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I'm working on some urban fantasy worldbuilding over here:  http://wyld-dandelyon.livejournal.com/229369.html

For this week's #FridayFlash, I'll share a bit I wrote yesterday, but shared first with the person whose comment inspired it.  if you're willing to play along, you can stop at the post I link to above and leave a comment or question.  Happy New Year!

In a Private Corner of the Morgue

The old coroner cleaned the corpse’s face, then wiped the dead woman’s lips clean of the smeared lipstick, leaving the mouth open wide. He crooked his skinny, wrinkled fingers by her mouth. “I can tell you’re still in there, my dear. You really don’t want to stay there while I do your autopsy. It would be quite unpleasant, I’m sure.” He wiggled the fingers of his right hand like a fond cat-owner offering a good scratch, and then waited, humming an old tune. His left hand picked up a tool from a nearby table.

He stood there patiently. After a while, there was a hint of movement in the back of the open mouth. The murdered woman’s body lay quite still on the cold steel table; the movement was only on the spirit-plane.

“That’s right, my dear.” He wiggled his fingers again.

Slowly, hesitantly, a glowing lavender and silver butterfly emerged from the corpse, wings all wrinkled like an earthly butterfly just out of its chrysalis. It climbed onto the grey lips and let its wings slowly stretch.

Very, very gently, the old coroner stroked the butterfly’s insubstantial wings, and the nervous creature slowly relaxed. The wings spread out, wider than the dead woman’s face, and the glow intensified.

“Don’t you worry, my dear, I’ll find your murderer.” He rubbed the tiny, furry head, then picked the butterfly up, placing it on a clean sheet of vellum he had waiting nearby. “Don’t you worry, I won’t let anything happen to you.”

Then he plunged a spell-clad needle through the iridescent soul, securing it to the vellum and paralyzing it in all it’s new-furled beauty.

“Don’t you worry at all. I’ll keep you safe and perfect in my collection.”


( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 5th, 2014 03:50 am (UTC)
Wow, 0 to really creepy in 1.2 seconds.
Jan. 5th, 2014 08:22 am (UTC)
Thank you!
Jan. 5th, 2014 05:09 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the fact that I find it unsettling isn't quite a Pulitzer Prize,
but... it's recognition of a sort...
Jan. 5th, 2014 09:27 pm (UTC)
Well, I figure I need some villains, and some complex people who are a perplexing mix of good and evil. I'm not particularly good at villains, but I think this guy will be interesting. Unsettling is a good word for him.

I'm not sure, yet, how this will work into a longer plot...
Jan. 5th, 2014 10:35 pm (UTC)
You've certainly got a good start on ~this~ villain.

And I've got a feeling that my homicide detective ~will~ have a dream
very similar to this, but with her girlfriend-from-high-school,
now an archaelogist, instead of a coroner,
unearthing and dusting off some sort of artifact,
rather than a butterfly, and no charmed pin.
That should be different enough to prevent your attorneys
talking to my attorneys.
Jan. 5th, 2014 11:21 pm (UTC)
The butterfly as a symbol for/embodiment of the soul is seen in Japanese and other folklore, however, so if you want to use it you're welcome.

I'm all in favor of an archaeologist, however!
Jan. 5th, 2014 11:46 pm (UTC)
Re: Excellent!
is something else entirely that I thought of because,
well, it's so much like Mackenzie Barba...

Jan. 5th, 2014 08:09 pm (UTC)
This, yes. Eeepings!
Jan. 5th, 2014 08:25 pm (UTC)
Thirded! Well done!
Jan. 5th, 2014 11:29 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Jan. 5th, 2014 11:28 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Jan. 5th, 2014 12:30 pm (UTC)
Well done twist! Just when I was busy imagining the large, lovely butterfly ... zap! Good job.
Jan. 5th, 2014 11:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Jan. 10th, 2014 04:32 am (UTC)
Oh crapola...
Why did I read that just before bedtime? That's so creepy!

I've always found those butterfly collections to be sadistic. I enjoyed the supernatural twist!
Jan. 10th, 2014 07:35 pm (UTC)
Re: Oh crapola...
I guess setting it in a morgue wasn't warning enough.

Thanks for stopping by!
Jan. 10th, 2014 10:22 pm (UTC)
I think this is the creepiest thing I have read all day.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )


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