He Rings The Bell Once (Flash Fiction)

Thank you, Priceless Joy, for hosting this Flash Fiction challenge for Aspiring Writers (75 – 175 words) and you, Ellespeth’s friend, for providing the inspiring photo prompt this week. If you haven’t heard of or joined this challenge, please take the time to check out PJ’s blog for more details and entertaining entries. [This is also in response to the Daily Post’s writing prompt “Blogger With a Cause“: Mental Illness Awareness.]



Cal stands outside a three-story, beachfront Bed & Breakfast. He lived here once upon a time. At least, that’s what everyone’s saying.

He grips a picture with an address on the back. Eight orphan boys smirk up at him, flexing their biceps.

He rings the bell once, then twice. Footsteps rush up behind him through the sand. He whips around.

The woman’s sharp, brown eyes stare straight into his. A scar travels diagonally across her face. Her black hair shimmers in the sunlight.

“Er . . . hi.” He extends his hand.

She doesn’t shake it. Tears brim in her eyes. She blinks them away and crosses her arms.

He crunches the picture in his fist, cursing Dr. Green for making him intrude into her life. She already looks like her day’s gone to hell. “Listen, I don’t know if you’ve spoken to an idiot named Dr. Green, but he sent me here . . . my name’s Cal. I’m not sure if you . . . if he’s—”

She throws herself into his arms. He freezes up.

“Of course he sent you here.” She cries into his shoulder.

Cal grimaces and pulls away.

(185 words . . . 😮 )

18 comments on “He Rings The Bell Once (Flash Fiction)

  1. Oh what’s next? Will he be able to recognize her?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love stories that can go in so many different directions.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, I’m glad to read you’re planning to continue with this. I want to know what their story is! It’s an intriguing beginning 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Excellent! I didn’t want it to end. I wanted him to recognize her, love her and wrap his arms around her and cry… so..maybe next week??

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What an interesting start. I am intrigued to know more. Great take on the prompt.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s an intriguing introduction to your new story, Izzy. You’ve depicted both characters so well that now we’re all dying to know what happens next. The scar on the woman’s face is an added area of interest.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A great beginning..looking forward to learning more. Apparently she was expecting him and what is her story? The mention of a scar on her face must have a story behind it.


  8. I too am intrigued, Izzy, and would love to read more. There is obviously quite a story behind these two characters. You leave many unanswered questions. A fascinating beginning. 🙂


  9. Lovely story..quiet intriguing.


  10. interesting, I like your take on the picture. Can’t wait to learn who the woman is…and who Cal is!


  11. Intriguing, so many unanswered questions, glad you’re continuing next week


  12. Ohhhhh!!! And?? How does her story intersect that of the orphaned boys? What’s causing her to seem so sad?
    Wonderful stuff here!
    I like your style and the way you are gently leading us on.


  13. Izzy, you know by now that I like to drop by occasionally just to leave a personal message for participants of the FFfAW challenge. I want you to know how grateful I am for your continued participation and to let you know how much I enjoy reading your stories. I know the others do as well. Again, thank you, for your continued friendship and loyalty.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Wow, this was amazing, Izzy. So many questions I want answering. Loved it as usual!


  15. Wonderful beginning to the story… now I need to go locate its other half!

    Liked by 1 person

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