Flash Fiction Challenge: “Frog Powder Seagull Tower Scissors”

And here we are again.

It is time, my little scrunchies, to conjure for the world another dab, another dollop, of some flash fiction.

Once again, you have five words to play with:






You need to choose only one of those five words.

Yes, that’s right. Only one.

That one word must feature prominently in your fiction, whether directly or as a clear and forthright inspiration. You do not have 1,000 words but rather, you have 100. A hundred words, no more. That way, nobody will be taken away from NaNoWriMo if they’re participating for more than a mere handful of words.

Any genre will do.

Post your entries into the comment section below.

You’ve got till Friday, Black Friday, to turn in your entries. By noon EST.

I’m going to pick my favorite out of the bunch. That person will get both SHOTGUN GRAVY and IRREGULAR CREATURES as e-books. I’ll pick the winner sometime that following weekend.

Get to writing, fictioneers.

75 responses to “Flash Fiction Challenge: “Frog Powder Seagull Tower Scissors””

  1. …That’s weird. The pingback showed up, but not the actual comment that I left. Lemme try that again…

    Russet Powder

    The fine rusty powder coated every surface inside the abandoned Beamer. Detective Inspector Graumann couldn’t make head nor tail of it, nor of the sharpened oak shaft protruding loose from the centre of the black velvet driver’s side seat cover.

    A Forensics trainee passed a twine sightline from the splintered wooden head of the arrow through the windscreen entry hole. When the clumsy labrat cut a finger on the glass, Graumann sighed at his contaminated crime scene.

    The powder sizzled and coalesced around the spilling droplets. Graumann clutched for his mother’s crucifix as the powder regathered into hissing human shape.

  2. (Third entry – Today’s is a bit silly)

    2 Seagull s, a Cricket, and a planted Idea.
    The cricket threw up his thin arms and scream with urgency “WAIT! Don’t eat me.”
    The first seagull flapped his wings in protest “Now, why can’t I eat you?”
    The cricket responded “Haven’t you heard of ‘Mad Cricket Desease’?”
    “No, what is that?” another frustrated flap and then he tucked his wing in to get closer.
    “It causes stiff joints, makes your brain numb, you do strange things, and…”
    The second seagull asked “Why did you eat him, you’ll get sick?”
    “That’s just stupid.” The first seagull searched for more dinner.

  3. Love in a Jar

    He brought her love in a jar; slimy, hopping, eyes bulging.

    It thudded against the glass, amphibian eyes begging for release. But she left it caged: fearful to embrace it, unwilling to let it go, trapped somewhere between odium and adoration.

    And when he left for school she took it into the yard and planted it between the azalea bushes, jar and all.

  4. What was it that Jake Barnes said? “Gradually, and then suddenly”? That was how it was. First sales dropped, then suppliers stopped shipping because I couldn’t pay, and then sales dropped because you were out of everything. I had cooked myself the last batch of french fries we had, but even after they cooled, I couldn’t stomach them. I pitched them one by one onto the ground in front of me, watching the seagulls dive and caw, scooping them up in the October air. They say nature is so delicate, but some species are meant to survive anything.

  5. They each thought I knew nothing. That I was naught but an innocent girl, whistling sweetly from my innocent perch. I saw him below, lurking about in the garden day after day. He was there one morning when Mother called out to let down my hair. So when the Prince called out, I knew what came next for hadn’t my mother warned me time and time again? And come he did.

    I got what I wanted. Now my children and I roam, free from them both; stalker and witch.

  6. I had an enormous snootful of the fine white powder and felt my eyeballs rolling around like psychotic marbles when Melody commenced banging on the bathroom door.

    “Goddammit, Elvis, if you’re in there taking a shit you’d better light a fucking candle!” That’s my girl, all sugar and spice and labial piercings.

    “I’m not taking a shit!” I tried to yell back, but collapsed to the floor in a giggling heap of naked fuckedupedness.

    “Then you’d better not be snorting my dad’s Gold Bond Powder again! He keeps that shit in there for his balls!”

    That’s when the puking started.

  7. Ghost Story
    I woke to the sound of violence.

    Murder saturates the ground all around me. It was late when they attacked. They’re like ghosts in the darkness, lightning strikes leaving flayed flesh. I don’t know how many I’ve gunned down, but the smell of blood and gunfire permeates my nostrils and its getting hard to breathe. The hole in my gut burns and my hands can’t hold back the wound’s gushing flow.

    One bullet left. God forgive me. I pull the trigger, one final blast of powder and then oblivion.

    Where am I now?

    I wake to the sound of violence.

  8. I tried to post this once yesterday, but it didn’t take. I’ve got my fingers crossed that it works this time.

    “I’ve got a frog for you.”

    “Tell me that’s not a weird new euphemism I could live without knowing.” She rolled her eyes but opened her hands.

    Eric placed the wriggling frog into them. “As promised: one amphibian.”

