Spellbound (Friday Fictioneers, April 2012)

This week’s photo prompt from Madison Woods Friday Fictioneers.

“They look like tears,” said Avina, extending a delicate finger to catch a drop of the crystal clear water.

She gave him a sidelong, flirtatious glance. “Though I don’t suppose you’ve ever cried have you, Gandolf?”

Gandolf’s gaze clouded.  “I cry often,” he said “for the love of a woman who spurned me.”

“Can’t you cast one of your spells,” she teased, “to make her love you?”

Gandolf didn’t reply.

Avina laughed nervously.

“Well, she must be made of stone to resist your charms, Gandolf,” she flattered, hoping she hadn’t offended him.

“How dangerously perceptive of you, my dear,” he replied.

About Sandra

I used to cruise the French waterways with my husband four or five months a year, and wrote fiction and poetry. Now I live on the beautiful Dorset coast, enjoying the luxury of being able to have a cat, cultivating an extensive garden and getting involved in the community. I still write fiction, but only when the spirit moves me - which isn't as often as before. I love animals, F1 motor racing, French bread and my husband, though not necessarily in that order.
This entry was posted in Friday Fictioneers, Just Sayin' and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

79 Responses to Spellbound (Friday Fictioneers, April 2012)

  1. EmmaMc says:

    Beautifully written. Something about this line really stuck with me

    She gave him a sidelong, flirtatious glance. “Though I don’t suppose you’ve ever cried have you, Gandolf?”

    It says so much about each character in so few words. Nice work.


  2. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Sandra,

    This prompt is turning my brain to stone. Can you cast a spell for me? I like your foray into wizardry this week. Good job.




  3. Kris Kennedy says:

    I think your dialogue is so effective. You bring forth mystery and flirting well. I always enjoy reading your writing.

    Here is mine: http://integrativethought.wordpress.com/


  4. I love the irony in this. Does Alvina know that Gandolf is referring to her heart of stone? Great story. Here is mine: http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/2012/04/20/fridayfictioneers-diamond-tear-drops/


  5. Sandra says:

    I don’t think Gandolf is referring to her heart of stone. 🙂 Thanks for commenting, I’m off to yours in just a minute.


  6. susielindau says:

    Could it be that Avina is the love of Gandolf’s life? I don’t think she will be that lucky…
    Nice story!
    Here is my continuation.


    • Sandra says:

      I think, for once, I might not have been explicit enough. The rock they are standing next to is the woman Gandolf loved, and he turned her to stone when he found his love was not returned. The stone is crying. Ah well…. 🙂 Been to yours, but will have to go back to read the earlier part(s) now that I see it is a continuation. Thanks for commenting.


  7. A sidelong, flirtatious story! Your writing, as always, is very elegant. I could not get inspired and didn’t have the time, so I cheated, but your story makes me feel that I could have written something. I couldn’t get my mind out of the dirt.


  8. Lindaura says:

    So what exactly is he referring to? I assumed he was casting a spell on her and she never noticed. Your dialogue is good as usual, but this is a departure from your usual ironic thrillers!
    Yours, Lindaura
    here is mine: http://fictionvictimtoo@blogspot.com


  9. Sandra says:

    Hi Lindaura, no he cast a spell on the woman who didn’t return his love, turned her to stone, she’s crying and Avina has just landed herself in a heap of trouble. Can’t win ’em all. 🙂 Thanks for commenting.


  10. It’s very pretty. I love the interaction between the two characters. and your steady style of writing.


  11. writelindy says:

    This is great Sandra. You have really painted a picture for me with your words and I really didn’t need the photo.


  12. I love Gandolf’s reply to her question, and the way it created such surprise (at least in me). I like his story, even more so now I read the further backstory in the comments here! He seems like such a dangerous man to cross! (And I already thought Avina was ridiculous with her flirting!)


  13. elmowrites says:

    I’m in two minds about this one, Sandra. On first read I thought you’d created a fascinating story about these two, with a balance of flirtation and danger crackling between them, which I liked. But having read the comments I realise I read it all wrong and I think in that case it kind of fails to achieve what you wanted it to. maybe I just needed to know more of the backstory though, my legend-lore is pretty poor where King Arthur and Robin Hood haven’t ventured!

    I’m over here: http://elmowrites.wordpress.com/2012/04/20/friday-fiction-maturity/


    • Sandra says:

      Sorry it didn’t work for you. Normally my problem is being over-explicit, so I must be improving on that score. 😦


      • elmowrites says:

        Ah, that dratted balance! I’ve finally resigned myself to the fact that if I’m over-explicit to 10% of readers and under-explicit to 10% I’m still probably getting it about right. good luck with it


  14. rich says:

    gandolf? hasn’t that been used elsewhere? but spelled a little differently?


  15. Sandra says:

    Gandalf was a wizard in Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. It was a kind of a hint. 😉


  16. Hmmm, is something there? or am I imagining things? Nice way to leave the mystery but get the point across. Great read.

    Mine’s here: http://bit.ly/HNJYyQ


  17. Andy Flood says:

    Hi Sandra,
    This is one of my favourites of yours. I enjoyed the characterisation via the dialogue (which was very well written) and the sinister reveal in the line about her being dangerously perceptive worked very well for me. I ‘got it’ first time out. This story was a lot of fun to read, thanks for sharing 🙂
    Thanks also for your always kind commentary on mine:



  18. TheOthers1 says:

    I wanted to make sure I was right before I comment. I figured he was implying that the woman he cared for was literally stone. I didn’t figure he had feelings for the girl he was talking to. I liked this story. 🙂

    My attempt: http://unduecreativity.wordpress.com/2012/04/20/water-the-earth/


  19. Very nice. I especially like the bit about stone.

    Here’s mine: http://wp.me/p24aJS-3Z


  20. jeanelaine says:

    Love it! Of course I love mystery and magic, great job. Here’s mine. http://jemcogdell.blogspot.com/2012/04/flash-fiction-hope.html


  21. JKBradley says:

    That ice queen can be one wicked witch.

