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Story Writing Prompts - Writing Buddies Discord Server


bourgeoises pigeon
Most of these prompts are challenges received by a Discord server I joined that was founded by fellow RPN members. If you want to join it to help improve your writing or just give you something to do, lemme know! We're just writing in hopes to improve ourselves.

Prompt: A curious person asks someone why the moon changes every night. The answer they received was unexpected.

Promises under the Moon
966 words​
The sea of dead grass, tainted by the blood of countless men, stretched out underneath the thick wintry night. A night that was devoured by a thick smoke of war, gunpowder and battle cries. Darkened with the stench of decay, sweat, and metal; a stench that had at one point been numb to the man’s senses, but now it was his anchor. It kept him grounded as his nose scrunched up at the detestable scent. A distraction from the blood oozing between his fingers, from the war that continued around him.

A war that had, at one point, seemed warranted. Now? It felt pointless, irrelevant, but that could be the pain talking. That or it could have been the bite of exhaustion and constant hunger.

“Joey!” His name cracked like a gunshot over the expanse of dead grass, and it pulled him forward. His fingers dug into the wound at his side, applied more pressure as he tried desperately to sit up. The movement only seemed to rouse the blood within him. His body was too wracked with winter to feel the hot blood flowing freely against his fingers though. Yet the pain was as prevalent as the tears that gnawed at the corners of his eyes.

His friend, his brother-in-arms, noticed it--the blood--though as he ran underneath the spray of gunfire. Joey watched as the younger man jumped forward and dove for the half wall of sandbags. His head hit the sandbags, and his rifle nearly crashed into Joey’s own long arm. He’d discarded it at his side, its barrel pointed skyward, but it knocked over as soon as his friend slid to his side.

“Joey, I’ve been loo-oh God-” his friend’s voice faltered as his face drew level with Joey’s, “holy-Joey!” He’d never once heard his friend’s voice reach such a pitch until then. A sharp, drawled cry that only helped in accenting the pain he was trying desperately to ignore.

His friend’s hands ghosted over his own hands like fledglings, and with a quivering voice, he said, “you promised me.”

Yes, he had. A promise that he would make it home in one piece. A promise that he wouldn’t die like a dog on the side of the road. They both had made that promise. A promise that, at one point, had seemed so tangible that they’d made it underneath the guise of a joke. How childish.

“Not dead yet.” Joey smiled sheepishly, but he could tell from his friend’s expression that the smile was probably a grimace.

There was a pause between them. Then his friend’s hands withdrew, and they found solace in gripping the long-arm against his chest. “You better not. You can’t. Forget our promise. What about Maryanne?” There was a hollowness in his voice, and it drew a shudder from Joey. Right, Maryanne, the love he’d left behind.

She’d made him promise too. Promise you’ll come home, Joe. Their promise hadn’t been made within the depths of humor.

How childish he’d been. Of course. I’ll always come back to you.

“She’ll be all right. She’s strong. Strongest woman I know.” It was a struggle to speak aloud underneath war’s smog and the wave of pain. He managed though. He needed to say it aloud, assure himself that she’d be okay.

His friend bit his lip, but said no more as the battlefield twisted and pulled all around them. They melted into their own slip of silence, an unspoken conversation leading them on. But silence at that moment seemed so depressing. The pain was gradually ebbing away, and it made Joey’s fate all the more real. He wouldn’t be seeing through any of his promises.

It was then that his hands relaxed, and he subsided on the pressure. His head rolled back then, hard hat butting the sandbags behind him, and his eyes lifted toward the night sky. It was as thick and black as the dread that he tried to ignore, just like the pain. It seemed to stretch as far as the battlefield, and it was starless, devoid of hope. Nothing but the moon remained, bright and large. It was as if it was the last light, the light at the end of his tunnel.

“Lucas, why do you… why do you think the moon changes?” He whispered.

There was a pregnant pause as his friend crawled closer to him, and replied solemnly, “it represents the passage of time.”

