A prompt response for “INSPIRATION MONDAY ~UNKNOWN SENDER

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Image © Copyright John and Margaret

A prompt response for Inspiration Monday

http://bekindrewrite.com

A prompt response for Inspiration Monday: “Leap to a Beginning”

UNKNOWN SENDER

by John Yeo

     “Where did that come from?” Asked, Minnie Mills, when she entered the post-office and handed in the card that had been pushed through her door by the postman.

    Elizabeth, the very experienced counter-clerk, scratched her head in curiosity. “We never know.  Are you sure you don’t recognise the handwriting? There doesn’t seem to be a visible postmark on the wrapper, it’s all smudged.” Elizabeth had worked in the village post office for twenty years and she knew everyone intimately, she was always very helpful, and rather nosey when it came to other people’s post.

     “I wonder what it can be, I am not expecting anything and I have never seen that writing before. I have heard there are some dangerous people around who send out letter bombs and parcel bombs, to all and sundry.” Minnie exclaimed with a slight tremor of her normally stiff upper lip. Minnie had just turned 83 years old, the week before, but her mind was very sharp from reading the newspapers and watching television.

    Elizabeth smiled in disbelief. “No! Mrs Mills, I don’t think so. Who on earth would want to send a bomb to you? I can call the manager if you like, but I don’t know what he can do. I expect he will call the police, who will then call in the bomb squad.”

    Charlie Jones the local odd job man was standing next in the queue, “Come on! Hurry up! I have work to do. Will you get a move on, I will take it outside and open it up if you like!”

   “No thank-you very much!” Exclaimed Minnie Mills. “I don’t want your death on my conscience.”

 Elizabeth gave him one of her special warning looks, and pressed the bell for the manager, who was in the office at the back of the shop doing his books. Bill Green had been managing this little village office for a couple of years now, having moved from the big city to enjoy life in the country with his family.

     “Can I help you?” Bill asked the odd job man, then sold him a first class stamp and showed him the door.

 Elizabeth rapidly explained the situation to the astonished manager.

     “Well, there is a procedure to follow when we encounter a suspicious package. I have a special number to ring for instructions. Don’t do a thing until I come back.” He rushed into his office to make the call.

  He returned in a couple of minutes and announced, “Help is on the way, meanwhile we must put the package in a bucket of water and take it outside, far away from the post office.”

 A short time later an unusual looking van arrived with strange aerials on the top and headed straight for the bucket. Some minutes later an army officer entered the post office.

    “There is no cause for alarm, this is definitely not an explosive device. We have x-rayed it and we ran a metal detector over it, and there is nothing metallic inside.” He reported, then drove off to another investigation.

  Elizabeth, the counter clerk was very curious, and when everyone had gone, she urged Minnie to open the parcel. “Go on, open it now in case I can help you.”

   Minnie gave her an old fashioned look, then said, “No I will take it home now.”

  When she got home she gingerly unwrapped her package to discover a rubber Hot-Water Bottle, donated by Age Concern to keep her warm in the winter.

Ahh! That’s nice of them she thought, smiling to herself.

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved

Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 23rd December 2015 ~Exhale

Exhale

Exhale

Tell us about a time when everything seemed to be going wrong — and then, suddenly, you knew it would be alright.

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“Crow Survivor” ~ Image © Copyright John and Margaret

EXHALE

by John Yeo

  It was a tough decision to take, you had been chosen to represent your country in the major hurdles event. You knew you were able to contest this as you have always been a natural athlete and a top class performer in your field. Training always came easy, as you had developed a routine over many years, six hours a day of consistent effort, toning up your body and honing your technique to a perfect fluent finish. You consequently started winning and producing some very consistent results, in fact you hadn’t suffered the ignominy of a defeat for several months.

Yet sadly you were about to decline the honoured invitation, due to the recent cascade of troublesome events that had intruded into your life and wellbeing of late.

    Firstly, your very special friend Maria, had broken off your long term relationship, she hadn’t given you a real concrete reason for this, except to say she thought you were too intense. You had tried to reason with her but she said….

      “Sorry I don’t feel comfortable, I think you are becoming a machine!”

