January 2019 – Song Fic – “God of the Ocean Tides” – Counting Crows

Time for a song fic. This month we’re working with “God of the Ocean Tides” by Counting Crows. Here’s a link, if you want a listen.

Kept it short and sweet, again, this time. This isn’t connect to any particular story, but it’s set in the same world as Tempted to Death, where there are paranormal creatures and a network of hunters and researchers.


“So…”

Bastian was impressed. He’d felt Owen’s gaze on him since they’d left town—it’d taken the other man a full half hour to speak. Yeah, impressed he’d waited that long, but also annoyed because Bastian knew what was coming.

“You gonna call her?”

Fingers tightening around the wheel, Bastian shook his head. “Nope.”

“Why not? You guys have history and seemed to be rekindling something…” Owen sighed. “You really want to spend the rest of your life with just me for companionship? ‘Cause I like you and all, Bas, better than most, but…”

“It’s what I signed up for.”

“That’s bullshit, and you know it. There are plenty of people in the network who have relationships and do their jobs.”

“Good for them,” Bastian snapped.

“All I’m saying is there’s no reason you and Callie couldn’t—”

“I think I’m a better judge of whether there’re reasons standing in my way,” he ground out, fingers aching, knuckles now white, on the wheel.

He didn’t want to think of all those reasons, right now. Not when he could still smell her, feel her, taste her. He’d been an idiot. Weak and stupid…and careless. He’d allowed himself to forget what he’d dedicated his life to, and that was unacceptable. Even for a short time, because it brought too much pain. For both of them.

Because how was she supposed to understand what he couldn’t tell her? She couldn’t know that he spent his days and nights hunting things most people didn’t believe in. That he had to be ruthless and focused in his work. That he’d given up more than he ever thought possible to do it. That he could never love her the way she wanted, the way she deserved.

Owen sighed. “So, that’s it, then? You move on, satisfied with the small amount of time you had with her, but refuse to go after any more?”

“Yep, that’s it,” Bastian replied—a mix of half-truth, half-lie.

Because satisfied, he most definitely was not. And he wouldn’t be, not really. He couldn’t love her the way she wanted, but he also couldn’t love her the way he wanted. Not if he was going to do the job he was called to do.

“So, while I appreciate the support and concern,” he continued, “do me a favor? Call in and see where we’re going next and what we’re up against.”

“Yeah…” Owen pulled out his cell but didn’t make the call immediately. “I didn’t mean to make it more difficult, man. Sorry.”

Gaze firmly on the road ahead, Bastian nodded. Yeah, me, too.


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Kayleigh Jones
Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

September 2018 Song Fic – “Need the Sun to Break” (Dark of Morning lyrics) – James Bay

This month’s song is James Bay’s “Need the Sun to Break”.

Going off the chorus this time around:

I need the sun to break, you’ve woken up my heart
I’m shaking, all my luck could change
Been in the dark for weeks and I’ve realized you’re all I need
And I hope that I’m not too late,
I hope I’m not too late

This is gonna be a short one… Mostly due to the fact I’m a dirty procrastinator, and I have to get up early to run hubs to the airpot…and I desperately need sleep. LOL

So, here we go…


After the door closed and silence fell, I moved over to the coffee table and sat down facing the couch and the man stretched out on it. Exhaustion weighed heavily, but I couldn’t think of sleep. Not now.

I sighed and reached out to take Cam’s hand, cradling it between mine. This wasn’t how I expected our reunion to go. Oh, I hadn’t expected anything to go smoothly. I’m not an idiot. I’d imagined yelling, slammed doors, tense talks… And I’d hoped it would end with us back together. Hoped, not counted on.

Of course, I hadn’t expected to come back and find Cam in the middle of a shitstorm that defied all explanation. Now, my main focus wasn’t repairing the relationship I’d spectacularly ruined. It was keeping this man safe, keeping him alive.

Right now, though, the only thing I could do was wait for him to wake up. And hope he could fill in the blanks of what I already knew about his abduction, captivity, and what had happened since. And clue me in on how the fuck he was able to do what I’d seen him do earlier.

I leaned forward and brought his hand to my lips. Pressing my lips to his knuckles, I closed my eyes. After all that, we could figure us out. If there was an us… Until then, I could only hope, as I had been for months, that I wasn’t too late.


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris

July Song Fic – “A Mháire Bhruinneal” by Susan McKeown

Today’s Song Fic is inspired by “A Mháire Bhruinneal” by Susan McKeown.

I adore this song, but decided to write someone who didn’t care for this type of music… It got a bit heated. Rowr.

Saturday night. Hot as fuck. Ass going numb on the wooden bench. Mosquitos out for his blood. Too many freaking people around—and the smell? Beer, sweat and too much Axe body spray. Lovely. Music—Irish music, which he didn’t even like, for fuck’s sake—filling his ears.

Christ, why? Why did he do this to himself?

