#FlashFiction #Fictioneers: Forsaken

This is my first opportunity to post a flash fiction with the Friday Fictioneers under our new leader, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. It’s a big job to take over this project from Madison Woods — thanks, Rochelle!

This week’s photo prompt is by Ted Strutz. I know I say this almost every week, but this one was quite a challenge. But that makes coming up with a story all the more satisfying! Thanks, Ted!

Did you hear the very sad story about the two little boys on the east coast, whose bodies were found in a marsh yesterday? These poor boys were swept from their mother’s arms as hurricane Sandy ripped through New York. The saddest part of the story is that the mother had knocked on someone’s door and asked for help. They turned her away.

This story haunts me.

To read more flash fiction from great writers from around the world, click here. Feel free to leave a link to your blog with your comments.


     The woman cried frantically, as if trying to explain something to anyone who would listen. With a growing crowd, I moved closer to hear what she was saying.

She held her hand three feet off the ground. “He’s about this tall . . . blond hair, wearing a Batman sweatshirt.”

A tall man shook his head and kept walking.

“I let go of his hand for only a second to try on these glasses.”

My stomach sank. I’d ignored a plea for help only moments before. Just another kid having a tantrum, I figured. But he was blond, and wore a Batman sweatshirt.

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23 Responses to #FlashFiction #Fictioneers: Forsaken

  1. Parul says:

    The bit about the two boys is very unfortunate. The times we live in. At least the woman in your story would find her son.
    Good piece Jan.


  2. Russell says:

    Ooh, the last paragraph killed me. I’m thinking the kid was being abducted. Unsettling, but extremely well written.


  3. erinleary says:

    Every parent’s worst nightmare. I am also going to hold on to hope. Well done. Mine is also about a mother and son – just a little more every day take – it is here: http://erinleary.wordpress.com/2012/11/02/flash-friday-fiction-14/


  4. Sandra says:

    You’d never forgive yourself, would you? Very menacing.


  5. brudberg says:

    A very sad story, especially with your introduction. Without it, I would have believed in a happy ending.


  6. Oh, how awful! And it can be so hard to be sure what’s going on when the crying child is too young to make themselves clear. You really handled the setup and pace of this story well.


  7. Hi Jan,
    Wow, you added guilt on top of despair. A double whammy of a story. Inspired by real events. Thanks for telling me my link was wrong. Doofused it. Glad you guys are back safely from the land of ice and survived that bus. That looked scary. Ron


  8. This brought me to tears, Jan. And I read it at work on my iPhone. I did hear the news story. Can’t imagine…don’t even want to have to imagine it as a mom. Beautiful beautiful story.


  9. Well-written but heart-wrenching, Jan 😦 I had not heard about the two boys but that’s awful.


  10. rich says:

    well done, but instead of “my stomach sank,” i think you can be more creative and think of something that hasn’t been used too many times. you can do it. that’s why we’re here.


  11. Jan! What wonderful words. Your flash gave me goosebumps. I’m with Ron, guilt on top of despair. 🙂


  12. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Jan,

    Powerful story and illustrative of those moments upon which the outcomes of many lives hinge. There should be a special hell reserved for those who ask without real need and thus muddy the water for those in real need that follow. Great job. Heartbreaking, sad, human.




  13. vb holmes says:

    Frightening tale–hopefully, one with a happy ending. Well done!


  14. tedstrutz says:

    This is a sad story, Jan. And the point you make is sad but true. My 4 year old daughter wandered off at the California State Fair once, which is Huge… I know what that desperation is like. We heard an announcement and found her at the fair’s office.


  15. Lora says:

    True to life story, Jan. Your last line made me gasp. FYI: Last night, a news reporter found that creep who refused to let that desperate mother in. His sad excuse?…He thought it was a male burglar pounding at the door. He looks as lame as his excuse.


  16. Timely, but so scary and sad. Read several of these Sandy stories.


  17. wmqcolby says:

    That feeling of helplessness … what can I say? You brought it home. Great!


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