Fiction – Second Hand

A few years ago l joined a startup writing group called ThinkingTen. The concept is simple: there’s a daily prompt and you have 10 minutes to write whatever comes to mind. l deleted my blog posts from the site when I received an email saying the founder was shutting down the site. I hadn’t written anything in a while anyway. It’s still going, but I’ve decided to repost my original works here for Fiction friday.



Prompt: Words – (1) clean, (2) thirty, (3) watch, (4) yogurt


A thirty-something year old woman wanders aimlessly in the consignment store. She’s believes fussy weddings as they are shown on tv are for girls younger than herself. But she stares longingly at the dress hung up on the mirror in front of the change room, as a mother tries to convince her almost still a teenage daughter the dress is perfect for her.

“Its old,” she says.

“Its antique,” her mother reasons.

“Its dirty,” she points out. “And the beading is so messy.”

“It just needs a tender scrub to get clean. And the messy beading can be fixed.” She holds it out to her daughter insistently, and the daughter takes it into the change room with her.

The mother catches the thirty-something woman watching. Slightly embarrassed, she smiles and nods to the mother to show her approval. The mother turns back, anticipating the her daughter’s triumphant arrival. The curtains open, and the daughter steps out frowning. The mother frowns. It sags in the wrong places, meant for a time when curves were more appreciated than yoga-styled waifs.

“Fine,” her mother succeeds. She turns and shrugs her shoulders at the thirty-something year old, who waits with baited breath. The daughter emerges from the change room, yogurt smoothy in hand, antique dress balled up carelessly on the floor.

As the door bell signals their departure, the thirty-something picks up the dress, inspecting it from head to toe, and enters into the change room. When she emerges, the dress regains some luster. Standing in front of the mirror, she smoothes it out over her distinctive curves, her antique engagement ring reflecting the pattern of the beading.

Her radiant smile is all she needs before she decides on her final purchase.

Words, Inc., Wednesday:

(1) clean, (2) thirty, (3) watch, (4) yogurt