Lacy’s shop is packed with found objects. Townpeople claim magic hides within them. Some say good, others whisper wicked.
Mamma says, “Nope, you ain’t goin’ in!” Today I disobey. The bell above the door jingle-jangles. Lacy shoots me the stink-eye. Don’t care. Her store smells like magic: dried rosemary, old books, mouse droppings. I rattle a bowl of colored shells, rub the forehead of a human skull. Lacy raises an eyebrow. I shuffle on.
When Mamma finds me, she shakes me hard. Twirls me towards a mirror. My eyes are purple cowry shells and my curly blonde hair has vanished.

Thanks to J Hardy Carroll and Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (Fairy blog mother extraordinaire) Friday Fictioneers have a thought-provoking photograph to inspire a 100-word story. Happy Wednesday/Friday

Our people call them Fire Walkers, Truth Talkers, Father, Mother.
They populated the world centuries before the people arrived, and will inhabit the hills and valleys long after we’re gone.
We ask their advice in both love and war, for they are kind and wise. Humble. They name our children and bury our dead.
No one conjures these gold and ruby creatures. Fire Walkers appear when most needed.
At dusk, three rose from the currents of the Miwak River bearing favorable news and sad.
No more floods or firestorms. The animal population will triple.
Our people must abandon the earth.

The Proposal

Posted: July 22, 2020 in Friday Fictioneers
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Today’s photo prompt for our 100-word challenge was provided by our fairy-blog mother Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Thanks, Rochelle.

Isabel dances as if gravity does not exist. Her long velvet skirt floats in a patchwork cloud of violet, burgundy, and gold, bordered by glittering silver lace.
Have I mentioned her hair? Scented with jasmine and bergamot, and darker than the inside of night, it cascades to her waist. Each strand flickers with stardust and miniature pink pearls.
Do not laugh when I say God made her shoes, for who else could create beautiful footwear, supple and sturdy, from bright orange starfish and seaweed?
Today I present Isabel a ring made of silver dragon’s teeth. My heart prays she agrees.

Auntie June arrived wearing a blue checkered skirt and sparkly red stilettos.
Couldn’t tell if she was Italian, Mexican, or a plump Irish woman who’d seen too much sun.
Her merlot-red hair smelled of seaweed. Neither unpleasant nor compelling.
And we knew her onyx-colored eyes held secrets.
“Not your real Auntie,” Father whispered.”She’s your new tutor.”
We rolled our eyes.
June was otherwordly. Taught us magic tricks and spells.
June began an exercise routine. We grew strong.
Our June made us laugh. At our elders.
Our June divided us. Kids against parents.
My June chose me to continue her plan.

Grandma collected geodes. When she cracked them, instead of crystals, the stones contained small, exotic worlds.
Some called her a witch. I call them jealous.
Who could reject a tiny world occupied by three sleeping owls? Or a beach littered with sand dollars the size of a baby’s thumbnail?
She gifted her treasures to people with wounded souls.
Until today, I’d never received one.
Papa hands me a velvet-coated box. “She saved this one for you.” He nestles the box in my shaky hands.
Inside the geode? The scent of lilacs and a wee fairy with Grandma’s enchanting smile.

Today’s Friday Fictioneer picture was provided by CEAyr and posted by our fairy blog mother, Rochelle. Thanks to you both!

Woodstock. 1969. You. Me. Miles of mud.
An ocean of people
and music with a beat that carried straight to the heart with a thrum

You: with your six-foot-plus frame clad in fringed leather, sometimes. And beads, always.
Me: a four-foot nothing chick wearing one flowered dress for days. The flowers? Carolina blue, like your eyes.

How did we find one another in that crowd of shouters.dancers.lovers?
Never mind. No matter.
I only remember Dancing. Dancing. Dancing.
Beside you. We never touched.

Now, with miles of memories created over an ocean of years
we dance chest-to-chest
Just you. Just me.

Silence

Posted: May 13, 2020 in Friday Fictioneers
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“Samoa-Samoa-Tonga-Tonga-Talofa-Malo-Aloha.”
At the age of three, Clara was a musical prodigy, at five she spontaneously burst into song as if the family lived inside a musical.
“Hey, baby, why don’t you run over and pick out a T-shirt for daddy?”
Clara met the suggestion with an eye roll before skipping away.
Anita watched her daughter’s long blonde curls bounce against her tiny back, did her own eye roll thanking God for the blessed silence as her child disappeared in the crowd.

The blessed silence has gone on for two excruciating years. And now, today, the search for Clara was ended.

Sophia stands knee-deep in snow
clad in a once-elegant
now raggedy, red-velvet cape

she has occupied that table
no, no, not the corner table
that one is saved for people in love
the other table
the one set for four

when she and Thomas were together
there were never four
just him
just her

him bringing blue sapphire rings
capes of velvet
her carrying hopes, dreams
and laughter

champagne flavored kisses
nights of love so strong it made her hurt
inside and out

but now, tonight
he’s laughing with his wife
and two children
creating a balanced table of four

Diaries

Posted: April 26, 2020 in What Pegman Saw
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Charles – Explorer

August 11, 1861
Bathed in rosy light, the mountain’s noble brow gleams in the glory of the setting sun. Beyond the jagged outline of the eastern peak, which rises abruptly from a gentle incline, lies a rough, almost horizontal platform. 3000 feet lower, like the trough between two mighty waves, rests the saddle separating the sister peaks.

August 15, 1861
The trough is all that hinders me, but what an all! Snow at eye level. Clouds above. White upon rocks and sky. Shining masses, looking like newly-washed sheep!  I cannot describe the sensations thrilling my heart. Knowing my caravan of men will keep me safe, I must continue. For God. For country.

Johannes – Preacher

August 18, 1861
We are in the midst of Chagga thieves, trickish men, who only desire our property. My single earthly friend disappeared after striving to reach the mountain’s peak with a caravan consisting of local thieves. God bless his soul.

The Letter

Posted: April 22, 2020 in Friday Fictioneers
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Thanks, Rochelle, for posting yet another photograph for our merry band to ponder then jot down the 100-word story that pops into our mind. I find I’m getting a little down in the dumps about the state of the world so I tried to go on the lighter side again this week. Thanks to all who read and comment. Cheers!

26 June 

My Dearest Loraine,
No paper available. Using the flip side of a wine label.
We are stationed in Paris. Nazis everywhere.
Gregor is dead.
At least he died smiling.
Screams of the wounded are driving me mad.
Kiss the babies for me.
Love, Ted

Loraine shifts Barbara Sue on her hip. Kisses her baby-soft hair then reads the note for the fourth time, doing her best to make out what Ted had truly written.
Samuel tugs the hem of her skirt. “Mama?”
“Ah, Sam,” she says, “I fear the censors may have too much time on their hands.”