The Stoker Family’s Olde Sweet Shoppe

nosferatu-1

With trembling wrappers and chattering jars, huddled close under gloomy counters after the store is locked and bolted; after the fizzing lights dim and fade to black; all aquiver, as the midnight hour ticks round, the spellbound confectionery listens in awe to a frail, hushed voice that retells sinister legends that migrated from the old country when sweetmeats first set sail against a backdrop of dread and inexplicable massacres of entire communities  –  tales of a cowled, black-hearted, furry and fanged, Nosferatu lollipop, who swoops down at night on his jellied prey and sucks it dry as a husk.

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This piece of flash fiction was written for Friday Fictioneers: a story in 100 words prompted by a picture that Rochelle Wisoff-Fields posts every Wednesday.  Here’s the link to the stories and this week’s picture is at the bottom of this post, copyright Kent Bonham; while the original Nosferatu peers down from the top of the post. Clearly, the resemblance between the two is… uncanny.

unidentifiable-on-a-stick

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35 thoughts on “The Stoker Family’s Olde Sweet Shoppe

    • Thanks. The concept was a little bit childish and fun, really – unlike anything else I’ve posted. So, that’s what I wanted. Glad you enjoyed it 🙂

  1. Oh, now this is so clever! Yes, it *could* be a killer vampire pop! 😉

    Your prose – one sentence, even! – has that breathless feel of a scary tale chanted around a campfire — softer, softer, softer — till everyone is in rapt attention and then POW the storyteller drops a line that scares the crap out of everyone.

    Bravo!

    Double bravo — because I give an A+ to anyone who includes Nosferatu in their tales. 😀

    • Double bravo?! Pheuw that’s quite an honour 🙂 But you’re right about Nosferatu – that guy’s always deserving of a bravo. Still scary after all these years…

      And your analysis of the prose is exactly right – I had in mind the idea of someone speaking with bated breath. Then I thought “I haven’t written a one sentence story yet.” So…

      • Well, the one-sentence story worked SO well for this … some day I’ll have to find the courage to try it myself …. how about we make a deal: you try a haiku, and I’ll try a one-sentence story 😀

      • Oh but I’d have to write dozens of haiku before I felt I’d got the hang of it even slightly, and couldn’t post one till then. Whereas you could write a one-sentence story right away, for this week’s FF, even… 😛

      • Started to write a one-sentence story for FF and it just didn’t work out right — so I’ll have to try it next week. Thankfully Owen and Abbie have spoken their last (for a while anyway) – so I can be a bit more experimental.

        And as to “getting the hang” of haiku — I’m sure you could do a lot better than some of the stuff I’ve seen passing itself off as haiku. Just gotta jump in, get your feet wet 😉

      • Ok so as I was walking to the shop today I started thinking about writing haiku, according to what I saw about me, and came up with this –

        Mansion dwelling
        In red-yellow canopies –
        Magpie swoops low

        I tried remembering what I’ve learned at BIOLI: seasonal reference, cutting, 1st and 3rd lines interchangeable; it’s not 5-7-5 but I noticed that you’re allowed fewer syllables. Now I’m not sure if it’s haiku or not, but I’m sure it made my head start to ache from thinking about it so much! Honestly, as I was reworking these little lines in a Word doc. I opened another doc. and wrote a 500+ word story effortlessly, for fun 😛

        Anyway I attempted my part of the challenge, so over to you…

        And I must say I enjoyed how the initial process made me pay attention to what I was looking at as I went walking :)

      • Oh, your comments made me giggle – both in delight as you’ve remembered and used so much of what we’ve discussed – and in amusement as I’ve felt your frustration in wrangling with words SO many times. Last night I wrote a “fantasy haibun” that was forty times the size of a haiku and did it in a fraction of the time, LOL!

        NOW. On to your haiku. It’s GREAT! You’re right about not needing a full 5-7-5. You’ve got the right elements and you’ve captured a beautiful moment. I KNEW you could do it!

        Bravo! And – huzzah!

        Do you mind if I share with Chevrefeuille? He would be so pleased!

        And… I guess that means I have to write that one-sentence story now… Oh dear…. But…. MindLoveMisery has a great prompt about a grimoire which may be perfect for your challenge. 🙂

        Can’t tell you how pleased I am right now…. Just … Well done! 😀

      • Hmm I’m not sure how you manage to do that 3 or 4 times a day. It would make me queasy! Though I’m sure regular practice starts to make the process smoother.. :S

        Well, of course you have to write your one-sentence story – hey, it was you who set the challenge 😛 Ah you’ll breeze through it!

        And I’m glad I got the right elements. It’d be a little annoying if I’d absorbed nothing after all the haiku-based reading and chatting I’ve done over the past couple of months 😉 Of course it’s fine to share if you want.

        Also glad you enjoyed a giggle 😉

      • Oh, surely not queasy! A bit headachy perhaps. 🙂

        After a while you start to think in 5/7/5 bits. (Or close to 5/7/5.) I’ve woken up and realized I’m composing haiku in my sleep. (Didn’t say they’re good sleep-ku, but they’re ku….)

        Will be working on my one-sentence story tonight — it’ll probably be in the dungeon though, given the idea that I’m brewing …..!

      • Oh yes, I watched the bird glide by beautifully, which I’d always have enjoyed – then it disappeared into the trees. Normally, I realise now, when looking at trees I look at the outside “face” they show – the shapes and colours – but this time I followed the bird inside and thought of all the rooms and chambers there – so that large clump of trees became a vast mansion 🙂

      • And that’s a really wonderful observation too — a huge mansion, with magpies and ants and squirrels and everything else!

    • Hmm I imagine vampire lollipops are the most fiendish kind of vampires since they lull people into sucking them as a means of launching an attack and sucking their victims dry!

      An I love your comment: “love your punctuation.” Punctuation doesn’t get enough love, as a rule 🙂

  2. Oh delicious. Love the pacing and complexity of this. It’s hard to write a 100-word sentence and keep it going. Great voice and fantastic idea – poor dried up lolly.

    • Yep that lolly has certainly seen better days! The story just seemed to lend itself to a single sentence structure, so I’m pleased you thought it worked ok.

    • Thanks. When you’re writing something new each week it’s fun to look for a different angle, hey – so this time the pacing of the story was the angle I wanted to approach differently 😉

  3. Sweetmeats look very much alike nazis!… Nosferatu lollipop took away our childhood and Joy. Sigh…
    Excellent, Sue. Thanks for sharing.
    Best wishes, cara, Aquileana 😛

  4. Pingback: Grimoire | Girlgoyle. Banished.

  5. Just read Jen’s grimoire post and wanted to see where she’s picked up the interesting “form” or “genre” as it may be … fantastic story you wrote here … and the form contributed as much as the words themselves … my sincere compliments.

  6. Oh thank you. The form really grew out of the content here – a tale where the teller daren’t pause for breath. Jen’s story played a similar trick, with a mind that’s racing out of control – and, of course, she delivered it beautifully 🙂

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