Love

The Cost of Choosing

Tears streamed down his reddened cheeks as he sat holding his knees against his chest as tightly as his little arms could manage.

“I hate being little!”

Andy’s father plopped down next to him and thought about what to say while resisting the urge to rub the wavy locks of blonde hair that seemed to always look perfect no matter how messy his clothes were at the end of the day.

“I think I’m supposed to tell you how great being six years old is, but to be honest I bet it kind of sucks sometimes.”

Andy’s head shot up to look into his father’s before delivering a very serious reprimand.

“Mom says that’s a bad word.”

“Oh… yes. I’m sorry. I meant stinks.” (more…)

Windows to the Soul

Her eyes froze me. I had never met someone who could say so much without a single word. Thoughts played like pictures across two small blue screens. The slightest lift of her eyebrow could convey things more clearly than most of my dim-witted friends and it is no wonder. They had willingly traded in the treasure of words for the sake of fitting in. How am I expected to know the true feelings of a person who would rather say “LOL” than share the actual joy of laughter with me?

But it was not what she could say to me that chilled my soul, it was what she could read. I felt naked when her gaze held mine. (more…)

Gifts (Part 1)

Valerie Michaels hoped that March 7th, 2045 would be a special day. And even though it was her eleventh birthday, she would always remember it for another reason.

The ceiling in her room began to illuminate as the soft sounds of classical music signaled that it was time to get up. Her step-mom would be in soon to help her. Until then she stretched and listened to the music drift down like snow upon her. A smile crept across her face as she recognized the soft song. It would only be the first of many surprises from her father. Christine opened the door just as a cello finished the last “Happy birthday to you.” (more…)

Knights, Spies, and Astronauts

Growing up in Hollywood was not as glamorous as it sounds, but the education is unmatched in all the country. In class I was taught geometry, history, and biology, but on the way home I learned how to recognize drug dealers and whores. I could spot a hopeful actor or actress from across a restaurant by the script they kept folded in their back pocket. My friend Dickson and I never finished at the top of our class in school, but outside those walls we felt like Einstein and some other smart guy like Einstein.

My family moved to Hollywood when I was still in diapers because my dad was an actor. He mostly did plays, but wanted to be in the movies. He was always talking in weird voices and pretending he was other people. Sometimes he would let me play along with him. We were knights and spies and astronauts. No matter what adventure we shared it always ended with a tickle fight and lots of laughter. After a while we didn’t pretend anymore. He said it was because I was getting older now and it was time for me to grow up. Luckily I got a new best friend right around the same time.

(more…)

A Thousand Reasons

“That’s weird…”

The high-pitched squeak of Riley’s chair signaled his coming arrival to the top of the grey wall that separated our cubicles. His words arrived a split-second before the top half of his face.

“What is?”

I looked up to see the hazel eyes of my curious co-worker looking down upon me. His short brown was neatly parted and brushed to one side. When I started working here, his habit of looking over our shared wall reminded me of the neighbor Wilson from Home Improvement, but after a few weeks of why Star Trek is more scientifically accurate than Star Wars instead of words of wisdom from obscure tribes in Africa the illusion faded.

“Some girl dialed my number by accident, but instead of hanging up she left a message.”

Riley’s voice rose a bit with excitement. “Oh yeah? Let me hear.” (more…)

All I Wanted

I almost killed him. And I could have done it. I’ve got a hundr… sixty pounds on the little twerp. His big blue eyes were locked onto me until I couldn’t take it anymore.

“What are you looking at Thane?”

His little smile was the kind of evil that is so far from good it doesn’t even know that it’s evil.

“Mrs. Owens, your arms jiggle like the Jell-O mom makes for Halloween. I like Jell-O!”

What would the sentence be for killing a five year old? Life in prison certainly, but would they give me the chair? When I pictured the jury filled with women in their thirties I almost convinced myself I could get away with it. But then I remembered that it wasn’t him I wanted to kill. (more…)

Twenty-seven

Note: One of the greatest things an author can hear is “So what happens next?” I was lucky enough to hear this from an amazing author named Anne after publishing a story titled “Most Guys”. (You can find it here.) I gave her an honest answer and said, “I don’t know.” She proposed that maybe we could find out together. So for the past few months we have been playing tag with the lives of Adam and Emma in order to answer that question. The result was a few tears, a few more laughs, and the story below. I invite you all to go over and check out Anne’s writing here on the condition that you don’t abandon me for her superior stories.

I waited nervously by the door, resisting my desire to check the mirror one last time. Adam would arrive at any minute. The details of our last date, our honesty date, played over and over in my mind, but it was the question I hadn’t asked that taunted me. Did he really not care that I was pregnant? How could he not care? (more…)