11/19/2020 random stories from random words

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

using random words to create short stories


abattoir  believable  accountable  comrade  frigid  blackness


There was a man named Wallace who wasn’t much more than a ghost.  Not a ghost you would think of, with chains rattling and transparent, but he was about as white as one would think.  Like a ghost, he moved, mostly unnoticed, from his house to his employment, to the store and maybe a pub.  The world was loud, busy, and everyone had somewhere to go, but Wallace just drifted, like a cloud, lackadaisical.


Wallace would wake up at 6 o’clock in the morning, have a strong, black coffee with some plain scrambled eggs, and then he was out the door, walking, by 7.  He walked the same mile to work everyday and arrived around 7:30, and by 8 o’clock in the morning, he was covered in blood. 


Dripping down his hair, down his nose and his chin, his forearms soaked as well as his knuckles, which were calloused and hard, like the palms of his hands.  He would stomp around in entrails and shit, which splattered up to his thighs.  Wallace worked in a slaughterhouse where he slaughtered cows and pigs, and whatever else they wanted him to slaughter.  Day in and day out, from punch in to punch out, he would swing his sledge hammer, shattering skulls.  Then as the animal spasmed and jostled, he would take a large knife and open its jugular artery.  Slaughtering animals had never been a passion, or a dream, of Wallace, he sort of merely happened on the job.


When he was young he never dreamt of being an astronaut, or a  superhero, or a fighter pilot; really he never gave it much thought.  This uncertainty carried into his academic life, and without knowing what he wanted to do, he never found much purpose in learning anything in particular.  Now, this is not to say Wallace had not learned reading and writing, and mathematics, and science, and history, and everything one learns in school, and Wallace was not even considered by anyone really to be noticeably  stupid  or  smart.  Wallace was relatively average at most things and lived a relatively average life.  He lived independently, had a career, had food in his refrigerator and a comfortable bed, and life was quite comfortable for Wallace.  It would be more accurate to say that Wallace grew up less  motivated, maybe also less  excited.


So Wallace, unsure what to do after high school, was told about his now slaughtering job by a peer from one of his classes.  That peer’s name was Dutch.  Dutch and Wallace could be described as friends, they had many classes together, all the way back from first grade.  They would attend one another’s birthday parties, would ride the school bus together, traded baseball cards and comics, and did other things friends would do, but Dutch was  everyone’s  friend while Wallace was acknowledged.  Wallace was always welcomed, never bullied, but with Dutch, he was the guy everyone wanted to be around.


Dutch always went out of his way to invite Wallace to social events.  Dutch always wanted to talk about the future, about college and careers, starting families, cities to move to, and more.  Wallace never knew the answers.


So Dutch, knowing Wallace needed an income, helped him with the slaughtering job.  Dutch worked there too, for a time.  Dutch was accepted into a University, and then into a graduate program, and this was about the time he left the slaughtering business.  While they worked together, Dutch always encouraged Wallace to apply to college, and he did, for a time.  Wallace went to a community college, and even received his AA, but being unable to decide on a clear direction, ended up taking the summer off, which turned the following fall off, and then a year off, and then he never went back.  Dutch would call Wallace for a while, but then, eventually the calls stopped, and Wallace kept on slaughtering, day in and day out.


Now Wallace had been slaughtering for so long, life passed by as if in a dream.  The sun rose and fell, and Wallace did the same thing, and then he did it again.


It was about ten years later when he was at a pub two blocks from his house, that Wallace ran into Dutch.  Dutch was excited to see Wallace, to tell him stories about his life, his accomplishments, his family, and about the future.  They shared a few pints and then called it a night. 


The next day, Wallace woke up, had his coffee and got ready, and left.  He walked his same route and got to work around the same time.  He sharpened his knives and then took them, along with his sledge hammer, to begin his shift.


It was about an hour into his shift, which worked out to about six pigs and four cows, when his fifth cow entered the space.  Wallace, going through his motions, gave it a half-hearted shushing to calm it as he would take the rope around its neck and tie it to an anchoring point.  Usually the animals resisted, smelling blood around them, they would buck and fight, but this cow was calm and just stared.  Wallace, seemingly sensing the cow staring at him  stopped his shushing and felt slightly startled.  It was not overly strange, but simply  different  enough to notice.


