Wednesday, February 20, 2008

I decided to join in the fun over at r.e.h.'s place. He's come up with this great game where he gives us pictures that represent different aspects of a story, then we write the story. He explains it a lot better than I do, and you can find the rules here.
So, here we go!


One Little Leaf

Samuel should have been working on his homework, but he was having a familiar daydream instead. He was running through the wet sand, his feet slapping against the receding wave as it tried to drag him into the ocean with it. The sky was as wide as the ocean he was running next to and all of his worries were gone. He had never even been to the beach, but he just knew that if he was there, running on the sand, he could forget about the cramped two bedroom apartment he and his sister, Abigail, lived in with their mother or the bully, Frank, who stops him on his way to school to pick on him just for the hell of it or the hours he waits for his mom to get home from her job.

He knew she hated her job. She only took it to support him and Abigail after their father left. She was so tired when she got home that he didn’t want to bother her with helping him with his homework or talking to her about Frank. Samuel knew that if they could just go to the beach, his mother would forget all her worries, too. Maybe she could relax and smile again. It had been so long since she had smiled.

The thoughts of his mom brought Samuel back to real time. He finished the last of his multiplication tables then went to the bedroom he shared with his little sister. It had an invisible line drawn down the middle by the separation of girl’s stuff and boy’s stuff. Abigail’s side was pink with Dora the Explorer and baby dolls around, while his side was darker with Transformers and race cars. He reached under his bed and took out the box of treasured objects. He ignored the ribbons for science fairs, the pictures of his mom and dad, the birthday cards from some grandmother he never met, and picked up the small, hardback book about sea shells that his mom had given to him for his birthday. It was the first birthday without his dad, so she had made it a big party to try to make up for it. They had been at the park for his party, and in a puddle of water there had been a leaf. There weren’t many trees in this park—it was mostly sand and gravel around a swing set and a jungle gym—so he guessed that’s why it caught his attention. It was a very pretty golden color and a lovely shape with no tears or nicks in it. He had carefully picked it up and dried it off with a napkin before putting it in his book about shells.

Now he sat on his bed, opened the book, and held the leaf tenderly in his hand. He thought about the birthday without his dad and the promise about going to the beach some day that his mom made when she gave him the book. She talked about how he and his sister would jump and run in the sand. And he remembered the far away look in his mother’s eyes and that she was smiling.

14 comments:

Dana said...

I've been having so much fun reading new blogs and the interpretation of R.E.H.'s PFC #1 pics. Great job! I look forward to reading more!

R.E.H. said...

Very well written and engaging. I wanted to read more though.

What I really liked was how you got a real character out of that character pic. I couldn't for the life of me find a character there - but you did. Having him daydream about running on the beach really inspired me. You did very well.

I'll be looking forward to reading more fiction from you!

Leighann said...

REH is a mad genius! This PFC has been a lot of fun!

Great job!

fiwa said...

Kell, that's a terrific story! I saw your comment on REH's page - so I know you wrote it today. I am so impressed, I can't believe you can just sit down and dash off a story just like that. And I too wanted to read more. What happens to the little boy??

I'm glad you're feeling a little better. Take care of you. :)

lovins,
fiwa

Jay said...

Nice! That was really great. These have been a lot of fun to read.

Newt said...

Wow, that was spectacular. I would read the novel. Great job. Superb. Fantastic. I could gush for days...........

Emmeline said...

Good job. I love how you made the character a little boy. Genius! This is such a fun challenge, isn't it?

Em

Sparkling Red said...

That story made me all nostalgic and daydreamy... It's like a little snapshot of a real boy's life. Lovely. :-)

Jo said...

Great story! Melancholy, hopeful...you captured the deep, simple, big, wistful thoughts of a young boy so beautifully. I instantly want to make it better for him.

Aurora said...

Damn, that was my life as a kid (except, no Abigail). Great writing!

Dianne said...

I want so much to hug Samuel. You just absolutely brought him to life for me.

great job!

Karen said...

Great job. I am FINALLY getting around to reading all these. Yours is awesome.

Glad you checked in here and i hope you are feeling better.

susan said...

This is the first time I've ever read any of your fiction. You are really, really good. I want more! (and I want to read your novel!)

tt said...

I am sooooo late in reading this. I loved the story! Reh is a genius for thinking all this up. Everyone has been so creative. I got sucked into your story from the get go! I hope to read more stories from you.
Thanks for letting me peek into your world. :)
Your heart is very big..;)