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Lynn Miclea: Memories of Murder

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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(Please note: the images used as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Memories of Murder

by Lynn Miclea

Keegan stood there, staring at the chair. He had loved using that chair and he cherished what it represented. The memories flooded back. He remembered tying his victims to that chair. The red-brown bloodstains on the floorboards were still visible.

The memories made him smile. He could see the terror in the eyes of his victims when he brought out the knife. He could still hear the screams. He hadn’t killed again in all these years since then. But that chair brought back the cherished memories, and he chuckled.

Keegan remembered how the police were closing in on him and how he quickly left. He had been careless, and they had gotten too close — they had almost caught him. He had barely managed to stay one step ahead of the cops, but it was not easy. They were good.

He fondly ran his hand along the back of the chair as warmth filled him. He was too old now to kill again — he was no longer interested in that. But the memories were wonderful.

They did not bring back the family members he had lost, but they had brought him some relief, even if it was only temporary.

He silently said goodbye to the chair and the memories. It was dangerous to even be here.

Tomorrow he would retire from the police force. This case would remain unsolved, and his record would be spotless. He thought about retiring on Maui, with endless sun and sand — a fitting end to a brilliant career.

A broad smile erupted on his face. He had done it. He was free.

As he turned to leave, he heard tires screeching out in the street in front. A neighbor in a hurry? Then he heard more tires. What was going on?

A loud voice thundered through a bullhorn. “Police! You are surrounded. Come out with your hands up!”

Images of Maui beaches dissolved into images of a jail cell. Where did he mess up? What had he done wrong? How did they know?

He glanced out the front window. Four cop cars were out in front. His own squad — he knew them all. A huge sigh escaped him. He knew they were already at the back as well. All exits were covered.

He would not go to jail. There was only one way out now.

He opened the front door and saw the shocked looks on the faces of the officers who he had worked next to all these years.

He raised his handgun, aimed it at the cop who he knew was the best sharpshooter … and felt his body jerk backward as rounds of ammunition hit him.

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Copyright © 2019 Lynn Miclea. All Rights Reserved.

Please also visit Lynn’s blog, like the story there, and follow her at – https://wp.me/p4htbd-o9

Write the Story: February 2019 Collection

Sean Bracken: Danny Finn’s Dream

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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(Please note: the images used as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Danny Finn’s Dream

by Sean Bracken

Danny Finn reached over in the bed for his wife Ann. Still only half awake, he realised that her side of the bed was empty. He guessed that she had gone down for a glass of water and lay back on his pillow. It was then that the awful truth came back to him. Ann was gone. He was on his own except for the children, Danny Junior, Heather, and little Harry. The never-ending grief and horror washed all over him again and he cried out in his despair, “Why? Why, Ann, Why?” Tears now streaming down his face, he pulled himself up from the bed and made his way downstairs and into the bar.

He reached up to a shelf and pulled down a bottle of “Black Bush” and stumbled back upstairs to what had been Ann’s old study. The room, once vibrant with old furniture lovingly restored by Ann was now sparse and cold. Danny had donated much of it to charity and given the rest away to friends and family. And yet the room still held her essence, her soul, the smell of her. Her perfume lived in the walls. Here, she lived in Danny’s mind. Here he talked with her, night after night.

Her ‘writing’ chair stood solitary guard before the empty hearth, now devoid of warming flames, and her grandmother’s old coffee table lay upside down in the corner, kicked over in a drunken rage the night before. Danny righted the table and set it down beside the chair. He picked up a glass and an ashtray from the floor and placed them on the table along with his whiskey and cigarettes.

He poured a generous measure into the unwashed glass. A Pall Mall in one hand and drink in the other, his tears subsided as he switched on the stereo. It was three o’clock in the morning. God, would he ever know peace again?

The soothing sound of Vivaldi sang to him as the whiskey started to take effect. Danny knew that without his drink and smokes, nothing could prevent him from joining Ann in oblivion. Lord Jesus, how he missed her. Images of her dead body on the bed, one leg on the floor, the empty Prozac bottle beside her, paramedics working frantically to revive her, the God-awful funeral with the children clutching onto him, the condolences from people that were sincere, did nothing to ease the pain conspiring to destroy his soul.

