Three Line Tales/ #TaleWeavers / #MusicChallenge: Poem – Bop – “Doorway to Home” #amwriting #poetry #3LineTales


Thanks to Sonya of Only 100 Words for hosting #3LineTales. Also, thanks to Michael of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie and his Tale Weaver Prompt of “time’s up,” literally or figuratively in a piece 500 to 600 words at most. A triple combo for this one with MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie Music Challenge and the song “Hope in the Air (I Speak Because I Can)” by Laura Marling.


Credit: Sonya


Hope in the Air (I Speak Because I Can” by Laura Marling


Time’s a limited but precious present,

So, never squander it so hesitant.

Don’t be an old man with words lost to the sea,

Say what you truly mean, set your soul free.

Don’t let the end come your wasp’s tongue too numb,

Don’t fear my next visit, your mind and ears dumb.

Learn — never forget to hope against hope;

Spend not life somber, your last line’s aren’t wrote.

Hope’s Air and Water; your doorway to Home.

Men may fall graceless when easily provoked,

They’ll stumble, choke as life’s gift is revoked.

Death’s the end for all, one day the reaper;

Face me not with fear, I’m your soul’s keeper.

I come not with curses for those who’ve kept faith,

I’m no doom-ridden creeper nor dark wraith.

So, fear me not, live your life full and whole;

Shrink not — fear your evil deeds, those woeful.

Hope’s Air and Water; your doorway to Home.

So, don’t give in; pull your boots up, hold —

Onto your candle, its flame’s spreading bold.

I can’t save a soul, with good deeds or gold,

I can share His light; it burns but He’ll mold —

You up-right when your wax melts, and you wane.

Before it’s done believe, gleam bright with God’s hope.

Hope’s Air and Water; your doorway to Home.

******


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

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#OctPoWriMo Day 30/ Photo Challenge: Poem – Wrapped Refrain – “ The Occult Shop” #poetry #photochallenge #dVerse 


For OctPoWriMo Day 30 the prompt theme is forbidden. As per usual I’m combining prompts with Bodhirose’s #dVerse Poet’s Pub open link night prompt and Scribblers Dip of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie ‘s Photo Prompt Challenge. 

——-

Credit: © Richard Davis Photography

———

Barbara the Methodist walks by —

Aging, cluttered shop, holds head high.  

Her morals don’t permit feeling —

Curious she crosses busy street. 

Readings of palms of one’s future —

Advertised; she considers curtly. 

Blouse buttoned to her neck, arms folded, righteous ire,  

Prays curiousity won’t condemn her to the fire. 

——

Martin the mailman delivers —

Packages with symbols, riddles. 

Cashier is a friendly goth kid, 

Worn man watching frightens Martin.

Knows things he shouldn’t know all too well. 

Secrets hid deep, Martin’s own hell; 

Tortured with memories from a childhood of sad hurt, 

Old man offers help, revenge with a strange voodoo curse. 

—-

Danielle at the cash register, 

Peers around her, bad vibes incur. 

Items of witchcraft and pagan —

Jewelry of Celtic design. 

From eons ago polished bright,

Such treasures blend, occult sights. 

Shop’s wage pays well, most customers tip buying —

Items for potions and ailments — she’ll keep silence. 

—-

Ancient face with creased folds knows much —

Desires that he did not so he plucks, 

Courage from reserves to see Barb. 

Prudish and angry inferring, 

He has a choice in knowing fortunes. 

She sneers, he revealed misfortunes —

No matter her believed goodness her false piety, 

Barb sees herself righteously  forbidden

——

From the likes of magic healing, 

Holistic meds as blood congeals, 

In her heart which is dark damning;

Others beaming hope as Barb fans, 

Smoke of incense by the mailman.

Sniffs at Danielle’s tattoos all grand, 

Demands for him to read her hand, doesn’t know facts, 

Barbara the hateful sees not, he reads hearts and fates. 

——-

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 


November Notes: Poem – Day 1 – Wrapped Refrain – “I’ll Pass” #amwriting #novembernotes #poetry


Today’s prompt song is “Almost Lover”by A Fine Frenzy. For me it was a song that was pretty much on repeat eight-years-ago or so. It’s a beautiful song, see music video below: 

——-

“Almost Lover” – A Fine Frenzy 

—–

http://www.singleblackmale.org

——–

Sail the words across my fair skin, 

The memories avail, and hurt within. 

