5 June 2015

Published June 3, 2015 by rochellewisoff



 Born Sunday, 31 May 2015 at 6:04 a.m.

Congratulations to parents Jennifer (elmowrites) and Jon and big brother Sebastian!

© Jon Pendergast

© Jon Pendergast



FF copyright banner finalThe following photo is the prompt. Does it tell you a story? Tell me in a hundred words or less. 



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Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 100


            “You’ve changed,” said Dwight.

            “You haven’t,” said Elise.

            “Where’s the sweet girl I married?” 

            “Don’t you mean chained, bullied and nearly drowned?” She hefted the last of her suitcases into the car.

            “What about the children?”

            “They’re adults.”

            “What will you do?”


            Thousands of miles from Iowa, Elise reeled under the impact of the relentless waves that crashed into the rocks along the shore. She peeled off her wet garments and dove into the swell. Water rushed over her naked body, flooding her with a new sense of freedom. She surfaced and inhaled the salt-laden air.

            “I will swim!”

136 comments on “5 June 2015

  • Lovely baby and a great story of freedom hard won. What your new intro says about it not being a race struck a chord – I take my time over my story and am usually well down the list. I wonder sometimes if I’d get more comments if I was quicker.


    • Dear Liz,

      It’s a tough call. I fear it’s true that those who post the earliest get the most comments. But some of the stories are written in haste and it shows in typos and weak stories. Then some are quicker thinkers than others.

      At any rate I’m glad you liked my story.

      Thank you.




      • Nobody will ever accuse me of being quick. I’m more like a sloth wading through molasses. But wasn’t it the famous philosopher, Totie Fields, who said, “Wait comes to those who are good.” No, maybe it was Weight comes. I can’t remember now. Where were we?


    • Liz, Please take heart and keep taking your time. There are some Fictioneers who always pop in early that I seldom read because of the low quality of their work. Sometimes I come in early, other times I take longer. I’ve posted as late as Saturday. But, you know what, I have readers who wait and still read my stories. You will too. Building a readership takes time. Polishing a story takes time. Hang in there!


      Liked by 1 person

  • For a moment there, I thought baby Dominic was the prompt. 😀
    Your story is beautiful, breaking the chains of her old life, learning to swim… good for Elise.
    About the early/late posting. Maybe I should be slower with the posting, I’m always waiting for the prompt and work on it as soon as I can. It’s easier to read and review when I’m finished early, because I don’t want to read others’ stories before I’m done…


    • Dear GAH,

      When I first joined Friday Fictioneers, the idea was to spend a couple of days on your story before posting it on Friday. Hence the name. I don’t know when it changed. I don’t have a problem with anyone posting Wednesday. Many of us do. But then there are some stories that have a sense of being slapped together just to be first. So my “directive” is actually a suggestion, not pointed at anyone.

      Thank you for your lovely compliments to my story.




  • Dear Rochelle, If the baby is part of your family, congratulations. If not, beautiful baby any way.

    As for your story, Freedom at Last. I like that she didn’t die, but will finally be free to live.



  • A great story with the freedom she feels through swimming. THAT part is true. I feel the same freedom from long rides on my Harley. I would say, keep up the good work, but then…….what a silly statement. Isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

  • Oh, he’s precious! I can tell you’re in baby love…as you should be!

    And I love you’re story. I was concerned that it would take a dark turn. But I’m glad she was set free to swim! ❤


  • Mazel tov!! What an adorable baby!! Newborns smell so heavenly, I think it is my favourite perfume:) That story is awesome…how you packed so much in 100 words…freedom at last! You always have a way to slip in a bit of humour in serious situations “What about the children?”
    On another note, the other day I had to write a haiku influenced by a painting by Marc Chagall and I could not help but be reminded of what was going on in Russia at that time when he painted le poète allongé https://cheryllynnroberts.wordpress.com/2015/05/27/left-with-dreams-haiku/ So I had to give it one more take and wrote another one about his first love following this one. I look forward to your sequel.