Bran didn’t even have the excuse of his sister dragging him here as he’d had the night before…and the weekend before. Oh, she would have—she followed most of the folk bands around the state to festivals and faires—but she’d had to work.

And, instead of taking his friends up on a couple drinks at the sports bar or spending the evening at home, Bran had gotten in his car to drive an hour and a half for another night of lively music that made him grit his teeth, being jostled by too many freaking people, and expensive, watered-down beer in plastic cups.

Why?

He sighed then sipped his beer, cringing when the now piss warm liquid passed his lips. He fought the urge to spit it back into the cup. Barely. He stood, edged around people to one of the trash bins and chucked the drink in. He stood a moment, scanning the crowd, distracted enough that he jolted violently, knee knocking the bin a few inches, when a hand landed on his shoulder.

He spun around and found his gaze caught by amused blue eyes. His breath caught, and without a thought, he nodded when the dark-haired man beside him jerked his head to the side.

He followed the man—Thomas…brother of the girl currently singing on stage—through the labyrinth of tents, stalls and trailers, biting his lip as he watched the sway of narrow hips and a truly spectacular ass. Bran flexed his fingers… Christ that ass.

Ten minutes later, Bran had his answer. His back shoved against the hard metal of one of the trailers, his pants shoved past his hips and his hands buried in Thomas’ thick hair. Thomas’ hand—large and hot and deliciously calloused—was wrapped around both their cocks, stroking slow and maddeningly. His lips smoothed over Bran’s neck as Thomas pressed words and encouragements into the sweat-slick skin.

“That’s it, love,” he crooned, twisting around the cockheads in his grasp, pulling a gut-wrenching moan from Bran. “Come on, wanna feel you lose it… Love the sounds you make. Can’t wait to fuck you proper. You’d like that, yeah? My fat cock splitting you open? Hmmm?”

Bran opened his mouth, but all that escaped was garbled nonsense as Thomas sped up his strokes.

“Come back to my room after, Bran?” he murmured, nipping at the sensitive skin behind Bran’s ear. “Need more. More than just hands and cocks in the shadows… Stay the night. Fuck you good and proper. Fuck you through the bloody mattress…all…fucking…night.”

With a cry, Bran came hard, head falling back and thunking against the trailers. Thomas stroked a few more times then, shout muffled in Bran’s neck, came as well.

Bran shifted, dropping his head forward to rest his forehead on Thomas’ shoulder, and tried to catch his breath. His heart stuttered as soft gentle kisses peppered his neck, his jaw. Then, Thomas took his mouth—confidently but so fucking sweetly.

Yeah, Bran had his answer. Why did he do this to himself? One word—Thomas.


Bronwyn | Kris | Sarah

February Song Fic – “Angel With a Shotgun” by The Cab

**apologies for the late posting…don’t know what happened when I scheduled this…
it didn’t post when I set it to. 🙁 **

Time for February’s song flash fic. This month’s song is “Angel With a Shotgun” by the Cab. Have a listen if you like:

I love this song, and have had something simmering about it since we chose songs for the year. I’m going to visit the world of my Albion’s Circle series for this one.

I’ve also written other flash fiction set in this world, if you’d like to have a read. 🙂

“Merlin’s Cave”
“The Hammers Coming Down”
“I Will Possess Your Heart”
“The Coldness”
“Ever The Same”
“Ghosts That We Knew”
Promptly Penned #20 – “One Last Time”
“Ghost”

Hope you enjoy this one, and what the others have come up with for “Angel With a Shotgun”.


~Merlin~

I slowly walked down the stairs. I’d slept longer than I planned. Hell, I hadn’t planned on sleeping at all until Arthur pushed his way into my room and forced me. I’d slept long and hard—if I didn’t know better, I’d suspect Arthur had magic and used a spell on me. I’d clearly needed the rest. Physically, I felt better than I had in a while, and more importantly, my mind was well clearer.

Not that I’d say or admit anything to Arthur. That would just get me his patented smug, knowing look—his fucking royalty bleeding through—and more fussing in the future.

I followed the voices through the lower level to the kitchen. I stopped in the doorway, leaning a shoulder against the jamb, and bit back a sigh.

Not everyone was here—the newer members of our group were absent, as were some of the knights. I swallowed thickly as the face of one knight who would not join us again in this life filled my mind. Cursing inwardly, I shoved that aside, unwilling to spiral down that hole. Not now.

Arthur, Owain, and Lancelot sat at the large table, Owain pointing out something on his laptop screen to the others. Galahad and Will stood at the stove, playing grab-ass as they cooked. And Anna…my Anna was a few feet away, whisking eggs. I couldn’t see her face, but sadness radiated from her, and my heart ached. With the knowledge that I’d had a large part in bringing about that sadness. That more would come. It was inevitable. It always was.

The weight of responsibility, of duty, pressed down on me. The oppressive feeling all too familiar. It was an old friend, my constant for hundreds of years, for lifetimes. Only a handful of times had I shamefully wished it away. Those moments of weakness, when grief and despair and loneliness had taken their toll, never lasted long. Because I knew, I remembered, what I was fighting for.

