Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

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Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

Postby Boo Kay Bucket » Feb 09, 2018 7:18 am

Welcome to the Inn Between! No reservations are needed, but I will expect payment in advance. -clink!- Thank you. While you enjoy your stay in my inn and in Ditto Town, please feel free to take part in the event that I have been coer - *ahem* - requested to host, during Ditto Town's reconstruction. May I introduce you to Ditto Town's first Flash Fiction Challenge!

Flash Fiction Challenges are designed to create very short, self-contained stories on a given theme or prompt, within a certain set of parameters. Once stories have been submitted, writers can provide each other with feedback.

This event is intended to be rather short, so fair warning, writers and commentators! This thread will close on March 5th, 2018 - and I will want my inn back. Please to be sure to be checked out by this date - and remember to keep your rooms clean! It is very difficult to keep things spic and span with no hands.

General Rules:
1. Keep in mind that this thread is specifically for authors to post finished pieces and receive feedback. It is not for roleplays.
2. For the same reasons, please refrain from discussing tangent topics or plotting in this thread.

Flash Fiction Rules:
1. Keep all posts rated “G” or “PG” for the sake of our younger members.
2. Your story must be longer than 10 words and shorter than 1000 words. All stories must be on the prompt given, and all stories must be given a title to differentiate from stories written by other authors.
3. Members may only post one story per prompt.
4. All characters must be characters you have invented yourself, not taken from other authors. This means fan fiction is not allowed. You can use your characters from other Ditto Town stories, or ones made up just for this thread.
5. Remember again to post the title of your story at the top.

Feedback Rules:
1. Always include the title of the story you are commenting on.
2. Remember to THINK—are your comments true, helpful, inspiring, necessary, and kind?
3. Make your posts substantial. For example, if you want to say “Good job!” or “I really liked your story!” add some details (“I really liked your story because it highlighted the strong friendship between Cheddar the Chipmunk and his Talking Thimble without being overbearing and cheesy”).
4. Please keep in mind that all writers are at a different place in their writing journey. Thus, we ask that you focus on giving feedback, rather than editing pointers.

Without further ado, your prompt is as follows:

You are just finishing up a long day's work and getting ready to head home. As you put away the last of your things, you realize someone is standing behind you. You turn to see a young man.
"I'm terribly sorry to disturb you," he says, "but I believe I am your grandson."


Feel free to revise this prompt to fit your individual storytelling style by changing the tense or changing any pronouns necessary to fit your characters.

Happy Writing! And tips are greatly appreciated!

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Re: Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

Postby narnianerd » Feb 19, 2018 1:15 am

'69 HOTROD


I was just finishing up a long day's work and was getting ready to head home. Today was the day I was going to do it, I just finished writing my note, folded it neatly and placed it on my workbench. I began to put away the last of my tools when realized that someone was standing behind me. I turned to see a young man.

"Hey boss-man, I don't mean to intrude," he said, "but I'm pretty sure that I am your great, great grandson."

It took a minute for my brain to process all the information that my senses were feeding to it. There wasn't one thing about what I was observing that had any logical explanation. The young man standing in my shop appeared to be in his late teens, his hair was shoulder length, blonde and curly at the end. His complexion was fair, his pale skin tone matched my own. The two of us could definitely have passed as brother. Then again, he was a random stranger who happened to be intruding into my already locked, supposedly secure garage. Suddenly, my instincts kicked in and it wasn't long before I had him backed up against the hardwood door, my forearm shoved deep into his throat.

"Woah dude, chill aight? I'm just a tourist brah! You can check my bags, all I’ve got with me is a camera and a couple pairs of socks! Jee’ze-Louise man, what's got you so wound up?”

I grunted an unintelligible response and then quickly performed a thorough pat-down. My findings confirmed his claims. The boy's choice in socks was a bit tacky for my taste, but his belongings were otherwise harmless, so I backed off. “What are you doing here?”

The kid huffed, smoothed out his jacket and shoved his hands deep down into the front pockets of his faded blue jeans, “I told you pops, I'm tourist.”

