Posted in Challenges and Contests, Flash Fiction Pieces, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

The Pros and Cons of Staying Here for #StoryADay May; Day Twenty-Three

The Prompt:

  • Write a story in the form of a list.

The Pros and Cons of Staying Here:


  • (I guess I’ll come back to this…can’t think of a single one right now…)


  • The baby is already a lost cause; it’s going to die, and there’s nothing anyone can do to change that, because people need brains to live, and this baby doesn’t have one (I need to stop crying about this; it doesn’t seem to bother Marilyn at all, even when I can get her to talk about being pregnant, which is almost never, even though her belly is getting huge).

  • I’m not helping Marilyn get off drugs (even rehab can’t do that, apparently, so how the hell would I be able to, when I’m virtually a stranger to her?)


  • (I’ve still got nothing. Need to try harder, but – )


  • I’m already trying as hard as I can, and it’s not working (I feel old and used-up, and I only turned sixteen five months ago! If I stay here much longer, I’m going to be an old woman inside by the time everything’s said and done – if it ever even is. What will she be like, after this baby is born, and dies?)

  • I fucking hate this house (I feel like it’s sucking away my life and my soul, and maybe like it’s already turned Marilyn into a husk of a human. There’s things she’s not telling me about growing up here, I’m sure of that. She’s been poisoned, somehow, more than by the drugs, I mean…)


  • (Nope – nothing yet. There’s got to be something, hasn’t there?)


  • Marilyn is often abusive, destructive, sometimes even violent (Need to ask Mom to send some money to cover the security deposit if I can’t get the walls scrubbed clean where she wrote on them, and my wrists are sore where she grabbed me yesterday, and I’m afraid she’s going to keep escalating…)

  • She’s secretive, and I know she’s hiding drugs, and fucking guys every chance she gets in order to score more (she’ll take anything, and screw anyone, it seems, as long as she can score her next fix. She takes so many drugs, it’s maybe a wonder she’s still alive at all…and she might not be, at any moment, and then I’ll have to deal with a pregnant corpse, and I have no idea if I can handle that and I need to stop thinking this way and find something positive, damn it, so I can go to sleep, because there’s no telling when the next explosion is coming and think positive damn it -)


  • (Damn it – I need to think of something – anything! – that makes all this worthwhile for anyone involved…but what, when there doesn’t seem to be one good thing about any of this?)


  • Marilyn blames me for everything that’s wrong in her life (well, maybe not that, or not exactly that. More like she blames my existence, or my mom and our dad, even though Mom didn’t know he was married and already had a child, and she didn’t expect to get pregnant the very first time she had sex, and, well, I really can’t say a damned thing to exonerate a father I’ve never known, except that I know Mom has good taste, and he must have talked a very good game…)

  • I don’t think I’m strong enough to handle this (and I know that Marilyn isn’t. She’s unhinged, lost in her damage, and no one can help her, not even the professionals, so how the hell am I supposed to help her? And yet…she does need help, needs someone, needs love maybe more than anyone I’ve ever met in my life – wait, maybe that’s it…)


  • She needs me (and maybe I need her, too…)

Will Ophelia be able to think of anything to add to the pro list?

What about the cons?

Is this one pro enough to keep her here?

Any guesses?

Come back tomorrow for another installment, and we can explore this new story seed together!


I am myself. I own my life, and live with three other people who own theirs. My intention is to do only those things that bring me joy, and to give myself wholly to those things I do. Writing has been my passion throughout my life, and this will become the home for my writing life...because it brings me great joy!

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