Still Not a Love Story

It’s time for Friday Fictioneers! This is another summer re-run, a story originally posted in October, 2012. It’s a sad tale, so I won’t say I hope you enjoy it. But I do hope the story transports you, taking you into the mindset of a confused young girl and the predator who exploits her.

Friday Fictioneers is an international community of writers who post 100-word stories each week, based on a photo prompt provided by our lovely leader, author Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  She is re-running some of the favorite photo prompts this summer while she complies with her publisher’s pesky request to complete her third novel.

alley - Jan Morrill

Photo copyright: Jan Morrill

Not a Love Story

by Jan Brown

Lexi snaked through the alley, hoping no one would recognize her. She hoped no one would tell her father that she lingered in the alley at night, the cool white stucco against her unclad back. How could she explain to her family the yearnings she felt? Only Theo understood.

Theo was a man, not a feckless boy with fumbling hands. He knew her body and what it needed. Friends at school told her that Theo wanted to control her, taking wicked pleasure in sharing her with other men. “There’s a difference between love and lust,” they said. But Lexi was lost to love, not knowing the difference.

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29 thoughts on “Still Not a Love Story

  1. At Lexi’s age, no one feels as deeply as she does, loves as much, can even imagine what she suffers or understands her. We’ve all been there, hopefully not in such a bad way as she is. Great story that resonates.

  2. I like the two halves of this – hers and his. Personally, I wonder if it might have packed more punch if we got even deeper into their psyches (or just one) and there was more feeling in the piece. I’m not sure I’m explaining this very well… the character I feel most through this is a third character, a narrator with strong opinions about the moral question. I think it would have been stronger if I felt her emotions and then was left to make my own moral assessment.

    Anyway, there is a lot I liked about this story, in particular the description in the first paragraph and the wisdom of her friends.

    • Thank you for your comments! Now I’m wondering if I should have written it in the first person (as Lexi). For instance, the narrative about Theo–how he understands her and knows what she needs–was intended to express Lexi’s viewpoint, as opposed to the narrator’s. You would be a wonderful editor!

      • Wow, thanks. It’s only my point of view, so don’t change what you’re happy with, but if you experiment, I’m sure I’m not the only one who would enjoy seeing version2

  3. Ah, this is sad. Maybe she does love Theo, but I don’t think it’s mutual. Some people don’t really know what love is and this is as close as they get. I agree with comments that this could be a good story for first person. Nicely done, Jan.

  4. Gritty piece, superbly written.
    Reluctant though I am to disagree with those better qualified to critique, I think this works very well in the third person.
    In the first person (which I very often use mysef) it woud be a very different story, and not necessarily better.

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