6 December 2013

Published December 4, 2013 by rochellewisoff


As always, writers are encouraged to be as innovative as possible with the prompt and 100 word constraints.

Henry David Thoreau said it best.

“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”


Write a one hundred word story that has a beginning, middle and end. (No one will be ostracized for going a few words over the count.)


Make every word count.


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Copyright -Randy Mazie

Copyright –Randy Mazie

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Genre: Literary Fiction

Word count: 100


             Darlene rescued the tiny, squalling creature from a smelly garbage can. He squirmed and squeaked as she cuddled him on the way home.  

            “It’s E.T., Mommy. Can I keep him?”  

            “He needs special care, honey.” Mom gently wrapped him in a blanket and picked up the phone.

            To Darlene’s delight, after months of social workers’ visits, Mom said, “He’s ours, sweetie, but we can’t call him E.T. What shall we name your new brother?”


            Five years later, when Elliott scribbled green flying saucers all over her math homework, Darlene screamed, “You little monster! You really are from outer space.”     


114 comments on “6 December 2013

          • Yes it was a challenge fitting in work as well – there were at least 7 days where I couldn’t add to the manuscript – especially as I was still performing poetry and attending writing conferences during November too! I don’t regret it – as I did the April and July camps to work up to this, I am unsure whether I will attempt it again, unless I stick to a series of short stories, which breaks the rules!


  • Tears in my eyes, Rochelle. I love where you took me – intrigue, laughter, sorrow and a trip down memory lane … I can barely describe it in 100 words, yet you managed it all with your usual grace and style. I think this is one of my favourites from you ever!


  • So….. at first I thought you were truly venturing into sci-fi territory, but then when I realized what was actually happening, my heart broke. What a great story — heart-wrenching and yet light-hearted at the same time!


  • awww i loved this. i have younger brothers and no sister. indeed, i remember them transforming from sweet angels to little monsters whose main goal is to ruin my life. 🙂 lol


    • Dear Janet,

      My brother and I fought constantly growing up. Now he’s pretty much the only family I have left. He lives in VA so the only way I see him anymore is via Skype. We have some long conversations.

      So I think Darlene and Elliot will discover they really love each other.




  • Wonderful! I trust the child was reasonably healthy? Luckily for all of us, there are some true saints who would adopt a child in such a circumstance. Unfortunately for Darlene, brothers – no matter where they come from – are still brothers. 😉 A lovely story, Rochelle!


    • Dear E. A,

      My story’s loosely based on a true story I recently saw on TV (see my comments to Amy, below). Darlene really does love her brother but, as you say, he’s still a healthy, inquisitive little brother. 😉
      Thank you for your kind comments and compliments.




    • Dear Amy,

      I recently watched an Untold Stories of the ER where a nurse found a premature infant in the toilet. The mother was never found. Miraculously the child lived and was adopted by a woman who had fostered special needs children. The little girl is now 6 or 7 I think and has overcome some health hurdles. Today she’s normal and healthy. So my story’s loosely based on this event. I’m glad to hear that it worked. 😉




  • I liked the slow reveal on this. I was thinking it was an animal at first, but as the story came together it turned into an altogether familiar scene (for those of us with brothers.) Well done Rochelle.


  • i think you want “squalid” instead of “squalling.” but that doesn’t take away from the amusement. that film came along at just the right time for me and made an excellent film for a first date for me and my future ex-wife. happy wednesday!


  • Hello, I heard about this on another website and thought I’d try it, but I’m a bit confused. I thought the stories didn’t go up until Friday, is that right? Is your alien-trash-can-kid story for this week? Is it supposed to go with the picture of the old building and flowering vines? There’s no trash can in that photo. Or did I miss something?



    • Dear Christine,

      Hello back and welcome to Friday Fictioneers. Let me try to clear up any confusion. I believe when Madison Woods started the challenge the idea was that the picture was posted on Wednesday and the stories usually didn’t go up until Friday…hence the name.

      The way it works now is that I post the photo on Wednesday and everyone has from then until the following Tuesday to link.

      You may have noticed the Thoreau quote at the beginning of the my blog, “It’s not what you look at that matters. It’s what you see.” In other words, the prompt is just that, a prompt, not necessarily an illustration. What do you see in the photo? How does it make you feel?

      Some writers adhere strictly to what’s in the photo. Some may only give it a glancing nod in their story. I usually go the latter route.

