Friday Fictioneers – Sin

Today’s picture comes from Lura Helms, through Madison Woods’ friday fiction page. As ever, if you’d like to read the other stories, go to Madison’s site. Mine is below. Not an easy one this week – the picture didn’t say anything to me for a while and then what it did say is nothing like what I eventually wrote. The Muse is clearly feeling capricious! Anyway, I’d love to receive your comments, good and bad.


Alice felt Liam’s hand on her bra. She didn’t dare look down, but she couldn’t look at his face either.  She wanted so much to enjoy this, but she’d heard too many stories about how easy – and how terrible – it was to get pregnant. Her gaze flicked away to the forest that was keeping them safe from prying eyes.

But God could see them.

As Liam’s fingers touched her skin, she screamed. High in one of the trees, a single eye stared out of a sheep’s bleached skull. The animal was dead, but the eye watched – omniscient, eternal and judgmental.


Filed under Friday Fiction, Writing

33 responses to “Friday Fictioneers – Sin

  1. A great piece of writing.
    Loved the idea of the dead animals eye being ‘omniscient, eternal and judgmental’. We all need to be wary.

  2. I am impressed with you wracking your imagination to this difficult prompt. The story stuck in my throat, nice work! beebee

  3. Nice take! I am enjoying the wide array of responses!

  4. Peeping Toms – everywhere. Nice take on the prompt Jennifer.

  5. You drew me in to the story quickly and the tension was great. I especially liked this use of language “omniscient, eternal and judgmental.” It summed things up very well.

  6. A great story; the omniscent eye spoilt the fun. A unique take on the prompt. Thank you for the nice comments on my blog. Much appreciated.

  7. I think that skull would definitely kill the moment. Interesting statement on God (and not the first connected with this prompt, if I remember correctly), and on what influnces us most directly, the physical or the metaphysical, not to mention how those two intersect at times.

    • Hi Keli,
      I’m not anti-religious and I hope none of my posts ever come across that way, but I think the way religion and morality are often taught can create some interesting problems for children as they grapple with their understanding of the world. The balance between teaching sexual morality without discouraging exploration and enjoyment is one of those questions I don’t look forward to dealing with as a parent!

  8. Dear Jen,

    Not a good way to start. Out in the woods under God’s baleful eye and the eyes of his dead creatures. I’m thinking Liam is not going to enjoy himself overly much, assuming he gets past third base after that scare.

    Your story was well crafted. The mood was dark and foreboding without a hint of pleasure in the offing. Nature, the driving force in all things, was portrayed here as an all seeing Gaia-ish presence, intent on exerting its influence, indirect or otherwise, on the proceedings.

    Loved your take on the picture. (Thanks you for stopping by mine, which is almost light-hearted by comparison:)



    For others stuck in the trees—>

    • Hey Doug,
      I’m not sure about light-hearted, your characters are at the other end of love’s trials and still struggling with it! I’m glad you enjoyed this story – you know I like to linger on the dark side.

  9. I guess this isn’t going to end well and not for the usual reasons. 🙂

  10. Boy, talk about a mood breaker. I’ve had a lot of women complain of a headache but never of a one-eyed bleached sheep’s skull staring down at them. I thought this was great. Thank you!

  11. Hi Jennifer,
    Wow, a screamer, that must have taken Liam aback a little. And the lack of privacy. It’s so hard to find a place to make out these days. Very interesting response to the photo.

    • I love how all the guys have commented on this story from Liam’s point of view! I do admit I feel sorry for him, but I’m impressed by how much of a character you all make out, just from his wandering hands!

  12. The personification of the sheep skull was shocking and worked really well in this story. I like how she connected it with the idea of God, and even perhaps of death? That extra touch really brought this story to a new level.

    Here’s mine:

    • Thanks glossarch – it was hard to get something out of this picture, so I’m glad the end result was worth the effort. God’s all-seeing eye is everywhere for her, poor thing.

  13. I almost jumped out of my own skin with that eye staring down on her. I bet she was raised Catholic…the old teaching is that God will strike you dead if you engage in premarital sex. Ask any Catholic over the age of 50. I’m betting they will confirm that fear, guilt and brainwashing.

    • She certainly has a lot of the old “Catholic guilt” about her, doesn’t she? Although the way even non-religious sex ed goes seems to instill a lot of girls with fear. There must be a balance somewhere. Thanks for confirming her reality, Lora.

  14. Don’t know what to say that hasn’t already been said. Quite a picture you painted.

  15. Interesting that the guilt amplified into the sheep’s eye, very nice.
    Here is mine

  16. Your description of the sheep skull – with it’s one eye, omniscient – was incredible. I saw that image so clearly, and it’s terrifying not because it’s gruesome but because it knows. My only criticism might be that it seems at first she’s more concerned about getting pregnant than about who might find out about this, or the judgment she could suffer for the sin, which sort of slows the build to that last amazing image. Great, great story.

    Brian (Here’s mine, even though I’m commenting late this week:

    • Thanks Brian. You’re right, he fears originally focussed on Sunday sermons rather than pregnancy, but they were lost in the editing process and in hindsight I think they shouldn’t have been. Glad the end worked for you though, and thanks for forcing me to rethink my edits.

  17. Russell

    After reading my little piece, you realize of course that it was Billy Bob staring at her. I assume it was enough to put a stop to Liam’s wandering fingers.

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