Double rainbow

by | Jun 5, 2012 | Fiction, Flash fiction, Relationships | 14 comments

This week’s episode. What do you think?

Double Rainbow
By Laura McHale Holland

Carly runs the palm of her hand over her skirt, smoothing wrinkles that aren’t there. Facing her, a lawyer shuffles papers on hs desk until he finds the Last Will and Testament of Chloe’s biological grandfather, the man who had hired a drug dealer to kidnap and kill Carly and her daughter, Chloe. Now the old man is gone, knifed repeatedly in a prison bathroom—no witnesses, no suspects.

To Carly’s left her former boyfriend, who is also the dead man’s son, is texting someone on his cell phone. To his left is his mom, sitting tall and stiff. Carly looks straight ahead and sees a faint double rainbow just inside of the window behind the lawyer. She smooths the nonexistent wrinkles again.

The lawyer thanks them all for coming and begins reading. After several pages, he finishes and puts the will down. “This is preposterous,” the older woman declares.

“Let me see that,” the dead man’s son snaps. He stands up, snatches a copy of the will from the desk and starts reading.

Carly cannot speak. She and Chloe are inheriting half of the dead man’s business. It’s some kind of holding company that owns more than half the town. The rainbow glows.


All of the episodes in this series in the order in which they were posted follow:

Back pocket wishes

Cascading to the sea

Right through the heart

Away today?

A dime a dozen

She doesn’t know them

On the seat

A pillar of the community

He needs a friend

Double rainbow

The one he always wants to hear

Give it some time

It gives my life meaning


Extenuating circumstances

 The four of us

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  1. Jerry Kohut

    one never knows what’s in a persons will, it’s not always what people may think.

  2. admin

    Isn’t that the truth, Jerry! I was surprised when this came to mind for the next leg of this story. It wasn’t what I expected. So I guess you could say it’s imagination mirroring life.

  3. Arletta Dawdy

    Don’t you love how the story and characters take over, run with the plot and take us into new, unexpected territory. I enjoyed this scene very much tho’ not sure about boyfriend/son…same?

  4. Nancy LaTurner

    Such a fascinating twist! The rainbow glows in that moment, but does it guarantee that only good will come from the pot of gold? We’ll have to wait and see, won’t we?

  5. admin

    Oh my, Nancy, I don’t know yet either what will come of this development. Thanks much for following the story and leaving this comment! Comments such as yours help me feel connected rather than isolated in this project.

  6. admin

    Yes, Arletta, I do love how the characters take over. And it’s fun to let them do it rather than impose some preconceived idea of what I think should happen on them. The scenes are little gifts from the universe, I believe. The boyfriend and son are the same person. When I move into editing mode, I’ll find a way to make that clear.

  7. Nancy LaTurner

    Good point from Arletta. I read the piece a few times before I “got” that connection right. Maybe it’s due to to serialization — readers tend to forget many details between episodes, especially the fine points of complicated relationships. It’s a challenge for the writer to remind, clarify, and yet keep the promise of brevity. Personally, I’m willing to read as many times as it takes to jog my memory because I love your work and find your writing to be reliably clear and consistent.

  8. admin

    Thanks, Nancy. I just worked on the problematic sentence a little bit to make it clear that the boyfriend and dead man’s son are one and the same. You’re right that it is a challenge to remind and clarify while also keeping things brief. Plus, I’ve just about given up on having each one be a stand-alone piece. It’s good to see what’s possible, though, and I may figure more out in that regard in the editing process. If not, that’s okay, too, because just doing a story in short installments is turning out to be a fun project.

  9. Barbara Toboni

    Good section. I like the twist of son, boyfriend. I’ve tried this, writing a continuing story on my blog, but it’s difficult as you say to keep things clear. I always worry about putting my stories in a blog, wanting them to be perfect first. I have to shake off this trait, try being a little more carefree like you!

  10. admin

    I guess in a way I am a little carefree about this, Barbara, maybe because there is so much going on on the web that not many people are paying attention to what I’m up to, and those who are kind enough to check in and comment are supportive people like you. Making a commitment to post regularly also forces me to push through my fatigue after a draining day at my day-job and do a little something that is dear to my heart. I edit for a living, but it’s business writing, which is an entirely different animal. This blog makes me smile, and the fact that some folks have been intrigued, entertained and stimulated by some of my work here is very gratifying. I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read of your work online and think you should do whatever pleases you most.

  11. Susan

    Perhaps the grandfather felt some guilt about what he had done, or attempted to do? It’s fitting that his wife and son would be a tad bit angry about it. I love the idea of destiny. The rainbow reminds us of hope and possibilities. Carly would be able to provide “nicer” things all the way around, but the glow really comes from her heart. The glow is all the good she and her Chloe haven’t seen together or separately.

  12. admin

    I like the way you’re talking about the different characters’ motivations, Susan, because if I decide to develop this series of little drafts into a satisfying, cohesive whole, I’m going to need to give the characters more depth. I also appreciate your thoughts on the symbolism. Right now I’m just following intuition on that. Thanks, my friend.

  13. Eve Trout

    Is this his way of seeking forgiveness?

  14. admin

    I imagine once he got to prison, it jolted him so much that he realized how wrong he’d been and wanted to try to make restitution in some way. I hadn’t considered whether he thought he could be forgiven. I think he just wanted to make up for the harm he’d done.


  1. A dime a dozen - [...] Double rainbow [...]
  2. Cascading to the sea - [...] Double rainbow [...]
  3. The four of us - [...] Double rainbow [...]

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