Friday Fictioneers : Green, amber. Red

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields


This set of lights is so slow. Red, red, nothing but red lights all the way home. His heel bounces impatiently, knee tapping the steering wheel.

He hates the colour red, always has. Something threatening about it, something he can never quite put his finger on. Trina says, ‘red wine, cosy fires – my hair. What’s not to like?’

But still …

Finally, the light shimmers amber, green. Home, then, and fast.

Something flickers in the wing mirror. A girl on a bike, scarlet coat flapping like a broken wing. She’s there then gone.

Horns blare. Red, red, nothing but red.

 


Written for Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Friday Fictioneers. See the prompt pic and write a tale, but do visit here to read the other stories.

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46 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers : Green, amber. Red

    1. Ah, thank you so much! As you’re a lady who has made a very successful writing career from building tension, I’m delighted you felt that way. Thanks so much Louise 🙂

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  1. Great tension, especially with the photo. I always try to remind myself when I’m feeling stressed out and rushed, that rushing can lead to mistakes which can lead to being even more late, so it’s best to calm down and stay steady. And when you’re behind the wheel of a car, especially so!

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    1. Thank you Joy. You’re so right. I see it on the roads every day in this city that has so many cars – drivers who assume that becasue a rash action turned out okay before it will today. Sadly, watching the news you grow to realise this is not always the case. Thanks again 🙂

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      1. As a pedestrian around campus, I see so many crazy drivers and almost-accidents, it’s terrifying. I realize that part of the problem is not only so many first-time drivers on campus, but also that so many of them are from other countries, so some confusion is understandable. Still, it’s baffling to me that people don’t even *pause* at a stop sign!

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      2. Not just young, inexperienced drivers either. There’s something about being cocooned inside a car that gives people a sense of the world being distant, a false sense of security about the reality of physics. Some terrible things happen just because people are keen to get home.

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  2. This is our worst nightmare isn’t it? The momentary lapse that changes lives forever. Thank god when I swung the driver’s door open after parking that the cyclist and her child weren’t hurt, but we were all shocked. A damaged car door which never shut properly was a small price to pay for a thoughtless action that could have ended really badly.

    Your use of red, that polyvalent colour, was well done and, I think, subtly understated. Another gem of a vignette, if shocking.

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      1. Red, in my culture, is the color of bravery, courage, strength. It is a color of strong medicine, the color of the lifeblood flowing within all of us. It’s not a negative color, not like in non-native society where it represents anger, hate, and nastiness.

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      2. What a wonderful thing – thank you for sharing this with me. So interesting to learn how different cultures view the same things, bringing their own interpretations and ideas. Thank you 🙂

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      3. I used red, black, yellow, and white in a business class presentation and website design. The professor flunked me because the colors were unacceptable. The business I was proposing was a Native business, and the colors highly appropriate.

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      4. Now, that just shows how narrowminded your professor was. How can you flunk someone on colour choice? That’s entirely subjective. Did you argue your case or was there no opportunity to do so?

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      5. I did so, all the way up to the dean. Who, of course, supported the professor. Only D- I’ve ever gotten in my life. The professor had a knack for not liking women, especially women who were smarter than him. I went on to sell that business plan & accompanying website to the Native run business at a nice little profit.

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    1. Thanks so much. Always remember reading Wide Sargasso Sea and Jean Rhys’s use of red as a warning. If you’re going to filch and idea, nick it from the best! Thanks for reading

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