Ten Word Photo Prompt: Lights

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astrology astronomy atmosphere dark

Photo by grafixartphoto grafixart_photo on Pexels.com

It’s Ten World Photo Prompt Day!! Using the image above, craft a 10-word micro flash story. You can have a title, but as always, let’s not go crazy with them.

Feel free to post your masterpiece in the comments.

Here’s mine:

With the alien ship submerged, he’d need a bigger canoe.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 12

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skull icecream colorized yellow pinkI’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

I ate some ice cream before I wrote this installment. You know. For inspiration and, uh, research.

***

Something Linda said stayed firm in Jane’s mind. Drain pan, thought Jane. Drain pan. A way out. And far off in the distance, she could see it, an indentation in the ice wall. She was getting out of here.

With a rhythmic rumble, the ground shook. “What now?” said Jane, her eyes on the path ahead, the path, she was sure lead to a freezer drain.

And her freedom.

Iris shook her blobby head. “Meatniks,” she said. “Damn Meatniks.”

“Meat–”

“Niks,” said Linda, “And you want to stay clear. Come along children,” she said to the twins, hopping back in the direction that they came. The twins laughed.

“Let’s race!” they said, waddling from stick to stick, getting some distance ahead of Linda. Linda stopped, and tracing a bare spot in the snow with its stick, turned back.

“If you had any sense, you’d do the same.” And then they were gone, the twins giggles growing fainter.

“Linda’s not wrong,” Iris said. “And not to pile on or anything, but things don’t look so great in the other direction either.”

While the solid beat of the coming Meatniks grew heavier, there was a definite squelching coming from the direction they had been. Jane couldn’t bear to look, and yet she couldn’t stop herself.

Yep. There they were. The Tofuratti.

“You know, there was a time when you splatted a piece of tofu and it stayed splatted,” said Iris. “But these days, with all the additives…you wouldn’t believe what they call ‘organic.'”

“You’re being awfully quiet, Barry. Nothing to say right now?” Barry swiveled on its cone, front and back and front again.

“Not really,” said Barry.

“Want to maybe zap me out of here?” Jane said. She could now see the gleam of the plastic packaging surrounding the Meatniks. They looked pretty solid. And mean.

From the other way, the Tofuratti bounced onward, scarred and lumpy and scrambled in parts. No question about it. They were trapped.

***

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil: Part 9

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I’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

With the soggy sounds of fighting behind her, Jane tried to process what her eyes were seeing.

It was beautiful.

There before her icy crystals heaped in their glistening glory, large enough to show off every intricate line. Forming mounds and then hills, and then finally peaks in the distance, they gave off a scent of fresh chill, like a cold morning before winter truly settles in.

Far beyond, in a white backdrop, a sheer wall of sparkling white stretched far up beyond where Jane could see.

“Sheesh,” said Barry. “You’d think you’d never seen the inside of a freezer before.” Its head was somewhat squashed and lopsided from its recent up-ending.

“What?” Jane tried to snap back from her wonder.

“It’s just the inside of a freezer,” it said, “and this isn’t my neighborhood, so I suggest we get–”

“Anyone miss me?” said Iris, her tofu gouged and nicked in a few spots, but no worse for the wear. She was holding the flap closed, the sound of wet splotches hitting the other side.

“Iris!” said Jane. “You fought them all off?”

“Extra firm my off-white behind,” she said. “Huh. This is pretty.” She nodded in the direction of the landscape.

“See?” said Jane.

“ONE MORE SPLAT AND I WILL MEAT UP THE JOINT,” Iris yelled through the cardboard.

The noise on the other side stopped.

She stood up, and brushed her wobbly hands against one another. “That’s what I thought. So, what’s the plan?”

“I’d like to get out of here and back to normal size,” Jane said. “Or nearly normal size, I wouldn’t mind dropping a pound or two.”

“And yet you tried to buy me to eat me,” said Barry.

“Hey!” Jane and Iris glared at Barry in unison.

“Seriously, let’s go, I don’t like it around here.” Barry hopped onward, determinedly, the tip of its cone sinking into the snow. But not fast enough.

“Well, well well. If it isn’t Barry, same old floppy-coned Barry,” came from a short distance away.

***

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 8

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I’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

Looking over the right angle of her shoulder, Iris used an asparagus spear to prop open the flap.

“Go go go,” she said, watching as the Grand Fermenter finally glopped enough of himself back together to get back on his bottom tofu square.

She sent Barry skittering, cone first, through the rectangular opening, ice cream scraping off top and bottom.