Yes, and no. Joey faintly shook his head. “It represents a beginning and an end. The full moon…” his eyes squinted against the bulbous moon that rested high above them, “is the promise of an end. It’s the end of the cycle.”

“Don’t. Stop that. You’re not going to-”

“Sure, it only has a few phases, and its cycle lasts for thirty days.” His lips shook into a small smile. Thirty days, more like thirty years. Death at thirty years old, an age that he’d at one point in his life thought was “old.” It seemed so young now, as if his life had never even truly begun.

“Shut up. Just wait, we’ll get out of this, and you’ll-”

“Hey, how old are you again? Twenty-six? Ha, you still got… four years. The war should be done in four years.” Joey asked, and his friend once again drew up and leveled with Joey’s gaze.

“Joey, stop. You’re not-you can’t die.” His friend’s eyes were wide, as wide as the moon. For the first time since their deployment, Joey watched as fear painted over his friend’s face.

“You’ll outlive your lunar phase, right? You’ve got to now, for my sake.”

“No, quit that. Stop speaking nonsense. You’re fine, okay?”

It’s a promise, right?

“Fine-Joey, no. Stop, don’t close your eyes. Joey! Come on, wake up.”

Promise me that you’ll outlive me.
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bourgeoises pigeon
Prompt: Write about a Reunion between two people that used to be very close but, haven't seen each other for a long time
Promises under the Moon II
1382 words; 5 pages

A pungent aroma of warm roses, cool evergreen, and thick mahogany devoured the spacious lobby. Accompanied by a string of hanging lights overhead, a sea of vibrant flowers, and a soft murmur of piano music, the room felt almost comforting. Yet nothing could keep the coldness that reeked from the wooden box atop the church’s front stage. It had taken refuge where the pastor’s podium usually was. Its long, thick figure cast a foreboding shadow on the mourners that greeted it with glassy eyes.

The family that lingered beside it appeared anchored, stuck in time, as they greeted each mourner and shook each passing hand. Their bodies were stricken with grief, bones shivering at each breath of a memory, at each wave that was littered in condolences.

“I’m so sorry about your loss. Lucas was a good man. I’ll miss seeing him at the corner store.”

It was a scene that Lucas Montgomery had never, in his ninety-five years of life, wanted to see. It was inevitable though. A part of life, an ending to a story that had long since reached its resolution. Nevertheless, he felt bitter because half the people that shuffled into the church, to his funeral, had barely cared for him let alone cared for his family.

Well, it didn’t matter. He was dead, and at least they had the decency to come and say their goodbyes. Still as he watched from the back of the lobby, Lucas couldn’t help but muse over his friend from long ago. The friend that had introduced him to what it meant to live. Though that introduction had led to his friend’s death.

He’d died on the battlefield, and had left Lucas with a promise to simply live. It was an easy enough promise to achieve, but he still never understood what had led his friend to focus on nothing but that while he slowly passed on. Had he felt like this too when he was dying or even when he was dead? A bit lost, a bit cold, somewhat jealous, a little sad, and just a tad confused?

It was difficult trying to imagine his friend standing at the back of the room, just as he was. Time did funny things to one’s memory, but Lucas was sure that his friend would have popped out and headed to a nearby bar for his last drink. That is, if ghosts could even partake in that. Still, he was sure that the man would try. That thought alone caressed a smile over Lucas’s face as he gradually leaned back against the paneled wall.

The funeral procession crawled by as slowly as the humming piano music. It had only lasted two hours, but Lucas swore to himself that a year had managed to slip by in the time it took for the last guest to utter their condolences. Through that time he had watched his wife, his daughter, and her husband weep. He’d become accustomed to the feel of the constricting tie, identical to the one that his body wore in the coffin, around his neck. He’d even stopped marveling at his ghostly body’s youthfulness, having finally stopped rubbing a hand over wrinkle-free cheeks and hands. However, he still ran a stray finger on his head of hair, something he hadn’t had the pleasure of knowing or remembering for years now.

