FP433 – The Sad Death of Lord Northrop Saggyface

Welcome to Flash Pulp, episode four hundred and thirty-three.

Flash PulpTonight we present The Sad Death of Lord Northrop Saggyface

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This week’s episodes are brought to you by The Human Echoes Podcast!

 

Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

Tonight we tell a tale of friendship and terror, in the classic style.

 

The Sad Death of Lord Northrop Saggyface

Written by J.R.D. Skinner
Art and Narration by Opopanax
and Audio produced by Jessica May

 

The first time Titus Bitok noticed something was amiss, he was conducting a sweeping battle across his room’s rug and into the cliff faces of his rumpled bed. The empire’s forces had been hiding beneath the comforter all along, and the small band of rebels in their shag-floored fortress had little hope of surviving unless Johnny Strongarm could use his bit of twine to repel down the sheets and warn his friends.

That’s when Lord Northrop Saggyface entered the scene. The dog, taller than the boy despite the fact that both were the same age of five, brought a quick end to the wall of hard-backed novels that formed the resistance force’s compound’s western defenses, then the beast was into the crawlspace and out of sight.

Seconds later Ayah Bitok, Titus’ mother, burst through the door. Her hair was free of the scarf she’d left the house in, and her mouth had taken up the tight line that usually meant Dad had said something mean that she wanted to pretend hadn’t happened.

She asked, “are you okay?”

In truth he was a little annoyed at having to repair his base, but the boy commander shrugged it off. He owed Lord Saggyface a few favours, and he could see no gain in getting the mutt in trouble.

“Yep,” he replied.

He did not notice that she was sweating as she departed – nor that she took the unusual step of closing the door behind her.

The invasion resumed.

* * *

That Saturday night, Titus slipped his babysitter’s dozing gaze and crept into his bedroom.

Generally the race to see if she’d fall asleep before thinking to put him to bed resulted in his treating himself to a movie starring aliens, people with laser cannons, or car chases – all three if he was especially lucky – but this evening he’d set himself a special goal.

FP433 - The Sad Death of Lord Northrop SaggyfaceThough his mother had done away with most of the traces of his father about the house, she’d set aside a stack of ancient horror comics, noting that they were actually intended to be the child’s by way of grandfather.

“A much better man, and it is only too bad you did not have the chance to meet him before his passing. He was always eager to hold you,” she’d said.

Still, though she’d fanned the ghoulish covers of his inheritance, she’d set his estate high on her closet’s shelf, deeming them too terrifying for a youth his age.

This had been no obstacle at all once Cynthia had arrived. Dragging her to the park, to the store, to the ducks, and then home again, he knew he’d exhaust the chain-smoking woman who lived in the other half of their duplex.

He’d been patient through a half-dozen dragging snores, then, with a cat’s stealth, he’d shifted a chair and retrieved his prizes.

It was just after midnight of that evening that Lord Saggyface stepped from the cubby and stood, the bulk of his broad gray fluff projecting into the room, while his head joined Titus beneath the glow-lit sheet that hid the undertaking from any who might stumble through the door.

Titus spent some fifteen minutes softly reading aloud to the dog’s bobbing tongue, then a noise the reading boy could not make out drew Northrop’s attention to the window.

With childhood reflexes, the light was extinguished and the the exterior darkness flooded the room. Saggyface’s gentle panting became the only sound, then came the grind of a shifting pane, and a grunt from beyond.

The beast opened his throat and took to roaring, and Titus began to shout for him to be quiet while attempting to collect his stolen goods.

Cynthia, roused from her nap, burst through the entry with ragged lungs, inundating the room with light and kicking off a week’s grounding.

* * *

Titus could not help but notice the tension creeping into the quiet moments of the next seven days. When Cynthia had come around for Sunday tea, the boredom of the afternoon had been broken up by the first fight the boy had ever witnessed between the woman and his mother.

