#fridayfictioneers via rochelle – 8/23

Every Wednesday Rockingham 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.

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.

Oh – and there’s a question at the end…



The Castle

“Sire,” squeaked Thomas, “do our cries still go unheard?”

“Aye, lad,”  Lord Barton rattled his chains.  “These thick, stone walls trap both body and voice.  I hear those on the other side, but they not us.”

“Countless days have we rotted, Sire.  Soon these cuffs will slip over my withering hands should I still be able to try.”  Eyes closed, Thomas fought for air.

“With your remaining strength, let us scream once more.”

“Aye, Sir.”  Cries echoed, then faded.


Jason, briefly distracted from his iPhone, glanced back towards the dungeon, then followed the boring tour guide upstairs towards the exit.


100 words

Question:  Is it at all evident that Lord Barton and Squire Thomas are ghosts who lived and died in the dungeon hundreds of years prior to Jason’s visit?  When Barton said, “I hear those on the other side,” I was hoping that – and the setting change – would be enough of a clue.  Is it enough?


56 thoughts on “#fridayfictioneers via rochelle – 8/23

  1. Hi Rich,
    I’m glad Jason has his priorities straight and is focusing on his iphone. That’s where life really happens, you know. He might miss some illiterate text message, or the major news that Kim Kardashian farted, or that bacon flavored coffee is now at Starbucks. Who cares about history? It should be a banned subject, like grammar. Ron

    • they fought for air at the time they were still living, but fading, so their spirits (i guess it’s possible) are still mimicking what they did while alive. maybe?

      thanks for reading and figuring.

      • I suppose ghosts could do that. Hey they are your ghosts so they can do anything you want them to. People do say ghosts go through their deaths over and over so yeah I can see it. And you are welcome.

  2. I didn’t see them as ghosts until the mention of the iPhone also, but then it came through loud and clear.

    My question is do they know they are ghosts? The mention of the other side as you pointed out brings that question to my mind. And if they do know they’re ghosts, what good will getting the attention of the living do for them?

    • good question, but no they don’t know they are ghosts. the “other side” literally was the other side of the stone walls of the dungeon. however, i was thinking the words “other side” might also hint at the living, and they’re on the dead side of things. but you read it as i hoped – that the story was set in the dark ages, but really it’s present day.

  3. Yes it was obvious to me they were ghosts from the get go but my head leans that way when someone talks of “the other side”.

    But it wasn’t until I read your responses that it became apparent they weren’t aware they were ghosts. I didn’t know why they wanted to be heard. I understand know they are still hoping to be saved. Perhaps if Thomas speaks to that?

    P.S Thanks for introducing me to Friday Fictioneers. I’m loving it. 🙂

  4. Great story, Rich. I really enjoyed this one. It made me question a few things maybe already mentioned. Do they know they’re dead? If they are ghosts (dead) would they be trapped? Do they need to know theThe cuffs confused me a bit. It made me think they were trapped prisoners. Your second part pulls it together well.

  5. I definitely understood they were ghosts as soon as I reached the iPhone bit, and really liked the subtle pun of the ‘the other side’. And no problem about them being in cuffs – presumably they were prisoners and starved to death in there.
    My only concrit comment is about this line: ‘Soon these cuffs will slip over my withering hands should I still be able to try’ – although I know you’re writing in the style of the time, I had to read it a couple of times to get the full meaning

    • yes, that was tricky for me, to write how they might have spoken, which i am by no means educated about. when getting the names, like “Lord Barton,” i originally had other names and had to ask a very smart friend to help me out. originally, it was “Lord Marcus,” but it was pointed out that marcus is roman, and these guys were in the dark ages in a castle – not very roman.

    • many a church, indeed. and i hate the marimba ringtone. and, i often look at rochelle’s picture prompts, but the past few just called to me. thanks and thanks again.

  6. Dear Rip,

    The rattling chains tipped me off they were ghosts, Shades of Jacob Marley. I liked the change in scene to Jason with his iPhone, oblivious to the ghosts among them.



  7. Haven’t seen your mug around these parts in some time.

    Made me think of that story we all read in high school about being chained and walled up alive.

    As for Jason, I’m certain he can find a way to Instagram this whole event.

    • i was hoping that language of Thomas and Lord Barton were different enough from what to expect in the time of Jason and his iphone that they must be ghosts or echoes from the past. thanks for reading.

  8. I’ll be honest, I didn’t catch it that they were ghosts, but did think the dialect was strange for the same period someone would be using an iPhone–so the clues were definitely there–Meaning I’m mentally slow. 🙂

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