Pirouette – Featured Flash Fiction September, 2021

I have become enchanted by movie trailers and narrative poems. Trailers and some microfiction stories are tasty bonbons or truffles of story. I can’t stop reading or watching. Diane Frank taught a class on flash fiction that challenged me in all the right ways. I hope this tiny story of mine catches your imagination.

Pirouette

She sat quietly as twilight filled up the house with darkness. Elizabeth, her mother, would arrive in style in a few minutes. They had to talk.
Susan broke her reverie and powered on the wheelchair to glide into the yellow kitchen, where the pale ghosts of gaudy flowers on the wallpaper seemed to glow in the darkness. “This is so silly,” she said a bit too loudly. “Mother will understand and if she doesn’t—then she doesn’t.”
Turning on the light, she busied herself with the cork of the chilled Chardonnay, pushing down the puller’s black wings, hearing the squeak and soft pop. The wine was only for Elizabeth. It didn’t mix well with pain meds. Cheese, cured olives and crackers nestled in a fluted dish.
Susan’s accident seemed even harder for her mother, whose dreams of grandchildren broke along with Susan’s pelvis. And tonight, she would tell that disappointed woman she was going to space again. This time she would be flying through the heavens for a ten-year tour of duty.
The doorbell rang and then again, not waiting for Susan to get to the door release. “Come on up Mother,” she said through the intercom. She gave a mental smile realizing she would not be able to say that again for a long time, the space station being just too far away.

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