They did not speak throughout the march of days, and more than once Titus caught Ayah closing the blinds against the sound of their neighbour coughing and lighting another cigarette out on the sidewalk.

A mere fifteen minutes after his Thursday night bedtime, the screen door swung against the outer wall, and the house fell silent. Titus, taut with the boredom of his punishment and the pacing of his mother, had been already been hard-pressed to fall asleep, but now, with the child’s increasing surety that he was alone in his home, his feet began to wiggle.

He wandered into the bathroom, Lord Saggyface shuffling along behind him, and no voice raised an objection against the fact that he was out of bed.

He wandered into the kitchen, his mouth half-open and ready to deliver his excuse of needing a glass of water, but again no objections came.

Through the glass patio door that looked onto over the yellow grass of their back lawn, Titus noticed movement in the shadows.

It was his mother, and she was hoisting a shovel.

His curiousity suddenly outweighing his caution, Titus slid back the exit.

Stepping onto the turf with barefeet, he approached the short trench that had been dug alongside the rear fence.

“Mum?” he asked.

Ayah turned, clearly startled, and the boy wondered briefly if her raised brows might avalanche into anger over his violation of curfew.

Instead she seemed to take his measure, then sighed.

“My Love,” she said, “did you hear the dog bark the night Cynthia was over?”

She dropped a load of muck on her growing pile as she spoke.

“Yes,” replied Titus. He hated to rat out his friend, but he also knew he wasn’t the only witness.

The digging stopped.

“You heard Saggyface?”

“Yes, Mum, he was crazy over whatever was at the window. He was jumping and barking, that’s why I was busted with my – uh – those comics.”

Somewhere on the street a car door slammed. Neither noticed.

“You’re saying you saw Lord Northrop?”

“Yeah, I think he liked the smell of the old pages so he was sort of reading with me.”

“Did – did Cynthia mention any of this to you? Ask you to say it?”

“What? No, I just – I just heard the dog barking? I mean, it’s like the only thing he’s good at anyhow, what’s the surprise?”

A third voice joined the conversation then, and not a welcome one.

It’s tone was thick and slurred.

“Oh, I heard the barking Ayah, it’s why I left. Not tonight though, not tonight. I’m surprised you were so quick to get another mutt – figured you as more sentimental, but then, look how quickly you forgot me, eh?”

“Dad?” asked Titus, but he did not mean it as a question of identity – he knew perfectly well who the man was – he meant it more as an inquiry into why his father was holding a broad-hilted knife.

“I was trying to do you a favour by not going to the police, you heartless butcher,” said Ayah

It was the most directly the boy had ever heard his mother speak against the man.

Titus, however, had long grown sick of the old man’s habits.

“Dad,” he said, “everytime you come around, someone cries. I cry, mom cries – I’ve even seen the lady next door cry over some of the things you’ve said and done.

“I can’t let you do it anymore. Go away, or I’ll make YOU cry.”

Though it was an effort to keep his knees from knocking, Titus worked hard to take on his best Johnny Strongarm stance. He needed Dad to believe, because he really wasn’t sure how he could make good on this threat otherwise.

His father raised his knife and smiled.

“No more tears – come here, boy,” he said.

That’s when Lord Northrop Saggyface gave his final charge. He held no form on this occasion, his assault consisted of only howls and barks long reserved for the man who’d too often silenced him with a boot, but it was enough.

It was a small back yard – barely ten feet between Cynthia’s privacy fence and that belonging to the Mainas next door – and the shovel’s long handle made it easy to close the distance when their assailant turned to try and catch sight of the beast.

Ayah did not stop swinging until Titus had grabbed the dropped knife and tossed it clear of the melee.

An hour later, with all safe, it would be up to the police to find it where it fell: Atop Lord Northrop Saggyface’s already decaying corpse.

 

Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

Freesound.org credits:

Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

– and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

Spread the word!

    FP432 – The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 3 of 3

    Welcome to Flash Pulp, episode four hundred and thirty-two.

