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Friday Flash – “Shunned”

  It started with asking her to wait until everyone else was seated before coming in.  Then the council suggested that it would be more efficient if she just sat in the back.  Before long, they  had added a separate entrance, then built a partition wall to ensure there was no accidental taint on the upright members of the community.

Jemma had gone along with the steady lowering by degrees of her dignity. She didn’t like it and she didn’t think they would go so far, but there weren’t no other place to go.  She’d had a letter, though, just this week.  Her child was coming home, and he deserved to hold his head high and sit on the front row if that was his desire.

She gripped the axe handle and aimed at the largest crack in the wall.

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24 thoughts on “Friday Flash – “Shunned”

  1. Boy I liked that! Such a wonderful, far-reaching story! You’ve told us an awful lot in 100 words, but I think there’s at least 400 more pages there! 🙂

  2. Dear Karen,

    Your story was poignant, sad and, in the end, uplifting. I can feel her long years of shame and anger power the axe deep into the wood. No more. And despite what she does, I get the sense that they’ll let her sit wherever she wants now.



  3. I’d like to know the rest of the story, too. What happened that caused her to become shunned? At first I thought racial prejudice, but then I thought it sounded more along the lines of Hawthorne’s Scarlet Letter, since it was a gradual lowering of her dignity and not one she started out with all along.

    Great job at piquing curiosity!

  4. Makes me want to know why she was shunned in the first place…and if the ax will play more of a role down the road, heh.

    I know a lot of people identified with the mother, but this really had a creepy element in it for me somehow. (I think because the first two lines put me in the mindset of something like The Village, for whatever reason.) Don’t know if that was intended!

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