Words can’t express heartbreak so strong, 

Words can’t make right, you did me wrong. 

If you weren’t interested, you should’ve said so first, 

If you were decent, pain wouldn’t have been a curse. 

—–

Almost lovers, the kind that hurt —

Woman the most; they’re the worst. 

Almost lovers, leading you on, 

Leading astray, in a sad song.

Don’t say you never knew, why the night ended tearful, 

You’ll never admit fault; you’ll say saw unclear. 

——

Tripped on a step, shocked at such eyes, 

Deep brown ocre, good-looks suprise. 

Not an old-man, but still too old —

For barely a woman, thoughts untold. 

She should’ve kept her distance — far away, turned around.

She shouldn’t have melted as wax, at your face proud. 

—–

Arrogantly you led her around, 

Stupidly, she tried to astound

Talking, fluttering lashes black, 

Someone should’ve gave her a smack. 

You were off limits, you should’ve have said, you knew but —

Didn’t care, liked attention, simple jerk, and man slut

—–

You hurt her greatly; her fault it —

Remains; for years cursed, her hurting;

For an apology that never —

Will come to her in forever.

Goodbye almost lover, no time to waste on you, 

Life is happening, she survived, made it through. 

——

Almost lovers, almost lovers, 

They do what they do, hurt, shove–

You into reality, so you

See they’re human, hurtful too.

Take off your blinders; modern charming has no class —

Sail the words of a liar fade; now really, “I’ll pass.” 

——-


———

©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

Tale Weavers Fairytale Prompt: Enchanted Apples #taleweaver #amwriting #fiction 


Thanks to Mind Love’s Misery’s Menagerie for hosting Tale Weavers Fairytale prompt. This months prompt is: a tale with fruit.

——-

Mara Eastern
——

Jared was the kind of man who made any woman who saw him stop and stare. He was classically handsome, with blond hair and blue eyes; he was told he resembled a thirty-five-year-old Brad Pitt. 

Jared was blessed, but he didn’t realize how much. He owned his dream company, made tens of millions of dollars early in his career, had mansions all over the world, cars of various makes and models from classics to brand new, as well as, any toy he desired — skidoos, motorcycles, dirt bikes, (etc). 

Yet, Jared was alone in life. He had no emotional relationship with any woman he dated. He felt many women and men were worthless beings, wasting their life focusing on helping others and building relationships which, ultimately, ended. 

Jared believed he was “better” than other people due to his wealth, prestige, and attractiveness. He knew he needed a partner, a woman who had similar qualities to him. He also knew it wouldn’t be a love match for he had no love in his heart. 

One night at a charity reception, a hideous girl named Ali approached Jared. She carried with her a basket of the most delicious looking apples. 

People were drawn to their ruby shine and many people begged Ali to have one of her apples. Yet, they cringed at her repulsive faces and body, ravaged by burns and disease.

Ali’s form was bent and crippled and she dragged behind her a club foot. Her eyes were beady and when she opened her mouth, she revealed rotten teeth with many missing. Her basket of apples, in fact, was the only attractive quality about Ali with exception of her beautiful golden hair. It was thick, lustrous, and reached her waist.

Jared was appalled when Ali approached him but he noticed her mouth watering basket of apples. As with everyone, he was drawn to them. But Jared didn’t understand why Ali carried the apples around, not willing to give them to anyone, despite offers of large sums of money and contacts for proceeders to alter her appearance. 

——

“What do you want?” Jared asked Ali, gazing down on her in her repulsive ugliness. 

Ali laughed. Her voice deceivingly youthful, “I can give you anything you desire with these apples. What you want the most will be yours with only one bite.”

“Yeah right,” said Jared. “Why would you give me a bite of one of your apples? And for free? You’d be stupid to do that.”

Ali giggled,”I didn’t say I’d give you a bite for free. Nothing’s free in this world as you well know.”

Jared peered again at the apples which called to him, a sirens song from forbidden fruit,”What’s your price hag?” 

Ali smiled and her rotten teeth and foul breath made Jared take a step-back. He knew what the ugly woman would request, but for some reason, he let her ask for what she wanted.

“I want a kiss. A real one,” Ali said.”For a kiss I will give you one apple. Perhaps, then, you will find the woman who will truly be your other half.”

Jared gasped, afraid the horrid woman could read his mind. He nodded to her and said: “I accept your bargain.” 

“My names Ali,” she said and drew closer to Jared. She stopped for a moment,”This will only work if you truly desire a partner to love, with a pure-heart.”

