My judge for this month’s Prompted Contest is practically a mermaid expert, so when we were deciding a theme for the contest, we knew exactly what to choose. As exhausted as I am, hosting the contest was so refreshing. The participants inspire me.
A big thanks to Beka Gremikova (@beka.gremikova), who helped me judge this month. She is an expert flash fiction writer–if you’re a Havok member, check out her Havok author page–and a fantastic person, and I loved having her at my side!
If you haven’t read “One Way: Part 1,” I would highly recommend you do that before proceeding. Otherwise, here is Part 2!
“. . . have a portal creature.”
Another high voice. Why do these huge serpents have such squeaky voices?
Eirikur swims to the other side of the house, the place farthest from the door, and starts poking something with his nose. More light streams in––he’s uncovering the windows. Enormous windows, big enough for a sea serpent to fit through. Goodness, you could fit a whole family through that window.
The door stone keeps shifting. “You know . . . against our code . . . house them,” the squeaky voice continues. “. . . abominations . . . must be executed.”
Brynhildur pushes the bubble toward the window. Her voice is softer than normal but just loud enough for me to hear without the hearing aid. “You mean ‘eaten.’”
“Eaten?” I shriek. Just as I thought when I first saw Eirikur and Brynhildur––I’ll end up in a huge reptilian stomach.
She lifts the bubble onto her nose and balances me there. “Kalfr uses some parts of the code and ignores others, such as the fact that portal creatures must be either exiled or executed. Not eaten.” Then she tosses me through the window.
This confounded rain. I scowl at the sky, but it doesn’t listen, just like everyone else. Droplets splatter against my glasses and hinder my already-dim vision. The rain gathers in bothersome puddles that soak my shoes and set my bones aching. Should’ve brought an umbrella, but I had to be stubborn, didn’t I.
Oh well. I can handle a bit of rain.
I shuffle along the sidewalk, moving my walker slowly and carefully, supporting myself with each step. I can almost hear Greg’s voice in my head telling me that it isn’t safe for me to go out by myself, that everyone gets old, that it’s nothing to be ashamed of, that Spring Meadows Retirement Home would take good care of me.
I snort. The only way I’m leaving my house is if I’m dead.
He thinks I don’t know what he’s up to, but I’m old, not blind. He’s tired of his dingy apartment and thinks his dear sweet mother will hand over her house like a docile old woman. Preposterous. If he keeps this nonsense up, I’ll write him out of my will. He never even gave me grandchildren.
The smoke-clogged air finally gets to me, and I cough, practically knocking my glasses from their precarious position on my nose. Pushing my glasses to a more settled position, I glare at the factory chimneys as they pump more of that nasty stuff into my air. Unfortunately, my glasses aren’t fogged enough to keep me from seeing those dreadful black clouds.
When I was a girl, the air was nice and clean. But now––
Even my walker isn’t enough to keep me from tripping. The puddle and my face meet, but instead of slamming into hard concrete, I am swallowed by water.
Today is the day! My story “Stealer of Secrets” is now officially published on Havok Publishing’s website!
“Stealer of Secrets” is based on a 70’s song (let me know if you can guess which one!). It’s about a telepathic girl despised by her people who dedicates her life to saving those trying to commit suicide, and in the process, she just might be saved too.
Unfortunately, the story is on the website TODAY ONLY. On Havok’s website, each story is posted for one day to the public, and a new story takes its place the next day. Once that special day is over, only Havok members can view the story. So, unless you’re a Havok member, if you want to read “Stealer of Secrets,” go to Havok’s website now.
That’s not the only exciting news I have, though. To celebrate my acceptance on Havok’s website, I hosted another prompt contest, similar to the one I did when I launched my blog. In this case, though, the prompts were water-themed, and the stories had to be under one-hundred words. The theme came from the fact that both “Stealer of Secrets” and the story I’m posting on my blog next week, “One Way,” revolve around water!
If you missed the contest, here are the posts I made, including all the incredible entries I received.
If you haven’t read the first part, I would recommend reading this. Otherwise, you might be a bit lost. But without further ado, here is the rest of “Rainhaven.”
Rain slammed against the sidewalks, thudded against the lights. “Rochelle!” Selah shouted. “Rochelle, can you hear me?”
“Rochelle!” came Brad’s baritone. “I’m with your sister! Where are you?”
His voice certainly carried farther than hers did. Maybe it was a good thing she’d recruited him. But still, they had no idea where to look.
Glass shattered behind her. She spun around, holding her umbrella out in front of her as if it were a weapon, leaving her head unprotected. “Who’s there?” she shouted.
Brad had tensed next to her. His umbrella spread over his head, orange like his hair but intermixed with pearly streaks. “You’re getting soaked, Selah.”
“I noticed.” She could barely see through the rain, so she moved the umbrella back to its normal position. A tiny umbrella, like the kind they had in drinks, floated away in the streams moving along the street. Wait. “Viv?”