FF Challenge March 31st – Betrayed

Here we are, the last challenge for March. Yes, April is just a few days away. For those of you living in northern climes, spring is here and summer is on it’s way. I miss spring almost as much as I miss snow. I long for the first sighting of tulips as they push out of the ground promising a riot of color.

Enough longing for the past. Here’s to the future. Let’s start with a visit to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, at her site for all the rules for this challenge. Stop by, read her story and leave a comment. Take a chance and join our group by submitting your story.

Click this link to real all the stories based on this week’s photo.

BTW the photo is courtesy of Fatima Fakier Deria, who retains all rights to her photo.

And now my 100 word story – Betrayed

Waterfront

The blazing sun shot daggers into my eyes as I scanned the horizon. A hopeless gesture. Day 18 since my young husband left for a daytrip on his sailboat, a gift from me for his 30th birthday. I had been amused when he named it. No news, no sightings since the life preserver emblazoned with Molly’s Folly was found on day four. Still, I wait. I watch.

Day 61 a withdrawal from the bank account I discovered on Day 10. A breadcrumb trail to follow.

I wait. It will take years. Can you be convicted of killing someone already dead?

Thanks for taking the time to read. Please leave me a comment, good or bad.

Cindy

 

 

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FF Challenge March 23rd – Sweet Revenge

Hey there, here we go once more. A new week and a new challenge.

A few pieces of important business. First, thank you Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for continuing to challenge us. Please take a moment to visit  Rochelle at her site and take the challenge to write a 100 word micro-story based on the photo prompt.

The intriguing photo this week  is brought to us by J Hardy Carroll, who retains all rights to his photo.

Fair warning to all readers, this story is a hefty 109 words. My apologies. I struggled to reduce the number of words but could not without either editing out the intent or the emotion of the story.

Without further ado – Sweet Revenge

Beyond the Gates

With coffee-colored hands Mama clutched Laticia and recounted the story passed from mother to daughter. Her voice venomous, eyes narrow slits she described the blue-eyed man, Laticia’s great-great-great-grandfather and the child born in the tiny room under the stairs. Of how, never acknowledged by the master, the little girl was ripped from her young mother’s arms when discovered by the mistress.

The fortunes of the well-heeled family took a nasty turn. Laticia purchased the plantation at auction, solidifying her revenge. From far and wide, she filled her school. With wild abandon, the ragtag group of African-American children trampled the once carefully tended fields. Laughter filled the once silent rooms.

It is always amazing to discover the wide variety of tales based on a single image. Click HERE for this week’s submissions.

Thanks for dropping by,

Cindy

FF Challenge, March 17th – The Gift

Welcome to this week’s edition of Friday Fictioneers.

A few pieces of important business. First, thank you Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for continuing to challenge us. Please take a moment to visit  Rochelle at her site and take the challenge to write a 100 word micro-story based on the photo prompt.

The intriguing photo this week PHOTO PROMPT © Jennifer Pendergast

It is always amazing to discover the wide variety of tales based on a single image. Click HERE for this week’s submissions.

Here’s my story for this week – The Gift – 101 words

Big Wheel

Some say it was his great-grandfather’s fault. The shipped had stalled. Great-grandpa hadn’t noticed the part falling until it was too late. He watched, horror struck, as it drifted down, pulled by the gentle force of the blue planet.

“It happened long ago,” his great-grandpa said, “it floated down from heaven, a gift from the gods.” For generations, they have worshipped the object, praying for the message behind this miracle to become clear.

Forbidden from interfering with life on other planets, they wait stranded. The debates rage. Should they snatch back the part, changing the destiny of the frail planet further?

 

Thanks for reading. Any feedback is really appreciated.

Cindy

 

 

 

The Scrivener’s Forge 3 – In a Flash

This is take 3 for the Scrivener’s Forge. This months exercise is to, and I quote our host Neil MacDonald –

This time, write a paragraph that comes immediately before your character reaches the climax of their struggle. The purpose of the exercise, apart from exploring further how desire drives your character, is to learn how to build suspense. You will need to hold your reader’s attention at the same time as making them want to jump ahead.

