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Word Vault Flash Fiction Contest for WBQ 28

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Old 08-01-2010, 12:34 AM
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Tau (Offline)
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Default Word Vault Flash Fiction Contest for WBQ 28

Welcome everybody to the Word Vault. This season is hereby officially open, have fun and good luck.
Please see Comment Thread for last seasons Winner.



Members are allowed one entry in the Word Vault Flash Fiction Contest. You are required to use at least one of the words from the Word Vault, (duplicated for your convenience below). Entries should be submitted as posts to this thread. The competition is open to all members of Writer’s Beat, including staff.

Members are requested to refrain from commenting on entries in this posting thread. Please use the Word Vault Flash Fiction: WBQ28 - Comment thread instead. That thread will remain open throughout the posting period and afterwards, and members are encouraged to let entrants know what they thought of their entries.

Word Limits:

250 words maximum


Once an entry has been submitted, it cannot be altered. Any work that is edited after it has been entered will be disqualified. If you feel you need to make a small alteration (a misplaced comma, a spelling error), contact a member of staff. If we feel your request is reasonable, we will make the correction on your behalf.

Close Date:
23 September 2010, 12 midnight GMT


After the closing date, we (the Staff) will select a winner to be published in the next issue of Writer’s Beat Quarterly, assuming permission is given when we contact the winner.

affuage(n): right to cut firewood for one’s family
Example: The Lower class’saffuage was not always guarantied by the local nobles.

bonifate(adj): fortunate, lucky
Example: Lady Luck turned away from Jimmy as his bonifate winnings drew the attention of the casino manager.

chicanery(n): 1. Deception through subterfuge or trickery. 2. Performance of a “Slick” Lawyer
From the French chicanerie (trickery)
Example: Loki was the trickster god of the Norse, achieving trough chicanery what others worked hard for.

clippy(n): (British) obsolete term for a female conductor (train or bus).
Example: The clippywas rather confused upon the introduction of a second conductor on her bus.

lachrymose(adj): tending to weep, tearful, sorrowful
From Latin lacrimosus, from old Latin dacruma
Example: Old Widow Weatherworn still visited the weeping willow once a week, to remember the past and join it in its lachrymose silence.

quiescent(adj): at rest, dormant
From Latin quiescens, present participle of quiescere, from quies (rest)
Example: The second monk had been quiescent all evening, until the snore gave him away.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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Last edited by HoiLei; 10-01-2010 at 12:57 PM.. Reason: Change close date. Sorry for the confusion!
Old 08-14-2010, 11:03 PM
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Default Loop.

- trapped in a never-ending loop.
I shook my head, trying to erase these strange thoughts from my brain. I had no reason for this curious, irrational belief, but still it lingered. The logical part of my mind grew lachrymose at my insane conviction, lacking any form of evidence, but there it was. I just couldn’t shake the idea that I was -
That is not dead which can eternal lie
And with strange eons, even death may die
Old 08-16-2010, 07:03 AM
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Default WBQ28 entry

Word count: 234

Jimmy Joe was a con man, and not a very good one. Both his victims and the law had caught him at times in his career, resulting in beatings or incarceration. He had avoided any new swindling activity since his last release. You might say his chicanery was quiescent.

But he was unhappy. Being legal did not appeal to him. Sitting in his bleak one-room flat, he wallowed in lachrymose depression, breaking down in despair at times.

He had lately been visiting a casino. The clippy on the shuttle bus was Sheila, and he had become quite friendly with her. She was not a beauty, but Jimmy Joe’s luck with women was about like his luck with cards, so he was not in a position to be choosy.

Lately, their relationship had bloomed. On their last date, Sheila had indicated by her actions that she might be willing to haul his ashes. Plus, he had started winning a bit at the poker tables. His bonifate gambling and love life had him thinking of resuming his con work. He daydreamed of one big score would set he and Sheila up for life. He started bathing more often, and walking with a spring in his step.

Then he was run over by a speeding lorry. As synapses fired in his dying brain, he wondered if the environmentalist-sponsored anti-affuage law in Parliament would be approved.
Old 08-16-2010, 05:50 PM
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Carl and the Cockroach
Word count: 250

Ling had been acquiescent all night. She watched a cockroach crawl across the coffee table in front of her, picking it’s way through dirty dishes. She felt lachrymose, watching it skitter around.