   Then your brother fell ill with a breathing problem, this was a body-blow as you had grown up together. You suspected the writing was on the wall, but when he had sadly passed away a few days before you received your invitation to compete, you began to feel more and more unsure of yourself.

Your Mother was distraught and spent hours on the telephone to you, depriving you of your sleep in the early hours of the morning.

 The fateful morning that put the cap on your sea of troubles, happened yesterday, just yesterday morning, while you were training. You had fallen badly after hitting the top of a hurdle and there was a bad graze along the outside of your left leg.

A friend from the athletics club, Sonya, who was also a nurse, bandaged your leg and reassured you, there wasn’t any permanent damage.

  “Don’t worry, there is no serious damage, just superficial grazes, you will be fine,”

Sonya was a sincere, demure, friendly young woman who always had a smile for you, and treated you like a brother. In fact you often trained together.

    Suddenly you were unloading all your recent problems on her shoulders, the troubles poured out in a flood of emotional exasperation.

  Finishing with the words, “I am not sure I will be able to compete.”

Sonya blushed, exhaled loudly and said,

“Go for it! You will win! I will be with you right through to the finish.”

Copyright ©  Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved

 

Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 28th December 2015 ~ FEARLESS FANTASIES

Fearless Fantasies

The Eye

Image © Copyright John and Margaret

Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 28th December 2015 ~ Fearless Fantasies

 

FEARLESS FANTASIES

by John Yeo

   “Tell me about the fearless Peter Strong, the man the victim copied.” Asked the investigating officer abruptly.

     “Oh Yes! I tell you the man is trouble! Last week he strolled into a den full of hungry lions! Yes really, lions! He walked out unscathed too. The lions took one look and yawned, as if he was one of them.”  

  “Hmm!” Murmured the police officer, “You say he is a character who is afraid of nothing, and he will do anything for a dare, to make money!”

   “That’s right officer, the man is a total nutcase, capable of any trick in the book. Until that lion stunt, we were all sure he used a lot of trickery to fool the audience. No-one would ever suspect that a fool would try to copy the stunt.”

   “How did the victim get into the cage?” Asked the policeman curiously.

 “We don’t know! He must have got hold of a duplicate key from somewhere. They say he was bragging to his friends that the lions were toothless. He actually invited them to watch as he entered the cage, then the lions tore him to pieces. So much for fearlessness. The two witnesses are in total shock, incapable of answering any questions right now.”

  “Where can I find this Strong fellow?”

  “Certainly in the White Horse pub at this time, Peter Strong is a man of regular habits, he always drinks there.”

The pub was empty as the policeman arrived.

“Where is everybody?”  he asked the barman curiously.

   “Down at the mere! Watching that fearless fool Peter Strong, trying to walk on water! That’s a broiling tumultuous whirlpool, he has no chance of coming out of this alive!”

   Just at that second a crowd of people entered the bar, following a tall enigmatic looking man, who was grinning from ear-to-ear.

 “The drinks are on me everyone! I’ll collect your losing bets later!”

There was a stunned silence at first, then everyone crowded around the bar ordering various drinks.

 The officer grinned in recognition. “Ah! Harry the hypnotist, as I live and breathe. I know you well! Our paths have crossed before. I guessed mass hypnosis was the only answer. I am sure the man who knows no fear has no fear of going to prison, for fraud and causing death by false pretences.”

Copyright ©  Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.

RED UMBRELLA

Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers ~ Writing challenge.

https://flashfictionforaspiringwriters.wordpress.com

Hosted by Priceless Joy.

The goal is to write a story between 100-150 words (give or take 25 words) based on the provided photo.

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This week’s photo prompt is provided by Etol Bagam.

RED UMBRELLA

by John Yeo

“Take your umbrella Mum! Rain is forecast. Take the main road, the shortcut is dangerous, the path takes you through the enchanted woods.” cautioned Arabella.
“OK! Dear!”
‘I don’t believe in any of that,’ she thought.
Bessie was bravely enjoying her walk along the shortcut: suddenly a wolf howled, Merlin the magician appeared with a magic wand and a long white beard . The wolf was trotting along by Merlin on the other side of the fence.
“Abracadabra, you should be dead! You’ve only been been saved because you are carrying red!” The magical Merlin wickedly said.
“Oh dear me!” replied Bessie. “Boo-Hoo, I know you! You’re in my imagination!”
There was a jingle of bells on the other side behind the magical fence?
A figure in red rode by on a sled that glided over the mud.
“Merry Christmas! You are not dead because you are carrying red. Follow me and you will be free from Merlin’s mighty dread.”
The rain stopped and she shut her red umbrella. Bessie was never seen again.

