The Beginning of a Short Story

Kira used to love summers.

Until, her ultra-conservative father decided to cave into mid-life crisis, purchase an engine-red Porsche and have an affair with his Executive Assistant; a woman twenty years his junior.

Her mother got the short end of the stick in this bitter divorce. She got stretch marks, saggy thighs, drooping boobs and a dilapidated Buick.

Kira couldn’t stomach the sight of her father anymore, and instead of living with him and his silicone bride-to-be in suburbia, she moved with her mom to a microscopic studio in the middle of WeHo.

The building is ancient. It dates back to 1940s, and the lobby still has remnants of Art Deco in the ceiling and the molding of the walls.

Other than that, the hallways reek of urine and boiled cabbage. Some of the lights are broken and it makes it very hard to navigate down the hallway at night, not to mention super creepy. The elevator hasn’t worked for months, and the windows get broken at least twice a month by the crazy junkies that like to huddle outside, by the dumpster.

And, the building is plagued with uninvited guests.

Roaches.

Kira encountered one while sleeping on a sofa bed that she shared with her mom. She turned on her side and there it was, staring boldly at her on her mom’s empty pillow. It didn’t even scurry off until she screamed and jumped out of bed!

Since then, she triple-checked the sheets before going to sleep, and never left food on the counter or the table anymore.

Kira pushed open the moldy door to the studio, with her foot, and walked inside.

It was unbearably hot and stuffy.

She slumped her backpack down on the floor and walked towards the opened window.

The sweltering heat wave smacked her face and with it, brought the thunderous sound of honking, sirens wailing in the distance and smells of greasy, fast food.

Kira shut the window and turned on the decrepit A.C.

At first, it coughed up dust, but then after an hour it began to blow out cold air, and with it, brought a foul stench of rotten eggs.

Kira let out a deep, exasperated sigh and wondered if her life would ever get better.

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The Beginning of a Short Story

The Tale of a Dubious Prince

Once upon a time, in a kingdom of darkness and pain,
Lived a dubious, little prince with a hollow heart.
He sat on a skeletal throne and butchered souls.
And his favorite pastime was to conquer and burn.

He enjoyed torture, blood and impalement most of all.
Hence why his foes called him a bloody monster, a tyrant and a wild boar.

Those who lived in the kingdom were very afraid,
For the prince was volatile and simply deranged.

He ruled his homeland with an iron fist,
Hence why the people called him a beast.
Those who opposed him were beheaded and flayed,
For the prince lacked a heart – mercy was not in his veins.

He was ugly, repulsive, scarred and insane.
And although he was small,
He was fearless and strong.

He mounted warhorses – ponies were given to slaves.
And he’d charge into battle, yell out, “Ye shall fall to your knees!”
Before slaying his prey.

After battling foes, burning temples to ash,
Disembodying the innocent, ripping hearts from their chests,
The dubious prince dove into raping his conquest.

Virginal maidens only lasted a night,
Early next morning, their bodies were trashed,
Into the gutter, with the rest of the quarry;
Damaged, deflowered and ready to bury.

The tale is woeful, morose and dreadful,
But the reign of the prince did not last forever.
He was finally slain by a raven-haired maiden.

She beheaded the tyrant, placed the crown on her head,
Settled into the skeletal throne and assumed his place.

The tale of the raven-haired princess has yet to be told,
No one knows if her kingdom will flourish or fall.
But beware she will not be a puppet, a fool or a dolt.

She will rule as she pleases,
And if protests arise, then the sword that she used to butcher the tyrant
Will once again be ready to strike.

The Tale of a Dubious Prince

The Guardian of Light

Misha pushed open the double-doors and stepped inside the cafeteria.

It was sardine-packed, and the thick, humid air reeked of greasy, processed food, and a mixture of moldy scent that every cafeteria across the country is guilty of, along with a pungent scent of Red Bull.

The endless chatter and obnoxious laughter quickly faded into silence, and all eyes fell on her face.

She swallowed a thorny lump that suddenly spawned inside of her dry throat and took a step forward. Her heart thrashed frantically inside of her rib cage and her body shook from the adrenaline that rushed through her veins.

“What the hell do you think you’re doing here?” demanded an angry voice.

It belonged to Joanna Smalls. She was a short, fat girl with piggish eyes, a pockmarked face and a large, bulbous nose.

She was what the neighborhood called a “bad seed” and her reputation for biting ears off in a fight earned her the nickname Tyson Jo.

“Hey, I’m talking to you, retard!”

For a split second, Misha thought about running out the cafeteria – embarrassed, angry and confused – but she stood her ground. For the first time in her life, she scraped enough courage to stand up to the leader of the pack that bullied her all through elementary and junior high.

Misha was tired of being scared.

She clenched her hands into tight, trembling fists and whirled around.

“And? You want a medal for that?”

A taunting wave of snickers weaved through the cafeteria.

“W-what did you say?” Joanna sputtered in disbelief, her face turning puce with anger.

“What are you, deaf and stupid?” Misha countered with a steady gaze even though her voice trembled with fear.

Joanna jumped to her feet so quickly that her chair fell backwards with a loud thud. She crossed the distance between them in short, quick strides and faced Misha with a menacing glare.

Misha prepared for the worst.

“Beat the crap out of her, Jo!” yelled a giant, paunchy girl with uneven, yellow teeth and thin, oily hair.

Without a warning, a large, sweaty fist hit Misha in the face and pushed her down on the cold ground. Joanna jumped on top of her, grabbed a fistful of her copper-red curls and pummeled her face with rabid punches.

Misha cried out in pain.

The skin on her face tore open. Blood oozed out of her nostrils, snaked down her chin and dripped down on the polished floor. She tried to wriggle free but Joanna grabbed her by the sweatshirt and slugged her in the eye.

Suddenly, Misha went rigid.

Her body went numb. But, she felt a blistering knot in the pit of her stomach. It was coiled into a tight, prickly ball and it slumbered deep inside of her like a fire-breathing dragon, only to reveal itself when her life was in danger.

She felt the knot unravel, very slowly, and it sent a fiery wave through her veins. Her body ached and trembled, and the stinging sensation burned every inch of her porcelain flesh. She knew that once it reached the surface, it would burn everything to ash.

Joanna gave out a blood-curdling scream. Her black tee shirt caught on fire.

“HELP ME!” She screeched and beat the scarlet flames with her large, calloused hands.

Her friends tugged the burning tee shirt off and tossed it on the ground while the students in the cafeteria watched in shock.

“She’s possessed! She’s possessed!” Joanna shrieked unnaturally and joined the rest of the students as they screamed at the top of their lungs and burst out of the cafeteria.

Misha sat up slowly.

Her body trembled from head-to-toe and her sweatshirt was drenched in sweat. She couldn’t see through her right eye; it was swollen shut. But, she knelt beside the flames and reached out a hand to touch them. They nipped at her fingers like baby snakes and sent a rush of excitement down her spine.

She scooped them up and watched them sway gently back and forth. Her eyes glistened and a menacing smile tugged at the corners of her lips.

This is only the beginning, she thought.

 

 

The Guardian of Light