Flashes of Sanity #170: Holy Protector

Welcome to Above Heaven, Below Hell! Previously called Flashes of Sanity. I am changeing the name because it is not flash fiction. It is a whole story with chapters!

Four times a week, a chapter of 500 words or less will be published. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Today’s entry: Holy Protector

Enjoy!

”These are hard times,” the man said,
”Very hard times,” his friend said.
”You don’t want to end up on the wrong side of the coin.”
Aaron studied the two men. “And you tell me you are on the right side of said coin?”
The two looked at each other. They smiled with intentions. Aaron actually could picture the intentions in his mind from times behind enemy lines. Those were not intentions one wants in a church.
“Yes, we are,” They both said.
Aaron’s grip hardened around the knife under his robe. His other hand prepared to crush two skulls against each other.
How long will it take before they come in larger numbers, he thought. Longer than if I let them live.
“How can I be sure your protection will be what is right for my church?”
The two smiles widened. It would be so easy to open their mouths from bone to bone with lips that stretched.
“You will know once you need it.”
Aaron loosened his grip around the knife.
“Please, come in,” he said and turned around. “Welcome to our sanctuary for those who cannot defend themselves.”
The two crocks followed him inside. Without looking back, Aaron knew they looked around in the large room.
They scan for things to take and places to break in.
“There is no one here,” one of them said. The bald one, Aaron recalled. The voice moved to the left.
“No, not yet.”
“How many do you plan on holding here?” The friend said.
“Hundreds. I keep my money behind the altar, follow me.” Aaron steered left. He intentionally stepped on the trap door.
They are warned.
He turned right. His grip hardened around the knife again.
“This place is perfect,” the bald one said.
“It truly is,” Aaron answered. He put his hand on a pedestal and pushed hard.
Spears grew out from the floor. The trap door opened. The crooks screamed.
“Remove all their clothes,” Aaron said. “Search for any recorder.”
“You will pay!”
Aaron turned. His robe rose from the air and his arm swung forward. The knife slit both throats. Screams turned to gurgle. Aaron punctured the lungs. He dropped the knife and grabbed the jaws. With a hard pull both let go from the bodies.
“No recorder, sir.”
“Thank you, Marshal. Now take them down. Make sure the kids don’t see a thing.”
The trap door closed and left was only blood splatter and two jawbones. Aaron crushed the jawbones with a hammer. The powder, he burned.
“Dear Merciful Lord,” he said. “Forgive me for I have sinned.”

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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2022

Flashes of Sanity #169: After party

Welcome to Above Heaven, Below Hell! Previously called Flashes of Sanity. I am changeing the name because it is not flash fiction. It is a whole story with chapters!

Four times a week, a chapter of 500 words or less will be published. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Today’s entry: After Party

Enjoy!

Bottles laid everywhere. Some broken. Most just forgotten in the never-ending party. Isa crossed the room unnoticed. The first day, he was scared that someone would see him, but that quickly proved false. The devils were either too drunk or too hangover to care about what they saw.
They had won after all. That was all that mattered.
As usual, a couple had found each other under a table and moaned loudly, but apparently not loud enough to awake the man on the table.
I killed myself for this, Isa thought. To see a bunch of redheads fuck each other’s horns of.
The irony hit him just as hard as the sadness in it all.
I actually killed myself. I did it.
It all felt so empty.
He crisscrossed out the back of the large meeting room. ‘New York’ it was called. It and ‘Los Angeles’ were the most popular rooms to party in. He walked through the hallway, pushing himself towards the wall at the right moment before a devil or some devils crossed his path. The elevator was open, but Isa disliked the risk of getting locked in with the enemy. He took the stairs, always the stairs no matter if he was on floor one or six. The only devils there were too busy fucking to even notice the stairs collapsing on top of them.
The streets closest to the offices were bursting with people but further away they quickly became empty, and at the prison cells there were only occasional guards. To be honest, those were not the for guarding, they were there for revenge.
For being creators with the holy mission of tending to sinners, the devils were dangerously similar to their victims.
When the light went out, we are all animals who fight for survival. Isa echoed the thought in his head as he walked the corridors between the cells. It was as close as home he could get. There was always a cell empty for him to sleep in too. Without his reflection trying to kill him.
Sobs echoed between the walls. The losers in a war. Isa didn’t care for either.
What do I care about? Isa thought. Really?
Sobs came closer, and disappeared behind him.
“Why?” A woman moaned.
Isa glanced into the cell. She was alone on the floor. Shit was everywhere.
“Why?”
Because you weren’t cautious, Isa thought.
“Why did you have to kill them?” She cried. “They were innocent. They were just kids.”
Isa halted. The heart of his soul screamed in pain.
Kids, he thought. They kill kids. Why?
He quickened his steps back to his cell. He sat by the wall.
“Why?” The woman moaned again.
Why? He thought. Kids. Is nothing sacred?