Her sister for the evening, Jennifer, was a mile away at the other end of the couch. She was going by “Bobbi Jo” tonight, and she was up to her usual chicanery.

Their first customer was a fat bald man named Carl. Carl wanted to relive his prom tonight, in a way that he had only imagined in his perverted, polluted mind. They had been watching a movie, a real piece of filth. It was over now.

Carl was ready. Bobbi Jo was ready. Ling was ready to leave. Carl leered at the beautiful young women.

“Don’t be shy ladies,” he challenged.

“Oh, we aren’t shy honey,” Bobbi Jo laughed. She stood up and peeled off the frilly pink dress, revealing black garters underneath and nothing else. Carl giggled. Ling barely registered the flash of silver as Bobbi Jo pulled the knife tucked behind her back and thrust it into Carl’s chest.

Three minutes later, he was dead, and they were leaving seventy dollars richer.

“I just couldn’t take another minute of that smell,” Bobbi Jo moaned, wiping at a spot of blood on her dress as they click-clacked down the dark street. Ling agreed, feeling more and more bonifate as they left Carl and the cockroach behind. It had smelled absolutely terrible.
Not all who wander are lost...
Old 08-23-2010, 03:55 PM
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The trees are crying. You can hear them calling out their lachrymose lament.
Moss grows over their fallen comrades, those who didn’t survive the battle. It creeps, slowly, so that you don’t notice its movement, but it is taking over. The vines as well. They crawl over the forest floor, and they weave up around the trunks of the living, suffocating them, trying to pull them into darkness.
To you it looks like a peaceful forest scene. You don’t notice the deafening silence, the lack of living creatures that permeates through the air. I notice, and I am telling you now. The trees are crying. We might not know what happened here, whether it was the war of humans, the greed of humans or the ignorance of humans that caused this tragedy. All we know is that this forest has been desiccated and destroyed and it’s all our fault.
Once, affuage was the only threat to these glorious creatures, now, every single aspect of our lives threatens to cast them into oblivion.
Tane Mahuta: the forest God, is lowering his head. He is crying too.
You don’t notice either that no humans are crying over this terrible tragedy. No, we revel in the destruction we cause to these trees, in fact, we cut down more.
This forest will die soon, the trees will stop crying, they will stop living, and all we hope for now is that their silence will give them peace.
But, for now, the trees are crying.

250 words.

Just a note: Tane Mahuta (pronounced Ta-neigh Ma-who-ta) is the god of the forest in Maori lore in the country of New Zealand (where I'm from). Tane Mahuta is a real tree, a massive Kauri that is several hundred years old. You can visit him, he lives in the Northland region - just a couple hours North of Auckland.
one thing i can tell you is you got to be free...
Old 08-26-2010, 02:47 PM
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Icon2 Bravery

Bravery: It is the foundation of hope; Of trust; of success.
I learned this the easy way at first, blissfully riding on a boat across a sea, far from distant lands on either side. Those in their balloons, or flying in jets overhead passing me by without either regard.

I had found a land I would surely stay. I was glad. I was at peace. My bonifate lifestyle keeping me safe from all dangers, my shield before my eyes as plain as the solar flare that is day.

So happy was I with the courage I had discovered, that great quiescent land of my faith, I thought to myself.
"there is surely no greater land than this."

Before my eyes it would seem was lifted a hand, and I would see no more. I began to ponder if the true great lands were abroad where I had yet to sail.
And I lifted my feet from the ground and yet I fly. The open waters and nourishing ground beneath left me.

As I struggled to keep in flight, to trek the various skies I am forced to wonder: Were I the conductor of this balloon; could I be the clippy of this flight.

Yet here I am, unable to land in water, and far from distant shores. Yet I know of their passage, and where they aught to lay. I feel I was safer in my ship than ever before in my life. Riding the stormy sea, looking for the great land I left behind. My Bravery a dream long lost.

