Posted: August 29, 2013 in dark, fiction
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

FFFPrompt KIOSK lvbydawne_3

Thank you to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for all her work and organization. You can visit her site and read through the other Flash Fiction Friday postings at:


For those who are new, Rochelle shares a photo prompt to which several #FridayFictioneers compose a 100-word flash of fiction. Come, eat your fill and more, so much more.

Here’s my contribution:

The Experiment

Charlie Messler leaned against a facade within the Valley Mall, surveyed the testers and fingered the bottles of cologne and perfume within his pockets. Maybe here?

Some four thousand consumers were gorging themselves on things, stuff, excesses.

Yes, this is precisely the place.

He approached a kiosk in the central thoroughfare, the highest traffic zone, and casually swapped the sampler bottles with his doctored replacements while inquiring about a lovely topaz pendant suspended by a gold chain.

Such fun.

He moseyed to a coffee shop nearby, ordered one black and sipped while he observed his first two subjects expose themselves.


  1. Adam Ickes says:

    The scary part is that this could easily happen

  2. zookyworld says:

    I shall steer clear of those sampler bottles … but hopefully the offerings in the food court are not tainted…

    • JKBradley says:

      You might do better (and safer) at a roadside roach cart. You always hear about food poisoning from restaurants, not from those small carts with hotdogs and big doughy pretzels.

      Thanks for visiting!!

  3. I echo Adam’s sentiments. I’m all paranoid now. Sheesh, darling, this was frightening.

    • JKBradley says:

      Don’t you ever wonder about the stuff we blindly consume?

      I’m tickled by your enjoyment of this piece, cause the scary stuff hasn’t even happened yet.

      Thanks, Helena!

  4. unspywriter says:

    Yes, I, too, am more paranoid than usual. Very chilling in that you capture the way this could so easily be done.

    Here’s mine: http://unexpectedpaths.com/friday-fictioneers/good-service/

    • JKBradley says:

      We, the consumer, get scammed everyday, yet on some level we sort of expect to. But Charlie, he’s up to something very special, and it stinks of trouble.

      Thanks for visiting, Maggie.

  5. rgayer55 says:

    You put us right inside that wacko’s head. Outstanding piece, JK.

  6. Carrie says:

    just one more reason to stay away from the samplers!!

  7. Jan Brown says:

    This was very well written, from the viewpoint of the terrorist. Very chilling, and a very realistic look inside his mind.

    • JKBradley says:

      Thank you, Jan. I hadn’t thought of Charlie as a terrorist, just someone up to no good. Maybe he is but I suspect his subjects haven’t a clue, which seems to me is a vital component to terrorism. The reader on the other hand….maybe that makes me a terrorist?!

  8. Whoah, what could be gong on here? I love that he was so casual, inquiring about that “lovely topaz pendant suspended by a gold chain.” Thanks for that.

  9. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear JK,

    Ever read the novel Perfume? Goggle and order and enjoy. Great experiment. Send me the formulas, please. And thank you.



  10. kz says:

    so evil! fantastic job in getting us inside the mind of a madman.

  11. Sandra says:

    Grim and sinister – you’ve such an imagination JK. Well done.

  12. What a psychopath. That’s probably how the zombie apocalypse will finally story: Chanel #5.

  13. How fun it must to be evil …

  14. Dear JK,

    You’re so good at these sinister scenarios. Should I worry? Personally I think 90% of what is called food is poison. Bon Apetit. Good story.



  15. Sarah Ann says:

    I think the ‘Such fun’ line tells us so much about your character.

  16. Dani karns says:

    and this is why I stay away from those samples!!

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