    • Dear Oliana,

      The baby belongs to Friday Fictioneer, Jennifer of Elmowrites, so the mazel tov goes to her. I just wanted to make the announcement as I did with her first son a couple of years ago. 😉

      I’m glad you like my story. I was once told by a therapist that my sense of humor is what kept me from jumping off a roof.

      I visited your haiku. Lovely. You have me in some great company. Chaim Potok. I’m honored to receive such a compliment.

      Thank you very much.



      Liked by 1 person

  • I will swim! I’ve been saying “just keep swimming” for years so it’s a fitting metaphor for my retirement too. I’m glad that I’ve never had to leave a bad relationship but I’m glad your character had the guts to do it.
    Thanks for sharing Jennifer’s new addition.
    Be well,

    Liked by 1 person

  • Dear Rochelle,

    Jennifer’s new baby is gorgeous and she had time to do a flash last week.

    Since seeing the chains I have not been able to stop singing Jo Cocker’s “Unchain my heart” and can totally relate your flash to the picture prompt. Wonderful flash as always. I was worried for a brief moment that your character was going to drown herself but glad to realise that she was going to swim.

    Cheers Irene


  • Great story, Rochelle, although poor Iowa. 🙂 I like the images of being chained and drowned, versus swimming. By the way, I really like your InLinkz icon this week. Looks good. Hope everything is well with you lately.


    • Dear David,

      Iowa is something of a metaphor as is Dwight. http://www.iagenweb.org/boards/ringgold/obituaries/index.cgi?read=233540 Perhaps the link will clue you in. 😉

      My husband took the picture a few years ago. He’d made one of those comments that made me go, “Oh really?” then he snapped the photo.

      Graduation season has ended and things are a little calmer, if you call working in the midst of a construction site calm. The store is undergoing a complete remodel. I go in for eyelid surgery next week so FF will be on autopilot.

      Say hello to Leah for me.

      Thank you and Shalom,



      • I’m glad things are a bit calmer for you. I’m in the middle of an extremely busy June but hopefully the rest of the summer will calm down a bit. On Thursday I was wondering why I was so tired until I realized I’d been at the office for 13 hours that day. But I still write when I can.
        I’ll be praying your surgery goes well. Take care,


  • Dear Henrietta,
    I’m surprised you didn’t write one about “The Old Ball & Chain.” There are a lot of men who live in oppressive situations as well. I worked with one man who suffered an aneurism after years of verbal abuse and constant berating. Perhaps he should have gotten naked and gone swimming earlier in the relationship. I love the freedom & liberation at the end. Maybe in some future decade I’ll get to retire too. 🙂


    • Dear Bigfoot,

      I have a young friend who was the victim of an abusive wife. Men are certainly not exclusive in the abuse department.

      The closer retirement looms on the horizon the more anxiously I await diving into the swell, naked and full of joy.

      Thank you for paddling by.




  • Uplifting end there, a breaking free moment nicely captured.

    As always, great descriptions hidden in little things – the relentless waves, the salt-laden air… great.


    • Dear Phylor,

      Alas, many women don’t think they have any other options…and in some parts of the world that’s woefully true.

      Thank you for such nice comments. They’re always appreciated.




  • Great story! The last line really does it for me!
    (I might not e able to write one his week – too busy reading your book!)
    What Retirement? I just got here! Were you thinking about swimming?


    • Dear Bobi Jo,

      So many questions. 😀 Of course I’m really happy to hear that you’re reading my book.

      In October I’ll be retiring from my day job as a cake decorator and pursuing my career as an author.

      Thinking about swimming? I swim almost every day…alas I’m landlocked so my swimming is in a lap pool. This story is a bit of an allegory that can be taken literally or applied to my work situation. My husband of nearly 44 years and I remain happily married.

      Thank you.




  • Your stories are not only excellent but thought provoking and inspiring also. In 100 words you put a lot. I loved it. It reminded of so many chained women on our side of world who are not so courageous and just drag on. Very sensitive and beautiful tale dear. Shalom.


