150 Word Serialization on Medium. Midlife Crisis Trope Genre: Paranormal Women’s Fiction
I just turned forty, plus I just filed for divorce from my cheating soon-to-be ex-husband, but if that is not bad enough, he murdered me. I didn’t stay dead. Turns out I’m magical, a ghostwalker with a destiny I had no clue about.
I recently learned if you are reading short form stories you do not need a friend link you can read as many short forms behind the payway as you want to without subscribing. Just click the lin above and start reading. As of June 10th, 2022 I am up to episode thirty. E1-30.
What is Medium Short Form?
Medium has introduce a new format. 150 word stories for readers who want bite-size reads. Those 150 words include title, subtitle, photo credits, and link words.
The challenge for me is to tell a novel size story in episodes 150 words a pop. I invite you to come on the journey with me and read, comment, tell me how I am doing. Are you engaged? Does the story excite you? Are you having fun? The experience for me is to create rough draft (outline) of a novel, world build, in bites bits for a short form serialization. Its experiment to later be enlarged into a novel.
My goal is to publish an episode a week on Medium, but more often if I can manage it in my schedule.
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If you use my Medium Referral link I will get $2.27 of the $5.00 monthly subscription fee you pay to Medium. I earn money when subscribers read my stories on Medium.
Not A Member of Medium? You can still read.
If you are not a member of Medium, I don’t earn money, but you can still read my serialization short form stories free by using my Friend Links down below. If you use the friend link you do not have to sign up for Medium to read or subscribe.
If you have a free account, you can read 3 stories behind the paywall every month free. If the story is not behind the paywall you can read free by signing up for their free account, which means you can read any story not behind the paywall and up to three each month behind the paywall. (FYI my stories are all behind the paywall.)
If you decide to subscribe, the $5.00 a month allow you unlimited and unrestricted reading on Medium.
Read Some Of My Other Fiction Free On My Website
Fiction you can read free on my website here. Some of these stories are also on Medium behind the paywall but you can read total free here on junetakey.com. If you have a problem shoot me an email.
I have learned you do not need a friend link to read unlimited short form stories on Medium, so I will save myself steps and extra tasks, so I will not be updating these anymore, since it is not needed to read free behind the paywall.
“…Years later, on late night shifts on boring runs, the crews of ships would whisper tales of Jamie Stewart – and sometimes, when all hope was gone, the ghostly figure of the Siren’s Embrace would appear.” – The Ballad of Jamie Stewart circa GD 5914
James ‘Jamie’ Stewart, Captain of the Siren’s Embrace, looked down, teeth grinding. Seven ships, armed to the teeth were minutes away from his ERV 454 scout ship. He knew as soon as they started closing in that this was it – there was no escaping this one with clever tricks.
Their current mission was to escort a beautiful, mysterious guest of the Council to her home planet – and to return with three ships full of rations one could only get dirtside. Her name was something incomprehensible, and he’d never even heard of the planet – not in twenty years on every type of ship known to man or mechanical.
She’d boarded his tiny recon vessel on the arm of high command and had kept her own company during the flight.
The rest of the crew was as tried and true as any in the fleet; men and women he’d nearly died with dozens of times, and the finest in the galaxy to his way of mind. If someone had betrayed them, she was his first bet.
He turned to her as she entered the cabin as the proximity alarms blared. “They were waiting for us.”
“If they were, it was none of my doing, and there is nothing you can do about it, Captain.”
His hand circled her arm. “I could kill you.”
“I very much doubt that.” Her eyes took on a strange glow.
The captain released her, hand going to the weapon at his hip. “What are you? Some kind of new assassin?”
She snorted delicately as the hailing light blinked on the console. “New? Hardly. I am old. And I was never an assassin, though I was considered something of a patron of them for a time. Goes with the territory, I think.”
“What are you? And why go to all this trouble to capture one vessel.”
“You are mistaken Captain. This is no plan of mine. In fact, I would assume that someone in your high command sold you out.”
