Apr 03 2017

C #AtoZChallenge Conversing #Fiction #SFF

#AtoZChallenge2017 Badge C #AtoZchallenge @JLenniDorner

My THEME for the A to Z challenge 2017 is an ongoing speculative fiction story featuring telepathy.

Each letter post is titled and inspired by a commonly misused word or phrase.

line break


Conversing without speaking out loud freaks everyone out the first time. Mr. Bennett is no exception. Having been only on the hearing end all these years has really messed him.

We sit under the oak tree across from the high school. Most students have piled on buses or driven off in their vehicles. A few are still around since some after school activities started even before the first day of classes.

Mr. Bennett’s mind drifts to memories of his early teen years. That’s when his mind-reading developed. He didn’t know what was happening, of course. A girl named Cindy kept having sex dreams about him. She thought about the dreams when she saw him. Mr. Bennett thought this was a sign that she liked him. It turned out that wasn’t the case.

“She humiliated you at an assembly? In front of everyone? Wow. I’m so sorry.”

His eyes widen and he thinks a string of curse words.

“Beck and call, remember? Sorry, I guess. You can’t lock me out.” I’m actually #SorryNotSorry about this. It’s nice to have a friend I can honestly talk to. Or think to. “No,” I answer his next thought. “The journal assignment isn’t to blame.” I’d have figured out what you are as soon as you tried to read my thoughts.

I never try. It just happens. Why don’t I hear all your thoughts? You’re mostly just a dull buzz. It’s a nice break, don’t get me wrong, but it’s weird.

Weird? I laugh. He yanks up a blade of grass and shreds it while laughing along. You only hear what I allow you to hear because I think at different volumes.

“How did you learn to do that?”

I shrug. “Most of it is easy.” Even regular people can think VERY LOUD or very soft.

“Yeah, but none of them have a dull buzz in between.”

Can you hear me now? I hold up my finger. He nods. Can you still hear me? I rotate my finger.

“I could, but then it cut off at the end. I can’t now at all.”

“Yeah. Volume. I keep it off unless I’m trying to be heard. Picked that survival skill up when I was seven.”

Someone else could hear inside your head? Someone besides me?

Mr. Bennett, you have no idea how not alone we are.


line break

Have you ever had an inappropriate dream about a classmate or co-worker?

by J Lenni Dorner
Reference and Speculative Fiction Author
A to Z Challenge Co-Host
Operation Awesome Debut Author Spotlight Organizer
Operation Awesome Debut Author Spotlight Organizer @JLenniDornerFollow @JLenniDorner on Twitter please WhatAreThey on Facebook pages Networked Blog @JLenniDorner Linky Followers @JLenniDorner Bloglovin

Follow JLenniDorner on Pinterest please Follow and friend J Lenni Dorner on Goodreads please Please visit the author page of J Lenni Dorner on Amazon Please visit author J Lenni Dorner on Smashwords Please add Author J Lenni Dorner on G+ Google Plus Please visit J Lenni Dorner on AllAuthor


Skip to comment form

    • rads on April 3, 2017 at 5:25 PM

    oh wow, so true. That was deep, took me a couple of reads and i so agree. We are as alone as we think we are, but never alone in our heads. Until you reach further down your journey. Meditation helps with silence.
    Good piece!
    My latest blog B
    Find on Twitter:

  1. Great! Keep going. I’m hooked.
    B is for Bon Jovi
    Janet Miles has this post to share April 2017 – #Atozchallenge – Beginning with BMy Profile

  2. Intriguing concept, engaging style. You’ve got me. Have I ever…? Hahaha — of course I have!
    Find on Twitter:

    • Marquessa on April 3, 2017 at 10:46 PM

    Wow! I enjoyed that! i’ll be back for more!
    Find on Twitter:

  3. This is awesome…. I love the theme as well as the way the tale is unfolding… Just trying to think what would have happened had my teachers been able to hear my thoughts… I would have been in a lot of trouble 😉
    Jaishvats has this post to share #AtoZChallenge 2017 – C for CupMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

  4. Part of the hooked brigade! 🙂
    Nilanjana Bose has this post to share C is for…Chai…Coffee…and…Calligraphy…My Profile

    • Duncan on April 4, 2017 at 2:06 AM

    Inappropriate dreams? Yes, they seem to crop up quite often haha!
    Absolutely Amazing Alliteration
    Duncan has this post to share “C” post – Absolutely Amazing AlliterationMy Profile

  5. I like all the little details you are drip feeding about this concept. Count me in as hooked, too!
    Nick Wilford has this post to share A-Z Challenge 2017 – C is for CentreMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

  6. Inappropriate dreams? Me? Never. But seriously, who hasn’t? Mind reading only appeals superficially to me. The more I think about the less i like the idea, although there are times when such an ability would be decidedly handy.