Humanity.

The Circle was formed for that, after all. We vowed our lives—every one of them—to protect the world from Magical threat.

My friends.  Those I loved.

Arthur…the Circle…those who had bound themselves to us, to help us in our quest. Those I’d mourned again and again, and vowed to keep safe every time.

Her.

My Anna. Sweet Annwyl. I looked at her, heart aching still. Not with sadness, but with the depth of the love I had for this woman, the lengths I was willing to go to keep her safe and with me.

Then, slowly, she turned and met my gaze. And time stood still. It was only the two of us. She moved across the room and stopped in front of me. Eyes narrowed, she lifted her hands to cup my face and stared. Then, seemingly satisfied with what she saw, she nodded.

“Breakfast is almost ready,” she said softly, raising up on her toes.

I closed my eyes when her mouth pressed against mine. My magic pulsed and swelled…and rejoiced when hers answered, twisting and twining with mine, wrapping around the both of us.

“I love you,” I whispered.

“Hmmm,” she hummed, pulling back. “I know.”

Her smile took my breath away, as always. I’d stopped wondering long ago—so long ago, back in Camelot—if she’d ever stop having that effect on me. Anna and her magic would always overwhelm me, take my breath away, and make my heart ache. I accepted that more easily than any other fact of my life.

“I love you, too.” She held my gaze a moment longer than turned away, moving back to help her brother and Galahad finish with breakfast.

Yes, the weight still pressed down on me—the responsibility, the duty—and I had so much to do, but I knew what I was fighting for. I knew who I was fighting for. I would take all the weight, all the shit thrown at me, all the shameful moments I had to bear for what I had here. For her.


Bronwyn Green | Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

January 2018 Song Fic – “Dog Days Are Over”

It’s time for the first flash fic of the year. This week, our inspiration is one of my favorite songs – “Dog Days Are Over” by Florence + the Machine.

Though, I’ve found, just because a song is a fave does NOT mean it will be easy to come up with a flash fic! But I’ll give it a shot… LOL Going off the opening line:

Happiness hit her like a train on a track
Coming towards her stuck still no turning back

Loosely connected to my (poor, super-neglected) serial, Your Lies.


I didn’t bother turning on the light as the shadows lengthened around me. Sitting in the dark… Well, it helped. Not nearly enough, but enough for the moment. And I wasn’t thinking beyond this moment. Soon enough, I’d have no choice, but for now, I was just going to sit.

I didn’t regret what brought me to this point. I couldn’t…not ever. Not with my daughter sleeping down the hall.

When I’d met her father… God. I scrubbed my palms down my face, cringing at the wetness on my cheeks. Meeting Sam was like getting hit by a train. Before I knew it, I’d fallen in love him. Worrying about his magic, and what that would mean—for him, for me, for the family we’d start—didn’t even enter the equation. Not at first. Not even as early as it should have. I wasn’t stupid, after all. I knew how magic users were viewed, the dangers they faced. But what was that in the face of love? Maybe I was stupid…because Sam was gone now. Taken, killed… I didn’t even know.

And I couldn’t even properly feel, properly mourn. Not when I had to keep my daughter safe. My Delia, who had her father’s magic flowing so strongly through her veins. Who wielded her power with hardly a thought. Who could be taken from me just as easily, as suddenly as Sam had been.

I straightened in the hard kitchen chair, shaking my head at the thought. No. No one was going to take her. I wouldn’t let that happen. I may not have been able to stop Sam—the fucking nobility that had helped me fall in love with him had driven him to risk far too much for others like him—but I could keep Delia safe.

Nothing else mattered. Not my feelings, not my grief, not my fear. All that mattered was Delia. Her safety. I closed my eyes, pictured Sam in my mind. I’d do this for him, for the love we had. The living and breathing love that was our little girl.


Bronwyn Green | Deelylah Mullin | Gwendolyn Cease
 Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

December Song Fic – “Chances” by Five For Fighting

Last song fic of 2017! This week, we’re inspired by “Chances” by Five for Fighting.

Even though I love this song, it took me a while to come up with something, but I finally did. I’m actually revisiting a flash fic I wrote – the first song fic I wrote for 2017. Kind of bookending the year. LOL

You could read this on it’s own, but if you want to take a look at the piece – it’s a short one,

Albatross by Susan McKeown


God, I was going to barf.

I fiddled with the coffee cup in front of me and focused on breathing slowly—in and out, in and out—hoping it would calm my nerves.

A simple coffee date shouldn’t fuck me up this much. I didn’t even know if this could be considered a date.  And it was so far from simple it wasn’t funny. Meeting your husband for coffee after not seeing, or even speaking to, each other for nearly a year… Yeah, not remotely simple.  I bit back the hysterical laugh that bubbled up.

