Friday Fictioneers: Only The Michelin Man Knows Otherwise

friday-fictioneersAs writers we write for many reasons. This week, I could not work on this weekly challenge in the hours just after the shocking attack on a synagogue in Jerusalem. For many of you reading the headlines, it was just another horrific incident in the never-ending spiral of violence between Israelis and Palestinians. However, my 24 year-old daughter lives in Jerusalem– not far from the synagogue where this happened. Not far from the train platform where another attack occurred last week, and not far from a market place where a terrorist drove his car into a crowd, killing a 3 month-old baby and a 22 year-old woman. I am a mother first, a writer second. For me this news story was personal, and I could only write about that. If you’re interested, you can read my post here or on BlogHer.

However, don’t blame my clearly darker approach this week on the events in Jerusalem. Despite the cheery Michelin man, I think Claire Fuller has provided a photo this week, full of dark potential. Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for wrangling this weekly group of Flash Fictioneers, who write on Wednesday but call it Friday. This week, I’m writing on Thursday and posting on Friday– call it Weekly Fictioneers!  Check out other stories or join in the highly addictive fun, at Rochelle’s blog: Addicted to Purple. Each week it is truly an honor to be a part of this amazing group of writers!

As always, I welcome feedback that is honest, positive or constructive. Please leave a comment.  

© Claire Fuller

© Claire Fuller

Only The Michelin Man Knows Otherwise

(90 words)

The noxious smell of gas and used oil hid the stench of decaying flesh. Tires piled high, made it difficult to see her bruised and battered body, dumped there the morning after she disappeared. Police investigators, family and friends scoured nearby fields, woods and the local reservoir, hoping for a sign. However, cold temperatures and slow business left the alley behind the small automotive garage mostly undisturbed for days and then weeks, as Jenna’s once beautiful blue eyes became milky and fixed, on the dark space where she lay.

*     *    *


HELP ME REACH MY GOAL for 2014:  I’d love to see the Tales From the Motherland Facebook page reach 500 likes in 2014. Have you stopped by to spread some fairy dust? Follow me on Twitter, it’s where I’m forced to be brief.  Most importantly, if you like a post I’ve written, hit Like and leave a comment. I love to hear what readers think. Honest, positive or constructive feedback is always welcome. Click Follow; you’ll get each new post delivered by email, with no spam.  If you see ads on this page, please let me know. They shouldn’t be there.  ©2014  Please note, that all content and images on this site are copyrighted to Dawn Quyle Landau and Tales From the Motherland, unless specifically noted otherwise. If you want to share my work, please give proper credit. Plagiarism sucks.

About Dawn Quyle Landau

Mother, Writer, treasure hunter, aging red head, and sushi lover. This is my view on life, "Straight up, with a twist––" because life is too short to be subtle! Featured blogger for Huffington Post, and followed on Twitter by LeBron James– for reasons beyond my comprehension.
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49 Responses to Friday Fictioneers: Only The Michelin Man Knows Otherwise

  1. Mike Lince says:

    You are right – this post definitely comes from the dark side. It is not difficult to grasp that your thoughts have gravitated toward the darker side of life given the recent events you have written about. Nonetheless, the writer in you demonstrates your uncanny ability to take inspiration from wherever it may come. As a loyal follower and fan, I continue to be impressed by the many facets of your imagination that you share through your writing.

    Because you personify the expressive artist I admire and at times aspire to be, I offer this quote with you in mind:
    ‘There is no agony like bearing an untold story inside of you.’ – Maya Angelou

    Liked by 1 person

  2. storydivamg says:

    Dear Dawn,
    A tire graveyard is a breeding ground for creepy tales. Good one this week.

    On a personal note, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your daughter as well as with other friends and loved ones in and near Jerusalem. When one knows the names and faces, the violence becomes much more personal, and so I join you in prayers for peace.

    Marie Gail


  3. A dark tale. I wonder how many murdered people are never found.


    • Given the numbers, I think there are quite a few! It’s a horrible thought to imagine anyone you care about just disappearing, and knowing that they are probably dead. I saw this dark alley and only dark stories came to mind… Though admittedly, the Michelin man gave me pause. 😉


  4. plaridel says:

    what a sad, sad story. the recent happenings in jerusalem must have really affected you and contributed to the mood of your story this week.


    • Plaridel, it’s possible that the events in Jerusalem impacted my story telling, but somehow I think I would have come up with this story regardless. That pile of old tires just called out dark, for me. Thanks for taking the time.


  5. Maree Gallop says:

    This story touches everyone. Dark but sadly to real.


  6. Dawn, praying for safety not just for your daughter but for all in Israel, and that the conflict would end, not that I’m at all sanguine about the latter ever happening. As for your story, some bodies are never found and the lack of closure for family, friends, and even investigators must be terrible.



    • My guess is that this body will be found… eventually, but she will lie there, unnoticed for a long while. Strange, I saw this photo and knew I was going dark.

