Evil Stepmother Support Group ~ One Year Anniversary

 

 

MAY 2017

 

The Misunderstood Stepmoms, a support group started by Cinderella’s stepmother, Caroline, celebrated its one-year anniversary this weekend.

“We were pleased with the turnout,” she said. “And we’re proud that this little group has been around for an entire year.”

Caroline’s statement may be a bit modest. The group is not only still around but, in fact, has swelled to over 600 members. Rumors of branches being formed throughout the country have been circulating for months.

We caught up with Gothel, Rapunzel’s adoptive mother, who had to travel quite a distance for the meetings and recently started a local chapter near her.

“It was good while it lasted but it’s been shut down,” she waved her hand dismissively. “Apparently, I’m not technically a ‘stepmother’. According to some people.”

The “some people” Gothel spoke of are the original three members: Snow White’s, Hansel and Gretel’s, and Cinderella’s stepmothers.

Gothel was awarded legal guardianship of Rapunzel in 2003 but, sources say, there may be evidence the document was faked.

A follow-up with the groups’ founder, Caroline, shed some light on the situation.

“I don’t want to throw stones,” she said, “but, yes, we’ve banned Gothel from our meetings and stripped her of any rights to use our name in future group settings. It’s not entirely about her stepmother status, although it has come to our attention that she is in a cauldron of trouble in regards to how Rapunzel came to be in her care. We, personally, have had…issues with her behavior. I can’t say too much due to an ongoing legal matter. And I want to emphasize that we are a caring group of women.”

Cinderella’s stepmom said, “Caroline’s too nice for her own good. Gothel is nuts. Some stepmothers have a reputation for a reason. Poor Rapunzel. ‘Adoptive mother’, my ass.”

Allegedly, Gothel had lost her temper during a meeting in early May, causing damage to the building and endangering members of the group.

When asked about the incident, Caroline admitted a few of the members were injured during “what can only be described as an ‘attack’.” She has since added a clause to her online ad about the group stating “zero tolerance for violence, magical or otherwise” and plans to hold an emergency meeting to focus on maintaining a safe and supportive environment for The Misunderstood Stepmoms.

 

The group meets once a week, on Wednesdays, and any mistreated stepmother is welcome. There is no fee for membership. Apple tart and herbal tea will be provided. Contact Caroline for more information.
UPDATE: Due to recent events, the location of meetings has been changed from the Fuji Warehouse in downtown Darby to the Braeburn Building on Main Street.

 

Evil Stepmother Support Group

 

 

MAY 2016

 

A new support group started up this week in downtown Darby. They call themselves “The Misunderstood Stepmoms”.

The group is led by Snow White’s stepmother, Caroline, who is fed up with all the hostility.

For years, she was despised and discounted, never being asked to join local book clubs or invited to a girls’ night out. Following this past Mother’s Day weekend, Caroline decided enough was enough.

Needless to say, she did not receive flowers or a card on Sunday.

About Snow, she said, “The girl pigged out on junk food. She was always walking around with her hand stuck in a bag of corn chips or jellybeans. I gave her some fresh fruit and, yes, that included an apple. She took one bite and pretended to choke on it, falling down and accusing me of trying to poison her. The girl didn’t want to eat healthy. End of story.”

Caroline went on to say, “I heard similar accounts of stepmothers being unfairly bashed so I created a safe space for them to talk and share their feelings.”

Cinderella’s stepmom claims she tried for years to get her teenage stepdaughter to “take a bath and change her damn clothes.”

While Hansel and Gretel’s stepmom says she spent months warning her stepchildren not to wander into the woods before their disappearance. “They came home with some cock-and-bull story about a candy house and a kitchen witch. Everyone knows kitchen witches live in the city,” she said.

In both cases, these women were blamed for the unfortunate state of their stepchildren.

“Sadly, these stories are not unique.” Caroline said. The three founding members were joined by fifteen others for their inaugural meeting. While there is no official motto for the group yet, Caroline said, “We want women to know that they are not alone.”

When asked about the group dynamics, Caroline admitted there is some tension. “We have a mix. There are a few members with anger management issues, while others are simply disheartened. But, for a first meeting, things went extremely well. We are a supportive bunch and provide a much-needed sense of community.”

 

The group will meet once a week, on Wednesdays, and any mistreated stepmother is welcome. There is no fee for membership. Apple tart and herbal tea will be provided. Contact Caroline for more information.

 

Something’s Afoot #WritePhoto

 

 

“I don’t accept money,” his eyes traveled over me.

“But,” I took a deep breath, “I need it.”

