Friday Fiction: 100 Word Challenge

Friday Fiction: 100 Word Challenge

Friday Fiction: 100 Word Challenge

A quote: “We never understand how little we need in this world until we know the loss of it.” ~~ James M. Barrie


The first time I saw the locks clipped to the rope along the boardwalk — saw names and dates and realized what they were for — I was horrified. People! Why tempt fate?

I think it was our 25th when you confessed you put a lock with our names there, the site of our first date. I was ticked – for about 30 seconds.

And I now think of the years between then and now. Surely it has rusted beyond identification. But as soon as we lay you to rest, I’m going to look for it.

We defied karma, my darling.


Now, it’s your turn.
. featured image, cropped, Adobe Stock standard license

Written by

  • Dupin says:

    “I don’t know.”

    “Getting cold feet?” She laughed. “We’ve done the hard part. The lock’s engraved with our names, and we got here. We just lock it here with all these others, kiss, and we seal our love for one another forever when we throw the key into the water.”

    “And who all have done this before us?”

    “Look at the locks. Brenda and Eddie on this one. Lola and Tony on the next, and Jack and Diane here.”

    “Billie Joe and Bobbi Sue on this one. Okay, so this is real, and so’s my love, so let’s do this.”

  • Leigh Kimmel says:

    I still remember when I first heard the story of the Locks of Love. It was in third hour French class, and Mme. DuBois was giving us a video tour of her visit to Paris over the winter break. She showed us the Pont des Arts encrusted with locks, and told us how lovers would inscribe their names on a lock, fasten it there, and throw the key in the Seine as a gesture of their eternal love.

    Lenny leaned over and whispered that we ought to do that, right here on one of the bridges over the St. Joseph River. I smiled and nodded, not wanting to disturb class any more. We’d been dating off and on for a few months, nothing super-serious, but we we were teens, studying a language everyone associates with lovers. Of course grand romantic gestures would appeal to us.

    When several days passed and nothing happened, I figured he’d forgotten about it. But the next week he came to class with something to show me.

    The lock was cheap, and the engraving unsteady, something you might do with those pens the cops give you to mark your electronics and stuff with your phone number so they can be identified if they’re stolen. But Lenny had gone through with it, so after school we drove up to one of the bridges to do the deed.

    i still remember the splashing sound the keys made when they hit the water. You’d think that all the city noise would cover it up, but it sounded as loud as if we’d dropped a whole safe in the river.

    We probably would’ve gotten married right after we graduated, if things hadn’t blown up in the Middle East. Lenny went down to the recruiter’s office and enlisted. We both figured that, with his good grades in French, he’d probably be sent to language school and become an interpreter, stay somewhere nice and safe. Then go to college on the GI Bill, maybe get into international business.

    He got sent to language school all right, but for Arabic, not French. Then it was off to the sandbox, and it turns out even an interpreter isn’t safe in a combat zone. I was just walking back from the post office after mailing my weekly letter when I saw the car at his folks’ house. There was only one reason that would happen.

    I never heard the full story. What got printed in the newspaper had to be prettied up for public consumption, and I didn’t have the heart to ask his folks.

    Maybe I should’ve started dating again, found someone else. It wasn’t like Lenny and I were married, just two kids who did a romantic gesture. Maybe I was scared of setting myself up for another loss, even after the Energy Wars were over. But it was easier to keep myself to myself, focus on getting my degree, getting a job and making a life for myself.

    Now I’ve learned a new meaning for Locks of Love. My younger sister just sent me the bad news — her little girl has cancer. It’s treatable, but it’s really hard for a kid her age to have her hair fall out. It’s easy for us adults to forget just how mean kids can be to each other. The slightest hint of weakness and they’re all over it.

    This is the first time I’ve had my hair cut since I got word of what happened to Lenny. I’ll miss having hair so long I can wrap it clear around my head. But Sandy will have a wig that will make her look normal, and she can go to school without all the kids asking nosy questions and calling her mean names.

  • Navig8r says:

    “What are all these shiny things?”
    “Beats me. They’re not edible, not much use to us fish. Dangerous. My brother caught one that was moving horizontally and disappeared completely.”

    “They show on my metal detector as coins, but they’re just junk. Did a locksmith go off a bridge?”
    “Dry river beds are supposed to be good for detecting. I was hoping for valuables like jewelry or old weapons.”

    “This archaeological find shows that 21st century humans were very superstitious. The locks were used to bind demons and then the keys thrown away to prevent their escape.

  • Cameron says:

    (Sorry I’m late. I forgot to do this)

    Every year, the graduating Senior class brings the lock from their locker and secures it to the bridge. Folks like to say how it’s symbolic as they leave behind a memento as they cross the bridge to adulthood.

    It’s when they get older that they learn the about what happened when those…things got loose. There are people in town who remember that time and how it stopped when an old man put the first padlock on the bridge. Since then, we make sure that the creatures stay bound. Call it superstition if you want, but the monsters never came back.

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