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Cecilia FliesFive stories high doesn’t sound like very much until you’re standing on a plank extended out over a swimming pool so small and so flimsy even toddlers give it a wary eyeball.
“I don’t like this, I don’t like this, I don’t like this,” Cecilia repeated to herself as she took that last step to the end of the board. “No, no, no, crap, crap, this is bad. What am I doing?”
Down below, a couple hundred people sat in the stands around the center platform. Their heads leaned back, gazing at the tiny ballerina balancing precariously above. Cecilia only looked for one person in the crowd.
There! A glimmer of glitter, silver and white, the unmistakable sequins of her friend and guardian angel, Lina. Cecilia couldn’t see her face, but she imagined her as she always was, book of spells on her lap, reading the familiar words.
It was Lina who made Cecilia fly. Lina who made the tiny ballerina a star, so much so that she had become the face on
Deal With It“There,” Philip said, and stuck the tip of the pick axe in the dirt.
“Are you done? Took long enough.”
“Oh, pipe down, Mack, I did what I needed to do.”
“All you had to do was kill him, dude, I think this is a little excessive.”
The younger man turned his head as Philip kicked body parts into three separate holes, then picked up the hoe and helped fill them without looking.
“Well, I can’t sleep at night if I know somebody I killed could come back.”
Mack stopped the hoe and looked up at Philip in shock. “You mean, you do this because you’re afraid of…of zombies?”
“It’s not likely, but the fact is, it could happen. Not gonna take my chances. When you’ve killed as many people as I have, kid, you have to find some way to deal with the ghosts in your head.”
“All right, whatever, but I really hate your coping skills.”
Happy AccidentsSometimes I wake up in the morning, blink against the blue light coming in the window, and forget for just a second that the rest of the world is dead.
When I was a kid, I read stories about how some of the best inventions and discoveries resulted from accidents. “Happy accidents,” my mom called them. I grew up hoping that one day I would be a scientist, and “accident” into something incredible. I achieved my goal—I’m not unhappy and it was something incredible.
Three months ago, I walked into my lab like I do every day, coffee in one hand, cell phone in the other, ready to work. An hour later, the entire lab went up in a puff of green smoke. I managed to make it to my safety bunker before the explosion went off, but by the time it was safe to emerge, the damage had been done.
I stayed in the bunker a month, waiting for my detector to tell me that it was safe to exit. When it still hadn’t gone off after a month and my food supplies were running
StrangersLauren laid on her bed, scrolling through stories on some paranormal website her sister raved about. Standard fare, really—ghosts, demons, nearly-there-but-not-quite photos, clearly faked photos, curses, unexplained deaths—nothing to make Lauren so much as lift an eyebrow.
She clicked on one story labeled “The Stranger” and skimmed through it. “Yada, yada, cursed because she was unbearably nasty, morality tale, etcetera, etcetera,” she said as she glanced through it, then closed her laptop with a sharp click.
Sighing, Lauren slid off the bed and grabbed her coat, heading down stairs and out the door. Seriously, rotting her brain believing that crap, she thought, and pulled her coat closer to fend off the chilly drizzle.
Five blocks to their favorite ice cream place; she met her sister there every week, and she hated it. She would have to pass at least three homeless people only to listen to her sister talk for an hour. At least she could get t
ChupaSheila crawled out of bed, eyes barely open, and slammed her hand against the alarm clock. After a trip to the bathroom and a half-hearted glance in the mirror, she shuffled her way to the kitchen.
Then, just as she had every morning for the past fifteen years, she poured herself a cup of coffee and thought, for the millionth time, what would I do without coffee on a timer? Then leaned against the sink, letting the aroma work its way into her system, and watched out the kitchen window.
This habit resulted from the hummingbird feeders her mom had put up before she died, and out of respect for her mom and, she had to admit, some personal interest, she kept them filled during the warmer months. Most mornings, a few hummingbirds would zip around the feeders, and she would start her day with them, marveling at their speed.
As she watched, two hummingbirds came up to the feeders, a blue and a green, and a territorial fight broke out, one chasing the other in huge arcs around the feede
Becoming a ManThe day my mother brought home a brand new book for my brother, I knew something had happened. He was too young to know, though. “Aces!” he yelled, grinning, when she put it in his hands.
I didn’t look at him; I looked at her. The joy of the gift didn’t mask the sorrow in her eyes. The deep wrinkles branched out from the corner of her eyes like leafless winter branches, and the exhaustion etched in the lines on her forehead read loud and clear.
Somehow I knew, without a word. I waited until she walked into the kitchen and followed her. “He died, didn’t he?”
