Friday Fiction – An Old One

Back home after our flying visit to the UK, but with a long list of things to do and a lovely-but-extra-challenging toddler, I’m going to take advantage of Rochelle‘s invitation to report my previous story for her repeated prompt. It took a while for me to remember what I’d written about for this one, but when I went back (August 2012) and read it, I was actually more pleased with it than I thought I’d been. Do tell me what you think!

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Sin

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.

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26 Comments

Filed under Friday Fiction, Writing

26 responses to “Friday Fiction – An Old One

  1. I couldn’t tell what was stuck in the tree. I think this is a wonderful take on the prompt.

  2. Conscience informing imagination. 🙂 I think you deftly showed the conflicted feeling of the adolescent, especially in earlier years, and also the pressure of expectations.

    janet

  3. I would guess that if your conscience is bad you see the prying eyes everywhere… but a skull would be especially eerie.

  4. Helena Hann-Basquiat

    That was disturbing. So well written, as always — the narrator’s voice was so strong in its paranoia and religious fear. Excellent ending!
    I have just been taking a break, but I wanted to drop in and say hello, see how you are doing? We’re having lovely English weather these last couple of days, and it’s kept me inside and doing lots of writing.

  5. MM Jaye

    Needed to be caught and judged even by a carcass to justify her fear. Well done!

  6. Passion,excitement leading up to judgement! How can anyone top that?

  7. I bet Liam didn’t know what was happening. And she’s going to have to rely less on some strange eye in the future.

  8. I thought the animal was a seal, go figure. It was a well written story.

  9. Dear Jen,

    I remember liking this one the first time. My opinion hasn’t changed. You set the tone well. Eerie and foreboding. As has been said before, I don’t believe either of them are going to enjoy the experience.

    It’s fun to revisit the oldies, isn’t it?

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

  10. I love the last sentence, Jen. It says it all. Great story.

  11. Glad you reposted this one, Jen. I enjoyed the read. A retread is often a special treat.

    Cheers!
    MG

  12. Her father had something to do with this I just know it! lol

  13. I enjoyed that. Those feelings of indoctrinated guilt for having fun, I’ve encountered someone with that problem. Almost anything was ‘a sign’. Well written and beautifully descriptive.

    • Thanks, aa, I’m glad this resonated so well with people. I wanted it to be clear enough that she was genuinely conflicted, not just looking for an excuse to get away.

  14. Jen, Good story and well written as usual. Not everyone agrees with her guilt feelings, but they’re keeping her safe from pregnancy which would be terrible being she’s too young to be either pregnant or married. She has a right to be afraid. The boy probably doesn’t respect her and maybe that’ll change now. He needs to think about becoming an unwed father at his age. Well done. 🙂 —Susan

    • One part of parenting I’m not looking forward to is trying to instill a healthy respect for adult activities – including sex – without damaging the healthy enjoyment that can be found in them between consenting grown ups. I left Alice’s age deliberately vague in the story – I suspect you’re right that her caution is sensible here, but in a few years when she’s settled, even married, will she be able to throw off the fear and enjoy sex, pregnancy and motherhood?

  15. I surely had a chill down my spine.. its the age that brings the questions and the confusions linked to it. We all carry on our shoulder the results of our actions. Somehow I always felt with some stuff one needs caution and with others take risk. It every individual’s choice..

  16. Dear Jennifer, Well written story, as usual, and it is a time-tested predicament that young people face all the time. I hope Liam learns to bring precaution with him in the future – or better yet – they just wait. Nan 🙂

  17. Yikes! Might think twice before having a rendezvous in the forest now 😉 (BTW someone should have told her about Birth Control lol)

  18. It’s the old adage – if you feel someone is watching you, they probably are!

  19. I think I jumped when Alice saw the skull and screamed. She doesn’t sound like a happy girl and you’ve summed up teenage angst really well in this story.

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