Each Monday brings a new picture prompt. Last week, Kreative Kue 76 asked for submissions based on this photograph:
John W Howell, author of MyGRL and His Revenge, who blogs at Fiction Favorites, sent this:
“Yeah go on you dopes. I don’t care if you leave me.”
“What is he saying?”
“I don’t know. Something about leaving him.”
“Just relax Blackie We’ll be right back.”
“Yeah, sure. You always say that and then I find myself sitting here and waiting.”
“Oh, for heaven’s sake. You guys go ahead I’ll sit here with Blackie till you get back.”
“Aw gee, thanks, Robin.”
“You are such a baby sometimes.”
“Well, I hate to bring it up, but you guys left me at the park. Remember?”
“That was because it was raining cats and dogs and we needed to take shelter.”
“And what about me. I sat on the bench until I was wet to the skin. I waited and waited.”
“A whole five minutes.”
“I’m a bird remember. Five minutes are like five hours in bird time.”
“Please spare me the dramatics. You’ll be okay. I’m here with you. By the way, why did you pick this table to stand on?”
“You don’t like red. I’m surprised given the red breast and all.”
“I’ll thank you to keep your eyes up North.”
“Jeez. I didn’t mean anything. I was talking about color.”
“You know, it’s amazing.”
“How do you know?”
“You have this glow. Kind of a crow blush if that’s a thing.”
“You did shock me with that eyes comment.”
“I was teasing. You can look at my red breast anytime you want. It is quite cute.”
“When do you think the others will be back?”
“I would say after they case the fry situation at McDonald’s and the bread crumb outlook at Panera.”
“Did you order?”
“No, I’m on a diet.”
“A diet? Which one.”
“The Atkins Protean Diet.”
“What can you have on that?”
“Worms. Nothing but worms.”
“Yuk. How do you stand it.”
“I hold my beak. It’s still disgusting.”
“Maybe you should exercise more.”
“You calling me fat?”
My effort was “Which spelling lesson?“.
“What is it now, Jude?”
Michael and Mary Samowitz had travelled all the way from their home in the south of England to Florida as a treat for their son Judah, who had just had his thirteenth birthday, and daughter Judith, who had done so well playing Tzeitel in her school’s production of Fiddler on the Roof. Although she was only eleven, she possessed a singing voice that was more mature than her years and, her parents thought, a real talent for musical theatre.
She was the only member of the family with any flair in that arena. Michael was a lecturer in software engineering, and Mary… Mary had a knack for getting things done. Michael had learned not to ask how, but just about everything…
Let’s put it this way: Michael had become very careful what he asked for, or even expressed an interest in. Whether Mary simply had powerful contacts or what it was, he neither knew nor cared. He just knew that… Let me give you an example.
Last year, Michael was having trouble with his car, a seven-year-old Ford Focus. He happened to mention to Mary that he was fed up with it; it was unreliable, uncomfortable and just plain sucked. She asked him what he would really like if money were no object, and he told her. It was a car well out of his reach, but his dream car nonetheless.
The next morning he awoke to find a brand new Jaguar XF in his garage. All the paperwork was in his name, and when he dug his hand into his pocket for the keys to his Focus, he found he had Jaguar keys instead. When he asked Mary if she had any idea where it had come from, she simply touched the tip of her nose with an index finger and winked.
“Can I go in one of the rockets, Mum? Can I? Can I? Can I? Pleeeease,” Judah pleaded.
“Ask your father,” Mary replied, exhausted already with Judah’s incessant whining. It had started the moment they walked through the doors of the Kennedy Space Center and showed no signs of abating.
Judah ran across to where his father was seated with Judith, listening yet again to her breathless critique of her own wonderful performance and her slaughtering of the efforts of most of the rest of the cast. His father was about as exasperated with his sister as his mother was with him.
“For goodness’ sake, Judith, STOP,” Michael said, “Yes, you were good; very good. And yes, some of the others weren’t as good as you were. But there’s no need to go on about them. Every one of them gave the best performance they knew how, as did you.”
That didn’t help. Still, she continued. Still she berated everyone’s efforts bar her own. Her father became more frustrated by the minute, and now his son was pleading with him for something, but he couldn’t make out what, because now, his daughter was SINGING. At the top of her voice. Crowds were gathering, and neither Michael nor Judah could tell if they were watching from interest or critically – of Michael’s parenting.
Mary joined them. “Michael; go off with Jude. Do some manly stuff. Leave Judith to me.”
The boys went off together; Michael slowly and with a sombre attitude, Judah running, skipping and talking excitedly as they approached the rockets. When he saw the capsule that people could sit inside, facing skyward, you would have thought he was having all his birthdays at once. And when he saw the signs for the ‘Go Vertical’ shuttle experience, he almost fainted, so overcome with excitement was he.
Meanwhile, Mary grabbed Judith by the arm. “Judith Rachel Samowitz; come with me!” she said. Judith knew that she was in trouble. Like almost every child in the world, since time immemorial [used in its usual sense, nothing to do with 1189 or England’s King Richard I], she knew that when Mum used her middle name, she was in deep trouble. She went along with little protest. When they reached a quiet area, her mother bade her sit on the table before them.
“Cackle, cackle, cackle,” she said, then waved a hand and near-screamed, “become a little Grackle!”
And it was done. Judith had transformed into a Boat-tailed Grackle (but still carried on singing).
That’s you dealt with, young lady,” Mary said, “now what shall we do with your brother, busily sucking the sap out of his poor father?”
On to this week’s challenge:Using this photo as inspiration, write a short story, flash fiction, scene, poem; anything, really; and either put it (or a link to it) in a comment or email it to me at email@example.com before 6pm next Sunday (if you aren’t sure what the time is where I live, this link will tell you). If you post it on your own blog or site, a link to this page would be appreciated, but please do also mention it in a comment here – for reasons I have yet to fathom, pingbacks don’t seem to be working.
Go on. You know you want to. Let your creativity and imagination soar. I shall display the entries, with links to your own blog or web site, next Monday.