Although I enjoy reading her posts, I’ve not participated (officially) in Rochelle’s Friday Fictioners challenges. So, I thought this week I’d give it a try. Here is my 100 word story.


copyright – Jennifer Pendergast

The Grinch’s Eyeball

“I’m scared!”

The child shrieked as he clung to the woman’s leg, scooting along the marble floor, refusing to stand. Embarrassed, looking more than a little haggard, she kept her composure as onlookers glared. Across the courthouse lobby, like a sentry guarding her only escape from the dagger stares, stood a sign. The elevator was out of order. The woman reached down to lift the child, wishing she’d never taken that moonlight stroll down the garden path into the life she now desperately wanted to put behind her.

 “I’m scared too,” she whispered, and up they climbed into the eyeball.

61 thoughts on “Friday Fictioners On Wednesday

  1. annisik51 says:

    I like your multi-layered take on the spiral. Welcome to FF! Ann

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Hi Ann. Glad you like it. I appreciate the welcome.

  2. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Honie,

    Let me join the throng in welcoming you to FF. I found your story to be comforting. Mothers and their children are often left to navigate alone (together) the rocks and shoals of life’s oceans. “I’m scared, too.” is an admission we all could do well to make to our children along the way. Your title was great and the entire piece was well written.



    1. Honie Briggs says:

      True Doug, we all could do well to admit this to our children just before we put on our brave face. Thanks for the compliment.

  3. Joe Owens says:

    I am so glad you joined the Looney Tunes crew. Well, actually it is called the Friday Fictioneers. Your story is one that I am sure more than one parent has known. Sometimes the consequences aren’t what is expected.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Thanks Joe. That story, or variations of it, belongs to a lot of parents.

  4. Well told, and I really liked the closing line. Comforting in a weird way I would think.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Not weird at all. I think comforting is an accurate word to describe that closing line. Something comforting is implied. The woman, taking the scared child in her arms, acknowledges his fear and her own fear with a whisper. Her tender and yet bold act gives the impression that everything will be alright.
      Thank you for your comment.

  5. petrujviljoen says:

    Of course the ‘eye’ is clear. This prompt held many possibilities. And the surveillance camera within the eye adds to the bleakness. I thought it was well written. Thanks for joining. Single mothers and children and courtrooms … bleak and scary stuff. A man as a judge, probably … better stop now or I’ll start a new story!

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      The possibilities are endless. That says a lot right there. And you are correct, there is more to this story. Your comment is much appreciated.

  6. I love this. So hard to write so much with so few words. You built the mom’s tension and described the scene so vividly. Last line is a real winner.
    Gold star!

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      My first Gold star!!! It really does take choosing just the right words to make it work. Thank you so much!

  7. elappleby says:

    Hi Honie
    I saw an eyeball too the first time I looked at the prompt. Really enjoyed your story 🙂

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      That eyeball! Glad you enjoyed the story.

  8. artsifrtsy says:

    Nice! I love the eyeball – perspective. I find that reading fictioners posts thwarts my natural need for closure – that same need that lead me to watch the entire Ken Burns Civil War series without a break even though I knew the outcome.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      LOL! Too funny Lorri. Yeah, even though the 100 words are supposed to encapsulate a beginning, middle, and end, I find there is always more to the story. (than meets the eyeball) HA!

      1. artsifrtsy says:

        So true – I think it’s a great exercise though and some of them really hook me like this one. Of course I watched Lost for six seasons and that didn’t clear all my questions up either – were they dead on the island?

  9. elmowrites says:

    I’m left with a lot of questions about the courtroom. I hope her regrets are about whatever lies inside, and not the decision to have the child.

    1. elmowrites says:

      grr.. hit send before I was done! I wanted to add that the last line is great.

      1. Honie Briggs says:

        Thanks for your comment. I think because she takes the child in her arms and whispers that she too is scared shows having the child isn’t a regret but her reason to choose to face her fear of what awaits in the courtroom…and beyond.

  10. rgayer55 says:

    You created plenty of suspense and tension while leaving it to the reader’s imagination as to why they were in the courthouse. divorce, murder trial, etc.???

