This week's Challenge comes from the very inventive Fiona Riplee: Flash fiction - Your hero & heroine are playing an "old-school" board game (one with an actual board or pieces old or new - just not a video game). The winner gets a special prize. 1000 words or less.
Instead of writing a new flash fiction this week, I thought I'd use an excerpt from my latest. The hero and heroine just happen to be playing chess just after they meet:
"My lady, perhaps we could partake in a game of some kind to pass the time. What say you?"
"A game, my lord?"
"Do you play?"
Bryce found his grin irresistible, even though the double meaning was obvious. She must take care.
"Perhaps a game of chess?" he suggested.
"Why, I would be delighted." Now it was her turn to smile. "I have even been known to win on occasion."
"So the gauntlet is thrown. Shall we find a table and set the board?"
"Check." Her gaze was on the chessmen, but Bryce was very aware that his piercing blue eyes were watching her intently. She sucked her lower lip between her teeth. This was a new game, one with which she had no familiarity. The man was flirting with her and she found it exhilarating.
Rowland shook his head as if to re-focus. He stared at the board. "Clever, my lady. But the play is not at an end. He shifted the rook. "Your move."
"So you return to court tomorrow?" she asked, trying to hide her reluctance to see him go.
"Unfortunately. You have proven a most gracious and intelligent hostess."
Bryce felt the blush rise at his praise. "And would you still consider me so if I were to say…check-mate?"
Rowland stared at the board wide-eyed. "You have won?"
Bryce laughed. "Do not be so confounded that a mere woman could best you. Perhaps it was simply luck."
"My lady, you are one of a kind." He rose and bowed to her. "Perhaps we may schedule a re-match. Once my self-esteem has recovered."
"Oh, somehow I do not fear for your ego, Sir Knight. I am sure you have enough conquests to satisfy it."
"My lady, the male ego is a hungry animal that needs constant feeding."
"I shall remember that when we play again. I could not live with myself if it grew small from lack."
"Would you then offer me some recompense for my loss?"
"Ah, my lord, but I am the one who has won."
"Yes, but you hold all the cards, so to speak. And I am quite sure there was mention of a prize."
"A special prize?"
"Then what will you give me?"
He smiled, his straight white teeth suggesting he wished to devour her.
Well, in the meantime..."Captain's Captive is just about to be released (September 12th).
And my others would love to be read!
Let's go see what game the fabulous Fiona is playing for us...