      Thanks for your kind and hopeful words about Israel. We can only hope…


  7. A wonderfully written story full of great imagery. By the way – the photo was the front of the garage on the main road…


    • Oops! It looked like a back alley to me, so I just went with it. Alas, that’s why it’s fiction. 😉 So glad you liked it, Claire… thanks for such a fantastic prompt! Tomorrow, I’ll finally have time to read the other stories! Thanks for stopping by.


  8. Dawn, Great story with description that made it real for me. My thoughts are on the dark side this week as well. The U.S. government has warned of possible demonstrations that could turn violent in large cities on Sunday due to the court decision on that Missouri shooting. My daughter is in Chicago. I texted her to be careful. That’s all I can do. Well written as always. — Susan


  9. Dear Dawn,

    The image you depict in this flash is disturbing and well written.

    The images from Jerusalem are terrifying. While we cry, “Never again!” we’re back in 1939, hovering between horror and disbelief. As a Jew I shed tears of anger, as a human I shed more tears of anger and as a mother I shed tears and add my prayers to the others for your daughter’s safety, as well as the safety of friends I have living over there.

    Well written as always.

    Shabbat Shalom,



    • Shabbat Shalom, Rochelle! Thank you for your kind and caring words– I know you understand well where my mind has been these past weeks. Tuesday was just more jarring than usual!

      I don’t write dark stories often, but when I do… I go Dark. Thanks for your feedback! xo


  10. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Dawn,

    Tell your daughter to leave town. The more people there are as time goes on, the more trouble there’s going to be. Humans make me pro-nuclear.

    As for your story, it was dark yet good, if you know what I mean. Well done.




    • Aloha, Doug and thanks for your feedback. I always appreciate hearing your viewpoint!

      As for my daughter, there is no telling her anything… she is there for her own reasons, and I imagine she’ll stay there until her reasons change– though I certainly agree with your views.


  11. Honie Briggs says:

    Dawn, I read your post earlier. I couldn’t think of anything to say that would be of any use. You’re in my thoughts today.


    • Thanks Honie. I probably shouldn’t have linked my Jerusalem post to my FF post… I feel badly that my FF buddies don’t know what to say this week! 😉 I am ok. Really. This is what I live with every day… each time there is an attack in Israel, and particularly Jerusalem, I generally go about my day… whispering to myself: “I know she’s ok, I know she’s ok…” She is.

      Thanks so much for your kind words of support; they mean more than most of you know. xo


  12. I hope for your daughter’s safety.. the escalation of violence is certainly chilling.. very much so. As for your story it draw so much from the image it seemed to be form a perfect unity.. I will never be able to look for a pile of tires without looking for an arm or a leg sticking out.


    • Oh no! I’m so happy my writing had an effect on you, Björn, but I feel badly that that effect will be negative… when it comes to tires. May you never see a pile of tires again! 😉 Thanks for your wonderful feedback, and your kind words of support.


  13. That is dark, but fascinating and well-written as always. My older son was in Israel last year on a Birthright trip and had a terrific time and felt safe, but who knows? Hopefully we’ll be around some day to see peace.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Sandra says:

    Good story, and well done for managing to contribute when you must be so worried. Hope she stays safe.


    • Thanks Sandra. The reality is, that reality marches on. Life happens. So, this is what I just have to accept and not get sucked into for more than a few worried hours, here and there. I’m not stoic, but as with all of our lives, it is what it is. I appreciate the feedback.


  15. yarnspinnerr says:

    It is a dark story but somehow very near life.


  16. Sarah Ann says:

    So well described – the events conspiring against Jenna and her family. This was so well drawn I could see it playing out as a TV crime show.


  17. Margaret says:

    Poor Jenna, lying there undiscovered in the snow. Powerrful description – very evocative. I agree that the scene in the picture is the perfect setting for dark deeds and evil mysteries.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. draliman says:

    Very dark. I hope they find her soon for the sake of the family. I love your imagery!


  19. Alice Audrey says:

    I agree that the photo has a lot of dark potential. You took it to one of the darker but increasingly prevalent corners of modern society. You may worry about the bombs in Israel. In the same way I worry for my daughter and those who would like to leave her in a place like that.


  20. Even though your thoughts are elsewhere it’s still good to put pen to paper. If nothing else, it allows you to reach out to other people and share your worries. Regarding your story, indeed it was from an understandably dark place, but still a good read


    • Thanks so much for your thoughtful comment. I think, that even if I hadn’t had scary things on my mind, this is where the photo would have taken me. We all have dark stories to tell… it just depends on the day. 😉 I appreciate your feedback.


  21. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Dawn, I love your story – even if it is disturbing. I can see this happening in just about any major city in the country. How sad. I hope your daughter remains safe and careful! Each night when I go to bed I pray for my son (a policeman) who works at night. Good job! Nan 🙂


  22. A dark tale beautifully penned.


  23. h82typ says:

    Poor Jenna! Love, light and prayers.



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