Five Sentence Fiction – Scarlet

This was written for Lillie McFerrin’s weekly Five Sentence Fiction flash fiction event.  Writers are tasked with creating a five sentence story inspired by a single-word theme.  The theme for this piece was, “Scarlet”.


The smoke from the engine, the rain, the platform, and the dozens of faceless travellers getting on and off of the train, it was all gray.

I had four minutes until the train pulled out, four more minutes to hope, four more minutes to look through that city of gray for a glimpse of scarlet.

The scarf of scarlet you wore, the hat too if it was raining hard enough.

Four minutes went by and the train rolled out.

The smoke from the engine, the rain, the platform, the dozens of faceless travellers, and what was left of my heart, it was all gray.


Posted on July 19, 2012, in Five Sentence Fiction. Bookmark the permalink. 16 Comments.

  1. My heart goes it to him, liked how all but his hope of her appearance was grey.


  2. Oh I love it. It has an old-time movie kind of feel to it. The search for the one, once glimpsed. I love the reiteration and the parallels.. So nicely done. Bravo.


  3. goingforcoffee

    I agree with Stacy that you were able to evoke both the gray feeling of sadness and the feeling of a black and white movie waiting to be sparsely colourized. Nice :))


  4. I can picture Humphrey Bogart as Rick from Casablanca.
    I can picture him in his trenchcoat and fedora hat.
    Very good imagery. Love the noir feel to it.


  5. Beautiful piece, full of imagery just hoping to be blessed with colour…sadly it was not meant to be and your perpetuation of gray played out the scene.


  6. I immediately thought of a black and white photograph with only one detail in color. I wish the poor fellow had had his last glimpse, his final goodbye. Lovely post.


  7. Absolutely fantastic! Such a noir vibe to it!! Using the gray to reflect the external and internal atmosphere of the story was brilliant. This is one of those stories that will stick in my mind for a long time to come!! 🙂


  8. Love how all that he hopes for hangs on that red imagery, and everything else is monochromatic in contrast. Really layers in the emotional aspect without overt telling. Nicely done!


  9. Donna B. McNicol [@donnabmcnicol]

    What everyone already said…loved it!


  10. Ahh…this is sad….it’s true that everything seems grey without love…good writing 🙂


  11. I agree with Stacey. Very much and old movie feel. Such beautiful imagery throughout. Lovely, lyrical and memorable piece.


  12. I love the repetition of the first sentence in the last, the hope of spotting that special one all gone along with the train. A very 1940’s feel to this with your description. Loved it. xxx


  13. Yes, it definitely seemed to be a picture drawn in monochrome. Nicely done.


  14. I heard music in the background-a beautiful, haunting tune…that had me in tears with the fade-out on his crestfallen face.

    Great use of the prompt, and our heart strings. 🙂


  15. Love the use of grey and scarlet. Such longing here. Really, really, really love this 🙂


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