Published September 13, 2012 by rochellewisoff

Thanks to Madison for choosing my photo for this week’s Friday Fictioneers. Two summers ago this magnificent creation showed up in a corner of our garage door. While I’m not a big fan of spiders, I’m in awe of their webs. And as always, I love the challenge of story telling in few words. 93 words this time.


            The ravenous pain that riddled every nerve ending of Jessie’s cancer-wasted body defied morphine. She would welcome the death angel when he came.

            Outside her window the porch light illuminated diaphanous spiraled threads that stretched from one corner to the other. She admired the creator’s tenacity.

            Through her medicinal haze she gazed at her daughter Marissa’s bruised face. “The bastard. Leave him.”

            “Don’t have to. Someone shot him six times at close range.”

            “Do you know why that spider spins her web?”

            Marissa kissed Jessica’s powder burned hand. “Yes, Mom. For her children.”

48 comments on “EUTHANASIA

  • Whoa, Rochelle,

    You’ve outdone yourself this week. Great photo and an awesome story to match. Given the chance to set things right, how many of us would have the courage or strength to do what Jessie did for her daughter? Loved the last line. Has the feeling of a eulogy for a loving parent, beloved by her well protected family. Very well done.




  • Wow – didn’t see that “powder burned” hand coming! At first I assumed “euthanasia” referred to Jessie’s situation, but by the end it’s clear that you’re telling us about a very different kind of mercy killing…mercy not to the victim, but to the victim(s) of the victim. And the perfect understanding between mother and daughter that you show us so economically is wonderful.

    To say the same thing in fewer words, Rochelle, this is GREAT.


  • Rocks! I’d be lost without your Friday Fictioneer stories. I’ve always had a fascination with spider webs and enjoyed your story that went with it. Thanks!


  • I promise I didn’t read your before I wrote mine, Rochelle! Clearly I was just channelling you through the photo. Great writing, and so much story in 93 words. I want to read the other 7 just to find out how many more threads it could have had!


  • Thanks for a great photo for this week’s prompt Rochelle.
    I really enjoyed your story – so much pain and tension coming from your words, yet at the same time she was able to leave her daughter with one final gift.


  • Heavy! And I like your twists. I thought at the beginning the web was illustative of her pain; nerve tissue always reminds me of spider webs. But that web just keeps showing up in other contexts. I enjoy a well-layered story.

    Thanks for sharing your pic, too. I posted my story to Pinterest with your pic and attribution. If you don’t want it out there, please let me and I will take it down. (I guess I should have asked beforehand. I’ll do that next time.)


  • There isn’t anything that a mother wouldn’t do for her children and your story proved the point in just 93 words! Very powerful idea and great delivery, loved the Photo absolutely. Thank you for sharing both the prompt and the story. Will be coming back for more.


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