5 Days – 5 Photos Challenge – Day 3: Master Manipulator

5 day photo challengeColleen from Silver Threading kindly set me this intriguing challenge. The rules are simple:

Post a photo each day for five consecutive days, and tell a story about each photo.  The story can be truth or fiction, poetry or prose.  Each day one must also nominate a fellow blogger to participate in the challenge.

For the challenge today I decided to use a photo prompt. Sometimes when I begin to write, I’m surprised by the direction the story takes, so I must warn you…this one is a little weird! But it was fun, and so I decided to share what came pouring out warts and all 🙂
Anyway, let’s get on with the story.
Click on the image to see the origin.
Click on the image to see the origin.

Have you ever felt that the whole world is out to get you? I’ll take the silence as a yes, either that or thank you for it because I’m…exhausted. Sorry, I think I drifted a little there. Now don’t freak out, because you hear my thoughts in your head. I’m impressed you’re still here. Kudos for not hightailing it, by the way.

I know what you’re thinking. I should lift my head, shake it off; perhaps explain my appearance. It’s why you’re here isn’t it. I’ll give you that one. This is no place to catch a little shut eye. The only thing I’ll catch here is…well, idleitis. I never should have climbed up. I only wanted to rest for a minute. It’s been a long day. A girl’s entitled to a little downtime, right? Right.

I can sense your confusion. It’s part of the cocktail of despair and discouragement. This place reeks of it. I’d ask your story. It can’t be any worse than chatty Cathy’s over there, pouring her woes down her friend’s throat. Though it beats the watered down booze they sell in this place. Yes, I know I’m lying in it. I don’t even want to think about the last time they wiped it down.

Maybe I should tell you how I got here instead. I’d like to cue a clever little sequence and flash back to the moment I took the job, but this isn’t a movie so my disordered thoughts will have to do.

So, where was I? Ah, yes. The assignment, the reason I’m stuck in this furry form. It’s not that bad really. If people aren’t giving me a wide birth, they’re patting me on the head, or leaning in to find out my story. It’s what you did. And here’s the thing. Touch is important in my line of work. In my true form nobody would give me the time of day. I couldn’t listen to the endless droll of conversation and pick up on the subtle cues of the environment.

People trust me. Your own curiosity is what led you here after all. I would apologise for lying, for leading you into a false sense of security. But I won’t. You see, it’s my job. And, in case you need me to spell it out for you, I’m not in the least bit tired. There’s an extremely good reason I chose this particular bar stool. Why I had my eyes closed.

Don’t feel bad. This ruse works at least sixty percent of the time, and how were you to know I’m a master manipulator. I could have taken any shape, another reason you have that dumbfounded look on your face. Did you think your own brand of evil is the only thing that exists in this world? Where I come from you’re a grey stain at best.

I should thank you, though I guess I already did that. You see those nice gentlemen behind us, look carefully – they’re there in the shadows. Those fine officers have been searching for you for a long time, and I’m about to get a huge bonus for bringing you in so quickly.

We knew you owned the bar, you see. That you stop by toward the end of the evening and linger on the periphery, watchful, wary. You’re good. But the thing is. I’m better.


Today I would like to offer the challenge to Natacha Guyot, who I know is currently in short story writing mode! Thanks to Colleen for giving me the opportunity.

Until next time. Thanks for stopping by.


13 thoughts on “5 Days – 5 Photos Challenge – Day 3: Master Manipulator

  1. Alex Hurst says:

    I like the idea of the dog as shape-shifter. That photo is great! The dog looks, honestly, dog-gone tired. 🙂 I guess that’s where the term came from!

      1. Alex Hurst says:

        I wish I could! A five day challenge is a little too much for me right now, haha. I am juggling two volunteer anthology projects at the moment, and I need to do the design spread for a magazine article (also volunteer), and get some slush reading done this week! On top of my full-time work, haha.

        Thank you for thinking of me, though. 🙂

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