She is the One

58DC3994-C8C2-47B6-BFD5-6767C9A8337ASara never thought of herself as special. Sure, she was tall, blonde, and beautiful. But between genetic engineering, hair coloring, and cosmetic surgery, who wasn’t?

But then, in 2180, everything changed for her. She was looking for a position within the security force and had transmitted her CV in response to an inquiry from a bot investigator. When she got a message on her communicator regarding her CV, she provided the bot with her physical world coordinates and was instantly teleported to what looked like an underground room in a 21st century ruin.

Sara looked around the dank, dirty room into which she found herself when she noticed what appeared to be a tiny, iridescent dot on a far wall. She walked up to it and touched the dot with her index finger. That action brought the wall to life, a giant screen with thousands of horizontal dots and shimmering images appeared before her.

Instead of jumping back in fear, though, as so many who had preceded her had done, Sara was intrigued. She reached out and touched the screen and she instantly knew exactly what it meant.

At a different location in another dimension, the Managers were watching Sara as she absorbed what was passing from the screen to her consciousness. “Is she the one?” one of the Managers asked.

“Even in the darkest hour, you can see her light, the Manager of the Managers said. “She is, indeed, the one.”


Written for The Haunted Wordsmith Daily Prompt. Teresa selected the genre of “Superhero” and the Sentence Starter of “Even in the darkest hour, you can see his (or her) light.” Photo credit: Josh Hild on Unsplash.

Time to Write — The Peephole

513BBE11-0F37-4BDE-AB11-0E0A58674BEA“How did you find me?” Jimmy asked Anita.

Just an hour earlier, Jimmy had been sitting on his living room couch sucking on a joint and watching a baseball game on TV when his doorbell rang. “Damn, who the fuck could that be?” he said aloud. He slowly stood up and walked to the door. When he looked through the peephole, he saw a young woman, maybe in her late teens or early twenties, someone Jimmy didn’t recognize.

He decided to just ignore the unexpected visitor, whoever she was, and to head back to his couch and finish watching the game, but as he started to back away from the door, the doorbell rang again and he heard the woman’s voice say, “I know you’re in there. I saw you look through the peephole.”

Jimmy opened the door and said, “Whatever you’re selling, whether it’s Girl Scout cookies, magazine subscriptions, or Jesus Christ, I’m not interested.” He started to shut the door when she literally stuck her foot in the doorway.

“Wait,” she said. “Are you James McMurphy?”

Surprised that she knew his name, he said, “Yeah, who the fuck are you? What do you want?”

“Do you know Rebecca Hartley?” she asked.

“No, I don’t,” Jimmy responded, although in the far reaches of his mind, the name did sound a little familiar.

“Did you go to Northgate High School?” she asked.

Jimmy was losing patience. “So what if I did? Who are you and what’s this all about?”

“May I come in?” she asked.

Jimmy sighed, stepped aside, and waived her in. Once she was inside, he shut the door and said, “Yeah, so?”

The young woman made a sniffing gesture and smiled at the familiar aroma of marijuana. “My name’s Anita,” she said, putting out a hand for Jimmy to shake. “And you’re my father.”

Jimmy started laughing. “Yeah, right,” he said. “Listen, I don’t know who you are or what your game is, but you need to get the fuck outta here.” He reopened the door.

“Rebecca Hartley!” she blurted out. “She is, or was, my mother. She died last month.”

Jimmy closed the door. “I’m sorry about your mother, but I don’t know your mother and I sure as shit ain’t your father.”

Anita reached into a backpack she was carrying, pulled out a few old photographs, handed them to Jimmy, and said “That’s you in these pictures with my mom, isn’t it?”

It had been 22 years since Jimmy had seen these pictures, but when he looked at them, his mind was flooded with memories. “Becky,” he whispered. He looked up at Anita and said, “You’re Becky’s kid?”

“And yours.”

“No way. Becky would have told me if I’d have knocked her up.”

“She never told you because she knew you weren’t right for each other,” Anita said. “You only went out three or four times, but she said you were hot and, well, I happened. It was the summer after you graduated when she found out that she was pregnant with me. You were getting ready to leave for Ann Arbor on a football scholarship and she didn’t want to burden you.”

