An Old Soul – Friday Fictioneers, March 2017

Copyright Jennifer Pendergast

From the moment of his birth, my grandson was old.  And wise.

From his crib, he fixed me with an unwavering gaze as we locked fingers on the blue satin-edged blanket.  I felt humbled… instantaneously stripped of layers of attitudes, beliefs and defences garnered over the years.

In her post-natal euphoria, my daughter didn’t see what was as clear as daylight to me.

You’d only to look into his contemplative, all-knowing eyes, to see he was here on unfinished business of some nature.

I just never, for one moment, imagined the business would take so short a time to complete.


A delightful surprise to have the Friday Fictioneers prompt arrive at my laptop a whole hour early this week.  There’s a lot to be said for Daylight Saving.  Thank you for hosting our weekly get-togethers, Rochelle.  🙂

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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105 Responses to An Old Soul – Friday Fictioneers, March 2017

  1. neilmacdon says:

    This is full of your usual menace and disquiet. I always enjoy your stories

    Like

  2. So heart-breaking that last line! What a beautiful story captured in just a few lines.

    Like

  3. Such beautiful weaving of a cute little tale.

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  4. rogershipp says:

    Left me wanting to know much more! Well done.

    Like

  5. michael1148humphris says:

    I am worried, I fear for the daughter and her child. Grandmother it seems has an agenda.

    Like

  6. Dear Sandra,

    You left me wondering what unfinished business he completed. Does this mean the child died young? Or someone else paid for wrongdoing? Well written.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Like

  7. Martin Cororan says:

    Very good. Like the best of this type of succinct fiction it hints at something huge over the horizon…

    Like

  8. What a heartbreak you offered this week. Beautifully done.

    Like

  9. Dale says:

    That went right to my gut! It is exactly what we felt at Austin’s birth. And he was here for less than eight months… Beautifully told.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. ceayr says:

    Wow, brilliant!
    Although it is not at all funny, the end of your story made me laugh with delight, it is just so good.

    Like

  11. Tamal says:

    It’s a great story.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. jellico84 says:

    What a rich and deeply moving write this week, Sandra. You captured so very much in so few words. Still processing all the emotions this evoked, know the feelings all to well.

    Like

  13. Rowena says:

    Very well written and my heart almost stopped with the last line…how tragic!
    xx Rowena

    Like

  14. Rommy says:

    Filled with so much love, making that last sentence even more of a heart breaker.

    Like

  15. yarnspinnerr says:

    I read it as unfinished business for the good of humanity and was sorry for her mother. Great read as always.

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      I think that’s pretty close to the way I intended it to be construed. It was a difficult concept to get across, the fact that the final touches to the cycle might be as much for other people’s enrichment as for your own. Thank you for commenting.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Beautiful, deep and heart-breaking – quite an achievement in 100 words

    Like

  17. James says:

    Certainly sounds ominous. There to send Grandpa on his final trip to the pearly gates?

    Like

  18. Iain Kelly says:

    Definitely an ominous atmosphere and tragedy in the air. Great writing.

    Like

  19. Jade M. Wong says:

    Oh no, that’s such a heartbreaking ending. I love your ability to say so much in so few words.

    Like

  20. writelindy says:

    What a wonderful story Sandra. So much in so few words.

    Like

  21. Lynn Love says:

    Womderful and wonderfuly sad. You did so much in so few words. A little person with such a lot to accomplish before he left the people who loved him. So very good, Sandra

    Like

  22. He sounds like a very special child.

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  23. This child is such a promising soul that when I got to then end, I wanted to cry. Devastating… and beautiful.

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  24. Excellent story. Tense and menacing.

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  25. Ooh so many questions! I’m worried for them all!

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  26. You told the story and set the atmosphere beautifully, Sandra, leaving us to read in what we would.

    janet

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  27. I have always felt the duration of a life is unimportant and therefore I am bemused by modern man’s fixation for prolonging one’s life. 🙂 What a beautiful story Sandra. The last line just took it to another level.

    Like

  28. draliman says:

    I see from other comments what happened, but of course my first thought was “alien using birth to enter world undetected” 🙂
    Great story either way!

    Like

  29. Just so sad, and there I was thinking you were writing a sweet story about a newborn …until the last line, at which point I realised that the story had been full of subtle foreshadowing from the start D: Jolly well done, as per usual.

    Like

  30. Liz Young says:

    Ye gods, how sad. Fortunately my own ‘old soul’ son reached adulthood and is now a father.

    Like

  31. Michael Wynn says:

    Very moving Sandra. Just the concept of a short time span intensifies just about everything.

    Like

  32. Life Lessons of a Dog Lover says:

    Beautifully touching. I was captivated from the first line.

    Like

  33. HonieBriggs says:

    Totally didn’t see that coming, Sandra. Lulled into soft satin sweetness. Then WHAM! You know just how to do it.

    Like

  34. Joy Pixley says:

    Deeply moving, and such a sad ending.

    Like

  35. There is something a little sinister about to happen in the future methinks! Deliciously dark.

    Click to read my 100 words!

    Like

  36. rgayer55 says:

    That little bugger. He can’t fool Grandma. Who knows what he could’ve accomplished if given more time.

    Like

  37. I somehow think the unfinished business was of a sinister nature! Great story.

    Like

  38. Beautiful.
    Guess what I thought when I read it through? I thought if that is what Mary’s mother felt when she saw baby Jesus in a cradle!

    Like

  39. goroyboy says:

    Intriguing Sandra. Insightful as well as with age comes the wisdom of trusting children’s unbiased innocent insight.

    Like

  40. Sarah Ann says:

    This has me tingling, wondering what intrigue could follow.

    Like

  41. Not sure if he’s evil or a miracle worker. That close is deliciously ambiguous.

    Like

  42. My heartstrings were pulled more and more as I read your story. Tear filled eyes was where I was when it ended. Sad … Sad … Sad … but beautifully written, Sandra. Touching ..!!!
    Isadora 😎

    Like

  43. Laurie Bell says:

    Oh my gosh… so sad Sandra. What a heart wrenching story

    Liked by 1 person

  44. Dora A. K. says:

    Heartbreakingly sweet, and begging to be made into a longer story.

    Like

  45. i b arora says:

    there’s much left unsaid. the last line makes me uncomfortable.

    http://obliqview.blogspot.in/2017/03/tyranny-of-watch-wake-up-said-watch.html

    Liked by 1 person

  46. Beautiful Sandra. Sad I think. My mind went to the loss of the child.

    Like

  47. subroto says:

    Such a sad and moving end. Beautifully written as always.

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  48. This one confused me a little, Sandra, though I think I’m on the right track. Does the child’s mother, in “post-natal euphoria” kill her child? Or does the child die naturally, with a karmic journey that was fulfilled? Either way, this one shook me and has left me tearful. You’re an amazing writer, so that’s a compliment… but, the first lines resonated so deeply with me, and how I feel about my own grandson, that the final lines really shook me. Very powerful story telling!

    Like

  49. Oh my…you’ve broken my heart.

    Like

  50. gahlearner says:

    Last line’s the killer. Breaks my heart. Perfect.

    Like

  51. athling2001 says:

    Sad and uplifting at the same time.

    Like

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