Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #346

This is a writing prompt. Bet you can’t do it! Take the 10 random words below and crush writer’s block by creating a cohesive, creative short story! And remember: after (if) you finish entering your submission into the comment field, highlight your words and click the bold button to make them stand out and help you determine if you forgot any words. (If you’ve missed previous writing prompts, we BET YOU CAN’T do those, either.) NOTE: Our bolding plugin is gone, so you’ll have to put and around each of your words if you want them to stand out, but NOT REQUIRED THOUGH.

  1. November
  2. patience
  3. bedroom
  4. rights
  5. brandy
  6. happiness
  7. accusation
  8. society
  9. contradiction
  10. class

NOTE: Don’t copy and paste from MS Word. Use a program like notepad that removes formatting or just type in the comment field itself. Also, finish your submission, THEN bold the words. Thanks. (And don’t forget to tweet this and share it with your friends.

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78 Comments on “Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #346”

  1. Anklebuster says:

    “Time is money. Let’s examine this contradiction. Obviously, idle people have a lot of time. However, not all idle people have a lot of money. Clearly, this is a dichotomy of the two-class society.” Leon smirked into his beer.

    Adrian groaned, “What a moron. ‘Time is money’ refers to opportunity cost.” He pushed the beer bottle toward the edge of the table.

    “Hey! What’re you doing?”

    “I am going to pour you a real drink. This cognac was preferred by Napoleon, himself.” Adrian held up a bottle of Courvoisier. “The problem is, you only have one glass.”

    Leon licked his lips greedily. “How is that a problem? All I gotta do is finish off this beer.” He belched loudly.

    “You’re missing the point! If the glass is full of beer, it can’t also have brandy!”

    Leon harrumphed, “Obviously, you’ve never had a Boilermaker.”

    “That’s whiskey, dumbass.”

    “I did a lava lamp once.”

    Adrian raised a confused eyebrow. “I suppose you would take anything into your bedroom.”

    Leon chuckled. “As long as she’s tall, thin and twenty-one. But what does my libido have to do with Jell-O shooters?” He grabbed his bottle back from the edge.

    “Well, nothing. But why aren’t you more discerning? I would have thought Betty’s accusation last November …”

    “Shut up about that, man!” Leon turned pink. “I don’t have to pay for ephemeral happiness! It’s just that I was losing my patience and, well, the blue pill doesn’t last all night. By rights, she shoulda been paying me, but I just offered her the test answers as an incentive.”

    Adrian poured a bit of brandy into his own glass. “Hmmm, maybe you’re right after all. Time is money. Betty did pass the test.”

    The friends clinked glasses in a silent toast.

  2. Cathy Miller says:

    November rolled in with the patience of a cat, silently stalking its prey. Gray fingers of frost kissed the bedroom window and held on throughout most of the dreary day.

    The rights of passage shivered in the black soul of the serial killer. His heart hastened as images transformed brandy-colored eyes into a cold-blooded reflection of his mind. Soon he would relive happiness.

    The accusation of a society he despised was of no consequence. Their repulsion fueled his pleasure like an addiction of the sweetest contradiction of what they called class.

    Let the killing begin.

  3. Someone’s got a thing for brandy, I see.

  4. I could tell from the headlines that a contentious November election was right around the corner. Nobody had an iota of patience left; nobody wanted anyone else to find happiness, in or out of the bedroom. A harsh accusation, but the stalemate over human rights, class and racism, and society’s relationship with government and business had ground all productive activity in the Capitol to a halt. The view from atop the monument was a contradiction – this far up, the cars and people looked like a colony of ants, belying their summer stagnation. I reluctantly took the elevator back to the base and slowly wandered from the Mall in search of a good brandy.

  5. Sizzle

    November breezed in, a welcome breath of crisp, cooling air after a simmering summer. The sun cast long golden rays across the shadow-dappled lawn. Brandy in hand, Elise flung open the heavy double doors that separated the bedroom from the balcony, breathing in the scent of tart apples and sweet cider. Gone were the wildflowers and the scent of their blossoms; these had been replaced by the aroma of cedar and earth, nature’s sigh before the sleep of winter. The October leaves had set the hills ablaze in red and orange and yellow; now, they were letting go of their hold on twigs and branches, dancing on the wind.

