Home > Fiction > Friday Fictioneers – Dead End Street

Friday Fictioneers – Dead End Street

Here is my story for Fridy Fictioneers, hosted by Rochelle. The photo was contributed by David Stewart.

This week I went for “gritty reality”. It’s a bit clunky but it’s good to try something other than “humorous dialogue” once in a while.

To read this week’s other stories, click on the blue froggy.

Copyright David Stewart

Copyright David Stewart

 

Rusted cars line the curb-side, burnt-out shells long abandoned. A starving tabby scrabbles for morsels in the long grass, forgotten by apathetic owners. Half-dressed women stand on the corner promising excitement with dead eyes while their watchers, dressed in leather and gold, control their next fix, their lives. A young man staggers against an ageing fence, his pockmarked face and spider-veined arms mute testimony to his addiction, the infection in his lungs only hastening his demise.

People look but don’t see.

People hear but don’t listen.

People speak but say nothing.

This is life on Dead End Street.

 

  1. September 16, 2015 at 9:42 pm

    What a grim picture of dead-end street. Your descriptions brings out the horrors. Nicely done.

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:40 pm

      Thanks! Not a place I’d like to visit, but you’ll find one everywhere.

      Like

  2. September 16, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    Dear Ali,

    Not a very cheerful story. Your vivid descriptions bring the dead end to life in all of its grim detail. Well done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:41 pm

      Dear Rochelle,
      Thanks! Fortunately I’ve never experienced anywhere quite so grim.
      Ali

      Like

  3. September 16, 2015 at 11:44 pm

    You draw a disturbing picture here. Very powerful images and feelings. I love how you’ve depicted the characters on the street in their sordid lives.

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:42 pm

      I tried to imagine all the different characters who could be hanging around. I’m glad you liked it!

      Like

  4. September 17, 2015 at 12:03 am

    Every city has a dead end street. A sad but all too common situation.
    Rosey Pinkerton’s blog

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:42 pm

      Very true. Many more than one.

      Like

  5. September 17, 2015 at 2:44 am

    Very powerful. The cat really stuck out for me — if even the cats are starving, that’s a bad street.

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:43 pm

      Yes, cats are survivors. Maybe it’s time for him to move on.

      Like

  6. September 17, 2015 at 3:30 am

    it couldn’t be written any better. great piece of writing.

    Like

  7. September 17, 2015 at 6:53 am

    THIS is the story I wanted to write, I just couldn’t find the words, until now.

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:44 pm

      It took a lot of rewrites, my longest story time-wise for quite a while. I’m glad you enjoyed it!

      Like

      • September 17, 2015 at 3:53 pm

        It took me all day to come up with something. My mind was telling me something such as you wrote but the words would not come, to me. They came to you though!

        Like

      • September 17, 2015 at 7:28 pm

        Quite a few people saw something somewhat foreboding in this week’s picture.

        Like

      • September 17, 2015 at 7:38 pm

        I figured there would be lots of murders and dumped bodies. I wanted to stay away from that.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. September 17, 2015 at 7:11 am

    Holy Shit, why?
    Are you ok?
    I’ll take a dose of vengeance, gore and any old sadist please.
    Good description, to bad I read this at bedtime.

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:45 pm

      Not exactly bedtime reading, sorry about that. But it’s nice to try writing something different once in a while!

      Like

      • September 18, 2015 at 12:15 am

        I was trying in a humorous way to compliment you. I’m not the writer.
        I did not want to say great story because of its content.
        I am sorry.

        Like

      • September 18, 2015 at 9:06 am

        It’s okay, I got what you were saying. I also always wonder if I should say “great story” when the content is rather grim 🙂
        I’m sure humour will be resumed soon – it takes quite a lot of effort for me to do descriptive writing!

        Like

  9. September 17, 2015 at 7:16 am

    This is one of the best pieces you’ve written, Ali. Excellent. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:46 pm

      Thanks, I’m glad you liked it! It’s good to throw in a “no dark humour or indeed any humour at all” story once in a while 🙂

      Like

  10. September 17, 2015 at 7:24 am

    That’s a masterpiece, Draliman! I’m going to look for that Tabby now… Pawkisses 🙂 ❤

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:46 pm

      Thanks! I bet you’ll find him/her and pull them to safety 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. September 17, 2015 at 8:41 am

    It is really a dead end street, living dead.

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 3:47 pm

      I’m guessing many of the inhabitants are zombies in all but the most rigid definition.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Lyn
    September 17, 2015 at 8:59 am

    Brilliantly written D-Man!

    Like

  13. September 17, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    Your description of tis piece as gritty reality is spot on. When we sit in our cosy homes we can so easily forget there’s another all too sinister world beyond our closed curtains.
    Visit Keith’s Ramblings!

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 7:16 pm

      Sometimes just round the corner, just a couple of minutes walk. It makes us feel safer to forget it’s there.

      Like

  14. September 17, 2015 at 5:34 pm

    Really like this one a lot. I always enjoy your humor, but this is most dark and excellent!

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 7:17 pm

      It’s rare I write something that doesn’t even have dark humour. I’m glad you liked it!

      Like

  15. September 17, 2015 at 7:00 pm

    Man, that was totally, terribly gritty — and a very believable fictional reality! This sentence was … exquisite is not the word, because it’s not pretty, but perfectly described: “Half-dressed women stand on the corner promising excitement with dead eyes while their watchers, dressed in leather and gold, control their next fix, their lives.”

