Friday Fictioneers – Cry

(Author’s note: I’m in the USA. I’m on dry land. I’m jet lagged beyond all hell. I apologize if this isn’t coherent. Here’s the fictioneers for this week, a day later than normal.)

mg-rose-stem

© Marie Gail Stratford

Cry

by Miles H. Rost

Hair tousled.

The wind made a mess of Brian’s hair.

He stood, looking out at the ocean. He stepped out of the vehicle, and within a moment he was alone.

He felt the entire weight of his years descend upon his soul, the experiences of his many years crushing him.

Brian completed his assignments, did what he needed to do, and ended up here, a place that he long had felt lost. He wasn’t home, but he wasn’t familiar with the place.

Like the waves he was spying, the emotions crashed into him repeatedly.

A tear fell.

He fell.

Crying.

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Friday Fictioneers – The Colour of Love

(Author’s Note: Great response from people last week. Sorry I haven’t responded, but I am working on it. Now that a job has been secured, boomba…more time to do things. Here’s today’s Fictioneers.)

 

mystery-chair-ted-strutz

© Ted Strutz

The Colour Of Love

By Miles H. Rost

“Alright, Monica. We have only a few hours before tide comes back in. Think you can paint the scenery?”

Monica looked up at her teacher with her eyes full of worry.

“Monica, you’re going to do just fine.”

She pointed to the hulking dam in the distance and exploded her hands outward.

“No, Monica. The dam won’t break. Remember, I’m here with you. If anything happens, I got you.”

She smiled, and warmly hugged his waist. She picked up her palette and dipped into some Prussian blue.

Her teacher watched as she silently painted. He knew his daughter was safe.

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Friday Fictioneers – Somebody Put Something In My Drink

(Author’s note: No major announcements. Still working on short story. Taking longer than I hoped. But that’s cool. Enjoy an interesting story here.)

 

PHOTO PROMPT- ©Ted Strutz

Somebody Put Something In My Drink

by Miles H. Rost

Bud Murray was the oblivious barfly.

He was always at the end of Charlie’s Bar, drinking his riches away. And no one paid mind to him. It was the 1960s, no one really cared.

A dull-colored liquid in a shotglass perched itself in front of his lips. He sniffed. Smelled normal. He took it and knocked it back.

Within a minute, his shoulder moved. Then his arm. He started staggering around the bar, out of his mind.

That was the last thing he remembered before he woke up, tied down to a bed.

He looked at a nurse, and yelled the only word on his mind.

“COINTELPRO!”

Look it up!

Friday Fictioneers – Brave New World

(Author’s note: Helping friends out with their issues here in Korea. Seems to me like I was sent back to Korea for precisely this moment. Future writings are coming, that are non-fictioneers. Here we go with today’s, though!)

© Rich Vosa

Brave New World

by Miles H. Rost

“It’s been 7 years since I’ve been home. I’m worried about what I’m going to find.”

He looked at his friend, Cord, as he was ready to board his plane at Gate A19.

“You’ve been through hell in Vietnam. You’ve taken some time and got recharged. It’s time for you to go home and see people.”

He looked at Cord sadly.

“But what if they’re like all the others who’ve been spitting on our comrades, pouring urine over them, and all that.”

“I think you’ll find that most of those stories are in the bigger cities. You’re going to Muncie, Indiana. Not happening.”

He breathed a sigh of relief, as he handed his ticket to the gate clerk.

 

Friday Fictioneers – Do What You Do

(Author’s note: There’s a lot of things going on, and my production of fiction hasn’t been very productive because of other factors. I shall have more stuff up soon, but at this time, all I am able to do is Fictioneers stuff. To which, here’s today’s offering.)

 

© C.E. Ayr

Do What You Do
by Miles H. Rost

“So, I noticed that you came in with only one shoe. What happened?”

Bridget Moroney bit her lip as the question hit her with full force. It was the one question she didn’t want to answer.

“Well, I was rushing to get here, and a man pushed me out of the way. My foot stepped onto a drain grate and the heel got stuck. I couldn’t pull it out.”

“Did you think of breaking off the heel?” the interviewer asked, her voice in disbelief.

“It wouldn’t have done much good. So I just took off my other shoe and walked the rest of the way here.”

“Where did you walk from?”

“56th and Broadway.”

The interviewer’s eyes bugged out.

“You’re hired.”

 

Dull Swords

Dull Swords
by Miles H. Rost
(Part III of the Warrior Series)

(For parts I and II, please visit Unstoppable God, Invincible and Ambushed By Myself at their respective links

I had a long recovery after being beaten up and subsequently healed. Morgan, our leader, had taken the time to look at my sword and the armor that was carried off of me after I arrived back at the camp. He relayed a message to Brian, a message that would inspire a lot of worry and challenge. This was all in the space of a few days before the big Gathering that we were going to be attending.

“Hey!” Brian said to me, as I slowly started jogging around the camp, “We just got done with your assessment of your equipment.”

“What did you find?” I asked back, not looking at anything but the path in front of me.

“I don’t know what happened, but your equipment hasn’t been maintained very well. Has it not been given the proper upkeep?”

I just shrugged as I continued to jog. Brian put a hand on my shoulder, giving me the indication to stop.

“You don’t have to worry if you say yes.”

I stopped, and turned to face him at underneath a large oak tree. He continued to speak, as I looked at him.

“We get people in our camps all the time with equipment that’s falling apart. They try to take in battle, and they get thoroughly knocked around because of this. You, my brother, are not the only one who has to deal with severely corroded gear.”