She let out a shaky breath and started putting the other things she’d brought home away. “I can’t hide anything from you, can I?”
“Late last night.” She set down a magazine, and I glanced at the back cover. Ham in a can. I wondered what it tasted like for a second before I remembered what we were discussing.
“So what now?”
Permanent Relocation“Well, here we are, floating in a tin can in the middle of space.” The stocky blonde with short hair shoved her bag under the sparse bed in the room.
“Funny, I thought it would feel different,” said the brunette behind her.
“Welcome home, ladies,” said the tall, severe woman who showed them to their room. “Dinner’s in an hour, and we don’t wait.”
When the door was closed, the blonde laid down on the bed. “What’s your name again?”
“Stephanie, but I like Stevie better.”
“All right. Nice to meet you, Stevie.” Pearl pulled out her things, putting them in the small dresser beside her bed. There wasn’t much—some clothes, toiletries, a few books, and some pictures. Stevie noticed that she shoved these under the clothes. The curvy brunette sat on the bed when she finished and looked at the blonde across. “So why are you here?”
“Had to get
BoomI ran for my shotgun as soon as I heard the blast. No way I was going to get caught off guard, no sir. Another one followed the first, insistent, and with the sound of crackling that could only mean shrapnel.
Great, and I’m in my pajamas. I loaded the shotgun and walked with a purpose through the living room. The patriotic music from the July 4th concert still played from my radio—fitting, I realized, and I stood taller.
The last notes of America, The Beautiful rung out loud and true as I opened the door. As soon as I stepped outside, light and sound assaulted every sense. I refused to waver, and I shook my gun and yelled, “Come and get it, you pansies!”
The booming intensified, and I raised my gun. I might not be able to see my attackers, but if I shot in their general direction, I could provide covering fire for our boys. Good thing I brought extra rounds.
I leveled my gun at the tree line, knowing that whoever lead the charge of those exp
Helper“Forget the car, Gene, it’s gone.”
“Cars don’t just get gone, Marsha.”
“Yeah, well, people don’t just get gone either, do they?” the blonde looked out into the woods. “But twenty years in this business and I’ve gotten plenty of people just gone.”
“You’ve been doing this for that long?”
Marsha looked up at him in perplexed amusement. “You mean the gray roots and the wrinkles on my hands don’t give it away? I’m touched.” She turned and started walking back down the highway, muttering to herself. The short, stocky guy behind her hesitated, then followed.
“Why do you do it?” he asked as he fell into stride with her.
“Sometimes people need to go. Someone’s gotta help ‘em.” Gene nodded silently, and the two walked on for a while until Marsha turned down a small path into the woods at the edge of the highway.
“Well, I appreci
back then. | antonio fernandez carriedo
The Spaniard let out heavy sigh of distress. Two hours. He's been waiting for his date for two hours. Maybe more, but he doesn't really know — he lost track of time. What he was confident, however, was that he has waited for a long time. Otherwise his ass wouldn't be so sore right now. Antonio picked up his glass of water and sipped it, and then leaning back to his chair.
Maybe he wasn't ready for a relationship yet.
Maybe commitments.. aren't his thing.
A light buzz came off from his phone and sighing once more, he dug into his pocket and unlocked the screen to see a message from his date. The person who he hoped to share his future with — unfortunately not. Then again, was he even ready to be in a serious relationship? Was he even ready to share his story with someone else? He doesn't know anymore.
[Text] 11:39 PM: Hello! I'm so sorry that I couldn't come. I had work to do.
He frowned at the text. Antonio was conflicted whether he should beli
Valley's End RoadDo you ever wish you could un-see something?
It lay in pieces on the indigo pavement. Rain had washed away most of the blood, but what was left was brown and purple, and the exposed flesh, that rich interior muscle and ligature, was all pink and silver striation and shining through the varied grays of fur and fabric. A smell like dead fish wafted beneath everything.
My mind tried to reassemble it, like a grotesque jigsaw puzzle. That part of me was not working very well, being over-ridden by surging adrenaline, my thoughts drowned out by the hormonal roar in my ears. What I was looking at, what I wished I could un-see, made no sense. And it made me feel as though there were others, its brethren, its masters, some thing or things lurking behind the curtain of forest lining this isolated road.
I ran it often. Rarely after dark though. But I’d been certain my flashlight and my reflective armbands would see me home safely. I looked around and tried to get my beari
Why?"Why do you hang out with children so much? Doesn't it get annoying?"
"No, not really"
"Why? Why do you like them so much?"
