Thursday 19 December 2019

Mid-Week Flash Challenge - Week 138

This week's photo was taken by Tien-Chien Chen, a landscape photographer from Taiwan. This photo was taken on the Jancing Historic Trail in  Taipingshan National Forest, which follows along an old logging railroad, and is at an elevation of 2000 meters, hence clouds form and linger. You can find it, and many other incredible landscapes over on Chen's flicker account

She's back! Tricky strikes again and each time giving me a little bit more. (previous tales can be found here.)

And this will be the last tale for a while, as Mid-Week Flash is taking a hiatus over Christmas and New year. I just don't have time to spin more tales. 

The General Guidelines can be found here.

How to create a clickable link in Blogger comments can be found on lasts week's post here.

There is also a Facebook group for Mid-Week Flash, if you fancy getting the prompt there.

Railroad Memories

She knew this railroad well; she remembered when it was built. Tricky had been around a long time, longer than even she could tell. Many things had happened on the railroad, many nasty things. Some she was responsible for, others not. That time of John the Thatcher she’d only played witness, but had managed to see the end of that nasty piece of work that had befallen the district of Clancy.

Randolf Carter was a man people didn’t like to mess with, even Tricky was wary. But she’d taken him on that dawn morning along this track. She’d been up here doing other business, Tricky business, business that was none of nobody’s no mind. She’d been gathering and drawing things to her the forest trees could provide, things she didn’t like to talk about lest others should learn her secrets – although that was but a tiny one.

She’d been in the dell, concentrating, when a scream had hit the air. She’d known who it was immediately but not who was responsible and crawled up the side of the embankment to find out.

There’d been three of them. They’d done a good job tying John to the sleepers, and were busy poking things into him. But what had caught Tricky’s eye was another, standing further away, the dawn mist covering their face. So she’d used the energy she’d collected to move the mist, and it had revealed the ugly mantel of that canny, perfidious, snake of a man. People might call her Tricky, but she was as squeaky as a pair of clean skivvies compared to crater-face Carter. His pox marked face confirmed he’d even managed to scare off the lurgy. No one messed with that man. Not till then.
Tricky’d had a soft spot for the Thatcher and not just because she’d seen what was in his pants, oh no, he was a man of purity and wholesomeness that rarely got the credit it deserved.

She’d listened to the ranting and intermittent questions old crater-face had plied John with, something about a woman and a debt he was owed. John had barely been allowed to speak, though screaming he’d done well. Tricky wasn’t squeamish by nature; she liked a good blood letting when it was warranted, but this hadn’t sat right with her.

She’d taken a breath, calling upon the woods for their help, and tapping John’s screams for energy. She’d drawn it all up, channelling it through the chakras to refine it, and the trees had responded, their movement clearing the air. As expected it unsettled the men even if they’d only thought it a storm. It had been enough to get them leaving John’s side. Then she’d whipped up the air between them and sent the three men flying in all directions, leaving her to treat the fourth to some extra special attention.

Tricky still snickered now remembering the look on his face as he’d been taken from the ground. The wide-eyed horror as the branches had swept him up and played ball with him, catching him on the ends of their branches, impaling him a little more each time. The blood had flown that morning. She still wondered where he had ended up. No one had ever found his remains, not that anyone had looked. That’s the trouble when you’re rotten to the core, people only care you’re gone, they weren’t interested in finding you.

She’d gone to John’s aid and healed him up proper, reminding him of the promise they’d shared for nigh on five years and to continue to keep it if he wanted to remain in good health. He’d been grateful but in a hurry to leave, and she remembered how she’d enjoyed watching his arse as he’d walked away between the tracks.

That was one of her better moments, when she’d done something for someone else. She shivered; it didn’t come natural though; it wasn’t how she’d survived this long.

She turned her mind back to the task at hand. The one good thing about the railroad falling out of use was that it was now covered in such delightful moss, one she needed to complete her current conjuring trick – a trick that would need to last several years if it was to be of any benefit. She set too scraping what she needed into a hessian pocket she’d brought with her.

A new type of Randolf Carter had befallen not just Clancy but the whole province. This one was much nastier and more insipid, but she’d been link to his game the second he’d arrived. She’d met him before, although he didn’t know that, and that was the tiny little pick in the jersey she was going to unravel. Oh yes. 


  1. Wow! Tricky, you became dark and evil in this one. Nice job, Miranda.

    1. Thanks Mason, I think there might be more darkness to explore.

  2. Here us my attempt at this weeks prompt. The Empath's Flight

    As the last prompt of the year passes I'd like to thank you for all your help this year, and for all the amazing prompts that have allowed me to grow as a writer. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Miranda.

    1. Wonderful story Mason. Your writing has progressed so much in the short time I have known you.

  3. Loved your story, Miranda. Nice one.

    I haven't written any flash fiction for such a long time! So, I thank you for inspiring me. Here it is: The Great Divide

    Hope you enjoy it.


  4. Ooh, I like this! Tricky sounds like my kind of character!

  5. Hi Miranda, thanks for the prompts this year, I've really enjoyed them. Here's my story for this week's prompt: Where All Tracks Lead

  6. Had posted my story to the wrong post. Thanks for your mail :)
    Here's my entry-

    December Chills - Anita

    Have a great week! Merry Christmas!