“Hey! Easy,” said Barry as it disappeared through the flap.

“Now you,” Iris told Jane as the Grand Fermenter and the other Tofurati lurched toward them like tofu zombies, leaving wet crumbs in their wake.

Jane eyed the opening and then Iris, whose pimentos were looking a lot less menacing. “What about you?”

“Don’t worry about me,” she said. “I’ll be fine. You may not be.”

Jane dropped onto her front side, pushing herself through the slot. Halfway through, she stopped. “Thanks,” she said, as the Fermenter closed in on Iris. “Watch out!”

“Don’t mention it,” said Iris, and keeping those pimentos exactly where they were, she slammed a soggy elbow into the area on the Grand Fermenter that is commonly a nose.

Slithering through, and now adding some melted ice cream to her coating of stickiness, Jane pushed herself out of the box and into the light beyond.

It took a moment for her eyes to adjust, and when they did, she gasped.

***

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 7

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I’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

“Don’t move,” whispered a damp voice just above her ear. It was Iris, the one with the pimento eyes.

“Let go of me,” said Jane, struggling against the bouncy sauciness surrounding her.

“Seriously, don’t move,” Iris said.

“Excellent.” The Grand Fermenter glopped close enough to Jane for her to see the flecks of pepper in his coating. “Now, Iris, take her to the Composter.”

“The Composter?” said Barry, its voice muffled a bit by the upside-down position, “that doesn’t sound good.”

“And take that monstrosity as well,” the Grand Fermenter said, waving in Barry’s general direction. “As it melts, it will really help pack everything down.”

“As it MELTS?!” said Barry. “I’m not OK with that!”

“Stop squirming!” Iris said, gripping Jane by each arm and depositing a glistening, oily layer. “Stay exactly where you are.”

“I don’t know what you think you’re trying to do–” is as far as Jane got before Iris bounded off of the bottom of the box, and horizontal, knocked the Grand Fermenter sideways. She spun, using Jane as the center pole, gliding smoothly over the sauce as her bottom tofu square bonked each of the other Tofurati, sending them sprawling and chunks of tofu flying.

With the last leg of her circular rotation, she bumped Barry right at the tip of its cone, sending Barry twirling upward, head over end, and back down again, perfectly balanced once more.

“Iris!” roared the Grand Fermenter, trying to reclaim his scrambled bits.

“Hurry,” said Iris. We’ve got to get out of here now.” She ushered Jane and Barry toward the back of the box, where a bar of faint light flickered under the flap.

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 6

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skull icecream colorized yellow pinkI’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

“Don’t come any closer,” said Jane, snapping her hand and the cardboard in a sharp sideways royal wave.

The Grand Fermenter chortled. “What do you think you’re going to do with that, meat-based creature?”

Jane stood still, her cardboard blade hand falling to her side. “Meat-based crea– Nope, no, never mind, I don’t care.” She brandished the cardboard again. “Get any closer to me and you’ll find out.”

“If ice cream cones ate popcorn,” said Barry, now on the very edge of the bottom of its cone, trying to get the best view through the rip in the top of the box, “I would so be eating popcorn right now. Best show ever.”

“Shut up, Berry,” said Jane, trying to keep track of all of the Tofurati. But especially the one with the pimento eyes. That one just didn’t look right.

“BArry BAAArrrryyyy BAAAAARRRRYYY,” it bellowed, and with the momentum of the last one, Barry lost its precarious balance and tumbled head-first through the hole, landing on the bottom ice cream down with a soggy splat.

“Ouch,” said Barry.

“Serves you right,” said Jane. “If it wasn’t for you,I wouldn’t be in this mess.”

“Your mess has only just begun,” the Grand Fermenter said, his eyes gleaming in the now-brighter fluorescent light making its way through the top of the freezer and into the hole.

Barry struggled to right itself, its cone pointing straight up. “Help? Anyone?”

“I’m warning you,” Jane said, cutting air with the cardboard, “I’m not afraid to use this thing.” The Tofurati advanced, undeterred, as Barry tried to lurch its way free.

“You fool! What do you think we are, silken? We’re firm tofu, meat-based creature. Super-firm tofu. We’re the rubber bands of tofu. That thing will bounce right off of us!”

“Do you really want to find out?” Though her tone was confident, her heart pounded, and a hot fear kept the her from feeling the cold. They were close enough now to poke at her with the asparagus spears, which bent with every wet nudge.

The one with the pimento eyes was right on her, the red glowing softly in the shaft of light from above. Jane jabbed at the Tofurati with the tip of the cardboard. Her hand rebounded sharply back at her.