She stilled. “Perhaps because I chose you. You reminded me of someone I knew long ago. Jealousy is a powerful motivation.”
“Look, I need whatever information you have, and I don’t have time for riddles. We have approximately three minutes before they blow us to smithereens, or worse, board us. I don’t have to tell you what they do to prisoners.”
“No, you do not. I cannot die, but neither can I, in this form, whisk you and your people away. I am a mere memory of what I was once, but by my nature I am unending, and so, here I sit – endless.”
He took a breath. “You are an alien.”
She shrugged, unconcerned; her voice was like broken glass in the sun – beautiful, sharp. “I am alien to you, human, though I lived on your homeworld before your kind crawled out of the mud.”
He shivered. “Well, unless you have some kind of mojo that can help, prepare to end here. I don’t care what kind of alien physiology you have, it’s not going to survive a blaster hole through the hull and depressurization. If we surrender, we’ll be tortured and then slaughtered to a man, and I don’t plan to go out that way. As soon as my crew gets into position, we’ll – “
She looked pleased for some reason he couldn’t fathom. “Go out in a blaze of glory?”
He swallowed, anger and pain flooding him, then looked up defiantly. “Yes. We might be no match for them, but I’ll be damned if I go down without a fight.”
She smiled, and it was terrifying. “Then, perhaps, you and I can come to an agreement.”
It was madness.
Utter madness, and he called himself a fool a dozen times as he opened the hailing frequency, cursing himself for clinging to something like hope on the word of some mad alien.
The worst that could happen is that he and his crew would die without getting a shot off. In the end, they’d be dead in a few minutes in any scenario he could logically expect – well, unless they surrendered, and then they’d be tortured for information before they were tossed into space like yesterday’s rations.
He pasted a smirk on his face as the faces of the commanders of the seven cruisers appeared on screen. “Sorry it took so long – I was, well, occupied.” He nodded toward the woman who claimed to be an ancient goddess as she lounged in his chair, like a gorgeous cat.
The commander of the largest dreadnought glared from behind a truly impressive mustache that made him look like an Old Earth walrus. “How dare you…”
Stewart grinned. “Oh, I dare quite a bit, as often as I can get away with it. But enough of that. I assume you had some reason for intercepting a diplomatic mission?”
A tall, skinny commander that looked like the weight of his medals and gold braid might overbalance him at any moment adjusted his glasses and intoned, “The subjects of High Queen Ramase do not recognize the sovereignty of your pathetic little planet; therefore you cannot have diplomatic arrangements with other systems. Furthermore, your class and marking have been identified as belonging to a ship that was sited in several insurrection – “
Jamie felt his eyes blazing. “It’s not insurrection if you are invading our planet and claiming it for your own – that’s called defense, or didn’t they teach the definitions of Basic language to you at that subpar brainwashing system you call an academy?”
The skinny commander’s eyes opened in surprise – and then obvious rage. “You insolent porcine byproduct!”
He walked over to the console and flipped his shields off, and then forced his body into a casual leaning pose he didn’t feel in the slightest. “Please. If you lot were any dumber, they’d have to hire Wenverian Crustaceans to help you cheat on your exams.”
Even if this didn’t work, it was almost worth dying to see the Ramsae commanders turning purple with rage. The skinny commander gave him a deadly smirk. “Fire all weapons.”
Stewart gave him a shark-like grin. “Go to hell.”
Minutes, or maybe hours later – he took in a deep breath, as if waking from a deep sleep. The woman (goddess?) sat on the floor with his head in her lap in the cockpit of the Siren while the wreckage of seven ruined ships floated serenely in the darkness of space.
Her voice was thick. “You are awake.”
He blinked. “And even more surprising, I am alive.”
She dimpled. “Hmm. This was nothing. You should have seen the things I could do when I was worshiped properly. Your desperation and faith allowed me more power than I’ve had in eons.”
