The Bauble – Sunday Photo Fiction

Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge presented by my old friend Al Forbes.
The idea is to write a short story (200 word max) inspired by what you see in his picture (below).
This one, I confess, leaves me confused.
Yes, okay, but more so than usual.
Click on this link to enter your tale, and see what others have written.

Copyright Al Forbes

Copyright Al Forbes

The Bauble

At first it is just Carol and I.
We are far along the beach, past the Broken Steps, when we see it.
It is small, about the size of a bauble from a Christmas tree, and shiny.
No, it is glowing, with an almost painful intensity.
She goes to lift it, pulls back in surprise.
What, I ask her, bending, reaching.
I feel the heat before I can touch it.
At this time of year the beach is deserted, but I don’t like to leave it lying there.
I rummage, salvage crumpled tinfoil from a forgotten seaside supper.
I scoop it into my rucksack, find it incredibly heavy.
We go to the little café in the square, show it off.
My friend Rafa points to the TV.
We see similar objects, discovered all over the world.
It seems that there are dozens, maybe hundreds, of them.
No one has as yet determined what they are, or where they come from.
We are told to call a special number.
I do, and I am told to wait, leave it untouched.
So we all sit around, speculating.
It starts to vibrate, gently.
A small crack appears.
And unspeakable evil emerges.

About ceayr

A Scot who has discovered Paradise in a small town he calls Medville on the Côte d'Azur, C.E. Ayr has spent a large part of his life in the West of Scotland and a large part elsewhere. His first job was selling programmes at his local football club and he has since tried 73 other career paths, the longest being in IT, with varying degrees of success. He is somewhat nomadic, fairly irresponsible and, according to his darling daughter, a bit random.
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39 Responses to The Bauble – Sunday Photo Fiction

  1. Evil emerges… and it is left just there for the imagination. You build up the perfect story and then at the end I have to finish it off as I want. That’s not fair. Good story anyway


  2. It ends just as the story gets going. You should write more!


  3. luckyjc007 says:

    Great read! I was anxious to see what happened and when I reached the end of the story….I wanted more…especially when the unspeakable evil emerges!


  4. Dave says:

    The intro to The Blob…? Or a whole lot of Blobs, maybe.


  5. i b arora says:

    intriguing twist in the tale


  6. justmaria says:

    This is a great story and leaves me craving for more.🙂


  7. Joy Pixley says:

    I like that you hint at this huge science-fiction world-wide catastrophe going on, but instead of giving us lots of overhead shots of that, you zoom right in on how a few everyday people experience this curious new thing, and how it develops for them.

    As soon as I read that there were more of these found all over the world, I could tell that it was either going to be Very Good or more likely, Very Bad. And because you used the phrase “unspeakable evil” my first thought was something Lovecraftian. ((shiver))


  8. Dale says:

    It’s always gotta be some unspeakable evil, eh?
    They do it on purpose, ya know…make it all shiny and pretty so unsuspecting folks pick them up and bring them into places with no protection…


    • ceayr says:

      Maybe not so much unspeakable as unwritable.
      Thing is, I had run out of words, so it was totally unmentionable, if you see what I mean.
      And thank you for the enlightenment.
      I had not previously understood that the shiny prettiness was just to save on fuel.


  9. It begins so mysterious and ends so chilling! Great story CE!!


  10. julespaige says:

    Man, don’t you just hate that when evil emerges…
    Where is Superman when you need him? But wait it is green…was green maybe there’s
    some nasty krypotnite residue?…

    This wasn’t a Rumors week… but I did do another poetic mash-up –
    Reigning in Expressions

    And I used my own interpretation of the ‘green bauble’ Cheers.


    • ceayr says:

      Hiya, Jules
      I never see Superman down here, guess he doesn’t like the sun.
      That Kent guy is always hanging around though, go figure.
      I don’t think it is kryptonite though, not according to what just happened here…

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Nice story from you🙂 sense of mystery, and leaving lots of people wondering when, where, and how… Great stuff!


  12. Steve Lakey says:

    I actually like the last line – it still leaves plenty to the imagination. Enjoyed the build-up too!


  13. Pingback: Sunday Photo Fiction – September 13th 2015 | Sunday Photo Fiction

  14. Dear C.E.

    I wonder what that evil looks like. Although, take this as my opinion, I think the story might be more effective if you left us hanging without the last line. Nonetheless, I love your concise style of writing.




    • ceayr says:

      Thank you, Rochelle, and I understand your point.
      I also value your opinion, and cherish your praise.
      But it would then be a very different story, and not the one I had in mind.
      Perhaps as good, perhaps even better, but…
      I did not envisage, as some undoubtedly would, little fluffy duckies popping out.


  15. Ooooh … unspeakable evil .. I like it. I did wonder where the Government came from, and now we know😉

    It’s a crystal ball that has had a laser light shone in it with a shutter speed of ten seconds.


  16. Reblogged this on anelephantcant and commented:
    AnElephantCant decide what this photo depicts
    It looks a bit like a wee shiny cat’s poo
    He does not like to be rude
    He’s a well-mannered dude
    So he hopes that C. E. Ayr has somewhat more of a clue


  17. Belinda Crane says:

    Oooh … lovely! I love this sort of story!


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