“I told you so.” The Grand Fermenter’s smile left her colder than the freezer did.

“Seriously? Just a push? One push?” Barry said.

“Seize her, Iris!” commanded the Grand Fermenter with a stately brandish of his spear.

And then Jane felt the jiggly stickness of malevolent tofu surround her.

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 5

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I’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

“Vegania?” Barry said, a hint of moisture gathering along his sprinkles.

“Yes,” said the Grand Fermenter.

“But Vegania is far lower, under the Permafrostbitten Layer of Perpetual Freezerburn.” Barry’s voice quavered with more than the cold.

“Vegania has grown and conquered many lands, including The Space of High Turnover.”

“What the heck is a Vegania?” Trying to get the sauce off of her hands, Jane ran her hand along the cardboard below her. Until, like some kind of organic soy-based superglue, the thinned stickiness stopped her hand dead. She was stuck.

“Ignorance. Such shocking ignorance.” The Grand Fermenter wiggled his spear in Jane’s direction. “But little can be expected from one so reeking of…animal-based products.

Jane tried twisting her hand to loosen it, but it stayed put. She made a mental note to check out the box so she could use the sauce for her next glue-based emergency.

“Look here, Grand Fermenter. There hasn’t been any official notice about your kind encroaching–”

“Silence, dairy-based creature!” He blobbed his way closer. “Surround her! You will be taken to the Cruciferous Florets where you will be sentenced for having the audacity to wear those shoes.”

Jane put a little shoulder and arm into it, but still couldn’t pry her hand from the cardboard. “These are synthetic,” she said.

“I know,” said the Grand Fermenter. “They’re just awful.”

“Gotta agree there,” said Barry.

“Seriously, Barry, what is your problem?” Shifting all of her weight to the side, Jane tried to yank her palm away from the floor.

“That you were trying to eat me, maybe?” The ice cream topper on Barry’s cone cocked itself to the side as it raised a single cookie crumb eyebrow.

“You were going to eat him? EAT him?! A sentient dairy creature?” The Grand Fermenter’s olive eyes folded a fraction, giving the effect of them narrowing. He straightened his stovepipe hat with indignation, leaving it more askew.

“In my defense, I had no idea of that at the time.”

“Advance!” the Grand Fermenter jabbed the spear upward, as upward as possible as his semi-solid fingers tried to control it. The other Tofurati glopped their way to Jane, their spears more or less pointed at her, some more, some less.

“Well, this didn’t turn out the way I expected,” said Barry, making sure it could see the goings on without the danger of being in asparagus’ reach.

As they got near enough for her to smell the hint of chili in their sauce sheen, Jane, with one final, massive pull, heard a slow rip. Her hand was up, yes, but now attached to a jagged blade of cardboard.

She looked at the approaching Tofurati, looked at her hand, and smiled.

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 4

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I’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

“The what?” Jane said, trying to gather her haphazard limbs into some semblance of decency. With her palm, she rubbed at the gloppy coating on the right side of her face, smearing it more than anything else.

“We ask the questions,” said the one who appeared to be the leader, as his hat — a stovepipe made of macaroni noodles, a wholewheat spaghetti ribbon and a carrot brim — had a fancy red pepper flourish.

“Mwaahhh haaaa haaa,” taunted the cone, whose name we recently learned was Barry. “Wait, what? What’s going on down there? I can’t quite see.” It shifted over the hole, blocking the light, narrowing the light, blocking the light, and narrowing it again.

“I said we ask the questions,” said the leader, jabbing his spear up in a wobbling arc as his hands were rather jiggly. “And will you stop doing that, because it’s kind of annoying.” His head landed back into a neutral position with a squelch, and he fixed his olive-slice eyes on Jane. “I will not ask you again. As the Grand Fermenter of the Tufurati, I demand you explain yourself.”

Jane flipped herself over and sat up, her hands behind her, the left one now in the puddle, the sauce oozing over to the back sides of her fingers. The leader’s lackeys loomed above her, appraising her coolly with their own olive slices. Except for the one in the in the corner. Jane got a glimpse of those pimento pupils and shivered.

“Hey,” said Barry, trying to maintain a tricky angle for a pointed cone, “I shrank her, so technically she’s mine.”

“Your what?” said Jane.

The leader straightened his non-shoulders and tightened his black bean lips. The growing rage floated from him, along with the tang of tamarind. “Pardon me, sir–”

“Uh, I would like to point out that I, like all ice cream cones, do not have a gender.”

