Thursday 5 September 2013

Strike, a little late

Moving house does two things. It makes you forget all about the other world - that virtual space you occupy. And it makes you wonder about the real space you've created around you. Why do I have so many mugs? How am I going to find a place for that? It's both refreshing and frustrating.

So, after moving to our house by the river in Wasserbillig, Luxembourg, and realising what a wonderful decision we made to live there now that we have a lovely new bed to watch the swans on the river from, Forest Bird is back. 

I've missed writing my flash fiction pieces, for Trifecta and Julia's Place. However, last Monday as I was waiting for my husband, parents and truck to arrive from England with all our things, I checked the week's prompt on my phone and set about writing something on my lap top, sitting on the window sill. I got about 80% of it down before they arrived and then the computer wasn't opened for another eight days. I finished it yesterday. 

Last week's prompt was turkey. The definition: three successive strikes in bowling.

Here is what I wrote. 

Dirty War

Act 2, Scene 3: Bar Wasserbillig, 1969.

Marta, older but still beautiful, is behind the bar. Wilhelm and Kristian are sitting at a small table. Stage right is an old jeux de quills. Wilhelm has just told a story. 

Kristian: [Laughing] Dear friend! I had forgotten that! Though I think you take advantage of my bad memory to make your stories end with you always winning. Isn’t it?
Wilhelm: Drink up. Let’s play. Once before my train.
Kristian: You’re going back? No! Stay! What, at this age, do we have to rush for? We must catch up. [Quieter and more serious] Properly.
Wilhelm: [Looking at Kristian] I know.  

Wilhelm goes to the bowling alley and starts putting the skittles in place. Marta looks at Kristian and smiles, raising her eyebrows towards Wilhelm as he struggles. Kristian nods, mouths thank you and goes to help Wilhelm. 

Kristian: Youngest first, am I right?
Wilhelm: Well then…

Wilhelm takes a ball and steps in front of his friend to bowl. It’s a strike. Marta claps and resets the skittles.

Kristian: As always! Beginner’s luck! 

Kristian takes a ball and does the same. He turns around celebrating.

Kristian: You have the pressure. Remember the last tournament of the war? 

Wilhelm smiles and throws. Another strike. 

Wilhelm: I do. Let’s see what you’ve got. You always surprised me somehow. [Whispers] Always. 

Kristian takes a ball and throws: no strike. 

Kristian: I tried…  He pats Wilhelm on the shoulder.

Wilhelm: I go for a goose.

Wilhelm makes another strike. Kristian claps loudly.

Kristian: You mean turkey.

Wilhelm: What? [He seems distracted and looks at his watch.] I am afraid I must go. It’s late and… Anja will be worried for me.

Kristian: Stay. They look intensely at each other.

Wilhelm: I… can’t.

Wilhelm bids farewell to Marta and Kristian follows him off stage left. You can hear short goodbyes. Kristian enters and sits on the first chair wearily.

Marta: Was that..?

Wilhelm: Yes. The love of my life. 

You can read other entries and winners from last week and check out this week's challenge by clicking here:


  1. I loved the dialogue. I always think dialogue is so tricky and sometimes struggle with making it believable. You did a wonderful job illustrating that scene between Wilhelm and Kristian. Hope you continue to enjoy Luxembourg. I am jealous! :)

  2. Thank you so much for the read and kind comment. I've never tried writing a scene before so decided to have a bash. Glad it worked for you.


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