#FridayFictioneers ‘The Swimming Competition’ #FlashFiction #100Words @MondayBlogs

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her best friend Billy! This week they’re both taking part in a swimming competition.

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge and to Terri Smeigh for this week’s photo prompt.

Photo Credit: Terri Smeigh

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The Swimming Competition

The highest school team goal scorer wore a smug smile as he strolled over.
‘Hi Alice, fancy a pizza?’
I was one of the few girls he hadn’t hit on yet. ‘Sorry, I’m swimming.’
‘What about the Saturday market? Help me choose my sister’s birthday present.’
Jack is dense, but persistent. ‘I’m swimming.’
‘Everyone knows Billy will win.’
I nodded, Billy’s the best. ‘We’re training together.’
‘So, when he beats you, we can go on our date. What about a movie on Sunday?’
‘On Sunday I’ll be celebrating with Billy, his victories are mine too,’ I said and strode away.

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My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be mostly read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are! 

By the way, I’m a couple of days late this week in posting my story and below are the three reasons! My lovely grandchildren!

#FridayFictioneers ‘A Visit to the Synagogue’ #FlashFiction #100Words

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her best friend Billy! Last week, they saved a young man from committing suicide. Today he’ll tell them what was troubling him so much in life to prefer death.

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge and to Roger Bultot for this week’s photo prompt.

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

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I recently read a beautiful novel called The Two Hearts of Eliza Bloom (read my review here) by Beth Miller, about a Jewish girl living in London, in an orthodox family, who married a non-Jewish man, against her parent’s wishes, and the subsequent upheaval in both their lives. It’s an emotional and non-judgemental, yet moving account of what happens when families are in disagreement over their children’s marriages.

It’s a topic that is close to my heart, not because I’m Jewish, I’m not, but I could have been. We do not choose where we are born, or our parents’ religions, nationalities, skin colour, or mother tongue. It’s relevant to me because my parents have held hostile attitudes towards my husband for the last 39 years, since we started going out, which brought, and still brings, many senseless and unfair complications to our family.

This flash, was written bearing in mind the damage such inflexible and unreasonable attitudes can cause in a young man who is in love and yet would go to extreme lengths not to upset his family.  

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A Visit to the Synagogue

The young man whose life they’d saved took them to a brown stone building.
“The woman I love isn’t Jewish,” he said staring at the synagogue.
Alice shrugged. “Neither are we.”
“Then you wouldn’t understand.”
“Try us,” said Billy.
“I must marry a Jewish girl.” Tears filled his eyes.
“Have they met her?” asked Alice.
“They would never allow it! And I’d rather die than live without Helen.”
“We understand.” Billy squeezed Alice’s hand. “If your parents realized how much they meant to you, so much that you’d rather die than upset them, I’m sure they’d want to meet her.”
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Billy is right. If the young man’s parents realised how much their intolerance and demands were making their son suffer, due to his love for them, they would surely reconsider, but unfortunately, parents aren’t always willing to accept that their children grow up and should be allowed to make their own decisions, and even their own mistakes.
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My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be mostly read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are! 

#FridayFictioneers ‘Alice to the Rescue’ #FlashFiction #100Words

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her best friend Billy! On this occasion, my story was inspired, not only by Rochelle’s picture prompt, but also by her flash fiction for this week.

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge and to Sandra Crook for this week’s photo prompt.

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Alice to the Rescue

The sandwiches and lemonade were in Alice’s rucksack. Billy’s held a large blanket for their picnic by the lake.
Alice gasped and sprinted towards a man she spotted on the bridge, leaning over the murky waters.
“Where are you going?” asked Billy, at her heels.
“I need your help!” Alice shouted at the man.
Billy stopped in his tracks. What was Alice doing?
The young man rushed towards Alice. “Keep away from her!” he warned Billy.
Alice grabbed the man’s hand. “I’m Alice and this is my best friend, Billy. Now, please tell us why you were going to jump.”
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My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be mostly read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are! 

#NaPoWriMo Day 12 ‘Powerful Gibberish’ #poetrymonth #April #Poems #Tanka #Haiku #FridayFictioneers

NaPoWriMo

National Poetry Writing Month is a poetry writing challenge to write a poem a day, which takes place every year in April. Follow the link to find out more, be inspired, get daily prompts and meet other poets!

