The Kingdom Behind The Brown Door (Flash Fiction Ex 4)

The Kingdom Behind the Brown Door

She anointed herself, Staring Champion of Forever back in 1981. She was an excellent starer and no one wore the crown better than she. Sitting upon her glazed throne in this royal place, her clouded eyes did not blink. Here, she stared intensely at the plainest of brown doors–its color like chocolate milk without the sweetness. When thinking dull thoughts, she enjoyed leering at the door’s meandering rings until she entered Forever. The kingdom of Forever was filled with royal inhabitants who pranced about with festive voices and smelly feet.

The only window in Forever was an undersized transom that sat selfishly high. Glass walls let one taste what it might be like over There without giving up on over Here. So she fervently believed all windows should be altruistic in their station, and deduced the undersized transom was the one thoughtless window in the entire universe. She often refused to even acknowledge its egocentric existence.

The pink oval rug was an entirely different story. It was not even pink. Not anymore. It was a shade of dusty rose now lost somewhere on the value scale. She articulated dusty rose when she was having honest conversation with the milky door. She often admitted that the dusty rose footman had caught stains from her earth worn feet. Once, she made the mistake of calling the oval rug–dirty. It immediately turned all kinds of wet and dark. Not pleasant. The selfish window wouldn’t even open to dispense the unbearable stench. So the rug covering the mildewed black and white tile was most definitely dusty rose. It remained happy this way–a fibrous flower with velvet petals and pleasant scent. If you liked that sort of smell. (Shh listen, don’t tell the pink footman but she doesn’t like the stench of roses. To her they smell of death.)

On the days when the transom window was behaving especially uppity and the dusty rose rug was disinterested in comforting her calloused feet, she stared at browness. Sometimes she didn’t like squatting on the royal seat while gazing. Like the roses and their bad death odor, the porcelain was too close to bone white. Skeleton-colored shitters and those damn roses could stay in horrid funeral parlors that didn’t have proper brown doors with jubilant kingdoms.

When she stared at the door with her aristocratic eyes, porcupines appeared or ground hogs that could have been anteaters–she was never sure. Forms sprang to life the way the broken faucet did when the wrench was shoved too hard. In this place, there were endless teeth wrapped in smiles that went on Forever. She loved anything and everything about Forever. Where Forever was death roses and bone shitters weren’t allowed. Beyond the plain door was brown–the exquisite color brown–browns as far as the cloudy eye could see. No horrible colors existed in Forever, like the button-collar dress Ellie Sue Menser was stuffed into when her skin pulsed cold and her face smacked mannequin stiff. No organ oranges, bloodied reds or bile yellows in this woody place nothing but warm living brown.

All the smiles she once knew, John Poiter’s with the big planet sticking out of his neck, Arnessa Blue Platt’s who didn’t like blue (she didn’t like brown either) and Talia O. Smith-Wisier the Second’s who didn’t know who the First was, were all gone. They’d left long ago with putrid rose smells and frozen skin. They’d never found Forever like she did. They didn’t have glazed white thrones, and they never stole extra years from the kingdom’s wizard who lived outside the transom window.

On the opposite side of the door where colors prowled, traitors set their traps. These betrayers usurped her power by lobbing endless commands–eat, walk, bathe, brush, sleep…  Sadly, whenever she visited Forever she could never stay. Iron fists would come knocking on the soft animals making them scamper to the furthest brown foothills. The porcupines and the ground hogs that could have been anteaters sometimes jumped into floundering bubbles. Bubbles that often tried squeezing out the transom.

Whenever the transom saved the animals of Forever, she didn’t mind its lofty behavior. All she ever secretly wanted from the thoughtless window was to spy a sliver of blue from time to time (though she entirely preferred brown) so when she spoke to her friends at night, like Arnessa Blue Platt who now hid in the stars, she could tell Arnessa that blue was quite lovely though not nearly as warm as brown.

The enemies of the other side were jealous of her glazed throne and the dusty rose footman who served her dirty calloused feet. The double-crossers were relentless. Why did they bother her so? She would eventually abdicate. She always did. She feared if she lingered in Forever too long that she’d turn into bones and smell bad like roses. It also hurt her butt though she preferred bum soreness to cold fear. Those waiting on the milky brown door’s bad side, wanted to dress her up like Ellie Sue Menser in a button-collar dress until her skin too, turned stiff. So she hid away in this small room everyday for as long as she could tolerate it. In the Kingdom of Forever, she was both queen and princess. She was adored. Here, she bathed in the warmth of a milky brown door, her life celebrated by the joyous inhabitants of Forever.

