Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Morning Run

Hello Everyone,

Today I'm sharing with you a bit of flash fiction that I worked on called The Morning Run. I hope you enjoy it. Let me know what you think in the comments section.

The Morning Run

It was early dawn and the promise of a sunny day was evident. The rising sun’s light streamed in through the windows creating sprays of rainbows throughout the room. She smiled, glancing out of the window as she did her morning stretch. The gentle breeze tousled the trees and the first spring flowers blossomed in shades of orange and purple.

Eager for her morning run, she waved her aunt good-bye as she dashed out of the door. Cool and crisp, the breeze assaulted her senses as she began a slow jog. Too early for her neighbors to have risen, the morning stillness welcomed her. Barely audible she trotted down the avenue, her ponytail swaying as she ran.

Bored with her usual route, she veered to the left of Newton Lane where a new development had been added to the residential district where she lived. Rows of new houses compacted together lined either side of Murray Street where she now found herself. These modern houses were identical to each other as if cut from the same mold at an assembly line. Severe in their design and beauty but without the lush greenery that houses in her development boasted, they seemed cold and uninviting. Running in place while she checked her heart rate, she felt disillusioned at the future of architecture. Soon to graduate from Architect School, she vowed to maintain traditional standards in her designs.

Propelling herself forward she intensified her run. Her trained eye critically analyzed the houses as she went by. Smaller and cheaply built, she foresaw her community becoming overpopulated with box-like dwellings. Remembering the offer her aunt recently received for her house, she made a mental note to speak with her as soon as she got back.

Chasing away her concern, she sprinted ahead crossing the street at the next light. Now at the end of the development, she could see the terrain had already been excavated to make room for more construction. Disgusted with what she saw, she decided to turn around and head back home; her heart mourning the forest-like part that used to be there.

Within moments apprehension assailed her. Too close to the deserted construction site, she chastised herself mentally for her stupidity. She ran faster in the hopes of discouraging who ever it was from pursuing her. Tracing her steps she crossed the street. She could hear the footsteps behind her keeping pace with her. Once on Murray Street , she worked up the courage to glance back as she ran.

A tall hooded man too far back to make out his features, ran full pace after her. Adrenaline surged through her blood as fear made her bolt like a frightened rabbit. Breath puffing and heart racing she turned right at the corner hoping to lose him. Her hair wet and matted from sweating and muscles burning from the continuous sprinting forced her to slow down momentarily. Gasping for air and looking furtively for her pursuer, she saw him turn the corner as well. She leapt into a sprint head down; her elbows close to her sides as she propelled her body forward pumping with all her strength. He matched her stride, his long muscular legs stretching forward effortlessly.

Her mind raced trying to find a way out of her situation. She had left her phone on the kitchen table, and the mace she always carried was in her handbag - useless to her now. Defenseless, all she could think of was getting to Newton Lane which even in the morning is a busy intersection. Once there, she thought he’d be discouraged from chasing her. The breeze chilled her sweat and dried her tongue as she gulped large chunks of air. She blinked wet eyes - fighting back tears as her heart drummed and her lungs burned.

About to collapse from exhaustion and anxiety she saw the man turn left and enter a red brick house. Relief crashed into her as she continued her dash home; a hysterical laugh escaped her amidst the tears that flooded her face. Clearly, he was a morning runner like her and she had never been in any danger.

Once home, wilted from her exhaustive experience she resolved to be better prepared in the future. Even though she lived in a safe area a girl should always take precautions for her safety. The doorbell rang and her aunt called for her to answer it. With a groan, she put her water bottle down and dragged herself to the door while running her fingers through her hair so it wouldn't look as if she wore the cat on her head.

She opened the door and froze. The man with the black hooded sweater stood there smiling. Seeing him this close she was able to appreciate the Greek God beauty he personified. “Hello, I’m Steve McKenzie. I live on the next block over.” Stunned and unable to speak she just stared at him wide eyed.

“I saw you running earlier.” He continued. “You dropped your watch. I tried to catch up to you to return it but I’m no match for you. I thought it best to go home, get in my car, and drive here because I’m so exhausted.” He finished with a smile.

Heart drumming fast driven by attraction instead of fear all she could manage to say was “Thank you”

He flashed a warm smile as he placed the watch tenderly in her hands, and locking his gaze with hers, he said “That’s what friends are for.”

And in the end a morning run which began full of promise and grew in intensity paved the way to a beautiful friendship.

The image above is titled Woman Running in Motion courtesy of Free Stock Pictures from Photos8 by Sam Mugraby.


  1. Carmen this is wonderful.You are a very talented writer. I couldn't help grinning along with your characters thoughts about the construction area. My boyfriend is a framer and I hear the same sentiments from him often! Great work! Deb

  2. Thanks! This story came to me - wait for it - in a flash and I had to type it up right away. As you can tell, I'm not a great fan of the so called modern architecture. Some (very few really) modern structures are nice. The rest are just monstrosities of glass and metal.

  3. My heart was pounding probably as loud and hard as hers. My eyes nearly popped when she got home; love the twist ;-)

  4. My heart palpitated as I typed the story. I didn't originally intend on the attraction - but it happened. So I was quite surprised myself.