No Ordinary Mouse

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“Run! Run! Run!”

“We’re not gonna make it!”

“We will! Move your tail, soldier!”

Crofton jumped first, landing solidly on the floor of the moving boxcar. Nina leapt after him, grasping the handle of the partially open door and swinging into the car beside him.

Paul ran as fast as his four feet would carry him down the station platform, his heart racing like an eight-cylinder engine at full horsepower. Continue reading “No Ordinary Mouse”

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The Friend Zone

the friend zone graphic

“One Hoboken special and a turkey club, no onions.” Mia’s voice rose over the sound of the crowd outside the food truck.

A warm California breeze blew in through the open window, smelling like fried onions and saltwater…and Mia’s orange blossom perfume.

Ben flipped two filets of chicken on the sizzling griddle before moving to work on the sandwich order. With a glance out the window, he saw it belonged to their last customer.

Relieved, he finished up the order, and fifteen minutes later, he was slouching into a folding chair at the back of the truck. He ran his fingers through his hair, let out a long sigh, and propped his feet up on a cooler. Mia pulled off her baseball cap, and her coffee brown curls tumbled around her shoulders.

Ben’s breath caught, and he studied his shoelaces like they held all the world’s secrets. Did she see the blush heating up his face? Continue reading “The Friend Zone”

Become New

Leona stared, unseeing, at the small grungy duplex. Her eyes fixed upon the fading gray door and penetrated through the walls to her past. That night so long ago came rushing back like a tidal flood and nearly drowned her once again in the pain of it all. She could see the others—homies, out for a good time and looking for themselves. They couldn’t abandon her fast enough when the cops showed up. Continue reading “Become New”

Finding the Sun

Photo “seattle rain.” taken 12/12/10 by Ryan Heaney. Made available at Flickr.com under an Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic license.

 

The city lights gleamed upon the wet concrete, streams of luster among a hard sea of darkness. Raindrops continued falling from the black night sky, rippling in puddles and slipping down the window panes of the café in glassy rivulets.

April took a sip of coffee and watched through the window as a woman with a black umbrella slipped an envelope into the blue USPS drop box along the sidewalk. What words were contained Continue reading “Finding the Sun”

Love, Tea Gardens, and Converse Sneakers

Photo “Untitled” taken 2/21/10 by Paola Camargo. Made available at Flickr.com under an Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic license.

 

As out of place as a river bass in a teacup. That’s what I was. From my mint green nails to my blue Converse sneakers.

Yet here I was at a formal tea in a Victorian garden with my future in-laws.

I wanted nothing more than to melt into a puddle and seep down between the cracks of the Travertine tiles beneath my shoes. Continue reading “Love, Tea Gardens, and Converse Sneakers”

Hidden Treasures

Photo "Light Night" taken 9/28/10 by amanda tipton. Made available at Flickr.com under an Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic license.

Photo “Light Night” taken 9/28/10 by amanda tipton. Made available at Flickr.com under an Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic license.

 

“They’re all empty,” Dan said looking down into the chest.

Dust particles swirled in the sunrays that shone through the dusty panes of the attic windows. The place looked like a thrift store and an antique shop had gotten married and taken up residence there. Aunt Maud had insisted on bringing him up to look at her “treasures”. Dan had protested. He was sure she’d never be able to make it up the ladder. He’d stood below, telling her not to be unreasonable and expecting every moment to have to catch the thin-boned mass of blue chiffon and bobby pins. Continue reading “Hidden Treasures”

Not Quite Done

Photo “Irish Independent” taken 9/27/13 by Thomas Leuthard. Made available at Flickr.com under an Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Chicago. March 17th, 1960

 

Mrs. O’Toole set the newspaper down on the table beside his steaming mug of coffee and Doran glanced at the headlines. Something about three women from Riverside being murdered and Eisenhower endorsing Nixon. He turned away from the paper with a sigh. Continue reading “Not Quite Done”

Stand Up

prayer-close (1)Shawna sat against the hard, brick wall of the school, her head in her hands. It was a perfect, California day full of sun and warm, sea breezes. Everyone around her was eating or talking with friends in the outdoor cafeteria area. But Shawna was in no mood for any of that right now. Ever since the phone call from Jamie’s dad last night, it felt as if someone had stabbed her heart with a red-hot poker. She still couldn’t believe her best friend had tried to Continue reading “Stand Up”