… upon her glazed throne, thinking dull thoughts…the Kingdom of Forever began shaking like brown rocks in a blender…

dark nana

If you read, I humbly appreciate. I’m experimenting with the Flash Fiction process…
This is my fourth attempt.

image painted long ago


24 thoughts on “The Kingdom Behind The Brown Door (Flash Fiction Ex 4)

      • I see. Do they have a good team this year? Seahawks look good again. The Pats need to work with Fletcher one of the cornerbacks you and I could cover wide receivers better than him but The Pats corners aside from him are pretty good. Malcom Butler. Can you imagine being that guy? Even if he had a supbar career he still is credited with making a clutch improbable superbowl winning interception.He really saved the day.


      • Your secret is safe with me Boston fans are very passionate fans who take sports quite too seriously. I like The Pats Jets rivalry but Jets never seemed to have a team good enough to compete with Pats but the two teams always have players switching teams making it feel real personal. 4 Superbowl wins for The Pats is pretty good can’t ask for much more than that as a fan but i think we will win 6 when the smoke is cleared and Brady retires. I think Giants got 2 superbowl wins left in them. Eli is still young so he has plenty of years left in him they just got to surround with a good team. Though The Pats lost Revis I think they got better through last season and through the playoffs and into this season. That was what I didn’t like about all the hype about The Bills. They have a new team and a new coach you have to play some actual games before you are considered a good team. Bills are better than I thought we had them most of the way but that was gutsy stuff fighting until the end down 4 scores to cut it to 1 score. Football is so awesome.


      • Thanks AnnMarie I wish your team good luck and if The Pats and Giants meet in The Superbowl may the best team win! It was a big deal when Tom Brady emerged the star and took Drew Bledsoe’s spot who had been the man and great qb for The Pats for a long time. I learned some good lessons from Bledsoe he showed good character when Brady took his job. He never had sour grapes or complained. He was a team player. I watched Bledsoe as a kid and as awesome as it was to see Brady become the star he was it was too bad Bledsoe had to leave. Football is awesome. I am lucky to have The pats with this 15 year run of excellence and you are lucky to have The Giants it was a former GIant head coach Bill Parcells who built The Pats team up before leaving and having one of his assistant head coaches Bill Bellichick becoming Pats coach. I like Bill Parcells.


  1. Two objections to begin with: 1. no “humbly” nothing — you can and should be “proud” (okay, be “modestly proud,” if you must) of this amazing 4th FF, and 2. it ain’t no “attempt” at FF — it most definitely is. You’re not attempting nuthin’ here, sister; you’re doin’ it — so get that straight.

    So, now that we have those protestations out of the way …

    This is fantastic, AM. I see you pushing the experimentation with words, imagery and voice here, and I’m lovin’ it. I also see you delving into psychological/surreal ground — which I find enchanting — while still going deep with a serious undertone re: aging, nursing homes, etc. In fact, your piece made me feel a tad bit uncomfortable in the most profound and positive way — it put me in that dark shitty world where controlling one’s bowels may be the only control one has left; a sad, but true, reality. Yet this FF doesn’t read gloomy or despairing at all because the woman and her world are so artfully and sensitively presented that we as readers are whisked away — much like the contents of that glazed throne, 😉 — to a place where we can “stare” at this woman and contemplate her last tenuous days in Forever and how she gets by, keeps living.

    Again, I’d recommend Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper” ( — only in that you character here and her flights of fantasy remind me of the main character in this psychological classic.

    Last word: SEND
    Last other word (I lied about “last”): SEND! 😉


  2. Drawing is awe inspiring and disturbing. I get sucked in as I look at it.
    I waited a day till I had the time to fully read this. You’ve taken me away here my friend. Most love the “brown door” like chocolate milk without the sweetness….not bloody red or bile yellow….warm living brown.
    I find it so interesting….the artist in you rendering the fiction with color in this way. One wouldn’t normally think of brown as opposed to pinks…but you’ve made it a color of life here. Very well done.


  3. Glad I waited till I had good moment to read this one!!!
    I get the feel of an old fairy tale with a macabre of which could only come from YOUR imagination. Great imagery and mood! It’s sweet and stinky all at once and I want to return to Forever!


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