The Gardener’s Son – Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction


The Gardener’s Son

“If I came upon a wasp’s nest and cried for help, what would you do?” Shauna interrogated her suitors.

“I’d set it aflame, kill the vermin. All for you, My lady.” The scribe puffed out his chest, checking her over like cattle.

“Wrong answer,” she said.

“I’d lead you away, and take care not to anger the adults. When the young have hatched, I’d bind you a bouquet from the nest, with red roses and gardenia.”

Shauna smiled. The gardener’s son wasn’t much to look at, but his words caressed like velvet. She went down on one knee.

“Marry me.”

(100 words)

I pledgeEvery Wednesday we get a new picture prompt for the Friday Fictioneers, a challenge graciously hosted by our Fairy Blog Mother Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. We’re still in rerun modus because Rochelle is busy with her soon-to-be-published new book.

The task of the challenge is to write a story: beginning, middle, and end, in 100 words or less. You can find all the Fictioneers’ stories when you click on the Froggy. Please read, comment, and if you like, join the fun. Everyone is welcome.

When I read Sandra Crook’s story last week, I saw how she challenges herself with writing in genres that are uncomfortable for her, writing-wise. She thinks that this makes you a better writer, and I think she is right. I want to challenge myself from time to time as well; all too often I fall back on ‘my’ genres, SF and F. But I’m having difficulties figuring out what makes me uncomfortable, writing-wise. I know that I don’t like to read too sweet, too cruel, too gory, or child abuse and incest. Still, I try to write about everything when the plot demands it. I seldom write romance just for romance’s sake though, so I’ve tried my hand on that this time around. There may be some blood and gore in the future. Or more romance. 😉

Image prompt ©Janet Webb. Used with permission for this Friday Fictioneers Challenge only. Any other use of this image requires Janet Webb’s permission.

55 thoughts on “The Gardener’s Son – Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction

  1. This is such a terrific concept for a story that it begs for more words. It needs (to my mind) a second unsuitable suitor for the rhythm of that beautiful fourth paragraph to work to its fullest potential. But nevertheless, I loved it as it is and don’t see how you could have cut back on words to accommodate an extra suitor. Well done, and thanks for the pingback.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Sandra. That was the idea, I wanted to have three suitors in the story, but they could barely have said, “I burn them.” “I drown them.” “I let them live.” with the word count. I’m glad you liked it as it is.


  2. Great job at writing a lovely little romance! I’m thoroughly convinced she made the right decision with the gardener’s son. (Although the realist in me hopes she had asked other questions and generally collected more data about these two prior to this decision.) 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Why don’t you write it, if you’d like to? When I try to be romantic, it often ends up fairy-tale/fable-ish. I’m just a left-over hippie, can’t help it. 😉 Thank you Björn.


  3. Lovely story, Gabi. So vivid and romantic too. I love the idea of the bouquet – that gardener’s a winner in my book. Really love it. I agree with Sandra – could be longer for me, but of course then it wouldn’t be a Friday Fictioneers story. Lovely 🙂


    1. Thank you Liz. It’s not really my first attempt, I’ve written romantic elements in stories before, but not with the main focus on the romance.


  4. This is my favorite story based on this prompt. I think it’s the fable style (as Bjorn pointed out). I also agree with Sandra that this would make a great longer story. Well done, Gabi.

    Liked by 1 person

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