    Like

    • September 17, 2015 at 7:25 pm

      That’s one of the sentences I spent ages rewriting 🙂 I’m glad you liked my departure from my “norm”, and thanks for such a lovely comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. September 17, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    That was a killer departure from your norm. Excellent description.

    Like

    • September 18, 2015 at 9:02 am

      I’m glad you liked it! When I saw the photo I thought it called for something different this week.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. September 17, 2015 at 10:55 pm

    Brilliant portrayal of death way before burial. Non judgemental, objective view but it evoked compassion. I found the cat brought out my sympathies with the people (and the cat)
    Anipals have a way of stirring our humanity. 😀

    Like

    • September 18, 2015 at 9:04 am

      I was hoping the little cat would do just that. I’m glad you liked my description of this grim place.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. September 18, 2015 at 12:44 am

    You can find that street in most every city, sadly. Great descriptive work, you captured it perfectly!

    Like

    • September 18, 2015 at 9:08 am

      Yes, pretty much everywhere, sometimes right round the corner from some of the most affluent areas. I’m glad you liked my description of this grim reality.

      Like

  19. September 18, 2015 at 1:31 am

    Enjoyed the description. Didn’t like the content, but that’s another side of life – and a sad one. Randy

    Like

    • September 18, 2015 at 9:08 am

      I’m glad you liked the description – I doubt anyone enjoyed the content.

      Like

  20. September 18, 2015 at 6:51 am

    Society’s underbelly is the only true measure of morality.
    Good piece.

    Like

  21. September 18, 2015 at 11:40 am

    Well done. You took us to another world that most choose to ignore. In reality the only hope for the addicts are if we embrace them and help them reform human connections.

    Like

    • September 18, 2015 at 4:12 pm

      Thanks. Yes, most people would prefer to pretend that areas like this don’t exist.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. September 18, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    A very moody piece. You have captured the environment very well, and I like the rhythms at story’s end.

    Like

    • September 18, 2015 at 4:12 pm

      Thanks, it was the first thing that came to me when I saw the photo. I’m glad you liked it!

      Like

  23. September 18, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    There is a scripture in the Bible that perfectly matches this. Matthew 25:31-36
    Not good to ignore the poor.

    Like

  24. September 18, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    Dear Draliman,

    Holy crap was that grim, but very well written so you did what good writers do. You moved me and impressed me and made me vow never to visit Dead End Street. Wish me luck.

    Aloha,

    Doug

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 6:43 am

      Dear Doug,
      I’m glad it spoke to you. That’s a place none of us want to visit I think. Good luck never making it there!
      Ali

      Like

  25. September 18, 2015 at 6:35 pm

    A sad reality for far too many “invisibles.” Well done!

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 6:44 am

      That’s a good name for them – “invisibles”.

      Like

  26. September 18, 2015 at 7:08 pm

    I’m afraid there are too many places like this in our world. A deft if depressing portrait.

    janet

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 6:45 am

      As many have mentioned in the comments, there’s at least one place like this in every city.
      Ali

      Like

  27. September 18, 2015 at 7:27 pm

    Your serious pieces are equally as engaging as your humourous ones, great piece of writing 🙂

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 6:46 am

      Thanks, I’m glad you liked it! The serious pieces take a lot longer to write, though 🙂

      Like

  28. September 18, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    Let’s hope there’s a cul-de-sac at the end of the street and some of these folks get the help they need to turn around and go the other way.

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 6:47 am

      I hope so too. Some people do escape (I know some of them).

      Like

  29. September 18, 2015 at 11:35 pm

    Very bleak and power descriptions, Ali. The last four lines are my favorite and really stamp out a solid statement and end to your story. It’s definitely a dead end if I ever saw one.

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 6:48 am

      I’m glad you liked the story, though the content is somewhat bleak. Yes, definitely a dead end.

      Like

  30. September 19, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    It is either dystopian after the world has ended, or downtown of any large city … or a good start to a rock n’ roll song. People do escape. Many people, actually. Much of escape has to do with family culture and ambition … and being smart enough to get a good education 🙂 Good piece!!!

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 4:27 pm

      I didn’t even think “dystopia” when I wrote this (makes a change!). Glad you liked it!

      Like

  31. September 19, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    Ali, this certainly brings to light a life that none of us want to think about or even acknowledge as being a reality for many. Excellent story.

    Like

    • September 19, 2015 at 4:34 pm

      Thanks. Very true, Caerlynn used an apt term for them – “invisibles”.

      Liked by 1 person

  32. Francesca Smith
    September 19, 2015 at 9:18 pm

    You have conjured many powerful images in such a short piece of fiction.

    Like

    • September 20, 2015 at 5:11 am

      Thanks, it took a lot of rewriting to get it all in and sounding okay.

      Like

  33. September 21, 2015 at 6:20 am

    As you say, a very gritty piece. Well done.

    Like

  34. September 21, 2015 at 11:11 pm

    Magnificent use of your gritty description. Nicely done!

    Like

  35. September 22, 2015 at 7:08 pm

    Vivid descriptions of a sad, but true, way of life – and of our society as a whole.

    Ellespeth

    Like

    • September 23, 2015 at 11:27 am

      Thanks, I’m glad it felt true-to-life. It is very sad that there are places like this.

      Like

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