It Was a Dark and Stormy Night

New York Lightning Storm Fiction Friday.jpg

Sadie’s mood drove the storm — rain and grumbling thunder and flashes of angry lightning. Rehearsal was a debacle. She had gone in tired from practicing her chants and pushed her voice too hard. She knew better. She’d been in choirs since she was a kid.

The man with the knife who stepped from the alley heard her mutters and the rain, thought they’d cover his approach.

They did not. A bolt of white fire caught him mid-stride and burned him to a pile of ash, which the rain washed into the gutter.

For the first time tonight, Sadie smiled.

A couple of months ago, I scratched out a couple notes for a group of witches who call themselves The Black Cat Collective. I imagined them as informal regulators of the magical world. Not police, exactly, but…regulators. They show up and deal with situations that need dealt with, mostly because someone has gotten a bit out of hand with their magic. The Black Cat Collective is almost exclusively women, mostly because of the female grapevine but also because magic is more prevalent among females. Don’t know why. That’s just how it is. They’ve studied it in their own way, over a few generations. The BCC is led by a woman whose name I’ve yet to learn, but she reminds me a lot of Mary Poppins, if she were a 5th Grade teacher. She looks a lot younger than she is — and I mean a LOT. Witches tend to live a while unless someone kills them. Which happens.

It’s possible I’ll do more with these notes because I have a neat little idea for a story about a man who has an encounter with a basilisk and (who could be played by Martin Freeman in the movie) who may or may not end up a member of the Collective. I’m not sure if the Collective is the right thing to mash together with the story of this hapless man and his crypto-whispering* ways.

I tell you this because I’ve had a notion to write up a few of the story ideas and/or loose elements I’ve had that I don’t plan to use any time soon and post them here under the heading “Story Starters”. The ideas in those posts would be yours for the using, but with a couple provisions. First, you’d have to give me credit for the idea when you publish the idea, however you publish it. So, if you take one of my ideas and turn it into a box office smash, I’ll want to see my name in the credits. Preferably up front, under the phrase “based on an idea by…” Second, I’d reserve the right to use the idea myself and you couldn’t gripe if we used the same idea and hunted down the same trail.

I’m not entirely sure this is worth doing, or is even smart to do, so I’m on the fence. What do you all think? Feel free to leave a comment and let me know, okay? Okay!

And don’t forget to pop over to Phantom Sway and write your own story. I love reading what you write!

*What? That’s a perfectly cromulent word!