    She grinned down at it — paused. Blinked. Her “gift” had paisley-patterned skin that gleamed purple.

    “I’ll name him Prince. For the singer, not the fairy-tale,” Finn declared. She tried — failed — not to recall the meteor or its other strange aftereffects.

    “You won’t kiss it, will you? I almost had to maim Greg so he wouldn’t lick the damned thing.”

  9. He fisted the red silk scarf. It was all he had left, save for her powdered remains covering his clothes.

    If there’d been a way to save her… but her addiction was too great, and the more blood she’d consumed, the more haunted she’d become by the memories stolen from her victims.

    So he did it, and he refused to think of it as anything other than a mercy. The stake he’d used fell to the floor and settled into a crack.

    The sun ascended and he welcomed the burn as his flesh, too, turned to powder.

  10. (Fourth entry) – Powder

    The grey powder left behind in the dragons passing had blurred his vision. He tried to focus his eyes on the aftermath. His band of misfits had been caught inside the tavern while celebrating their successful raid on the dragon’s den. He quickly searched for Shawna. Everyone looked the same, their bodies covered by powder.
    “Looks like you’ll have a few new scars.” She called from behind him.
    Relief flashed through him as he turned towards her. The combination of her presence and his near death experience made her irresistible. He pulled her closer and gave her a passionate kiss.

  11. Peering through the circle of men, the young girl could see the clenched fists of two boys facing each other. Her own fists were tightly bound to the chair by rope, the fibers tearing into the flesh of her wrists. Ignoring the pain, she pulled on the ropes in a hopeless attempt to free herself.

    The clenched fists of the boys moved up and down as the men chanted “One, two, three…”

    One of the boys fist opened and his hand was flat. The other hand showed two fingers extended.

    “Scissors beats paper,” the crowd roared. Her fate had been decided.

  12. Snip, snip went the scissors. Sam imagined time falling away with every cut. She willed each terrible memory into every closing of the blades.

    Snip. A black eye fell to the floor. She would not “slip in the bathroom” again.

    Snip. Unlimited variations on “bitch” settled in a crease of the cutting cape above her forearm.

    Snip. An attentive aide brushed the false “I love you” from her face.

    A last snip. The stylist asked, “How do you like it, dear?”

    ‘Any first step will do,’ Sam thought, but she replied only, “Thanks,” and tried to smile. It looked strange.

  13. Arturo Fuego, who in ten years would be hailed as the greatest dramatic tenor of his generation, stood in the wings with a frog in his throat.

    The opera-goers had just discovered Enrico Arboles would not be performing his most famous role, having developed a severe fever an hour before. The theatre was deeply in debt and so had not cancelled the performance. Bringing in the understudy was a risk they had to take.

    “The audience expects nothing of you,” his father had said over the phone. “Forget Arboles. Be Fuego.”

    The orchestra started to play, and the legend began.

  14. The bouncy ball was bisphenol-b. When the princess accidentally tossed it into a well, it sank to the bottom.

    A frog croaked, “I’ll fetch it for you, for a kiss.”

    “Okay,” the princess said.

    “Kiss, then ball,” the frog said.

    Their lips touched. The frog grew and the green localized to tights and a jacket; obviously a prince. The princess forgot about the ball.

    They didn’t live happily ever after. As a frog, the prince had absorbed a lot of pseudo-estrogens. His vestigial third leg gave the princess the willies, and his sperm count was insufficient to provide heirs, anyway.

  15. Trying one more time before bed… *Crosses fingers*

    “The knight eyed the tower, a predatory smirk on his face. He was ready. After hours of stalking, he would finally conquer that ever elusive tower. The tower shook in fear, knowing its time had come, its exits blocked and the knight a mere L-shape away. Straight lines hadn’t been enough to find freedom, and so, the end is nigh.”



    “Play the damn game.”

    He picked up his piece and knocked over Heero’s castle with obnoxious sound effects and a cheesy scream. Then he lined the piece up with others he’d captured and waited for Heero to move.

  16. (Last entry) – Frog

    The frog who wasn’t a prince
    sat on the log outside
    as a lost girl approached and winced
    he had no place to hide.

    He stared at her with big eyes
    as she knelt down to cry
    she let loose a jumble of flies
    and he caught with his tongue one fly.

    His time was running out
    and he would soon change form
    as he watched her pout
    he felt the rising storm.

    The frog grew and shifted
    into exactly what was required
    for he was one of the gifted
    a puppy that was inspired.

    The lost girl was happy.
    Thank you for providing this challenge for bit of creativity on our holiday week!

  17. Scissors

    I cut the film into thirty-six clips and spliced it together with special tape. I got it on a reel and played it through a projector. It was thirty-six perfect moments, real on the wall at twenty-four frames per second.

    Later it occurred to me that the actual moment was the light, not the film. By the one source, each frame of film experienced.

    I cut up a lot more film, ended up with the special tape from beginning to end. My life looks a lot more choppy now, but every moment is exactly what I want it to be.

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