Browsed by
Author: Paul

We Are Arrived

We Are Arrived

This bit of fiction was part of  I Saw Lightning Fall‘s (blog) Advent Ghosts 2013 shared storytelling event.  100 eerily inspired words.

We Are Arrived

We roam the night, while you rest snug, secure in your bed,

dreaming of video game systems given.

From the beginning, we have amused you with our antics,

Partied with your dolls,

Eaten your foods,

Crept through your house.

Amusing ourselves, biding our time. Earning your trust.

But the jolly fat man in the white trimmed red suit,

he will be replaced.

We are the elves on your shelves, and we do not poo candy canes.

Do Not Touch

Do Not Touch

Do Not Touch
by Paul Liadis

note: This was written as part of a flash fiction writing contest at the blog, The Clarity of Night, back in 2006. Here is a link to the original post. The idea was to write 250 words based on a provided prompt.

“Do not touch” were the words Mark and Elizabeth heard repeatedly regarding the painting that now hung illuminated in the hallway between their bedrooms. Much to Mark’s chagrin, the artwork had accompanied them to their new house.

Though Mark took great care to hide it in the back yard while they packed, his parents had somehow found the painting. Something about the picture made Mark feel uneasy, as though its composition was more than mere canvas and paint. One night in their previous house Mark was on his way to get a glass of water and was sure he heard a girl laugh inside the painting. He now runs past the painting, not willing to chance even a glance at it.

It was Elizabeth who made sure the painting hung in their new house, fishing it out of the bushes out back before they moved.

To a six year old like Elizabeth, “Do not touch” meant “Touch, but make sure Mom and Dad don’t see you.” The sight of Elizabeth mere inches from the painting, softly clutching Winnie the Pooh’s worn hand, startled Mark.

“Elizabeth, you know we’re not supposed to touch that,” Mark whispered forcefully as he approached his sister.

“It’s ok,” answered Elizabeth. “I touched it before.”

Mark ran toward his sister, hoping to stop her from touching the painting. Unfortunately, he was too late. All that remained of his sister was a lonely teddy bear and a giggle from inside the painting.

The Old Grey Wall

The Old Grey Wall

The Old Grey Wall
by Paul Liadis

note: This was written as part of a flash fiction writing contest at the blog, The Clarity of Night, back in 2007. Here is a link to the original post. The idea was to write 250 words based on a provided prompt.

For most men, their most fond childhood memory involves playing catch in the backyard with their dad, like the ending of The Natural. Mine’s a little different. Mine is of the old grey wall outside of the apartment Mom and I lived in when I was a boy. We had electricity most of the time, hot water occasionally, but the old grey wall was always there.

Mom used to come home late from work only to find me outside throwing the beat-up Rawlings baseball Grandpa gave me against the wall, imagining I was Ozzie Smith roaming the Busch Stadium infield. I was too small to make the baseball team, but on that gravel filled pavement I was an All Star. For years I was sure I held the record for most throws, 5,429, without a miss and if the Guinness Book of Records people ever happened to be in my neighborhood, I would be famous.

I still return from time to time to my home town to visit my mother, who now lives in a nice little Ranch not too far from the city. That dilapidated excuse of an apartment building burned down a few years ago but the old grey wall remains. I rarely miss the chance to visit my old friend, only now I bring my son with me and we stand in front of that old grey wall and have a catch together. Sometimes, I miss the ball on purpose, just to give my friend a turn.

College

College

College

by Paul Liadis

note: This was written as part of a flash fiction writing contest at the blog, The Clarity of Night, back in 2007. Here is a link to the original post. The idea was to write 250 words based on a provided prompt.

“Do the dishes yet?” said Gavin.

“I told you I’d get to it,” said Samuel. “Get off my back. I’ve got a Calc final Thursday and a Chemistry paper due Friday. Besides, those dishes aren’t even mine.”

“I know,” said Gavin. “I’ve seen your cup. Wouldn’t hurt you to wash it every once in a while.”

“I rinse it,” said Samuel.

“You pledges need to know your place,” said Gavin, ignoring the freshman. “My mom’s visiting this weekend.”

“She’s visiting me this weekend,” said Samuel under his breath.

“What’s that?” said Gavin stepping forward.

“Nothing,” said Samuel. “I’ll do it.”

“Good,” said Gavin, tossing a half-eaten plate of nachos into the mess. “I better see a clean sink soon.”

That Friday, following dinner at the Olive Garden, Gavin escorted his mother around the house, visiting the kitchen first.

Little punk’s lucky, Gavin thought. The sink looks better than when we moved in. He’ll have to do the dishes every week.

“Let’s see your room,” said Gavin’s mother motioning upstairs. “You must be hiding those textbooks someplace.”

“Sure,” answered Gavin. He had made sure to prepare his room for such a drop in.

Opening the door, nudging his mother inside, Gavin’s jaw dropped. Strewn across his bed was every single dish from the sink, filthy as ever. Spread prominently on the floor was his secret stash of magazines, open to the most revealing pages.

Placed neatly on his pillow was a note from Samuel which read, “I quit. Find another maid.”

Out of the Darkness 

Out of the Darkness 

Out of the Darkness
by Paul Liadis

note: This was written as part of a flash fiction writing contest at the blog, The Clarity of Night, back in 2007. Here is a link to the original post. The idea was to write 250 words based on a provided prompt.

Alistar wept, his tears tracing the curve of his sunken cheek. The sky had been a murky gray for ages, the sun and moon and stars, his onetime companions, having long ago taken their leave. His tears were tears of joy, for the light had returned to him, filling Alistar with hope for the first time in his life.

He had been bound to the tree facing this spot for months, possibly years, possibly his entire life. Alistar could not recall. The forest was all he knew, all he could remember. It was his world.

There were times Alistar felt himself on the verge of starvation, ready to give in to the hunger that gripped his being. Each time a mysterious man would appear out of the shadows, giving him something to eat and something to drink. Alistar had begged for mercy, hoping the man would release him from his entanglement or let him die, but the stranger would simply smile, wipe away Alistar’s tears, and slink back into the shadows. Despite this, Alistar felt no ill will towards the man.

And so it was, on the day that the day the sun peaked once more through the treetops, that the stranger unbound Alistar’s hands, wrapped a towel around his thin frame, and led him to the cottage beside the rippling stream. “You have endured,” spoke the stranger. “Now rest.”

It was on this day that Alistar began his journey to the throne, as the Great Book had said.