I had no idea what to expect. The last time I’d talked to him had been right after he’d left me. Oh, how I’d hated him them. Or I’d thought I did. Who knew? Maybe I actually did in that moment. Hated him as much as I loved him. Because the love hadn’t gone way. Even when I was drowning in the pain that had eventually driven him away, I’d loved him so much.

Now, months later, there was no hate. Just gratitude that he’d done what I couldn’t. I would have clung to him, to our marriage, until my last breath. And I had a feeling that would have killed the love—slowly and painfully and to the point of no return. He’d been strong when I couldn’t be.

Now, I was filled with a sickening mix of hope and fear. The fear was winning, by far. For all I knew, he’d moved on, and this was some kind of act of closure for him. I swallowed thickly and straightened in my seat. If that’s what this was, I’d deal. I may not have been strong then, but I was now. And I wouldn’t fall apart.

The bell above the door jingled, drawing my gaze as it had every time, and my breath caught painfully. Fuck, he looked good—healthy and tanned, his dark hair wind-tousled, his jeans and t-shirt molding his body.

Seeing me, he smiled and strode through the shop toward me. I rubbed my damp palms over my denim-clad thighs and pushed to my feet. He didn’t hesitate when he came close—he pulled me in a tight embrace, face turned into my hair. I heard him inhale deeply then let out a long sigh.

I squeezed my eyes tight, trying to hold back the tears that threatened. Wrapping my arms around his waist, I leaned into him, soaking in his warmth. When he pulled back, he brought his hands up to my face, cradling it as he stared down at me.

“I missed you,” he murmured roughly. “Thank you for meeting me. I was afraid you’d… I wouldn’t blame you if you told me to fuck off after…everything.  I…I’m so sorry.”

I shook my head. “No apologies. Please. It took me a while, but I know you did what you had to. For both of us. It’s okay.”

He pressed his lips together then huffed out a short laugh. “You were always too forgiving. Especially with me.”

I rolled my eyes, then we both sat at the small table. “Oh, do you want a coffee?” I asked.

“Not yet,” he said quickly. “We need to talk.”

My stomach dropped. This was it. Shit.

He reached out and took my hands. I looked down and couldn’t hold back the tears this time when my gaze landed on the gold band circling his finger. The sight pushed the hope inside me higher.

“How have you been?” he asked quietly, his thumb dragging over the ring that still sat on my finger. Was he as relieved by the presence of my wedding ring as I was by his?

“I’m good. Better. Still have some bad days, but I don’t think that’s ever going to go away. She was our baby, and she’s gone” I took a deep breath and met his gaze—so full of understanding. “But I’m not lost in the grief anymore. I’m…good.”

“I’m glad.”

“Are you? Are you good, I mean,” I blurted. “Did you get what you needed by leaving?”

“Yes…and no.” His fingers tightened around hers. “I hated myself for doing that, but I…we needed the time and space to heal. It was too hard—dealing with my own grief in the face of yours. I just wanted to make it better for you, and I couldn’t, not when everything I was feeling was so—”

“I know,” I said when he choked on his words. “I know.”

He smiled, eyes glistening. “So, yeah, I got what I needed, but I missed you so fucking much. I missed us.”

“So, this isn’t you…breaking up with me for good?” I joked weakly, even as panic tightened my throat.

“What?” His eyes widened. “Is that what you thought?”

I lifted a shoulder. “I didn’t know what to think, to be honest.”

He stared at me for a long moment. “I spent the last month trying to build the courage to call you. I was so afraid you had moved on, maybe found someone else, who could give you what you need.”

“You did give me what I needed,” I protested. “Even if I didn’t see it then, even though it was so damned hard and hurt so much. You were always good at that—giving me what I needed.”

“I love you,” he said simply.

I inhaled sharply. “I love you, and I missed you, too, missed us. There isn’t anyone else—how could there be? And, yes, I have moved on—away from that dark place I was in—but not to where I wouldn’t want to be with you.”

“I’m not asking to come home,” he continued. “Not yet. I don’t think rushing into that would be good for us. We can’t pretend the past year didn’t happen.”

I nodded slowly, practically holding my breath as I waited to hear what he had to say.

“But I do love you and want to be with you, so much I can taste it, but I think we need to go slow. Would you…” He wet his lips. “Would you go out with me?”

I laughed, feeling light for the first time in a long, long time. “Yeah, I would totally go with you. So, this,” I gestured around the coffee shop, “is a date, then? I’d been wondering that since you called.”

He grinned, relief clear in the way he relaxed back in his chair, still holding one of my hands. “Absolutely a date.”

With that, the hope overcame the fear, and I found myself looking forward to the future again, to trying to get back something I’d lost and building something new, something stronger. And no matter the outcome, I knew it ‘d be worth it, because if anything was worth taking a huge risk for, it was love. My love for and with this man.


