Never Play Cards With a Man Called Doc

I wrote this for the Tuesday Writing Challenge at Go Dog Go Café



I pushed through the swinging doors of The Nugget Saloon looking for a card game but sidled up to the bar to get a read on the establishment first.
“What’ll it be?” the barman asked.
“Whiskey and a beer.”
Before we could continue our discussion there was a ruckus at one of the tables. A cowboy stood quickly, knocking his chair down as he pulled a gun, apparently because he had lost a big hand. He was quickly dispatched by a gambler with a fast draw on the other side of the table. The barman excused himself and went to drag the dead ranch hand out the back door. He told one of the girls to go fetch the doc and then busied himself cleaning up the remaining blood on the floor. There wasn’t much mess on the chair or the table so a mop erased the scene relatively quick.
I went to take the seat that had just been vacated and signaled the barman to send my drink over to the table.
The five remaining players nodded their assent as I pulled out the chair with a questioning look on my face as if asking, “Mind if I sit in?” I introduced myself, “I just came in on the two o’clock stage. Name’s Chance,” I said, “Doc Chance.”
Three of the men sitting at the table pushed their chairs back, scooped up their cash, stood and left. The other two remained sitting, but shaking their heads.
The guy to my left finally pushed away from the table too. “Sorry, Doc,” he said as he stuffed his winnings into his pockets and stood, “I just can’t do it.” He walked to the door.
Last guy leaned back. He was the one who had shot the cowboy, “not much of a game with only two players,” he said. He picked up my beer and downed it, “I’m willing to wait if you are, Doc.”


Write anything around the theme or words: Trapped in my ancient fear

Who, Exactly was Yvette Bouchard?

I wrote this for the September 26th Flash Fiction Challenge



Yvette accepted the post-coital Cohiba offered by the bearded writer from La Plaza Vieja. He was writing his memoir. She tucked the bed linens around her waist, leaned back against the worn headboard, and told him about France, her life before la Habana. Before coming to Cuba.

He listened carefully as she smoked and wove her tale, “… But Paris was a very old city and we were young and nothing was simple there, not even poverty, nor sudden money, nor the moonlight, nor right and wrong nor the breathing of someone who lay beside you in the moonlight.”


The prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about someone unremembered. Is it a momentary lapse or a loss in time? Play with the tone — make it funny, moving, or eerie. Go where the prompt leads you!