Friday Fictioneers – Naming

Photo Prompt © Björn Rudberg

We called them the witch’s tits. On account of their shape, you know – sharp cones. Before we named the peaks, this was just an ordinary mountain track. Afterwards, well you could feel it, the cold I mean, a kind of chill in your heart as you rounded the corner.

I think it was Harry who named the force – Ishtar, an ancient Queen of Heaven, who destroyed her lovers. Anyhow it was Henry She took for her own that day. We heard a wail and he vanished. That’s why we made the warning sign. Nobody takes this road now.


Friday fictioneers is a weekly challenge set by Rochelle Wisoff Fields to write a 100-word story in response to a photo prompt. You can find other stories here

79 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers – Naming

  1. That’s a clever and elegant take on the prompt. I, too, noticed the crude construction of the warning sign and wondered whether to use it. Naming things can give the objects power – as here – or give the person doing the naming a power over those objects. In either case, it’s not supernatural, rather a quirk of human psychology, so I very much take your point that it’s not Ishtar who is the scariest being in the story.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’m not sure if it was your intention, but I found the first paragraph quite funny. Witches tits and “afterwards you could feel them, the cold I mean” the ambiguity! In South Africa there is a place in the karoo called Three Sisters because of three small hills that the locals felt resembled breasts. Well, Goddesses are not to be messed with that’s for sure!

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  3. Well, of course they were that shape. If they had been renamed, would Ishtar and the chill have gone away? A great complete tale that also leaves us thinking and wondering, what if?

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  4. Your writing always flows as its read, Neil. Perfection in writing and a fabulous take on the photo prompt. A bit of warning: All woman with names that start with the ‘Letter I’ can be mysteriously witchy.
    In a good way …. which could be even more dangerous. (I’d add a sinister laugh but can’t think of how to write that.) I enjoyed your story very much.
    Isadora 😎


  5. Great story, Neil. I can imagine the narrator recounting it to a group of travellers as he guides them up the mountain, and them feeling an icy chill run down their spines.

    I laughed at ‘Witch’s tits’, maybe I should watch my step!

    Liked by 1 person

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