Twilight feel, artificial light, woozy head. Almost home, such a nice night. Drinks, laughs, good times. Shared smiles with him again, dancing, brief contact. Should’ve made that move? A cloud of a missed opportunity. Park bench, take a seat, lie down. Staring up at the stars, the whole universe out there. Nothing to do in the day ahead. The future can wait. Enjoy the moment. Warm sun rays arrive, glinting, obscuring. His face appears above me. Can he join me? He lies on the bench next to me. Arms brush together. I smile. The rest of the universe can wait.

Copyright Dale Rogerson

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 stories of 100 words based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.



My second novel is out now in paperback and on Amazon Kindle – just follow the links:




75 responses to “THE UNIVERSAL”

  1. Hi Iain,
    The shoe is on the other foot this week and you’ve gone for romance and I’ve gone dark.
    I remember such lost opportunities from my youth and unfortunately they didn’t catch up like this. Good to be reminded of romance going well.
    Best wishes,

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Iain, you surprised me. This was literally a dream come true. A lovely story

    By the way, I’ve just finished reading your 2nd novel, “State of Denial” and I absolutely loved it. I enjoyed your first, but this one shows some real growth in the way your draw your characters; in the spinning out of the plot, surprising us more than once. Congratulations, Iain. Best wishes as you continue this triad.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much Linda, yours is the first feedback and it’s always a relief to hear it was worth writing the story and sending it out into the world. I truly appreciate your support ❤️ 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Very different than the usual ones. Warm vibes! Lovely take. Do Friday Fictioneers have a deadline? Do you write until the following Thursday?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I like the way you have constructed this, with the short sentences and phrases conveying a state of happy intoxication. You’ve also left an intriguing ambiguity as to the gender of the narrator. There are little hints that it’s written from a woman’s pov, but I think it’s more likely to be a gay encounter because there’s no angst about loss of trust from an earlier intimacy.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. There’s been a lot written about the happy ending here. I don’t see it. Whoever let this person walk off into the night obviously intoxicated and sleep on a park bench only to go looking for them in the morning is not a good person. Uber? Lyft? Taxi? Horse & carriage?

    Two years later: “Where’s the dog?” “I let him go for a walk.” “Alone?” “Sure.”

    Five years later: “Where’s Jenny?” “She was crying, so I put her in the yard.” “You couldn’t even put a diaper on her?” “What’s the point? She keeps shitting in them.”

    That’s just the optimist in me. The pessimist thinks he’s the Park Bench Killer. He drugs his victims and follows them until they pass out on a park bench where he snuggles with them until he strangles them.

    Liked by 1 person

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