#FOWC — Empty Words Empty Promises

874CC013-EEE5-479E-B59A-A9798F78C12CIt had been thirteen days since Sofía had been detained in the compound. And thirteen days since she last saw her daughter, Isabella.

Sofía thought about the difficult and often harrowing journey of the past two month that she and Isabella took, striving to reach the U.S. border to seek asylum from the country that took the lives of her husband and teenage son. Little did she know that she would be treated like a criminal when she got to the border and would have her last remaining child snatched from her arms and taken only God knows where.

Sofía was only thirty, but she felt as though she was suffering from a midlife crisis. She’d experienced horrors in her young life that most women twice her age could not even imagine. And now she was living a waking nightmare, detained in a compound, and separated from her only living child.

Whatever happen to those words of hope carved on a plaque at the base of the Statue of Liberty, words that Sofía had committed to memory:

“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

“Empty words, empty promises,” Sofía thought, the tears of hopelessness and despair streaming down her cheeks.


Written for Teresa’s Three Things Challenge, where the three things are thirteen, midlife crisis, and past. And for Fandango’s One-Word Challenge, “compound.” And for the Word of the Day Challenge, “striving.”

First Line Friday — Storm Clouds

B0F48CFF-AC10-481C-810A-C0F44DA1684B.jpegThe wedding loomed closer and all Tay could do was think of storm clouds. “This is a big mistake,” he said to his best man, Floyd.

“What are you talking about, Tay?” Floyd asked. “Are you getting cold feet?”

“I don’t know what I was thinking,” Tay said. “Who said love is better the second time around, anyway? What do they know?”

“Listen, Bud,” Floyd said. “You and Darlene were great together and then you fucked it up by having that affair with one of your students. You’re lucky that she’s even giving you a second chance.”

“We weren’t so great together,” Tay said. “Our relationship was very tumultuous at times. We fought like cats and dogs. Why do you think I felt the need to have an affair? I just needed to have some uncomplicated sex with no baggage.”

“But you’ve grown as a person since those days,” Floyd said, “and so has Darlene. You were both so young when you got married. But now you have a chance to put it all back together with the love of your life. You two were meant to be.”

“Yeah, you’re right Floyd,” Tay admitted. “It’s just going to be hard to break it to Samantha.”

“Who’s Samantha?” Floyd asked.

“Samantha,” Tay said. “was the student I had that affair with.”

“What does she have to do with it?” Floyd asked. “You’re not still seeing her, are you? That affair was years ago.”

“True,” Tay said, “but she and I had a kid together. I’m her baby daddy. I can’t abandon her and our son.”

“Storm clouds, indeed,” Floyd said, shaking his head in disbelief.


Written for today’s Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie First Line Friday prompt.

Time To Write — The Preparations

EA206B38-C62B-4220-A8F8-E916303C4EF8Emma looked at her watch. “We need to hurry,” she said to her brother, Liam. “Mom said she’s going to be getting here by around 6:30 and it’s already a quarter past six.”

“I’m almost done hanging this banner,” Liam said, “so go let everyone know that Mom and Grandpa will be arriving shortly.”

“I’m so excited,” Emma said. “Grandpa will be really surprised when he walks in and sees everyone from the extended family here to help celebrate his 100th birthday. There will be four generations of the family here for this occasion. He’s going to especially love seeing his cousins who have flown in from Ireland to see him.”

“Yeah, it’s gonna be great,” Liam agreed. That’s when he heard his mother’s car pull into the driveway.

Emma ran into the living and adressed the gathering of friend and family from near and far. “Okay, everyone,” she said. “Grandpa will be walking in any second. On my signal I want everyone to run out and shout SURPRISE!”

The front door opened and Emma gave the signal. The attendees all ran out and yelled “SURPRISE.” Grandpa, startled, looked at the crowd, smiled weakly, grabbed his chest, and fell to the floor.

Emma ran over to Grandpa and checked his pulse. She looked up at the group, tears running down her cheeks, and said in a hoarse voice, “He’s gone.”

Liam walked into the room carrying a sheath of papers. “Okay,” he said. “The plan worked. Mom was right, the old man’s heart couldn’t take it. So let’s get to the will, shall we?”


Written for Rachel Poli’s Time To Write prompt. We are asked to write a story where the characters are preparing for something.

Happy Anniversary

ABC15485-4D66-48CD-8F8C-89357D324357The first thing that impressed Ann when she and her husband walked into the posh, downtown hotel room were the beautiful lace doilies on the desk and the bedside tables. That was until Michael called her over to the window and told her to look out.

“Oh my God,” Ann exclaimed. “This is stunning. Look at the city with the twinkling lights from the skyscrapers peaking from behind the wispy, low-hanging clouds. This hotel is some discovery,” she said to Michael, squeezing his hand tightly.

“I wanted to surprise you on this, our fifth wedding anniversary,” Michael said, bending down slightly to give Ann a kiss. “And best of all, I scored great tickets for tonight.”

“Oh, Michael,” Ann squealed, “I’ve always wanted to see a Broadway show! Which show?”

“Well, it’s just a little off Broadway,” Michael admitted.

“Oh, off-Broadway,” Ann said. “Well, that’s cool. I understand that there are some very avant-garde shows that are off-Broadway.”

“Yeah, well it not exactly a show,” Michael said. “I got floor seats for the Knicks game.”

Ann looked at her husband and said, “You’re taking me to a basketball game for our anniversary? Seriously?”

“It’s my anniversary, too, you know,” Michael said.

“And your last one with me,” Ann said.


Written for Teresa’s two prompts, Three Things Challenge, where the things are discovery, lace, and basketball, and for her Worth A Thousand Words photo prompt. Photo credit: carloyuen @ pixabay.com.

WATW — Socks

C4730C9B-557C-49F1-9196-686AF639FAFA“Dammit. I’m not going to allow you to eat another sock!” Melinda yelled. “I already have too many singles without a matching sock.”

Melinda then flung herself into the industrial-sized dryer looking for the missing sock. After rummaging around for a minute or two, she jumped out of the machine and announced, “I got you!” and triumphantly held up the odd sock for everyone in the laundromat to bear witness to the success of her mission.


Written for Teresa’s Worth a Thousand Words photo prompt. Photo credit: Pexels @ pixabay.com.