The drink




Connor motioned towards the door. “Mike, you look like you can use a drink,” he said.

“Uh huh,” said Mike. His eyes focused on the raptor.
“But first,” Conner waved his hand in front of Mike. “Lets, clean you up.”
“Oh, sorry.”
“No worries. Come on, there’s a thirty year old bourbon with your name on it.”
Mike followed Connor through the door. “Hey man, did you redecorate since yesterday?”
Connor grinned, “Nope.”
A voice came from behind Mike, “You picked the wrong house.”
Mike spun around. His brows furrowed,”Three years, I’ve waited for this moment.”



 Photo Copyright: Douglas M. Macllory

Mike scratched his head. “Is that a metal raptor? Since when, are you into modern art?”

“Would you believe it’s my security guard,” said Connor.

“How does a sculpture guard anything?” said Mike

Connor snapped his fingers. “Raptor, security test.”

In a blink of an eye, legs emerged from the statue complete with sharp claws. Skin covered with green scales replaced the metal. One yellow eye stared at Mike. As the raptor moved closer on its hind legs, Mike lost his bladder.

“Raptor, end test.” He glanced at Mike. “Do you believe, I’m a wizard now?” said Connor.

Mike remained silent.



 Photo Copyright: Santoshwrite

Sabo said, “Today, I would like four volunteers to perform a difficult spell.”

No one dared to accept.

“If you succeed, you’ll receive a passing grade for my class. If you fail, well, try not to fail.”

Everyone stared at their desks in silence.

With a snap of his fingers, Sabo and four boys disappeared.

A moment later, the woods surrounded them.

One of the boys asked, “What are we doing here?”

“Today you will turn into a drop of water and land on this leaf,” said Sabo.

Unable to reform, the boys remained water throughout the weekend as punishment.

The chase


Photo copyright: Sandra Crook

“Sir, I cranked the a/c for you,” said the valet. 

“Thanks, but I thought hunting wasn’t allowed?” said David.

 “It’s strictly forbidden on the plantation,” said the valet.

 Without a word, David sprinted across the parking lot towards a bald man in full camouflage. When their eyes

 met, a single glimpse of recognition betrayed Brandi’s killer. David chased the coward through the tree line into 

an overgrown field, but a single misstep sealed the bald man’s fate. An exposed tree root and gravity did the rest, 

as the man’s neck collied with the tree stump.

The call



Photo copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

With a double bourbon on the rocks, his medicine of choice, David stared at the maze in the distance. His reverie cut short by the ring of his phone.

“David,” he said.

“Thanks for making my job so easy,” said the caller.

“I will find you. Enjoy what little time you have left,” said David.

“Until then, have another bourbon, ” said the caller.

David scanned the maze, tables, and picnic area. Three men were using their phones.

“It won’t be that easy. Nice try…” The line went dead.

David threw the drink at the column. I’ll, bury him alive!

Maze garden


“David, I need a break, “ said Brandi.

“Sorry, if trying to keep you alive is boring you,” said David.

“It’s not, but there’s a plantation in Suwannee, Georgia. I’d like to visit.”

“Sounds nice, if you’re into old building and boredom.”

She ran her hand up his leg. “I promise you’ll enjoy it.”

“Sure, why not.”

David was bored ten minutes after arrival. While waiting for a room to be cleaned, they walked through the maze of shrubs. David noticed something small sparkle in the distance.

“That’s weird, Brandi…”

Brandi slumped forward. Brain tissue and blood soaked David.






 Photo Copyright: Georgia Koch

The money was moved to a new duffel; before, they switched cars and headed south.

She sat silent, until twenty minutes past Atlanta, Georgia.

Brandi said, “I’m still mad, but…I remember the metal ramp from the picture.”


“It’s High Falls Lake in Forsyth, Georgia. My dad took me there every summer.”

“Is it a resort?”

“No, and don’t laugh. We went there to fish. I hated being in that boat. It was so boring.”


“There’s a painting of a boat in the rental office. Painted in eighteen-fourteen by the original owner.”

“Sure, that you remember.”


The buyer


Photo Copyright: Jan Wayne Fields

David knocked on the door three times before it opened.

A Latin beauty in a skintight black dress said, “He’s expecting you. Please wait by the window.”

With his attention on her David never noticed the two men, until a muzzle poked his back.

The man facing him said, “If you don’t have my merchandise, I’ll torture you and your girlfriend in Starbucks, before you die.”

David said, “It’s in the duffel.”

The man unzipped it to reveal an ancient statue of a Roman solider. He handed David a briefcase and said, “Leave.”

The bullet he expected never came.

The trip


Photo copyright – Jean L. Hays

David parked in between two spaces in front of Starbucks.
“Why are we in Illinois? Please tell me, we’re not here for a tour of Route 66,” said Brandi.
David responded, “No sightseeing. I need to make a delivery.”
“What are we delivering?”
“We’re not. I am. You’re going to get a coffee and wait.”
With an icy glare Brandi said, “The hell I am.”
“Brandi, The guy I’m meeting doesn’t care for strangers.”
“He’ll have to get over it.”
“No, he’ll kill you. Wait here.”
David grabbed the duffel from the backseat. “I’ll be back in ten minutes.”

The dream


Brandi awoke with a jolt. “David, behind you!”

In one fluid motion David’s eyes sprang open the forty-five retrieved from under his pillow and raised it to a firing position. This was all done in the space of a few seconds.

“Brandi, no one’s here.”

“Sorry, bad dream.” Before David had time to object Brandi threw back the curtains. As she did something landed in her hair. With a quick shake of her head it landed on the sill. “I’m not staying here one more minute, let’s go.”
“What’s wrong?”
“A dried out dead roach fell in my hair.”