Random Wednesday: Promptly Penned

Okay, I’ve got business to attend to so lets write this bitch.

“Promptly penned” is where we pen a story that was prompted. Going for brevity on the explanation.

Enjoy.

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This would normally be where the story ends, if this were a story; the world has been saved, the prince found his bride, and there’s nothing left to do. Only this isn’t a story and the loose ends that are left belong to people that aren’t the prince, or the dragon, or the little goose girl. Fantasies lead you to believe there isn’t a story beyond the last page of the book. The bears come home and Goldilocks runs away but, what about the baby bear who no longer has porridge?  Do they go to bed hungry, having to portion what is left of their meal for them to eat? Do they eat at all? Losing their appetite after finding their home and sanctuary violated. Though to be honest, who goes out for a walk with uncovered food on the table? You’re just asking for ants.

But here I am, sitting at a round table with a real cloth, table cloth. Not the sticky and scratchy vinyl stuff. Watching the wedding party dancing on thickly lacquered wood floors, lost in deep thoughts. Thoughts about where stories really end with a few tangent thoughts about what the bartender over in the corner has on his mind. Doubtful it’s the porridge he left cooling on his dinning room table. His eyes glance up to the bride and groom dancing the night away, enjoying a dream come true and I helped them. I threw the party where they met, I encouraged them to court when both asked me about the other, I invited them to my house for events where they could attend as a couple, I listened and counseled them when they fought,  and encouraged them to work through the rough patches. I’m also pretty sure they banged on my couch. I’m not exactly thrilled about that last part but my dog also puked on the same couch so the defiled rating for that piece of furniture is pretty high.

Their story as husband and wife will continue to a two part movie sequel involving buying a house (part one) and having kids (part two). My story was part of the script until it was cut out and left on the writer’s floor. An important detail but not necessary to the fantasy anymore. I’m just a loose end to someone else’s fantasy and my story is unfinished. Today, I think I am going to write the rest of my story. I will be the Frasier to their Cheers, the Mork and Mindy to their Happy Day’s, and the Torchwood to their Dr. Who. Sure, it’s a spin off story at best but, the bartender is smiling at me and for the record; Penguins of Madagascar is still a better movie than Madagascar. By all accounts, I still have a good chance my story can be the fantasy I dreamed of.

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Thank you for reading. Here are the other participants:

Bronwyn Green

Jessica Jarman

 

 

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Song Flash Fiction: Near Anger

The song to inspire this flash fiction is Far Away by Nickelback.

You know I didn’t pick the song. It was Kris Norris. It’s always Kris Norris.

But the fans have spoken and they all had the same request. If you are a regular follower of my blog, you won’t be surprised. If you’re new, I am not going to apologize for what you’re about to read.

Here is my flash fiction, Near Anger.

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He rolled his fingers into his palm and felt the nails dig into his flesh. One, two, three. He counted, trying to control the rate of the cool air he breathed in and the warmth of the breath he exhaled. In through the nose, out through the mouth. He concentrated, smelling the pine in the air, trying to relax his muscles. He has moved here to get away from the city, the noises, the stress, the politics. The Canadian country side welcomed him with rolling fields of evergreens, song birds, and legendary wildlife. He closed his eyes and tried to imagine the majestic elk he had seen a few days ago while hiking a nature trail. The creature paid him no mind as it carefully moved through the trees, it’s form large and strong. Concentrating on the details and markings of the bull, he imagined he was on the trail once more, carefully watching in the distance.

A surge of screams passed through the crowd with the wave of noise coming through his window. He dug his nails deeper into his palms and the hair at the nape of his neck seemed to stand against his skin. This was his own mistake he realized, his self isolation made him ignorant to the yearly held festival at the grounds no far from his new, once quiet home. The sounds of cars, muttering of people, the clanging of set pieces and pop up vendors setting up their shops. He couldn’t handle it, he knew he was going to lose control.

He began to pace. His feet pounding the floor harder and harder with each turn back and forth.

People cheer once more and the sound of a drums being hit in no particular order make the walls of his mind vibrate wildly.

Stings of a guitar are plucked and the sound of the crowd crashes like a wave pushing the room into an out of control spin.

