“Now you knew I had to grow up sometime, Marigold.”
“Yes, but it all seemed to happen so fast, Phoebe.”
Phoebe couldn’t actually see the unicorn, but that was just as well because she was driving South on Interstate 5 and unicorns are terribly distracting.
“That’s what Mom and Dad said, too.”
“But your parents aren’t immortal, Phoebe. I am. The passing of centuries to me is like how the passing of a few days is to you.”
“Then I aged from eight to eighteen in the wink of an eye.” Phoebe was joking around but it was no joke to Marigold.
“Please don’t jest. I want to savor every moment of being your friend.”
“You will, Marigold. I promise.”
“When do we get to this ‘UCLA?'”
“In just a few hours. You’ll have to stay hidden on my clothes when we’re there.”
“Fortunately, little Muffin can be my eyes and ears, Phoebe.”
“Familiar spirits do come in handy, Marigold.”
“They do indeed, Phoebe.”
“Meow and please don’t speak of me as if I’m not here.”
I wrote this for the FFfAW Challenge for the Week of December 5, 2017. The idea is to use the photo above as the inspiration for authoring a piece of flash fiction no more than 175 words long. My word count is 175.
I admit to being momentarily flustered when seeing this week’s photo prompt. “What in the world can I make of that,” I thought.
In 1983, My wife and I moved from Berkeley to Orange County, California, both so I could attend graduate school and so she could take charge of her recently deceased Dad’s house. I drove down with our cat “Mamacat” (long story). Well even though I had her sedated and in a carrier, she was pretty unhappy, so I put my hand in her carrier to pet her. Bad mistake, grievous error. She was out like a flash and parked herself under the brake pedal. I was traveling South on Interstate 5 at about 75 mph and if I had to stop in a hurry, she was going to be toast.
Fortunately, everything all worked out, but the photo sort of reminded me of the journey. I couldn’t really use that story, but the horses on the woman’s blouse reminded me of unicorns.
True confession time. I read a comic strip called Phoebe and her Unicorn written and drawn by Dana Simpson. I don’t know why I started reading it. I saw that it was new at GoComics.com and decided to give it a whirl. Then I got hooked, although sometimes I get a little annoyed at Phoebe’s millennial generation parents (I assume they’re about Simpson’s age).
I decided to use the character names for my wee tale, age Phoebe ten years and have her going off to university. I had to make something up for the kitten since there isn’t one on the comic strip. Just a fun, lighthearted tale.
In the comic strip, absolutely no one is surprised or otherwise reacts to a full-sized unicorn always being around Phoebe, but I decided for the sake of UCLA that Marigold would have to hide as a design on Phoebe’s clothing. Besides, I’m not sure she would have fit inside the car otherwise.
To read more stories based on the prompt, go to InLinkz.com.