The Twin

Posted: August 6, 2014 in Friday Fictioneers
Tags: , , , , ,

Friday Fictioneers has reared it’s pretty head once more. This is my contribution at 101 words. Thanks, Bjorn, for the thought provoking picture. I’m sure this desolate building will inspire some sad tales this week.

Björn 6

First, German tanks rolled through
shelling buildings to rubble.
Next came Russians, finally Americans.

People hid in basements between
walls humming with the weight
of the enormous machines
rumbling past their
front doors.

When the soldiers were gone
Francine’s entire family was dead.
The neighbors who remained buried
Momma, Pappa, and baby Michelle
in what was left of the cemetery.

But Francine had hidden Franklin
in her pretty pink room.
Arranged him in the chair Pappa gave
her for Christmas.

She placed weak tea and crumbled cookies
on the stool beside him
saying, “Momma told me I must
always look after you.”

  1. The loneliness of being left behind is with the body (I assume) of a baby brother is deeply disturbing… the detail with the weak tea and the crumbled cookies tell so much,,


  2. Dear Alicia,

    You captured the desolation war brings. Although I”m not quite sure who Franklin is.The word “arraigned” confuses me. The only meaning I know has to do with accusation and charging.

    Forgive me if I’m just being dense.




  3. Lynda says:

    There is so much going on in these lines, but it is Francine’s shock that really goes to my heart. Chilling and well written, Alicia.


  4. Sandra says:

    Yes I missed the title too. And I’m a great believer in the effective use of titles in 100 word fiction. Nice one, very poignant.


  5. This would make a great movie!


    • Thanks! It sort of stems from WW II movies where the tanks roll by bombed out houses in Europe. To me, they resemble front views of doll houses with furniture exposed for all to see.


  6. This here is an excellent piece of writing! Love how you portray fear and solitude a war brings!


  7. My heart goes out to Francine. She’s obviously in shock to do that to Franklin. This captures the horror of war powerfully and is very disturbing to read, Alicia. Well done.


  8. Very sad and haunting piece.


  9. draliman says:

    Sad story, really illustrated the plight of people living in the middle of a war zone. They might not much care who the soldiers are fighting for, they just know they bring death whichever side they’re on.


  10. K.Z. says:

    such misery. you wrote a very powerful piece… the image of the girl and the hidden body of her twin with their weak tea and crumbling cookies is so strong.


  11. wmqcolby says:

    Whew! Truly a sad and heartbreaking story. Awesome, Alicia! Bravo!


  12. Thank you – you make me blush.


  13. A terrible tragedy happened in that house in your story. Heart-breaking.
    Reminds me, alas, of what’s going on in Gaza and other parts of the world today.
    It’s always the innocent who die.
    Beautiful writing.


  14. Horus says:

    A very realistic imagery of the twins and the pain around – just hope Francine survives and gets over the loss and pain !


  15. I’m terrible with reading the titles (and didn’t give my stories any, for ages!), but Sandra is right, they add a lot to a story. Once I found it, I understood so much more of this already evocative tale. Very powerful, in light of all the war around us right now…


  16. dianathrelfo says:

    Your take on the photo prompt had such a strong impact. It’s heartbreaking and so authentic. Beautifully written.


  17. subroto says:

    Very powerful and disturbing. The ending really reinforces the tragedy and it’s impact on the protagonist.


  18. Blake says:

    I was very impressed with how you managed to make a piece so devastating out of something as small and innocuous as a child’s tea party. I think it’s the mundane details that make the image so vivid and therefore make the scene so painful, e.g. the fact that the tea is weak and the cookies are crumbled.


  19. Amy Reese says:

    Powerful story, Alicia. The twin at the end was eerie. I see her sitting next to his dead body having tea, isolated and alone for many days to come. Oh no! That is disturbing.


  20. plaridel says:

    great storytelling. it’s amazing how you can say a lot in a few words.


  21. rgayer55 says:

    What a sad tale, Alicia. Poor Francine, shellshocked and warped for life.
    Very strong writing.


  22. Sarah Ann says:

    Like Bjorn I assumed that Franklin hasn’t survived despite Francine’s efforts. There is an overwhelming feeling that she is on her own now. Terribly affecting – a stark painting of the horror of war on those who take no part.


  23. Maree Gallop says:

    Fantastic story, so well thought out and written. I really enjoyed reading.


  24. Lucy says:

    A very poignant story. So sad to be left behind, alone, feeling guilty for being alive. All that horror had to leave something a bit off. Well told. Lucy

    Liked by 1 person

  25. kirizar says:

    I missed the title as well. Although the fact that the twins are named Franklin and Francine ought to have been a clue. Without the ‘twin’ context, I pictured a little girl serving her teddy bear instead, as a comfort from war. The thought of a dead sibling next to her instead is less poignant and more heart-wrenching.


  26. seanfallon01 says:

    Very good work 🙂


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