The Value of Power – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers So grateful to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge.  Please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is this week’s photograph  and my story:

The Value of Power

Sundays, after Dad died, Mom and I would head out to church and then to the town square where I’d play chess with Mr. Frank, who taught me to play the game for several years.

When we first started playing, Mr. Frank wouldn’t put his queen down as he set up the board.  “I’ll just take this piece out while you’re learning,” he said at the start of our first game.  He’d winked at me, and we’d begun playing.

I’ve made a good living playing chess tournaments since then, but I’ve never appreciated the game like I did when Mr. Frank surrendered his power to help me win a Sunday game on the square.

Ellespeth

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Iain Kelly. Thank you Iain!

That Night In October – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers So grateful to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge.  Please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is this week’s photograph  and my story:

ffaw-bridgeThat Night In October

After a lifetime of problematic decisions, I sat here at his bedside.  My one perfect choice.

We held hands and gazed at each other.  Sometimes he smiled at me.

“What are you smiling about?”  I asked.

“You always say you like the way my face brightens up when I smile,” he replied.

“I didn’t mean you have to smile when you’re dying.”

“It doesn’t hurt,” he assured me later.  So him.  Wondering how to soothe me.

And we spoke back and forth this way until he passed to the other side.   I wanted to run after him.  I watched him cross over.

Ellespeth

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Joy Pixley. Thank you Joy!

The Nature Of Knowing – Fiction

Time for this week’s challenge over at Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Thanks to PJ  for hosting our challenge. 

Here is the photo and my story.  Please follow little froggy for more stories.

The Nature Of Knowing

Every Spring, when I was growing up, Mr. Devereux would come spend time in our neighborhood. He owned an old duplex down the block. Potted plants hung all round the veranda where purple martens nested. Sweet scents of blooming trees drifted from his garden.

Spring is best to come visit,” he’d say to me, “before the heavy humid air suffocates one’s soul.”

Mr. Devereux was some famous screen writer out in Hollywood. He’d always bring his black Lab, Noir. I anticipated Spring more than some do Christmas. Noir gave the best hello smoochies, and Mr. Devereux read and critiqued every story I’d written since his last visit.

Try not to bother Mr. Devereux, sweetie,” Mother would tell me.

Mother hadn’t a clue about such things as writing and artists. I’d shake my head and ‘tsk’ in her direction.

He’s come to rest. He doesn’t have an easy job, you know.”

Ellespeth

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Louise with The Storyteller’s Abode.

What We Don’t See – Fiction

Yay!  PJ is back over at Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers!  While she was gone, we had some pretty wild parties on her blog…but we cleaned up after ourselves 😛 Welcome back, PJ, we missed you and are happy you had a restful vacation with the grand kids and all 🙂  Thanks for hosting this for us ♥  please follow little foggy for more stories

Here is the photo for this week’s writing challenge and my story:

What We Don’t See

If anyone were to ask me,  “C’mon now, Ellie, what’s your most favorite room in a house?”  I wouldn’t think of just any room in any house,  I’d think of Aunt Lucy’s kitchen.

Aunt Lucy lived in the cottage behind my cousin Brenda’s house.  Whenever Brenda had a family BBQ,   Aunt Lucy and I would sneak back to her kitchen.   When I was younger,  we’d sneak back for hot chocolate and warm cookies.   When I was older,  we’d sneak back to spike our cola with Kentucky Bourbon, or maybe for a snifter of brandy.

She treated every inch of her tiny cottage like prime real estate,  even her kitchen shelves were perfectly organized.  “What’s going on with her?”  family members would ask.  “Anal retentive,”  someone would reply.   Then they’d leave the room to laugh at themselves.

The kitchen remains. It’s aged like fine Napoleon brandy now.

Ellespeth

That Afternoon At The Psychic Fair – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  So grateful to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge.  Please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story:

That Afternoon At The Psychic Fair

This particular month, for the first time in our valley, a psychic fair came to town.  Most people I knew thought this sort of thing was nuts, so I went to the fair  alone.

The air, all around the grounds, was scented with sandalwood incense.  The purple silks of one particular tent drew me in.  Consumed me with panels swaying in the breeze.  The psychic, within, looked so comforting.  We sat at her table and joined hands.

