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I've been creative writing all my life, though with various haitus(es) along the way. IFrom 2010 I started this blog and enjoyed sharing writing and other information with everyone. illness and bereavement supplied the more recent hiatus.

Thursday 29 September 2011

Fearful Heart ~ Romantic Friday Writers entry

Challenge No: 20 Fearful Heart
Based on the given theme we can post up snippets from novels, ongoing WIPs, a piece of bespoke flash-ficton or poetry. Maximum word count is 400.

My contribution this week is a Flash-Fiction piece in 410 words. (MPA)

Feeling the Fear by Madeleine Maddocks

Luke was more than ready to leave his childhood home as he stepped into the tiny kitchen.

“She’s gone!” his mother announced with a gleam in her eye and a triumphant twist to her mouth; even before he’d stepped over the threshold onto the stained linoleum.

“Gone? Who?” Luke replied, feigning confusion, though fearful cracks had begun to fill his heart at the words.

“That simpering Bonnie, the neighbour’s daughter” his mother confirmed, her beady eyes reading his face with such an unmaternal coldness that froze his heart even further.

“Oh” he said, as casually as he could “Well I’d best be off, I’ve got a train to catch”

“Must you go so far away? What if I’m taken ill or something?” She had an uncanny knack of making him feel guilt like a creeping cold through his entire body.

“Then I’ll come home again” he lied, thinking about her  now. His Bonnie, the light of his entire existence. The woman he intended to marry. The woman he hoped had arrived at their rendezvous. The woman he feared would see him as a failure and a dead loss and be nowhere in sight when he arrived at the railway station to meet her. Yet her kindness, warmth and love had been the antithesis of his mother’s cold, cruel indifference.
Believe in yourself” he heard Bonnie’s mantra as though she were whispering in his ear. “Believe in us, I love you” she had said to him time and time again when his mother had threatened to thwart their plans for a future together. They had finally agreed to make it look as though they were not together anymore, that she had lost interest and gone. Yet even though it was their plan, Luke was still fearful that this beautiful, compassionate woman would have found someone else, someone better and really have left.
“That’s your mother’s voice you’re hearing. Don’t listen to it!” Bonnie’s mantra whispered through his consciousness.

“Bye then” he said with renewed determination. A hint of rose water made contact with his lips as he kissed his mother’s cheek for what would be the last time. He felt sorry for her, but he must be strong. His life with Bonnie was all that mattered. His future was not this stifling hell-hole where emotional manipulation and unfair culpability were his constant bed-fellows.

“You’re better off without her!” were his mother's parting words.

He turned away smiling. I’m better with her.


  1. Aw sweet!

    It's sad that he couldn't fix things with his mother though.

  2. Thanks Misha

    Okay Something went wrong with my comments on my blog and 4 were lost as follows:

    Old Kitty said: Awwww yay for Luke and Bonnie!! Good luck to them! take care

    Anna of Sweden said: What a brilliant story! Perfect for the theme. I hope Luke is not disappointed.
    Best wishes, Anna

    Adura Ojo said: The psychological edge to the story is spot on, Madeleine. Love the parting words at the end too. Especially Luke's.

    Madeleine, Can it be explained by the psychological fear of losing and gaining of one to the other. The consequences can be lethal as it gets into a psychopath situation. Leaving it at the end in contrasting situations between mother and girlfriend is brilliant! Hank

    Hi Hank, your comment sounds quite a profoundly involved analysis. The relationship with the mother is meant to be abusive while the one with the girlfriend is hopefully his salvation.

  3. I trust you Madeleine, his Bonnie will be waiting for him :-)

  4. Hi Madeleine,
    Thanks for commenting on my Fearful Heart-post. I thought that I had left a comment on your post, but I guess not.
    Anyway, I have written a second text on the same post. If you have the time, you are welcome to visit again.

    Best wishes,
    Anna's REWers Challenge No 21 'Fearful Heart' TWO TEXTS!!!

  5. Hi Madeleine: My new comment system was a dismal failure. It sent me email comments (which I'm not a fan of) and showed nothing on my blog. Strange. I've deleted it.

    I really got the feeling of fear on your hero's part as he fretted about losing his Bonnie. Those interfering mothers, hee hee. Great use of theme!


  6. Ouch, mother's can always press those buttons! I can really feel all his inner turmoil and fear. I just know Bonnie will come through :-)

  7. Chilling and exquisitely composed. I loved this piece of a strong willed and indifferent mother and a son determined to leave.
    N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium

  8. Can really feel the conflict! What is his mother going to do when she finds out they're still in love? Yikes

  9. Got a very edgy, stirring vibe from the story, so well done! The finish was perfect, too. Enjoyable read indeed.

  10. I love it! And good for him for choosing love over fear (and emotional blackmail!)

    Judy, South Africa

  11. I liked it. As usual you have written it so well, Madeleine!

  12. It speaks well for Luke's courage that he could find love, even if it wasn't in his childhood home. Sad, but sometimes parents truly don't love their children. I totally believed in this story (and also wrote about domestic abuse, lol!)

  13. What a wicked mother! That said, how about giving her some redeeming or seductive quality that really tests Luke's courage and resolve?

  14. Hi,

    OMG: clingy mother with malicious tongue! Good for him in quitting and taking the road to true love. I can understand his inner fears, though. It's a huge thing he's doing to walk away from an overbearing mother, being as boys tend toward their mothers no matter what. I hope he is not walking from the frying pan and into the fires of hell! ;)

    Thought provoking read!


  15. What a mean mother...I must agree with Luke's leaving..sometimes it is best to do that which will cause the least pain.

  16. The last line was so, awww. Great conflict with the Mom. I wanted to know more.

  17. Hello Madeleine.
    Some mothers can be so overbearing & use emotional blackmail to get their own way.
    Good for Luke...hope Bonnie doesn't disappoint him & will be waiting.

    Nicely done!

    Thief In The Night

  18. Great finish! Thanks for sharing this one with us.

  19. Oh yeah, I like this. You can't help but be pleased for him that he's escaping to happiness.

  20. Lovely! Very well written. I hope he finds true happiness :

  21. Dear Madeleine.
    Thanks for recovering my comment. I love your story.
    Best wishes,

    Anna's REWers Challenge No 21 'Fearful Heart'


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