Friday Fictioneers : When the world froze

PHOTO PROMPT © Victor and Sarah Potter


 

Winter was hard.

The streets were slick and glassy, icicles sang from every tree – a high, unearthly tune – and even the harbour was clogged, jagged plates of ice knocking, sliding one over the other, only for their cold geometry to refreeze each night as the sun vanished.

We were standing by a brazier when we saw the strangest thing. Webs, the spokes and lines frilled white and at the centre of each, the crystal bauble of a spider, waiting for a last meal that never came.

‘A sad sight,’ said Barney, hands purpled and blotchy.

He’s a good man.

 


Written for Rochelle Wisoff-Field’s Friday Fictioneers, the best prompt on the ‘web’. See the photo and write a tale and don’t forget to share and read the other contributions here.

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62 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers : When the world froze

  1. Liking so many of the carefully crafted descriptions in this one, especially ‘cold geometry.’ A human affection for all small things is a winning attribute. I knew someone who used to stroke the backs of bees!

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    1. Wow! Not sure I’d be brave enough to stroke their backs, though I have tried to save honey bees from spiders before – to no avail. They are wonderful, wonderfully strange creatures. Thank you Pola

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    1. Thank you. Ah, I see where you’re going here, but as someone who suffers from poor circulation, lives in a temperate climate and has what is often quite a cold job, I was just writing from experience – my hands are often purple (and red!) and blotchy from the cold at this time of year. Thank you for leaving such a thoughtful comment Varad

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    1. Yes, that was my thinking, that the narrator admires the fact that Barney can feel compassion for the spiders even as he himself is freezing. Possibly could have described that more clearly, but I would have needed a handful more words. Thanks for reading Irene

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    1. Thank you Iain. I remember few winters ago seeing a row of spiders webs on some railings, each with frozen dew drops sparkling all over them. I wonder where the spiders went? We kept catching spiders and putting them outside until we read that they’re probably house spiders, evolved to live with in homes and likely to die outside. Now we leave them be. Though I absolutely understand if you can’t stand them – they’re not everyone’s favourite 🙂

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    1. Glad you read it that way – I think a couple of people thought the ending was a bit obscure. I liked that thought though, seeing the spiders and having a fellow feeling because everyone is in the same predicament. Not sure if that’s how many behave when it comes down to it, sadly. Thank you Joy

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  2. Fabulous! LIke all the rest, I loved your icy descriptions and even the matter-of-factness of the gentleman’s comment.

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  3. I like “a last meal that never came.” That’s heavy! Nice, tight imagery..the purple, blotchy hands too. Well done, Lynn. Let’s get back to work and do some more!

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    1. Ah, so true, Russell. And that’s bad news for so many people, judging by the state of the world. Thank you so much for reading and for your – always – kind and considered comment

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