October Flashes

This month’s parameters were:

Length: 150 words

Genre: Romance

Key word: lift


Title: The Lifting of Detective Nancarrow

Word Count: 150

“Light-Fingered Lilly!” the local cops would sigh at the woman of indeterminte age and certain humour occupying a cell whenever some shop keeper had decided “enough is enough!” Once charges were dropped it was just a hot cuppa, a condescending word and a safe bed for the night for Lil.

Detective Genevieve Nancarrow had first seen, and heard, Lilly 18 years earlier; her voice soaring in song to lift her fellow-lost out of the deep; sometimes into love and always into chorus, in the beer garden of the old pub across the road from The Bakery building where Genevieve had grown up.

Lillian Smith’s corpse lay in blood, contortion and silence near the homeless shelter.
Squatting down beside it, Detective Nancarrow could not stop her shoulders trembling. The shelter’s young pastor offered a steadying hand. Genevieve looked up. His face lifted her above it all.


Title: The Fall

Word Count: 149

‘Harry, are you there?’ Sheila yelled from over the fence.
Harry roused himself.
‘What are you up to Sheila?’ he asked as he walked across the lawn.
‘I’m making jam and I need to pick the cumquats from the top of the tree. Can you give me a lift up?’
Harry strolled into Sheila’s yard. He saw her clinging to the fence, dressed in faded jeans and a lumpy woollen jumper, and his heart skipped a beat. He put his hands around her waist and felt the closeness of her body as he lifted her further up the fence.
Sheila plucked the fruit, dropped it into the basket, lost her footing and fell, landing on top of Harry. He closed his arms around her, held her gently, and Sheila smiled. Harry felt the softness of her skin as he bent and kissed her cheek.
‘You’ll make great jam Sheila’.


Title: The Lift

Word Count: 150

This is a true story. A deeply devoted husband visited his wife, who suffered Alzheimers, every day for years. Each anniversary he would take her home but this day, when he arrived as usual, she turned away from his kiss, ignoring the antique jade necklace he gave her. Once home she was uncontrollable til finally in tears he returned her to the Home, leaving his gift on her lap. Hours later she slipped the smooth green beads through her fingers, puzzled. Remembering the devastated husbands eyes my niece said
Do you remember what today is?
She did, but with no memory of the earlier visit. So my niece dressed her carefully, arranging the necklace and drove back.
His face when he opened the door and saw her there, she said, was priceless. His wife turned to my niece,
Thank you for the lift dear.
And taking his hand, went inside.


Title: Come, Let’s Dance

Word Count: 148

I dreamed about him, so handsome, so charming. Deep brown eyes – reflecting his soul? His tall slim frame often shadowed me as I took his instructions at my desk.

We gathered for the end of year celebration; fine food and wines; and dancing. The generosity of our company directors’ annual tribute to their staff never disappointed.

When he chose me from the crowd, a surging lift in spirit overcame me. Striding across the room he took my arm.

“Come. Let’s dance!”

We dined. We danced. We dreamed away the summer. Two summers. I dreamed some more. White tulle, long stemmed roses…


“Yes, yes my darling.”

“I can’t do this anymore!”

I stumbled, reaching out to the ground beneath me, my world shattering before me; a thousand pieces, like mother’s Wedgwood slipping through my hands last evening, replaying eerily before me, the foretelling of a dreamer’s folly.


Title: The Lift

Word Count: 148

They collide on entry as the sleek doors glide open. He steps back, nods, she moves into the cage of glass and stands to the left. Then, he’s beside her. They stare ahead.

At the first floor, as she glances at her image in the mirrored wall she catches a glimpse of him. About her height, handsome, same age even, her nostrils flare as she inhales his aftershave.

Past second floor now. He moves from foot to foot in order to watch her profile in the glass. Long neck, small ears with silver studs just visible under her long dark hair. Chanel perfume reaches him.

At the third floor she sneaks another look. He’s watching her. He blinks or did he wink?

Their eyes lock at the fourth floor, a fleeting smile.

The doors separate, they move as one, their shoulders touch. They linger as the lift closes.


Title: The Day It Happened

Word Count: 149

The day it happened he saw her in the doorway first. When she began to move toward him a breath escaped his chest. Time stood still and another moment passed before his body forced a gasp. She must be an angel, no mortal woman ever looked so perfect. He felt the sweat bleed from his palms and prickle his armpits, and as she floated ever closer to him, the magnitude of the moment threatened to seep from his eyes. When she finally stood before him his heart tried to beat out of his chest to hold her. He feared she might lift to the heavens at any moment and never return to earth. One smile from her and his eyes made good on their threat. He caught the single tear with a finger as it dropped onto his cheek. This was it.
‘Dearly Beloved. We are gathered here today…’


Title: The Proposal

Word Count: 149

Round and round they spun, the grass cool against their feet. With a lift that took the breath from her body Gerald placed her in the fork of a tree. Her yellow dress floated around her knees and the breeze lifted it’s diaphanous folds. He breathlessly planted himself firmly in front of her.
‘I’ve had many happy moments in my life, and I know I’ll have more, but this is one cemented forever.’
Rachel laughed down into his face, her eyes as wild and excited as his. ‘Oh, yes, a thousand times, yes.’
Adoration of the other takes lovers into a mystical world; the love that swirls around the young—with the promise of a future with endless hope and joy—tells them angels have sent their blessings.
Gerald lifted her down, swinging her around again. He kissed her tenderly then took her hand.
‘Let’s go look at rings.’

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