Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike and Book Promo

Book Promo

*Note these are books sent to us by readers/frequenters of this blog.  Our bringing them to your attention does not imply that we’ve read them and/or endorse them, unless we specifically say so.  As with all such purchases, we recommend you download a sample and make sure it’s to your taste.  If you wish to send us books for next week’s promo, please email to bookpimping at outlook dot com. If you feel a need to re-promo the same book do so no more than once every six months (unless you’re me or my relative. Deal.) One book per author per week. Amazon links only. Oh, yeah, by clicking through and buying (anything, actually) through one of the links below, you will at no cost to you be giving a portion of your purchase to support ATH through our associates number. I ALSO WISH TO REMIND OUR READERS THAT IF THEY WANT TO TIP THE BLOGGER WITHOUT SPENDING EXTRA MONEY, CLICKING TO AMAZON THROUGH ONE OF THE BOOK LINKS ON THE RIGHT, WILL GIVE US SOME AMOUNT OF MONEY FOR PURCHASES MADE IN THE NEXT 24HOURS, OR UNTIL YOU CLICK ANOTHER ASSOCIATE’S LINK. PLEASE CONSIDER CLICKING THROUGH ONE OF THOSE LINKS BEFORE SEARCHING FOR THAT SHED, BIG SCREEN TV, GAMING COMPUTER OR CONSERVATORY YOU WISH TO BUY. That helps defray my time cost of about 2 hours a day on the blog, time probably better spent on fiction. ;)*

FROM MARGARET BALL: Tangled Magic: A Regency fantasy romance (Regency Magic Book 2)

After waiting ten long years for Richart Dalkey to realize she’s no longer the awkward young girl he grew up with, Elspet is thrilled when he finally comes to pay her court . . . until he divulges the true reason for his visit. His proposition? A sham engagement to discourage debutante Dorothea Turvoll, who’s infatuated with Richart and whom his mother wants him to marry. Elspet convinces him to pretend he’s desperately in love with her and actually court her instead, certain that with time—and a little bit of magic—he’ll see they’re meant to be together.
But another woman in Din Eidyn has her sights set on Richert, as well as some dark magic of her own, and she’ll stop at nothing to win the one man who can give her the social standing she desperately desires. Before long, the charade gets out of hand, and as scandal engulfs the ton, Elspet must decide how much she’s willing to sacrifice for the love she’s always wanted.


The Islamic terror cell that was annihilated by the 74 year old Vietnam veteran had a target in its sights compared to which the World Trade Center paled into insignificance. Authorities have given the figure of 50,000, it might have been more.

This book seeks to set the record straight regarding Kurt Langer. He had fought terror in all its forms, from the jungles and deltas of Vietnam, to the Anatolian plains of Turkey, to the NW Pacific coast of the USA. Terror had always come off worse.

His wartime experience had left him disturbed. He was a casualty, one of the walking wounded. He added a terrible stain to his life with the planned killing of an off-duty policeman.

The Islamic jihadis, kayaking stealthily for weeks towards their target could never have imagined that the old warrior, ‘released back into the community’; would destroy them.

His interception of the terror cell was his redemption. The world would call him a savior.

FROM JAMES MAYNARD: Flying on the Wings of Change: A story from Americas Divorce (The American Divorce Book 1)

It was the early part of the Tweens when the political divisions of the United States reached irreconcilable differences. Ted and Jim, a burnt out computer programmer and a double amputee combat vet, reverse engineer the pentagons drone program and create a rebel air force. While traveling the country helping others defend what is left of the country, they run afoul a most evil woman,,,,,

FROM PAM UPHOFF: The Maze of Worlds.

Christophe “Kit” Antoine is determined to escape from Foster Child Hell.

But stowing away on a truck going through a dimensional gate may have been a really bad idea. Or perhaps a good one, as he rescues children in a worse situation than he was in, and joins them in a wild trip through parallel worlds.


“Complete your tasks and you will be released. We have summoned you and you must serve us.”

“Never.” The word caught against the fangs in her lengthening jaw and became a growl. She looked down at her tormentors below her and knew them. Fox ears and cat eyes.