He loved the kids with all his heart, but for the past year he had only been pretending to be alive. He woke them up in the mornings, fed them their meals, helped with homework, and put them to bed at night. It took all he had just to wash and shave in the morning. Then on autopilot behind the bar for the day, until bedtime for the children and time for him to relax with his whiskey and wallow in self-pity.

He barely ate anything at all and lived on coffee, sixty smokes a day and a bottle of Irish every night. Once a healthy twelve stone and full of life, he was now just a fraction over six stone and looked like a survivor from a Nazi concentration camp. His friends, family and the regulars in the pub had all tried to help him, but he preferred the isolation. All he wanted was his bottle and the numbness it brought.

Violins reached towards the climax of The Four Seasons when Danny’s doorbell chimed, rousing him from his memories. He noted that it was a little after three-thirty and wondered who on Earth could be calling at this hour. Probably another poor soul in need of a late night drink. He wanted to ignore the caller but decided to go down to answer the door.

A total stranger stood on the porch, doing his best to shelter from the falling snow. “Mr. Finn? Can I come in, please?” asked the man as he shook snowdrops from his dark hair.

Danny looked the man up and down. He seemed to be quite calm and, other than his rather pale skin, appeared to be unremarkable. “Who are you? What do you want?” Danny asked.

“I’m so sorry,” replied the stranger. “I realise how late it is but I need to talk with you urgently. It’s about Ann and it can’t wait.”

“Come in then, if you must,” mumbled Danny, feeling unsteady from the alcohol. He led the man up to the living room, and after they were both seated across from each other, he asked what was so urgent that it couldn’t wait ’til morning.

“Ann sent me to talk with you, to help you, to guide you,” replied the stranger.

An incredulous Danny was incensed and shouted at the man to get out of the house. “Leave me alone, you bastard! That’s impossible. My wife’s been dead for a year! Get out, get out, get out,” roared Danny, as he struggled to his feet.

“She said you might react like this,” said the stranger quietly. “She told me to show you this. She said it would help to convince you,” he said, holding out a necklace that Danny recognised. He had given it to Ann on the birth of Danny Junior, and it had been buried in her coffin with her. Danny sank back into his chair and, crestfallen, he looked up at the stranger. “How can this be?” he asked.

The stranger replied that Danny would soon understand and started to talk to him about his life. How hard he had worked. How devoted a father and husband he had been. He also explained that Ann was so sorry for taking her life and for the pain it had caused. As the stranger continued with his soothing words, Danny began to calm down, and he realised how selfish he had been for the past year. He felt deep shame for the way he had behaved, for withdrawing himself from his friends and family, and for treating his children as if they were a burden.

He asked the stranger to tell Ann that he would always miss her, and that he was ready to be a decent father to the children and to make a fresh start.

The strange, pale man smiled gently and put his arms tenderly around the grieving husband. “That’s all I wanted to hear, Danny. At last Ann can rest in peace, but never forget that I will be keeping a very close eye on you from now on.”

Danny woke up back in the study, shaken from his dream. It had been so vivid, so real and so intense. It was then that he noticed Ann’s necklace on the coffee table right beside the empty whiskey glass.

The End

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Please visit Sean’s website and check out his other great stories and follow him. https://sean-bracken.site123.me/

Write the Story: February 2019 Collection

Barbra Badger: Did you see…?

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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(Please note: the images used as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Did You See…?

By Barbra Badger

Ethel reached for Paula’s hand while ducking her head to protect the flowers on her hat. Paula pulled her gently out of the car and Ethel emerged, hat unscathed.

“Ahhhhhh.” Ethel had a musical sigh most of her family enjoyed. Paula had never been to the ‘old farmhouse’ although the stories she had heard convinced her she would know it as soon as she saw it. Stories had been told from the memories of relatives who grew up in the house when everything was fresh and cared for. Their memories were so vivid, Paula could see the fresh curtains and smell the accumulated family dinners with herbs and spices mixed with the charcoal residue in the fireplace.

The sight before her now did not measure up. The porch awning was hanging by a row of nails that could be seen in the space between the eaves and the main support of the roof. Shingles had taken leave of their posts, and paint was down to only a few steadfast patches clinging in scattered array.