For Day 12, I’ve included a haiku and a tanka within a 100-word piece of flash fiction, inspired by Rochelle Wissoff Fields weekly flash fiction challenge photo prompt at Friday Fictioneers. Check out this inspiring and supportive writing challenge!

I’ve been contributing with an ongoing story about Alice and her family. Today, Alice is asking her parents’ opinion about a poem she’s written.

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

Powerful Gibberish

“Which one do you prefer, mum, the haiku or tanka?”
Sharon slides on her glasses and reads both poems aloud.
Weathered, cobbled path,
Lined with overgrown bushes.
Ancient cloister sighs.
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Weary wanderer
Pursues answers to his prayers,
Chasing fleeting shadows,
Swaying with voiceless monsters,
Screaming in his tangled mind.

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“The first one’s descriptive, but the second one’s powerful. What do you think Kevin?”
“Let’s have a look at the picture prompt.”
“Here dad,” says Alice.
Kevin shakes his head. ‘Neither. Cloisters don’t sigh and the second one’s gibberish.’
Sharon coughs. ‘Powerful gibberish, wouldn’t you say, darling?’
‘Of course, dear.’

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Kevin doesn’t quite understand that writing poetry is like walking through a doorway into your mind and soul. It’s the place where conscious and subconscious images and thoughts melt into rhythmic words and suggestive lines…

So, which of Alice’s poems do you prefer?

#FridayFictioneers ‘A Visit to the Loom’ #FlashFiction

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her family! On this occasion, Alice is telling her mother about a school trip to a loom.

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge and to Sandra Crook for this week’s photo prompt.

PHOTO PROMPT© Sandra Crook

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A Visit to the Loom

Alice jumped onto her mother’s lap, squashing a noisy kiss on her cheek.
A pencil held Sharon’s unruly caramel hair on the top of her head as she marked final exams. “How was your school trip, sunshine?” 
“I discovered dad’s a warp and you’re the weft.”
Sharon sighed, hoping Alice wasn’t in one of her moods, or her father would insist on going back to the therapist. 
“Dad’s stationary and stiff and you weave your way round. Together you make cloth.”
Sharon burst out laughing. “Not cloth, we made a magnificent tapestry, which is weft-faced, your warp threads are completely hidden.”
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My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be mostly read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are! 

#FridayFictioneers ‘Aunt Sarah’s Dresses’ #FlashFiction

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her family! On this occasion, Alice is coping with her grandmother’s deteriorating health.

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge and for this week’s photo prompt.

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

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Aunt Sarah’s Dresses

‘I’ll take the roses.’
‘Grandma, we can only bring one of your belongings to the hospital.’
‘I never told you about your aunt’s dresses, did I?’
My aunt Sarah had died long before I was born, so I changed the subject. ‘What about your photo collage?’
 ‘She wore the white dress at her christening.’
 ‘Your radio?’
‘The red one at her graduation.’
‘Your bible?’
‘The yellow one on her 21st.’
I looked closer at the handmade flowers.
‘And the mauve one the day before the accident.’
‘The flowers will be on your nightstand, grandma.’
She smiled. ‘They were beautiful dresses, Alice.’
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My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be mostly read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are! 

#FridayFictioneers ‘The Escape’ #FlashFiction

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her family!

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge and for this week’s photo prompt.

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

The Escape

Alice looked up at the starry sky, not daring to look down at the street, four storeys below. She held on to the window ledge and moved slowly towards the next balcony, climbed over the railing and slipped inside the apartment.

Silence, although someone must have put the freshly cut leaves in the glass bowl on the kitchen table.
‘Can I help you, dear?’
Alice turned. A grey-haired lady wearing a woollen shawl smiled pleasantly.
‘Your neighbour kidnapped me. Could I use your phone?”
Her kidnapper burst through the door.

He nodded at the elderly lady. ”Sorry boss.

Then he pointed his gun at Alice.

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To be continued…

My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are!

A quick recap of the three previous episodes: Alice and her mother, Marsha, caught Kevin on a date with another woman. When Alice confronted her father, she discovered the woman was her father’s half-sister, Clara, who was in serious trouble. Three weeks ago Alice was kidnapped, and last week the kidnappers made their demands. This week Alice tried to escape and failed.

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