"That don't explain why you are in my shop, nor does it extrapolate at all on your claim.”

The kid laughed, “I’m a time traveler from the year two thousand, one hundred and sixty eight. Getting past a locked door is a literally a piece of cake, now the vastness of the space time continuum, that’s a whole other thing entirely.”

“Prove it then,” I challenged him, both fists closed tightly.

“You got anything to drink?” He asked, changing the topic of conversation entirely.

“What?”

“Time travel man, it makes yah thirsty, doncha know?”

“You know what, screw it. There’s some root beer in the fridge I think. Go ahead and grab me one too, what’s your name anyways?”

“Jason, Jason Birmingham, my friends call me JB for short.” Replied the boy as he tossed me a can.

“Well I’m pretty sure you ain’t here to kill me, grab a seat man. So, lets say for now that you are my great, great grandson or whatever, why are you here?”

Jason plopped down hard onto my bench seat, “Whattya mean pops?”

"Don’t call me that. You know, I'm just saying that if I had access to a time travel machine and could go anywhere, see anything… I don’t reckon I’d go see my great, great grandpap. I’m not even sure if I remember his name, to be completely honest.”

“I’m not sure myself. All I know is that I’ve always come back here, on this date to see you. It’s been recorded history ever since and so here I am.”

I leaned back against the wall, “So, you literally have no idea?

“Nope."

That makes two of us, I thought angrily, his intrusion had disrupted my evening plans, fatal as they were. “So, what’s the future like kid?” I asked, deciding to play along. At the very least, this goofball made for a pretty nice distraction, providing me with some much needed entertainment on such a grim day.

“Eh, you know what? It ain’t all that it’s hopped up to be. You know how after every great war, some big-headed genius decides that it’ll be the one to end all wars? Well that never happens. There’s a war on again and it's interplanetary this time.”

“Anyone you know serving?”

“My dad’s a fighter pilot, a CW3 in the the 11th Armored Cav, based on Ceres. Oh, and my older brother is in the 82nd, just like you I think. They jump from space now, crazy huh?”

I grimaced, imagining the back and knee injuries that jumping from orbit must cause, “sounds like the Birmingham family to me kid. Maybe you ain’t all that crazy.”

“Wouldn’t go that far Pops, I am Birmingham after all. Insanity runs in the blood.”

“Fair point.”

"By the way, you get that ‘69 fixed up yet?”

“What, the AMX? Its uh, a work in progress at moment. And by in progress I mean, I don’t have the money or time to do anything too it, story of my life, actually Always running out of time.”

“You get to it eventually you know, it’s in a museum now, people come from all over the country, just to see it. You did a great job Pops.”

I thought back to the letter I had wrote earlier and nearly choked on my soda as a result. “Not possible," I stated as a matter of fact. But then, my curiosity got the best of me. "What color did I end up painting it?

“You went with the dark cherry and flat black racing stripes, it’s beautiful, honestly. It’s a work of art.”

I crunched my can, “yah know what kid?”

“What?”

“Promise me this kid, when you make it back to whenever you are from, break that old girl out. Take her for a spin, burn some rubber, aight? That car doesn't belong in a museum.”

“Pops, ICE vehicles have been banned from use for nearly four decades.”

“Are you a man, or a mouse?”

“What?”

“It’s something my Gram used to tell me.”

“Tell you what Pops, I’ll do my best.”

“Fair enough.” I replied as I turned to toss my crushed can in the trash. When I spun back around, the young man was gone, having vanished into the upcoming night. I shrugged, figuring that the whole conversation had been a trick of the mind, a last gasp effort at keeping the lights on before I shut the whole thing down. But then, when I went to retrieve my last letter, it was gone, and in it's place laid picture.



