Flash Fiction: Peter Piper and his Pickled Pepper Picking Palaver.

It’s time for another Terribleminds.com Flash-Fiction challenge, this time it’s called “An Affliction Of Alliteration”. The challenge is to create a piece of flash fiction of no more than 1000 words that uses alliteration in its title. For some reason I decided to take this further and write the story as alliterative as possible. In fact the thing reads like a tongue twister at times. The best effect can be achieved by trying to read this out-loud as quick as possible.

It’s a little shorter than the word count at around 600 words but it’s a lot more difficult to write like this than I first thought.

Please let me know what you think, all comments are welcome.


Peter knelt by the pink pickled-pepper plants and plucked each purple fruit with his plump fingers. He placed them into his pot one by one, purposefully ensuring the pepper pickle didn’t pour out.

‘What a perfect day’ he paused from picking to peruse the pigeons perched on the palisade.

Peter had the perfect job, not only was he the perfect pickled-pepper picker but he had proved to be the person that the people preferred as their prefect. He loved the way that sounded ‘The Pickled-pepper-picking people’s preferred prefect.’

Peter continued to pick the purple pickled-peppers, until the plant’s fruits had been plucked. As he perused the pink plant positioned to it’s right, he spotted paw marks in the peppers.

‘Paw marks? In my pickled peppers?’ He proclaimed ‘What pernicious act of pillage is this?’

As Peter painstakingly perused the plant, he perceived a high-pitched purring sound from the plants behind him. Before Peter could pinpoint the purring he was pounced on by a pack of pickled-pepper pinching pygmies.

The pickled-pepper pinching pygmies pushed Peter, then they punched him with their petite paws and tried to pinch his pot filled with the purple pickled-peppers. They were persistent and for every pygmy Peter pushed away, the rest of the pack pounced and pawed him even more. They soon overpowered Peter leaving him powerless to stop the pickled-pepper pinching pygmies pinching his pickled-pepper picking pot.

‘Pickled Peppers! Pickled Peppers! Pickled Peppers!’ the pygmies piped out in perfect pitch.

The pickled pepper pot was now perfectly positioned behind a purring pile of pleased pygmies.

‘Where’s my pot of pickled peppers that I picked?’ Peter pouted.

The pygmies pulled back until Peter’s pickled-pepper pot was protected, and Peter could only postulate the pickled-pepper pinching pygmies plan.

‘Either pass me that pickled-pepper pot or prepare to see my power.’ Peter was persuasive but the pygmies persevered.

Peter reached into the pocket in his backpack and produced a plate-metal pole. The pole was long and pointed with pictures of pigs and pomegranates painted on it.

‘Pickle-pepper Pinching pygmies?’ Peter proclaimed ‘Return my pickled-pepper picking pot.’ Peter purposefully paused allowing the pygmies to perceive his performance.

‘Once again you pickled-pepper picking pygmies, return my pickled-pepper picking pot or you will feel the power of my pickled-pepper picking pygmy poking pole.’

The pygmies panicked ‘Perhaps’ the proudest pickled-pepper picking pigmy pleaded ‘Perhaps we may procure the plumpest pickled-pepper you’ve picked for ourselves. The pepper provides for our people over this perishing period. The other pickled-peppers in your pot are yours.’

Peter postulated over their plan.

The proud pygmy peered at Peter expectantly then spoke ‘The pickled-pepper picking pygmies have some plump pickled peppers for the perishing period, the plethora of surplus pickled-peppers in your pot are Peter’s, and no pickled-pepper pinching pygmy needs to be poked with your pickled-pepper picking pygmy poking pole.’

‘Perfect’ Peter was pleased with the pickled-pepper pygmies plan, so he put his pig and pomegranate painted pickled-pepper picking pygmy poking pole back in the pocket in his pack.

The pickled-pepper pinching pygmies purred in pleasure at the pickled-pepper plan, and pushed the pickled-pepper picking pot to Peter. Once Peter had picked the plumpest of the pickled-peppers he passed it to the proud pickled-pepper pinching pygmy who promptly pounced back into the pink pickled-pepper plants with the rest of his pickled-pepper pinching pygmy pack.

Peter Piper paced proudly to the palace with his pepper-picking pot pouring with plump purple pickled-peppers. ‘Perfect.’ Peter Piper pondered ‘Perfect.’


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