Okay, the contest is over and thanks so much to everyone who participated. Now, it's time to pick a winner. Everyone can vote, whether you submitted or not. You can vote anonymously, or you can be a man and put your John Henry on your post. Whatever. We totally won't make fun of the chickens.
So here are the stories you're voting on. Remember, we're looking for Best overall, Funniest, and a random pick so feel free to vote for three if you like but remember to tell us why you voted for them. Writers need stroking now and then and we're an accomodating bunch here at the Edge.
Now, the stories:
First Prize: Best Story $25 Amazon Gift Card And your story featured on my blog
Second Prize: Funniest Story Book of your choice And your story featured on my blog
Third Prize: Random pick Mystery Prize
He looked so beautiful in the moonlight. The strange pallor of his skin always seems luminous at this hour. Sirens draw closer, the bright halogens flick on. Our perfect dark world thrust out of the shadows into this sterile light. They take my love away from me zipping him into a plastic bag. My love preserved in the shadows.
By Milo James Fowler
She wondered how things might have turned out differently, if she hadn’t majored in that, followed this career path, married him, had those children, lived there and there along the way. When given the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to step through the cosmic membrane between realities, she jumped at the chance. She had to know. Was she happy, this alternate version of herself? Did she love her life?
No more than should have been expected.
by JM Prescott
Magic is just another word for a wish. Asha’s wishes always came true except for one; Asha wished she had my eyes. She said blue was her favourite color and she hated brown. “When the flowers die they always turn brown,” she said.
She grew up happy, having everything she ever wished for, until I got sick. The cancer bit and chipped at my body until I was nothing but empty bones and blue eyes.
She wished for healing, but her magic never worked on me. I died the day before the flowers bloomed. Every one of them was blue.
Anna chomped down on the end of the pickle that came with her deli sandwich. Sour, green juice launched forward, splattering on her friend, Liz’s, blouse. Liz didn’t notice. Her focus centered on the French fries she constructed into a hut and the conversation spoken in hushed tones into her cell phone.
Anna chewed, loudly, as she waited. Liz had been in the middle of a bitch-fest about her chauvinistic boss when her phone rang. Whatever name showed up on the caller ID morphed Liz’s expression from disgust to a red-cheeked grin.
Anna had no doubt it was a man. She watched Liz twist her fingers in her hair in between intermittent, girlish giggles. Definitely a man.
Finally, Liz hung up and leaned over to put her phone in her bag.
“So who was that?”
“Huh?” Liz shot up, wide eyed. “Who was who?”
Anna smirked. “Who do you think? The mysterious caller who has you all… kerfluffled.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Liz studied the soda in her glass as she sipped from her straw.
“Yes you do. You’re fidgety, your face is like a tomato, and you’re playing stupid.” Anna took another bite of her pickle. “Spill.”
Liz looked down at her fry hut. She slowly disassembled it, pushing the fries over with her fork. “I don’t know…”
“We’ve been best friends for almost ten years. You can tell me. Who is he?”
Liz took a deep breath. “There is no ‘he.’”
“Bullshit. What’s his name?”
“Her name…” Liz folded her hands to keep them from shaking, “… is Lucy.”
By Susan Griscom
Shelby went to window and slammed it down. Locked it just to make sure it was tight. When was it going to end? Her head ached from the pounding and sawing. What were they building over there anyway?
She was all for improving the neighborhood, but damnit, it was her day off. Her first one in two weeks and all she wanted was a little peace and quiet. Was that too much to ask?
Even with the window closed, the raucous still clamored throughout the house. There was no escape. She went upstairs, grabbed her iPod off her nightstand, stuck the little headset around her ears, and cranked up the volume. Plopping down on the bed, she twirled the knob, searching for something to drown out the racket next door.
"Let's see, something lively, some rap? No. Bon Jovi… that should do it."
She closed her eyes and sang along. "Wanted, dead or alive, I'm a cowboy…"
Life was, once again, blissful.
A deafening kerfluffle jostled Shelby and she bolted up, yanked the earplugs from her ears and ran down the stairs.
The roar happened again, sounding like walls tumbling down. The house shook around her as if the world was coming to an end. Shelby grabbed on to the newel at the bottom of the stairs for support. After several seconds, the shaking stopped and men's shouting replaced the kerfluffle.
"What in the name of Christ was that?"
Shelby wobbled toward the horrifying sound, stopped at the kitchen door and gasped. Her quivering jaw hung open as her shoulder slumped against the frame. A huge yellow bulldozer sat in the middle of the floor, the man inside wiped at his brow shaking his head looking befuddled. He looked at Shelby, scrunched his shoulders and raised his hands.
The wall and bay window she loved, crumbled around the gigantic machine. It smashed the refrigerator, toppling it over on its side, the door smashed and propped open. A carton of milk pooled out over the floor among the cheese, butter, and a chocolate cake with a pickle sticking out of the top. Broken glass and pickle juice mixed in with the milk and seeped its way toward the antique Oriental rug, once owned by the late Marilyn Monroe.
Shelby sunk down in the middle of the mess and cried.
A present from Mao Tse-Tung
by Cath Barton
He would show you round his country house, the elder statesman, wave airily at a hideous vase, sigh, and say in a world-weary way - "A present from Mao-Tse Tung....."
The stateman never married and had no children. He left all his money for his house to be kept as a museum. If the vase is some day broken by a coat carelessly swished by one of the few who visit, it will not be reported, even in the local press. Of course, there are many such vases. Like a child's goldfish, it can be replaced and no-one will know.
by Janet Richards
As revellers gathered to celebrate a nation's birthday, Margaret sat in her small living room nursing a cup of tea. The arthritis in her fingers made it difficult to hold the cup.
Too often now she would find herself suddenly old after slipping back in time. It had become harder to hide the confusion and she saw the concern loved ones tried to conceal.
At dusk the sky exploded with the flash of bombs. Margret cowered paralyzed with fear. The London of her youth already stolen, she braced herself as the Blitz continued wondering if she would survive this attack.
Voting will go until July 20th and I'll announce the winners shortly after that. Deal? Cool. Get voting.