The Iron Writer Weekend Quickie #16

old bottleThe Iron Writer Weekend Quickie #16

The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day Three

One Picture

One Element

One Emotion

200 Words

An Old Bottle

Three French Hens


Please add your story in the comments below.

8 thoughts on “The Iron Writer Weekend Quickie #16

  1. When I landed on my feet and the train disappeared, I found myself adjacent to one of those quaint old British farms. Visions of children decimated by the loss of Christmas raged in my heart. The Grinch, that wily woman from Columbus, scampered over the corral fence and dashed into what I presumed was the hen house. Well, I know French Hens when I taste them and they don’t scare me. Fry me up three of them. This was going to be a long and arduous battle. I ready for it.
    Or was I still imaging things. The magic beans still inhibited my mind. Perhaps the Grinch was still on the train, laughing, mocking my fate. I stumbled into the chicken coop. There were two rooms. The first was a work room with several gunny sacks of chicken feed in the corner. I came up short. An old dirty bottle rested on top of the sacks, a faded tag with smudged written wire tied to the corked opening. How did she know? How did the would-be lady in a green petticoat know about my family secret? How did she anticipate this test, this chase, this place and me being here?

  2. We ought to gather all these up, by author, and post them. So those writing a continuing story using all 12 Days of Christmas, can have their entire stories available. Mine will stink all the way to Hawaii, but hey, it’s fun.

  3. The nurse loved the old man’s war stories. She was secretly writing them down. For posterity.

    Mr Montgomery had been a Spitfire pilot shot down over Holland. The locals hid him from the Nazis, but, as anticipated, there was a house-to-house search for the pilot.

    He was removed to the henhouse by his apologetic hosts, in with the Faverolles, the prettiest of French hens, but a smelly bunch.

    He heard the footfalls of a searching Nazi coming nearer so he burrowed underneath the filthy straw covering the floor. The lid to the first nesting box lifted and he could just see a uniformed hand shoo off the three French hens before scrabbling in the straw. The vile Heinie wasn’t searching for the pilot; he was stealing eggs.

    Mr M found a little glass bottle in the straw. He quickly reached it up into the nearest nesting box, substituting it for the eggs. When Heinie encountered the sharp wire on the bottle’s label, he cursed loudly in German, giving Mr M a smile and enough time to remove the remaining eggs from the last nesting box.

    It was the least he could do for his hosts. Eggs were far too precious for that thieving Kraut.

  4. “Good morning to you too, Constable Warwick,” Darby said.

    Warwick did an about-face and marched towards the village.

    “The constabulary heard you were back. After finding the bodies, we looked for you. We checked the pub, of course, but no one ever saw you exit the train. We came here to search the train and there you were, in a heap on the floor.”

    “I was drugged.”

    “Indeed. Cocaine or opium?”

    Darby scowled.

    “The killer drugged me. She…”

    Mocking, Warwick exclaimed,“She?”

    Darby seized Warwick’s collar drawing him close.

    “Put your petty shit aside and listen. She has killed three people so far. If we don’t find her, tomorrow she will kill three more.”

    “You know this how?” Warwick said.

    Darby let him go, “Three French hens.”

    “Beg ‘pardon?”

    “The song,” Darby said. “The twelve days of Christmas. Each day, she kills an amount of people equal to the gifts from the song and leaves images tying them together.”

    They came to the bodies lying in the bloody outline of turtle doves.

    “Poisoned. We found a small, labeled bottle,” Warwick said.

    Darby looked at the couple on the ground. They really were a couple, their rings matched.

    “Let’s go.”

  5. FX: Train sounds picking up to a moderate speed

    Narrator – “Jack Brandy stared at the two love birds as Juliet hummed some haunting melodies; Her voice was sweet and comforting as it sauntered through what seemed to Jack as three distinct tunes.”

    Jack – “What are you singing?”

    Juliet – “I’m not sure. I learned them from my mother when I was little. We were living in France. That’s when we used to go to church …. I, I can’t remember …”

    Romeo – “She doesn’t even know the words; just hums the tunes when she’s feeling homesick.”

    Narrator – “Jack was having trouble focusing on Romeo’s words as the “magic Beans” were starting to kick in. His head began to feel light, and a very pleasant feeling rose up within him.  He tried to stand, but it was useless. He collapsed against a crate and slipped into a colorful dreamland of visions and emotion.

    “Jack felt like he was standing at the counter of a drug store when the druggist approached and asked what he wanted. Jack answered …”

    Jack – “A life.”

    Narrator – “The druggist turned away, picked a glass bottle off the shelf and handed it to Jack.”

    Druggist – “Here you go. That’ll be 5 cents, bud.”

    Narrator – “Jack took the bottle, it was labelled “Jack Brandy”. Holding it up to the light in anticipation he gasped and remarked …”

    Jack – “It’s EMPTY! THIS is EMPTY!”

    Narrator – “At that Jack slipped into dreamland as images of chickens and this phrase echoed through his mind …

    three French hymns ….. three French hymns …………….. three French hymns”

  6. Part 3

    Brad ignored the shouts from behind and followed the strange man over fences, gates, fields and outdoor toilets. He finally got within earshot.
    He showed his badge once again but the man shrugged it off.
    “No one can stop me.”
    The man grabbed three chickens from another yard.
    “What are you doing? Why are you taking these birds?”
    “Leave before I begin to care about your existence!”
    “Are you making a bird stew?”
    “A partridge in a pear tree, two turtle doves and three french hens! Can’t you see the plumage? Lovely plumage…”
    “Are you collecting for a school Christmas performance or what?”
    The man took out an old bottle with a sample tag and held it to Brad.
    “With this pus from her ganglion cyst which she saved in this here bottle, I will bring her back to life! Muhahaha!”
    “Who? With pus?”
    “Not just pus! With this device and the twelve elements of Babarossa from the ancient incantation of Babylon, she will once again be mine! I am in excited anticipation of her glorious return!”
    The man hit a button on the device and disappeared through another portal. Brad had no other plans for the day.

  7. In one corner of the car a magnificent rooster with a great green plume of a tail, and three hens pecked contentedly in the straw. Ryan’s makeshift pillow moved and she sat up, turning to look into the placid, long-lashed eyes of a massive bovine. The cow looked back, unperturbed, and curled its prehensile tongue around a wisp of hay, pulling it into its mouth. Next to the cow lay a donkey. Ryan stretched out her hand and patted its soft muzzle; the creature nuzzled her in reply. Closer examination of the boxcar revealed only a single door, latched securely against the rushing winds. Was this it, then? Then, Ryan spotted it, a small wooden table tucked between some bales of straw. On it laid a silver plate, covered in filigree. In the middle of the plate, seemingly impervious to the rocking and jostling of the massive machine, was a small bottle, stoppered with a cork, and containing a small amount of powder. Ryan felt a tickle in her stomach and an involuntary grin split her face. She picked up the bottle and uncorked it. It smelled spicy, exotic. Her hands began to tremble as she turned the bottle upright onto her tongue. There was another of the dizzying spins, not so bad this time, and when she opened her eyes a door, ornate and incongruous among the steel and livestock, had appeared.

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