Weathering Our Storm (2)


Thanks to Georgia Koch for the lovely photo for our prompt this week and to our intrepid Captain Rochelle for navigating our good ship Friday Fictioneers  through all kinds of seas.

(I love this photograph and am so grateful to Rochelle for using it as the re-run this week and I have posted my original story. At present my ship is a bit wobbly, due in part to OH not being well, but we will be back on course very soon).

24 January Georgia Koch

Copyright – Georgia Koch

Genre: Fiction

Word Count:100

Weathering Our Storm

Will you come with me, to Venice?’

An invitation to the place where we began would once have sent my heart soaring. Dare I allow it to do so again?

‘I’ll think about it, if that’s alright?’

Oh, the care we take with one another.   I couldn’t ride out the maelstrom of his affair.  I had to scream it out, to hit back verbally against the waves of pain and sadness that engulfed and threatened to overpower me.

But somehow the storm abated, he chose to stay. How ambitious we are, how determined to keep our precious ship afloat.

‘Yes.’

 

For more stories click here 

 

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An Invitation


I love the old desk in the photo this week and wonder how many ‘letters’ we will receive…

Thanks to Mr Fields for the photo and for Mrs Fields for continuing to mark our work and support our efforts.

Copyright Jan Fields

Copyright Jan Wayne Fields

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

An Invitation

Dearest Ellen

My words will be a shock to you and I beg you be seated whilst you read them.

When I refused Henry’s proposal, I know you were saddened as you wanted us to be sisters.  My disposition would not have suited your brother and I believed the wedded state was not for me.

I write to you to confess that I was wrong in my belief and have accepted the proposal of marriage from Arthur Nicholls. The wedding will be in June, my dearest wish is that you will be my witness.  

Your loving and devoted friend

Charlotte

 

Read more Friday Fictioneers stories – I insist 

 

This letter could have been written by Charlotte Bronte to her dear friend Ellen Nussey. Ellen’s brother Henry did propose to Charlotte and she did refuse him citing her disposition as the main reason they would not get on.  Charlotte married her father’s curate Arthur Bell Nicholls in June 1854.  Sadly the marriage was happy but short, Charlotte died on 31 March 1855 in the early stages of pregnancy.

If you would like to read more the link will take you to the website of the  Bronte Society

Bronte Society

Bronte Society – Ellen Nussey

 

 

 

 

An Uncertain Future


Our fabulous group achieved recognition by WordPress – the comment I liked best- We love Friday Fictioneers as much for the blogging bonds it cultivates as for the range and power of the stories it inspires.’

If you missed the post you can read it here. So pleased for Rochelle and for the whole group too, as it is always a good feeling when your work is admired.

Back down to earth now, my story this week follows the lovely photo by Erin Leary.

Copyright Erin Leary

Copyright Erin Leary

Genre: Fiction

Word Count: 100

An Uncertain Future

She waits outside the door, listening to the conversation between the doctor and her husband. Her nails dig into her palm, the discomfort a distraction.

‘Last question, do you know what day it is today Daniel?’

‘Yes, of course I do.’

‘Can you tell me?’

A slight pause, ‘you know it as well as I.’

‘I’m not sure, will you tell me?’

Silence

Sadness envelops her; her worst fears confirmed.

Later when they leave he holds her arm. Safe again, he looks at her with shining eyes, and wide smile.

She smiles back at him, immediately recognising her new role.

 

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Dementia is a cruel and unforgiving thing. This story came to mind as soon as I saw Erin’s photo. It is based on a close friend and her husband – a former accountant with a brilliant mathematical mind. She always described his illness like  ‘a mist that slowly descends until the way becomes totally obscured.’

 

 

 

Tuesday morning on the 10.25


Countryside as Seen from a Moving Train

 

“Are things any better with Jack, or still the same?”

“They’re still the same.  I’ve tried my hardest to find out what the problem is, but nothing I do makes any difference. I’m afraid I have just given up.”

As the two women take their seats across the aisle from me, I try not to stare. Their conversation has aroused my interest, set my imagination to work.

I wonder what on earth could be wrong with Jack and think up several different scenarios.  Is he ill? Perhaps he only has months to live and couldn’t bring himself to upset his wife and family. Or is he facing redundancy and feels depressed, wondering how the family will manage without his salary? Or has he found someone else?

I decide it must be the latter. It will explain the change in his attitude to his wife, the reason why she has given up.   He doesn’t really want to be with her but just can’t bring himself to end their relationship.  I imagine them in their semi-detached house with small manageable garden, they have a mortgage and three children; the youngest would not have been planned. They used to holiday abroad for two weeks each year, now they take one week and spend it in a caravan somewhere in the Devon, barely speaking to each other.

He met the woman who became his mistress at work.  She is tall and slim with a terrific personality, quite attractive with a great sense of humour. His wife was like her when they first married, he tells her, but now she is more interested in the children and her family than him.

The train races along and I am tempted to take out my notebook, but it is in my bag on the luggage rack and I am unwilling to cause a disturbance. I resist the temptation. I make a mental note to always make sure the notebook is in my handbag. The conversation between the two women is spasmodic, their voices low.  I find it hard to hear anything further without making a fool of myself.

As the train enters a long tunnel, I have the opportunity to study their reflection in my window.  Although a slightly distorted view, I see two women in early middle age; the one who had asked the question seems the younger of the two and is now reading a magazine.  The other woman, the “wife”, is half-heartedly nibbling on a sandwich, staring into space.

Small stations flash past. The train will only make three stops before reaching London. I find that I feel sorry for the wife, she probably has done nothing other than carry on as she always has.  Perhaps she too longs for more; a more interesting life, a more attentive husband, but feels it’s too late to do anything about it.  She is just resigned to things the way they are, getting on with the mundane tasks life has handed her; a home to run, a husband and children to care for.

I decide that she looks like a ‘Susan’ and her friend is called ‘Louise’.  I am busy creating lives for them and their families when the train pulls into Paddington. I gather my bag quickly from the rack and follow the two women from the train.

“There they are” calls Louise, pulling Susan’s arm and hurrying her along.

They walk towards two young women, waiting by the coffee shop.

“Where’s your dad?” asks Susan sounding worried.

So, Jack hasn’t even bothered to come to the station. I feel sad for her; she is still hoping for a change of heart, while he obviously just doesn’t care anymore.

Suddenly there is a commotion and out of the crowd a man comes running, being pulled along by a very excitable West highland terrier.

“Oh Jack” Susan cries  stooping down to grab the dog, who is  trying his best to jump up to her, “you’re back to your old self.  I was so worried we were going to lose you.”

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I feel more comfortable writing ‘memoir’ pieces and would welcome your feedback if you have the time.