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Change or Die

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Photo copyright: Grant Sud

The passing of time had left her without family. She felt as if she came from a totally different universe to todays young people. The old neighbourhood that had once nourished her, now frightened her. Graffiti covered almost every inch of the external walls of her home, and now both the boys and girls of the town had taken to using the roof of her home for urban acrobatics which they called free running. Well she wished that they would leave her home out of their athletics.

The sound of breaking glass brought her out into her tiny garden. Her two walking sticks kept her upright as she surveyed the shattered bell cloches. Then she saw the blooded culprit, a young dark haired girl. Nearby stood a boy who she later would come to know as Elijah. She lowered herself to the ground, then bound a deep gash from which blood was flowing profusely. Find her father or mother, boy, and be quick about it, if you wish to save the girl. As Alyssa cradled the child, memories of cradling her own dying child flooded back. As she watched another child die, she prayed for her own release instead.



It is strange what a difference a few hours can make. For the last forty eight hours I have totally struggled with a 200 word story called ‘Mr Thompson’; yet this story ‘Change or Die’ literally flew onto my writing pad.

This Post Has 44 Comments
  1. Great story with a lot of depth to it! I love how you’ve managed to capture the current issue of the widening divisions of the young and the elderly, along with a good character backstory in so few words! Fantastic take on the prompt 🙂

  2. Lovely story Mike! I could certainly understand her wanting her own release instead of the child’s after suffering so much during her life (the death of a child). I know what you mean how the story just flowed from your pen because that is how my story came about. Great story!

        1. I do value feedback for many reasons. Especially as at times comments will pick up on some thing that I had not thought about. I have gained much from taking part in flash fiction. Thank you PJ.

  3. Hmm.. I like the last line. Praying for her own release instead. It is not a tendency of writers to give a insight to psyche of their characters in short stories.. But you chose ‘release’ (not death) and revealed her ‘entrapment’.
    Excellent reflection of psyche.. Bravo..

    (Strangely my like is not registering here. Maybe I am doing something wrong)

  4. I really felt how isolated she felt from the younger generation and from others more generally, and the part about her losing her own child made that sadness feel even more profound.

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