The Ghost Before Christmas

christmas

Photo credit: Akshata Ram

Raymond walked into his bedroom with a fresh cup of coffee for a relaxing Sunday morning and found the Christmas decorations laid out on the bed next to his newspaper. “You never give up, do you, Mom?” Setting his cup down on the end table, the 45-year-old divorced engineer sat at the foot of the bed and picked up the dollar store Santa. “I miss you too, Mom, especially this time of year.” He knew his ex had her place elaborately decorated for the season, and that his three sons delighted in trying to guess what was inside all of the brightly wrapped packages, but he’d given up on Christmas and everything it was supposed to stand for when his Mom died a month after his divorce was final. Taking a deep breath, he picked up his cell and punched in a number.

“Hi, Sherry. Is it okay if I come over for a while? I’ve got some presents for the boys.” He listened and smiled. Of course, he’d have to go shopping first.

I wrote this for the 196th FFfAW Challenge hosted by Priceless Joy. The idea is to use the image above as a prompt for crafting a piece of flash fiction between 100 and 175 words long. My word count is 174. This is pretty much a “stream of consciousness” thing. I just wrote the first thing that popped into my head.

To read other stories based on the prompt, visit InLinkz.com.

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17 thoughts on “The Ghost Before Christmas

  1. That is sweet.

    The Christmas after my mother passed I was sitting in the bed room of my apartment I caught a whiff of a familiar perfume: Charlie. One of Mom’s favorites.

    Some of the furniture sitting in my room had been in her room for a couple of years, so it is possible that what I smelled was nothing more than lingering fragrance, but how do you explain that the air currents from the vents were going away from my bed?

    I still think Mom stopped in to check on me.

    Like

  2. Nice story. Who had left the dollar store Santa on his bed? At least he is buying presents for his children, despite his state of mind.

    Like

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