He can’t hold back any longer. The image of the bull standing with elegance in his mind charged away and all he can saw is darkness and anger take over, pulling at his skin so tightly the pain was agony. His tortured body grew, fed by anger, strengthen by pure rage. The scream that emerged from his lips was primal and wild as he took in his first real breath. His heart raced in his chest as he ran and burst his transformed body through the wall.

The outside air was cool against his exposed skin. He ran toward the festival following the sounds that had been eating away at his soul. Music was beginning to play and a deep voice came over the microphone.

“This time…”

Is the last time.

“This place…”

Is my place. 

“Misused…mistake.”

The crowd screamed with fear and then quieted to a deafening silence. He could feel his heart beating and his breath was quick and uncontrolled. It was a blur, jumping on the stage, pushing his giant fist through the air. But suddenly he was aware. Aware of the handful of bleach hair he now held in his hand and the man splayed lifeless on the stage floor next to a guitar shattered to pieces.

“Oh my god.” The voice of the drummer was panicked as he dropped his sticks on the ground. He looked over at the drum set but the drummer had ran away and abandoned his station. The custom made Nickelback emblazoned bass drum still shown brightly in the spot light.

“H…H….Hulk?” A man appeared in all black from the side of the stage, his hands were held out submissively. “Heh, Buddy. Ah…Mr. Hulk. You…ah…you okay?” Another man followed behind him and quickly grabbed the arms of the body laying on the ground to pull it off stage.

Hulk stood up to full height and let out a roar. The audience ran screaming toward the exits.

The image of the elk returned and a calmness came over his body. Hulk sprinted and with a few leaps, was off and back into the woods. He would run until he no longer heard the screams behind him. He would run until he felt he was part of nature. He would run until he was free of anger. He would run with long hair still held in his fist.

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Thank you for reading. Here are the other participating authors.

Bronwyn Green

Kris Norris

Paige Prince

Random Wednesday: Promptly Penned

The prompt for today is: Write about the three things he could never tell her.

I had think about this one for a little bit and I kept coming back to the same idea which is a story I heard on the radio. We have this cool little thing every Thursday on our local radio station called, “Second Chance Date.” One person contacts the radio station and asks them to intervene on their dating situation. Typically, as the name suggests, something happened after the first day and the person calling in is unsure of how to land a second date. In some cases the other person simply isn’t calling them back or one of the two people on the date really screwed something up and would like a do-over. The radio DJ’s contact both parties and put them on the air to work out what went wrong, why there are unanswered text or non-returned phone calls, and see if they can help set up a second date.

The couple that inspired this story is one of my favorite Second Chance Date stories. Though the hungover guy that had to use the bathroom and puked after curiously smelling his dates shoe and finding a used (but saved) pregnancy test in her closet on the search for toilet paper was pretty epic. He ended up bailing to a local Denny’s without telling her. No second date there.

Here are the participating ladies:

Bronwyn Green

Paige Prince

Gwendolyn Cease

Kris Norris

Please enjoy my Promptly Penned short story Devote. 

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She stared wide eyed at her ice water. With her back straight as a board she kept her hands under the table where they are only noticeable when she reached up to check the time on her cell phone before hiding them under the table again.

“So, Deadpool is not your kind of movie?” Mitch sucked in a deep breath and exhaled, deflating his body to a slouch over the table.

Emily looked up from her water. “No.”

“Okay.” Mitch straightened himself with confidence, determined to right his wrong and win over his date before she ran to the restaurant door. “This is good. You know why this is good? This was my plan. Go, see a movie, then have dinner so we can talk about it. You didn’t like the movie. That’s okay. What didn’t you like? Let’s talk about that.”

“This was your plan?” Her voice had a touch of anger.

Mitch shifted in his chair. “To be honest, I heard it was a good movie. But I didn’t want any spoilers so I was unaware of some of the…er…adult content?  But it was my plan to see a movie before dinner. I ran it by your mom and she thought it was a good idea. She said you can be shy sometimes.”

“When you were sitting at church with my mom, did you mention to her your idea included Deadpool? A rated R movie?”

“Well, no. I’m sorry I didn’t think that through.”

Emily relaxed slightly, pushing her long hair over her shoulders and onto her back before picking up her glass of water. “I also question your choice in friends.”