Bronwyn Green| Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

October Song Fic – “Call Me Crazy” by Travis Collins

Time for a flash fic. We’re writing flash fic inspired by Travis Collin’s “Call Me Crazy”

I had a hard time with this one – don’t know why. Finally went with pulling some lines and coming up with something from those… The lines I went with are:

To the life we had
To the rules we broke
To the plans we made together that you left to me alone
To every dream, every good night kiss
And so you had to leave
Did you have to leave, like this


I stared at the number on the screen, chest aching. I shouldn’t call him. I knew that. Really I did. But… It felt like I needed to. Until now, I’d had no way of getting ahold of him. I’d had nothing but memories of the life we’d built together. And the unbelievable pain his leaving had caused.

Then, I’d heard Ryan talking to him on the phone—fuck, just hearing his name had jumpstarted something in me, made me feel alive when I’d just been existing all these months.

I hadn’t hesitated, when Ryan had ducked into the bathroom, in grabbing his phone, finding Dominic’s number, and plugging it into my contacts.

That’d been four days ago. Four days of telling myself I shouldn’t call. Four days of remembering the years we’d spent together, happy and in love, and dreaming of a future. Four days of picturing him in my head, imagining his smiles, his soft, sleepy goodnight kisses, the way he would look at me as if I was all he needed. Four days of knowing I was going to call, eventually, because how could I not? Finding his number, now, was a sign, right? A sign that we could make this work again. All I needed to do was call.

Mind made up, and fingers trembling, I hit “call” and brought the phone to my ear.

“Hello?”

Oh god, his voice. My stomach clenched at the sound. Memories had nothing on actually hearing it again. I wet my lips and swallowed the lump lodged in my throat.

“Dom,” I breathed.

A long silence. I pulled the phone away, saw the time still counting up on the screen, then tried again. “Dom, it’s me.”

“You shouldn’t— Fuck.” He sighed heavily. “Goodbye, Grant.”

“No, no! Wait. Please! Don’t hang up,” I pleaded, hating the fact I was begging but, at the same time, grateful because I could still hear him breathing on the other end. “I just needed to hear your voice. I…I…I miss you.” When he didn’t respond right away, I asked, “Don’t you miss me?”

“No.”

I frowned at the harsh reply then shook my head.

“You don’t mean that,” I whispered. “You love me. I love you. We’re meant to be together. All the plans we made…the dreams we had for a life together… That doesn’t just disappear, Dom. It just doesn’t.” I shoved a hand through my hair, pulling slightly on the strands. “I’ve been thinking, remembering all of that. I can’t stop thinking about you. How you look when—”

“Well, try harder,” he snapped. “Or if you want something to think about, something to remember, remember that last night. Or were you too drunk to remember clearly? Because I remember it all too well.”

“I said I was sorry, and I am. I never meant to hurt you like that. It won’t ever happen again,” I vowed, even as his beautiful face, bruised and bloody, filled my mind and made me want to vomit.

“I’ve heard that before. Believed it the first couple times you said it.” He sniffed and cleared his throat. “The man I fell in love with left long before I walked out the door, Grant. All the plans, the dreams? Were destroyed long before that night, and you know it.”

“Dom, please, give me one cha—”

“No. No more chances. You already used them all up.” Then, voice quieter, softer, he added, “Keep getting help, Grant. Get better. Be happy.”

The click echoed in my ear—just as loudly as the slammed door all those months ago had, and yet somehow, more final than anything I’d ever heard.

“How can I without you?”

Of course, that was the question I’d been asking myself since that night. And hearing him again, I was farther from an answer than ever.


Bronwyn Green | Deelylah Mullin | Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

August Song Fic: “Ghost” by Halsey

It’s time for another flash fiction – this one inspired by Halsey’s “Ghost”.

I’m again visiting the world of my Albion’s Circle series. This takes place not long before the series begins. A small glimpse into Anna’s head…before she finds out that her dreams are more than she realizes.


~Anna~

Music pulsed.

Lights flashed.

Bodies pressed against me. From every side. The touches, the scents, the heat… All of it, surrounded me, filled my senses, driving everything else out.

I closed my eyes, as anxious to escape what was happening as I was desperate for it. I sighed in relief as hands circled my waist and pulled me back against a very hard, very male body. I leaned into him, letting my head fall to his shoulder, as our bodies began to move.

His lips glided along my ear, and his breath tickled as he whispered, “Fuck, you feel amazing…”

Jamie.

My heart sped up. From excitement, from the knowledge of what the night would bring…from shame. Shame that I was using him. Again. And an even deeper, more painful shame that probably wouldn’t be the last time.

Hands firm on my hips, Jamie turned me to face him. I opened my eyes and, tipping my head back, met his gaze. Swallowing the immediate disappointment I always felt when I looked into his gray-blue eyes—and hating myself even more for it—I forced a smile.

He grinned then jerked his head toward the front of the club. “Let’s get out of here.”

Heat coiled in my belly, and I trembled slightly as I nodded. He grabbed my hand, and as I let him lead me through the crowd, I tried desperately to hold on to the excitement and desire. And not think about the tendrils of dread and regret weaving their way through.

