The Fifth Horseman – Friday Fictioneers

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by the wonderful Rochelle, the undisputed master of what I call Sound Bite Fiction.
She sets the weekly challenge, the standard, and the prompt photo.
The idea, as always, is to write a story of around 100 words based on the picture below, which this week is supplied by Dale Rogerson.

© Dale Rogerson

Click here to hear the author read his words:

The Fifth Horseman

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are known to everyone.
War, Famine, Pestilence and Death.
But scholars have long suspected the existence of a fifth.
And new studies have revealed that she was Humiliation.
She was, in many ways, the worst.
After the others had passed through the land, destroying all in their path, she followed closely behind.
And attacked the survivors when they were at their most vulnerable.
She would laugh and jeer, her breath rancid with garlic.
With thumb on nose, and fingers a-waggling, she would sing out the words that cut deepest.
Na-na nah na-na.

This entry was posted in Sound Bite Fiction and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

65 Responses to The Fifth Horseman – Friday Fictioneers

  1. Indira says:

    This is so true.. Excellent use of the prompt ‘She would laugh and jeer, her breath rancid with garlic. Some people are really very cruel.


  2. MrBinks says:



  3. ahtdoucette says:

    Unfortunately, I’ve seen this fifth horseman out and about all too often, especially on those who least deserve it. 😦 Fascinating story.


  4. trishsplace says:

    One of my favourite book series was ‘Incarnation of Immortality’ by Piers Anthony – have you read them? This made me remember them. He didn’t consider Humiliation 😊


  5. trishsplace says:

    Such a great idea! You’re very clever.


  6. That made me chuckle!


  7. robprice59 says:

    Yes, it’s incredible the lengths that people will go to avoid her.


  8. James McEwan says:

    Ah, the final emotional sword, humiliation – a usual feminine trait.


  9. I was drawn in by the suspenseful tone of the story, very nice. But, then, I laughed at the last line (especially when you listen to it), imagining the fifth horsewoman taunting like a child with her thumb on her nose and waging her fingers. Great descriptive bits throughout.


  10. pennygadd51 says:

    A shrewd observation CE. How many people have feared ridicule enough to die rather than risk it – quite a few, I think. Nicely written, and entertaining.


  11. At first, I was offended that Humiliation was a “she”. In the end, I was quite pleased!


  12. Oh dear, yep, I think those who named the four, were too afraid of Humiliation to name her, too … 😉


  13. I’m not even reading yours anymore, its so much better to hear you read to me! This one was a classic, and what a brilliant idea too, the final insult. Loved it


    • ceayr says:

      Your cheque is in the post, sir!
      Seriously, I am pleased you enjoy the readings so much.
      I do a Saturday story too, and a Sunday poem on my other blog, both with readings.


  14. Sue says:

    Loved this story!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. granonine says:

    You can exit laughing on this one, CE. Who among us has never felt the sting of that nasty little tune. As hurtful as it is, you’ve made us smile 🙂


  16. A fun, clever story.


  17. michael says:

    I am now looking forward to my future readings from Dale prompt. As you and Sandra have set the bar high.


  18. Dora says:

    I bet the other four horseman just love her, what with her always having the last word and all 😂


  19. Great story with a brilliant ending! Thank you for making me laugh.

    Susan A Eames at
    Travel, Fiction and Photos


  20. Paula Sue Bryant, Writer says:

    Sounds like my president. Well said.


  21. She sounds a bit like my ex.


  22. Iain Kelly says:

    I’m pretty sure I’ve met her, and on more than one occasion. Devilishly inspired.


  23. trentpmcd says:

    I think I can hear her hoof-beats approaching now…


  24. Dear CE,

    Oh my. I believe this is true. Humiliation is a subtle destroyer. Nice addition of garlic breath.




  25. Great stuff. Fits in the group for sure.


  26. Sandra says:

    Utterly superb! I’m well impressed.


  27. Dee | Grammy's Grid says:

    Oh gosh, I can just smell her rancid breath!


  28. Tannille says:

    Clever, very clever. We seem to be at her mercy.


  29. Anita says:

    Realistic story.
    We need to be at our best behaviour with all.
    Still, humiliation will follow? Don’t know…


  30. Reena Saxena says:

    Gaslighting, narcissism, psychopaths, sociopaths … so many names that do not cover the venom of the demon you mention.


  31. neilmacdon says:

    Both sides in Armageddon may make use of that horseman, Pride, they tell me, is a sin


Leave your Sound Bite here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.