(174 WORDS)

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.

Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

A prompt response for “INSPIRATION MONDAY ~ BOXING

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Image from the Net

A prompt response for Inspiration Monday

http://bekindrewrite.com

A prompt response for Inspiration Monday: “Leap to a Beginning”

BOXING

by John Yeo

   Jim always walked to the town through the farmer’s fields He loved to watch the seasons change and drift along. The county of Kent is popularly known as the garden of England. The sky was blue, the sun was shining, it was a glorious Spring day. Jim always took his faithful dog Rover along with him for company.
   This was to be an unforgettable day for both of them, Rover was busy chasing rabbits and sniffing around the dried-up cow pats exploring the interesting smells. When suddenly the dog rushed forward, barking furiously at a very large, unusual creature that seemed to have appeared from nowhere. Jim couldn’t believe what he was seeing, he rubbed his eyes in total disbelief, in front of him was a very large Australian Kangaroo, that bounded directly towards Rover, his ears pulled back and his large long tail dragging along behind him. Rover changed his bark from an aggressive loud noise to a frightened whimper as he turned tail and fled. Jim stood his ground and looked the unusual creature straight in the eyes.
     ”Hallo! where have you suddenly appeared from? You are a very long way from home.”
  The Kangaroo suddenly reared up on his hind legs and assumed an aggressive boxing stance. Jim instantly turned and fled in alarm with the large creature leaping and bounding along behind him. Jim was stopped in his tracks by a six foot high hedge, one look behind at the aggressive Kangaroo and Jim leapt over the fence into a field of cattle, Rover wriggled through a gap in the fence and followed.
    A huge Bull bellowed at this intrusion into his private space, and started charging across the field towards Jim with his head down, just as the Kangaroo came flying over the hedge. The two creatures took one look at each other and fled in opposite directions.
   Jim climbed a tree and watched, as three tractors appeared and drove the Kangaroo towards a large lorry marked in bright letters Circus. The drivers were laughing and enjoying the spectacle immensley. Someone had telephoned the local papers and a large crowd had gathered and witnessed Jim’s amazing leap to freedom. Jim soon became something of a local celebrity, and was wined and dined as his leap to freedom, became the leap to a beginning of many after-dinner speaking engagements.

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.

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lmage from the Net

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Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 21st December 2015 ~ SAFETY FIRST

Safety First

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Image © Copyright John and Margaret

Safety First

Share the story of a time you felt unsafe.

ROUGH SEAS

by John Yeo

  The most memorable time that I felt unsafe and insecure was a time when we were in the middle of the ocean, aboard a relatively small ship. We had experienced some quite strong winds, and there was a rough swell, that was rocking the ship a little. We were quite used to this traversing the Bay of Biscay.

   On that memorable day we were eating a leisurely meal in the ship’s dining-room, I was sitting opposite my wife Margaret, with a view of the open sea through the windows on the side of the ship. The dining-room was quite high up, on the fourth level of eight, or nine if you include the open Verandah deck. 

   As I looked up, the windows in front of my viewpoint were underwater, literally underwater! Then within a millisecond or less, there was an huge shocking bang, as an enormous freak wave hit the side of the ship. The shock reverberated through the dining room, tables were thrown over and large metal serving stations were upended. There was the sound of crockery smashing everywhere and food and broken glass was scattered.   Several passengers were injured as the tables trapped people beneath them and the room was an area of total devastation. 

 All of the public rooms were affected and the damage to the fixtures and fittings was substantial. The passengers were ordered to return to their cabins as the clear-up began, we returned to find our television set had been ripped from the brackets that secured it to the wall. The maintenance department were obviously attending to the urgent areas of dangerously damaged fixtures and fittings.