I looked up at Brian and just couldn’t take it much more. I sat down at the base of the tree and the tears started flowing from my eyes.

“I’ve had that equipment for 18 years,” I cried out, “I’ve not had to use it much except in the last few months, when I joined with your crew.”

“That’s okay, brother. We’re not here to condemn you. As I said, everyone’s got corrosion on their armor. The difference is, are you going to work to repair your equipment, or will you be working to get new equipment. If you’re needing new equipment, do not be surprised that you will be able to get it. We walk by faith, and not by sight.”

After I told him that I would talk to him a little bit later, I just sat at the bottom of that tree and cried my eyes out. All of that frustration from being knocked around, and all of the pain of knowing I could not battle because I was exposed without armor, it flowed out like a raging river.

As I had dinner at the camp, Morgan sat down next to me. He looked out over the camp, over his army of warriors, then looked at me.

“You know, what’s happened to you is going to make you a stronger man. To fight heartily, it takes strong leadership,” he said, with a stern yet comforting edge to his voice, “With leadership and the coverage of our camp, you’ll be able to do a lot more. But you gotta listen, and you need to get in with our Father.”

I started in on the training the following morning. I spent all day trying to swing my dirty and pitted long sword, to spend time developing the skill. It kept slipping out of my hand after a while. I was so rusty, I couldn’t even understand how I could have withstood all of those Legion those weeks back.

I felt frustrated with each day of practice, each day where I kept losing my sword and losing all of my focus. The week was just incredibly hard, with attack after attack on my own confidence. I could feel many parts of it falling like a crumbling brick wall.

After one of my day long practice sessions, I sat in my tent silently. How could I get myself ready for the upcoming Gathering when I was so lost about everything. I heard a scratch at my tent, and looked up to see Brian poke his head in.

“Hey, are you okay?”

“Come on in. I’m really having a tough time today, to be honest. I just can’t seem to do my work, well or otherwise. I’m just concerned about a few things.”

He took a seat next to me, folded his legs, and put his hands under his bearded chin..

“So, tell me about it.”

“I feel like all this stuff with my equipment has just eroded me down. I mean, how am I to do the fighting against the enemies like I’m supposed to do if I still have all this corrosion on my work?”

“Well, soldier, you need to just remember that our assessment of your equipment just gives us an idea of what needs to be repaired. And we have a session of repair for you to experience coming soon.”

“Session of repair?”

“Yeah. See, we have an attachment with what we use for offense and defense. It’s a part of us, and just because it gets tarnished or corroded, it doesn’t mean it’s unfixable. In fact, if things get done right, it could be made as good as new.”

“Will this happen before the Gathering?”

“I’m not totally sure, but I have a feeling it will be done soon. In the meantime, I think you need to get some sleep. You need to rest as much as you can.”

I looked over at him, and gave a small sigh.

“Do you think the corrosion was affecting some of my other skills, as well?”

“I think lately, no. You were pretty good at the river battle. You just need to be mindful of where it starts, and how to take care of it before it gets too bad.”

I nodded, and I prepared my face for bed.

“Brian, thank you for being a great friend.”

“Don’t sweat it. I’m also your sergeant, so I have to make sure my people are well taken care of.”

The gathering of people would happen in two days. I needed to get my heart ready.

 

We All Sleep Alone

(Author’s Note: If you’re interested in reading the previous five stories of Mayumi, please use the tag “Mayumi” to find her stories.)

Mayumi’s Story (part VI)
(aka “We All Sleep Alone”)
by Miles H. Rost

The months passed by, and things finally stabilized for Mayumi Shiomi. After dealing with more ups and downs at her job, things finally were able to get to some semblance of “normal”. She had just a little over 4 months left on her contract, and could not wait to leave.

The intervening months since her letter to her dad had not been too kind. She went through many relationships and one night stands, feeling the loneliness and emptiness in her heart that she was left with for such a long time. She finally got in with a counselor to talk about it, to come clean and to rebuild the shattered pieces of her heart and deal with the remnants of the old relationship that so wrecked her personal life.

As she sat in her apartment, looking out at the Sydney landscape, she couldn’t help but think about how she got where she was. She thought about the God she served, and how she was being led even in her weaknesses.

“Y’know, God. Ah’ve been such a fool,” she said, out loud, “I’ve spent so much time grousing about my job, not doing what I’m  supposed to do. Ah know I need to do better, I just don’t know why I’m so weak.”

She sighed, as she looked at the cloudy skies that unfolded over the city like a scroll. It was a day that matched her feelings, and as she got up to do a small bit of cleaning, she gave a small sigh and a weak smile.

“Sooner or later, Lord, we all sleep alone. Ahm glad it’s happening now, instead of when I’m an old maid.”

Looking at the calendar, she had the date circled. Just over 4 months, and she could finish her contract and get out. She already had prospects at a new job, and a new life in Melbourne. But, she wouldn’t be able to start for at least a month after due to non-compete clauses. She knew that this would be a perfect time to find out about places to live there.

She had life to look forward to. But she had to survive the next months. That would be a challenge, as long as she was dealing with all the anxiety issues and the health problems that came with it. Worry, anxiety, and all sorts of other things pulled at Mayumi’s neck like a gremlin on an airplane. It was not something she enjoyed, and her sleep sometimes suffered because of it.

She would pray for at least one vacation in between, just to make things go faster.

She grabbed her pillow, and proceeded to her bedroom to take a nap. Why not let time pass her by with something she wanted to do.

Sleeping was one way to get away from the everyday. And she took to it like a champion.