(Author’s note: Thank you, everyone, for your notes on last week’s fictioneers. It was a big undertaking, though people may not have known it. Anyhow, here’s this week’s fictioneers!)
Breaking Hearts (Ain’t What It Used To Be)
by Miles H. Rost
Paul froze, chilled by what he saw.
The old pair of shoes, the ones he used to wear when stepping out, lay sprawled in the back of his closet.
The shoes reminded him of what others termed “the good old days”, the days when free blow and free sex was in high supply.
He violently flung them out the window of his brownstone, one shoe accidentally smashing into a cat perched on top of a garbage can.
Paul moved slowly to his couch, the place he spent the most time. Covered up under a blanket, he awaited his fate.
Great stuff, I was thinking Aids when I read it and then saw your tag. A terrible disease that affected so many, the vast majority of them innocents.
It’s also a little interesting that I used Elton John for this story. The thing I was going for in this piece was to use the plaintiveness of the song to really tell the story of a guy who was disgusted with what he had done, and the reason why he was disgusted.
The song helps add a second layer to the story.
Thanks for the remarks. 🙂
Such a sad predicament .
Great story and song .
One of the casualties of the freewheeling 70s and 80s. Thanks for commenting!
A sorry tale well told. How sad.
Click to read my FriFic!
Thanks, Keith. I am not sure why I wrote this piece, but I think a lot of it is the words from Elton John’s classic. Thanks for commenting.
Looks like his carefree days caught up with him.
The cat is a foreshadowing of what’s to come for Paul. The shoe that’ll fell the cat is descending quickly. Thanks for dropping in!
No running away from his past then. A sad story. A necessary story, I feel.
Death usually puts an end to running. And yeah, it’s a necessary story. Thank you for your contribution, and I appreciate it highly.
So sad and lonely. A depressing end to a vivacious life. Nicely told
I wouldn’t say vivacious more than carefree, and that cares finally came back with a vengeance. Such is life in the roaring early-mid 80s. Thanks for the statement.
A terrible punishment for a carefree life
This story has layers of meaning, but the main message for me is the way AIDS victims were shunned in the seventies and eighties. It is a matter of shame for our society that men like Paul too often died alone. You tell the story well, Miles.
A lot of it was also the self-disgust that men like Paul saw as a result of his habits. Part of the story was inspired by a friend of mine who received a life threatening STD due to his promiscuity, and how he suffered by himself for so long (because he kept it hidden.) He finally got help by saying something, but too many times, men like Paul don’t.
It’s interesting how stories can bring out so much in all of us.
Penny, I appreciate what you have written in these comments, and thank you so much for commenting! Please keep coming back, as I love your vision on it.
Wow, this prompt took you to a really dark place. I have to confess I was confused until the I read the comments about AIDS. I likee the story before that, loved it after.
Sometimes it takes a couple reads to get it. But the song also helps illustrate.
This is so sad but so well done.
It is. But such is life. Thanks for dropping by!
His angst is well reflected in the story. Alone with the dreaded disease he awaits his fate.
He realizes that he created this situation, and he can’t do anything about it. It’s hard to deal with, but it’s an exposition of the human condition. Thanks for the comment!
Oh. My word. That last word ties it all up in a very sad bundle. Great writing.
Such a sad and poignant reality for too many back in the day. It reminds me of the courage and compassion Princess Diana showed when she reached out to people living with AIDS and touched them without wearing gloves. She taught the world so much and I hope we’ve listened.
PS Australia is in the process of voting re marriage equality.
Sad story but told perfectly. :o)
Thanks for the compliment. I am not sure why I ended up in that state, things actually went well in my life this week. I blame Elton John’s music. 😀
Great writing. I had many friends…..
Yeah, there were a lot of them. A lot of them.
😦 really sad
This could be true for any person in these times of increasing isolation and solitary existence. Makes me wonder and worry for coming and yet to come generation. A thought provoking piece Miles.
Sometimes the good ol’ days weren’t all that good. Sounds like he caught something that couldn’t be washed off with soap and water.
Poor chap – I didn’t read AIDS until these comments. Years ago my friend lost his partner to AIDS and had to bury him under a great slab of concrete. Such was the ignorance of the times.
A very sad story indeed….the last word makes the heart ache…even relation to AIDS didn’t strike me till I read the comment. Re reading it made more sense after that. His frustration was evident in your writing.
Great take on the prompt.