Flash Fiction Writing Prompt: Apples

apples and fur spokane ren faire 2018 flash fiction prompt copyright K. S. Brooks
Photo copyright K. S. Brooks. Do not use without attribution.

Use the photograph above as the inspiration for your flash fiction story. Write whatever comes to mind (no sexual, political, or religious stories, jokes, or commentary, please) and after you PROOFREAD it, submit it as your entry in the comments section below. There will be no written prompt.

Welcome to the Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge. In 250 words or less, write a story incorporating the elements in the picture at left. 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 Tuesday at 5:00 PM Pacific Time. No political or religious entries, please. Need help getting started? Read this article on how to write flash fiction.

On Wednesday, we will open voting to the public with an online poll so they may choose the winner. Voting will be open until 5:00 PM Thursday. On Saturday morning, the winner will be recognized as we post the winning entry along with the picture as a feature.

Once a month, the admins will announce the Editors’ Choice winners. Those stories will be featured in an anthology like this one. Best of luck to you all in your writing!

Entries only in the comment section. Other comments will be deleted. See HERE for additional information and terms. Please note the rule changes for 2018.

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14 thoughts on “Flash Fiction Writing Prompt: Apples”

  1. She was the apple of my eye. This little beauty born to me and my wife. I never imagined that something this perfect could or would ever come from me. But from the moment she was placed in these loving arms, my heart belonged to her. Now she’s all grown up, my little apple, ready to go off into the world and make dreams of her own.


    If Apples Be Wisdom

    If apples be wisdom, then seven be fine,
    Atop a fur blanket, the best to recline.
    If they imbue power, then let us partake.
    To open our eyes, all the senses to wake.

    The trees where they ripened, a shady retreat,
    Nature’s sweet umbrella where we pause to eat.
    A crimson confection, each delicate taste,
    Not wanting a mouthful of fruit go to waste.

    This bountiful harvest is mine to ingest,
    An orchard of plenty, shared at your behest.
    So pierce the skin gently, and taste of the tart,
    Each glorious bite born of Nature’s fine art.

    Reclined in our bower, each succulent drop,
    A crispy selection, I don’t want to stop.
    If knowledge be power, all seven we’ll eat,
    A red, ripe indulgence; we’ll soon be replete.

    ~Tamara McLanahan

  3. “Seven apples, lying on the skin of a bear. What does it signify?” Estelle watched her father study the tableau laid out on the ground before him. “Apples, taken from the tree. A skin, taken from the bear. Life, taken away. Seven, a mystical number.”

    Wide-eyed, her children also silently watched their grandfather with a mixture of fear and admiration. Grampa was tall and strong, and he had provided for all six of them since their father’s accident.

    Grampa circled slowly around the bearskin letting not the slightest bit of fur touch his boots. “The apple in the middle has a mark in its center,” Grampa noted. “Three apples lie above it and three below. What is this mark? Does it signify the center of all things? Or is it evil, an evil eye?”

    The children had no answers. Estelle too was silent.

    Grampa nodded his head knowingly and headed toward the barn where he quickly saddled his horse.

    “Miz Williams will know what to do.” He said, and he rode away in the direction of the widow woman’s cabin.

    Estelle divided the apples between her children. She had to laugh at the elaborate ruses her father used just to escape the children for a little while. And to pay a visit to an attractive single lady.

    She cut the black mark out of the last apple and saved the apple for him.

  4. The seven lie gently on a soft bed of fur as if further enticement were necessary. Fallen now, they glistened in the early morning sun, watchful, waiting, ripe with promise. Each wondering which would be taken first. Would the consumer pause after the first bite or would they be eaten whole, some down to the core or more, even to the seeds? After all, bit of cyanide would be the least of any person’s worries after even a single mouthful.

    The apple to the furthest right sat alone, too proud to fraternize with the others. It was, after all, the most perfectly shaped, the brightest red, and secretly believed it would be chosen first.

    The topmost apple was very nearly perfect, sure that the other six were saddened not to be so well positioned, or envious of the luster as well.

    The smallest apple sat among his compatriots and hoped he’d fuel the appetite of the one to take him in hand. How many more would be eaten after taking their bite of him?

    Black marks marred the skin of another, as where it had fallen was where it had stayed, caring little for when it was eaten.

    The palest sat impatiently, annoyed to be pressed up against the smallest who hadn’t had the courtesy to move even in the slightest.

    The bottom apple lay upside down, a lack of control in his descent.

    The seventh apple hoped they’d all be made into a pie.


    Just deserts.

  5. Curly and Louie lugged their Don’s dead body up the hillside path to the old orchard. Stopping halfway up, “Louie, there’s his favorite bench, let’s rest.”

    Respectfully, they sat the Don upright on his bench. Curly went to sit down next to him. “What’re you doing? Get up! Show some respect for dead.”

    Curly knew better than to argue with Louie, so, he got up and stood with Louie watching over their dead Don, “You know, he looks peaceful as if he just fell asleep.”

