Sunday, January 17, 2016

Bedtime (Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge)

After a long day that ended with a late exercise class at the gym (because I couldn't drag myself out of bed this morning to make the 6 AM class), I reflected on the days of childhood. That was when bedtime was not a welcome relief, but something to resist with subterfuges like requests for another drink of water or a bedtime story.

Now my bed is something I must resist falling into until the day's work is done.

Even then I relish a bedtime story, although now I must read it to myself. A few pages (chapters, books) read after I climb under the covers, and I'm ready to give myself up to slumber.

So the Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge this week prompted me with thoughts of bedtime stories and that long-ago desire to stay up late:

January 13, 2016 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) begin a story with, “Once upon a time…” Where you take the fairy tale is entirely up to you. Your character can break the traditional mold, or your ending can be less than happy. Elements of fairy tales include magic, predicaments, villains, heroes, fairy-folk and kingdoms. How can you turn these elements upside down or use them in a realistic setting? Write your own fairy tale.

Grampa Ray is a wise man, but not quite swift enough to head off his grand-daughter Mary's stay-up-late argument.

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Bedtime

"Once upon a time," Grampa Ray began.

"Wait, Grampa! Why it is always 'once upon a time'?" Mary wriggled under the covers with the urgency of her question.  "Why do bedtime stories begin that way?"

"I don't know..." Her grandpa scratched his head, then his chin. "Maybe it's like, 'And now, the news.' Just a way people have of telling us that whatever follows is either real or make-believe."

"Oh." Mary thought for a moment, then said, "Once upon a time I wanted to watch TV until 10 o'clock and my mom said I could stay up late tonight."