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FPSE028 – Vanitas: Digging

FPSE028 – Vanitas: Digging

Welcome to Flash Pulp Special Episode Twenty-Eight.

Flash PulpTonight we present Vanitas: Digging

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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.

FP429 – Coffin: Dislocation

FP429 - Coffin: Disclosure, a Skinner Co. Network Podcast

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

Flash PulpTonight we present Coffin: Dislocation

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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.

FPSE027 – Meeting

FPSE27 - Meeting

Welcome to Flash Pulp Special Episode Twenty-Seven.

Flash PulpTonight we present Meeting

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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.

FP428 – Extremes

FP428 - Extremes

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

Flash PulpTonight we present Extremes

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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 hear a tale of gun play and international terrorism as it plays out across the acreage of a small Midwestern farm.

 

Extremes

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

 

Marina Hedges sat at her simple wood table, her fingernails unpainted and her hair pulled into a tight bun.

In the fields beyond the farmhouse, Felix and Oscar were barking.

Though she suspected it was nothing more than a fox – though the kettle was on the cusp of whistling and her tea in near need of tending – she stood.

From his place upon the kitchen wall, Howard, in his Marine uniform, seemed to watch her as she shuffled towards the bedroom they would again share once he’d returned from deployment.

The kettle whined. The dogs howled.

* * *

Now crouched just inside the fence, the trio began their planned slow approach, but they had not expected the persistence of the barnyard mutts, nor the difficulty of dealing with such beasts within the confines of dense wheat.

FP428 - ExtremesA pair of shark-like ripples moved through the tall grass, their zig-zag approach growing ever closer while never revealing enough riled fur to attempt a shot.

Their plan had seemed a reasonable thing when discussed across steaming cups of tea in their shared apartment. The command had been simple: Using social networks, find the husbands and wives of those in uniform, then make those fighting on distant shores understand the death of family in the personal way that each of the trio understood it.

They had laughed and joked as they’d flipped through the photos, constructing ridiculous histories for each potential victim. It’d been easy: They’d been nothing but faces on a screen.

In the end, the canines nearly overran them. It was their leader – dressed from head to toe in black and armed with the only automatic weapon between them – who opened fire and brought the hounds low.

The spurt of thunderclaps from his weapon, however, was the end of their attempt at surprise.

* * *

Marina had trained the dogs herself.

Psychological concerns had kept her from service, but there was no doubt that her own mother’s death in combat had fueled some of her interest in Howard’s accomplishments, and her several youthful attempts at sneaking past the recruiters.

She’d already had the AR-15 in her hands before the shooting had begun, and, by Oscar’s final whimpered complaint, she was positioned in the shadows of her front porch, her body and weapon nearly invisible behind the long bench on which she spent her evenings reading.

Across the driveway three men broke from the shelter of the field, and she could see their eyes were anxiously large, which made them seem somehow tiny against the sea of wheat.

She did not fire, but she did think of Oscar and Felix.

The intruders stepped forward, un-noticing of their observer as they exchanged forceful whispers and blur-fingered hand signs.

She did not fire, but her mind did land briefly on her mother.

Throwing down his pistol, the leftmost approached the tallest of the bunch, the one dressed all in black, and seemed to argue turning back.

Sure now that a few missed rounds wouldn’t give them opportunity to withdraw into the depths of the grain, Marina settled into a slow exhale and fired – and fired, and fired.

In the end the invaders didn’t get off a shot. The only sound they made, at least that she could hear, was the call of the man who’d suggested retreat. He’d shouted “Aariz” twice before bleeding out, but she’d had no way to know it as the name of his uncle, who was long dead from a misplaced drone rocket that had detonated in his apartment’s kitchen.

For the next five years not a sign-up would pass through a recruiter without having heard or told the tale of Marina Hedges’ defense, but it would take only a week for the news to filter back to the trio’s hometown, where, upon hearing the story, each man’s son swore revenge.

 

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.

FPSE26 – The Queen’s Conversion

conversion

Welcome to Flash Pulp Special Episode Twenty-Six.

Flash PulpTonight we present The Queen’s Conversion

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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 return to the Hundred Kingdoms to witness a transformation happen under the close watch of Queen Sofia Esperon.

 

The Queen’s Conversion

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

 

Tonight we return to the Hundred Kingdoms to witness a transformation happen under the close watch of Queen Sofia Esperon.

 

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.

FP427 – Ruby Departed: Kilroy’s Story

Tonight, our zombie slaying heroine hears the recounting of one man’s post-apocalyptic vacation.

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

Flash PulpTonight we present Ruby Departed: Kilroy’s Story

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Download MP3

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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, our zombie slaying heroine hears the recounting of one man’s post-apocalyptic vacation.

 

Ruby Departed: Kilroy’s Story

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

 

Tonight, our zombie slaying heroine hears the recounting of one man’s post-apocalyptic vacation.

 

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.

MMN6 – R.O.T.O.R. (Live!)

MMN6 - R.O.T.O.R. (Live!)

MMN6 - R.O.T.O.R. (Live!)
Join The Mob in mocking the homicidal robot cop of THE FUTURE!

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This show is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

FC121 – Yay Moonshine (Live From Kar’WickCon 2015)

FC121 - Yay Moonshine (Live From Kar'WickCon 2015)

FC121 - Yay Moonshine (Live From Kar'WickCon 2015)

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(Download/iTunes/RSS)

Hello, and welcome to FlashCast 121.

