16/10/2014

WHAT WOULD YOU SAVE? 100-word fiction

WHAT WOULD YOU SAVE?

Marjorie clutched the oxygen mask to her face and breathed deeply, but Jim had already lit a cigarette.
“Haven’t you had enough smoke for today?” Marjorie snapped.
“I need one,” Jim said, “Don’t you realise we’ve lost everything?”
Marjorie choked back a sob and glared at the collection of junk in front of her. “Is this all you managed to get?”
Jim shrugged hopelessly. “I just grabbed whatever was on the hall-stand, and you didn’t do any better.”

“Yes I did,” said Marjorie, “I’ve had Betty for seventy years - she's always been the first thing I’d save from a fire.”

There is a large element of truth in my story this week. Betty has been my friend and confidante since I was born, and in the event of a fire I would grab her first - right after my grandchildren, of course. 
What would you save?

Follow the link on this blog  http://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/  to read other stories prompted by the photo.
And please leave a comment on mine!



26 comments:

  1. If I had to save just one thing it would be my bag which contains my phone and credit cards and driving licence. But my phone would be the most important as I would need to contact all the family. I like the way you rounded off the story by confirming the fire.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thaks Maggie May - I like to think I would remember my bag too - all that paperwork would be SO difficult to replace - and my phone lives in my bag usually.

      Delete
  2. Such a great story. I can really see the characters of both these two. Still together, but not terribly happy.
    What would I save (after loved ones)? I think a box I have full of scraps of paper - postcards, things my children have written, mother's day cards. Irreplaceable things.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh gods! Now you've got me thinking about my scrap folder too!

      Delete
  3. Thinking about it logically and calmly, I'd want to save my computer, the insurance documents and the family photo albums. But if fire did break out I'd probably panic and just grab whatever I could as I rushed outside.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm in the process of scanning every page of my photo albums onto a memory stick. the plan is to give copies to my children - I have a whole shelf full of albums so it's a long job!

      Delete
  4. I wonder if Jim's smoking started the fire in the first place? At least Marjorie rescued her treasured possession. After so long it's probably worth more to her than most stuff people have lying around the place.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A lot og house fires are caused by cigarettes, so it could have been Jim's fault. He'll be in trouble with Marjorie if the Fire Dept discover that!

      Delete
  5. I would probably end up saving nothing.. I have no idea except myself and my wife... hmm

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd probably be in the wrong room to grab my Betty, but I like to think I'd try!

      Delete
  6. My parent's house burned down in 1988. Mom was at a club meeting and Dad was outdoors when he first saw the smoke. He rushed in the house and tried to get to the fire extinguisher, but to no avail. He was fortunate to escape with his life. All their valuables and keepsakes went up in flames. Since that time, I've often asked myself what I would save if I could only take one item (family members excluded) what would it be--a cherished gun, my favorite guitar, the family bible--and the honest answer is I just don't know. Probably whatever was within arms reach at the time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Guitar or bible, yes - I don't like guns - but in truth nothing is worth risking your life for except another life.

      Delete
  7. The teddy my granny made for me when I was little and my laptop as it has all my work on it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad someone else would save a teddy!

      Delete
  8. Dear Liz,

    You've left us with much to think about. I've asked myself this question before and the answer has changed over the years. My first thought, at the moment is one of my flash drives. All of which have backups of all my manuscripts.

    Wonderful story.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Rochelle- I've been thinking the same since most of this week's comments have mentioned saving laptops!

      Delete
  9. Nicely done. I'd save my laptop, tab and mobile phone. Not very romantic am I?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not romantic, Sandra, but practical - and your mobile phone is contact with friends and family anyway.

      Delete
  10. Good story! There's a similar old ethical question I've heard asked: you can only save one of the following in a fire - the world's greatest work of art or the world's worst Nazi. Which do you save? I'd save the world's lousiest piece of art first.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :D With a bit of luck all the world's worst Nazis will be dead before I am faced with the dilemma!

      Delete
  11. I was on a flight once, that had a emergency landing due to a bomb threat (false threat thankfully). As I went down the chute my thought were with a Black Forest cake I had to leave behind. Fortunately it reached home intact (but did not survive the frenzied feasting that followed). You might laugh but that baker remains a true artist and a genius.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did laugh, Subroto - our minds often fix on relatively unimportant things in moments of stress! I'm glad you got to eat the gateau.

      Delete
  12. Liz, I hate to think about a fire as we are 42 steps up from the ground floor with no lift.. We'd be lucky to get out with our lives.--- Susan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your lives are all that matter in the long run. Be careful!

      Delete
  13. I've got a portable file box that's easy to grab and it has all our important and treasured papers. But I suspect that I'd be in too much of a panic to save anything. I like the dialogue in your story - they can't help bickering even after their tragedy. How realistic that is. You're lucky to still have your Betty. She's very cute.

    Marg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am lucky to have Betty - she's a bit battered after I let my daughters play with her but I still love her. Our important papers are in a fireproof file box.

      Delete

Leave a comment, please - I will reply to everyone.