    Flash PulpTonight we present The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 2 of 3
    (Part 1Part 2Part 3)

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    This week’s episodes are brought to you by Nutty Bites!

     

    Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

    Tonight we join the Irregular Division – currently consisting of Ms. Atlas, cybernetically modified wonder of the American military, and Head, occasional thief and government contractor – as they take an unlikely journey across Britannia’s decaying countryside.

     

    The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 3 of 3

    Written by J.R.D. Skinner
    Art and Narration by Opopanax
    and Audio produced by Jessica May

     

    November, Year One
    Excerpt Source: Verbal Debrief Three Days Following Operation Blighty

    Adviser: Major Nelson Wily
    Subject: Milo “Head” Smith

    Head: “It was some real Alice through the Looking Glass BS, let me tell you.”

    [Inaudible, then the sound of a chair being adjusted]

    Head: “Yeah, as if the landing wasn’t rough enough, Atlas was so quick to kill the chumps on the ground I didn’t have time to suggest that we should attempt to take a hostage.”

    Wily: “You disapprove of her behaviour on the ground?”

    Head: “Nah, I guess not. Who’s more excited about dying than a doomsday cultist, right? – and, to be fair, those guys seemed quite intent on shooting us.”

    Wily: “The video of their setup makes it appear pretty simple?”

    Head: “More firepower than you’d expect in a gun-less nation’s park, but otherwise it mostly looked like they were winter camping. We secured the site, which is to say we picked up their weapons and had a poke about. In their packs we found zip ties, a portable satellite internet connection, and enough tranquilizers to tuck in Michael Jackson.

    “At that point it was obvious that we’d either interrupted a particularly kinky weekend, or they’d had some abductions in mind.

    “While Jen phoned home, I used the network password you’d provided to get myself back online.”

    Wily: “That’s when you had your clever little idea?”

    Head: “Well, let’s say it was half ‘clever idea’ and half ‘bored habit.’ Our intel guys had found the encampment based solely on the fact that it was the only site still generating human-based internet traffic, and it was the same sort of notion that put us on the road.

    “I was mentally flipping through British streams and feeds; some sites that I visit – uh, used to visit – regularly, some that I hadn’t thought of in years, and I found myself wandering by BBC Radio 1. I paused there for a moment, as they’d left a maudlin take on God Save the King running on loop.

    “The weird thing was, it stopped, skipped back thirty seconds, then started again at half speed.

    “That’s when I started yelling, which you can probably make out on Atlas’ call log.”

    Wily: “I’ve heard it. You sound excited.”

    Head: “Well, it was the solution to an unexpected puzzle. If the genocidal nutters had been intending on kidnapping someone, then they must have expected there to be survivors. This kind of made their camping location, at the center-ish of the island, make sense.

    FP432 - The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 3 of 3“The machines, on the other hand, didn’t know or care if anyone had survived. There were still tiny European cars idling away as we passed, and I feel confident they gladly did so until their fuel ran dry. On that same note, there’s no reason at all for an organization like the BBC to have live-to-air audio chopping and dropping. Clearly someone, likely someone who had no idea what they were doing, was messing with the controls.”

    Wily: “That meant a drive to the BBC buildings in London.”

    Head: “Uh huh. Easy enough to commandeer a ride – like I said, some of them weren’t even fully parked when the infection took hold of their drivers, but they’d mostly been reasonable enough in their lusty passions to pull over. We ended up in a white Ford Fiesta with the steering wheel on the wrong side and an engine that sounded like it had been stolen from an RC car.

    “Honestly, I started off being a bit of a smartass about it. I even used the sat internet to blast Lindsey Buckingham’s Holiday Road as we were leaving the parking lot. I knocked that business off pretty quick though.

