Monday, December 30, 2013

Writing Prompt #3---Five random words

Today's writing prompt is five random words I got from a random word website. I have to admit, I was pretty happy to see "anchor" on there, since my first book takes place on the a Royal Navy vessel, the Reckoning, in 1805.

Here are the five words.


I'm trying to stay as close to 350 words as possible. Without further ado, below is my story. If you'd like to do a 350 word story, using these same words, please put a link to your blog in the comments.

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“Take this tonic,” the Spanish physician said in French, waving a spoon in my face. “You’ll feel better.”

I doubted it. If I’d been a boy, like everyone thought when Napoleon’s soldiers captured me, I’d simply be a prisoner of war. When they carried me to hospital and dug the musket ball out of my shoulder, they discovered I was not a boy. That was when they decided I was a spy.

That meant the guillotine. I knew enough French to know they intended to let my wound heal before the trial, but what was the point if they intended to kill me? My only hope was they’d spare my life because I was a woman.

The sweet smell of medicinal herbs wafted under my nose. The physician pressed the spoon to my lips. I took the laudanum and tried to clear my mind. Sleep, I needed sleep.

When I opened my eyes, it was dark. Footsteps in the hall held an unmistakable note of stealth. They stopped. The faint sound of breathing drifted through the doorway. I could hear it over the heartbeats slamming into my bruised ribs. I couldn’t decide if I should hide under the sheet, or sit up and face the enemy like a…like a…like my shipmates would expect. I struggled to focus.

The footsteps started again, coming closer. Panic filtered through the euphoria of the drugs, and I couldn’t stop the whimper from escaping. Were they here to take me to trial, or were they here for something far worse? I dragged myself to a sitting position and squinted into the dark.


A thrill sparked through me. I knew that whisper. “Yes.” He was the commander of my ship. “Lieutenant Kearney?”

He huffed out a sigh of relief. “Glad we found you, boy. We’ve just taken one of the Spanish ships at anchor. Get up and let’s get back to the Reckoning.”

He scooped me up. We sneaked past a sleeping orderly and out into the moist night air.


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