Ethel strode confidently on the warped boards which formed the platform of the porch. Paula noticed her aunt’s form was framed by the lace curtain in the window behind her and took a mental picture.

Paula dashed ahead and got the door.

“Wait, Auntie, it may be stuck. I will get it for you.”

Immediately Ethel’s memory replayed the day her beloved Vincent brought her home to ask her parents if he could marry her. Vince’s face was beaming as he leaned in to open the door. She squeezed his solid bicep as she stepped past him to give reassurance—she would stand with him. Their joy was palpable when they went inside, and the room lit up with it. A few years on, this house became their home.

Today the ear-splitting squeak the door made brought her back to the moment. Time had not stood still but had slowly ravaged and besmirched the very air that filled her nostrils.

A reflexive cough squeezed her eyes closed, but when she opened them there sat ‘his’ rocker facing the empty fireplace. Empty chair, empty fireplace, this empty house was a mirror for the emptiness she had not faced since Vince had died. She groped for the chair with tear-filled eyes, overcome.

Paula said nothing but helped her aunt sit in the beloved chair, then went exploring.

So many aunts, uncles, and cousins had passed since the house was built. Though few had passed in this house, the many did not choose to inhabit it in spirit. No ghosts here. The only floors that creaked were the ones she stepped on. The only moaning sounds were the wind slithering through a gap in the window frame.

Ethel sat in Vince’s rocker staring at the cold fireplace and rocked herself into a nap. His rocker was where they read to the children; comforted them after a fall or heartbreak; cradled them to a heavenly sleep.

Emerging from her reverie, he was plainly standing before her holding out his hand to help her rise as he had done when they played music and danced in the night while the children slept. A smile so warm and welcoming she could never resist. Even days when so much washing, cooking, tending animals and children made her bone tired, his smile and gentle hand drew her to her feet.

Paula entered the room just as Ethel let out a laugh and leapt to her feet. Ethel clapped her hands and danced in a circle with more vigor than Paula had at the moment.

“Auntie! What?”

“Did you see? Did you see him? He came and asked me to dance.”

Paula knew who she was speaking of and tossed it off to Ethel’s deep state of denial.

“No, Auntie. I didn’t see him. But I am sure he was here for you.”

Ethel’s face was lit up as though the fireplace was in full glow. She twirled around two more times, nearly fell, and Paula rushed to her side to help her into the chair again.

“We should go now, Auntie. Is there anything else here you wanted to see or do first?”

Still glowing, but perfectly calm now, Ethel sat silently rocking slowly.

“No, child. I have what I came for. Let’s stop by the cemetery on the way home. I haven’t been since he passed.”

On the way out the door, Paula was seriously tempted to take one of the glass knobs or the lace curtain as a memento, but instead she bent down and scooped up some earth with a paper cup.

Ethel smiled a warm, welcoming smile all the way to the cemetery and all the way home.

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Please visit Barbra’s FB page, Barbra Badger’s Writing Tablet and give her a like!

Write the Story: February 2019 Collection

LEAH PRYOR: COMING HOME

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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(Please note: the images used as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Coming Home

By Leah Pryor

The room had been cleaned out. Void of anything that resembled the life they made in it. The pictures that adorned the walls were gone. So were the vases that once held fresh cut roses from the garden, the bookshelves that were filled with the classics and catalogs, even the furniture that had been purchased with the dowry money from their wedding, were all gone. It didn’t matter, she could point out where everything belonged. She saw it in her mind the way it used to be. But it wasn’t that way anymore. The only thing left was the chair that sat in the corner by the small green closet door. Only it wasn’t by the door now. It had been pulled up to the small fireplace that once kept the cold out and the newlyweds warm. The warmth was gone now too. The cold found its way in through the old and dilapidated structure. Gone were the memories but not forgotten.

Martha didn’t want to remember this place as just another bare room. Her best memories were in this room. This was first place she had ever felt comfortable enough to call home. It was the room that she birthed their only child in. It was the place that they celebrated birthdays and holidays in. Just the three of them. Cramped but exceedingly happy. She hadn’t been here in nearly twenty years but could still feel the essence of the home that they made it.