 We were confined to our cabins until further notice, and informed that our meals would be delivered to our cabins by the room-service staff. The Captain kept everyone well informed, of the ongoing situation over the internal tannoy system. The weather was still pretty rough and the seas were high but nothing to compare with the original freak wave that had caused such devastation. That was totally unexpected by the officers on the bridge and came literally out of nowhere.

 We were confined to our cabins for almost two days, and for us that was the safest place to be. I certainly felt unsafe during those two days of high seas, and I was quite relieved when things were back to normal and our ship was sailing on calm waters into the sunshine.

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.

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Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 18th December 2015 ~ TAKE CARE

Take Care

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Image © Copyright John and Margaret

Take Care
When you’re unwell, do you allow others to take care of you, or do you prefer to soldier on alone? What does it take for you to ask for help?

HAVE A CARE

by John Yeo

  “Take Care” is a fond farewell greeting nowadays as people take their leave of each other. The obvious meaning is to be careful as you proceed onwards in life, carefully avoiding the pitfalls and dangers that can be apparent as you travel the unknown road ahead. “Look after Yourself.”
   In the present context to ‘Take Care.’ refers to the way one takes care of oneself, or alternatively should one allow others to take responsibility for their care, in the event of illness or a sudden indisposition. My first inclination would be to look after myself, and allow others to become involved at the very last possible minute. I think the up-to-date method of taking care, is to fight any illness wth the self medication that is available everywhere over any Pharmacy counter. There is much advice available to begin to understand the onset of a minor illness, and fighting on alone is the only way to proceed. However the time to ask for help is when the symptoms do not clear up and fear for your personal health sets in. This is the time to ask for the professional help and advice from the trained medical personnel.

Have a Care!

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved

PICTURE IT AND WRITE ~ CUT ~

This is a latest Picture it and Write prompt from Ermilia’s blog ~ 20th

December 2015

https://ermiliablog.wordpress.com/2015/12/20/picture-it-write-80/

Emilia Scissors

As usual the image is supplied and credited by Ermilia

CUT

by John Yeo

    Roger was a parish priest, who had many secrets entrusted to him by the congregation. His parish took in the local prison and many prisoners unloaded their secrets on to his broad shoulders. One day his code of ethics was put severely to the test.
  One eloquent embezzler, a lawyer who had been jailed for stealing funds from his client account, asked to speak to him. Then followed many interviews over a period of many months, as the prisoner took him into his confidence and confessed to many other unsolved crimes. Hiding behind the cloak of priestly confidentiality, the man’s claims seemed to get wilder and wilder.
  Nothing much had ever come anywhere near to shocking the priest before but this man’s confession penetrated his consciousness and affected him badly.
  Father Roger wrestled with his revulsion of what he was exposed to by this continuous stream of evil, and he requested a meeting with the prison governor, asking to be relieved of his position.
     “Why this sudden decision?” Asked the governor anxiously.

       “I am unable to reveal the real reasons, but suffice to say. I will be a changed man in the future!” the cleric replied.

   The governor nodded as the sudden realisation came across to him, that this was a professional man who was clearly at the end of his tether.
The priest went on to say to the prison governor;

        “Maurice, I feel as if I have been taking part in a revolting nightmare. I can’t believe some of the secrets that have been entrusted to me, even with my experience and my long period of training, I am profoundly shocked. I intend to go on a long retreat to expunge this evil from my mind. It is as if I have been playing a role in a disgusting movie. I need to take a huge pair of imaginary scissors and cut the last last few frames of this film, and tread the memories into the dust of the cutting room floor and destroy them forever.”
Then there was something of a role reversal, as the prison governor calmly said.
    “Go in peace and use your scissors with care!”

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved
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Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 18th December 2015 ~ THE ARTIST’S EYE

The Artist’s Eye
The Artist’s Eye Is there a painting or sculpture you’re drawn to? What does it say to you? Describe the experience. (Or, if art doesn’t speak to you, tell us why.)

