Sunday, October 5, 2014

To Leanne, On Her Birthday...A Short Story

Time For A Writing Challenge

It's easy, really. You go to a website (I'll include the links to these sites below...), and you take the photo and the five words that are provided and you write a little story.

Of course, if you want the official rules, here they are:

1) Use the above photo and five randomly chosen words in your story.
2) Keep your word count 500 or less.
3) You have until next Tuesday night to link up your story.
4) Use the Blue Link to add your story at Leanne's, Debb's, or Tena's websites. 
5) Have fun, don't stress, and let those creative juices flow!

The five randomly chosen words:


So, here goes!

To Leanne, On Her Birthday

A runner lines up her shoes on the garage floor and no longer wonders why she does it--she just does. Of course, after years of doing the same thing every day, habits form, attitudes change, a blister becomes a callus, and a will becomes a force.

She puts on the newest shoes; the others remain to be used doing yard work. She stretches, opens the door and the crisp 5 a.m. air fills her lungs as she begins her routine. She starts slowly, the rhythmic sounds of her shoes on the asphalt acts as a metronome in her ears. A frock of darkness engulfs her as she runs between streetlights, puffs of condensation remain above the space she just passed, fading evidence of her existence on the lonely road.

She checks her watch, she's a mile in and she feels good, good about the run, about her job, good about the future. It's been a while coming, an inner sense of contentment as uncontainable as a grease fire, as illusive as catching a child's laugh.

Still, she continues, beyond the second mile and into the third. Now, her legs burn and her body begs her to quit, but she endures like ants rebuilding their home after an errand foot fall. She counters the urges to stop using her mind to convince the body of its need to give--she sacrifices the bishop for the greater good, and becomes a pirate of wants over needs.

The last corner, the final stretch and she returns ached, spent, sharing a joy with nature that comes after pushing herself beyond the comfortable, the expected--beyond the point where others fail. She opens the garage door, places the shoes with the others and enters her home in preparation for a day filled with work, children, and attendance at a "surprise" birthday party being planned by her husband that she's not supposed to know anything about.

But she does. A smile crosses her face as she closes the door.

Word Count: 339


  1. That's a lovely story, as always I enjoy your writing.

    1. Thanks Sally for your kind words. This one was fun to write!

  2. Wow! This is so fantastic! This reminds me of one of my runs ... back when I used to run. :) Thanks so much for the birthday story. I am sorry it took so long for me to hop over here and read it!

    1. Thanks Leanne! Once a runner, always a runner, even if you're not running regularly. Can't remove (forget...) the memories that come from all the time on the road. Glad you liked it and I hope you had a wonderful birthday!