by Rebekah Postupak
He’d thought of everything.
Plottery won him the girl: years of watching from shadows, weeks of trailing her routes, then finally, darefully, asking her out.
Balloonery won him the yes: fifty inflated blowfish lining a sandy path to the frangipani-blanketed water plane, painfully, heartfully, arranged to speak in place of his cursed, impedimented lips.
Yes; it had all required brainery. Patiencery. Sacrificery.
But she was with him now on the remote desert island, they’d burned the plane, and their days blossomed with delightery.
How could they not? He really had thought of everything.
Except, it turns out, midwifery.
Written for sharktastic lit agent Janet Reid‘s flash contest this past weekend, incorporating the required words heart, wife, balloon, dare, and plott (two t’s), max 100 words. Don’t let me forget to tell you it won: a feat I proudly dedicate to you, dear draggins, for pushing me daily to be a better writer. Thank you.
And if you’re interested in the story-behind-the-story: Janet R allows writers to bury but not dismember words. It’s awfully hard to hide “balloon” in anything other than “ballooning” and, hoping to give all five words a fresh face, I thought, “It’s too bad balloonery isn’t a word.” And then I thought, “Maybe I’ll make it a word; and speaking of hiding balloons, wouldn’t it be funny to hide them for real — what if they were balloons made from blowfish? For Pete’s sake, what kind of blowfish balloon guy uses a word like ‘balloonery’?” And there was my story.