A. L. Kaplan Wins Another Flash Fiction Challenge

Two weeks in a row! Another flash fiction challenge win at Indies Unlimited.


A. L. Kaplan is the Readers’ Choice in this week’s Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge. The winning entry is decided by the popular vote and rewarded with a special feature at Indies Unlimited today.

Thank you all for your votes.

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A. L. Kaplan Wins Flash Fiction Challenge

A. L. Kaplan is the Readers’ Choice in this week’s Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge. The winning entry is decided by the popular vote.

This week, the Reader’s Choice winner is also the editors’ pick, so congratulations – Ms. Kaplan’s story will appear in our first Editors’ Choice Anthology.

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THE RESCUE

I glare at the man who tried to kill me and spit the grenade pin onto the ground. He and his pals picked the wrong folks to mess with when they abducted Mistress. I’m way more than a little white dog. I scramble across the beach and into the water as the man turns into confetti.

A little twist of magical energy and my fur vanishes, paws become flippers. I shoot toward the wooden dingy like a torpedo. Too busy gaping at the cloud of smoke on the beach, the four pirates don’t notice me until I transform and land amidst them as a king cobra. My venom splatters the man closest. He tumbles into the water. Ducking a machete, I bite another man. The machete gouges the bottom of the boat. Water bubbles up. Good thing Mistress still wears her magic boots.

Something grabs me. Not good. I can change shape, not mass, so I’m small. Fur once again covers my body, this time with feline accessories. I twist and slash with my claws. Blood streams, but he holds me fast under the water. Spots fill my eyes. I have to wait for energy to replenish.

Finally I can change shape again. My new eel form shoots electricity in one enormous blast. The two remaining pirates convulse, then collapse. It’s not over yet. The dingy is sinking. Mistress is too hurt and tired to transform. So am I, but somehow we make it to shore. Mission accomplished.

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A.L. Kaplan Wins Another Flash Fiction Challenge

What a great way to end 2015 and start 2016. Thank you all for the votes.

A.L. Kaplan is the readers’ choice in this week’s Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge.

The winning entry is rewarded with a special feature on Indies Unlimited today and a place in their collection of winners which will be published as an e-book at year end.

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THE PROPOSAL

Sweat dripped down John’s back, tickling like a stream of little spiders. He hated being hot, but the corporate sauna was the only place where he could work undisturbed. Stripping down to a towel had made it somewhat bearable. He squeezed the black satin pouch that hung from his neck and took a deep breath to calm his nerves. The proposal deadline was in a few hours. Holiday house guests, endless phone calls, and questioning coworkers had kept interrupting him, even in the bathroom. This hot, pit of cedar hell was his only refuge. His fingers tapped furiously on the keys of his iPad. He was almost done. Nothing could stop him now.

A fire alarm screeched. John groaned in frustration. “This isn’t fair.”

He stumbled to the door and yanked it open, dizzy from the prolonged heat. Cold air hit him like an arctic blast. Everything looked hazy, smoky. Panic pressed in on him. He raced to the exit, bare feet slapping on the tile floor. Relief filled John as he burst out of the building and hurried to his boss, Morgan and her administrative assistant, Tyron.

“Sorry…Morgan,” he said, clutching the iPad with its precious proposal and gasping for air. “Proposal’s…not quite…done….Need another…five minutes.”

Morgan’s mouth opened and closed a couple of times, then she cleared her throat. Her eyes kept lowering, then darting away, finally settling on something behind his left shoulder. “Um…it’s okay, John. The fire and all….”

“Really,” said Tyron with an enormous grin. “When you said you had an early holiday gift for me I wasn’t expecting this, but I love it.”

Confused, John stared at his coworkers, then at the crowd around them. Fingers and phones pointed in his direction. It wasn’t until his heart stopped pounding in his ears that he heard the sniggering and the rapid clicking of cameras. A cold December breeze chased away the last of the sauna’s heat induced haze. Somewhere during his dash to safety, his towel had vanished. Warmth flooded John’s face. He lowered the iPad, then shrugged and handed it to Morgan. Sinking to one knee, he opened the pouch around his neck and pulled out a diamond ring.

“Tyron, will you marry me?”

Tears glistened in Taylor’s eyes. “Of course I will, you crazy fool.”

Camera’s continued to snap amidst cheers and applause as Tyron wrapped his jacket around John and pulled him into passionate kiss. This was one proposal that would make history.

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A HUMBLE REPAST

Snow flew across the room as the door swung open, bringing with it the cold Mary and Frank had just driven away with their meager cup of hot soup. A few people barked obscenities even after the door closed. Frank’s arm tightened around her as a hulking figure stared at the empty kitchen counter. Nowhere felt safe since they became homeless.

“Go away,” someone yelled, as the figure shuffled across the old linoleum floor. “There’s no food and no room for anyone else.

Even from their distant corner, Mary could see the despair in the eyes of the grime covered figure. His shoulders drooped further when empty floor space vanished as he neared. That was no way to treat anyone, especially during the holidays. Mary made space by snuggling closer to Frank. The man nodded, then squeezed against the wall, clutching his long legs in tight.

Both she and Frank had saved the crackers that came with their soup and muffin. Who knew where their next meal would come from? She pulled the two precious packages from the pocket of her threadbare jacket and handed them to the man.

“Here,” she said. “It’s not much, but you’re welcome to them.”

Tears pooled in the man’s eyes and he smiled. Mary returned the look, wishing everyone could be thankful for simple crackers. Exhausted, she and Frank drifted off to sleep. The stranger was gone when they woke. As they left the shelter, Mary discovered a large roll of cash in her pocket.

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A.L. Kaplan Wins Flash Fiction Challenge

A.L. Kaplan is the readers’ choice in this week’s Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge.

The winning entry is rewarded with a special feature on Indies Unlimited and a place in their collection of winners which will be published  at year end.

 

Posted in Short Story | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment