Monday Matchup Writing Challenge: Truck, inhaler, "fate"

WRITING PROMPT: Tempting “Fate”
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Write a scene featuring a red truck, an asthma inhaler, and the word “fate.”

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6 thoughts on “Monday Matchup Writing Challenge: Truck, inhaler, "fate"

  1. Mandy

    She had had asthma as long as she could remember. Longer even than her Momma had been driving Shelby, the old pick-up that might as well have been part of the family. Every Sunday when they got home from church, Daddy said he had to go take care of the red-head and he’d spend the next hour making Shelby look as good as an old truck could. Around the time that Fate started packing the inhaler in with her PE clothes, she realized that most people didn’t name the cars they drove. Missy Flanagan was more than happy to share this information as Missy was a girl who thrived on knowing things that other people didn’t.

    But Fate was no longer a girl and although she still had asthma, she had lost Momma and Daddy before she walked across the stage for her diploma. Not that the diploma had really done her much good. Cutting hair at Elvira’s Hair Port didn’t require a high school diploma, but it did require transportation. For the first few years it had been hard, but now Fate loved driving Shelby. Settling herself into that lumpy seat each morning, for just a moment, she didn’t feel alone.

  2. Dare Gaither

    Linda shivered as she sat waiting on the bench.
    She peered into the dense fog that enveloped her,
    unsure what would happen next.
    Two bright spots emerged from the gloom and
    slowly moved toward her. She heard the low hum of an engine
    and stood up to greet whatever was coming her way.

    Linda’s eyes widened in surprise as she saw the familiar form
    of a Ford F-150 pickup truck. The truck stopped in front of her
    and deposited a thin, wiry man of indeterminate age.
    The bright red truck provided bold contrast to the muted
    grey surrounding them.

    “Linda Gardener?”
    The man checked his clipboard to be sure of the name.

    “Here!” Linda said, trying to be cheerful.

    “You weren’t on the schedule for today.”
    The man’s narrowed eyes studied her face as if he could read her very soul.
    Maybe he could.

    Linda gave a small sigh and tried sound philosophical.
    “Ah, well….Accidents happen.”

    “Or not,” the man replied with a knowing look.

    He opened the door and Linda climbed in the passenger side.
    She flashed back to cherished Sunday afternoons spent with Ron.
    His old ford truck took them up forgotten logging roads high into the mountains.
    She once again felt the warmth of his hand holding hers
    as they walked amid the brilliant autumn leaves.
    She wondered where this ride would take her.
    Would Ron be waiting for her?

    She glanced at her watch and discovered it had stopped at exactly 1:13.
    She nearly choked when she realized it would be 13:13 military time.
    She had always been superstitious.
    Was this a bad omen?
    A cold chill gripped her as she considered the implications.

    “Where are we going?”
    Linda’s voice quivered at the thought of what she had done.

    “You’ll know soon,” the man said with an inscrutable expression.

    The truck came to a stop before an ornate bronze door.
    Massive stone walls stretched far as she could see on both sides.
    The man helped Linda down from the truck and escorted her to the door.
    She stared at the enormous structure, unable to move.
    Her breath came in gasps as she struggled to breathe.
    She grabbed her purse, frantically searching for her rescue inhaler.
    The man watched her without emotion.
    Before she could put the inhaler to her mouth, the wheezing stopped
    and her breathing returned to normal.
    A cold fear gripped her as she looked at the man in confusion.

    “You had your inhaler with you,” the man said.
    “Why didn’t you use it then?”

    “I…I wanted to see Ron again,” Linda said, sobbing uncontrollably.
    “Is…Is he here? Will we be together forever?”

    The man turned without answering and climbed back in the truck.
    As Linda watched him drive away, she noticed the license plate:
    FATE 4 U

    She didn’t have time to laugh.
    The bronze door opened and Linda crossed the threshold into Eternity.

