The Voices #Friday Fictioneers

The street emptied, and the voices got quieter.  I could think again.
I considered how I ended up in this place.  I’d had this theory, you see, that if I went somewhere where people didn’t speak English, I would stop hearing the voices everywhere.  Or, if I did hear them, I wouldn’t be able to understand.  Well, I was wrong about that, wasn’t I?  I learned something else too – the more perceptive you are, the more alone you are.
An old man in the doorway glances at me, and thinks to himself: just another tourist.

———-

When you think about “superpowers” a little bit, you are a lot more grateful about being plain old normal.  Anyway…Every Friday, writers from all around the world write 100 word (or thereabouts) flash fiction based on a photo posted that Wednesday on Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog.

I welcome constructive criticism; without it I cannot grow as a writer.  The weekly photo that inspired this story is below:

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About glossarch

The word "glossarch" doesn't exist. At least, not yet. But let's pretend it does for a second. The first part is "gloss," a word that comes to us from Ancient Greek via Latin and English. It means "language." The second part also comes from Ancient Greek and can mean "having power over." So "glossarch" means simply "language controller." So what am I doing making up words? Well, I made up an entire language once. It's called Angosey. So I'm the Glossarch of Angosey. I'm currently a doctorate student in volcano seismology (a branch of geophysics). I enjoy writing fiction and poetry, launching balloons, programming, and hanging out with my lovely wife! Follow me on Twitter! Writing and language creation: @glossarch Balloons and science: @bovineaerospace
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20 Responses to The Voices #Friday Fictioneers

  1. Sandra says:

    Interesting concept. I’ve always assumed the voices in your head would speak in your own language because they’re a product of your own brain. Now if they didn’t, that would be truly scary… Nicely done.

  2. Terrifying prospect — if all of a sudden the voices in your head spoke a language you didn’t know… madness confirmed. Unique take on the prompt, darling — and I like unique!

  3. elmowrites says:

    I assume the voices are the thoughts of others – in this case the old man, and therefore it does seem strange that they wouldn’t be in English. Unless, of course, they are not those people’s thoughts at all….

    • glossarch says:

      Crazy, or telepathic? My idea was that he fled English speaking countries so that he would read people’s thoughts in another language, and thus not understand them.

  4. mike olley says:

    One day ESP will come with subtitles. Great story.

  5. Super powers or mentally ill? It’s a fine line 😉

  6. The more perceptive the more alone you are. I think there’s a lot of truth to that. How bizarre that would be to hear voices in a foreign language. Fascinating take!

  7. zookyworld says:

    Disturbing thoughts to have voices crowding the narrator’s head — even in a language they can’t understand. Contrasted when the street empties and the narrator feels so alone. A well-crafted story to convey that unease — of being crowded with voices and then feeling deeply alone.

  8. Dear Danny,

    A well-crafted illustration of how a gift could become a curse.Good one.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

  9. atrm61 says:

    Erk-voices -even speaking in foreign lands!Run!Terrifying yet fascinating thought:-)

  10. That’s an interesting idea, that if you were in a foreign country, the voices would be foreign. I think Rosetta Stone uses that idea. 🙂 There’s a mystery series I enjoy by the mother-son combination of Charles Todd, that has a detective shell-shocked from WWI, hearing the voice of someone he’d had to have shot for disobeying an order. This reminded me a bit of that. Single or plural, voices would be disconcerting.

    janet

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