Token | The Ink Well Weekly Fiction Prompt #6: 50 Story Ideas

in The Ink Welllast month

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I've always thought it was forever lost to the public's eye—kept hidden behind walls thick enough to hide the bloodstains of its notorious past, much like how Elizabeth Bathory was bricked off in her room until she took her last breath, the Portrait of a Lady was not supposed to see the light of day. Until it was teared off from its confinement.

Although the real story behind those “unfortunate” incidents were far from supernatural...

“Hey honey! Looked what the guys found during the renovation at the old coop!”

“Well, that does look like a fine piece of art! Do you think we could sell it for a dime or two?”

“More than that luv, I think we've hit a jackpot on this thing! See here—“

An incoming text pulled me to the present—The Lady is in hand, but the Emperor's on our heels. Also, do something about your friend.

Surreptitiously hiding my phone, I leaned towards my assistant who quietly sat beside me in the car, “Have the driver turn right on Wellington Avenue. Quick.”

At my instruction, she straightened up and called out to the driver as I leaned back into my seat, calmly gazing out the window. It was moments later that I spotted the signature black ringlets that made up Roe's hair, my car smoothly passing through the crosswalk enough for me to notice the troubled look she had on her face.

I couldn't help feeling smug about that. It was a good thing she wasn't able to notice me behind these tinted windows.

The prized painting was already out of the library's hands, I'd be damned if I let a two-bit psychic get in the way.


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The Ink Well Weekly Fiction Prompt #6: 50 Story Ideas


Author's note: If you're reading my story for the first time and wonder where it all began, do visit My InkWell Story Map. It all began in The Ink Well Fast and Furious Festival and continues on The Ink Well Weekly Fiction Prompt. I'm a work in progress, and so is my story. Thank you for your patience.

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Oh that line - "do something about your friend" - really gave the story an ominous feeling. I was glad when the narrator just drove by in the car. I was peeking between my fingers.

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The saga continues with the cryptic text:

The Lady is in hand, but the Emperor's on our heels. Also, do something about your friend.

There is a clever inclusion of the painting's back story. And the chase is on, with a foreshadowing of treachery to come in these words:

the bloodstains of its notorious past

To what lengths will the plotters go to secure the painting? We wait.

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It was moments later that I spotted the signature black ringlets that made up Roe's hair

This line jumped out at me, almost like the narrator looking out the window. I could see what the narrator saw. The sense of conspiracy is intense.

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