What Pegman Saw – A Great Prize

“What Pegman saw” is a weekly challenge based on Google Streetview. Using the 360 degree view of the location provided, you must write a piece of flash fiction of no more than 150 words. You can read the rules here. You can find today’s location on this page,  from where you can also get the Inlinkz code.

 WPS - A Great Prize - Norfolk Island 171028

© Google Maps

A Great Prize

Subsistence farming is always unforgiving; on Norfolk Island, twelve thousand miles from where Queen Victoria reigned, weakness could mean death for the whole colony.

Jeremy saw Big Jack slip out of the prayer meeting and followed him. The cold knot in his stomach twisted tighter. He thought of Elsie – beautiful Elsie. He’d have to fight Jack tonight if he was to win her.

“Save yourself a beating. Leave Elsie alone.” Jack’s tone was matter-of-fact.

“I won’t,” hissed Jeremy.

The first punch would have flattened him – if it had landed. Jack was brutally strong, but Jeremy was quick, and he’d trained. He dodged and punched, again and again, bruising Jack’s face.

There was a gleam as Jack pulled a knife.

“That’s enough!”

Mr Fletcher and three others stepped out of the shadows.

Fletcher clapped Jeremy on the shoulder.

“Pay your court to Elsie, lad. She’s yours – if she’ll have you!”

32 thoughts on “What Pegman Saw – A Great Prize

  1. I saw a fight in one of the Expendables movies (don’t know which one) between Jet Li and Dolph Lundgren. Of course, it was a fake and they were both in character but it illustrated what happens between small and skilled and massive and unskilled. Li held his own for a while but Lundgren finally grabbed Li bodily and lifted him in the air. There was a piece of rebar sticking vertically out of a chunk of concrete and Lundgren’s character was about to impale Li’s character on it. Sylvester Stallone’s character arrived just in time to shoot Lundgren and save Li.

    If a fight goes on more than a few seconds between those two types of opponents, mass is likely to win. That said, if you could get Mohammad Ali and Bruce Lee, both in their prime, in the ring with each other, I’d have no idea who I’d put my money on, but it would be a hell of a fight.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you for reading and commenting, Alicia. I’m glad that “if she’ll have you,” made you smile. You may be right – the manly-man stuff may have been wasted, but at least Jeremy now has a chance. If he hadn’t fought, Elsie may never have had the chance of choosing – it would have been Big Jack or nobody.
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Like

    • Dear Josh
      Thank you for reading and commenting. I’m so glad you liked the language and found it authentic. That’s praise indeed from a historical fiction writer like yourself!
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Like

  2. Daft lads should have just asked the girl in the first place – save all that fighting! I liked the idea that who you paired with was this important, that it could potentially make the difference between surviving and not. Good tone throughout and I enjoyed the dialogue too. Great story Penny

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Wow, Penny. We both chose a fight. Interesting. Glad our endings are different. Well, written, with a lot of detail worked in seamlessly; however, one observation, apart from the open ending (which worked well for me. as we know nothing about Elsie), I wasn’t sure if the first paragraph: “Subsistence farming is always unforgiving; on Norfolk Island, twelve thousand miles from where Queen Victoria reigned, weakness could mean death for the whole colony.” was part of the story. I have read again without it and the story stands up. I know you are trying to scene set, but would your character think that… unless it him deliberating over the pros and cons of fighting. I enjoyed though and have no issue of big over small. Mass versus speed. Fighting style of fighting technique.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Kelvin
      Thank you for reading so carefully and commenting so helpfully.
      I, too, felt that the opening paragraph was a weakness. The scene needs setting, I think, because otherwise the characters’ motivations aren’t properly comprehensible. But I couldn’t think of a good way to do it. However, your comment points out that reason the paragraph doesn’t work is because it doesn’t belong to any of the story’s characters, especially Jeremy. That gives me a way to improve it! Thank you so much!
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Dear Ali
    Thank you for reading and commenting.
    It was acute of you to spot the significance of the men waiting in the wings. Jeremy and Jack had been working up to this fight for some time. Prayer meeting in the church was the only social activity available so it was fairly easy for the men to keep an eye on the lads.
    With best wishes
    Penny

    Like

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