Thursday Flash Tale – A Flash Fiction Adventure

Thursday Flash Tale – A Flash Fiction Adventure

We are trying something new on the PJV, we call it Flash Tales. It’s Flash Fiction, with a random writing prompt. Joss and I will be doing this, and we would love to have you guys join in. Or just read our stuff and let us know what you think. What we are doing is generating a random idea prompt, using the site Short Story Ideas. Then we’ll write a 1K to 2K tale based off of the idea generated.

Here is what the Short Story Idea generated for me:

A convenience store is the location, angst is the theme. A pack of cigarettes is an object that plays a part in the story.

This is an unedited work of fiction. All content © 2016 by Gillian Zane. This content can not be shared or republished without express permission from the author. 

The Stranger by Gillian Zane

“Just run in and grab me a pack of smokes,” Billy whined from the back seat. He was a douche on a good day, drunk he had me wanting to beat his head in. This surprised me since I considered myself an even tempered person and not prone to violence. Billy always brought out the bad side in me.

“Will you stay put?” I asked my own pleading tone an embarrassment. I gritted my teeth and tried to not scowl. I had one thing to do, deliver his ass to his parents in a relatively unharmed condition if I wanted my bonus. Bonus, as in ten grand. I was getting that money. That money would be the best thing that Billy Wallace ever did for me.

I had checked every low-rent casino and strip club in the tristate area and finally found his ass at the Big Horse Casino on a three-day binge of what seemed to be meth, gin, and black jack. He had also been in the hole by over fifty grand. No wonder his father offered me ten to find him, I was a bargain.

Billy looked up at me with bloodshot eyes and gave me a goofy grin.

“Billy, if I leave you in the car do you promise not to go anywhere?”

“Cross my dick and hope to sober,” he laughed at his joke, which fell way short in my estimation.

“I don’t believe you,” I mumbled and then said louder, “I’m locking you in.”

I parked the car in the spot on the side of the convenience store, so if Billy made a scene the clerk couldn’t see him. I slipped out of the sedan and clicked the remote to lock him in. I had another fifty miles to go with the drunk William Wallace the fourth in the backseat if I plied him with cigarettes and sugary soda maybe he’d not talk as much.

I was tired of hearing his mouth. Tired of hearing him reminisce about our childhood like he cared.

“Remember that time, Kel? You know when I got locked out of the house…and you stayed with me in the tree house?” I had been hearing stuff like that for three-hour drive back to his parent’s manor.

Working for the Wallace family wasn’t my ideal career choice, but they paid ridiculously well and I usually made my own hours. My father had worked for them before me when they had only been the owners of one prestigious horse farm. I had grown up around the family. Billy and I had practically been raised as cousins. I cringed at my own thoughts. Cousin was a bad analogy since at one point I had the hots for him, but I was a teenager and dumb as a box of rocks, not to mention relatively isolated at the manor house.

But, then his father had run for office. And now the manor was a veritable compound and Mr. Wallace employed hundreds of people, including myself.

I thought about the stupid girl I had been. The daughter of the Wallace’s beloved trainer. We had lived in a little house by the stables and I thought the sun and moon set on the boy that rode the big white horse named Thor. It had probably been years since Billy had ridden and even more since my obsession with him had fizzled. That attraction, what I had believed to be love, had quickly been doused as Billy found things to do other than riding. Hobbies like drinking, drug use, and a lot of very casual sex.

“Stay put,” I mouthed.

He tried the door and when it didn’t open he banged on the window. He called my name, but I shook my head and rattled the keys at him.

I hated treating him this way, but there was no choice. He went missing two weeks ago and his father had been livid. There had been all these strange people hanging around the manor, men with creepy eyes that didn’t blink when they watched you. Mr. Wallace had assured his staff that they were here to work with him.

“Big changes,” he had told us. “And all of you will be with me when it happens!”

But then his son had disappeared, on another binge and those creepy men had become anxious, Mr. Wallace had gotten more and more frustrated until he finally pulled me into his office, along with two other of his security staff – and offered the person that found Billy ten grand. I knew Billy, I knew I would be the one to find him.

Yet, a tingle in my stomach, an itch at the back of my neck had me worried that someone else had known this. Someone knew I would find Billy and that someone was watching me. I scratched at my neck, my hair was pulled on top of my head in a professional bun.

Billy was still banging against the window, I turned back to look at him once more and he pulled his face in a grimace, his skin tinged with green. He was going to be sick.

“Oh shit,” I cried and clicked the release button. The door flew open, Billy must have been yanking on the handle. He fell from the car and fell forward with an audible oomph. The moment his hands hit the pavement he began to vomit. Wet retching sounds making me swallow as my mouth filled with saliva, I was never good with puke.

I hated him. It was a revelation to realize the truth. But it was the truth. I had loved the boy, I hated the man. The weak man. Looking back on our lives together I could see the weak man in the boy I had loved, but before I had seen him through rose colored glasses. I had viewed his greed as ambition. I had played off his selfishness as confidence. It had taken a lot for me to wake up and view him for what he really was and it stung because I had cherished my friend. Now, I hated him.

I stood over him as he vomited and made no attempt to help him.

“Friend of yours?” I hadn’t heard anyone walk up. Not the crunch of gravel, or the sound of a stray breath. I had been trained to be a member of the Wallace security team, so I was supposed to be aware of my surroundings. I had thought I was good at my job.

“Where did you come from?” I turned to the man that stood next to me, staring down at Billy. He was a few inches taller than me but much wider, his shoulders filling out the leather jacket he wore. I only caught his profile, an aquiline nose, a strong jaw and hair in a sleek fade.

“Your friend is drunk.” He stated the obvious.