He leaned against the moss-covered stone. “Obviously. Since you’re trading with the likes of me under a bridge…”

“Tell me what you want. Anything.” I shifted from one foot to the other under his gaze.

“Your shoes.”

“My…wait, what?” I looked at my strappy sandals. “These?”

“Yes.”

I slid them off and held them out.

“Over there,” the dragon extended his wing to a mound of what I now realized was shoes. “We don’t just hoard gold, you know. Carl fancies teacups.”

 

 

I’ve combined two prompts again this week:

#writephoto, a weekly writing prompt for poetry/flash/short stories hosted by Sue Vincent which asks writers to use photos for inspiration (the photo above is this week’s prompt)

 

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and Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch which asks writers to pen a piece in 99 words (this week’s prompt: Trading).

March 23, 2017 prompt: Trading In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story write a story about trading. It can be the profession of old or of modern day traders on Wall Street. What is traded? Go where the prompt leads you.

 

Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig

Gone Fishing

 

 

“This is boring,” Caleb whined.

“It’s father-son bonding. It’s fun.” He wiped sweat from his forehead. “It’s…hot.”

“Something we agree on,” Caleb mumbled. “Can we go now?”

“I’ve got the boat until two.” His father sighed. “Crap. This is boring.”

“Race?” Caleb stood, pulling off his t-shirt.

His father dove into the water. “Head start for the old man!”

She rose from the waves. Glorious and horrible. Eyes gleaming, hair spilling over her breasts.

“Dad!”

“Aw, c’mon…” He splashed Caleb.

“Get back here! Swim back…now!”

She smiled at Caleb, her mouth rows of shark teeth. “Fear. My comfort food.”

 

 

I’ve combined two prompts again this week: A 99-word flash about “comfort food” and a thriller/horror with the word “splash”. It was, um, difficult. But I do love a challenge and it was fun. 🙂

 

#BlogBattle is a weekly writing prompt for flash fiction/short stories (with a word AND genre theme) hosted by Rachael Ritchey 

Week 18 Prompt: Splash
Genre: Suspense/Thriller/Horror

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and Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch which asks writers to pen a piece in 99 words (this week’s prompt: Comfort Food).

May 4, 2017 prompt: Comfort Food In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story write about comfort food.

 

Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig

*Artwork by Diane Özdamar

On a Cliff Overlooking the Sea #WritePhoto

 

 

This is exactly how I pictured it.

Temple ruins set on a cliff overlooking the sea. In my imagination, this place has always existed.

It’s real. I’m here.

A breeze, heavy with salt and seaweed and mist and everything that only the ocean can offer, caresses my cheeks. Tousles my hair.

Waves wash up, lapping the rocky shore, gurgling like a newborn babe. They retreat, leaving frothy rings on boulders worn smooth. It reminds me of a root beer float, those cream-colored bubbles. Then they are gone. The waves roll up again, bringing their foam, then run away.

I tried to run away once. I was seven. I stuffed my pillowcase full with mismatched socks I didn’t need. Mother hated when my socks weren’t the same color. And I brought bubble gum I loved. It was watermelon-flavored. The kind Father hated because it smelled the whole room up. And I thought how wonderful it all was. How it wouldn’t matter because they wouldn’t be there. I could chew with my mouth open and blow enormous bubbles and pop them all over my face and no one could say anything because I would be alone.

Alone on a cliff overlooking the sea. Temple ruins set behind me.

It’s real. I’m here.

Just like I imagined.

The sun is setting, creating a golden carpet for my feet to step upon as I dance atop the sea before I sink.

I set my pillowcase down, strip my pants and top off, and skip to the cliff’s edge. I curl my toes over the place where earth meets air and jump.

I laugh so loud. The wind pulls the sound so all I hear is something that sounds like distant drumming. My legs scream, or maybe it’s me. I forgot how much it hurt. But I smile as I leave behind what I was never supposed to be.

By the time I hit the water, I cannot feel my legs. They are gone. They are one. They are me. They are the iridescent tail I remember from a time when I knew what cerulean blue scales looked like underwater while the sun was setting, creating golden carpets on the surface.

 

 

My attempt at #writephoto, a weekly writing prompt for poetry/flash/short stories hosted by Sue Vincent

 

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Oil Stains

 

He was oily. His hair, his smile.

“Sit,” he licked his lips. “It’s not often I get a visit from such an elegant lady.”

“I’ll stand.”

“As you wish, beautiful.” His eyes scanned me head to toe then met mine. “Better view for me.”

I slid the envelope across to him.

