This short piece of fiction is written for Friday Fictioneers.The challenge is to write a story based on the picture prompt of 100 words or less that is a complete story with a beginning, middle and end. You can read other participants stories by clicking HERE.
My story begins after the picture below.
The memories of the place still haunt him.
Robert was his roommate. An extremely obese black man who never once in six weeks got out of bed. They brought a contraption in to lift him up to change his sheets. He never once turned the television off despite desperate requests. He had moved what furniture he had from his apartment into the tiny room.
Chicken Lady was how he knew what time it was. She started crowing late in the afternoon and her state of confusion would last well into his restless night.
The telephone call came at 6:04 p.m. I remember the exact time because the national news was beginning and the ringing of the telephone irritated me.
It was Sara. “Jeff passed away last night,” she cried.
I was speechless. My mind going from full speed ahead to a full stop in a nanosecond.
Jeff was diagnosed with frontal lobe dementia four years ago. I was a witness to this disease’s rapid progress through his mind and body.
We were both terrible golfers. But Jeff started to have difficulty keeping his score. As the disease progressed we would tell him what he scored. He would say, “That sounds about right.” At one point he took a swing at an imaginary ball. He went through all the motions: put the ball on the tee, took a practice swing, then took a full swing with a beautiful follow through. But he forgot to take the ball out of his pocket. “Mike, you forgot the ball!” Mike went through the same procedure again without the ball.
As this terrible disease progressed he would lose the ability to recognize family and friends, forget how to use eating utensils. Four years from diagnosis to death. Jeff was 62 year old.