Friday, April 29, 2011

Flash Fiction Fridays: A Cure to Spring Fever

Spring Fever month comes to a close with Sharon Cupp Pennington who bridges this month and next beautifully with her story, "Deliverance." May's theme? You guessed it. Parenthood.


Deliverance 
By Sharon Cupp Pennington

“Push, Mags.” Her husband bent over her, his urging firm yet gentle.

Maggie blew out a breath, sucked in another and pushed with what she hoped was enough strength to bring a baby into the world. She and little Mack—he’d carry the name McKenzie after his great grandfather—had endured four hours of pushing since her water broke in their apartment’s renovated kitchen, and James bustled her into his Volvo for the twenty minute drive to the hospital.

Her brain fuzzy with fatigue, Maggie likened the natal downpour in her kitchen to the deluge that had breached the levies and flooded her beloved New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. They’d celebrated being back in their home a year only last Tuesday.

One flood brought life; one ended it. Nature’s contradiction.

“Another, Mags. You can do it,” James whispered next to her ear.

Easy for him to say. Nine months of wretched nausea, constant tiredness and no hope of seeing her feet until Easter while he sold real estate from a nice, comfy office.

But they were here now, in delivery. On a day almost too beautiful for spring with its thick plumes of frothy Astilbe, stunning purple Corabells and yellow Daffodils.


Maggie pressed harder, tightening the muscles in her arms and back, her grip on James’ hand. Cool air from the vent above assaulted her sweat-slick forehead, and she recalled August heat and the chill of a river baptism when she was eight. She’d do the same for little Mack when he was ready.

“One more push,” James urged, “and we’re a family.”

Maggie groaned, silently swearing he’d make up for this agony on their next anniversary, and birthdays until she turned eighty. . .and Valentine’s Days far into the millennium. She pushed with all she had, and then felt release and sudden bliss.

James cheered; a baby wailed. Tears coursed Maggie’s cheeks when the red-faced infant was placed in her arms.

A new spring. A new beginning for her New Orleans. A new baby.

“Welcome home, little Mack,” she whispered. “Welcome home.”




Sharon Cupp Pennington’s short stories have appeared in numerous online and print venues, with anthology contributions to The Rocking Chair Reader in the Coming Home edition (2004) and Family Gatherings (2005), A Cup of Comfort for Weddings: Something Old, Something New (2007), and Good Old Days Magazine (March, 2007). Draumr Publishing released her debut romantic suspense novel, Hoodoo Money, in May 2008 and the sequel, Mangroves and Monsters, in November 2009. She resides in Texas with her husband where she is currently working on her next project. To learn more about Sharon, visit her website

No comments: