July Writing Prompt

Every Month Didi Oviatt creates a writing prompt, and the only rule is to use the characters from our current WIP and write about the topic provided. You can read Didi’s original post below:

July WIP Writing Challenge: The Prodigal Return

I hope you enjoy:

Let’s Be Prodigal


Cara stubbornly sat in the window seat Michael had built her for her 40th birthday. She was desperately trying to read Stephen King’s latest novel, but after reading the same line for the fourth time she slammed the book shut and threw it on the floor, releasing a sigh of frustration, and then bending down to pick the book up, gently rubbing it’s cover as an apology. She leaned her head back against the wall and looked out the window and her equally stubborn husband.

Michael was literally throwing stones into a wheelbarrow, a last minute decision to change the landscaping, in 90 degree weather, no less. She watched as he stopped to wipe the sweat from his brow, knowing he was thirsty, but too stubborn to come inside for a tall glass of freshly brewed iced tea she had made just that morning. She chuckled, they were so much a like, yet different enough just to keep things interesting.

That was the thing about Michael and Cara, they are both so passionate, and that passion shines through in everything they do, including their fights. They don’t fight very often, but when they do they are always knock outs, with raised voices, curses, and sometimes tears, but they always come back to one another, and the make up is just as passionate and filled with emotion as the fight.

Cara sighed, thinking back to the fight that had taken place in the kitchen that morning. She had just finished making the tea when she spotted Michael at the kitchen island, working on their monthly budget.

“Do you realize we haven’t taken a vacation in almost three years?”

“Not this again,” she pinched the bridge of her nose, “Michael, yes, but we’ve been remodeling the house, and we’ve been on many trips to the lake.”

“Those don’t count Cara, that’s my family’s lake house, we can go there any time we want, and we very rarely spend any money because you insist on cooking for the majority of our stay!”

“You don’t have to spend money to have a good time Michael. What is it with you wanting to spend so much money all of a sudden?”

“What’s the point in having money if you don’t get to enjoy it?”

“A safety net, Michael. I like having a safety net. It’s nice to know that when the car breaks down or the water heater goes up we don’t have to wonder about where we are going to get the money to fix it.”

“Yes, that’s all fine and good, Cara, but we will still have money. I’m not saying let’s blow our entire savings, I’m saying let’s take some of our hard earned money and travel, eat at expensive restaurants, buy some extravagant art. Let’s go exploring and experience different cultures, let’s splurge for once in our lives. We live near a lake, let’s buy that pontoon we’ve always talked about.”

Cara looked down at her feet. “We have spent thousands on making this our dream house, our own little oasis so that we can enjoy the things we love right here at home, and now you want to buy a boat and spend all of this time away from the house? Lord, Michael, is this some sort of mid-life crisis? Are you going to get tired of me and want some new young thing next?”

Michael turned slowly, glaring at her with so much anger, he had never looked at her that way before. She swallowed thickly, knowing that she had struck a nerve. “How. Dare. You.” He snarled through his teeth. “How dare you defy my vow and devotion to you. If you remember correctly, my dear, you are the one that wanted the updates to the house. I was fine with it the way it was. You said you always wanted a window seat where you could sit and read, so I built it for you. You said you always wanted a walk in closet, so I built it for you, you wanted a new kitchen with updated cabinets and a farmhouse sink, so I made that happen too. I built you a craft room, a mini library, a covered porch, a screened in porch, a back deck, and a patio! Dammit Cara, I have bent over backwards to try and give you everything you’ve ever wanted, but I want a boat and you think I’m going to leave you for a younger woman?!?!” His voiced raised an octave on every word of that last sentence. He stormed passed her, making his way to the front door.

“What are you doing?”

“I want new landscaping, so I’m going to do it, this is my house too, I deserve a say.”

She started to name off his man cave, the Pac-man machine, the garage, the bar in the entertainment room filled with all of his favorite movie posters and memorabilia of his favorite sports teams, but she thought better of it and remained silent.

“What’s the point in making a living if you don’t get to enjoy it? Life is short Cara, and one day it’s going to be too late and you’re going to wish that you had made the time to visit different countries, try new cuisines, and spend your free time on the lake with the ones you love, instead of spending your days gazing through a big picture window. You weren’t born just to work, pay bills, and die.”

Cara kept reciting his words over and over again, and she knew he was right. She hated when he was right. She made her way to the kitchen, pouring him a glass of iced tea before taking it to him.

She handed him the glass as she said “I’m sorry.”

He downed the entire drink in one long swig and handed the empty glass back to her. Staring at her, waiting for her to continue.

“I crossed the line with the whole younger woman thing, I’m sorry. I don’t actually think you would do something like that.”

Michael crossed his arms across his chest, still gazing at her, but not saying anything.

“Fine, You were right, okay, you were right. We do deserve to spend some of our hard earned money on extravagant things and we should travel more and see more of the world.” She paused, swallowing her pride. “There I said it, you were right and I was wrong, now can we please go back inside? It’s hotter than Satan’s large intestine out here.”

Michael chuckled. He has always loved Cara’s little made up analogy’s.

Later that day Michael came out of the shower to find his wife looking up pontoon’s.

“Wait? You’re really looking at boats?”

“MM…. so I was right about that too?” He asked, smugly.

“Don’t push it, Williams.” She teased. She looked down at her hands and started fiddling with her thumbnail. Knowing what this meant, Michael took the seat across from her.

“You do know you can tell me anything right?” He asked as he took her hands.

She smiled at him, although they had been married for some time now, it never ceases to amaze her how in tune to her he is, he knows all of her character traits. “Listen, I just wanted a house that was truly ours, you know? A mixture of your styles and mine, a place filled with so many memories. A place where I can spend my evenings, cuddled up next to you, watching horror movies, and spend my mornings with you on a porch drinking coffee. I wanted my own little oasis with you. You can whisk me away on adventures, we can spend many days and nights out on a boat, but my favorite place will always be here, the home I’ve built with you, my love.”

“Oh, Cara, my sweet, sweet Cara. I want that to, and we have that. But do you realize how much your face lights up when you experience something new? Do you realize how wide your eyes get when you watch a sunrise, or the smile that reaches your eyes when you taste a delicate dessert? Do you realize how much I love observing you experience those things? I want a boat so that I can drive fast on the lake and hit every wave and hear your laugh as the boat bounces. I want a boat so that I can take you out to the middle of the lake where there’s no pollution of light and I can watch the wonder in your eyes as you take in the view of thousands of stars. And then I want to come home and look through hundreds of photographs with you as we make photo albums of our fond memories, and I’ll cherish that memory just as much as any other memory I have of you. I want the best of both worlds Cara. I hit the jackpot with you, and life is short, and I just want to spend as much time as possible with you, in many different ways, in many different places. This is our home, this is our oasis, but Cara, at the end of the day it’s just a house. If it wasn’t for you it would just be a building. You’re my home.”

She straddled his lap and kissed him passionately, just as the fight was full of passion, so was the make up.

“Come on,” she said, hopping off of his lap. “Let’s be prodigal.”

This didn’t really turn out like I had wanted it to, but it’s just for fun, and it helps become a better writing.

Love & life lessons,


This entry was posted in Ficton and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to July Writing Prompt

  1. Chocoviv says:

    Very cool story!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think Michael’s place in my heart just doubled in size!! 😍 can he get anymore perfect?!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: WIP, July Writing Challenge PRODIGAL RETURN! – Didi Oviatt

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