Friday flash — growing ivy

Today’s drabble is inspired by Chuck Wendig’s flash fiction challenge, using three of the following five words: enzyme, ivy, bishop, blister, lollipop. (Note if you haven’t visited his site before, some of the language is not words I would say in front of my kids.)


Roots from the ivy pushed between the bricks on the bishop’s chimney. He knew he needed to have the gardener deal with the plant before it damaged the house, but it looked so picturesque, and appearance was everything, wasn’t it? Growth in the diocese, innocence of the mayor, functioning of the enzymes that made insulin in his treacherous body.

He glanced again at the lab report. Maybe it was time to accept things as they truly were. Tell the truth, and let his successor deal with the ensuing outrage.

Afterward, the gardener could always plant ivy next to his tombstone.


I’m not terribly happy with this drabble — it sounds more like the opening of a story than a complete story, but his rule was no more than 100 words, so this is what I have.

N.B.: Changed “peace” to “growth” to avoid certain assumptions, which could easily be read into the story.

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  1. I liked the story, despite your note at the beginning. Maybe put the note at the end so readers aren’t turned off before they even read it…?

    I think the story could be a little clearer. The “peace in the diocese” sentence especially. Part of the problem might be the associations with catholicism and pedophilia, which a few stories I read before yours made use of, and so my mind went directly there when the bishop was worried about appearances. Once I got to the end I realized it was something else, and was very relieved. So thank you for that. 😉

    • Yes, I rarely write sad when it’s longer, but sadness and horror do come out in my shorter pieces — maybe because they’re not long enough to overwhelm me?

      Thanks for coming by.

  2. the 100 word constraint does make it difficult to create an entire story – mine is also more of a “part” but it was fun to do. These are great for generating ideas and I can see you working this into a longer piece. I enjoyed reading this 🙂

    • Yes, I love writing 100-word pieces. (You can see others by looking at the “drabble” tag.) There’s just something about pushing limits . . . I remember writing a sonnet about basketball in high school just to see if I could.

      We’ll see whether I rework this longer or not. It might be too depressing.

      Thank you for stopping in and commenting; I’m glad you enjoyed it.

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