It’s Perfect

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PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson


It’s Perfect



The arrangements were complete.

I had double-checked every detail.

Heck, I triple-checked most of them.

After changing my shirt for the fourth time… it was wasn’t dirty, I just couldn’t control my sweating… I calmly walked downstairs. I wanted to check out the table settings before they got here.

It’s perfect.

They are to be seated just in front of the windows. What a lovely view.

It’s perfect.

Wait…

That’s his car. They’re early.

Heading to the back closet, I grab my coat, gloves, and Barrett M95.

If Nathan, my twin brother, gets married before me, everything goes to him.



Written for Friday Fictioneers.

The Fifty-Fifty Brother

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Photo courtesy of Donna McNicol


The Fifty-Fifty Brother



Fifteen-million dollars.

Half of my inheritance.

All resting on this one chance encounter.

The terms of my father’s will had been specific.

***

I knew Dad had had a mistress. (I suspect he had had many.) But this one was different for some reason. This one gave him a son.

And now… This ridiculous hitch in his will.

I had been groomed to be the new CEO of Hilldenbury International. I would be, no matter how this foolishness played out.

But, if the worst happened…

If Bartholomew (my ill-conceived half-brother) was shown to have “a heart-of-kindness, like my beautiful Felicia” to quote my philandering father, Bartholomew was to receive half of the estate.

I would inherit the business; he would get the rest.

***

I had hired the best detective agency. My father’s attorney presented them with the scenario my licentious father had planned.

If Bartholomew offered assistance to this vagrant itinerant upon their meeting, then he was to be recognized as Mr. T.Y. Hilldenbury’s long-lost son.

If not, the entire fortune was to be mine, Bartholomew was to be forgotten.

Sweat was dripping from my face, and that of my solicitor as we watched the scene play out before our eyes.



Written for Sunday Photo Fiction.

Wake Me Only for an Emergency

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Bow Wow Meow


Wake Me Only for an Emergency



The local officer the doorman had called sat patiently with me as I dried my eyes and held Snickers.

It had been three hours since I had awakened and took Snickers, my four-year-old Australian terrier, for his morning liberties. Dad and I switched off weeks for Snickers routine. Dad worked the night shift at Belleview Metropolitan. He was the head of trauma center.

Snickers was mine. Dad and I had wrangled and wrangled for months before I was able to convince him to let me get Snickers. (Being in my thrid-year at Cornell, I thought I deserved my first pet.) He had finally agreed to Snickers after I had promised I would take the main responsibilities for the dog.

Snickers nuzzled his collar under my hand again for attention. I scratched him under his neck. You could hear his safety tags and the silver key clink when I stopped. Snickers let out a small yelp. “Shhh… “ I whispered. Snickers was anxious for my morning breakfast. So was I.

Picking up another post-it, I wrote…

Me again. Wake up.

Daddy, I’ve locked myself out.

Pop, open the door.

I aligned it beside the other eleven notes. “I’m sure this one will stir him.” I smiled at the officer sitting across from me. “You have so kind to sit and wait with me.”

“Ma’am, do you lock yourself out often?” the officer asked.

Embarrassed, I set my eyes to the floor. “Truthfully, it happens more frequently than I care to admit. Even in high school I was a little absent-minded. Dad thinks I’m rather scatter-brained, but I had thought we had worked out a fool-proof system. Dad placed these Post-its and the pencil cup by our doorway so anytime I have need to tell him something, all I have to do is jot a note to him before I forget it. He is real good at seeing it every afternoon when he awakens. We have the same correspondence system right by the refrigerator.”

“Has that helped?” the officer smiled as he asked.

“It sure has.” I was proud of the progress I had made in keeping my life in order.

“Couldn’t you two have found a way to assist with an extra set of keys for the door?”

“Oh, Dad did,” I said. “He wired an extra house key right to Snickers’ collar just in case I ever locked myself out again.” Snickers let out another small yelp as he pressed my hand to his neck.

