It was Christmas Eve Eve Eve Eve Eve Eve Eve Eve (December 17th). Emily crossed the softball diamond in the snow, to where Sister Amy had had a tooth loosened by somebody’s loose ball in autumn.
“I’m fine!” she’d told them, face in hand.
Secretly Emily practiced alone until spring.
John Gabriel Adkins is a Pushcart-nominated writer of microfiction, anti-stories and other oddities, and is a member of the Still Eating Oranges arts collective. This year his work has appeared (or is forthcoming) in Literary Orphans, SPANK the CARP, Five 2 One, Sick Lit Magazine, The Sleep Aquarium, and more.
I only married her to get citizenship, paid 15 grand and thought that was it. Then I couldn’t forget her.
She once asked me if I liked blondes or brunettes and I said, “Any colour, as long as she smiles like you.”
Five years later we got married for real.
Connell writes again.
Pinched between sweaty fingers, the love note—a carefully crafted purple-inked questionnaire that would potentially determine the rest of their lives—was passed to the blonde in front of him. She firmly marked “No.”
“Okay,” he sighed, erasing the dark X of rejection. “Well, would you pass this to Julia?”
This is Alexandra’s eighth fifty-word story. She learned early on that love was a numbers game, but the good news is that you only need one.
After two years longing for her love, finally she loved him back. Their last encounter was really painful:
“Are you leaving?” she asked.
“Yes. Would you give me a kiss?”
And so she did.
He stared at her picture and sighed. His little toddler niece was turning three in April.
José Jaime is a Spanish guy who misses his nieces.
Emilia passionately claimed that everyone she loved didn’t love her, and vice versa. She knew that true love was tricky, rather like a sort of magic.
Then one day, quite inexplicably, Emilia met Fred. He was busking on a street corner and just happened to pull rabbits out of hats.
Linda is a teacher from Sydney, Australia, who has had plays go from page-to-stage and poems published in both Hemispheres. Once upon a time, she was invited to the same function as Ben Stiller.
Here’s the thing. I was good. All year. Check your records. Consult your list. Check it a third time. I minded my manners. I was consistently polite, even when I wasn’t in a particularly cheery mood. And not once was I nasty.
So what happened? Weren’t you looking?
Over the years Bob Thurber’s work has received a long list of awards and prizes. His most recent book is a collection of brief stories titled “Nothing But Trouble.” His first novel, “Paperboy: A Dysfunctional Novel,” was recently rereleased. Visit BobThurber.net.
Oh God, it’s done! The adoption is finally complete!
There she sits, a cute seven year old, her face filled with hope and questions.
Oh God, what have I done? Can I really provide the loving, forever family home she deserves?
What do I know about raising Jack Russell Terriers?
John Keeley is the new guardian of seven year old Storm, and is wondering about the trust our pets put in us.
“There’s a bug.” The new project manager steps into Charlie’s cube. She smells fresh, like she showers.
“Impossible.” He knows she can’t read Java so he points to his screen. “Show me.”
“Good Lord, never mind.” She removes her ruby high heel and smashes the cockroach crawling across his desktop.
Anne Anthony once worked as a systems project manager, but she never wore heels. She writes fiction and hand-carries bugs to safety.
First she declared a bonus for landing on Free Parking, then accidentally-on-purpose collected twice for passing Go. But even when she raised the rent on me, I didn’t object: it’s comforting to know that even at her tender age, my daughter’s got what it takes to run the family business.
Ingrid Jendrzejewski grew up in Vincennes, Indiana and loves cryptic crosswords and the game of go. Recently, she won the Bath Flash Fiction Award. Links to Ingrid’s writing can be found at ingridj.com
and she occasionally tweets @LunchOnTuesday
On Saturday, I pedal through the rain to the school gym, where dodgeball reigns.
Elizabeth, who sits atop the bleachers, rules elsewhere. Red balls splat faces and bodies.
I shake off the rain, join the banshee chaos, and hope a ball finds me before she decrees us all hopeless naives.
Penn Stewart lives and writes in Wichita Falls, Texas. His most recent short fiction appears or is forthcoming in Literary Orphans, Word Riot, Dogzplot, Front Porch Review, Union Station Magazine, and elsewhere.