:: Flash Fiction archive ( 2000-2005, click for articles pre-2006)

How to Avoid the Cardinal Sins published 16/12/2013

Men cannot mend the Lapse of Man. It remains to us Mortals to obey the Lord, keep to the Ten Commandments, guard against Sin and avoid Sinners. I hereby propose a Method of purging Sin: a non-medicinal Nostrum and Prophylactic in one, potent until the Day of Reckoning. Though it bears not the Church’s Imprimatur, I guarantee its salubrious Effects on the Conscience. Judge for yourself whether it be of any Use—if it be, promote it every which Way, by Word of Mouth and in Print.

By S.D. Chrostowska

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Horizontal Transmission published 13/07/2013

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Like lavender she is suited to extreme conditions, expert drainage and the appreciation of a romantic’s nose.

By Rebecca Hattersley.

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Planning an Atlantic Funeral published 07/07/2013

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The Atlantic of my memory loves the moon the best.

By Hugh Sheehy.

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Three Stories published 06/06/2013

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You can’t kill yourself. The roach powder is getting into your brain. Get out of here! Leave. The blinds don’t matter. You can leave. You have fulfilled the terms. You don’t feel fulfilled, but, formally, there is fulfillment.

By Joanna Ruocco.

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Fat of the Land published 20/05/2013

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One-hundred and fifty years ago, a famous battle from a great war spilled blood on the fields behind my family’s home. Now, these long summer days, we chase away men wearing dark baseball caps and bulky headphones, metal detectors swaying wildly at their sides. Other days we crack off pistol-fire into the air and watch as they retreat to their little cars, great clouds of dust dispersing over the roads as they tear back to town.

By David Peak.

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Tusks of Varaha published 01/05/2013

Just then he conceived a dare for himself. The proper way to put it looked cross-eyed back at him and winked. There it sat: the comic adjudicator from hell—the devil—with its fat gut and perfect whiskers and horns. Superintending pointless dares in Indian restaurants everywhere. Stewing after the pointless fallout. Utterly hysterical for more to come, for eternity. Harvey deliberated. He was just drunk enough on beer to give a wink back. He did so and then emptied the remainder of his drink with a gulp. “I dare myself to get a girl tonight. Or else go abstinent for a good solid pig’s lifetime.”

By Peter Clarke.

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Hungry dogs, dirty puddings published 11/04/2013

She was the kind if girl who wasn’t fussy where her shiraz came from, the kind a barge man wouldn’t touch with his pole. But he’d got to the point where he was so hungry for someone to touch him this was no longer important. He found her, not in the gutter but wavering on the edge of it, with thin legs perched on ridiculous heels that made her unsteady as a young bird. He preferred more flesh on a woman – even her laughter was the brittle kind, but better than the eternal silence of his apartment.

By Clare Kirwan.

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An Easter prayer published 01/04/2013

There, there
The fool that you are, Robert
Is that druff on your shoulder?
It is not, you fiend
Oh, Meg, tarry a while
I will not, I cannot
Please, I’ll make an honest woman of you
The cheek of it, you don’t have it in you
My kisses say I do.

By Alan McCormick & Jonny Voss.

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Before the Storm published 19/03/2013

I met her in a cocktail bar, but she wasn’t working as a waitress. She was getting drunk like me at the counter, blabbing away to strangers, some of whom were queuing to order. We swooned this way and that, as if on the deck of a storm-swept ship; then she yelled in my ear. She stank of perfume and gin; and later, in her room, I wondered whether she’d splashed on the latter and drunk the former.

By Alex Sheal.

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Making the Bed published 14/03/2013

“For some reason I’ve started making the bed.” Luc said stroking the little, grey bristles poking out from his cheeks.
“I don’t know what it is. I’ve never made the bed before. I always thought it was a waste of time, and then suddenly, I can’t stand to see my bed unmade.”
“What are you talking about?” asked Marcel before taking the final sip of his coffee.
“Making the bed in morning. I never used to do it. Now I can’t help myself.”
“So what?” said Marcel rubbing his hands on his cream coloured corduroys.
“So nothing, I just thought it was interesting. When Marigelle was alive she couldn’t stand to see the bed unmade and I never did it. Not once in all the years we lived together.”
They both chuckled.

By Nathan Loceff.

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