Fred had never seen a chess set made of cheese before, and couldn’t resist chomping into the rook breaking at least two teeth and his pride.
“Oh, Fred!” gushed his wife. “I leave you for a minute, and more trouble. That’s going to be another couple of crowns. I’ll call the dentist.”
Yesterday, he’d overheard her talking about a babysitter, even sending him to a home. Darn this blasted whatsy-me-call-it! He was gunna shoot it.
Mary gave him another orange juice. The blur only deteriorated, and he no longer cared what it was called. Just as long as it hurried up.
This has been another contribution to Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wishoff-Fields. PHOTO PROMPT © Jeff Arnold
I wasn’t sure what to make of those final lines. Was his wife giving him juice laced with something? Intriguing with a hint of malice, Rowena.
Susan A Eames at
Travel, Fiction and Photos
A bitter-sweet take on dementia. The ‘cheese’ chess set is a comic touch on a serious subject. Deftly done.
Hard-hitting tale, Rowena, powerfully presented.
Difficult topic, well handled.
I too thought the wife had perhaps decided to help nature take its course, not in a sinister way, but as an act of love. Deftly handled Rowena.
Subtly written, Rowena. Like Iain I did wonder what might be in the orange juice
Knockout Orange Juice. It’s a sad thing when the mind goes.
Fred is having a delusion, is he. Why did he bite the rook thinking it is made of cheese?
For me the biting into the rook was a master stroke. It instantly brought the story to life. What a dreadful state to be in, with no hope of an end to it, unless his poor wife has given fate a gentle shove with that orange juice.
Thanks, Jilly. I showed this story to my son who plays chess and he thought I’d wasted an opportunity. However, for me the image seemed a bit too blurry and almost psychedelic to develop a game of chess.
I wasn’t too sure whether his wife was friend or foe and thought I’d leave that up to the reader.
How interesting, your son’s view. I would say that you scored top marks for superb use of your own imagination and you were topical too, as dementia is an increasingly common problem. I think you were right to leave the wife’s emotions ambiguous because in reality she wouldn’t know whether she was friend or foe at times either. A fine piece.
Watching someone deteriorate is excruciating. Perhaps there is some relief in the juice.
Poor thing, biting the rook and breaking his teeth then realizing what he had done. It’s an embarrassing and frustrating stage in life for too many, and hard on love ones to watch. You handled the subject well and wrote a fine piece.
So horrible to watch someone slowly slip away…
A sad tale. My father-in-law has Alzheimer’s and has been on a slow (unusually so) decline for the last fifteen years or more. He now recognises nobody, remembers nothing but manages to raise a smile from time to time.
Sorry to hear that, Scooj. Two of my grandparents had it and were pretty much like your father-in-law. My grandfather was 95 when he passed away and moved into care when he was 90. Soon after, he forgot most of us and thought a care worker was a second wife, not that he made a move on her. He responded to our son much longer than the rest of us. We had a photo of him even asleep with Santa but when we came the following week with the kids, he was very alert and was even using the mouse on my son’s Fisher Price Lap top. I remember what it meant to us just to see one smile. It is such a cruel disease.
I am starting to hope so.
A sad situation captured with sensitivity and a comic touch that brings a smile. Nice take on the prompt.
It is something we’ll see more of as life expectancy increases. It is indeed a cruel disease.
Dementia is a very sad condition, I thought you captured the essence of it very well