    A gray squirrel scrambled up the sweetgum tree beside the house. With persistent patience, he had amassed quite a cache of acorns, nuts, and seeds for the coming winter. A pair of blue jays teased and taunted the little squirrel, now and then daring to steal a seed or a nut and taking turns dropping it on the poor little fellow’s head. He stopped for just a moment to scold them, and they replied with accusations of their own while strafing him like kamikaze pilots. By all rights, some of the plunder did belong to the blue jays. The little squirrel had learned to climb up to the bird feeder and steal the best bits, and the birds were now onto his game.

    Elise could barely contain her happiness. Next week, her guests would begin to arrive. Her dream of running a writers’ retreat and creativity class would soon be a reality. Though she had craved solitude and the quiet, country life, Elise had missed the society of other writers. Her friends didn’t understand, but to Elise’s way of thinking, this was no contradiction at all.

    • Anklebuster says:

      Sounds like you have NaNoWriMo Fever…two posts and a wistful fantasy.
      Blue jays are some mean mofos – ever see them take on a hawk?

      Cheers,

      Mitch

      • I’ve seen them take on each other, squirrels, and cats… although around here, mockingbirds do it best, and could probably give the jays a run for their money.

        You’re probably right about the NaNoWriMo fever, Mitch. Although I really have no ideas at this point. Maybe that’s a good thing – I should just start writing with the intention of incorporating at least one interesting word from every page of the dictionary, in order… maybe something would just come to me before the month was over. And if not, so what?

        • Anklebuster says:

          You, no ideas? That sounds like the Pacific Ocean with no water. Still, if you feel that way, try origami. Or microbrewing. Something to take your mind off of writing. Maybe you’re just on the edge of burnout.

          Speaking of mockingbirds, I had to look for some images. So pretty. Being from the city, I still have trouble distinguishing anything that is not a pigeon. LOL

          Cheers,

          Mitch

          • I’ve been perched on the edge of burn-out since that contest two years ago. 😉 Notice how I haven’t entered one, since?

            I don’t know if it’s a lack of ideas, or – like my morning blog post – the fear that I could set someone’s hair on fire with some of them.

          • Anklebuster says:

            Hmmm. Well, since you have been outspoken since I’ve known you, your “Nothing Left To Say” post has the ringing sound of a gladiator resting his sword on the bloody field.

            Perhaps it is not the consequence of matches tossed by a pacifist that worries you, but the fear that the fire won’t purify anyone.

            Cheers,

            Mitch

    • bbanne says:

      I can’t see a contradiction, either. It sounds like heaven to me. Peace when you need it and company when you choose to have it. Such an evocative piece, Holly.

    • are we going to have to start a AuGoWriMo for August? If you guys remember Becca J. Campbell from the old site, she started JuNoWriMo so she could write in NOvember and June. Now August. Maybe we should just shoot for 50,000 words every month.

    • Cathy Miller says:

      Beautiful scene-setting. 🙂

    • Kelly says:

      So evocative, Holly. I can picture Elise’s house completely—and I think her nervy squirrel hangs out in my yard in his spare time. I know him very well!

  6. bbanne says:

    The bedroom was a mess. The bedcovers were askew and items of clothing scattered the carpet like confetti. The last rays of the November sun curled around the curtains, falling on her like a spotlight.

    She had the bed to herself, now. Her playmate had gone back to class. He had looked at her, eyes filled with accusation and a forced smile of happiness painted onto his lips. The strange contradiction excited her and she almost wished he would come back. Even his lack of patience was promising.

    Society frowned on it. She knew that her peers would never understand her love of virgins. 18 was the perfect age for them to start playing. She wanted the rights to their lean and muscly bodies. She wanted to be the one to introduce them to pleasure; to break them in like young stallions. She wanted the brandy flavoured lips and the tentative kisses of lustful beginners.

    But there was no rush. A little play here and a tease there. Let them leave wanting more. He would be back and then she would take him further and further.

