Sunday Vignettes by Mary Catelli, Luke and ‘nother Mike

Sunday Vignettes by Mary Catelli, Luke and ‘nother Mike

*Sorry, guys, I was out being a menace to Colorado Springs traffic (I’d prepaid the lessons while we still lived there.)  Or actually not being a menace but feeling like it, which is the problem. However, the confidence is coming back, now the eyes are better.  Soon, soon, I’ll be a menace to the streets of Denver (like anyone would notice.) – SAH*
Sunday Vignettes!

So what’s a vignette? You might know them as flash fiction, or even just sketches.

We will provide a prompt each Sunday that you can use directly (including it in your work) or just as an inspiration.

You, in turn, will write about 50 words (yes, we are going for short shorts! Not even a Drabble 100 words, just half that!). Then post it! For an additional challenge, you can aim to make it exactly 50 words, if you like. We recommend that if you have an original vignette, you post that as a new reply. If you are commenting on someone’s vignette, then post that as a reply to the vignette.

Comments — this is writing practice, so comments should be aimed at helping someone be a better writer, not at crushing them. And since these are likely to be drafts, don’t jump up and down too hard on typos and grammar. If you have questions, feel free to ask.

Your writing prompt this week is school

74 responses to “Sunday Vignettes by Mary Catelli, Luke and ‘nother Mike

  1. “He cheated. Used a machine to do computions. And his brother helpd cheat by making it!”

    “Sam has limited muscle control. All Tom did was motorize a slide rule. Sam just adjusts it by push-buttons. It no more does computation than your typewriter creates stories.”

    Mrs. Throckmorton gulped. Hers did.

  2. Half-hidden in the shade, Halley knelt on the bank, watching the red fish shift and shimmer as the asrai herded them onward.
    “The schools are always lovely in the stream,” said Artos.
    “Shoals,” said Halley, absently. He blinked. “Schools is just a distorted form. I am a scholar, after all.”

    • ‘In my experience shoals are places I wished to avoid when boating,’ Artos said, pausing a moment before continuing, “So have been most schools, come to think of it … I mean places to avoid.’

  3. “So, which method do you favor? Sandhurst, West Point, Bad Tolz, or Frunze?”
    “Sandhurst and Frunze are both too rigid. West Point is simultaneously too chaotic and hierarchical. Bad Tolz is too reliant on everybody knowing everybody else.”
    “So you favor?”
    “St. Cyr.”
    “The only ones who lost without winning?”

  4. Loud. The mead hall was loud. It was almost impossible to hear individual words in the roar of the serious drinkers.
    Everyone wanted to buy Gronar a round, to toast his health. Was it friendly? Was there a sly aggressive edge? Whatever. Free mead!
    “What happened to him?”
    “He got skoaled..”

  5. It feels like I’ve been waiting all my life for this. Finally, I’m out on my own… or at least in the dorm.

    Today’s the day I start making my mark on the world. I want to read every single book in the library’s collection.

    Hail to thee, Miskatonic University!

  6. I went to school today, Ma, and there was a class in anatomy.
    “Who taught it, Billy?”
    “Lily St. Cyr. I learned a LOT.”

  7. “Ah, Mr. Sims.”
    “Sir.”
    “I hear you spent some time at the University before your… incident.”
    “Yes, sir.”
    “We need a schoolmaster for the other midshipmen.”
    “But sir…”
    “You’ve studied trigonometry?”
    “Yes, sir, but not spherical…”
    “You will learn it, Mr. Sims. Then you will teach it.”
    “Aye aye, sir.”

  8. ItCouldBeVerse

    He fell into line, moving at the same rate as everyone else. He had been ridiculously bored for hours, and motion didn’t relieve it. He tried to make a game out of touching the plants as they passed. Nope, still bored.

    Finn hated school.

    He wanted to swim by himself.

  9. It was an Indian Summer morning. After school they were going out to the lake and they had dressed accordingly. ‘Who likes short shorts?’ she sang.

    ‘We like short shorts!’ they chorused.

    The principal met them in the hall, ‘Come into my office’ he said, ‘We don’t allow short shorts.’

  10. Edgar had … issues with authority, but nowhere near so much as Authority had issues with Edgar. Edgar never grasped their expectation that he perform busy work to prove his mastery of things while they never accepted Edgar’s disinclination to win their praise. As if their approval mattered to Edgar!

