#writephoto — The Scarecrow, the Witch, and the Wizard

D3D2201B-77FD-47C4-AE2E-A2346009A9F9During the occasion of a full wolf moon, the scarecrow, the witch, and the wizard went out together for a late evening stroll, as the trio was wont to do on nights such as this. After several hours of walking and talking, the wizard mention that he had developed quite a thirst. The witch said that she remembered passing a tavern on the outskirts of town shortly after they began their stroll.

“Ah yes,” the scarecrow said. “I distinctly recall that place because there was a tall sign just outside of the tavern that contained within it a scarecrow’s hat. But despite the fact that the tavern is home to scarecrows, I’d be delighted if the two of you would join me there as my guests.

“I beg to differ with you, Scarecrow,” the witch said. That tavern is obviously home to a coven of witches, since the hat in the sign is clearly a witch’s hat. But despite that fact, it would be my honor to invite the two of you to join me there tonight.”

“Hold on just a second, my friends,” the wizard said. There is no question but that the hat inside the sign is that of a wizard. Be that as it may,” he continued, “I would be happy to serve as host to the two of you in that establishment.”

“You don’t know what you’re talking about, either of you,” the scarecrow said. “Anyone can plainly see that it’s a scarecrow’s hat.”

“Don’t be daft, Scarecrow,” the witch responded. “The hat a witch’s hat.”

“It is neither a scarecrow’s nor a witch’s hat,” the wizard interrupted. “It is, without a doubt, a wizard’s hat.

“There is only one way to find out for sure,” the scarecrow said. “We shall, the three of us, head over to the tavern, walk right in, and you’ll see soon enough that I was right. It’s a pub for scarecrows.”

“It is not,” said the witch and the wizard simultaneously. Each determined to prove the other two wrong, the companions locked arms and marched straight to the tavern. Upon reaching the tavern, they looked at the sign.

“See,” the scarecrow said. “A scarecrow’s hat.”

“See,” the witch said. “A witch’s hat.”

“See,” the wizard said. “A wizard’s hat.”

Once again, the three locked arms and, together, squeezed through the tavern doors and stepped inside.

All eyes of the patrons inside the tavern gazed upon the three who had just entered. There was dead silence as those already there and the three newcomers sized each other up. A tension filled the room and the atmosphere grew heavy.

There were no scarecrows, witches, or wizards among the patrons in the tavern. Instead, the customers were farmers and farmhands.

The awkward silence of the moment was finally broken when the bartender cheerfully called out from behind the bar. “Welcome to Ye Old Farmer’s Hat Tavern, folks,” he said. “Find any empty table and I’ll be right there to take your orders.”

Written for the Thursday Photo Prompt from Sue Vincent.

Twittering Tales — Full Moon

FEA5ED29-EA4F-452D-9A47-BA5E2B463433Just as he did every night, Sam took his dog out for her last walk of the night. The moon was full and bright, illuminating their usual route, so Sam left his flashlight at home.

Perhaps if he’d brought his flashlight that night, he’d have seen what was lurking in the bushes.

(275 characters)

Written for this week’s Twittering Tales prompt from Kat Myrman.

#writephoto — Saving Grace

The full moon shown brightly over the lake, illuminating the mountains on the opposite side.

As he gazed upon the moon’s image reflected in the calm waters of the lake, Mark reflected upon his own life. It was just over a year ago that his wife of thirty years passed away. Both of his grown kids, Grace and Jonathan, were living out of state and busy with their own families. And just four months ago, Mark got laid off.

Neither of his kids had come to visit him over the holidays; he had spent Christmas alone and lonely. It would be so easy, he thought, to just start walking into the lake, taking one step at a time until the cold water consumed him. No one would miss him, of that he was sure.

And so he removed his shoes and socks and took his first steps into the dark water, creating a series of ripples that caused the moon’s reflection to sparkle like a million little stars. He’d walked about twenty paces and the cold water was barely beyond mid-calf. But Mark knew that it wouldn’t be long before the lake waters would engulf him.

As the water reached waist level, Mark heard a frantic voice calling his name. He turned around to see a woman, arms flailing, running into the water. “Dad! Dad!” he heard her scream.

Recognizing his daughter, Mark yelled, “Wait, Grace, I’m coming to you!” He ran back through the water as fast as he could until he reached her. She threw her arms around him and held him tight to her.

“Dad, what the hell were you doing? We need to get back to the house and dry you off.” Then she pulled her cell phone from her jeans pocket and called her brother. “Jonathan, I found Dad. Get the fire going. We’ll be there in a few minutes.”

“Jonathan’s here, too?” Mark asked. “I didn’t think either of you were going to make it here.”

“Dad, of course we were going to be here for Christmas,” Grace said. “But because of the blizzard back east, our flights were delayed by two days. We tried calling, but you didn’t answer your phone.” Then she paused. “Dad, what’s going on? What were you thinking back there.”

“Grace, forgive me,” Mark said. “With your mother gone, me losing my job, and then, with Christmas and not hearing from you and Jonathan….”

“Dad, I know,” Grace said. “But we’re all here now. Everyone is waiting for us back at the house, including all of your grandchildren. We all love you and wanted to be here with you for the holidays.”

Right before they got to the back door of the house, Mark stopped, hugged his daughter, and with tears running down his cheeks and with his voice cracking, he said to her, “You literally are a saving Grace.”

Written for today’s Thursday Photo Prompt from Sue Vincent.

Friday Fictioneers — By Land or By Sea

737F6A92-D362-43E6-9F16-018AC121A80E“So do you want to drive or take the ferry?” Jack asked his wife. “I think it will be quicker to drive,” he added.

“Oh, let’s take the ferry,” Susan said. “There’s no rush, you know. And it’s such a delightful night. The moon is full, the water in the bay is calm, and the evening temperature is perfect.”

“I don’t know,” Jack said. “Besides, you know I can get seasick at times.”

“Come on, Jack. It will be very romantic to take the ferry across,” she said, winking at her husband.

“That’s it. We’re driving,” Jack said firmly.

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Written for this week’s Friday Fictioneers prompt from Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Photo by Ted Strutz.