He shuddered. He had made a devil’s deal to win an unwinnable situation. “My crew?”
“Teleported to their homeworlds, with a vague memory of you sending each of them off before this fight. Each of them has enough credit to make a good life for themselves, just as you requested.”
He nodded and tried to sit up. She held him down, smiling with teeth slightly too pointed and eyes that were never human. “Will you keep your word Captain?”
“I will. If you help me free my homeworld, protect my people, then I will Captain this vessel and live as a ghost – bearing your symbol in battle and dedicating my kills to you. No man will know that I live, until the war is over, and then my life will be forfeit.”
She patted his cheek and slid gracefully into the Captain’s chair. “Don’t look so glum. A forfeit isn’t an end Captain. You are about to win unwinnable war – and when you time is done, you will find that eternity spent with a goddess is not a fate worse than death.”
He stood at the console, turning his ship to the homeworld of the empire had oppressed his people.
He’d trade his own life for the people he loved a hundred times with no regrets. If that meant dying he was fine with it.
If it meant living, he could do that too.
STORYTIME QUARTERLY BLOG HOP JAN, APRIL, JULY AND OCT PARTICIPATE LIST
Read speculative fiction from authors around the globe. Flash Fiction from 500 to 1000 word quick reads. Leave us comments we love hearing from you.
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I understood the world I was writing in, as I had created many shorts in it—world building is my thing. I always start with character and build from the inside out.
My trouble was finding my character’s long-term voice at first. I still struggle with my sidekick. I did not intend my story to be YA, but it is—again, story decisions.
So I am writing in a genre I am not totally comfortable in. However, I have been reading a lot of YA lately to get a better feel for it. I am very picky about my story, so had trouble finding great YA story that pulled me into the world, but I did.
Finding YA Book I like to read:
I found a few I am really enjoying that hooked me, but it was a search for me.
In my search, I came across Shade. I started reading and did not stop until chapter six, and only then because I had to do so. I read several before this one and was not impressed. So, I bought the whole series to read. This is a NY Times and USA Best-Selling author, which means she has experience capturing her audience.
I am also a pantser and linear writer. This story I have written, somewhat, out of order, not my natural writing style. Now I struggle a bit with transition scenes and the piecing together. Expansion, revision, and editing are a slow, painful process, but I will not give up.
Finding Character Voice:
The story decision to write this story always belonged to my characters. I write this story because my characters, though difficult, will not shut up. Especially Smoak, my sidekick. If you read my newsletter then you have been talking to Smoak as he has taken the newsletter writing over for now. He is insisting that I go back and rewrite my welcome letter in his voice. I may do that just have not had time yet.
So though I struggle with the long-term story voice, the voice in my head has no problem at all chatting my ear off.
In fact, in the last monthly newsletter, Smoak even shared his favorite movie.
Here is the excerpt from the newsletter:
Okay, on to the question, what is my favorite movie? My favorite movie is Avatar. The local inhabitants of the planet have tails. Tails are handy. Since I am a Fae Dragon Sprite, I have an awesome tail.
In fact, you could say, I am downright dangerous with it when I can stay in my natural form. All too often, I have to shift into whatever form is needed or promotes safety. The way life and the planet is all connected and symbiotic makes me think of me and Remi. We are elemental bondmates. Our element is FIRE. Avatar 2 is coming December 2022. I can’t wait!
Smoak even took a special place in the remake of my logo featured below.
My newsletterwith my gift story, The Boon. This story is not related to my current story, which for now I am calling Project Atlantis.
I enrolled in Tammi Labrecque, The Newsletter Ninja’s, Cookie Challenge. We will be creating short stories or other choices for reader targeted opt-in related to our reader audiences. It starts March 7th; I am excited about it.
A couple of rough-looking bacteria shoved me into a shadowy cell wall on the wrong side of the intestines.
