Warmup Wednesday!

Directions: Write a scene or an entire story of 100 words on the nose (no more, no fewer), inspired by this photograph. No judging. All fun. (Normal Flash! Friday guidelines regarding content apply.)
Don’t forget to add your Twitter handle & link to your blog, if you please. And a few words on how your week’s going would be nice.

This week’s challenge: Incorporate at least three shades of red.

Bus stop. CC photo by 5demayo.

Bus stop. CC photo by 5demayo.

165 thoughts on “Warmup Wednesday!

  1. Seeing Red

    I’m so angry, my face blushes like a fire engine. I can still picture the lipstick on his collar. She probably has a stripper name, like Ruby or Scarlet.

    I watch as the camper van disappears into a cloud of crimson dust. Moments ago it was a palace on wheels. Now I see it for what it truly was, an escape pod to get out of a jam. He never bought me roses, lobster or a nice bottle of Merlot. I gave him my heart, my love, my cherry.

    I wonder how far he’ll get before he tries the brakes…

    100 words

    It’s been a busy week so far, finally got internet at the new house so can catch up on all the awesome flash fiction out there, rather than squinting around on my phone! Loved the article about the Flash Dogs, great to see the community coming together to create amazing things 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Bus Ride

    Carla didn’t notice the sun setting behind her. She was engrossed in thought as the sky became bathed in warm shades of crimson red and burnt orange.

    She stared her fire engine red sandals and chili red toenails.

    Carla liked the sunny west coast, but she couldn’t live without country music. The twang of a guitar coupled with lyrics of how beer and pickup trucks made life better her heart sing. When the bus made it to Nashville, the sandals would have to go.

    Carla wondered how much a pair of fire engine red cowboy boots was going to cost.


  3. @colin_d_smith
    100 words

    They gathered at the designated spot: the bus stop on Carmine Street, across from Ruby Tuesday’s. Driven only by an aching hunger that knew no conscience they crossed roads that burned like embers on their bare feet, and risked death by man and machine. The sun roasted their backs, but it was worth it for the perfect camouflage. They waited on the crimson stripe, remembering with anticipation the open sandals of last Summer.

    When she stepped up to the curb, they pounced.

    But word had traveled.

    Her fire ant repellant worked, littering the curb with the bodies of the slain.

    How’s my week going? Cold and snowy. I wanted to write something warm to counter our freezing temperatures of late. Four inches of snow may not seem much to some, but for Eastern North Carolina, that’s a snowpocalypse. And it’s not over yet. But we’re keeping warm, and the snow looks pretty. The white covered fields, houses, and roads have a cleansed look to them. Like a picture book waiting to be colored.


    • Well, this just about sums up this week. Another mistake to add to the way things have gone.. (Sorry about posting before adding flash , doh! ) Just want to scream and the pounding rain that is a continuous torrential downpour here, since 2am, has kept me awake when I desperately needed sleep. On the plus side, I am cosy and warm in the duvet with a hot cup of tea. I have managed two flash fiction stories and a plot outline since 4 am, and am meeting with writing friends today (if all goes smoothly) … Well you did ask !!


  4. Red shoes
    100 words

    The boss stood looking smugly on, in his clean designer gear, whilst the rest of us muddied and weary, prepared for the next away-day team challenge.
    With my alizarin nail varnish chipped, my eczema hands crimson and sore, I sat on a cut tree trunk, that reminded me of a hobbit hole, and wished for Dorothy red shoes to click together and take me home.
    A strange whooshing noise filled the air, russet leaves swirled, as the wind whipped me up, lifted me out of the Go Ape hell hole, and deposited me at the Red line bus stop.


    • Hah, those lovely team-building days that do anything but. We’ve got a ‘Go Ape’ near us – rest of family want to give it a go but I prefer my feet on the ground. Nice story – sorry to hear about your disturbed night but a cup of tea always helps …


  5. #flashdogs
    word count 100 excluding title


    If I’m wearing red
    It means take me to bed
    Oh, sensual and passionate
    I’m so ready for it

    With my crimson shoes
    And ruby lips you can peruse
    My blusher is flaming scarlet
    Why aren’t I in there yet?

    I’m full of curvy va-va-voom
    Take me now to your room
    Sexy and oozing confidence
    Such a glamour puss

    You can call me whatever you want
    With my talons I taunt
    You can pop my cherry
    Such a potent berry

    I’ll be your Dorothy
    so cute and pretty
    Take me to the land of Oz
    Clicking my heels just because


  6. #flashdogs
    100 words

    The Dream Team

    Saffron, Crimson, Ruby, my dream team – I invoke you now!”

    People behind us in the queue shuffle a couple of steps backward.

    Cheered by this small sign of power she tries again, “SAFFRON, CRIMSON & RU…..”

