The Butler Does It

Photo by: The Magicsticgoldenrose

After retiring from the Special Forces Wallace Curry couldn’t give up the excitement of his previous profession. He turned to burglary for money and excitement.

He cased Dintermouth Castle by attending a party there. He learned the young inheritor, Rex Dintermouth, employed very little staff.

“But who does your gardening?” Wallace asked Rex.

“Huxley, my butler does it.”

“You have chefs?”

“Huxley does it.”

“Surely you have a security team?”

“Nope. Huxley does it all.”

Looking at the elderly liver-spotted butler, Wallace smiled. He expected the wrinkled seventy-year old would be too exhausted to stop an invading puppy. This would be the easiest smash and grab yet.

Two nights later, Wallace sprawled on the Dintermouth floor in a puddle of his own blood. His shoulder was dislocated, his hand shattered, and his left knee bent at a gruesome angle.

Huxley, crouching over him, reached for Wallace’s last good arm with astonishing speed. “This will hurt a bit, sir.”

Rex approached the scene in silk pajamas and yawned. “New robotic body working okay, Huxley?”

Huxley grinned. “Smashing, sir.”
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Written for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers: https://flashfictionforaspiringwriters.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/fffaw-challenge-week-of-june-13-2017-2/

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Ghost Nursing Home

Photo by: Al Forbes

Brian looked around the Common Room. “That’s an unusual chess set,” he said.

Instead of black and white, the chess set’s pieces were frosted glass and clear glass.

Yves, the nursing home director said, “Yeah, ghosts prefer it that way.”

“Huh?”

“Well, this is a nursing home for ghosts,” explained Yves.

“I don’t…”

Yves misinterpreted Brian’s look. He said, “Think about it. If someone died while infirm, they might need a nursing home as a ghost.”

Brian decided that Ives was insane. “I see, so…”

“Different ghosts interact with worldly things in different ways. Some can play chess and some can be seen, but interactions are always limited. Most ghosts pass through anything solid. So we need a living person like you to manage day-to-day operations. Hire contractors, pay the bills and so on. ”

“That’s why it seems so empty.”

“Oh, it’s packed in here. You just can’t see them.”

Brian began to grin. If this fool wanted to pay him for managing nobody, so be it. “Okay. I’ll take the job!”

A moment later, Brian ran from the building screaming.

Patrick the ghost stood beside Yves. He offered, “Yeah. Let’s avoid the traditional handshake until employees realize you’re a ghost too.”
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Written for Sunday Photo Fiction: https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/sunday-photo-fiction-june-11th-2017/

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Suicide Note

Photo by: Sarah Potter

Researchers found Professor Taube’s hut in the Bolivian jungle years after his apparent suicide. The skeleton still held the shotgun used. Upon his desk, overgrown with vines, they found a suicide note. It read:

My efforts to increase the intelligence of Llamas is wildly successful. Though now I realize it was morally yucky. We They used to roam the fields blissfully eating, unaware of yucky things like politics and money. Now we they suffer from, a poison foisted upon them by that devil me.

My life is forfeit.

“That’s odd,” noted Professor Hotchkiss, examining the note. “It’s signed with a hoof print.”
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Written for the Friday Fictioneers: https://rochellewisoff.com/2017/06/07/9-june-2017/

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Advanced Technology

Photo by: Pamela S. Canepa

It often happens that more advanced cultures negatively impact less advanced ones. For instance, the introduction of Europeans in North America nearly destroyed the indigenous peoples. So it was when Elves first encountered Humans. From them, Humanity learned to construct weapons of flint and afterwards nearly killed off their own race in destructive infighting.

Realizing what they’d done, Elves sealed themselves away from Humanity hoping to save Humans from further disruption. One such seal rested beneath a rock fall in a forest in Romania.

Though Elves avoided Humans for Human’s sake, not all Elves felt the same way. Darkleaf and Oakshanks were two such Elves. In the Human year of 2017 they thought it might be fun to go adventuring among the pitiably weak and backward Humans. What could go wrong with a bit of sport?