Please visit Neil’s site to get more information on the monthly exercise. Click HERE to read other stories.

Once again this is an excerpt from the novel I am working on. Any feed back, positive or negative, is greatly appreciated. Here we go –

The violent storms that haunt the dog days of summer struck our little island yesterday. We had been blessed with bright sunny days that stretched long into the night and had come to rely on the steady but gentle winds from the west to keep the temperatures and humidity from rising to intolerable levels. Day after day we have enjoyed ideal weather. Late yesterday afternoon that changed. We were contentedly sipping cocktails on the deck when the wind abruptly shifted. No longer a gentle warm breeze, a cold wind battered us from the east. Absorbed in our lazy afternoon, we had ignored the warning signs. It was almost too late when a disquieting rumble drew our attention towards the east and the banks of roiling black clouds marching swiftly towards us.

Swallowing my panic, I belted out instructions to Bob. “You check the boat. Make sure it’s secure. Clear out anything laying on the bottom that could get blown around. I’ll get the chairs and anything I can see. I’ll check the doors on the outhouse and bunkie. You make sure the hatch on the crawl space is closed firmly. Meet you back inside.” I gave him a quick kiss, and we took off running.

By the time we had made it into the safety of the cottage walls of rain were advancing across the lake towards us. We stood by the living room window and watched Mother Nature’s fury. She sure was mad about something. Wind swirled around the island, throwing rain at the cottage from all directions. A sound like hundreds of hammers battering the roof indicated the rain had turned to hail. Penny sized ice pellets pelted the island, tearing leaves and small branches off the trees. With an ear-splitting crack and blinding flash, lightning hit a tree on the rocky outcrop twenty feet out from our eastern shore. The onslaught continued. We watched, silently, as if speaking might call attention to us and make us targets of this fury. It would have been impossible to hear each other anyway. Daylight had disappeared, replaced with a smothering darkness. Another ear-splitting crack drew my attention to the meadow outside the kitchen window. In the brief flash of light was the figure of a large man. He was drenched and tightly clutched a large bundle to his chest. He was bent forward under the burden of the weight he carried and the assault of the storm. I shrieked. Bob, stunned, turned to see what had startled me. Another flash illuminated the meadow. I slumped against the window relieved when I realized nothing was there. I fought to slow my pulse and struggled to breath when I recognized the memory I had buried long ago.

Word Count – 454

Thanks for reading.

Cindy

Friday Fictioneers, March 3rd – I See You

Last week I broke with tradition and wrote a story based on my childhood. This week I wrote a fiction piece that is based on a childhood activity. I hope that gazing at clouds searching for something familiar is a tradition known worldwide. From that wide-eye child’s perspective springs this story.

But before we get to that, a few pieces of important business. First, thank you Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for continuing to challenge us. Please take a moment to visit Rochelle at her site and take the challenge to write a 100 word micro-story based on the photo prompt. This week Rochelle also provided the beautiful photo.

Next, I encourage you to take some time to visit the link to many other stories based on the prompt. It is always amazing to discover the wide variety of tales based on a single image. Click HERE for this weeks stories.

Now to the heart of the matter, the photo and my story –

sun-and-clouds
PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

The grass prickled at nine-year old Debbie’s bare legs.

“A hippopotamus!” She exclaimed pointing towards a large cloud, laughter bubbling up.

“Your turn, Katie.” Debbie, turned towards her left. The empty space threatened to swallow her whole.

“Katie’s in heaven, playing with the other angels.” Momma had said, her voice like tires rolling over gravel, hesitant, sounding like she was not quite convinced.

For months Debbie’s loneliness sat on her chest like an elephant. Every breathe was a struggle. Now playing her little sister’s favorite game, Debbie squinted, no longer feeling alone she whispered.

“I see you.”

97 Words

Thanks for reading. I hope you enjoyed the story.

Cindy