Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Mid-Week Flash Challenge - Week 7

Last week's photo prompt set a record at 5 wonderful entries! Such a diverse range of stories too. I love seeing how people are inspired. I am hoping this image will do the same.

I ummed and arhhed over the choice for this week's photo, as there are just SO many waiting to be used. I want to provide something new and fresh each week, and not the same sort of photo either, as well as a prompt that provides ample possibilities. I'm hoping this one does.

This photo was taken by Sirombo (Luca) from Italy over on Deviant Art.

My tale this week is actually based on the novel I have been working on, which is in the final editing stages. It gives a good outline of it, although it is set 10years on.

The General Guidelines can be found here.

Fresh Start

Lizzy stooped to pick up the feather stuck in the pebbles on the beach. She ran it through her fingers as she looked out to sea at the setting sun. It was a sign, she knew it.

Feathers had always shown up at significant times in her life: a turquoise one had landed on her windowsill the day before Steve had asked her out; a tiny brown one had been on the dashboard in her car the day he had proposed, and a beautiful white one had fluttered in through the kitchen window the day before her wedding. They had all signified good things. And this one did too. This  one signified freedom.

She inhaled deeply, taking in the sea air, something she hadn’t been able to do for over ten years. Instead she had been stuck in a prison cell looking at four grey walls twenty hours a day. It was the penance you paid for losing your mind and taking your husband’s life.

She sighed, still feeling the weight of what she had done deep inside her chest. The last time she’d walked on a beach she’d been with Steve on a holiday they’d taken to try and recover from the loss of their second child. They’d splashed out and gone to the Maldives, a dream destination for Lizzy. With Steve’s modelling career taking off they’d been able to afford it.

It had helped a bit; they’d reconnected a little, although the return home had not gone as well as hoped with his parents forgetting to cancel the delivery of the pram. It had stood there in the entrance hall, taunting her when they’d arrived.

Gosh that all seemed so long ago. Another lifetime. She could recall the feelings but they didn’t cut her like they used to. She had something new to cut herself up about instead; something much bigger. And now she was out, the pain of what she had done was much keener.

In the years running up to the murder her head had become fuzzy, full of angry noise, bitterness and resent. And during her first years inside it hadn’t cleared; it had only become foggier as more negative emotions had swallowed her up: guilt, shame and despair. Now she stood here, finally out, on a beach in the crisp evening air, there was no noise in her head, no anger, there was only sadness and a gratitude at the chance for a fresh start.

Lizzy took in another deep breath and turned her back on the sunset. But before she could begin on that, she had to face the people and the memories from the past, the last part of her penance. But the arrival of the grey feather was a positive sign, and one she clung to as she headed back up the beach. 


  1. Replies
    1. Such brutal brilliance. Thanks for joining in.

    2. Wombat, shivery but great! Nicely done.

  2. Again, thank you Miranda for doing the hosting! Here is mine, 3rd week in a row. Woot! http://stacybennettauthor.com/2017/04/19/mid-week-flash-feathered-friend/

    1. Thanks for keep writing. I am glad the prompts are inspiring you. Another great tale too:

      Here's a clickable link for readers: Feathered Friend

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Sad emotive tale this week. Thanks for joining.

  4. I never have a clue what's going to happen when I write for this. I'm just supposed to get out of my way, and let it happen.


    1. Really sweet tale. Thanks for joining in.

      Here's a clickable linke for others to use: My Soul's Tears

  5. I made it this week! Longer than my last one, and 20 words over your limit! But loving the chance to write!

    1. Such a compelling read should not be stifled by a meer 20 words. It's a wonderful story.

      And here's a clickable link for others to enjoy it too: New Dawn