  11. After an eternity, the clock finally ticked past the last five minutes, and the bell finally rang. A simultaneous cheer rang out, with mine perhaps the loudest. The last day of school!
    At the water taxi, I looked up, spinward, and picked out my Grandfather’s farm. Summer freedom beckoned.

  12. She stood, necked craned, soaking in the beauty of the alien megastructure, a pale blue ‘sky’ filled with cumulus clouds and flocks of strange migrating birds.

    “Their base intelligence is very much the same as ours,” she said, “how?”

    He looked up. “Their words for ‘school’ and ‘friendship’ are the same.

  13. Victor checked his pay before signing the receipt. He slung the bag over his shoulder, bid Principal Igor good morning, then headed home.

    Him, an all ghouls’ school teacher. Oh, the indignity But it was only until he was back on his feet – if he ever found two that matched.

  14. “Three more laps to go”. I sprinted around the start curve and launched myself at the hole, 100 meters away. The guy from Armstrong High had goofed his jump, and was going to catch the safety net. Keep steady at the frog jumps, I may just win.

  15. Christopher M. Chupik

    It had begun in all innocence: Ray finding the old grimoire in the school library, deciphering the eldritch spells, and finally, casting one. As the dimensional rift gaped and the school grounds crumbled into it, Ray found himself thinking of a song his parents used to play.

    School’s out . . . forever.

  16. “I don’t see why we can’t do the experiment indoors,” Riley groused.

    “You blew up the last experiment, and we didn’t have any kind of incendiary component involved, physical or verbal,” Shion pointed out, exasperated. “Your fault.”

    “Feh. What mage school doesn’t have properly spell-reinforced walls and roofs these days?”

    • BobtheRegisterredFool

      “Since when should frontline grade battle screen be necessary at our level of education? Keep the power levels low enough, like Sage Natsume keeps saying, and they’ll be enough.”

      • “Shion, you’re not seeing the potential!” Riley groaned. “All we have to do is make sure the glowlotus pods explode with enough force to do damage. Nobody will expect it! It’s a really great idea for home defense!”

        “The experiment is to grow it without water, not blow them up!”

    • Makes me think of Christopher Nutall’s Schooled In Magic books.

  17. BobtheRegisterredFool

    On the second day of the interscholastic competition the level five big brother of the one who had destroyed the gates was tyrannically demolishing the representatives of the Old Grand School. Big Brother sneered inwardly at Reägandûr Hall’s level four Deathcross stepping up. “Fellow Daoist Deathcross, fists have no eyes…

  18. I grinned as all four chairs turned. Oh man, Einstein, Newton, Darwin and Hayek virts all want to mentor me this year!

    As they made their cases, I could barely listen. I didn’t expect such a tough choice. Which one?

    Hayek. Everyone knows the physical sciences are already mostly solved.

  19. Assignment:

    1) Obtain a small piece of rock from outside on the ground.

    2) Glue some pipe cleaner feet on it.

    3) Glue some googly eyes on it.

    Behold: The Science Bug

    Where does one begin to explain this mealy non-attempt at imparting scientific knowledge to the next generation..?

  20. Macarthur Grant gloated. All his life had led up to this, had prepared him for this moment, and he stood ready to show the world his mastery of political science! As the camera’s eye lighted, Macarthur pulled the cover from his depiction of the electoral college as a macaroni diorama.

  21. But … MacArthur was _supposed_ to go to war with China. What happened?

    • MacArthur found he was insufficiently deft with Delft, but BOY, he could mess up his school’s rivals with Meissen!

  22. “What are you up to, young man?” came from behind me, and I jumped. About six feet.
    I landed, turned, smiled at Mrs. Milton, and thanked her for shocking me all the way back to human form. My classmates would have laughed at me if I couldn’t shift completely by now.

  23. Dragonknitter

    One more pass around the old globe to slingshot up across the model solar system suspended from the old rusty eyebeams holding up the decrepit school roof, and Trey the Adventurous could have one more shot at flying through the bright sky blue escape hatch to freedom if he dared.

