Infidelity – 300 word version

Infidelity

It was dark in the wings. I should have been in the Green Room but I wanted to watch the performance.

A strong arm slipped around my waist. It felt so right that I couldn’t help myself. I turned towards Frank, tilting my face up to his. He kissed me. I yielded, as I would have done for Jim, and then thought, ‘No, I don’t need to pretend…’ and kissed back enthusiastically.

How long is eternity? Two seconds? Three seconds? That is how long the kiss lasted, but it brought its own sort of eternity.

And then it was over.

Frank stepped back.

“Liz, I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have done that. I’m so sorry. You’re a married woman.” Even in my swirling Arcadian haze of arousal I noticed that he didn’t say that he was a married man.

“Don’t be sorry, Frank. Don’t be sorry”. My right hand stroked his chest feverishly. The quartet on stage was reaching its climax.

“Oh, Liz, you are just so…Liz, I love you’.

Why did Jim never speak to me like that? Why did he never kiss me like that?

I felt guilty that night as I went to bed. Jim didn’t seem to notice anything. He kissed me goodnight, rolled over, and was snoring gently within a minute. Normally I liked Jim’s snores. They weren’t loud, they just rumbled gently and reminded me that my man lay beside me; a comfortable knowledge of security. That night, though, they grated.

‘Liz, I love you’. The joy of that knowledge! And its guilt. Lying there beside my sleeping husband thinking of another man’s love.

And then, knowingly and deliberately, I imagined Frank’s embrace, the look of bewildered joy on his face, his tender words. I allowed the joy to seep through me. I went to sleep.

 

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Friday Fictioneers – Infidelity

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 (‘Join the Party’) on your page. Link your story URL. Then the fun starts as you read other peoples’ stories and comment on them!

FF - Infidelity 190626

PHOTO PROMPT © Ted Strutz

Infidelity

It was dark in the wings. I should have been in the Green Room but I wanted to watch the performance.

A strong arm slipped around my waist. It felt so right that I couldn’t help myself. I turned towards Frank, tilting my face up to his. He kissed me. I yielded, as I would have done for Jim, and then thought, ‘No, I don’t need to pretend…’ and kissed back enthusiastically.

How long is eternity? Two seconds? Three seconds? That is how long the kiss lasted, but it brought its own sort of eternity.

And then it was over.

Join the party!

 

What Pegman Saw – Saints and Martyrs

“What Pegman saw” is a weekly challenge based on Google Streetview. 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 - Saints and Martyrs 190622 

Santa Ana, El Salvador | Lopez Lopez, Google Maps

Saints and Martyrs

I pulled out my transistor radio ready for Archbishop Romero’s weekly sermon. My fiancée, Carlotta, wound her fingers through mine, her apprehension palpable. Would there be news of her brother? Would he be one of those on the grim lists of victims of torture and murder that the Archbishop read out?

I could hear other radios down the street – everybody listened, despite the ban, because this was how we, the poor and defenceless, found out what was happening.

Carlotta’s brother wasn’t mentioned.

A month later, the Archbishop was dead. A man burst into the hospice chapel where he was celebrating mass, and shot him twice. They say he forgave his killer with his dying breath. He’s a saint now.

And Carlotta? She and I joined the throng for the Archbishop’s funeral. As we drew near to the cathedral, the security forces fired on the crowd. My beloved, my dearest – dead…

Join the Party!

 

Friday Fictioneers – Chance Encounter

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 (Join the Party!) on your page. Link your story URL. Then the fun starts as you read other peoples’ stories and comment on them!

FF - Chance Encounter - 190619 PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Chance encounter

It’s lonely, being divorced, childless and forty-something. Still, at least I have the time and money to travel.

I was waiting for a plane when I met him. He was tall, and looked artistic, cultured – interesting.

“Is that seat taken?” he asked, pointing at the place beside me. His voice gave me goose-bumps. Hastily I removed my bags.

“Where are you going?” he said, sitting down.

“Cambodia.”

His eyes opened wide. “Flight EK222? Why, so am I!”

He pulled out his boarding pass. “Seat 27A”

“Mine is 27B! Looks like we’ll be sitting together a while longer.”

How very agreeable!

Join the Party!

What Pegman Saw – The Lighthouse Keeper’s Wife

“What Pegman saw” is a weekly challenge based on Google Streetview. 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 - The Lighthouse Keeper's Wife 190615 

(c) Jim Semonik

The Lighthouse Keeper’s Wife

My tent slapped like the sail of a gybing yacht as I pitched up within sight of the North Head lighthouse. There was moisture in the air. It tasted salty, and left a film on my spectacles. Waves hurled themselves against the rocks below the lighthouse with a power that was simultaneously exhilarating and appalling.

The wind and waves were my lullaby that night.

I awoke at about one o’clock.

Somebody was sobbing, gasping sobs of desperate distress. I pulled on waterproofs, seized my torch and went out into the gale. There was a wail up ahead, and I saw her, running pell-mell towards the cliffs.

“Stop,” I yelled.

She turned, saw me and shrieked with terror. Panic-stricken, she turned to flee.

“No!” I screamed.

Too late. She plunged over the cliff, plummeting out of sight.

I called 911, but the police found nothing.

“Mary Pesonen’s ghost,” they told me.

 

 

Friday Fictioneers – A good omen

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 - A good omen 190612

PHOTO PROMPT © Valerie J. Barrett

A good omen

Makshirani hardly noticed the rustling; it was the movement that caught her attention. Swaying, tongue flickering, hood puffed out large, the cobra sensed her. Makshirani froze.

“Stand absolutely still!”

The serpent’s eyes held her spell-bound; it could strike at any moment. Shouldn’t she run?

Slowly, slowly the snake lowered itself and slithered into the ditch. Makshirani’s father hurried over.

“That Nagaraja should raise his hood in blessing is an excellent omen, daughter.”

“Baba, I must sit for a moment.”

She stumbled to the bank under the jackfruit tree. Good omen it might be – she was just glad to be alive.

Join the Inlinkz party

I’m afraid my response to this week’s prompt is very obscure. The kettle in the picture seems to be spitting boiling water. Cobras spit venom. I’m in the depths of editing my novel set in India, hence this story!

 

What Pegman Saw – Homeless

“What Pegman saw” is a weekly challenge based on Google Streetview. 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 - Homeless 190608

Photo courtesy Mark Knight by Pixabay

Homeless in Shepherd’s Bush, 1972

Damn, it’s cold tonight! My bloodless fingers fumble the string as I tie my dog to the railing. “Stay, Sam!” I say.

Traffic’s heavy, but the bright shop window lures me across the road. Get a few minutes in the warm, and a bottle of something to stop me feeling the chill. The traffic lights glare frosty green; a car horn blares as I stumble.

The shopkeeper looks about seventeen, with pimples and sparse curly hair. He keeps watching me.

It takes me a few minutes to find the cheapest vodka, a few more to count out coins from my battered purse and then I’m out of excuses to stay in the precious warmth.

Vehicle headlights swerve past me, too bright, too fast. I trip as I mount the kerb, skinning both knees. Sam barks. I shuffle cardboard sheets into a crude shelter, cuddle Sam, and open the bottle.

Cheers.