Every week Rochelle hosts the Friday Fictioneers’ flash fiction contest.  One hundred word limit, tied to a picture prompt.  Come and have a go, if you think you’re bard enough!


Dave’s psychiatrist, Dr Markof, described him as “impressionable”. “Malleable” or “compliant” might have been closer. Dave’s mind was receptive to any suggestion, because he had nothing within to counter it: little intelligence, no social skills, no rules or regulations, no moral imperative. Example and prescription were indistinguishable for him. He had that unquestioning, wide-eyed innocence of a born follower. His crimes were gory, distressing and, although most of his victims survived, albeit with horrible scars, it was clear to all, they should never have allowed him to watch the vampire film. Monkey see, monkey do! (95)

PHOTO PROMPT – © Kent Bonham

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About micklively

Fifty-something, pacifist, six sigma black belt, lean implementer, brewer, vintner, guitarist, wood-turner, and slave to collies.
This entry was posted in fiction, vampire, writing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

71 Responses to Impressionable

  1. i b arora says:

    poor Dave and what monkeys can do

  2. Dave better stay far away from me then 🙂 This was evocative, Mick 🙂

  3. Liz Young says:

    The Sound of Music would have been a better choice, perhaps? Nice one.

  4. He’s worse than a wild animal. I’d say he needs someone to watch his every move. I wouldn’t want him wandering free in my neighborhood. If he was ever tried for his crimes, I think hospitalization would be mandatory. I feel sorry for him, but not enough to see him wander free. In time someon is liable to “put him out of his misery.” Good story, well done, Mick. 🙂 — Suzanne

  5. subroto says:

    But is he really? Or his lawyer wants to hide his crimes under psychobabble instead? It happens too frequently now. Nice one.

  6. rgayer55 says:

    I suggest they hire him to host Jeopardy, or perhaps he could run for President here in America. He’d be right at home with the other airheads seeking the job.

  7. wildbilbo says:

    Impressionable indeed! I actually find the idea of the ‘effectively innocent villain’ really fascinating. Cool idea.

  8. Amy Reese says:

    I’ll say he’s impressionable. Is there, perhaps, something else the good doctor could turn him on to? Puzzles, perhaps? I got a good feel for his character. Nice job, Mick!

  9. gahlearner says:

    What a great study of the guy’s character. Very impressive. Hopefully he’ll only see teletubbies when he’s institutionalized

  10. sadly, I think many killers have just that kind of mind!! Good story

  11. storydivamg says:

    So, is this one of those guys we hope has friends who all decide to jump off a bridge some day? 😉


  12. And I guess the garlic wouldn’t work on a copy cat. Avoid Dave is the only answer and hope the psychiatrist schedules him to a lock up ward.

  13. Jan Brown says:

    A creative interpretation of the prompt! I guess the garlic only works on real vampires😬

  14. Margaret says:

    Not sure which is more dangerous – brilliant and vicious or stupid and vicious. I’m glad you’ve got him into therapy. Great story.

  15. This is a great one Mick…loved all the words you used. Malleable is a fave.

  16. Francesca Smith says:

    I do not know what causes it or if it is a classified condition, but I do believe that some people are highly impressionable and susceptible to being influenced more so than others from films and books.
    Very creative take on the picture.

  17. There are more movies for him not to watch.. maybe something with sweet puppies is better for everyone.

  18. Diminished responsibility – or intent well hidden by the murderous mind! Great job!

  19. phylor says:

    Let’s hope he doesn’t watch a werewolf and a Van Helsing movie in the near future. I also hope he doesn’t live in my neighbourhood.
    Really enjoyed the story!

  20. draliman says:

    Great story! It sounds like Dave was almost programmable, so malleable was he.

  21. And they say watching the media has no affect on our behavior! 😉 That last line is brilliant!

  22. Damn them monkeys! 😉

  23. Too much monkey business for my liking. What an unpleasant chap!

    Rosey Pinkerton’s blog

  24. Got there first! I think this is a great response to the prompt – makes eminent sense and really well written.

  25. Nan Falkner says:

    Micklively, you are awesome indeed! Very talented and I really like the way you wrote this version! Nan

  26. Lynda says:

    Garlic seems to have brought out the vampires in today’s collection. Mick, your version is well done!

  27. k rawson says:

    Really intriguing character. I wish you had more than 100 words.

  28. ansumani says:

    LOL . I’m not sure the garlic would work to fend off Dave given his “Money do but Money not think’ attitude . Funny story!

  29. Sightsnbytes says:

    and that is why I carry a vile of holy water wherever I go

  30. any1mark66 says:

    Garlic was too easy wasn’t it?

  31. Nice.
    Gory but nice!

  32. Vinay Leo R. says:

    Toothy. Wonder if he thinks he is a vampire, or everyone else around him are vampires. Impressions could be lethal either way.

    • micklively says:

      I imagined he thought he would do vampire stuff, following what he’d seen. I hadn’t considered that he might feel threatened by folk he thought were vampires. Thanks Vinay.

  33. Dear Mick,

    Dave needs to be literally reprogrammed. Find a better monkey to follow. 😉



  34. Have fun in jail, Dave! You’ll learn lots of new things. Meet lots of interesting people.

  35. Sandra says:

    Ah! Vampires! 🙂 Dave doesn’t sound like someone I’d want to meet on a dark night. Or any time really.

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