“Never!” She bellowed defiance that started deep within her scaled body and expanded with her to fill the sky.

Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike.

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: Warn

55 thoughts on “Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike and Book Promo

  1. There were two piles of melted armor on either side of the path leading toward the dragon’s cave

    Stephen remarked “Not very friendly”.

    George replied “Oh the Dragon is actually very friendly. Those are just warnings that visitors should be friendly toward him”.

    1. Re: Bridgerton: I read JQ’s books a couple years ago and really enjoyed them. I’ve started watching the series primarily to drool over the costumes, especially the men’s. From what I’ve seen so far (first 30 minutes) they’ve made totally “woke” with the casting, but I never expected the screenplay to pay any attention to the original story anyway, so, eh!

  2. “They never look up.” Keenan sighed. The terrorists in the mountain valley below started coming out at the checkpoint’s warning, scattering into positions around the farmhouse and up and down the only road in. In the distance, they could clearly hear the growl of the delivery truck’s engine starting up from the roadblock the “peaceful worker’s collective” had set up one mountain valley north of the town of High Point.

    Twitch didn’t bother replying, marking the positions where each one went to rest on both his internal tacnet and a paper map he’d been drawing of the terrain and the farmstead along the creek, from the radio tower on the ridge across from him down to the size of the windows on the main house and each outbuilding. The radio antenna had to be serviced from the town side, as he couldn’t see any roads or tracks leading up to it from the training camp. Knowing humans, they had to be there. Someone always set up a way to smuggle in something, from drugs to food to nookie, that Dear Leader wouldn’t approve of. He had ten days of twelve hour shifts to find it, along with every other detail of the layout, schedules, and personnel.

    He watched three men walk out of the farmhouse, one with a fine suit and proud bearing. The other two were looking at him, awaiting his orders before cracking open a case and readying… “Drone.”

    “On it.” Keenan replied. As overwatch, it was his threat to track, while Twitch concentrated on the ground.

  3. And on that dark and stormy night Sir Persevere said to his Page Pascal:
    “Beware the worm wearing worn out warmers”
    Pascal replied: “Willingly you words I wrote, spear in hand, sword in fist, pen in other hand and ax in the another, because forewarned is to be four armed.

        1. Perhaps, but who really knows what a man’s wyrd actually is?

          What he (or others) think his wyrd is likely isn’t his true wyrd. 😀

  4. The Master could not see the shadow growing behind him. Her cowering form, and the whip in his hand had his full attention. Silently, the huge maw opened above him. To warn him would be to disobey….

  5. There was on the manuvering console a big red, molly-garded switch, clearly marked Danger and above the switch was “Safety Protocol Override.” He flipped the molly-guard up and threw the safety switch from Disengaged to Engaged, the entire warning panel blinking blue/yellow once he did. “Safety systems off-line,” he said, his voice only slightly quivering in fear. “Taking her up to a hundred gees of acceleration, compensator at full military power.”

  6. The 1MC crackled to life. “This is the Captain. I have just received the following from the flag:
    ‘All ships of the United States Space Force: This is a Warning Order. The three Krell ships that attacked Earth last week were indeed scouts. Long range sensors have detected ten-plus gravitic disturbances approaching the solar system along the same vector as used by the Krell. All available ships of the United States Space Force will sortie in the next hours to intercept those ships as far away from Earth and the Mars colonies as orbital geometries allow. Based on those scouts, this will be a hard fight, but we know about them now. The billions of people still alive across the solar system must be defended, and the dead of Buenos Ares, Los Angeles, Vancouver and Grinell, Iowa demand some payback. Ships will depart by section, and coordination orders are going out now. Good luck, and good hunting.’
    I’ll just add I expect the Indy to kick some Krell ass. All departments make ready for departure. That is all.”

    “Looks like you were right, Bill,” said Lt. Amy Brussels, looking across the ship’s intel space as Bill maneuvered into the seat and strapped in.

    “Yes, Ma’am. I wish I wasn’t.” Chief Warrant Bill Reynolds shook his head. “At least we have everything we’ve been working to extract from the Krell wrecks.”

    “It would be nice if they don’t change their crypto keys, since you were able to disable those demo charges and extract theirs. I’m putting you in for a decoration on that, Chief.”

