Speculative Fiction Prompt – January 2022

It’s a new year, and in the spirit of 2022, the speculative fiction prompt is back! On the first of each month there will be a new image for writers to use to inspire work. We accept all styles of writing, be that a poem, a short story, of a chapter for a novel. This prompt was originally the brainchild of D Wallace Peach over at Myths of the Mirror. Writing and Works took over 2019 and it went on hiatus at the start of the pandemic.

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Just Two Left – #Prosery

‘What did you just say?’ Selwin asked, leaning his body through the open doorframe. He squinted past the greasy smoke and spotted Jak crouched by the hearth, hands out to the spluttering flames.
‘I went out to the hazel wood, because a fire was in my head,’ Jak muttered, his scalp mottled and pink in the gloom.
‘It wasn’t in your head.’ Selwin crossed the room to open the back door. ‘You messed with a bad spell and set the world alight.’
‘It needed to be let out.’
‘It needed you to mind your own business.’ He waved a hand in front of his face, the air clearing slowly. He frowned at the shadows across Jak’s features.
‘New worlds rise from ashes,’ muttered the broken wizard.
‘Not from these.’
Selwin sighed and sagged against the doorframe. ‘Your just lucky enough not to see it.’

Tonight’s DVerse Prosery prompt takes inspiration from the poem ‘The Song of Wandering Aengus’ by Yeats.

‘I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head’.

The Walls Whistle – Flash Fiction #DVersePoets

They bought the house new, especially to avoid these sorts of things.
There is nothing behind the wall, except a space where the wind whistles, and it always whistles. Even on still days, when the plastic windmills in the neighbour’s garden don’t clatter, and Gregory Mutt’s union jack is slummed around its flagpole, the wind whistles!
‘I don’t quite understand what you want?’ the contractor explained. ‘There’s nothing to explain where a draught would be getting in, and we’ve checked all your external walls.’
‘Listen though!’ Jenny hauled him through the kitchen by the front of his shirt, pressed her face to the lilac paint. ‘It’s whistling now!’
The contractor stared at her, wide eyed, and a little sweaty.
‘Aye,’ he croaked, ‘I hear it.’
She yanked him closer.
‘You will,’ she said, quiet now. ‘You will be the one to make it stop.’

It’s the end of a long day and I still have words to write for NaNoWriMo, but I’m taking a little break to pop over to the dVersePub and see what delights they have in store for tonight’s prompt. They’ve yet to dissapoint!

Wash Out The Bad #WeekendWritingPrompt

The official report blamed ‘a torrential downpour’ for Ichabod McGuffin’s horrific suffocation beneath two hundred tonnes of hillside.

However, there were rumours about his mother, and the hairs on Eddie’s arms rose as he pulled up outside old lady McGuffin’s bungalow. He shook the feeling off and fetched the shopping from the backseat.

‘Such a good lad,’ she smiled, opening the door. She watched him set the shopping down.

‘Yes,’ she said again, and handed him her payment. ‘A good lad. Just the sort we want round here.’

wk-158-downpour

 

It Isn’t The Princess Who Needs Saving #DVersePoets

In the market they are talking

about last week’s linens,

still strung across the garden

beneath skies dazzling blue.

 

The butcher’s wife does not like

the cats with their black cloaks,

stalking the briar patch at night,

bright eyes like guttering candles.

 

Her husbands claims superstition,

but distrusts the foxglove purple swords,

the nightshade, the mistletoe,

the cut stems by the hedgerow.

 

Forgets who birthed their last child,

almost blue and so brokenly quiet.

Breathed that first cry into him

when they though him too far gone.

 

But there’s the girl and her tears,

and her husband raging

for some sort of explanation

as to why the seed won’t take.

 

And why this year’s harvest failed,

and the Harlow’s pig got sick,

and the men from the church came

and hung a witch out.

 

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I’m going to admit, this poem got away from me somewhat, and I’m really not sure how I feel about the ending. Still, I hope you like where I took tonight dVerse prompt. I only used a couple of the phrases we were given but like I said, the poem sort of got away from me.