They Also Serve … (A Yorkshire Tale) Friday Fictioneers, February 2015

Copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

“Every man deserves a son,” he said, cradling Ben’s fuzzy head against his shoulder.

The dismayed gulp from his daughters must have been audible in Cragg Vale, if not in Heckmondwike itself.

Emily, the younger and formerly favourite child, simmered with resentment.

And Hester, who’d laboured dawn to dusk managing the estate, seethed as he indicated the surrounding dales, announcing “one day all this will be yours, my lad.”

Years later, when their father lay confined to his bed and Ben had eloped with a used-car salesman from Mytholmroyd, the sisters smiled.

“You can never have too many daughters,” their father mused thoughtfully.

It’s that time of the week again.  Time to sharpen quills, and draw the inkwell closer to the parchment.  As a member of the British contingent of Friday Fictioneers, I chose to transport this week’s prompt to my home country, and to the rolling dales of West Yorkshire this week. Thanks to Rochelle for her photo, and for her unfailing attention to our little circle.

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.

87 Responses to They Also Serve … (A Yorkshire Tale) Friday Fictioneers, February 2015

  1. Dear Sandra,

    It appears to me that the father got exactly what he deserved. 😉 I love the cultural aspect. I dream of visiting your side of the world but don’t know if I’ll ever realize it.

    Another well-written story. Thank you for being part of the FF circle. You welcomed me when I came in as the new kid on the block and I appreciate your support.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s amazing the daughters stuck around. Now there’s devotion.

    Like

  3. I wouldn’t count Ben out yet, especially when his new husband finds out what he left behind.

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  4. Eee, heck, lass. There be some great Yorkshire names here. Love the stone walls so clear in Rochelle’s picture.
    Ben’s probably taken up residence in Manchester’s norther quarter – hope they follow his dialect.

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  5. wildbilbo says:

    Very funny, I chuckled over this one.
    KT

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  6. Ha.. never trust a baby boy. But who know the used car’s salesman might be an excellent lady of the manor. But I bet the daughters would not be too forthcoming..

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  7. I enjoyed this tale very much, Sandra. 🙂

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  8. All children should be appreciated, no matter their gender. A really great little story.

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  9. Good story, Sandra, and amusing. There’s that old saying, “A son’s a son till he takes a wife, but a daughter’s a daughter all of her life.” Our son’s a great guy, but our daughter and I contact each other back and forth more. She also sends gifts. Our son takes care of financial matters for us which is also important, but we don’t hear from him as often. Well done as always. 🙂 — Suzanne

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  10. Well done as always, Sandra. I’ve always found your point of view fascinating. Your stories have depth to them — you are almost post-modern in your sensibilities. This story in particular – taking something that is almost nostalgic and traditional, and flipping it on its head with the introduction of the gay son.

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      Thank you Ken. Your comment prompted an interesting half hour on Google searching for the definitive and concise meaning of post-modernist. 🙂 Yes, the introduction of the gay son was meant to overthrow the sombre and staid tone of the first part of the story.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. elmowrites says:

    Yorkshire is exactly the sort of place I’d expect to see green like this, Sandra; I’m so glad you took us there. And I loved the feel of this story for more than its location – the characters, the father getting his comeuppance and the final reward for the daughters.
    Just one thing, although merely an observation not a criticism – the first half of the story felt like it dated to an earlier period than “used car salesman” would allow, so I had to do a bit of mental re-adjustment there.
    Happy almost 3-year anniversary! Not sure how long I’ve been here, but I’m definitely sticking around!

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      Thanks Jen, as I said to Helen/Ken above, that contrast was planned. It’s that funny little urge I get to switch out of one mood into another, almost like taking the mickey out of a style. I can’t remember whether you were here before me, but it seems like only yesterday I first joined and submitted my first piece in trepidation. Nobody understood it. No change there then! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • elmowrites says:

        For clarity’s sake, I’ll say that it was the change in time-zone that bothered me. The change of tone and the unexpectedness of the gay son were well-handled and made for a great twist. But of course, I support your choice to have both.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. paulmclem says:

    Daughters are indeed valuable – never know when you might need to marry one off to form a political alliance with a former foe. As it ‘appens I’ve Just been watching ‘The Tudors’ so all this son/daughter/heir thing is very topical for me. Good one.

    Like

  13. helenmidgley says:

    Great story Sandra, and talk about a small world, I have a friend who lives in Mytholmroyd, lol 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I loved the story Sandra as I do all your stories. If I could write even half as well I would be happy. I love your sense of humor which is always outstanding in your stories.

