Short story: When we were seventeen

006“Mary-Anne, do you remember the tree by the river, when we were seventeen?”
“Who is this?”
“It’s me, of course,” said the man on the telephone.
“I don’t know who you are.” I said, but didn’t hang up.
“I recall you complained about the sun in your eyes, and that the dappled mare was baring her teeth. I told you she’s only jealous, so I could see your smile.”
“How did you get this number?”
“I know you haven’t forgotten. I know you think about it often,” he said, laughing in that infectious way he had when he was alive.


This piece of writing was inspired by the picture prompt provided by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for the Friday Fictioneers writing group. She is also our kind host for all our stories. Each week writers from around the world attempt to write 100 words (or so) and this week I’m spot on. This week I owe a huge debt to the musician Iron and Wine and his song ‘The Tree by the River‘.

I’d love to receive comments and constructive criticism. Click here to read other people’s stories inspired by this picture or to join in.

31 thoughts on “Short story: When we were seventeen

  1. Dear Claire,
    This phone on my desk (the one in the picture) is getting creepier by the minute. If this disconnected thing rings I’m coming after you and Sandra!
    Good job on your story. Great twist at the end.


  2. that was my first thought on the prompt, someone calling from the grave. but i never developed it and went a different route. but i’m glad you went this route. well done.


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