    “In a weird way it was almost as if a terrible wind had passed over the land. Even with frost on the windows, every lawn, block of sidewalk, every abandoned park seemed to hold random collections of laundry and dead bodies. Bodies knee deep in a snow drift without pants, bodies with jaws shattered from use, bodies crushed flat by the weight of those grinding on top of them.

    “We must have passed thousands of the dead, but the thing I won’t be able to shake was the smile on each of their faces.

    “From the empty highway we began to spot fingers of smoke on the horizon. Fires, no doubt, caused by forgotten stoves, dropped cigarettes, and a thousand other accidents waiting to happen once their tenders wandered away from the switch to chase their groin.

    “I remember crossing a river and noting a hole in the thin ice down by the shore. There was this Bentley poking out, its front end submerged, but it was clear the passengers had managed to get clear. They were both there: A thin bald guy and a lady with bad teeth. Tweediest mofos you could ask for.

    “Though they’d exited, they hadn’t made it back to land. The ice must have thawed and re-froze in the time of their rutting, as his corpse had been locked into the ice up to his ears, and she was stuck at her hands and knees.

    “Then we were passed them, and I had some other horror to stare down. At least in that instance there merely two of them.

    “We have only the virus’ intensity to thank for this thing not ending everyone. If the incubation period had been any longer we’d all be, well, fucked.

    “Thing is, there were these ugly little scenes, but, especially as we cruised the streets of London, there was also much beauty. Buildings that had stood for centuries and statuary with more history than my hometown will ever care to know. I started thinking, you know, about how the history will remain, they just won’t be making any more of it.

    “I started yammering to Atlas: Have you considered that you’ll never hear the accent on anything but recordings now? Maybe we’ll setup zoos for the ex-pats, or teaching schools so that actors can carry on the tradition.

    “Eventually I turned the glitching BBC signal up just for the noise.

    “When we finally reached Broadcasting House I was out of the car like a kid hitting Disneyland. I’d seen too much death, and the notion of finding something living struck me as especially exciting.

    “What I wasn’t expecting, as we pushed open doors and shouted down hallways, was what we encountered: A couple, or an apparent couple at least, fighting.

    “Our rescues may not have known each other beforehand, but they certainly bickered like they’d been married a decade.

    “Martin was repeating something Annabel had just stated, though he was using a voice that sounded vaguely like a Hanna-Barbera character had taken a sharp blow to the head, when Atlas went into Atlas mode.

    “Even with the medical precautions you’d shoved into our arms before takeoff, I could feel the pull of their nanotech-rewritten pheromones. Within ten feet the virus makes you think – oh aren’t they quirky and fun. Isn’t he gruff but lovable, isn’t she witty and sharp tongued. If Atlas wasn’t more machine than woman I might have been worried, but she had them on the ground and in the surrender position before you could quote the COPS theme song.

    “By then you were screaming at us to come home, so we immediately stole a jetliner – and that, mon Capitaine, is how we came to find The Lovesick Twins under our roof.”

     

    Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

    Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

    Freesound.org credits:

    Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

    – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

    Spread the word!

      FCM025 – The Ballad of Bubba & Rooster

      FCM025 - The Ballad of Bubba and Rooster
      Welcome to Flashcast Minisode 025 – The Ballad of Bubba & Rooster

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      * * *

    • Join the fall session of the Mob Movie League film draft!
    • Opop’s story
    • JRD’s story
    • JMay’s story
    • * * *

      Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

      Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

      Freesound.org credits:

      Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

      – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

      Spread the word!

        FP431 – The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 2 of 3

        Welcome to Flash Pulp, episode four hundred and thirty-one.

        Flash PulpTonight we present The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 2 of 3
        (Part 1Part 2Part 3)

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        This week’s episodes are brought to you by The Elysian Springs Kickstarter!

         

        Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

        Tonight, we report on unpleasant and indecent acts as they unfold across Great Britain. This episode, dedicated to Captain Pigheart, is definitely not safe for children, workplaces, or your parents.

