Friday Fictioneers – Memento Mori

Every week, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (thank you, Rochelle!) hosts a flash fiction challenge, to write a complete story, based on a photoprompt, with a beginning, middle and end, in 100 words or less. Post it on your blog, and include the Photoprompt and Inlinkz (the blue frog) on your page. Link your story URL. Then the fun starts as you read other peoples’ stories and comment on them!

FF - Memento mori 171129

PHOTO PROMPT © What’s His Name

Memento mori

There’s a bathroom suite in the outhouse, never used.

I remember how proud Mom and Dad were when they bought it. It was plastic not cast-iron, and, source of immense satisfaction to Mom, it had a low-level WC.

“Stop picking at the wrapping, Adrian!” snapped Mom. I sighed. My little sister tittered.

When Dad arrived home after work, he tore off the packaging. There it was, a fashionable avocado, with gleaming chrome-plated fittings.

“I’ll have the plumber install it on Monday,” said Dad.

“Come on, Henry. Tea-time. We’ve got prayer meeting tonight.”

On their way home, a drunk-driver killed them.

69 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers – Memento Mori

    • Dear Lynn
      Thank you for reading and commenting. I’m glad you had such a strong sense of her working class pride, because that was exactly what I wanted to convey. She would have been the sort of woman who has a crotcheted cover over the spare toilet roll in the loo!
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes! I can imagine that. A Sindy doll with a knitted skirt – and plastic runners down the stairs and hall to save the carpet. An Aunt and Uncle of mine had plastic covers on their sofa too – though that might have been for when we visited! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Susan
      Thank you for reading, and for your helpful comment. I agree that the ending was too abrupt. It would have been a better balanced story if I’d prepared a little more for the twist. Thanks for the ConCrit!
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Like

  1. Considering what happened to them later that day, Mom’s annoyance at Adrian for picking at the wrapping seems so petty, doesn’t it? Death puts everything in perspective. I liked your attempt at explaining why a run-down place would contain new items that had never been used.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Susie
      Thank you for reading and commenting. I’m glad you found the ending unexpected. Looking back, and with the help of the comments I’ve had, I think my end was too abrupt; it needs just a fraction more build up.
      Thank you for the constructive criticism!
      All the best
      Penny

      Like

    • Dear Irene
      Thank you for reading and commenting.
      I’m glad the twist took you by surprise. However, in retrospect, I think it was too abrupt to make a really satisfying story. I must try a little more build-up next time!
      With very best wishes
      Penny

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Anurag
      Thank you for reading and commenting. It was a sad story, I’m afraid. I’m glad you loved the title. It never hurts to be reminded of the brevity of life, as it makes us appreciate our daily life more, even though it can seem dull at times.
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Alice
      Thank you for reading and commenting. To make a more satisfying story, I think I should have built a little more carefully to the ending. It was too abrupt as I wrote it.
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Like

  2. Wow, you jerked the rug out from under my feet there, Penny. What a shame they never got to use their new furnishings. Ours have been stored in that old milk barn for over a year. Don’t know if we’ll ever use them either (other than as a photo prompt).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Russell
    Thank you for reading and commenting; I’m glad to know that the twist shocked you. In retrospect, i think I could have achieved a better effect with just a little more preparation for the reveal. I’ll try it next time!
    All the best
    Penny

    Like

    • Dear Bjorn
      Thank you for reading and commenting. Now that I’ve had feedback on my story – and thought about it – I think that even if you’d guessed what might happen from the title, it would still have felt wrong. The killing of the couple by a drunk driver doesn’t arise out of any of the other story elements – it just happens. However true to life that may be, it’s not aesthetically satisfying, is it? I, for one, like stories that make connections rather than stories where a ‘plot device’ abruptly changes matters.
      Thank you very much for your feedback!
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Like

      • I think in life things just happens, and maybe we are wrong in the sense that we should drop clues of what might happen… to some extent that’s an artifact of fiction, and I almost think it would be a great thing to just write about things that just drops from the sky. Actually I can see this as an example of Deus Ex Machina

        Like

    • Dear Jan
      Sorry to be a long time replying to your comment.
      Thank you for reading and commenting. Yes, it was a shocking ending. I’m glad the ‘fashionable avocado’ had the right effect; it’s very helpful of you to tell me that.
      With best wishes
      Penny

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s