  11. acflory says:

    You know that would make a great opening to a novel. 🙂 Just saying…

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Hmmmm I was thinking the same thing. Minus the eyeball reference. Unless I decide to use pictures.

      1. acflory says:

        -grin- You could always have it as the cover!

        1. Honie Briggs says:

          oh, clever. very clever.

          1. acflory says:

            -takes a bow- 😀

  12. I’m glad I’m not the only one that thought it looked a bit like an eye. 🙂

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      It’s the first thing I thought when I saw it.

      1. rgayer55 says:

        That was my first impression as well, but then went a strangley different direction.

  13. C. Patrick says:

    Yup, I very much like that last line, but I kept wanting to read it literally. Perhaps that’s just the horror writer in me. Heh. Pulling it back to the perspective of the child would indeed be a good way of clarifying that, if clarification is what you’re looking for. And welcome to the Fictioneers. I’m relatively new here, myself. 🙂

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Thanks for the welcome. I appreciate your comment.

  14. kdillmanjones says:

    Nice work! There’s so much I imagine as I read it.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      It’s great to hear it sparked your imagination.Thanks!

  15. JackieP says:

    Wecome to the world famous Fictioneers Honie! I loved the story. You can feel the woman’s fear as well as the boy’s. Well done with the ‘eye’.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Thanks Jackie. Yeah, both scared for very different reasons. There’s more to that story. 😉

  16. I too welcome you and liked the way you melded the first line with the last. The ‘eyeball’ a very apt definition.

    1. Yes. You brought the story full circle which is A MUST in story telling. Good job.

    2. Honie Briggs says:

      I appreciate the welcome. 😉

  17. Impower You says:

    That’s really clever. Two thumbs up. 🙂 I like the photo too.

      1. Impower You says:

        You’re welcome.

  18. Dear Honie,
    Welcome to Friday Fictioneers. I’m happy you joined us and hope you’ll make a habit of it. 😉 More addictive than pistachios.
    Your story’s engaging and well written. Some days with small children can feel like horror stories. You’ve captured that. My sons are all grown now and I can look back on those Grinch days and laugh.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      I appreciate the welcome and the heads up about the addictive nature of your challenges. I’ve watched from afar for far too long, but will only participate when I have something worth contributing. No forcing it here. Small children, oh the days (and nights)!! Mine too are adults, and you’re right, we can laugh about it now. But to be a woman in desperation with a small child…is no laughing matter. My mind went directly there the moment I looked at the picture. I don’t know why. It happens that way for me sometimes.

  19. Welcome, Honie. I particularly liked what you did with the “eyeball” and your title as well.


    1. Honie Briggs says:

      To a kid looking up from the floor, I think that’s what it would look like. At least it did to me. Thanks Janet.

  20. Nicely done.
    Fascinating take on it.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Grazie! I’m not Italian, I just like to pretend to speak it sometimes.

      1. De rien, madame.
        UnElephant n’est pas Francais, mais …….

  21. denmother says:

    It is an ominous staircase – that was my initial reaction as well. Great story.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Ominous, daunting and one more hurdle standing in the way of that very brave woman. I’m just sayin’.
      Thanks DenMother.

  22. claireful says:

    Fantastic last line – anyone would be scared. I was only a little confused on the second when you use ‘she’, I thought you were still talking about the child because it was the child who has been refusing to stand at the end of the previous line, but a very minor point. A lovely story with a real sense of place.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      good point. I should have used my original words, ‘as HE clung to the woman’s leg’…that’s better, I think.

  23. Brigitte says:

    I agree with Moon — there’s much going on between the lines here. I like the name of your short and how the pic does indeed look like an eyeball. Why is she there? Is the child hers? Hmmm.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Brigitte~~I think you know my writing well enough to make an accurate guess where this story is going.
      The first thing I thought when I saw the photo was…scary eyeball! HA!

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Awesome comment! Thank you~~He Who.

  24. There are alot of lines to read between on this flash starting with the stroll down the garden path.
    Glad you joined in this week!

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Thank you. Yes, the space between is where the real story is. Nice of you to stop by.

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