         

        The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 2 of 3

        Written by J.R.D. Skinner
        Art and Narration by Opopanax
        and Audio produced by Jessica May

         

        November, Year One

        Source: The Capital City Citizen

        Headline: UK TERROR ATTACK

        Body:

        We have reports, most from what remains of the BBC, that Great Britain has been the target of a well-coordinated string of bio-weapon attacks conducted by an unknown group of aggressors.

        Indications began to crop up on social media feeds around 10PM London time, and it has been confirmed that an emergency declaration was made to European Union officials, by British parliament, shortly before midnight.

        Though transcripts of the conversation have yet to be released, the discussion was obviously dire: A naval task force was immediately deployed, and fighter jets scrambled.

        No official tally has yet been provided, but witness reports from one Princess Cruises ship, re-routed from its Brest-to-Plymouth course by military vessels, claim that at least three fishing-class boats were sunk within view of the vacationing families watching from the liner’s balconies.

        Aircraft were also targeted, as cellphone photos of wreckage, taken in the northern provinces of the French countryside, have surfaced online. Though currently unconfirmed by Citizen staff, information on the ground is that all lives on EasyJet flight U2-7142 have been lost. It is unclear if the infection had spread to the passengers and crew.

        FP431 - The Irregular Division: Part 2 of 3While every death related to this incident is an unfortunate loss, it appears the hastily erected quarantine blockade is holding.

        Satellite and fly-by imagery was hampered during the night hours, but dawn has found a very changed island.

        Social media reports seem to indicate rioting, but no observers were prepared for the swathes of human flesh that they were presented. While the plague’s transmission mechanism has yet to be determined, it is clear that close contact is more than enough to spread the epidemic.

        One man was spotted sprinting away from a crowd in a panic, along the Liverpool docks, only to stop some dozen feet ahead of his pursuers, possibly due to a shift in the wind. When he halted, so too did the twenty to thirty revelers behind him. He immediately began to strip, first removing the scarf he’d wrapped about his face and the goggles he’d been wearing but not stopping until he was completely nude. Though the crowd howled at his display, they could not join him in disrobing: Each was already in a state of undress.

        It is reported that those giving chase were endlessly grabbing at each other, and themselves, in their anticipation.

        Finally naked, the man apparently turned back towards his stalkers, and what can only be described as an orgy ensued.

        The merchant ship that spotted the activity, its Norwegian crew having drawn up its entry at the earliest indication of trouble, cut ties from the shore and moved into open water once it was obvious that, after an hour’s brutal sexual interaction, not all members of the clench had survived the ongoing copulation.

        However, as of press time, the sole government-acknowledged release has been from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, who set down a light aircraft at the Manchester airport at approximately the same hour as the incident reported by the Norwegian crew. For reasons of expedient public disclosure, the center’s visual link was provided to news sources uninterrupted and unedited.

        Video from the cockpit shows two armed analysts moving from the plane only to be caught up in a tide of naked humanity flowing from the terminal in search of a target to sate their lust. Though the recording provides no audio, the pair can clearly be seen attempting to retreat from the flood until their suits are breached by groping hands. Once their barriers are violated, both members of the ECDC strip away their gear at top speed, their tongues making lewd gestures towards the infected even before they were free of their suits.

        What follows is a horrifying sight: The group falls to the tarmac as a single pulsing mass of limbs and genitals, and remains there for the majority of the broadcast. In the end, just three of the dozens who entered the frame stand to depart, the rest having evidently died of dehydration, exhaustion, or simple brute injury during the act of mob fornication.

        Though the survivor is not visible, a slight shake then indicates the plane’s engine was restarted, and the perspective swings to an empty runway.

        The remaining lovers – two men and a woman – turn as one at the noise, running directly towards the small plane’s single prop. Though the males’ libido is clearly on display, the look of hunger in the trio’s eyes is perhaps what is most unnerving. The fervor remains unchanged even as the group move to embrace the escaping craft. While the view provides little detail, it is clear that their embrace of bone and meat is enough to damage the propeller, and the final seconds of the transmission are a quickly approaching utility hangar.

