Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 16-04-2014

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“I know we haven’t spoken in a while. I’d love to catch up, but I need to get home,” Becky said in a tight voice when Vivian got into the car uninvited. “I know that you guys ditched me and stayed at the beach over the winter,” Vivian said with a sad and knowing smile. “And I know that you weren’t out of town when I had my accident and couldn’t drive for a bit afterwards; you just didn’t bother to come by.” Becky’s face flushed. “But don’t worry about it,” Vivian went on. “I wasn’t really that surprised. The thing is, a lot has happened in the past few months and I just want to take a moment to show you what you’ve missed.” Becky frowned slightly, confused, and then she started screaming as Vivian began to change.


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 15-04-2014

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“No way!  You’re Marley’s Ghost?  THE Marley’s Ghost?” Kesson exclaimed. “I am the spirit of Jacob Marley, Sir – without issue and the only one so named of which I am aware,” said the spirit hesitantly.  “Scrooge’s Marley?  Hot damn!” Kesson went on. “I was Ebenezer’s partner, Sir, but he is now beyond me and blessedly so. Now it is you I turn my full attention to,” the shade replied. “GREAT!  Jesus, this is the COOLEST!  I just have to finish a couple of financial spreadsheets, upload them, check Facebook quick, and I’ll be right with you!” “No, Sir. Now. I believe it most timely that we speak.” Kesson felt his chest tighten for the second time this week; an inexplicable pain traveled halfway down his arm. “Now, Sir,” Marley whispered quietly, “with all possible haste.”


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 14-04-2014

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“Honey, you should put that back,” Maggie said. “I will, Mom, in just a sec. I’m talking him through something.” “But, Honey,” Maggie began. “Sssshhhh, Mom! Don’t make him more nervous than he is.” The whispering continued for a minute or two and then Jack gently placed the caterpillar back onto the branch. “He was afraid of turning and then flying; pretty big steps for a little guy. I think he’s sorted out now,” he said. “Where did you learn to speak caterpillar? Certainly not from me,” Maggie said, amused. “No, certainly not,” Jack replied, with an edge that gave his mother pause.

The Undercryptic Lexicon: Caption #18

Filed Under (Undercryptic Lexicon) by Tansy on 13-04-2014

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What is the caption for this photograph?


(Photographer unknown)

Tansy’s answer:  I stopped drinking rye whiskey the night I almost went through.

(Post your own answers and read the genius of others on the Tansy Undercrypt Facebook page here.)


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 12-04-2014

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“Would you be willing to talk about the Dooter Decree?” the interviewer asked quietly. “Everyone wants those details and, really, there’s no way around it,” Lempett replied and then sighed heavily. “It’s short for Deuteronomy Decree, but that was never its name, of course. It was called that afterwards for Deu 18:10 – that whole bit about ‘let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter into the fire’. Tough stuff.” The interviewer was silent. “Mayor Dorothy Krayer initiated a martial lockdown of the city on Thursday, May 9th, so that the streets would be vacant except for the undead and sharpshooters could clear them from above.” “Except for the undead AND the homeless,” the interviewer whispered. “Yes. A comment from Krayer that this would ‘kill two birds with one stone’ has been documented.” Silence. Lempett continued. “Well, people complied readily and the shooters had correctly assessed how the zombie ranks would swell from stragglers before it actually decreased.” “But?” the interviewer prompted. “But … she forgot about the Chesapeake private school extra-curricular bus and its 7pm drop off. That one bus never made it on any list and, yes, both her son and her daughter were on it that day. She didn’t know their schedules; her husband handled all of that and they hadn’t spoken.” More silence. “The mayor committed suicide two days after the initiative success reports came in,” Lempett said, looking down at his lap. “Savior of the city, monster, or just a bad mom?” the interviewer asked pointedly. “No comment,” Lempett said, closing his eyes.


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 11-04-2014

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Sophie had just finished the “welcome to your library” tour (new families and adults from the Dept of Immigration’s Sanctuary program). She had left them with an invite to use the search terminals to find something that interested them and now she had turned her attention to making a cup of tea. Out of the corner of her eye, Sophie saw one of the adults coming towards her; it was the tiny little Oriental woman with her rosy apple cheeks and straying grey hair. “Mongolia? Was that it?” Sophie murmured to herself. “May I help you, dear?” Sophie said, turning to the patron. “Is there something that you need?” A shadow passed over the face of the woman as she held up her hand to reveal a sigil drawn into the palm. Sophie made a strangled mewling sound, then stumbled forward to unlock the case holding the ceremonial magic books (as her master had instructed).


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 10-04-2014

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“You go on about your business, but it’s always on your mind,” he began. “There’s something intoxicating about the first time you had it – even all of these years later.” No one in the room made a sound. “You feel great – invincible, you look even better, the world is beautiful, you’re fully alive. You don’t care how awful you’ll feel later on.” Several nodded. Vlad sighed. “Then you move to Los Angeles and your chances of finding and drinking virgin blood again are the same as finding a reasonably-priced crypt.” One of the other vampires snickered, and Vlad cast him a withering look.


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 09-04-2014

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“She’s reading again. Reading. The television is right there and it’s off,” she said, shocked, walking into the bedroom. “Making us the best parents ever,” he replied with a laugh and high five. Down the hall, little Sarah Kingsfeld sat quietly as the ghost of Marjorie Steeples (former Garfield Park head librarian) continued to read from the second Harry Potter book. “Is magic real, Mrs Steeples?” Sarah whispered, transfixed. “I would say yes, dear,” Marjorie whispered back, smiling, “certain definitions notwithstanding.”


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 08-04-2014

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They cowered before The Nameless Horror. “Fear me!” it bellowed at them, belching flames and ash from its mouth as it spoke, its claws flexing and its tentacles writhing. “I am beyond your darkest nightmares – the bane of hope and the bringer of madness!” “Wendell?” called a small voice. “Wendell, why are you yelling at those people?” “I … uh … I shall devour your happiness and …” it continued. “Wendell? Don’t be rude. How are you ever going to make new friends?” came the small voice again. “The Nameless Horror’s name is Wendell?” whispered a cultist on the left who was immediately crushed by a tentacle. “Mom, not now, please!” the Unfortunately Named Horror lamented, “I’m trying to work. Gah! I HATE it when you do this!”


Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 07-04-2014

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“We’ve wanted to see the world since we were kids,” they said. “Uh huh,” their oldest daughter replied, texting someone at a feverish pace. “And we’ve craved a deeper connection with nature – and people,” they continued. “Right,” their son answered, trying to get to Level 25 at the same time. “Uncle Mike will stay here and run things; he always wanted a house and family, but it didn’t happen. We’re leaving almost all of the money behind and he’ll be the custodian,” they explained quietly. “I need twenty bucks for that CD I told you about,” offered their youngest, changing channels. “But, although the plan is to run away, we’d never leave you behind. You’ve been our one solid connection and true friend,” they whispered, scratching Monkey the dog behind his ears gently. Mike arrived before midnight and hugged them both hard. In the morning, they left as planned with no hesitation.