The Fleeting Suite: Dame Rocket

December 4th, 2021

by Douglas Cole

read the suite from the beginning

Dame Rocket

At first it sounded like someone practicing violin. The it was just someone playing violin, a sound that rose and fell as if someone were messing around with the volume or a wind he sure couldn’t feel were taking chunks of sound away.

Not light, though! You have these moments of intense clarity, riding fast on a postage stamp magic carpet from one end of the room to the deck—and I mean profound true principles, enough to get you burned as a heretic in one of these versions. But now it couldn’t pay the rent past next Thursday.

That’s what I was trying to tell you, he said, right as the blender came to a stop. Was it coconut or jasmine that most defibrillated him back into paradise? I’ve got to get out on the lake!

Maybe no one’s going anywhere, except for Andrea who came through the wisteria vine rubbing her jaw as if she had just finished giving a rough one. Permission to come aboard, she said.

It’s your dream, too.

I’m only renting.

So am I! I could never afford this.

Low nitrogen supplements made the Daphne and the Dames Rocket sing visually and point at the places where they wanted their pots moved. Sun high overall. The idea fountain quietly flowing in its place on the wall under the eave of the bungalow.

The lord and ladyship around?

No.

Ah! And Andrea lit up so fast it was like a magic trick. She was a miracle stepping out of her own creation smoke.

Join me? She said.

Why not.

And there are pales, again a principle, a physical law as solid as gravity, much like the one that pulled up its skirt when he drank this concoction he had taken to calling elixir. Then there’s Andrea’s mystery oil-soaked booster rockets. It was getting hard to keep track of the distortions.

Are you all watered or not? He said to the plants when his eyes fell down the well of Andrea’s million-mile stare. He thought to shake her, out of a sense of bio-fealty, but before he could shoot that message off to control center, she blinked, turned to him and said:

Don’t look at me!

He knew instantly that she was referring to the cavalcade of possible miss-steps and unintentional detours that might have occurred in the years she had been absent just standing there. He was familiar with that abyss. It rolled between him and many other narrative versions in which he for all he knew might not have survived the first bad wave.

Oh, there were a few missing pieces, naturally, a few gaps, intervals between then and now. They were walking in a golden wonderland overgrown vine street willow-choked and sweet sunken into summer daydream versions of several walks they’d had before, only now most of the homes were abandoned—take your pick!

And during the moon pause, she was saying, what you choose to do doesn’t have the same consequences. It’s a natural space for experimentation.

Everything has consequence.

Not during a moon pause.

Moon pause?

It’s like a gap. It’s like you get to be free from being you.

How do you now when there’s a moon pause?

It’s on the calendar.

Which calendar?

Any calendar that includes the phases of the moon.

It was Morse code now, midway into this conversation. Andrea always fragmented before him at some point.

…and he won’t answer his phone, she said. I think he got the guy. I just hope he doesn’t kill him.

He wouldn’t kill him, would he? He was proud he as keeping up even if he was on shaky grounds of clarity.

I don’t know. A monster like that? I can’t say I’d feel sorry for him after what he did to me.

No, no. Never.

Two days, can you believe that? Deserves a killing.

Absolutely.

And Tom was pretty mad.

I bet he was.

He’s got him right now, I’m sure of it, she said, shaking her head and yanking down on a drifting tree limb like she was summoning a butler. Yeah, he’s probably putting cigarettes out in his eyes right now. That’s what I would do…




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The Fleeting Suite

December 3rd, 2021

by Douglas Cole

The Ground Beneath Your Feet

I felt a jolt. The house began moving. For a moment I was weightless, then I flew to the back of the room and stopped and everything was coming at me—chairs, cups, couch pillows, plants and dirt and the whole sky. I went fast forward and hit the other wall, and then the house stopped. Can I tell you that in that time my mind leaped through every room double-checking no one else was there? Yep, just me. I had a nice bump rising on the front right top of my head. I could feel it tingling. It was warm under my hand. I’d taken a few shots to the arms and legs. The left wrist was a little twisted, but I don’t think broken. Stomach felt okay. I could see straight.

Windows on the north side of the house were still in place. What a miracle! And I could see the house did a complete face-plant into the maple trees. They broke the fall. Otherwise, the hillside was one big muddy slump that lava-like had flowed out from under and around the house and into the trees. Up above, half the road was gone.

Sometimes chance throws you a bone—the fire poker was right there at my feet. That’s how I’d get through those north windows, but looking up across the room, I mean, it looked like I could make it to the front door. First climb over the room debris: clock, couches, tables, guitars, pots—a ruin, just a ruin—and from there grab the wall edge at the little bar inset where I throw my keys. Next, hold onto the doorjamb to the entry way, and here it gets a little tricky. I’ve got the stairs on the left, doorway to the living room on the right, and ahead and just out of reach is the front door. I went for the stairway railing and got it, and that was my ticket out. From there I could reach the door, turn the knob, and the doorway fell open. There was my escape hatch.

