The witch and the dragon



Today he felt better than he did all week–having cleansed himself in an ocean of blood. The demons were gone–perhaps never to return. That in itself was well worth the effort. He could hear the screams of rancor and derision–spitting on his countenance in a fury of profanity…oh, they were angry. Continue reading

The Terrible Two’s


“You smell terrible. What happened?”

“I’ll tell you after I bathe Roger and I take a shower. I’m beat right now….”

“You can’t come in. The storm knocked out the electric so you can’t take a shower. There are horse flies buzzing around you.” Continue reading

Walking on the Sun

Nazca Desert, Peru

Nazca Desert, Peru

“Yes, hello?”

“Ma, it’s me.”

“Me, who?”

“Very funny. You left a message. Said it’s very important?”

“Not too important, DeDe.”

“Ma, I’m in the middle of nowhere in the Nazca Desert, bouncing this expensive call off a satellite heading for Jupiter. What is it?” Continue reading

Favors and Other Lovers


“Stewart are you in here?”

“What do you want, Whitney? Make it fast, I’ve got to take the Ferrari out for a spin. I tightened up a few things and I want to make sure they don’t come loose.”

“What things? Like what?”

“Whitney, if I told you, you wouldn’t understand. Let’s just say it had something to do with the steering distributor system, okay?” Continue reading

Artifact: A Carny Point of View

My name is Mike Kandinsky and I manage a carnival. We tour the Midwest, mostly, and Canada. It’s a substantial show, and while other carnies are trimming down, and cutting their venues, we just keep on growing. It all comes down to scheduling and demographics. And a nephew in economics at MIT doesn’t hurt. Continue reading

Icing on the cake

DSC_0075Winter Racing At Aqueduct Racecourse


“Well, He does work in mysterious ways.  Seems like it’s all here. Wherever did the penniless Lucas Vang get $7000 cash?”

“I suppose that’s a rhetorical question, Mr. Snake, so I won’t bother answering it.”

“Suit yourself. We’re done. Take your fine self out of here.  See he leaves, Guido.” Continue reading

Sins of the father


Arthur Arensdorf and 11 other members of a jury of peers, convicted Richard Nixon’s grandfather, Dick the trickster, who lived 525 years ago, for gross negligence which led to the suicide death of Leonard Hoffman, former owner of the Watergate Tavern and Inn. Continue reading


Archie McLeod was speechless.  He could see now why his granddaughter loved her job.  When they got back to Spokane, Archie went to his room and quickly called his old friend, Dick Morehouse…

“I’d seen some big ones in my time, but this one…this one was huge!”

“Come on, Archie.   Nothing’s as big as old Herb.” Continue reading

Massacre on Mars

“Captain Hong?  Can you see this on your screen?  It’s on Hatch 3.”

“Roger that, Albright.  Looks like an insect of some kind.  It’s big!”

“I can see it on my heads up.  It’s 45.7 cm in length.  It’s a foot and a half long, Hong!  Anyone got a can of RAID?” Continue reading

Fun House

My name is Mike Kandinsky and I manage a Carnival.  We travel the Midwest, mostly, and Canada  (see:  A soliloquy).   At the time of my story, we were still hunkering around the heaters, waiting out the frigid winter, getting set for our Season.  Oh, and Maude Lemon, our bearded lady, decided she wanted a career change. Continue reading

The note

“That’s $10, Sylvia. That’s a big cookbook. It’s in good condition.”

“It has all sorts of yummy recipes, Karen. Thanks so much.”

Sylvia Kronenberger supported the local charities as much as she could on a teacher’s salary. The cookbook was a real find.  Someone had collected monthly, laminated, recipe pages which were placed in the lovely, custom binder. Continue reading

The Chosen

“You sure you don’t want to come with us, Lynn?”

“I’m sure, Charlie. I have too much to do here. I’m so behind because of my surgery.  You know how Dr. Vario is, “Take it easy, take your time, get well. Get plenty of rest. I need this by tomorrow.”

“Bummer. Don’t work late, Lynn. See you Monday.” Continue reading

We have control of your…

“Okay, Adagio,  I’m going out.  You be a good kitty and daddy will be home soon.  I’ll bring you a treat.  Bye sweetie.”

We’re out of catnip, remember?  Oh, could you get me some more of that fishy gravy stuff I like so much?


Maxwell Thompson thinks he has everything in control in his life. What he doesn’t know, is that the cat has been controlling him for the past several years and has finally decided to let Maxwell in on it.  Telepathy is only part of the story for Maxwell Thompson in:  The Outer Twilight Zone Limits. Continue reading

Why Napoleon never invaded Ireland

As soon as Eloise and her Dad reached the front door, they could smell cabbage cooking.  When Aunt Sis opened the door, it hit the two of them like a steam locomotive. The abrupt exposure to the full force of the smell made Eloise gag and her father sneeze.  There’s nothing quite like the sickening sweet, sulfurous stench of cooking cabbage.  All this suffering for a nominative day to celebrate a patron saint of a country she never once thought about any other time of the year. Continue reading

Supplanting evolution

Dr. Illyana Davinich knew she was making the right decision by altering the ship’s course to the small island off the coast of Borneo.  She had convinced Vladimir Dragonovic, Captain of the Russian research vessel, Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn, that it was necessary for humanity’s survival to thwart Dr. Papadopoulos’ heinous initiative: the supplanting of the human species by super insects. Continue reading




Darren felt an anxiety attack coming on.  Sam’s car was in the driveway.  She was back a week early; Darren was in his “working” clothes and Kravitz was at the vet’s.  Sam was going to kill him when she found out about her dog– that big baby of hers left in his charge while she was on hiatus for six weeks in Japan.

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a soliloquy

My name is Mike Kandinsky and I manage a Carnival.  We travel the Midwest, mostly, and Canada.  At the time of my story, we were just outside of Red Bow, getting ready to head on over the border.  It was early morning and I was reading my paper and on my second cup of coffee when Maude Lemon knocked on my trailer door… Continue reading

Flash Fiction Challenge #13: The Mission

Jim found a table under an accommodating umbrella on the fountain side of the luxurious hotel pool.  All outdoor pools  were free of guests since the air raid warning earlier that morning.  Jim directly connected his cell phone to the heads-up display of his sunglasses and accessed the encrypted files Bailey had sent him.   For security reasons Bailey had found it necessary to bypass the usual route and sent the data via the region’s emergency broadcast system. The information was extremely sensitive.  Now all Jim needed was an iced tea and a French cigarette. He’d eat lunch in one of the dining salons with his next contact in under two hours.

Continue reading