John is a poet and short fiction writer who enjoys collaborating on stories with other writers, and partaking in challenges.
Bill Holland's Challenge
Our good friend and fellow writer Bill Holland (billybuc) recently issued a writing challenge. The guidelines were as follows:
"1) The title of the short story must have the word “mountain” in it, and the subject matter of the short story must be, in some way, related to the mountain in the photo.
2) There are three other photos included in this short article. Your story must, in some way, include and mention those three photos.
3) Short story….flash fiction….I don’t care. There is no word limit in this challenge, but you are limited to only one Hub article…
4) Post your entry on HubPages by September 10th.
5) You choose the genre."
As I can never pass up a challenge, or dare, I had to come up with something, and the following story is the result.
The Ghost Mountain Adventure
Kurt stuffed his backpack with everything he’d need in case of an emergency, not that he was expecting one. Half a dozen muesli bars, water, compass, thermal blanket, and solar charger for his cell phone went in.
Just as he was packing the last item away, the 4x4 Hyundai pulled up outside and honked the horn. He was excited to say the least as he raced outside, yelling goodbye to his parents but not waiting for an answer.
This would be Kurt’s first ever unguided skiing adventure. Just he, his friends, and the snowy wilderness called Ghost Mountain. It was called "Ghost Mountain" because, in the right weather conditions, the snow-capped peak resembled your stereotypical Halloween ghost i.e. like a flowing white sheet suspended in mid-air. The mist and cloud cover tended to hide the base of the mountain.
Sure he had been to the ski school at the resort with his parents where he had learnt to be a competent skier, but he had always been under the watchful eye of an instructor.
His parents were apprehensive about this trip but Kurt convinced them that he was a big boy now and could look after himself. At 17, he knew he was old enough to go off alone. He was almost an adult for God’s sake and even old enough to drive.
His two friends, Nick and Eric, called for him to hurry, “We want to get up the mountain before spring and all the snow starts to melt!” Nick joked.
Being cousins, the two had skied down Ghost Mountain once, about a year before, accompanied by their fathers (brothers). They were confident they were now experienced enough and had the common sense to do it on their own.