“Yeah, they will probably give me shit for this, too.”

She set down her glass firmly without taking a drink. “Pardon? Did you just swear?”

Mitch felt a ball of anxiety catch in his throat. “Did I? I’m sorry. It must have slipped out. I didn’t realize.”

“This is what is wrong with movies and T.V. I’ll admit, I am utterly shocked at what I saw today but it’s already clear how it is starting to take over. Swearing, nudity, violence. Desensitizing and undermining the value of sensible and conservative life. I thought I’ve seen it all but really? Masturbation jokes? I can’t even believe this movie was made little alone written. If my mother…” Emily placed her hands on the table and rolled her body back in her chair. “If your mother knew you took us to see this trash. Oh Lord!”

Mitch picked up a menu to hide his face and compose himself. He had worn his favorite long sleeve button up shirt which he now regretted as the heat of embarrassment made him sweat, the smell of his deodorant becoming increasingly noticeable.  “Let’s focus on getting something to eat and putting this behind us. Can we agree the movie was a mistake and just move on?”

Like wise, Emily picked up her menu and stared down intently. Her breathing, quick and loud, eventually softened to a normal breath after paging through the menu front to back, and back to front, a few times.

“Would you like to share a bottle of wine?” Mitch asked.

“Wine?” Her voice mimicked her earlier tone as if he had just brought up Deadpool’s masturbation scene again.

“No?” Mitch asked quietly.

“No.” She raised her eyebrows and studied Mitch, judging him in silence, before returning to her menu.

A waiter came around to take their order. Mitch decided to do what was best for himself and ordered a hearty pasta entree. If all else fails, he assumed it would make good left overs. Emily looked carefully at the menu before ordering a salad in defeat and looking away from the waiter as she held her menu up for him to take blindly. The middle aged waiter was not new to the service industry and he just nodded kindly. He then placed a small plate of olive oil with seasoning on the table and a basket of bread before rushing off as Mitch wish he could at that moment. Still, as appealing as exiting himself to use the bathroom and bailing to his car sounded, he had actually been on worse dates. Emily was a little rigid, he knew this, her mother had warned him that she could be “a bit difficult” as she put it.

But she had also said, “My daughter needs a good Christian man and I think you two would be a good fit.”

Mitch came to his senses on how he could rectify the date. “Your mom and I met in the church choir. Do you ever come to see her sing? She has a very lovely voice. She said you go to the church closer to where you live. Do you sing too? Are you in the choir there?”

“I’ve been to your church many times. I don’t care for it. I like a little more structure though my mom has introduced me to many members of your congregation.” Mitch offered the basked of bread to Emily but she waved it away before she continued. “There is, no offense, too much singing and lax rules. I understand this pulls in more members but it’s not appropriate to think of member numbers over the word of the Lord. Are you really going to eat that right now?”

Mitch held in his hand a piece of warm bread torn off from the basket on the table, dripping in olive oil.

“You were going to eat without praying?” Emily’s nose wrinkled and she pushed herself away from the table.

Mitch felt his cheeks burning warm when small breeze of relief washes over him, he realized he is out of ideas and patience, freeing him to be himself. He put the bread in his mouth and chewed with his mouth open. “You know. You’re cute and all but, this isn’t working out. I don’t pray before I eat my complimentary bread. It’s delicious though. Want a piece? Quick! Come-Lord-Jesus-be-our-guest-and-let-thy-gifts-to-us-be-blessed-amen!” Mitch tears off another piece and holds it out to her.

“First, you swore.”

“I swear all the fucking time.” Mitch shrugged.

“Second, you drink.”

“Jesus made wine. Hell, if he was born today he would probably brew some kind of artisan IPA.”

“Third, you took me to see a rated R movie.”

“Okay, the last one, might not have been a wise choice for a first date. Should have reserved that as a second or third. But who doesn’t have a little wine now and again or say ‘hell’ instead of ‘heck’ once in a while?”

Emily picked her phone off the table and unhooked her purse from the side of the chair. “I thought you were a devote Christian. I am devoted and my companion should be as well. My body is a temple and full of faith to God. I do not poison or defile myself with poor choices.”

