Kreative Kue 248

Kreative Kue 247 asked for submissions based on this photograph:

2014-03-25 13-34-04_0140a
John W Howell is the author of the John Cannon trilogy of My GRL, His Revenge, Our Justice and Circumstances of Childhood, co-author of The Contract, and blogs at Fiction Favorites.

The Pick Up by John W. Howell © 2020

“You call a cab buddy?”

“I sure did.”

“Well, jump in. You can sit upfront with me. Here I’ll open the door.”

“Er. I’m not sure I’m your ride.”

“Why are you not sure. You said you called for a cab?”

“Yeah, I did. But I thought I had called the Yellow Cab company.”

“Ah, what’s the difference. You still get to your destination.”

“Well, that is my worry.”

“What worry?”

“I’ve been reading a lot about gypsy cabs. You know the ones where they kidnap unsuspecting travelers and hold them for ransom.”

“Oh, man. You must have been reading the Enquirer. That doesn’t happen around here.”

“How do I know that?”

“Look at me. Do I look like the kind of guy who could kidnap anyone? I’m an old fart with skinny arms. You could take me in a minute. You work out right?”

“Yeah, I do work out.”

“I could tell by those biceps you got. Some pair of guns. Hey, guy, I need the fare. If you don’t want to get in then just close the door and I’ll be off.”

“I don’t mean to be so cautious but this is my first time here.”

“I understand. If it would make you feel better you can get in the back.”

“That would make me feel better.”

“Okay, no problem. Jump in and we’ll get you to your hotel bing badda boom.”

“You from the States?”

“Yeah, Brooklyn. Born and raised.”

“Okay, I’m in.”

“Where to, Pal?”

“The Continental. Wait why did those doors lock?”

“To keep you safe .”

“Oh.”

“And to keep you from getting away.”

“What do you mean.”

“We are going on a little trip so sit back and relax.”

“Hey. Stop this cab and let me out.”

“Not gonna happen, brother. You are my meal ticket. There at a bunch of nice guys who’ll pay me a thousand bucks for you.”

“Okay, I’m coming up there if you don’t let me out.”

“Yeah just try. Your seat belt has you locked in. You cautious types always put on the seat belt. Makes it so much easier.”

“I demand that you pull over.”

“This is rich if I say so myself. Here’s a guy who is making demands. The same guy who gets in a gypsy cab with the name of Moron. This is one for the boys at the tavern.”


This short tale is from Na’ama Yehuda, who blogs at https://naamayehuda.com :

Owning it by Na’ama Yehuda

She was owning it.

In a city packed with cars for hire, she always got a second look from other drivers and passersby. Not always the business, mind you, but a second look. And … that meant they remembered her the next time they needed a car.

Not that everyone dialed for hers.

I could see how it would require a certain level of self-confidence to not be unsettled by being seen entering or emerging from her vehicle.

“Which is fine by me,” she chuckled. “Weeds out the weirdos and overly judgemental. I don’t need them in my ride.”

Her phone rang.

“Moron Taxi,” she answered cheerfully, “where and how far?”


From Ahtees, who blogs at Mywayoflivinglife a caption:

I didn’t name it, its named after me.


My effort was

The lesson.

Alphonso Morales started his day beside himself with excitement. It was his eighteenth birthday and his father had presented him with vouchers for lessons with a driving school in the town. Predictably, his father had rushed out of the house before he could adequately thank him.

“Make sure you’re ready,” Alphonso’s mother said to him at breakfast, “señorita Villanueva at the school called yesterday and told us that they have made you the first pupil of the day for señor Guiterrez, their most experienced and respected instructor. He will be here by ten o’clock.”

“¿Ten o’clock?”

“Ish. You should know that it is an honour to be taught by their best man. They usually save him for their most important client families. Youngsters are normally taught by more junior staff.”

“¿Why do I have this honour, Momia?”

“Your father has helped many people in this town Al, and some important men owe him favours, including the owner of the school.”

“¿Has this to do with what Malena calls her special evenings when she works hard and comes home looking extra tired?”

“You may very well think that, Fonsi. I couldn’t possibly comment.”

Alphonso smiled at his mother, rose from the table, planted a kiss on her forehead and said, “I’ll get ready, Momia. Thank you so much for my birthday gift.”

“De nada bebé,” she replied.

Scowling a little at what he saw as his mother’s continuing infantilising of him, he went to his room and changed into his going-out-in-public clothes, returning moments later and presenting himself for his mother’s inspection.

“¿Will I do, Momia?”

“You’ll have to. Señor Guiterrez is outside. Go!”

“Bye-bye, Momia.”

Alphonso barely heard his mother shout good luck to him as he ran to the car. The instructor scooted across to the front passenger seat and signalled to his pupil to get in the driver’s side.

“Jump in, Alphonso and listen carefully whilst I explain to you what we need to do.”

“Thank you, señor Guiterrez,” the teenager said, taking his place behind the steering wheel.

“If we are going to spend a lot of time together, my young friend, and I think we are, we can be more familiar. My given name is Bartolomeo, but you can call me Buddy.”

“Thank you, Buddy. You can call me Al.”

“¿Not Fonsi or Pancho?”

“My parents call me Fonsi, my teachers in school call me Pancho, but my friends call me Al. I prefer that.”

“¿Why?”

“Because it sounds like an American name, and everybody knows anything American is cool.”

“I may have to disagree with you on that, though I know young people think it. I have to admit, I did too when I was your age.”

“¿But you don’t now?”

“Indeed not. If you look below the surface you’ll find that no country is as good as it is claimed to be. They all have their strengths and their weaknesses. Now, let’s find yours. It’s time for you to start the engine.”

Sr Guiterrez… sorry, Buddy talked Alphonso through the rudiments of starting the engine, getting into gear and moving off. Under his direction, Alphonso set the car in motion and started driving along the residential road where he lived with his family. By the time he had mastered the clutch and gearbox, the pair were barreling along in second gear at a speed approaching fifteen kilometres per hour.

Alphonso was quick to pick things up and it wasn’t too long before they were travelling at a speed that wasn’t a massive inconvenience to other road users. Rounding a bend in the road, they came across a serious hold-up.

“Slow down, Al, and bring the car to a stop behind the grey car in front.” Al did as he was told and, remembering what his instructor had said earlier, applied the handbrake and placed the gearbox into neutral.

“Stay there, Al,” he said opening his door and stepping out of the car, “I’ll see if I can find out what’s causing the hold-up. In fact, switch the engine off. It looks like we’ll be here for a while.”

“¿But what if we start to move again? I can’t drive without you in the car beside me.”

Buddy ignored him and went to speak to other drivers, returning a couple of minutes later.

“It seems,” he said, “that there’s been an escape from the circus. The councillors and all the staff of the council chamber have had to evacuate and are blocking the road. They’re saying something about an elephant in the room.”


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On to this week’s challenge: Using this photo as inspiration, write a short story, flash fiction, scene, poem; anything, really; even just a caption for the photograph. Either put it (or a link to it) in a comment or email it to me at keithchanning@gmail.com before 6pm next Sunday (if you aren’t sure what the time is where I live, this link will tell you). If you post it on your own blog or site, a link to this page would be appreciated, but please do also mention it in a comment here.

Go on. You know you want to. Let your creativity and imagination soar. I shall display the entries next Monday.

2 comments

  1. Pingback: Kreative Kue 249 | Keith Kreates!

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