Welcome to Flash Friday! In these posts, I take a writing prompt and whip out a short story off-the-cuff with little editing. If you have an idea for a writing prompt, send me an email, and maybe I’ll use yours next time!

Today’s prompt is: An app store lets you download magic spells


Jungle App

There are millions of apps in the app store, so it was just happenstance that I stumbled on that one. It had a cute animation of a monkey, and the reviews were good. Jungle, said the title. Turn anyone into a jungle animal. It was summer. My boyfriend wasn’t here to pick me up yet, and I was bored. I thought I’d give it a shot. Plus, it was free. Everything’s gotta be free these days, or I won’t even bother.

So, I downloaded it. I opened the app. Cool, I thought, it doesn’t even have those annoying ads most apps have.

Jungle was quick to figure out. You added a photo of someone, and the app turned the photo into any jungle animal. I chortled over turning my best friend into an ape, that snooty girl in third period into a snake, and my boyfriend into a lion.

Then I added a photo of myself. What do I want to be? I thought. I’d recently seen some documentary show my parents made me watch on giraffes. It would be awesome to be so tall. I dragged the giraffe picture onto mine and the two meshed. My neck elongated in the picture, and I broke out in spots. Cool!

Then I felt a stab of pain in my real neck.

The words “Nothing is truly free” popped up on the app’s screen. What the … ?

And suddenly, my hands became hooves, spots broke out all over my body, and my head shot toward the ceiling. I was a giraffe: a real giraffe. I felt panic rush over me, engulfing me like a tidal wave. Then it got worse. The doorbell rang, and in prowled a tawny yellow lion.