Friday Flash: Long Distance Phone Call

Long Distance Phone Call

Betty sat beneath the lamp, phone cord wrapped around her arms, loose skin hanging from her bones. She smiled and laughed – something her caretakers rarely saw her do. The calls from her husband had become more frequent over the past year; she relished every word. Though he’d traveled far, Howard contacted her frequently to let her know how much he cared.

The attendants smiled and wheeled her back to her cell, locked her inside and made sure she took her medication before lights out. The delusion of her long dead husband’s calls harmed no one and left their patient happy.

As she drifted off, Betty smiled. Howard had told her he would come for her that night. Cloaked in darkness, the figure of her husband extended his hand and brought her home.


Now that my Oglingston Spitworthy serial has ended, my #Friday Flash stories will be focused more on my 52/250 submissions. Today’s was an alternate story I wrote for the week #38 theme- Long Distance. If you are interested, here is the version published on the 52/250 site.

My most current 52/250 flash stories can always be found here.

I hope you return on Sunday for the My Writing Niche podcast when I will read this story for #Spoken Sunday. Also, I’m finishing up a book to review for the Functional Nerds website – If you haven’t checked them out yet, you should! In the meantime, I beg for welcome your comments and feedback. Thank you for your time.

*image courtesy of The U.S. National Archives via Flicker. No known copyright restrictions.



Filed under 52/250 Challenge, Flash Fiction, mythology, Writing Corner

13 Responses to Friday Flash: Long Distance Phone Call

  1. This was a great slice of life, a true flash.

  2. Such power in the brevity of this piece. The last line is sad, but comforting in its conclusion.
    Adam B @revhappiness

  3. How very nice! I’m with Tony, a true flash indeed. :)

  4. A great slice-of-life indeed. A very cool story, Catherine.

  5. I hope they let me keep my delusions. I liked it.

  6. I actually found this quite creepy — the last line sent a shiver down my spine!

  7. Good story! It’s a comforting ghost story.

  8. I agree with the majority, this is a “feel-good” ghost story. Great job with so few words Catherine!

  9. Betty died happy. :)

  10. Lovely short story Catherine, they’ll be together again, where they belong.

  11. That’s a remarkably gentle story of potential illness, madness and/or death. Can’t think of another super-short that’s handled it quite this way. Thanks, Gany/Cathy.

  12. Awwww! And yes, I would like to keep my delusions in that scenario too – and, of course, be visited by his ghost :-)

  13. Nice and poignant. This reminds me of the RadioLab’s segment on a bus stop. Your piece nails it with the ending of her passing away. Nice touch.