Prepare yourself for: Crazy Larry’s, Wayne Bruce, Sasquatches, equal pay for Batgirl, and Mulligan Smith.

* * *

Huge thanks to:

* * *

* * *

* * *

* * *

Audio-dacity of Hope:

  • Black Smoke by Jessica May
  • * * *

    Backroom Plots:

  • FP421 – Back on the Road
  • * * *

    Also, many thanks, as always, Retro Jim, of RelicRadio.com for hosting FlashPulp.com and the wiki!

    * * *

    If you have comments, questions or suggestions, you can find us at http://skinner.fm, or email us text/mp3s to comments@flashpulp.com.

    FlashCast is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License.

    FCM023 – #KarWickCon

    FCM023 - #KarWickCon

    FCM023 - #KarWickCon
    Welcome to Flash Pulp Minisode 023 – #KarWickCon

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    Download MP3
    (RSS / iTunes)

    * * *

    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.

    FP426 – Balance

    FP426 - Balace

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

    Flash PulpTonight we present Balance

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    This week’s episodes are brought to you by The Casebook of Esho St. Claire!

     

    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 find ourselves trapped on a Capital City bus with an apparent madman.

     

    Balance

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

     

    “Fare?” asked the driver, his eyes bored but his lips taut at having had to repeat himself for a third time.

    Clay Lyons, locked in internal conversation, barely noticed, though his hand continued to shuffle around inside his jacket as if in search of change.

    Coming to an answer, he turned and took in his fellow passengers.

    The bus was largely empty. On the left side of the aisle a fatigue-jacketed man of fifty, his knit cap pulled low, slept his way through Capital City’s most remote stops. To the right, a sixteen-year-old boy watched Clay, his gaze appearing to take the newcomer’s measure. Beside the teen sat a woman whose graying hair seemed to have arrived too soon for her thirty-something face. She was occupied with the sidewalk beyond her window.

    “Listen: Pay up or step off,” said the driver.

    With a sigh, Clay reminded himself that it wasn’t his fault. He’d been driven mad by the lawyers and the system weighing against him and damned Lorraine. She’d always driven him nuts – wasn’t that obviously why he’d hit her so often?

    It was her fault. It was the system’s fault. It was everyone’s fault.

    Producing one of the six-inch knives he’d bought online, Lyons smoothly swung out the blade with a flick of his practiced thumb.

    As the tension of his life drove the weapon into the wheelman’s throat for the fifth and sixth time, Clay decided he was truly crazy – that he’d been made crazy his responsibilities, and by his ex-wife.

    * * *

    “Fuuuuuuuuu-” began Quinton Labadie, but his mother’s proximity shut his mouth. Her wrath wasn’t worth raising, even in the face of cold blooded homicide.

    The teen had lost count of the killer’s thrusts, and a red mist now hung across the windshield and over the murderer’s white shirt and black tie.

    FP426 - BalaceStanding, the youth tugged at Amoya Labadie’s arm until she relented and joined him on the runway towards the rear exit. That’s when the man in the khaki coat snored.

    It was enough to snap the executioner from his rage.

    “Am I boring you over here!?” screamed Lyons.

    Raising his head in confusion, the slumberer took in the scene.

    “He’s got a knife!” shouted Quinton, but the warning was too late even as it passed across his lips.

    Stumbling over his still-sleeping feet, the dreamer had attempted to leave his seat, but was overtaken by the crimson form of the knifeman.

    Staring up from his leaking handiwork, Clay pulled on a cruel smile.

    “Scared?” he asked.

    “It’s not you I’m worried about,” answered Quinton, but it was too late. His mother had taken notice of the world again. She drew the large yellow purse close to her chest, her brows low with suspicion.

    “You’ll be hurt,” she said, setting a hand on her son’s shoulder, “he’s got shadow eyes.”

    * * *

    Usually the shadows simply lurked beyond the windows, but sometimes they got inside folks, and you could only tell by the darkness in their eyes. That’s when they were most dangerous, because they could jump from gaze to gaze.

    Amoya had been at war for ten thousand days. She knew because she’d written each of them out, as roman numerals, in her journals.

    She’d first seen the glooms when she’d entered puberty. She’d long harboured suspicions, reinforced at every sleep over and birthday party, that her existence was somehow aside from those of her friends. She’d worried that they could tell she was different, and she’d worked hard to hide those differences.

    Decades later, her son was the only one with a hint of her true vision. Most would have said she was just a quiet woman with a large yellow bag always at her side. Yet the war continued.

    The shades were everywhere, taunting her through the lips of news anchors and in the sneering refusals of the insurance companies. The lesson that she was alone had come young – but she was a fighter. She had kept her secrets, knowing they’d take Quinton away if she didn’t, and she had waited.

    Now they had come, as she’d always known they would.

    They had come, but she was ready.

    Clay approached with the heavy tread of an angry man – a betrayed man – but she thrust her son aside with the strength of true madness: Of a lifetime’s certainty that the world was aligned against her, not just in a moment of rage, but at every second, with every breath and every push up and every mile ran.

    He raised the knife, and she saw the shadows in his eyes.

    He raised the knife, and she knew there was only one way to keep the gloom from entering her own being.

    The banana-coloured purse dropped away, revealing the portable nail gun that had been her constant companion for over a decade.

    In the end, no amount of surgery would save Clay Lyons’ punctured vision, but Amoya’s victory would be enough to rally the support she and her son truly needed.

     

    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.