Saturday, February 6, 2016

Cracked Flash: Year 1, Week 27

Judge This Week: Rin

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 (late afternoon).

Remember: The prompt can be mutilated, but not beyond recognition. (Photo prompts are added for inspiration only (and our amusement) and do not have to be included in your entry)


"You saved my life."
"It was an accident!"


  1. Bunmi Oke
    296 words


    "You saved my life."
    "It was an accident!"
    "How so?"
    "Someone bumped into me..."
    "...then, I tripped."
    "So did I."
    "Only that I tripped with my suitcase in hand while you did headlong."
    "Thanks. A good thing your case served as cushion 'cause to think my skull was bound for that railing...thanks again for saving my life."
    "You're welcome. And again, 'twas all an accident.“
    “A life-saving accident."
    Shared laughter.
    "I'm Casey. Nice meeting you."
    "Deeks. Pleasure."

    A swap of contacts would snowball into days of lengthy mail exchanges peppered with lengthier, vacuously exciting dialogue on virtual space in an over-the-air fondness that would ultimately be translated as love. Her mom was often an intrusion though.
    "If I were you, I'd suspend that chat and give my mother some attention at least once in a lifetime," she would rant. And then she would dive, as usual, into endless tales about people.
    Little wonder she never has a stable man. Five divorces and counting. Who would want a chatterbox, meddler and talebearer wrapped up in one, for a life partner?
    And she did know a lot even though she was not close to the selfsame folks she liked to lecture her daughter about.
    Someone's bluff should be called. And someday soon.

    "If I were you..." Hannah begins this morning.
    "Mom, you can't be me! Unlike you, I have a life. And with love in it. Lots of love."
    "Oh, I see," not masking her sarcasm. "You think."
    "Do you even know a thing about love?"
    "I doubt if I do. But if I were you, I'd pay a little attention to my mother's boring talk about family tree . Maybe that'd help me stop frittering away affection, swooning stupidly over my own second cousin."

  2. Godsend

    294 words


    “You saved my life.”

    “It was an accident!” Azazel gazed at the human, practically grovelling at his feet.

    He was in real trouble. Satan had plans for Franz Ferdinand. The Archduke’s death was supposed to trigger the greatest war of all, setting the stage for the rise of young Adolf; a particular favourite of theirs.

    And Azazel had screwed up; all because he had been bored and wanted to watch, forgetting that the presence of a demon could disconcert even the most evil of men. As a result the assassin had caught sight of him just as he pulled the trigger, his surprise sending the shot wide.

    Ferdinand too had seen him, but not in demonic form. Azazel had clothed himself in the uniform of the prince’s guard and sent the body of the would-be assassin into the Milijacka river before the man could say anything. To the stunned prince, Azazel had appeared as a godsend.

    Now Azazel had to put it right before Satan found out and gave him to Cerberus as a new chew toy. Thankfully he had time, the Devil was being kept busy by his Bolsheviks in Moscow.

    The next day, Azazel caught sight of Nedeljko Čabrinović. Perhaps he could persuade him to toss a grenade at Prince Ferdinand?

    Unfortunately, he missed.

    And Satan had now sensed something was up, was heading his way.

    Then he found Gavrilo Princip; another young man with revolutionary ideals. Azazel gave him a gun.

    The Archduke spotted Azazel in the crowds as he drove past.

    “Look dear,” he said to his wife. “There’s the young man who saved my life.”

    As they both turned to smile and wave at him, Princip fired.

    Azazel sighed with relief. All was right with his world once more.

    1. Oops, misplaced comma in 2nd line - needs to come out. Makes it seem as though Azazel is grovelling :(

    2. I like this one! Nicely done :)

    3. Great piece! I love how you wrote Azazel.

  3. Saving a Life
    293 words

    ‘To save a man’s life against his will is the same as killing him’ the poet’s words rose up off the page to choke her. Had Horace experienced what was happening to her? She was beginning to regret her heroic act well that was how the media portrayed it. The headline read ‘Woman saves policeman from crazed knifeman’. (Her fifteen minutes of fame)

    It was a lot less dramatic and heroic than that. In fact if she’d had an inclining of hindsight she would have walked no run in the opposite direction. She’d been walking to work, her normal route, when she saw her next door neighbour Dan holding a knife to the throat of a policeman. Dan had a history of instability, but had always seemed harmless.

