Three Things Challenge: Fiction – The Homeless Wood Nymph’s Fairytale #3ThingsChallenge #amwriting #fiction


Thanks to the Haunted Wordsmith for hosting the #3ThingsChallenge. Today’s things are: discovery, lace, basketball.


Credit: Caroline Hernandez via Unsplash


Kate tromped through the bushes, in her wedding gown; at least she’d switched to her flats. The fist fight between her fiancé, and his best man, Jim, had her heart thumping fast. She ran to catch Evan as he disappeared into the pussy willows, into the Woods. The sun burnt her skin, and she swore as makeup and sweat melted in rivulets down her face.

She’d met Ev playing pick-up basketball with friends, walking her fiendish dog, Slash. He was a rescue dog, and Ev abhorred him. Slash won him over when Ev learnt that the accident-prone doxie was left to die by the side of a road — just as him. Both doxie and man had a roped scar down their torso.

Ev had studied law within the military, but had been called up for a tour in Afghanistan. A mine exploded, killing one of his squad and leaving Evan half-dead; his right side slick with blood and guts.

It was two-years since Kate met Ev in the park and nine-months since he proposed, but only six-months with therapy twice-a-week that lessened his nightmares of that insufferable day.

Kate’s lace dress tore as she shoved her train over her shoulder. Where was her made of honor, Rose? She couldn’t get out of her corset alone.

“Ev?” In the stillness of nature she searched. “Where are you? What happened with Jim?” No answer, but leaves crackled. “Ev, please. It’s our wedding.” Little trails of blood marked Kate’s skin as prickled branches scratched.

Kate blew out her breath; a long train and flats made hikes through the woods impossible. “Don’t do this to me, don’t ruin our day because of him. You’re out, and you’re finally getting over the horror — you and Slash. You’re working at you’re dad’s practice, and you’re why I haven’t been drinking these past two-months.”

Kate’s throat was raw, and she heard twigs snap as she neared Ev’s scuff-less shoes cast aside. The pussy willow fluff in the air made her sneeze. She wiped her nose and sniffled. Her allergies alone hadn’t caused her eyes to tinge red and her nose to drip. She rubbed her eyes and screamed. Tears leaked out of her eyes, a constant dripping faucet.

“Kate?” Finally, Ev stepped out from the woods, barefoot. Her handsome guy in a fitted suit. He’d thrown his jacket over his arm, and his sleeves were rolled. He held a beer to his blackened-eye.

“Ev, thank God. I’ve been yelling your name forever. There’s barely cell reception, and we’ve missed our ceremony. What happened with Jim?”

Ev grumbled and rubbed the back of his neck. “I don’t want to talk, not today.”

“He’s your best man.”

“Not anymore, Cameron’s in.” Kate sat beside Ev on a fallen tree.

It crackled as she sat, and tore at her lace skirt. “You ruined my dress, you know. My mother will never forgive me.”

Ev rubbed a hand over her cheek. “Your shoulders are sun-burnt and you’re face is red; you’ve raccoon eyes too.”

“How observant of you.”

He grimaced then pressed his lips twice against hers, back and forth. “I would’ve come back. I wouldn’t leave you. I told Cameron to say I needed two hours.”

“Well, Cameron wasn’t fast enough. I saw you leave and ditched my Kate Spade’s. While I searched for you I suffered terrible allergies. Now that you’re discovered, I’m mad at you, Ev.”

“I get that. I still don’t want to talk about Jim.”

Kate huffed. She pushed at Ev’s shoulders. He teetered, but didn’t fall. She shoved him until she was pounding at his chest and shoulders. Then Kate rushed Ev as if she were a linebacker. Ev didn’t fall or talk.

Instead, he sniggered, a hand holding his stomach. “You have to stop! My stomach hurts from holding in my laughter of your whimpiness. Stop running at me; you’re exhausted.”

Kate grabbed Ev’s tie and yanked. “You pick up my train and march us back to the ceremony. Don’t pull this shit on me today.”

Ev’s mouth hung open, and Kate closed it, peach nails digging into his chin. “Bella, luckily, will fix my makeup and hair and even has a little vacuum to get the thorns and twigs from my ruined dress. We’re getting married, screw Jim.”

“You don’t want to know what happened?”

“Not until tomorrow.”

“He–”

“Shut it. There maybe no guests, but your dad surely knows a judge who can help us before tonight.”

“Listen Kate –”

“No, you listen.”

“He hurt me. When that landmine killed Jace, he pushed me too. Jim was scared, but he was also a trained soldier. I asked him straight out who pushed me three-years ago. Today, he chose to tell me it was him who left me to die; him who never returned for me until twenty-three hours later.”

