The Muse Unleashed

Knock Softly. Bring Chocolate.


Deceptions {Friday Fictioneers}

Mei watched her mother post her twin sister’s report card on the fridge.

“Straight A’s again! Mama is so proud of her little scholar!”

Her fingers tightened around her chopsticks as her sister beamed at the praise. Mei never heard things like that addressed to her. All she got was disappointed shakes of the head.

“Thank you Mama.” Yi An slid her gaze over to Mei and smirked, her fingers toying with her own chopsticks. As soon as their mother left the room, Yi An pulled a fork from her pocket and began to eat.

Mei snorted. At least she ate like civilized people.

copyright Marie Gail Stratford

copyright Marie Gail Stratford

For Friday Fictioneers :)



What I like about you {Light and Shade Challenge}

Following sometime after this:

The explosions over, Rachel settled against a tree to wait for Nathan. He’d promised to find her after speaking to Amanda about a recording scheduled the next day. Stifling a yawn, she wondered how rock stars managed to get up and do things. Late nights seemed to be par for the course.

As she stared up in the sky, counting the stars that appeared like pinpricks in black cloth, a shadow wove through the crowd and slid onto the ground next to her.

“Whew. Never a moment to rest.” Nathan snaked an arm around her shoulder. Rachel sucked in her breath. Nathan, with his arm around her! It was still a little surreal. She hesitated then let herself relax into his body. His fingers gave her a little squeeze. Her lips tamped down, swallowing the squeal of joy threatening to erupt.

“I don’t know how you do it. I like my sleep.”

“You get used to it. I’ve always been a bit of a night owl. And my creativity is strongest then.” He gestured out to the now clear night sky. “What did you think of the fireworks?”

“I loved them. Rainbow has always been my favorite color.”

Nathan chuckled under his breath. “Glad my efforts didn’t go to waste.”

“What are you talking about?”

“The band sponsored this. Part of it is for the album promotion but I like to be involved in the community too.”

Rachel felt a little flutter in her stomach. Every moment she spent with Nathan only strengthened her belief that he was perfect. There was still that ‘sex with groupies’ thing but maybe it was all an act.

Nathan bent down and nuzzled her cheek. “You ready to get out of here? You’re more than welcome to crash at my place. We can grab a late breakfast then maybe you can come watch the recording session.”

Her heart did a little flip. Stay the night? She opened her mouth to accept when she remembered what tomorrow was.

“I—I can’t. It’s Sunday.”


“I have to go to…to church.” Rachel squirmed away, once again about to kill the Mirror for dumping her into this particular reality. The battle between her love for Nathan and the understanding that this would be her new permanent home should everything work out was tearing her apart. How was she going to maintain her friendship with Amy is she dumped the religious part of her? It’s what brought them together as friends in this world.

“Can’t you skip it?”

“I promised Amy. I just…need to go this time.” Rachel found Nathan’s hand in the dusky light. “You’re not mad, are you?”

Nathan stared off into the night for a moment before giving her a wry grin. “No, it’s part of what makes you, you. “ He tweaked her nose. “And I kinda like that.”


A scene from my never-ending (it feels like anyway) work in progress. Inspired by this week’s Light and Shade Challenge quote:


Best Day of My Life {100 words}

Laura fingered the baby blanket, its colors faded from time, the edges soft and threadbare. She took strength from its innocence.

“Why are you here? You made your choice.” The girl glared at her, her tangled blonde locks forming a curtain across her cheek. Laura blinked at the venom. She hadn’t expected open arms but this was heartbreaking. Her throat tightened.

“Because I needed you to know. Because I needed to know…” She swallowed the lump, surreptitiously sliding her hands under her thighs to keep them from shaking. “The day you were born was the best day of my life.”


For Leeroy’s 100 word Song - American Authors Best Day of My Life (my choice FYI) and Velvet Verbosity’s 100 Word Challenge: faded

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Lady in Red {100 Words}

Rachel twirled in front of her mirror, an involuntary whistle escaping her lips. She’d never looked this great. Despite her misgivings, the Mirror had been right to make her older. Her lingering baby fat had been smoothed into womanly curves that filled the dress to perfection. And it was a perfect shade of red for her complexion.

“Damn, I look good.”

“Talking to yourself is never a good sign, Rachel.” The Mirror’s voice wrapped itself around her shoulders like a shawl. She yelped at the sensation and frantically rubbed her arms.

“Geez, a little warning perhaps?”

The reflection just grinned.


Linking up to two of my old haunts: Leeroy’s 100 Word Song (Chris De Burgh’s Lady in Red) and Velvet Verbosity’s 100 Word Challenge (whistling)

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Elephant in the Room {Friday Fictioneers}

“Are we going to address the elephant in the room?”

I glance over my sister’s shoulder and shrug. Her jaw tenses at the dismissal.

“You can’t keep going on this way. It’s not healthy.” She grasps my hands, stilling the piece of paper twirling in my fingers. I squirm out of her grasp, my fingers burning at her touch. My heart races as I search for my sanitizer.

My sister sighs and places the bottle in my hands. “You need help. Let me help you.”

“It’s a goat, not an elephant,” I say as I slip past her, careful not to touch.


It’s been too long since I have done any bits of flash fiction :) I hope to make up for the silence.

For Friday Fictioneers:

copyright Adam Ickes

copyright Adam Ickes


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