The Stormbringer

WP authors don’t seem to run out of originality. I hope you enjoy this story from JR Shull. 🙂

J.R. Shull

Below is a story in response to D. Wallace Peach’s photo prompt: February’s Speculative Fiction Prompt.

Enjoy! Don’t forget to like, comment, and share!

The Stormbringer

The creaking.
Distinctly, I recall the way the boards along the ceiling would not stop creaking and groaning. The sound buzzed around my head like a swarm of gnats. It clawed at me, scraping against my eardrums though I held tight my hands to my head. As I sat huddled in the corner, watching, waiting for the crescendo of splintering wood to bring the pain down, the creaking never ceased.
Oh, but I am getting ahead of myself! The dread was formed earlier, brought on by that godforsaken storm.
The garden beneath my home– that is, at the base of a massive, gnarled, twisted tree– needed tending. I stood with my toes in the soft soil, admiring the sprouts brave enough to enter the…

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Gesundheit! by Andrea Stoeckel

Andrea doesn’t have a blog, so I’m sharing her complete story based on February’s prompt here. I hope you enjoy!

Pixabay image by Marianne Sopala


“Oh! Ahh! That feels so much better!”, said the young elephant. “My nose gets so itchy sometimes.”

From the crook of the tree, he heard a ruckus of squeaks as a half a dozen mice struggled out of what appeared to be an attic window. “It didn’t feel better to us I’ll have you know!” said the larger one as he stood up peering at the pachyderm. “And who or better yet WHAT are you?”

“I am an Asian ele..ele..ele..Elephant, at least that’s what the zookeeper says I am. He also says I am a lot of trouble because…”, he hung his head, ”I’m allergic to peanuts”!

“I have tried them”, squeaked the mouse, “and they are not anything to sneeze at. I know they are treats that two-footers discard. Very nice, but too much work for us.” “Now, please tell us why you are shaking our house up?”

“I have an itchy nose and I can’t scratch it, but your house can! I am sorry if it shook you up. What can I do? I had no clue that stuff the kids threw had peanuts, and I got so itchy I rubbed myself out of the enclosure and have been lost ever since…and, it’s getting dark. It’s cold. It’s snowing. I want my Momma!” He began to cry.

The grandmother mouse moved to the front of the group on the roof. “Little man, we might be able to help each other. If you could let us get back inside and very carefully carry our house to the zoo, maybe the keepers will let us stay too. My grandfather worked at the zoo when I was just a baby and he brought home the most marvelous things.”- she closed her eyes- “salty, sweet things and it was in a safer area, warmer too.”

So, Baby Elephant waited for the mice to scurry back into the house, and very slowly and carefully picked the house up by his trunk, and with the mice helping navigate, they all arrived back to his enclosure at the zoo. Momma Elephant trumpeted so loud Baby almost dropped his new friends’ house. When the keeper saw Baby, he was so happy!

Baby explained as best he could about how the mice had saved him, with an occasional squeak from the mice. Although they couldn’t stay IN the zoo, keeper knew a place right outside in a hollowed out tree where the house would be safe and the mice could scrounge for leftovers…but, they all agreed, NO PEANUTS would be harmed in the making of this pact. On this they all agreed!

Procrastination Plus!


I’ve been procrastinating regarding my writing for the first time in 10 years. Why? Partly because of this dang speculative fiction prompt challenge I started. It’s not the busy-ness that’s holding me up. It’s that the responses are so creative and fun, and I’m all over the blogosphere reading and visiting old and new friends.

In terms of writing, my most productive time of day is first thing in the morning when I can indulge in big chunks of creative time. And here I sit at 5:00 AM writing this post… procrastinating!

I did finish the first draft of Book 2 in my current WIP trilogy, but it took me a month to write the last three chapters – instead of a week – ugh.  It was more fun to play with cover ideas. I can do that for days on end.

I don’t know the titles yet  – these are place-holders – and I’ll probably have covers done professionally, so this very likely is just more procrastination!

(I haven’t purchased these images, (thus the watermark). I certainly will if I decide to use them).

Okay, enough procrastinating, Diana. Time to start on Book 3. Knuckle under and get cracking! Or maybe I’ll quickly check on the blog first… See what I mean? Arrgh! Lol.

How do you procrastinate, and however do you get back on track?


Atonement Ganesha

Happy Valentine’s Day! With all those hearts, I had to share Teagan’s story today. We’re off to the Atonement universe once again. Enjoy.

Teagan's Books

Saturday, February 9, 2018

Elephant mice tree house HEARTS_PixabyPixabay, altered image by Teagan

Diana Wallace Peach started a  monthly feature at her blog, Myths of the Mirror.  I caved into the temptation to play along. Click the link to learn more. 

Each month, Diana issues an image as a prompt. This time, my response is a twofer! My first response is my alteration of the original image.  Click the link above to see the original at Diana’s blog. 

As you can see, I was hoping to make a Valentine’s story.  However, whatever and whomever my muse is, apparently it has no relationship with Cupid.  Even so, I wrote a vignette and once again, made my response part of my “Atonement, Tennessee” universe.  I’ll leave Ralda Lawton to tell you about it.


What is that up ahead? I wondered.

I was about to turn my Toyota into the long, rhododendron lined driveway of…

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Who is Weak? – Balroop Singh

Pixabay image by Marianne Sopala

Who is Weak

by Balroop Singh

The strong and the mighty
Try to push you around
Whatever the weather
They don’t want you together

“Why are you happy?
How could you…without me?
I hold the power
How dare you flower?”

Is it jealousy or arrogance?
Lack of love or loneliness?
Humility at their feet,
They trample you with conceit…

(continue reading: Who is Weak?)

A New Home

A story from Anneberly that my grandson gave 5-thumbs up! Enjoy.

Anneberly Andrews

elephant-2910293_960_720 Marianne Sopala via Pixabay

“Africa!” his mother trumpeted.

He did not reply. He was having too much fun playing with the other calves. Flopping their heads back and forth, swinging their trunks to and fro, and pretending to trip and fall, without actually meeting the ground, face to dirt. This game was the most exciting, and the most played game among the calves. The adults growl, and violently shake their heads, especially when the irritating calves pretend to trip and fall at their feet.

Today was one of those irritating youngster play days. With frustration billowing deep within their guts, the adults sent the calves far away from the watering hole, so that they could bask in the sun peacefully.

“Africa!” his mother trumpeted louder.

He still did not reply.

While he was running around, swinging his trunk at the other calves, he became dizzy from moving his head too…

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A playful nonet from Helene at Willow Poetry. Enjoy!

Willow Poetry

elephant-2910293_960_720 Pixabay image by Marianne Sopala

Written for: D. Wallace Peach at Myths of the Mirror
February’s Speculative Fiction Prompt:  Photo Above

(a Nonet)


once upon a fluffy snowflake day
a symphony of squeaky mice
thrown from a brisk vibration
all amass in a heap
there in the window
peculiar eyes
grey monster
mice mad

©Hélène Vaillant

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