She shook her head as she turned in the middle of the small area. She took in every inch of it. The cradle that never got used for more than storage once stood by the window. Adeline had slept in the bed with her and Frank until she was two. Than the cradle was sold and a small mattress was purchased. The mattress was placed at the foot of their own small mattress. During the day both mattresses were laid up against the wall and the small loveseat was put in the center of the room. The food was prepared in a Dutch oven that hung on a metal bar in the fireplace. She could almost smell the stewed meats, potatoes, and vegetables that would waft from the fireplace. Enticing smells that would bring the neighbors knocking. This was once home. This small green room that once was the cradle of their lives, held nothing now but her memories.

Martha sat in the chair. Her strength was waning. She was an old woman now. Frank had passed away some years back. Adeline was a mother. Her two grandchildren were no longer children, but young adults on their way to universities. They both had lives of their own. “What happened to the time?” she thought out loud. Her voice echoed off the hollow walls. It crackled back at her reminding her of an old phonograph. Reminding her of the fact that she was old enough to have owned a phonograph.

“It seems like yesterday, Frank, you were carrying me through the door of this place. Oh, Frank. If you could see it now. How small it really is. How many years did we spend here? We were happy, weren’t we, my love?”

Her echo was the only answer she got back.

“This place is going to be demolished, Frank. A big fancy motel is going to be put here instead. I don’t know why it bothers me now. I guess I thought it would be here forever. But forever is a long time, isn’t it, Frank? It was too long for you. Hell, it’s too long for me too. So I suppose it’s fitting that it should be torn down. Something new and useful should go here, I guess. But wouldn’t it be nice if we could go back? Do it all over again? I miss it, Frank. I miss Adeline when she was a wee babe. I miss you. I miss this place. I want to go home, Frank. I’m tired. I have nothing to live for. Nobody to care for. Now they all take care of me. I feel like a… like a… well, like I am an old fart. There, I said it. I feel old. And without you, I feel… I feel like I’m just waiting to die. Frank? Are you even listening to me? No. I suppose you aren’t. You barely listened in life, so why would death be any different. I came here to tell you that I love you. I always loved you. I loved our life. I loved this room.”

The tears were forming in big glops around her eyes. They stuck to her long lashes and dropped down her paper-thin cheeks. She felt as if this room was holding on to the last bit of life she had left. Once it was demolished she was sure she would die shortly after.

When Frank had come back from the war he had purchased a new tract home on the other side of town. They moved out of this room and into the new home when Adeline was nine. But the rent was so cheap on the room, they kept paying it. When Adeline turned sixteen, she and her friend moved in, but soon found the small room too confining for women of their style. They moved out, leaving the place empty. It didn’t stay empty. They were able to supplement their income by subletting to young couples and single people. It had been a godsend during times when money was tight. But it hadn’t been rented in years.

The building creaked and shuddered as the cold seeped in through the old home’s bones. Martha shivered from the cold. She felt it in her bones too. It was time to say goodbye. The space was starting to feel as empty as her heart. It took her awhile to stand up and straighten out. Before she left she would open the small green closet door just to see if anything of value might have been left behind by any of the room’s other occupants. The old bulb flickered as it warmed up and set the small closet ablaze with light.

The light blinded Martha. She put her hands over her eyes until the bright streaks faded from her vision. When she removed them she gasped in awe. She was no longer standing in the small empty closet of the empty room she once loved. She was standing in her home. The room was filled with all their things. The cradle was against the window where it belonged. She could smell the stew cooking in the Dutch oven as the fire crackled. Frank was sitting in the corner rocking their baby girl. Their sweet Adeline asleep in her father’s loving arms. He smiled brightly at Martha and her tears flowed freely.

“We’ve been waiting for you. You’re home now,” he said to her. He held their baby out and she took her child from him. She held her in her arms while she cried tears of joy. Frank stood and kissed her deeply. He welcomed his loving wife back to their happy life and back to her first home.

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Visit Leah’s Facebook for more of her writing and be sure to give her a “Like.” https://www.facebook.com/asentenceaday2019/

Write the Story: February 2019 Collection

Larry Stephens: My Room of Choice

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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(Please note: the images used as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

My Room of Choice

By Larry Stephens

How do you like my room?

True, it’s really not much to look at; nor is it well-furnished—not like the dozens of other rooms in this rambling, sprawling mansion where generation after generation piled more rooms on top of older rooms in a crazy, haphazard way that actually gives me a headache when I consider the overall construction of this… monstrosity.