The interior of the cell was dimly lit, but I could see well enough to know I’d fallen out of the esophagus and into the stomach acid. Legends of the virus world were standing around one seated figure at an imposing desk, peppered with a few tough-looking bacteria and some kind of protozoa that was leaning on the wall, leering.
I was dumped into a chair by the two Streptococcus thugs; it broke off one of my protein spikes when I hit the chair. It’s foul play to break a guy’s protein spikes. Just bad form really. But these guys weren’t bothering to play fair.
“Any idea what landed you in that chair Covid?” From the desk, a virus everyone knew, H1N1, was staring down at me like he was supposed to be judge and jury.
I huffed. “I’m guessing you don’t like me invading your turf.”
The twins, better known in the virial underworld as Influenza B and C giggled.
B gave me a ghoulish grin as she whispered, “It’s not so much that you are on our turf.”
C continued, “It’s that you are making a mess of our turf.”
H1N1 nodded. “Exactly. New viruses pop up every day. It’s a big place. But let me explain something to you, kid. Something I wish had been explained to me earlier in my career. Who do you think the most brilliant virus is?”
Jeez, this guy was lame. “I suppose you think it’s you?”
H1N1 snorted with laughter. Flu B and C tried to hide their laughs a little, but their fake coughs weren’t fooling anyone. I do my deadliest work in the lungs. I can spot a fake cough a millimeter away, and in microscopic terms, a millimeter is the size of a Burrough.
“Kid, you have a lot to learn. What’s the whole point of being a virus?”
I gave an evil grin. “Easy. Kill as many humans as I can.”
The protozoa tossed a box of Kleenex at my head.
H1N1 pinched his protein like he was fighting off a migraine…which is impossible, since viruses don’t have heads. He looked up and spoke very, very slowly. “Idiot. The whole point isn’t to kill humans. It is to reproduce as much of yourself as quickly as possible and infect as many of them as you can without killing them! Dead humans don’t cough or sneeze, so if you kill the host, there is no escape. And you not only kill the host, you kill everyone in here with you too. Something we do happen to object to.”
I looked at the older virus in utter disdain. “I’m a virus. I infect people, it’s what I do…what we all do.”
“Kid, do you know who the most brilliant virus of all time is?”
I surveyed the group in front of me and shrugged. “Enlighten me.”
H1N1 gestured, “It’s that guy over there.”
Across the room, snoozing lightly in an overstuffed chair, was the Common Cold.
I looked back, waiting for the joke. “Seriously?”
H1N1 rolled his eyes and turned to the influenza viruses. “Was I ever this dumb?”
The other viruses in the cell just nodded and he gave a frustrated huff. “You think you are so smart. That old guy over there makes the host j-u-s-t sick enough to give off a decent virial load, but not sick enough to stay home. He looks weak, but he can hold on for months in the right conditions and infect everyone in a three-block radius. He almost never kills his host, because you don’t shit where you live.”
Boring. And so limited. What was the purpose of living if you couldn’t reproduce uncontrollably? I ran a hand through my cool punk-rock protein spikes, while Common Cold never faltered in his napping.
I turned back to the assembled pathogens. “So you guys got together to show me the light, am I right?”
H1N1 replied grumpily, “Someone had to. Otherwise, you ruin the host for all of us.”
“I’m not interested in joining your little knitting club, thanks.”
Flu D spoke for the first time. “We’re an HOA.”
H1N1 looked down his autocratic nose (which fairly impressive since he technically didn’t have a nose). “We’re a Host Owner Association. We keep the host well enough so that everyone has the chance to propagate over time.”
I slumped into the chair and put my feet up on the desk. “You guys are nuts.”
H1N1 nodded to the two burly bacteria. “You two, split yourselves via mitosis and have your copies shove this guy in front of a T-cell.”
I lost my balance and fell out of the chair, losing a couple more protein spikes in the process. “T-cells? Are you out of your minds? They’ll eat your guys too.”
H1N1 gave me a cold grin. “Kid, that’s why you don’t mess with an HOA.”
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