This week the latest Literary Lion flash fiction prompt was the word “water.” The challenge: Create a story in 400 words (or less) based on the the prompt. I’m pleased to share that were blessed to welcome our second child ten days ago. It was my third pregnancy, so the inspiration for my story this week is close to the heart. This is a not a true story, but inspired by true events.
Fat raindrops pelted the window, leaving streaks of droplets in their wake as they streamed downward. Rachel stared at the deepening puddles in the backyard, where a few blades of grass defied the pressure of the water to penetrate through the surface, standing upright like reeds in a pond. She had wound her arms around herself, clutching a cell phone with one hand and a tissue with the other.
Matt stood quietly behind her left shoulder. She breathed loudly, her inhales wet through her nose, her slow exhales and measured.
After several minutes he spoke. “What did she say?”
Rachel glanced over her shoulder and then turned, pressing her forehead to his shoulder, her arms still tightly wrapped across her midsection. “It’s called a blighted ovum. Something went wrong very early and it never got very far in development. It never would have been a baby.” Her eyes glassed over with fresh tears, a few of which spilled over onto her cheeks.
Matt pulled her closer and stroked her fine blonde hair. “I’m so sorry, honey,” he whispered.
She sniffled loudly and nodded, hot tears streaming down her face, splashing off her chin and darkening his shirt.
They stood that way for several minutes until Rachel pulled back and dabbed her eyes. Matt wiped her cheeks, his emerald eyes reflecting her sorrow.
“What now,” he asked.
She drew in a deep breath. “Now we wait. Dr. May said since I’ve already started bleeding we can wait it out. That it will get worse before it’s all done. I supposed to call Monday morning. If I haven’t passed everything by then, she’ll have me come in for a procedure called a D&C. If I have, then I go in for an office visit and probably another ultrasound.”
He nodded and pulled her close again. She leaned into him and wrapped her arms around his back.
“I’m so sorry,” she said softly.
Matt shook his head. “It’s not your fault.”
She nodded into his chest. “I’m still sorry it’s happening.” She sighed. “I was so hoping we were finally having a baby.”
He kissed her forehead and smoothed strands of gold away from her face. “I know, me, too. Me, too.”
Featured image credit: CC; Jill Kelly, “thank you for the rain”
Comments are welcome, especially those who have struggled with pregnancy loss. Thanks for reading and happy trails.