There are older rooms in this place—some dating back to the first construction in the early 1700s, buried in the rolling hills of southwestern Pennsylvania. But I avoid those rooms. They scare me; feels like they’re haunted and they creep me out.

No, this is my Room of Choice, and while it looks old, I actually have not a clue how old it really is. There are no dates scratched in the paneling, no roughly-etched heart shape with two sets of initials bisected with a plus-sign. There’s no evidence that so-and-so was here in 19-something-or-the-other.

But the beat-up paneling tells so many stories, as does the charred fireplace and the worn, spotted floor, so really, it’s pretty easy to get lost in here.

I found a chair—like the most austere chair I could find in this endless cluster of windowless rooms, rooms with doors that open onto brick walls, doors that open to winding tunnels carved out of the raw earth—and brought it to this room. After all, a man’s gotta sit, right?

I come here every day; burn a little weed before I get here and wash it down with some Johnny Walker Blue, then I grab some H2oH, then trundle down some steps, out of the ‘waking world’ of sunlight into this room that time forgot where I take up my super-austere chair and then find a story.

I don’t have a creative bone in my body. You ask, ‘How can that be?’ And the answer is straightforward. Because I don’t. I’m not built that way.

It’s this room. Without this room, I’m nothing. There would be no best sellers with my pen name gracing the spine.

But this room…

There are so many stories that this room commands me to tell. Look here at this panel just to the left of the fireplace. What do you see?

Worn panel. That’s funny. And stupid.

Why is the paint on that panel worn differently than the ones on either side of it? Maybe it has something to do with the fireplace? Maybe that’s the perfect panel to lean against to get just the right amount of heat and light from the fire. The one to the right? Too hot. One to the left? Not hot enough. So why not lounge right there while puffing on a pipe while a lady perches right in front of the fire? Maybe she’s knitting.

Maybe it’s 1902 and she’s asking her man why he has drops of blood on his rough, wool shirt. Again. And perhaps this time he’ll finally tell her why. And then show her.

Understand? No? Okay, let’s look at that fireplace. Now some of these spots on the floor that look to be more worn than the rest of the floor. What’s that stuff telling you?

You’re cracking me up, but it’s good to hear that you’re a little more serious in your answer. ‘Favorite spots where people gathered ’round the fire.’

What if those people consisted of all one family? An entire family’s lives lived in one room. Think about that. Now, what if it were two families? And they were slaves.

But we know there are defectives in every group, right? All sorts of defectives; some with physical deformities and some with mental ‘problems,’ especially if there was inbreeding, which I heard was common in situations like this at the turn of the 19th century.

But folks were not stupid; they knew how to thin the herd no matter the cost in personal, emotional pain.

Doesn’t that just open up all sorts of possibilities? Now, look at that spot right there, right in front of the fireplace. Look at the color of that spot. Kind of looks like the floorboards are… stained.

Don’t look so shocked.

Now please leave me; the Room is calling me and it’s very, very demanding.

You can see yourself out.

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Visit Larry’s FB page for more of his work and ‘Friend him! https://www.facebook.com/Enzo.stephens.5011

Write the Story: February 2019 Collection

E. C. Fisher: The Ending Flame

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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(Please note: the images used as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

The Ending Flame

by: E.C. Fisher

The seasons pass and winter is here

Alone I sit beside a roaring fire

The wood crackles and pops

The warmth seeps into my bones

As the icy chill blows

The dancing of the flames entice my eyes

Mesmerized by its roaring life

The crackle and pop my only companion

As the icy chill blows

Memories of our life together flash in the flames

The love, the fights, the cries, and the laughter

Only silence fills me now

As the icy chill blows

Behind our bedroom door, you sleep

Now you rest eternal my dearly departed

I sit here watching the flames dance

A mesmerizing tango of rage and fury

As the icy chill blows

Rest now my sweet, for I will be with you shortly

The last flicker of the flame smothers out

Our dance is at its end

The smoke rises through the chimney

Joined with you, together, our eternal sleep

As the icy chill blew out our fire

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Visit E.C.’s Facebook page and check out his work and give him a like. www.facebook.com/ecfisherauthor

Write the Story: February 2019 Collection

Lynn Miclea: Peace for humanity

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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January 2019 Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Peace for Humanity

by Lynn Miclea

Liam stood at the peak, gazing out over the view before him. For once, he was speechless. A sea of billowy clouds spread out below him in all directions. There were no sounds. There were no words. There was just complete, powerful peace.

