Stepping Out

When Dad told us Jimmy’s mom had asked him on a date, Jamie took my bike to her house.

“Is it okay, August?” He was looking at the trunk underneath the tired white shirts in his closet.

I swallowed. “Yeah, Dad. It’s okay.”

Pounding up the stairs, Jamie was back, brandishing brightly colored shirts. Dad protested but seemed glad.

“It’ll be all right.”

He smiled then because when Jamie says something you believe it.

Later Jamie told me what Dad said so quietly I hadn’t heard, that he’d whispered this was the hardest thing he’d done in seven years.


At Carrot Ranch the September 5, 2019, prompt is to write a story in 99 words (no more, no less) that shows true grit. You can use the phrase or embody the theme. Who or what has true grit? Go where the prompt leads you! 


I’m not sure if this embodies the theme, but the prompt led me to Augie. I had thought I would write about the grit he and his new friend Jamie, both outsiders, demonstrate by showing up to middle school every day. But then it became about Augie’s father who has been a very quiet widower for seven years now, taking care of his son alone. The trunk in this episode alludes to Silence Shared.

27 thoughts on “Stepping Out

    • Thank you. Yes, only 99 words… I only had to carve them out of an original 473 word version. But I wouldn’t have found the motivation to write that without the prompt, so thank goodness for my flash addiction and the prompts that feed it. This story moves forward one fix at a time.


  1. Pingback: True Grit « Carrot Ranch Literary Community

  2. It’s nice to see August and Jamie again, and to find out a little more of Jamie’s character. If I had known, I’d forgotten that Augie’s dad was a widower. The future could involve complex feelings for Augie. It’s a good thing he’s almost ready to step out on his own.

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  3. Pingback: Admissions | ShiftnShake

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