Swoop – Friday Fictioneers

Their faces glowed, huddling around crackling heat, not because of an oddly calming nip in the air, but that a campfire was rare.

Tommy loaded five marshmallows on his hanger. Dangling them deeper into the fire, he anticipated the charred effect and gooey center, too impatient to unite with graham crackers and chocolate.

Two owls swooped around the oak, and disappeared into the velvet night. They returned in a reverse course, telephone wires their branches, and hooted back and forth underneath a diamond-chipped sky.

Building a fire pit on the front lawn was the best thing his dad ever did.

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Genre: General Fiction (100 words)

Photo Copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

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I needed to write a happy story, so no, Tommy’s toys were not burned in the fire.

Thanks to the lovely Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting and for the photo. She had a birthday recently, so Happy Happy Birthday to Rochelle!

For more stories from the Fictioneers, click here. If you’d like to join in, click here for instructions.

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49 thoughts on “Swoop – Friday Fictioneers

  1. We do need to write happy stories now and then don’t we? Oh, who am I kidding. One or two people have complained that my stories are always depressing, that somebody always dies. To which I always respond, “where’s the drama in happy?” And, there’s this little nugget, in odd ways, I don’t think my stories are eternally happy. There’s always a kernel of hope and light in them. As in, yes, life sucks, but people still find a way to go on and live their lives with hope and dreams.

    Ah, never mind. It’s a Friday evening. I’ve had a couple of beers. I’m in a contemplative spot — which is frequently where I reside. Your quick little piece of flash here was nice. And then your explanation hit me. I want to see the version where Tommy’s toys are burned in the fire. 🙂

    Ramble over.

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    1. Ah, tis why the news is always so sad and depressing, and tis why I wanted happy. I want to see the headlines, and then I regret that I saw them, Mark. Everything seems to be hanging in the balance. I think happy works for a flash, as does humor. For the long haul, I think people want more that they can relate to. But you mention hope, and that makes all the difference I’m sure.

      Contemplative is good. My explanation only came after I wrote this, and my husband suggested the burning of toys, but no…not little Tommy’s toys… not this time! Saved by the word count. Thanks so much for your comments. That was fun! 🙂

      Ramble anytime.

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      1. I’m super late with my story this week. I’ll probably post it withing the next hour or so though. We just moved into our new house and I start my new job tomorrow, so there’s a lot of other things to do. Still, I can’t miss FF, right? 🙂

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      2. I’ve been that late on a just a normal week, David. So, let’s just say I’m impressed. Technically, you have until Tuesday to do a FF. You’re way ahead of schedule then! You have your hands full. Best of luck with your new start. I’ll be by to read your story. 🙂

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    1. Ah, I think must be the marshmallows, or maybe the owls. My idea was that family is there all huddled together. I was going to include different family members having different experiences, but it got too long! Word count and all. 🙂

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  2. Yes, Amy, with Friday Fictioneers we tend to anticipate a bad ending. I agree that happy stories are necessary, especially to counteract what we constantly hear in the media. People seem much more willing to share sad or horrible stories than happy ones. So up with happy!! And speaking of that, I hope you’re having a happy weekend.

    janet

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    1. Thanks, Janet. I’ve been feeling quite sad lately due to all the bad news. There’s so much of it. I could have easily have gone with a more tragic story with this prompt, but I wasn’t in the mood. So, up with happy! I like that. And I hope you’re having a fine weekend yourself!

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  3. This was right up my alley. I wrote poetry for 20 years, but gave it up because my wife said my poems were all depressing. I didn’t want that to be my writing legacy so I did a 180 and started writing short story humor. I have found it extremely fulfilling. Scenes like your happen every day all around the world and no one thinks they’re important enough to record. I think they are precious. Well done.

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    1. Your comments made my day, Russell! Awww, thank you! I think it’s those little things that people remember that stick. You might not even think they’re that important when they happen, but they are great to return to, like a warm, fuzzy blanket. I’m so happy you switched to writing humor. You do it so well. I would have never had guessed that you wrote sad poems, although that’s part of life too. Once in a while it’s so nice to drop that. Thanks so much.

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  4. Dear Amy, I love s’mores and when we run out of graham crackers, I love Marshmallows! Delicious. What a nice story and good memory the son will grow up and do with his children! Good job! Nan 🙂

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  5. Dear Amy,

    Tommy will have many happy memories if this time as I do of campfires in scouting camp outs. Marshmallows charred black on the outside practically liquid on the inside. I feel sticky and happy at the thought.

    Nicely done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

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    1. I never went on a scouting camp out. I chose dance classes instead, I guess. I do have memories charring the heck out of marshmallows. I’m glad you feel sticky. That’s perfect, Rochelle. Those sticky moments have never left me. It’s a good sticky. Thanks so much.

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  6. This wee piece warms the heart to the very soul. You’ve evoked a lot of happy memories for many folk I, I would say. I could feel the warmth of the fire from my toes to the tip of my nose and it brought a big smile to my face.

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    1. Ahh, thanks, Michelle! You warm my heart to my very soul with your sweet comments. I’m so happy I could bring a smile to your face. That was my only hope. When it’s cold, I want a warm fire right away. I guess I should start cleaning out that fireplace, although truly, it won’t get here for a couple more months, if ever!

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    1. Thanks, Bjorn. Some people are lucky enough to live in the wilderness and live in a beautiful spot. That wouldn’t be me, but maybe someday. Thanks for mentioning that, because that’s exactly what I wanted to capture.

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  7. I like to read a happy tale once in a while.This is a cute story. I rarely write happy, so it’s nice to get a break from the drama and sadness. I’m thinking Tommy probably burned his toys later in the evening once the marshmallows were eaten. I find that throwing things in the fire is irresistible to some people.

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    1. I’m glad I could treat you to a happy tale, Lisa, full of marshmallows! You’re cracking me up. Tommy threw his toys in after all, huh? I’m certain you’re right about the fire. It’s a big draw for some.

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    1. Ha ha, Frank. I did consider that very move…to have owls swoop down and steal a marshmallow. Maybe they would like it. Who doesn’t like marshmallows?! I’ll never forget the day at the beach when a seagull stole my graham crackers! The whole package! He was not bashful.

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  8. Amy, I was sure I’d written a comment on this story. I don’t know what happened. Anyway, it seems that fire pits are popular home improvements. My son built one in his lawn. I don’t keep up with the latest in home improvements. Good gentle story with a great happy ending. Well written. 🙂 —Susan

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    1. That’s funny, Susan. I thought you did, too, and I thought I replied. Ha! Maybe we’re getting our weeks mixed up. They do tend to run together. My son wants a fire pit, too, but we haven’t quite built it yet. Of course, you can always buy an expensive one, but if you want to make it yourself, I don’t think it has to cost much. Thanks for your nice comments. 🙂

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