The Rowboat — Flash Fiction


I wrote this awhile back for a flash fiction contest, but it didn’t make it. Thought I’d post it here anyway. It had to be 150 words or less, I clocked in at 137.

 

winslow-homer-the-blue-boat-c-1892

 

Mary stood up in the rowboat, rocking it sharply. “You told me you were going to leave her.”

Calvin remained seated, his hands still on the oars. “Keep your voice down.”

The moonless night hid them but the sound carried. If anyone heard them arguing, their secret would be out. At night on the lake was the safest way they could meet without the little town finding out and ruining them both.

Mary reached out to slap Calvin, but the boat rocked harder. Calvin stood, oar in hand, and swung it, connecting with Mary’s temple. She went over the side, into the lake, the heavy woolen skirts pulling her down into the icy black water. Calvin looked around, put the oars back in the water, and rowed for shore.

The next night, Calvin’s wife died in childbirth.

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16 comments

      1. Hahaha, I bet there are plenty of women who could tell stories about that, and lots more who dated married men unawares. As Samantha noted on “Sex and the City”, “Rings come off.” And yes, I will admit, when I was 18 I fell into a bad situation. Luckily it didn’t last long.

  1. Oh, and no reason for anyone to beat themselves up. Love and relationships can be quite the complicated thing! It’s too easy for some to judge others. But the more one lives and experiences things, and listens to others’ experiences, the more one is able to understand things/people from all different sides. And as a bonus, that’s definitely a huge asset for a writer.

  2. Thanks, Tasha. My only real regret in life is that I haven’t been bolder. I feel like I’ve spent too much time sitting meekly on the sidelines. Well, there’s still time, there’s still time. ;)

  3. Hi DD really sorry it did not make it. This was truly a good read. It got me visualizing the action which took place than at the end I started to wonder off by linking the death of Calvin wife and unborn child with his mistress he murder. Make me think that his mistress was a jealous woman who believed if she could not have him no one could. Or wanted to teach Calvin what pain feel like to lose someone or live without someone one love. I read into stories too much. All in all as mention previously, this was a great read!

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