#FiveSentenceFiction ~ Distance

Grupo de pelícanos en formación a su paso sobr...

 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Every day during the summer holidays, ten-year old Luke would sit on the beach staring longingly out at the island.

It seemed to shimmer in the hazy distance, a rocky outcrop inhabited only by a colony of sea birds who would dip and dive through the spray into the crystal clear waters.

He didn’t know how to swim so could only watch them, remaining tethered to the shore and wishing he could feel the coolness of the sea water against his sun burnt skin.

It was their freedom that he envied most of all, and when his parents asked “Are you looking forward to the new term, Luke?” he could only nod glumly at the thought of school.

A knot formed in his stomach, but he vowed then that he would learn how to swim, return to the beach and visit his island one day.


© 2012 Louise Hastings

Written for the 5 sentence fiction prompt ~ Distance @ Lillie  McFerrin’s site


Scarlet ~ #FiveSentenceFiction


“Isn’t it beautiful” I said to Lucy, watching the horizon spread its scarlet fingers across the ocean waters.

I didn’t want it to end, but knew it must.

“Are you ready, mum?” asked Lucy, the tears streaming down her face.

I took her hand and she held me close as I drank the bitter liquid that would end all my pain and suffering.

When the sun finally sank, the air was so thick I could almost breathe in the stars.



© 2012 Louise Hastings

Composure ~ #FiveSentenceFiction

“You bitch” he’d sneered, and I knew he had won as soon as I felt my hand sting from slapping him.

After a shocked silence, he’d smirked from behind his red, burning cheek and threatened, ” You’ll regret this, miss.”

“Obnoxious thug,” I thought, watching his scruffy hulk lope from the classroom.

After 20 years of teaching, I fervently hoped I had enough standing with the school to survive this.

Biting my lip, right where he kissed me, I took a moment to compose myself and fling the moment from my mind like the poison that it was.



© 2012 Louise Hastings

Rest in Peace

It is a voilet-tinted world they go to sleep in, lying side by side in separate beds. Janie thumbs through the pages of her book while Richard fixes his eyes on the shadows, thinking about his childhood and idly wondering why the two of them never touch anymore. The night has washed them away from the passions of their marriage bed it seems, like flotsam swept away on seawater, but although they lie strangely apart, they are close still, contented and cloaked in domestic love.

“He would have been twenty today,” she blurts out.

He glances at her with concern, his thoughts interrupted. “I know, darling. We’ll go and see him, visit his grave tomorrow.”

Janie remains silent after that, picturing little feet and soft blond curls, blue eyes peeking out from under the duvet. To her he would always remain a little boy, cheeky and cherubic.

Sensing her silence, Richard returns to his thoughts, making a mental note to ring for a taxi in the morning, their car being a write off after the accident. There are moments in life, he thinks, that can be recalled forever; it’s been stamped into the neurons that fire the brain, suddenly and irrevocably; his son’s death was one such moment, the other the smell of the mixture that makes up brake fluid & oil and rain and smoke. He grimaced remembering the terrible pains in his chest after the collision, the stinging in his streaming eyes from the black cloud of poisonous smoke, the sense of terror that gripped him as he scrabbled for the door handle. He couldn’t remember much else after that, he must have passed out, swallowed by the enveloping relief of unconsciousness.

He shuddered, grateful for the morning saving him from the nightmares and waking him up to sunlight and the trees casting their shadows over the lawn. He tried to breathe in the sweet scent of the roses that grew wild with neglect by the hedge. They loved it here in the country, being so quiet. It was a perfect place for them to retire to.

As they approached the cemetery later, they encountered a wonderful sense of peace and tranquility, but Richard couldn’t get past his anger at the injustice of it all. Jack had suffered a violent death; blown up in Afghanistan on a mission against insurgents. Five soldiers lost their lives on that dreadful day. Richard presses his lips together, inwardly cursing the futility of war.

Noticing the absence of flowers by his grave, Janie felt a burning sense of shame in her cheeks. She swallowed hard, staring down in silence at the headstone that read:

 Here lies our beloved son

Jack Manford

1992 – 2011

May he rest in peace

Jack was already there however, standing to the side regarding them quietly. It had been a while since he’d last seen his parents.

“You look just as solid and real as you did when you were alive,” he thought, glancing over at their fresh, marble headstones. “Was it possible they didn’t realise?”

“Death must make people less perceptive,” he thought, stepping forward to greet them.



© 2012 Louise Hastings

Five Sentence Fiction ~ Faeries

Jasmine was 10 years old when she first got ‘lost’ in the mists of the woods at the edge of the garden.

She hadn’t felt lost at the time, but when she’d returned after many happy adventures, her mother had been frantic with worry: “Where have you been? You were gone for days!” she’d cried, bundling her daughter into her arms.

After that, she limited the time with her new friends who loved the colour of her eyes, a sparkling green that glimmered like the emerald of the leaves after rainfall.

But one day, after many years had passed, she’d gone down to find that her friends had simply vanished.

She wondered if she would ever see them again and never forgot them or told anyone about them except to her children; she smiled when they disappeared into the woods and knew they’d be safe: they’d inherited the same colour in their eyes.



© 2012 Louise Hastings