He knew that down on the surface of the planet wars were being fought. There was too much anger, hatred, and fighting down there. It had to end. It couldn’t go on like this.

He pushed those thoughts aside. Liam had come up here, as he often did, to get a much needed break from the war. For now, he allowed the serenity before him to settle in his body. He felt a deep peace wash through him, as he took in the scene that surrounded him.

Up here he touched the incredible expanse of infinite wonder. The beauty and overwhelming grandeur filled him, and he felt his muscles relax and the tension in his body soften.

But time was running out. His eyes burned with tears. Liam needed to lead his troops into battle one last time. It needed to be the last war, the final battle, if humanity were to survive.

He took a deep breath, and his eyes took in the exquisite awe-inspiring magnificence before him. The incredible beauty and serenity of this place was not lost on him. This was what he needed, and what mankind needed, to survive. It was what made it all worthwhile.

It was time to return to the world below. The planet and all of humanity were worth saving.

Please, God, he thought, let this be the last war. Please.

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Copyright © 2019 Lynn Miclea. All Rights Reserved.

Please also see this story and like it on Lynn’s blog at – https://wp.me/p4htbd-nQ

Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

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Zakia Sultana: Resistance and the Dream

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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January 2019 Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Resistance and the Dream

By Zakia Sultana

“Every mountain top is within reach if you just keep climbing.” Barry Finley, Kilimanjaro and Beyond.


“I wish I could be a bird. Then I would be able to play hide and seek with the clouds over the mountain. If I could just walk again, I would touch those clouds. Mom said that there was a forest on the top of that mountain. I would really like to go there and lose myself in the harmony of nature. If just I could climb the mountain. If…”

Neil was talking to himself sitting beside the window, looking outside with an unwinking gaze. Only when he heard his mother shouting his name, he gained consciousness.

His mother said, “Neil, can you hear me? It’s time to have your milk. The glass is on the table. Drink it…drink it all before it gets cold. And then don’t forget to take your medicine.”

“OK mom,” Neil said, rolling his eyes. He neither liked to drink milk nor to take medications. But he couldn’t say no to his mother. He knew very well that it would freak his mom out.

Neil lived in a small village which was surrounded by mountains. He used to be a very mischievous child. He used to run indoors and play with his friends all day long. There was an old tree beside his house. He used to climb that tree often. It was his favorite thing to do. His parents didn’t like it and used to tell him not to do it every day, but he didn’t listen.

His mom said, “Listen to me, Neil. Do you realize how much pain it will be if you fall? You could even break your legs or hands or even injure your head. Don’t do this.”

Suddenly one day he fell ill. He had a high fever. His condition worsened. No medicine seemed to work. His parents consulted with doctors. After almost twenty days his condition started to improve. But he was still physically very weak. One day, on a beautiful sunny morning, he wanted to go outside the house. But the moment he tried to walk, he fell. No matter how much he tried, he couldn’t move his legs. His parents called the doctor. After a checkup, the doctor said, “I don’t know how to tell you. There is no easy way of saying this. Your boy’s leg is paralyzed due to the fever. It’s not permanent damage. With proper physiotherapy, it will get better, but it will take time. Till then you have to be patient. Don’t let him lose his mental strength.” From that day on, Neil had been taking treatment.

Amidst all this, Neil never lost his faith and hope, although there were some moments when he became impatient and frustrated. All he wanted at those moments was to go outside. See the world with his own eyes, feel the ground with his legs. But then he reassured himself that everything was going to be good. Just a few more days and then he would be able to walk again.