Jimmy was dumbfounded. He walked over to the couch, sat down, grabbed the remote, and turned off the TV. He picked up the joint and lit it, took a deep drag, looked up at Anita, who was still standing by the door, and asked, “How did you find me?”


Written for this week’s Time to Write Sentence Starter prompt from Rachel Poli.

 

Time To Write — Trial and Error

1018822723Look at that!” William said. “I can’t believe how full the courtroom is.”

“I know,” Jason, who was sitting in the first row of seats directly behind William, acknowledged. There’s a real flurry of activity here.”

“That’s good news,” William’s lawyer said. “We’ll have plenty of character witness to testify on your behalf in this lawsuit.”

The judge asked the attorneys if they were ready to proceed with their opening remarks. The defense attorney started first. “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury,” he said. “This case may be an emotional one for you to hear, but your job is weigh the evidence in a cool, dispassionate manner. You will see that the accident that injured the plaintiff was caused by his own willful negligence and irrational behavior.”

The lawyer pointed to a police officer in the courtroom. “You’ll also hear from the officer who attempted to collar the plaintiff, only to have the plaintiff, despite having just broken his leg, attempt to flee the scene. There is simply no way anyone in his or her right mind could condone what the plaintiff did or that it was in any way the fault of my client, the defendant.”

Then it was the William’s attorney with the opportunity to address the jury. “My client, this poor, now crippled young man, was simply doing his laundry at the laundromat. He put his clothing in a basket and brought it to the establishment, where he loaded it into the washing machine. As he was waiting for his wash to complete, he climbed into the industrial-sized dryer and asked his friend, Jason, to turn it on. It was at that point that my client sustained the severe fracture to his right femur, rendering him unable to walk without crutches.”

The lawyer moved closer to the jury box, used his finger and thumb to sarcastically mimic playing a tiny violin, and in a stage whisper, said, “The opposing side would have you believe that my client’s actions were reckless and that the owner of the laundromat should not be responsible for my client’s medical expenses plus compensation for pain and suffering. But let me inform that there are no signs or warning labels anywhere in the establishment indicating that patrons should not climb into the machines. So how was poor William to know that doing so would result in personal injury. Thank you.”

The judge shook his head and said, “I’m sorry, but this case is an insult to my court.” He looked directly at William and said, “Son, you’re a jackass and the injuries you sustained were due to your own stupidity. Case dismissed.”


Written for Rachel Poli’s Time To Write Sentence Starter prompt, where the starter is “Look at that!” Also for Paula Light’s Three Things Challenge, where the three things are basket, violin, and lawsuit. And for Teresa’s Opposites Attract prompt, where the opposites are emotional, cool, and dispassionate. And finally, for these daily prompts: Your Daily Word Prompt (flurry, plenty), Word of the Day Challenge (collar), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (condone), and Ragtag Daily Prompt (laundry).

Time To Write — All in the Family

F49C8E6E-A29A-4938-84E3-BDE895E4855D“Welcome to the family,” the woman said upon opening the front door.

Dan was both confused and dazzled. The woman was radiant. He had never seen, in real life, anyway, a woman of such dazzling beauty. Dan took a deep breath and simply said, “I’m from UPS with a package for Arturo Bianchi.”

“Yes,” the woman said. “We’ve been expecting you, Daniel. Please come in.” She stepped aside and waved him through the door.

“How do you know my name?” he asked as he stepped inside the large foyer.

The woman took the package from Dan. “As I said, we’ve been expecting you.” Once he was inside, she closed the front door behind him.

Dan took out the little electronic device, about the size of a smartphone, from his belt holster and held it out to the woman. “You need to sign this,” he said, holding the device out toward her and handing her a stylus.

“That won’t be necessary, Daniel,” she said,  grabbing his hand and leading him into large room at the center of which was sitting a heavyset older man with a shaved head. “This is Arturo, my husband,” the woman said.

Arturo got up from his chair, moved over to Dan until he was standing right in front of him. Arturo stood on his tiptoes, placed both of his hands on Dan’s shoulders, leaned in and kissed him on each cheek, and said, “Welcome to the family, Daniel.”

