A Bad Time for a Phone Call

The phone rang on Dr. Michelle Funchess’s desk.  She looked up from the paper she was writing on quantum entanglement theory and picked up the receiver.

“Hello, Dr. Funchess speaking.”

“Yeah, I know.  Look you have to listen to me.”  The voice on the other end sounded exactly like Michelle’s own when she had a cold.

“Okay, is this Jenna?” Michelle asked.  “The voice is pretty good.”

“No.  I am you from twenty-five years in the future.”  Michelle thought about hanging up the phone.  “Listen, I know this sounds crazy, but hear me out.  I know about that time you were with Bobby back in the stacks.”

That took Michelle aback.  Yeah, that happened and she hadn’t told anyone about it, or did she?  There were a couple times she had gotten stupid with her girlfriends, so maybe it had come out?

The voice continued.  “And what about the time you felt guilty swiping that pack of gum from Albert’s Drug Store in fourth grade?  Remember that?”

Michelle smiled at how bad she had felt for weeks until she had “accidently” left like seventy-five cents in the need a penny take a penny tray at the counter.  “You need to do better than that.  If you are me you know I tell lots of stories.  I’m not sure I have a deep dark secret that would prove you are who, or when you claim you are.”

“Damn!” the voice on the other side of the line said.  Michelle could hear a ton of typing on a keyboard.

“Look, there is nothing you can say that will make this hoax work.  If you really know me you know I too much physics to fall for this.”

“One second,” the voice said.  “Ah, there.  Okay, I’ll give you a prediction for your future to make you believe.”

“You’re going to give me the lottery numbers?”

“That would take too long.  What time is it where you are?”

“It’s 2018.”

“Not the year, what time of day?  It’s like 12:30, right?”

“Close.  It’s like 12:46.  What time of crappy time travel do you have there twenty-five years in the future?”

“There are uncertainties, just like the ones you are writing in that paper.”

That stopped Michelle in her tracks.  No one really knew about that.  Well no one around here.  She might have hinted it at the last American Physics Society national conference, but still.  This was quite the scam.

The voice continued.  “It’s going to start raining in exactly three minutes.”

That made Michelle laugh.  They finally overplayed their hand.  She looked outside her large office windows.  “It is perfectly sunny here,” Michelle said.  “There is barely a cloud in the sky.”

“It will rain in the next two minutes and forty seconds.  This will prove I am who I say I am.  I need to hang up now and call back in four minutes.  The energy cost to keep the line is too much to just wait.”  With that the voice on the other side hung up.

Michelle hung up her phone and went back to her computer, but her curiosity wouldn’t stop her from checking the scene outside her window.  As she stared, wondering why someone was trying so hard to get into her head a sun shower began.  Big wet rain drops splattered against her window and her vision to the outside world, and her world in general, became blurry.

The ringing of the phone soon thereafter made her jump in her chair.  She stared at the phone, but didn’t try to pick it up.  She still wasn’t sure what was going on, but she knew she didn’t want to know.  Her future self should have known that.  Time must be able to change a person.

Advertisements

The Tides Have Turned (a 100 word story)

I captured my true love’s heart playing among the ocean’s surf.  I was overjoyed, yet saddened at the same time.  She means so much to me, but I had wanted solitude at that moment.

I had left her last week, hoping the pain of our breakup would begin to dull.  Alas, here among those playful waves she worked her way back into my life.  Because of my devotion to her, she and I will go sailing far over the horizon together again.

This time I’ll make sure her waterlogged corpse doesn’t get loose and wash up on the beach again.

 

Image: http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/pictures/210000/velka/ocean-waves-crashing-on-rocks-1481321563Aek.jpg

Barbershop King (a 150 word story)

The barbershop smelled of talcum powder and yesteryear’s stale cigarettes.  Dale closed his eyes and felt the gentle tugs of scissors cutting through his wispy graying hair.  He remembered back to a time where he would be smoking one of those cigarettes as the barber struggled to tame his gorgeous mane.  He had been king back then, and this place had been his private den.  Now he was an aging male with a comb over and a paunch of too successful hunting.

The bell announced a new customer.  Dale opened his eyes to see Charlie come in.  Charlie rubbed what little stubble he had on the top of his noggin.  “Got time to shave me?” Charlie asked.  “My daughter is getting married this week.”

Dale smiled and closed his eyes.  He may not have much, but he had more hair than Charlie, and that was good enough for this king.

 

Image: c1.staticflickr.com/8/7110/7803621240_7e05e383e0_b.jpg

Justify the Means (short story)

Some traders deal in stocks and bonds.  I trade lives and souls.  I buy low and sell high.  The problem for Matt is that his potential had just maxed out and I was here to collect, with intrest.

