What Pegman Saw – Follower

“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. Many thanks to Karen and Josh for organising this most stimulating prompt!

WPS - Follower 190601

Balbulol Dive Resort, Indonesia | Lera 76, Google Maps

Follower

He’s here again, not doing anything, just sitting and watching me.

At first he hid. He’s bolder now, in plain view.

I chant invocations as I shovel ash from a bonfire into a sack and put it into my outrigger. Nine and ninety days it has sat in sun and rain, and now it’s ready to bless the land and the sea.

I paddle hard for hours, and as I approach the atoll the sun is at its zenith. Has my pursuer had the stamina to keep up with me? I can’t see him. Perhaps the heat has overcome him? I shrug. If it has, he will not do.

I have been quick. The sun must be three-quarters through her journey before I scatter the ash. I eat and drink, and, behold, my hunter paddles slowly to the beach. His head droops.

He’ll do. I shall make him my apprentice.

Friday Fictioneers – Wilderness of Passion

I’m sorry to have been more or less missing from Friday Fictioneers. I’m especially sorry for those who kindly read and commented on my story and received no response. Sadly, this was because my mum died at the end of July. The combination of grief and the need to deal with the funeral etc rather pushed out my regular activities. I’m afraid this may continue for a while, but for this week, at least, I’ve written a story, and here it is.

Many thanks, Rochelle, for hosting this challenge. To any newbies, the challenge is 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 on your page. Link your story URL. Then the fun starts as you read other peoples’ stories and comment on them!

PHOTO PROMPT (C) Trish Nankeville

Wilderness of passion

It was a strange place to meet a tiger; Acton High Street is not conducive to tigerish behaviour. I still had most of my lunchbreak, so I followed him into a bar.

He patted the seat next to him. My breath came fast. My heart pounded. How beautiful he was, how passionate; how dangerous.

I went with him to a Premier Inn, my body savannah-warm in his arms. I cried out in triumph.

Finished, he tossed me the room key. ‘I’ve settled the account,’ he said – and left.

My wilderness of passion was, for him, merely a commonplace suburban infidelity.

Inlinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Prince Charming

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

PHOTO PROMPT (C) SANDRA CROOK

Prince Charming

Dillon saw Sally blink with surprise. Her mouth twitched.

‘You’re asking me out?’ she said.

Hot-cheeked, Dillon looked at the ground. ‘If you like,’ he muttered.

Sally laughed. ‘I’d rather date a frog,’ she said, and skipped away.

Desire, despair, mortification, Dillon’s feelings twisted him. He could hardly see; but he could hear.

They were laughing. The girls were laughing. The girls were laughing at him. Anger oozed like crimson blood from the cut of a razor.

‘But I love her,’ he thought. ‘I can’t hurt her.’

He slunk home to his bedroom – and wept.

Inlinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Second-hand romance

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

PHOTO PROMPT (c) JOHN NIXON

Second-hand romance

“I want a bride.”

“Do you mean the dress in the window? I’m afraid it wouldn’t fit you – it’s only a size 10.”

“I don’t want a dress, I want a bride.”

The shop-girl giggled. “Is that a proposal?”

“Of course not; I mean a mail-order bride, a Filipina say. I’ve got plenty of cash, and I’m generous. I’d be a great match.”

“Perhaps Mum could help you.”

The shop-girl led him into a back room, where an old woman held a folder of photographs.

“These are the women currently on our books,” she said. “But remember – we’re a second-hand shop.”

InLinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Get Well Soon

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

PHOTO PROMPT (C) ROCHELLE WISOFF-FIELDS

Get Well Soon!

The helium balloon nodded in the gentle breeze from a fan.

‘Get well soon!’

Liz Nightingale’s eyelids drifted open. She saw the garish good wishes and smiled; she and her grandson, Oliver, had always shared a taste for irony.

Her phone was ringing but Liz didn’t have the strength to answer. The nurse noticed and held the phone where Liz could see it.

There on the screen was a new born baby, protesting her first breaths.

‘We’re calling her Liz, after you,’ said Oliver.

