The End of Summer – Friday Fictioneers, June 2016

Copyright Piya Singh

Copyright Piya Singh

Such a beautiful summer…

I couldn’t believe it was true; he was total perfection and, incredibly, wanted to be with me.

That day, we’d slithered down stone-flecked hillsides greased with September rains to seek shelter in the ramshackle building.  The dusty air crackled with the tension between us as we lay side by side.

Afterwards he told me it couldn’t happen again; it felt wrong, I was too young.

Afterwards, right?

The wheel creaked rhythmically as the stream rushed beneath the mill, and his neck cracked loudly, when his head became trapped in the spokes.

Everything changed that day.

Including me.

After a hectic month or so, we’re now settling into the rural Dorset retreat that will be our home for the next six months.  We’ve had deer staring in the windows, woodpeckers, bluetits, finches and squirrels feeding and bathing in our garden, whilst the geese, hens and horses from the neighbouring smallholding offer continuous rustic background music.

How easy will it be to write here, I wonder?  I won’t find out this week, as I’m offering a 2012 re-tread for Friday Fictioneers, but blame that on the unpacked boxes still requiring attention. Rochelle’s busy too, with a publishing deadline looming – keep that head down, Rochelle. 🙂  I’m sure you’re cooking up a masterpiece there.

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.

86 Responses to The End of Summer – Friday Fictioneers, June 2016

  1. Dear Sandra,

    Thank you for being the rerun mistress this week. I liked this story the first time around when I was the new kid on the block. It’s still a good one, although a little grisly around the edges. Your temporary home sounds idyllic. I hope things are setting down on your end.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Like

  2. Josslyn Rae Turner says:

    Great suspense, Sandra!

    Like

  3. ceayr says:

    You wrote this 4 years ago?
    My admiration grows again.
    It is terrific, and yet you keep getting better.

    Like

  4. neilmacdon says:

    Just when i’d decided I knew what this story was about, you twisted and broke his neck. That’s some transition!

    Like

  5. michael1148humphris says:

    This flowed nicely, if deadly at the end.

    Like

  6. Oh dear.
    That went dark very quick.

    Like

  7. Dahlia says:

    Oh wow – that was swift justice! 😀

    Like

  8. Now I understand why all my stories became so grisly when I first joined FF… it seemed that body counts have decreased a lot since then… I love the audiovisual of the cracking that will make me look differently on every mill from now on.

    Like

  9. ansumani says:

    “Afterwards, right? ” – That’s just a couple of words but it tells soo much more. I love how you get across so much in little words Sandra!

    Good luck settling down again in your home.

    Like

  10. Sightsnbytes says:

    good to hear he got what was coming to him! great story

    Like

  11. This is great. I don’t remember it first time around, although I remember the picture. I love that little snippet of her voice in the middle before she takes action.

    Like

  12. liz young says:

    Oh! That repetition of ‘afterwards’ says so much – perfect as usual.

    Like

  13. Graham Lawrence says:

    I hope you don’t mind if I take some notes. Masterful.

    Like

  14. Some people can get a head, others can’t, I guess. 🙂 I remembered the photo but not your story, although I knew it wouldn’t end well. Glad you’re settling in. Sounds like a wonderful place.

    janet

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      Thanks Janet, good to see you here. Yes, we’re settling in nicely. I never knew I was such a city girl until we moved into the outback. 😉

      Like

  15. Lynn Love says:

    Never say never to this young lady. And accidents can happen so easily in the countryside … A great write, Sandra. Sweet, romantic and horrifying by turns. And Dorset sounds lovely 🙂

    Like

  16. Joe Owens says:

    Who expected this place to offer a neck-cracking good time? She was motivated to make sure if she couldn’t with him no one else would either. YIKES!

    Like

  17. paulmclem says:

    Wasn’t here the last time so this is a new piece to me. However, the murder at the end tells me it remains one of your favourite ways to end a story…lol.

    Like

  18. wmqcolby says:

    Yikes! We should call you the Black Widow of FF Central. Superb writing as always, Sandra. Terrific!

    Like

  19. You changed the tone of this very cleverly. A great piece! 🙂

    Like

  20. Ohhhhhhh! That’s what the wheel was for! Pithy!

    Like

  21. End of summer? Sounds like end of innocence!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. You are the true master of flash fiction writing, Sandra. The voice of your narrator is deceptively matter-of-fact and calm-seeming, in violent, clashing contrast with her brutal and swift response to the hypocritical (and worse) boyfriend.
    As always, a brilliant story!

    Like

  23. d3athlily says:

    Well it may be a retread for you, but it’s a first for me. And I gotta say it’s amazing! I love the notions left at the end of the story and am haunted by her last words.

    Like

  24. Wow! That sentence, “Afterwards” carries significant weight.

    Like

  25. draliman says:

    A brutal end to such an initially pleasant and romantic story. Not a woman to mess with! Great stuff as always.

    Like

  26. Well, Sandra, you’ve killed off another character. I most certainly wouldn’t turn my back to one of your ladies. Well written as always. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Like

  27. I think your female character wanted a forever relationship. Be warned all who follow. One broken neck can easily become two. Good story Sandra. Enjoy Dorset. I guess it will be a bit of a change to being on the canals but the deer and other wildlife make it sound a wonderful place to be. Hope you find you can write there as well.

    Like

  28. gahlearner says:

    Brilliant. All smitten with puppy love and then, crack. What a character. He doesn’t have time for regrets… afterwards.

    Like

  29. The Voice says:

    Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.

    Typical man. Gets what he wants and then decides it’s wrong. Still, that was a pretty harsh consequence, which is exactly why I loved it! An excellent piece, both in style and substance.

    Like

  30. mickwynn2013 says:

    That was vicious Sandra, delivered with just the right timing, lulling us in and then CRACK!

    Like

  31. Well.. guess it WON’T be happening again! eh? LOL! Great story! 🙂

    Like

  32. rgayer55 says:

    For a minute there I thought you were talking about me, “he was total perfection,” but then I realized he was simply a poser who was only after one thing. I have no sympathy for the rascal. One good crack deserves another.

    Like

  33. Becoming a murderer does change a person.
    Yikes!

    Like

  34. plaridel says:

    great story. thanks for retelling. i’d miss it otherwise.

    Like

  35. elappleby says:

    Powerful. I loved ‘Afterwards, right.’ I subscribe to Words with Jam so was thrilled to receive this week’s email – a short story by none other than Sandra Crook. Really enjoyed it – so much that I popped over to yours and read the other one too. Two winners – excellent – congratulations!

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      Thanks El – that was certainly a red letter day when the results were announced. I remember that once all first, second and third places were won on the quarterly competition by the same author. I know how she must have felt then. 🙂

      Like

  36. jellico84 says:

    Ouuuuu, what a cruel way to go! Great write!

    Like

  37. I love this story, great voice. Hello hath no fury…

    Like

  38. athling2001 says:

    Well written, congrats. Nice pulled together story with an unexpected character twist at the end.

    Like

  39. Margaret says:

    Great ending. Caught me unprepared – I even gasped a little. Perfect title too.

    Like

  40. Dee says:

    Would have known this was you anywhere, great story which has stood the test of time. It’s interesting to read the reruns and see how far we have travelled. Hope you have settled in now.

    Like

  41. Dale says:

    It’s amasing how the crisis of consciousness comes *after* they get what they want…

    Like

  42. Indira says:

    Deadly finish indeed. He deserved it. Beautifully written.

    Like

  43. Wicked stuff! One minute “too” much alive and the next extinguished.

    Like

  44. Imelda says:

    Oh my! What a quick and painful comeuppance.

    Like

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