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Re: Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

Postby Lady Arwen » Feb 21, 2018 1:52 pm

What Comes Knocking

“Some kid wants to see you,” Janine said. “Were you expecting anyone?”
I looked at her over my glasses.
“I have to finish reviewing this case. I’ve no time for visitors.”
“That’s what I thought. I’ll show him out. By the way, the sun has set. You could open the blinds.”
“I suppose it wouldn’t hurt.”
“I’m going to close up the office. Unless you want some company this evening?”
“Thanks, but I’m afraid this will take quite some time. Don’t wait up.”
She smiled and left. I turned toward the window, appreciating the last colorful rays of a sun already behind mountains. It was relaxing, and made the papers I wanted to chuck out the window more bearable. Short of actually visiting the site myself (which is generally out of the question), or finding someone with the proper training willing to tote a shotgun up into bear-infested territories to mark out surveying lines (which is generally expensive), the paperwork was my best bet. In the end, it proved the original owners had made a contract regarding water rights. Satisfied, I made my notes, and set my files in order.
It felt good, finishing a long day’s work and getting ready to head home. As I put away the last of my things, I had the acute sense of a presence behind me. I turned to see a young man in the doorway.
“Can I help you?” I asked, pulling on my coat. “I don’t get many nighttime visitors.”
“I’m terribly sorry to disturb you,” he said, “but…I think I am your grandson.”
I stared at him, then bursting out laughing.
“I’m sorry, but I think you’ve got the wrong office. I never had children.”
“Maybe you gave them up for adoption? Or didn’t know about them.”
“Look, if I had a kid, I’d know. One of the advantages of being a woman is you’re not surprised by newly discovered adult children. Plus, if I had a kid, they’d be—how old are you?”
“Sixteen, ma’am.”
“If I had a kid, they’d probably be your contemporary. Anyway, it’s one in the morning. Your parents are probably worried about you. I’ll give you a lift home, on one condition: quit breaking into people’s offices.”
“I’m pretty sure I’m right. I did my research. If you’d look here—”
“You want a lift, or you wanna go to juvie?”
“…lift, please.”
“Well, then, let’s get going,” I checked my pockets to insure I had both wallet and keys before leading the way to the car park. Mine was the only one in the lot, so he went to the passenger side and settled in.
“Now, where are we going?” I asked. He mumbled the address, which I was then tasked with punching into the stupid navigator.
“You want help?” he asked.
“Sure. Never can get the darn thing to work,” I replied, handing it over. He had it set in seconds. “Child, that’s over an hour away. How’d you get here?”
“Public transportation.”
“Let me guess, you haven’t eaten since you started?”
He shook his head.
We stopped for burgers at the edge of town.
“Since you’re stuck with me for the next hour, can I tell you my theory?” he asked.
“I am a bit curious as to why you hold so tenaciously to this belief, so go ahead.”
“Well, I mean, you haven’t disproved it.”
“Oh?”
“Most women would freak out if some teen showed up in their office in the middle of the night. But then offering to drive him home?”
“Let’s call it Christian charity.”
“Maybe you feel like you know me, but won’t admit it.”
“Because we share genetics?”
“Yeah.”
“No.”
“You’re my grandmother.”
“Why don’t you start at the beginning?”
He took a bite.
“When my mom was a baby, she was left at a safe surrender place,” he said.
“That happens to a lot of kids.”
“Yeah, but she was a IVF baby. When she was dropped off, she was left with her dad’s phone number. My grandmom just disappeared. My granddad raised her, of course, and she had me and my sisters. The only adult picture I have of my grandmom is this—that’s you, isn’t it?” he wiped the ketchup off his hands and pulled out a photograph. I took it and held it in the light. I wasn’t sure, but it did look like one of the photos my mum had taken around my college graduation.
“Could also be a lookalike.”
“This woman moves every ten years, is a water rights attorney, and always looks the same. And you just moved here a year ago from across the country.”
“So?”
“When you set up your practice there, you were thirty-four.”
“Yeah? So I’m thirty-six now.”
“So you moved there ten years ago.”
“So what’s your theory?”
He looked down at his lap.
“Well?” I prodded.
“You’re stuck in a time/space continuum loop,” he blurted out. “For some reason, you’re repeating the same decade of your life over and over again.”
“Excuse me?”
“When you figured it out, you wanted to protect your family, so you ran away.”
I turned on my blinker.
“What are you doing? We need to go on the freeway, not the right of way.”
“Change of plans,” I said briskly, putting the car into park. “Hey, look, do you see that shooting star?”
“Where?” he asked, leaning forward to look out the window.

