Darlene Foster's Blog

A Good Day

Posted on: August 1, 2019

Here is my entry in Stevie Turner´s August Short Story competition.

You might like to enter as well. Here is the link https://steviet3.wordpress.com/2019/07/31/share-your-short-story-august-2019/

A Good Day

by Darlene Foster

Erin Arnold cocked her head to one side and narrowed her eyes as she entered the coffee shop. Her favourite table appeared to be free. She bit her lip and suppressed a smile. Good days were rare for Erin. The new medication was working.

Keeping her eyes on the seat by the window, she clutched her handbag and cautiously made her way. She dusted off invisible crumbs from the chair before settling down. Erin removed a wet wipe from her purse and gave the already clean table a swipe. She ordered her regular mint tea and chocolate macadamia biscotti and stared at the people walking by the large front window. The china pot of tea arrived and, after steeping for the full three minutes, she began to pour into the white porcelain cup. She set the pot down abruptly when hot liquid slid down the spout and onto the table.

“Damn, why does this always happen? When will they invent a teapot that doesn’t drip?” Her face burned crimson.

She sopped up the drips with a paper napkin. With a fresh napkin, she dabbed the sweat off her upper lip and began to pour again. The tea continued to dribble. She could feel herself losing it. She clenched her fists and then unclenched them. She wiped the table once more and took two deep breaths. The third time she poured the tea without a drop on the table.

She sighed. A minor glitch in an otherwise good day.

Erin dipped the biscotti in the tea. Biscotti was perfect as it didn’t immediately disintegrate in the tea. She savoured the combined taste of mint, chocolate and macadamia nuts. She felt vaguely happy and satisfied.

The blast cut through her pleasant thoughts like a volcano erupting in a tranquil mountain scene. The teapot jumped from the table to the floor, shattering as it hit the tiles. The biscotti followed, dissolving into mush as crumbs mixed with the brown liquid. The window shattered showering flakes of glass throughout the coffee shop. People shouted and screamed, a child cried.

Erin put her hand to her forehead and closed her eyes. She felt tea running down the side of her face. She lowered her hand and opened her eyes. Blood dripped onto the pristine table.

She knew something like this would happen.

The day had been too good.

46 Responses to "A Good Day"

Oh my. I didn’t see that coming. Very powerful story, Darlene.

This veered off in a most unexpected direction, Darlene. I thought it would be about OCD. Well done.

It started out that way. Glad you liked it, Robbie!

Wow…I did not expect this finale. I felt like I was on the table next to her, watching her every move. Would love to know what happens next?

Thanks, Gilda. Glad it caught you unawares!

Wow Darlene! This was a seductive piece that ended with a sucker punch to the stomach. It evoked images of 9/11 for me. That perfect summer’s day before the entire world for the average New Yorker turned apocalyptic.

Well done!

Thanks, Dean. Coming from you that is such a great compliment. It could be any time or anywhere.

Excellent story Darlene. Good luck with the competition. 🙂

Enjoyed your short story, Darlene, but wanted it to continue. You know how to catch a reader’s attention!!

So pleased you liked it, Nancy!

oh wow….I didn’t expect that…boom! I wonder was it a car or a gun…..I immediately thought of the ones caught in the cafe in Sydney when that gunman started firing his gun….

Everyone will think of something different as these things happen all over the world. The story caught everyone off guard, as it would in real life.

Yes we will think of something different. It certainly caught me off guard, I thought someone might sit at her table..lol

Whoa! Did not expect that! Such powerful images. That is a keeper, my friend! Thanks for sharing!

Sometimes I need to try my hand at writing something completely different. Glad you liked the story.

great short story; left me wanting more!

Hah,would like to hear more @bout this woman

That’s the thing about short stories, you just get a snippet of the person and you have to choose your words well to paint the picture.

This was really good, Darlene. I never saw that coming.

Glad you liked it, Jennie!

Very much so! 🙂

I wouldn’t want a good day if it was to end like that. Poor Erin. I don’t think it’s her fault.

For someone with OCD, they would feel that way. Thanks for reading my story, Norah.

My pleasure, Darlene.

A good example of OCD and tragic sign of the times.

Thanks, Fatima. So true.

A ‘cutting edge’ piece of fiction, Darlene. As one of the earlier comments mentioned, you wrote it as if the reader was sat at the next table. I was!
I wouldn’t want to know any more than what you’ve written. It’s a fantastic piece of fiction as it is.

Thanks, Hugh. Coming from a master of the short story, that is high praise indeed.

You’re welcome, Darlene. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. You kept me hooked all the way to the last word. I would read more if you decided to add to it, but I think it’s a brilliant piece of flash fiction as it is.

A book launch and yet you have time to write an amazing short story, Darlene! Maybe it’s how you un-wind. Or, maybe you’re just wired that way. You evoked pictures of the magical teapot in Beauty and the Beast gone awry!

I work on short stories from time to time. I find them challenging and work long on them. I keep a file of them and go back to them once and awhile. I consider it brain exercise. I started this one some time ago and did a few rewrites. Yes, I relax in the weirdest ways.

Ooh this was rough! A testament to your writing skills ~ I was enjoying the detail of the tea and the cup because that dribble often happens and it IS annoying ( not enough to ruin my day though ). Then BHAM!!! The way that life can change in a fraction of a second .

Peta

Thanks, Peta. I hear about these things happening and often wonder what the people affected were doing just before the disaster, what they were thinking, what kind of day they were having. Pleased that you thought the story was worthwhile. Yes, life can change that fast.

I loved the way you drew me in so that I became immersed in her world. Excellent stuff, Darlene.

Susan A Eames at
Travel, Fiction and Photos

Oh my Darlene I was not expecting that twist. I could totally picture the scene through your telling of the story. Well done!

Thanks for the kind words, Sue.

As Robbie said, I also though this would be a story on OCD. But that did veer off course fast 😀 Very seamless. I also like how you ended the piece – sort of like this big blast was just another ordinary bad thing on a normal day. Great writing, Darlene.

Thanks so much, Mabel. I´m pleased you appreciate my writing.

That’s an interesting twist, Darlene. Love the detail you build into this. Good luck.

Well done, Darlene! I love reading & writing really short fiction. It’s challenging to write, but great fun. Good luck!

Thanks, Debra. Iy can be more difficult to write a short story than a chapter of a novel! But such great writing practice.

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