Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 16-05-2013
“Really? Just like this? I have to tell you – this is NOT how I expected the story to end,” Burt marveled. The Angel of Death sighed heavily. “I mean, seriously,” Burt continued, speaking animatedly from his hospital bed, “it’s predictable. Unless … UNLESS … you’re planning to walk me down the hall slowly and some skeptical doctor – a neurosurgeon – sees you – actually sees you! – and thinks he’s going insane, but …” The angel touched Burt on the forehead and there was silence for a moment. “Screenwriters,” it thought grimly.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 04-05-2013
A point of light appeared on the horizon and soon a taxi was pulling up before him. “I’m Peter; nice to meetcha. Let’s get this show on the road!” the driver said with a wink. “Uh … Pearly Gates Peter?” he replied, a little hesitant. The man laughed. “If you like. Look, we don’t really have a formal check-in process; we figure formally checking out covers it.” Peter laughed again. “Your mom wants to see you, of course, there’s a reception gala tonight, and that French foreign exchange student you were crazy about is waiting at a restaurant to meet you for lunch. You coming?” “Just like that? No final judgments?” he stammered, climbing into the cab. “Well, you did have consistently shitty taste in ties,” Peter answered as they sped off.
(For John Munger, my dear friend, who has departed for an undiscovered country.)
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 02-05-2013
The search was long, and at times the tracking seemed utterly futile. Still, in the end, they did find Nemo … and he was delicious.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 28-03-2013
Amelia would enter the facility with her doll and her bear, wandering the halls until she found someone to adopt for the day. She would play for hours beside them, talking away cheerfully (whether they could engage or not), and occasionally holding their hand. Near dinnertime, Amelia would collect her things, beam her delight at them, and kiss them on the cheek – freeing their souls from this place and sending them on to the next with a warm memory of love and belonging. The Angel of Death is an agent of compassion and a master of disguise.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 20-03-2013
Bernice wrote letters to Lloyd after he passed, keeping them in a box away from view. When Bernice died some years later, Frank and Barbara found the box while cleaning out the house. There must have been more than two hundred letters … and one unopened and unmarked envelope. Barbara opened it (after resisting temptation a good 2 or 3 hours) and then burst into tears; Frank took the letter from her and read it aloud, “You get to keep the love you’ve built; it travels with you. We could not be happier. Make love the point, kids; don’t think about anything else.” Although it had today’s date, their father’s chicken scratch was unmistakable.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 15-03-2013
Once he found the place, he visited every year; oddly fascinating, to see your name carved into the stone with dates from another century. The press made a huge deal about the annual visit, which amused him to no end. If they only knew the real mystery behind the mystery. Poe moved slowly away from his grave, an old man now. He spied a woman a couple of monuments over who reached out to that marker tentatively, almost in disbelief. He wondered if she, too, had found her own name and history.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 22-02-2013
Marjorie had dispatched them herself over the years, not wanting to spend perfectly good money on some New Age rainbow end. That’s how she spun it – that she had always been practical – instead of the truth about the violence and how much she liked it. Now, as Marjorie looked out at the fence and saw that more cats and dogs and rabbits and the like were gathering on the far side (their shadows blurring, their eyes glittering in the fading light), she wondered how long the fence would hold and what would happen when it fell.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 16-02-2013
It took Wei Lin all day to prepare, for she was old and weak and this was the last day. The cleaning, the dressing, the placing … as the sun began to set, she lit the fire for the water and opened a window briefly to let her fear out. Death arrived soon after, dressed as a samurai; she took his sword and removed his shoes and led him into the main room where the tea ceremony was ready. Wei Lin performed the ceremony one last time with great care – to honor the angel and return her gift of life with the most profound respect. Death sat amazed and accepted it, humbled.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 05-02-2013
Sharon quickly found the 800 number for customer service, relieved that the website promised the line was manned 24 hours a day. She hung up once out of shyness, then twice more out of frustration with the phone menu selections, but finally picked “life event” over “accident” and got a live representative. He was very kind; the accent was most definitely North Carolina. “Uh, yes,” Sharon said, settling in. “I’m not sure exactly how to report this, but I’ve become a vampire and I’d like to know if that changes my policy at all.” The rep stammered and she smiled; he was probably delicious.
Filed Under (Microfiction) by Tansy on 15-12-2012
The angel stood before them, the tiny lights that had quickly arranged themselves in field trip formation, filling the air with questions. “Will they be okay?” “Not all,” he replied (for although the future could not be seen, it was not in his nature to lie). “Can we visit them?” “In some cases, after a time; for others, it would do more harm than good.” “Why?” came a whisper from the back and they fell to silence. “The darkness craves the light and resents it at the same time; it lacks hope and desires comfort, but standing in the light unsettles it and makes it angry. It is always grieving and often lashes out to share its pain.” “That’s stupid.” “It seems so, yes, and I’m sorry.” He turned to lead them on, understanding at last how easy it could be to hate your job.