    The policeman was tall, dark, muscular and good looking; she was amazed these facts were registering. He was talking very quietly to Dan but it didn’t seem to be calming him as he was getting more agitated. So like the lead character in an adventure film she stepped forward and said “Dan, are you okay, be careful with that knife you might hurt yourself, do you want to give it to me?” And just like that he handed it over.
    She looked around, where was the policeman’s partner; didn’t they go around in pairs?

    For weeks after she felt she was being stalked, someone always at her side, watching, waiting, a huge burden crushing the life out of her. It wasn’t until the day she parked her car on the fourth storey she got release.

    She felt his presence, “you were asking Dan to kill you”
    He smiled, “You saved my life”
    “It was an accident” and she pushed him off the parapet to oblivion.

  4. “By Gad, sir, you are a character.”*

    "You saved my life."

    "It was an accident!"

    “My LIFE was an accident?” I angle my noggin and give it a whap, thinking, perhaps, that water from my morning shower has given me swimmers ear.

    “No, no. That’s not what I meant. Although, it could have been. Back then, birth control was sometimes hit or miss…”

    “Hold your horses. What are we talking about? And what do you know about my birth?”

    The chitchatty conversation with the cavalier stranger who has generously allowed me to jump the queue to get my morning Starbuckeroo Madagascar Swirl is going seriously off the rails. Granted I am a little sensitive about most things but my pedestrian attempt to offer a thank you, topped off with a hyperbolic maraschino augmentation, clearly is a gaffe.

    My new pal is tall, quite portly, with the soft fleshy features and droopy jowls which brings to mind Sydney Greenstreet. Or maybe having watched The Maltese Falcon for the millionth time last night is impacting my world view. The transitions back from my cinematic expeditions are proving more difficult. Where is Sam Spade when you need him?

    “You have me all wrong, my friend. I know nothing about the struggles your parents must have had to achieve your birth. I’m sure it was all quite well-planned.”

    I am still waiting for my coffee. The Barista asks Sydney what he desires.

    “Tea,” he says.

    I give him a caffeinated glare intended to mean, “What Planet are you from?”

    “As I was saying,” he continues, “All I meant is that I was distracted for a second. An accident. That’s all it was.”

    I pay for my coffee and begin my escape.

    My nemesis offers his hand, and, in the finest Kasper Gutman voice ever, says, “The best goodbyes are short. Adieu.”

    300 streams of consciousness

    *apologies and thanks to everything and everyone involved in The Maltese Falcon

  5. Jeff Rowlands

    268 words


    An Accident

    Her face is stern. Inflexible. Her mouth set into a stern pout. Unforgiving. Not open for negotiation. She shakes her head. “No solid reason but this is just the right thing to do. What I have to do.” She puts on her jacket, zipping it up to the top. I think she wore the same one the first time we met all those months ago.

    She starts to turn and walk out of the room. Her hand on the door handle, about to walk out of my life. Surely she can’t want it to end this way? Surely? I am lost, I splutter “don’t go! I’ll be nothing without you” I half shout, half croak “You saved my life!”

    “It was an accident!” She turns back to me, looking at me in a pitying way that makes my blood curdle. She speaks softly “I just needed fun when we met. I told you that. Now is the time for me to move on. You wouldn’t thank me for staying if I didn’t want to.” She turns her back again.

    A horrible thought occurs to me which I can’t help voicing straight away. “Someone else, right?”

    She looks around the room, as if trying to freeze it in time, a little shake of the head then out the door and gone, gone, gone. The room is quiet and empty. I pat myself down for a cigarette although I gave up six months ago. I lay on my bed and close my eyes as I hear her heels click their way along my apartment block corridor for the last time.

  6. Accidentally Saved
    Maggie Akhurst
    294 Words

    “You saved my life!” I gasped to the young man who’d pulled me from the path of a crazy bus driver.

    He stared at me, as if only just realising I was there. “It was an accident.” He stepped back.

    It was my turn to look at him oddly. “You grabbed me - quite forcefully, I might add - and yanked me! Exactly how do you manage that accidentally?”

    “I was only supposed to be observing.”

    “Observing what?”


