Sunday writing chat prompts for 4 Apr 2021

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    • #7240

      The Sunday Brunch Prompted Writing Chat is an opportunity each week to test your skills at writing under pressure — or to have some fun without the need to be brilliant — or both!

      The prompts are intended as both as a challenge and a starting point, open to creative interpretation. You can use these as an excuse to write anything that comes to mind, whether it’s fiction or creative non-fiction or a mixture of both. You can write a separate piece for each prompt, or try to link them all together in a single story.

      If you join in the chat, you can add “an excuse to complain about unfair prompts” to the entertainment, too. But even if you can’t attend the chat session, feel free to give the prompts a try anyway (and leave your responses, comments, or complaints in this thread if you like).

      This week’s prompts are posted below.

      1. Use the following five words: jump, extension, waterfall, pile, monopoly. (10 min)

      2. Use the phrase, “Can we afford that?” (10 min)

      3. Write about an auction. (10 min)

    • #7241

      There was a knock at the door.

      “Can you get that? My lap’s full.”

      So Ravyn put her laptop aside and went to the door. She figured out which of the two masks hanging from the handle was hers, put it on, and opened. The hallway was vacant, but there was a small bag at her feet. She picked it up.

      “Who was it?” Renee asked.

      “The chocolate fairy, it looks like,” said Ravyn. “Two identical boxes of chocolates.”

      “You remember…” they both said at the same time.

      “Yeah,” said Ravyn. “Andy sent me chocolates on Easter, with some silly poem about my chocolate colored eyes. He… thought I was sweet or something. He never did figure out what the OMG Chocolate! thing is all about.”

      “And I got a box from a secret admirer whose name was undisclosed but her initials were Janet Mueller,” said Renee.

      “Aaaand Mom wanted to know all about our love lives,” said Ravyn.

      “Um, no,” said Renee. “There was such a waterfall of conclusions we let her jump too, all of them wrong.”

      “Well, not all of them,” said Ravyn. She smiled. “And all over a pile of chocolates.”

      “Let’s save some of these for…” Renee started.

      Ravyn was chuckling before the end of the sentence came. “Like we did then?”

      “That was part of the whole Andy’s never gonna know what chocolate is actually for thing,” said Renee. “Because even though he was your boyfriend…”

      “Nuh-uh!” said Ravyn, just like she had then.

      “You totally weren’t going to tell him anything,” Renee finished. “Maintain the monopoly on being the mystery girl or whatever.”

      “What was I thinking??” Ravyn asked herself, aloud.

      “You were thinking?” Renee said, smiling sweetly.

      “Prolly not, no,” Ravyn admitted. “But by extension, neither were you,” she added.

      “I so didn’t want Mom to figure out it was Janet sending me sweets,” said Renee. “So I did the obvious thing, since you were standing there holding a box of perfectly normal straight chocolates, and teased you mercilessly.”

      “D’you think it worked?” Ravyn asked,

      “I got you to blush… that much worked,” said Renee. “Mom was way smarter than we gave her credit for at age fifteen, though.”

      “Totally,” said Ravyn. “I wonder sometimes what they thought about us, the ‘rents. We were way more than a handful, or even two handfuls. Hands full. Something.”

      “Yeah, I can’t imagine how a couple of teenage girls could afford to have that conversation with their parents, right out loud,” said Renee. “Embarrassment is lethal at that age.”

      “And we seemed to have such a huge pile of stuff too be embarrassed about,” said Ravyn. “Including, to be sure, this. But we probably could have buried it under all the teenage angst.”

      “Might require thinking clearly, Little Miss Chocolate Eyes,” said Renee. She carefully set the box aside before howling with laughter.

      Ravyn joined in. “What a couple of… dunno what… we were. Teenagers? That might be what I wanna say.”

      “And a lot of less nice words,” said Renee. “Who knew the proverbial closet had chocolate in it?”

      Ravyn looked at her sister, and slowly raised a hand.

      “Oh. Well, there’s that,” said Renee.

      “There is, as you say, that,” said Ravyn. “Well, there was. It’s good to be too old for that kind of thing.”

      “I do still love chocolate,” said Renee.

