Collection (Friday Fictioneers, September 2014)

Copyright Marie-Gail Stratford

Almost too perfect; such clear, amber pools of light, the faint blush, the blood-red promise of satisfaction. Those long delicate necks … simply craving the touch of a discerning, caressing hand.

He kept them in the shadows, their shapely elegance proofed against invasive, fumbling fingers and the uneducated palate of the chattering classes.

He leisurely anticipated the moment they’d be ripe for tasting.

Their bouquet would linger on his bloodless lips; he’d savour the full-bodied taste he’d nurtured over twenty years.

He was to be disappointed.

Intruders snatched his prizes, slaked their thirst indiscriminately.

And his girls left with them.

 

Back home again after a great season of cruising and wondering how I’ll keep myself occupied during the next few months until we set off on our travels again.  Apologies if I’ve not returned or acknowledged visits from other Friday Fictioneers as comprehensively as usual – I did my best, given the weather, the internet connection etc etc. Thanks once again to Rochelle for her hard work hosting this weekly get-together.

About Sandra

I cruise the French waterways with my husband four or five months a year, and write fiction and poetry. 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.

75 Responses to Collection (Friday Fictioneers, September 2014)

  1. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Sandra,

    I’ve just told someone that you are amazing. (Only the bloodless lips have me wondering) An amazingly well crafted story, a little mystery, a touch of class and a big glass of humor. I love it, and you.

    I know you will find something to occupy your time. Welcome back to the wait for Winter (whatever that is).

    Aloha,

    Doug

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sandra says:

      Thanks for reading and commenting Doug. First up, best dressed this week. 🙂 (That might have you wondering too.) ‘Bloodless lips’ is a familiar phrase to me, meaning pale, lacking in the usual rosy hue. But these differences in vernacular are life-blood to Friday Fictioneers. 🙂 And thank you for your compliment – I love it when you love me or my work. Have a good week.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Sandra,

    For someone who is a connoisseur it would be frustrating for him to see the less cultured dub his fine wine collection as “good hooch.” At least this is what I’m seeing in the story. Like Doug, I’m baffled by ‘bloodless lips.’
    As always, the writing is wonderful and how you come up with them so quickly is beyond me.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sandra says:

      I think I might be getting a bit too obscure for my own good here. 🙂 But thank you for reading, and for putting in the effort week after week. We really do appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dear Sandra,

        Perhaps it’s not your obscurity but my density. 😉 I’ll be watching to the comments for clues to what I’ve missed. At the very least I’m open to learn.

        Friday Fictioneers is my pleasure and passion (and sometimes my albatross).

        Shalom,

        Rochelle

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Very clever metaphor – it took me a second read to work it out. He sounds like he deserved to lose everything – creepy.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautiful choice of words, you pulled me right into the heart of the story. Too bad it ended bad, I would love to feel his ultimate satisfaction after all those years.

    Like

  5. Some collectors deserve to loose it all.. the selfishness to keep perfection to yourself.. to human, to bad.. and yes the metaphor beyond wine is even worse.

    Like

  6. suej says:

    I love your flash fiction Sandra….you show so much in so few words. The u likeable, creepy character came across well. Glad he got his come-uppance!

    Like

  7. Sandra, You painted a great word picture of that man. In this day and age he shouldn’t have depended on just one material good for his supreme pleasure. It’s looks like his “girls” just considered themselves employees and nothing more. I wonder if he’s learned a lesson. Well written as always. 🙂 —Susan

    Like

  8. Am I way off-base this week? I think a certain Count had his “collection” wrested away prematurely.

    Like

  9. I think I got it Sandra. It’s not wine . . . Love the way you compared the girls with wine bottles. “Those long delicate necks”. Welcome home. Many projects will keep you busy during the long winter days (or short) and soon spring will be upon us.

    Like

  10. Sandra, I had a feeling as I read that he wasn’t talking about wine. He is quite the patient creep, to wait, and nurture, for that long. I wonder if he’ll start again.

    Like

  11. Sandra, what a clever and subtle metaphor (bottles and girls) you created here. The creep deserves to lose both his collections. As for “bloodless lips”, I perfectly understand. Have read that phrase many times. Excellent as usual.

    janet

    Like

  12. From “the blood-red promise of satisfaction”, “those long delicate necks”, and of course the “bloodless lips” I thought this was a vampire story.
    I thought that unusual for you but I have learned to never pigeon hole you.
    MG does love a good vampire story, you know. 😉

    Like

  13. JKBradley says:

    This story struck home for me. Many years ago I was enjoying the subtle differences between three bottles of single-malt scotch while a buddy and I were jamming on our acoustics. He asked which one I liked best and I told him. He pour some four fingers into a glass, tossed in some ice, then dumped in a topper of Coke. If I hadn’t been so shocked I might have actually smashed his skull with my guitar.