I could only hold it off for so long, I knew. It was inevitable and would fill me to bursting soon enough. Because I wasn’t going to find what I was looking for in Jamie’s bed, in his arms, any more than I’d found it is this club or with any other person. I gritted my teeth as another face flashed in my mind. Another set of blue eyes—clear and piercing and haunting.

I shoved all away as Jamie pushed me up against his car and took my mouth. I let myself to fall into the kiss, to become lost in the bliss of his touch, because however temporary, it dulled the edges, softened the harshness of not having what I yearned for.

And made me forget, for just a little while, that I was searching for something I couldn’t reach. Because it wasn’t real.


Bronwyn Green | Deelylah Mullin | Gwendolyn Cease
Kayleigh Jones | Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

June Song Fic – “Ghosts That We Knew” by Mumford & Sons

June’s song flash fiction is inspired by one of my favorite songs – Mumford and Sons’ “Ghosts That We Knew”.

I’ve jumped in the world of my Arthurian series “Albion’s Circle” for this one. I’ve done a few flash fictions in this world, if you want to take a look.

Merlin’s Cave
“The Hammer’s Coming Down”
“I Will Possess Your Heart”
The Coldness
“Ever the Same”


“Promise me.”

Gut churning sourly, I stared at Guinevere—lying on the bed, frail and fading, almost lost amidst the bedclothes. My queen, my friend, the only one I had left. But soon, she’d be leaving me. Just like the others. Then, I’d be well and truly alone. Left with the ghosts of everyone I’d ever loved.

“Merlin.” Her voice, weak and raspy washed over me as she grabbed my hand. “Please. Please, you have to promise me.”

“I already did,” I reminded her quietly, reaching out to cup her face. “You don’t need to worry. I’ll take care of everything. All the arrangements are in place. Everything wil be as you want it. I promise.”

Her lips curved, and she leaned into my touch. “I’m tired. I’m ready to be with them again.”

Them. I closed my eyes against the wave of pain thinking of our friends, long gone. Morgana, Lancelot, Galahad and the rest of the knights. Arthur. My throat tightened. Annwyl.

So many lost to us. Years and years of loss—a lifetime—until it was just the two of us. We did the best we could—Guinevere ruling the kingdom after Arthur fell in battle, hoping he would be proud of her. He would have, of course. I never doubted that, even if she did, at times. Guinevere had a strength to be envied and had never wavered. Not when she’d lost her husband and king. Not when, years later, she’d lost her lover.

“You will come?” she asked, her thin aged fingers squeezing mine. “It’s time, don’t you agree? Long past time, I believe.”

I opened my eyes and met her weary gaze. Unlike my dear friend, I had not endured the pain of loss so well. In the final battle against Mordred—so long ago, although it was still so fresh in my old mind—I’d lost so much more than I’d been prepared to lose. Not only had I watched my king, my best friend, struck down by our enemy, but my love, my Annwyl, had been lost as well. And it had been my fault. My magic that had drained the life from her. Faced with that, I’d gone mad. I’d lost the control I’d always taken such pride in.

Technically, the battle had been won, but I’d retreated. First, without choice. Dragged away by Morgana and Galahad while I raged against the twisted turn of fate after everything we had been through and everything we had sacrificed. Then, I’d stayed away, remained alone, because how could I return? A Camelot without Arthur, without Annwyl, was unthinkable. But eventually, when my queen needed me, I’d made the city my home once again. I played the role of advisor and friend and supporter, just as Arthur and Annwyl would have wanted.

In all that time, though, I’d never visited their final resting place. Guinevere had gone against tradition, ignored her council, and refused to bury Arthur with his ancestors. The Circle would be together for eternity, in both life and death, she had decided, and no one would sway her.

Now, she was to take her place with Arthur, Lancelot, Galahad, and Morgana.

“You need to make your peace, Merlin. Before it’s too late and you’re joining us in rest.”

“The rest is only temporary.” I lifted a shoulder lazily, despite the tension stiffening my body. “All too soon, we’ll be back together, alive and well.”

“And back into danger,” she added, dark eyes shining and lips curving.

I nodded. That was the deal we’d struck, after all, to gain the power we’d needed to defeat Mordred and his army. The Circle had been formed. Defenders of the world against Magical threats. Brought back again and again when we were needed. Christ, I was exhausted at the prospect, though my heart raced at the thought of the reunion with our loved ones.

Silence settled over us for several minutes. Guinevere’s grip on my hand loosened, and she closed her eyes. I watched, having to blink back stinging tears often, as her breathing gradually slowed.

Suddenly, her fingers tightened, and eyes still shut, she spoke, barely above a whisper, “You’ll come, won’t you? You wouldn’t deny an old woman her final request, would you?”

“Oh, but I would. Easily.” Swallowing around the lump in my throat, I shifted to lean over her and pressed my lips to her forehead. “But deny a friend? Never.”