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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2022

Flashes of Sanity #168: Conflict of Wat

Welcome to Above Heaven, Below Hell! Previously called Flashes of Sanity. I am changeing the name because it is not flash fiction. It is a whole story with chapters!

Four times a week, a chapter of 500 words or less will be published. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Today’s entry: Conflict of War

Enjoy!

It was a comfy chair. The cream of the crop didn’t want anything to disturb the thinking process, I guess, Susanne Queen thought.
“Correct me if I misunderstood,” she said. “We declared war on President Sloptokov to fight Xander Bylix’s cloud monster. Which proved unnecessary as a dragon randomly showed up and destroyed both himself and Bylix. The declaration of war is still active and as we speak, Sloptokov talks to the UN about possible outcomes because our nation has proven to dangerous since the dead began walking.”
“That is correct,” Marge said. “The UN have inquired you the president of the United States to defend our position.”
“Right. What is your take on this conversation?”
“Sloptokov has been searching for reasons to turn everyone against us. As the state of the country is today, he’s got a point.”
“Is there anyway we could convince them to side with us?”
“We must try. I suggest you take the stance that we will clean up the mess and bring this whole country back on track.”
Susanne nodded. She glanced at her desk. Her thoughts puzzled with the dilemma from all possible angles. “What do we have in case Sloptokov gets his will through?”
“Our army is impaired, but we hopefully can get it back on its feet with the rouges.”
The rogue Hunters and Witches of Xander. Not that reliable when Susanne thought of it.
“Our main strategy has been to take the war to the enemy. News reports from around the globe suggests that it would be unwise in our situation.”
Susanne glanced at the muted TV, probably the only TV in the country still working. Just like her communications with the outside world probably was the only working within the country. Criminals outside of the US still died. Within the borders everyone lived.
“No, the troops we send, if anyone would agree to it, would die on the battle field.”
“And the troops Sloptokov sends to us would become immortal,” Marge continued her trail of thought.
Susanne rested her eyes on the TV-screen. A reporter gave the viewers his personal opinions on what could happen. The reporter called it analysis.
“We need to win the UN over. We will press on the fact that the war declaration was enforced and we needed military action fast when our own was down. Do you have a recording of your conversation with Sloptokov?”
“Everything is recorded and backed up, but it will probably take too long to get the recording.”
“Try anyway. Otherwise, we’ll hope the UN trusts us and not Sloptokov.”
“I will see what threads can be pulled.” Marge picked up her phone and tapped the screen with fingers quick as thoughts.
“And Marge, I find it hard to believe Gool didn’t keep track on our country. See if you can find what people he had reporting from the streets.”
“On it.” Marge sank deeper into her phone.
Susanne corrected her dress.
Now, what should I do next?

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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2022

Flashes of Sanity #165: Criminal Begginings

Welcome to Above Heaven, Below Hell! Previously called Flashes of Sanity. I am changeing the name because it is not flash fiction. It is a whole story with chapters!

Four times a week, a chapter of 500 words or less will be published. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Today’s entry: Criminal Beginning s

Enjoy!