    “ALICIA! Stop that right now” I hiss. Half horrified, half secretly impressed – my five year old is invoking – whatever next. “What on earth are you chattering about?”

    Alicia is twirling, “Dream team, dream team, dream team……………”

    I reach out and snag her arm “What’s a dream team sweetie?”

    “Saffron is my best red pandie, Crimson’s my wolf, and Ruby’s a cat. My Dream Team!”


  7. Waiting at the Bus Stop
    100 Words

    The miniature hand grasps mine as his body twirls in space. He is in the stratosphere, not hearing my pleas to be still. The red scabs on his knees show his lack of coordination. Suddenly, he crashes into a young toddler.

    My face blushes crimson as I apologize.

    “It’s OK. My older son has autism, too.”

    The word burns my ears as I glance at my spinning child. Is it obvious? Are people staring? Instead of smiling back, I inspect my ruby sandals.

    The bus arrives. We board, and I sit far from the stranger.

    Another chance for friendship, lost.


  8. 100 words excluding title


    Red to me means many things. I’m dressed in it rarely, usually for some special occasion if I want an extra boost of confidence, accompanied by glaringly, as crimson as you can get finger and toenails. That’s its happy purpose.

    It also is the color of blood although I think mine is blue I have to be involved in the royal line somewhere my psyche won’t accept anything else. That’s its staying alive purpose it runs through us all.

    It’s also the color of passion, crimson kitten heels and red bows on my teddy, which I let slip purposely, scarlet.


  9. Foy
    WC: 100

    Vermilion and Carmine

    Social conventions are for the buzzards.

    Before I minded, believe me. Didn’t touch white after labor day, black blouse and blue jeans never met, prints always with plains, brown belts with brown shoes, and you wouldn’t catch me at my own wake in temptress scarlet.

    For buzzards.

    Today, is a vermilion tube top and carmine jeggings kind of day. Waiting for the bus, the young are eying me. There’s another fashion mandate that can jump in a lake. So what if I’m 89? I’ll wear what pleases me, thank you.

    My garish Harry, wearer of India bolds, would be proud.


    This week? One word: busy. Actually, make that two words: busy and COLD. Please, no more below zeros!
    However, I got to spend last night with friends and brownies so I can’t complain too much. ☺


  10. It was the cliche’ picnic. A hilltop apple tree, red checkered tablecloth, nice gouda and a breathy merlot. Also present, the obligatory ants. At first they laughed at the bite. The dot was pink and began to itch as they fed each other strawberries for desert. At home the sore was alarmingly darker and she sweated profusely. The welts began under her arms and soon oozing blisters covered her body. She took the bus to the hospital. In room 116, she lay slathered in a bubbling antiseptic cream. She began to smolder. “Code red,” she heard on the loud speaker.
    (100 words)

    Hello all, my name is Steve and I’m new to this FF group. I live on Cape Cod and I can sum up my week with a capital B followed by several Rs. Having just reread the prompt I realized I am supposed to incorporate the photo as well as use ‘reds’ in my story. One might be able to tell I kind of stuck the bus sentence in there to play the game by he rules. My character probably would have taken a cab if she had known of her impending combustibility. By the way, she was also allergic to strawberries.


    • Hey Steve, I’m fairly new here too. It’s an awsome group, everybody is very welcoming. I enjoyed your piece, looking forward to seeing more.


    • Great story – and welcome, I’ve only been here since Oct/Nov ‘ish and I still feel like a newbie AND I usually forget the photo prompt too and have to rewrite so you’re not alone. 🙂


  11. Toenails
    (my shades are vermillion, cerise, and ginger…as long as ginger counts)

    What colour are my toenails? I think you’d call that vermillion. Maybe cerise? I don’t know. I’ve never had painted toenails before.

    “Will the new body serve?”

    I press a finger to my ear. It’s an unconscious gesture to bring the voice closer. Ears and communicators aren’t new.

    “Completely satisfactory,” I whisper. The other humans at the bus stop can’t know that the woman of moments ago has been replaced.

    “Report by Earth Friday. Better results.”

    Of course I’ll get better results on human behaviour as a human. The ginger tabby’s body only helped me develop a fondness for tuna.


    My week is nuts, it’s month-end at work which is always a whirlwind, and I feel like I have too many projects on the go at once. Of course, once I finish with those, I’ll be bored again…It’s a vicious cycle.


  12. Waiting

    I wait for you.

    I always fended off your advances. I just wasn’t ready till now.

    Remember that evening? I danced on the precarious roof with my fuchsia dress billowing in the wind. I saw your inviting eyes. I wasn’t ready then.

    Remember how I stood at this bus stop, giggling with my friends, oblivious to the roaring traffic? You were there, anxious, pleading, but I wasn’t ready.

