Freshest Fish in Town

Photo credit: Janet Webb

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers, details are available at

“You see Harry, this is the future.” Stan points his pudgy fingers at the former parking lot. “Customers go into the water and pick their fish from the pools.  We clean and prepare them.  We have the freshest fish in town!  Revolutionary!  I tell you.   Revolutionary!”

“Ah, we are having people park in back. They walk around the free chicken area.  Past the hen house.  The milking stalls. Then we want them to wade into water.  Why keep anything inside?  Let’s plant orange and grapefruit, grow lettuce..” Harry is beside himself.  Quitely the thoughts go running through his head ‘Who would let this idiot design anything?’

“My Aunt Ester.  She was rather surprised when I told her that I was a mind reader. Then offered to marry her husband’s pregnant mistress for exchange of design work.  Speaking of the future.  I understand that daughter of yours needs some legal help. I could be of some assistance.  If you told the old bag Ester, how much you like this idea.  It seems before the free range chicken  park opened, someone failed a drug test and she had to fire someone who disagreed with me.” Stan smiles at Harry.

“Stan, you’ll run this company.  I’m not sure if it’s into the ground or just be CEO.” Harry regretfully gives in.

“Good thing I like you Harry!  You speak your mind well.   I can tell” Stan shakes his hand.  Then wades into the pool. “Fresh fish in pools! Genius, if I don’t say so myself.”

Player Piano


Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers, details at

Suzy looked at Cory.  “You know Grammy’s piano has a clown in it!   That’s why it plays itself!   It crawls out at night..”

“Noooo!  There aren’t no clowns in it!   I hate clowns!”  Cory stomps his foot and slowly bands away from the piano.  “It’s in the garage.   Noone is in there!”

“It’s comes out at night.  Why do you think Grammy has nightlights? So the clown can walk around without tripping on her stuff.  He’s been here for years.   You’re just to young to know.”

I’m asking Grammy.  You’re lying!!  Liar! Liar! Pants on fire!”  Cory runs out of the room.

Suzy laughs hysterically.

From behind her legs emerge from the keyboard.  Stealthy they miss the keys.



Photo credit: J Hardy Carroll

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,

The crowd has left.  The flashes of cameras.   The loud reporters shouting over each other just echoes.  The victim’s family fled.  The curious court visitors appetite satisfied.  The only thing left is the Prosecutor.

He sits on the cold wood benches.  Her looks up at a statue of Justice.  Half blind she holds her scales up before the world.

His mind wanders to the story.  Comatose man found next to his murdered wife and a bloody knife.  The man has no memory.   He has no wounds.  The press had him from day one.  Faking amnesia and coma…the nerve of him. 

The Jury did four hours of diligence sentencing the man to die for what he did.  A Prosecutor ‘s dream case.

Except for the note left on his car.

“Thank you for the Guilty verdict.  Now, I am free. 

The Real Killer.”

He sits staring at Justice.  The reason she is only half blind still eludes him.

No Earthy Greeter


The city sleeps beneath the moonless night.  A distant set of lights dances on the horizon.   Lights flicker.  The few phones working blink on and off.   Internet sites hold the same screen.

A hum travels through the still air.   Windows start to vibrate.  A few dogs start to howl.   They pace, looking to the sky.

The lights get larger.  The hum louder.

The strange disk shaped craft finds shelter next to the harbor.  It’s lights glow softly on the water.

“Did you tell them we were coming?” Fearless leader asks his crew.

“We called this guy who tells this world we are ancient aliens.  He said ‘sure kid. I’ll meet me there.  If I’m late, just wait a few minutes’.” Number 641 replies.

“Noone is here.  We drove 4.3 light years and he’s late! Let’s go!”  Fearless leader isn’t happy.

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,

Boys of Greene St

Photo credit: Roger Bultrot

The young ones hang out on Greene St.  It’s always been that way.  A handful here. A handful there.  Groups mix and merge only to separate and regroup.

“We wait for Marty.” Sal dryly says.

Quiet descends on the group.  They fidget a bit.  Eyes look side to side. Nervous twitches.  Anxious moments rise.

“He… he must be late….or something.”  Timothy breaks the brief pause. 

Streets are alive as a truck chugs past.  Leaving a cloud of grey black smoke.  A car approaches slowly.  A group turns to behold the car.

“OK, boys let’s go!  Forget Marty!” Sal screams and flaps his wings.

A swarm of birds leave the wire.

Below the black car is no longer clean.

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,



Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,

My keen sense reminds me how stupid I am.  The signs are obvious to those outside.  Nearsightedness is a hazard in relationships.

I’m in my third minute of standing in silent treatment.   My eyes have already looked her over.   I have probed the body armor for weak spots.  The fences are sharp. No trespassing signs posted.

I surrender to the moment.   One sigh at a time.

“Have it your way then.”  I resign my post turning away

The Body


PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

“The body is inside, it’s on the left! It’s wrapped in old clothes.   Grey crazy hair…..the skin is very…weird.” Glen smiles that half smile of false confidence.

Sammy looks at his friend.   He’s scared to death of dead things.   But he’s three days older, more mature, closer to thirteen. “Who is it?   You saw the face right?”

Glen taller and sharp jet black spiked hair emphasizes with body language, a definite no.  “Look come see it yourself!   You want to know who it is so bad.   You?  You’re scared.   Son of a bitch, you’re scared!”

“I got more balls than you.   I’ll go take a selfie with it!” Sammy is up and marching.  No younger kids will make a fool out of him.

“A mannequin who throws a mannequin in a haunted house!” Sammy yells out.

Nearby a friend laughs uncontrollably.

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,



PHOTO PROMPT © Marie Gail Stratford

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,

Warm air swirls between the buildings downtown.  Far below cars and trucks battle to get out of here as fast as possible.  A horn blasts.  It echoes across the faces of the towers of concrete and glass.

I look over at my friends Rocky.  He’s ghost white.  Thirty eight floors above the chaos.  It’s a calming feeling, kind of.  I feel bad for him in some ways.  First time stuck on a platform where a cable broke.  With the harnesses you just hung there.  The world around you.  Peaceful.

“Hey, Rocky enjoy the view.  Half hour, tops!   They’ll bring us back up.”  I try to get him to relax.  It doesn’t work.

Spring Clean Up

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,


Jessica gave simple instructions.  And if that wasn’t enough a list.

Clean out garage
Get planter for the pansies

Kenny pulled out the old refrigerator and  rusted out drawers.  He forgot all about the old toilet behind them.

“Hey, this will work.  She really liked when I took apart the broke wicker chair and put a pot in that.   Hell, this had the pot built in!”  Kenny raises the beer in celebration.  “Hot damn! She’ll love it.”

Before he could get it out of the garage, he heard the squeak of the minivans breaks.

“I know you ain’t putting that in our yard!” Jessica was surprised  alright.

The River

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Written as part of a challenge called Friday fictioneers,

I’m going to college.   I ain’t living in tar paper shack…workin’ some foundry job!” The words 20 years distant.

His tired calloused eyes glared. “That foundry fed you.   It’s raised you and all us folk!”

“Cancer to the family. Two of your fingers. It cost us. I’m living in a real house. That foundry will close before I walk in..” my tone faded.

Out the window, the foundry stares back.  It took the old man.   Cancer says the doctor.   Incremental parts were stripped from all of us.