Published September 7, 2012 by rochellewisoff

Thanks to Piya Singh for this week’s photo prompt.

Here’s my offering for Friday Fictioneers. 100 words on the button this week. I can’t say that it came easy, but I think it conveys the story I was going after. 

And while you’re in the neighborhood, why not read my previous blog entry? It’s a good reminder for all of us who write to make every word count. 


Despite his outspoken arguments against the Confederacy, to please Father, Amelia’s twin brother James enlisted. A year later he perished at Clark’s Mill.      

Afterward she spent afternoons in the abandoned slave quarters reading Andrew’s letters in secret. The last one came seven months ago.  

 “When the war’s over we’ll live in New York…”

Had she lost him, too?

From the corner of the shack a Union soldier stumbled toward her, his face chocolate brown beneath his rumpled cap. Her knees buckled. He caught her and crushed her against his broad chest.

Breathless, she devoured his bronze lips. “Andrew. Dearest Andrew.” 

44 comments on “CEASE-FIRE

  • Rocks! What a terrific story. I’m usually not into romance stories, but I found myself fantasizing about the future of Andrew and amelia. Thanks for the little sweet read.


  • Your love stories are always beautiful and touching. This one is no exception. It could be the story of many a tale and woe of lives lost and love enduring the heartaches of war. And, I did read your earlier post of Doug’s article posted. It was good and made good sense for all us writers.


    • Who knows? I think you’re right, Linda. It could be stretched into a novel. Just the teeny bit of research I did for this flash fired my imagination. There were successful interracial marriages in the 1800’s, mainly in places like Brooklyn usually between black men and Scottish, Irish and British women. In my mind Andrew and Amelia were a success story but with a lot of intriguing potential for obstacles.


  • Took me a few moments to fill in the pieces of the story – who Andrew might be was as opposed to her twin brother James – and then the black soldier appearing – and her (and the reader’s )suspense at “her knees buckling”, worrying for her welfare as she is “caught and crushed” – strong words – only to find that they are words of passion – and Andrew is a black secret lover… hot ,powerful last words: “devouring his bronze lips.”


  • Dear Rochelle,

    The first paragraph sets the stage for the story and frames the time and the trials your protagonist is living through. I thought you really nailed it with this story; fear, longing, loss, passion, and love, both in the moment and the love that endures in the heart of someone separated from their beloved. I didn’t even think about the prompt until I had unravelled the threads of your tale and figured out what was happening. Perfect title, too. A very fine story in every sense of the word.



    Liked by 1 person

  • There’s so much happening in this tiny story, and you tell it clearly enough so we can understand – very impressive! I like the way you move from several paragraphs without much detail – Amelia’s memories – to the richly detailed, very physical ending that puts us right in the moment.


  • Oh BTW – I’d say the first paragraph is essential. When I first read the story, I wasn’t sure if Amelia was white or black – but I can’t imagine a black man during the Civil War supporting the Confederacy so strongly he pressured his son into joining the southern army, so Amelia has to be white.

    Which makes the whole situation much more complicated and interesting – I can imagine Amelia talking to the new neighbors in New York. “So how did you meet your husband?” “Well, my father used to own him…” Chapters worth of Awkward Situation right there. And what a mess our ancestors kindly left on our hands.


  • I agree with Newpillowbook, the first paragraph tells me her father is big on the Confederacy. Without it, Andrew being a Yankee has no significance. Dad is going to crap his pants (if he’s still alive) when his daughter runs off to New York to marry a Yankee. Good job, Rochelle.


  • Though the content is not quite my cup of tea, I can admire the skill in which it is crafted. I felt that, within the confines of 100 words, you’ve built a complete world. Now all you have to do is fill in the details for a full blown novel. I must say, though, that the only time a woman devoured MY bronze lips I almost ended up with stitches. I am now married to her…


  • I don’t know. I think this is concisely and beautifully written, but I think I might agree that the first paragraph is unnecessary here. The fact that there are slave quarters mentioned in the second paragraph would indicate which side Amelia’s family was on. Maybe if Andrew had been in the first paragraph somehow, it might seem more unified to me.

    I do love it overall, and I do think the first paragraph’s material definitely enhances the story; I just feel like it could be more specifically connected.


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