Tag Archives: Death

Friday Fictioneers – Anniversary Supper

The last of the logs crackled in the fireplace. A bone-piercing chill steadily embraced the once warm and inviting front room. On the coffee table a bottle of our favourite cheap red wine was missing only one large glass, the take-away pizza less than half eaten.

This was supposed to have been our chance to talk, to patch things over – perhaps our last chance. He should have been here well before eight, been off the roads long before the storm passed across the valley floor.

I had red wine and pizza while waiting that night too, and every year since.

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These words form this my entry into this week’s Friday Fictioneers photo prompt challenge

Friday Fictioneers – Movie Memories

ff281216Every Saturday morning my brother and I would cycle down to the movie theatre on the corner of Mullen St. No matter the weather, no matter what was playing, we’d be there. For two hours each week we would leave behind our small hometown and travel to places we’d only ever read about, perhaps even to the distant reaches of outer space. The stars on that flickering screen were our heroes. One by one those heroes are leaving us. Yet the moments of joy and wonder they provided at that theatre on the corner of Mullen St will remain forever.

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My final Friday Fictioneers story of 2016 takes the form of a small tribute to those childhood icons who have passed in recent days, weeks and months. May they all rest in peace. 

Friday Fictioneers – Onward to Victory

ff151216We hadn’t advanced in weeks. My fingers and toes were turning black with frostbite. From somewhere deep within the freezing mists came the unnerving echo of enemy gunfire. This cursed weather didn’t seem to affect them as much as it did us.

Despite everything, my letters home had remained defiant – they had to be. We knew that all of our personal correspondence was reviewed by increasingly paranoid eyes. If I told the truth, If I said I thought the Fuhrer was wrong, I’d never see my wife and son again.

I steadied my rifle, despite trembling hands, as fresh snows began to fall.

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These words form my entry into this week’s Friday Fictioneers photo prompt challenge.

Friday Fictioneers – The Best Laid Plans

ff231116I lingered as Ellie Henderson walked past the store window.

‘You’ve no chance there,’ my boss, said.

Ellie was a real beauty. I’d  admired her from a distance as she met and married Frank Henderson.  Frank had sure been the lucky one, but his luck ran out when his body turned up face down in Whitewillow Creek – a fishing accident the coroner concluded.  Ellie had been in mourning for months now. Surely she would be ready to move on soon.

‘The door to that one’s heart is locked and bolted – she’ll never love again,’ my boss, continued.

What a proper sinful waste that would be. I almost regretted killing Frank now.

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These words form my entry into this week’s Friday Fictioneers photo prompt challenge.

Friday Fictioneers – Staying Put

ff021116Every time I stopped at the Trading post our conversation would be the same.

‘Why don’t you sell up, Vern?’ I’d ask. ‘Take the money McCullum’s are offering.’

Everyone knew McCullum’s Dairy was desperate to get Vern’s acre of land.

He’d always just smile and reply, ‘Where would you get your gas then, Jimmy? Besides, too many memories.’

Vern died last fall. As it turns out there were other reasons he never left. One reason in the cellar, another in the cavity wall. At least one more in the yard.

McCullum’s Dairy never bought the land. Doubt anyone ever will.

friday-fictioneers

These words form my entry into this week’s Friday Fictioneers photo prompt challenge.

Friday Fictioneers – Nom De Plume

ff191016They found Uncle Joe in his shed at the bottom of the garden. Nobody had seen him in almost a week.

His body was slumped over what Uncle Nolan said was once their Grandpa’s writing desk. The floor around Joe’s feet was littered with screwed up paper, the desk drawers crammed with bits and pieces from his life.

On the desk sat a blue typewriter. In a neat pile alongside, were bundles of letters thanking a woman called ‘Mrs Betty Bartholomew’ for her ‘submissions’. I didn’t really understand, but Uncle Nolan just smiled as he wiped away a trickle of fresh tears.

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These words form my entry into this week’s Friday Fictioneers photo prompt challenge.

Sunday Photo Fiction – Trouble in Paradise

168-08-august-14th-2016A thin trail of blood trickled down his ring finger. At first the tiny wound had barely even stung – he couldn’t even remember how, or when, it had happened. Now there was a stiffness in lower arm. Slowly that sickening stiffness cascaded up towards his shoulders and then out and around the rest of his failing body. His legs suddenly gave way as he collapsed to the ground struggling for breath. These distant, hidden rainforests had been the photographer’s life; today they might prove his death.

His whole body and mind were now shutting down. Yet, it would surely pass. This was just a temporary shock: the primitive defence of some ancient flora defending its hard won territory. But as daylight began to ebb he remained on the sodden spot where he’d fallen. Drips of warm, sticky sweat covering his now fevered brow. In the distance desperate hopes were raised by shouts. Yet unable to respond, unable to cry for help the shouts soon faded – the piercing white searchlight of torches extinguished as his lonely vigil once more returned to clawing, suffocating darkness. In the near undergrowth something slithered in his direction.

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Other entries for SPF can be found here.

Friday Fictioneers – The Waiting Room

ff300915He’s such a lovely man, Mr Williams. For thirty years he’s owned the card shop opposite the village Post Office. His only daughter, Grace, was a friend of my sister’s at school. His wife, Barbara, had been a stalwart on our local community council. Grace now lives in Australia, and Barbara only in his memories.

Nothing had been said to me of course, but the look on her face as she scanned down his results had told me everything I needed to know. Back at my desk I’d set up this morning’s appointment straight away.

A green light flashed on my console.

“Mr Williams, Dr. Francis will see you now.”

friday-fictioneers

These words form my entry into Friday Fictioneers photo prompt challenge.

Trifecta 78 – Gone Fishin’

abandoned2The biting summer winds shrieked their way through the deserted streets of Saskatill. Doors of homes long shorn of life blew open and closed in an endless cacophony of thuds and bangs. The frozen, hulking skeletons of rusting machinery at the abandoned fishing plant rattled day and night.

Nobody cared. Nobody was there to care. They’d all left when the plant closed. All except Mickey Keeperman. He’d stayed.

“Come on Mickey. Think straight. We leave tomorrow” they’d said.

“I ain’t leavin’. This is my town. Why woulds I wanna leave?”

Who wouldn’t want to leave this end of nowhere? Use some imagination Mickey!

Mr Mayhew called him pedantic. He didn’t know what that meant. He had everything he wanted right here. They didn’t understand.

“I can’t leave my family. They needs me” insisted Mickey.

At that point they stopped asking. Soon they were all gone. Rust moved in as the town began to rot away. Those who left didn’t forget their old friend though. Supplies were delivered. Hardly enough to feed a bird but Mickey survived. He survived to keep a look out.

*****

He came down to the dock every day to wait for them. They had been gone since Mickey was a kid. His father and brother were his heroes. A child needed heroes in this sort of town. He would never give up on them.

The cold and loneliness were beginning to take their toll on Mickey. His health wasn’t what it was. One bone chilling night, with the view crystal clear, Mickey thought he saw a boat. No! It is! Is it? It all went hazy. It all went quiet.

*****

Five years after they left life returned to Saskatill. They’d struck oil. The first ones back found Mickey down by the dock.

It’s said when the skies are clear and the air is cold you can see it. Out in the fishing grounds. The old Keeperman trawler. Three hands on board. Mickey at the wheel.

These 329 words are my entry into the Trifecta Week 78 writing challenge.

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