I climbed up and out. It was otherwise a beautiful day. My neighbor, Albert, was standing at the edge of the driveway looking down at me as I climbed like a space traveler out of the crashed capsule of my house. I stood next to the front door, in a hole that used to be the land all this stood on.

“Hey!” Albert, said. “Are you all right, there?”

I looked back down through the front door into the interior mess. You know, it didn’t look like the house had been damaged that badly. There’s no more foundation, but if you could just lift it up and set it upright somewhere…

“Yeah,” I said, “I think so.” I felt that bump on the top of my head. I could already hear sirens. “I did hit my head, though.” Sirens, but now that I think about it, that might have been seagulls or my ears ringing, you know? Or the untethered spirits flopping around inside the house wondering where to go.

“How does that feel?” she asked.

“I won’t lie,” I said. It’s a little bright.”

“Hmmm. You might be sensitive to light for a while. Otherwise, you seem fine. Its amazing! But I think you should stick around for a night and let us keep an eye on you, okay? Just to be safe.”

“Safe. Yeah,” I said, because, well—

“And you climbed out of your own house?” she said.

“I did.”

“That’s incredible.

“Like The Poseidon Adventure.”

“The what?”

“The movie.”

“Oh, I haven’t seen it.”

“Never mind.”

“All right, well, you just get some rest, then. If you need anything, you’ve got the call button, there, but I’m going to check in on you—just to be safe.”

“Oh, I appreciate that.”

“You’re good for now?”

“Good. Safe.”

“Safe.” And she gave me the old buckaroo fist jab and a wink. Who knew there were people like that in the world.

And I tell you that room had a view, looking out over the bay, west, and the edge of the wharf glittering like a holiday. I don’t know what floor I was on, but I tell you this was like one of those high-end hotel views. I don’t know how safe I felt. I mean, I’ve never had a thing about heights. I like being up high. I like seeing into the distance.

Dame Rocket

At first it sounded like someone practicing violin. The it was just someone playing violin, a sound that rose and fell as if someone were messing around with the volume or a wind he sure couldn’t feel were taking chunks of sound away.

Not light, though! You have these moments of intense clarity, riding fast on a postage stamp magic carpet from one end of the room to the deck—and I mean profound true principles, enough to get you burned as a heretic in one of these versions. But now it couldn’t pay the rent past next Thursday.

That’s what I was trying to tell you, he said, right as the blender came to a stop. Was it coconut or jasmine that most defibrillated him back into paradise? I’ve got to get out on the lake!

Maybe no one’s going anywhere, except for Andrea who came through the wisteria vine rubbing her jaw as if she had just finished giving a rough one. Permission to come aboard, she said.

It’s your dream, too.

I’m only renting.

So am I! I could never afford this.

Low nitrogen supplements made the Daphne and the Dames Rocket sing visually and point at the places where they wanted their pots moved. Sun high overall. The idea fountain quietly flowing in its place on the wall under the eave of the bungalow.

The lord and ladyship around?

No.

Ah! And Andrea lit up so fast it was like a magic trick. She was a miracle stepping out of her own creation smoke.

Join me? She said.

Why not.

And there are pales, again a principle, a physical law as solid as gravity, much like the one that pulled up its skirt when he drank this concoction he had taken to calling elixir. Then there’s Andrea’s mystery oil-soaked booster rockets. It was getting hard to keep track of the distortions.

Are you all watered or not? He said to the plants when his eyes fell down the well of Andrea’s million-mile stare. He thought to shake her, out of a sense of bio-fealty, but before he could shoot that message off to control center, she blinked, turned to him and said:

Don’t look at me!

He knew instantly that she was referring to the cavalcade of possible miss-steps and unintentional detours that might have occurred in the years she had been absent just standing there. He was familiar with that abyss. It rolled between him and many other narrative versions in which he for all he knew might not have survived the first bad wave.

Oh, there were a few missing pieces, naturally, a few gaps, intervals between then and now. They were walking in a golden wonderland overgrown vine street willow-choked and sweet sunken into summer daydream versions of several walks they’d had before, only now most of the homes were abandoned—take your pick!

And during the moon pause, she was saying, what you choose to do doesn’t have the same consequences. It’s a natural space for experimentation.

Everything has consequence.

Not during a moon pause.

Moon pause?

It’s like a gap. It’s like you get to be free from being you.

How do you now when there’s a moon pause?

It’s on the calendar.

Which calendar?

Any calendar that includes the phases of the moon.

It was Morse code now, midway into this conversation. Andrea always fragmented before him at some point.