        There is no confirmation as to if the pilot perished in the impact. Perhaps it would be the better option.

        As of the time of this printing, millions are expected dead.

         

        Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

        Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

        Freesound.org credits:

        Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

        – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

        Spread the word!

          FP430 – The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 1 of 3

          Welcome to Flash Pulp, episode four hundred and thirty.

          Flash PulpTonight we present The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 1 of 3
          (Part 1Part 2Part 3)

          Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

          Download MP3

          (RSS / iTunes)

           

          This week’s episodes are brought to you by The Elysian Springs Kickstarter!

           

          Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

          Tonight, the Irregular Division find themselves landing in a very changed British forest.

           

          The Irregular Division: Hostilities, Part 1 of 3

          Written by J.R.D. Skinner
          Art and Narration by Opopanax
          and Audio produced by Jessica May

           

          February, Year One
          Source: Presentation to Working Group Alpha
          Presenter: Head

          […]

          Ever been at 35,000 feet and have someone punch out your pilot?

          Fine, smartass spec ops guy at the back of the room, ever been at 35,000 feet and have someone punch your pilot completely out of your transport?

          It was the old “I leave you now – TO YOUR DOOM” scenario, and Ms. Atlas was having about -10% of that bullshit.

          In fact, I believe the fellow in question, apparently a Kar’Wickian turncoat, was about halfway through his dialogue when she said “You announced you were leaving, so fucking LEAVE,” and then she hit him.

          Now, listen, I’ve been in situations where an unexpected punch is thrown. I’ve been in locations where “and then he hit him” was not an out of place option. You’re sitting in a bar, the guy five stools down is mouthing off, the fella whose wife he’s making fun of turns around, boom.

          There’s usually some blood, maybe a broken pint glass, maybe some apologies to the barkeep if you’ve made a mess.

          When I say “and then she hit him,” I don’t mean he fell to the floor and groped for his missing teeth, I mean it was like watching a Dodge Ram with a novelty fist strapped to its fender slam into someone. His body passed cleanly through the skin of our admittedly fragile high-altitude insertion vehicle, and I doubt he was in any condition to pull his ripcord on the way down.

          In instances like that I like to remain cool and calm, I like to deliver a witty one-liner and perhaps sip on an extremely dry martini.

          There was no booze service on the flight, but I do believe I managed to utter the line, “holy fuckity fucking fuck.”

          The Irregular Division: Hostilities, a futuristic podcast with a certain heroic flavourNow, have you ever seen a largely cybernetic She-Hulk gracefully touch down an injured craft as if a sparrow alighting on a willow branch while dawn’s gentle tendrils crest the horizon?

          Me either, because she grabbed the controls and dropped us to five hundred feet at such a high rate of acceleration I thought the tail section was still a good half-mile above us.

          I remember her laughing and laughing while the wind howled through the Wile E. Coyote hole in the wall.

          Betrayal, as it turns out, is extremely low on Atlas’ list of preferred daily events, and I could tell she wasn’t in the greatest mood as the wingtips grew closer to the grasping trees of Sherwood Forest. We’d picked up a lot of speed from our sudden descent and the titanium skeleton was shivering in the clutches of that much g-force.

          Then as quickly as our pilot had gone truly airborne, we came across the target site. Abruptly the windshield was full of stars, and I swore I could feel the frame giving out under the pressure, which was kind of okay with me as we were just as abruptly staring at the ground – then we were on it, skidding through frozen dirt and tufts of snow.

          Atlas didn’t bother to use the door – hell, she didn’t even bother opening the tub full of expensive firearms we’d been supplied.

          Some poor murderous schmuck came up to the hole, AK-47 poking in like a curious dog’s nose, and then there was no more schmuck, there was only Atlas, and, like a magic trick, it was suddenly HER AK-47.

