Weekend Wife, by Vivienne Bradshaw

Confident, chatty. Big theatrical voice, very like a pantomime dame.

He was delivering the week’s groceries. Didn’t carry it in. Stood and watched me as I lugged the bags to the kitchen.

Told me that he had been married three times already, now looking for a third wife but only for the weekend. For a bit of this and that, then send her back.

“You’re all ruddy Divas,” he declared.

He used to work in a call centre. He really loves this doddle of a job.

I closed the door and heaved the heavy bag of potatoes down the hall.

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Horseshoes, by Paritosh Chandra Dugar

Two shape-shifting stallions entered the human mind to enjoy sight-seeing, but soon came out panting, panicked, and with their soles badly bruised. They felt there were rough rocks, spikes, thorns, burning coals, and boiling canals in the semi-dark regions of their visit. Unfortunately, they were without their shoes of mettle.

The Hungry Beast, by Reg Wulff

It comes during the night when everyone should be asleep. The hungry beast prowls the dimly lit hallways, its heavy breathing sending shivers down my spine.

I know what it wants. I know where it’s going. I know what it’s going to do.

Billy says it’s a Sasquatch looking for food. Emmy calls Billy stupid and says it’s a bear. Rose has absolutely no idea what it is. I’d tell them the truth, but they’re only children and there are some things they shouldn’t know at such an early age.

They shouldn’t know about my secret cache of chocolate bars.

New Home, by Dan Tassone

He moved when he was six. He remembered the new subdivision: the bulldozed cornfields; small mountains of dirt; new houses, driveways, and streets.

Everything was so different from his old neighborhood: houses made of brick, new yards covered with straw, the faces of unfamiliar people.

It all made him so anxious. But soon it began to feel like home again.

Now he is eighty-three. He and his wife just sold their house and moved to a retirement center. It is a new place, with straw-covered topsoil, small trees, and unfamiliar faces.

It all makes him feel so anxious.

Cupid’s Arrow, by David Croll

The god strolled into the trendy bar. Even though the cherub is honored by Hallmark every February, nobody recognized him. The deity decided to remedy this slight.

He grabbed his quiver of arrows and with lightning speed, fired passionate love into the buttocks of the patrons.

Nobody could see the arrows but everybody felt the sting, as they were filled with uncontrollable desire. Cupid, being a mischievous sort, made sure no two would desire each other.

In the hands of a mortal, the arrow is a weapon of war. In the hands of a god, it is far more dangerous.

You Can Never Go Home Again, by Eric Smith

“What did Thomas Wolfe mean by that?”

“How should I know? I never read his work. Maybe he meant you did something so bad after you left—say, you wrote an unflattering book about the residents—that they’d make it unlivable if you returned.”

“Plausible. Or maybe you’ve gotten so far away geographically you don’t have the cash to make the trip back.”

“Less likely. How about your home changed so much while you’ve been gone that it no longer really exists as you remember it?”

“That sounds better. Or suppose you’ve changed so much you can’t recognize your home?”

Busy, by Russell Conover

(Originally posted to LinkedIn.)

Tom was swamped. Between his job, commitments with friends and family, and his interest groups, he had no “Tom Time”. Every waking moment was packed to the gills with things to do.

He took a deep breath. “You’ll manage,” he assured himself. “You’ll knock all this out.”

Closing his eyes, he imagined himself with all the time in the world, doing whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted. The thought made him smile.

CLUNK!

The newly delivered papers from his boss on his desk ended his visualization. He sighed. “At least I’m a week away from my Plutonian vacation. Can’t wait!”