Stay Classy

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He’d insisted on arriving by helicopter. Helicopter!  She stood on the roof dutifully, at a safe distance from the helipad, her honey-blond locks whipping around her face. Her boss, Ed, the station manager, sighed deeply. He was as annoyed as she.

Finally, the helicopter touched down and Ron emerged, wearing a flashy suit in a color that could only be described as neon tangerine. His hair, held in place by layers of hairspray, didn’t move as he walked toward them with a swagger.

He greeted Ed first, ignoring Veronica’s extended hand.

“Can you get me a coffee, honey?” Ron asked, not bothering to look at her.

Her eyes narrowed. She ignored his request and decided to head inside.  “I’ll see you at six.”

“Wait, what?!” Ron yelled after her. “YOU’RE my co-anchor? YOU’RE going to read MY news??? But you’re a…a…”

She smiled tightly. “Let’s stay classy, Ron.” She disappeared inside the building as Ron stared after her, dumbfounded.

“I’m going to marry that woman,” he said, to no one in particular.

 

For Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  The picture prompt this week reminded me of the opening scene of one of my all-time favorite movies, Anchorman.

Unbroken

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Copyright – Georgia Koch

It was premiere night and Zoey was nervous. Her new movie, a remake of Jaws, was already getting panned by critics. It’d seemed like a good career move.  Quality roles for actresses of color were rare, plus her character delivered the movie’s iconic line, We’re gonna need a bigger boat.  But, the backlash was swift.  Twitter was bombarded with hatred – racist memes, messages, videos – all targeting her. She hadn’t left her home for days.

The  car stopped.  She wiped her wet eyes and emerged with a luminous smile. The fans were calling her name.

 

For Friday Fictioneers.  

Inspired by the most recent attack on the actress and comedian, Leslie Jones. 

Formalities

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He rode up on a dark horse.  So dramatic. I was sitting under an old oak tree on a blanket, sipping sweet tea and reading, my hair falling into my eyes. My parents stepped onto the porch.

“Mr. Powell – I have a question for you, but Mrs. Powell, I want you to hear this too. I love your daughter more than anything. I’d like to ask you for her hand.”

I choked on my tea as Dad shook his hand.

“Helloooooo!” I shouted. “Sean! We broke up MONTHS ago. Before I moved away.”

“But…I thought…if I asked your father…”

“So my dad is the one that gets to decide who I marry?  Not me?

Mom began to wail. “Savannah Elizabeth Powell!!  Do you want to die alone???!!!”

“You people are insane,” I declared, rising from the blanket. “I’m going inside.”

I watched my parents console Sean through the window and rolled my eyes.  I looked to the sky, reminding myself that soon I’d be on a plane, far, far away.

 

For Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

The Rules

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CeCe knew the rules.  Good girls didn’t ask boys out, or even approach them.  Good girls didn’t chase boys.  Good girls were innocent, well-dressed, demurely made-up.  Good girls were quiet, non-threatening, unassuming.  Good girls ended up with good lives.  Handsome husbands, gorgeous homes, fat babies.  They just had to be patient.

The rules, hammered into her brain by her mother from the time she could walk, circled her thoughts.  This is what being a good girl gets youshe thought bitterly, at the movies alone on a Friday night.   She usually enjoyed her own company.  Besides, it wasn’t her friends’ kind of movie, a French film about two lovers who meet who meet at the tomb of Napoleon II.  But for some reason, that night she couldn’t stop thinking about Ricky.  They were both single for the first time in years and he still hadn’t asked her out.

She quieted the nagging voice in her brain and pulled out her phone, composing a text.

Dinner tomorrow night?

Her heart pounding, she pressed send.

 

For Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

Crash

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Lara was going to have a place in history.  The first woman to win a racing championship.  Of course, women had won individual races before.  The men had taken pity on them and laid off near the end, letting them race triumphantly toward the finish line as though they’d truly accomplished something.  Lara didn’t need anyone’s charity.

As she lifted her trophy over her head in jubilation, tears streaming from her eyes, champagne spraying everywhere, she could see Cole, her biggest rival, at the edge of the crowd.  They’d been neck-and-neck all season. He was a typical spoiled rich kid, thinking that just because his dad was the most celebrated name in racing that he was entitled to this win.  Not wanting to earn his way.  Cole told the press the night before that the only reason Lara even got the sponsors and publicity she did was because of her looks, not talent.  How she hated him.

Cole placed last today.  A crash took him out during the first lap.  Now, their eyes locked and something passed between them.  An understanding.  He knew what she’d done.