          Yes, I’d say that’s when the shit really hit the fan.

           

          Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

          Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

          Freesound.org credits:

          Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

          – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

          Spread the word!

            FCM024 – The Yellow Streak

            FCM024 - The Yellow Streak
            Welcome to Flash Pulp Minisode 024 – The Yellow Streak

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          • The Whiz
          • Chicken-based Relationship Repair
          • * * *

            Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

            Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

            Freesound.org credits:

            Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

            – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

            Spread the word!

              FPSE029 – Road Into Summer

              Welcome to Flash Pulp Special Episode Twenty-Nine.

              Flash PulpTonight we present Road Into Summer

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              This week’s episodes are brought to you by The Way of the Buffalo Podcast!

               

              Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

              Tonight we Kill All Vociferation as we briefly gaze through a window into a universe that wasn’t, but may still be. Join us, with a pair of old friends, for a short journey into Summer’s swelter.

               

              Road Into Summer

              Written by Opopanax
              Art and Narration by Opopanax
              and Audio produced by Jessica May

               

              FPSE029 - Road Into Summer

               

              Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

              Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

              Freesound.org credits:

              Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

              – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

              Spread the word!

                FPSE028 – Vanitas: Digging

                Welcome to Flash Pulp Special Episode Twenty-Eight.

                Flash PulpTonight we present Vanitas: Digging

                Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

                Download MP3

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                This week’s episodes are brought to you by The Way of the Buffalo Podcast!

                 

                Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

                Tonight we take a detour into the woods and find ourselves at the site of an unusual burial.

                 

                Vanitas: Digging

                Written by Opopanax
                Art and Narration by Opopanax
                and Audio produced by Jessica May

                 

                FPSE028 – Vanitas: Digging

                 

                Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

                Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

                Freesound.org credits:

                Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

                – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

                Spread the word!

                  FP429 – Coffin: Dislocation

                  Welcome to Flash Pulp, episode four hundred and twenty-nine.

                  Flash PulpTonight we present Coffin: Dislocation

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                  Download MP3

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                  This week’s episodes are brought to you by Nutty Bites!

                   

                  Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

                  Tonight, Will Coffin, urban shaman, and Bunny, his apprentice, find themselves dealing with an apparition that simply wants to move on.

                   

                  Coffin: Dislocation

                  Written by J.R.D. Skinner
                  Art and Narration by Opopanax
                  and Audio produced by Jessica May

                   

                  It was a strange gig.

                  Bunny stood at the edge of the lake, her hands deep in her pockets and her denim jacket shut against the wind that roared across the water.

                  She stood with Mantas and Greta Kulpa, whose hard faces watched Will Coffin swing high his arcane token upon the rocky shore.

                  Behind them was a plain white cross, nailed together and painted by Mantas’ own hands.

                  The sky howled and the rain came, yet still somehow the Kulpa’s cheeks remained dry.

                  Their English was crisp, but they delivered it as embittered spitting.

                  Mantas asked, “is this going to take long?”

                  Bunny shrugged. “Do you really hate it that much here?”

                  “How much do we hate this place?” asked Greta.

                  “We hate this place so much we are literally driving directly to the airport to leave,” replied Mantas.

                  “We hate this place so much I may lobby the Grand Duchy to declare war on your miserable nation. I hardly think you’ll notice, but hopefully it will be enough to find us on the no fly list, and thus free of your grubby hands, sarcastic remarks, and ironic tourist sunglasses.”

                  “Not much longer,” answered Bunny.

                  The Crook of Ortez maintained its revolutions, its power, waxing in these late days, summoning up waves as well as pulling at the phantoms of the dead, teasing them to rise.

                  Bunny had seen her partner conjure the apparitions dozens of times, but never quite like this. It certainly was dramatic, at least.

                  On this occasion, however, no shimmering form appeared. Her partner made no extended entreaties, nor threats, nor even dry coughs. The storm hit a furious tempo, and then he let the chain drop, and the gale with it.