    Ah, she loved virgins – part toys and part pure satisfaction.

  7. I can’t believe I missed the last challenge. Busy week. Well, I have something for this week at least!

    A bedroom. One with a solid floor, a ceiling, and no smelly mate sleeping above him. That was Chandroc’s dream at the moment. The sea was high, a storm was raging above decks. They were not able to fish, not able to get to a harbor, not able to do much but sit in their hammocks and sway to the rolling of the sea.

    Chandroc knew that the Captain was sitting in his quarters, reading poetry and drinking brandy, not caring about the men who languished below decks. There was a contradiction in the class system even here on the Marietta. Fish would come and go, but even as the Captain said they were all equal, the mores of society still held sway.

    Patience Chandroc.” He kept telling himself. “happiness is only a few more days away. We dock soon, on the 24th of November we do.” That was all that kept him going anymore. That and the fish. He had grown to truly love fishing. He loved watching the nets fill, watching the ship list to the side as the weight of the net pulled at her. He loved the silvery flopping as the fish hit the deck.

    He also loved the thought of the money that was going to be his and only his by rights this time. No more stealing or gladiatorial contests for him. The thunder of the past few weeks was natural, preceeded by lightning, and portending rain. SHE hasn’t come back, despite Chandroc’s accusation a few weeks ago, Only this storm. Soon they would dock, sell the fish, and Chandroc would have money and leave for a few days. He smiled again in his hammock. Life was going to be ok.

    • bbanne says:

      It always amazes me that you can take these 10 random words and fit them seamlessly into your ongoing story. It’s as though they were meant to be. I am hooked on your tale.

    • Anklebuster says:

      Justin, somehow, I have the feeling that this is just the calm before the storm. 🙂 Lovely visuals, what with the smelly bunkmate and silvery floppy fish.

      Cheers,

      Mitch

    • Cathy Miller says:

      So descriptive I could smell it, Justin. 😉 Love this story!

    • Kelly says:

      Love the way this story is slowly opening up. Well done, Justin.

      My fav line this week is “…even as the Captain said they were all equal, the mores of society still held sway.” It transports me to their world with such ease.

    • kathleenMK says:

      Justin !
      I started getting a little motion sick by the end of the 2nd paragraph, queasy as a mater of fact. Bravo! Then —
      Chandroc knew that the Captain was sitting in his quarters, reading poetry and drinking brandy, not caring about the men who languished below decks. — I felt it again with this great description, while feeling some melancholy as well.

      Write On! I am waiting to see how Chandroc is able to ride out the storm.

      Kathleen

  8. K says:

    Another long one:

    Opening her eyes, Robin expected to find herself staring at the ceiling of her bedroom, resting on the cot. Instead, rays of sunlight blinded her as she struggled to sit up on the pavement. Few cars whizzed past, their engines roaring. She stretched her arms and legs and pounded on her aching back, hoping it would realign. Despite wearing a rather large coat, she did not fear passing out under the sun’s warmth beating down on her head; cool breezes brushed across her cheeks, negating the humid heat. She then recalled the date, November 13th, yet the more she tried to dredge up facts about her and her position, the less information she had.

    Out of everything she could have recollected, Robin salvaged three pieces of information: her name, the date, and a person named Chris.

    Robin, with her head palpitating, quit searching for answers within herself and ventured to investigate. She rose to her feet and surveyed her surroundings. It would appear she stood on a bridge overlooking a river flowing downward as slow as molasses. Regardless of its speed, the sight of the river hurt Robin’s eyes. Its almost translucent surface glowed, beaming in the sunlight. Nothing tainted it, and its blue hue made it all the more mesmerizing.

    Robin snapped out of her stupor and continued her quest to find some answers. Despite being on a bridge, it looked to be devoid of life, and the handful in cars zoomed past without batting an eyelid in her direction. Well, no living being lurked around with the exception of the mess of crows hovering nearby, but even then, Robin couldn’t quite walk up to them and demand answers to her inquiries, could she? Then, she would be branded as the lady who lost her mind which actually wasn’t too far removed from the truth.

    Why were there crows? The thought occurred to her.

