Haunting Jack



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The loud rock music and fireworks were perfect to cover up her last screams. All Jack had to do was dump her corpse into one of the cheap seats and walk away. Anyone noticing her would think she’s stoned. He’d be on a plane to his next job before her death was discovered.

He hated the weird ones, but that’s what he got paid for. Jenny called herself a witch or a medium or something. Who cares why someone wanted her dead.

Jack’s fingers were on the door handle of his rental car when he saw her bloody ghost inside.

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Visiting Heaven

amanda stairs

PHOTO PROMPT © Amanda Forestwood

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The gate at the top of the stairs was open. God again allowed mortals to have visiting hours in Heaven. She could see Mom once more. How long since the last visitation? God saw when He first allowed this, it turned into a disaster. No one visiting wanted to leave the bliss of the world to come.

Of course, they were still alive so they had to go. But then came mass waves of depression and suicide. God cut off visitations but that was worse. Now an entire world had come to faith, but only if they could see Heaven.

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Comfort Food

Liz Young


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“What’s this?” Aaron viewed the cutting board with dismay.

“You wanted to know how to cook. This is your first lesson.”

It was his third date with Melissa. He’d been divorced for two years. He didn’t want to at the age of 63, but his friends pushed him into that dating service.

“What are we making?”

“Something healthier than what you usually eat.” She pressed in behind him. He felt the not-so-subtle push of her breasts as a motivator. It wasn’t enough.

“Where are you going?”

He grabbed his phone and headed for the door. “Out for a burger. Bye.”

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The Galaxy Coloring Book


PHOTO PROMPT © Jennifer Pendergast

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I stoked the fireplace while contemplating the unusual coloring book I bought at the Flea Market last Sunday. I was referred to the vendor rather mysteriously. She suggested that I would find this particular book especially interesting.

I thought I’d reserved my “coloring between the lines” behavior for playing with my grandchildren, but this wasn’t a child’s plaything.

I had retired from my career in astronomy years back, but my childhood fascination with the universe never left me. If I colored the lines according to instructions, Earth’s gateway to a people and their far distant star would finally become known.

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Letter from the Dark


PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

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“1857 Maisonneuve Blvd.” Marie held addressed envelope she’d received from her priest. The outside of the building was painted so colorfully, belying her desperateness.

Timidly, the small-town girl walked in the door marked “Catholic Community Services.”

“May I help you?” The receptionist was as young as Marie.

Mutely, she handed over the unsealed envelope.

After reading the enclosed letter, the woman gave it back and pointed down the hall. “Room J in the back. Knock twice and walk in.”

“Thank you.” Marie nodded and approached the indicated door. She prayed that the exorcist would be able to help her baby.

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Another Day, Another Zeta Beam



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The boat ride was boring. Just tourists from who knows where sipping overly sweet alcoholic drinks and mindlessly chattering. The only one halfway sober besides me was the guy running the engine and steering, and presumably the other guy in the little kayak thing leading the way.

The real reason I was here had nothing to do with my date or anyone else except me. In less than two minutes, the boat would be passing within two meters of the Zeta Beam impact point. I’ll be able to visit my lover on the planet Rann again for a little while.

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The Temple of Heaven


PHOTO PROMPT © David Stewart

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Haoyu Yue Zhan, entering the courtyard of the Temple of Heaven, took a deep breath. Western tourists visited a pale replica of it in Beijing. He had traveled thousands of miles to visit the actual temple hidden in the Kunlun mountains in Xinjiang.

The descendent of famed Yue Fei was not here to study Tai Chi. Here was the center of Earth and Heaven and the gods awaited above. He did not seek paradise, but rather a way to prevent the Earth from becoming a wasteland. Nuclear war was only days away and he needed the power to stop it.

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Fugue State

lisa fox


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He didn’t remember how he got here. It was some sort of posh restaurant. He was alone, although there were two menus on the table. An unknown appetizer was sitting in front of him looking particularly vile.

The taste of his soft drink made him want to vomit. He tried to act calm, then realized not only did he not know where he was, he didn’t know who he was.

He started to get up when a fairly attractive young woman approached.

“Hello. I’m Joy, your server. Welcome to your first day at cognitive depression treatment clinic. Shall we begin?”

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The Fallen

beit shan

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

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Mastema watched Tancred’s ascension as Prince of Galilee over Beit She’an with hidden glee. This ancient city of the Hebrews had passed through many hands before falling into those of the Crusaders in the year of their Lord 1099 C.E.

It was well that Tancred did not know the true name or origins of his faithful adviser, because Mastema had his own reasons for coveting the city in the Jezreel Valley. He divined that men in ages to come would find sacred and mystic Egyptian artifacts. There was one he must take that would render him master of the dead.

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PHOTO PROMPT © Amanda Forestwood

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14-year-old Stace McPherson was drawn to the musician’s unusual stringed instrument. The backyard wedding reception was over. He was supposed to be helping clean but he wanted to touch it. The musician, no one called him anything else, had played the most amazing tunes, like from another world. He looked around. Just the last few guests. The musician was saying good-bye to the bride and groom. He had to do it. Stace let his fingers glide across the strings. As he did, something creative entered him. Ten years later with his own guitar, he accepted the best new artist Grammy.

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