Due to the technical difficulty known as “not enough time,” I didn’t write my own twisted flash when I posted the May 14 prompt. So I’m posting a stand-alone response today.
My flash is based on the May 14, 2014 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that begins with a twist. How did the character get there? Are there more twists? It’s up to you.
This story is based on conversational inspiration. Let me explain. Socks came up in a Twitter conversation and I started thinking about the role of mothers as family laundress. But the idea led me to think of a twist–what if Mama’s boy had to wash his own socks? And why?
If it seems that I have Civil War and western history oozing out of my flash writing, it’s a reflection of my love of genealogy and collecting family histories. One day I might write westerns or historical fiction. But for now, the genre is a favorite because it’s different from my longer prose which is commercial and climate fiction.
Yesterday bullets buzzed my ears like summer honey-bees. No longer do I farm Papa’s land. I’m a Union soldier. Today, my life is socks. Precious wool socks. I was issued one pair.
Silence shrouds camp, though fires crackle outside our dog-tents. I pretend the smell of boiling socks is coffee brewing; a commodity we lost before winning this bloody ridge. In bare feet I wring water out of each sock. Mama would have bashed socks heartily on the rocks along Greene Creek, as if waging her own war. Hers was against dirt.
I no longer know what mine’s about.
If you want to submit your own flash, do so in the comments for May 14: Flash Fiction Challenge. Respond by noon (PST) Tuesday, May 20 to be included in the compilation.