Tag: drama

Sisters Crossing a slice of life short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Family Slice of Life

Sisters Crossing (Slice of Life)

Linnea sat quietly sobbing in her tiny studio apartment as she read over all the details on her baby boy’s birth certificate. It was all she had left to remember him by and she had not so much as looked at the document in the last twenty-some-odd years. 

In fact, the creases were tucked so tightly together for so long, the paper would fold on its own if she didn’t hold it with both hands – one at the top and one on the bottom. But, this was a nearly impossible task, given the tears rolling down her face required … Continue reading...

Born Again Boston - a short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Action Drama Historical Fiction

Born Again Boston

You probably know the name of the man who shot Lincoln. You may even know the gunman was a famous actor in his day, a southern sympathizer, and an ardent partisan. But, do you know the truly outlandish story behind the man who shot and killed the 16th President’s assassin?

Thick plumes of smoke billowed high into the air, escaping the heavy fog settled on the ground, fueled by a combustible mixture of kerosene, dry-rotted wood, and huge stocks of tobacco leaves, previously hung high above the floor from old frayed hemp rope. 

The structure engulfed by the raging fire … Continue reading...

That Intersection - Slice of Life short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Slice of Life

That Intersection (Slice of Life)

I saw a pedestrian cross a busy intersection the other day. 

On my way to pick my son up from school, I stopped at a red light at a busy intersection. On the southeast corner, to my right stood a man, no more than about 5 ft 7 in tall, dressed in a muted orange shirt and long black khaki pants, about his mid-fifties, judging from the characteristics of his face. 

He held a reusable shopping bag and lottery tickets in his right hand, using his left to push the crosswalk button. (I only noticed this detail because he would … Continue reading...

A Very Simple Explanation - a short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Family Sci-Fi

A Very Simple Explanation

A troubled, deeply unfulfilled yet very successful middle-aged corporate executive, who was brought up in a wealthy but highly dysfunctional household, is given a remarkable chance to change his life; and after accepting the exceptionally rare offer, experiences an outcome that is utterly unimaginable…

Theodore begrudgingly woke to an intense ray of sunlight, piercing through a slim gap in the otherwise tightly closed window blinds of his corner office suite. Weirdly contorted on a couch meant for clients, vendors, and visitors, he could barely draw focus on the coffee table – littered with empty liquor bottles – merely an arm’s … Continue reading...

Just another Day at the Office Slice of Life short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Slice of Life

Just another Day at the Office (Slice of Life)

A dead battery meant being late for work this morning, and now, a flat tire in the parking lot at lunch, with an in-person client meeting in less than 30 minutes. Needless to say, the day wasn’t going well, and to make it worse, there wasn’t a spare either. Time to catch a ride share to try and make it on time or, run out of time waiting for a tow truck and wasting a lot of time at the nearest auto repair shop. So, only one real option.

Making it to the meeting with just minutes to spare, sheer … Continue reading...

Please don't Let Me Fall - a historical fiction short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Crime Drama Historical Fiction

Please, Don’t Let Me Fall

The assassination of the 16th United States President was a first for the country in more than one regard, and one of those accused of being in on the plot would become the subject of controversy – not only contemporarily – but far into the future…

“Sic semper tyrannis!” was not just the ranting of a deranged, racist, secessionist – it rekindled a rallying cry for those seeking justice in the brutal and cowardly assassination of one of the most beloved figures in history. In fact, the Latin phrase was even then, and remains, the state motto of Virginia – … Continue reading...

How One Particular End Began - Slice of Life - by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Romance Slice of Life

How One Particular End Began (Slice of Life)

The end had already begun.

By this time, the young couple’s parting was inevitable; and to prove it, it had been more than a week since he and she had seen each other in person – something unthinkable just months earlier. 

Still, it was only hours since they had last spoken on the phone – a strange new dynamic that had become quite common during the past few weeks. But also, very different from before their relationship changed subtly yet undeniably. Prior to this unforeseen change, they spent every day together. Now, maybe once or twice a month at the … Continue reading...