~~


“You really should close the blinds before you dose,” Janine said. I opened an eye and looked at her.
“Mmm, sun’s still a good three feet away.”
“You have a meeting with a judge this afternoon. A burn on your face isn’t helpful,” she chided. “Also, get your boots off your desk. There’s mud on the heel.”
I obediently put my feet down and watched as she looked through the papers on the table.
“Something bothering you?” I asked.
“Did that boy come back last night?”
“Never saw him.”
She nodded, still looking at the file.
“They found him floating in a diverting canal this morning. He had bite marks in his neck.”
“Really.”
“You wouldn’t know anything about that, would you?”
“Nope,” I said, getting up and stretching. “But, I have been thinking it might be time for a change of scenery. How do you feel about moving to Canada?”
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Re: Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

Postby stargazer » Feb 22, 2018 3:47 pm

Tempus Fugit



Finally Friday, I thought to myself as I stepped out the door of my company’s latest project. I loved my job but it had been a long week and I was looking forward to meeting my wife for dinner at our favorite pizza place.

“I’m terribly sorry to disturb you,” came a voice behind me, “but I believe I am your grandson.”

“I beg your pardon?” I’d been on site all week, and we’d been advised to be cautious regarding potential con men, thieves, and the like, since this project was in a less savory part of town.

The speaker didn’t look dangerous but that didn’t mean I should let my guard down. He was about as tall as me, in his early twenties perhaps, sharply dressed in a suit that looked brand new.

“I’m Jonathan, your grandson. You are Daniel Baxter, age 35, electrical engineer, wife Angela, adopted children Grace – “

I decided to humor him. “Stop right there. If you are from the future, won’t telling me too much blow up this arm of the galaxy or something?”

“I couldn’t say. But perhaps you’re right. Anyway, my time is limited.” He glanced down at his wristwatch. “You know the old saying, tempus fugit.”

“Time flies? What does that even mean to a time traveler anyway?”

He chuckled. “That would be telling.”

“Fair enough. But why me?”

“Why not? I wanted to see you when you were, ah, younger. You know, at your prime. And Grandma too. Is there a place we can talk? Harrison’s Pizza, maybe?”

He knows our favorite pizza place. I’m on my way there anyway. At least our girls are at Angie’s parents so they are safe whatever happens.

We walked to the parking lot and he gestured at the cars. “So, which one is yours?”

“What, no DeLorean?”

“Yeah, I wish. The last one is in the Smithsonian. It’s $75 just to see it.”

I was beginning to wonder if this guy was a con man or just crazy – or perhaps he was who he said he was.

We arrived at Harrison’s before my wife and sat down to wait. When Angie appeared he rose to his feet and greeted her politely, introducing himself as her grandson. She looked as puzzled as I must have, but I couldn’t help noticing that Jonathan had to keep himself from hugging her, as if he hadn’t seen her for a long time.

Does something happen to her in the future? I almost blurted it out but stopped. Don’t go there.

We made small talk after ordering. He was obviously hiding things, but that would be true whether he was a con man or really from the future.

He eventually asked, “So how are Grace and Emma?”

Of course, he’d know their names either way too.

“How do you know our girls’ names?” Angie was skeptical.

“They’re my aunts. I grew up with them.”

The pizza came and we ate in silence at first, except for his, “Oh, I’d forgotten just how good this is.”

It gave me time to think. If our children – now ten and seven – were his aunts, it gave some credence to his claims. But they were our only children, which meant –“

“Your aunts? What’s your last name, Jonathan?”

“I’d better not say. I’ve already said too much.”

“That’s for sure. You’re saying we have another kid who grows up to be your parent, aren’t you?”

Angie gasped and turned pale. She signaled to me she was all right so I turned my attention back to our alleged grandson.

He nervously fidgeted with his fork. “Please stop asking questions. It could be disastrous if you find out too much.” He looked at his watch again.

