In high school we stuck the stickers from our lunchtime fruit to a wall. We’d add to it, a few at a time, until it became an elaborate mural, a monument to how much fibre we were getting.
So my mum surprised me with this weird time capsule parcel yesterday. It contained long-forgotten photos, love letters, birthday cards, scribbles and other detritus. It also contained a handful of drawings from my teenage years. Sur-fucking-real!
These are extremely crude (let’s just say I’ve improved since), but I still wanted to share them. Apologies for the image quality. Each page was marred by a big fat crease down the middle and it’s apparent I had a penchant for featherweight pencil strokes, which don’t show up well in photographs.
Flash! Friday is in its second year! This is my response to the seventh prompt (the above picture) since their anniversary. One hundred and fifty words was the limit (with a ten-word leeway). We were also required to incorporate ‘Destiny’ as a theme.
* * *
‘No Regrets’ (158 words)
His sixtieth had arrived, but Charlie was alone, thinking of 1935, of Pearl. He withdrew the framed picture, hidden in a study drawer, and placed it on the mantel. Looking at it, he felt ill. Estranged daughters, three divorces, and a career spent manufacturing soap, yet this regret eclipsed them all.
The statue stood in all its monochromatic glory. Not an especially romantic spot, but it was where Charlie and Pearl had promised to meet following his tour of duty. His reasons for not showing were trivial at best.
Depleted, Charlie touched a hand to the photo. The image rippled at his touch and he flinched. What was this?
Drawing on reserves of courage, he offered a finger, then a hand, then his entire arm. The portal received him like a body of water.
* * *
This world was colourless. Beneath the statue, an incredulous Charlie surveyed his twenty-something body. Pearl was smiling and waiting for him across the way.