  7. We are not alone… Awesome! Happy A-to-Z-ing.
    Ronel Janse van Vuuren has this post to share Calling It #TwistedTaleTuesday #FlashFiction #AtoZChallengeMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

  8. Great twist! Being able to turn the volume down and guard your thoughts would be a good thing to have
    Find on Twitter:

  9. I really liked this. Well done conversation. I had to go back to A to make sure I understood how the conversing was going on…the italics and quotation marks. It’s quite complex…as would be telepathy!
    Find on Twitter:

    • Kaddu on April 4, 2017 at 8:13 AM

    I find the idea of mind reading quite appealing, if only we can do it when we want, instead of how Mel Gibson was stuck with all the “voices” without any control.
    Thank you for stopping by at my blog.
    Happy AtoZing!
    Chicky @ http://www.mysteriouskaddu.com
    Kaddu has this post to share A to Z of Happiness: C – Calmness #atozchallenge @AprilA2ZMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

    • FinnBadger on April 4, 2017 at 9:48 AM

    No dreams from me, although one coworker had a dream about me!

    I like the cliffhanger (at least for Mr Bennett) end to this one. And that meme is fantastic.

    Phillip | C is for collaboration

  10. Nice cliffhanger. The GIF made me laugh, too.

    ~Patricia Lynne aka Patricia Josephine~
    Story Dam
    Patricia Lynne, Indie Author
    Find on Twitter:

  11. This post is awesome

    Launching SIM Organics
    *Menaka Bharathi*

  12. Loving the series till now! looking forward for more of the story to unfold:)
    Namratha has this post to share Crafting a business: Quiet Books: #AtoZChallengeMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

    • Tamara on April 4, 2017 at 2:03 PM

    And there I was thinking “conversing” means walking around wearing fancy sneakers 😂
    Find on Twitter:

    • Tamara on April 4, 2017 at 5:15 PM

    I don’t think I’ve had a sex dream about any coworkers. I have been freelancing for a while…so it would be weird dreams about myself, lol.

    Will all the flash fiction pieces piece together for a complete story at the end? I really liked this piece.

    C is for Character
    Find on Twitter:

  13. Love the volume control on mind reading – clever!

    @Moondustwriter A Piece of Uganda
    Leslie Moon has this post to share Circle #Uganda #atozchallenge #acholiMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

    • Anna on April 5, 2017 at 5:55 AM

    Ooo volume control. That’s a neat trick.

    No inappropriate dreams that I can recall right now…. probably repressed by my subconscious.
    Anna has this post to share #AtoZChallenge: The Princess and the Diamond DarknessMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

  14. I’m intrigued by the volume dial, wondering if the finger motion is needed or just a helpful prop for his mind to focus on. Great chapter! 🙂

    Natalie Westgate has this post to share Descent (Secret Diary Of A Serial Killer)My Profile
    Find on Twitter:

    1. Yay! I was hoping someone would wonder that.
      *hands you candy*
      Good reader. 😉

      1. Ooo candy! *noms happily* 😀
        Natalie Westgate has this post to share Descent (Secret Diary Of A Serial Killer)My Profile
        Find on Twitter:

  15. Woah! Loved the twist in the story. Specially the protagonist’s ability to block his own thoughts from other people. I mean, when we think of mind reading and telepathy, we never think about a the hiding aspect too!

    As a regular mortal, I wish I could up my poker face game once in a while 🙈
    Mithila Menezes has this post to share Fame, the fickle and flighty temptress #AtoZChallengeMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

  16. Interesting, I wonder how she learned to control her volume.
    Sara C. Snider has this post to share A to Z Herbarium: PoppyMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

Comments have been disabled.

%d bloggers like this: