I’m doing things a little differently for this week’s #SuperShort. When I talked to my friend Addison the other day, I complained that my writing mojo was lost after my holiday vacation in Sweden, that I hadn’t prepared a Flash Fiction story for this week, and that I didn’t have any ideas for one. So, she offered to throw some prompt words at me.
I accepted, even if I’ve never used that method as inspiration before. These are the words she gave me (found here):
They didn’t seem too impossible (like the words I sometimes throw at her on Fridays…but to my defense she asks for words and I’m just being a good, helpful friend…and she’s a pro at this 😁) so I mulled them over the whole day until an idea popped into my head.
And I’m so freaking proud of myself because I managed to incorporate all of them! I thought I’d might fix one or two, but not all five. Yay me!!
And thank you, Addison. I needed the virtual kick in the butt. 😁
Now, let’s get to the story, shall we?? (I might have taken some liberties with the words, but I figured it was allowed.)
The First Meeting
I kept my gaze firmly on the winding road cutting through the woodlands even though it wasn’t car sickness that made my stomach twist in knots. We were alone, hadn’t met another car in ages, and Matt had stopped trying to talk to me several miles back, probably tired of my monosyllabic answers.
When my knee started its incessant bouncing for the tenth time the last five minutes, he reached over the center console and rested a hot palm on my thigh, stilling my leg with a light squeeze.
“Baby, you don’t need to be nervous,” he said.
I swallowed around a big lump in my throat that threatened to make its way into my mouth. “I know,” I croaked out. And I did. He’d told me many, many times. Mom is the nicest and most levelheaded person you’ll ever meet, he’d said. Heck, my dad even used to call her Mellow Meg. The silly nickname had elicited a smile from me but hadn’t really calmed me down. And now, less than five minutes before I would meet her, I had a hard time breathing.
It was the first time in my life I was going to meet the parents. Or parent, since Matt’s dad had died a year before we met. Thirty years old and scared to death to meet someone who apparently was the most agreeable person on God’s green earth and who had no problems whatsoever with Matt being gay if Matt was to be trusted. And he’d never lied to me before, so I had no reason to doubt him.
But it didn’t help. My own family had reacted badly when I came out, and I’d never met the parents of my only serious boyfriend before Matt because he wasn’t out to them. Meeting his family had never been an issue for the entire four years we’d been together.
Matt, on the other hand, was completely different. As soon as our relationship had turned serious, he’d wanted us to go see his mom. I want the two most important people in my life to meet, he’d said and curled his big body around mine where we’d lain in his cozy bed. His thick fingers had played with my treasure trail and short-circuited my brain, making it impossible for me to deny him anything.
Not that I’d ever been able to say no to him. Whenever I tried, he would just kiss me and kiss me and kiss me until my legs turned to spaghetti and a kaleidoscope of butterflies took up residence in my stomach. His warm brown eyes, his lush mouth, and his big hands with the thick fingers could convince me to do anything.
So here I was. About to meet his mom. Desperately hoping I wouldn’t faint like a damsel in distress on her doorstep.
Curling my hands into fists, I shuddered at their clamminess. I rubbed my palms on my pants because no one wanted to shake a sweaty hand.
A house materialized in the distance and my heart stumbled between two beats. The fist around my throat tightened.
What if Mrs. Johnson was fine with Matt being gay, but not him being with me? What if she didn’t like me? I wasn’t the most talkative of guys under normal circumstances. What if I did something to offend her? My parents had taught me manners, of course, how to be polite and correct when meeting new people, but nerves always made a knot out of my tongue and left me a stumbling mess.
My knee resumed its bouncing when Matt turned into the driveway leading up to the small, ranch-style house. It was surrounded by trees and looked nice and inviting. Like a real home. I groaned and ran my fingers through my hair.
Matt parked the car and got out after shooting me a quick smile. I followed him before I had time to change my mind and do something stupid, like climb over to the driver’s side and hightail it out of there. I trailed behind him on the path leading up to the house like a baby duck padding after its mama. Feeling just as small and vulnerable.
He didn’t knock when he stopped in front of the door. Instead, he turned to me and cupped my cheeks. And just like that, I could breathe easier. I looked up and met his gaze and the lump in my throat dissolved.
“Oh, baby,” he murmured as he leaned forward and nudged the tip of his nose against mine. “I promise she’ll love you.”
I bit my lower lip to stop it from trembling. How could he promise me something like that when my own mother had refused to speak to me for years because of who I was? How could he be so goddamned sure?
“And Ike?” He slid his hands down and ran his fingers through the short hairs on the back of my neck.
“Uh-huh?” Needing to be connected to him, I hooked my index finger in one of the belt loops of his faded jeans that made me want to fall to my knees and worship his muscular legs.
“Even if she doesn’t, it won’t change a thing. I love you. That’s all that matters.”
I tugged him closer and rose on my tippytoes so I could rest my cheek against his. “I love you, too, Matthew,” I whispered.
We stood like that for several minutes. His breaths puffing against my cheek and his caressing fingers made me forget everything but him. His woodsy scent found its way into my nose and I inhaled him, taking his essence into my body. My darling Matt. Steady as a rock, and mellow like his mom.
When the knot in my stomach had untangled, I pressed my lips against his stubbly cheek before taking a step back. “I’m ready,” I said.
Together, we turned to the door. I lifted my hand and knocked.
That was fun. So, leave me some words in the comments and I’ll try my best to incorporate them in a story. But please, leave more than one so I can be picky…if you decide to not play nice and leave me a word like skullduggery… or diaphanous or something equally evil 😁
While you do that, I’ll browse through Instagram and see if I can find something inspiring. It’s best to have a back-up plan, don’t you think? 😁
Happy Friday, everyone!