Friday, October 22, 2010

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Fourteen

All he was saying was that a spit take from Jim Carey was a radically different thing than a spit take from Sasha Grey.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

THE LOCAL HEROES: Escape From Pickman's Grove

Escape From Pickman’s Grove
Al Bruno III

Most of the streetlights on Pickman’s Grove were broken. Rosie Mcdaniels walked as quickly as she could but the sounds were growing closer
All her friends had warned her to stay away from this neighborhood of River City. “It’s just not safe for a woman your age,” they said, “there are such terrible stories.”

The stories were terrible, that much was true; the disappearances and the reports of strange sounds and shadows that stalked the unwary at night. But Rosie went just the same the lure of antiques was too much for her to resist.

She could make out the sounds now, a chorus of snorts and meeps that were growing closer by the second.
And there was a smell- a terrible smell. She risked a look back and saw six shapes loping after her. Their clothes were filthy and torn, their flesh was pale and rubbery.
Other, similar shapes were starting to creep out of every alley and doorway. They began to surround her.
Then she started to run but she knew there was no hope. How fast could a woman in her sixties run?
Not fast enough. Tears began to well up in her eyes, she thought of her friends and her grandchildren.
A taxicab squealed to a halt in front of her. The back door sprung open. “Get in!” a deep voice shouted, “Hurry!”
Rosie hurried.
Once she was safely inside the cab door shut all on its own. Rosie looked back and saw there were dozens of the things but they were staying back, snarling and meeping with frustration.
“What’s your name?”
Startled she looked back to the front of the cab and saw the driver was wearing a blue cowl and a friendly grin. She made a stammering noise.
“That’s ok,” he said reassuringly, “you’ll feel better once we’re out of here.”
One of the pallid creatures threw a brick, it bounced off the glass of the rear windshield.
“And speaking of getting out of here...”
The taxi sped away with a squeal of its tires.
A super hero driving a taxi? Rosie thought with disbelief. She knew about super heroes; the city she lived in was teeming with them but those heroes flew, ran or swung from skyscraper to skyscraper. She had never heard of one driving a taxi.
It was ridiculous.
“Who are you?” she asked.
The driver chuckled good-naturedly, “Now I asked you first.”
“Rosie,” she answered, “Rosie Mcdaniels.”
“Well pleased to meet you Rosie Mcdaniels.” he glanced at her in the rearview mirror, “ I’m Captain Hero. Maybe you’ve heard of me?”
“No. Never.”
“Oh,” the taxi paused at a red light, “now where are you headed?”
“Home,” she said.
“And home is?”
Rosie told him the address and he nodded, “Ah Megalopolis City. I’ll have you there in a jiffy.”
Four headlights began to bear down on them. Captain Hero looked in his side-view mirror, his voice was calm curiosity “Now what is this?”
The light still hadn’t changed. Rosie looked back again and screamed, “It’s them! They’re coming!”
“Trucks?” the masked man turned in his seat, “Since when do they drive?”
The taxi sped through the intersection, the two pickup trucks in hot pursuit. A handful of the monsters had crowded into the rear cab of each. They threw bricks and stones as their vehicles drew closer.
The taxi took a hard left. “What are they?” Rosie asked as she held on for dear life.
“Sewer ghouls,” Captain Hero said, “bit of a local problem.”
Rosie was struggling to get her seatbelt on, she breathed a sigh of relief when it clicked into place. The trucks were getting closer, one mounted the sidewalk crashing through some long abandoned boxes.
“So,” he asked, “what were you doing in Pickman’s Grove anyway?”
The question stunned her, “Antiquing.”
“I see,” he nodded, “you can find some great little shops there, great bargains too. Tell me, what were you doing there at this hour?”
“I was at the bus stop,” she explained, “I fell asleep.”
“Oh you poor dear.” One of the trucks was close enough to bump the taxi. Captain Hero pressed a button on the dashboard and a stream of liquid squirted out of the back bumper. The trucks fishtailed and crashed. The masked man shook his head again, “Trucks! I really have to amend my crime files.”
Rosie asked, “What did you do?”
“Oil slick,” he replied, “but don’t worry. I use canola oil- better for the environment.”
The second truck came roaring up beside them, the sewer ghouls in the back started bashing the car with their homemade weapons. Rosie squealed with terror.
Captain Hero said, “Don’t worry. I had this taxi specially augmented by my good pal Rusty Johnson, it has weapons, a nitrous oxide injection system and the sound system will knock your socks off. Let me show you.”
With a flick of a button the song American Pie began to fill the car. Humming to himself Captain Hero jerked the wheel clipping the driver’s side tire of the second truck. One of the sewer ghouls lept out and landed on the hood of the taxi just before the truck spun out and crashed sideways into a lampost.
“I wanted the team to drive these creeps out of the tunnels but they got a lawyer and set up restraining orders,” Captain Hero explained, “something about squatters rights.”
The taxi slowed down to the legally posted speed. The ghoul on the hood clawed at the windshield and spat. With a flick of a button Captain Hero sent windshield washer fluid spraying into its eyes. It howled and tumbled from the hood.
“And that’s that,” the masked man said as he flicked the taxi’s meter on, “now lets get you home. I hope this experience hasn’t put you off visiting our fine city.”
Suddenly she realized, “I lost my purse!”
Captain Hero turned the taxi’s meter back off, “Don’t worry Rosie, this one’s on me.”