    Louie replied, “Yeah, I wonder what killed him, he just turned all purple in the face and keeled over, maybe we should have called 911.”

    “No! Louie! The family would not believe us, and someone else would be carrying us up to the orchard, or worse grind us up to feed the chickens.”

    “Yeah, your right, did you dig the grave up there like I told you? ”

    Louie groaned, “Oh! Shoot! I got so upset over him dying, I forgot.”

    “No problem, let’s leave him sitting here and finish our last job for him.”

    Finished digging, they headed back when Curly exclaimed, “Oh No! Look the family is all around the body! Now what do we do?”

    Louie sighed, “I guess take our lumps.”

    The Doc spotted them returning, “It looks like a heart attack. Can you carry him down the hill for us.”

    With sad grins they both did, and later planted an apple tree in the grave they dug for him.


    “You’re so…so…PREDICTABLE !”

    “Whatdya mean?”

    “It’s just that you never want to try something NEW !”

    “Well, I like what I have.”

    “Where is your sense of adventure? Life’s to be LIVED !”

    “I’m living, and I like the way things are.”

    “Look. Just look around us…we have a nice home, live in a beautiful place amidst an abundance of good things. But you won’t even TRY something new.”

    “Such as?”

    “Well, fruit for example. We’re surrounded by it. Yet you ignore it. Won’t even take a bite.”

    “Listen, you know me. I’m a meat and potatoes kinda guy.”

    “That’s all well and good. But if you don’t sample…don’t explore all of these offerings, you’ll never know what you’re missing!!”

    “I’m content.”

    “OK, OK…just try this banana.”

    “Nope. Not interested.”

    “Then how about a pear.”

    “I’d rather have some nuts.”

    “Try this persimmon.”

    “Too many seeds.”

    “Tell me. When will you show some spirit of adventure? Spread your wings as they say.”

    “They who? It’s just you and me here!!”

    Whispering in his ear, she said coyly: “If you really loved me you’d at least take a bite of this apple. It looks GORGEOUS.”

    He looked at her and thought: what the heck, she’s my wife. And if this is all it takes to make her happy…why not?

    Frankly, it tasted pretty good.

    “You’re right, Eve. It’s time for a change.”

    “Oh, Adam !!”

    They heard the serpent’s hiss behind them.

  7. Mary sighed. Seven apples left means one more week at camp.

    Mary had begged and begged for what seemed her entire life to spend a summer at a horse ranch. She always imagined herself riding across the Great Plains, with the wagon trains, or even better through meadows surrounded by large leafy trees where she could rest, eat lunch, and nuzzle her pony.

    No matter how much she planned, no matter how hard she saved, something always got in the way. But this year was the year. She couldn’t spend the entire summer, but she could go for four weeks. All her hopes and dreams were coming true!

    At the beginning, Mary and the other campers were given the month’s rations for their particular horse. It was their responsibility to feed and care for their charges while they were there. The ranch wanted the campers to spend as much time as possible with the horses so they could bond with the animals and also so the campers would know how much work is truly involved with owning a horse.

    Mary knew about hard work.

    Having had dogs and cats all her life, she understood the responsibility involved with a pet. But the stall mucking, constant combing, and the heaviness of the saddle promptly dashed her illusions.

    The dreams of childhood are always bitterly dashed when seen through the realistic eyes of a 43-year-old.

  8. Annabelle lived in the English countryside in the days of lords, ladies, knights and peasants. Her family of six held a small plot of land, and lived in a two-room cottage.

    Her father and older brother, Edmond, would go out hunting; then they ate and traded the meat, and traded the furs. Four times a year, the landlord came to collect. For him, the family saved their silver coins.

    Annabelle’s favorite time of year was apple-picking season in the orchard. In fair weather, they would leave wooden chairs covered with furs under the trees, to catch the falling apples, and discourage vermin.

    Early one morning, bandits raided their orchard. They stole seven furs and about five dozen apples. They even broke some chairs, waking the adults.

    As Father and Edmond quickly dressed to pursue the villains, Mother begged them not to go. “Pray, Terrence, we can get more apples and furs, but where shall I find another fine husband and eldest son?”

    Father said, “I will wake our neighbors to help. We will take stock of those cowards before challenging them.”

    Anxious and crying, Annabelle waited with her mother and the younger children. But the men returned tousled and spent, loaded down with goods. Annabelle threw her arms around her father and brother.

    “They were but young rakes. After giving them a good beating, we took what was ours, and more to cover our losses and trouble. We’ll not see the likes of them again!”

  9. Poison Apples

    The last visual in my conscious mind was laying back to sleep. The ceiling looked fuzzy and blackened quickly. With my eyes open I now see myself lying on the bear skin with an apple in my outstretched hand. I do not know how much time has passed. Apples were all around me on the pelt to tempt me. I hadn’t seen apples in five years and I couldn’t resist.

    My hand slides through the furniture as if it is not there. My eyes fall onto a piece of paper that seems on my plane. I move toward it not sure of reality, while continually glancing at my form that is not moving.

