19 July 2016


This is another entry in the contest hosted at the Creative Writing Ink website. The picture below was provided by the website as inspiration for a short form of prose for the week of June 16th. However, I modified the picture so that it is consistent with the flash fiction.

   Although the air outside was warm, I shivered as I wandered throughout the long hallways of my house. Though I modestly refer to our residence as a house, it's really a mansion. This massive three story structure towers over the neighborhood, matched only by the extravagant floral display encircling our mansion.
  As I walked along the hallway, I admired our conservative family portraits, noticing our grim expressions and erect posture. The space between each portrait was consistent, forming a simple pattern throughout the hallways. My family and I were clothed in finely pressed garments and were positioned before a waterfall of black fabric cascading in the background. Although I enjoyed the portraits themselves, the most stunning aspect of the images were the frames that enclosed them.
  Unlike the pictures, which were nearly identical except for our age, each frame was unique and original. The most expensive frame was carved from raw gold, and engraved with our names and the intricate branches of a delicate tree. Conversely, the least expensive was simple in style and fashioned from plastic. However, the most striking frame was carved from ebony and depicted rolling waves along its border.
  The longer I admired the frame, the stronger the urge was to admire the frame without the distraction of the portrait of my conservative family. Running my tongue over my dry lips, I glanced in each direction, ensuring that I would not be discovered. Hesitatingly extending my limbs toward the frame, I barely managed to remove the frame the wall.
   Crouching, I silently dismantled the contents of the frame, removing the cardboard base and secondary layers. However, as I continued to bare the frame, I noticed a small, yellowed rectangle resting in a corner of the frame. The writing scrawled at the bottom was indecipherable except for a single word that I recognized: Katherine - my mother's name.
  Turning the slip in my hand, I recognized my mother's brown, flowing hair, but I did not recognize the boy with blonde hair running behind her. Clutching what appears to be my mother's hat, the boy was dressed in a drab gown with bright stockings and polished shoes. Although I did not recognize the young boy, something about him was familiar. Shifting the paper over again, I squinted my eyes and distinguished the penmanship of my father.
  Brimming with joy at this discovery, I pressed the image to my chest, closed my eyes, and imagined the waves frothing on the shore, the warm sand brushing my legs, and the childish, uncontrolled laughter of my young parents.
  I realized exactly what this image depicted - the first time my parent's had met, and it wasn't even framed.


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