…and he won’t answer his phone, she said. I think he got the guy. I just hope he doesn’t kill him.

He wouldn’t kill him, would he? He was proud he as keeping up even if he was on shaky grounds of clarity.

I don’t know. A monster like that? I can’t say I’d feel sorry for him after what he did to me.

No, no. Never.

Two days, can you believe that? Deserves a killing.

Absolutely.

And Tom was pretty mad.

I bet he was.

He’s got him right now, I’m sure of it, she said, shaking her head and yanking down on a drifting tree limb like she was summoning a butler. Yeah, he’s probably putting cigarettes out in his eyes right now. That’s what I would do…





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2022 FLASH SUITE Contest Finalists Now Announced

December 1st, 2021



Our 2022 FLASH SUITE Contest is now live.


View the finalists
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Posting begins December 3rd.
Fan Voting begins January 1st.



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Virtual Halloweeeeen Party, 2021: Lady Moet Beast

November 1st, 2021


! It’s the virtual Halloween Party!
at Defenestrationism.net

Join us as we post new message across
the day of the eve of the Day of the Dead,
into the night, across the witching hour,
and even into the Day of the Dead, itself.


!No– it cannot be!
The witching hour continues on
Defenestrationism.net with

Lady Moet Beast
contest judge for the FLASH SUITE Contest.

Watch her transform into a superhero in this promo

Watch Moet and her husband, DC Ty the Monster, crank as
the Cruddy Crankerz



And catch all her wildness at: cruddycrankerz.com
and https://www.youtube.com/c/CruddyCrankerz



Halloween is just a party, and parties weren’t meant to last.
I’m hoping we’ll have one more post
~~~~~~ from Beyond~~~~~~

Will we finish it in time?
For now, only the Day of the Dead knows.



Submission period for the
2022 FLASH SUITE Contest closes
the moment it is no longer November 1st, anywhere on Earth.

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Virtual Halloweeeeen Party, 2021: Tara Campbell

November 1st, 2021

! It’s the virtual Halloween Party!
at Defenestrationism.net

Join us as we post new message across
the day of the eve of the Day of the Dead,
into the night, across the witching hour,
and even into the Day of the Dead, itself.


The witching hour is upon us.
The spells are cast.
The first ones will now be last.
All though I haven’t asked,
I’m pretty sure neither of these women that have updates for us within the next hour on Defenestrationism.net would at all mind being all powerful witches–
unless their witchery is already steadfast.

Tara Campbell,
Editorial Advisor, Mother of Dinos
and submissions reader for the !Short Story Contest!

presents her newest release:



And don’t miss her launch interview with the Writers Center of Washington, DC:




Do not fail to keep surfing through
for special messages from our
contest judges, our co-editors, and
~~~~ from beyond~~~~

The witching hour has not ended,

Lady Moet Beast
contest judge for the FLASH SUITE Contest

has a new music and videos for us.




Are you scared yet?
Don’t be,
we’re all treats tonight
on Defenestrationism.net



Submission period for the
2022 FLASH SUITE Contest closes
the moment it is no longer November 1st, anywhere on Earth.

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Virtual Halloweeeeen Party, 2021: Glenn A. Bruce

October 31st, 2021


! It’s the virtual Halloween Party!
at Defenestrationism.net

Join us as we post new message across
the day of the eve of the Day of the Dead,
into the night, across the witching hour,
and even into the Day of the Dead, itself.


It is deep after dark, here, on the East Coast of the States.
Time to get really, super, very-much-not-kidding scary with

Glenn A. Bruce,
contest judge for the FLASH SUITE Contest

with his newest release:

My Worst Nightmare: The Dead Of Night: A Horror Novel by [Glenn A. Bruce]

Raven Tale Publishing: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09K7ZPDLV



Keep surfing through for special messages from our
contest judges, our co-editors, and
~~~~ from beyond~~~~

!O! The witching hour draws nigh:

Tara Campbell,
Editorial Advisor, Mother of Dinos
and submissions reader for the !Short Story Contest!

will chill our spines with her bewitching,
“Cabinet of Wrath: A Doll Collection”



Are you scared yet?
Don’t be,
we’re all treats tonight
on Defenestrationism.net



Submission period for the
2022 FLASH SUITE Contest closes
the moment it is no longer November 1st, anywhere on Earth.

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Virtual Halloweeeeen Party, 2021: Christian McKay Heidicker

October 31st, 2021


! It’s the virtual Halloween Party!
at Defenestrationism.net

Join us as we post new message across
the day of the eve of the Day of the Dead,
into the night, across the witching hour,
and even into the Day of the Dead, itself.


It’s past your bedtime,
and you’re checking your phone under the covers:

Christian McKay Heidicker
former contest judge, 2013-2019,

has a new book to follow-up his
Newbery Honor Recipient YA
“Scary Stories for Young Foxes”.

Scary Stories for Young Foxes

The series has been compared to “Watership Down”,
but he answered my question on such with an answer along these lines (not an exact quote of the author):

I love “Mrs. Frisbey and the Rats of NIHM”! “Young Foxes” is so often compare to “Watership Down” but that book was so dark and depressing that it is closer to “Mrs. Frisby”. She does wear a little vest and that stuff, and isn’t entirely realistic, but the message is more positive.



The new title is “Scary Story Stories for Young Foxes: the City”

In that same panel– presented by Politics and Prose Bookstore, Washington, DC–
Christian told us that the new book features ghost stories from the future,
Robots, Extraterrestrials, and more, all told in his insistently realistic style.

Scary Stories for Young Foxes: The City


Purchase both from Macmillan:
https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250181428?q=scary%20stories%20for

Keep surfing through for special messages from our
contest judges, our co-editors, and
~~~~ from beyond~~~~