“Selfish prick. I’d like to deal with that coward myself. I’m sorry, Ev. I would’ve wanted to tackle him too”

“I’d have forgiven him anything as long as he’d been honest. No guy we were with would’ve said a thing, and they didn’t. It wasn’t their fight. But, it’s two-years later and he’s lied all this time. I went through so much. I’m still going through it.”

Kate swore and grabbed her phone from her clutch. She texted Rose.

“What are you doing?” Ev’s grey-eyes were wide. His hand stopped her typing.

“I postponed things. We’ll get married at the hall tonight before the fesitivities. It will be a half-hour, not a whole service, thankfully. This time away’s more important.”

Ev nodded and she gawked as tears ran down his face. “I’ve never seen you cry. Not even in physiotherapy.”

He pulled her down next to him, and buried his face in her neck. A wet cooling sensation flowed onto her collar. She barely flinched when his tears stung her sunburned skin. He needed to get this out, and Kate didn’t want him to notice her pain. She embraced Ev, and didn’t move until he was done.

Eventually, he peered up. “How much time?” His voice rasped and his face was flushed.

“Until 5:30 p.m. Rose and Cameron have it arranged. Everyone saw what happened with Jim. They’ll understand.”

Ev pushed a hand through his chocolate hair and wiped his eyes. “My face is probably as red as yours.” Kate leaned against him and the rip of her skirt up her leg made them both wince.

Ev shrugged. “It’s okay, babe. We’ll deal with it. We’ll get through tonight, and everyday after that. You’re my new bestie, and Cameron’s been promoted too.” She smirked and entwined their fingers.

Her thumb brushed over his mouth and his hand wrapped around her head, as he laid it on her shoulder.

Ev played with her curls. “Now, I look like a homeless wood nymph. Your fingers aren’t helping my hair. Ev kissed her neck beneath her ear.

She rested her cheek against his hair, as he laughed. “I like your new look. The amount of leg where your dress ripped is also an improvement.”

Kate elbowed Ev and he sniggered. He placed his hands around her face. “Is it true I’m the reason you haven’t been drinking? Is it because -?” She nodded and Ev’s eyes twinkled. When he grinned and rocked her back and forth, she knew the wedding would turn out.

He placed his hand on her belly. “Let’s hope Slash isn’t the jealous type.”


©Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

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Poem: Free Verse – “Prayer for the Small Things” #amwriting #poetry #prayer


Credit: Saatchi Art – Thank God For Women Legs by Thomas Saliot

——–

Oh Lord, thank God for the small things, 

The words and acts of kindness, 

Which help me through the day.

Thank God for the small things, 

Each day I’m fed, 

I’ve many clothes to wear.

Thank you that I too can be generous

That you gave me a Mother who taught —

Her daughter to be thoughtful, 

So I wouldn’t think only of myself. 

And even when I’m hurt and crying

I can see a silver lining in that cloud. 

*****

Lord, thank you for the small things, 

A life I’m given to live

No matter how battered or bruised

You’re my armour and you never leave. 

Your champions wage

Though the whirlpool may swallow;

You bring us through to the other side. 

New blessings each day, 

More than we need or want, or deserve

Thank you for the small things. 

For earnings, for caring friends, 

For a heart that doesn’t break when it’s bent

Thank you for love; however, small it was, 

For those who hurt me, 

So I knew then, what forgiveness was. 

*****

Lord, oh for the small things, 

That kindness could be formed in me, 

To kill the badness, the jealousy

Thank you for keeping him safe, 

For him not being my guy, 

Though I pray for him still, 

You keep him secure, alive —

I pray you give him faith

And draw us both close to you. 

*****

Thank you my almost love, 

Is not in the big picture. 

I hope he sees his wealth, 

His privilege comes, 

Not only with acts of goodness

But faith in God, in Jesus —

From his heart

If I see him again —

Help me to not turn away but to repair

So much is your power, 

You could change a man’s mind. 

Help him see he is lost in the law, 

He needs your grace to believe

*****

Thank you Lord, for the small things, 

My family, my friends, those I detest. 

My lost pets, my forgotten foes. 

Every man I felt something special for,

For the ones who hurt me deep and cut in;

I didn’t bleed out and die inside. 

I moved on, survived

I’m doing okay. 

*****

Thank you I was born in this day and age

Not one-hundred something years ago or more. 

For medical advances, social programs, 

And people more understanding, 

At least I hope

Thank you that one day, I’ll see you face to face,
Thank you Lord, for the small things, 

For to me they’re very big.

My prayer I give and keep in my heart

For your omniscient presence, 

For your healing,

Oh Lord, I ask and give thanks. 

———

©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved. 

Writing 101 – Freedom – “Sacrifice”


Many people would react viciously if you told them they weren’t free. It’s a fundamental of democracy that every man and woman of every human race, justly has a right to liberty.

We take it for granted and we do not think, what it would be like to be locked up — to be bound with chains of tyranny, literal or figuratively; freedom is never free.