“Fine,” said the leader, a flush of red pepper rising to his tofu cheeks, “Pardon me, Cone–”

“That’s better. But you can just call me Barry.”

“Berry?” said the Grand Fermenter of the Tufurati.

“BA-rry. Sheesh, why is this so hard?”

“Uh, hello?” said Jane. “Remember me? I just want to get out of this freezer.”

“That will not be possible,” said the Grand Fermenter. “As you have illegally crossed the border into Vegania, and from here there is no return.”

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 3

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I’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

How deep is this box? thought Jane, bracing herself for the impact. And then there it was, but before she could prepare for certain smashing, the damp cardboard stretched downward as effortlessly as a trapeze net. She sprang up again, back toward the hole in the box, now filled with the ice cream cone’s face.

“Mwaahhh haaaa haaa,” the ice cream cone said, little bits of ice cream showering down, along with a sprinkle or two.

Jane hit her rebounding peak and went down again, this time more relaxed. She’d always loved a good trampoline.

“I don’t think you’re using that laugh right,” she said, striking a pose as she bounced again. She wondered if she could get a little higher, maybe, if she jumped. All the activity was warming her up, at least.

She connected with the cardboard, this time bending as far as she could, and shot up, fast. The ice cream cone’s peanut eyes widened as she came at it, and it tilted back on its waffle apex just as her head and right shoulder made it through the ragged opening in the box top.

“You better move, Ice Cream Cone!” said Jane, compacting herself for her next recoil. That Trampolinercize was really paying off.

“My name is Barry!” it said, hopping back on its cone tip as this time, she nearly got her elbows through.

“Berry?” she said, her hair the last thing to go through the hole on the way back down.

“No, Barry. BA-rry.”

“Still hearing Berry.” She smiled as she descended. She knew what it said, but she couldn’t resist that growing annoyance. This time should get her back up and out.

Thunk.

“Holy ouch,” she yelled, when she managed to get her breath back. She lay sprawled on the suddenly ungiving bottom of the box, her cheek resting in a puddle of…something. It smelled vinegary and a little spicy. Tall, lumpy white creatures surrounded her, each carrying a long, green weapon resting where their shoulders would be.

“We are the Tofurati,” said one of the creatures. “Explain yourself.”

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Jane Storegoer and the Cone of Evil, Part 2

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I’m taking a badly-needed technology break! To keep you entertained without my daily nonsense, I’m posting the complete stories of Jane Storegoer, a character who sprang to being during the #AtoZChallenge in 2016.  During my break, I’ll post the installments daily. Can’t wait? Catch the rest of the posts here. They start from the bottom. Hope you enjoy!

“I really wish you’d stop doing that,” Jane said, crisscrossing her forearms to rub her goose-pimpled flesh with her numbing fingers. She shouldn’t have left her jacket in the car. But it was a warm day, and she was only running in for an ice cream cone.

“I’ve been practicing my laugh for centuries,” the cone said, one sprinkled eyebrow arched high, “and I’m going to make the most of it.”

“You’ve been in this freezer?” Jane leaned against the freezer wall, but as the ice bit into her back, thought better of it.

“Yep.” The ice cream cone nodded, which looked mainly like the ice cream trying to wobble its way off the soggy waffle base.

Eyes narrowed, Jane angled her head. “For centuries?”

“Yah-huh.” With scrunched frosty lips, the ice cream cone leaned menacingly toward Jane. “Got a problem with that?”

“Yeah. Freezers have only been around for like, a hundred years or something.”

“I’ll have you know the first ice-making machine was invented in 1854!” the cone roared, close enough to Jane to cast her in a cloud of his chilly vanilla-scented breath.

She stepped a tad closer to the cone to get another whiff of a delicious exhale, the box under her bowing a little more. “But that’s not a freezer. And it’s not even enough to say ‘centuries.’ One-and-a-half, tops.”

“It’s called hyperbole!” Like a simmering volcano of frozen confection, a flow of chocolate fudge started at the top of his swirly peak and ran slowly down, gliding lumpily over the sprinkles. Jane couldn’t take her eyes off it. “Do not underestimate powers of my creamy magic!”

Without even thinking, Jane took another step nearer, reaching out with curved fingers for a swipe of that enticing chocolate rivulet.

“Do you have to yell everything? We’re in a closed freezer, I can totally hear–” is as far she got, as the frozen breakfast box buckled beneath her. Down, down she plunged. She clawed at the remains of the box, trying desperately to slow her descent, the soggy cardboard tearing away in her hands.

Like my political side? Read my opinion pieces here.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.