Redemption in a Playground

photo prompt liz

© Liz Young

I used to be like this junk. Drinking, smoking, a broken plastic person. A terrible father. A worse husband. Disreputable, divorced, self-destructive. But that’s before they were born. My grandchildren. They made me believe in myself because they believe in me. Now the man I was is just like this stuff, discarded. I’m sitting on this hill watching them frolic on the playground in the park below.

“C’mon down and play with us,” Johnny shouts.

“Yeah, Grandpa. Push me on the swing,” Cindy adds.

I stand up and walk toward my redemption.

Written for Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Friday Fictioners challenge. Based on the photo prompt above, you’re supposed to write a complete story of no more than 100 words. Mine came in at 93.

To read more stories based on the prompt, go to InLinkz.com.

Another Chance

goth

Image: mookychick.co.uk

Jeff and Mary Edge were getting a divorce and they didn’t want to talk about it anymore.

Mary’s parents suggested that they try marital counseling, but Mary was tired of Jeff’s drinking and Jeff was tired of Mary not getting a job to help with the family finances.

They’d had it with each other and they weren’t going to talk to Mary’s parents, a counselor, or anyone else about it.

Jeff and Mary didn’t even talk about it with their seven-year-old daughter Morgan.

Jeff was at the wheel and Mary was sitting, sulking in the passenger seat after meeting with the divorce lawyer. He was going to take Mary back to her parent’s house where she was staying for now, and pick up Morgan for their weekend visit.

Jeff was sober and would be throughout the visit. When he dropped Morgan back with her mother Sunday night, he planned to go back to his seedy one bedroom apartment and get roaring drunk. The hangover he’d have when he went to work on Monday morning would be worth it.

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Redemption: A Halloween Tale

trick or treat

Image: WFMJ.com News

Brent hated Halloween. He’d hated it for the past twenty years, and he had a very good reason to. Twenty years ago tonight she had died and it was all his fault.

Twenty years ago tonight, Brent took his eight-year old daughter Evelyn out trick or treating. His wife Marie stayed home to give out candy to the children who would be visiting their house.

It happened so fast. Evelyn saw her best friend across the street and ran over to see her without looking. A teenager driving too fast in a neighborhood full of children. Brent froze at the sickening thud of her body being crushed by the impact. Mercifully, she died instantly.

Brent wasn’t the only one to blame him for little Evie’s death. His wife divorced him six-months later. Evie was their only child.

For the past twenty years, Brent lived alone. He never remarried. Who would have him anyway? Oh, he’s kept a job, had a small comfortable house to live in, he even had a few friends, but the spark of life and of living died along with his little girl.

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