Welcome Home

Welcome to Friday Fictioneers! We are a community of writers from around the world who post 100-word stories based on a photo prompt provided on Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog. Please visit her lovely blog for more information…and join us if you wish!

This week’s photo is by Doug MacIlroy.  Mahalo, Doug!

Doug hokusai

Photo Copyright: Douglas M. MacIlroy

Welcome Home

by Jan Brown

I settled into the sofa and put my feet up. If I had to do this, at least I deserved to be comfortable.

I logged in to create a memorial page: birth, death, survivors…a litany of facts without significance. Allegations of “beloved husband” and “dear friend” rang untrue.

Not enough reality.

I clicked “cancel,” started over.

“The deceased had no children with his estranged wife, but is survived by a son born last December to their neighbor, Mrs. Lydia Fitzwilliam. Manslaughter charges are pending against Col. Richard Fitzwilliam, recently returned from Afghanistan.”

Too much reality.

I clicked “cancel,” started over.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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64 thoughts on “Welcome Home

  1. I love this story and its pacing — its symmetry is beautiful (“not enough reality,” “clicked cancel,” “too much reality,” and “clicked cancel, started over.”) Elegantly done!

  2. Oh my! What a difficult situation to be in, dealing with the pain of betrayal and trying to do the socially “right” thing to do. I suppose if his life was a lie, his death is likely to fall into that rut as well. I love the internal tension you exposed, not through her thoughts but craftily through her actions. This is so unique and captivating!

    • Thank you very much for kind comments! I’m glad to know I was successful in conveying the emotion through her actions. It’s all about showing the reader rather than telling the reader….

  3. Dear Jan,

    Click edit, select undo delete and run with the truth. Everyone in town knows anyway.

    This was a very good story. The Colonel’s only mistake was getting caught. I love the writer in this piece (and of it). Very well done.

    Aloha,

    Doug

    • Thank you, Rochelle! Maybe she shouldn’t write the obit at all. I’m not sure what type of comments she would get on the memorial page for this guy….

  4. This was very clever and complex indeed – really sharp stuff. The neighbour…goodness… The way you told this was very good, deciding not to just give it out straight but play with it. Your opening lines reveal her mood very well.

  5. I like the way you tell the whole, complicated story indirectly and in just a few words. I also like the rhythm of the two lines for canceling and starting over and not enough reality / too much reality.

    Carma

    • Thank you, Carma. I appreciate your feedback. I really enjoy inserting elements like rhythm and repetition into these little stories, but it’s a challenge to do it within the 100-word count!!!

  6. Really clever story this week, Jan. I loved the start, where she makes herself comfortable, I loved the ‘too much reality’ and the two ‘resets’- very very cleverly done.

  7. Jan, Very well written. This was dark humor, but humor never the less. If it was a true story, it would of course be tragic. It was a clever way of telling what happened. She could just give the basic info and let a writer at the newspaper write the obit. Good story. 🙂 —Susan

  8. aloha Jan. a potent write. setting off with comfortable ease and foreboding and building to an edgy gripping finish. and leaving the reader to wonder about and write the next version in our own skull. it does not leave the mind. excellent. aloha. rick.

  9. A superb take on the prompt. And I have to confess that, although it deals with a tragic subject — and many times all too true in lives today — I found it a piece of light comedy as well and really did laugh out loud. Hope that was okay. Very good writing.

  10. HI Jan. Do you mind if I use your story as a great example of flash fiction with my students? It asks the reader to unearth the story so cleverly, and has layers of meaning, including the question of the ‘truthfulness’ of writing. Thanks, Karen.

  11. Dear Jan, Very well done – and you were so clever how you did it! I don’t know that I would have thought to go that route but you did and it REALLY works well! Thanks for the excellent read and have a good week! Nan 🙂

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