Eileen stared at the photograph of her two sons, Eric and Eddie. It was taken in the fall of 2005, a few days before Eric shipped out. They were wading in the shallow creek bed, their pants legs rolled up to stay dry.
That photograph, with its streams of light from the late afternoon sun shining through the tree branches as her two beautiful boys frolicked in the creek, was one of her favorites. She framed it and placed it on the fireplace mantel in the family room.
After Eileen learned that Eric had been killed in action in Iraq by an improvised explosive device, or IED, it was hard to look at that photo. But though she had lost her firstborn, she still had Eddie, the boy wading in the stream in his rubber boots.
And then, after finishing college, Eddie joined the marines and went to Afghanistan, where he lost his life in a firefight.
It was hard for Eileen to bear, but she still had that photo to remind her of happier times.
Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers from Priceless Joy. Photo credit: ENISA.
“Can we get this?” Jimmy asked his father, pointing to a plastic model.
“You want that?” Dan asked.
“Yeah,” Jimmy said. “The uniforms are just like my soccer team’s. And look at that cool elephant sitting on that guy’s shoulders.”
Dan motioned to the proprietor of the curio booth. “How much is this?” he asked.
“Four thousand rupees.” The man then bent down and spoke directly to Jimmy. “Do you know who this is?” he asked, touching the elephant’s head. Jimmy shook his head no.
“Ganesha is one of the best-known and most worshiped deities in the Hindu religion. He is the Lord of Good Fortune who provides prosperity, fortune, and success. He also is the Remover of Obstacles.” Pointing to the model, the man added, “Here, Ganesha is offering good fortune for the India National Football Team.”
“I’ll give you fifty American dollars,” Dan said.
“For your boy, I will accept that,” the man said and took the cash Dan handed him.
“Now our soccer team will have good fortune,” Jimmy happily said.
Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers from Priceless Joy. Image credit: Lavanya
“It’s huge!” Harold exclaimed. “Bring me the tape measure.”
Peggy rushed over to her boss and handed him the tape measure. “It’s enormous.”
Harold started measuring the length and width of the footprint. “Write this in our dig notebook,” he instructed Peggy. “It’s 67 inches long by 34 inches at its widest part.”
“It’s almost heart-shaped,” Peggy said. “But it’s not like any dinosaur prints I’ve ever seen.”
“None like I’ve ever seen either,” Harold admitted. “It’s similar to those of the apatosaurus, but more triangular.” He started to get excited and looked over at Peggy. “We may have stumbled upon a new class of dinosaur.”
“Oh Dr. Bancroft, that would be amazing,” Peggy said.
They heard some rustling sounds coming from the brush behind them and they both turned to see what the disturbance was. But what they saw next caused them to freeze in fear.
The roar was deafening and the swiftness for its size was incredible. Neither Harold nor Peggy could escape the crushing blows of the creature whose footprint they had just discovered.
Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers from Priceless Joy. Photo credit: Yinglan.
“Is he God?” Allsion asked Victor. “Did you see how he reached up and grabbed a sunbeam from the sun and held it between his thumb and forefinger? He must be God.”
“No, he’s not God, Allison,” Victor said. “It’s a parlor trick. He’s a cheap magician. He probably has some little bulb in his hand that lights up when he presses something down.”
“No!” Allison said definitely. “It wasn’t a trick. He grabbed the light right out of the sky and captured it in his hand. I saw it with my own eyes.”
“Allison,” Victor said, “You’re being naïve. He’s a con man. He’s selling you and everyone here bottles of snake oil.”
“That’s not true,” Allison insisted. “He promised that if we follow him, he’ll lead us to a better life. I believe him.”
“It’s all bullshit….” But before Victor could finish speaking, the cups were being handed out to everyone assembled.
“Now everyone drink the Kool-Aid,” Reverend Jones said, “and you, too, will see God, just as I already do.”
Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers from Priceless Joy. Photo credit: Goroyboy.
“It’s pure genius,” Phil said. “I took a felled, dead tree and turned it into a work of art that serves practical purpose.”
“Well, it’s interesting,” the director of city parks said. “But I think we were looking for something a bit more, um, traditional.”
“You can’t be serious,” Phil objected. “Thousands of visitors come to this park every year. Don’t you think they’d appreciate ecologically and environmentally responsible park benches carved right out of nature?”
“I appreciate that,” the director said, “But we have to replace several dozen of the existing broken and worn park benches with new ones and we need them fast. How long did it take you to make just this one?”
“An artist can’t be rushed,” Phil responded. “And did you notice how I used the carved out pieces from the bench to make foot rests? Ingenious, right”
“I’m sorry, Phil,” the director said. “I’m going to go with our regular bench supplier. But since your bench is so artistic, I’ll put it behind the museum.”
Written for Priceless Joy’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Photo credit: me!