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Thirteen

It was his job to care for any women of ill repute that suffered broken limbs, it was all part of the Emergency Broad Cast System.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Twelve

“If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with. But for God's sake ask permission first.”

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eleven

The candidate compared herself to a grizzly bear, which was ironic considering how often she mauled the English language.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Ten

She could write anywhere but she found that when she needed to be sitting on the toilet if she wanted her work to be really pithy.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Nine

The Maven hadn't meant to kill that villain but now she had to deal with the legal consequences and the fan mail from Frank Miller.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eight

It was the only full service car wash that allowed you to talk to the dead, the secret was their Squeegee Boards.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seven

Some thought it was a brilliant idea to make an erotic film based on the works of Ayn Rand but no one went to see ATLAS TUGGED.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Six

“I'm not too insecure to shower with the other men,” Deggent explained, “its that the sight of my body might make them insecure.”

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Five

“I'm no expert in demolitions,” Abner Deggent said, “but I've never heard any of the people I've blown up complain about it.”

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Four

Services at the Church Of Twitter are brief; the preacher posts 'OMG' and the congregation retweets it.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Three

Abner Deggent wore his scars with pride, except for the ping pong ball shaped one from an accident at a strip club in Singapore.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and Two

Arachnid-Kid's powers only allowed people to communicate telepathicly with one spider at a time, then he got crawl waiting.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred and One

Everyone admired Frogman's youthful ward, the little guy really toad the line.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Seven Hundred

“Calls to Ocean World Aquarium may be recorded for training porpoises.”

PTA: Pay the Al!

If you'e enjoyed any of the work I've posted here why not buy one of my books? Or donate a few bucks? All money donated goes towards new projects, buying art for the blog and the sooner I can quit my day job the better!

All donors will be listed on the PATRONS' PAGE!
(And as soon as I get a donor I'll make a PATRON'S PAGE!)

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My latest anthology is available!

Click Here For Preview

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My story 'In Memory Alone' is in THE BEST OF FRIDAY FLASH

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Nine

He had a penis and he had a blog. The blog generated more return visits.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Eight

Captain Hero and Amazing Ed were captured by the villain known as King Carpenter. Amazing Ed commented, “We are royally screwed.”

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Seven

He called the baseball bat his 'Debate Club' because if you tried to debate him he grabbed it and did some expounding on your ass. 

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Six

The Lord works in mysterious ways, his followers inevitably go right for the rough stuff.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Five

The super hero known as the Black Squirrel returned from battleworld with a snazzy alien costume and a mouthful of strange nuts.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Four

The difference between Stephanie Meyers fans and Tea Partiers is that TWILIGHT fans have actually read the documents they venerate.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Three

Rex paid for his tuition by selling his sperm, he wasn't the first student to exhaust himself with day long cramming sessions.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety Two

The Furry Separatists were led by General Cuddlesworth; he was a dangerous man and not to be yiffed with.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety One

The ninja crept into the crowded dining hall to masturbate, no one heard him coming.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety

It took years of experimentation but he finally managed to combine sandwich with a six string- now he was everyone's guitar hero.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Eighty Nine

She mocked religious people for rejecting science but refused to get her kids immunized because of something a supermodel said.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Eighty Eight

“You idiot!” Dave stared at the gown with 'Rick' embroidered on the front, “I said I wanted your name and ADDRESS!”

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Eighty Seven

Many were confused when Quentin Tarantino opened a gourmet coffee shop but for him it was just another trip to the grindhouse.

5 Second Fiction One Thousand Six Hundred and Eighty Six

Once again Greg critically injured himself by injecting hot water into his rectum. He had always been his own worst enema.

TWITCH brings us the cautionary short film 'Just Take One'

"See what happens when you find a stranger in the Alps?"

GAWKER brings us ' The Most Ridiculous Edited-for-TV Movie Lines'

The actual article has all the other examples but 'Stranger In The Alps' is a favorite of mine...

Monday, October 18, 2010

The following story is reposted in honor of an old friend's birthday... THE GIRL CAN'T HELP IT

The Girl Can’t Help It
Al Bruno III



Every morning she promises herself she’s not going to kill anyone but by midnight, somewhere, somehow she has another corpse on her hands.

