Friday, 11 May 2012


Unfortunately I missed the deadline (due to work commitments) for this challenge from Romantic Friday Writers but I'll post it here anyway.
Here is the challenge:

·         You must respond to the stimulus in some way.
·         From the image, choose who will be your viewpoint character.
·         Place your character/s in one of the following settings:
* a nightclub
* last day of high school/college
* at a carnival/festival
* a private party
* an exotic island
* audition for a part in the latest Romeo + Juliet production
* a combination of two or more of the above settings...
Word limit is up to 600
Entries are to contain some element of romance (it doesn't have to be HUGE).  Please, no outright erotica, gratuitous sex, gay romance is permitted if tastefully drawn.  Paranormal if fine if there is romance involved.

My viewpoint character is the girl with her back to us.

She painted the smile on her face with bright red lipstick
Concealed the shadows under her eyes thinly, not thick
A dusting of blended eye shadow to widen her eyes
To give an air of being knowledgeable and worldly wise
Lush, long, lascivious lashes enhanced with black eyeliner
Gave an exotic look, lengthened and edged with tints of copper.

As she sprayed her perfume, intoxicating and heady
A provocative, powerful aroma worth every penny
She sighed deeply, recalled the conversation to invite her
As her unadorned fingers rummaged in the box among her jewellery.

No excuses her best friend Melanie had insisted over coffee
The limousine is booked, just nod your head and agree
She wrote it on the calendar with two weeks to prepare herself mentally
To draw a line, close the chapter, finish the book finally.

Now the time had come, she’d make the best of it as always
She knows all about the brave face, best foot forward clichés
Melanie placed a fortifying glass of red wine by her elbow
Just right to steady her nerves and make her feel mellow.

She reached out to the stand, touched the wig lightly with her finger
Nail varnish, applied earlier, caught the light sparkling like a chandelier
She was used to the weight on her head but this one felt so much lighter
The curls were so tight, somehow the artificial glow made it brighter.

They looked at each other and took a deep breath, nodded and advanced
To the waiting chauffeur who doffed his cap, opened the door and glanced
At their long legs as they slid elegantly into the plush leather seats
Then the nervous giggles started as the music thumped out its beats.

The room was humming with conversation, subtle notes could be heard
Nobody stopped, nobody turned as the girls entered and surveyed
The couples together, singles pretending, wall flowers and groups of socialites
All positioned strategically, they stopped taking in the highlights.

A charity event, a private party, invitation only so no-one was supposed to be lonely
They all knew, they all had felt, they all knew someone on this journey
So the last person she expected to see stood by the bay window framed by the light
The shock was so great she nearly turned and took flight, why tonight of all nights?

He looked so handsome, so suave and sophisticated, diplomatic and brave
Her heart skipped several beats; her tummy somersaulted as she smelt his aftershave
He espied her, smiled, stepped forward, catching her eye, she was frozen, a statue
The strength of emotions assailed her, forgotten feelings as she looked at Andrew.

He took her hand, pulled her into his body, cheek against cheek
She remembered, she felt, she forgave, she felt free, she felt so weak
There was nothing she could do as she returned his tight embrace
She whispered to him, her voice filled with love, lightness and grace.

Melanie looked on as Ruby melted in to his strong arms, she uttered
Silent prayers of thanks to those responsible in the universe for what occurred
She smiled knowingly as she saw the pair move together, fluid in their movement
United as they should be and would be forever more in this time now present.

Midnight rang out, the dancing ceased; people bowed their heads for a minute
Sometimes the fates were just a lottery, so maybe unfortunate
They remembered those who had lost their fight, those who continued to do battle
Railing against the illness but always ready with hope to be saved by angels.



  1. Sally, the story took an entire different twist then what I expected. I heard red lipstick and thought provacative...very lovely!

  2. Hi Sally. So sorry you didn't get this posted! It is awesome! A delicious take on the picture.

    I hope you get a post up for the next challenge. Remember if you're a bit late you can email me and I'll post for you.

    Looking forward to your first RFW post!


    1. Thank you Denise, I think I got myself confused with my work deadline I had to meet and this one including time differences and thought I had another day!

  3. This is really lovely and original. I loved it! :)

  4. It takes a particular kind of courage to act normally in the face of serious illness.