It was one year and a half after that incident. Gradually he was gaining control of his legs. Though his legs were still weak, he could walk with the help of a walking stick. At that moment it was more than enough for him because as people say, “Something is better than nothing.” One day on a sunny morning he was watching the mountain through his window. He realized that the attraction he felt toward the mountain didn’t fade away, instead it had increased. He thought for a second. No one was home at that time, and his legs were better than before. He decided it was time. Leaving a note for his parents, he took his stick, filled his backpack with some dry food, a water bottle, a sleeping bag, rope, some emergency medicine, some bandages, and he went outside. Though he couldn’t run, he could walk. He was walking slowly but wasn’t falling down, and that was a relief. When he was outside, the joy he felt couldn’t be expressed in words. He touched the ground. The smell of the soil was mesmerizing. He looked again at the mountain and started his journey toward it. There was no way to tell from where he gained such courage. But the point is at that moment he felt like he could even climb Mount Everest.

So his journey began. He started to walk up the mountain. It was a thrilling experience. The higher he was climbing, the more this energy was expanding. He could feel it. He made sure to take regular short breaks to eat energy foods, rest briefly and to assess his direction. He also made sure to not linger too long where he was cooling down too much. Despite all his efforts, it was becoming difficult for him to continue because of his issue. Soon it was dark. So Neil settled in a suitable place to camp for the night.

The weather remained perfect the next morning.  Standing there, Neil started to look back from where he started his journey. He couldn’t believe that he came so far. It was only yesterday when he was lying on his bed, looking outside the window. And today he was here. So close to fulfilling his dream. He ate and then started his journey again. He had still a long way to go. He walked slowly collecting all his strength and courage. It was not easy at all. But he was not the type of person who would lose hope after failing once. He had a pretty clear idea of what he was going to get once he was out here, far away from home. The path was not smooth. The rocky path was making it hard for him to climb. He was getting tired. He fell two or three times and got several scratches. But now was not the time to ponder over those.

He looked below. Everything seemed so tiny. From this height, his village was looking miniature. He had to admit that once or twice the thought of quitting crossed his mind. But now he could tell that he was not going to quit. He looked above. His goal was near. He could feel his excitement. He resumed his journey.

He didn’t notice the time until it was 4:00 PM. His legs were hurting so much. But he paid no attention to that. Because the scene which was in front of him was worth dying for. It was indeed a breathtaking one. The sun was shining above the clouds. The clouds were beautiful. They were looking like big balls of cotton. Tender winds were flowing as if they were caressing the clouds. He couldn’t believe his eyes. If he could just touch the clouds. Unable to control his happiness he began to shout. He didn’t know what to say. He just shouted and said out loud, “I did it. Yes, thank God I did it. My lifelong dream…finally!!!”

Before he knew it, tears rolled down his cheeks. But he didn’t seem too concerned about that because it was tears of happiness. He dropped his walking stick. He figured that he didn’t need it anymore. It was the happiest day of his life. All those years whenever he saw the mountain, he had the feeling that the mountain was calling him. And now he was here, on the top of the mountain. The only place where he was destined to be…

Sometimes all you need is strong willpower to make the impossible possible, to conquer the resistance.

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Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

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Sean Backen: Lyin’ Eyes

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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January 2019 Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Lyin’ Eyes

by Sean Bracken

“You can’t hide your lyin’ eyes

And your smile is a thin disguise”

I know that I’m only tormenting myself, and yet I can’t stop playing the Eagles’ classic song over and over again on my classic Bush turntable. The words are torturing me. They evoke memories of Jessica’s smile. That smile that radiated from her entire face. That smile that captured my heart and mind forever. The words also remind me of the look in her eyes when I realised that she had betrayed me.

It seems like only yesterday, but in reality it was over six months ago when our plane landed in Orly airport. Our two-year-old marriage had been under strain for a few months, after our second application to become adoptive parents was refused. We had decided to take a three-week vacation in France. My best friend Billy lived in Val d’Isère and had invited us to come stay anytime we liked. The plan was to relax, enjoy some skiing and to work on our problems.

The holiday got off to a perfect start. The mountain village was picturesque, and Billy’s chalet was perfectly located, with easy access to the slopes. Billy and Jessica became instant friends and Billy went to great lengths to make us welcome. I could feel my tension disappear from the moment I arrived.

The first few days were fantastic. Hearty breakfasts were followed by fun on the slopes and high-spirited apres-ski parties. Jessica was in her element. It was her first ski holiday and she loved it. Her beautiful smile returned and I began to believe that we were back on track with our lives.

