moon, no one Avra Kadavra’d my parents, and to top it off — Get this: There is no prophecy stapled to my wee little kid head.

Oh, yeah. No magic powers too.

I should be able to lead a perfectly normal muggle life without any interference from ghosts, goblins, specters, werewolves, witches, or what have you.

That would be nice.

But I’m Harry Potter’s kid with Albus Dumbledore’s first name.

Sigh.

I have a bad feeling my life is NOT going to be perfect or normal.

So, go on. Feel bad for me and my problems.

I need the pity.

So bad.

Peter Is Dying

“I’m sorry, Peter. You’re dying.”

Everyone is doomed to die. Some will be old. Some will be young. Some will never take their first breath. Yet, despite that fact, I never expected to hear those words said right to my face.

“I’m so sorry. There’s nothing I can do.”

And, just like that, I’m dying. Suddenly, everything seems so frivolous and inconsequential. Arguments. Road rage. My hatred of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Peter looked down at the diamond pattern on his hospital gown.

What should I say? I guess I should be upset. This is one of those moments where being upset is not only understandable but also acceptable. And expected. I could wail, “Why me?” fifty-five hundred times and not be called a drama queen.

But all he could say was, “Oh, really?” in a mildly disinterested voice.

The doctor frowned. “Peter. If you want to wail and weep and—-”

“No. I don’t. I’m fine. I guess I’m not fine, but no. I’m good. I’m. Yeah. I’m gonna go home.” He shook the doctor’s hand. “Thank you.”

The doctor gave him a long list of names and numbers, but Peter had no idea who they all were much less why the doctor thought he’d call any of them.

“And if you happen to have a bucket list, this might be the time to start—”

A bucket list? Me? Why would I have a bucket list? That’s for people in their seventies and eighties. That’s for people who are dying.

I’m dying.

I’ve never thought of myself as a dying person. I always thought of myself as vibrant. Alive. Strong heart. Strong head.

But I’m dying.

Peter shivered.

I’m dying.

“Do you have any questions?”

Yes.

Will it hurt when I take my last breath?

Will I know that it’s my last breath?

Will I be counting them down inside my head?

Will I feel the tug-of-war between death and life?

Will my life really flash before my eyes?

And, most important of all, what comes after that last breath is exhaled? After my heart has stopped beating? When the light leaves my eyes, what will I see?

Peter shook his head. “I just want to go home.”

The doctor reiterated the purpose of the phone list of mystery people and etceteras.

Peter didn’t hear any of it.

***

By the time Peter came home, night had fallen. There was no moon and the stars were hidden.

He hung up his coat, shluffed of his shoes and went up to bed.

But he didn’t go to bed.

He changed into his sensible, comfortable pajamas and walked out onto his balcony.

I’m dying.

How many nights do I have left?

He looked up at the night sky, searching for a familiar face.

A long forgotten pattern in the blackened sky.

But the stars were hidden and the night was cold.

He sighed.

What am I doing out here? What am I thinking? What was I expecting? It’s been too long. Although I’m not that old, it has been too many years.

He sighed again.

Oh well. Time for bed.

He turned to go back inside.

The balcony doors were shut.

And a yellow ball of vibrant light stood fiercely on the door handle.

A well-sharpened sewing needle shined like gold in her hands.

Her?

Her.

Peter gasped.

Her!

“It’s you!”

She floated up to his face and spoke in her chime-like voice.

“It’s really you. Tink. What? No, I can’t.”

She insisted.

“But…look at me. I’m too old. I’m dying.”

She eye-rolled and called him a derogatory term for a donkey.

He smiled.

Her glow brightened.

“Okay. Let’s give it a try. If I fall, I fall. If I don’t, I fly.”

She blew him a kiss and some of her glow covered him.

He closed his eyes and thought of his happiest memories.

He didn’t think about ifs or tries. He trusted that it would happen. He had faith.

He could no longer feel the ground beneath his feet.

Peter opened his eyes and he saw it.

He smiled as he saw it.

“The second star on the right and straight on till morning.”