Photo (c) 2017 Murphy Frain Photography.

A Debt to Die For

I promised my mother. Promised myself. I wanted to stop. But the voice.

It purrs in my head.

Without planning, I find myself back here. Why don’t they know I’ll come?

Three exit the train. My eyes lock on one. He walks beneath the lone streetlight, but it gives way.

My heart doesn’t race anymore. That thrill ended. But the voice growls like a lion inside my head, louder until I can no longer ignore it.

He turns the corner, slips by, a whisker away from me. It’s Frain. Guy who cheated off me in high school twenty-two years ago. Not the first time I’ve stalked him here. But it’s the last.

I never forgive. I hope he does.

I kiss my katana.

Sorry, mother.

Prey for me.


A katana, in case you’re wondering, is a samurai sword. You’re getting the definition easy. I found out the hard way. The letter L brings us back to more fun. Unless you’re me, of course, where fun doesn’t show up until May. Thursday’s weapon sounds like it might be …

  • Lamp
  • Lead pipe
  • Leaf
  • Liquor
  • Love

22 thoughts on “Katana

  1. You had a rather murderous high school class. I suppose we all do.

    For tomorrow, love is the deadliest force in all existence for no greater love is there that one man lay down his life for another 😉


    1. My high school class was the setting for Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None.” Of course, Agatha Christie wrote her classic long before my high school class showed up, so there I go again … timeline. Ugh!


  2. High school grudges. But if this Frain fellow cheated off the katana-wielder, and he still holds a grudge 22 years later, does this mean Frain outscored him and made valedictorian, and he didn’t? Color me dense I guess.

    I’ll expand on one of your options for L. L is fore leaf-BLOWER. At 5am. What a nasty way to go.


    1. Hey, it’s flash fiction, who’s got time for such backstory! I figured everyone came to the story already knowing Frain was valedictorian. And chief bottle washer. Captain of the debate team…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I guess you’re right, Emily. I wish my former acquaintances would quit being the type of people that hang on to grudges so long. Lord knows I give people enough reason.


  3. Ah so, Samuri. I do recall. You seem to have a lot of folks, from all walks of life pissed at you. So, though I deem you a very congenial fellow, I have to ask, are some–or all– of these one-time assassins based upon experience? BTW, you misspelled pray, or was that an intentional play on words?
    Great stuff, Frain, a.k.a. Wiley Coyote.


      1. Haha, you’re not kidding. Never let on when you accidentally do something right. But I’ll deny till my death is I accidentally do something wrong! (Well, this month that won’t be much denying.)

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, I’m guilty of typos, no denying that. In this case, however, I was intentionally going for the double meaning of prey/pray. Mom, pray for me because, um, this is prey for me.

      The whole month is based on real-life examples with a little license to fictionalize the account so people don’t recognize themselves. This story, for example, is about a guy I know who knew a guy who had seen a katana. So, yeah, based on actual events. Like the movies always say nowadays.


    1. You got me on that, Tamara. I quit watching TV a little over a year ago and I’ve never heard of Michonne and I’ve never seen The Walking Dead. (I assume it’s a TV series, but maybe you’re talking about a movie in which case I’m still unfortunately ignorant.)


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