‘Wait for me, Daddy’ (Friday Fictioneers, November 2012)

This is Rochelle’s sixth week hosting Friday Fictioneers – how time has flown.  And another great photo prompt, from Rochelle herself.  I know I’m early this week, but I can never tell just how reliable my internet connection will be – and today it’s fairly fast.  Never look a gift horse… as they say.  🙂

She’d been a pain in the butt all afternoon – constant grizzling, whining and foot-stamping.

Want, want, want’.

She’s the spit of her mother, I thought uncharitably, glaring back down the street at her, all pink, tear stained cheeks and jutting lip.

“Come this minute,” I snapped, “or you can find your own way home.”


Another thing her mother does well.

She stayed;  I went round the corner, waited, counting to five.

And that was all it took.

The world ended in that frosty December twilight, as tyres screeched, doors slammed and rear lights sped off into the evening rush-hour.

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.
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88 Responses to ‘Wait for me, Daddy’ (Friday Fictioneers, November 2012)

  1. Dear Sandra,

    Just goes to show you have to be careful what you wish for. This was a chilling and scary story from a bleak and desolate prompt. Well done.




  2. yepiratesays says:

    Oh…that is just…tragedy….


  3. TheOthers1 says:

    Oh wow. The story is fab even if the end is every parent’s nightmare. Great job.


  4. Wow! What heartbreaking story.


  5. Oh, as a parent I HATED this!!! Which means that, as a writer, I think you did a smashing job! 🙂


  6. JKBradley says:


    How those smaller things seem less important when faced with the cruelness of a reality without a loved one.


  7. mari wells says:

    Tears are streaming down my cheeks. Thank you for the reminder a split second it all it takes.


  8. Paul says:

    I just can’t think of what to say. This floored me. Was not expecting such a lousy ending. I’m totally depressed now. Beautiful job, though. Thank you!


  9. Wonderfully written story about a terrible tragedy! There’s such a thin line between becoming paranoid about this sort of thing and just being careful. Glad this isn’t the usual result.


  10. boomiebol says:

    Oh wow…my eyes popped open as i got to the end…scary…very good but you captured one of the fears of every parent so well…BRAVO!!!


  11. I agree with everyone’s comments….
    It was horrifying, real, terrifying, frightening, unsettling, upsetting, and repulsive; and we have all felt that as parents.
    congratulations on a great job on a nasty story…


  12. Frightening. How will daddy explain this to mommy. Afraid there will never be another peaceful day in their lives.


  13. Dear Sandra,
    The holidays are forever marred for this family. .What a beautifully written tragedy and as others have said, every parent’s nightmare. I love to hate this one.


  14. claireful says:

    Really powerful story Sandra, and very believable – I’m sure I did that myself when the children were younger.


  15. Sandra says:

    Thanks Claire. Yes, I remember years ago taking a few seconds’ time out when my four year old niece was really pushing me to the absolute brink in the supermarket. I just disappeared behind a display of tinned goods for a nanosecond whilst I pulled myself together, but when I heard that plaintive howl… jeez, I nearly dismantled the entire supermarket in my haste to get to her. I’ve never lost that feeling of guilt.


  16. Oh my. So heartbreaking.


  17. rich says:

    how dare you give me such a gut wrench. well done.


  18. Hi Sandra,
    A tragic tale well told. Your descriptions and inner dialog were both spot on. Ron


  19. Well, that one brought back memories: memories of my son throwing such a fit in a McDonald’s that the family and I left, went out to the car, and watched him pitch the fit until he realized we were gone. No, I never let him leave my sight, but still…the memory lingers.
    Mine: http://kindredspirit23.wordpress.com/2012/11/29/friday-fictioneers-8/


  20. Abraham says:

    Oh dear!
    Very well written. Children can be a pain. Losing them even more painful.


  21. Mike says:

    A great story Sandra. Everything changed so quickly at the end. Just like in real life tragedy can strike in an instant.


  22. An action thriller here…while i was warming up to a domestic prattle…the world ended on a frosty December twilight. Great!


  23. Oh, crikey. What a heart-rending story, and a reminder of how normal life can be so easily flipped into tragedy. I have a lump in my throat the size of China. So, excellent work, Sandra!


  24. unspywriter says:

    Scarier than any fantasy horror story. Been there, almost lived it, but you have perfectly described the emotions.

    Here’s mine: http://unexpectedpaths.com/friday-fictioneers/tis-the-season/


  25. Russell says:

    Now I feel scarred and guilty for all the parental BS I pulled on my kid, but I expect they’ll get me back when they select which nursing home they’ll send me to. The ending made me feel like I’d been kicked in the gut. Very well written.


  26. Oh. My. God. Shocking, shocking. The ending took my breath away.


  27. brudberg says:

    I wonder should I spend my Friday evening with something else. I have an icy lump in my stomach. Which means it’s great writing.


  28. Sarah Ann says:

    Oh Sandra, I was so enjoying this. I knew who the little girl was, felt so much for the haggard adult, and now you have me feeling gulit-ridden. A great turn around!


  29. lindarigsbee says:

    OMG! Excellent writing. I could see that little girl and remember that feeling. Fortunately, I didn’t have the guilt trip, though. Good job.


  30. elmowrites says:

    Scary stuff, and so much story and history in those early words about the mother too. Great work, Sandra!


  31. billgncs says:

    wow — a strong one, and as a father it felt like a kick in the gut.


  32. Oh, so tragic, Sandra. I was hoping for a happy ending. Maybe just a little sulking? Anyway, I enjoyed the writing. It’s crisp and effective. Nice job!


  33. OUCH! As sudden and shocking as life. Gonna run peek at the kids, now.


  34. writeondude says:

    Every parent’s worst nightmare. Nicely done, Sandra.


  35. claudia says:

    Oh, so excellent. Vividly told the ending snapped with surprise! The shocking end left readers sad and stunned. Perfect!


  36. Anne Orchard says:

    Very strong story Sandra, used to have terrors when I couldn’t run after big boy (who turned 14 yesterday) because I was expecting small boy. Lucky I have a strong voice and we didn’t have to face this. Well done.


  37. vbholmes says:

    Hopefully, the driver of the car was Mama who saw her daughter standing alone,threw a hissy fit , bundled the child into the car and drove off in a rage.


  38. Heidi says:

    Great ending.


  39. Gee. Bummer. And people think I’m a negative person!
    But very artfully and well told and provides an excellent cautionary tale. A good job, but I think we have to talk ….


  40. Debra Kristi says:

    So true. That’s all it takes. I have experienced this scare. Thankfully, not to this extreme. Kids can be so stubborn and they don’t understand how dangerous the consequences of their actions can be. My daughter ran under a clothing rack and disappeared. Shut down the entire store until she was found. Some of the scariest minutes of my life. Well done.


  41. Judee says:

    Your surprise endings continue to surprise me, you craft them so beautifully! This one is heartbreaking, and so human.


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