It had to do with his traveling, I was sure. “Can I see that? I’m an engineer, you know.”

“I know, Grandpa.”

Ouch, that hurts. Not ready for it yet.

I backed down. “Sorry. You’re the first time traveler I’ve met.” I grinned. “Is it some sort of predestination paradox thing you can’t tell us about? You’re changing the future just being here?”

“Maybe. I think I can say you’re just as curious about everything in my day, and still take things apart to see how they work.

“My time is almost up. It’s been great seeing you again. I gotta go back.”

He stood up and we did the same. He hugged me, and as unscientific as it sounds, I felt some connection to him.

His hug for Angie was long and tender, and I had to resist the urge to ask him why. I vowed then and there, however, to cherish her all the more, to make each moment with her count.

And then he was gone.

“Well, that was strange.” Great way to break the awkward silence, Dan.

“Do you think he was telling the truth?”

“I can’t say. But there seemed to be something about him.”

“I felt it too. And I have news for you, something I was waiting to be sure about. I’m going to have a baby. Doctor Smith says it’s going to be a boy.”

“Wow, that’s great!” I hugged her closely, my mind whirling. This was unbelievable news. For years we’d been unable to have kids, so we’d adopted Grace and Emma.

Predestination paradox, eh? Could our unborn son grow up to be Jonathan’s father? No wonder he kept quiet. I certainly didn’t want to mess up my family’s future but maybe the paradox was that I was destined to lay the groundwork for my own grandson’s visit.

That watch was how he traveled, I was sure, and maybe it wouldn’t hurt to try to figure out how it worked. It could be a new side project, even if I got nowhere with it. But one thing was sure – I was going to love Angie and our kids – all three of them – like there was no tomorrow.
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Re: Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

Postby aileth » Feb 24, 2018 1:33 am

Market Encounter

"Are you trying to be impertinent, young man?"

All around the open air market, vendors were packing up and loading their unsold goods. It had been a long hard day for Evelyn; she had been on her feet from an early hour. Ordinarily, her brother would have driven the truck, done the heavy lifting, and helped with the sale of the produce; since he was out of commission with a broken leg, she had to carry on without any assistance. Needless to say, she was in no mood to put up with nonsense from anyone at all. So to have this young whipper-snapper come up and say, "I'm terribly sorry to disturb you, but I believe I am your grandson," was just a bit too much.

"Do I look like I'm old enough to be your grandmother?" she snapped out, when he made no answer to her first query.

His face had turned bright red. "I didn't mean--I thought you were a very young-looking grandmother," he managed at last.

She snorted indignantly, then began to chuckle as the funny side of the situation hit her.

"You must be about 22 or 23," speculatively. "And I am turned 45. I suppose it's just barely possible. Except that I have no children."

"Then it must be a mistake. I'm very sorry!"

"So am I! Look, don't go off," she said, taking pity on his embarrassment. "Why don't you tell me about it? I truly do want to know. You see, you are the eighteenth person to claim to be my grandson to-day. No--make that seventeen. One was a girl."

"Oh my!" groaned the poor young man. "They must have all had the same thought as I did."

"Do sit down here, and tell me. I'm ferociously curious." She thumped the tail-gate of her truck; he gingerly rested on the edge of the rusty, ricketty gate.

"This goes back some time--my grandmother had four children, and fell out with all of them; I couldn't say where the fault lay. All of us grandchildren have grown up without ever meeting her. Apparently she is a real terror."

Evelyn's lips twitched, and a wave of consternation crossed his face as he realized what he had just implied.

"I didn't mean--oh bother, I am not telling this very well. Here, I'll show you," and he pulled a folded newspaper out of his pocket. She looked at it with interest.

"Yes, that is definitely my picture--see, it was taken here in the market."

"In the notice below--here--it says that Ruth Evelyn Cowper would like to contact her family. That's pretty much all there is, but I thought that it would be a good idea to respond to any overtures that she was willing to make. Evidently my cousins came to the same conclusion."

