Writers Prompt: Day One

Day 1 —Select a book at random in the room.  Find a novel or short story, copy down the last sentence and use this line as the first line of your new story.

Source:  Sunday at Tiffany’s by James Patterson

and Gabrielle Charbonnet

“Yite!” the little boy exclaimed.

“Yite!” the little boy exclaimed.

Tom reached down and patted his son, Bobby, on his head passing over the chocolate laden ice cream cone at the same time.  Bobby never took his eyes of the treat, seemingly worried it might disappear if he did so. As they exited the shop Barbara spoke.

“Really Tom!” Barbara sounded exasperated, “At his age don’t you think he should be able to pronounce words in a manner we can at least guess the meaning of!”

Her attitude was ruining a beautiful sunny outing.  Her strident tone of voice was piercing the quiet beauty of the day.  People were turning to look at them.  Tom understood that Bobby was not Barbara’s son but he was tired of their endless sniping.

“What IS his age Tom?” Barbara queried, “Maybe I could look into a private school that he could be bought up to a more acceptable standard”

Suddenly, Tom watched as the ice cream cone wobbled unsteadily in Bobby’s hand.  He saw the potential trajectory and did nothing.

“Feck!” Barbara yelped loudly as the ice cream cone fell and then slid down her pristine white skirt.  It left her with a dark brown smudge and then it piled on top of her white sandals.

In reaction Barbara spun and lifted her hand to strike Bobby.  He had stepped back as if readying himself for the blow and Tom was devastated.

This was it, that moment when the loneliness of child raising without his wife was not louder than the need to protect his child.  In those seconds before he prevented her striking his son, Tom saw all the non physical blows that she lobbed in direct hits upon his innocent son.

In the sudden, silent aftermath Tom and Barbara faced off.  The ice cream shop owner had collected Bobby with the promise of a new ice cream.  Jim, the shop owner had never liked Barbara and knew this next moment would be one of high drama.  Moments that Bobby could do without observing.

Tom saw Jim lead Bobby back into the shop out of the corner of his eye. He knew that Bobby was safe.  Tom returned his full focus onto a seething Barbara.  People were still watching.  The type of looks that matched those watching an accident that they knew was going to happen but could not stop or turn from observing.

“The little shit did that deliberately!”  She was nearly frothing at the mouth and her entire manner was at odds at how she usually portrayed herself.  Tom was tempted to question her own language use but cold anger won the day.

“That may well be, but DO NOT ever strike a child, especially not my son!” Tom spoke quietly and coldly.  You could almost see the icicles forming in the humid air between them.  Each one had a single target, the metamorphosis of Barbara into the wicked witch, although Tom was thinking of a certain B word that might be more appropriate.

“Send me the dry cleaning bill and that will be our last contact,”  Tom ignored Barbara’s flustering denial, attempts to apologise and whatever else might spew out of that vile mouth.

Tom walked calmly into the ice cream shop.  Closing the door softly on the whole experience.


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