Ninth birthday trade-in – Friday Fictioneers

Thank you to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields who hosts Friday Fictioneers.  Each week Rochelle chooses a photo prompt to inspire writers to produce a 100 word piece of flash fiction.  Do use the link to her blog if you are interested in joining the group.  It’s a great way to get involved in writing.



Ninth birthday trade-in

Daddy worked away but always spent time with them on their birthdays.  Today, she would have him to herself.  Her brother was on a week’s school trip.

 So excited on the train, she barely heard what Mummy said about “another woman” and “you mustn’t love her.”

 Daddy’s car was at the station.  A woman and a boy about her age sat inside.  The day out didn’t last long.  There were no more.

 Next day at school they wrote letters to their siblings on the trip.  Her paper remained blank and the teacher scolded her.  She lowered her head in desperate sadness.




27 thoughts on “Ninth birthday trade-in – Friday Fictioneers

    1. Thank you for your question. The story explores the lead-up to the rejection the little girl experiences when her father abandons their outing and, as she understands it, chooses to spend her birthday with the woman and the boy. The wider implications of his action will be realised more slowly and over time.


    1. Thank you for your comment and the very positive feedback on the writing. I think she will be able to deal with the shock of learning the truth. It will take a while to sink in but, even at her young age, she’ll find the strength to rebalance her life now she knows what’s really going on.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. What a tough story–you get the emotions across well. I was a little confused letter line–the assignment was for them all to write to their siblings? They didn’t all go on a trip, right? You wrote this so that it’s easy to empathize with your narrator–you got a lot into the 100 words. I’m a teacher and have definitely seen (too often) sadness paralyze students when it comes to writing about their lives (or sometimes about anything) and your story brought that feeling right back to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your response. Sorry about the confusion. It’s the challenge of the 100 word story – what to put in and what to leave out! In the final paragraph “they wrote letters to their siblings” is intended to imply that they (who had brothers/sisters on the trip) wrote letters to their siblings. As you will appreciate, I would have gone over the word count if I had added the additional detail. The final sentence of your comment indicates to me that you will understand why I felt it was important to include the information about the letter writing. Thanks again for reading the story and taking the time to respond.


  2. Heartbreaking. This happens all too often… families breaking apart and kids feel like they are replaced with new families. Poor baby. I just wanna hold her. There’s a deeper conversation here and you did it in very few words. Kudos.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The little girl just doesn’t have the words to explain in a letter to her brother and she just cannot write about anything else. The teacher’s criticism on top of the previous day’s experience is all too much and the grief overwhelms her. Thank you for telling me you liked the way that was written in the final sentence. I value your comment.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. The mother only got a brief mention but, as you suggest, there’s a whole other story in there. It’s a terrible situation for the little girl but the mother’s heart must have been breaking. Thank you for your sensitive response.

      Liked by 1 person

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