    Thank you for the mystical ride.



  22. Avina is completely clueless that she is the one causing his anguish…isn’t she. Well played! This is my favorite so far this week.



  23. teschoenborn says:

    Good, very good. The last line makes the story.

    Here’s mine:http://teschoenborn.com/2012/04/20/friday-fictioneer-5/


  24. Madison Woods says:

    Avina does indeed strike me as being quite cold in her teasing of poor Gandalf. I loved the story and felt like a fly on the wall during that little exchange.


  25. Hey, that wasn’t very nice of Avina. (It certainly seemed like she knew Gandolf’s history.)
    A well-told, solid story. Liked both the emotion throughout and the inventive twist at the end.
    Thanks for sharing!
    My humorous (I hope) story here: http://the-drabbler.com/splat/


  26. Gary says:

    Really enjoyed that overarching sense of menace you sprinkled over every word. I love that the interpretations are different for many readers too – admitting myself that although I realised the other woman was turned to stone, I didn’t realise Gandolf and Avina were standing beside her! That revelation made it even more chilling…perhaps more so with that hint of dark humour lurking around the piece.

    One of my favourites this week, Sandra. Excellent work!


  27. Gandolf? He can cast spells like from the LOTR and The Hobbit?

    I like it! As I understand it, Avina and Gandolf are standing in front of a person turned into a stone, who is supposedly a lover of Gandolf. Then Avina hinted that he knows Gandolf’s secret admiration? Am I right? I hope I am. A nice read. Hope you have a great weekend.


    • Sandra says:

      It’s amazing the different interpretations that have been put on this one. The stone figure wasn’t a lover of Gandolf, she was someone Gandolf loved, and who rejected him. So he turned her to stone, the stone is crying, Avina is just teasing/flirting unaware of any of this, and isn’t aware that she’s just verbalised what actually happened. Gandolf is uneasy that she may realise the truth of what she’s just said and so … 😦
      Have a nice weekend yourself, look forward to reading more of yours in the future.


      • Now I get it. Crystal clear. It reminds me of Dream, from The Sandman Series, who banished his lover when she rejected him. I think Gandolf is more of a Saruman than a Gandalf. I like Gandalf and I’m looking forward to the upcoming movie of The Hobbit. Now, I’m just thinking that Avina is interested with Gandolf.:)

        By the way, I might and probably will take a break from Friday Fictions. I’m hoping I might find time writing even with a piece of paper with my own photo prompts. I left my reasons at the start of my entry this week and I’ll elaborate more of that later in my next blog post. I hope that I could participate longer with the Friday Fictioneers because you guys are great. This simple act of writing a flash fiction every week inspires me a lot.


  28. Sandra says:

    Thanks Gary, glad you got it. I think I might need to adjust my ‘explicit/implied’ border for the next piece. 🙂


    • Gary says:

      Not at all! Sometimes it’s better to let the reader figure it out. Personally, I enjoyed finding out more via others’ thoughts. That sort of interactivity is a sure sign of a strong story.


  29. Very nicely-written bit of fantasy. Enjoyed it being dialogue. I do that sometimes because it seems to engage the reader very differently. Works for me with this piece for sure.


  30. Russell says:

    You painted a beautiful picture with 100 words. Excellent dialogue and interplay between the characters. thanks for visiting mine and the nice comments.



  31. erinleary says:

    Sandra, I really liked this! And I enjoy how you use the female wiles in your characters. They are always more than they seem.

    Mine, late as it is, is here: http://erinleary.wordpress.com/2012/04/21/flash-friday-fiction-8/


  32. Parul says:

    While trying to come up with something with this prompt, I too wanted to write something with “Gandolf” as the main character… but I could not come up with anything good! And I am glad I did not pursue that idea further cos you have done a very good job at it!

    Did Gandolf cast a spell on that woman and turned her to stone?? Hmm…

    Refreshing take on the prompt! 🙂



  33. Lora Mitchell says:

    Avina better stop teasing and run…or he may turn her into stone. I think you have gotten the most comments this week, Sandra. Seems Gandolf has cast a spell on all of us. lol. Here’s mine:


  34. Brilliant turn of phrase. I loved it!


  35. kbnelson says:

    Very mysterious! It left me wondering about the stone lady…


  36. Great interplay between these two, and you draw two very distinct characters (and agendas) with so few words. Nice job.


  37. sacha1nch1 says:

    fantastic! i imagined some kind of giant’s causeway of cursed would-be lovers and inept flirters; but does the reason for their being cast to stone lie in the psycological defect of gandolf or the women….


  38. Sandra says:

    My money’s on Gandolf Sacha! Thanks for dropping by.


  39. Judee says:

    Heehee, made of stone, indeed. Loved it! ;D


  40. Brooke Ryter says:

    Great interaction with the dialogue. Well done!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog to read and comment on my story. =)



  41. tedstrutz says:

    Methinks Avina may be made of stone in Gandolf’s eyes, but not his heart. Loved the dialog.



  42. Michael Fishman says:

    I like your dialogue a lot. Moral of the story: never say no to a wizard!


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