Friday, May 6, 2011


Today is Cherie's Flash Fiction blogfest.So hop over to Surrounded by Books for Cherie's and the other entrants stories ....  I chose to write a period piece for this blogfest.  I hope you enjoy it.

The Cameo
Today’s my sixteenth birthday. I rush to the mirror to pin up my long, dark hair.  I fashion it into the style of the day. I want to be the next Gibson girl.  Putting on my favorite lace blouse and black velvet skirt, I twirl around to catch myself at every angle. 

“Perfect.” I dash out of the room to descend the three flights of stairs of our turn of the century brownstone. Father and Mother will certainly have something wonderful for me, waiting in the dining room. 

Cheers chorus around the table from my older brother, Louis, and my four younger sisters. He pulls out a chair for me and places a wrapped box into my hands. I smile and thank him. I notice other presents, but I chose to open Louis’s first. He is not only my brother, he is my best friend. Untying the ribbon, I take off the lid. Inside is a small black box. As I open it the lid creaks. 

“A cameo! Oh, Louis! It is beautiful. I have never seen one like it.”

“It cost me two week’s salary,” he said, grinning.

“You are the dearest.” I jump up and kiss him on the cheek. 

He blushes.

I step to the mirror over the buffet and pin it to the center of my collar. I stare at the captivating face carved into the shell. A single sparkling diamond hangs from her neck. “I will treasure it always.” 

Later that afternoon, tears well up in my eyes. The cameo is no longer pinned to my collar.

For a half century I never knew where I lost that cameo. I was thinking about it, when the bell rang. Still living in the same family home, my daughter came to see me with her three children. It’s my birthday. 

My grand-daughter and two grandsons, kiss me on the check. The boys take off like a shot. They love to run up and down the stairs. Janie sat next to me.

“Grandmother, is it all right if  I go to the doll room. It’s so pretty in there.”

“Of course, just be careful. Those dolls had belonged to my little sister, Eva.”

A sudden tear rolls down my face. Eva died at such a young age, still a little girl. I never step into her room. I recently opened it back up to show my grand-daughter Eva’s doll collection.

A moment later, Janie walks into the living room carrying one of the dolls. I recognize it at once. Eva’s favorite. “I didn’t see that doll when I opened the room last week.”

“She was in the chest at the end of the bed. Isn’t she beautiful?” Janie coos.

A flash of light flickers from the doll as Janie plays with her. 

“Look Grandmother, she’s even waring a pretty pin.” 

I can not believe my eyes. My heart beat faster. Another tear escapes. “Would you like to hear a story about that pin?


Now for my favorite segment .... Well everyone it's Friday and for all of you who know me before the A-Z challenge know I post my Earthly Angels segment every Friday. For the benefit of my new friends I will explain. Please bear with me regulars.

This segment actually started with the Chicago blizzard back on February first. I am reposting this from February 3rd.


Nine hundred cars were towed off Lakeshore drive in Chicago yesterday. Could you imagine, sitting in your car for twelve hours? Then, finally giving up and trekking through the snow for miles during the worst blizzard Chicago had seen in over thirty years.

My heart goes out to those poor souls. Mother Nature can be cruel at times and I am sure you all know. I must share with all of you the plight of one of my commenters from yesterday's post. A courageous soul who weathered the storm and made it though.

Joicy013 said...

"wow that storm was something! yes there was lighting that looked like fire during the storm. the winds were bad! I was out in the road picking up my sister who was stranded at work and let me tell you something. i could see nothing. windshield ended up falling apart with the ice and wind, about 2 cars on every block left stranded. took us about 2hours to get home, which would usually take 15min. woke up this morning to have snow up to ny waist in some areas of the yard."
Could you imagine the family bond to drive in such a storm for your sister. You are a kind and caring soul and you sister is very lucky to have you.

I find acts of love/kindness to be truly amazing. With our hearts filled with love for the month of February, I'd like to ask all of you, "What act of kindness/ love has been bestowed on you? Tell me about the wonderful person that came to your aid in a time of crisis. I really want to know. 

We are all blessed with angels in our lives. Not the heavenly bound creatures, but the ones bound to earth. Let me hear your story.