    The rusty leaves flutter in the wind. My choral nails, I painted them especially for you, glow.

    Times have changed.

    I wait for sweet release of you, Death! Hope you come soon.


  13. The Curb

    This crimson curb is like an electrified fence. I can’t cross it. Elaina and Chuck have playfully walked out there, but I can’t do it.

    It’s mom’s fault. She filled my head with rules, burned scarlet into my psyche. Now I am stuck here while they live libertine. Her rules constrain me, limit my experience, and make me hate her and her ways.

    Pink cheeked, I watch them kiss, totally absorbed in the moment. I envy their passionate freedom, until a taxi dashes into their lane, striking them down.

    “Mom, I called to say, thank you and I love you.”

    100 words exactly. Of course, its the rules.

    Almost forgot the red challenge, had to go back and do some quick edits.

    This week is swallowed up with a various papers. Not the good kind, but things like taxes, policy statements and bills.


  14. My colours – red, cardinal, lust
    Word count excluding title 100


    The red mist descended and I whacked him. It would have been of no consequence except for the hammer which had been in my hand. I had just committed a cardinal sin from which there was no running away from. I had no proverbial red herring to get out of jail.

    He and my friend had been enjoying a veil of lust, and when I confronted him he laughed, said what made me think anyone would ever want to be around me. It had been going on for years the flames of anger consumed me. Blood coagulates at my feet.


  15. A Shade of Myself
    Margaret Locke (@Margaret_Locke or margaretlocke.com)
    100 words on the (cherry red) nose

    I picked three polishes, wanting to get it just right. “Vampire Sunset.” “Ruby Slippers.” “Blushing Bride.”

    I’d like that job, getting paid to name make-up.

    I’d like any job other than standing on this street corner, hoping to hook my next customer, so bored with life I’m trying to match my toenails to paint on cement.

    I long to escape. But there’s nowhere to go. Not with mama sick. She needs me.

    Every morning, when I return, I don’t tell her where I’ve been. She doesn’t ask.

    I just go pick out the next shade. The next shade of desperation.


  16. Our Red Days
    100 words excluding title
    Remember how we used to be obsessed with red? Our shoes, our lips, our nails… they all had to be rotating shades of fuchsia, vermillion, crimson, and scarlet. We would say the words out loud, feeling so adult, then we would dissolve into giggles.

    Today while I was waiting for the bus I was thinking of you, missing our red days. Why did we ever lose touch? I could call you, sure, but you won’t be that little girl who wore red with me. I’m not that person anymore, either, even if I do still wear red shoes on occasion.



  17. Beware the Snei!
    100 misread words

    “The Snei is coming! The Snei is coming!”

    The panicked scream echoes off the pavement in front of my ruby-painted toenails. I’m shaking in my strappy crimson wedges, fighting against the terror surging through my blood. Men, women, and children dash madly from door to car, loaded with precious possessions as they flee the coming of this horrifying, dread menace.

    I, in an unusual example of bravery or bravado, have decided not to flee, but to wait here, patiently, and in my best cherry-red shoes, for the Snei to arrive.

    Oh…wait…I’m reading the curb upside down. Here comes the bus.


  18. Fashion Sense
    (100 words)

    Everyone raves about my ability to coordinate colors in my look. Everyone is absolutely spot on.

    But after all, if I don’t look good at the beach, how will I catch anyone’s eye?

    That’s why I wore my electric crimson sandals. Matched of course to my magenta toenails.

    Of course one cannot forget about accessories. Amaranth framed sunglasses and a vermillion handbag complete the ensemble.

    However, the piece de resistance is the cerise bikini.

    It all matches the scarlet red of my sunburn perfectly.

    Next time I won’t leave my sunscreen on the bus when I go to the beach.


  19. The Last Dance

    100 words

    No giant leap, just one small step
    Across the Rubicon for the next would-be Caesar
    Amid tears of scattered scarlet
    Falling at the victor’s feet,
    Washing the cheeks
    Of newly-made death masks.

    Beyond the line of no defence,
    Beneath the rusted maze
    Crimsoned corpses roll over in the mud
    To make way for fresh bed-fellows
    On whose bodies roses bloom,
    A brief dazzle of colour
    Before flesh fades.

    With wild abandonment
    They embrace each other
    Forcing the sun to blush,
    To hide its face
    From their wantonness
    And give them the night,
    The endless night,
    For this last, eternal, dance.

