5. The Writer, by Marjan Sierhuis
“Please take a break today,” Elsa says, walking over and massaging his neck. “Visitors to the flash fiction site can wait another week.”
“But I have another story to tell,” Oliver says as he glances at his notebook. “My readers need to see it.”
“I am sure they can wait. You have been writing continually for the last several months.”
“Of course, sweetheart. How can you even ask me something like that?”
“Come here,” Oliver says, pulling Elsa onto his lap and kissing her on the cheek. “Show me the ways I can make it up to you.”
4. The Skilled Lion Hunters, by Ann-Louise Truschel
Unaware that they were being watched, the poacher and his guide stealthily approached the pride. The hunter was looking for the rare black-maned lion that roamed the wildlife preserve.
He had paid the guide to sneak him into the protected area so he could get the trophy of a lifetime! The bribe had cost him a small fortune!
“He’ll occupy the place of honor above my fireplace.”
As the poacher raised his rifle, he and his guide were attacked by the rest of the pride that had circled around behind them, learning too late that lions indeed are skilled hunters.
3. Time’s Up, by Bill Engleson
On the day I died, I woke up, a bounce in my belly, a smile on my lips.
“You’re looking chipper,” she observed.
“Haven’t even had my coffee yet,” I said, hugging her the way I once did.
“What brought that on?” she asked.
I continued to grin like a school kid in the moment, finding lost pleasure, remembering the way I had imagined my life, my love would unfold.
After breakfast I made to leave.
“Where are you off to?” she queried.
“I’m thinking a hike up to the Falls,” I said.
“Be careful,” she advised.
“Always, my love.”
2. Wind Song, by R.S. Pyne
The wind blew directly in his face and it sang with a dozen voices, each one belonging to a past victim. He kept them with him always, recalling their faces, how they died and how he killed them: the closest the man ever came to making friends. On the hunt now, he searched the streets for prey.
An accomplice breeze showed him the way, insistent and impossible to ignore. It told him to kill and drove his compulsions, fuelled the fierce rage against a world that had rejected him – always room for one more in his collection of bound souls.
1. The Trouble with Garlic, by Fliss Zakaszewska
Harry and Geoff were discussing their favourite topic: home-cooked food, cooked by someone else – their wives.
“Can’t stand garlic,” announced Harry. “I’d tell Delia to shove it if she put it in my food.”
“Me, too. I’ve told Christine never to use the stuff.”
Delia looked through the open hatch towards her husband and smiled. She took a second garlic clove, an extra-large one. Carefully, she peeled and crushed it … then stirred it into the lasagne.
“And you’ll be shoving garlic – again – where the sun don’t shine, sweetheart,” she whispered as she reached for a third one.