“What are you thinking?”

“She was such a beautiful little girl.  Her favorite color was purple.”

“Try to breathe now.  Evenly.  Deeply.  In. Out.”

“I don’t want to breathe!”  I shouted.  “I want my baby back!”

Ellespeth

thank you , Jade,  for our most unusual photo this week

Paternity Leave – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  As always, thanks to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge.  Please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story:

Paternity Leave

The closer we got to my home town, the more nervous we each became.  There’s no wonder to that, since we’d only been married a year and were seven  months pregnant and Seth lost his job last week.  My parents had offered us the old artist’s studio next to their house.

“I just want to be certain you know that the place needs quite  a bit of work,”  I kept saying in various ways.  Seth had never been to my home town.

“I don’t have too much more to do with my time right now,” Seth would reply each time.

There wasn’t much need for oil workers these days.  Seth was thinking of changing fields.  We could afford to pay my parents rent, and it would be nice to be together with our new baby for a while.

“It’s air-conditioned, though,” I finally said.

Ellespeth

Thank you Phylor for our photo prompt!

The Receptionist – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  Thanks to PJ for hosting this weekly challenge.  please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story.

The Receptionist

11am  used to be an escape time for me each day. That’s when the helicopter  touring the Mississippi River – just at the crescent of New Orleans  –  would pass by the beauty parlor window where I was the receptionist.

Henry, the building’s security man, would lean against my counter. We’d find ourselves wondering about the lives of the people in that red and white helicopter. We’d wonder what we’d do if we had enough money to take a helicopter tour of the Mississippi River.

Eventually, Henry would move his security self to other floors and other receptionists and other fantasies.

That was fine with me.  After all, I was the flirty receptionist Henry came home to each day and I was the one who loved Henry.

Ellespeth 

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Iain Kelly. Thank you Iain!

Fossils – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  Thanks to{{ PJ }}for hosting this weekly challenge.  please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story…what a fantastic photo!

Fossils

Once a week, Polly and I met for lunch at Syd’s Deli & Market. We both loved sardine sandwiches.

We were legal secretaries for opposing  firms. That didn’t matter, though. We’d dated each others’ boyfriends, watched each others’ kids and, eventually, married each others’ husbands. And, when our husbands died, we just kept meeting for lunch once a week, at Syd’s Deli & Market.

That’s why it’s so hard to know where to begin this story. Does one start with the boyfriends or the kids or the divorces and remarriages, or the losses for which there are no words?

Ellespeth

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Louise with The Storyteller’s Abode. Thank you Louise!

Half-Assed Timbered – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  Thanks to{{ PJ }}for hosting this weekly challenge.  please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story…

Half-Assed Timbered

Whenever we pass by the Funky Munky Inn,  Lars and I try to stop for a drink. Ya see, we used to live right up there –  fifth-floor attic loft – when we were first married.

I can still remember being just married, and I can still remember that creeky-springed bed where our son, Nils, had become the hopeful outcome of some night or other.

After Nils was born we never could conceive again, and so we often like to celebrate.

Ellespeth

 

Thanks to TJ Paris for our photo

That Still-Framed Moment In Time – Fiction

Time again for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.  Thanks to{{ PJ }}for hosting this weekly challenge.  please follow little froggy for more stories.

Here is the photo and my story…

That Still-Framed Moment In Time

I was 12.  What made that day different – up to that point in my life at least – was how fast everything can change.

That still-framed moment in time, when I’d forgotten my knee guard and Mom had driven back home so I could retrieve it.

I hurried inside.  At the foot of the stairs was my dad. From somewhere, upstairs, a strange woman’s voice called his name.  Dad and I stared at each other in shock and disbelief.

Then, I ran outside with the knee guard and got back into Mom’s car.

“Dad’s home early,” I said.

“He said he might be,” Mom said.

For a long while, Mom and I rode in silence. Our breathing began to fog up the windshield.

“I have a feeling we’re gonna win today, Mom.”

My mother looked at me and smiled. I don’t know why I smiled back, but I did.

Ellespeth

Photo by Yinglan.