"I see. It would appear that there was either a mistake by the paper, or else somebody was playing a prank. Though whether it was on you or on me, I don't know. And I fear that I might have confirmed your cousins' negative opinion of their grandmother: I must admit to being quite short with them, particularly the later ones. I'm very glad that you stayed to explain the matter; I was beginning to think that perhaps I was the one going crazy, when so many people claimed me for their long-lost Granny. Yes, you laugh, but just try it yourself, and see how it makes you feel."

"I wish you were my Granny," said the young man abruptly. "So it was just a miscaptioned photo--how simple!"

"Well, that's what is funny." Evelyn hesitated. "It's not as much of a mistake as you might think. You see, I do know your grandmother--Ruth Evelyn Cowper. We met one day in the post office, and discovered that we practically share a name--I am Evelyn Cooper; it is our little joke that I'm the Ruthless one. We take lunch together now and again, when we can. Your grandmother is a very lonely woman, though she is too proud to admit it. Whether she placed that notice or not, why don't you pursue the matter? I don't think that you'd regret it."

"You think that she wouldn't mind? I've often wondered about her and wished to meet her, but--"

"But you don't want to intrude? Or you're afraid you'll be deemed avaricious and self-serving? Well, take an old woman's advice, and go visit her. She can't do more than refuse to see you."

"Perhaps I will. And maybe you are right--maybe it wasn't an accident after all. I like to think that perhaps it was Providence."

Without saying a word more, he lifted the last of the boxes into the back of the truck. Before she even had time to thank him, he was off, with a cheery wave of his hand.

"I wish you were my grandson," she unconsciously echoed his thought, a soft glint in her eyes as she watched him walk away.
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Re: Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

Postby Aravanna » Feb 24, 2018 4:04 pm

Roots

I was just finishing up a long day of digging in the soil and was getting ready to clean up and head inside. I’d have to drag the hose around and water all those new geraniums with their thirsty roots first, then perhaps I’d have tea and read a novel in the sun room. As I put my gardening prunners in my back pocket and loaded the extra soil and empty plastic containers into the wheelbarrow, I caught movement out of the corner of my eye and turned. There was a young girl standing behind me.

"I'm terribly sorry to disturb you," she said, "but I believe I am your granddaughter."

Had I heard right? My palms started sweating inside of my gloves. I reached up and grabbed at my heart. There was a pang there, all that digging in the sun all day. I was too old for this.

When I didn’t say anything, the girl added in good but accented English, “You are Maria Cunningham right?” She looked like a deer in the headlights, like she thought she was wrong and wanted nothing so much as to dart back down the street. She had black hair and a medium complexion. She looked like my daughter, if my daughter had possessed black hair and hadn’t been as Caucasian as I was.

“Jessica is dead.” I finally answered, still clutching my heart. “They found her body. We had a funeral, the dental records…” I trailed off. I was thinking about that awful day when I got the call that a body in Pakistan (Pakistan of all places?) matched my daughter’s description. Then my mind slipped back to a different awful day: Jess, yanking geraniums out of the soil and screaming that I didn’t love her, that I loved these plants more than her. I’d been so angry, unable to think clearly. I’d screamed right back at her. I’d said that she was a moron if she thought Saeed loved her, and how could she possibly believe a word that weasle said.

Jessica ran away that night. I never saw her again. I never got to apologize for my last words to her.

“I’m sorry. You’re standing here and I haven’t invited you in. I think I have lemonade in the fridge.”

“I… thank you.” The young girl (was she even 18?) looked slightly less like a deer in the headlights now.

Once we were inside and sitting down, I realized I hadn't asked any questions. “What’s your name?” I asked.

“Lotus,” she replied. I smiled, it would be like Jess to name a daughter that… and named after a flower too, even when she claimed to hate them. She always was a bit of a hippie. “I know this must come as a shock to you. But I brought evidence… if you’re the same Maria Cunningham. The body they found was someone else, but my mother thought… you’d stop looking for her if you believed she was dead, so she never came forward. Are you Maria?”