“Oh goodness, am I too late?”

The voice resounded beside him, distant yet solid. A muffled static of white noise that stitched itself together into clarity with each passing syllable.

Out of all of his guests, this one in particular irritated Lucas. Of all the things to say, and of all the ways to say it, this guy had the nerve to--he’d turned so that his shoulder pressed against the wall. The coldness from before vanished in an instant as the speaker’s eyes lingered on him, not through him.

There in-between the last set of pews stood a tall, lanky man dressed in a suit that would have brought the color of winter to shame. His smile was brighter than the lights overhead, and his laughter sounded much more soothing and heartwarming than the piano’s music ever would.

“No way I’d miss my friend’s funeral.”

“Joey? How are you--” Lucas’s voice stumbled just as he pulled away from the wall.

The smile on the man before him grew wider, and it reminded Lucas just how much he’d missed him. “Here? Well, I’m dead. You’re dead.” His friend, Joey, gestured between them with an ever growing grin. A grin which subsided into twinkling laughter, “So, ninety-five years, huh? That definitely surpassed my thirty years.”

Lucas stood at the mouth of the aisle in shock as he looked his friend over from head to toe. He himself hadn’t been able to catch his reflection in anything since his death. Apparently ghosts had no reflection, but at the sight of his friend, he wondered if he glowed just as much as Joey did. The man looked much younger than he had when he’d passed away on the battlefield all those years ago. He even glowed, physically. It was as if a layer of the sun had seeped into him. As if the light had burrowed just beneath his skin. The glow wasn’t bright, but with each faint movement Joey made, the shadows underneath him and the light that embraced him shimmered.

“You good? You do know that you’re dead right? Don’t tell me you’ve gotten so old that you’re senile now.”

Lucas shook his head as he felt a gradual pull of his lips. “Depends, did you pass over with your ego intact? You look like a flashlight turned on.”

There was a breath of silence then Joey chuckled, “oh, yeah. Perks of passing into the light. It looks like you’re just about to do the same though. Don’t get too excited… it’s a lot of paperwork before you actually get to don the white suit. Now, tell me. How have you been since we parted? I knew you’d try to keep our promise, but I didn’t expect you to live till almost one hundred.”

“Besides trying to catch up with the evolving technology, trends, and hashtags,”


“It’s a long story. Anyways, okay I suppose? I mean, it was a life, and I lived it. I even found love.” Lucas’s gaze slipped back to his family. They had found refuge in a pew, all three huddled together in prayer. “Louise, she and I met a couple of years after the war ended. The other little lady is Janet and that’s her husband, Marcus.”

“Never tied the knot with Kali. Well, looks like it was for the best. Your daughter is definitely blessed, from what I can see she didn’t get any of her looks from you. What about…” his friend paused, and it drew Lucas’s gaze back toward him.

“Maryanne? I went straight to her after the war just like you'd asked. She was devastated for several months, but she found a man in Maryland in the end. Brandon, I think? They have seven kids, five grandchildren.”

“I’m glad she was able to move on.”

“In a way. She did insist on her family having a tradition though, to honor the man you were. The first born will apparently be given the name ‘Joey,’ even if they don’t carry the family name.”
“Ha, as sweet of a woman as ever.” There was a certain solemnity to his voice, but Joey’s smile never left.
Their eyes met then and with a smile, a puff of laughter, and a gentle nod, Joey turned toward the archway that led out of the lobby. He didn't pause in his stride as he said, "Let's catch up in a less drearier environment, for old time's sake. I’ll leave first."

Lucas followed after him, hesitating at the threshold as his friend all but vanished as soon as he crossed from the carpeted floor to the beige linoleum.

He inhaled, taking in all of the experiences, the memories, and the emotions that had made him, and looked over his shoulder at his family one last time. “See you all soon.” Lucas’s voice was barely a whisper, and it rode along his exhale as he turned back to the archway and crossed the threshold.
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