Tag Archives: Escape

Friday Fiction – Any Person, Any Study

What a surprise to find a photo I’d submitted as this week’s FF prompt. Thanks for choosing it, Rochelle. I’m late (for me) submitting today, but I’m looking forward to reading as many as I can of the stories submitted for this photo over the next few days.

In the meantime, here’s mine – on which your thoughts and comments are very welcome.

jennifer-pendergast4

Any Person, Any Study

Past the mist and trees, past the archways, steps and bike racks, so small that it was completely invisible even though she knew where to look, Lizzie gazed at the house where she’d been born.

It was less than five miles’ walk down the hill, and less than five years since she’d lived there, but to Lizzie it was another world. Shouting and bruises were things she read about in books. Harry Potter was locked in a cupboard; Celie from The Color Purple was abused by her father.

Lizzie clutched the promise of another year’s funding tightly and turned away.

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In Mon – Is That a Real Place?

More fun prompts over at BeKindRewrite this week. This take on one probably isn’t that original, but I enjoyed writing it and definitely feel I could work more with these characters. Have a look, leave your thoughts, and/or stop over to Steph’s site to use the prompts yourself.

Getaway

The bar was quiet and our host was friendly, setting down drinks then hovering behind Alice. “So what brings you to this corner of the globe?”

“Walking,” I replied, hoping he’d leave us alone. “We’ve heard there are fantastic trails up into the mountains.”

“Sure thing,” he said, pulling over a chair, “We’ve got a load of maps and guides you could take a look at in the Snug.”

“Great.” I picked up the menu and tried to leave the conversation at that.

“I also know a few more secluded trails if you’d like a personal touch. There are places I can show you where you won’t see another person for hours.”

“Except you,” Alice muttered.

Our host laughed. “Well, of course.” He pulled his chair in. “But I can be unobtrusive when I want to be.”

Unlike now, I thought. I caught Alice’s eye and she smiled, reading my mind.

“Do you remember on our honeymoon?” I asked her, excluding him as much as I could from the conversation.

“The Lover’s Island!” she laughed, then she turned to him. “We booked a private island getaway for a day. Then a bunch of Italians turned up with a picnic.”

Now that she’d included him, I tried to hammer home the privacy point. “I paid good money to get some alone time with my wife.”

“Ha, yes,” he said, “Well you’ll definitely find that here.” But I could tell he didn’t really get it. Instead he began to explain the flora and fauna we might chance to see if we took him up on his offer. Alice and I continued briefly our reminiscences, then gave up and read the menus while he droned on.

“… And the mandrakes are spectacular. Although not at this time of year, obviously.”

“Obviously,” I said, trying to sound like I knew what he was talking about.

“Mandrakes are real?” Alice said. “I thought JK Rowling made them up!”

“No, they are quite real. Nice cheap hallucinogen, if you like that sort of thing.”

“Now we’ve never been offered those before!” Alice laughed. “Someone tried to sell us Speed in New York once, and we smoked weed in Timbuktu.”

“That’s a real place?” asked our host, finally standing up.

“Yes, believe it or not. It’s a city in Mali.” He was looking at me blankly. “In Africa,” I added.

“Not like the movies, then?” he asked. “Not quite so many skyscrapers and yellow cabs.”

“What?” I think Alice and I spoke at once.

“New York. You must have seen the movies – all skycrapers, yellow cabs and Americans with loads of money. I assume it’s a bit different if it’s in Afrcia.”

I probably just stared at him. For all I know, my mouth was hanging open.

Eventually Alice spoke. “You’re kidding, right?”

The man sighed. “Did you pass the train station when you drove into town?”

“Sure, but it was all boarded up.”

“Exactly. When I was a kid, I always said as soon as I left school, I’d travel the world and see places. Then the day before my eighteenth birthday, they closed the station. I guess some things just aren’t meant to be.”