“Whoa.” Mitch leaned over the table while Emily recoils in her chair. “Are you a virgin?”

Her eyes narrowed but she hesitated to answer. “Yes. My body is a temple. All true Christians save themselves until marriage. Aren’t you?”

“Oh, GOD no.” Mitch laughs loudly. “Are you kidding? I’m thirty! Of course not.”

“And you call yourself a Christian!” Emily stood up from her chair and pushed it into the table.

“I go to church, I volunteer, I pray on Sundays. I met girls while helping Habitat for Humanity, we had some drinks, had sex, and watched something rated R online with the wifi I steal from my neighbor.”

“You’re a monster.” Emily turned to leave.

Mitch smiled to himself. “Glad you enjoyed Deadpool!”

 

 

 

 

 

Photo Flash Nonfiction: Destination

I’m halfway through my manuscript.

It feels good to have a solid word count but I’m going to admit it’s not easy and the amount of work I put in for April alone, was difficult. I kept my goal challenging but not too challenging that I would become discouraged and give up when I fell behind. Which ended up being a good plan because nothing panned out as I thought it would.

At night, when the kids went to sleep, I would pull out my laptop and get started. Around this time I would hear a loud thump over the baby monitor. That would be my son, practicing crawling when he should be sleeping, and smucking himself on the side of the crib when he lost his balance. He gets his grace from his mother. The whiny sound that emerges when he is mad at injuring himself, that’s me too. Before I knew it, the time I’ve set aside to write was replaced by rocking my baby to sleep for the second time followed by the clock reminding me to get myself to sleep if I want to be a sane woman in the morning.

Okay so nights didn’t always work out. How about mornings? Mornings seemed like a solid plan. I do arrive at my office early enough to beat the morning school buses and I have some time to myself. If only I had the self control to not check my work email. “Can you check this out for me?” “Can you change this?” “Quick question….” “I was wondering if you could help…” “When you get a chance…” I have this problem over rationalizing things and believing that if I take care of these few, easy, simple, only takes a moment emails I’ll have more free time later to take a break and write a few words.

Nope.

After my morning of writing was shot down by good work intentions I would approach my lunch hour. From here we move to the always popular around 12:05 statement of, “Oh, I see you are on lunch. Don’t worry, this will only take a moment.”

I do have a door to my office. It has a motherfucking window.

But some days, my kids did sleep through the night and I did get my hour or so before it was my bedtime. A few mornings I walked in and there were no emails or any other work detritus sitting on my desk. Finally, the occasional lunch went uninterrupted.

One key thing I did to help was take notes when I wasn’t writing if an idea came to mind. I might be sitting and listening to a speaker or taking out the trash when I thought “My character could do this in this scene!” to which I would find my handy dandy badass notebook that Bronwyn made me and write down the idea. It made those quick thirty minute writing jam sessions go a lot smoother when there was an idea I could work with.

Brainstorming doesn’t have to happen at a desk in a quiet area. Which is nice. Since a desk combined with a quiet area is a luxury I already proved I don’t really have.

This is the “what’s next part.” Well, editing what I do have to help figure out what I don’t. I still need to finish this book and I have ideas, I just need to figure out how to get there. I’m going to keep reading and picking up tidbits of advice to help me spot my errors and make sure my plot has a direction. As I said to Bronwyn a few days ago, “I don’t want to pile more shit on shit. I have things to sort out.”

The next camp nano is in July and I’ll be there. Not only that, I’m going to up my challenge by 10,000 words.

I have a goal.
I have a destination.
And bumped heads and unread emails be damned, I’m going to get there.

image (1)
This was the picture for our photo prompt today.

Don’t forgot to visit the other ladies!

Bronwyn Green

Paige Prince

 

 

Flash Fiction: In Possession of Sand

Monday flash fiction time! This Monday’s edition of flash fiction is our song edition. Song is from Ellie Goulding and titled “How Long Will I love you.”

And based on google suggested searches the answer for Ellie Goulding is, “Not very long.”

Here are the participating writers and happy reading.