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  15. plaridel says:

    a well-written story. i’d say one of your best.

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  16. You achieved funny this week Sandra. A brilliant twist.

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  17. draliman says:

    Not exactly what father was hoping for in his son, I think. At least he was forced to reconsider his feelings on having daughters.

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  18. Ha, glad he had a change of heart. Great story !!

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  19. storydivamg says:

    Great story, Sandra! The elopement caught me by surprise and provided a satisfying end indeed. Well done.

    Marie Gail

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  20. Amy Reese says:

    Sandra, what a rich story. You just can’t plan these things. A very unpredictable ending, I did not expect. Well done!

    Like

  21. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Sandra, Excellent story and every week, I know I will be entertained by your offering. You are a real asset to this writing club! Nan 🙂

    Like

  22. MythRider says:

    Love it. I’m betting the father so soiled his son, he got what he deserved. In the end, true love prevailed.

    Like

  23. In the end, women are appreciated.
    Too bad we don’t admire them as equals from the beginning.
    But the day is coming – if not already here.
    Randy

    Like

  24. kirsten says:

    I enjoyed your take on the prompt. It was a nice twist with the used car salesman. I wonder if the daughters bought any of their cars from that used car salesman? They might have come up with some sort of plan to get their brother out of the picture…

    Like

  25. rgayer55 says:

    I thought it was a hilarious story, and really enjoyed the names of the towns. I sensed the seething siblings soreness at their father’s favorite. I assume they fight among themselves like cats & dogs to the divide the spoils when Daddy passes.

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      Thanks for reading Russell. Yorkshire specialises in unusual town names. I was tempted to use Luddenden Foot or Todmorden, but opted for Heckmondwike. I think it was the ‘k’s’.

      Like

  26. milliethom says:

    What a disappointment the son turned out to be. The son and heir idea seems to have truly backfired in this case. It’s a good job the father had two loyal daughters to compensate. Great story, Sandra.

    Like

  27. Always challenging the reader and never disappointing. That’s our Sandra. I’m so glad I just saw your WPC Symmetry post because it caused me to realize I hadn’t seen a FF in my Reader. And here you are…..

    Like

  28. All around sounds like everyone lived happily ever after despite Father’s rigid and old fashioned ways. I truly enjoyed this story!

    Like

  29. sonya says:

    I’m glad their father realised what a fool he was. Love the twist…

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  30. That’s the start of a great gothic novel.

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  31. Maree Gallop says:

    Ha, I enjoyed the story, particularly the twist at the end. Good read.

    Like

  32. Ellespeth says:

    My first sense is: how fooking man-orish of the father. My second thought is that, if the son will inherit it all, he can afford home health care for his father. I hope the sisters smell the coffee brewing sooner than later 😦
    A nice mellow humor here, Sandra.
    Ellespeth

    Like

  33. Margaret says:

    I love where you took this. Wonderfully told. And I’m glad Dad came to his senses at last. I hope he remembered to change the will when he rediscovered how good it is to have daughters.

    Like

  34. Interesting turnaround!

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  35. Judee says:

    Lol, I love it that Ben ran away with a used car salesman, perfect touch there!

    Like

  36. Sarah Ann says:

    🙂 Wonderfully told. Honestly, some fathersnderfully told. He’s lucky to have such patient and forgiving daughters who are content to care for him after all he said.

    Like

  37. AnnIsikArts says:

    I like the place names which give colour to and authenticate your tale. I love what you did with your Ben character. The attitudes still exist. It would make a great ‘soap’ story, Emmerdale I think. 🙂

    Like

  38. Poetic justice. Wonderful twist. Thanks.

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  39. I guess he learned that value is inherent in gender, Sandra. Great story. The name Mytholmroyd is so unique I had to go look it up to make sure it was real. 🙂
    -David

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    • Sandra says:

      It is an interesting name that attracts various pronunciations. Some say Mithemroyd (as the BBC do), others My-tholmroyd as it’s spelt, whilst others, I believe locals, say Mathemroyd. Whatever… 🙂

      Like

  40. Loved all the names and like David I was sure some were made up. Inheritance is certainly a murky area and can break families up easily, let alone running away with a used car salesman. That has its own connotations. Loved the humour.

    Like

  41. Beautifully entertaining, as always. A very nice balance between old way of thinking and modern circumstances.

    Like

  42. rogershipp says:

    A sigh… A frown…. A giggle…. A twist. You’ve got it all!

    Like

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