It didn’t help that I was already pissed off that my Louis Vuitton hand bag had a hole in it, and this asshole in front of me was responsible.  Okay, maybe it happened when I slugged him upside his head with it when I kidnapped him, but it still pissed me off.  No one likes me when I am pissed off.

Matt sat blindfolded, tied to the chair.  I placed my pistol at the base of his skull, making sure the hard steel bruised that tender part of his neck.

“One more time, where is the little girl?”

Matt growled and stained against the ropes.  I wasn’t expecting much from this conversation, to be honest, but I have my own demons and I needed to justify to them what I was about to do.

I pulled the trigger then spit on Matt’s remains.  “Now I own you,” I growled.  I scooped out what brains were still left in the body and painted a pentagram around the cooling corpse.  I then took out my hip flask and poured a drink offering into the vacated head cavity.  “Okay Belial, fetch me his soul.”  I set fire to the liquor and the blue flame turned deep purple before flaring out.

The body jerked twice then became still.  “Where is the girl?  Talk and I’ll let your soul go.”  The body twitched back and forth as it tried to resist what was happening.  “Belial, if you make him talk and his soul is yours.”  Demons loved collecting souls.  It was their version of Pokémon.

The body stopped spasming.  Flames leaped from the cranial cavity.  “How can you give away my soul?  That’s against God’s law.”  The voice originated from the reignited fire.

“Because when you have pals on both sides of the war you get to break the rules.”  I was beginning to lose my patience.  “One more time.  Where is the girl?”

“She is locked in my ex-wife’s dominatrix hideaway.  I knew the bitch would be in Europe for the next month so I had time.”

I shook my head and took a shot from the hip flask.  “Your whole life is one big fucked up mess, isn’t it?”

“I don’t have any life now.”

“You should thank me for that.”

“Go to hell, bitch!”

“I will, but I won’t be seeing you there.  Belial, he is yours.”

“But…”

The body self-immolated as the sound of Matt’s scream echoed in my head.  I took another hit from the flask and poured another shot onto the flaming body.  I should have brought some marshmallows with me.  Oh well, better luck next time.

I tucked away my flask and pulled out my cell phone.  “Janet, it’s Felicia.  She’s at the ex’s torture chamber.  Any idea where that is?”

 

Image: orig00.deviantart.net/839a/f/2015/021/2/5/belial_by_tentaclesandteeth-d8ew5ja.jpg

Drastic (an acrostic poem)

Dominic looked out over the battlefield

Rational people didn’t go to battle willingly

Armies ran on true belief

Simply put that training and divine luck would get you through alive

That was proven wrong day after day

It still amazed Dominic that people volunteered to do this and had faith in him

Could be the canons he had aimed at the back of his troops also helped

 

Image: nps.gov/fopu/getinvolved/supportyourpark/images/Cannon_Firing.jpg?maxwidth=650&autorotate=false

Dead Wrong (part 1)

I usually don’t do this, but before I get to the story for today I have a question.  After you are done reading this can you comment and tell me if you want more in this story?  I wasn’t planning on writing this right now, but of course sometimes stories stand up and scream at you.  Thank you for your feedback.  🙂


Jeff opened his eyes and watched his corpse being taken away by the ambulance.  He looked down and his body seemed whole to him.  He then heard laughter behind him.

“Man, that never gets old,” said a young man Jeff didn’t recognize.  “You should have seen the look on your face before that car crash.  Man, it was precious.”

Jeff glanced around noticing that some of the people he saw were looking at him, while others were cleaning up the accident scene.  He ran up to a policeman who seemed to be trying to direct the cleaning crew.  “Mr. Officer.  There seems to be something weird going on,” Jeff said.

“Nothing weird man, you just bit the dust and said your final goodbye,” the man said.

Jeff wheeled around and looked at the man again.  The man was wearing bell bottomed pants where the bell bottom was at least a foot bigger than a normal pant leg.  He also wore a shirt with a collar and lapels that you could land an F-16 on.  “I’m sorry,” Jeff said, “What do you mean?”

The man bowed his head solemnly.  “You, my son, have just died.”  His head snapped back up with a large grin on it.  Jeff just stared at him, dumbfounded.  “Man, I love it when they just don’t get it.  What do you think boys and girls?”

A few of the other people paying attention nodded.  One of them, a red headed woman dressed in a flapper style dress spoke up.  “Did you ever get a chance to eat Baked Alaska?”  Her haunted blue eyes felt like they were boring holes into Jeff’s very soul.