But freedom is a difficult ideal. People in society should be able to decide on their actions and make their own choices.

And  people should decide who should govern them, what laws and rules limit people from ruining another’s human rights (liberties).

When you say “freedom,” people actually think it is free; they stop and forget that people fought and died in wars so we could enjoy the right to liberty today. People long for freedom in places under lock and key.

We forget that freedom isn’t about only  our own freedom but the liberty of our neighbours and community members too.

We forget that since we are free to educate ourselves , and be educated, we should strive to be knowledgable; we should make informed choices.

For example, a liberty to bear arms — guns — is secondary to how available you make them and for whom. If you truly want to have a gun to defend your house, then you will jump through hoops so your rights do not infringe on other people’s rights to live.

You will follow all the steps the law says you need to do to have a gun even though they are aggravating, because you want your children safe at school and you want your friends and family safe at work, or at a shopping mall.

In the subject of freedom we are negligent (because we have had it so long without are world falling to chaos) because it is only free if you limit it.

You must say you are free to do ‘this’ but not ‘that’ because you are infringing on the freedom of other people.

For this reason, where I live: we eliminated smoking in bars and public places. Because people have a right to breath clean air and not be subjected to second hand smoke which can cause cancer.

If you smoke you are free to do so but not if it is going to affect my liberty to breathe, too not be allergic to the air.

You can do it in certain areas where there are places to put out your cigarettes, or in your own home if your certain you must.

And you can wear a head set while driving a vehicle, instead of driving one-handed. You can tell your phone ” Siri, text Allison and tell her I’m going for a beer after work, ” instead of removing your eyes from the road and using your fingers to text.

And now we are losing demerits for distracted driving. No putting on mascara or lipstick while you are driving. No looking for something you can’t find or eating a burger either. It’s harsh, but people are dying.

You are infringing on people’s saftey when you drive distractedly. You think you are free to drive how you like, but an old lady thinks she is free and safe to walk across the road while you search your phone, your  eyes not on the road.

Not every one follows law and order, the price of freedom, of our liberty. It’s the purpose of jail. Why we spend so much on prisons, why in some countries people are sentenced to die; are we truly free to say someone’s life should be forfeit?

People change. That doesn’t make up for the pain of the victims or their families or the crime. But the fact that people can educate themselves, find God, show remorse, and better themselves makes me think it is better to let God decide who lives and dies.

He is after all the ultimate judge and executioner. The freedom to give and take life as you please, that scares me. It is something that happens in places with no freedom. In places where people are suffering and dying needlessly.

And because people don’t follow laws here, they act to protect their freedom and they sue each other, and do awful and thoughtless things.

And some companies can be pretty corporate at the bottom line when it comes to thinking of the individual employee’s liberties.

What freedom, do the mentally ill have? When the common person knows so little about mental illness, to help them. When people don’t understand them or make an effort to. What about freedom of acceptance?

What about freedom of speech? Does it change your view of the person talking normally if you know he is bipolar? Or if he does is job year after year but has a bit of break down. Or if he is an alcoholic or a crime victim.

And what of the freedom to live, we can take this two ways. Should you have the freedom to healthcare you can’t afford? Isn’t a human life worth it? What if your health plan doesn’t cover a new medical procedure?

But Doctors need to be paid and new ones trained. There are nurses and interns and the people from the lab. What about their right to make a living? Does it out – weigh your right to live? Haven’t we decided that we shouldn’t be choosing who lives and who dies?

But it changes up a little when you are dying and nothing can save you. When you are in horrific pain because of a physical disease. Think of ALS and Tuesday’s with Morrie or cancer in your bones or in your blood.

Miracles can happen. But if you are the one choosing and it is your life, shouldn’t you have access to drugs, or some humane way to die. To not leave this life so torn apart that everyday is an agony and pain is a mantra.

I don’t know what I’d do but I think I might like to go out with a little of me left in me. I don’t want to be a person with no freedom because she is forced to live and suffer. A person who had no freedom because disease stole it from her.

I think the concept of freedom is quite deceptive. Initially, it appears harmless but when you dig deeper you see that it has teeth, a tale, and Jurassic World T-Rex hybrid eyes and teeth.

Liberty, is a hugely complex subject. It seems so simple when we’re only dying for it. But to uphold a society of freedom, means not everbody is completely free. There is give and take.

And I found that as I write, I keep becoming caught up in liberty of life. In society and their reactions in time near death, for abortions, in prisons, as you go about your day — who decides who lives and dies.

That is a freedom I think humans shouldn’t have. But we make the decisions anyways, because we have free will; sometimes, I don’t like liberty at all.

At times it’s easier to have “someone”make the decision. But that is how dictatorships start, when we stop deciding.

Here we are, the biggest problem with freedom — we must choose what freedom is, and what we will give up to be free.

—–

©Mandibelle16. All Rights Reserved.