Bronwyn Green

Kris Norris

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Usually there are scented candles burning and visits are in the evening after a lovely dinner, not early in the morning when the morning fog is still present around the garden. It had been about a week since my Dad’s funeral and there wasn’t a rush to attend to the house. It was already so well maintained with only a slight mess of mail on the counter. They answering machine around the corner was blinking five messages. I picked up the phone and checked the caller ID only to see the calls were unknown numbers and most likely telemarketers. Dad complained about them regularly and screened his calls to avoid them. I simply unplugged the machine and phone to avoid any disturbances. If anyone needed to get a hold of me, they would have my cell.

I continued through the house opening doors and closets, sizing up the items to be sorted, packed, given away, or sold. A collection of historical framed prints, a couch that sagged slightly in the middle, and the hospital bed would all be sold. Maddie was going to college soon and wanted the spare bed and bedroom furniture from the guest room to put in storage for when she was allowed to move out of the dorms and into an apartment. Aunt Liz was hoping for the car that has been sitting unused for years and my Dad’s friend Tom was always fond of the spy novel library which spanned from the 70’s until only a few years ago. Dad only stopped buying them when he was unable to see the words on the pages to read.

The sound of a car’s tires rolling over the loose gravel collected at the end of the driveway is clear through the silent house. I looked at the clock and it was almost 9:15. Early for the day but 45 minutes later than the agreed upon time. I suppose I should just be happy my brother showed up at all. A moment later Doug pulled himself through the front door with a gas station coffee in his hand and the strong smell of aftershave, what hair he has left was still damp.

“Morning.”

“Morning.”

Doug sipped his coffee and winced from the heat. “I brought the truck and Logan is coming later to help pack.”

“Your truck? How much do you plan on taking?”

Doug opened the coat closet and pulled out a leather bomber cut jacket. “Hey, he said we could take whatever we wanted and we get first pick so why not? Look at this, Dad use to wear this all the time.”

“I remember but, he stopped wearing that one years ago and he gave the newer one away before he died. What are you going to do with this? It won’t fit you. Why take it if it’s just going to sit in a box and rot somewhere?”

He put his coffee down and slipped on the jacket. The shoulders were wide for his frame and his torso too short. Doug zipped up the coat and flattened the puffiness of the extra fabric against him. The only part of the jacket that fit were the sleeves. The cotton cuffs settled perfectly at his wrists but otherwise he looked exactly as he was, a son in his dad’s jacket. Doug looked through the pockets and pulled out a piece of paper. “Car wash receipt from 1997.”

“Told you he hasn’t worn it in a long time. Just put that back.”

“No. I’m taking it. I’m taking all of these coats. I am taking the furniture too.”

I looked behind me to the couch with the sag in the middle. “Why? The grand kids were going to take this old stuff. The estate sale is suppose to take care of the rest and the money is going to be divided up. There isn’t much here and what isn’t really of any value. At least not to any one other than Dad.”

“I want to put it in my basement and set it up just the way he had it here, you know. Kind of like a way of hanging with Dad, drinking beer, watching the games on Sunday.”

“It’s just stuff.”

Doug stretched out his arms and the jacket hanged off him with the surplus of extra fabric. “It’s not ‘just stuff.’ It’s Dad’s stuff.”

“Dad’s gone. It’s just stuff now.”

Doug crosses his arms. “How can you say that. Do yo hear yourself? He cared about these things and you should care about them too.”

“Just because he did? I should care about that jacket because he liked it enough to buy it and wear it? There are hundreds, thousands of jackets just like that one. There is nothing unique about this other than he wore it. He isn’t here to wear it anymore. That’s the difference. I want to see that jacket on him and I won’t. So it doesn’t matter now who wears the jacket. I’m leaving the jacket because just owning it and remembering him in it, won’t bring him back.”

Doug picked up his coffee and walked to the living room. “More for me then. But, I’m just saying, it’s easier to remember him when you have things that remind you about him once in a while.”

I walked toward the open closet door when something caught my eye. “I’ll always love Dad for the rest of my life even if I had the opportunity to keep a hat of his that says, ‘Boobs and Brews – Beer Fest 1975’ on it.” I placed the hat on my head and it sank down pushing my glasses down my nose before I was all the way into the living room.

Doug looked at me and smiled. “Love Dad for the rest of your life with or without mementos, that hat is just foolish to give up.”