                  Thunder broke and rolled across the calming blue, and a downpour began to march in their direction from the distant shore. It’s ferocity, however, was nothing more than natural.

                  “It’s done,” said Will, his leather jacket dripping as he approached the cluster of observers.

                  “Great light show,” said Bunny, “but next time play some Floyd or something,”

                  The comment was out of her mouth before she considered her audience, but, given the Kulpa’s stolid indifference, she found it difficult to deliver a sorry.

                  “You spoke with her?” asked Greta.

                  “Yes,” replied Coffin.

                  “You told her we still intend to depart?” asked Mantas.

                  “Yes,” replied Coffin.

                  “How did she take it?” asked the mother, and Bunny thought it seemed as if she expected the dead girl would talk back.

                  Will shrugged. “She seemed okay.”

                  FP429 - Coffin: Disclosure, a Skinner Co. Network Podcast“Indifference? Typical,” said Greta. “I told you this place had warped her. Even in death she does not care about her parents. So ungrateful – so, so: So American.”

                  Mantas only grunted.

                  Coffin and Bunny stood together as they watched the pair climb the embankment, arm in arm. Within seconds the rented yellow hatchback was back on the highway and out of sight.

                  There was no wave goodbye, but Bunny consoled herself with the fact that they at least hadn’t spit on her as they departed.

                  “I missed what you were supposed to tell her – was it anything that would make me feel bad about thinking they’re a couple of puckered-asshole righteousness fondlers?”

                  “Nah,” answered Coffin. “They said, ‘tell her we can not stand this place. We are still leaving, good luck in the afterlife.”

                  “They didn’t seem too fuckin’ wadded up about the untimely death, and still missing corpse, of their only offspring? For all they know the bass are slowly shitting out their daughter down there. Why didn’t they at least ask her where her remains were?”

                  “Some use ritual as a system for dealing with the guilt they ignore. Those folks know they are right and proper, so it’s not their fault they’ve failed to make it in America, or failed to raise their daughter, or failed to change in any way as the world has ground on around them.

                  “They came to me not to get answers, but to simply put a period on the sentence. They have, to their own minds, done what they can – and now they’ll get on with the next thing.”

                  As they spoke, the pair climbed the same hill they’d watched the parents scale. Shuffling towards the car they’d rented at the Kulpa’s expense, a sixteen-year-old girl in a Ramones t-shirt and frayed-kneed jeans joined them.

                  “Exactly,” she said, “and it’s that same unthinking dedication to their ancient ways that would have forced them to drag me back to a place I remember hating as much as I remember it at all – or, if I’d fought hard enough, would have left them in a small town half a world away, complaining endlessly about the daughter they never saw, talked to, or in any way helped support. Still, they’d cry over it, and they wouldn’t even understand why. Just that it’s what is done.

                  “Better they think I’m dead then a blight upon the family, carousing and living a wild life in America.”

                  With no more time spent lingering than Matas and Greta had invested, Will, Bunny, and the very alive Melina Kulpas leaned into a quick U-turn, then sped back to the city.

                   

                  Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

                  Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

                  Freesound.org credits:

                  Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

                  – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

                  Spread the word!

                    FPSE027 – Meeting

                    Welcome to Flash Pulp Special Episode Twenty-Seven.

                    Flash PulpTonight we present Meeting

                    Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

                    Download MP3

                    (RSS / iTunes)

                     

                    This week’s episodes are brought to you by The Jr. Execs!

                     

                    Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

                    Tonight we present JRD’s Father’s Day gift!

                     

                    Meeting

                    Written by Opopanax
                    Art and Narration by Opopanax
                    and Audio produced by Jessica May

                     

                    FPSE27 - Meeting

                     

                    Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

                    Intro and outro work provided by Jay Langejans of The New Fiction Writers podcast.

                    Freesound.org credits:

                    Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

                    – and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.

                    Spread the word!