Today Let me put up a few flash fiction pieces I have written for various contests. First up is a story that was entered into Flash Friday, one week ago today. It was second out of about 30 entries. This contest gives you two prompts a picture and some required feature. The picture was of an almost empty bus, but one rider is visible only for her shoes. The required feature was a detective.
The Time Traveling Detectives and the Self-sacrifice of Grace Evangelista
Ten years before she had gotten her time traveling detective license, and had set about unwrapping the mysteries of her own life. Every day she hopped on the lonely bus and went back to some point in her own past, to find out what really happened.
A lifetime of memories gets distorted, and seeing something that was behind the scenes to her during her earthly existence, gave her understanding of her own past.
She learned who her father was. She learned why her favorite teacher left in the middle of the term. Slowly, methodically, the questions in her mind were answered. She finally accepted herself; faults, strengths, pains and glories.
Today she was making one final investigation. She shivered as she thought about it. Today she would find out if her sacrifice mattered. She chose to die for her friends. Had they chosen to live?
Next up is a story for Christian Flash Weekly, this challenge is currently open. If any of you are interested this weeks challenge is to write between 100-200 words based on John 8:45. I also like it because it proves not all my titles are long.
“Truth is stranger than fiction.”
“That doesn’t mean every strange thing is a fact.”
“No but it does mean some surprising things are true.”
“I wish I could be like you. Happily believing in God, but I don’t have enough faith for that nonsense.”
“That is the real problem.”
“Your saying something is wrong with me?” Her tone of voice was intended as a warning.
“Yes. Same thing that is wrong with all the world.”
“Same thing that is wrong with me. The Bible says, ‘All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.’ That includes you, and me. Our sin interferes with our faith.”
“Sin stops us from seeing the truth? So how did you overcome it?” She was studying the bottom of her coffee cup.
“I asked God to give me the faith to understand the truth. I thought, if He is not there, that prayer couldn’t hurt. If He is there, He would answer it. And if He was there, I wanted to know it.”
“He answered my prayer. I began to see things differently. I realized, I had become unwilling to hear the truth about God”
Finally here is a piece I wrote for another contest called Finish the Thought. The word limit was 500 and I forgot and thought it was 700. OOPS! But in this context they give you the first sentence and you write the story that follows. If you think my story is too emotional go to the contest and read the winning entry by R. Postupak. If it doesn’t choke you up, you must be one really tough cookie.
Chicken Lips and Other Mysteries of God
“Chickens have lips.” Adam watched as the news sank in.
“What do you suppose it all means?”
That had been the question since they had woken up that morning. Their farm was changed, they couldn’t see any hills, or neighbors around them. Out front, their extensive garden was in its place, but instead of the garage and driveway there was a large orchard.
Because they were farmers, creatures of routine, Adam went to feed the animals while his wife fixed breakfast. That was when he noticed the chickens.
“I don’t know, but I think it means we aren’t on earth anymore”
They made a fearful journey to see if the family graveyard was still beyond the garden. It was. In silent pain they both stared at Timmy’s fresh grave. Timmy Anthropoi, Age Seven. Taken Too Soon. The words on the temporary marker sent his wife retreating to the house. Adam was, once again, paralyzed. A moment later he felt a gentle hand on his shoulder and it brought him back to the house.
“What is happening? Where are we?” Adam asked
“You are in a place, I created so that you could learn the truth.”
“Who are you?”
“I am the Lord.”
“So tell us what it is you want us to know.”
“I already did. Since you didn’t understand it in words I will not teach it to you that way again. You will learn it through experience.”
It wasn’t prayer; it was face to face. But one thing remained the same, they felt much better, even though they didn’t get direct answers to their questions.
After God left they ate breakfast—bacon, biscuits, eggs, and some fresh fruit from the orchard. They had never had this fruit before, it gave them a head-rush. Adam asked about it. She mentioned it was the only tree of its kind in the middle of the orchard.
An idea came to Adam’s mind and he rushed out to look. He became cross with her.
“Why did you pick this tree?” he demanded.
“I wanted to try something different. What difference does it make?”
“Don’t you see? God placed us here in a garden just for us. One tree in the middle is different than all the others. My name is Adam your name is Eve. Don’t you see it.?”
“If you realized this why didn’t you tell me?” She demanded. “Why don’t you tell me what you’re thinking?”
God approached them. “What have you done?”
“We ate of the fruit.” Adam was sobbing, but quickly his tone turned to accusation. “Why did You do this to us? You knew we make this mistake. Why?”
“Are you not responsible for your actions?” God asked.
“But it’s impossible for us. Life is too complicated we cannot get it right all the time.”
“That is true. And it’s my pleasure to forgive you. If you will receive it.”
Adam stormed away. Eve stood confused. God watched with the understanding of Omniscience. Over the next several months, God waited while Adam went through the motions of harvesting the garden, milking the cows, and gathering eggs.
Finally Adam tried to step out of his routine to make a permanent marker for Timmy’s grave. He went to the workshop. But seeing the dried blood, he froze. He had never cleaned up after the accident. All he could do was turn to run.
Just outside the shop, God stood waiting. Timmy was with him.
Timmy ran to Adam. “I’m sorry, daddy. I know I was supposed to wait on you. You trusted me with the key, and I wanted to surprise you, to make you proud.”
“It’s alright, Timmy. It’s okay, I forgive you.” They cried together. Then they cleaned the tools and made the marker. Timmy Anthropoi, Died at Age Seven, Waiting with Jesus.
Adam forgave himself for giving Timmy the key. Eve forgave her husband as well. Together they accepted the forgiveness of God.
They awoke the next morning back on earth. The chicken’s no longer had lips, the orchard was gone and they had the courage to keep on living.