Thursday, October 05, 2017

The visitor

The Visitor

My writing mate and I met back at LaNoisette to do our writing exercises. The opening line was from Fanny Flagg's "Welcome to the World Baby Girl" that was the trigger for this piece of flash fiction.
"She stood and watched the man pull away."

She stood and watched the man pull away.

Her mother was at work as usual. As much as her mother tried to be home early each night, her work as a paralegal often kept her late at the office.

Lana saw the wind blow the first red leaves of autumn in swirls in the driveway after the departing car.

He'd rung the side doorbell, which was the first few notes of Beethoven's "Ode to Joy". Her mother had wanted to be a classical pianist, but Lana's birth had put an end to those hopes.

Sometimes Lana worried, she'd destroyed her mother's life, but her mother always said that Lana was the best thing that had happened to her.

Lana knew her mother would be unhappy that she'd opened the door to a stranger, but she was expecting her friend Jessica, who was coming to study for a history test. And besides only friends came to the side door.

Instead it was that man standing there. He was about her mother's age, although she wasn't that good at guessing grown-ups' ages. He was dressed in good jeans, an Irish knit sweater and expensive looking boots.

"Lana Friedman?"


"Your mother is Diana Friedman?"


Then he looked down at his boots, looked at his car and said, "I shouldn't have come." He ran to his car, turned and came back. "Give your mother this." It was his business card. He was a software engineer in another city. There were tears in his eyes. "Tell her there's no obligation to call me."

Then he went back to the driveway, calling over his shoulder in a shaky voice, "Tell your mom she did a great job in raising you and I'm so, so sorry."

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