 

Random Wednesday: Blog Take Over

This weeks topic in new, interesting, and a little scary. What would happen if someone else took over my blog for the day? Well, not sure what my husband would do but my daughter would write something like this, “hhhhhhhhhhsssssssssseeeeeeeeenawwwwqqqqfuaew;offfiaoslleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” and my baby son would drool on the keyboard. But instead of assuming what it would be like of someone else took over my blog for the day I decided to allow someone to actually take over my blog for the day.

Meet Jim.

I’ve mentioned him before in on my blog and I particularly like Jim. He lives across the pond, buys me awesome books, is a wonderful beta reader, and generally a brilliant and kind person. He seemed a perfect fit for the task.

Plus, if I had asked Katie my blog would probably be loaded with dick pics. (Note: I’m well aware a few of you would be okay with this but get out of here! Ain’t nobody got time for that! Except, Gwendolyn. She usually has some half naked dude on her blog if you need a fix.)

Don’t forget to visit the other bloggers Bronwyn Green, Kellie St. James, Gwendolyn Cease, and Paige Prince and without further ado – take it away Jim:

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I like giving gifts, not big fancy things, but little things that folk will appreciate. Most recently this has been food, I’ve been getting back into baking for the first time in a long time. As a result there’s been a lot of cakes brought into the office.

cheesecake

Behold the cheesecakey goodness. It was delicious, it didn’t last long in the office.

For my overseas friends, cakes would be a little harder to send, so I have to settle on something a little different to show my appreciation for them. Sometimes I send daft custom postcards,Touchnote is great for this, but what I really like sending is books I think they will enjoy.

Though it’s always a tricky proposition when picking a book for a bibliophile, you are essentially hijacking several hours to several days of their life, depending on their reading speed. A poor choice in this regards is a horrible thing to inflict upon a friend, for starters think of all the better books they could have been reading.

I seem to have done a good job of this so far… well with choosing for Jessica at least, I still feel guilty about the time I sent Katie a copy of Alan Wake, she did not enjoy that anywhere near as much as her love for X-Files and Twin Peaks made me think she would.

Wyrd

“I’d like to know if I could compare you to a summer’s day. Because — well, June 12th was quite nice, and…”

Jessica has a cracking sense of humour, with a command of sarcasm, cynicism and silliness that put me in mind of Pratchett’s writing. So one Christmas I sent her Wyrd Sisters, and as far as I am aware she was quite taken with the late Sir Terry’s writings.(Jessica Edit: I have this awesome map I saved of Pratchett’s books and the universe they are set in sent to me from Jim. Reading all of Pratchett’s books is an item on my bucket list..)

karla

“It’s all so very ugly George”

But it’s not just holidays. Sometimes there’s no better way to put a smile on a friends face than an unexpected gift when they are least expecting it, this was one such gift. Jessica loved the Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy movie, and I don’t blame her. The slow burn of a spy thriller builds tension much like a horror movie does, gently but inexorably towards the crescendo at the end. I introduced her to the utterly delightful BBC Radio adaptation and as we chatted back and forth about it by email this dropped into my mailbox.

I wanted to read the books as soon as I found out the movie was a book adaptation.

When I saw the movie, i watched it a second time immediately the next day. I do that very rarely anymore.

But i’m so far behind on writing and other “to do” items that it’s just one of those things lingering on the back of my mind.

The wonderful moment when a gift idea blooms organically out of simple conversation. I made a joke about her finally getting to read it once the kids move out to college, and then sneaked off to a certain large book retailer to order a copy. Less than two weeks later, on what was proving to be a particularly rubbish day, a surprise package arrived in the mailbox. Rubbish day instantly improved, if the excessive number of OMGs in the email chain that day are to judge. (Jessica Edit: Seriously, there were a lot of OMGs.)

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Thank you Jim! I hope you enjoyed writing for my blog today. You’re awesome!

Song Flash Fiction: Try

This was a requested post. I had confessed how I was unsure what to write for this song for multiple reasons.

Reason #1: I’m not a romance author and 90% of songs are about love in some shape or form. The song for today is Try by Backstreet Boys. It’s a song about trying to work things out. DUMP THE DOUCHE! I dare say. Go out to the club and, I don’t know, do the stanky leg. (Edit: That’s not a spelling error. Google is your friend.)