Images from the Net

 Auguste Rodin’s “The Thinker”

by John Yeo

  Wherever or whenever, I have ever seen a reproduction of this incredible work of art, I am entranced. I am sure this is a very allegorical piece of work, full of hidden alternatives. My thoughts are with the mind of the sculptor.
  What was in the mind of the sculptor as he constructed this work of art? What was he trying to reveal through the deep concentrated reflection of thought revealed in the face of the subject?
  When I ponder on the ponderer and think about the mind that is reflected in the depiction of a mind, set deep in thought. It is difficult not to equate the creative process, reflecting the mind of the creator with the creator of this work of art. Was the sculptor in a creative trance that guided his mind and his hands to portray such an intense reality? The figure of the man has his head bowed resting on his right hand in a position that can only be viewed as deep concentrated thought. One wonders what was actually in the mind of a man who could produce such an incredible piece of work.
  In the mundane world of most people’s reality, survival and the normal processes of day-to-day living fill the crevices of an average mind to the exclusion of almost everything else. The dedication required to simply create something as intense and perfect as this amazing work of art must be phenomenal.
  To me this represents the complete dedication and incredible mind power that is required to start, build, and complete any complex project or creative accomplishment.
  Auguste Rodin’s depiction of a thinker always sets my thinking processes off on a wild stream of thought. I can only begin to guess how other minds are affected by this incredible work of art, that would be like trying to read the mind of a bronze statue that is obviously deep in thought.
  According to historical legend Auguste Rodin originally created this statue as part of a much larger piece of work. Apparently the figure was supposed to represent the Italian poet Dante Alighieri thinking about his incredible epical story of Paradise and Inferno.

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.

Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 17th December 2015 ~ BECAUSE THE NIGHT

Because the Night
Are you a night owl or are you the early bird? What’s your most productive time of day? When do you do your best work?

Daily Prompt on WordPress ~ 17th December 2015 ~

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Image © Copyright ~,John and Margaret

BECAUSE THE NIGHT”

by John Yeo

   Lenny was a rising star in his field, he had started at the bottom of the organisation and had been rapidly promoted to area-manager.   Ruthlessly brushing aside his rivals, he had used every trick in the book to get where he was today.
     The confidence levels of the superstar, super sales-manager were at the highest levels. He was a dynamo that never seemed to slow down, or break down. Record figures on his monthly sales graph told the story of his infinitely clever abilities.
  One day he was ordered to attend a very special meeting with his well known, internationally famous boss.
  Ricky Ricardo, was a guitarist who had made a pile from the recording industry and was now diversifying into other areas. Lenny was both intrigued and flattered to attend this meeting, he had always been a fan of his bosses music and he couldn’t contain his curiosity.
   Lenny stepped into a huge outer office and was directed to a seat by a secretary.
       “Please take a seat, Mr Ricardo is expecting you and he is aware you are here.”
    “Thank you,” Lenny replied. Looking around this outer office, Lenny noticed that the walls were covered with photographs and memento’s of Ricky Ricardo’s long established career in the music industry.
The secretary smiled and motioned Lenny towards the main office.
     “You can go in now.”
  Entering the office, Lenny gasped in surprise to be confronted by an aged, wizened wrinkled man, seated behind a huge desk.
         “Hi! Don’t look so shocked son. We all get a little older each day. I know what you are thinking and I am not surprised at your reaction. Take a seat. I am impressed with your performance since you joined the company, and I want to make you an offer that I hope you will find difficult to refuse.”
   “Thank you Sir!” responded Lenny.
            “Call me Ricky, How are you sleeping lately? I fully understand if you are having difficulty with your sleeping patterns. We all do after a while. That last deal you made, must have cost you an awful lot of sleep the way you ruthlessly ripped off those people for the benefit of the company.”
  Taken aback, Lenny just murmured, “I sleep OK!”
              “Do you really? That’s amazing, I always toss and turn after I have screwed a few people for all they have got the world. That’s how I got to look like this, because the night is always the time your conscience should be bothering you. Are you sure?”
    “Well!” intoned Lenny “Now you come to mention it, I do have a few problems and the Doctor has prescribed sleeping tablets.”
               “I knew it son, you have a long way to go yet, I am going to give you early retirement with a month’s pay in lieu of notice.”
    Lenny was stunned. “But why?” was all he could get out.
              “Call it justice son. That last lady you conned out of her life savings was a distant relative of mine. Think about it tonight, because the night is the time things begin to catch up on you.”

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.