Deep after dark,
it’s time to get really, super, very-much-not-kidding scary with

Glenn A. Bruce,
contest judge for the FLASH SUITE Contest

who has a special message about his newest publication,
My Worst Nightmare: The Dead Of Night


Are you scared yet?
Don’t be,
we’re all treats tonight
on Defenestrationism.net



Submission period for the
2022 FLASH SUITE Contest closes
the moment it is no longer November 1st, anywhere on Earth.

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Virtual Halloweeeeen Party, 2021: Aditya Gautam

October 31st, 2021


! It’s the virtual Halloween Party!
at Defenestrationism.net

Join us as we post new message across
the day of the eve of the Day of the Dead,
into the night, across the witching hour,
and even into the Day of the Dead, itself.

It’s the glomming hour on the east coast of the States,
and with it, here’s a Halloween message from

Aditya Gautam–
contest judge for the FLASH SUITE Contest

‘I have my book, “A Dream of Duplicity”, coming out in March 2022 in the USA and it’s quite Halloweeny with swirling mists in lonely mountain towns, creepy twins, lovers with existential dilemmas, the whole spooky works.

Meanwhile, I myself will be chilling out with the audiobook of Bradbury’s “Something Wicked This Way Comes”, and I very much hope that we continue to have the privilege of scaring ourselves as a way of escapism, rather than face true horrors of persistent viruses, melting glaciers, insane politics, crazy conservatives, and the almost equally crazy woke people.’



Instantly gram the latest news at
https://www.instagram.com/adreamofduplicity/



Keep surfing through for special messages from our
contest judges, our co-editors, and
~~~~ from beyond~~~~


Past your bedtime:

Christian McKay Heidicker,
former contest judge

has a second book in the series for his Newbery Honored
“Scary Stories for Young Foxes”


Are you scared yet?
Don’t be,
we’re all treats tonight
on Defenestrationism.net



Submission period for the
2022 FLASH SUITE Contest closes
the moment it is no longer November 1st, anywhere on Earth.

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Virtual Halloweeeeen Party, 2021: Paul-Newell Reaves

October 31st, 2021


Surprise appearance from

Paul-Newell Reaves
owner, co-editor,
and contest judge for Lengthy Poem Contest

with some old footage, but Halloween-themed

! It’s the virtual Halloween Party!
at Defenestrationism.net


Are you scared yet?
Don’t be,
we’re all treats tonight
on Defenestrationism.net

Join us as we post new message across
the day of the eve of the Day of the Dead,
into the night, across the witching hour,
and even into the Day of the Dead, itself.



As glomming arises,

Aditya Gautam,
contest judge for the FLASH SUITE Contest

with a cover reveal from his new book,
“A Dream of Duplicity”.





Submission period for the
2022 FLASH SUITE Contest closes
the moment it is no longer November 1st, anywhere on Earth.

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Virtual Halloweeeeen Party, 2021: Chantelle Tibbs

October 31st, 2021


! It’s the virtual Halloween Party!
at Defenestrationism.net

Join us as we post new message across
the day of the eve of the Day of the Dead,
into the night, across the witching hour,
and even into the Day of the Dead, itself.

First up,

Chantelle Tibbs–
co-editor and Knight of Nights,
submissions reader for the FLASH SUITE Contest–

here with a new music video for us,
More Space

!Check it!




Keep surfing through for special messages from our
contest judges, our co-editors, and
~~~~ from beyond~~~~

As glomming arises,

Aditya Gautam,
contest judge for the FLASH SUITE Contest

with a cover reveal from his new book,
“A Dream of Duplicity”.

Are you scared yet?
Don’t be,
we’re all treats tonight
on Defenestrationism.net



Submission period for the
2022 FLASH SUITE Contest closes
the moment it is no longer November 1st, anywhere on Earth.

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