Jared brushed Ali’s words aside, “My intentions are honourable enough.” He tried not to gag as Ali’s mouth drew closer. But he stared at her gorgeous red apples and imagined an apple in his mouth; it was how he managed kissing Ali.

Her lips were dry as they rasped against his. Ali’s tongue dove in his mouth and when she groaned, he felt as if he might throw-up. She bit his lip and she laughed when he cringed. 

When Ali stopped kissing Jared, she stepped back, her mouth in a mischievous smile. She drew a beautiful ruby apple from her basket and presented it to Jared with gnarled fingers. 

Jared grabbed the apple, greedy for its taste. He gorged on it as if he was Eve and the apple, the forbidden fruit in Eden. 

Suddenly, both Jared and Ali began to glow with white light. While Jared withered, developing scars and burns all over his skin, Ali became stunningly beautiful. She became a curvaceous and breath-taking woman in her prime. She attracted the crowd in the room to her presence.

Jared’s hair had fallen out and his expensive clothes hung on him as his muscle tone disappeared. In minutes, no one recognized Jared; he was as ugly and as repulsive as Ali had been. His only remaining attractive feature were his bright blue-eyes. 

A beautiful golden haired goddess stood before Jared. She sighed, grasping his scarred hand. 

“I told you Jared. You had to want what you desired with a pure-heart. You had to be ready to love the perfect woman for you; but you love no one but yourself. I was the perfect woman for you, but you loath me. You called me a hag.”

Jared laughed, “You were disgusting and now you made me disgusting too.”

Ali let go of Jared’s hand, offering the basket of apples to him: 

“Only, give an apple to the most loathsome and disgusting person you can find on the earth. Remember appearances are not everything and under the most beautiful and sometimes successful people, hides a monster,” Ali warned.

“You’re a monster Jared, but you have been given a chance to redeem yourself. To learn to love and be human, until you find the most terrible woman and find the smallest glimmer of hope inside her. She will either become your truelove and save both you and her, or become as you have, taking your place. You will return to your former privileged life and body, but with a changed heart. You will know when you find the right person and will wander the earth until then.”

Ali dropped Jared’s hand and disappeared into the crowd. No one noticed him for once. They only noticed Ali who had become his philanthropic sister. She became owner of all his wealth, company, mansions, and life, when he disappeared. 

Jared wandered the earth an evil gnarled old man for years and years. Some say, he still wanders today. No one knows if he’s changed. 

——

©Mandibelle16.(2016) All Rights Reserved. 

27.How Was Last Night For You: A Stranger on an Unknown Beach


Please read Chapter 26 here.

Chapter 27. A Stranger on an Unknown Beach.

He was happy and content, floating amidst graduations of colour. He had never felt such tranquility in life.

He was awake suddenly and strolling on a picturesque beach. White sand almost burned his feet but he buried his toes down into the sand, and his feet cooled.

Gazing down at himself he saw he was only wearing swim trunks and a white T-Shirt. Sunglasses adorned his eyes and he knew it was his favourite pair of sunglasses. The sunglasses he broke some time ago he remembered. How odd they were in one piece now.

He languidly walked through the surf on the beach. Was he on vacation? He couldn’t recall. He didn’t even know what he was named. It was slipping his mind. How could he not know his own identity?

Sleep had held him in her vivid colours and luminescence for ages. His mind was foggy and he had forgotten details of his life he thought he should know.

In his mind, he kept seeing her . . . Nina. His beautiful blond haired girl smiling with pretty pink lips. He knew Nina had helped him break his curse because he loved her. He hadn’t loved anyone as much he loved her, ever.

Wait, he had been cursed? He couldn’t recall why.

But he pictured beautiful Nina in a pink bikini and grinned. He wished she was here so they could be alone and he could sip Corona and talk with her.

He’d convince her to go into one of the two cabanas where he could touch her smooth creamy skin. He’d remove the pink bikini that was the same shade of pink of the heels she worn when they first met… How had they met?

He sighed, lonely at the thought of not being able to be with Nina. He was by himself here on a fabulous beach which stretched for miles either way.

There was a cottage up some stone steps where he had been living,  but other than this cottage, and the cabanas, there were no other dwellings as far as he could see.

Fully awake and lucid (he believed), he thought of Nina. He knew had a family besides her too. Their faces were blurred images in his mind.

