He struggled to push the cart through the thick snow and cursed winter, the short days and the long nights.

He leaned his ladder against a lamppost and climbed. The gas ignited and a shivering orange glow lit the white scene.

White and red.

The body lay under a nearby tree. He scared a fox away as he approached it.

A woman. The Ripper again?

The crunch of footsteps in the snow. A passing policeman.

‘Officer!’ He waved to get his attention.

Too late, he noticed the stain of red on the uniform, illuminated by the orange glow from the lamp.

Copyright Dale Rogerson

Written for Friday Fictioneers 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.

78 responses to “THE LAMPLIGHTER”

  1. Terrible moment. Poor man.
    Hope he is not falsely implicated in her murder!
    What to do & whom to trust when those who are supposed to protect the law, flout the rules?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Rochelle, it was written to make sense with or without the knowledge of recent events (a woman was killed while walking home late at night in London and her body found in Kent a week later, a police officer has been charged with her murder).

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Well done in every way–atmospheric, suspenseful, and very disturbing. In the US we’ve been overwhelmed with violence yet again–and distrust of police plays a large part.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Absolutely the same here, although I do try and temper my thoughts on the police with the caution that their actions in many cases are dictated from the lawmakers and leaders who set the tone for what follows.


      • You’re so right about that, Iain–what we’re hearing as this “trial of the century” is about to begin here, the defense will include that the officer was “following procedure”…but too bad a man had to die. There need to be changes in the system.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I like this take on the Ripper which you’ve set up so brilliantly. What better camouflage than as a policeman, perhaps even a real policeman?! A better theory than Prince Albert anyway :>)


    • Thanks Dale. The incident itself has gone on to cause a lot of protests, particularly by woman, which has led to further controversy with the police. It has not been handled at all well by those in charge – as we are becoming used to.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Very topical, between the trial of George Floyd’s killer in America and the policeman accused of killing Sarah Everard. The shivering orange glow was particularly nice. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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