A Most Desperate Pact - a short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Action Drama Suspense

A Most Desperate Pact

Just as the war against man ended, the war with nature began. 

Stranded in a remote area, far away from any semblance of civilization or basic infrastructure, a new struggle to survive is now a constant and desperate reality. Just three days ago, another member of our dwindling group finally succumbed to his injuries, his mortal end quickened by the unforgiving, unrelenting elements of this place.

Miraculously, now perhaps, unfortunately, I made it through numerous enemy encounters with just minor wounds which have largely healed, only to be left in the direst of circumstances. I somehow share this inexplicable “luck” … Continue reading...

The Soul-Crushing Clutch of Undeserved Obscurity by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Historical Fiction Suspense

The Soul-Crushing Clutch of Undeserved Obscurity

Modern-day information and entertainment would not be the same without the contribution of one unlikely inventor, who changed society so profoundly but was unjustly denied the fame and fortune he rightly earned after many years of hard work and sacrifice…

Sharp pains interrupted his tortured, shallow breathing as sweat beaded and dripped from his forehead. His skin pale, clammy, cold, and riddled with goosebumps as a chill persisted throughout his entire body. His eyes sunken, bloodshot, crying out for help in the inevitable, unwinnable struggle with death. 

This was the end. The final conscious moments of a brilliant mind, now … Continue reading...

coin and coincidence slice of life short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Crime Drama Slice of Life

Coin and Coincidence (Slice of Life)

Ever eager to make a quick buck, Burris suddenly had a devious idea. The scheme came to him in a moment of disappointment, disproportionately motivated by desperation. Being nearly five grand in the hole, it would take at least that amount, plus another $60k to get him through the year. So, $120,000 would undoubtedly be much sweeter.

Even better, such a score would nicely set him up for the next big thing – the one to put him so far into the black side of the ledger, he could give up the game for good. All he had to do … Continue reading...

A Dark Harvest Yields Light by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Family

A Dark Harvest Yields Light

Abandoned by his mother only a few months after his birth, Taft had to rely solely on his dysfunctional dad. A man who always kept his word but could be very cruel at times. By the age of fourteen, the teenage boy knew what he wanted to do in life. So, he carefully laid out a plan: graduate at the top of his class, earn a degree in finance, and join a prestigious firm. But, one obstacle would be extremely difficult to overcome – the continued presence of his ne’er-do-well, alcoholic father. Thankfully, his dad’s many years of harvesting in Continue reading...

From Kindness to Incredulity - a slice of life short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Family Slice of Life

From Kindness to Incredulity (Slice of Life)

Under sunny blue skies with a pleasant breeze sweeping across the little league field, Ryan and Sienna shared a mutual excitement – it was his first year as a coach and her’s as a team mom. Their ten-year-old, Tyler, rushed into the dugout, hastily throwing his equipment bag onto the bench before running onto the diamond and taking the pitcher’s mound, winding up, miming a knuckleball delivery, then a fastball.

“Hey Tyler, that’s some great form, there, buddy! Now, come back over here and help Mom carry the snacks.”

“All right, Dad!”

It was a half hour before the team’s … Continue reading...

Pretty Penelope's Pernicious Perfidy a short story by Owen Richason
Posted in Crime Drama

Pretty Penelope’s Pernicious Perfidy

Pretty young Penelope and her husband have everything they could ever want and more, courtesy of his shrewd business sense that offers them a life of luxury. Unfortunately, he desires a simpler lifestyle, one free of all excess material trappings. But, she’s got a trick up her sleeve to keep things just the way they are, even if it means having to sacrifice their marriage…

Penelope grew up poor, pitifully poor. Pretty, playful, yet quite polite and presentable, she was also very impractical, particularly when it came to popularly-accepted social positions. That’s where her pragmatism underperformed profoundly, practically every time. … Continue reading...

Between the Lines a Slice of Life Short Story by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Family Slice of Life

Between the Lines (Slice of Life)

2:17 am. Still, silent, unsettling, and four long, anxious hours until the morning alarm chimed. Leanna had grown so tired of tossing and turning she defiantly laid motionless on her back staring up into the discomforting darkness that offered absolutely no consolation.

