Life, or Lack Thereof

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This was written for The Red Dress Club, a virtual writer's society.
Concrit is always welcomed and appreciated!

Flash Fiction can be fun and a real challenge. This week focus on the words and the strength of each to contribute to your story. Write a 300 word piece using the following word for inspiration: LIFE.Word limit: 300 My count: 300 EXACTLY!
Reveling in the first warm day after a rainy spring, she lies back in the adirondak chair and stretches her legs out in the sun, feeling very feline as she luxuriates in the warmth.

Connor runs around the yard, as thrilled as she to be outdoors again. Porch to mailbox, to Mr. Rommel's rosebushes and back.

Getting caught up in her gossip magazine, she loses track of time and realizes it's been a few minutes since hearing Connor's joyful shrieks. Looking around the yard, she spots him in Mr. Rommel's yard, staring intently at the ground under their neighbor's giant maple tree.

Her curiosity piqued, she heads across the lawn to join her son. “What's goin on, Peanut?” Not wanting to startle him out of his concentration, she calls out when she's halfway there.

“Come look, Mommy! What is it?” His chubby toddler finger points at the base of the tree. “What is it? Can I poke it?” He's found a stick, which he now wields at the tree.

“Hang on, Con” She arrives next to him and sees what he's examining.

It's a mouse, or something. From the looks of it, it died some time ago, and is barely recognizable as an animal.

“Oh, sweetie…” kneeling down next to Connor, she gathers him onto her lap for The Talk. “It's a mouse, but he's gone to heaven…” Pause to search his face for some reaction. “When you're all done with your time on Earth, God calls your soul back to heaven, but your body stays here…” Pause. “But it's OK, because your soul is who you are, and that's up in heaven with God.” Exhale. He doesn't appear to be traumatized; his eyes have returned to the decomposing rodent.

“Oh,” he says, confused. “I thought it was just dead.”

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14 Comments

  1. Wow! The heaven talk in 300 words? You are GOOD.

    Lines like this: "Porch to mailbox, to Mr. Rommel's rosebushes and back." are so tight and so visual.

    Poor Connor. Poor mouse. 🙂

  2. I really like this (and special smiles for hitting exactly 300!) There was a whole lot packed in here and the whole thing resonated and spoke to the spiritual/mommy side! Nicely done! (oh…and sigh…I've missed reading you!!!)

  3. *snort* Oh man, that is so perfect for a kid to respond!! "I thought it was just dead"

    Great job, you painted a perfect little picture in your 300 words exactly!

  4. I really enjoyed that. I remember my child having a very factual non-reaction in a similar circumstance. Interesting, yes but not traumatizing like I suspected.
    This was very real to me.

  5. I loved the last line. 🙂 Great job with the God talk in 300 words! I still try to avoid it with my four-year-old.

  6. Ha! That last line was priceless. After all the trouble of making The Talk perfect, what a great way for him to respond!!

    Nice response to the prompt, and great job in hitting 300 words exactly. That takes skillz 🙂 Stopping by from TRDC.

  7. Yes! That was great and fun. I, too, have thought this would be a difficult thing to explain, but my son does the same thing. Oh, it's dead? Ok!

  8. The last line was total money.

    Yeah like Katie and Galit said, the Heaven talk in 300 words is super impressive. You took one of life's big moments and made it sing in 300 words.

    good work…thanks for my comment too.

  9. I'm a little late to the party, but I'll agree with everyone else… That last line is priceless!

  10. Hee hee hee…. This is the first prompt I've read this week that had humor to it! It's a nice change!

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