The cow and Wallace locked eyes, and in that moment everything around Wallace the world around him went black, like the two of them were in an abyss.  The air was cold, which was normal as the slaughter house wanted to preserve the meat, but today Wallace  felt  the cold.  He felt the goosebumps tingle along his shoulders and then to his neck.  He also felt the blood, the warm, sticky blood on his forearms, and how his pants were warm with blood, clinging to his legs.  He felt a warm drop of blood roll down his ice cold cheek, down to his lips when he tasted the iron of it.  No.  Not iron, but  salt.  A tear?  Wallace was becoming overwhelmed, confused.  Suddenly the world felt like too much, so much that his brain shut it all out and now it was only him and this cow, this cow staring at him, into his soul.  He wanted to take the sledge hammer and bash in its head, to make everything go back to normal, but the hammer was too heavy now, Wallace had no strength to lift it.  Instead he dropped it, hearing the metallic sound bounce off of the cement floor.


He looked into the cow’s eyes, its black eyes, like voids with no end.  The cow looked back with no emotion, no concern, no thought of what was happening or why Wallace was standing before him.  Wallace realized those eyes were as his own, blank and empty.  His mind began to spin, thinking of all the livestock he had killed, all the lives he had ended.  About how they were bred only to be slaughtered and consumed and he thought about his own life, how had been born, only to later die.  These livestock had achieved nothing, done nothing, had been nowhere, and had never been excited for anything.  Just as Wallace had lived.  He took off his rubber gloves and put his hands on the cow, for the first time actually feeling the coarse hair, feeling its shoulders expand and deflate as it breathed. 


Slowly the world returned around him.  Wallace walked out of the slaughter house and into the warm sun.  For the first time he listened and heard birds singing, and cars passing by and people talking.  He could smell the scent of fresh cut gas and asphalt heated in the parking lot.  For the first time he was aware of  himself  and for the first time, he wanted more.



trousers  believe  church  limit  obscene  natural


It was a Sunday morning when the Campbell family was getting ready for their weekly church attendance.  There was Charles Campbell, a good father, and Wendy Campbell, good mother, and then their children, two boys and a girl, named Dillion, Jacob, and Heidi.  Every Sunday, Charles and Wendy would wake up and work together to make a great breakfast: delicious fat pancakes, juicy bacon, and perfectly golden hash browns with some cheese melted on top.  The family always started with their prayers, thanking God for everything He provided and then they would laugh and talk at the table, enjoying being together.


The Monday before, little Heidi, who was 7 years old, noticed her friends started sewing patches onto their clothes, both the boys and the girls.  All on their jackets and shirts and pants and backpacks, the children would adorn themselves with their passions, whether it be Batman, Pikachu, or Spiderman, My Little Pony, or just rainbows or skulls.  All over the playground and the classroom, her friends would show off their patches, explaining how it reflected who they were.  One of her friends showed off his Batman, explaining he admired how he stood up to bullies, but he also had Joker, because en enjoyed a good prank.


Heidi went home and told her family of this and she too wanted to show off her passions through patches.  Initially her parents dismissed it as a fad, but by Thursday, as Heidi relentlessly retold stories from the other kids about their patches, Charles took his daughter to the store to pick out a few.  Heidi was so excited, ecstatic to show off what she would pick, her older brothers but not by much, Dillion and Jacob, helped with her ideas.  They quizzed her in what she believed in, what her principles were, which was a conundrum for a 7 year old, but Heidi was confident she would make the right choice.


In the end, she picked three patches.  The first was a Princess Leia face, with the buns on the side, the second was a cute lion head with a mane around it, and the last was a full body Buzz Lightyear.  She was proud of her selection and confidently asked her mother to sew them onto her trousers.  She picked her trousers specifically  If they were on her jacket, she would take it off if she became too hot, and she did not pick her shirt, because then she would cover them with her jacket if she became too cold.