    Like

  14. I love the mystery that you bring to this piece, Sandra. It makes me wonder what else is left unsaid about the bottles. So much told in such few words. I bow 🙂

    Like

  15. Highly sensuous stuff here. It must be that canal water that you’re drinking.
    I’m pleased he got his clutching comeuppance.

    Like

  16. Amy Reese says:

    He took me a couple of reads, because I immediately look for clues in the prompt. What a creepy man. He deserves to be abandoned. Great writing, Sandra. Highly evocative.

    Like

  17. DCTdesigns says:

    Okay so I too had a creepy vision in mind. His collection was bottled ladies, their lifeblood, souvenirs of a psychopath. I fear the bandits are in for a surprise even if they do know vintages. Clever and ooky tale 🙂

    Like

  18. JackieP says:

    Thank goodness the girls got out. That man needs a comeuppance! Well done Sandra as usual. Subtle, I love subtle as I rarely achieve it myself. 🙂

    Like

  19. plaridel says:

    he grew old as his wine collection. unfortunately, he didn’t grow as gracefully.

    Like

  20. Perry Block says:

    I’m having the sense of Hugh Hefner here after the Playboy Mansion has been raided! So subtle and well-written until the last drop.

    Like

  21. Elizabeth says:

    Hi Sandra, we got the same title. Our characters are collectors but not the same kind of collection. Yours is great!

    Like

  22. all I can say is that:
    lips that touch liquor shall never touch mine
    and the same goes for bloody or bloodless lips.

    You got everyone’s minds going on this one. Randy

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Gorgeous gorgeous writing Sandra. Women are like good wine… a wonderful analogy.

    Like

  24. wmqcolby says:

    “When I was 21, it was a very good year.” Kind of reminds me of the song, in a way, Sandra. Of course, I have a feeling that there’s more to it than that, but STILL a wonderful piece of writing for all of us to enjoy. Thank-you!

    Liked by 1 person

  25. wildbilbo says:

    Describing the wine in bottles to make us think they are young women, describing this desire to taste them, only to have them snatched away… and then the switch showing his indifference to his actual girls.
    Nicely done.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. draliman says:

    I immediately thought vampire, but you know me 🙂
    In any case, looks like he waited too long. It must be terrible for him after all the anticipation to lose out to a bunch of scruffy Johnny-come-latelies.

    Like

  27. shanx says:

    Good one Sandra! 🙂 Loved it!

    Like

  28. margirene says:

    A disturbing story. I’m really glad he lost everything at the end, and I like how you’ve offset the darkness of the story with your understated conclusion.
    Marg

    Like

  29. Disturbingly and subtly clever, with circles of light and fingers of shadow. Always a joy to read your work!

    Like

  30. K.Z. says:

    *shudder* love how you likened girls to bottles of wine.. what a creepy character. can’t believe he’d wait that long and watch them “ripen”

    Like

  31. mscwhite says:

    Great story! The extended metaphor was powerfully written!

    Like

  32. That was a disturbing, sensual, strange, discomfiting story! Beautifully written and compelling in a dark way. I loved it!

    Like

  33. Two Dawns thought it was a vampire story and I’m left still not sure what I missed… I’ll have to come back and read all the comments. I know there are much sharper readers than me! But, I’m traveling again and hoping to just find enough time to read the stories!

    This was amazing, Sandra. Mesmerizing story telling, I was totally caught up in the story and again found myself stunned that you can do what you do in 100 words! “Those long delicate necks … simply craving the touch of a discerning, caressing hand.” Gorgeous writing.

    Like

  34. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Sandra – He is a creep and comparing women to the long neck wine bottles – you are so brilliant. Enjoy the winter – there is a lot to look forward to in the winter – cuddling, bonfires, wine, Christmas, snow and snow angels. You’ll keep busy with a good book and a warm blanket. Have fun – it was fun traveling around with you this summer (with your pictures) and so interesting! Thanks! Nan 🙂

    Like

  35. Liz Young says:

    Should have enjoyed them while he had the chance! Well written.

    Like

  36. MissTiffany says:

    I got a little chill, reading about him! Somehow, I don’t have much sympathy for his loss…

    The way he equated the wines with women…great analogy, but a little on the creepy side. He probably should have enjoyed them while he had the chance.

    Well done!

    Like

  37. I enjoyed this, written as a connoisseur…and leaving the reader with just enough intrigue. I noticed in your profile you enjoy French bread, Formule 1 and animals…I would add cheese of any kind in my favs too:)

    Like

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