Donna searched the shop from top to bottom. It was as empty as the other ones. Only rats, and rat poop.
Was that all the city had become?
“We should get going,” Cat-scratch Bill said. “The city is not safe for a small gang like us.”
“You are right about that,” Brutal Joe said.
Donna ignored them. Who could be in the city? Who thrived among rats?
“Donna lets go.”
“Wait, I just want to check one more store.”
“Why it will be like this one, and the one before that, and the one before that.”
Joe nodded in agreement to his friend’s words. “It is a waste of time.”
“Who is it you are afraid of? All the gangs blew each other to pieces as soon as they realized they were immortal.”
“All gangs?” Joe shook his head in disbelief. “You are one lousy criminal if that is what you assume. There is always someone biding their time ready to strike when everyone else is down.”
Like me, Donna thought.
“Like who?” She asked.
The two thugs shrugged in unison.
“That’s the rule. There are always one more crook.”
Bill smiled. “Yep, there are always someone you can work for.”
“But I don’t want to work for anyone.”
“And that’s why we will escape the city.” Joe’s arm landed on Donna’s shoulders. “This in not safe for someone like you.”
“Someone like me?” Donna threw his arm of her. “Do you even know what I am capable of? Do you even understand what I have done? I am the mastermind behind this whole war.”
“Up until the immortal part,” Joe filled in.
“After that you got caught and tortured in a basement,” Bill continued.
“And I want revenge!” Donna felt her face heat up. “I want to make them all pay for ruining my plan.”
Her two newfound friends took one step back. They looked at each other.
“Well, we can’t die,” Bill said.
“You are right about that.” Joe turned to Donna. “So, what is your plan miss Sweet Sixteen Criminal Mastermind?”
“My plan?” Donna glanced at the rat poop.
Rats survive everything. She looked out through the window and saw a manhole cover. Rats are everywhere. She smiled. Rats live below.
“We will find who runs this town, and we will make them beg for their sad lives.”
“Just the three of us?”
“Yes, we will build our base above ground, and when the rats dare to come up, we will catch them one by one.”
Joe and Bill looked out at the manhole cover Donna saw. Her plan sank in behind their thick skulls, and they nodded.
“Yes, rats they must be,” Joe said. “Rats can lose.”
“I like the way you think, little girl.” Bill laughed. “Let’s get this party going.”




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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2022

Flashes of Sanity #164: Gravel

Welcome to Above Heaven, Below Hell! Previously called Flashes of Sanity. I am changeing the name because it is not flash fiction. It is a whole story with chapters!

Four times a week, a chapter of 500 words or less will be published. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Today’s entry: Gravel

Enjoy!

Gravel rolled under the wheels. Miko closed his eyes and listened to the sound all the way until the Porsche stopped.
Perfect.
“That was unnecessary,” said Dale Riderstorm beside him.
“With a car like this? Never.”
“You could have given away our position.”
“But I didn’t.” Miko pushed a button and the car doors opened.
Dale gave Miko one of those rolling your eyes at an idiot without rolling your eyes that only he was capable off. Or to be accurate, Mitch did it too, but he was Dale’s apprentice. The stare was probably essential when training to be the Reviewer.
Miko sighed.
They were idiots. Anyone who was that fascinated by every little detail was an idiot.
“We used to play space war here,” Mitch said. “Home is 500 yards that way.”
He halted just outside the car door.
“I hear Leo,” he said. “He is in the woods.”
Dale grabbed the collar of Mitch’s suit and pulled him down on the gravel. “And if you run to him both of you will be captured by your father. This is not the time for letting your feelings take control. Do you understand?”
“He is my brother!” The youngling pulled at his coat, but the master’s grip was to firm. What looked like a twist in Dale’s wrist threw Mitch to the ground.
“Do you understand?”
Miko rushed over to the two and put his weight on the boy’s legs.
Who is threatening to give away out position now? He thought. He kept the thought to himself.
Mitch stopped fighting the weight of his opponents. Some minutes afterwards his face also calmed and only the heavy breaths gave away the fight within his thoughts. Miko let himself loosen the grip on the skinny legs.
“Do you understand?”
“Yes,” Mitch answered. “I understand. Please, let me go.”
“Good. We will make our move tonight. Anything before that will only ruin our chances of getting your brothers out in their current state.”
Dale grabbed Mitch’s hand and pulled him up.
“Leo chops wood for the fire place,” he said. “Father always get drunk in front of the fire place. He will beat them before we get there either way.”
“Yes, but if we get there now without planning it correctly, he might kill one of them too. You don’t want that, do you?”
“No.”
Miko felt his shoulders sink. Danger averted.
“How much ammunition do you need?”
“Hopefully, none, but to be safe, pack two clips for us each.”
“On it, boss!”
“My name is Dale, or Mr. Riderstorm, or the Reviewer. Not boss.”
The annoying frown on Dale’s face sounded through his voice. Miko smiled at the thought of it.
“Will try to remember it Mr. Riderstorm,” he said.
And forget it, he thought.

