“Grandfather,” asked the dead boy


“Grandfather,” asked the dead boy, “why do those sad people stand at the water’s edge and wail?”

“These people were bad; they were selfish and did not earn enough karma to pay the passage to the other side.”

“Grandfather,” asked the dead boy, “why do those happy people get onto boats so grand?”

“Those people were good; they gave more than they took, and earned enough karma to pay for a comfortable trip to the other side.”

“Grandfather,” asked the dead boy, “why is our boat so humble?”

“We are Hindu, grandson. We save some karma for the return fare.”

(Word count 100)

Another Friday Fictioneers’ 100 word challenge from Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple Blog (click here to read all the stories). A bit of a departure from  my normal style (or so I think anyway), so I’m very interested in any comments you may have. This one came to me very quickly – 15 minutes of writing, with minimal edits – but as I saw the photo prompt last night, immediately before going to bed, I wonder if I mentally wrote it while sleeping.

Sleep-writing would be pretty cool, although I’d love to get into some ‘sleep-exercising’.




34 thoughts on ““Grandfather,” asked the dead boy

    1. Thanks Doug, I’m really glad you liked it. The image just cried out ‘Charon the Ferryman on the River Styx’ when I saw it the first time, but I couldn’t find a good ‘hook’ to go with it. When I woke up in the morning, this reincarnation tale (minus the ferryman) seemed to be sitting in its place, fully formed!



  1. Dear KT,

    I think I told you before that you’ve become one of the writers I look forward to reading every week. (It wasn’t my intent to echo Sandra, but I see that I did 😉 Nonetheless my comment stands. ) This story is an example of your fantastic imagination and skill. Well done.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Rochelle – this sort of comment (from you and Sandra and the other lovely commentators) means a lot to me. I get a lot from these #FF challenges – feedback on my own stories is great, there is a lot of skills to be had from reading the stories of others (for example, I KNOW that my dialogue has gotten better from reading other peoples 100 word pieces).

      Till next week 🙂


  2. This really had a kind of effortless flow to it, KT! I can see that it might have come to you quickly. You are so lucky. I’d like some of that sleep exercising as well. How do you that? Do you know? Anyway, really great work! The end is lasting and stays with me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I like the idea of spending karma wisely and remaining humble. Just a thought – could you have softened the language of good and bad to incorporate more of the Hindu philosophy of improving oneself in the next life? The good and bad contrast felt too final to me, or maybe that was the point. Thanks for making me think. Tracey

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks mate – this one seems to be one of my most popular posts, and really stems from me trying to stretch away from the less original ‘reaper and the river styx’ story I came up with first. taking some inspiration from a different culture here helped.


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