I settled back in the hard chair, body aching and feeling every year I’d lived on this earth. Every damned minute of existence. But I would not complain. As much as I dreaded being alone, being the last of our people left, I would see Guinevere though her final journey…of this life, at least. And I would keep my promise.

Three days later, I stood just outside Camelot, where the rest of the Circle had been laid to rest. Still numb with the grief, I traced my fingers over the sun-warned stones marking the newest grave.

“Goodbye, Guinevere,” I whispered before moving down the line. I pressed my hand more fully on the next pile of stones and nearly choked. “Arthur… I saw her through until the end, my king. She was everything you always said she was and so much more. The queen Camelot needed after…after everything.”

I closed my eyes for a brief moment and took several deep breaths. Then, I forced myself to continue, touching Morgana’s, Lancelot’s and Galahad’s graves, silent but my mind filled with memories.

Coming to the final marker, I began to shake. I lowered myself painfully to my knees and pressed my forehead against the cool stones. The shaking intensified, and as I gasped for air, I realized I was sobbing. Unable to hold it in any longer. I was finally as alone as I’d always felt since the moment I lost her. My Annwyl.

“I love you,” I whispered hoarsely. “I never wanted to be without you… My only thought is joining you, love. There’s nothing left for me here in this world, in this life.”

But for now… I sighed and pushed to my feet. For now, I had no choice. I would live with the memories, the ghosts, with my regrets, and with the promise of the day I’d be with Annwyl and my friends again.


Bronwyn Green | Deelylah Mullin | Kris Norris |Siobhan Muir 

April Song Fic – “Ever the Same” by Rob Thomas

Happy Monday! It’s time for another flash fiction. This one inspired by “Ever the Same” by Rob Thomas.

I love this song. It’s one of my favorites. I went into the world from my “Albion’s Circle” series for this flash fic, and wrote a glimpse into what I feel is one of the most important relationships in that series. And it isn’t one of the romantic relationships.

I have delved into this world in flash fic before, so if you’d like to see those, here are the links.

“Merlin’s Cave”
“The Hammer’s Coming Down”
“I Will Possess Your Heart”


~Arthur~

“Arthur.”

I looked up and found Anna standing in the doorway, hand braced on the wooden frame, looking as exhausted as I felt.

“If you’re busy—”

I snorted and pushed my chair away from the desk. “I was paying bills. Nothing exciting, and nothing that can’t wait. What do you need?”

Her lips quirked upward. “Always to the point and ready to jump in without even knowing what I’m about to ask for. I’d forgotten that about you.”

“Well, It’s been a while, hasn’t it? A very long while,” I pointed out, familiar sadness weighing heavily over me.

“Yes,” she murmured. “My memories are coming back—the ones from Camelot that were hidden…” She blew out a long breath. “But I’m realizing that time may have passed, but you’re the same Arthur. And you are exactly who I need, right now. Who he needs.”

I stepped closer. “Merlin?”

“He won’t listen to me.”

I nodded, knowing things were still strained between the couple. Mostly because of Merlin’s self-sacrificing tendencies, especially when it came to the woman before me.

“And another thing I know, that I remember,” she closed the distance between us and took my hands, “is when I can’t get through to him, you always can.”

“That didn’t happen often—you not getting through.” I squeezed her cold, trembling fingers.

“It’s different now.” She inhaled deeply, closing her eyes a moment against the tears that welled up. When her bright green gaze was on my again, she continued, “He doesn’t see me as he did then. He looks at me and all he sees is his failures. Not how I look at the past, Arthur,” she said quickly when I opened my mouth. “But he does. All those lives, never finding me or being able to save me… I’m not the same Annwyl from Camelot. Not to him. Not really. So, I can’t get through to him the way I did then. But you can.”

I sighed, not exactly agreeing with her, but I wasn’t prepared to argue it. Not when there was Merlin to deal with.

“He won’t sleep,” she said before I could ask what the issue was. “He’s pushing himself too hard. For me, for you, for the Circle. He’s trying to figure out a way to find Jamie, to stop Mordred, to,” her voice cracked slightly, “to make things okay between us. He isn’t giving himself time to rest, and he hasn’t…hasn’t taken the time to grieve at all, let alone properly.”

“I’ll talk to him,” I assured then kissed her cheek.

“Thank you,” she said as we parted.

I headed out into the hallway then toward the stairway up to the third floor—Merlin’s space. I stopped and looked back at her. “You need to rest, too.”

“I will, when I know he is.”

Shaking my head, I made my way upstairs. Merlin wasn’t exactly alone in the self-sacrificing department. Hell, that could be attributed to damn near everyone in this house. Myself included. Of course, it was sort of a requirement when you vowed to come back, life after life, to fight against things most people believed were fantasy.

I didn’t bother knocking on the door and strode into the large open room. Merlin was at his desk, old books open and covering the space in front of him. His dark hair stood on end, from his habit of shoving his hands through the strands in frustration, and he was pale as fuck, with dark circles underscoring his eyes. Eyes that he could hardly keep open. Stubborn bastard.