He recalled two rambunctious little boys laughing with him as he played with them and their construction trucks in the sand. His nephews . . .and that led him to who they looked like — Jasper his older brother. He had a younger brother too — Jordan.

She had given Jordan her soul.MHe didn’t know why she had done it or how he knew since he had been lost in colour and light then. But he could feel a darkness, a shadow when he thought of her.

Yes, she had cursed him. She had separated him from Nina. He hated her.

He knew in the end, the lake had swallowed her corpse and dying she hadn’t been darkness or light. She had been both.

So much did not make sense to him he thought struggling to think. Sitting down on a stained Adirondack chair, he leaned back, squinting into the sunlight in his sunglasses. The sun was incredibly bright. He was sweating in the heat. Could this be Mexico? The Carribean?

Not too far away from him he noticed an older man walking barefoot through the sand towards him. The man had a grey straggly beard and the man’s gate was self-assured.

How how had he not seen the man coming in the distance? He stood, a tad frightened at the thought of someone else being here where it felt he had been alone a long time.

He faced the man as he stopped at the steps and the man said: “John? Is that you? You’ve haven’t been this healthy in years. You’re well rested and I believe you’re bored of paradise.”

“I’m John?”

“Yes, you should’ve remembered your own name by now Mr. Eric. You’ve remembered Nina.” John flushed unaware the man had been privy to his inner thoughts.

“I don’t know you,” John said, his name and identity rushing back to him in torrents of thought.

“I need to see if Nina is okay. I need to check on Jordan. She did something to him. Talise or Tia, whatever or whoever she is, she put a ring on Jordan, one he can’t take off.”

“It’s an emerald with a silver band, and the emerald colour matches Talise’s eyes. Beneath the emerald her soul floats. It’s dangerous, why did she put a ring, her soul on Jordan?” John asked afraid for his brother.

“Good questions John,” the man said walking up the steps. He came up to John and shook John’s hand which John shook back without thinking.

“You have a good hand shake,” John told the man. “It doesn’t fit with the rest of you . . . You look as if you’re . . .weathered. You’ve been through tough times I think. It appears as if you live on the streets because your clothes are dirty and worn.”

“No offence, they haven’t been washed in a long time, and you need… you need a shower man.” John peered guilty at the homeless man, ashamed of what he had said.

The homeless watched him closely, his face expressionless in creases and wrinkles of acquired wisdom. Suddenly, the man smiled and let out a boisterous laugh, his deep creases becoming more pronounced.

“Yes, John. My appearance of late has been a homeless man. And if you’re offering me a shower and clean clothes, I gladly accept.” John smiled grateful the man wasn’t offended by his words.

“Come into the cottage and make yourself comfortable,” John remarked easily becoming a host. He peered in the fridge, “There’s trays of fruit and another of vegetables. Some steaks I can grill if you’re interested? There is even craft beer, AlleyKat,” John said grinning.”I don’t know how this all got here? Was it was here before I woke up?”

The homeless man only smiled at John and headed for John’s bedroom, “Where’s your closet John? Ah there.”

John followed the man to the master bedroom into a walk-in closet full of beach clothes and clothes one didn’t wear to work. “This is wonderful,” the man said, “Can I stock up for the road?”

“Of course,” John said. “I’m not sure any of this –the clothes, the cottage, and the food –even belong to me.”

The man smiled again at John, a curious light in his brown eyes.”After my shower we can sit and eat. We can talk all you want. Chill a few beer for me in the freezer will you?”

John regarded the man thoughtfully, trying to remember him.”Who are you?” John asked.

“I’m here to help” the man remarked, peaking back at John before he shut the bathroom door with a bang. John heard the sound of water streaming.

He wasn’t sure what to do. Usually, John was head strong and sure of himself. He had had to be with the curse from Talise, the sea witch who’d been his girlfriend in the past.

John felt enraged with Talise. She had  separated him from his loved ones with her cruel curse. He was afraid for both Nina and Jordan.

Perhaps, the homeless man could return John to his family, especially Nina. He would also like to know where exactly he was?

His mind made up, John decided if this homeless man was here to help him, then John should be a good host, as his mother had taught him.

After all, John was filled with so many questions he needed answering. There was much he didn’t know about current events since he died.

The old man was keeping many secrets, John was sure. Not to mention, John wondered if the man might be benevolent magic of some kind? He could use some magic now.

John set out the fruit and vegetables on a large coffee table on the patio. He got out the steaks to Barbecue (they were already in marinade) and placed six beers in the freezer.

