Saturday, July 25, 2015

Cracked Flash: Year 1, Week 5

Welcome to the second month of Cracked Flash! (Well, I suppose, technically the third, since the very first challenge was in June, BUT NUANCES.) 

Take a looksy through the full rules if you haven't already!

Judges This Week: Rin and Si (Mars is gone to Canada)

Word count: 300 max

How: Submit your stories as a comment to this post, along with your name, word count, and title (and Twitter handle or blog if you've got 'em!). Only one entry per person.

Deadline: Midnight tonight, PDT!

Results announced: Next Wednesday!

Remember: The prompt can be mutilated, but not beyond recognition.


"Well, this just got awkward."
"There's a corpse on the floor. Of course it got awkward."


  1. Due to Unforeseen Circumstances the End of the World is Postponed

    299 words


    “Well, this just got awkward.”

    “There’s a corpse on the floor. Of course it got awkward.”

    “Are you sure you got the words right?” asked Sal.

    “Course, no mistake. Look, Eye of newt, leg of toad …” said Ma.

    “He’ll be here soon,” said Sal. “He’ll be expecting an army. He’s not going to be too happy is He?”

    A shade emerged from the body. “He’s not going to be too happy? What about me? One minute I’m signing my first ever book deal, … major publisher and next thing I’m here, dead, deceased, like the parrot …”

    “Oh, do shut up,” said Ma. “It’s not like it’s the End of the World.”

    “Not now anyway,” said Sal. “With no army He can’t exactly go forth and conquer.”

    “Oh,” said the ghost. “This was supposed to be the day when … perhaps I should just …”

    The door crashed open. Two red eyes glowered at them.

    “Where is my army?” He asked. “Armageddon awaits …”

    He caught sight of the body, His shoulders slumped. “What went wrong? I gave you the Book, my own personal copy, Every Spell You’ll Ever Need and this was the one you used?”

    He stared at the page incredulously. “This spell creates a corpse! I wanted you to create me a corps! Soldiers, an army of the undead. Why didn’t I learn from last time? I should just do it myself.”

    “Perhaps that’s for the best dear,” said Ma, patting His arm fondly. “Now why don’t you sit down with us, have a bit of cake. You’re looking a little peaky. You’ve been overdoing it again, haven’t you?”

    He flicked the telly on, grinned. Images of Syria, Greece, Calais, the Ukraine, Charlestown flooded the screen. “Well, they say there’s no rest for the wicked.”

  2. Right from reading the title, I knew we were in for a treat, and you didn't disappoint, Steph!

    Some stand-out lines: 'One minute I’m signing my first ever book deal...’, 'This spell creates a corpse! I wanted you to create me a corps!'

    Great stuff! LOL

    1. Thank you, I had a nice couple of lines about the Whore of Babylon and mates rates for the ghost but unfortunately the word count ... had to slaughter my darlings :)

  3. The Shelley Boys are Back
    157 Words

    "Well, I think this just got awkward."

    "There's a corpse on the floor… so… yeah, I think ‘this just got awkward’ is an understatement.”

    “I can explain…”

    Martin shook his head. He’d had enough of his brother’s blase approach to life. “I have an M-16 that says ‘I’m not buying anything you’re sellin’ brah.”

    “You weren’t supposed to be home, yet…”

    “Again, not explaining here… just drawing things out.”

    “Well. He was supposed to be… gone… before you got back.”

    “Gone?” Martin sighed. “You still using Martinez’s cleaning service?”

    “Nah, gone as in Igor would have gotten him down to the lab before you got home.”

    “And now?”

    Martin felt a cold chill in his brother’s smile as he heard a rustle behind him.

    Philip shrugged. “Now Igor’s in place…”

    He sighed as Igor finished making work of his brother.“Looks like there’ll be two corpses to reanimate now.”

    “Awkward,” Igor agreed.

    “When’s dad due back?”

    1. Brotherly love eh? Always happy to see a story with an Igor in it!

  4. Winston and Leaverly, Private Investigators
    300 words

    “Well, this just got awkward.”
    “There’s a corpse on the floor. Of course it got awkward.”
    Sarah and Miss Winston both stared at Marie, Lady Boutemont’s kitchen maid, who was standing in the doorway.
    “I...just came down here to get some flour, begging your pardons, Miss Leaverly, Miss Winston,” she stammered, twisting her apron in her hands.
    Miss Winston turned towards Marie, cool as frosted glass. “Of course, Marie. I apologize if I or my associate are in your way. Please, continue.”
    Marie gave them odd looks and gingerly stepped over the body. Sarah waited until the girl was gone to ask Miss Winston what the plan was.
    “Plan? Well, we solved the mystery for Lady Boutemont. I suppose she’ll call the guards, pay us, and we’ll leave. There’s plenty more clients waiting for our sharp minds to solve their mysteries, Sarah.”
    Sarah knelt down next to the the corpse. Old Admiral Clint hadn’t been dead for too long, and although the medals and lapels had been ripped off his coat, Sarah recognized his wine-stained beard and hairy ears.
    “Poor man,” she said. “I can’t believe his own son would do this to him. Especially in Lady Boutemont’s house.”
    “It doesn’t help to get too sentimental, my dear.” Miss Winston covered the body with a tablecloth. “What were you doing in the pantry until I came down?”
    Sarah colored a bit and fiddled with the hem of her new dress. “Well, I--”
    “Sarah, let me say something.” Miss Winston stepped over the Admiral and laid a hand on her arm. “Don’t let the nobility upstairs make you feel like a lesser person than they. You are my associate now, and your cleverness and intelligence exceeds even the smartest of them. Come, let us be off to our next case!”

    1. Cluedo meets Agatha Christie meets Mrs Bradley, classic crime.

  5. Josh Bertetta
    "The House in the Woods"
    295 Words

    “Well, this just got awkward.”

    “There’s a corpse on the floor—Princess! Come next to mommy. Of course it got awkward. Princess! Princess!”

    Princess didn’t listen. She ran, rather, giggling, to the old dust-crusted bed at the far end of the room and grabbed the doll, its dress, pink like hers, threadbare. It was one of those real old dolls—the kind that, when you tilt it, opens and closes its eyes. “Look what I found Mommy!”

    “Princess! I said get over here!”

    “But Mommy—”

    “I said—”

    Princess’s eyes fell upon the corpse and lingered there just a moment before lifting the doll on high, twirling and cheering “Weeeeee!”

    She ran out the side door to another room in the old abandoned house in the middle of the deep woods—a treasure her parents, those self-professed explorers, forced themselves into.

    Her parents hurried after her, skipping through the large house, past none one, but two more corpses. Each time they came across one, they paused but for a moment, only to give Princess that much more time and space. Her mother called for her, and called for her again.

    Princess didn’t answer.

    “Maybe we should split up,” said Daddy.

    And they did. Ghost houses, they say, appear deceptively small and this monstrosity fit the bill, for what resembled a two bedroom home from the outside was more, much much more.

    The deeper they ran, the further back they travelled in time, the more the body count piled up, dressed in generations.

    They screamed her name; it fled through the house in a panic.

    Mommy and Daddy converged at a long hallway—a single door, ajar, at its end.

    They heard a giggle, and a second, then a voice, not Princess’s.

    “Want to play?”

  6. Great story. Last line makes this horrifically sinister (with the lightest of touches).