Done Fighting by Deborah A. Upton

The man sits at the table glaring at the woman on the other side. Their eyes lock, causing him to scowl. Both of their shoulders tense up. For twenty six years he has been fighting this woman.

He clenches the edge of the table, causing his knuckles to turn white.

Her hand moves, then she quickly pulls it back. Her tongue clicks, then she growls, “No.”

Watching her intently, he waits for her to make a mistake.

Disbelief spreads across her face.

Maybe, just maybe, he thinks, hope rising.

Her lower lip starts quivering. “Pass,” she mutters, weakly, turning her head away.

“Finally,” he yells and slaps down his last tile onto the game board. “I not only have the last word, but I have also finally beaten my little sister at Scrabble.”

He smiles at her, fondly, realizing that he really does like her.

Maybe he always has.


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27 responses to “Done Fighting by Deborah A. Upton

  1. Well I was sure it was an old married couple who lived in the state of hate, so when you turned the tables here, I was def taken by surprise! Nice story!

  2. Joanne Jagoda

    suspense and great turnaround at the end!

    • Deborah A. Upton

      The suspense came through which makes me feel successful because it’s hard to build up suspense in such a short amount of space.

  3. ha! loved this and loved the ending. can so relate, i am a huge scrabble fiend. peace…

  4. randalhoule

    You turned the tables on me on this one. Nice work.

  5. You had me too. I was thinking that they were a long-married couple barely able to tolerate one another, and then the surprise that it was a brother and sister. I really liked the sibling rivalry and the resolve – maybe he’d always liked her. Doris

  6. Delightful, loved the twist and it turning out they are siblings. Made me wonder how many sibs end up sounding like old married couples, or vice versa. Interesting.

    • Deborah A. Upton

      My son tells me when he was growing up and we played Spades, that I had an “evil” laugh when I beat him, and I was always beating him at the card game. I never realized I had an “evil” laugh until he told me, so now when I play games I try to control my “evil” laugh!

  7. So much tension, and then, wham! it’s over a game. Of course he had always liked her; she repeatedly beat him but he kept coming back for more. Great story, and even a better telling.

    • Deborah A. Upton

      Tension–I love that word–then wham! It’s nice to be able to get all of that out there and have it all resolved by the end.

  8. Tom O'Connell

    Great, tense tale.
    I wonder if she let him win…

  9. yes, i agree with the group. you set it up nice and then shot us the other way cleverly. nice job.

    • Deborah A. Upton

      Thank you. I wish I could do that with other stories I have written, but some stories just seem to naturally happen.

  10. You’ve outfoxed me! Great fun!

  11. Ah, sibling rivalry lives on forever, doesn’t it? Nice.

  12. Kelly

    rivalry and affection, I liked that – and the tables turning too!

  13. Pingback: Week #39 – Password | 52|250 A Year of Flash

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