Friday Fictioneers

Mary’s Mountain

Mary tightened the last screw on the wall joist and set down the screwdriver. She was done. She stepped outside the tiny cabin and sat on a rock. She rolled herself a cigarette and smoked and gazed over the valley at Baboquivari, whom the Yaqui called the Navel of the Universe. The valley was all

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Waiting

Dominick walked back from the road, hands in pockets. “You see him?” asked Tony, already knowing the answer. “He’ll be here. Don’t you worry, little brother. When has he ever not showed up after practice?” Tony stared at his sneakers, wanting to ask when has he ever been on time?  but instead saying “I’m hungry.” “Ma will

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Ten Years After

Decroix took his St. Joseph’s Day handkerchief from his hip pocket and wiped out the brim of the blue Borsolino he used to only wear for parades. There was a lot of that down here.  Used to. We used to go up to Luchan’s for boudin, used to get us some drinks at Jimmy White’s Sports

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You Think You Know Her

She stared down into the lobby, all color drained from her face. “What is it?” She shook her head, sipped the last of her chardonnay from the plastic cup. “Nothing,” she smiled. “Let’s go back. Second act will be starting soon.” I felt her tension all through the second act.  She seemed to be looking

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Gossip

Jolly Mrs. Benbow, arms a-jiggle as she lifts the cup to her lips, tilting the saucer to show the maker’s mark SPODE on its bottom. Her great-grandmother’s cup, she will invariably remind anyone in earshot. To her left is Mrs. Wright, the eldest and most severe. Her only vice is the single slice of lemon she

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Risk Is Our Business

Janus liked quoting Captain Kirk at the start of a climb. Gentlemen, risk is our business. It was funny the first time or two, but like most of the aspects of his personality, it ended up grating on you. After a couple years, I was the only one left who would still belay him.  I suppose I felt

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Only Questions

“Oh dear,” she said as she peered into the garden. “There seem to be more of them.” He joined her at the window. “Hell and death. When the devil did he do that?” Her cup ratted against the china saucer. She steadied it with her free hand. “I don’t know. Perhaps he goes and builds

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Palookaville

“You too, Joey?” “I got nothing against them personally, Jack. I just don’t want to box with them.” “So that’s it, then? You’re quitting?” “No. Maybe go to Lopez’s.” “You boys don’t have a problem with the Spanish, then.” The old man sat back in his chair, the old wood creaking with the weight. Joey

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A Family of Three Now

My wife brought in the stack of Christmas cards to sign.  I shook my head. “It’s not even Thanksgiving yet.” She smiled. “I like to get a jump on things.” I almost said probably addressed them in January, but I caught myself in time. I thanked her and went to my study. I opened the first

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Keeping Appearances

“Am I waking you up?” “I had to get up anyway, Dad. The phone was ringing.” “Ha. Listen, I need you to do something for me.” “Name it.” “I need you to come over and shovel the walk.” “Now?” “Yes, now. Before your mother wakes up.” “It’s four in the morning.” “I know what time

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