Friday, September 27, 2013

Flash Fiction challenge early results

When I issued my flash fiction challenge a few weeks ago, I’d hoped a few readers would take up the gauntlet. I am pleased that some of you did, with some most interesting viewpoints and stories. So, to honor those who expended so much thought and effort in rising to my challenge, I plan to publish the stories that have met the challenge’s criteria here, beginning with this post. I’ll post them in the order I received the original manuscripts for the sake of fairness.
I plan to post them every Friday while they last. As I said, the deadline for this challenge isn’t until 15 December, so there’s still plenty of time to show us what you can do with flash fiction.

So, here’s the first. I hope you enjoy it and you are welcome to ooh and ahh profusely.
Birthday Gift
©2013 by Elizabeth Rowan Keith
Chatting over a cup of tea with my next door neighbor is a pleasant part of most Saturdays.  We both looked forward to it.  This visit, with the holiday season approaching, the conversation turned to gifts.
“What’s the strangest gift you ever received?” asked my neighbor as I sipped my tea.
I thought a moment, and then said,  “That might be a camouflage machete scabbard.”
“Oh, you’re kidding,” she replied.
“No, it was a birthday gift.  My boyfriend at the time came to the door with this unwrapped, folded piece of camouflage nylon in his hand.  I said, ‘What’s this?’  He said, ‘It’s your birthday present.’  I said, ‘What is it?’  He said, ‘It’s a scabbard for a machete.’  I said, ‘I don’t own a machete.’  He said, ‘I do.’  And then he waited.  So I handed him the scabbard and said, ‘Here, then.’  He said, ‘Thank you.’  And then he left.  That was my birthday.”
My neighbor sat speechless.
“The story gets better,” I said.  “Not long after that, when he and I had broken up, the neighbors across the street told me they had seen him pick the scabbard out of their trash.”
“What’s the best gift he ever gave you?” asked my neighbor.
I smiled.  “This story.” 



  1. Enjoyed reading this. :)
    In her place I think I might have been tempted to buy a machete and wave it at him the next time he showed up.

  2. This is wonderful; made me shirk back, then mull the words through my head.

    Looking forward to more!