John went back on the patio to warm the Barbeque up, and he waited for homeless man to emerge.


 

A couple of hours later, John was sitting on the patio having finished his dinner and two icy   beers. The homeless man could really put his food away and he’d had four beers as well.

“Are you hungry still? There’s extra steaks in the fridge I could bring out to Barbecue if you like? And there’s some lemon cake?”

The homeless man patted his belly, “I think I’m full now John, but thank you. By the way, you can call me Norman.” John nodded teeming with questions.

“Alright, Norman. You told me you were here to help? I thought you might be able to answer my questions such as why I’m here when I’m supposed to be dead? And who are you?” John asked.

Norman peered at John curiously. “You don’t know then? You haven’t figured it out? You’re not dead John. You’re in-between life and death, between the spaces between spaces so to speak.” John was even more confused.

“So, is the beach and cottage like purgatory? Where’s my body at if it’s not dead?”

“Your body is here and you’re not in purgatory. You’re not Catholic John, you’re Anglican,” laughed Norman.

“As for me, I’m here to help you and Nina. It’s my job, helping certain people in difficult situations. I know you want to go home, but there are some things we need to discuss first.”

“Rianne would know who I am,” Norman said.” She went to buy Chinese food and Talise’s bewitched boyfriend Malcolm, knocked her head against the wall and Rianne passed out. Which, is the reason Nina was alone when Talise kidnapped and bewitched her.” Norman explained.

“I woke Rianne up and made sure she was okay, so she could go back to Nina’s condo and call Jasper who called Jordan, to come help you and Nina.”

“They decided to bring your sailboat out at night, even though it’s impossible to see in the dark. It was windy at least. I helped them find you and they would have never seen you if I hadn’t been there.” Norman said.

“How could you help them on the Sirene at night?” John wondered and Norman smiled secretively.

“I whispered in Jordan’s ear as he sailed the boat. My form isn’t always a homeless man or a human. Sometimes I’m an extra push in someone’s mind to get them moving. Or a whisper their ear such as I was with Jordan.”

“You’re magic?” John asked, trying to understand Norman.

“Magic is as sufficient a word as any.”

“So what are you? A wizard?” John questioned and Norman laughed again.

“I’m here to help and I’m on your side,” Norman said.

John realized Norman was providing him with the only explanation he would receive. John changed his line of questioning. “I’m worried about Nina and my family. How long have I been gone?”

Norman appeared to be thinking. “You’ve been gone four-months now, nearly more. Nina she doesn’t give up hope. She convinced your family to hold the funeral off for months. She believes in her heart you’re out there somewhere. She’s right you’re here.”

“I need to get back to her. Has my family had my funeral?”

“You’re funeral is tomorrow, Saturday. Nina doesn’t think your dead, she’s only attending out of respect for your family.”

“Your nephews, Sam and Eric, don’t know you’re gone yet. You should probably get back there soon if you don’t want to break too many hearts more then you already have.” Norman said thoughtfully.

“Ok how?”

“In time,” Norman said giving John another secretive smile. His brown eyes glimmered with knowledge. “You wanted to know about Jordan and the ring Talise put on him with her soul inside?”

“Yes, absolutely. How do I help Jordan get rid of the ring?” John asked desperate.

“You can’t help Jordan, John.” Norman replied. “The ring and Talise’s soul is Jordan’s path to travel down. Just as you’ve have your pathway and responsibility regarding Nina, now Talise is Jordan’s responsibility.”

“But why?” John argued, “Isn’t Talise dead and gone. She’s evil! Just because she did the right thing by me and Nina in the end, doesn’t mean she isn’t still malovelent, does it?”

“Her soul was still in Jordan’s ring last time I checked. Talise chose Jordan. In the end, she saw something in him, she never saw in you. It was something like what she found in Ethan. But closer to what you and Nina had in each other when you first met.” Norman explained.

“She’s not gone?” John said afraid.

“No John. But Talise isn’t a sea witch anymore. A mermaid yes, but with no magical abilities. She gave them up. Talise is redeemable.”

“Are you kidding me?” John yelled.

“Don’t worry about it. You can advise your brother with her but Talise is his problem in the end. Let it go.” John was incensed but a feeling of calm washed over him as he regarded Norman. How did Norman do that?

“Why do you want to go home John. Beyond your family and being with Nina, why do you think you should be alive?”

