Thursday, August 16, 2012

CASUALTY OF WAR

This week's Friday Fictioneers' photo prompt is from Lura Helms. It's always fun to read the different imaginings that emanate from one photo. Here's my 100 word offering.
In the woods on the outskirts of town is the Tree of Life. Not to be confused with the original this one earned its name from a century of discarded oddities which have grown into its branches.

Jason and I carved our names into the bark the day before he left for Viet Nam. We’d marry when he returned.

When the final letter came my heart cratered to my stomach.

He’d met Trinh-Lee, his true love.

Today you can still read the crude print that says, “Jason loves Karen.”

Just below it, imbedded in the trunk, is my disengagement ring.



33 comments:

  1. Looks like I get to be first too. What a sappy story--no, just kidding. I couldn't pass up a tree sap pun opportunity. When you said he went to war, I expected the final letter to terminate the relationship, but not in the way it did. You fooled me--I like that in a story.

    Thanks for reading mine first. I feel truly honored. Here's my link for others
    http://russellgayer.blogspot.com/

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  2. Very nice. I can feel her pain. :-( I like "cratered to my stomach" and "disengagement ring."

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  3. Good story. "A century of discarded oddities which have grown into its branches..." more stories to be told.
    Like Russell, I too thought a different ending was coming. Trinh-Lee was every kid's true love over there. Jason got duped but got what he deserved for dumping Karen. That's my spin. Randy

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  4. Rocks!
    Well done!

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  5. Nice surprise...I expected him to have died, but no. The disengagement ring given to the engraved tree to hold was a marvelous touch.
    cheers,
    Lorelei
    http://westcoastwriters.blogspot.com/2012/08/fridayfictioneers-fork.html

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  6. Dear Rochelle,

    A Dear John letter in reverse. Great twist. "...my disengagement ring" is a great turn of phrase, if you will. A very sweet, then sad, but in no way sappy (Russell) story. I enjoyed the Tree of Life imagined by you. I think every town should have one.

    Aloha,

    Doug

    http://ironwoodwind.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/love-pays-the-butchers-bill/

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  7. Rochelle, I see you're up to your usual tricks with brilliant writing.Love your descriptions. On my way to link mine up now.

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  8. Great piece - didn't expect it to go that way at all. Well done.

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  9. Lovely story! I imagined the letter being the end of it all but I love how you take it further to express her pain.

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  10. Unexpected twist there, and I love the "cratered" phrase. "Disengagement" also has a fabulous "ring" to it. Well done (as always...)

    We're here with two this week:
    http://www.lazuli-portals.com/flash-fiction/the-horn-of-trust

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  11. Yes, must watch out for the scorned woman. Nice story. I'm sure she felt much better after that.

    Here's mine: http://unexpectedpaths.com/friday-fictioneers/thus-endeth-the-lesson/

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  12. Rochelle, you have a gift of weaving poignant tales. This is sad and beautiful. Loved it!

    --Jan
    http://janmorrill.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/fridayfictioneers-flashfiction-passages/

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  13. At first i thought the letter carried news of his death...glad he didn't die but then i was like no wait, how can he do that...NOT FAIR.

    Very well written Rochelle. You know how to tell captivating stories. Thank you so much for stopping by mine
    http://boomiebol.wordpress.com/2012/08/16/chidinma-friday-fictioneers-817/

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  14. Good story--I, like some of the others, anticipated the letter from the War Office but like your ending much better. Some image: the carved names above the ring--tells it all.

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  15. Ha Ha. Jason will now always sort of just 'hang' around on the old tree where he can feel right at home with his name carved there, and all the other oddities there. Good place to leave the ring. Good story. Yep. I wish I could explain away all my goofs and misspells or syntax errors in my writings on my aging deteriorating eyesight, or having 'senior' moment. Ha. But guess it all comes down to just plain ole careless boo boos. We'll all have to be one another's editor. LOL

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  16. A great story.
    Loved the idea of the 'imbedded disengagement ring' - had a feel of satisfying anger.

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  17. I would love to see this tree. What a great image! That embedded "disengagement" ring was potent.

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  18. A very good story, captivating to say the least. Well done. Mine is here: http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/fridayfictioneers-the-withered-flower/

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  19. I like it, it takes me through many emotions, but with the "disengagement ring" I feel she has moved on!

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  20. I liked the twist - I think that letter was harder to read than one announcing him KIA on many levels. Glad to see she moved on.

    One comment - "embedded" may be the right word in the last line.

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  22. Great story -- I expected a sad death notice; I would have never guessed what actually happened. Either way, poor girl.

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  23. Great story with an interesting twist, love the "disengagement."

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  24. I totally expected a different ending there. Way to go!

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  25. Good job on the unexpected ending! Thanks for stopping by on mine.

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  26. Ok...got it...however...we reversed gender. She got jilted and he (my Zach) got jilted. Maybe we should do some old-fashioned "matchmaking" and get them together. lol.

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  27. Well done and a nice twist at the end. Liked it a lot.

    http://adrarasdreams.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/fridayfictioneers-blogflash-day-17.html

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  28. I have to agree with all the other comments here. Expertly crafted, nice twist. Your main character really comes to life in such few words. Well done.

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  29. You never hear about the women left behind like that. Funny I was engaged when I joined the service and broke it off six months after getting to my ship. Luckily we were very best friends and were able to talk it out instead of breaking each other's heart. karen does not sound so lucky. Way to make one reflect. Great story. Thanks for commenting on mine.

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  30. Such a lot going on here in these few words, the trees history, their romance and her loss. It has made me wonder if she would have rather that he had died and also about the ring being found centuries later when the tree dies. Fascinating and thought provoking.

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  31. Replies
    1. Dear Hemangini,

      Thank you for reading and commenting. You can now find my blog and stories here: https://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

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