    A second life is possible. The parameters are simple. For a gift of 20 years I perform weekly requirements. Tasks of service but no questions or deviations. If rules are not followed death will be immediate.

    I sign the page there is nothing to lose.

    I sit up on the pelt. The first task is simply to compliment every person I talk to. No issues.

    Week two the card requires me to apologize to my mother even though she is wrong. I refuse. I am immediately compelled to an apple which I bite into and once again I see myself laying on the floor apple in outstretched hand.

    Will I ever learn? This time the paper says I can only live for ten.

  10. Giovanni propped his canvas onto the easel and turned to the class. Some stood while others sat, brush in hand, eagerly awaiting instructions. The faint scent of turpentine drifted through the studio.

    “There’s your subject this week,” he began. “Seven apples. We’re going to experiment with only one color, Burnt Sienna, for the entire painting. Remember, whenever you set up a still life always use an odd number of pieces for your subject, where the light is coming from and, most importantly, light against dark,” he stressed. “Now, go! Become an apple. Know what it feels like to sit on a blanket in front of strangers. Fill your painting with your emotions for, and of, the subject.”

    And, there she sat with her back to him. Her hair was graying, but that delicious curve at the back of her neck hadn’t changed. Would she remember modeling for his first nude painting ages ago? Paris? Montmartre? The captivating Moulin Rouge? Their five weeks of absolute bliss?

    Then, after he nonchalantly told her it was time to go back to the wife and children she knew nothing about, he casually disappeared. Her heart crumbled. She searched, but never saw him again and took to walking the streets while plotting a long-awaited revenge.

    He brushed against her shoulder and leaned forward. It took just a second to feel the slash of her knife as he slumped to the floor clutching his throat.

    Waiting for the police, she smiled and felt young again.

  11. “Well, this is it, Selma. End of the season. Last of the harvest. We are all that’s left”.

    “Yeah, it’s been a long year. I’ll miss you, Mary. We had our fun, basking in the sun, drinking in the elements, avoiding pests, and watching our friends disappear by the dozen from Farmer Brown’s stand.”

    “Helps to be a little bruised or under-ripe, doesn’t it? We get to be the last to be chosen!”

    “True, but There is no dignity in being crushed into cider or winding up in one of Missus Brown’s pies. Look at Henry over there. Still has that high gloss Alar glow. See how he managed to separate himself from us all? Won’t be caught dead with us Seconds. No, Henry’s angling for death with dignity. Perhaps in a teacher’s lunch sack”.

    “Oh, look at him. He’s practically crying out ‘pick me!’ What hubris!”

    “Been that way all year. Since the blossoms in May when we all started to fruit. I shared a limb with him. Never a word of conversation from that one. Always primping for the sprayers and dodging the borers with his twisting and spinning. A real show-off. It’s no wonder he got picked first. Quite ironic though, as that put him on the bottom of the pile and now he’s the last Select.”

    “Shhh! Here comes a buyer”

    “She grabbed Henry. But, oh no! She dropped him on the pavement. Putting him back. Look at that bruise! Oh, well, Pie anyone?”

  12. APPLES

    Farm people had very little cash money but didn’t know they were poor. The neighbors lived as my grandparents the Garrisons did. Most of the food came from the land. Fruit was not plentiful in the area between Kentucky and Oklahoma.

    Small apples such as the Arkansas Black were the most common. It was a good-keeping apple with very dark skin that kept through the winter. The longer they were stored the shinier they became, firm and hard for the following spring.

    Other varieties of apples were cut and dried in the sun and used for pies and applesauce for the winter. The Garrisons usually had a barrel of apples that were doled out one-half to each child. Nothing was wasted.

  13. Twenty-two year old Issac looked over at his second cousin,by marriage,Lilly.She was three years younger,and would have been married if it wasn’t for the plague that ravished the country. He had left his advanced studies, at Cambridge, to come home to the safety of the family farm.

    He watched Lilly flit from picnic basket to blanket.

    ” Lilly, you are such a distraction to my mathmatical studies, and writing,” he said laughing.

    ” But Issac, we are young, we should be distracted,” she smiled coyly.

    Lilly prepared a scrumptious plate of food for him, and sat close.

    ” Mmm…very nice Lilly,” he murmured, but his mind raced with concepts and theories.

    As Issac relaxed, he noticed the apples that fell from the tree, in the breeze.

    ” I must get after our workers. Why aren’t these apples being picked!”

    Another apple fell onto the blanket.

    ” Why does it always fall like that?” Issac thought aloud.

    “What, dear cousin?” Lilly cooed.

    Then, another- falling straight down.

    “Why don’t they fall sideways or up?”


    ” It’s been happening all my life, and I’ve never realized the significance!” he said excited.

    “What’s wrong?”

    ” Lilly, do you know what this means to my research…?”

    ” No…”

    ” There is a force that we cannot see, that is equally strong to all objects,” he said grabbing her by the arms, ” I have to go to my study!”

    ” I guess the picnic is over…” she said frowning, and looking down at the blanket…hating those apples!

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