After the plane crash, Andrew was forced to live with his grandfather.

“Change will do you good,” the therapist said. “Country life can settle a person.”

On the way out, Andrew remained unconvinced. He’d wish for different from time to time—childish maybe, but really… what did he have left that could be lost?


The farm backed into tree-crammed woods. Sometimes, if it was windy, Andrew thought he could hear his mother’s voice twisting through the clash of limbs and leaves. She had been a nightingale, off key, but forever smiling.

He discovered a stream. The water tasted pure, almost spirited. It reminded him of the time his father let him have a sip of his summer cordial.

A trout leapt, slamming down between a pair of stones. He watched it thrash, its gills fleshy pink.

Overhead, a vulture circled. Two chipmunks scurried after an invisible foe. Sunlight shot through branches in beams of bright pageantry. Near the shore, two raccoons regarded him for an unmoving moment, then they carried on.

A cloud of mosquitoes hovered over the trapped fish.

Andrew saw its big mouth go even wider as it sucked air.

It flayed in his hands, slimy and coarse at the same time.

He thought about the fish, how it may represent his parents’ untimely death, or possibly even his own discontent.

He gave it a gentle toss. The fish floated, glinting rainbow scales in the sun. After some moments, the fish thrashed, leapt, and swam again.

Andrew watched it disappear. He felt the sun sting his face and for the first time in weeks, he sighed. He let himself smile again. He kept on wishing.

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Thompson Emate
Thompson Emate(@thompson-emate)
8 months ago

Melissa, this is a lovely and touching story. I enjoyed reading it.

Margarida Brei
Margarida Brei(@margarida-brei)
8 months ago

This is such moving micro fiction. I really enjoyed your descriptions of the countryside, Melissa.

Sandra James
Sandra James(@sandra-james)
8 months ago

I always think that when you help someone else you help yourself so much more and Andrew in helping the fish began his own journey towards healing. A heartwarming story with a very satisfying conclusion. Well done, Melissa.

Bella Minyo
Bella Minyo(@bella-minyo)
8 months ago

Melissa, I can practically feel an oasis of calm and peacefulness settle on me when I read this. Wonderful writing and story! I enjoyed the description of the scenery surrounding your protagonist very much!

Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
8 months ago

Hello, Melissa. After reading your story, you make me smile with satisfaction. It is a lovely and heartfelt read, Melissa. You perfectly portrayed how to acquire happiness when you learn to let go of things that make us sad and out of our control. Very well done. 

Marianna Pieterse
Marianna Pieterse(@marianna-pieterse)
7 months ago

Melissa, not only did you picture a beautiful scene in my mind’s eye, but your story also has a feeling of hopefulness. I agree with Sandra, that if you help others, you help yourself so much more. This is a lovely story.

Sophie Toovey
Sophie Toovey(@sophie-toovey)
7 months ago

Some lovely images in here, especially the mother being an off key nightingale! Loved that.

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