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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2022

Flashes of Sanity #163: Held Promises

Welcome to Above Heaven, Below Hell! Previously called Flashes of Sanity. I am changeing the name because it is not flash fiction. It is a whole story with chapters!

Four times a week, a chapter of 500 words or less will be published. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Today’s entry: Held Promises

Enjoy!

”Do I look like someone who don’t hold my promises?” Donald Diamond put his cup to his mouth with a smile.
”Do you really want me to answer that?” Carl Messinger said and entered the walk in closet. He scanned the jacket’s arms and smelled the fabric. ”How did you get Umeniando suits in all these sizes?”
Carl removed one from the hanger and slid it over his arms. The soft fabric settled on his body. He caressed the shape it formed against his waist.
”When SurgeRay became big, we needed to have extravagant suits for clients who where a little too picky with their sellers. To ensure that we never would need another visit at Umeniando’s store we paid him extra to tailor suits in all shapes and sizes.”
”Umeniando was rumored to be very difficult to work with,” Carl said. His focus was on the arms and the buttons on the sleeve. All buttons shaped like a boar.
”He was, and probably is.”
Donald put down the cup on a table. He inhaled the room. Some secrets, he had hidden well. Storage houses for when times went bad was one of them, and times had gone bad quickly. He walked up to a pantry. Inside was cans of food stapled in a neatly order as one would expect in a bomb shelter. He pushed them to the side a and flipped a switch. A soft click travelled across the wall.
“Will you help me with the cabinet?”
Carl looked up from the hangers where he had found matching trousers to his jacket.
“Don’t you worry, the suits are not going anywhere.”
With one last hesitant stroke across the fabric, Carl left the hangers and all the promises of comfort and style they promised. They put their hands against the cabinet next to the pantry and pushed it, the sliding door whined. Donald caught a glimpse of the wall behind it and smiled.
There you are.
They pushed the cabinet all the way to the corner before catching their breaths.
“What do you have here?” Carl glanced at his suit, and the dust the door had rubbed off on it.
“Shit!”
“Carl.” Donald put a hand on the former police officer. “This is promises to all those who have wronged me.”
The rifles glimmered in the lamp light. Not even a particle of dust had fallen on the bottles behind them.
“I will show them what hell feels like,” Donald said.

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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2022

Flashes of Sanity #162: Dawson

Welcome to Above Heaven, Below Hell! Previously called Flashes of Sanity. I am changeing the name because it is not flash fiction. It is a whole story with chapters!

Four times a week, a chapter of 500 words or less will be published. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Today’s entry: Dawson

Enjoy!

Hugo Dawson knelt by the slurry of bodies. In the mass an eye moved. He caught it and lifted it so it looked straight into his own grey circles.
”Who were you?”
The iris widened just to fall back into a dot in the middle of the globe.
”Stabber?” He continued without letting the tiny dot out of his sight.
”Yes, sir?”
”We need shovels, a lot of them. And gasoline.”
The tall man disappeared. The eye vibrated in Dawson’s hand. The pressure became too much and the orb turned into squishy goo. Like the rest of the body.
”Have anyone found anything resembling Mart Adamson yet?”
His troop answered in a choir. None of them had. Dawson put his finger on the mic by his ear.
”We can confirm your suspicions Mrs. President. All of Mart and his troops were immobilized.”
”Thank you Dawson. Do you see any signs of Donald Diamond or his crew?”
”They have fled the premises.”
Stabber returned from a shop down the street. He dropped the shovels on the ground and ran off again.
“Inform me if you find any clues of their whereabouts.”
The line went back to white noise. Dawson tapped the mic again and arose. He grabbed a shovel and joined forces with his team. The bodies became a pile of blood, bones and tissue. Stabber poured the gasoline on it and with the flick of a match the bodies were aflame. A pillar of smoke arose into the sky.
“Do you think it will work?” Stabber asked.
“I don’t think Stabber, I know.” Dawson inhaled the warmth. “We will get our own monster, and when we do, the world will crumble. Little Mrs. President won’t know what hit her.”
“Do you hear that, brothers and sisters?” He continued to the smoke. “The world will crumble at our feet.”

