The Curse of Blackwood Manor

creepy house
The door swung open just as Sissy’s sneaker-clad foot left the top step. She’d expected something creepy. She cleared her throat and swiped sweaty palms down the front of her jeans before pulling a thick envelope from her messenger bag. Peering into the foyer she addressed the empty space. “I have a delivery for Abigail Blackwood.”The interior gloom swallowed her words. Thinking she was alone, her heart stuttered when a tall shadow moved at the edge of her peripheral vision and solidified into the notorious Anthony Blackwood.

Sissy couldn’t believe her bad luck. The law office job of serving legal notices and hand-delivering letters was intended to provide income to fix her uncle’s vintage Edsel so she could drive to college this autumn. That seemed unimportant now.The black-haired man moved into the rectangle of light cast through the doors, highlighting the thin white scars across both cheeks. He reached for the letter. Somehow he grasped her hand. His touch warm, he spoke in a husky voice. “Grandmother is unable to leave her room. You must bring it upstairs.”

Sissy couldn’t drag her eyes from his pale narrow face.
He gently pulled her inside and the door swung shut.
For the third Write Campaign, Challenge #1: 200 words using the door swung open & the door swung shut.
(Should you feel so inclined, you can like Entry #287)


  1. #1 by David Powers King on September 8, 2011 - 2:52 pm

    Interesting. I liked your description, and the man's description intrigued me. Makes me curious about what's going to happen next!Great job, Lesann! 🙂

  2. #2 by Lesann Berry on September 8, 2011 - 4:16 pm

    Thanks David! I dunno what might happen next, something gruesome probably…lol. Short flash fiction is SO hard for me.

  3. #3 by Nick Hight on September 9, 2011 - 1:58 am

    Nice story, I'm intrigued 🙂 As a judge for the first challenge, I've shortlisted you to move into round two! Nice work 🙂

  4. #4 by bridget on September 9, 2011 - 2:01 am

    RUN!Nice job. mine is #72

  5. #5 by Lesann Berry on September 9, 2011 - 2:26 am

    I'm shortlisted! Woohoo! Thanks Nick. I better go read all the information, I don't actually know what that means. I probably have to hold my breath and write the sequel under water huh?

  6. #6 by Lesann Berry on September 9, 2011 - 2:27 am

    Hey Bridget! That's what I always say. We must have seen all the same movies. Run you dumbsh*t! …but he always stands there and get's eaten by the monster.

  7. #7 by MyTricksterGod on September 9, 2011 - 4:19 am

    You succeeded in establishing a certain atmosphere in your description. It had a distinct quality to it that I cannot– or will not spend 20minutes trying to verbalize it, but know that it was good, and seemed very realistic.I don't know if it was the picture you posted or what, but for some reason I could hear the creaks of the hard wood floors.This again touches on the specific atmosphere you laid out, that I'll not try to verbalize.But Im sure you know what it is anyway.nice post Lesann.

  8. #8 by Lesann Berry on September 9, 2011 - 4:25 am

    Trickster…that's too funny. I had actually used the word creaky but the entire front porch scene ended up on the cutting room floor. Short flash fiction just kicks my tushy. Thanks for the visit and the comments! I love atmosphere and setting, usually to the detriment of story – but it's just so darn much fun!

  9. #9 by Nick Hight on September 9, 2011 - 10:25 am

    To be honest, I'm not too sure what it means either. I was just chosen to judge a selection of these stories – I don't have the details. I'm assuming you find out more in time.

  10. #10 by Lesann Berry on September 9, 2011 - 3:47 pm

    No worries, Nick. I've had a great time visiting the other campaigners and read some really great stuff. It's amazing how so many different ideas develop from the same simple prompt.

  11. #11 by Angelina C. Hansen on September 9, 2011 - 8:28 pm

    Oooh. I like this story. Want to hear more. . .

  12. #12 by Lesann Berry on September 9, 2011 - 10:51 pm

    Thanks! I guess I'm going to have to figure out what happens next so I can tell everyone. lol

  13. #13 by Bryce Daniels on September 10, 2011 - 1:49 am

    That was downright spooky! Now how do I get rid of these goosebumps?FABULOUS job of creating an atmosphere, Lesann! Please consider me a new follower!

  14. #14 by Lesann Berry on September 10, 2011 - 1:59 am

    Thanks Bryce! I appreciate the comments and the enthusiasm. Creating atmosphere is something I really strive for so it's nice when it works. I have followers! (silly dance)

  15. #15 by Helen on September 10, 2011 - 8:31 am

    I really like your style of writing – simple, uncluttered prose with bags of atmosphere. Congrats on getting through to the next round!

  16. #16 by Lesann Berry on September 10, 2011 - 2:31 pm

    Hi Helen! Thanks for taking the time to drop by, read and comment. I've managed to read through about 2/3 of the entries so far and there's just so much great stuff! I listened to Vincent Price read too many scary stories when I was a kid. His voice is always the narrator in my head. Creepy huh? lol

  17. #17 by Alica McKenna Johnson on September 10, 2011 - 10:20 pm

    Great story- I love the idea and I wish it was longer then 200 words- I want to know what happens next

  18. #18 by Lesann Berry on September 10, 2011 - 11:08 pm

    Thanks Alica! I've got some ideas percolating to expand the story. I'm excited so many folks have enjoyed it.

  19. #19 by Sonia Lal on September 11, 2011 - 10:29 pm

    whoa, I don't think I would have gone inside.

  20. #20 by Lesann Berry on September 12, 2011 - 2:57 am

    See…that just proves how smart you are! In fiction however, we'd be boring.

  21. #21 by Amanda Milner on September 13, 2011 - 5:02 am

    Uh oh! Never go inside! 0.oI like this. Leaves me wondering what will happen next. 🙂

  22. #22 by Lesann Berry on September 13, 2011 - 5:08 am

    Isn't it ironic that none of us would go inside, but you KNOW she's going to… Now I just have to make sure she's not TSTL so things don't go down the drain!

  23. #23 by Jocelyn Rish on September 14, 2011 - 8:53 am

    Great mood and atmosphere! And even a little back story on Sissy so we feel for her since she's working hard for a good reason, even though she might prove herself to be TSTL.

  24. #24 by Lesann Berry on September 14, 2011 - 3:54 pm

    I think this is one of the things that makes flash fiction so challenging…how do you get so much in such a little space? I've seen some really great examples during the campaign, so I know it can be done! Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment!

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