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Last Run

September 23, 2014

I wrote this a few years ago when I was participating in the weekly photo prompts from Madison Woods’ 100-word Flash Friday Fictioneers:

The instructions: Come up with a story, 100 words, more or less, based on the above picture.

This was exactly 100 words. I decided to re-post it. It’s one of my favorites. These photo prompts are almost like single-reel comic strips. You look at the image, then read the words, then look at the picture again, and hopefully it’ll all make sense.

Last Run

Peterson had hoped his last run would be easy. Thirty-five years witnessing hugs and tears along every stop should’ve hardened his heart. But somehow it splintered every time it saw a freshman’s face leaving for college, or he’d have to tell a young soldier we’re on a tight schedule, all the while hoping sun glare would burn out the lingering young wife’s image: one baby on her hip, another burying its face in her dress.

Last run, he’d told the engineer. And then she boarded–reddened eyes, cuffs for baggage–and strapped a new word across her young son’s heart.


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