It was near the end of the first week that I started to become suspicious. Billy and Jessica had begun to find excuses to avoid the morning skiing, preferring instead to meet me for lunch and ski in the afternoon. I dismissed the idea, thinking there was no way my best friend and my wife could ever hurt me like that.

How wrong I was.

The following Monday morning, I took a chair-lift to the highest piste, situated on a glacier. The elevation combined with the ice provided for year-round skiing. As I skied away from the lift I began to take in the vista. The beauty of the mountain took my breath away. Standing above cloud level, I could see even taller peaks rising through. Bright sunlight reflected off the pristine snow and the sky was the deepest, intense blue I had ever seen.

I forced myself to turn away from the captivating sight and began to ski back down to another piste, determined to bring Jessica up to share the scene in the afternoon. Halfway down, a snowboarder lost control and collided with me as I traversed a very steep run. Luckily, I escaped with bruising down my left side and a nasty black eye. I decided to return to the chalet and soak my aches in a hot bath.

As I climbed the stairs I could hear giggles and laughter escape from behind the bedroom door. Even though I knew instantly what was happening, I was not prepared for the sight of my beautiful wife and my best friend sharing my bed. Both women tried to cover their nakedness, but it was the look in Jessica’s eyes that really shook me. All of the deceit, all of the lies, all of the treachery shone through her dark pupils. I never spoke a word to either of them. I was afraid that if I dared to speak, I would surely kill them with my bare hands. I stormed past the bed, grabbed my bag and stuffed my clothes and toiletries into it, before walking out of the room and out of their lives.

I found a small hotel on the far side of the town, changed into my favourite silk pyjamas and climbed into bed with a bottle of wine. The following morning I booked an early flight home, leaving my dreams behind. Streaks of mascara traced the course of tears down my face as I boarded the plane.

To this day I would give anything to have Jessica back. I’d sacrifice my money, my career, even my title. I used to love being Lady Sandra Byron. I used to love life. But nothing can replace my love with the lying eyes, disguised by her smile.

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Check out Sean’s website and be sure to follow him! https://sean-bracken.site123.me/stories/lying-eyes

Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

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“Lyin’ Eyes” Written by DON HENLEY, GLENN FREY  Copyright: ℗ 1975 Asylum Records. Marketed by Warner Strategic Marketing, a Warner Music Group Company. © 1975 Asylum Records

Jenny Booker: The Climb

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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January 2019 Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

The Climb

By Jenny Booker

The chill of the air and only the sound of the breeze surrounded him—he felt like he was the only person in the world.

Just a little bit farther, he thought, looking out to the view of vast clouds below.

The high altitude, they warned him, could make the trip very hard. Some adventurous people who also traveled up with him had to turn around at the camp ending their dreams—but not him, and he was determined since the day he booked the flight a year ago. She made him promise he would, and he couldn’t turn back that promise—and he was so close to the summit. Taking the necklace out of the warmth of the jacket, he opened it and turned around to also take in the extraordinary view.

After what seemed like hours, the guide called out to notify him of the final climb, and he noticed the sky had darkened once more.

“Let’s do this Polly,” he whispered.

Making sure he had all his gear from the tent, he nervously proceeded to follow the guide, knowing that this was the last push but also the most dangerous. The last of the group were two other men and a lady—he got to know a bit about them at base camp drinking some tea in the lady’s tent to try and warm up from the cold.

The lady shared the same dream and the other two men had climbed mountains before. Apparently one of them was a blogger but had to leave his laptop at base, which wasn’t a happy sight to see before starting the climb.

The breeze now turned into something like a gale as they said goodbye to the last of the camps and the safety. His cheeks were burning and his legs started to really ache after all the walking. He was near the front and could see the others were also struggling as their axes tried to cut through the ice. The light on his helmet flickered, warning him of the impending danger.

Not sure how much longer he could last, he turned the corner, and then the gale started to calm.  A long way in front was a big flag—guessing a half-hour walk.

The sunrise finally welcomed them to the destination that some never made, as he noted on the route. But he made it. Overjoyed, he knelt down and a wave of tears started to clog his goggles. A hand patted his shoulder—turning to look and find one of the group or the guide—it was Polly.

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Please visit Jenny’s blog and like and follow her! https://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com

Write the Story: January 2019 Collection