By quarter after three, she had only slept an hour, and morning wouldn’t come for another three. Now, it had been five agonizing hours since her parents took her phone away. Over three hundred minutes, more than ample time for the worst to happen. She knew full well the consequences of breaking the rules but didn’t have much … Continue reading...

To Whom We All Owe a Great Debt - a slice of life short story by Owen Richason IV
Posted in Drama Family Slice of Life

To Whom We All Owe a Great Debt (Slice of Life)

Twenty-seven – that was all. After numerous deployments and two enlistments, Dakota’s body trauma finally overcame his ability and will to live at just twenty-seven years old.

The victim of a massive myocardial infarction, brought on by his lingering wounds, his body now lay lifeless in an old VA building, surrounded by total and complete strangers.

It was the inevitable end to a hard-fought battle the young man had no real hope of winning. The injuries he suffered during his last military operation were simply too great. So egregious, his doctors were stunned he survived at all. The physicians’ agreed … Continue reading...

Nine is Not Enough
Posted in Action Family

Nine is Not Enough

After a man rescues a frail lone mountain lion cub, he and his family nurse it back to health, and while raising the cougar, experience many exciting and dangerous adventures over the years…

Derry found the tiny, starving cub when it was only one, maybe two months old, along a precarious hiking trail, not often traveled. Its fur noticeably patchy, as if it had been attacked by a larger, more aggressive predator at least once. The little cougar’s ribs were clearly visible and it panted heavily, laboriously, trying to catch its breath while visibly craving water. It cried out for … Continue reading...

Vindication on Broad Street
Posted in Drama Historical Fiction

Vindication on Broad Street

A late-nineteenth-century physician, formally trained as an obstetrician who dabbled in many other areas of science, puts his experience and keen sense of detection to work, solving one of the biggest mystery killer’s origins of his time, eventually convincing his skeptical colleagues of the deadly disease’s true source…

Baby Lewis was just five months old when she became ill with diarrhea on August 29th, 1854. The little girl named Frances was barely out of her mother’s womb and less than halfway through infancy when her condition acutely worsened. She died on September 2nd, five days later.

Just six days after, … Continue reading...

The Dark Side of Artificial Light (or 10,000 Failures and the Desperate Invention of Vaporware)
Posted in Drama Historical Fiction

The Dark Side of Artificial Light (or 10,000 Failures and the Desperate Invention of Vaporware)

A high-profile and very popular figure, dubbed by the press as a contemporary wizard, conducts gruesome experiments to discredit his chief rival – a troubled genius who ultimately wins a heated public battle for a nation’s and civilization’s rise to modernity…

Her name was Topsy. Exotic by almost every measure, the unique twenty-eight-year-old circus performer hailed from Asia and mesmerized countless crowds for nearly half a decade. Now, deemed unsavable by her trainer, a mean, drunken individual who routinely beat her, despite her unwavering obedience and desire to please, a death condemnation awaited after killing a man named James Fielding … Continue reading...

The First American's Final Battle
Posted in Drama Historical Fiction

The First American’s Final Battle

After eight bloody years of unconventional warfare, a controversial and transformative figure must fight one of the most important battles of his military career and this confrontation will pit him, not against his sworn enemy, but against his very own ranks…

Seventeen long, tense, and bloody days had passed since the two belligerent forces first met one another on a nearly frozen, previously soaked battlefield. Only hours later, almost 1,500 casualties lay dead in the stained snow, shattered ice, and oozing muck at Saratoga. The stench in the air choked the breath out of every surviving combatant. Putrid remains littered … Continue reading...

The Death of Legend Ludd at Huddersfield
Posted in Action Drama Historical Fiction

The Death of Legend Ludd at Huddersfield

Roger Johns is deeply committed to his cause, waging a war pitting laborers against manufacturers and merchants but the grass-roots movement will not adequately stop the revolution of industry and innovation will prove too great a force to overcome as the world moves forthright into modernity, leaving its antiquated past behind…

Spring flowers stood tall and bloomed bright under the sunlight in a meadow near Huddersfield, sadly stained and spattered red with blood, oozing from five poor protestors, gunned down by soldiers under direct orders from King George III to capture or kill, whatever necessary. His Royal Majesty and the … Continue reading...