"What's the reason most people tell you?"
"What's the answer you usually hear when you ask other people that question?"
"That they're small and adorable."
"That's a funny answer... puppies are small and adorable, kittens are small and adorable, even hedgehogs are small and adorable. So why hang out with loud kids when you can hang out with a small and adorable animal?"
"You're not answering my question."
"What do you think innocence is?"
"Innocent people don't know about the bad things in the world."
"Innocent people don't -act- on the bad things of the world. Whether they know about them or not. Children have a sort of forced innocence."
"What does that have to do with anything?"
"Have you ever seen a young child double-cross someone? Or lie and then not feel a single
The Game Player Challenges...Magic shows are not as popular on the television now as they used to be – not unless your name is David Blaine or Dynamo – but at one time they were the stalwarts of midweek television, and escape acts were a firm favourite. Nowadays, you find them on shows like Britain’s Got Talent, or in holiday parks, but on a recent show I saw a husband and wife act called The Carlisles – very good they were too.
And I should know – a few weeks previously I had visited them. Mister Carlisle is a successful writer, and my researches had suggested they were worth calling on. Those same researches had shown me, through the power of YouTube, just how good they were as well, so I made sure I went fully equipped.
It was a Sunday afternoon when I let myself into their house, and heard Mum and daughter talking. As I listened, it was clear that the ten year old was trying to persuade her mother she could be part of the act, if she learned her tricks, and
The Pyramid [17/100]A young girl trudges through the dust worn sand and clambers over the bricks of white stone, with pieces of its history flaking off. Higher she tries to climb the Great Pyramid but after a while, she can no longer go further and that is when she realizes that she is too high to make the climb back down.
Maybe it’s fear or maybe it’s just reluctance, but that girl sits down and decides instead to admire the view, hoping someone would save her.
Wooden stick clacks on stone and the girl turns to find an old man standing next to her, smiling softly.
“Do you mind if I join you?” the old man asks, tender and gruff.
The girl nods and the old man sits, his bones creaking into eternity.
“Sometimes,” the old man starts, “you just think you can achieve anything but half-way there, you run into problems. Ah, like you, I seem to not be able to continue any higher.”
“It’s too high,” the girl complains.
“Yes. Sometimes its
Off to Somewhere My mom seems to think that I have no worries at all. That I am supposed to be complacent. That I am supposed to be content. What more could she give me? She asks me this question everyday.
She asks me what I want to be when I grow up and tells me what to be in the same sentence. I'm not sure what answer to give her. The one she has given herself or the one I want to allow myself to say. Always, I give in. Arguments like these should be avoided.
Instead, I tell her I want to grow up first. I want to grow up fast. She says I would regret saying that because being a kid is so easy. You don't have to make important choices or be responsible for anything. Things are laid out for you. What she doesn't understand is I want the supposed difficulties. Then, I can be responsible for my own happiness. I want to choose my own happiness.
My aunts seem to think that I am taking everything for granted. That I should work harder. That I should ma
IThis battle... It wasn't started by me, and it won't be won by me. My existence will merely be remembered as a name; a name like any other, recorded in a book filled with many other names who have fought just like I have and who have died just like I will. My importance is only a number; my actions are only a victory; my life is only a time that the darkness was kept at bay.
My fate has been sealed; my destiny has been decided. My entire existence is meant for one thing and one thing alone: To keep this world in balance and to protect those of light from the creatures of darkness. This is what I was born to do; this is what I am meant to do.
So, what would one such as I do if the balance of this world is thrown into disarray? I would try to correct it, of course, but what if the cause of the chaos is by one creature- not a creature of darkness, but one of light? What if that single creat
Bling“Carry me across the threshold,” she told me. “It’s tradition.”
“Well, dear, it’s a simple question of weight ratios. A five ounce bird cannot carry a one pound coconut, after all,” I quipped.
“Are you calling me fat?”
“It’s impossible for you to be any other size, love.”
“Just what are you saying?”
I realized at this point that perhaps I hadn’t thought this through enough. “Nevermind, dear. Up you go!”
My knees shook as I lifted her, shuffled forward, then sat her down.
“Now that wasn’t so bad!”
What could be done? I was in love with a robot.
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Endorell-Taelos is very well known within the community for her selfless giving and gracious community spirit. Since joining DeviantART over seven years ago, Alicia has continued to make a positive impact on many deviants. Her helpful and thoughtful approach was one of her finest attributes when serving as a Community Volunteer, and this has continued throughout the many contests which Alicia provides on a regular basis. As we approach our Birthday celebrations, we can't... Read More