      • Dear Rochelle, I can’t express in words How much I love your writing. Sometimes food, shelter, securities, and atrocities in outer world compels them to be captive and then it becomes habit. It takes great courage and will power to break the shackles.


  • Dear Rochelle

    Such a beautiful and contented baby. Takes me back to those days, that feeling of holding my own little ones and breathing in their warm perfection. Anyway, enough of getting broody as I have two lovely grandchildren now, one of them a teenager!

    I love your story and can breathe in another sort of perfection there — Elise’s wondrous escape from a bully, with the vast briny ocean representing her freedom.

    So well written, as usual.

    All best wishes


    • Dear Sarah,

      I’m merely sharing another Friday Fictioneer’s good news. Jennifer of elmowrites just gave birth to her second son. That picture does make me think of those times of warm contentment when I held my own newborn sons.

      I’m pleased that my story resonated with you.

      Thank you.



      Liked by 1 person

  • Congratulations on the new little one! He is so beautiful. So sweet.

    I love your story – a wonderful sense of freedom she feels! I think I’ll feel the same after I leave work today for my beach vacation! Haha!


  • I loved your story — love the next to last paragraph — pure sensory and spirit-delight! Freedom! Yay!
    By the way, I have a new blog I’m using (started on June 1st, 2015) — sort of made the old one password-protected. I need to go back and clean it up, throw out stuff, do more editing, etc. on that blog. My new blog is: StrangeLander2015
    Oh, and I wrote a story this week — sorry I’ve been so out of it! I’ve missed Friday Fictioneers and all the great stories, but this is my last month at my teaching job (I’m quitting to spend time with my husband, daughter and do– and heaving a sigh of relief. All those late nights of grading English papers for seventeen years have left me a hollow semblance of my former self).
    I’ll post my story on the InLinkz site.
    Thanks for all you do for us!


    • Dear Vijaya,

      It’s nice to see you here. Your new blog looks nice.

      I’m pleased my story stirred emotions. Water always does it for this mermaid. 😉

      Thank you.


      Your Fairy Blog Mother


  • What a beautiful baby boy! Congrats to Elmo and the rest of her lovely family. ❤

    The sea has a lot of birth symbolism, what with the salt water and mysterious depths. Many cultures associate that mystery with the womb and how miraculous it is that a child can grow within it.

    Maybe I'm making connections where there are none, but I can see how your beautiful story aligns nicely with the beauty of birth. In many ways, that's exactly what Elise has found for herself!


    • Dear Emile,

      It wasn’t my intention to connect my story with birth. One of those happy accidents. Although Elise’s story is most definitely one of renewal and new birth.

      Thank you for such a fantastic comment.




  • Well, we did indeed take very similar paths! It’s just taken me much longer to get to reading! With extra people living in our house, and life a bit dizzying right now, I am behind in just about everything. That said, the check is in the mail, friend. 😉 I wondered if there was a historical link for this one, that I missed, but the story itself is played out over and over… history for us all, I suppose. We have to take charge of our own destinies. No other way– Wonderful story!


  • Dear Dawn,

    No historical link exactly on this one but it is a bit of an allegory as well as a story of a woman’s release from a bad relationship. As always the author and Elise have much in common. (My marriage is fine 😉 ) I hope things calm for you soon. I’d say there’s a book in your future.




    • Dear Colline,

      It’s interesting that others found the ending unexpected, too. Completely happy accident. I didn’t mean to mislead anyone to think she was going to drown herself. 😉

      Thank you.




  • I am really late with my reading and writing for this week but I see you’ve turned in another fine post. Nice story about freedom, liberation and finding yourself. And a such cute baby photo too. My baby turns eighteen this week 🙂


    • Dear Subroto,

      The baby belongs to our own elmowrites, Jennifer Pendergast. My baby is thirty-one. 😉

      I’m glad you liked my story. You caught its full meaning which is gratifying for me as a writer.

      Thank you.




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