    So half-term came and went and I’m now back with the teens trying to help them analyse war poetry for their upcoming exams which I think prompted the above poem (I seem to be returning to poetry lately whilst I await (late) decisions for submitted stories). As usual, Southampton is cold, wet and windy but I noticed the first crocuses in my front garden when I got home today. 🙂


    • Love this! War poetry is some of the most beautiful and poignant, and a personal favorite of mine to write. So many lines in their begged to be read aloud, “scattered scarlet,” “Crimsoned corpses,” “For this last, eternal, dance.” Lovely. 🙂


  20. Parched

    Mark Morris – 100 words

    Doris appeared, her face a vivid shade of crimson and with both arms threaded through the handles of her shopping. “Please don’t say I’ve missed it! I knew I shouldn’t have stopped for that cappuccino.”

    I shook my head, my lips pursed pinkly. “No, you’re fine. It’s not like it’s an old London red bus. They were always punctual.”

    “Thank the Lord for that.” She dropped to the seat and, freeing herself, she wriggled out from her burden. “Now,” she said, “do you reckon I’ve time to pop to the cafe for a quick drink? That running’s made me thirsty!”


  21. Oh, man. That last sentence made my stomach churn. I feel like I’ve spent so much of my life narrowly missing buses because of simple mistakes! You tell yourself you’ve got just enough time to duck into a coffee shop and the next thing you know, the bus is gone and you’re sitting around for another thirty to forty minutes waiting!


  22. The Arsonist
    Word Count: 100

    “Sacrifice,” she spat in disgust to the bus stop’s invisible audience. “He knows nothing of sacrifice.”

    Fifty-five years of marriage amounted to nothing more than fifty-five years of devotion to someone else’s dreams.

    Marge’s crimson, bloodshot eyes were two glassy orbs tinged with madness as she starred at the red hot flames consuming her husband’s store front. Howling, scarlet fire trucks soon arrived on the scene and the city’s finest firefighters raced to quench the growing inferno. The eighty year old arsonist kept her sandal-clad feet glued to the curb as she waited patiently for her getaway bus to arrive.


  23. Mistaken Identity

    “You saw the accident? Tell me what happened.”

    “Lady stepped off the curb, into the street. Ford mowed her down and disappeared.”

    “What color was the car?”

    “Candy apple red,”

    “And you’re sure it was a Ford?”

    “Yes officer.”

    “And you’re sure it was candy apple red?”

    “Umm, no. It was actually more of a Burgundy.”


    “Well, carmine maybe; maybe maroon?”

    “You don’t sound too sure. How about we just say it was a reddish color?”

    “Cerulean, that’s what it was.”

    “How the heck do you mix up your blues with reds?”

    “Well that’s easy sir, I’m color blind.”

    100 words
    All’s going well. Can’t wait to get home and finish a submission piece and then write for Microbookends and ThreeLineThursday (they go live at 9pm for me). Worked on this on my lunch.


  24. Fox Wife

    Does this polish draw too much attention to my knobby toe-knuckles? “Scarlet Mischief”—I thought it apropos, y’know?

    Strappy, aren’t they? Michio would complain they’re not sensible. I didn’t wear sandals once all those years.

    Oh, marrying him was a lark–a five-decade lark, sure, but what are years? Another few decades and that marriage will be another rosy pearl beading my necklace.

    After I shuck this silly sack of pale flesh, I’ll reclaim my carmine glory. I think I’ll kill a rabbit first. It’ll be hard not to think of Michio as its tiny sangria life stains my breast.

    100 words


    After I told my toddler I was working on a story about a girl becoming a dragon, she insisted that I change it so she becomes a cat instead. I either have to convince a cat-crazed two-year-old of the awesomeness that is dragons or completely overhaul my WIP. The latter strikes me as the easier task.


  25. @lovecraft419
    100 words minus the title
    My day has been productive and peaceful – mostly.


    She looks down at her watch. The pink leather band is frayed but the time piece is still in good working order.

    “Those toes!” She thinks. “Who’s idea was that horrible red rose color and what am I doing wearing these ridiculous shoes?”

    “Ugh!” All the rush and fuss over a bus that’s not even on time. She wants to swear, curse and cuss.

    “Forget it.” She says out loud to herself.

    Better to take out the compact, work some reddish brown blush onto her cheeks and wait patiently for the #23.

    “Who the hell takes a bus to a date?” She asks herself.


  26. Bliss

    I’m ready and waiting.

    It’ll be nice on the bus, riders’ cheeks rose-tinged with warmth and breakfast. They will smile at each other, all carmine lips and toothpaste-white teeth.

    “Good morning!” some will say.

    “Good morning!” others will answer.

    “Thanks!” the first will say and, eyes closing, together lean back against plush scarlet seats to rest from the pleasant work of conversation.

    This is why once more they won’t see me, standing at the curb, ash-grey hand raised. I know they’d never keep passing me by on purpose, day after day, if they knew.

    Not when I’m ready and waiting.

    100 words


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