The Case of the Smoking Dragon

Cops wanted to talk. Reckoned I had something to do with the old man.

‘The guy was wired.’ I lit a cigarette with another. ‘Said his life’s in danger, then blathered on about demons.’

‘Demons?’ The kid took notes.

The old one’s clenched up and pissed.

‘I ignored it,’ I said. ‘Got some drinking in at Eddie’s. Then this chick, she’s shaking right? Seen demons at East Side, she says, where them murders happened.’

‘You didn’t call us?’

‘I needed the drink money,’ I shrugged, ‘so I pay the guy a visit. Landlady’s bleating about the smell. I break down the door.’

‘It was bolted on the inside,’ the kid reads from his book. ‘But no fire.’

‘I’m getting to that, kid.’ I took another drag, the taste made me sick.

‘There was no fire,’ I said, ‘but everything reeked — like burnt meat.’

‘Coroner said his heart burned — to a crisp. How’d you do it!’ The old guy grabbed me.

‘It was a dragon!’

I needed a drink. But the kid’s curious. ‘Dragon?’

‘A wooden dragon. It was on his chest, breathing smoke.’


‘Where’s the dragon?’ the kid said.

‘It flew away. God’s honest truth, the thing grinned and flew away.’

© 2017 Occasional Dreams
In response to: Sunday Photo Fiction – February 19th 2017
Image credit: A Mixed Bag


20 Replies to “The Case of the Smoking Dragon”

  1. Chills! David! Chills! I thought it was like a mafia revenge thing going on at first. Got a little sniff of an accent in my head. Then your dragon reared its head. This is good story telling. Kind I like to read alone at night and see dragons breathe and grin.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You feel cramped too David with the words? Me too and its an exercise to be so prudent with words isn’t it. I love the long stories really, do you have a few? I must go read your other stuff not just the prompts. But this came out really good, told you I had the chills. But you are the perfectionist I can tell by the precise layering of words in each sentence.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh yes, I’m much too wordy for my own good. My stories before doing these prompts often ran between the 500 – 1,000 words. These prompts are good practice. And yes, I’m very much a perfectionist, which makes it difficult to get anything finished at times!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. That’s a lot of words! I like words though. And I see your perfection. The day just ran away with me and I wanted to go read some of your stories, I will, come read. Yes, agreed the prompts have helped me a lot, and I also look back and read my older ones and see shifts and changes that I like. Plus it gives us a chance to experiment with different writing styles don’t you think so? – not that I have one LOL! Lovely day to you David wherever you are, I hope you get the weather you wish for!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Neel. And please know the feeling is mutual. As we pass each other during these photo prompts, I too have come to enjoy your writings and look forward to reading more.


  2. Trying to keep to the word count can be difficult. I tend to write the story to about 200-220 words and then edit it down afterwards. It can be so hard sometimes as you end up having to cut out some big moments and try to rewrite them elsewhere.

    You have done a great job with this. I can imagine the setting, the descriptions were awesome

    Liked by 1 person

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