Photo Prompt – Etol Bagam


Olivia had a free afternoon.   That’s how she’d ended up at Murphy’s, alone in a corner booth next to the window, sipping merlot, halfway through Girl on the Train.

“Do you mind if I join you?”  She looked up at the man, annoyed – she hated being bothered while reading.

“I’m flattered, but I really just want to be alone.”

He traced his finger along her upper arm and she cringed away.  “Come on, let me buy you a drink.”

“No, thank you.”

“A beautiful woman like you shouldn’t be sitting here all alone.”  He sat in the booth across from her.

Olivia sighed.  She knew what would get rid of the guy.  “My boyfriend’s on the way.”

He raised his hand in surrender and left to bother someone else.  He didn’t respect her but he respected a man that didn’t exist.

Olivia closed her book, put some bills on the table and left the bar, in search of another safe haven.

For Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

This story was inspired by Men, a post on In The Bliss of Broken Dreams.   Check it out, it’s quite powerful.


37 thoughts on “Haven

  1. Yes, can say I’ve experienced this. Sometimes it is nice to b a woman alone reading her book or writing. So unfortunate when our havens our invaded.

  2. This this this this!!
    I’d read a post like this on tumblr. About how disrespectful and nagging men are even when you say no. Where’s the respect? They keep insisting until women give in.
    Or they will respect that non existent man who is meant to be your boyfriend.
    It makes me so angry.

  3. Reblogged this on In The Bliss Of Broken Dreams and commented:
    One of my most favorite bloggers on WordPress wrote this very powerful flash fiction story in response to my post on men.
    I recommend you give it a read ’cause it reflects a reality that I agree exists and in fact, needs to be addressed.

  4. So true! I had a similar experience. When I joined college, there was this guy who had helped me a lot. We started talking to each other and he seemed really nice. After a few days he said he never had a ‘proper girlfriend’ ( I still dunno what he meant by that! ), and he want me to be his girlfriend. I rejected the ‘offer’ saying I’m not interested, but he became so annoying asking ‘why can’t you?’ ‘Am I not good enough?’ etc etc I tried to keep being nice thinking he’d stop it eventually,cuz I din want to begin my college life with fights, but he started being touchy around me. Then I said next time he try that, I’ll teach him a lesson, to which he replied he’ll tell people that I’m his gf and will make stories about us, then I won’t be able to back off. I din want to take chances, so I said I can’t be his gf cuz I’m committed already. He din believe me. So I called him from my friend’s chinaphone which had this application to change into male voice and told him not to bother ‘my’ girlfriend. Then my friend said : “He din back off when you threatened him in your original voice but did when you said this calmly in a male voice”!

    1. I’m sorry that happened to you. What a jerk! Yes, we have the right to turn a guy down for whatever reason we like. Sometimes I wonder if some guys just are spoiled and can’t take rejection.

      1. Yeah! And the funniest part is, when others got to know about my rejection ( Again, I dunno who informed the college rumour mill) many people asked me why I did that cuz “he’s such a nice guy”!

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