    Assuming she ended up somewhere in the city, wouldn’t there be pigeons instead of crows? What was a group of them called again? She thought. Again, she scrounged up no answer. Such a simple question, and yet, she turned up empty. Curious, Robin approached the flock. A smile graced her face before flickering away when she spotted a person amidst the crows. On one hand, she discovered someone of import; however, the person teetered between life and death, latching onto the other side of the railing. Robin dispelled some of the birds, earning her indignant caws, and reached out for the person. She retracted her hand for fear of toppling him over and used her voice instead.

    “What do think you’re doing, Chris?” Although it came out stronger than she thought, it caught his attention. He craned his head and faced her, a placid, indelible smile plastered on his face.

    “Oh, hello, crazy lady. My name is Hessal not Chris. But I don’t think you remember, so I’ll cut you some slack. Did you have a nice nap?” He asked.

    “Umm,” she hesitated, “I guess, but that’s not the point. What are you doing, how did you know I was sleeping out here, and how do you know I don’t remember anything?” With the birds’ caws becoming more frenzied and incessant, Hessal waved his hand, and the crows dispersed, flying elsewhere.

    “Well, anyone with eyes could see you were passed out right over there.” He pointed to the spot. “And I’m guessing you don’t remember since you called me Chris. Probably the only name you knew besides your own. Am I right so far?” Robin nodded, though his evasion of one question wore her patience thin. This Hessal did seem genuine, no scent of brandy or alcohol on his lips. She trusted his assessment of her situation and retried her approach to his. Before she could, he spoke up.

    “Did you know a group of crows is called a murder? Weird, huh?”

    “Thank you,” Robin said. “I’ve been thinking what they were called, and now, there’s my answer. Yeah, it is pretty weird, but considering crows are supposed to be harbingers of death, it does make sense. But everything is besides the point. Stop avoiding the big issue here.”

    “Hmm?”

    “Look, Hessal,” she addressed, “with you on the other side of the railing, looking like you’re prepared to jump, I think we both know where this is going. I know I’m not in any position to claim I know you or your life, but I really want you to come back over to this side of the railing. Life, even with all the pain and tribulations it throws at us, is beautiful, and what you’re doing is a permanant solution to a temporary problem. No matter how bleak it looks for you right now, it will get better with time. Now please, get back to your senses.”

    Silence hung in the air after Robin’s speech, although with the response she received, it seemed her spiel turned into more of a soliloquy. Hessal’s attention focused on the horizon as he remained unfazed by her accusation. A bit angered, Robin shouted, “Open your eyes, and look at me, please!”

    “But my eyes are open, and now, they are looking at you.” Hessal tossed a glance back before returning his gaze to the sun. “You think my eyeballs will melt if I stare into the sunset? I know it will right now, but at sunset, the sun’s not as bright. Still, it is the sun, so even if I stare at it while it’s setting, will my eyes melt?”

    “Are you even listening to me?” Robin countered, lacing the question with venom. Even so, the malice dissipated around Hessal.

    “Yup, every single word. I get what you’re saying, but every person is guaranteed the rights to happiness. Even I deserve that much, right? And I’m happy doing this,” replied Hessal.

    “And your actions infringe on my right to happiness. I would be happy if you would come back over on this side of the bridge, and since you’re not, you’re technically breaking the law.”

    “You, too, lady if there were a law like that,” Hessal retorted. “But it’s funny. Even if I jump into the river, no one would care or remember who I am. People live, knowing that death could be one moment away. They struggle to survive in order to remain important, relevant in this world. No, I don’t think people are afraid of death itself; they want to live regardless of the atrocity that death is. They’re scared of being forgotten and cared by none, washed out by time’s passage. Maybe that’s why people people are buried alongside tombstones, but even then, their names and lives fade and are left buried in time.”

    Stunned speechless, Robin found herself agreeing with some of his points to a degree, but bent on her resolve, she continued her persuasion.

