Prompt Winner: Renee L. Tennis-McKinley
Hooray! This past week, we had two participants in the #TuesFlashFicTrain contest, and the voters decided that Renee L. Tennis-McKinley‘s interpretation of the prompt should be part two of our story. Congratulations, Renee – it was an awesome response and you’ve really taken the story in a great direction.
Check it out and stay tuned next week for what could happen next!
If only I’d come home sooner.
I wandered the empty rooms, memories snapping before my eyes as though pages of the photo albums Mom had kept on the coffee table.
Dad’s chair with his remote at hand. Mom’s china displayed in perpetual newness in the over sized hutch.
The dining room table, ragged centerpiece bookended by the salt and pepper shakers I’d sent her one Christmas.
It had come to this. Clearing their lives away, packing their bits and pieces into bland cardboard boxes.
Each bit laid away, each piece folded and stored, chiseled at my strength.
Memories of two people I knew, yet never knew.
Familiar items that meant everything and nothing.
My room, almost as I’d left it. Patches of darker paint on the sun faded walls where I’d peeled away posters, long since discarded.
On the bed an unfamiliar quilt made by mother’s hands. Hands that rarely held me, yet so carefully stitched each square into place.
Red and blue checkered fabric here, that came from the new dress for my first day of kindergarten
Different shades of denim scattered throughout saved from multiple pairs of jeans. The center square, the shiny iridescent pink of prom. Around the edge, strips of soft fabric stamped with pastel bunnies recognized from old pictures as my baby blanket.
I carried the quilt past the crowd of boxes awaiting the moving van.
Twenty minutes later I stood in front of a door clutching the bundle tightly. I turned the handle with shaking hands.
She sat in front of the widow. Late afternoon sun highlighted the yellowed gray of her uncombed hair.
As I approached her chair, she turned. Pale blue eyes met mine with confusion, then settled on the riot of color in my arms.
She gently touched the fabric, her hands smaller than I remembered. Her eyes focused as they returned to my face. A smile began to bloom as she stroked my cheek with the same tenderness she had afforded the quilt.
I wished I had come back sooner.
Thanks so much for playing, Renee! I’m looking forward to reading the rest of your ideas on this story, and more of you writing in the future – hope you can come back and play this week!
Be sure to visit Renee and congratulate her all over social media:
Also, check out her neat blogs! You can find some of her other writing – lots of great stuff to read 🙂
I’m so excited I was able to put up a vote for this past week! We’re picking up momentum and it’s awesome – the ball is rolling! I’m super grateful to Renee, and last week’s winner, Stephanie, for being the first people to really get this going.
Keep an eye out for tomorrow’s prompt post for this week’s prompt!
As always, think happy thoughts!