Cheers to fellow flash fictioneer, Nillu Nasser Stelter, and to her latest post–a most welcome reminder of good times–Rekindling the Flash Flame: A Bite-Sized Story.

“The teenager walked in and sat down while her mom signed her in at the window.”

“Abby… Not everyone likes to have their lives narrated.”

The little girl mumbled an “okay,” but she looked so disappointed.

“It’s okay,” I said. “I don’t mind.”

Her mom smiled. “Thank you,” she said. And to Abby, “Just keep it down.”

“Okay! I mean—okay.”

I pulled out my cell phone and scrolled through my timeline, liking a few statuses. Just enough to keep me in the loop.

“The teenager checked her phone for a text message from her boyfriend.”

My mom sat beside me and giggled. I couldn’t help but smile myself. The kid had such a great imagination. She was completely oblivious to how things really worked.

I didn’t have a boyfriend. I had cancer. I’ve read the ‘heartwarming’ stories of sick girls with devoted boyfriends. I saw the movie. It’s bullshit.

But we all have our ways of escaping while we wait for chemo treatments.

Except my mom. She faces everything head-on. And she never meets a stranger. Wait for it…

“So,” she addressed Abby’s mom, “is this your first time here?”

She means well. But…

“Ah, no. We’re in the pain management phase.”

There’s the awkward.

“Oh, I’m sorry to hear that.”

Wait… pain management phase? That sounds an awful lot like doctor speak for “Time to give up.”

Abby picked at the hem of her dress.

I cleared by throat, my face already burning with embarrassment, and looked at my phone again.

“The teenager looked at her phone and gasped with shock. Abby the Fabulous had sent her a friend request! She immediately accepted the request and sent Abby a quick thank you message. She was trying to play it cool, but she couldn’t wait to tell her friends about the amazing storyteller.”

I’ve never been good at telling stories, but it must not have sucked too bad. Abby grinned and took up the tale from there.

That day, not only was Abby a fabulous storyteller, but she was also a magician, an explorer, and a nurse as well.

Published in Flash Fiction

Tagged with #FlashFlame


Jessica West (West1Jess) is pursuing a state of self-induced psychosis (reading, writing, editing). She lives in Acadiana with three daughters still young enough to think she’s cool and a husband who knows better but likes her anyway.

One Comment for "Escaping the Wait"

  • Nillu

    Wonderful Jess, so poignant x


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