    “But there are people who would care if you disappeared. Your family and your friends would. While you save yourself, you only hurt the ones you care about in the process. Don’t-”

    “I have no family to go back to,” he began. “Friends? Not a single one who would remember my existence after today. Can’t I be a selfish? Humans are selfish creatures, you know. Think about it. Everything is done for personal gain. If a person like me were about to jump off the bridge and someone passed by, would they do anything? If anything, I think they’d be too scared to do anything. Sure, they would try to stop them, but in the end, they would pass through, thinking they did all they could while allowing that other person to jump. They would comfort themselves for that accomplishment when in reality, nothing was done. All they would remember was that time they tried to rescue someone while the victim fades into the background.”

    “Hessal, I know the world is a cruel place, society has its contradictions, and everyone is separated into a class of their own, but-” Robin’s voice faltered as tears welled up in her eyes. It overwhelmed her, the inevitability of this outcome. She couldn’t form a proper argument for her case at this point.

    And in that moment, Hessal’s foot slipped.

    Robin, without another thought, reached out for him, wrapping her arms around him. Her action grounded him to the ledge as well as prevented him from leaping. Startled, Hessal flinched, feeling Robin’s head buried in his back and her tears soaking his coat.

    “I would care,” she said. “I would care if you jumped, so please don’t. Don’t think of ending your life. It’s selfish, but like you said, who isn’t? Please, live. Live for me, your friend, Robin.” She heard Hessal chuckle.

    “Look at this. You really are insane, hugging and crying over a person you barely met. Okay, I guess if you really want me to I’ll come back over. Let me go. Don’t worry. I’m not going anywhere.” After Robin reluctantly releases Hessal, he hops over the railing and stands besides her. “Aw, are you still crying?” Hessal dries her tears with his sleeve. Looking up at Hessal’s grinning face, Robin burst into tears once again. “What’s wrong? Are you hurt?” Robin shook her head.

    “I’m just happy you’re still here.”

    “Ahem,” someone behind Robin cleared his throat. “Can someone explain why Robin is crying all of a sudden?” Robin whipped around, confronting a familiar face.

    “Chris?”

    “Well,” Hessal interjected. “I’ll just be going. I’ll leave her to you, Chris.”

    “Can’t we go together?” Robin asked, sniffling. Hesssal shook his head.

    “No, but we can meet up here later.”

    “Okay, see you later, friend,” she said. With that, Hessal departed in the other direction, leaving Chris, his sister, and Robin to settle matters beyond his control. He debated on telling Robin the truth but decided against it lest it incur her wrath.

    Sure, he had stood on the precipice of the bridge, but he had no intentions of plunging to his death. In fact, Hessal only climbed over the railing in order to better enjoy the view of the river. If Robin weren’t there, Hessal would hop over the railing on his own accord and continue on with his life, but Robin didn’t have to know that. He hummed a discordant tune. For once, Hessal could see why his birthday landed on World Kindness Day.

    • bbanne says:

      How very clever. So many questions left unanswered, so many new ones popping up, and a cracker of an ending. Fantastic work, K.

    • Anklebuster says:

      Nice one, K. I didn’t know about World Kindness Day. Sad that so few countries participate.

      Cheers,

      Mitch

    • Cathy Miller says:

      Ha, K. I did not see that one coming. Well done 🙂

    • Kelly says:

      Ooh, cool! I love a good cliffhanger… or should I say, bridgehanger. Nice work, K!

    • kathleenMK says:

      K —
      You had me hooked in by paragraph three … now I am going back up to read the rest of your tale! 🙂

      Many good truths were written within your piece K. And no apology for length it is not “too” long, it is just the right length. You took me away from my oak chair in California to a bridge over a mesmerizing river keeping me interested and making me think, feel and then leaving me wanting more of the story.

      Thank you,
      Kathleen

  9. Kelly says:

    KEEPING BRANDY COMPANY TONIGHT

    It’s not an accusation
    just acceptance of the class of chicks you like
    The beer I brought is on the doorstep
    and you’re keeping brandy company tonight

    I showed up in late November
    just in time for holiday thrills
    Society’s got no patience with love at first sight
    when the bedroom isn’t yet chilled

    I learned a long time ago
    you don’t put happiness on hold
    We both see what we want, so why waste time
    trying to fit some mold?

