What Pegman Saw – A Question of Identity

“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. This week’s location is Tbilisi, Georgia.

WPS - A question of identity 190406

A Question of Identity

“Remember, tell no-one about our guests.” Fatima’s father clutched her arm.

Fatima picked up her motorcycle helmet. “You can rely on me, Papa,” she replied.

Aleksandre was waiting for her in the market. He pointed at her hijab.

“I don’t know why you wear that thing. It’s hardly for modesty, is it? You’re wearing make-up for goodness sake!”

Fatima looked at the ground.

“Maybe using make-up is a sin, but you know I only do it to please you, husband-to-be.”

“I don’t like you wearing hijab. It demeans Mother Georgia. It’s halfway to treason!”

“Aleks, dearest, I would betray my faith if I didn’t wear it.”

Aleksandre scowled, so Fatima said, “Come, I’ll treat us to coffee before I do my shopping.”

Later, as she hurried home, she thought of Aliya’s young family, refugees from Syria, and rejoiced that the global reach of the ummah had brought them safe to Tbilisi.

 

 

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Friday Fictioneers – Sacrifice – Survival

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 - Sacrifice - Survival 190403

PHOTO PROMPT © Ronda Del Boccio

Sacrifice – Survival

The leaf-stalks, the arteries of the tree, became choked, losing their strength just as the autumn gales blew fiercer. Desiccated leaves clattered in great drifts, leaving the gnarled limbs and wrinkled bark of the tree facing the onrushing fury of winter naked, without protection. Sap sank back into the branches.

A persistent east wind hardened the cold. The tree pulled its sap back deeper, sacrificing more and more of the tightly-wrapped packets of new leaves. It was a killing winter, set to split a tree and bring it down.

Spring came late that year, and the leaves were few.

 

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Friday Fictioneers – Broken Threads

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 - Broken Threads 190327

PHOTO PROMPT© Sandra Crook

Broken Threads

Martha squatted in the only room that was still intact in the derelict house. Even the druggies had gone, leaving behind their mess and their stink. Martha moaned as the muscles of her abdomen tightened.

The Loom of Creation faltered. The Creator fused broken threads together, working frantically to keep the weave continuous. A spindle of charcoal thread was empty. Consternation! He had no more of that colour! He seized the nearest spool and spliced in a gold thread.

Martha, exultant, hugged her flawless new-born to her breast. She rose up and walked to the hospital. Her child would live!

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What Pegman Saw – Warning

“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. This week’s location is Patagonia, Chile. The prompt photo is in the city of Punta Arenas.

WPS - Warning 190323

Warning

The news that Ignacio was missing electrified our community.

“Dear God, not here,” I prayed.

Ignacio’s wife was frantic, visiting his usual haunts, interrogating his many trade union friends, calling at the police station daily. And then, abruptly, she stopped searching. She wouldn’t talk about him, or answer my questions about whether she had news of him. I saw terror lurking behind her dark-brown eyes.

There were second-hand reports of others who had disappeared, teachers, social workers, even a doctor. We all knew they’d supported Allende, but they weren’t Marxists, for goodness sake, just ordinary people who cared for others. We’re in Punta Arenas, not Santiago; not even Valparaiso. That was where resistance to the military was centred, not here. We’re a peaceful people.

Ignacio turned up after a few months. He’s a solitary man now. He shakes constantly and refuses to go out.

His fingers are twisted.

Friday Fictioneers – Change the Date

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 - Change the Date 190320

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

Change the Date

Once more Denise counted the lamp-posts to the bridge. She was sure she was waiting in the right place.

She called Alan again. No answer.

Something must be wrong! He wouldn’t stand her up. Not on New Year’s Eve. Would he?

The minutes were ticking away, and the crowd was growing steadily thicker, noisier and more exuberant.

Her phone pinged. A message. From Alan.

“Sorry. Dozed off. Enjoy the fireworks!”

Before she could answer, she felt a tap on her shoulder.

“Mark! How lovely to see you!”

“Here for the fireworks? Shall we watch them together?”

Why not? Bugger Alan!

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What Pegman Saw – Accident

“What Pegman saw” is a weekly challenge based on Google Streetview, to write a story of about 150 words in response to a location prompt. It’s great fun, especially reading and commenting on the stories submitted. You can read the rules here. You can find today’s location on this page,  from where you can also get the Inlinkz code. This week’s location is Rams Island, Northern Ireland.

WPS - Accident 190316

Accident

The empty windows of the lodge stared blindly into the night.

“No! Take your hands off!”

Annie O’Neil struggled with Sergeant Cardew, who was being a great deal too amorous for her liking.

He laughed and drawled, “Come on, sweetheart. You know you want to!”

“You’re just a gobshite!” she hissed, and spat at him.

His face darkened. He slapped her face three times, not especially hard, just to shake her. Annie lashed out with sudden violence and swivelled to flee, but rain had left the ground muddy and slick. She pitched forward, hit her head and lay still.

“Come on, Annie. Stop playing games.”

He reached down, turned her head, saw the wound, the open eyes, the frozen features.

“Shit.”

Glancing round apprehensively, he saw the lodge. It was easy to force a window, and the fire that some ‘careless’ GI started there that night reduced everything to ashes.

Friday Fictioneers – Growing marigolds

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 - Growing Marigolds 190313

PHOTO PROMPT © Anshu Bhojnagarwala

Growing marigolds

Ferenc’s fingers hammered the final chords of the Polonaise, and the audience roared its approval.

“A new Liszt!” exclaimed one man to his wife.

Ferenc bowed and swept off stage.

Out of the shadows, the heavy hands of the secret police grasped him, forcing him from the building.

“You are an associate of terrorists.” The interrogator was implacable. “Give us their names, and we will let you live.”

One by one, he broke Ferenc’s fingers.

Now those twisted fingers painfully press marigold seedlings into the compost filling his piano case.

The seedlings will bloom prettily – but you can grow marigolds anywhere.

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Click here to enter