This is how it all began. If you know of any Earthly Angel please let me know. I would love to tell your story in my Friday segments. Next week I will post a new set of stories. 


I most likely will be on the road driving north back to Chicago. From what I see of the weather I will be in he midst of lots of rain in Kentucky, Indiana, and Chicago on Sunday.... What fun. I can't wait. Wish me luck. I just might have to stay another three or four days in the sun....


  1. Ditto to Alex. Drive safely. Can't help it. I'm a mom. :)

  2. In my case it was the tow truck guy who rescued me on a busy highway when my water pump leaked and the car went up in smoke.

    Drive safe Michael.

    Life on The Farm

  3. Wishing you a trouble free journey home.

  4. Stay safe, Michael. That photo is incredible. I remember a blizzard in 1969 when I still lived in NYC. The whole city shut down. I love the angels segment. I don't have any angel stories to report right now, but I'll stay tuned.

  5. Wishing you safe travels over the weekend!

    Once when Philly was in the midst of record snow (a mere 36 inches--nowhere near Chicago levels), a friend drove through the storm to bring me my purse that I'd left at a dinner party the night before the storm hit. I'd been trying to dig out my driveway for hours, but couldn't keep up, the snow was falling so fast. It was angelic of him to bring my purse so I could at least walk to the corner store and stock up on a few food essentials. We ended up snowed in for four days!

  6. Travel safe. Take an angel with ya.


  7. I hope an angel follows you home :) I was looking for your flash fiction for Cheries blogfest- I'll check back later for it.

  8. Stay safe!

    I love your flash fiction story; the ending is wonderful. :)

  9. I enjoyed The Cameo. Thanks for sharing.

  10. I enjoyed The Cameo. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Happy Friday, Michael! Thanks for sharing the story!

  12. Drive safely! I really enjoyed your flash piece. Loved the ending!

  13. Thank you for entering! I'll announce the finalists on Monday on my blog, and I'll drop back by here and give you a comment on your entry then as well.

    And definitely drive safe.

  14. Good luck on the contest, Michael. I have Wiley E. Coyote's luck with contests, you know that!

    Mind your surroundings as you drive. Imagine all the other drivers are idiots and suicidal, and you will do just fine, Roland

  15. What a sweet flash piece! So glad the MC got her beloved pin back. :)

  16. I loved your story. Really beautiful. I found you while doing the flash fiction blog fest.

  17. Safe driving, Michael! ;-) Loved your cameo piece too, have you written another one about it? Tis lovely.

    Happy weekend!

  18. When I was a child I could find lost items. I became famous around the neighborhood for it. One day while sitting in a cherry tree, my friend told me about a ring that had belonged to her grandmother and how they had lost it. While we talked, the garbage man came and picked up the trash next to the alley. Later, we took out some trash for her mother and there in the dirt indentation of the trash can was a beautiful ring. I picked it up and said, "Look what I found." Yes, the very same ring we had been talking about in the cherry tree. How did I do it? I just asked Jesus to show me where it was. A child's faith is pure.
    N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium.

  19. It's beautiful by us today - the sun caught us by surprise at Zach's baseball double-header and we're actually sunburned! Ow, but yay!

  20. Another wonderful flash fiction piece, Michael. Hope you had a safe drive home!

  21. Ooh, I hope you're dodging the raindrops okay...or have decided to take those extra few days in the sun. :) Whenever you get a chance to check in w/ the blogs, there is a prize announced for you at my blog...

    Man, that picture brings back memories---I first saw that post from my sister's flat in London and couldn't BELIEVE the storm I'd so narrowly escaped.

  22. Michael, this is such a sweet story. There is a bit mysterious, sad undertones. I love the historical element. Since I blocked out the name when I read them, I was surprised to find you wrote this one. Nicely done.

  23. Hope you made it home safely, Michael, and aren't too waterlogged! LOVE the flash fiction story, so sweet and poignant. Nicely done.

  24. This is a very sweet flash fiction! Well done.

    The picture is nice! Watching a blizzard is bad enough, but actually being out in it? Tough!