  24. “Williams, I hear you savagely beat a fellow student without provocation.”
    “Just a punch on the nose”, Wiliams whispered, “and he had insulted my mother.” He felt dizzy. It’s all over! Expelled!
    And then the headmaster smiled.
    “I am very proud,” he said quietly. “Finally… a boy who’s a man.”

    • Hrm, damn. I think that first “you beat” should have been a “you’ve beaten”.

      • While not perfect grammar it doesn’t sound ‘wrong’ to me.

      • trailing wife

        It depends. Did young Master Williams take a stick to his back unmercifully, or did he win an unsanctioned competition?

        • I meant a fistfight.

          Anyway, what I meant by my past-tense doubts is that “you beat” implies that Williams makes a repeated daily habit of administering blows to his classmate, while “you’ve beaten” clearly implies a one-time occurrence — assuming I understand correctly how English past tense works, of course.

  25. It was thought that Hobbes should be sent to the School of Hard Knox, though Calvin thought that plan was likely to fail. Once enrolled, Hobbes ran for class president and after graduation went into a life of politics, as he was somewhat unclear on the concept of “The Elect.”

  26. Professor Badness

    “Welcome to Physics 101!” the diminutive professor called as he entered the room. His robotic foot caught on the flowing robes of a demi-god in the front row, tripping him into a half-sasquatch.
    “Excuse me, Ma’am.”
    Deiter licked his extended fangs and smiled. He was going to like this school.

  27. Off topic, but I figured I’d ask here.

    Got a secondhand copy of Lee Harris’ Civilization and it’s Enemies off ‘net shopping, and while the description did say that there was some mild cover damage (coffee looks like it was spilled on it) and ‘some’ writing in the margins, the unfortunate reality is the description is closer to ‘writing on most margins and empty pages, and underlining lots of phrases and sentences the reader decided to argue against or bitch about.’

    Normally I wouldn’t mind this so much except that the writing in the margins is rather obviously by a leftist radfem socjus kool-aid drinker – How else would I describe someone who dismisses Jihadist attacks on the West with ‘they hate us because we disrespect them’ and under ‘then you must find men to…’ writes the symbol for ‘female’, as if it is remotely relevant to the rest of the paragraph. Also dismisses much of the first few pages as ‘fear mongering’ and ‘rhethoric’ – and I just flicked open the book to check on the condition!

    I am actually rather annoyed by this and does anyone have suggestions on how to erase the writing on the margins so my pleasure of reading isn’t spoiled? The bitchy lecturing and tone-policing is written in ballpen. Or is going to paint most of it over with a bottle of correction fluid the only way to go? One of the reasons I go read physical books is to avoid being hectored by radfem whining, and it’s really unpleasant to have encountered it in a book I was looking forward to reading.

    • Might you just send it back as having more than “some” writing in the margins? If it’s on every page, *and* there’s underlining of the text–about which they didn’t warn you?– you could say it doesn’t fit the description.

      • That’s what I would probably do.

      • It’s not on every page, thankfully; but a lot, but still enough of the book just to qualify as ‘some.’ Sending it back would also cost more than I paid in book and shipping unfortunately. =/ And normally I wouldn’t mind writing in the margins, but the writing is that of a dismissive socjus indoctrinate with lots of virtue signalling. It was suggested I argue in the margins, but arguing with socjus isn’t really a fruitful way to spend one’s time when one is not on the Internet.

        In fact, I was rather astounded that the effort was even made to mark the margins. Unless it was shown around to friends or hell, anyone else, they wouldn’t have been able to prove they were being good little zealots and putting out the right signs and arguments.

        • If it weren’t for the cost of shipping, I’d argue that the underlining is in a different category than margin writing. I hate both, myself.

          • I don’t always mind highlighting or underlining – underlining tends to make me frown when it obscures words, and until this book margin scribbles haven’t bothered me – then again, until now the margin scribbles I’ve seen indicated a brain behind the writer!

            I’ve got a bottle of liquid paper, but Matt Bowman over at my blog is suggesting I fisk the scribblings – turn my annoyance into entertainment, which is a good way of defeating the ‘rawrrrr’ feeling. So I’m considering it.

        • In fact, I was rather astounded that the effort was even made to mark the margins.

          My mother-in-law did this extensively in some books. As for showing it around, she never really showed her books to anyone. Even if she would have, the woman had few people who were on friendly enough terms with her for her to show them to.