A Wayward Physician’s Guide to Curing Consumption
Posted in Action Drama Historical Fiction

A Wayward Physician’s Guide to Curing Consumption

A late 19th-century physician seeks a cure for tuberculosis at a time when the disease is killing nearly 14 percent of the population in the United States and Europe. He must rely on the rudimentary tools and knowledge of his time to fight back against a growing pandemic that continues to indiscriminately infect and claim victim after victim…

Sitting alone, staring almost blankly at his journal, perplexed by loosely threaded thoughts and a creeping sense of despair, Doctor Iain O’Rourke nurses his third stiff drink, chomping on the end of a drawn-down cigar, agonizing over the loss of yet another … Continue reading...

101 Miles to Padborg
Posted in Action Drama Historical Fiction

101 Miles to Padborg

American soldier Buford “Doc” Fry is stranded deep in Nazi Germany in early May of 1945. As the only remaining survivor of his platoon, he must sneak to safety from Hamburg to just beyond the border of Denmark where he can find the Danish Resistance, slightly over 101 miles away. During his escape, he happens upon a very unlikely ally, a young German, Rolf Shultz. As a team, they encounter many obstacles and dangers along their journey to Padborg…

Buford struggled to breathe, even more so to maintain some semblance of composure. Alone, covered in grime and dried blood, he … Continue reading...

Grave Escape by Owen Richason
Posted in Crime Drama Suspense

Grave Escape

For Naill Donnely, this would prove the toughest case he ever had to crack – very few clues, and worse yet, no viable suspect whatsoever. Unfortunately, the crime itself was all too familiar. The latest victim, a young girl, her life choked out of her by some psychopath. But, it was the circumstances that left him perplexed – practically nothing about it made sense. What’s more, he had an eerie feeling this case would end with him losing the only semblance of humanity he had left…

Soiled, matted hair purposely pushed away from blank, bloodshot eyes, skin tinged a lifeless … Continue reading...

The Simple Pleasure of Pecan Pie by Owen Richason
Posted in Drama Romance

The Simple Pleasure of Pecan Pie

A young immigrant woman flees her over-domineering family and a pre-arranged marriage in hopes of living a life of independence. But the cultural divide shock and making it on her own proves more than challenging — until she unexpectedly meets a man who could be the right one…

Jasmine had just enough time and money to run away. This would be the opportunity to escape her pending arranged marriage and break free from the unceasing demands of her overbearing father and his fundamentalist ways. No longer would she have to submit to traditions she didn’t believe in or adhere to … Continue reading...

The Biggest Difference between 'Want' and 'Need' is Often Contentment
Posted in Drama Family

The Biggest Difference between ‘Want’ and ‘Need’ is Often Contentment

An elementary school boy learns a valuable lesson about the difference between asking for something he wants and getting what he needs…

Danny sat down at the kitchen table to eat his breakfast before scampering off to school. Mom, humming happily, hung a new calendar on the pantry door.

“1954 is going to be a great year!” She exclaimed as she did every year before, jubilantly drawing a big “X” through Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, the first three days of that year their family just enjoyed over the weekend.

It was over the very same weekend Danny came across the … Continue reading...

Lucky Compass Run
Posted in Action Drama

Lucky Compass Run

Couple Danny and Shannon embark on an ill-fated hike, getting lost in the woods. The two come upon a dog, who appears to be stray at first. But, when they realize it’s someone’s beloved pet, and are desperate to find their way out, they decide to follow the pooch’s canine instinct (magnetoreception or compass run) for finding its way back home…

Three cans of soup. One half-dozen sticks of beef jerky. A few bags of trail mix, and a couple of small blocks of cheese. That’s all Danny and Shannon had between them. It would be just enough to last … Continue reading...