Always slaves

Copyright – Dawn Q. Landau

The manna fell and the old lady cursed it.

Forty years the manna had fallen in the desert. After forty years her people, her children, had ceased to strive, to question, to think. Wandering in the desert left no time for teaching, for reflection, for advancement. The knowledge of prior generations was lost. Her children knew only obedience, knew only dependence, knew only manna.

She was the last. When she died, her children would be allowed to enter the promised land. But the promise was that of the Pharaoh’s.

Now they would always be slaves. 

Word count: 100

Followers might have noticed yesterdays post was missing. I originally intended that post to be on time (meaning about time as a concept, not simply punctual) and how I have tried to fit writing into my busy life. Unfortunately when I got home from work yesterday evening, I had the unpleasant duty of burying my dog, who had passed whilst no-one was home.

I didn’t feel like writing after that.

But a writer writes, and I want to be a writer. So, today I get back into it with a super short one hundred word flash fiction challenge. You can find the photo prompt for this challenge here on Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’s blog.

I think how I’m feeling at the moment might have darkened the tone on this story, but I’m not necessarily a good judge.

What do you think?

Edit (22 September 2014): I finally wrote a short piece specifically about my dog, Clark, which can be found here.

Published by: wildbilbo

My name is Kristian Thoroughgood, alternately known as KT to my friends, or @WildBilbo on twitter. As of August 2015, I am forty years old. Australian. My blog is intended to be both a place for me to polish my creative writing muscles (not a double entendre) and for others to read and comment on my musings. Expect short stories, articles, essays and other brain dumps. My opinions are my own, and whilst I take care to be at least moderately informed about any topic I speak or write about, these opinions are subject to rapid change in the face of passionate arguments and greater evidence. Please note - on my blog, Evidence beats Passion.

Categories Fiction, Flash Fiction, WritingTags, , , , , 35 Comments

35 thoughts on “Always slaves”

  1. I have been trying to come up with words to match the story. But, now that I have read yours and Rochelle’s, I am daunted by the caliber of the material. I do believe you have found the right way to measure the loss of a beloved pet with the need to express yourself in writing. Now, if only I could kick my own muse in gear.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Again, thanks for reading, and thanks for the kind words. 🙂

      I’m pretty new at this, and so not in a position to give advice – but I feel daunted frequently (trust me), and try to analyse what it is that they were trying to do, and why I like it.

      If you are interested, I had two ‘threads’ that I tied into one in this story.

      I was looking to subvert the generally accepted meaning attributed to manna as a gift from heaven, and one that the Israelites should be grateful for (indeed, lack of gratitude was the reason for their 40 year wandering punishment). I looked at the manna as you might view food stamps – a hand-out with conditions, an act of donation that controls the donee.

      The exodus wandering was also enforced for 40 years, as ‘everyone who was ungrateful would be dead’, and only their children would enter the promised lands. I thought this might cause a generational knowledge gap, and again, I linked this into control.

      And thanks for the comments about my dog. Clark was a great pet, he will be missed by the family.

      I’ll be sure to check your blog out soon – but the daily grind is calling…


      Liked by 1 person

      1. The daily grind is killer…and rains down like a sh*t storm most days. (Too graphic? Sorry. It’s been one of those exhausting, mundane days.) I’ll see if I can find your links to be suitably impressed.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. That’s what I get for commenting at 3:00 in the morning. Newfoundland is an odd half-hour off other time zones in Canada, but I missed the fact that your site read PM, not AM. Your day’s almost over, and I still haven’t gone to bed. 😯

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Wildbilbo,

    Wandering in the wilderness? Sounds like something I read in a book called Exodus. I love the individual take.

    And while I’m at it, welcome to Friday Fictioneers. Warning. It’s habit forming.



    Liked by 1 person

  4. Dear WB,

    Welcome to the party, pal.

    Great start, now comes the addiction’s middle phase. Looking forward to reading more of your stuff.

    Someone once said that dogs were put on this earth to teach us about unconditional love and loss. It sounds as though you are experienced with both. Sorry for your loss. I tell my dog every day to meet me in heaven, that I’m going to need his help. He smiles and might be saying yes, but mostly he wants to know if I have anything tasty for him to eat.



    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Doug – both for reading and the kind words 🙂

      He was a great dog. He’s buried near our young apple tree – I thought that this would be a good marker for him, and trigger some good memories in the future when it fruits.



  5. So sorry for the loss of your dog. Such a painful thing! And welcome to Friday Fictioneers… as Rochelle warned, it’s terribly habit forming! I just reached my 1 year anniversary, and haven’t missed a prompt in that time. I love Wednesdays now. 😉

    Excellent, thought provoking story that suits my photo so well! I can really see where you got this. Nice job!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wonderful take on the prompt. One hears about “Manna from heaven” but I’ve never thought of it as a bad thing. You’ve definitely put a different spin on it. Thank you!

    (Sorry about your four-footed-friend. It’ strange how dogs and cats make us love them just by being there. The apple tree sounds like the perfect burial place. Cheers and welcome.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you for reading and the kind words. I’m thrilled so many people have liked it!

    I appreciate everyone’s sympathies too – Clark was much loved, and will be remembered fondly.



  8. Wildbilbo. Welcome to Friday Fictioneers! I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your dog. It’s always hard to lose a beloved family pet. I’ve been through it a number of times with my parents and then my own family. Good story. I’ll also be looking forward to your stories in the future. —Susan

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for reading Patricia & thanks for the kind words. I only managed to put some words down specifically about my dog today – it was really difficult. I do think it helped though.


  9. The loss of knowledge and the cessation of thought. A dreadful state of affairs. I like how you’ve approached and developed this. Grim but thought-provoking. Well done.


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