      “With whiskey chasers?” said Ravyn. “It helps with the aftertaste.”

      “You don’t like chocolate kisses?” said Renee. Her open box had several of the candies.

      “Depends who’s offering?” said Ravyn.

      Renee smiled in a way that reminded Ravyn of a certain fifteen year old.

      “And whether there’s a counter-offer?” Renee suggested.

      “And whether there are parents watching?” Ravyn said.

      “And whether they’ll figure anything out about us from that watching?” said Renee.

      “Surely they must have known,” said Ravyn.

      “I’m Renee,” said Renee. “Stop calling me Shirley.”

      “Exactly what you said when we were fifteen and having this conversation,” said Ravyn. “Though it was in some more immediate tense, then.”

      “I guess we were a little old for grounding?” said Renee. “Maybe not, though. I’m sure I would have cried the whole time. Out of embarrassment, if not frustration and a thwarted teenage crush.”

      “D’you know what’s become of Janet? Have you kept in touch?” Ravyn asked her sister.

      “Married a guy, cut me out of her life,” said Renee. “It’s probably just as well.”

      “I guess,” said Ravyn.

      “How about Andy?” said Renee.

      “Same,” said Ravyn. “Married a guy…”

      “Wait, what?” said Renee.

      “After trying several girls with no luck,” said Ravyn.

      “Your stories are always one step wilder than mine are,” said Renee.

      “Nuh-uh!” said Ravyn, grinning.

    • #7242
      Sue
      Participant

      TAMERA

      “So what are you going to do now that this is all over?”

      “To be honest, I don’t think I’ve allowed myself to even think about it.” He took a sip of his wine. “It was as if I was afraid that making plans would jinx the outcome.”

      “On paper there was enough evidence that we had to recommend charges, but none of us actually believed Sunny.” I played with the charm at the bottom of my wineglass. It was the boot from Monopoly. “She seemed too smug and jumped at any question that could cast you in a bad light. She kept piling it on as thick as she could, even though her mother insisted you were a nice guy.”

      “All because her mother wanted out and wanted me to be the bad guy and do the breaking up so she didn’t have to.”

      My heart went out to this guy. After all the BS, he was still standing. “So back to my question? Only let me rephrase it. What are some of the things you’d like to do now that you’re free and clear?”

      RICK

      “What are some of the things you’d like to do now that you’re free and clear?” Tamera asked.

      “I think first off, I’m going to sell anything I convinced myself to buy to give the kids a better childhood. It was never a question of ‘Can we afford that?’ I could. Well, I could while she was working and paid for the day-to-day stuff for her kids.”

      She tilted her head. “Like what?”

      “I have a thirty-eight foot travel trailer, a side-by-side ATV, a four-wheel-drive SUV to haul the trailer and the four of us.”

      “You bought all that for them?”

      “I upgraded what I had to accommodate them.” I took another sip of my wine. Oddly, I wasn’t as agitated as I would have expected from this conversation. “I had a perfectly good twenty-foot trailer to take camping, but she found it cramped and didn’t enjoy roughing it that much. I also had a single seat ATV but I couldn’t take more than one person with me and I loved taking them to picnic with me out at this waterfall I discovered out in Mission. Hence the bigger bike.”

      “So, everything you have now is just an extension of what you already had, you just needed to make room for them.” She nodded, understanding in her expression. “If you get rid of all these things what will you do?”

      “I’m sure my old trailer is long gone. I’ll probably find another one around the same size. I can’t take my current glamping behemoth into the back country.” I thought of my dust covered four-wheeler in the back of my garage. “I’ll sell the side by side and pull out my old bike and then sell the SUV. My truck is fine if I’m the only one going camping. I can haul my ATV in the box and be all set.”

      “Will you sell them privately or at auction?”

      “I’m in no hurry. I’ll probably trade in the trailer for a new one and sell the other two vehicles outright.”

      “And then you’ll be rid of her?”

      I hadn’t thought of it that way, but yes. Then I will be rid of the last of Lillian’s shadows. I clinked my wine glass against hers. “Yes, then I will be rid of her too and have reset my life.”

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