  3. Mark James

    For the first weekend in months, Ryan didn’t have to kill anyone. Last couple years, the weeks leading up to elections had been busy. But with a depression in full swing, people jobless and families on the street, buying votes was easy work. That’s what he’d heard. No one told him much; not until someone had to die.

    Hiking up to Fate, his cabin in the Blue Ridge mountains, with the setting sun at his back, and cold rock under his spiked boots was about the next thing to Heaven. Up there, nobody thought anything about a man who was muscled, over six feet tall, and whose hard black eyes gave away nothing. City folk got out of his way; mountain folk invited him in for coffee.

    He had his first bad moment when he rounded the last curve of the path up to Fate and saw his red truck–Lexus SUV. She’d added pink flames running down the hood.

    Ryan stopped dead, thought about going back the way he’d come, but even he couldn’t make it down the mountain in the coming dark. He took a steadying breath, braced himself like a man walking into a gale force wind, and strode up to his cabin. Through the window he saw the fireplace going, pink bunny slippers hanging over the edge of the low couch, and a pink asthma inhaler on top of his gun rack. His ex-wife was Mary Kay to the hilt.

    One last breath, and Ryan pushed open the door. “Hi honey.” He lowered his pack to the floor. “I’m home.”

    “Crap.” Rissa was on her feet in a second, blonde hair falling across her face, over her blue eyes. “What are you doing here?”

    “Set up’s the same as when I lived with you.” Ryan was down on one knee, unlacing his boots. “I pay the mortgage.”

    Brushing her hair from her face, settling her soft lips into a smile, Rissa said, “Don’t sell yourself short. You did some other things pretty good, too.”

    Getting to his feet, Ryan looked down at her. Her pink pajamas matched her slippers. She was still beautiful. “You liked how I mowed the lawn?”

    “He threw me out.” She turned her back on him, headed for the kitchen, but not fast enough to hide the glint of tears in her eyes. “I didn’t have anywhere else to go. You know how mom gets.”

    Ryan jumped over the couch, settled onto the deep cushions. Fate felt good. Usually after the hike up, he had to get the fire going, air out the rooms. “Your mom liked me.”

    “Strong silent types turn her on,” Rissa said from behind him. She handed him a drink that only she would know he wanted after a long climb.

    Ryan took the can of Cherry Mountain Dew. It was cold and good, and it wouldn’t have been there if she hadn’t brought it with her.

    When she curled up on the far end of the couch, he slid over, stroked her hair, and let Rissa rest her head on his chest. It was nice being with someone he didn’t feel like killing.

  4. Janel

    "How am I supposed to get into that?"

    Holly looked at the giant tires on the red pickup truck. She stepped up to the open passenger-side door to better gauge the situation. The floor board even with her arm pits.

    "Just swing your foot up and use the arm rest on the door to pull your self up." Aaron climbed into the truck to demonstrate. He made it look easy, but he was also a foot taller than Holly. She wondered what kind of cruel twist of fate made the guy with the biggest truck in town ask the shortest woman in town out on a date.

    He hopped back down and laid his jacket of the floor of the truck. "Here. I’ll lift you up and sit you on the floor."

    Holly smiled and smoothed her shirt down over the top of her jeans, checking for muffin-top squishing over the top of her jeans. Satisfied that he wouldn’t grab a handful of love handle, she nodded her head.

    Aaron stepped forward, placed his hands on her hips and easily lifted her into the truck. He jogged over to the driver’s side, leaving her to figure out how to get out of the foot well and into the seat. As soon as she tried to pull her knees into the truck she realized her jeans were going to put up a fight. He was already in the driver’s seat when she slid backwards and clunked her head on the gear shift.

    After some twisting and wiggling she finally made it onto the seat. She was out of breath and wheezing. The growl of the engine helped hide the whoosh of the asthma inhaler when she turned to the window and discreetly used it while Aaron backed out the driveway.

    The drive to the restaurant was fun, roaring and bouncing through the backroads. Holly laughed at his jokes and tried not to worry. After dinner she’d have to try to get back into the truck again.


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