Friday Fiction – The Price of the Prize

Rochelle’s provided us with a bit of a mystery prompt this week, courtesy of Kent Bonham. You may recognise the boys in my response from another unsavoury prompt some time ago. Eat up, now!


“It’s club rules.” Owen tucked his thumbs into his waistcoat as he’d seen father do.

“But it’s gross.” Liam stared at the lollipop and then at the expectant faces surrounding him.

He’d been begging to join his brother’s treehouse club for weeks, but now the initiation ceremony didn’t seem worth the prize. Feathers and the legs of beetles were held to the stick by an icky white substance he couldn’t even guess at.

“Do it,” Owen snarled.

“Leave him alone, he’s just a baby,” said Tommy.

Liam stuck his tongue out and closed his eyes. Nobody called him a baby.


Filed under Friday Fiction, Writing

25 responses to “Friday Fiction – The Price of the Prize

  1. As a mother it pains me that he is no longer a baby.

  2. Go, Liam! And yes, it pains me, too, in my motherly heart, to think of MY baby deciding he’s no longer a baby.

  3. no doubt about it. he was no longer a baby. 🙂

  4. I was cajoled into eating an night crawler once. And wasn’t even invited into the club. Great reminder. Alicia

  5. I like that you took this to a tree house club story. I also like the thumbs-in- the-pants mimicking of the father. Cute story – even though I’m totally against hazing rituals.

    Now if you want to keep entering into Friday Fictioneers, Rochelle says you have to lick the stick, too.


  6. Dear Jennifer,

    Randy’s last sentence in his comment had me laughing. Your story was spot on. have you ever been a member of a treehouse club? You certainly nailed it here. The title adds to the high drama of the ritual. Well chosen.



  7. Dear Jennifer,

    Pay no attention to Randy. Uck.

    I cringed when Liam stuck out his tongue.

    This was so real and one of your best. Almost a scene from a movie. I could hear the boys’ voices and feel Liam’s inner turmoil.

    Two thumbs up and a round of applause.



  8. Great story, Jen! It brought back memories of me when I was a kid. We didn’t quite do gross things like that, but we came awfully close!

    I would hope that the public, in general, is hungry for kid stuff again. Little Rascals/Our Gang-type stuff. Sure, the kids weren’t outstanding talent, but they had no qualms about being in front of a camera and performing and they were so real and natural. Go on Youtube and see how Spanky did his rendition of Shakespeare. You’ll laugh yourself silly!

    • How can you say the kids weren’t outstanding talent?! I’ve always loved tales of childhood adventure, in books and movies; they have a special wonder to them, I think because they mix innocence with real emotions, just like kids do.

  9. Caerlynn Nash

    Excellent take on the prompt. Well done!

  10. That’s exactly how it would work.. the coercing of calling someone a baby works so well…

  11. Believable story … have heard of worse, funny how taken from the moral context of hazing etc this could even be considered a cute and indeed somehow funny memory of growing up.

  12. The “dare” story, I always tell my kids if someone “dare” you do to anything you turn your back to them and let them talking alone, you don’t need them.

  13. This well-written story has the ring of truth to it, Jennifer. Good take on the prompt. I enjoyed the read.

    All my best,
    Marie Gail

  14. You can call me a baby … and then some. An evocative memory of childhood, well done!

  15. When I think of some of the hazing my brother and his friends did as kids, this is right up their alley! Totally brings me into the story.

  16. Sarah Ann

    Ah yes, the killer line, ‘he’s just a baby.’ A great depiction of boys and initiation rites.

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