Flash Fiction Challenge: Rocky Raccoon

Photo by K.S. Brooks

Rocky patiently watched the picnic proceeding at a leisurely pace below. Lots of interesting treats down there for a clever raccoon.

The people would be no problem, of course. People were always easy to handle. They have terrible reaction time and most of them can’t even outrun a bear.

That little white dog down there was the only real problem. If these people would only quit eating for a bit and maybe go play fetch with Fido over there, Rocky might just get away with a nice snack. Then something unexpected happened…

In 250 words or less, tell us a story incorporating the elements in the picture. The 250 word limit will be strictly enforced.

Please keep language and subject matter to a PG-13 level.

Use the comment section below to submit your entry. Entries will be accepted until 5:00 PM Pacific Daylight Time on Tuesday, November 20th, 2012.

On Wednesday morning, we will open voting to the public with an online poll for the best writing entry accompanying the photo. Voting will be open until 5:00 PM Thursday.

On Friday morning, the winner will be recognized as we post the winning entry along with the picture as a feature. Best of luck to you all in your writing!

Entries only in the comment section. Other comments will be deleted.

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5 thoughts on “Flash Fiction Challenge: Rocky Raccoon”

  1. The raccoon was so entranced by the scene that he didn’t notice the beam of fluorescent white light that struck him from the sky. It enveloped him and, though he didn’t know it, the power of the beam was quickly rewiring his brain – strengthening the neural pathways and uploading information. After a few seconds, it was done. The raccoon quietly fell from the tree into a soft mound of leaves and pine needles.

    “Wow” was the raccoon’s first thought. His second thought was “Whoa. I can think???” The raccoon sat up. He looked down at his paws, noticing that his rudimentary thumb seemed to have lengthened into a proper digit. “I have thumbs?” He said out loud to himself. Shocked, he slowly said “I can talk…?”

    The realization hit the raccoon slowly and an evil gleam spread over his face. The look in his eyes was calculating and evil. “I can talk. I can hold things. I can think. I’ve got the knowledge of some sort of long-dead alien race in my head.” He casually looked around the tree at the picnickers. “No more of that menial scavenging for me.”

    He stood up and looked around the forest possessively. “I’m the smartest thing in this forest … and on this whole planet! This is a new beginning for Raccoonkind! I shall lead them to their proper place at the head of the food chain! So swears … Doctor Raccoon!” And he headed off to hotwire the car of the humans.

  2. Ah it is a bright Sunday, and my name is Rocky, I am a smart cunning raccoon my stomach is growling and I am hungry. There is a big family leisurely enjoying their picnic lunch and I would like to partake of some of those delicious morsels. Yes, the human are slow witted and I could out run them. But the query is the dumb dog, how do I get by him and not be chase or caught as his play thing? Question – Do I run from tree to tree to psyche the dog out, and make him chase me and have the family chase after him and back track to grab the loot? Or do I throw nuts down on them and pelt them until they give up and abandoned the picnic and leave behind the goods for me to feast on? The mystery of how do I enjoy the treats? I know I could act rabid and maybe scared them to run away and leave the sweets behind? They would not let their pet be bitten by a rabid raccoon. Hey wait a minute maybe I should call my cousin Elmer and we will tag team. Then the dumb dog will chase one of us and the family will be upset chase after their wild pet. I will climb down, snatch snacks and run as fast as my feet can carry me to the top of the tree and save a treat for him and me, “Elmer.”

  3. Come on, little guy. From the safety of his tree, Rocky focused on the lop-eared pup. “You’re tired of sitting around; yes, you are,” he muttered at the tiny microphone nestled into his furry bib. “You’re restless, and you’re so itchy to chase that plastic thing. Now tell your people…yes, like we rehearsed it… Hah, nice, toss in a little bark and a wiggle. Let them know you mean business and if we don’t go now…well, you’re gonna go now.

    Good, Rocky thought. They’re getting up. It’s about time. “I swear, dog, you’re dawdling on purpose. No. Ten percent. We agreed.” His stomach rumbled. His mouth watered as the people tucked the leftovers away. Humans are so amusing. Like some chintzy Wal-Mart wicker ever stopped my handy little hands. “Okay, dude, great. Take them to that tree near the brook, very nice.”

    The banded warrior watched them go, the dog leading. Rocky inched down the tree trunk. The grass hid him well; autumn was his friend with all those browns and oranges.

    Almost there. He imagined the goodies waiting. Cheese. Grapes. Oh, he loved grapes. And French bread. Simple is best. People and their picnic pretentions. Pesto? Pfeh. Nasty old garbage. But this…oh, this smells like…like… Smiling, he reached for the lid. Got one hand in and…

    Searing pain bit his flesh. Yelping, he yanked his arm back. What the—? A mouse? “Dog! Dang it, dog! All right! You win! Twenty percent!”

    He swore the white dude snickered.

  4. Oh no, Rocky thought. Don’t climb the tree, boys. DON’T CLIMB UP HERE!
    But it was too late. Clark and Ollie were on their way up, with that silly bird dog yapping at their heels below. There was nowhere for Rocky to hide.
    “Hey,” said Clark. “There’s a ‘coon up here, Ollie, and he looks hungry.”
    “Don’t touch him,” Ollie said. “Dad says they carry rabbits, and if they scratch you, you’ll get rabbits, too.”
    “It’s not rabbits, doofuss, it’s rabies, and this one doesn’t look sick to me.”
    “Let me see, let me see,” Ollie whined, as all little brothers are obliged to do.
    Rocky tried to decide what he should do. The big kid was only inches away now, and he was munching on a sweet-smelling candy bar.
    Rocky started to drool, despite himself.
    “Uh-oh,” Clark said. “Maybe he is sick. He’s starting to foam at the mouth.”
    Just as Clark turned to look at Ollie, Rocky reached out and snatched the candy from the boy’s hand.
    I got it! Rocky thought, and in a flash he was sorry. It was so sticky! How could people eat stuff like that without washing it first?
    Don’t their mothers teach them anything?
    That gave him an idea.
    He threw the candy as far as he could, and the dog ran after it.
    Rocky took the opportunity to scamper down the tree and escape into the woods.
    His first stop was at the river, to wash his hands.

  5. “Hey, Dad. Look. Up there in the tree.”

    Rocky had no time to hide, much less shove little Stripe under his chest. Her wee tail still stuck out like a sore thumb. And that white menace had his forelegs up against the trunk and made more noise than a whole pack of coyotes.

    Stripe struggled under Rocky’s chest. A small rump wriggled free. Before Rocky could react that rump, followed by the rest and fell to the ground. The landing didn’t hurt, what with all that fur, but the dog was on her in a flash and had her by the scruff.

    Stella screamed. “Dad, save it. He’s going to kill it.”

    Rocky descended faster than a bullet. He lunged at the dog, teeth bared, growling.

    The dog, knowing when to cut his losses, let go, and with a sharp yelp, took off, tail between his legs.

    Rocky positioned himself between Stripe and the crowd of picnickers that had begun to gather, fur standing out straight, poised, ready to take on any who approached.

    “Dad, it’s a kitten. He’s going to hurt it.” Tears streaked Stella’s cheeks.

    That was enough for Rocky. He wriggled back, still facing the crowd, took Stripe in his teeth by the nape and scrabbled back up the tree. There he tucked her firmly under his belly again and dared anyone to challenge him.

    “I think she’s been adopted. We’d better go.” Dad led the others away.

    Stripe was safe with Rocky once more.

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