“I am,” I said, looking at Lotus. She had hazel eyes. The shape of them was almost the same as Jessica’s too. I felt like I was looking at my daughter. I finally looked down at the papers slipped across the table to me. There was an old driver’s license, one corner taped back on. I recognized that picture. Jessica had hated how her smile looked. There was passport with a different last name, but the same smile. Pictures with Saeed and Jess together, and one picture with the two of them and a toddler, standing shyly half behind her mother in the bright dessert sun.

“She lived a good life. She missed you in the end, and wanted you to… she wanted to say she forgave you. She was sorry she deceived you and that she could not come herself.”

“She’s… passed on then?”

“Yes, last year. Father made her as comfortable as he knew how.”

My throat squeezed shut. I believed Lotus, believed all of this. That meant Jess had died all over again, I felt the ache that had faded with time regrow in my chest. But Jess had also lived all over again too, a good life. I looked at quiet Lotus, glancing shyly back at me. Jess had lived her life better than I could have dreamed, had she been a good mother? I supposed the evidence spoke for itself.

“Thank you for telling me everything.” I finally replied. “Do you have somewhere to stay?”

“No, but I will stay at a hotel. My visa is only good for a week longer. I cannot pay you.”

“Nonsense, granddaughters don’t have to pay their grandmothers to stay at their house. If you feel so bad imposing, you can’t help me with the flowers. Either way I insist”

“Yes, I did interrupt your work. Let me help. Mother always kept geraniums in front of our house. I do not know where she found them. I think father had to order them special from out of the country.”

“I have a few geraniums that need to go in the ground still. And all my new flowers need water. I don’t want the roots to dry out,” I said, getting up and feeling the ache more in my back now than in my chest. Lotus smiled at me, relieved to do something to help, relieved to feel like she was accepted here. I brushed my face with my hand as we went outside. My eyes were damp.
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Re: Flash Fiction Writing Challenge - hosted by the Inn Between

Postby Lady Arwen » Feb 24, 2018 11:25 pm

* is quite pleased to see so many people bustling about the Inn! * :D

Seriously. This place has been a ghost town. Erm, no offence to any of our ghosts.

Before I comment on any particular story, I have to say, I absolutely loved reading everyone's different takes on the topic, and this whole thing has been super fun.

69 Hotrod
Do, like, all your characters have names that start with a J? :P

I really liked this one, especially for the reminder that the things that we do now that are "unimportant" might actually have a huge impact. I did get a little caught by what I'm assuming is dialect ("boss-man" "brah"). Also, the stealing of the suicide note was a nice touch, along with the leaving of a template for how the car is meant to look, thus ensuring the time travel must always occur.

Tempus Fugit
DOES THIS MEAN WE GET A NEW BABY BAXTER
and
ARE YOU GOING TO MAKE US WAIT UNTIL ITS BORN TO KNOW WHAT IT IS

At least in this case ultrasounds are an option, but it wasn't like a certain set of parents didn't know what their hatchling was going to be before it hatched. * cough *

In much more writery terms, I love this little vignette and how it ties in with your normal characters, but is still an entirely stand-alone story. I also can totally see Dan being nosy and fiddling his way into inventing time travel by accident (which would be a great story in its own right).

Why does Angie gasp when Dan points out that Jonathan has to be from a third child, if she already knows she's pregnant?

Also, did Grace have a sister before, or was that a recent addition from their move to Ditto Town? * goes to look up who the baby was in the last Mansion *

I have lots of questions, clearly. ;))

Market Encounter and Roots
Forgive me if I go a little compare-and-contrast-y, but so many of the things I want to say are the same for both of these.

I had originally thought about going with an estranged child reunion, but I'm glad I didn't. You two did a much better job handling the matter than I could have. I love that, in these cases, the reunions (as they were) both ended as positive interactions (although I think Jessica was a bit cruel, knowing her mom was looking for her and refusing to give her any real peace). I also love that you both follow the same theme, but in such drastically different ways.

aileth, your dialog and voicing is awesome. I aspire to such greatness. Also, poor Evelyn, having that many people claim to be descendants and then scooting off without an explanation.

Ara, props for the title being the allegory (the roots of the family tree/roots of the geraniums).
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