Reason #2: N’sync was better.

With these reasons in mind, I wasn’t sure what I was going to write when an idea struck, “When all else fails – throw in an Avenger.” The motion was quickly accepted and approved with a 3-0 vote.

Either the idea is brilliant or I need more friends.

I had done this once before as noted here with Thor. “There is an entire team of characters to choose from. Pick a person and write another story!”

:sticks hand in fish bowl:
:pulls out folded paper:

The tribute for the 2nd Annual Song Flash Fiction Avenger is….:unfolds paper:

IRON MAN!

Before I make some attempt for a flash fiction story staring Iron Man prompted by the song Try by Backstreet Boys (I had to type this out fully because I am struggling to allow this idea I agreed upon to sink in) feel free, and I strongly encourage you to, visit the other writers participating in today’s prompt:

Kris Norris

Bronwyn Green

Kelly St. James

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Pepper stands at the entrance of the workshop when she decides to take a moment and close her eyes for a few deep, controlled breaths. Her feet are sore as her heels have started pinching her toes from all the walking she has done today. As well, her scalp aches from the her tight pony tail, hair screaming to be released and let down. But this is what they agreed upon. Valentine’s day was suppose to be a dinner at home, Tony was suppose to cook. He was far from great at it but Pepper really didn’t mind. But a few Stark Industry emergencies that included both putting out fires figuratively and literally kept their plans from coming to fruition. Now, the day after Valentine’s, Pepper stands at Tony’s work shop with paint swatches in her hand waiting for Tony to stop tinkering long enough to notice her.

She clears her throat and straightens her back. Tony continues to tinker.

“Tony.”

Tony rolls his chair away from his work bench and looks up. “Hi, beautiful.”

“You need to pick out the paint color you want for the new offices. You were suppose to have this done already. They are coming tomorrow to start the repair and remodel.”

“Repair?”

“Yes.”

Tony frowns. “For what?”

“The hole in the wall.”

“Who did that?”

Pepper sucks in a breath. “You did.”

“Oh.”

“Yup.”

Tony picks up a wrench and wipes grease from it with a shop cloth, avoiding Pepper’s gaze. “Well, I’m sure whatever color paint you want will be just fine.”

“I did pick a color.”

“You did?”

“Yes.”

“And?”

“After you blasted a hole in the wall on accident you said, and I quote, ‘I never liked this color anyways.'”

“Oh…”

“Yup.” Pepper walks over to Tony and hands him the paint swatches. “Now you pick the color and quickly please. Remember, we have plans tonight.”

Tony places the swatch book on his work station and stands up, placing a hand on Pepper’s arm. “Listen, why don’t we just call it for the day, put work aside and celebrate Valentine’s Day.”

Pepper doesn’t soften her stance. “Celebrate the Valentine’s Day we missed after work today?”

“Yes.”

“That was already the plan.”

“Oh. Well, I have a new project I’m working on. I think you’ll like it.” Tony picks up a remote from his work station and presses a button. The lights dim and music starts playing.

I need a little love like I never needed love before (wanna make love to ya baby)

Tony dances and mouths the lyrics but Pepper is unmoved. Pulling her arm in an attempt to make her dance she only adjusts her stance but her eyes become focused on something in the distance as she falls into deep thought.

Because tonight, is the night, when two become one

“Is this…is this the Spice Girls?” Pepper asks. “Well, Valentine’s Day was yesterday so do they have a song with the lyrics, ‘yesterday was the night two become one’?

Tony gives a side smirk and presses another button.

I want to sex you up! All night…

“Color Me Bad and nope. Please tell me you’ve been doing more productive things with your time today. Then making a mixed tape.”

“It’s so much more than a mixed tape.”

I swear, by the moon and the stars in the sky. 

“All 4 One? Honestly.” Pepper takes the remote out of Tony’s hand, picks the swatch book up and presses it to his chest. She turns and begins for the workshop door.

Tony picks up the remote once more. The volume suddenly increases as a new song comes on.

Try baby try, give me a moment of your time.

Pepper calls back. “Talk to me after you pick a color and that one is Backstreet Boys!”

Tony sits in his chair and whispers to himself, “Damn, she’s good.”