He took his time looking through the contents, enjoying what was inside. “Here’s your money,” he leered.

I reached for the cash too quickly, brushing his knuckles with my fingertips. I cringed.

He laughed.

I would wear the stain of this day for the rest of my life.

 

 

Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

April 27, 2017 prompt: Oil In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes oil. Go where the prompt leads.

 

Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig

A Room With a View #WritePhoto

 

 

The windows were nailed shut.

They’d always been. As long as I can remember, at least, and I’m not sure if it was because of me or the girls who lived in this room before.

The pretty, lace curtains might have been there to make up for the fact the windows would never open. Here, girl. Look at the lace and be happy. What is the point of curtains if they can’t billow in the breeze?

The thing about lace, though, is it lets light in. Speckled sunshine rested on the dark, red carpet and, sometimes, if I stood close enough, gave me a spotted glowing feeling on my face. I loved those windows. I hated those windows. They made me feel part of the outside world and were a reminder of everything I could never have.

 

 

Here is my attempt at #writephoto, a weekly writing prompt for poetry/flash/short stories hosted by Sue Vincent

 

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Softness #WritePhoto

 

 

Sand shifts under our feet as we run to the sea. It sparkles in the sun.

My chest hurts when I see her smile. It’s been so long.

It’s petty of me but I’m glad I am the one who brought her here, made her happy.

“What are you thinking?” I sit in the slender beach grass.

“Softness,” she looks at the distant mountains lost in mist. “Everything is soothing. Muted and soft. Yet…they’re here.”

Shadows pass over us. Two of the winged beasts. She’s right. We are never alone—we have an audience. And they are always watching.

 

 

 

I’ve combined two prompts again this week:

#writephoto, a weekly writing prompt for poetry/flash/short stories hosted by Sue Vincent which asks writers to use photos for inspiration (the photo above is this week’s prompt)

 

writephoto-logo

 

and Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch which asks writers to pen a piece in 99 words (this week’s prompt: Audience).

March 23, 2017 prompt: Audience In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story write about an audience. It can be broad or small, and gathered for any reason. How does your character react to the audience?

 

Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig

Colors

 

I smear color on tiles, watching different shades swirl together under my fingertips.

“Dammit, girl!” Heels click down the hall. “Why do you insist…” The woman’s eyes are wild, searching the corridor. She kneels in her nylons and clean skirt to look at the mess. “Well,” she tilts her head, “it’s a pretty one you’ve made here. You could have been an artist.” She yanks her sleeve over her hand and wipes away the colors. “No more. You’ll get us both killed. Understand?”

I stare at the women. She is always nice to me but I will find more colors.

 

 

Flash Fiction Challenge over at Carrot Ranch

 

March 16, 2017 prompt: No Art In 99 words (no more, no less) go down the rabbit hole to a place where art is not allowed.

 

Sarah Brentyn Reef 99 Words - sig

February Writespirations: A Collection

 

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Each week, Sacha Black challenges writers to pen a piece in 52 words. Exactly 52. You know I love micro fiction and you know I love a challenge. So, here are my entries for the February prompts:

~~~

Week: February 2
Prompt: Time / Stack / Juice / Pigeon (include all four words in the 52-word story)

Taking Stock

He spent his lunch break stacking juice, cereal boxes, candy bars…pigeon-holed by his supervisors as a dim-witted stock boy. He would never make it to cashier never mind manager.

His position gave him time to think and, within two years, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for his work in quantum physics.

~~~

Week: February 8
Prompt: That moment you see your ex with their hot, new bit and you look like turd

That Stings

I spotted him at the gas pump, a blonde in his car applying mascara.

Unshowered, clinging to a bottle of cheap vodka, I staggered over.

“Sheila?!”

“See you’re hiring hookers,” I gestured to the blonde.

“They’re ‘escorts’. Pricey but worth it.” He grinned.

I smiled, reaching for my badge. “Baker? We got him.”

~~~

Week: February 15
Prompt: The Distance Between

Between Lives

When I was little, I wanted to visit the moon.

My mother laughed. My father explained the distance between the earth and the moon.

My grandparents said I was spoiled. Which had nothing to do with the moon, but they never missed a chance to say it.

My teacher told me about astronauts.

~~~


Week: February 23
Prompt: Choke

Dinner for One

He sat across from me, leaning back, arms crossed. “Go to hell.”

“Maybe,” I shrugged. “Maybe I’ll see you there. But, for me, not today.”

“What’s that supposed…” he grabbed his throat, glaring at me.

“Don’t worry, love. The choking won’t last long. Your heart will give out before it becomes too uncomfortable.”