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Inspiration Monday – Drifting

One of the things everyone notices when they stop going to school or work regularly is that the days of the week start to blur. There are no external clues any more as to what day it is, and I find I can sit here pondering the question for a completely unreasonable length of time. In some ways, of course, it doesn’t matter. But it matters to the rest of the world – if I put the bins out on a Friday, they won’t be collected, and if I’d turned up to the doctor’s yesterday, they would have sent me away. Which is why I try to keep my blog posts on a schedule, to at least have some markers on the week. But that requires me to know what day it is. Today, I think, it’s Thursday. So here’s the latest InMon story, with thanks to BeKindRewrite for the prompt. As ever, I’d love to hear your feedback.

Drifting

I am the invisible woman.

Joel drifts through life, oblivious. His dinner is always on the table, his shoes clean, his bins empty. He probably thinks we have a maid service to keep everything clean and tidy. Or maybe he thinks the boys are actually elves. More like imps, of course. They wouldn’t know one end of a broom from the other.

They sail along with every little whim catered to, just like their father. “Mum, I need a costume for the party tonight!” “It’s in your closet, Ben.” “Mum, I have to take homemade cakes for the sale tomorrow!” “Just cooling on the rack, Andrew.”

The perfect housewife, the perfect mother.

I know the drill, my own mother trained me in it. Of course, the perfect mother doesn’t pander to her daughters for fear of spoiling them, so I’ve been making way for men my whole life. I wish I’d had girls.

But tonight when they get home, their little ships are going to drift into the rocks. Tonight, their lighthouse will have gone out. Because tonight the keeper has a date. Not with another man, I’ve had enough of those for a lifetime. And not with a woman, I can’t quite get my head around that possibility. I suppose I’m old-fashioned, but you can’t change everything at once.

I’ll be back. I can’t leave them forever, especially when the fault is mine – I should never have let them take advantage of me. But for the next few weeks, I’m going to do my own sort of drifting.

I’ve left a note: it felt like I was writing a suicide letter. But I’m not going to die, I’m going to come alive.

800px-Scenic_Sunset_Cruise

 

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Voice Week #4

In part 4 of my Voice Week submissions, I’ve stepped right outside my comfort zone and tried to give you something different from my normal fiction style. I’m not sure I could sustain it for a longer story, but it was definitely interesting to try for 100 words. You can see the original story and an explanation of Voice Week on monday’s post, then a couple of more normal versions of the story on Tuesday and yesterday’s posts. Please note – the various versions are not all supposed to be simultaneously true; they are different possibilities stemming out of the first story.

Thursday’s Submissions suggestions / Inspiration Mondays posts will be resumed next week.

Legacy

Clearance of properties in the Region Of Redevelopment proceeds with substantial success. Most inhabitants have been dispatched according to classification.

Pockets of resistance remain. At Building 785 gunfire has been intermittent. At 20:00 hours, two individuals were seen escaping into the forest in the direction of the lake. One adult male is believed to have returned to Building 785.

A boat was observed at 21:00 hours carrying a lone elderly female away from shore. Regrettably our tracking beacons were unable to intercept the vessel, which is believed to have escaped into enemy territory.

Final clearance is anticipated within 24 hours.

 

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Friday Fiction – Breakout

It’s Friday again! And this is my 99th post, so I’m in a celebratory mood. I’ll have to think up something exciting and hundred-worthy to say on Monday. Watch this space!

In the meantime, here is the picture from Madison’s blog, courtesy this week of Amanda Grey. I hope you like what I did with it – sorry, probably a bit of artistic licence taken on the geography.

Breakout

He’d been running for hours. The moor was undulating and rough – he’d already caught his feet in any number of rabbit holes, but none big enough to hide the box he carried, let alone his weary body.

The rundown shack glowed red in the light of the setting sun. Momentarily, it seemed his salvation, but he knew it was a trap. Standing proud and bold on the empty landscape, it would beckon his pursuers – the most obvious place to run. The box shifted in his hands. He couldn’t afford to stop. He turned and ran, towards the burning horizon.

 

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