She is still uncertain if she should be a scientist, an artist, or a unicorn veterinarian when she grows up. The crease above her nose tells me these are serious decisions.

I keep my vote to myself. “What happened to your dragon farm?”

“Oh, I’m still doing that but there’s a lot of free time in dragon farming. Especially if you’re helping.”

“I’ll be helping.”

She pulls a piece of paper from her bag. “I’ll make a list. Pros and cons. I want to be a scientist so bad but there’s so many sick unicorns who need my help.” She sighs deeply. The world is heavy on her shoulders.

Based on the prompt beloved


Three birds on the coast, their destination freedom. Their wingtips warmed with flight. Their defiance of winter an inscrutable delight. I’ll take their inspiration and hurry home to huddle ’round my fire. My fingertips wrapped and warmed around a mug. My defiance of winter a thick pair of socks atop a woolen rug.

This post written in response to The Daily Post’s ‘inscrutable’ prompt


The forest falls silent as the snowflakes flutter downward. The owl’s wings are muffled beneath the crush of ice crystals stacking mindlessly atop each other, heedless of their collective weight. A branch breaks, a limb is lost. The gnome things hunker down, stuffing their ears with moss against the deafening crash of kamikaze flakes.

I hear nothing and slumber on.

A stoat races across the fallen branch. The owl stretches out her clutching talons as her silent wings beat on. The gnome things cringe as the stoat’s cry penetrates the moss.

I sleep on, mindless in the silence of the snow.

This post was written in response to the Daily Post’s photo challenge “silence”

A Weathered Destiny

I’ll admit it, I was a terrible assistant. The wizard I worked for never received his messages. The coffee, if fresh, was instant. Ants on the sugar bowl, you get the picture. He hated instant coffee. Had a phobia of ants. Loved getting messages, said they made him feel less alone.

He might have done better with an actual person, rather than an old binder clip he infused with the first soul who floated past. Thanks for that, wizard. You bastard.

Few years back he up and died. Just keeled over mid-spell, so here I am, stuck living in this damn clip for all eternity, bored out of my mind. His kids tossed me in a junk pile with all his other crap. I mean, the view is better, but turns out rust itches like the dickens as it chews away at you. I’d crumble if someone tried to open me now, shove a sheet of paper in my maw. I’d stain it cruddy orange as crumbles of my corroding body skittered to their feet.

Not sure I deserve this. Not sure I deserved being trapped inside a clip to begin with. What the heck was he thinking? “I’m lonely and have a fetish for sentient binder clips?” I suppose I had some odd collections myself back in my human days. I liked to save the third metatarsal of all the little fairies I chopped up and threw into my stew.

I was famous for my stew. Set up a cannery and made a fortune. “Fairy stew puts a twinkle in you” remember that song? Your grandma might. That was me! Course I got blamed when the fairy population crashed. Darn things were so small it took three to stuff a can. Did my customers ever twinkle, though. Those were the days.

I know what you’re thinking. Did ol’ Wizard McGizzard trap me here as punishment? I doubt it. He was just a geezer without any gumption left for that sort of thing. He got lucky. I didn’t. Soon, though. This old body’s getting over-weathered. Soon it’ll be nothing more than dust. Then I’ll be free. I think. I hope. I guess I could end up spread out between a zillion cells, this one this memory, that one another, scattered to bits when the wind picks up. Maybe you’ll inhale me one day. Wouldn’t that be grand, now.

Well. Enough about me. What brings you here?

This post was written in response to the Daily Post’s prompt “weathered

runaway story

The story came to her in the early morning when her mind was still fresh from dreaming.

She had almost caught it when her alarm clock screeched and the story fled in terror.

It slipped beneath the crack of her door as she struggled to pull on her pants. She wasn’t far behind, but it was far enough.

Down the stairs, past the old library, she searched. Nothing. Her heart ached to lose such a story. Her fingers ached to write. Her mind longed to lose herself inside it.

She pulled back the coats in the old closet, whispering into the cedar scented shadows. “Story?” Nothing answered but the scritch of mice in the walls.

She crept into the wizard’s room, the one he rented by the week and reeked of charcoal, skunk, and sour feet. He was out.

She peered inside a blue potion bottle. Empty. But she could still make out the faint scent of the story.  It had been there, no more than a minute or so ago.

She closed the door with a click and hesitated. She crouched, checking the key hole. Dust. Pieces of a crushed and tragic spider. No story.

Her stomach growled.

The fridge. She hurried to the kitchen, grunting as she yanked at the door. There. Behind a plate of leftover ham. The story she’d been hunting. The one that escaped her.

She lured it out with a handful of papers and a promise of ink from the bottle in her pocket. Quiet, stealthy, she wielded her pen, her face a study of concentration and delight. The story relaxed at last, snuggling into the snow-white paper beneath her hand, knowing it was home.