Oakshanks emerged from the rocks first. “Ready for adventure?” .

“Absolutely!” crowed Darkleaf, emerging behind him. “Wait till the Humans see our latest advanced technology.”

“To be sure! They’ll be dumbstruck when they see our newly developed muzzle-loaded musket rifles!”
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Written for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers: https://flashfictionforaspiringwriters.wordpress.com/2017/06/05/fffaw-challenge-week-of-june-6-2017/

Author’s Notes:

In the US at least, muzzle-loaded rifles were last used en masse during the American Civil War in the 1860s. According to Wiki: “… so they kept muzzle-loading black powder rifles until after the American Civil War… Shortly afterwards, magazine loading rifles were introduced, which further increased the weapons’ rate of fire. From this period (c. 1870) on, the musket was obsolete in modern warfare.”
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Musket

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Latest Hannah Pics

My daughter Hannah is far more comfortable with getting her picture taken now. She even poses sometimes. Perhaps it’s the relentless picture-taking of her parents that finally got her used to it. I’m pretty sure her quirky sense of humor comes from me. Hannah’s Bohemian fashion-sense continues to amuse as I think you’ll see here. On to the pics!

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The Mixup

Photo by: C.E. Ayr

The airport’s new statue was getting a lot of attention. The bronze of a couple enthusiastically greeting each other looked realistic and heartwarming.

An elderly woman paused to admire it. “Isn’t that lovely?” she murmured.

“Oh so sweet!” smiled a young woman.

“That’s so beautiful!” said Fatima.

“It is,” replied her husband, Rene. “You can easily imagine the love light in their eyes.”

Despite the loving appearance, within the bronze surface something else entirely went on.

“This is positively awful!” moaned Gryptollylitch. “It couldn’t be any worse.”

“I know, I know. Stop reminding me,” sighed Antyllikana. She could feel an itch which shouldn’t be possible, but it was there anyway and she had no way to scratch.

“It’s all your fault. You just HAD to study Humans up close!”

“My fault? I didn’t ask for this,” grated Antyllikana. “When Galactic Control said they would put our life-force into a Human form, I didn’t think we’d occupy a statue!”
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Written for Sunday Photo Fiction: https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2017/06/04/sunday-photo-fiction-june-4th-2017/

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What’s Good

Mark and Cindy were visiting the Philippines for the first time. As they walked along the waterfront of Cebu City, Mark complained, “Can’t we just get a hamburger?”

“Honey,” sighed Cindy. “We should at least try the native food!”

“How will we know what’s good?”

People queued up before a food stall. “This one looks popular,” pointed Cindy.

A commotion erupted nearby. An octopus, a mutant five times larger than the largest, heaved up out of the water. Tourists began screaming and running for their lives.

The local Filipinos just smiled and called, “Kumusta ka*, Gambi!” The terrifying monster scrambled past, high-fiving four people at a time.

Huddling beside the stall, Mark squeaked, “What the hell?”

“Oh, don’t worry,” said Mrs. Sabang, owner of the the stall. “Gambi sometimes get’s a craving for Sinigang soup.” The small woman, far stronger than she looked, brought out a massive pot of her soup. “Here you go, Gambi.”

The giant gobbled down the pot in seconds, waved in thanks, then leaped back into the sea.

Mrs. Sabang looked towards Mark. “You ready for a hamburger now?”

“Nah,” said Mark. “I’ll try the Sinigang.”
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Written for What Pegman Saw: https://whatpegmansaw.com/2017/06/03/cibu-city/

Author’s Notes:

*Kumusta Ka: Visayan (one of 700 Filipino dialects) means: How are you?

Sinigang: a savory, tangy soup with tamarind, meat, and veggies. Highly addictive. Many folks have tried Filipino Lumpia (eggrolls, but better), but one of my favorite Filipino foods is Sinigang. I always eat slow, but not with Sinigang: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinigang

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