Sunday Photo Fiction 11-14-2017

 


Mission Scrappy-Scramble

“Pssst.”

“Quiet.”

Rodney moved his binoculars back and forth.  “They’ll hear you.”

“Who’s they?”

“You know, them.”

“So who’s them?” They had a they and a them and that was too confusing for him.

Rodney growled under his breath. “Doesn’t matter.  Just hush.”

They both fell silent as Rodney scanned some more.

“All right,” Rodney finally said.  “After this monster, run! And, Andy, I mean run your tail off.”

“It’s an awful long way, Rodney.”

“You’ll be fine.”

“Sure?”

“I’m sure. Just… get ready….. One….”

A huge gust of wind almost dumped them backwards as the monster flew past, metal sides gleaming in the sun.

“Two….”

The last of its wheels passed.

“Three!”

Grabbing Andy by the scruff of his neck, Rodney threw him out of the sewer drain. With all the speed two rats could muster, they fled across the pavement, reaching the far side and diving into a ditch as another monster flashed behind them. Collapsed in the grass to catch their breath.

“Are we going to the feast now, Rodney?”

Rodney slowly rose on his four feet.  “Yeah, we are. Come on.”

Rodney led the way as they scampered through the woods towards the houses beyond.

 

 

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Sunday Photo Fiction 11-7-2017

“Don’t,” he said, glancing over at the camera.

“But…”

“Pick up the camera and I’m gone.”

“But nobody will believe me.”

“Tough shit.”

“Bastard.”

“I’ve been called worse.”

“I bet.”

Shrug.

“So, tell me what happened.”

“Pinkert lied.”

“About what?”

“Promises. Platform, whatever you wish to call it.”

“And….”

“And, his past.”

“What about his past?”

“I’m not sure I want to talk about that.”

“Isn’t that what you called me to talk about?”

A long silence.

“I suppose.”

“So talk.”

“He …. abuses little boys.”

“Were you one of those boys?”

A longer silence.

Finally, “Yes.”

“So….”

“No more details.”

Silence.

“If I hadn’t come forward, nobody would know, now would they?”

“The political atmosphere is pretty vicious these days. He would have been found out eventually.”

“Eventually isn’t good enough.”

“You have proof?”

“Proof?”

“Without details to check, I need proof for my Editor to print this.”

“Pictures?”

“Pictures are good if they are authentic.”

“They’re authentic, all right.”

They both rose, neither offering to shake hands.

Darkness and shame walked one way.

Pulitzer Prizes and glory walked the other.

 


It seems fitting this conversation came up today, Election Day. Make of that what you may:) Thanks for reading.

Sunday Photo Fiction 10-22-2017

The moyacht motored down the street attracting the attention of one and all, shining its glory in the mid-day sun. People stared.

“What the heck is that?”

“I’m glad you asked,” crowed the salesman. “This, my friends, is the newest in modern technical creations.”

“What does it do?”

“What does it do, you ask? This, my friends, is a moyacht. You laugh now, but when you are the only house in the neighborhood without one in the driveway….

“The moyacht, my friends, is a combination motor-home and yacht.”

More laughter.

“Imagine touring the country in your motor-home. One can only see the treasures of this great country so many times. Think how many other wonders are in this world!

“Suppose you want to visit Jamaica. To do so, you have to leave your motor-home behind. But with a moyacht, friends, you simple drive into the water and sail away for another beautiful adventure.”

People started to murmur.

“Line up, line up, my friends. First come, first served and there are only so many moyachts to go around.”

People started to crowd around him, fighting for a place in line.

Ah, a sucker born every moment!

 

(Many thanks to Ryan Stiles for coining the wonderful word moyacht.)

Sunday Photo Fiction 10-14-2017


“Ugly fellow.”

“Why would you say that?” Holding back irritation.

“I never understood those beards.”

Workers bustled around, packing the statue into a sturdy wooden box, ensuring each delicate part was safely secured, and screwing on the lid.  I marked the papers on my clipboard.

“They are fake. Worn for religious purposes.”

“Still ugly.”

I turned away to hide growing anger. One simply did not talk about the Pharaoh in such a manner. Remained turned away, watching the wooden box loaded onto the first truck. Tapped the driver’s window.

The driver pulled away.

“No worries, Your Majesty. Soon, you will be free to rule once more.”

Sunday Photo Fiction 10-4-2017


Taxidermy fox at Natural History Museum, London


 

“Poor little fellow,” Johnny remarked, peering in at the taxidermied fox behind the glass. He wondered how long had been dead; why somebody decided to stuff it and put it in a museum. Wouldn’t it be better to see the fox alive, in the wild?

Dan shrugged. “It’s just a dog.”

“Fox,” Johnny corrected.

“Whatever. Come on, I want to get some chips before we go back to the bus.”

That had been Senior Year, twenty years past, but he still remembered the dead fox. He had no idea if Dan had gotten his chips, but the blank look on the fox’s face had stayed with him all those years.

Putting his binoculars back up to his eyes, he watched the kids tumbling and playing around the den.  Mother fox lay nearby, guarding her kids from that dead fox, twenty years in the past, blank eyes staring into nothing.

Sunday Photo Fiction 9-24-2017

Walking in fall was the best, he decided, scuffing his boots through the leaves. He liked the nip in the air, the cold night, the shortening days.

“All right, time to walk on your own,” he said, lifting Andrea off his shoulders and to the ground.

Off she went, tottering and laughing at the crunching leaves.

He hadn’t wanted to take her when her mother died, hadn’t wanted the responsibility. She wasn’t his child, but he was as close to a father as she had ever known.

She tumbled, silent for a moment as if not sure whether to laugh or cry.

His heart melted. A career was a career. This was….

This was….. well, he didn’t know what this was.

Scooping her up, he lifted her above his head, spinning wildly to her shrieks and laughter.

She’d changed something inside of him, something vital, something he’d never wanted but now would never let go.

Dropping her down, he hugged her tight.  “Don’t you worry, baby girl. Daddy’s here forever.”

 

Sunday Photo Fiction 9-17-2017

© John Robinson

UCLA’s campus lay deserted, shaded dorm windows honeycombing out like cells in a beehive. A quiet break from the push and pull of students searching out tiny grains of knowledge, buzzing here and there, carrying each nugget carefully back to their cell at night.

His sneakers made little noise on the pavement, hands stuffed in jean’s pockets. He’d be gone soon, a semester at Julliard, a dream since forever. The band thought they’d lost him, or would lose him, once he arrived to the esteemed halls.

Who cared if the band he’d inherited here was called The Pink Marshmallow? Names changed all the time (and this one would). What if they only played tiny clubs and dark basements? Venues changed.

They would be famous one day. He wouldn’t allow otherwise.

The band met him at the curb.

“We wanted to wish you a good trip,” Jay said.

Chris hugged each one. “See you after Christmas.”

He’d given up convincing weeks ago. It was enough he knew he’d be back.

A taxi pulled to the curb. Giving them a thumbs up, he slid inside. Julliard might be a dream, but those four, they were his future.

Leaning back in the seat, he began to hum.