Just a quick note before we begin – Friday Fictioneers is only supposed to be 100 words long (a drabble, I believe they call it.) This story is 234 words long, but if you Fictioneers stop at the ### you’ll get a full story that is 100ish words long…and now, on with the show.
Rain has fallen in the last two days, the smell of soft loam and of rich earth confesses it to me. It is the smell of my father. The smell of my grandfather. I can see the ghosts of these two men in the ghost of the vineyard, broad-shouldered and weather-scarred, their rough hands pushing deep into the soul of the soil.
I remember my father’s dying whisper, “A frost is coming, Jessie. You know what to do.”
I didn’t want to leave him, as I answered with that kind lie that is aways gifted upon the dying. “It doesn’t matter, Dad. It can wait. Don’t tell me to leave you.”
He couldn’t, so I stayed.
We lost the harvest. Lost our house, the farm. The books conspired against us and the bankers sucked at their perfect, bleached-white teeth. “There is nothing we can do, Ms Flambert. Nothing at all, I’m afraid.” Yet another lie. It was only the latest in a long line, vomited out like the apartments and shopping malls the town planners had foretold.
The best things in life cost everything. My childhood, the bittersweet taste of Riesling grapes picked too soon. The earth rising in torn mountains above the praying mantis arms of backhoes and beneath the tread of yellow locust bulldozers.
The earth cries out, its gentle smell now drowning beneath the diesel fumes and an army clad in high-vis safety vests and hard hats.
There is nothing I can do.
So, as I mentioned above, this story was written for Madison Woods over at Friday Fictioneers using her beautiful photo prompt, shown above the story. It was also written with this week’s BeKindRewrite InMon prompts, of which I used all five. They were/are The Books Conspired Against Us, The Best Things In Life Cost Everything, Kind Lie, Earth Rise and Don’t Tell Me. As always, criticism and comments always welcome, and always enjoyed!