    Bill shook his head again. “I was just the guy in the right place holding the diagonal cutters when those wires needed cutting, ma’am.”

    “That’s not what the EOD folks told me,” said Amy. “They tore it all apart and said you basically saved the entire boarding party by figuring that out in time. Good job, Chief.”

    “Just another day punching the clock in the USS Independence intel shop, ma’am,” as they both felt the vibration of the ship change, readying for departure.

    1. Grinell, Iowa? Did they know that’s Bob Noyce’s alma mater, or was it just a random hit by a munition aimed somewhere else, like Des Moines or Chicago?

  7. They should have told him before they sent him out. They should have taught him to stop doing it before they taught him anything else, if they had to beat it out of him. Shining would betray him to monsters faster than anything bar shouting, and sometimes faster than shouting.

    1. sent him out?

      Perhaps, they sent him out expecting him to be killed? 😈

        1. Ah yes. 😀

          Of course, he might get a “bit” annoyed if a “friendly” monster clues him in. 😆

      1. He was obviously an unrepentant socialist, and that was the most efficacious way to get rid of him.

  8. His eyes narrowed. He could not remember a time when the stone’s warnings had proven false, but many times, he did not know whether his precautions had done him any good.
    Then, what was the point of an enchanted gem from the Age of Wizards if he did not listen?

  9. “You flunked a spelling test?”

    “Um, yeah Dad.” Tycho shifted from foot to foot . . . to foot to foot. “The syllabus says it will wear off tomorrow.”

    Tycho’s older brother looked up from his precalculus book. “I warned you about that elective, didn’t I?”

    “Yeah, but you didn’t say that ‘SAT prep’ stood for Specialty: Advanced Thaumatology!”

          1. The odd thing is that the book promo link worked for me. [Puzzled Smile]

  10. Ah warn’t agonna walk down that there “garden path”; ah knows whut happens to them folks who do… an it’s UGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGLYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY. Cookie-tossin’ time. BIG TIME cookie tossin’… Mah tummy’s already heavin’.

  11. The dream of terraforming the entire globe of Mars had turned out to be a bust. There were, however, hundreds of ‘megadomes’ each covering ten to a hundred thousand square miles, often including some rough territory. Thus the experiment.

    “The Army wants to send mules to Mars?” Adam Chin asked. “Who came up with that crazy idea?”

    “Not crazy, sir,” Sergent Tallelk answered. “Just traditional.” He smiled slightly. “Very traditional.” He nodded toward one of the beasts. “I’d leave that one off the ship, however.”

    “Why? What’s wrong with it?” Chin looked more closely. “Something’s wrong with its tail. Is it sick?”

    “No sir. But that tail has been shaved for a reason.” Now Tallelk grinned. “A traditional reason. Best to take well-trained animals only, at least for this first voyage out.”

    1. Umm…try calculating the air pressure on a ten-thousand-square-mile ‘megadome’, and then try to figure what it would take to keep it from being blown right off the ground in 1/3 G. My results keep coming up ‘Bolonium’ and ‘Unobtainium’.

      1. Probably be easier to peel the crust off Mars, send the core hurtling around the Sun to impact Venus to push it into a higher, cooler orbit while stripping off 90% of that crushing hot atmosphere. Then drape the Mars crust on the Venusian surface. And wait a thousand years for the whole thing to settle down.

      2. I confess that I didn’t do the math, but I was presuming bolonium and unobtainium as the dome construction materials, simply as being necessary for any structure that size.

  12. Growing up in Minnesota, Autumn Belfontaine had plenty of experience with watches and warnings. If it wasn’t tornadoes in the spring, it was blizzards in the winter. There was a reason that every entrance ramp to an Interstate in the Land of Ten Thousand Lakes had a gate like a railroad crossing gate. When the blizzard warning went out, those things went down, and anyone who tried to go around them was subject to severe penalties — assuming the State Police caught them before Ma Nature did them in.

    Up here on the Moon, she’d thought that she no longer needed to worry about weather. After all, the Moon had no atmosphere to generate storms.