The officer rubbed Snickers under his collar. “You’ve got a smart dog here with you, Miss.” I heard Snickers’ safety accessories tinkle again. “I’m sure this will work out.” The officer patted me on my head as he rose. “My shift is over in fifteen. I’ll send another officer around to check on you soon.”


FYI: This is a haibun. A haibun is when a writer combines proses and haiku to tell a story.



Written for P.A.D. Poem-a-Day: Writer’s Digest … Day 18: For today’s prompt, write a message poem. You can decide the medium: Message in a bottle, postcard, or voice mail. Of course, there are text messages, telegrams, and letters. My wife loves to leave me messages on Post-It notes (and I love to find them). So write a message in a poem today!

THE ILL-FATED RACE

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PHOTO PROMPT © Jeff Arnold


THE ILL-FATED RACE



“Grab your bag. You know it don’t last long.”

“Already packed from the last one. Didn’t even have to replace the snacks. Last’n disappeared before we’d left town.”

“That’n was a small one. Look at the size of this baby,” Rudolph’s excited was evident. “’Bigger the rainbow, bigger the pot of gold’, Granddad said.”

“Granddad said a lot of things.”

“He won’t’ a lied in his last words… ‘Somewhere over the rainbow…’”

“Rudolph, that wasn’t Granddad. That was Dorothy, of Oz.”

“What did Granddad say?”

“Shut the dad-burn door. It’s cold in here.”

“Oh, then why are we chasing this rainbow?”



Written for Friday Fictioneers: 100 word prompts.

AWAITING THE SUNSET

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AWAITING THE SUNSET



“We’ve been hiking for over two hours- uphill – the entire way, yet the mountaintop seems even further than it did when we started. Are you sure we’ll get there for sunset.”

“I’ve hike this trail many-a-time, dear. When the lads were only eleven, we made up on to the top to set up camp before sunset.”

“Are you saying I’m slower than the boys were?”

“No dear, you’re not slower. Only less patient.” her husband said with a smile. “At least you don’t keep asking, ‘Are we there yet?’”

“I can clearly see that we’re not there, yet, Sweet’ums.”

“A hint of sarcasm. Still plenty of vim-and-vigor in you.”

“This had better be worth the trip.”

“It will be. And unlike my trip with the lads, we’re carrying only water and a few snacks in our packs. No tents.”

“I think you promised a candlelit dinner at the top. I hope that you’re planning to woe me with trail mix protein bars.”

“No, My Sweet.” Another smile crept across his face as it turned away. “The chopper is already atop the mountain with the rest of our things.”  And quickly he continued his assent, not waiting for a reply.



Written for FLASH FICTION FOR THE PRACTICAL PRACTITIONER: Week #14. 

SOME THINGS JUST DON’T CHANGE

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Photo courtesy of Pixabay


SOME THINGS JUST DON’T CHANGE



“Just look at that beautiful sunrise. I can never see enough of them.”

“Looks the same to me. I’ve seen enough of them to last a lifetime.”

“My honey-bee, a calloused heart doesn’t become you. I remember …”

“You can stop with all that sweet talkin’ and those stupid memories. And quit your fiddlin’ with my hair. It’s taken eons for it to look this way.”



Written for Sunday Photo Fiction: April 5, 2020.

THE MYSTERIOUS TRUTH

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THE MYSTERIOUS TRUTH



“Wait, Andy. Shouldn’t we think about this a little more?”

“Nah. This either opens the door to Grammy’s winter closet, like she said …”

“Or it’s the entrance the elven kingdom Grandfather mutters about when he’s drunk,” finished Walter.

Opening the door, the boys stood stunned. Before them – a winter wonderland.

“Welcome.” They turned and were greeted by a stout, dwarf-like creature wrapped in wolf pelts, holding two crowns. “We’ve been awaiting your arrival.”

“They were both right,” whispered Andy.



Written for the 80-Word Challenge for FANSTORY and Flash Fiction for the Practical Practitioner: Week #13.