Short story: The Lion’s Mane

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The giant creature pulsed, once, twice, propelling itself forward through the water, blue tentacles trailing in the wake of its translucent body, like streamers wafting sadly on a filmy chandelier the morning after a party.

Flora and Richard stood naked at the edge of the sea, foam gathering around their ankles while they watched the horizon turn from a deep ultramarine to orange.

‘Ready?’ she said, nudging him.

‘Will it be cold?’

‘Bloody freezing.’

‘At least you’re honest.’

‘The only way is to do it quickly.’ She took his hand and they ran forward.

The creature turned.

***

 

A Lion’s Mane is one of the world’s largest jellyfish; the body can grow up to two metres wide, with metres of tentacles with powerful stings.

lions_mane_jellyfish

***

For those who don’t know how Friday Fictioneers works, this picture (this time supplied by DLovering) is our inspiration for our weekly online writing group hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Each story is only about 100 words long, so why not read a few others: click here to read some more or to join in.  And please comment below with any suggestions on mine, or just to show you’ve visited.

47 thoughts on “Short story: The Lion’s Mane

  1. How funny – I was reading all about Lion’s Mane Jellyfish to N last night! Can entirely see why the bunting made you think of that particular creature! And glad to see Flora developing….. 🙂

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  2. Fabulous – incredible descriptions – the streamers on the chandelier and the foam around their ankles. Wonderful stuff and a very different take on the prompt – I just hope the creature doesn’t get them!

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  3. I’d never heard of the Lion’s Mane jellyfish — but now that you’ve described it, I can’t UNSEE it in my mind. Lovely description, and the almost anthropomorphic sentience you attribute to the creature gives this a very ominous tone. Wonderful again, Claire.

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  4. I was hooked from the first line and terrified too!Loved the horror of it all and how you brought in the two unsuspecting souls into it all-awesome Claire:-)

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  5. Good tension of the “Jaws” type and that was a scary movie. That’s one of the reasons I haven’t been in the ocean for years. Good description that places the reader at the scene. I also hope they’re not attacked. Well done. 🙂

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  6. Claire, there’s an expectation in stories that when you start out with happy people, bad things happen to them. I’m hoping this isn’t the case for Flora and Richard but I have a sinking feeling.

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  7. Two meters – that’s huge but I never heard of this kind of jellyfish. I was hoping the monster jellyfish wouldn’t see them enter the water – but alas, they did. Good writing as usual! Nan 🙂

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