Every Wednesday RenShui Wisoff-Fields posts a picture prompt challenging writers to create a 100-word story, poem, or whatever works for you. After posting your work on your blog, go back to her site and add your link on her Friday Fictioneers post. Place. Page.
I’m going to try to keep up with this, as should you. Give it a shot. I prefer to stick to 100 words, but she doesn’t mind either way. Not everyone has the time to sit and write, revise, edit, revise, edit, etc. until getting it down to 100 and telling everything you want to tell.
As has happened before, I forgot to keep my original version and edits, and I’m kicking myself because of what – I think – would have been educational. Yeah, but that’s patting myself on the back.
Xi, about half the elderly man’s 80 years, approached slowly.
“Pardon, Sir. You seem lost. Can I help?”
“I come each Sunday to remember my son. Gone 29 years today. We sailed boats in the fountain, here, especially Sundays.” Exhale. “Now – I come for memories.”
Xi looked away, then back. “What happened, may I ask?”
“Foolishly, I hit him for disrespect.” Eyes distant. “Then, one morning. Gone.”
Xi blinked. “Perhaps he too was wrong.”
“I must go. My empty house waits.” The man turned, shuffling from the fountain.
“Sir?” Xi touched the man’s arm. “Isn’t it this way?”
I did a little playing with words here. The name of “Xi” was chosen very specifically but also numerically. I was stuck with what to do about Xi. I originally thought maybe he would learn a lesson from the elderly man and then go buy a boat for his own son, but that would be too much for only 100 words. So instead I made him the long-lost son who had come back to find his father. However, I was worried that it might be too easy for people to figure that out while reading. But then I thought that there is no reason to be so “mysterious.” And, more importantly, it felt good to write it that way.