John gasped. “I didn’t expect that question. I . . . It’s not fair. Curses are supposed to work out if you break them. They shouldn’t end in death. Talise cursed me, she told me I would have to sacrifice myself for the woman I loved, and I did.”

Norman nodded, urging John to continue. “Nina helped me, she loves me.Together we broke my curse so terrible events would stop occurring around me each day.”

” I should get to be with Nina, raise a family with her, be with my parents and brothers, and grow my business. If I die, it’s not fair. The curse was a lie because spells which are broken end happily,” John argued vehemently.

Norman peered at John from his seat around the patio table, the sun was beginning to set.”That’s not real life John, you know that. What you believe is some Disney fairytale and real life isn’t Disney believe me, I know. Do you think there would be homeless men in a world where everything was fair?” John starred at Norman confused.

“It’s not about life being fair. Or curses having a happy result.”

John stared at his hands at loss for words. “What’s life about then?” He asked feeling angry and betrayed.

“I’m glad you asked,” Norman said, brown eyes gleaming.

Please Read Chapter 28 here.


 

©Mandibelle16.(2016) All Rights Reserved.

Story Continuation Prompt: Fiction – “Renewing My License”


Thank you to Wandering Soul who host this challenge each week. You can complete the prompt sentences and add two sentences of your own or use the sentence to write your own story based on the sentence. This week’s prompt sentence is: ” The harried woman looked at me, aggravatedly. I couldn’t care less.”

——-

The harried woman looked at me, aggravatedly. I couldn’t care less. I only needed to pay for my new driver’s license and have a new picture of myself taken. 

The woman named Jill pretended not to see me. I knew from the length of the line-up she had been busy all day. I felt bad for Jill  but at the same time, I had been standing in line one hour and there were four other ladies working at counters serving people politely and in a timely manner.

Why was the line I was in moving so slowly? The other women at their booths were cheery, as if they were attempting to do the best job they could, despite the constant flow of people.

But Jill sat in front of me and wouldn’t even look at me when I cleared my throat. She took her time drinking a soft drink until it was half-empty and pulled out a bag of ketchup chips from her desk drawer. Jill ate the chips slowly, licking her fingertips afterwards. 

She didn’t bother to wipe off her hands or use hand sanitizer. Jill peered up at me finally giving me be a grumpy stare and said: “What would you like Ma’am?” My eyes went wide as she emphasized the title ‘Ma’am.’ She was using the title on purpose, to be insulting.

I smiled at her trying to be genuine.”My those chips looked tasty. It must be difficult to take a break when there are long line-ups. I like your nail polish, what colour is that, Jade?” 

Jill looked at me distrustingly. “How can I help you?” She asked snidely. I sighed.

“Listen Jill,  I have been waiting for help from you for an hour and a half and all I need to do is renew my driver’s license and take a new picture for the license.” I handed her my old driver’s license and I paid for a new license. Jill was fast with her computer skills to my surprise.

“Picture is fine, it doesn’t need retaking,” Jill said, trying to speed up the process of moving me through the line.

“I would like a new picture. I’ve lost twenty-pounds since my old picture.” I told Jill and she giggled. 

“Still a ways to go?” I was taken a back. Especially after I regarded Jill’s plump form which was fuelled by junk food, as far I was concerned. 

“Actually my weight is great, right on par for my height. Thank you for asking, let’s get that picture taken, shall we?”

 Jill rolled her eyes and directed me where to sit and quickly snapped a picture. I glanced at the photo on her computer screen, “No, that’s a bad photo. Please take one more. Take pictures until you get one where I look decent.” Jill only took one more picture.

“We’re going to use this one,” she said trying to sound authoritive. It was better then the first one at least. I glanced at Jill again. What in the world was going on in her life that she was acting so miserable and rude? 

I heard her take the next customer as I walked away. She drank the remainder of her soft drink before helping an elderly man. She told him to hurry up and that she didn’t have time to explain everything too him. I was going to go back and defend the man, but he seemed to be doing fine, pounding his fist on Jill’s desk and asking to see Jill’s manager.

What turns a person into a woman who behaves such as Jill? I wondered.

——-

©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

Story Comtinuation Prompt: Fiction – Remembering Helen


Thank you to Wandering Soul who hosts this prompt challenge each week. You can complete the prompt sentence by writing up to two-additional sentences in her comments section in the link above or you can link to her blog page. Also, if you choose to write a longer story from the prompt, link the story to her page as well.