Now it was Sunday and she could not wait to introduce this new, fun idea to her friends at Sunday school.  The kids there did not go to her school, and she wondered if any of them would arrive with patches.


After the service ended, The Campbells were asked to speak with the minister, and his wife who led Heidi’s Sunday school class.  The Campbells had attended this church for some time, and generally appreciated their minister, and his wife, though at times they believed they could be overly zealous, so the request to meet was hard to discern if the conversion would be pleasant or if it would be a lecturing.


It was about little Heidi’s patches.


It was the minister’s wife who spoke first, mostly pleasant but with a sense of passive aggressive undertone.  She explained how Heidi had come in, with these patches on her trousers and it distracted from  her  lesson, how it felt very rude and frustrating that the kids would rather talk about the patches and discuss what they would want on their own clothes.  She talked about how hard she labored to teach the children about patience and kindness, how Jesus came to earth to serve others and be a sacrifice.  The minister’s wife went on and on about how long it took for her to gather notes and make an outline, and to use her time and energy to teach the children only to be ignored and unappreciated and how it made her feel, and how personally attacked she was.


Then it was time for the minister to speak.  He studied the patches and shared how it was selfish of Heidi to take over the spotlight.  He talked about Princess Leia, how Star Wars was a world serving  the Force, which was a false idol, against God.  He talked about the cute lion head, which was a barbaric creature and Buzz Lightyear, a toy, which consumed childrens’ minds, like a drug causing them to turn their eyes from God.  The minister explained they should dress wholesome and plain, to not steal attention while at church, to not cause others to be distracted from God’s word as he preached.


Heidi felt embarrassed, and ashamed that she let her family down.  She wanted to get the patches off of her trousers immediately.  Her parents defended her, explaining the fad at school, explaining it was an innocent gesture to show some individualism among her peers.  But the minister and his wife became more agitated by this.  They exclaimed it was a personal attack against their church and appalled these parents would allow their child to wear such un-Godly images. 


After some arguing, a few members started to gather to chime in.  Some agreed with the minister, some agreed with the parents, all the while Heidi hid behind her hand, which covered her face as she cried.


After even more time, now the whole church was debating over the matter,  an angel and demon appeared amongst the congregation.  The angel was glorious and bright, beautiful with long pure, white wings.  The demon also had wings, which were black and charred, like its cloak that one could tell was once white like the angels.  It smelled of sulfur and perhaps its once beautiful face was now scarred from burns.


The demon, delighted with the in-fighting, relished how the church was divided.  At first the minister condemned the demon, ordering it to go back to Hell, but the demon innocently held his hand up defensively.  It shared how it agreed with the pastor, how the child was selfish and distracting.  The demon, as once a being of God, could confidently say how change was a  slippery slope  and that the minister was right to stick with tradition, only focusing on God, the importance on the  minister’s  sermons, as well as his dear, sweet wife’s lessons to the kids and that children should obey because who were they to teach Godly lives.


The angel stepped in front of the demon, blatantly pushing it aside, to speak.  The angel pointed out the division, how the focus was about personal vendettas.  How all of this was a distraction from God, about what He really expected from his followers.  The angel talked about love and accepting one another, to get to know each other and to be examples of tolerance and welcoming to all.  The demon scoffed and again pressed people on defending where they felt attacked, and encouraged those who felt validated to press on harder with their zeal.


As people argued, or some just walked away, the angel slipped through the crowd and led Heidi away, to a quiet place and consoled her.  The angel asked her about the patches. 


Princess Leia was a strong, heroic woman, who believed in herself and the force with the greatest of faith, which Heidi felt symbolized her own faith.  The cute lion face made her think of her family and how a lion pride relied on each other, could count on each other, and how she knew her parents would always protect and guide her and her brothers were always around to play and laugh.  Buzz Lightyear made her think of the stars, how life was an adventure and she could go anywhere and do anything.  How, at times, life can be scary, she knew she would always be safe with her family, and God, and her own self-confidence. 

Submitted: November 21, 2020

© Copyright 2020 Minion of Coeus. All rights reserved.

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Serge Wlodarski

Good stories.

Sat, November 21st, 2020 12:08pm

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