      Yes, my alien-trash-can-kid story goes with the picture. While there’s no trash can in the story, the rather trashy looking scene in the photo put me in mind of the increasing number of premature and newborn infants that are being tossed away like so much refuse. From that thought I crafted my story.

      Some writers might see a club house, while another might think of it as a lair for a vampire or zombies. For another it could trigger a memory from which he or she will write a memoir. There again, we call ourselves fictioneers, but true stories are perfectly legal as long as they’re 100 words.

      I hope this helps, Christine. You’re welcome to join and add your written voice to ours.




  • Hi Rochelle,

    Doug MacIlroy referred me to you because I am interested in becoming a writer, and I would like to ask you a few questions about your work.

    I am a fifteen-year-old homeschooled writer. My favorite genre is Historical Fiction; I recently completed NaNoWriMo with a novel set in 18th c. Austria.

    What would be the best way for us to get in touch? Would you prefer a phone conversation or email? I wouldn’t need more than fifteen minutes of your time.

    Thanks very much!



    • Dear Adam,

      I don’t believe Darlene will ever regret saving her little brother. But little boys are just that. I raised three and had an older brother. Glad you liked and commented. Thank you.




  • I think every older sibling looks at the younger ones as an alien invasion. I admire how you stretch the prompt to come up with something completely new and interesting. I tend to be more literal and I am working at letting go of the literal and going with the tone or feel of the prompt. Kudos!!


    • Dear Erin,

      When I first joined Friday Fictioneers my stories tended to stay close to the prompt, then at some point, pretty early on, I jumped off. Glad you liked my story. I’m sure my brother felt like I was an alien when I intruded on his six-year-old world. 😉




  • Dear Elmrya,
    I thought all siblings came from outer space? I suppose if the stork had brought this one he’d be squawking and pecking at things with his nose. A very entertaining story.
    – Zeb


    • Dear Mike,

      Elliott will have to learn to read first, although in this day and age, he’s probably proficient with an iPad and iPhone as is my almost 3 year old granddaughter. 😉 Thank you for coming by with your kind comments.




  • Rochelle- delightful and yet poignant – the shadow of ET, phone home – is always there for me! Squall means both and my younger brother certainly squalled, which was quite different to squawking, which is what he does now !!! Hens squawk, and the baby was not necessarily squalid ! though if the nappy needed changing, perhaps !!!!
    It was a delicious little story, and every word appropriate….


  • I love what you did with the prompt, Rochelle. You had me wondering if she’d found a baby or an animal in the trash. Now I wonder how someone could actually leave a child there. They must be truly hopeless, so sad. But then, on a lighter note, you whisk me back a few decades to the movie theater with my hubby and daughter. And to top it off, Darlene and her brother live (almost) happily ever after. Thanks for the smile.


    • Dear Patti,

      Unfortunately there are too many stories of babies being thrown away with the trash. I can’t even imagine it. E.T. was one of my all time favorites, too. I think Darlene and Elliott live as happily ever after as any sister and brother. 😉 Happy to give smiles.




  • This one was really fun, Rochelle. And, even though I noticed you said you hadn’t intended it as “sci-fi,” when I got to the end, I actually thought that perhaps he IS an alien, and she’s going to discover more in the near future. I thought you purposely left us hanging and wondering. Good job either way, though.

    I’m glad I read it. The only other one I got to was Doug’s, and only because it was on here. I’ve been so swamped this week that Tuesday was here before I realized, and I didn’t get any story written at all — again. But I came over to check on something else on your site and discovered Doug’s story. So I got to read his, and since, even when the links are closed, I can still locate yours, I got to read it too. At least I haven’t completely lost out on this week’s venture.


    • Dear Sandra,

      It’s a fun idea, but it was never my intent for the Elliott in this story to be an actual space alien. My feet are firmly planted in reality on this one. More and more stories of unwanted infants being tossed aside with the garbage, I wanted to write a happy ending for one of them. (Even if he is fictitious ;))

      I’m happy that you came by and read both of “my” pages. It’s a busy time of the year, isn’t it? I used to think things would calm down after the first of the year. I stopped thinking that in 1975 when they didn’t.




    • Dear Rob,

      The idea of finding an alien and keeping him for a brother is a great idea! However, that wasn’t my intent. My Elliott may be seen as an alien by his adoptive sister, but he’s a human child.
      So many babies are tossed aside like so much rubbish these days. I wanted at least one of those stories, albeit fiction, to have a happy outcome.
      Thanks for commenting.



      PS A children’s series is a terrific idea…with illustrations…got my mind going. 😉


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