    I took a cautious step away from him. Okay, maybe it was more like three steps away. “Why are you watching me?”

    His face was impassive, making it impossible to read his thoughts or feelings. His expression didn’t change as he answered my questions. “I’m waiting for your recruitment. It’s supposed to take place any day now.”

    “My recruitment? I think you have the wrong girl.” I couldn’t understand a word he was saying.

    He glanced in the direction the bus had gone. “I believe you may have missed your interview. I’m sorry, I’m not sure what compelled me to save your life.”

    “You’re seriously apologising for saving my life?!”

    “Yes. I’m sorry for the inconvenience.” His face was deadpan.

    Before I could respond, screeching tyres and a revving engine made me turn. I was just in time to see a beat-up car come around the corner and flip.

    I felt a moment of pain as the car hit me, but darkness swallowed the sensation. I was brought out of it by a familiar voice.

    “Welcome, Reaper Recruit.”

    “I’m dead, aren’t I?” My voice was flat.

    He smiled as if this was fantastic news. Great. Trust him to smile for the first time and it’s because I’m dead.

    He beckoned. “Now, you’re ready for your interview.”

  7. Dave Novak
    300 words

    “You saved my life.”

    “It was an accident!”

    The thing is, it really was an accident. But accident or not, I’m screwed. Truly, utterly, and totally screwed. Left, right, and sideways. I mean, best case scenario here? We’re talking about a full out investigation with interrogations, loads of paper work, tests, reports, evaluations, maybe a reeducation session or two, more paperwork, therapy, and a demotion straight back down to the bottom of the ladder.

    And that’s the best case scenario.

    Worst case? They kick me right out of the CVA.

    Because if there’s one thing that the Confederacy of Villainous Actions won’t tolerate, it’s a Bad Guy saving a Good Guy’s life.

    That particular Good Guy happens to be called Blue Collar Man. He’s an upper mid-card sort – not featured in any of the primetime feuds, but definitely known around the City. Even has an action figure or two. He’s still standing here in front of me. Catching his breath. Eyes wide. Staring me down. And probably trying to figure out what the hell just happened.

    Which makes two of us.

    Weird thing is, I had him beat. The building behind him was collapsing and he didn’t even see it coming. All I had to do was stand there and wait and then boom! Goodbye Blue Collar Man.

    But then?

    “You saved my life,” he reminds me again, panting. “Why?”

    “I don’t know,” I say. “It was an accident. It was just instinct, I guess.”

    Instinct. I saved his life by instinct. Oh, I am so screwed.

    He chuckles. Limps over to me. Hands me something.

    “In case you need a new job,” he says.

    I look down, and there’s his business card.

    I sigh, and put it in my back pocket.

    After this fiasco, I might just need it.

  8. The Horror!
    287 Words

    “You saved my life!” The sheets shriek when Ana pulls at the pile to reveal the flushed face of her little sister.

    “It was an accident, I assure you.” She drawls, dropping the sheet to cover the face again. “What are you even doing?”

    The pile moves into a seated position, shifting until her little sister’s head emerges from its depths. “It’s fort time! We’re working on the blue prints. The engineering held strong until you switched on the ceiling fan and then it all came tumbling down. Bear lost a leg and Suzie may never recover but I’ve escaped unscratched and ready to build another day.”

    “Right,” Ana says then starts pulling at one sheet then another, bunching them up into separate piles.

    “What are you doing?” Her sister screams. She grabs at one sheet and then another, all slip through her tiny fingers. “You’re destroying my world! That’s the draw bridge – no, not the kitchens. You save my life only to take it all away. You monster! The horror! Not Bear’s tower, Bear needs his tower. All see, Ana the Horrific!”

    Ana snorts and reaches for the sheet, beginning to fold. Her little sister stomps over until her feet hit Ana’s knees.

    “We will avenge our lands, Ana the Horrific.” She bends low and tries to meet Ana’s eyes. “Of this we swear it.”

    A head appears in the doorframe to their right; their mother’s smile is tired but still reaches her eyes. “Everything all right in here?”

    Her little sister snarls and throws herself onto the carpet. “Ana the Horrific!”

    “Yup,” Ana replies, meeting her mother’s eye as they both pointedly ignore her little sister. “Almost done with the laundry.”

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