Liz smiled. Her first great-grandchild, and so beautiful.

Gently, with no fuss, her heart stopped beating.

InLinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Money on Trees

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

PHOTO PROMPT (C) DAVID STEWART

Money on Trees

There were fifteen of them, moving stealthily through the jungle. Carlos was nervous, aware that Jose was watching him; judging. There were riches ahead, but there were risks, too. Every man carried a weapon. They’d laughed at Carlos when he said he didn’t have a gun.

The terrain was rough. The overgrown paths, winding like animal tracks, became muddy as they approached a cataract.

‘Put your feet exactly where I put mine,’ said Jose.

Sweating, panting, terrified, Carlos crested the waterfall, and there it was. Money on trees; a coca plantation.

‘You can afford a gun now,’ laughed Jose.

InLinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Well off out of it

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

PHOTO PROMPT (C) BRENDA COX

Well off out of it

Magdalena watched as Jose vomited. His limbs shook. His eyes wandered. It was the second time he’d been poisoned by insecticide. Magdalena prayed he wouldn’t die.

At last the spasms eased. Jose lay down. He slept.

Magdalena slipped out of their hut and walked to the plantation office.

“You want your pay now, in cash?” The overseer’s face was ill-tempered.

“My husband’s pay, too. We must leave tomorrow; it’s an emergency.”

“You’ll have to make it worth my while…”

Magdalena scrutinised his leering face.

“Cash first,” she said.

Next day, she and Jose were on the bus back to Nicaragua.

InLinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Might Have Been

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

PHOTO PROMPT (C) ROCHELLE WISOFF-FIELDS

Might have been

You have a pretty house. Sometimes I imagine I live there.

On Sunday, when your family dress in their best clothes for church, and then afterwards you all sit down together to eat roast chicken, plates heaped high with meat and potatoes and carrots and cabbage and fresh green beans.

On a summer evening, when, gin and tonic in hand, you cuddle Robert in the backyard.

At night, when the ghostly flicker of the TV illuminates the sitting room, and you leave the curtains open as the outside world disappears into shadows.

The things that might have been…

InLinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Wilted

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

PHOTO PROMPT (C) DALE ROGERSON

Wilted

You gave me a single red rose before you left for the special military operation.

‘I should be back within days,’ you said. ‘The rose won’t even have time to wilt.’

But that was months ago.

You brave men must feel as though you’re fighting all the world, when you see NATO’s weapons used against you by the Ukrainian Nazis. It must be terrifying; I don’t know how you can bear it.

I long for you to be home.

The rose will stand, wilted, in its vase, until I hold you in my arms again.

Inlinkz – click here to join the fun!

Friday Fictioneers – Spring

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

PHOTO PROMPT (C) NA’AMA YEHUDA

Spring

In this place, this tranquil place, this sun-warmed niche of brilliant colour and delicate fragrance, I can start to forget his coldness, his fault-finding, his vicious silences.

I can believe once again that a man might smile at me for pleasure, with laughter and delight; that he might hold me with tenderness. I can hope, perhaps, for truthfulness and openness – even, dare I wonder? – for love.

In this place, this tranquil place, this place of gentle birdsong and sweet, moist earth, I feel the dry seed of my spirit swell and quicken to meet the spring.  

Inlinkz – click here to join the fun

Friday Fictioneers – Random Shooting

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

I was uninspired this week (my bad – the prompt is good) so I wrote about an event that actually happened to me in 1973. Yes, it’s a true story!

PHOTO PROMPT (C) TED STRUTZ

Random shooting

Rush hour was past, and there was only one person in the carriage with me as we squealed and rattled towards the suburbs, through a canyon of tenement buildings with mean back-yards. I gazed out, enjoying the last of the daylight.

A man emerged from one of the houses.

‘Heavens! He’s got a gun!’ I thought.

He raised the weapon.

There was a ‘Bang!’ and the window just forward of mine cascaded onto the floor in a thousand crystalline shards. The other passenger and I exchanged glances, both of us unharmed.

I never knew who did it, or why.

Inlinkz – click here to join the fun!