I walked over to his side and settled a hand on his shoulder.

He startled slightly and sleepy blue eyes peered up at me. “Arthur?”

“Come on. Bed.”

Shaking his head, he turned back to his books, pulling one closer. “In a bit. I just need to—”

“You need to sleep. You can look at this with fresh eyes in the morning.”

“Arthur, I don’t need a fucking keeper,” he snapped. “What I need is to work, to figure out what to do, what to…”

And there were those hands in the hair…

I shifted and, gripping the back of his chair, pulled it back. Then, I grasped his elbows and yanked him to his feet, ignoring his protests. I pulled him around the desk, past the shelves of books and the table weighted down with even more books, to the large bed at the opposite side of the room.

I pushed him to sit on the edge of the mattress then crouched down to untie his boots. He jerked away, and I grabbed him by the calf, scowling at him.

“Merlin!” He stilled, and I pulled off both boots, tossing them to the side before standing. “If you want to sleep in something other than what you have on…”

He glared up at me, and I returned the hard look, not giving an inch. He pushed to his feet, hands clenching and unclenching at this sides.

“Don’t need a keeper,” he said again.

“Not a keeper. A friend,” I murmured. “A friend who worries. A friend who loves you.”

His Adam’s apple bobbed as he swallowed audibly. “Low blow.”

I lifted a brow and waited. He muttered under his breath, and in a blink, he was standing there in a pair of pajama bottoms and threadbare t-shirt.

“Now, you’re just showing off.” I bent, reaching around him, and pulled back the duvet and sheet. “In.”

He looked as if he was going to argue again, but after a moment, his shoulders slumped as he sighed.

“In,” I repeated, a bit more gently.

Woodenly, he moved onto the bed, laying on his back and staring up at the ceiling. I toed off my shoes and stripped down to my boxers and t-shirt before climbing in beside him.

“Turn off the lights, Merlin,” I instructed.

“Arthur, please,” he whispered.

“Lights,” I said, adding a bit what Merlin called my “royalty” into my voice, knowing what needed to be done, knowing what he needed.

He blinked rapidly, then all the lights, save a small lamp across the room, went out. His breathing quickened and became harsher with each exhale. When his trembling shook the bed, I rolled onto my side and laid a hand on his chest, over his heart.

“It’s not all on you, Merlin. Stop carrying it all.”

His entire body jerked, and he shook his head frantically.

“You need to give some of it up. Give some of it to me, so you can rest. So you can be better and do what needs to be done. The weight of it all is crushing you, my friend.”

“You’re one to talk, sire.” The snarkiness of his words was completely ruined by the tears in his voice.

“Yes, and when the time comes—because it inevitably will—when I need to give up some of what smothers me, when I need to rest, you’ll be there to remind me, won’t you? It’s what we do.”

“I can’t sleep. Every time I close my eyes, I see…”

“What? What do you see?” I asked when he fell silent. Because it could be so many things. Living the lives we did, there was no shortage of horrors to relive in the quiet unguarded moments.

“Arthur,” he said, voice small and quiet. “I killed him.”

I closed my eyes as my throat tightened, the pain from that loss still a very fresh wound. “It wasn’t your fault. You know that.”

“No, I don’t. I don’t know that,” he bit out. Then, his hand covered mine. “Whose fault is it, if not mine? I should have…should’ve done it differently. Should have figured another way to stop it.”

“It was Mordred,” I said, loud voice echoing through the room. “He set that in motion. And don’t start down the road of questioning or diminishing the choices we make. We all made the choice to be here, and to give our lives if necessary. He did what he believed to be right.” Even as I was assured Merlin and believed everything I said, with every ounce of my being, I couldn’t quite bring myself to say his name, yet. My fallen knight. The first of the fallen in this life.  “And he’d be pissed as fuck, Merlin, if he knew you were blaming yourself. Don’t lessen his choice, his sacrifice like this. Honor it. Be better.”

“How many more are we going to lose, before this is over? Before we stop him?” He gulped. “Am I going to lose her again?”

Merlin moved closer, just an inch or so, but it was enough. I pulled him the rest of the way and held him—like I had hundreds of times before, like he had held me just as many times, if not more, when I was the one in need.

“We will stop Mordred. And we’ll keep Anna safe.” I said firmly, closing my eyes, praying I was right, this time.

“I’m so tired, Arthur.”

I had to fight to keep quiet, to not cry at the depth of pain and sorrow in those four small words. Silence settled over us, and slowly, Merlin relaxed and grew heavy in my arms. I continued to hold him as sleep finally stole over him, trying to give him what strength I could, hoping it was enough.


Bronwyn Green | Deelylah Mulliin | Gwenydolyn Cease
Kris Norris | Paige Prince | Siobhan Muir

(and a big welcome to Siobhan who will be joining us for flash fics!)