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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2022

2022 Writing Update

It is a new year! I hope your celebrations have been a blast, and I wish for you all to have your perfect 2022.

To begin this post I will tell you all that I have some announcements, all regarding Flashes of Sanity going forward. And, well, then I tell you about the announcements

1. After experimenting with daily entries during 3 months in 2021 (July, November and December), I have concluded that I will try to make four entries every week for 2022. The schedule for these entries will be Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sundays.

2. The first 160-ish entries of Flashes of Sanity will be released as a book! Yepp, you read that right. The book will be edited for grammar and for continuity. Some entries (especially those in the beginning before I was sure about the scope of my stories) will see quite a lot of changes before being put in the book. The entries will remain unedited on this website for those who want to read them. The books will also contain entries that no one has ever seen before! You want to know what this book and the whole book series will be called? The series collecting my stories will be called Above Heaven, Below Hell, and the first book will be called Worlds Colliding! 😀

3. As a consequence of my previous point, Flashes of Sanity will change name during 2022 to Above Heaven Below Hell. The reason being, I cannot justify the flash fiction moniker anymore. This is a book series, and I share the unedited chapters as I write them.

I hope you like this changes going forward! And see you tomorrow with the first chapter of 2022!

Flashes of Sanity #161: Winged Prayer

Welcome to Flashes of Sanity! Your daily dose of flash fiction on 500 words or less.

Today’s entry: Winged Prayer

Enjoy!

”Forgive us for what we are about to do.” Mort mumbled with his hands pressed against each other. “Forgive us for disrupting what you have built.”
Mort glanced to his left and to his right. His team was there. All on their knees and all with their hands tied. All mumbling in unison. None of them believed this would make any difference.
It was a tradition, that’s all.
And when you go to war, traditions might actually be what keeps you sane.
“May you write about our victory, and the re-stabilization of what once was.” Bale continued from his place by the door. Behind the door, they could all hear the frenetic taping that was the great writer’s trademark. The sighs of pain were trademarks too.
“Oh, Great Writer, spare us in this battle. Give us your strength. Give us your mercy. Detest those ignorant enough to face us.”
A short silence came after the words followed by “Amen.”
Mort arose on his feet. He dusted his knees with his hands.
The dark fabric was ugly. Mort was a man made for white clothing. As all angels are. The dark should be a thing for the past, something they had forgotten.
The recent incidents in hell proved that as an illusion.
“Go to your groups,” Bale continued. “The plan is to send you down in the morning to scout the premises.”
Mort found his squad of five. Astu, Gron, Blan, Fulg and himself Mort.
“Are you ready?” Blan asked.
“Go fuck yourself Blan,” Mort said.

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Copyright © David B. Johansson 2021

Flashes of Sanity #160: Cell Mate

Welcome to Flashes of Sanity! Your daily dose of flash fiction on 500 words or less.

Today’s entry: Cell Mate

Enjoy!

She crawled across the cell. The dirt scratched against her naked chest. Red turned red.
”Look how the beetle crawls.”
She ignored the man. Just as she had done every time he had spoken. She focused on the bucket. She focused on her children screaming in her ears. The cell door opened.
”You wanted to demolish these soul cells. Just because they had no use any more.”
The bunny ears he made as he talked sounded through his voice.
”But look, we found a use for them.”
His breath hit her neck. She shivered.
“You stink, just like the rest of you suited monsters. Under that fancy cologne and all that make-up you are uglier than the rest of us. You should be lucky someone finds interest in you.”
She scratched her nails against the concrete floor as she moved her arms faster back and fourth. He slammed his knee against her back.
She screamed.
“Please,” she said.
“No,” he leaned closer to her ear. “You should thank us for not letting you die like so many of your colleagues. We saved you.”
She grabbed the prison bars. She tried to pull herself towards them but the knee held her in place.
“Say thank you.”
She cried.
Please, let me die and be at peace, she thought.
He grabbed her by the hair and slammed her face to the ground.
“Your choice,” he saif. “Just remember, this is for all the pain you forced the rest of us through when you could have stopped the automation. This is your choice.”
She screamed. From the cells next to her other screams answered. Together they built a choir of pain.

Want to read more? Click here to read all previously published Flashes of Sanity!

My debut horror novel is only 0.99$ wherever you buy books! Check it out here

Copyright © David B. Johansson 2021