    It’s not a contradiction
    We’re opposites with equal rights
    I’m looking for a bottle opener
    and you’re keeping brandy company tonight

    What do I care about your old girlfriend and her fancy taste?
    You take a sip of mine and I’ll try yours
    Nothing goes to waste

    It’s not an accusation
    just acceptance of the class of chicks you used to like
    The beer I brought is on the doorstep
    and you’re keeping brandy company tonight

    • Anklebuster says:

      This is so cool. Like a sassy, but sad sort of song. I get the feeling she is settling – even though he is the one with brandy. Am I even making sense? The way she says, “It’s not an accusation…”

      Way to go, Kelly!

      Cheers,

      Mitch

      • Kelly says:

        Thanks, Mitch! Definitely sassy/reflective, I agree with that. They’re finding their footing in a new relationship the way you do if you jump in quickly (or if your old ways are set in stone, ha ha)—having to figure out which habits are your own and which “belong” to the old relationship, because those can really get in the way.

        I think she’s worried she might sound defensive/ jealous about the past, but she’s just trying to tell him that everything we go through brings us to where we are.

        Only, she’s not as philosophical as I am about it, hence the beer metaphor. 😀

    • bbanne says:

      I really enjoy your writing, Kelly. I can see the video clip to go with this. I love the way you’ve used the beer/brandy comparison as personalities.

    • kathleenMK says:

      Kelly ~~ way to go. Nice ditty.

      I love: Society’s got no patience with love at first sight
      when the bedroom isn’t yet chilled

      I felt the loneliness and the company all at once.

      I like how you changed it from chicks you like
      to
      chicks you used to like….

      Kathleen

  10. kathleenMK says:

    No problem, I’ll take another serving of brandy:

    No-‘vember when you used to have little patience to take me to the bedroom?” she asked her words were beginning to become unclear with each sip of the brandy, or was that a gulp? She wanted that impatience again.

    “Everyone in society has rights to happiness,” he said trying to make sense of it all.

    Her shawl slowly slipped off of her shoulder like a melting ice cube losing footing on the uneven surface a glass topped patio table, exposing skin.

    Wow, so smooth, I wonder if her skin is still so smooth? He loved the feel of her skin in his hands.

    With each inhale more skin became exposed, to his delight.

    Was that movement? she wondered as her eyes fell to his groin. She smiled and made no attempt to relocate the shawl as she desired his flesh next to her’s. Casually dipping her shoulder lower she ensured the cloth’s farther descent toward her waste. Her plump breast now held his attention. She did not care if accusations of seduction would be said later, because they would be true.

    She inserted her index finger into the golden hued liquid, stirring it ever so slowly. Her finger bumped into the side of the glass, she pulled it out. Slowly, she began raising it up from her lap. Her movements seemed puppet-like to him as he watched every movement. As her finger made contact with her exposed skin his mind nearly believed he had artfully pulled the correct string or had he just willed her hand to collide ever so gently with her own body.

    But can the puppeteer make the hand stay there, linger and generate more of a personal response? She said to herself as she halted her hand where it seemed to gain most interest. He could not hide the twinkle in his eyes nor the natural response his body showed. She traced circles on her exposed flesh. The shine of the liquid kept his attention on her, just as she liked it.

    In an attempt to not distract him, she casually brought the glass up to her breast, halting its accent to her mouth. He drew in a deep anticipatory breath. She did not disappoint him. She tilted the glass…allowing the fermented fruit juice to dribble out onto her skin. He rose to his feet walked around the coffee table settling himself squarely in front of her. She was now within his arm’s reach. She waited, but not long.

    He raised his hand up letting his fingers caress her shin before setting it on her bare thigh.

    Oh do not stop there my dear, higher, higher, she said to herself willing the movement.

    They shared a smile.

    “Would you like some?” she said tilting the tumbler toward him.

    “Yyyyeeeessss,” he purred, knowing that there was a contradiction building within him between want and need. “But not from the class,” he said as his mouth was filled with the sweet tastes of fruit and skin.

    Did he say glass or class? Oh, who cares! she said as she had him just where she wanted him.


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