    How wrong she was, she discovered as they were setting up Shepardsport Pirate Radio. The Moon might not have weather in the terrestrial sense, but the charged particles streaming out of the Sun made space weather a very real thing. Which meant they’d need to be transmitting solar storm watches and warnings, not just for space ops and EVA’s, but also for the settlement itself. Although the lunar regolith provided adequate shielding for most ordinary solar events, a really big coronal mass ejection would produce enough high-energy charged particles that everyone needed to retreat to the solar storm shelters under the settlement’s water reservoirs.

  13. Peggy swept into the room. “This way, children,” she said.
    Lucie tilted her head to one side. Lucie sounded odd, and looked pale.
    “We must leave,” said Peggy. “The empress wants you to be protected from being pawns among nobles.”
    Lucie scowled, but Peggy put her hands to their shoulders.

    1. Good God in Heaven. These people are paranoid! And crazy. And extremely dangerous. Sarah’s right…they’re feral hogs backed into a corner.

    2. And the twisted thing is they even managed to work in her writing prompt this week:

      “The Bureau has become aware of discussions on social media platforms suggesting that certain radio services regulated by the Commission may be an alternative to social media platforms for groups to communicate and coordinate future activities,” the FCC said in its warning Sunday. “Individuals using radios in the Amateur or Personal Radio Services in this manner may be subject to severe penalties, including significant fines, seizure of the offending equipment, and, in some cases, criminal prosecution.”

      1. Oh, very well. I confess already. I’m guilty of crimethink as defined by the Democratic Party. I would be entirely willing to help plot nonviolent resistance to unconstitutional acts by said Party if I could find anyone willing to plot with me, even if I am somewhat of Groucho Marx’s mind about the benefits of conspiracy membership. They can arrest my offending communications equipment and all my guns too; I’m shocked and appalled to learn they may have been planning suspicious activity without me.

      1. I must commend the creativity of those who keep coming up with ways to get “punished” with the duty. Truly.

        The great irony is that, in some circles, such punishments might qualify as promotion points in a more practical world.

  14. I felt like a fool. Thrice I’d tried walking down that trail, and three times I went off the trail heading into the woods. I finally started carefully searching the trail. Sure enough, five minutes later I found it. In the trail, a rock scribed with a warn off glyph.

  15. “That should hold him another eight minutes. Ditch the stripes and grab the Sergeant’s civvies from his locker. Wave the bottle around–you’ll blend into the festival crowd fine.”

    “They don’t fit.”

    “Tough. The festival’s cat themed. You don’t have one to bring—I’ll draw a couple of whiskers and you tuck another belt in for a tail.”

    “But I’m allergic to cats!”

    “You didn’t warn me?”

  16. “Okay, suddenly all three Fed ships are boosting toward us at 20% gee, not 6%. And looks like hard radiation from a high-energy drive doing part of that, too…” There was something of a breathless quality to the young man’s report.

    “Let’s go to 20% also, still just the torch drive.” Keith March’s voice was calm, even almost laid-back, but strong and clear.

    “Sir,” Todd Parker the sensor tech returned, “Isn’t that very close to the old rated maximum safe thrust?”

    “More manuevering, less warning. Or maybe just manuever first, warn later.” Still that same calm clarity.

    “20 percent on the gas-core rockets, aye aye.” Alea Maccechnie’s call-out was almost redundant, the tripling of apparent weight had been hard to miss; but perhaps the ‘Captain’ — she would’ve been one if this hadn’t been a Belter ship, being in direct command — had wanted to stress the authority of the diplomat turned spy-control turned something like rear-admiral or commodore. “If we go much higher, we will have to use the Boltzmann cloak field as an auxilliary radiator. And we are getting close to the old ceiling based on core-buoyancy effects. As in, the one the Fed would know about.”

    But March’s next words went in another direction. “Acting Science Officer, is that ‘hard radiation’ stuff really an antimatter-drive signature? ‘Cause it does kinda sound like one to me.”

