Odyssey – Friday Fictioneers, May 2020

Copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

I decide not to mention the shadows lingering at her shoulder.  Why alarm her?

Stumbling alongside her brother, I occasionally glimpse a veil of mist surrounding him too, a fog which evaporates the moment I try to focus.

The good book said we couldn’t all survive, and it seems they are both doomed.

Deeper and deeper into the forest we plunge, slashing at the branches reaching out to snag us.

Birds fall silent; the temperature plummets.

They turn to me.

I see pity in their eyes.

And I realise their shadows are protective, not malevolent.

The malevolence is upon me.


Don’t ask me what’s happening here, I only write the stuff.  I just challenged myself to steer clear of ‘eco-warrior/child trapped in fridge’ themes and this is what happened.  Thanks to Rochelle for attempting to focus the minds of Friday Fictioneers on something other than Covid every week. 

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.

36 Responses to Odyssey – Friday Fictioneers, May 2020

  1. A common human problem, me thinks. Great write, with tension from the first moment onwards.


  2. neilmacdon says:

    Magical and atmospheric, Sandra. A hundred fairy tales rush to our aid to clad it in meaning


  3. Iain Kelly says:

    If you don’t even know what’s happening, I’m not sure I want to know anymore. Terrifying!


  4. ceayr says:

    Jings, this is scary biscuits, Sandra!
    A masterclass in suspense.


  5. Sue says:

    Tense, suspenseful…


  6. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Sandra,

    I love clicking on your stories and being transported for the time it takes to read 100 words and knowing that for days afterwards as your words rise to the surface of my thoughts I will think of you again. This story is a tale for our times. I’m sure that’s what you had in mind, but I had to say it. Quiet, gradually growing awareness and then full realisation dawns. So good.

    Don’t you ever stop.

    Stay safe,



    • Sandra says:

      Thanks Doug. I can’t make sense of my own story, and I can’t make sense of these times, so yes, in a sense it is a tale for our times. So lovely to be reading your words once again. You’ve been away too long.


  7. varad says:

    This is fantastic writing, Sandra. The terse and gloomy setting has been captured perfectly within 100 words. Kudos.


  8. Dear Sandra,

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who couldn’t make sense of your story. But it seems I wasn’t supposed to. Ominous and menacing piece that sent a chill through me.




  9. Tannille says:

    Wow I was sad this one end! Ohh the atmosphere.


  10. Thom Carswell says:

    Does it ever get boring being so talented? Another fantastic story, Sandra. Not a word wasted. Not a word more needed.


  11. I love your comment about not knowing what you write about, you only write it! I have done that just because something sounds good coming to my mind, but it really is a dead end! Great take though. I’d be curious to know what happens next.


  12. Ominous. I really like the pacing here


  13. granonine says:

    It doesn’t matter what’s going on, Sandra. You’ve masterfully left it up to all of us to figure out our own stories. Excellent.


  14. Dale says:

    Oooh… I like this, Sandra. So much left for us to interpret and also leaves us wanting to know more.


  15. msjadeli says:

    The atmosphere of desperation is heavy here. I love the twist!


  16. A chilling story, fantastic suspense expertly delivered. You should write that more!


  17. plaridel says:

    it looks a like a bad dream and she woke up just in time.


  18. Nobbinmaug says:

    I love the note. “Don’t ask me what’s happening here, I only write the stuff.” Brilliant!


  19. wmqcolby says:

    Seems like the saying, “Do what you fear and fear disappears.” I got that feeling from the reading. Great writing, Sandra!
    Five out of five survival kits. 😉


  20. You’ve created the atmosphere so well here, and I loved the turnaround of malevolence.


  21. draliman says:

    I’ve decided that your narrator has a sense of smugness about them, only to realise that they’ve got it slightly wrong…


  22. Very atmospheric and chilling, Sandra. Mysterious too which leaves us wanting to know which force willl out. Hopefully, the children’s.


  23. I don’t care what’s going on, I don’t need to to be drawn into this incredibly atmospheric tale.


  24. James McEwan says:

    To me this is a story about trusting the people around you.


  25. pennygadd51 says:

    Winners and losers – those who live and those who die. And those who live have taken precautions. A tale for our times. Beautifully written as always, Sandra.


  26. Russell says:

    Well that turned around in a hurry! Nice twist.


  27. Nan Falkner says:

    I had to read this several times really slow – then I read all the comments. Then I asked my husband. To me, it sounds like a nightmare with a better ending. Thanks.


  28. Ah, this was satisfying in so many ways! Great one!


  29. A cliff-hanger, for sure!


  30. Mike says:

    A challenging storyline, that seems to offer more, I wondered what happened next


I'd love to hear your views; it reassures me I'm not talking to myself.

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