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Nothing supports Atheism. It just gives me a reason to prove you wrong
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Old 08-28-2010, 09:46 PM
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Default Untitled

None will enter the forgotten field – the quiescent rock face still groans with treachery. None will venture where the Dark One’s cry still echoes in the night. Fool was he to command a heart, an innocent’s will to his beck and call. Now none will step foot near the stain of one thousand years – the price he paid for a love not his to hold.

There, the rain weeps down the innocent’s tears. There, the ground bleeds for an abandoned child. There, the wind howls the Dark One’s pleas. The lachrymose ghosts moan their warnings, while the rock spirit sings his lure.

Will you dare approach? Will you dare make a wish?
"The line between love and obsession is drawn by only circumstance." ~Unknown

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Old 08-29-2010, 06:21 AM
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Default Competition Entry W.count 250

Lost forever

It was gone.

Inexplicably, unbelievably, inexcusably gone.

Walter looked at the empty box with a look of stunned amazement.
Gaping, he turned the box over in his hands checking for holes. Of course there were none. He turned his fraught attention to his briefcase, ransacking it in seconds; he re-checked his turned out pockets.

He considered the possibility that the couple he had bumped into on the train ride home, were in fact, international con artists, and the sole reason they had engaged him in light conversation, was to distract him from their true nefarious intent. The more he thought about it the more it made sense. They had asked him pointless questions like ‘Do you use this train regularly?’ and ‘where are the best hotels in the area?’ After all, how often do you get German’s travelling on the twelve thirty, Saturday special to Scarborough?

Disgusted at the chicanery of foreigners, his mind raced as he tried to recall the exact details of their conversation, which hotel had he recommended, had they written down the directions, what were they wearing? He felt the panic tighten his chest as it paralysingly quickly shortened his breath and left him gasping.

Marie felt pity wash over her as she observed Walter’s distress as she approached him. Tenderly and lovingly slipping her hands around his shoulders, she leaned close and whispered ‘You lost the engagement ring sixty years ago Walter, don’t you remember, C’mon lets get you back to the Home.’

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Old 09-06-2010, 08:07 AM
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Default Untitled; 141 Words

Nobel laureate Lord Benson is a bonifate chap. His estate boasts guest houses where his other famous friends are able to reside during their visits.

Housing all these people will drain my coffers Benson contemplates and begins to excogitate. Building twenty-three cottages was rather extravagant Benson reflects, but he has a plan.

Benson’s chicanery was subtle enlisting help of the local chavy. He would offer them train rides knowing the clippie, a close friend of Benson’s, would return these children safely. These lachrymose street urchins had access to the affuage Benson needed for his cottages.

You see Benson was never quiescent when thinking of ways to save a shilling or two.
The train ride was free of course in exchange for other business.

Trade firewood for a train ride, trade a train ride for, well I’ll leave that to your imagination.
Old 09-30-2010, 06:54 AM
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Default WBQ28 250 words. – Secret Charades

Uncle Chip opened the notebook but Julia tried to stop him. She grabbed him by the arm and shook it urgently. “Please Uncle Chip; I don’t want to play the secret game. I want to go home.”
Chip glanced at the video camera. It was recording. “Soon, sweetie,” he said, “I promise.” He scanned the list of words in the notebook. They started innocently but quickly became sexually explicit. The last innocent word was ‘clippie’.
“OK, let’s play clippie.”
“Then you said we can go home.” She backed away into the centre of the room. “I have to dance. You say ‘clippie, take one’.”
“Right. Clippie take one.”
“Now I have to say, um, let’s play chardes…”
“Charades,” he prompted.
“Yes.” She began to chant. “I am a clippie and you can play with Me.” she removed her shoes and socks. “You have to take my clothes off now so I can dance like an angel.”
“Right. Come here.” He swept the little girl into his arms and hugged her tightly.
At that moment, beyond the camera, in the soundproofed observation room behind the one-way mirror, bedlam broke loose as a burly detective struggled to prevent Julie’s mother from attacking her husband.
“You pervert, “she screamed, “What have you done to our daughter. I’ll kill you.”
In the silent interview room Julie’s eyes misted as she tried to brush the tears flowing down Uncle Chip’s face. “I’m sorry if I didn’t do it right. Please don’t cry,” she sobbed.

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