And most nights it’s more than one.


Lora Cusack ended her shift at the offices of Midon Incorporated, she worked in the Human Resources department and irony of that never failed to irritate her.

None of the men working in the office ever gave her a second glance so she was able to leave without questions about how she was going to spend her weekend or worse yet some clumsy gallant offering to walk her out to her car. She hid her beauty beneath plain looking skirts, blouses and glasses that completed a look the other office girls called ‘librarian chic’. Of course they only said things like that behind her back but Lora heard them anyway.

All around her were decorations; orange streamers, rubber spiders and gaudy pumpkins. Alone in the hallway she paused to tear a particularly festive looking cardboard skeleton from the wall.


Holidays are the worst; no matter how much she tries to incapacitate herself with eggnog every Christmas is marked with a home invasion, Arbor day isn’t so bad but the less said about Friday the thirteenth the better.

And Halloween? Halloween was the worst of all.


Once she arrived at her mirrorless apartment on Lark Street she busied herself with laundry and fixing dinner. She kept the radio tuned to the news channel and paused occasionally to savor a particularly grisly story.

Soon enough her doorbell was ringing away with early trick or treaters, the young and the timid. She kept candy on hand to be neighborly but never answered the door on the first ring.


It was generations ago, a story of witchcraft and betrayal, a story a sisterhood and loss. In the story she had a different name, a sacred name that she had loved. She had carried herself with such pride but she had been brought down, her beauty and her skin peeled away.

And though her fingers had been broken and her tongue torn away the daemon lord Gesichtschatten heard her call.


By sundown the butterflies in her stomach had become a full fledged anxiety. “How many?” she asked herself, “Why didn’t I keep count from the start?”

All the self-reassurances and justifications can’t relax her, the six glasses of wine didn’t help either- she’s still sober and afraid.

Lora always kept a box of knives under the sink, she selected one and changed into an outfit as dark as it was simple; she took her car keys but left her useless glasses behind. Once she was on the interstate she pulled off her wig; the gray locks that fell to her shoulders were a sharp contrast to her youthful features.

An hour or so away from Albany she parked the car in an unfamiliar town and began.


The daemon lord Gesichtschatten is tall with skin the color of smoke and eyes like winter starlight. He’s more than happy to hear her plea and grant her request for one more day, one more day of life and strength to avenge her coven and herself.

In fact he offers her even more than that and like a fool she accepts.


On a quiet street a Lora asked a man for directions and as he answered she stabbed him in the throat.

That’s one and this time she’s kept count, for all the good it will do her.

In an alley she stomped a vagrant to death as he begged first for change, then for mercy. There’s something familiar and satisfying about the way each crack of bone seems to travel like a shiver up her leg.

Then it’s off to the Wal Mart…


One day.

One day for every 13 lives.

And that was more than enough.

More than enough to strike down the so-called forces of decency; more than enough to visit horror upon their loved ones and burn the entire town to the ground.

And then?

And she waited for the end.


The security guard was just showing off, just daring someone to stop her but as always luck, skill and the gifts of her patron protected her from prying eyes. She stowed his body in a bathroom stall and avoided her reflection as she headed back out into the night.

A little while later and a few streets away Lora strangled a woman at a secluded bus stop with her own purse strap; then she disemboweled a convenient man standing in a convenient doorway.

All the while families went door to door with costumes and bags of candy never knowing there was a nightmare in their midst.


She had never had a head for numbers and never bothered to keep track of how many she had snuffed out and as the first week of her restoration wore on thoughts of her death and its aftermath began to trouble her. Would the daemon lord make a meal of her or a concubine? And which fate would be more terrible?

Soon enough she starts killing again, piling body upon body but this time out of fear instead of rage.

If only she had kept count…


By midnight she’s left a house party in ruins; blood clots in the sink, bits of skull cling to the fireplace poker and the fireplace itself is clogged with bubbling flesh. Red stained the carpets and ran in symmetrical rivulets along the kitchen tiles, there are body parts in the washing machine, pets in the dryer and the microwave door hung open letting the remains of what she had found in the bassinet seep out.

The festive costumes her victims are wearing make the scene all the more surreal.

If anyone saw the woman leaving the darkened house on Kings Road all they would remember was her red hair bright as fire.


And now she lives century after century in fear, weary of living but afraid to die, giving herself over to bloodlust in the night only to curse herself in the morning.

She sometimes wonders if this is what the daemon lord wanted all along- a legacy of death and fear. She had never wanted to be a monster or worse yet a legend..


Home again by morning, she left her bloodstained clothes in the doorway and climbed into bed. It was just a few hours before she had to get ready for work.

Soon enough she would have to move on again before someone realized the circle of bodies centered on her, on the woman children called Hell Mary.

But she hadn’t called herself Mary for generations and every night she paid the price for her life rather than pay the cost of her sins.