A Better Offer

Copyright - Dale Rogerson

Copyright – Dale Rogerson

“This is it. They planned to meet here before dawn and head downriver. They’d been preparing secretly for weeks. On the surface, they kept up appearances.”

“How did they meet?”

“He was much older – a drifter, a onetime acquaintance of her father’s. He floated in unexpectedly one day and worked his charm.”

“Did they make it?”

“Her dad knew: an experienced eye can tell how the current flows. He locked her in, met him here and ended it – offered an alternative.”

“What about her?”

“She was quietly married soon after. Five kids, uneventful life – no snags.”


It’s time for Friday Fictioneers again, hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Each week writers contribute 100 word stories in response to a picture prompt. Thanks to Rochelle for managing the event and encouraging everyone’s efforts so generously.

22 thoughts on “A Better Offer

    • I suspect you’re right. I wanted to show the narrator as a bit of a shady character, and suggest that the father rescued his daughter from a life of ultimate unhappiness with him. At least her life is secure. Thank you, Gah, for the response.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Good story. When he said he ended it I wondered if he ended the other man, literally. Though you said he offered an alternative. The daughter seemed to go on to another life pretty easily. There is a lot under the surface here.


    • Thank you, Deborah. Actually, I did have that in mind when I started, but decided it might work better if I suggested that the father paid him off. I also wanted to suggest that the daughter had little choice in her hasty marriage to someone else. It’s difficult to suggest deeper layers in 100 words, and the story in my mind may not be the story I’ve produced. So I’m glad you see more in it than what’s on the surface.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I like the conversational format of this piece. It worked really well. No snags, but is she happy? I sense she isn’t. I, too, feel a sense of regret at what might have been. Great, original take, Margaret!


    • I’m happy the dialogue worked. I wondered about the fact that I didn’t actually identify the speakers, but nobody has mentioned that so it must be ok. Thank you for your encouragement, Amy.


  3. Wonder what the alternative was? One suggestion. I would change “I keep in touch” to “we keep in touch.” It’s basically the same, but I assume it was two-way communication.


    • In my mind the father paid him off. I’m interested in your comment about “I” vs “we” keep in touch. I actually started with “we”, but decided to change it to “I”. I was thinking that he’s the one who keeps up the contact, not her. My idea was that by now she’s over him. I imagined quite a lot with this one – not sure if I’ve actually conveyed any of it.


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