Friday Fictioneers – Eternity

smallpox-hospital-roger-bultot
Photo Prompt © Roger Bulltot

“There’s earth right under our feet,” he said. “Earth and roots and worms – it can break through any time.”

How could I have known the ruined castle would terrorise him so? Imagined tourneys and jousting and round tables was what I expected. Instead, he saw decay, a child’s first glimpse of our impermanent hold on eternity.

“Everything’s okay, sweetie,” I said. “I won’t let anything hurt you.”

He seemed to recover until building began on the plot next-door.

Looking into the foundations’ depth he screamed, “dirt.”

For the next decade he wailed and fought whenever we took him outside.

 

 

Friday fictioneers is a weekly challenge set by Rochelle Wisoff Fields to write a 100-word story in response to a photo prompt. You can find other stories here.

Fancy sharpening your skill with writing exercises? The Scrivener’s Forge offers a new exercise every month to hone one aspect of your craft. Take a look at this month’s exercise on plot and endings.

 

73 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers – Eternity

  1. Dear Neil,

    When I was a young child I had an inexplicable fear of my cousin’s tape recorder microphone. The sight of it struck terror into my four year old heart. I hope your character outgrows his terror. Although I wondered if his didn’t have more of a reason. Well written.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Phobias… where they come from and how they take control of a person is something that always fascinates me. Wonder what triggered the boy’s? Hopefully he will outgrow it!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. ‘ … he saw decay, a child’s first glimpse of our impermanent hold on eternity ‘ loved this line.
    Such a deep story . The fact is most of us detest and fear imperfections in decay and yet when a child calls it dirt and worm , we call it phobia. I wonder if mortal beings will ever outgrow the fear of decay or impermanence as powerless spectators.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Neil, this makes me so thoughtful. I believe kids see things so differently than adults, sometimes more clearly because they don’t have those sensors at work.
    Anyway, your prose is so vivid that I could feel his terror and the narrator’s own confused dismay that what he intended was not seen.
    Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Well done, Neil. You really captured the irrational nature of so many fears. I know my own fears and all the steps I put in place to avoid them, make perfect sense to me, but would raise more than an eyebrow from an observer. Such a fascinating subject!
    xx Rowena

    Liked by 1 person

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