Blood Line by Doris Dembosky

Somewhere in India or possibly Botswana a phone was ringing. It took Claire six or seven rings to swim to the surface of her deep sleep and realize that the phone was hers. Reaching out to her bedside table, she lifted the receiver and fumbled the phone. She picked it up off the floor. “Hello?”

“Is this Claire Donovan?”


“You are never going to believe this, but my name is Ian Donovan, and I am your second cousin twice removed!”

There was a long pause while Claire yawned. Why would I want to talk to my second cousin twice removed when I don’t talk to my first cousins?

“Are you there, Claire?”

Claire plumped up her pillows. “I’m here, but to tell you the truth, I’m running late for work. I was just about out the door. This isn’t a good time.”

“Well, this will just take a minute. I don’t want you to think I’m some sort of nut case.” And then Ian took a deep breath and spit out sentence after sentence at breakneck speed. Cousin Claire was, after all, late for work. “My mother found your name on Ancestry.Com. She’s the one who found your name, but I Googled your address! Can you believe it? We live only five blocks apart! You’re on Willow and I’m on Chestnut! Isn’t that amazing?!”

Claire shut her eyes better to see her long lost cousin. It was a loose connection. She hung up.


Return to This Week’s Flash


Filed under Doris Dembosky

12 responses to “Blood Line by Doris Dembosky

  1. Dawn Armstrong

    I really like this little slice of life. I’m afraid I have hung up the phone myself at times like this. Ah, human nature.

  2. I think I’m may have more than a loose connection; he has a screw loose. Nice take on the theme!

  3. Deborah A. Upton

    I’m sure that’s how some “relatives” make you feel!

  4. Very funny, and honest. I made a call like that once, to a man on Catalina with my same unique last name, and the woman who picked up the phone screamed at me because she thought I was the mistress. Peace…

  5. This would be a fun theme to explore in various ways: the unexpected caller, the stranger at the door, the mystery deliverer, etc. You have a knack to reveal the oddness in this one. More?

    • More? Maybe. The beauty of flash fiction is that in a blink of an eye, the topic is done and dusted- beginning, middle, and end. Pretty much everything you need to get you started on a longer piece.

  6. Pingback: Week #35 – Loose connections | 52|250 A Year of Flash

  7. Kim Hutchinson

    A very true slice of life. Love the ending!

    • The older and busier I get, the less inclined I am to reach out and make new connections. Sad but true. The other thing I’ve noticed that when I was younger I had lots of “friends.” Now I have fewer friends and more “acquaintences.”

Leave a Reply to timeout2 Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s