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2021 February Flash Fiction Challenge: Day 26

Write a piece of flash fiction each day of February with the February Flash Fiction Challenge, led by editor Moriah Richard. Each day, receive a prompt, example story, and write your own. Today's prompt is to write about an article of clothing.

Let’s get back to basics! Today’s prompt is to write about an article of clothing.

Flash Fiction Challenge

Remember: These prompts are just starting points; you have the freedom to go wherever your flash of inspiration takes you.

(Note: If you happen to run into any issues posting, please just send me an e-mail at mrichard@aimmedia.com with the subject line: Flash Fiction Challenge Commenting Issue.)

Here’s my attempt at writing about clothes:

The Socks

The man had holes in every single sock he owned.

It always surprised me, though I don’t know why. I’d lived with him for nearly five years, seen him in all states of dress and undress. But we weren’t hard-up for money, and he always dressed well to go to work, to go out with friends. But every time he took off his shoes, his big toes would wriggle through the fabric at the front of his socks.

At first, I thought maybe he was just the kind of person to not clip his toenails correctly. I’d been with some guys like that, you know, who had nails that could cut ropes in a kidnapping situation. But Gray wasn’t like that. His feet seemed fine, soft, even, because he moisturized them after every shower.

“My mom taught me to do that,” he’d said the one time I asked. His hands were soft, too, and I liked it when he ran them from my shoulders to my lower back in one slow sweep.

He was polished, well-groomed. I couldn’t understand it. Dress socks, winter socks, it didn’t matter. They all had holes.

I started buying him socks for Christmas, novelty ones so that it wouldn’t become A Thing. He was always happy to get them, laughing about the little dancing tacos or Pride flags or whatever design I’d selected that year. He wore them dutifully, the way any partner does or should. But then, a few months later, I’d notice the holes.

They were there now, in his smart black dress socks. He’d been waiting for me when I got home, jacket neatly folded on the back of the dining room chair, tie loosened just a bit. The look on his face … I knew. I just knew.

“Are you listening to me?”

I dragged my eyes from his feet to his face. His frown creased his whole face. He scoffed and shook his head.

“This is literally what I’m talking about.”

I was having trouble focusing. The only thought rattling around in my skull was this: How could I be getting dumped by a man with holes in his socks?

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