Today’s prompt sentence is: “The old man stared at the droopy white lilies.”

——

 

http://www.thelilygarden.com
  

——

The old man stared at the droopy white lilies. Memories flooded back to him as he smelt the strong scent that lingered. He felt the edge of one of the petals, still baby soft but crisp and dry on the edges. Helen had always hated lilies; that was why he had them placed on her grave every Sunday.

You might think this a mean thing for an old man to do but Ernest (the old man) had had a complicated relationship with Helen. Though it might not appear so, he had adored her and thought she had always been a magnificent woman.

——

Ernest remembered the first time he had seen Helen in his senior year in high school. She had her abundant curly brown hair styled in a forties-bob. Her blue eyes sparkled when she saw him. He felt their two souls collide in that moment and Ernest knew their souls would always be connected.

Ernest and Helen dated until Ernest was twenty-three years-old. Helen hadn’t liked that they had dated five-years without getting married. In hindsight, Ernest realized he should’ve married Helen long before he did.

Helen became pregnant and the whole town turned against her. The women called her a hussy and advised Helen to marry Ernest immediately. His old man had took Ernest aside and told him that everything would be fine if he married Helen quickly and quietly.

But Helen was feisty and didn’t like being told what to do. She was hurt that her best girlfriends looked down on her and that the town’s people whispered and gossiped about her behind her back. It was then Helen changed her mind about marriage to Ernest.

One day Ernest and Helen were swinging on the porch swing at Helen’s parent’s house, Ernest trying his hardest to convince Helen marriage was an excellent choice since they both loved each other.The following day Helen and two suitcases full of her clothes and baby items she had been collecting, had disappeared.

Ernest searched for Helen. He wrote letters and searched various small towns. He went to big cities, remembering what Helen liked to do and where she would likely be found. He remembered the places she dreamed about visiting. Ernest also feared a young pregnant woman alone, wouldn’t find much friendliness from strangers. He was frightened for Helen and his unborn child.

——

Twenty-years later Helen appeared at Ernest’s house in Pittsburg. Ernest’s wife Lilian, was battling Cancer. To both their regret, Lilian and Ernest had never been able to have children. But behind Helen was an enchanting young woman whose green eyes he recognized as his own. 

The three of them sat outside and talked. Ernest had felt guilty about not seeing his wife at the hospital that day as afternoon turned to evening. His daughter’s name was Grace and to Ernest she was indeed a ‘grace.’ 

In the morning Helen was gone but Grace remained. His daughter stood by him, even when his wife Lilian passed away a week later. Despite the fact Grace had never known her father, she stayed with Ernest as he grieved and she began working in the woman’s section of a department store.

Grace told Ernest that her mother Helen detested Lilies and that was why she left. But Lilian’s favourite flower was of course a Lily; they covered Ernest’s home while Lilian lived. He was always greeted by their pungent fragrance when he came home from work. Ernest knew better the reason Helen hadn’t stayed: She didn’t want to make Ernest’s life difficult. Grace had chosen to stay with Ernest on her own.

——-

Twenty-years later, Ernest was a happy Grandfather of four teenage grandchildren. Grace had married a man in Pittsburg and lived close by his house. She visited Helen and spoke to her mother often, but clammed up whenever Ernest asked about Helen. 

One day, Ernest was home alone doing yard work and Helen appeared out of no where. It gave him such a shock that Ernest’s green eyes started to tear up not believing what he saw. Helen aged, but still magnificent, embraced Ernest and they both cried for the lost years they hadn’t been with each other. The love between them was still strong, even after forty-years mostly apart.

Helen remained with Ernest. The happy couple had a small wedding and Grace was delighted her parents were together at last. 

Ernest and Helen were driving to the airport for their honeymoon in Paris. Helen was complaining about the orange lily the florist had slipped in her bouquet. Ernest had thought Helen’s complaints funny. They both started laughing and Ernest in his bliss, missed the red light. He hadn’t seen the pick-up truck before it crushed his car where Helen sat, graceful in a white suit; she died instantly.

—–

Years passed and Ernest religiously had lilies deliveried to Helen’s grave each Sunday. He always thought about how much Helen hated lilies. But lilies made Ernest, the old man, remember his beloved Helen. So that even after Ernest’s own death, their darling daughter Grace, continued to have lilies deliveried to Ernest’s and Helen’s shared grave.

Grace wiped a tear away from her eye. Both her parents were sorely missed.

—–

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