One Way Ticket

Posted: November 12, 2014 in Friday Fictioneers

PHOTO PROMPT -Copyright-Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Zelda-Rae had been on the bus for twenty-two hours. Her back hurt. Her butt hurt.
Mathias bought the ticket saying, “Get outta’ here. Don’t come back.”
This just days after she’d told him she was pregnant. Damn him.
Didn’t tell her where she was going. Knew she couldn’t read or write.
Could hardly speak English. Now she was in some city on the beach
packed with hundreds of people. She smelled bad. Her clothes were filthy.
Mathias hadn’t let her pack anything.
She folded onto the curb. A man threw a quarter at her feet.
Zelda-Rae began to cry.

  1. wmqcolby says:

    Holy COW, Alicia! What an incredible characterization! You nailed it BIG! Her attitude, everything is expressed superbly. THIS is what it’s all about!

    So? You gonna write us some more about her? I see a fascinating expanded story coming through.

    This is GOLDEN! Bravissimo!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sandra says:

    You captured the desolation/desperation perfectly. Well done.


  3. Alicia, what a terrible situation and so well described. I could feel her aloneness.


    Liked by 1 person

  4. J says:

    Oh, ouch. Poor Zelda-Rae — that quarter would have felt like a punch to the gut. 😦
    Well written though — very well done.


  5. draliman says:

    That Mathias needs a good thumping, what a nasty fellow. What a frightening predicament to find herself in.
    I love the names you used for your characters.


  6. Dear Alicia,

    How very tragic. I’m guessing that Zelda-Rae is either a mail-order bride or the victim of human trafficking. Either way…beautifully written.




  7. Discarded like that.. what a terrible tragedy you depict.. what sadness. and what a bastard.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Alicia,

    This whole piece was killer, but the best nail in the coffin was the quarter tossed. So very good.



    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ellespeth says:

    This really ached my heart. What a jerk Mathias is. She’ll be better off without him in the end. Great piece!


  10. Wow,what a sad plight. Terrific ending!


  11. rgayer55 says:

    Whoa, this is way to true. Connie and I were blown away by the number of homeless people we saw out there, especially down near the Santa Monica pier. Terribly sad. Your writing is extremely tight and powerful. Like Doug said, the quarter was the best nail in the coffin. 5 stars!


  12. Thank you. Those words mean a lot. I’ve been work on “short and sweet” since I tend to over write often. The more people say about Hollywood the less I want to visit – if I ever had to begin with. Alicia


  13. subroto says:

    A sad, bleak and desolate scenario was captured really well in this story.


  14. wildbilbo says:

    Ooh, this is brutal. You captured humanity at its bleakest. Really well written.


  15. A well told but brutal story. Homelessness isnt always a case of a person making a decision to put themselves in that position – its a shame more dont realise this.


  16. Honie Briggs says:

    I liked everything about this tragic story. It’s all too real, isn’t it? Mathias is contemtpable, however, it really will depend on what happens next as to whether he actually did Zelda-Rae a big favor.


  17. OMG…that is so sad. She should find the church!


  18. Margaret says:

    Brilliantly told. You get right inside her predicament, and so economically. I read what you said about over-writing. I’m on the same learning path, and finding that Friday Fictioneers is a huge help – for the practice, and for the many good examples of the craft to be found here – just like yours.


  19. Fantastic, Alicia! The line by line descriptions leave the readers feeling as desperate and alone as Zelda-Rae. Just beautifully written!


  20. Sarah Ann says:

    What a nice guy. But in her present circumstances it’s difficult to say she’s better off without him. A well told tale of woe.


  21. Amy Reese says:

    What a terribly desperate situation you depicted, Alicia. I think it’s probably all too common in sunny Hollywood. Well told story!


  22. Alicia, I’m guessing she’s mentally challenged. She wouldn’t be human traffic or she’d be in someone’s possession and/or on drugs. She sounds like a poor girl who was let go from an institution and no one wanted her. They don’t want to keep them long these days. I read that a lot of homeless people are mentally challenged. It’s shameful that happens in a wealthy western country. Good and realistic story. Well written. — Susan


  23. What a great story, your pace and characterization were spot on. Congrats!


  24. Melanie says:

    Fantastic story telling.


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