    “Oh, yes, to a near certainty, nothing says two-photon electron / positron annihilation like one-sided 511 KeV peaks. The line radiation is Compton smeared down enough it seems decently well shielded, though. Not much neutron splatter, they’re probably using hydrogen as a reactant instead of anything heavier, with their mirror-hydrogen.” Angus Clayborne’s voice had a whiff of a Scottish Highlands accent, and a near-saturation level of hardcore old-school geekiness. “And I’d hasten to reassure you, Mr. Parker, that the new electromagnetic core suspension system is good to above 80% gee, field tested and inventor approved.”

    “So, in other words, Angus, they’re trying to show off by doing what they just did? Fed GCR plus MAM drive. Or maybe even trying to scare us a little?”

    “Maybe the first, to show it in the open for sure — unless they’re so cocky they think they can blow us away before we can signal home. And to the second, while the neutron flux from a fission rocket can be pretty evil at any sort of close range, the gamma and knock-off neutron emission from any decent sort of mirror-matter drive will truly ruin your day. Might be they plan to attack with nothing more and nothing less than a nice, close, toasty-hot flyby.”

    March smiled and folded his arms, at ease in the 1/5 gravity. “So if it came to a fly-by attempt at toasting us that way, how bright would we get if we lit our own MAM-drive at, say, a gee and a half? Comparatively.”

    “A hundred times worse, we’d be. When I optimized the original design, me and Colette, I didn’t much weight the out-to-space radiation. And since theirs looks like a solid-core annihilation reactor and ours uses a gaseous absorber for higher temperature and specific impulse, it’s much easier to design one like that if you’re not trying too hard to avoid disturbing the neighbors.”

    “And if we raised the shipwide Boltzmann cloak, never mind what our initial black-body temperature would be from the outside, what attenuation of the incoming gammas and particles would we get? Ballpark.”

    Clayborne almost snorted. “Trillions, at the very least, quadrillions maybe, I’d have to run a few programs. Remember when I said you’d never have to worry about getting cosmic-ray or solar X-ray or particle dosages even in the inner system again, once you had that thing up? That’s really what I meant. Now of course it’s not so great if someone blows off a 200-megaton bomb right next door and your field starts radiating thermal at 200,000 degrees or so.” And for a moment a slow smile curved his lips. “Then again, if you want the Fed ships to see us, we can’t raise the cloak, even if you’re willing to let them see it.”

    “Excuse me, but the Federation ships all just went to 32% gee, and the hard radiation from them went way up too.” Parker’s voice did not, quite, crack as he said it.

    “I’d like to match that on the GCRs, but I’d also like some details on it.” Calm and decisive as ever, was Keith March’s voice. One more reason his orders from the Associated Belt Colonies, from near Mars orbit to out beyond Uranus or even farther darkward, had been “use your discretion — all of it, but do.”

    “Droplet radiators can’t keep up with the thermal loads from the torch engines at about 27% gee, which is okay since they start losing coolant to space a bit above 24% gee — the droplets literally fall too far to be caught again. We’ve six small Boltzmann generators that can take up the slack, unless all of them fail at the same time, in which case the GCR chambers melt. The next limit is the gas core in the chamber ‘floating’ in the gee field, that’s above 80% gravity but we didn’t check how far yet.” He drew a breath, finally. “The Fed were using a very similar system, droplet radiators cooling GCRs augmented with mirror matter powered rockets. Now it looks like they’ve just shut down the GCRs and gone to pure annihilation drive, probably the core buoyancy issue again.”

    “So, Angus, any reason not to do the Boltzmann radiator thing?”

    “If you’re trying to show off… it’s a good way to do it, they just gave up on their own GCRs just now. And if you’re trying to wait till the last minute to pull out our own matter-antimatter drive, as you like to call it, that should work. We did test the field radiators pretty well, too, that little cruise out by Neptune…”

    “Deploy Boltzmann radiators. Try to underplay just how big the heat capacity of one of those fields is, too.”

    And a hexagon of small spheres, made of nothing material, appeared next to the engine section of the Bonnie Prince Charlie. And glowed bright orange, where they’d been as black as space (and cold as the 3-degree void) a moment before. And drew away from the stern, as they expanded like party balloons blown up by a willing guest…

    “Droplet radiators in shutdown, 25% gee, 30% gee, 32% gee. We are stable at matching boost.” Alea’s voice held a certain… satisfaction.

