Well, well, what have we here? Yup, it’s Friday so it’s time for another flash fiction piece. This one is a slightly longer micro at 285 words. The featured image was posted in a Facebook group with the prompt of “Uh-oh. Somebody’s in trouble. What happened?”
I chose to come at the prompt a bit sideways. It’s not a very happy tale, if you look at it one way, so be warned if you’re not in the right place for something sad. On the other hand, it could be viewed as a very happy tale for the narrator . What do you think? And if you want to play along, feel free to post it below, on Facebook, or link me!
He found the picture in a box of her things. One of their many arguments frozen in time by a mischievous child. She’d been so full of fire and passion, strong in her convictions and unafraid to fight for what she wanted. When she decided she wanted him, he’d stood no chance.
The photo shook as he traced the line of her jaw with a wrinkled finger. Time had left its mark on his body, his back now bent and hands stiff and sore, but she’d left a better one on his soul. They’d had fifty-six short years together, and now he was alone. Sorrow, deep and unending, raked his heart with razor-tipped claws and made him bleed.
“Dammit, woman.” He held the photo against his chest, protecting it from his tears, protecting her from his anguish. “Why’d you have to go? You know I can’t do this without you. You know.”
He tossed the photo aside when the anger came, raging against time, her, and himself. There was no one he could hold responsible for his loss, no villain he could punish, no disease he could blame. He stuffed her things into boxes and bags, shoved them into corners and dark shadows. She’d left him. He couldn’t forgive her for that, wouldn’t forgive her. She knew.
And when the anger faded and the tears dried, when exhaustion and cold seeped into his bones and made him ache, he reached for the photo once more. She’d be mad that he forgot to turn on the furnace, but it wasn’t that cold yet. He slid down the wall and traced her cheek again. It could wait, and he was so tired. It really wasn’t that cold.