Friday, May 11, 2012

On a Moonlit Lane

Photo Credit
“Two men appeared out of nowhere, a few yards apart in the narrow, moonlit lane.”
Alice had been running alone for years. Was this when her luck would end? She wanted to turn and run the other way. I’m panicking over nothing, it’s nothing. She kept her pace.
Her legs felt light, her mind slightly clearer. She could feel the old Alice resurfacing. She coerced herself into not making eye contact with them. A few strides closer and she knew it was her they had come for. The men held up their badges, “Are you Alice, Alice Elliot?”
Panting she bent over placed her hands upon her knees, tilted her heavy head towards the giants, “Yes, what do you want?”
“Do you know a Conrad Elliot?”
Summoning her breath, “What do you want with Conrad Elliot, and how did you know I would be here? Do you always track down young women in the night?”
The men widened their stance, “Do you know…”
“He’s my dad.”
“Mind answering a few questions for us?”
Alice put her hands to her hips, releasing a sigh, “Guess I’ve got no choice.”

The commute from the peaceful trail to the police station left Alice just enough time to think of all the things her father could have been involved in. This wasn’t the first time Police had questioned her father. She remembered vividly the time detectives searched their family home. Alice was a little kid, when detectives showed up at their door. Her Dad led the detectives through every nook and cranny of their home. Nothing was found. Later her Dad explained the situation in a way that led her to believe he was one of the most honest men she had ever known. He had a way of explaining things, even if it made no sense at all, somehow you would never question it. Alice chalked it up to a mix-up. Now she wondered, was it? Could it be about that? The incident was so long ago, it couldn’t be. The possibilities began to pollute her mind, one scenario popping up after another, like quick vivid nightmares. She hoped to God, it was not about her recently buried Mom.

*****Blogger's note****
This post was inspired through a prompt by Write on Edge.
And now the prompt:
For this week, I’m offering you this opening line:
“Two men appeared out of nowhere, a few yards apart in the narrow, moonlit lane.” Do it in 500 words or less.


  1. Very believable scene and dialogue, with nary a 'he said' or a 'she said' in sight: well done! It can be so hard to convey a conversation without using 'talking verbs', but you did it through actions and gestures. Is 'coerced' the right verb? (Can one coerce oneself?) Not sure... I had to read it a couple of times and I still get a twinge... Also you may want to try the past perfect tense rather than the simple past when writing about Alice's memories of the search: 'Alice had been a little kid when detectives had showed up at her door'. 'Her dad had led detectives...' 'Later, her dad had explained...' etc all the way up to "Now she wondered...' It creates more distance and a sense of reflection, but that may be just a matter of personal choice. Is this a stand-alone piece or part of a longer story? Whichever, I really enjoyed it :)

    1. Thanks for the tips. Past tense makes a lot more sense to me, now that you mention it. Alice is a character I've been working on, but as I wrote this I'm not sure I would include it in her longer story... undecided.
      Glad you stopped by.

  2. This is great! Didn't see the twist at the end. Very good writing. here is mine

  3. I absolutely loved the careful detail you created - "heavy head" and "possibilites that began to pollute her mind". Great job building the suspense and getting readers to wonder as well.

  4. very vivid. i wish i had concrit for you but i just really liked it and honestly wouldn't change a thing.


  5. Wow! I liked how you made me think those men were there for something else, then switched gears. It heightened the suspense for me!

  6. dum dum duuuuummmm! Ohh, bad things brewing I think. The fact Alice immediately thought about her recently deceased mom in relation to her dad and the police speaks volumes!


  7. An incomplete sentence or two, but I like what you did with this. Great take on the prompt!

  8. Nicely done - great plot here! I like the weaving of your back story here!

    Barbara @ de rebus

  9. AnonymousMay 15, 2012

    Very nice. There was drama, suspense, a twist. Great use of the prompt!