The Last Concert of the Kings of Long Beach


© Footy and Foodie

The Kings of Long Beach were back in their hometown playing where they’d first met twelve years ago, in the courtyard at the Hathaway Apartments. They started out as five high school students with a dream, but unlike most of their peers, they’d actually made it.

The parking lot was packed as was the street parking for miles around. Everyone wanted to see the Kings again, especially since the concert was free for the neighborhood.

The Kings’ lead singer, Toby McGuire stepped into the spotlight and up to the mike. “Hello Hathaway!”

The crowd went insane, their cheers could be heard for blocks.

“The Kings are back!” Toby turned to Miles Johnson the drummer, “And a one and a two and a…”

It sounded like a firecracker, but then Toby grabbed his chest and collapsed on the makeshift stage. People closest to the front saw Beth Middleton holding a gun, staring at Toby’s unmoving body, tears streaming down her cheeks.

“You made me kill my baby twelve years ago. Now go be with her.”

Written for the FFfAW Challenge-Week of June 20, 2017 hosted by Priceless Joy. The idea is to write a piece of flash fiction based on the image above that is between 100 and 175 words long, with 150 being the ideal. My word count is 174.

I know the topic is controversial, and I debated whether or not Beth had an abortion or just presented Toby with his twelve year old daughter at the climax of the story, but the former including the murder was more dramatic and communicated the pain of what she had gone through.

Toby and the “Kings” had started out just like a million other high school “garage bands” but they had actually made into stardom. However, there was collateral damage along the way and it came back to the Kings tonight in the form of death.

To read other stories based on the prompt, go to

21 thoughts on “The Last Concert of the Kings of Long Beach

  1. Oh my gosh! What an ending. Powerful and unfortunately, realistic. It was not long ago when we had a tragedy at a concert in Manchester. Thank you for sharing your writing, James 🙂


  2. I couldn’t seem to get a song out of my head, which started as I pictured a fadeout from your startling climax. It was the old Beach Boys tune: “Don’t Worry Baby”. Now, the story of that tune was much more innocuous, but it was not difficult to imagine a slightly different scenario that fit your back-story. I could even envision subsequent events while the chorus continued, as police and medical emergency personnel came to take away the young woman and the wounded man (or corpse; I could see it either way).


  3. You paint a dramatic scene here James and a very sad one for all concerned. The comeback that should have been such a happy occasion turned out just the opposite. Vividly written.


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