“Quite,” I snorted.

“That’ll make this easier,” he said and in a blur of motion was grabbing Billy and yanking him to his feet. He looked up at me. His eyes flashed. Those unsettling eyes like the men from the manor. They bore into me, challenging me. My stomach dropped and my breath hitched.

“Stop,” I drew on the man. This was the first time I had drawn my weapon, I had only passed marksmanship last month so I could get my permit. I was relieved to see my hand didn’t shake.

“Your little pistol means nothing to me,” the man laughed, holding Billy by the back of his neck in a tight restraint. Billy squirmed half-heartedly, his eyes rolling into the back of his head. Did he even realize what was happening to him? B

“What do you want from us?” I asked with as much command as I could muster.

“Nothing from you, female, everything from your employer, that’s why I’m taking his eldest son. It’s time for him to pay the piper,” he smiled and I saw the gleam of white teeth. Too white and too sharp. The man was handsome in a predatory way, in a way that was pristine and well-packaged–creepy. The kind of man you would see in a magazine that was photoshopped and touched up. But, here he stood, with a smile that didn’t reach his eyes, no photoshop needed.

Billy heaved again and the stranger let him fall to his hands and knees to avoid the forthcoming puke explosion.

I pulled the trigger. The metal of the trigger resisted as my finger pulled it as if to say, “do you really want to do this?” I had no reason to shoot, he hadn’t made a move to hurt Billy, the only thing I had going was my gut feeling and that feeling screamed TIME TO FREAK OUT. The gun kicked back, the sound exploded over the empty parking lot and the smell of gun powder fanned my face with a caress. The violence of the shot was shocking to me.

I went for the biggest target, his chest like I had been taught. The stranger jerked once, but he stayed erect. His eyes on mine. A hole appeared in his shirt, but there was no blood, he didn’t fall, he didn’t even wince. His smile became bigger and he looked down at the smoking hole in his shirt.

“Ah, Kelsey, that tickled.”

How did he know my name? How was he still standing?

“What?” I gaped at him.

“I don’t have the time or the inclination to explain,” he waved me off like I was bothering him. He pulled Billy up by his hair, which had Billy whimpering and complaining.

The man dragged Billy with him as he walked closer to me. He bent over and scooped something up. My keys. I must have dropped them when I drew my weapon. The man pushed Billy into the backseat with a kick and then got behind the wheel. I stood there, my gun pointed at him, but afraid to shoot again.

“Tell you’re employer Pace called in his marker,” the man made a dismissive wave with his left hand and started the car.

I finally found my voice and lowered my weapon, knowing it would be of no use. A weird doubt in my head that I wasn’t used to. I couldn’t shoot, I would miss. This man was too strong. I was too weak. I was nothing compared to this man.

“What are you going to do to him?” My voice left my mouth in a wavering, shaky pattern.

“That depends on William the Third. He knows what I require.”

“You can’t take him like this, he’s a drunk, but innocent. He’s not like his father,” I chose to use logic over force.

“I know this,” he said softly. “Call Wallace, he knows how to get in touch with me.”

“I’ll find you, you can’t do this!” I found my confidence. He couldn’t do this. The man looked me up and down, his smile never wavering.

“For some reason, I believe you and I look forward to it.” He winked. Winked! Like we were flirting and my gun arm slowly raised. I could shoot him through the head, no one could live through that.

He pulled off with a spin of the tires, kicking up gravel that hit me in the shins. I watched as the tail lights got smaller and smaller. I wanted to shoot out the tires, like the movies. I wanted to chase him, but something held me back. That crippling doubt that flashed through my mind. Too slow. Too weak. Too dumb. Too human…

That was odd. I blinked, the last thought breaking me out of my cyclical thoughts. What had just happened? I had lost Billy.

Reluctantly I pulled out my phone and punched in the number of my employer.

1 Comment

  1. Patti (@TheLoveJunkee)

    Ooohhh – I like this! Not sure if it’s paranormal or sci-fi, and you hooked me because I’d love to know what happens next. Great scene.

The Itch – A Flash Fiction Short by Gillian Zane

The Itch by Gillian Zane

The itching began about a month ago. A terrible itch that burned and bothered the girl from sun up to sunset. At first, it was just a light itch, she scratched at it haphazardly, leaving bright red marks on her skin. People asked if she had an allergy, she was unaccustomed to allergies, so she shrugged and itched more.

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Cassie’s Coffee Shop Escapades – Flash Fiction Thursday

It’s been awhile. I have nothing but long and drawn out excuses that you don’t want to hear. They involve a wasp infestation, the fact that I can’t say no…and the genius idea of turning rentals into AirBnB’s but doing all the work myself. But, I made it. And I’m writing again. I even have a release schedule. What? Yup. And I thought my “back on the horse” flash fiction, would take place in the world of Karma Inc. which is my current series.

This is an unedited Karma Inc. short. All content © 2017 by Gillian Zane.

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About The Author

Gillian Zane

Gillian Zane is an Amazon bestselling author that specializes in dark genre fiction for adults. Gillian defines herself by the city she was raised in, New Orleans. She’s tried moving away a few times but always comes back. At the age of ten, she decided she would be a writer and has been determined every since. Between that decision and when she actually finished a book that she believed was good enough to publish, she’s served in the military, worked as a bartender, became a cog in the corporate marketing wheel as a person “that makes things pretty” and has since been laid off too many times to count. She currently writes full-time, but still, continues to “make things pretty” by designing book covers and websites for her fellow authors and bloggers. Gillian lives in New Orleans with her husband, her daughter, and an ugly dog. You can find Gillian Zane on twitter @GillianZane. Sign up for her newsletter: