No Regrets…Friday Fictioneers.

Sex, drugs and rock n’ roll were a different story as a kid.  Bouncing in between Mum and Dad with a revolving circus of “aunts” and “uncles”, I was safer riding my bike unsupervised on the road, than being at home. Yet, I was only knee high to a grasshopper, and still had my training wheels on.

No food, but always money for smokes and booze.

Then, the car pulled up. The minute I looked into her eyes, I knew she was going to be my new Mum, and climbed in.

Clearly, I’d be better off with this stranger, than the devils I knew.

….

104 words.

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wishoff Fields. Every week she posts a photo and we write 100 words to the prompt. This week’s PHOTO PROMPT © Yvette Prior. I’d encourage you to have a go. I find writing to someone else’s prompt really extends the scope of my writing and gets me thinking outside my usual four walls.

Best wishes,

Rowena

PS I considered adding some kind of explanation to the story last night, and could well turn this into a longer short story. I have seen a young boy riding his bike outside my house a few times without anyone in sight, which is extremely unusual for a young kid these days. I spoke to him once because he was riding near my driveway and I was about to reverse and let’s just say that going backwards isn’t my thing. I haven’t said anymore to him or know anything about him. He probably lives a few doors away. However, I’ve been taught and my kids have been taught not to talk to strangers  so I haven’t crossed the line, even though as a Mum with kids and reasonably well known in the area, I’d probably fall into a blurry area.

That’s when I started thinking about reversing all that ingrained education about stranger danger. What if the stranger was actually the salvation?

The way I pictured this was possibly in a court room where the once child is now an adult and is testifying to support his purported kidnapper. He went freely and he was better off. He was safe. I had a few gems which I sadly had to delete along the way. I had him trying to find somewhere to rest his pillow in between the holes in the wall. I also had Mum pregnant with another baby, and the kid’s determined not to let another kid follow in his footsteps, but I wasn’t sure about a likely course of action there. I also reversed the common comment you hear about there’s no manual to raise a kid and had him saying there was no manual for a kid trying to raise their parents. Such great ideas, and too few words. I rarely write short stories but this one is luring me in.

33 thoughts on “No Regrets…Friday Fictioneers.

  1. larry trasciatti

    I work with the poor. ~St. Vincent de Paul Society and soup kitchen.~and hear of those lopsided priorities constantly. It’s a world of disordered families and priorities in general. Unfortunately your story accurately depicts what too many of them are like.

  2. New Journey

    First before I comment on your story, I am the kind that looks at pictures then reads, I looked at the picture and thought OMG what is going on with Ro!!! LOL Cigarettes, booze and filth…OMG Then quickly scanned the words, whew!! Only a story, LOL don’t give me a heart attack sister, I thought I was going to have to book a flight and come there and shake you!!! LOL Great story, and probably more true than not….XXXkat

  3. Rowena Post author

    Hi Alice,
    I just provided a bit of backstory. I did have a bigger picture in mind and could well write a longer story. I’d be interested to know your thought on the explanation. Meanwhile, I’ll head round and visit yours.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

  4. gahlearner

    This is heartbreaking and sadly true in too many cases that kids would be better of with strangers than their parents. Good story, it speaks for itself.

  5. Iain Kelly

    Interesting PS – adds a new dimension to the story. We are so ingrained to treat strangers with suspicion that it may never occur to many of us that actually our lives might be a lot better if we reached out to more people like this. Says a lot about society these days.

  6. aliceaudrey

    By Fictioneers tradition it would turn out the nice stranger was a serial killer. For a longer work it’s much better to have a well meaning, but flawed benefactor who learns as much about how to live a loving lifestyle as the narrator. You could play it straight with some heart warming moments for a mainstream effect or go off the wall for a “zany” off=beat mainstream. Off hand I’d say you have a fair amount of room to work with.

    Thanks for dropping by. Yes, cupcakes you can freely decorate make for a wonderful moment.

  7. pennygadd51

    Dear Rowena
    What an excellent story you’ve written. I like the way the title goes some way towards calming our fears that the child has come to a bad end. From your PS it sounds as though you had to jettison some real gems to meet the word count. I would definitely enjoy a onger version!
    Shalom
    Penny

  8. Rowena Post author

    So true, Linda and sadly while this is a fictional story, there are way too many children living this reality every day. This is where school teachers can make such a difference to a child’s life.

  9. Rowena Post author

    Yes, she already has. I was watching a segment about Scottish-Australian rock n roller Jimmy Barnes of Cold Chisel fame and this was his story. His mum left his Dad due to the violence but left all five children with him initially and they were in dire straits. His older sister would take money to feed the kids out of her father’s pocket when he was drunk to keep them alive. A very kind man married his Mum to give the kids a home and Jimmy took on his surname as a mark of respect. His life has been haunted by the horrific trauma of his childhood but he’s written two books and speaking out now and he has a family of his own and a wife who was heaven sent. I met him at a book signing and we spoke briefly. He was so stoked that I’d actually read his book. There was that anxiety. For a brief moment, I looked deep into his eyes and made a connection. It was incredible. Here’s a link to a post from the time: https://beyondtheflow.wordpress.com/2016/10/08/jimmy-barnes-what-do-you-say-when-you-meet-a-rock-legend/
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

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