REHABITATION

George Washington stood at the bow of the liner as the port came into view.

He was aware of the cameras and people around him, the helicopters above, the military ships alongside.

He thought about his parents. This was their homeland. They had left before he was born, as part of the evacuation. They had named their son after the 1st President. If only they had lived long enough to return.

Now, by virtue of his name, he was to be the first person to set foot back on that land. The radiation had dispersed. The climate was deemed habitable.

Americans sheltered around the world could finally return home.


lucy-sol
© Lucy Fridkin

Written as part of the Friday Fictioneers challenge hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (more details HERE). The idea is to write a short story of 100 words based on the photo prompt (above).

To read more stories based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.

86 responses to “REHABITATION”

  1. I hope that’s not a prescient story

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey … thanks Neil for the new word of the day.😎

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Dear Iain,

    That sent shivers through me.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Rochelle, I’m glad it had an impact.

      Like

  3. Good story, Iain, but I felt the last line was unnecessary, you had already said it all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. I had in mind to hammer home, in the current climate, that it was Americans who were refugees and relied on others to take them in.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Your story, your rules!
        I thought you had already made the point concisely and expertly, that’s all.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Appropriate that it was him to set foot on the land again.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. By the waters of Babylon! Nice.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Dear Iain,

    That homecoming was a long time coming. Good story and nice use of GW’s name and the returning of Americans to America. We have not had to weather a storm like that. I wonder how we’d fare should that time come?

    Yours,

    Doug

    Like

    1. Would certainly be an interesting time. Thanks Doug.

      Like

  7. I also hope your story isn’t prophetic!
    As far as the last line is concerned, in someways it is redundant but I’m Australian. So, for me the story is about America having problems but other parts of the world being okay. Don’t know whether that was your intention.
    Great story though.
    xx Rowena

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Partly about that, also about how America and the rest of the world would react if it was Americans who suddenly became refugees, and how attitudes might change in that case. Thanks Rowena 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. In response to the above comment I thought about how our President-elect expressed a flippant attitude towards nukes. I hope he doesn’t start WWIII!

        Liked by 1 person

  8. “Americans sheltered around the world could finally return home.”

    This presupposes the U.S. (current) unfriendliness towards refugees reverses itself. Cuz why would the world shelter the U.S. given current history in the making. I’d laugh, but it’s kinda sad…

    Another stellar write, Ian.

    Like

    1. Thanks Liz, that was the intention of that last line. If positions were reversed I’m sure American (politicians) would think again about their treatment of refugees – and other Western countries too. Many thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yep. Thanks for that gentle reminder!

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Interesting comment: among Fundamentalist Christians there’s a prophecy that people in the West will be refugees, and will get treated the same way they treated refugees. (The very people who played the prophecy were praising God that many state governors said, “Refugees not welcome!” — shortly after playing the prophecy!)

      Like

  9. Well done for cramming so much of a post apocalyptic world into so few words! just the right amount of info to let us know what’s happened without it feeling forced. Great stuff Iain

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Lynn, much appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. You are a twister, Sir. Love it. What a great take on this weeks prompt. May it be fiction forever.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hope so too. Thanks, much appreciated.

      Like

  11. A great telling story. One could change Americans for several other nations.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. And yet…. history has a way of repeating itself. Perhaps the new world will be different.
    Tracey

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Maybe we’ll do it better this time 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh my gosh love this! I loved the story you packed in there, how you left most of it untold but showed us a completely different world regardless. I agree with a previous comment that the very last line is superfluous. You packed enough of a punch up until then 🙂

    Like

  14. At first glance, the name George Washington took me back to the “good old days” then – what? cameras and helicopters? So, I began again and read the piece beginning to end. The name worked perfectly in this scary little scenario.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Alicia, sounds like it had the desired effect.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. “Good old days”: Make America Great Again!?

      THAT makes it chilling!

