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Here Comes the Bride (Flash Fiction)

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Coming of age story about getting a second chance later in life.

C Garcia
Age Rating:

Flash Fiction

I walk into the Piggly Wiggly and escape the steaming Georgia heat. These days I walk with my head up, not down.

I grab a buggy and mosey to the bakery section.

Wonderful. There’s Ida. Bags of baby carrots are piled high in her buggy. Reckon she’s got a house full of rabbits to feed.

She looks up. Beady black eyes gleam.

Lord, here we go.

She inches toward me, a detective on a mission. “Well, Lorraine. What a pleasant surprise.” Fakeness oozes from her.

I yank a loaf of wheat bread from a table filled with plenty more loaves. “Good to see ya,” I fib.

Ida watches me place the bread in the child seat of the buggy with curiosity.

“I tell ya. Sure is a scorcher out there,” she comments.

“Yep. Sure is.”

She rests a stubby finger on her chin like she’s in deep thought, but I bet she ain’t ever had a deep thought in her life.

“I, uh, heard you left Joe,” she mumbles, glancing around.

I push my buggy. “Sure did.”

Ida’s navy polyester slacks drag on the shiny white floor while she walks with me. “That’s pretty amazing.”

I turn down an aisle. “Ain’t nothing too amazing about it.” I take a jar of peanut butter from the shelf and toss it in the buggy.

Ida stares at the peanut butter. Puzzle pieces connect. Single women live off peanut butter sandwiches with gourmet wheat bread from the bakery. Sunbeam ain’t hip when you’re single.

She scans the long aisle. She don’t want no one to spoil our secret meeting. But there ain’t no secret. Whole town knows I left Joe. Hauled butt three months ago. Thirty years smelling the stench of alcohol on his breath and him belittling me wasn’t no way to keep living. I ain’t worried about no divorce. It’ll come in time.

“What do your kids think?” Ida asks. Discretion ain’t her strong point.

Ain’t gotta answer because ol’ Betty Sue struts up with her tall and lanky self.

Ida glares at her.

Betty Sue’s bleach blond hair is stacked extra high in tight little curls. The frizzy tower is in danger of collapsing.

“Hey, y’all.” She smacks her gum. “I was just about to go check out and happened to see y’all.” She blows a massive pink bubble.

I reckon Betty Sue and Ida are nosey like all of us. That ain’t no problem. They wanna know what the breaking point was—why I finally left Joe after so long.

Betty Sue’s bubble pops. She looks me up and down. Maybe she’s trying to see what a single woman wears. The same things I wore in a miserable marriage, but that’s not true. My tattered gray cotton sundress feels new and sways with my confident walk.

Betty Sue pretends to organize her groceries. She moves a tall can of Aqua Net hairspray and rearranges two boxes of chocolate moon pies. “I was just wondering ... is it true you left Joe?” She blinks fast, making her clumpy mascara coated lashes and bright blue eyeshadow that was all the rage back in the day even more noticeable.

“Yeah, it’s true.” I saunter away.

Did what I dreamed about for years. Had to break the cycle. Watched Mama live in misery. Waited on Daddy hand and foot not because she wanted to, but because she feared the consequences if she didn’t. Thank God my daughter married a man who treats her right. She’s the first person I told about my plan to leave Joe. Tears of relief trickled down her cheeks and she didn’t say nothing at first. Then she said something that’s stuck with me. “Mama, a good marriage is heaven on earth, but a bad one is hell on earth.” My daughter wasn’t too happy about me leaving her daddy, but she understood why I had to leave my husband.

My older child didn’t take the news well. My son sees Joe suffering alone in a rundown trailer full of memories. That’s why I finally had to leave. I couldn’t take the memories no more.

I drive up to my own trailer. Brand new. Make the payments with money earned from sewing and my catering business. I also have a savings account Joe never knew about. Took years to build it up.

I unload groceries from my old but sturdy red pickup truck. My cell phone rings while I walk up the porch stairs. I hurry inside and plop the bags on the kitchen counter and grab the phone from my purse.


It’s Sandy--the young woman I’m altering a wedding gown for. I assure her the gown will be ready in two days. I wish I had words of wisdom to share with her about one of the biggest days of her life, but I really don’t.

We end our call. I gaze out the window above the kitchen sink. A graceful Monarch butterfly floats through glittering summer sun.

I guess I could tell Sandy don’t be afraid to take a chance in life. You never know. You might end up happy.

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Further Recommendations

Pink_Venom_007: L'histoire est trop cool

Ker: It's a great read, however I wanted a better ending of the main characters.

Ben: First off, as someone who is 38 and gay ftm at over 15 yrs this is very accurate emotionally. In early to mid 2000s as a teen I thankfully had great parents and sister and spouse at that time but that deep hatred, loathing, and disgusting looks is why I had to wait until 19 to even start the proc...

FiU: Zum Dahinschmelzen. Tolle Geschichte. Hoffe auf Band 2 über die besten Freunde.Bitte mehr Zeit für die Rechtschreibung aufwenden.

Tammy: It a good book needs a little editing on some of the pages but other than that it is a good book I am planning on sharing it with all my friends who will like it

Erika: Yooo where’s the second part?!

Marnelli: I love the novel.It has a good storyline and great character development.

Nisha: So good! Love Seth and Sadie. Goodness, she put up with a lot before him! Great read

Reader0409: I’m really enjoying the story. Thank so much for sharing it with us.

More Recommendations

Deloris McCoy: I like these type of stories. This is a good one. I will be reading the rest of them. Keep writing.

Chaira Leusden: Loved all the books so much. And I just want to keep reading more. Too bad it has to end somewhere

WriterSweezy: 🚶🏿‍♀️🏃🏿‍♀️🏃🏿‍♀️🏃🏿‍♀️book 4

Sue: Loved this story very well written good plot thank you

Andrea: Una de las más emotivas por todo el daño que pasó Azucena en manos de su madre y hermana, me encanto como se dió la historia de amor entre julio y Azucena, y para mí nunca fue un amor robado porque ese amor siempre le perteneció a ella

Diane: This is a good read. Be careful of reiterating the books previously written.

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