Here’s this week’s prompt. I’m thinking it’s time to go traveling again. How about you?
This week’s prompt for the drabble challenge was “practice.” Again, a word that could have worked for several of the characters. I ended up going with Becca, who might be my favorite character in Exeter. This week, at least.
Becca fumed as Anderson drove off, Frances in the front seat and baby Ellie in the back. Her sister looked back, her face growing smaller with distance
The next time, she bit her tongue. And the one after that.
As Ellie grew up, it got harder.
“Aunt Becca, Daddy says I shouldn’t make a mess.”
“Aunt Becca, Dad says dishes need to be done this way.”
“Aunt Becca, why doesn’t Dad like Riordan?”
Becca deflected or softened her words. After Frances died, she refrained so she wouldn’t lose contact with Ellie.
Her brother-in-law couldn’t take Ellie away. She hoped, anyway.
Like reading about Becca and Ellie? Here’s another story from when Ellie is a child: Summer Getaway
One fanfiction site I frequent recently started a weekly drabble challenge, so I stole the prompt for an Exeter story. Yes, I also did the fanfiction one, too. Four of them, in fact, one for each show I watch. If you’re not familiar with drabble, they’re 100-word pieces. Telling a story in exactly 100 words is the challenging part.
This week’s prompt is “university,” which could have applied to many of the characters since Exeter’s a college town. But there was one it seemed perfect for because it touches on a story I’m hoping to tell once I finish wrestling the story of how Chris and Dan met to the ground.
Brochures, fliers, applications: swept away. Evan dumped them in the trash can behind the house, then wheeled it around to the curb. The kitchen counter would be full again tomorrow. More wasted paper.
The senior walked inside. His father was grading papers.
“Did you finish your college applications yet?” he asked, not looking up. “The deadlines are coming up.”
“All taken care of,” Evan said. He grabbed his windbreaker, slung a backpack over one shoulder. “I’m going to study.”
Minutes later, he walked into the fire station, EMT textbook in hand. “I finished this week’s homework and next week’s, Chief.”
Prompts: Lightbulb, Halloween/ghosts/ghoulies, skyscraper/office building, sleeping/alarm clock ringing, turning, rocket crashing in space, sunrise/sunset, sheriff’s badge/star, bowl of steaming something
Ellie stood at the entrance to the site and looked up at the girders rising high above the ground, the sunrise painting the steel in pinks and purples. Except the places where red and black spray paint marred the office building’s skeleton. She turned to look at the Fairfax County sheriff’s deputy.
“It looks like a Halloween prank a few days early,” she said, stuffing her hands in the pockets of her lightweight jacket. “You’re sure it’s gang-related?” She tried to remember the deputy’s name. Bettencourt, she thought. “Sgt. Bettencourt, isn’t this a little far out in the county for gangs?”
Bettencourt shrugged. “We’ve been seeing it more and more on the eastern side of the county, spilling over from DC.” He paused as the radio on his shoulder crackled. “They’ve even had a rise in gang activity in the Shenandoah Valley the past few years,” he added. “It’s not just the cities any more.”
“Why here, though?” Ellie scanned the development, sandwiched between two townhouse complexes, located off a main road in the fast-growing county. “I expect irate neighbors, not gangs.”
“If Fairfax County was a city, it would be one of the 25 largest in the country,” Bettencourt said. “All sorts of outsiders coming in these days.” His sneer made Ellie conscious of her own accent, the Boston flavor a far cry from the softer syllables commonly heard among native Virginians.
“Can the crews clean up the damage?” She looked over at Bettencourt, who had a good five inches on her, despite the modest heels that took her within an inch of six feet.
He nodded. “We took some photos after we got out here, got a few more from the neighbors who called it in.” The sergeant tipped his head to the southwest. “They have a strong Neighborhood Watch program over there. You might just have been a handy, unguarded target.”
Ellie stepped back so she wasn’t so conscious of looking up at the man. “But you don’t think so.” Read More
Whoa! That’s not the site that was here yesterday.
Nope. I finally switched over to WordPress.org so I could put the site on my domain, which has been sitting vacant for a while. So if you have this page bookmarked, go ahead and update the link to www.jenniecoughlin.com. If you run into a broken link, please let me know. It looks like tags got lost along the way, so some of the navigation links I imported point back to the old site. I tried to catch them all, but I’m sure I missed a couple.
Hope you enjoy poking around the site. One of the big changes I made was (finally) updating the reviews and interviews page to include the ones for All That Is Necessary, including the newest review, which came out Thursday.