The Main Attraction

Story #29 for Story A Day Challenge May 2016

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The Main Attraction

“No such thing as just luck, son. There’s good luck and bad luck. One can turn into the other pretty quick, too. Do your best to make your own good luck, that’s all you can do.” Wright’s grandfather was always full of advice, mostly based on his own bad choices throughout the years.

Wright stopped at the corner, waiting to cross the street. His reflection in the shop window showed that he looked a lot like his grandfather in his younger days. There were lots of photos of his grandfather, John, as he had spent several years on the professional wrestling circuit. John still had some of the posters with his name on it as the main attraction: Big Bad John.

And that was Wright’s ticket out of town, he had decided some years ago: professional wrestling. He was a pretty good size, Wright was, and fairly quick. He’d done all he could to get into shape, but without even a high school football team (the town was that small), he’d been mostly on his own in that effort.

As soon as he was old enough, he started working on the farms and ranches, any physical job he could get with two things in mind: earning money and staying in shape. The small town was like so many of them across the country: old and decaying. It wasn’t dying, exactly, but it hardly felt alive. It didn’t provide many job opportunities and even fewer that could be called career choices. Wright was not interested in staying around for a lifetime of poverty wage labor. This was not a good place for him to be.

And now he was rewarded for taking his grandfather’s advice by making his own good luck: he’d been accepted to the professional wrestling school in Calgary, Canada. It probably hadn’t hurt that he could say his grandfather had already taught him quite a lot about wrestling. Big Bad John may have been retired for years and years, but he was remembered.

The one thing that bothered Wright – silly, he knew – is that he hadn’t decided on a name for his professional persona. Not that he’d need it right away, but still, he didn’t want anyone else to choose it for him. Crossing the street, he saw the crumbling sign he’d seen a million times before but hadn’t paid any attention to: Battle Ax.

Oh, yes, Wright smiled. Battle Ax, only with an ‘e,’ making it ‘Battle Axe.’ Wright daydreamed about seeing posters advertising Battle Axe as the main attraction. Maybe this town isn’t a good place to be, but when I’m famous, he mused, it will be a good place to be from.

Dancing In The Rain

Story #28 for Story A Day Challenge May 2016

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Dancing in the Rain

“Gertie, let’s dance.”

“Dancing? But it’s supposed to rain.”

“Listen, rain is forecast for the next couple of years. El Niño, La Niña, Los Lobos, some kind of weather disturbance like that. We can’t wait for blue skies to get anything done. The world is our oyster.” Sampson snaps his wingtip feathers in rhythm with the music coming from across the pond while leading Gertie away from the shore.

“And may I say, Gertie, you are looking especially well groomed tonight.” Sampson winks at her with his third eyelid.

Gertie giggles as he takes her wing. “Oh, Sampson, you are such a charmer!”

The Right Place

Story #27 for the Story A Day Challenge May 2016 and doing double duty as my Friday Fictioneer entry

Photo copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Photo copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

The Right Place

The “beach” as the hotel called it, had no sand or seashells. Lyndon wondered if he was in the right place. Still, he thought it had an air of mystery: solid, dark boulders against fluid, transparent waves. He lifted up his face to the waves’ mist.

Lyndon got the feeling someone was watching him. The shore was deserted, but in the shallow water a mermaid appeared, swimming back and forth.

The hotel concierge heard the wind carrying the last notes of the mermaid’s song. He made a note to clean out Lyndon’s room, knowing the young man would not return.

To read other Friday Fictioneer stories based on this photo, select the smiley blue frog.

Here’s another Friday Fictioneer mermaid story by P.S. Joshi.

A Source of Contention

Story #26 for the Story A Day Challenge May 2016

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A Source of Contention

Stan was out of town for the weekend, so Brenda decided to work on cleaning out the garage while he was gone. It was a source of contention between them, their overstuffed garage. It’s not that Stan thought all those things were Brenda’s, he just thought all the junk was hers and the good stuff was his.

Brenda piled like things with like, ending up with several such heaps: broken flashlights, cracked Igloo coolers, busted hummingbird feeders, and paint brushes.

So all the junk is mine? Brenda scoffed as she hung all of Stan’s paint brushes from the garage ceiling.

Ice Cream with Sprinkles

Story #25 for Story A Day Challenge May 2016

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Ice Cream with Sprinkles

“Ice cream with sprinkles!” Jasper turned his head as his mother carried him down the sidewalk past the Magnolia trees.

“Jasper, those are flowers, not ice cream with sprinkles. Magnolia flowers. Mag-no-lia. Can you say Mag-no-lia? Here,” she said, walking across the grass. She hoisted Jasper up a little higher. “Smell them. Don’t they smell good?”

He leaned over, touching his nose to the white petals.

“Careful,” Angie cautioned, “there might be bees. Bees take the pollen and make honey.”

Before Angie could stop him, Jasper plucked a petal and started eating it. “Ice cream with sprinkles!” Jasper happily announced.