Monday, March 12, 2012

Virtual Reality

I'm back with another flash fiction post, thanks to the ever present, force of nature that is Mr. Chuck Wendig! The guy inspires and can wrench some serious creativity out of me. 

This week his challenge was presented by giving us 20 words. We had to pick 10 of them and incorporate them into the story. 

The 10 words I chose were: 

And now I give to you...


His breathing was hard but quiet. Crouched in the dark, his long cape trailed behind him like a scarlet river; the golden, oval brooch in his hand glowed. Its crimson stone filled with fire.

Keeping low, he poked his head slowly around the rock. The night was an obsidian wash over a silver landscape that allowed his eyes to see the details with shocking accuracy.

It was still.

Glancing back at the large stone edifice behind him, he clutched the brooch tight.

From the left came movement.
He could see the large beast was scanning the terrain, its armored head lifting and lowering alternately, as it attempted to focus in the dark. Vision was obviously not its strongest defense.

The dinosaur long tail slid across the ground as it walked, gouging trenches into the soil.

The area was filled with thick vegetation. He moved between the large leaves with stealth and silence. The brooch’s glow warmed his fingers almost uncomfortably, yet he gripped it tighter.

The wind began to blow sending a hissing sound through the lush forest.

Readying himself to run to the next tree for cover, he froze when the dinosaur looked in his direction. He pressed tight to the tree’s narrow trunk. Sweat formed on his forehead, tickling his temples. In a few moments the beast went back to the familiar bobbing motion, turning its head away.

Clouds were forming quickly, thick and roiling with flashes of lightning and thunder. His time was running out.

Lightning lit up the sky and he could see the gate at the far end of an open area. The dinosaur pawed at the ground, licking where he had been only moments before. There was no time to stop. In order to get to the gate he would have to cross it in one bold sprint.

Taking a deep breath, he bolted from the safety of the tree. The dinosaur roared in anger as it saw him and charged. With his cape flying behind him, he pumped his legs harder to gain speed. His boots kicked up clods of dirt behind him.

The ground shook with the dinosaur’s footfalls. The gate was still far away. The dinosaur, jaws snapping, would catch up soon.

The closer he got to the gate, the hotter and brighter the brooch became. It was burning into his flesh with an unforgiving fever, scorching his skin. Pain shot up his arm.

Lungs burning, he ran ever faster.


The dinosaur’s great jaw snapped shut, missing him by inches. He could feel the warm breath on his neck. He wasn’t going to make it.

Broad white wings appeared in front of him. He felt his feet leave the ground as his body was lifted. The world below was becoming smaller.

The enormous moth screeched as the dinosaur leapt into the air after it. It flapped its wings harder and they both rose quickly into the sky.

The wind had become brutal, whipping at the two of them. He clung to the moth’s spindly legs. He could see that it was taking him away from the gate.

Suddenly a different noise filled his ears. Turning his head he could see that the rumbling roar signaled the approach of a large TORNADO. 

The moth began to tilt and beat it’s wings faster. He was struggled to hold on, all the while keeping the brooch clasped in his hand. Behind them, the dinosaur was snatched up in the strong winds and tossed out of view. The tornado bore down on them.

The moth’s giant wings were ripped from its body as it beat against the gusts, and the two of them plummeted toward the ground, turning and tumbling.

The man opened his mouth and a scream was pulled from his body, lost in the sound of the storm.

Just before they slammed into the ground, the funnel snatched them. The moth let go and they were thrown in separate directions.

He was thrown from the tornado, flying fast through the air. When he landed, the carcass of a large, dead dinosaur beneath him lessened the impact. He rolled off and saw that the gate was in front of him. His hand sizzled from the intense heat of the brooch.

He ran, sore and bruised, and crossed through the large, iron passage. A bright light blinded him and he shielded his face with his arm.

There was no sound. His body felt weightless.

In an instant, he fell back into the familiar cushioned chair.

“What a ride, hey?”

The helmet was being lifted from his head. He blinked to adjust his eyes in the dimly lit room.

“So… was it worth the money?” The assistant didn’t wait for him to reply, leaving the room with the helmet.

His hand was aching. Bringing it up to his face he saw the red, angry oval mark.

“Yeah. Yeah it was.”


  1. What an interesting world you manage to build just in a piece of flash fiction. Is this related at all to what you're working on now?


  2. Great question, but it's not, Marcy. I just envisioned it as I sat down and glanced over the words I chose. It's not my usual setting or premise, and I think that's why it was even more fun! It's always good to exercise our writing muscles. :)

    Thank you for stopping by!