“Gillian, enough with the Baked Alaska.”  The man pointed at the red head with his thumb.  “She was going to her birthday party to try out the new dessert fad.  Instead she ran into a bit of a mugging gone too far.”

“Did you?” asked Gillian.

The man turned around and gave Gillian two middle fingers.  “Go haunt that restaurant on 22nd why don’t you.  Someone eventually will kick the bucket and you’ll have someone to pester about it for eternity.”

Jeff couldn’t process the conversation and turned back to the police officer.  “Sir?”

“Give it up!” the man yelled.  Jeff whipped his head around and the man shrugged his shoulders.  “Sorry about that.  Look, he’s still alive and you, my son, are dead.  Unless he’s some sort of medium he can’t hear you.  The most you can do is cause him a shiver down his spine.  Watch.”  The man walked over to the cop and placed his hand inside the officer.  The officer shimmied involuntarily.  The officer looks around, but his gaze passed right through the man, Jeff, and Gillian among the others watching the scene.

“Man, that doesn’t get old either.  Too bad I can only do that to someone once every couple of hours.  If I could do it more often…” The man shrugged his shoulders.  “Well that would make being dead a bit more fun.”  The man walked over and grabbed Jeff by the arm.  “Look, in a couple more minutes you will have to make a decision.  I suggest focusing on the now, or at least what passes for it on this side.  Let the living be the living, you know what I mean?”

“I’m dead?” Jeff asked in a very small voice.

“Keep up with me son, you don’t have much time.”  The wind suddenly picked up, but only Jeff and those that could see him seemed to be effected by it.  The man looked around, but continued.  “A passage is about to open soon.”

“A passage to where?”

“No one knows.  Anyone who goes inside never returns.”

“It’s how you go to heaven,” Gillian said.

“You don’t know that you foolish woman,” the man said.  “For all we know it spits you out in Hell or someplace even worse.  Hell, you might cease to exist.”

“The tunnel opens when someone freshly dies,” Gillian said.  “This will be yours.”

“Once again I call bull,” the man said.   “I’ve had friends go into them afterwards.  They just show up when someone dies.”

Jeff noticed most of the other people that he must now assume were dead had begun to leave.  “Why are they going away if it’s my tunnel,” Jeff asked.  “Not that I totally accept that I’m dead and all.”

“Man, them’s the chickens.  They worry about the tunnel somehow sucking them in or some bull.”

Suddenly a circle of light opened in front of Jeff.  He could feel its pull.  It called for him to walk on through, that this existence was truly done and over.

“You should go into the tunnel,” Gillian said.

Jeff tore his eyes off the tunnel.  “What happens if I don’t go in?”

“You get to see the world in all its glory,” the man said.

“You’ll regret the decision for the rest of eternity,” Gillian said.

“Then why are you still here?” Jeff asked.  “Why didn’t you go into your portal?”

“I didn’t have my Baked Alaska,” Gillian screeched before turning and running away from Jeff, the man, and the gleaming portal.

“Man, she is such a crazy.”  The man waved at her as she ran away.  Turning his attention back to Jeff he said, “Promise me you won’t lose it like she has.”

The pull on Jeff started to lesson, but Jeff could feel panic of missing out starting to settle in.  “Why did you stay?”

“I stayed because I wanted to see how my family would do without me.  Man, they have done some messed up things since I died.”

“Your family?”

“Yeah.  I try to be around when the kick the bucket.  Because you know, I care.”

“What does that make you to me?”  Jeff could feel the portal slipping away.  The winds were calming down and the light began to dim.

“I’m your daddy’s granddaddy,” the man said.  “So are you going to stay with me son?”

Jeff took his eyes off the portal and looked at the man again.  He definitely could see the family resemblance now that he looked for it.  “You wanted to be there for me when I died?”

“Of course.”

Jeff made his decision in that moment and the portal winked out of existence.  “So what do we do next?”

“Whatever you want.”  The man looked around and then waved at Jeff.  “Catch you on the flipside.”  With that the man began to run down the street, right through the cop, never pausing.

Jeff called out, “Wait, I thought you were going to help me.”

The man stopped and turned back around.  “I did.  I either gave you eternal life to play with or doomed you to the same hell I decided to hold onto.  Either way I’ve got places to go and people to watch.”  With that the man took a right and walked right through a building and out of Jeff’s sight.

Jeff looked around at the living who didn’t even notice he was still among them.  “Well I’ll be damned!”

 

Image: upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e1/Car_crash_1.jpg