I have been nominated by Nowathome to participate in the 5 Day Black and White Challenge and by Lrod to participate in the 5 Photos – 5 Stories Challenge. This post is my day 4 response to both. I again managed to stay below 500 words. Yay! Today’s story is 450.
The feel of the cobblestones beneath his feet transported him straight back to childhood and David couldn’t help but reminisce as he trod the familiar route. There’d been many happy times growing up here, a host of good memories. He’d climbed the quiet lane to Minto and Jen’s house so many times, eager to see if his friends were free to play, Goose and his two sister’s usually trailing close behind.
They’d been a close-knit group – the only children in their mainly middle-aged neighbourhood. As the eldest, he’d always been the one their parents left in charge. They used to race down the hill to the corner shop where they’d spend their pocket money on penny sweets and silly toys. There was a park around the corner where they’d play football and see who could get highest on the swings. They seemed to be endless days filled with laughter.
He was thirteen when everything changed. That was when Minto ran in front of the car.
He only came back once a year now, on Minto’s birthday. He had his well-paid job in London with his bachelor pad full of mod-cons; his parents had long since moved away. There was little to draw him back, or that’s what he told himself. The truth was, the feelings of guilt had never really left. He had been in charge of the younger kids. He hadn’t seen the car until it was too late. All of his memories were tainted with a bittersweet tang – Minto would never again run on the cobblestones.
He drew a steadying breath as he stood once again before the familiar door. After a brisk knock it was opened by his grinning friend.
“David – you made it!”
“Hey, Minto. Wouldn’t miss it for the world.”
Despite being paralysed from the waist down, Minto’s enthusiasm for life had not been dimmed. His wheelchair sped around the old house with ease – fifteen years-worth of modifications making the place his own. An electric wheelchair sat beside the front door for when he needed to venture onto the hilly streets outside.
“Minto? What a flash from the past! You haven’t called me that in years.”
“Sorry. Tim. I’ve just been… remembering.”
“Ah. You know, I don’t mind you calling me Minto – not as long as I can call you Buzz.”
“Then we can tell you to buzz-off,” Jen laughed at the old joke, entering the room and giving him a smile. “As long as nobody ever again thinks to call me ‘Bean’!”
David smiled back, feeling the familiar old flutter as he looked at her. His sense of guilt eased with their unchanged banter.
Maybe he did need to visit more often, after-all.
The black and white pictures for this challenge really seem to be inspiring melancholic stories. Sorry if I’m depressing anyone. On a positive note, though, I’d originally planned for at least one of the characters in this story to die…
Today’s photo was taken in Lincoln (UK) last November on one of the little side streets around Steep Hill. I don’t really know much about the area – not even whether there’s a corner shop or a play park anywhere nearby.
Before anyone says anything about the angle of the lamp post or wall – that is actually how they look! The whole area is really uneven. I rather love the fact that nothing seems to stand up straight. 🙂
The rules of the 5 day black and white challenge are:
1) post a black & white photo daily for 5 days
2) Invite someone different to participate each day.
The rules of the 5 Photos-5 Stories challenge are:
1) To post a photo every day for 5 days
2) To write a story to accompany your photo for 5 days (this can be fiction or non-fiction, a page, a paragraph or a poem)
3) To nominate a different person each day
My nomination for day 4 is desleyjane at Musings of a Frequently Flying Scientist. If you haven’t yet checked out her blog, go and do so! She has some wonderful photography and also shares great little science experiments that you can do with children. 🙂
There is no obligation to accept the challenge but if you wish to do so you can choose to do the 5 Day Black and White Challenge, the 5 Photos – 5 Stories Challenge or a combination of the two as I have done. Enjoy. 🙂