Dan stood back and said, “There must be some misunderstanding. I’m from UPS and I am here to deliver a package.”

“Ah, Daniel,” Arturo said, “There’s no misunderstanding. You are the package.”

Dan looked at the woman, who was smiling at him in a very sexy way, or so it seemed to him. Then he looked at Arturo. How could this short, fat, bald man who was at least three times her age be the husband of this young, strikingly gorgeous, statuesque woman, he wondered. “What do you mean I’m the package?” Dan asked Arturo.

“Your supervisor, Angelo, has told us about your special skills, Daniel,” Arturo said. “He said that you are a problem solver. That you know how to deal with people. That you can be very, shall we say, persuasive.”

Dan was a big guy, standing around 6’4” and weighing in at 225 pounds. Arturo reached over and squeezed Dan’s bicep and smiled. “You’ll do just fine in our family, my boy,” he said.

“Do just fine doing what?” Daniel asked.

The woman who greeted Dan at the door, came over to Dan, stood right in front of him, moved in close enough so that he could smell the subtle scent of her perfume. “My husband is getting older and he needs a bodyguard and an enforcer,” she said. “You’ll be very handsomely compensated and will have generous fringe benefits.”

“I don’t know,” Daniel said.

The woman moved in and pressed her body against Dan and, in a throaty whisper, said, “I’m one of the fringe benefits, Daniel.”

Dan looked over at Arturo, who looked back at Dan and smiled.


Written for Rachel Poli’s Time To Write – Sentence Starter prompt, where the sentence is “Welcome to the Family.” Also for Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (radiant).

No More Secrets

B146DD40-1000-4519-AEA1-FC1EE5831545“I thought we agreed no more secrets,” Max said to his wife.

“I’m sorry I was late,” Ruth said as she walked into their home at nearly 11:30 at night. “I’m working on that big presentation for the board tomorrow and I lost track of the time.”

“You always come up with good excuses, Ruth,” Max said. “But there is no excuse this time. How about a little honesty for a change?”

“Max, I am not making up excuses and I am being honest with you. And as to secrets, well, Max, we all have secrets,” Ruth said. “I know there are things about you that you haven’t told me, things you think that you don’t share with me, feelings that you don’t express.”

“You know that’s not what I’m talking about, Ruth,” Max said. “I’m talking about your late nights at the firm, your meals at expensive restaurants, your out-of-town trips. No more secrets, remember?”

“I’m not keeping any secrets from you, Max. You know I have a high pressure, very demanding job,” Ruth said. “And it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make for you, Max. I’m the one who makes enough money at the firm so that you can stay home and work on your novel and interact with all of your little blogging friends.”

“Yes, that’s true. You are the breadwinner,” Max admitted. “But that doesn’t give you carte blanche to run around on me.”

“What are you talking about, Max?” Ruth asked. “Are you accusing me of having an affair? How dare you?”

Max pulled out his smartphone and shoved it toward his wife. “No secrets, huh?” He said. “Then how do explain all of these photos the private detective I hired texted me tonight?”

“Max, I’m no fool,” Ruth said after scrolling through the pictures on Max’s smartphone. “I knew you were having me tailed and so I had all of these photos staged in order to give you fodder for your sexy adult novel.” Ruth gave Max a coquettish smile. “It’s my gift to you.”

“Oh I’m so sorry, Ruth, but I have been keeping a little secret from you, too,” Max said.

“You mean in addition to the one that you hired a private detective to spy on me?” Ruth asked. “What other secret, Max?”

“I decided to shift gears with my book and to write a murder mystery. I was looking for a good motive for the perpetrator, and these photos really help,” Max said, a smug smile on his face. “By the way, Ruth, I fixed you your favorite cocktail before you got home tonight. Drink up, my dear.”


Written for Rachel Poli’s Time To Write: Sentence Starter prompt, where the sentence is “I thought we agreed no more secrets.” And for the Three Things Challenge from The Haunted Wordsmith, where the three things are “sorry,” “late,” and “no excuse.”