Lara waved to her fans, holding her head high as she descended the platform.  A girl, no more than twelve, crying profusely, fell into her arms.  Lara hugged her tightly, watching as Cole stalked away and tossed his helmet in the dirt.  He was going to come for her now, she knew.  But she’d never be sorry.

For Sunday Photo Fiction

Happy

I’m sure that the little girl in that back seat is waving at us.  She looks like me as a child.  Brown eyes big as saucers, frizzy pigtails with loose ribbons, a crooked, mischievous smile. Thinking about that girl, the girl that I once was, emboldens me.  I turn to my mother.

“So, I have some news…” I begin.

“What is it?”

“They called me yesterday.  I got it!  I’m going to be a travel writer.  Getting to travel the world and write – that’s my dream!”

“Oh, that’s nice, I guess.”

“You guess?  Mom, this is my dream job!  I’m going to get to see the world for free and write about it.”

“I know, honey.  I was just hoping that…maybe…you and Brian…”

“Mom, I told you that Brian and I broke up weeks ago…”

“But, all of my friends are grandparents now.  They always ask when you’re going to settle down and I don’t know what to say…”

“Tell them I’m happy.”

The light turns green and I signal for a right turn.  The car in front of us keeps straight and I blow a kiss to that little girl as it disappears around the curve.

For Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner

Caged

“I know it’s only been three weeks since the roll-out but the response has been phenomenal...”  

Tonight was supposed to be date night.   As usual, Nate’s “quick work call” had lasted more than an hour.  Mary re-filled her wine glass and carried her plate into the living room, flipping on the television.  She’d gotten used to not being Nate’s first priority any longer.  He’d made a comfortable life for their family.  A gilded cage.  He didn’t know that long before his success, she’d trapped herself.  She still loved him.  She’d always love him.

The coffee-table book caught her eye.  A collection of pictures from the early 20th century.  A young girl was on the cover, forced to work long hours in a factory before she’d even entered puberty.  Mary imagined what her life would have been like had she been born during that time.  Maybe she would have gotten married when she wasn’t much older than this girl to a man she barely knew, no one caring what she actually wanted, her future already planned and assumed.  No escape.

Nate appeared in the doorway, signaling that he’d only be a minute longer.  A lie, but she nodded anyway.  Mary ran her hand over the girl’s solemn face and sighed.

For Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner

Silenced

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“Hi Barry, what’s new?”  Kate answered the phone with an optimistic lilt in her voice.

“Hey!  Katie!  How’s my favorite client?”

Kate rolled her eyes.  “What do you have for me, Barry?”  She persisted.

“Well, there’s a role I think you’d be perfect for.  It’s a drama about a woman who takes revenge on an evil, secretive corporation…”

“Sounds intriguing.  Who else is interested?’

“Well…errr…Katie, let’s be clear, Jennifer Lawrence is already a lock for the lead.  They want you for the role of her best friend…”

“I see.  And let me guess, I say a lot of things like ‘you go girl,’ and ‘ain’t nobody got time for that?’  Plus I’m wacky and over-the-top and have absolutely no life or personality of my own?”

“Errr…”

“I’m not interested, Barry…”

“Okay, okay, well, there is a lead role you may be interested in.  It’s a film set on a plantation in the deep south, early 19th century…”

“Gotta go, Barry.”

She typed a quick text to her partner.  Go time.

The women were waiting for her. They formed a straight line, with her at the lead.  Big Movie Studio’s imposing buildings loomed ahead of them.  It was time to send a message.  They weren’t interested in playing maids, or sassy best friends, or slaves any longer.  It was time for change, and they were sick to death of waiting.

For Sunday Photo Fiction 

P.S. – I love Jennifer Lawrence!  She’s my spirit animal!  Just making a point about diversity in Hollywood.

Comfort

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It had rained all day yesterday.  The torrential downpour had virtually flooded the route she usually took when she ran, so she decided to take a detour.  She ran everyday, rain or shine.   It was how she’d lost 70 pounds.

The rains had made the day humid.  She pulled off her jacket and tied the sleeves around her waist.  She relished the feeling of the fresh air on her arms and the tiny sliver of taut belly that peeked out from underneath her athletic top.  She felt powerful and sexy and beautiful.

“Oh yeah, baby!” A crude voice yelled from above her.  She looked up and saw construction workers standing on the scaffolding of a high-rise building.

“Take the rest of it off!”

“What a body!”

She kept her face stoic until she turned the corner, out of their sight, then pulled the jacket back over her shoulders.  As she tried to catch her breath, she found a stray chocolate candy in her pocket and popped it into her mouth, waiting for her body to relax.

 

For Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers