Wednesday 29 May 2019

Mid-Week Flash Challenge - Week 109

This weeks picture was taken by James Wheeler, a photographer from Canada. This is Lost Lake in the Whistler Resort, Whistler, Canada and it's pretty magnificent. Definitely makes me want to go there! You can view more of his pictures over on the 500px site.

I've gone a bit mushy this week, in contrast to last weeks. This picture was too beautiful to taint.

The General Guidelines can be found here.

How to create a clickable link in Blogger comments can be found on lasts week's post here.

There is also a Facebook group for Mid-Week Flash, if you fancy getting the prompt there.

Promises Under the Stars

Their anniversary trip had been a huge surprise. Lucy hadn’t expected anything from him, not after all these years, and certainly not with how dead their marriage had become. But he’d booked one of their dream vacations, or should she say his. Paul had always wanted to go ski-ing in Canada and here they were. She wasn’t a skier, but he’d even considered that in the booking: he’d picked a resort that was also a spa. It meant he could ski while she lounged about in hot tubs and had massages.

Again the level of thought he’d put into struck her. Lucy hadn’t seen the likes of this since they first met, some twenty-three years ago. It was a complete contrast to recent years where he made social arrangements behind her back, only telling her the day before so she either couldn’t join or was left unprepared.

A couple of times she’d found out by accident through a friend of his, or once her mother-in-law. People didn’t expect a man not to tell his wife about family gatherings, and when she’d challenged him, he was never sorry, he made out it was her fault with some remark like “I didn’t think you’d be interested.”

She pushed away the bad feelings that rose from the memories and walked further along the jetty. It reached out under the expanse of moonlit sky, the lake beneath like glass on this breathless night. She breathed in the crisp night air.

She wanted to let go of all the hurt he had done her, but it was hard. She didn’t know if she could trust him not to repeat it. He hadn’t said anything to indicate this change: he was still silent, empty of opinions and emotion, yet cheery and friendly in his usual vacant way. And she went along with it as she always did, because what else do you do? Anger and bitterness are such useless emotions.

She heard footsteps behind her on the jetty and knew it was Paul, instinctively tensing. She waited for him to stop a few feet away and his silence to manifest into something tangible, as it often did, unless she turned and broke it. But tonight he didn’t do that; he came right up behind her and slipped his arms around her waist, pulling her in. The movement took her breath away.

He snuggled his head into her shoulder, something he’d never done before, and whispered, ‘Hey you, it’s beautiful out here.’

‘It sure is,’ she replied, wrapping her arms over his and hugging them.

‘Penny for them?’ he asked.

‘What my thoughts?’


She pulled her head back to look at his face. “You’ve never cared before.”

He lifted his head to meet her eyes. ‘I know. And I regret that. I’ve taken you for granted – for years. I want to change that.’

She pulled her whole body back this time so she could turn and face him.

‘And what’s brought this on? Forgive me if I’m a little sceptical but your promises are often just words to suit the moment.’

‘I understand you feel that way, and you think this is out of the blue, but really it’s been in my head ever since Rob lost his wife last year.’

‘Your brother?’

Paul nodded. ‘They supported each other so much. She did so much for him. In every conversation I’ve had with him since he’s mentioned it, and it made me look at our marriage. I saw how little I support you, and how much you do for me. I haven’t appreciated it. I’ve only ever seen what I did. ‘

Lucy was silent. A part of her was unbelieving, but another part wasn’t – it hoped.

Paul looked into her eyes. ‘I want this trip to be a fresh start for us, a new beginning. I want to try and rekindle what we had when we met.’

Lucy opened her mouth to speak, but he interrupted her. ‘I know you have doubts, I know that I’ve promised things before, but let me show you this time.’

‘Actions speak louder than words? You’ve finally heard me, then?’

‘Yeah, maybe I’ve finally heard you.’ He stepped forward, hesitantly, his arms open. She stepped into them and let him pull her in, her head tucked under his as they both looked out at the full moon. ‘It’s the perfect night to begin our new life together, too.’

Lucy squeezed him, tears rolling down her face. This really was a dream vacation. 


  1. Aw that was a beautiful story, Miranda, Well done!!

  2. Last week you challenged me to turn this week into a dialogue experiment. Well I did here is my attempt at this weeks dialogue challenge Tranquillity Lake Hope I get a least 'D for dialogue'grade!

    1. You get an A for that! Really well done, works perfectly. Great job! Thanks for joining.

  3. Lovely story Miranda! Here's my contribution: The Siren

    1. Wonderful, love it. Great twist at the end. Thanks for joining.

  4. A lovely dark tale from David Milburn this week.

    Title: John

    “Do you remember John? Our honeymoon here. It was the happiest time of my life.”

    John didn’t say anything. He just lay there, next to me. I looked up at the stars and thought about those early years. John owned his own construction company. Times had been good with lots of jobs to keep him busy. It was only when the economy turned bad that the drinking and then the beatings had begun. He was a big, burly man so he only hit hard enough to make his point, which seemed to be, I talked too much. I soon learned to go down early. For some reason, he was a puncher and slapper but not a kicker.

    I had been planning to kill John for years. More of a fantasy really, but lately, his clenched fists were being used with more oomph, nothing specific, maybe he was just scared of getting old. Anyway, it was off-season at the lake so now would be as good a time as any. John’s business was integral to my plan. He provided the pickup truck, the four wheel dolly, the tools and the plastic sheeting free of charge.

    I had watched a movie once where a police sniper had explained that a shot into the nerve bundle just above the ear was a certain kill-shot. One night when John was passed out on the couch, I tested the theory with one of his chisels and a hammer. The result was amazing. He simply stopped snoring and that was that. I placed the dolly next to the couch with the plastic already laid out, four cinder blocks on one side, rolled him on top and wrapped him in a cocoon that any spider would be proud of. I had already backed the truck up to the porch, so it was simply a matter of wheeling him on, slamming the gate and off we went.

    The lake was more beautiful than I remembered. I had pushed the dolly along the wooden jetty and was ready to slip John into the water but I hesitated and sat there next to him for a time. The plan wasn’t done yet. I had taken selfies of my bruises, I would see a lawyer in a few days. “John had gone for a walk one night and never came home.”

    No telling how I would do. In the laps of the Gods now. With a sigh, I rolled John over the edge and started back towards the pickup.

  5. I rambled. That's a good way to describe it.

    The Path

    1. Love the underlying message in this, and it's very true. Thanks for joining Mark.

  6. Replies
    1. I love the dark unexpected ending. Thanks for joining.