    “All that’s well and good, but what if they launch a nuke missile at us, running at, say, ten gees of boost? I know it’d be minutes, still, to get here, but…” Pete Raskolnikov had been very quiet, sitting at the weapons console.

    “Doctor Clayborne,” March’s quiet voice replied, “remind us all about that weird science-fiction gizmo of yours.”

    “Well, it’s not really an inertialess drive at all, not quite like the Lensman series or any of those fictional ones. And if the Fed tries to get up to it by suppressing the Higgs field, I wish them joy of their, ah, explosive endeavours. But it really does let you run an orbit around the sun at five, ten, twenty times your normal speed, more or less for free. So if we need to get away fast, we can.”

    “But I’d prefer, highly prefer, to keep that a secret for awhile longer. Though a lot of what we’re up to today is letting us rightly say, later, ‘You were warned’ if it really comes to a fight — I believe the best part of ‘Technological Surprise’ is that nice, old-fashioned, ‘Surprise!’ part.” Keith March spoke with a quiet smile.

    “And meanwhile, ladies and gentlemen, we’re busy proving once again that, as ever, ‘a stern chase is a long chase.'” Alea said, quietly merry herself.

    (yes, this *is* set later in the same world as last week’s vignette/s)

  17. “Odd. I’ve looked at the historical data and unless a storm hits this place utterly dead-on, no deviation at all, it veers off somehow. I just don’t get it.” said Tara.

    “Like a sort of magic bubble of protection? Hrmm… maybe this place has an old school Storm Warning.” replied Connor.

  18. For the record, that book is not my work.

    I wish I could sit down and actually write the story that’s in my head…

    1. Jay, just sit and write the pieces. Alternatively, write the pieces as e-mails, or even instant text messages, and send them to yourself. You can assemble the jigsaw puzzle later and work out the sequence, and then filling in missing pieces should go easier. (says the guy with pieces cluttering his hard drive and notebooks scattered around the house.)

  19. “Why do we do this?” Mally slumped in her chair, making it bob slightly as she tried to tune out the annoying voice. Pak just hummed in sympathy, passing over a new cup of coffee.

    “The new holistic theory combines everything. Race, gender, sexuality, anti-religion, politics, ethics, it’s got it all. Camp 2319 reports good results from the sleep study, and 44910 says converts are up 13%. With this, we can completely eradicate the myth of free will and corrupting individual thought!”

    The older man tapped away his terminal. It wasn’t as annoying as the voice, the old fashioned interface just seemed to be a quirk of his nature. She thought it was endearing most days.

    “Linking in, and… locked.”

    “Good. Now we can get out of here.” Exiting the shade took significantly less time, thank goodness. Seconds later, the voice was gone along with its entire reality. Mally and Pak’s small probe re-entered normal space, cruising along the orbit while waiting for the planet to catch up.

    “Its important to keep the links up to date, girl. People need to know about this sort of thing, and our node decided to maintain the links. They are popular with the educational circuit and we get decent credits selling access.”

    “But why do we even bother, Pak? Nobody on Earth has taken socialism seriously in generations! The ideas are about as basic and wrong as phrenology and alchemy!” She threw up her hands in disgust. The other man rubbed at his right implant socket, something she’d seen him do often when he was thinking.

    “An inoculation against cerebral infection. It is easy for you to see because you were born into this world, and can see the benefits. Being born into fortune also can cause its own skewed view of the world. We do this so our people won’t have to have their noses rubbed in it when everything they had is burnt down, and chains of their own making bind them to foolishness and stupidity.”

  20. “If you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.”
    — Winston Churchill.

    The sun rose hat morning over the field strewn with the broken remains of the Patriots’ “army”. They… but wait… what was that sound? The ‘bots were coming back, spraying some sort of chemical fog… the air was getting thick… I…

  21. “Just this,” said Julie, indicating a bag of Len’s Special Granola and withdrawing a $5 bill.

    “Fine,” said Len. “Though I should warn you, there’s nothing actually in there but a bunch of rusty nail filings and some used kitty litter.”

    “Oh, that’s okay,” said Julie. “The bill’s counterfeit anyway.”

Comments are closed.