      Like

  15. There is a destiny in a name… great thought…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, I do think a memorable or meaningful name can help a person shape their life.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Nice take Iain. It’s a scenario you’re tempted to say will never happen but worry that perhaps it actually will.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Michael. Hopefully not but you never know…

      Like

  17. So much story in so few words, well done. As the others said, I hope it’s not prescient, and I appreciate the turn-around-is-fair-play nature of the situation. I find it totally believable that someone in charge would choose the person who happened to have that historic name to be the first one to return; but what an odd coincidence, to be that person, in that horrible time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your comments Joy. I agree, I don’t think I would want to be that person thrust into that position.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. I’ve nothing to add that hasn’t already been said except, great take on the prompt… goes to show that a name is not just a name…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Dale, appreciate your comment.

      Like

  19. You saw the disastrous in the photo, too. Good play on the climate here towards refuge and refugees. Would others be so good as to take all of us in — great response, great name choice.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Many thanks, glad you saw the point I was making.

      Like

  20. it was quite a departure from your usual. very creative and nice.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, nice to mix it up now and then, glad you liked it.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Ooh, really interesting take on the picture. There’s a whole novel in this one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Claire, it certainly does have potential for a much longer story.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. Chilling stuff. At least by implication some of the rest of the world survived nuke-free…

    Like

  23. Great job; like I said in other comments, quite chilling!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Many thanks. I’m not religious myself but agree that treating others how you would wished to be treated is a good guiding principle too often ignored.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Brilliant with a capital B, Iain. Put that in as one of your best.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks very much, I’m certainly happy with it, glad you are too!

      Like

    1. In a good way I hope 🙂 many thanks

      Liked by 1 person

  25. A bit of a warning here, but I like the happiness of this moment too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Laurie. I do think we will always manage to survive somehow, no matter how wrong we get it sometimes.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. A very moving story. In spite of everything going on around him there is a terrible sense of isolation and the paragraph about his parents is particularly poignant. The last sentence made me go cold. To me, it describes a momentous occasion but with nothing to celebrate. Great writing, Iain.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Edith, much appreciated and happy it made an impression on you.

      Like

  27. All you have to do is to change the word America to Russia or Japan to be current.
    Or even to the word Palestine!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. True for many groups of people.

      Liked by 1 person

  28. Oh my … let’s hope this stays in the world of fiction. So many nuclear talks and threats lately. This is a timely write. Well done, Iain.
    Have a good weekend.
    Isadora

    Like

  29. Very creative. I saw some hope in the last line.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, always good to leave some hope.

      Like

  30. ‘The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons,’ is claimed by Dostoyevsky (and others). Perhaps in this day and age we should add how we treat refugees to our measure of civilization.
    Clever moving story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree with that statement. Many thanks.

      Like

  31. Scary and sad. It would be a miracle to restrict such a disaster to the US only, what about Canada, Mexico…? Let’s hope it doesn’t happen. Great and powerful writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s true, although perhaps they were evacuated also, or worse, didn’t get away in time… Many thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

  32. That was clever, as I thought you were writing a historical cameo of the real man, then suddenly “bam”, we’re in the future. As others have commented, I hope your story isn’t prophetic, considering these rather strange and unpredictable times we live in D:
    Well written.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Sally, glad you liked it, much appreciated.

      Like

  33. Nice job, Lain. No doubt if Americans had to finally be the refugees, we’d see things a lot clearer. Nicely pointed out!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Dawn, if only it was that simple to point this out to everyone round the world!

      Like

  34. Nice work Iain. I wonder how the refugees were treated when they arrived Elsewhere? And how they will fare on their return. Also I am wondering if any couldn’t get away and what happened to them?
    So many questions raised by just 100 words, well done

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. Indeed, such a situation would open up a lot of questions and I’m not sure what some of the answers would be.

      Liked by 1 person

  35. Really lovely. Full of hope and a joy to read in these dark days.

    Liked by 1 person

  36. There’s great hope in your story, Iain. I hope what causes the evacuation in the first place isn’t prophetic. Good writing. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

  37. there’s hope, always

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Many thanks, I agree, there is always hope, even if only a little to cling onto!

      Like

  38. What a dramatic, brilliantly written tale! You’ve expressed so much in few words.

    Liked by 1 person

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