Friday Flash Fiction

This one came out of a short conversation I had with an airline seatmate last week.  She’d slept most of the flight, and I only got to talk with her after the plane actually landed.  She was in her late 20’s, probably, and she’d just come from visiting her sister, who was a couple of years older.

It was the first time she and her sister had ever met.

I had zillions of questions, and only a couple of minutes to ask them.  Yes, they’d known about each other as children, ‘but we never got around to meeting each other.’  Yes, they looked alike.  Yes, they felt like they’d known each other forever.  They talked the same way, used the same gestures.  ‘But our mothers were very, very different.’  Her father had been married a couple of times (at least).

This scenario opened the door for so many story ideas, and I thought I would use it as a prompt for this week’s Creativity Workshop short story, set in post-hurricane Ike Galveston.  And what the hell, I’m throwing another airline encounter from last week into the story too.  It’s the story of row 9C — and the two different guys who had boarding passes with the same seat number on them.  Turns out they both had the same name, too.

Anyhow, here’s the flash:

Kirsten tossed book after mildewed picture book into the dumpster.  All of Galveston was a disaster.  Still, she was glad she’d come down from Houston to volunteer with the hurricane clean up.

“Hey, Jen – lunch is ready.”   Weird – that was the second time today someone called her Jen.

Kirsten dumped one last stack of books before heading toward the school cafeteria.

She stopped abruptly as she turned the corner.  Was she looking at herself in a mirror?

“Oh,” she said and held out her hand.  “You must be Jen.”

13 comments to Friday Flash Fiction

  • This is what makes us “different” from other travelers. As practicing writers, we see the characters and story lines in everything around us. If the story isn’t obvious, we just make one up! Great one!

  • Natasha

    You’re right, of course. I’m always making up stories to go along with the people I see along the way.

  • I do the same thing!! This is really great, I loved it….

  • It’s a shame you didn’t have more time to visit with your airline seatmate. What a story she has to tell!

    Your Flash Fiction is striking.

  • This is great. How fascinating. My four cousins hadn’t all been in the same room together until my grandmother’s funeral last October. They all have the same dad (my uncle)and different moms. They’d all met once or twice but never got together as a family. The youngest is 35 and they all live in different states. Crazy huh?

    Sorry I missed all the actions this week. I had a little action of my own. Well, actually a lot of action. I had a fight with a flight of stairs and I lost. Okay, so the flight of stairs thoroughly kicked my a$$. At least I have some time off to catch up with my editing. 🙂

    • Natasha

      Oh no! Did you break anything? Are you in a cast? Purple? I hope it’s not too bad.

      Yeah on the crazy bit with your cousins. But it’s neat that they did get together, even this late in life.

  • My pride is a little broken…:)
    I fractured my right ankle and tore my left calf muscle. I think a broken leg would’ve been less painful then the torn muscle.
    Anyway, with both legs injured I’m moving pretty slow. I tell you–it’s pathetic! What can I say? I just signed up for a 12 week yoga class too dammit! Oh well…

    • Natasha

      Bummer. Are you in a cast? Can you drive? Not being able to drive would make me crazy. Well, at least this means your family is waiting on you hand and foot, right?

  • No cast, just a big boot. Thankfully it’s removable. The family is working hard to keep me comfortable… 🙂 The worst part: I can only handle the weight of the laptop on my lap for a little while. 🙁 It’s old and heavy and not comfortable with the torn muscle in my left leg. The best part: lots of reading.

  • […] I had a lot of catch-up stuff to do when I got back from Texas, was exhausted, and — I admit it — I did NOT get up at the crack of dawn to write, no matter what.  My bad.  But I did write a couple of sketches that were based on conversations I had along the way. (This and this.) […]

  • […] Friday Flash Fiction 55 This builds on last week’s Friday Flash: […]

  • […] of the workshop. I posted snippets of the second story ideas in these Flash Fictions — here and here — and the blog comments (thanks, everyone!) reinforced my thinking that this story […]

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