Getting off the Merry-Go-Round

Over the past six months, I’ve done a poor job keeping up with regular posts, but I’m working on some creative projects and trying to do a better job posting here as well. So today I’m revisiting a Friday Fictioneers post from this fall. I can’t post to the Linkup at this late date, but you can visit the original stories here. The photo is courtesy of Ted Strutz, whom you should also visit as he’s a decent guy with whom I like hanging out on the interwebs occasionally.

2015 10 09 Ted Strutz

Copyright Ted Strutz

Getting off the Merry-Go-Round

“It’s not my idea of a good time.”

“Why go every year then?”

“Tom likes it—says he needs a break from the routine.”

“So go on a vacation.”

“We should. I need a break—from routine and the state fair.”

“Does he know the reason?”

Lindsay shrugged. “He knows what happened. I don’t think he knows where.”

“You should skip the fair this year. Book a weekend at a bed-and-breakfast instead.”

“You think he’ll understand?”

“He’s a good guy. If you tell him why, he won’t keep dragging you back to the place where you were raped.”

Identifying the Offender

This is my response to the Friday Fictioneers prompt for November 14. The challenge is to write a 100-word story inspired by the photo prompt. Play along by writing your own, reading others and/or commenting on the flashes we fictioneers create. The photo prompt this week comes from Claire Fuller, a fine writer whose blog you should definitely check out, after reading mine, of course. My piece this week weighs in at exactly 100 words.

Copyright Claire Fuller

Copyright Claire Fuller

Identifying the Offender


Brandon sat by his wife’s hospital bed. He knew her objections to the Michelin tires on the SUV. But why was she murmuring about the Michelin man in her drug-induced state?

“We’ll be moving her to a psychiatric facility in the morning.” Brandon nodded dumbly at the doctor. “Is she a trauma survivor?”

Brandon shrugged. “Self-induced trauma, maybe.”

“She’s showing PTSD symptoms. I’m transferring her to a facility that specializes in trauma. Any idea who ‘the Michelin man’ or someone named ‘Mr. Bannister’ is?”

Brandon’s eyes widened. The puzzle pieces were falling into place, but he didn’t like the implications.

Author’s note: I struggled for a while to come up with a story this week, and I finally went with a story that I know well. Sadly, Brandon’s wife is much luckier than many trauma survivors. Several PTSD sufferers, including myself, are repeatedly blamed for their behavior and only treated with psychotropic meds that often make things worse rather than being given the therapy they need to remember, overcome and then let go of the horrors from the past. For me, it took 20 years of “pseudo seizures” and at least 4 suicide attempts before a single intake nurse changed my life for the better by uttering those words, “Are you a trauma survivor?”